Has new scientific evidence demonstrated that Adam and Eve never existed?
Are Christians scrambling for some new explanation of what the Bible means?
In this Trinity Insight video, we look what one new scientific study claims about evidence of early humans and whether it is incompatible with the biblical story of creation in Genesis, and specifically the existence of a literal Adam and Eve.
Welcome to Trinity insight the home of the thinking Christian. Today we’re asking the question, has science removed the possibility of a literal, historical Adam and Eve.
Bryan College in Dayton, Tennessee is under fire this week after making a change to its belief statement, which affirms that Adam and Eve were actual historical figures. A number of professors either resigned over fired because they could not agree with the idea that Adam and Eve actually existed in a literal sense.
This prompted University of Chicago ecology and evolution professor Jerry Coyne to demand that claiming bible-believing literalism is compatible with science is like saying that eating broccoli is compatible with being a lion. He says that the latest studies on this – although he fails to give us any citations – say the smallest size of population that could have initially spread from Africa would have had to have been 20,250. Then he makes the lead to say that since 20,250 isn’t 2, that Adam and Eve must have never existed as the Bible claims they did.
So, are Christians in trouble here?
Well, not really.
First of all, that there were 20,250 that came out of Africa just begs the question, where did the 20,250 come from? Atheists will answer this question in one way and believers in another. Moreover, even if the uncited studies were right – not that I think they are – it would not mean that Christianity was in any danger.
Christians have had young-earth creationists, old-earth creationists, and progressive creationists for a long, long time. Any one of those could believe in a historical Adam and Eve. They would just describe how Adam and Eve got there and when they existed a little differently.
Coyne then goes on to complain that to a rationalist all of these sophisticated theological gymnastics are amusing. But as I said orthodox Christians have understood the when and how of the historical Adam and Eve in slightly differing ways for hundreds and hundreds of years. Now I don’t agree with what many Christians say about this, but it’s not as though the church is all of the sudden trying to come up with new understandings just because of a couple of new studies.
So, has science destroyed the idea of a literal Adam and Eve? Absolutely not.
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