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Unread 03-30-2017, 06:02 AM   #1
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Evolution and the Fall

Issues regarding the fall and evolution, and how science connects to the faith, has been a consistent discussion topic on this site in the past.

A new book is soon out edited by two favorite scholars of mine: William Cavanaugh and James K. A. Smith.

Some of you may find this interesting or helpful.

Here is a clip that discusses the book with Cavanaugh and Smith.

At the least, watch the video.

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Taylor, you just got drive-by theologied.
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Unread 03-30-2017, 07:21 AM   #2
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As you read the NT do you feel that Jesus (and the authors) believed Adam was a real person and referred to him as such? If so, why would they refer to a mythical person as if he really existed?

I confess. That has always been the sticking point for me. I can't seem to get past that.
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Unread 04-01-2017, 04:13 PM   #3
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Just ordered the book. Looks right up my alley.

This has always been one of my favorite topics to discuss with friends. I'm always eager to hear scholarly takes on reconciling modern scientific ideas with faith.
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Unread 04-02-2017, 05:15 AM   #4
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They felt that they didn't have to choose between orthodox convictions and modern science. Looks like historical Adam is not an orthodox conviction?
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Unread 04-02-2017, 05:40 AM   #5
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Quote:
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They felt that they didn't have to choose between orthodox convictions and modern science. Looks like historical Adam is not an orthodox conviction?
Well, to be fair, it isn't mentioned in either the Apostles' Creed or the Nicene Creed.

I think it's also important to realise that Cavanaugh is a Catholic scholar. There have been numerous theological works by Catholic thinkers in recent years that have tried to reconcile this issues. Generally, they affirm a historical Adam, but not in any way that would be very acceptable to many who read Genesis in a more 'literal historical' fashion.
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Taylor, you just got drive-by theologied.
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Unread 04-02-2017, 06:44 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by athanatos View Post
They felt that they didn't have to choose between orthodox convictions and modern science. Looks like historical Adam is not an orthodox conviction?
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Originally Posted by Uptown Thrunk View Post
Well, to be fair, it isn't mentioned in either the Apostles' Creed or the Nicene Creed.

I think it's also important to realise that Cavanaugh is a Catholic scholar. There have been numerous theological works by Catholic thinkers in recent years that have tried to reconcile this issues. Generally, they affirm a historical Adam, but not in any way that would be very acceptable to many who read Genesis in a more 'literal historical' fashion.
When I said "authors" I was vague. I meant the biblical authors. The Bible (not just Genesis 1-2) refers to Adam as a real person. I have always felt that doing away with an actual Adam damages our Christology.

Sorry if that muddied up things.
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Unread 04-02-2017, 08:02 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leboman View Post

When I said "authors" I was vague. I meant the biblical authors. The Bible (not just Genesis 1-2) refers to Adam as a real person. I have always felt that doing away with an actual Adam damages our Christology.

Sorry if that muddied up things.
I understood ya, i just hadn't responded yet.
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Taylor, you just got drive-by theologied.
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Unread 04-02-2017, 10:14 AM   #8
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Watching this discussion eagerly.
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Unread 04-02-2017, 07:58 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Uptown Thrunk View Post
Well, to be fair, it isn't mentioned in either the Apostles' Creed or the Nicene Creed.

I think it's also important to realise that Cavanaugh is a Catholic scholar. There have been numerous theological works by Catholic thinkers in recent years that have tried to reconcile this issues. Generally, they affirm a historical Adam, but not in any way that would be very acceptable to many who read Genesis in a more 'literal historical' fashion.
I have such context. I am just surprised that literal, historical Adam is so quickly let go. It need not be in the creeds to be official doctrine, or nearly universally believed by the church Catholic. You now make me want to find the most recent RCC claim that Adam had to be historical. Hunch? It won't be earlier than 1850.
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Unread 04-03-2017, 01:50 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leboman View Post
As you read the NT do you feel that Jesus (and the authors) believed Adam was a real person and referred to him as such? If so, why would they refer to a mythical person as if he really existed?

I confess. That has always been the sticking point for me. I can't seem to get past that.
Amen.

it may not be an essential--but it certainly affects how we see ourselves & how we understand the gospel & our missions on earth.
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Unread 04-29-2017, 12:33 PM   #11
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So I purchased the book. Just got done with the first essay by Darrel Falk. If anybody else is reading it I'd love to discuss it on here.

I think the premise of the book is interesting so far and there are portions in the Introduction that I found would be incredibly useful in the future when having discussions with Christians that otherwise might not broach the subject of evolution more than calling it a heresy. I think they do a good job at maintaining a tone that reaches their target audience, too (pastors, clergy, believers in general).

In my opinion, the first part of Mr. Falk's essay is a fantastic rundown of current evolutionary biology written in a manner to bring about understanding for the religious crowd. He is a little too dependent on one or two sources throughout the whole thing for my taste, but the citations are good and seem pretty credible. I did not like the last portion of his essay. I felt like he was doing a good job at building up some arguments and bridging the gap between evolutionary biology and Biblical theory of origin until the very end. It felt like he gutted the last half of the essay for sake of space and threw on a conclusion that would appease the target audience.

As one who got his BA in Cross-Cultural studies and spending most of my time in anthropology and linguistics courses I was glad to see him touch on the idea of "human-ness" being related to cognitive ability associated with language, abstract thought, and self and other awareness. I wish he would have spoken more on that, but perhaps that is in another essay later on in the book.

So far it is interesting and I'll work my way through it - albeit slowly, as I'm a slow reader and have a lot on my plate. The book seems to be getting "meh" reviews. I'll try to update a bit as I go through the book if you guys are interested. If not I'll keep my damn mouth shut.

Last edited by Almost Enough; 04-29-2017 at 01:08 PM.
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Unread 04-29-2017, 01:01 PM   #12
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Please do update on it as you read.

I may pick it up, but I'm not sure. If I do, I'd love to discuss it.
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Quote:
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Taylor, you just got drive-by theologied.
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Unread 04-29-2017, 01:08 PM   #13
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I would be interested as well. . . And I may pick it up since I just saw this thread right after posting about this topic in my journal. I've been fascinated by the subject lately.
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Unread 04-29-2017, 01:28 PM   #14
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I just realized how uninformative my last post was.

The Introduction is titled Beyond Galileo to Chalcedon. This was written by the two authors Uptown Thrunk said were some of his favorite scholars. They lay out the framework for the discussion in the book from one of hostility between science and theology (Galileo) to one that seeks mutual expansion for both sides (Chalcedon). I think they did a fantastic job at reaching out to the Christian side about expanding theological opportunities through the findings in the current explosion of biological sciences but doing so steeped in theological tradition and practice. I loved that they touched on MacIntyre (of whom I was gifted the book After Virtue from my favorite professor but have yet to read) and (what I think is - correct me if I'm wrong) his idea that at the discussion table of all debates one must not discount the voices of those thousands that have come before through the voice of tradition. That is something that has always struck a chord with me, growing up in an evangelical environment that looked at much of Christian symbolism and ritual with suspicion, but having since moved towards a respect and love for more orthodox traditions within the Christian tradition.

I feel like the Introduction of this book (minus the laying out of the structure of the book) is a fantastic read for any group of believers entering into a discussion or debate. I am going to utilize it with a group that I meet with regularly to discuss politics and theology over beer.

I'll postpone my post on the first chapter more in depth after I have time to think about it a bit more.
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Unread 04-29-2017, 01:34 PM   #15
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Quote:
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I just realized how uninformative my last post was.

The Introduction is titled Beyond Galileo to Chalcedon. This was written by the two authors Uptown Thrunk said were some of his favorite scholars. They lay out the framework for the discussion in the book from one of hostility between science and theology (Galileo) to one that seeks mutual expansion for both sides (Chalcedon). I think they did a fantastic job at reaching out to the Christian side about expanding theological opportunities through the findings in the current explosion of biological sciences but doing so steeped in theological tradition and practice. I loved that they touched on MacIntyre (of whom I was gifted the book After Virtue from my favorite professor but have yet to read) and (what I think is - correct me if I'm wrong) his idea that at the discussion table of all debates one must not discount the voices of those thousands that have come before through the voice of tradition. That is something that has always struck a chord with me, growing up in an evangelical environment that looked at much of Christian symbolism and ritual with suspicion, but having since moved towards a respect and love for more orthodox traditions within the Christian tradition.

I feel like the Introduction of this book (minus the laying out of the structure of the book) is a fantastic read for any group of believers entering into a discussion or debate. I am going to utilize it with a group that I meet with regularly to discuss politics and theology over beer.

I'll postpone my post on the first chapter more in depth after I have time to think about it a bit more.
Interesting. . . I will definitely check this one out.
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