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“Adam never existed” theologian responds to critics

In “Spinning our Wheels: A Response to a Review of “The Evolution of Adam” (with apologies to those with a 500 word, 1.6 minute internet attention span)” (August 14, 2012), Peter Enns, formerly at BioLogos, responds to a critical review of his book explaining why the claim that Adam never existed doesn’t harm Christian theology:

Madueme is to be commended for saying plainly what many others only think: “I know there is serious evidence to the contrary that calls into question what I believe, but, come what may, I’m going to stick with ‘the Bible’ as understood by my tradition and the theological conclusions required to maintain theological stabilty.”

One might wonder, however, whether Madueme’s apologetic motives should have been stated at the outset, and perhaps led to a much shorter review. I mean no disrespect, but, after all, if Madueme truly recognizes the pressure that the scientific consensus on evolution (and I would add the study of ancient Israel) puts on the historical Adam and the fall, but then slips out the back door, so to speak, and returns home to his dogmatic commitments, all else is just filler. Any true engagement with counterevidence is in principle off the table at the outset.

Why does “the science evidence,” with these folks, always mean “whatever Darwin’s followers are fronting now”? For that matter, since Enns thinks that his critics really need Adam to exist, does he grasp the centrality of the fact that he himself really needs him not to?

For an analysis of the science evidence, try Ann Gauger, here, “Ann Gauger on watching Ayala’s “no’ Adam or Eve’ analysis crumble …”

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