Posts Tagged Genesis 2
At Jesus Creed, RJS has a great discussion of Tim Keller’s essay “Creation, Evolution and Christian Lay People” exploring the topic of the historical Adam and Eve, evolutionary theory, the trustworthiness of Scripture and the complex relationship between science and the Bible. Keller first addresses whether one needs to take Genesis 1 literally, and second whether all theories of evolutionary processes violate the Scriptures. RJS focuses her discussion on the third question of Keller’s essay. Here is Keller’s introduction:
Question #3: If biological evolution is true and there was no historical Adam and Eve how can we know where sin and suffering came from?
Answer: Belief in evolution can be compatible with a belief in an historical fall and a literal Adam and Eve. There are many unanswered questions around this issue and so Christians who believe God used evolution must be open to one another’s views.
My answers to the first two sets of questions are basically negative. I resist the direction of inquirer’s thought. I don’t believe you have to take Genesis 1 as a literal account, and I don’t think that to believe human life came about through EBP (Evolutionary Biological Processes) you necessarily must support evolution as the GTE (evolution as Grand Theory of Everything).
However, I find the concerns of this question much more well-grounded. Indeed, I must disclose, I share them. Many orthodox Christians who believe God used EBP to bring about human life not only do not take Genesis 1 as history, but also deny that Genesis 2 is an account of real events. Adam and Eve, in their view, were not historical figures but an allegory or symbol of the human race. Genesis 2, then, is a symbolic story or myth which conveys the truth that human beings all have and do turn away from God and are sinners.
Before I share my concerns with this view, let me make a clarification. One of my favorite Christian writers (that’s putting it mildly), C.S.Lewis, did not believe in a literal Adam and Eve, and I do not question the reality or soundness of his personal faith. But my concern is for the church corporately and for its growth and vitality over time. Will the loss of a belief in the historical fall weaken some of our historical, doctrinal commitments at certain crucial points?
Read the rest of Keller’s essay and RJS’s discussion of it HERE.
What do you think?