Interpreting Luke's Genealogical Account

(Freddy Magnanimous) #21

There’s every indication that Adam was viewed as a historical person in the Bible. From multiple genealogies that connect Adam to real people to Paul’s references to Adam in Romans 5, the most obvious and likely reading is that Adam is real. The problem is that no one has been able to propose an Adam that can credibly coexist with evolution. Denis Lamoureux knows this. Adam did not exist. He classifies the ancient belief in Adam as “ancient science” — Adam is in the same category as a dome sky and a three-tiered universe. Ancients didn’t know any better. They had to guess. Where I would disagree with Lamoureux is that Christianity can be coherently put back together without a historical Adam and Eve. The Christian story needs the Fall. Without it, the idea of a savior unravels. So, just to show all my cards. I think losing Adam is a fatal flaw to traditional Christianity.

(Jay Johnson) #22

Don’t worry. I found him. It’s just taking much longer than expected to draw the map … haha


But all people are sinners, and in need of a savior.

(Freddy Magnanimous) #24

I’m not sure you can ditch the backstory and keep the punchline. Of course we sin, we’re the result of a brutal billion year process of survival of the fittest. What did God expect? We’re emerging from animals. Why would God choose to bring about humans through such a process and then condemn them to hell for not being perfect? The theology becomes clumsy and strange. Without a Fall, nothing broke. Nothing went wrong. Why would humans need saving from being as God made them?

(Phil) #25

Not sure I understand your logic. You could just as easily said, “Why would Adam be at fault for being as God made him?” We are broken, regardless. All have sinned…

(Freddy Magnanimous) #26

The point of traditional Christian theology is that this is NOT how God made humans. Adam fell, bringing death and sin natures to all humanity. In this story God did not design humans with corrupt natures. Adam and Eve were created in harmony with God, but they broke this relationship and changed the very nature of human beings (and nature itself — farming and childbirth became difficult, etc).[quote=“jpm, post:25, topic:36744”]
We are broken, regardless. All have sinned…

You’re conflating “not being perfect” with “broken,” but these are different ideas. We are not broken. If God chose to forge Homo sapiens through an uncaring contest of survival, then this is what you get. We didn’t break. That’s a bit twisted to use such a process then declare, “Even though I created you in a way that ensures you are flawed, I will condemn you to hell for being flawed.” To be sure, I don’t think the original story makes a lot of sense, but at least something broke.

(Phil) #27

Help me here. Are we broken or not in your view? If so, do you see Adam’s fall as the reason you are broken?

(Freddy Magnanimous) #28

No, we are not broken. We evolved to be as we are.


We have all sinned and fall short of the glory of God. And we sin of our own volition. We have all fallen from grace.

(George Brooks) #30


Does that mean we have to have the Rich Man have the long discussion with Abraham,
as detailed by Jesus in Luke 16 (verses 22-31)?

And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham’s bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried;
And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.
And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.
But Abraham said, Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented.
And beside all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed: so that they which would pass from hence to you cannot; neither can they pass to us, that would come from thence.
Then he said, I pray thee therefore, father, that thou wouldest send him to my father’s house:
For I have five brethren; that he may testify unto them, lest they also come into this place of torment.
Abraham saith unto him, They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.
And he said, Nay, father Abraham: but if one went unto them from the dead, they will repent.
And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead.

(Freddy Magnanimous) #31

Of course we’ve all sinned. God made us through a brutal contest of survival - a process that often rewards tribalism, fighting, and having irresponsible sex. Do you really think God would create humans in this manner and then deem them worthy of hell for being as he created them?

If anyone’s interested, this book spells out the problems in more detail.

(GJDS) #32

This is the stark difference that evolutionists cannot deal with - if humans are indeed a product of this brutal process than there is no basis for faith, nor that of a human nature that is capable of repentance and redemption. Instead we are all brutes participating in a brutal process for survival.

Human history shows in many ways of the hope of humanity for virtue, goodness and faith, and the desire to attain the attributes shown by Christ. ToE cannot account for such matters, and many materialists have said as much.

(George Brooks) #33

All true, @GJDS … until …

… until God recognizes (or produces) in humanity a Moral Heart, a Moral Mind, a Moral Soul.

Then it is all new and different.

(GJDS) #34

And when and where has evolution done this?

(Freddy Magnanimous) #35

I don’t think evolution blends well with Christian theology, but nor do I think it requires that we remain brutes. As intelligence increases so does our ability to override our base instincts. We can reason our way to better behavior and more just and flourishing societies. We have a depressingly barbaric history, and too many people continue to suffer at the hands of human cruelty and stupidity, but we’ve come a long way. We’re climbing the escalator of reason (Shout out for Steven Pinker’s The Better Angels of Our Nature. So good!).

(GJDS) #36

A couple of points: (1) many of us do live in hope, faith and seek to grow into the attributes of Christ - your comment regarding evolution and Christianity would, as a fact, appear to contradict this. (2) human intelligence does not arise (or is a consequence) of Darwinian evolution as articulated by its proponents, and if this is so, you are adding something out of convenience to the theory, not as a prediction from it.

I agree that we have progresses, in spite of our brutal history. I also note that no selective force has prevented us to decimate our environment, which again contradicts the edicts of evolutionary theory.

(George Brooks) #37


Evolution-with-God, as formulated by BioLogos specifically allows for this.


. Do you really think God would create Adam with the free will to sin, stick him in a garden with forbidden fruit, and then deem him worthy of hell when he acted on his free will?

(GJDS) #39

This is not the case.

(Freddy Magnanimous) #40

Well, no, I think Genesis 2-3 is all ancient human speculation. I think trying to mine spiritual realities from it is misguided. But, the whole point is that this is exactly what Paul and later Christian theologians have done.

I’m genuinely curious, do you think God created humans through a brutal contest of survival - a process that often rewards tribalism, fighting, and having irresponsible sex -and then deemed them worthy of hell for being as he created them?