RTB's Model and Smalley

If you don’t like the answer, that’s okay with me.

I happen to be one of those who believe that "All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness… " II Timothy 3:16, and that the details are in the words, which are there for a reason. It is incumbent upon each person to seek the wisdom of God through them; this is not a claim to my proposed interpretation as perfect, but a claim to demonstrate my warrant for it. The only “proof” possible is in its fruit.


Then you are just the one to ask about a nagging thought in the back of my mind.

As you know, the Book of Chronicles is a much abbreviated book, condensing themes from older books in the Bible. And you are probably pretty familiar with how Chronicles uses different terms and quotes different numbers when discussing the Hebrew history.

What do you suppose we should make of the fact that Chronicles vs. Genesis>Samuel>Kings do not agree on some of the finer points of history?

There are good answers to those questions; you might check out Gleason Archer’s “Encyclopedia of Bible Difficulties” and many other, similar, resources.

There is a new article by Faz Rana, here:
And, here is my Facebook post, in response to the article:

This article relies on posing a false dilemma --namely, that EITHER Adam and Eve were the first humans ever, OR their historicity is rendered invalid. What this construal fails to take into account is the very real, alternative, evangelical, and theologically orthodox interpretation that the story of Adam and Eve takes place entirely subsequent to the creation by God of the first human beings, “created male and female in the image of God” well before any of the story of Adam and Eve even begins, in chapter two of Genesis. That this first couple to have fallen is not our only physical forebears, but that we are all still their genealogical descendants, is demonstrably in line with the scientific evidence. Adam and Eve lived around the end of the Paleolithic, before the Younger Dryas climate conditions raised the sea level in the Persian and Arabian Gulf areas. As the first to face and defy a direct prohibition by God, they gained the “knowledge of good and evil” illegitimately, and God announced to them the natural consequences of their actions. This interpretation not only erases the false dilemma the article poses, it is theologically orthodox, scientifically sound, and answers the nagging questions about how there were other humans around, so that, for example, Cain could choose a human wife who was not part of his family lineage. Several theologians have held this interpretive view, including John Walton, currently, who is an active evangelical. Such alternatives ought not be merely dismissed. Perhaps, if you’d like, Faz, I can get you onto a blog where these things are being cogently explored? By Joshua Swamidass, Ann Gauger, and others?


Isn’t that from 2017? That is not exactly recent.

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He just reposted it.
I just discovered this as the reason why, on his Facebook page, as a question posed by one Freddy Hoyt:

“Dr. Rana, how do we deal with the arguments of Dr. Swamidass? This link was brought up on the Old Earth Creationist FaceBook page. He seems to know Dr. A.J. Roberts and some of her arguments.”
(Hoyt then links to your blog, on the “Heliocentric Certainty” topic.

So, I went ahead and offered:

"This is the blog that you are most cordially invited to join, Fazale Rana , either formally or informally.
If you want, feel free to “lurk” for a while, to get a sense of the lively discussion. : ) "

Congratulations, @swamidass ; you’ve made yourself hard to ignore! : )


https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=10216279207563637&id=1556895740 and https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=10216243490870742&id=1556895740 . Cheers; BTW, he’ll be out east soon;
https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=10216282297960895&id=1556895740 .

I really do want you to have fresh material for Dabar!

Glad you posted there. Fingers crossed, and praying. Cheers!

A good nights’ work!



Yes, there are good answers… all of which provide support to the idea that the O.T. is replete with agenda-driven references that frequently don’t match details provided by another scribal sources.

Ahhh… because you know which scribal sources are agenda-driven and which are not? Are your own comments agenda-driven? I know mine are! Part of my agenda is to avoid, “Open mouth; insert foot.” Big surprise…


In many cases, it is impossible to know why a verse in Chronicles differs from its source text.

In most cases, it should be enough trouble that there is ANY difference at all!

But let’s look at the verse in Chronicles where it says Satan (!) convinced David to number Israel.

The original (is it in 1st Kings?) says that Yahweh did the convincing! It is said that Chronicles blamed Satan because the Zoroastrian influence was more strongly felt on Chronicles… where negative problems in the Cosmos were due to God allowing a subordinate “angel” to influence human fate (we find this even more vividly in Job, which is a much younger book than most realize).

Isaiah rejects this view… and zealously lobbies for the pre-Persian contact view: that even all evils come from god!

The Hebrew writings often exhibit what is commonly termed (by Westerners) “block logic” --that is, terms or sayings that make reference to a theologucal debate which has not, to their satisfaction, been settled yet. The instances you cite touch upon the view of God’s sovereignty; whatever He allows, He can be said as having done. But, when another writer objects that what happened is evil, the cause is more closely sought out.
If you see this as contradiction, there’s not much I can do about it. But, if like me, you can take a theologian’s approach, then you’ll discover, not only a lack of contradiction, but often other important theological nuances. It teaches you to be willing to try on other’s perspectives.
An analogy follows; as good adults, many parents offer to do playground supervision at elementary schools. One of the first decisions they have to make is whether to jump in every single time two kids have harsh words with one another, or whether to allow it and continue to monitor, and to preserve the individual learning environment, saving the option of active intervention for more important things.
I think your example needs to be more closely examined; in 2 Samuel 24, the exact opposite of what you said is the case. While God is angry with Israel, he does not command David to take a census; in fact, God is opposed to it.
"Now again the anger of the Lord burned against Israel, and it incited David against them to say, ’ Go, number Israel and Judah.’ ” - 2 Samuel 24:1 Keep reading in this chapter for God’s view of the matter.
1 Chronicles 21 goes on to attribute the influence on David to take a census to Satan.
“Then Satan stood up against Israel and moved David to number Israel.” - 1 Chronicles 21:1
There’s no contradiction.
You don’t placate God’s anger by doing what angers Him more. Political leaders have an obligation not to let their changing moods dictate national policy.


This is an Apologia for a narrative glitch, which would be an obvious glitch to anyone who has analyzed literature using Text Critical methodologies. You, or the rabbis of old, say there is really no contradiction.
I say that using flights of the imagination, you can always rationalize away differences in texts.

Using your approach, we can easily conclude there is nothing to be gained by analyzing “EL texts” separately from “Yah/J Texts”. My reaction to that notion?: a loud snort, and probably some coffee expelled through my sinuses onto my keyboard.

Understood. Paradigm changes often start with revulsion.


Totally correct.

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The link about Neandertal bestiality is from 2010. This link from 2012 indicates that a more recent position is to deny interbreeding. It would be interesting to discuss the points raised. 2012 RTB article about Neandertals

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It would also be great to get our host @swamidass comments on the strictures, limitations, and even “eccentricities” these views impose upon their model.
CAN they even deny interbreeding?
Does the science “allow” that?
Is there a different method of “horizontal gene transfer” that can account for this amount of Neanderthal, e.g., gene signature?
And, do they realize that “bestial” pairings should not, virtually invariably, result in fertile offspring? As it, nevertheless, at least analagously, seems to in Genesis 6, as well? Or, is this an indication they must be all of one physical species?
And, how does this impact our interpretation of the Nephilim passages in Genesis 6? There was definitely some kind of “illegitimate” interbreeding going on, there.
Could these be Adam’s descendants (“sons of God”) interbreeding with simpler, “prior to or outside of Adam’s lineage,” morally unsophisticted by comparison, “imago Dei humans?” If these “daughters of men” were, to make a wild stab at the sense of the passage, Neanderthal --or, at least, from a more robust species variant than those of Adam’s lineage… well, you can see where I’m going with this. They would make for better mini ice-age survivors, who were better mentally equipped for warfare, as well. Are we stepping into the reasons for a Tattersall-type “lone survivor” kind of view?
Homo sapiens sapiens as simply “the last ones standing?”
Lots of hypothetical questions which science can inform.

Welcome to the forums @ClarkC. We recently clarified with Dr. Rana and Dr. @AJRoberts. In the second edition of their model (2015, which is after 2012) they acknowledged the evidence for Neanderthal interbreeding.

To their credit, as good scientists, they recognized the clear evidence for Sapiens and Neanderthal interbreeding, and modified their model. They did this by calling Neanderthals beasts, but this does not seem to be the best theological characterization. Regardless, we need to give them credit for acknowledging their first model was falsified, and building a new one.

It is not your fault that this is not clear on the website:

Also to their credit, they are upfront about this when asked. Moreover, Dr. Rana and I plan to engage further at the end of summer. At that time, we may be able to test the plausibility of their current model.

Is there some reasonable hesitation with a proposal of “polymorphic” or “mosaic monogenism?” Coupled with a geneaological Adam? Where would I go to explore why, if so?

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  1. “beasts without intelligence” needs rephrasing to avoid being a straw man. Dogs and cats have intelligence. Symbolic thinking and the production of symbolic artifacts such as certain works of art, speech, religious thought, writing; these are the kinds of intelligence that RTB has ascribed to humans and not to Neanderthal and earlier hominids.