Single-Couple Human Origin 100kya is Possible (Hössjer and Gauger, 2019)

Yes, that was one of the first things I had noticed. And that is precisely why I said that “a single-couple origin of humanity as recent as 500kya” is not something I find all that controversial—or even remarkable. First of all, when we are talking about that long ago, we cannot be talking about Adam and Eve or that particular biblical context because we know from the textual evidence (farming, walled cities, etc.) that it was far more recent, as you also pointed out in your recent article on this. Secondly, we can’t even be talking about human beings at that point because Homo sapiens don’t appear on the scene until a long time later. In response to arguments for a single-couple origin of humanity 500,000 years ago, I can only shrug my shoulders. Sure, if we play with the numbers just right, maybe it’s possible—but so what? Why would anyone even look for a single-couple origin that long ago? It’s not like it could have been our Adam and Eve, so what would be the point, beyond academic curiosity?

But if you want to move that single-couple origin up to 100,000 years ago “or more recently,” that’s where I’m going to raise a finger, politely clear my throat, and beg your pardon. That’s controversial enough to require compelling evidence. However, as an average blue-collar layman, I find highly technical jargon describing complicated number-crunching really difficult to understand, so I wasn’t able to discern whether or not Hössjer and Gauger had provided it. I’m genuinely grateful for people like you who not only understand this stuff but are really good at explaining it clearly to the average person.

You commented that these sort of arguments illustrate “just how far one has to go to try to make sole genetic progenitorship work.” And I can see that. However, what I don’t understand is why people try so hard to make that work when it’s biblically and theologically unnecessary, as far as I can tell. If Christ can be a covenant representative without anyone being descended from him, then surely Adam can be, too. Or is there something I am missing?

That was a fantastic article, sir, thank you. I’m very glad you took the time to write that. After reading your article, I was able to reexamine that paper and comprehend much more of the argument it was presenting. I especially appreciated this particular observation:

Another thing to keep in mind is that at 500,000 years ago, there are no Homo sapiens on the planet. At that time Homo erectus is widespread, so, if we’re talking about a bottleneck at this time, then Adam is not Homo sapiens, but rather Homo erectus or a close relative. It should also go without saying that the Genesis narratives (with their agriculture, domesticated animals, advanced metallurgy, cities, and so on) look nothing like 500,000 years ago, when stone tools were the order of the day.

I also liked your salient question, “If Adam and Eve are created de novo, why does our genome look like we evolved?”

In the book I used the standard, non-specialist convention of referring to humans as Homo sapiens. In science, you will sometimes see “humans” used to refer to all species within Homo, including Homo erectus, Neanderthals, and so on. But for a popular audience, equating Homo sapiens with human is more common, so I went with that approach. When Gauger claims that single-couple human origin is possible, she is using “human” in the broader, all-of-Homo sense – but many people will not understand that and hear “single-couple origin for Homo sapiens”.

Indeed, I am one of those people. I thought she meant Homo sapiens.

I enjoy speculating that you’re still using that picture because it’s a random picture you grabbed off the internet one day and you can’t change it because it’s actually not even you. :stuck_out_tongue:

Yes, that is a curious thing. What is motivating the attempt? Is there any evidence for a single-couple origin 500,000 years ago and that’s why Hössjer and Gauger are trying to show that it’s possible? I doubt that there is, for they almost certainly would have explained such evidence. What else could their motivation be, other than the creation narrative in Genesis? If they are guided by some specific evidence. I wish they would share it.

I don’t think any young-earth creationist will be satisfied with this paper. Nothing can happen 500,000 years ago in a universe that is 6,000 years old. This is fodder for progressive creationists and intelligent-design advocates.