A Better Way to Reject Common Descent

That’d be like “coming to peace” with the theory of gravity without affirming that rocks fall down when you let go of them.

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I affirm common descent. Just trying to work out if there could be a plausible way to take a different view, consistent with evidence, not oppositional to evolution, and outside of science.

“Consistent with evidence” and “outside of science” is not possible. Science is based on evidence, so if one is going “outside of science” one is no longer “consistent with evidence.”

Even if all evidence is not scientific (questionable), one cannot act as if scientific evidence does not exist if one wishes to claim to be “consistent with evidence.”

That is not how science works.

Human rights are consistent with evidence and outside science. Scientific inquiry does not tell us one way or another whether these rights are universal. Do you deny universal human rights?


You misunderstood what I said.

Universal human rights violate no scientific evidence.

Denial of common ancestry does.


I have frequently recited what I personally believe to be the basic position of “Geneal.Adam”:

It is an arrangement that makes it possible for Creationists to move closer to accepting the mountain of evidence that supports evolutionary processes… while allowing for a few more miracles by God for Christians who have already established a stance accepting a handful of miracles already.

The only alternate scenario is the notorious one of "serial special creations that imitate the perception of Evolutionary processes with Common Descent.

It’s turns the logic of “Geneal.Adam” completely upside down.

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What do you see as wrong with that?


Well, firstly, in the context of these boards (which are trying to rehabilitate those Creationists who are inclined to want to accept Evolutionary evidence if they can do it without violating their view of Romans 5):

“serial episodes of special creation that simulates evolutionary processes at work” is equivalent to believing that we were all created last week, and God has provided all of us with false memories that make us think we were born years ago, and the Earth was created 5 billion years ago.
If you are okay with suspecting that you have only been in existence for one week, then Genealogical Adam is not for you.

Secondly, you might as well believe that we were created by Satan in such a way as to think we were created by Yahweh.

How would anyone know anything in a world where creation is so diligently operated to look like natural processes?

I fail to see how “believing that we were all created last week, and God has provided all of us with false memories that make us think we were born years ago, and the Earth was created 5 billion years ago” is any more or less scientific than Geneological Adam. Please explain

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Let me try. I don’t know, first, if “scientific” is the proper term. None of this is scientific. However, creation of the universe, etc., last week or 6000 years ago requires God to lie, presenting false evidence of history that never happened. Genealogical Adam requires no such false evidence, as it’s not expected to have left any evidence. Thus no deception on God’s part, which is theologically better. We have lots of evidence of the universe’s (etc.) age, but we have and can have no evidence against the creation of two individuals added to an existing population.

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Thanks, the helps clear things up.

So the goal is not to have people better accept science so much, as it is for them to think nicer things about God?

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Question of God aside, would it really be “unscientific” to believe in Last Thursdayism, i.e. the world came into existence only last Thursday (with all memories and physical evidence of age fully formed)? How about believing that we’re all just brains in a vat, part of a simulation by some alien overlords? You might call such a person crazy, but I’m not sure “unscientific” is the right word. It is hard to disprove Last Thursdayism scientifically.

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Yes, I remember that discussion. It appeared to me at the time to be the only contribution that Schloss had made on the BioLogos site since he had been appointed “Senior Scholar” two or more years earlier!

But Schloss’s intervention was useful, so I give him points for that.


Certainly, @John_Harshman did a very nice job of explaining the distinction… which I must assume you already understood…


More fundamentally, it is hard to disprove Last Thursdayism is valid.

Science assumes that observations of reality (by humans or by machines) reflect a unified reality.

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We assume that those Creationists who are inclined to want to accept the preponderance of evidence for Evolution … would also want to perceive God as an entity that is not trying to deceive humanity.

Ironically, Creationists who most object about the term Evolution would rather assume that God MIMICS evolution (by sequential special creation of life forms … or even just fossils of such life forms) - - - rather than to accept the idea that God could ever use Evolution as a method of Creation.

If they were “inclined to want to accept the preponderance of evidence for Evolution”, they wouldn’t be creationists.



Yes, technically that is a correct statement.

But we here at PeacefulScience.org recognize that there are many Creationists who are uncomfortable with their stance … and that the only reason they reject the evidence for Evolution is their unwillingness to re-interpret Romans 5.

So, when a phrase like “those Creationists inclined to want to accept… evidence…” is used, it is used to refer to the Creationists who struggle with their position.

This is an interesting comment. There are Christian scientists who accept evolution and that God created all things… they call themselves “Evolutionary creationists”.
Do you think these people cannot be called “creationists”…
Do you think, evolution somehow disproves God is the creator?