DNA evidence says that there was not a primal couple, instead there were a few thousand people from which mankind emerged. If that were true why did God say to Adam “It is not good for man to be alone” if there were people around?
One idea is that the narrative is not describing a literal, factual, historical event, but is a theological narrative meant to teach theological points–humanity is intended by God to have meaningful relationships and marriage is a God-ordained institution.
I would suggest that the Genesis 2:22 “Then the LORD God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man.” is sufficient to show that there is figurative language in the Genesis account. It seems as though the lessons of the text are more important than the literal meaning.
To say that DNA evidence does not support that Adam and Eve were the first humans to be created and that all humans descended from them, is not supported by scientic research. Please read the scientific article from Creation Science International Adam, Eve and Noah vs Modern Genetics
by Dr Robert W. Carter
Published: 11 May 2010 (GMT+10)
Other excellent articles are available on this topic. Many renowned scientists will tell you that genetics does not support evolution. Professor Maciej Giertych, M.A.(Oxford), Ph.D.(Toronto), D.Sc.(Poznan), is head of the Genetics Department of the Polish Academy of Sciences at the Institute of Dendrology in Kornik, Poland. He is on the editorial board of two international periodicals: Silvae Genetics, published in Germany, and Annales ses sciences forestieres published in France. He is a member of the Polish Academy of Sciences Committee on Forest Sciences, and on the Forestry Council in the Ministry of Environmental Protection, Natural Resources and Forestry. He is the author of about 150 scientific papers in Polish and international periodicals, IS JUST ONE OF THEM. His article appears on CMI site - Professor of genetics says ‘No!’ to evolution
by Maciej Giertych
@cwhenderson, nice posting!
The irony of that particular passage of Hebrew is that it more or less confirms that the Hebrew priests were knowledgeable of Babylonian traditions! And that they were actually influenced by these traditions!
“. . . in the Sumerian myth one of Enki’s diseased body parts that Ninhursag heals and conceives through was his rib. Ninhursag soon gives birth to Nin-ti, (“Lady Rib”), a motif that is echoed in the Biblical story of Eve, who was taken from Adam’s rib.”
Eve becomes the literal embodiment (< see what I did there?!) of “Lady of the Rib” !
Thanks for the link George, is it possible that the influence between Hebrews & Babylonians is reversed. A whole new discussion of course.
This is an interesting topic I know virtually nothing about. Looking forward to reading responses here!
In another thread, @Jon_Garvey mentions that the otherwise uncommon view of a heavenly aggregation of Waters, (which when allowed to rain down on earth through apertures regulated by angels in the form of Stars), is actually implied by at least one Babylonian writing. I’m quite willing to see this Cosmological Interpretation as a genuine Hebrew invention!
But, in other cases, it seems more obvious that the Hebrew priests are borrowing and Improving (!!) the ideas of their predecessors. The Tower of Babel story appears to be a “priestly co-option” of a pagan story, to help swallow up pagan religious ideas and energies, just like the Catholic Church did for centuries all over the world. And the Global Flood is more of the same.
Saint Nicholas of Anatolia “swallows up” the pagan Yuletide elves of Scandinavia, even after The Church “swallowed up” the Saturnalia and made it about the birth of 1/3rd of the Triune Godhead.
Some detractors try to accuse the church of being unethical in this practice, but it seems like a very practical, if technically not perfectly righteous, campaign to win the hearts and minds of people who otherwise might be performing rather unsavory rituals in connection to the “old gods” - - and would certainly be risking their salvation in the process!
That article gets a lot of basic science wrong. For starters, it tries to push the incorrect conclusion that having a most recent common ancestor (MRCA) for mitochondrial DNA and the Y chromosome somehow evidences that a single woman and a single man founded the human population. A simple look at your own recent ancestors can help dispel this myth. Of your 4 great grandfathers only one of them gave you your Y chromosome, yet they are all equally your great grandfathers. Of your 4 great grandomothers, only one of them gave you your mitochondrial genome, yet they are all equally your great grandmothers. You carry DNA from all of your great grandparents even though only 1 of them gave you your mitochondrial DNA and only one of them gave you your Y chromosome (if you are a dude).
Then there is this sentence from the article:
“The important take home point is that essentially all of the genetic variation among people today could have been carried within two people, if you discount mutations that occurred after our dispersion across the globe. This is a surprise to many.”
So they claim that just 2 people can account for all the alleles in the human population because there are only 2 alleles for each gene . . . unless there are more than 2 alleles for each gene and in that case it still only came from 2 people. Seems like they have a dogmatic position that is immune to evidence.
I remember somewhere on the site where a YEC leader was asked what evidence would change his mind, and he replied that no amount of evidence could do so. He was honest and it is notable that if you think your interpretation is the only correct way to look at it, is consistent with faith.
The science is overwhelming, but that is really not the determining issue. The issue is the theology.
Dr. Kurt Wise is one such creationist. He actually studied under Dr. Stephen Jay Gould in graduate school, so Dr. Wise does understand the science. Dr. Wise states that he believes in creationism because his religious beliefs demand it.
This differs a bit from most creationist organizations who claim that the evidence does not support evolution, or that there is evidence for creationism.
Ken Ham definitely is immune to any evidence as per the infamous debate with Bill Nye.
More interesting though, is YEC Todd Wood who acknowledges:
Evolution is not a theory in crisis. It is not teetering on the verge of collapse. It has not failed as a scientific explanation. There is evidence for evolution, gobs and gobs of it. It is not just speculation or a faith choice or an assumption or a religion. It is a productive framework for lots of biological research, and it has amazing explanatory power. There is no conspiracy to hide the truth about the failure of evolution. There has really been no failure of evolution as a scientific theory. It works, and it works well.
So he decides to go on ‘it is my own faith choice to reject evolution, because I believe the Bible reveals true information about the history of the earth that is fundamentally incompatible with evolution.’
There is a lengthy thread … full of chaos and commotion … where the question of allele diversity in the human genome was fervently bandied around.
I believe it was finally concluded that using reasonable assumptions about the pace of new allele development (i.e., mutatioins), and the pace of allele loss, and I’m sure many other things that I know nothing about, the conclusion was:
the current state of human gene/allele diversity is far too robust to have been created by a single mating pair that started reproducing 6000 years ago.
So … now God has to make the alleles…or its just another way Science is going to “oppress” the Creationists…
One of the surprises for me in my discussion with Nathaniel Jeanson at SEBTS was how negatively Jeanson viewed Todd Wood. I guess it’s not surprising, given Todd’s views.
@DennisVenema and @pevaquark, I haven’t read much of his work, but I have a tremendous amount of respect for Todd Wood. He has intentionally placed himself in the cross-hairs of both traditional Creationists and traditional Evolutionists in acknowledging the scientific support of evolution, but maintaining his belief in YEC. I draw different conclusions from the “two books” than he does, but we could all learn a lot from his example of sincerity and honesty.
Georgia Purdom also said this in the dialogue I had with her at LeTourneau University back around 2011 (?) or so. There are YouTube videos of the event.
Well, “the issue is the theology” for people like the YEC leader you mention. I would say a narrow majority of ordinary Christians are not so fixed in their views.
For millions of Christians, if the evidence were to swing away from Evolution, they would stop supporting the validity of Evolutionary science.
I think it is healthy to acknowledge that BioLogos is not going to resolve everyone’s opposition to Evolution, even if BioLogos was a perfect organization. But that’s not why BioLogos exists. It exists to reach the people who do care about both their faith and the science.
The prime example would be the HLA genes which can have thousands of alleles in the human population.