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The Genealogical Adam and Eve– Part Three

The Genealogical Adam and Eve– Part Three October 27, 2021

Q. Let’s talk about evolution for a bit. While it may seem redundant, the truth is that evolutionary science has itself evolved over time. Darwin’s early reflections on Origins morphed into some different reflections in later iterations of his work especially in the way he reflected on God’s role in the whole process, and it is true as well that evolutionary science continues to develop. It seems to me that for most conservative Christians whether Protestant, Orthodox, or Catholic, micro-evolution within a specific genus or species isn’t really the issue. You don’t hear a lot of debates or arguments about whether a fish could crawl on land and adapt and become some sort of land creature. You also don’t hear objections to the notion that caterpillars can become butterflies to use an even more obvious example. Change, adaptation to environment to survive among all creatures great and small that are not human is neither here nor there for most Christians. Obviously, the flash point is human beings and human origins.

 

A.

You are right to put the focus on human evolution. No one really cares, in the end, about evolution among animals and plants. The real difficulty is squaring human evolution with Genesis and theological anthropology. What do I mean by “evolution”? As a scientist, I understand evolution as a good and useful scientific explanation of how the complexity and diversity of life arose. But it is not the whole story. We do not know or understand all the whys and whats. Evolution is not a total explanation of the world, and it never will be.

As a Christian, I understand evolution as God’s providentially governed process of creating us all. I don’t need scientific evidence to prove God’s involvement. The testimony of Scripture is good enough for me. So, evolution is legitimate, but it does account for everything. Most scientists will agree with this account of evolution. It is against this backdrop, that my book argues for the special and miraculous creation of a single couple in our past, without parents of their own.


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