Garvey Contemplates The Generations of Heavens and Earth

In response to my suggestion to review The Generations of Adam and Eve, I got an email reply today from WORLD magazine today saying that, “Marvin [Olasky, the editor in chief] has requested a review copy and will take a look”

I hope they like it and decide to do a favorable review!

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Encourage John to join here. We’d love to include him too.

After all your effort, I hope you like my book too!

I had some contact from one of the BioLogos team, promising a review of God’s Good Earth, but nothing seems to have come of it so far. Which is sad since my involvement with BioLogos goes back to 2010.

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I decided to go ahead and get a physical copy since the ebook wasn’t out yet. And it was excellent, as expected! I will probably be reading it again before too long. One of the things I particularly appreciated was your discussion near the end about the ransom theory of atonement, and how it ties in with penal substitution. It’s one of those great insights that seems so obvious in retrospect!


Thanks Matthew - both your comments and your reading the thing are much appreciated.

You’ll remember in the book that I mine Irenaeus for the idea that Eden represents a vocation for man beyond the creation ordinance of ch 1, and that put me in mind of the old, “discredited” ransom theory. Suddenly, perhaps because of GAE thinking, Satan’s role in the whole cosmic drama makes more sense. And the idea of a ransom paid, not to buy off Satan, but to knock the moral ground out from under his feet, becomes obvious.

We’ve tended to make Satan an unexplained villain, or to ignore his existence altogether, and that’s largely a result of allegorizing the Eden account, I think. Yet the NT pays significant attention to the defeat of Satan, which only makes sense in the light of his role in the garden. His accusations before God are based on the fact that Adam’s sin has not been fully punished, impugning God’s justice. Once the cross fulfils the penalty on behalf of mankind, it becomes just to punish Satan too.

Incidentally GAE also limits the importance of Satan in the grand scheme of things: his rebellion becomes the direct result of God’s creation and calling of Adam, so he does NOT have a detrimental role in the creation before Adam, contra John Milton’s pre-creation fall of the angels, and his defeat begins at the cross and ends with Christ’s return. In the eternal scheme of things that’s just a failed putsch.