Comments on Three Reviews at BioLogos

The genetic comparison is problematic. That’s not how new species arise, what you describe is merely the fixation of a new mutation in a population that remains Homo sapiens, and Dr. Yevrag is only the sole progenitor of that particular mutation. Your analogy shows that “sole progenitor” is a bad term to use.



I like your clarification except for the use of the term “sole-genealogical progenitor”.

Since a population can have more than one pair of genealogical progenitors, it would seem that your attempt to wedge “sole” into the phrase only works for one type of model: the ones where all possible descendants come from only ONE parent, or from only ONE mated pair.

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There is no second use of the term. Just one, and that Isn’t what it means.


Right… the word “second” was a typo. I have corrected that post.

However, using the word “sole” is going to contribute to conversational confusions!

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Apparently “sole” is theologically important, for some reason that isn’t clear to me, and it must be retained even though it’s confusing.

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You guys are mistaking lack of clarity for a difference of definitions. The definition is clear. There, also, are multiple definitions. The repetitiveness of this is getting tiresome.

Could it be that the repetitiveness is indicative of a problem of communication inherent in the term? Several people have admitted to confusion. Could you perhaps clearly state the multiple definitions again, as I may have missed the ones you are referring to?

This is the standard definition: 1. All “humans” (by a particular definition) descend from AE. 2. Anyone who does not descend from them is not “human” In this scenario, Adam and Eve occupy the unique position of being the first in their lineage.

And almost entirely across the board, this does not rule out AE’s lineage interbreeding with other lineages.

We also have discussed other definitions elsewhere: Three Stories on Adam

But that isn’t what “sole” means. All humans are not solely descended from AE; what’s solely descended from AE is the quality of “humanness”, whatever that is. One is human by virtue of having AE among one’s ancestors. AE are thus the sole progenitors of humanness, but they aren’t the sole progenitors of humans, either genetically or genealogically. “Sole” is the problem. The terminology doesn’t mean what it says.

“Sole” means that it is soley AE from whom humans must descend.

You are meaning “sole” that they are the only ancestors in the earliest generation. However, if we mean the only people in their lineage in the earliest generation, that also works too.

What does “earliest generation” mean? I suppose it means the generation in which AE lived.

I don’t know what that means. Isn’t any couple the only people in their lineage in the earliest generation? By definition, a lineage starts with one couple. But there are other equivalent lineages starting at the same time, and they all merge. Again, they are the sole progenitors of “textual humanness”, but they are not the sole progenitors of anything else, including even textual humans.


I used that terminology, because your’s isn’t precise enough. We do not all only or solely descend from Adam and Eve (even if there are people outside the garden!). For example, I also descend from my father and mother. Adam and Eve are not unique ancestors of mine. Of course, there are more than just AE that are universal ancestors of all of us too!

@Puck_Mendelssohn explained sole-progenitor by your definition far more precisely in his review:

Well that is self contradictory. They are the sole couple that gives rise to textual humanness, the sole couple from whom we must descend to be in that group. In that sense, they are our sole progenitors.


I think you would do better to avoid the collision of definitions.

It isn’t a collision.

Just about everyone who uses “sole-progenitor” allows for interbreeding. Think that through.


But don’t you mean how non-theistic anthropologists view interbreeding?

Young Earth Creationists don’t deal with these issues at all…

Joshua, perhaps you could spotlight how OLD EARTH CREATIONISTS use the term “Sole” to make your point more understandable?

YEC’s allow for interbreeding with Nephilim. OEC’s allow for interbreeding too, even Ann Gauger does. Nothing in “sole-progenitor” rules interbreeding out.

Then it’s a poor term, since it doesn’t mean what the words imply. The Queen of England derives her divine right by descent from William the Bastard, but nobody says he’s the sole progenitor of the House of Windsor.

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It is a term that is poorly contemplated. That is why it’s important to clarify what it means.

So the sole progenitor is a person (or two people) from whom one derives some important quality, in this case “textual humanness”. The first person with blue eyes is the sole progenitor of blue-eyed people. Alexander Graham Bell is the sole progenitor of people who have telephones. And so on.

Yes, that is almost verbatim what I have stated for two years.