Skip to comments.Even Richard Dawkins is Right Sometimes (Is the Biblical story of Adam and Eve a myth?)
Posted on 11/29/2011 12:32:30 PM PST by SeekAndFind
For the last several months there has been a flurry of discussionmostly online, of courseabout the impossibility of a literal Adam & Eve (see, e.g., here and here and here). This ruling-out has been accomplished recently by the Human Genome Project, which indicates that anatomically modern humans emerged from primate ancestors about 100,000 years ago, from a population of something like 10,000. In short, science has confirmed what many of us already knew: there was not a literal first couple. So what else can we learn from this story?
Plenty, it turns out. Peter Enns, a biblical scholar who blogs at Patheos, has been following the discussion with some care. Lately he has done us all a great favor: written a series of posts pointing out recurring mistakes made by many of those doing the discussing. Many of these mistakes are rhetorically effective but collapse upon even modest inspection.
But not all of them.
On Friday, he listed one held mostly by the pro-science crowd: Evidence for and against evolution is open to all and can be assessed by anyone.
Enns declares that this is not so. The years of training and experience required of those who work in fields that touch on evolution rules out of bounds the views of those who lack such training, he writes.
This is true but it misses the point. The open-access-to-science cliché, usually trundled out by those who wish to contrast the transparency of science with the supposed obfuscation of religion, carries some truth.
Science actually is transparent in a way that religion is not. Thats because, in science land, there is nothing but to follow the evidence. Its out on the table, after all, able and willing to be poked and prodded and analyzed and figured out and held up and turned around and looked at from new angles. Also, what counts as evidence in science is pretty well-defined. And if you do become an evolution expert, you actually will see that 99% of all scientists back evolution for a reason: the evidence demands it.
This is the great generosity of science, and its great strength: It is actually all right there, ready to be seen and understood. It is relievedly explicit. It takes effort, sure, just as Enns suggests; its not easy to become a professional research biologist. But the reason biologists agree on evolution is because its a relatively simple matter to be objective about fossils and genes. Unlike the objects of religionthe divine and humanitys relation to itthe objects of science give themselves up for abstraction and analysis without a fight.
Therefore Richard Dawkins (for example) is right when he says, as he has on many occasions, that the evidence for evolution is there to be inspected by anyone. It is sitting out there on the table, waiting patiently for most of humanity to catch up to it, waiting to tell us its time to bid the historical Adam & Eve a final, if fond, farewell.
Since there are several theories of evolution, and the Pope only accepts one of them, which theory of evolution are YOU talking about?
You’re a marvel, allmendream.
You demand answers to your questions while all the while completely ignoring all questions asked of you.
I’ll play your game and do some research on your mouse/rat question.
Your comparison of the mouse/rat to the chimpanzee/human begs the question.... do you believe that humans evolved from chimpanzees? (That’s a simple yes or no, allmendream)
If so, how do you square that with Mark 10:6
Do you recognize this as a huge disconnect? How do you reconcile this huge discrepancy?
No. Human beings did not evolve FROM chimpanzees. According to the evidence and the theory of common descent - Humans and Chimpanzees share a common ancestor. Do you understand the difference?
From the VERY beginning of creation God made humans male and female? Is that what you are claiming? Or is it that sometime AFTER the very beginning of creation - WHEN God made humans - he made them male and female (the context being no divorce - that God intends us to couple and to stay faithful) - or is it one male and TWO females (Lilith) as other sources have it?
Do you mean that when you hear "growth", you think "teology"?
Your choice is....
Believe that what God wrote is true.....
Let God be true and every man a liar...
Does the Pope face the same choice?
He evidently chose the same path I did.
Does the Pope “call God a liar” by accepting evolution, or is it somehow just me?
Do Old Earth Creationists “call God a liar” by rejecting Young Earth Creationism?
Does most the Christian world “call God a liar” by rejecting Geocentrism?
then the pope is calling God a liar.
English Standard Version (©2001) then the LORD God formed the man of dust from the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living creature.
Young's Literal Translation And Jehovah God formeth the man -- dust from the ground, and breatheth into his nostrils breath of life, and the man becometh a living creature.
Douay-Rheims Bible And the Lord God formed man of the slime of the earth: and breathed into his face the breath of life, and man became a living soul.
Did God say that He used the dust of the earth or not?
Do you presume to know better than God?
I don’t care if the pope is the pope. If he denies what is clearly and plainly stated in divinely God breathed Scripture, he IS calling God a liar. He IS claiming to know more than God.
As is anyone who agrees with him.
Ask Richard Dawkins what he thinks about your screwy “virgin birth.”
So at last you answer ONE of my questions!
So the Pope is calling God a liar by accepting evolution - thank goodness! I thought that somehow I was the only one that was supposedly calling God a liar by accepting the theory of evolution!/s
The Bible tells me that I too am made “from dust” and “to dust” I will return. But I was also made through cellular processes involving DNA.
Was my creation “from dust” somehow less literal than the creation of Adam “from dust”?
If there was no Adam and Eve... there was no fall..if there was no fall there was no need for a savior...
There is no scientific evidence for evolution ...
"Do you mean that when you hear "growth", you think "teology"?" ~ tacticalogic
"[In light of what I just wrote] I think we are now in a position to coontemplate DeKoninck's orthoparadoxical statement that "Every natural form tends toward man. The idea of man bursts forth from no matter what form, even from a material point of view. The essential desire of prime matter, which always indefinitely exceeds any form received, is to be actuated by the immobile form of man. And in this perspective, subhuman forms are much less states than tendencies."
Ah, dear hearts, do you see the point, and how DeKoninck cannot not be speaking the truth? For you see, "truth is not just a property of knowledge, but a transcendental quality of being as such" (Balthasar). To know any truth is to know all truth, at least in potential.And to know this is to know the final cause of existence, as the cosmos completes and perfects itself in the life and truth and being of spirit.
Whoever can dictate the terminology cotrols the debate, and will always have the upper hand.
Greetings allmendream, you said this:
***Good do your research - then come back and tell me how a difference ten times as great is micro and perfectly able to be accomplished in a thousand years or less - but a difference one tenth as much is macro and impossible even after six million years!
Do you recognize this as a huge disconnect? How do you reconcile this huge discrepancy?***
Since genetics is not my area of expertise I sought out an expert. He has a PhD in Marine Biology and he is currently doing research on human genetics.
Here is what he said (verbatim):
1) Mice and rats have a much shorter generation time and a much higher reproductive output. More generations and more babies with a more or less constant population size = more mutations, more selection, more drift, and more rapid separation of genetic lines.
2) Whether or not they are the same created kind is an open question. The questioner is assuming common ancestry, which may or may not be true. Even if it is true...
3) Each type of organism must be treated separately. They have different DNA repair systems (or at least different variants of common systems), different reproductive modes, different selection constraints, etc., etc. Once the “molecular clock” is rejected, and it should be, one realizes that mutations will occur at different rates in different species.
4) Add to this the fact that we do not know how many individuals God created within each created kind, except for humans, and one of those was made from the other. For most animal groups, the fossil record is rich in diversity, especially when compared to the morphological paucity within these groups today (e.g., there were many unusual variations just in fossil rhinos!). Therefore, even if mice and rats belonged to one created kind, the two individuals on the Ark could have had carried a huge amount of genetic diversity, which would have been quickly partitioned in the rapidly-spreading post-Flood mouse-rat population.
5) With so much room for evolutionary experimenting, why have mice and rats remained, well, so mouse-like? With much less evolutionary experimenting, humans, with all their advanced thinking, (supposedly) evolved from something that anyone today would call an ape, and this occurred in less time than mice and rats have supposedly been separated. The differences between humans and chimps, even if only a few %, and that is debatable, are profound. Given equal time and opportunity, why are chimps still so stupid? Genetic distance is almost irrelevant, and so is the argument.
I’m sure this won’t satisfy you, allmendream. Nothing does.
As for the rest of your post:
***No. Human beings did not evolve FROM chimpanzees. According to the evidence and the theory of common descent - Humans and Chimpanzees share a common ancestor. Do you understand the difference?***
You insist on mocking, don’t you. I didn’t say that you believe humans evolved from chimps. I asked if that was your premise based on the way you framed the question.
***From the VERY beginning of creation God made humans male and female? Is that what you are claiming? Or is it that sometime AFTER the very beginning of creation - WHEN God made humans - he made them male and female (the context being no divorce - that God intends us to couple and to stay faithful) - or is it one male and TWO females (Lilith) as other sources have it?***
I claim no such thing. Jesus Christ does. I, of course, believe Him. Lilith? Are you intending to put “other sources” on par with scripture?
By the way, here’s something Jesus said in Matthew 24:
37 As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. 38 For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark; 39 and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man.
So in this passage Jesus verifies the flood. I believe I’ve read your mocking diatribes on that subject as well.
This is Luke 16:31:
31 He said to him, If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.
This would validate the writings of Moses including the Creation account.
The Bible speaks of you as well, allmendream:
12 Mockers resent correction,
so they avoid the wise.
Perhaps that is why you refuse to answer anyone’s questions.
Jude Verses 17-19
17 But, dear friends, remember what the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ foretold. 18 They said to you, In the last times there will be scoffers who will follow their own ungodly desires. 19 These are the people who divide you, who follow mere natural instincts and do not have the Spirit.
So, allmendream.... we are told to expect you.
I believe you have some soul-searching to do, allmendream. You say Jesus is your Lord but you reject what He says. You can’t have it both ways.
I’ll be praying for you.
The different “molecular clocks” of rodents and primates doesn't account for this either.
Two individual animals - unless magical - can only have a maximum genetic diversity of FOUR - IF each individual is a total hetero-zygote at each genetic loci and the mated pair don't have any variations at all in common. Four.
Mice and rats are extremely well adapted - what would you expect them to change into within our lifetime? If you have come to expect the differentiation of the rodent “kind” into mice and rats within a thousand year span you will be disappointed. It took many millions of years to accumulate that much difference in genetic DNA - ten times the difference as between humans and chimpanzees.
You did ask exactly if I thought humans evolved from chimps. Shared a common ancestor is not the same thing.
So can you answer how ten times the amount of genetic difference can be called “micro” and be possible within a thousand year span - but one tenth the difference can only be called “macro” and be impossible even after six million years?
The answer I gave you is from a PhD who is doing genetic research right now. If you won’t accept what he tells you, why would I want to dance with you any further on this? It wouldn’t matter if God Himself refuted you, you wouldn’t accept it anyway.
You have throughout this process refused to answer any questions while insisting everybody else answer yours, all the while mocking and deriding.
I believe I’ll stand right where I am. As I said before... you need to do some soul-searching in regard to Jesus Christ.
I’ll leave you with this which I posted quite a while ago. I’ll repost it here:
One of these statements is true:
1. Matter/Energy do not exist.
2. Matter/Energy are eternal.
3. Matter/Energy spontaneously generated out of nothing.
4. Matter/Energy were created.
Option #1 is falsified by the Scientific Method.
Matter & Energy are observed everyday.
Option #2 is falsified by the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics which states (basically) that energy is running down and we will eventually have no usable energy left. At that point we will suffer heat death....the sun can not burn forever, it will eventually run out of fuel. If the universe were eternal, this would have happened already.
One more thing on this.... secular science is all-in on the Big Bang theory, admitting that there was a beginning and therefore the universe is not eternal.
Option #3 - Spontaneous generation is falsified by the 1st Law of Thermodynamics (By natural processes, energy cannot be created or destroyed), The Law of the Conservation of Matter (By natural processes, matter cannot be created or destroyed although it can change form) and the Law of Cause and Effect (every effect must have a greater and preexistent cause).
That leaves us with Option #4... that matter and energy were created. This does not violate any natural law.
Can I prove that the universe was created? No. I cant.
However, natural law itself has falsified all the other options..... Naturalists, who believe only in nature and in nothing Supernatural have to ignore natural law to believe what they believe.