Animal Death Before The Fall Contradicted By Isaiah 65:25?

I got into a friendly debate with a protestant friend of mine. I claim that God could have used evolution as a means to bring about his creation.

He claims that evolution is contrary to scripture on the basis that death didn’t enter into the world until after the fall, thus rendering evolution impossible, and to believe both evolution and the Bible is to hold contradictory beliefs.

The Church permits us to believe evolution as a means to bring about our physical bodies (souls being supernaturally infused) and that we affirm that our first parents sinned, which removed humanity from Gods special friendship and brought about our fallen nature.

I read this tract from catholic answers on the topic.

catholic.com/blog/matt-fradd/was-there-death-before-the-fall

I brought to him the thre point about lion having sharp teeth for ripping flesh, and a body to bring down prey.

His response was that after the fall is when God made thorns, and made the serpent crawl on the ground shows that God changed his creation which then allowed animals to become carnivorous.

He then points to Isaiah 65:25 saying how if the lion will eat straw like the ox in the new creation (which is to be like the original paradise before the fall) then it holds that animals didn’t kill eatchother in the beginning.

biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Isaiah+65%3A17-25&version=NRSVCE

I don’t know how to respond to that. I’m not trying to convince him to accept evolution, but rather to see that there is no conflict between believing in both evolution and scripture.

My suggestion to you is to give it up. Trying to convince such people is like trying to empty the ocean with a pail. To such people, a literal belief of every word in the Bible is an emotional thing, and all the logic in the world has no effect. As for trying to proove your point with scripture, he won’t believe it saying that the Catholic interpretation is false.

Tell him that when death was brought to the world through Adam and Eve, it was spiritual death (as in it became possible for people to be separated from God, which is indeed the worst kind of death - to the soul).

Also, why does your friend think that God created thorns and made animals carnivorous after the Fall? It kind of contradicts the whole ‘God did everything in six days’. He rested on the last day; He was done creating after that. Why did God have to change His Creation when it says in Genesis that everything God created was good and perfect, since God is good and perfect? If changes had to be made, it implies that the Creation was less than perfect. Also, if your friends asks how animals dying and killing each other is good, ask him what’s so bad about a self-sustaining ecosystem?

As for the whole ‘lion will eat straw like the ox’, this was perhaps to metaphorically show how peaceful the New Creation will be in contrast to our messed up world, not a recount of how things were before the Fall. If that passage reflects how the world was before the Fall, why was the snake already eating dust if it hadn’t done anything wrong yet?

Good luck. :thumbsup:

LOL! Very true overall, especially like the ocean emptying with a pail metaphor. The fundamentalist takes everything literally…except, oddly, the Eucharist, where Jesus said it was his body quite literally, and of course, except for any other parts of the Bible that are Catholic, like where Scripture says baptism saves, or where it says there are mortal sins and not mortal sins, or where it says churches are to have a hierarchy of priests and then bishops over them, or where Mary is crowned in Heaven, or where Peter is literally named the rock on which the Church is built, or where the apostles are given the power to forgive sins, or…hmm…come to think of it, maybe you should ask your friend why he takes only THAT part literally (you know, the first 12 or so chapters of Genesis, even when they are written in clear mythological and allegorical style of literature) but he finds so much of the rest to NOT be actually meant in literal terms!:wink:

This is all very true and what I was going to say too essentially. The lion laying with the lamb stuff is a metaphor in OT terminology for a state of peace, an end to war among men, not a telling of how nature actually was.

Your friend is referencing Romans 5:12. Ask him to read to you all of that verse:

Therefore, just as through one person sin entered the world, and through sin, death, and thus death came to all, inasmuch as all sinned

Ask him whether animals sin. If death came to ‘all’ – that is, meaning ‘all living creatures’ – then this verse means that animals sin (since it says “inasmuch as all sinned”). That’s just silly, though. :wink:

So, if what Romans 5:12 means that “inasmuch as all [humans] sinned”… then it likewise means that “death came to all [humans]”, too. So, this verse – which he trots out in order to ‘prove’ that evolution is impossible – isn’t really talking about the death of animals at all! Rather, it’s talking about the death of humans: through sin, we’d lost eternal life (and therefore, inherited death) through the sin of our first parents!

So, Paul isn’t talking about evolution, but rather, about soteriology. :wink:

I could be missing something in the argument because verse 20 says,

No more shall there be in it
an infant that lives but a few days,
or an old person who does not live out a lifetime;
for one who dies at a hundred years will be considered a youth,
and one who falls short of a hundred will be considered accursed

thus we have Human death in paradise of Adam and Eve? which would contradict the idea that Adam and Eve were not subject to death until the Fall.

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