4 Stars: A YEC Reviews The Genealogical Adam and Eve

A really interesting review of my book popped up on Amazon. This reviewer is a YEC, and he writes very much like many of the YECs of good will I’ve met over the years. They are not well represented in the conversation, and their numbers are large.

https://www.amazon.com/review/R3SSGVE68KNXKI/?_encoding=UTF8&ASIN=0830852638

Challenging But Enriching

Attempting to accommodate evolutionary science with the biblical account of a real, historical Adam, Dr. Swamidass, a Christian biologist and theistic evolutionist, strives to provide a starting point for reopening dialog between science and theology. His big idea seems to be that God created two parallel streams of humanity. The first stream arose through evolutionary process from antiquity and the second through the “de novo” and more recent Edenic creation of Adam and Eve. Due to Adam’s disobedience the couple were exiled from Eden whereupon their genes mingled with those of the evolved stream, making the two groups genetically indistinguishable over the millennia. Thus, Swamidass focuses on the genealogical relationship of humanity to Adam as recorded in Scripture, which can’t be disproven or even addressed by science, and which gives rise to the title of the book. After laying this foundation, the author explores the theological implications of being genetically or genealogically (or both) connected to Adam with regard to, for example, original sin and the image of God. This is a very thoughtful book and the author demonstrates a surprisingly competent grasp of historical theology given the fact he is not a trained theologian. On the negative side, first let me say this book will be a challenging read for most people given the plethora of biological, theological and philosophical terms employed. A glossary, even one at the beginning of each chapter, would have been very helpful. Second, the logical constructs Swamidass presents are plausible only if you agree with his presuppositions. These include a geologically old earth, a pre-Edenic human population, a regional interpretation of Noah’s flood, a separation of Genesis 1 from Genesis 2 and a mythological interpretation of Genesis 1-11. So, while he seeks to extend an olive branch that will draw science and theology into dialog, Swamidass’s presuppositions erect a fence for young earth Creation scientists who view Genesis 1-11 as historical and who draw different conclusions while looking at the same extra-biblical scientific evidence. The author might have done well to acknowledge that there is a cadre of such scientists covering the spectrum of disciplines who have legitimate PHD’s from respected universities. As it is, he seems to have excluded them from the conversation by his assumptions. And I would also note that none of the book’s endorsements come from young earth Creationists. Having said all that, I am grateful to Dr. Swamidass, my brother in Christ, for writing this book. I was challenged, enriched and broadened by it. I think it is very important to interact in depth with viewpoints that may differ from our own. When we do, we may find we agree on more than we disagree on and we also learn respect for the opinions of others.

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You might invite him here. I think the only way to do that would be to comment at Amazon on the review.

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I thought the book was interesting. But intelligent design has extended an actual olive branch to YECs that we can actually accept. ID can incorporate old earthers and young earthers successfully. If Miller and Churchill can be taken at face value, even TEs can accept ID. Your idea can’t even be reconciled with other old earthers.

@BenKissling

The problem with I.D. is that it has a broken epistemology.

Creation is not the problem. Thinking that science can PROVE creation - - THAT is the problem. It can’t be done… because God cannot be used as a Controlled Variable.

I’m wondering how he gets the idea that you believe Genesis 1-11 to not be historical? Isn’t the whole point of the book to show a historical Adam and Eve? Or is he equating historical with 6000 year old earth and global flood?

It would be nice if he’d come here and discuss!

That is strange, because I argue precisely the opposite. Ha!