Monday, October 29, 2012

Who were Adam and Eve?

I've hinted for a while that I've been cooking up some exciting projects, and here at last is one of them.  During the 2011 Origins conference in South Dakota, my compatriots and I talked about how to improve our online journal JCTSB.  One of the ideas we kicked around was having theme issues, which we've already begun working on.  The current issue focuses on biological change, and we issued a Symbiosis and Relationship call for papers (due January 31, 2013).  Another idea we had was to devote an issue to reviews of an important book, preferably with a response from the author.  That's what I have for you today.

Did Adam and Eve Really Exist?


As most of you know, Jack Collins of Covenant Seminary published a book in 2011 called Did Adam and Eve Really Exist? Who They Were and Why You Should Care.  I previously blogged about the paper on which this book was based right here.  When I read the book, I thought it was a really significant contribution to the current discussion about evolution and theology among evangelicals.  This was the first book I suggested for a review issue to the CBS Executive Council, and thanks to Joe Francis, we were able to put together four reviews of the book and a response from Collins.

The reviews are written by myself, Alistair McKitterick, Stephen Lloyd, and Neal Doran and Steve McRoberts.  McKitterick contributed a chapter to the book Should Christians Embrace Evolution? published by in the US by P&R Publishing.  Lloyd is a pastor and works with Biblical Creation Ministries, and he's published a chapter in Debating Darwin (Paternoster, 2009).  Doran and McRoberts are both professors at Patrick Henry College and contributed a joint review.

The reviews and response are mostly quite cordial and nice to read, but they do get spirited here and there.  One of the fascinating lessons that I've learned from the reactions to Collins's book is how often we read or hear ideas about creation and evolution, and instead of listening carefully we simply place those ideas into pre-existing categories, whether or not they actually fit.  In my own review, I noted that Dennis Lamoreaux claimed that Collins's ideas were "concordist," while Doran and McRoberts emphasize the accommodationist aspects of Collins's arguments.  I find that rather ironic, since the categories would presumably be mutually exclusive and because I don't think Collins could be fairly labeled as either one.  But I think you should read the essays and decide for yourself.


Did Adam and Eve Really Exist?

Once again a big thank you to Dr. Collins, the reviewers, and our stalwart editor Joe Francis.

Feedback? Email me at toddcharleswood [at] gmail [dot] com.