How do we explain Adam/Eve/Garden of Eden and fall


#1

In light of science?

We know thru DNA that there was no “one set of parents” as told in the allegory of the Garden of Eden. We know that modern day humans interbred with other sapiens like neanderthals etc.

So how do we explain the fall, and original sin, and the need for a savior, when science shows us that the reality of our historical ancestors are as clear cut as the Bible would have one think?

Thanks


#2

https://www.catholic.com/tract/adam-eve-and-evolution

“The story of the creation and fall of man is a true one, even if not written entirely according to modern literary techniques. The Catechism states, “The account of the fall in Genesis 3 uses figurative language, but affirms a primeval event, a deed that took place at the beginning of the history of man. Revelation gives us the certainty of faith that the whole of human history is marked by the original fault freely committed by our first parents” (CCC 390).”


Can I stay Catholic and not believe in a literal Adam and Eve?
#3

Post has been deleted


#4

But were they from this world? Sounds like they were kicked out of Eden through a portal. :thinking:
image


#5

X Files theme plays dramatically


#6

image


#7

I have heard a Jewish explanation that Adam was like this spiritual giant of sorts or something, and all the souls of us are from him.
Of course this is wrong and presumes the preexistence of the soul, but it’s something.


#8

Adam and Eve were special creations. God gave them one command and they disobeyed. This created a physical and spiritual problem.

From Humani Generis:

“37. When, however, there is question of another conjectural opinion, namely polygenism, the children of the Church by no means enjoy such liberty. For the faithful cannot embrace that opinion which maintains that either after Adam there existed on this earth true men who did not take their origin through natural generation from him as from the first parent of all, or that Adam represents a certain number of first parents. Now it is in no way apparent how such an opinion can be reconciled with that which the sources of revealed truth and the documents of the Teaching Authority of the Church propose with regard to original sin, which proceeds from a sin actually committed by an individual Adam and which, through generation, is passed on to all and is in everyone as his own.[12]”

Neanderthals were fully human.


#9

If we are going to use wiki, then lets use more

"Not the biblical Eve[edit]
Owing to its figurative reference to the first woman in the Biblical Book of Genesis, the Mitochondrial Eve theory initially met with enthusiastic endorsement from some young earth creationists, who viewed the theory as a validation of the biblical creation story. Some even went so far as to claim that the Mitochondrial Eve theory disproved evolution.[42][43][44] However, the theory does not suggest any relation between biblical Eve and Mitochondrial Eve because Mitochondrial Eve:

is not a fixed individual (see above)
had a mother
was not the only woman of her time, and
Y-chromosomal Adam is unlikely to have been her sexual partner, or indeed to have been contemporaneous to her.


#10

I stand corrected, then.


#11

This contradicts Church teaching.


#12

The following is speculation. But I believe it aligns with the Teachings of the Catholic Church and with science.

Question: Doesn’t human evolution contradict the Biblical account of the the creation of man by God?

Answer: No. CCC 366 The Church teaches that every spiritual soul is created immediately by God - it is not “produced” by the parents…

Pope John Paul II in his Message to Pontifical Academy of Sciences October 22, 1996 said,

Pius XII stressed this essential point: if the human body takes its origin from pre-existent living matter the spiritual soul is immediately created by God (“animal enim a Deo immediate creari catholica fides nos retinere inhet”; Encyclical Humani generic, AAS 42 [1950], p. 575).
Catholic Information Network (http://www.cin.org/jp2evolu.html)

Therefore, Adam and Eve’s soul was created directly by God. The body evolved by processes put into effect by God.

Question: But science says that man descended from apes, while the Bible says that man was formed out of dust, Genesis 2:7 “And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul…”

Answer: Science also says that originally all life came fom some primordial mud. In comparison to God, we are all bits of mud and dirt. The Biblical Narrator may have been referring to some apes as a bit of clay and portrayed God as taking a bit of genetic material from this ape to make Adam.

Note also, that all animals were created out of the ground, Genesis 2:19 “And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof…”

Question: Concupiscence?

Answer: Yes. Man’s propensity to sin.

Question: How does any of that work exactly?

Answer: No one knows that answer. But we can speculate for instance, that an ape existed which had evolved to a certain level of intelligence. God took a little dust, a male infant (or an adult), breathed into it and made it into the first man. Then God took a female from the same species and made the first woman in the same way. He then put them in the Garden of Eden.

cont’d


#13

cont’d

Question: What is the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil and why can’t Adam and Eve eat of it?

Answer: In my opinion, it isn’t a green tree. It is a family tree.

God has forbidden Adam and Eve from participating in an animal society which already existed and from which he is keeping them separate. I am speaking specifically of the animal society from which Adam’s genetic material may have been taken.

It is a common theme in the Bible that God was setting His People apart from the heathen world. To be set apart is to be holy. Abraham and Moses and the other Prophets were supposed to keep the Hebrew people holy, set apart from the existing pagan societies which would teach them to sin.

Deuteronomy 7

1When the LORD thy God shall bring thee into the land whither thou goest to possess it, and hath cast out many nations before thee, the Hittites, and the Girgashites, and the Amorites, and the Canaanites, and the Perizzites, and the Hivites, and the Jebusites, seven nations greater and mightier than thou; 2And when the LORD thy God shall deliver them before thee; thou shalt smite them, and utterly destroy them; thou shalt make no covenant with them, nor shew mercy unto them: 3Neither shalt thou make marriages with them; thy daughter thou shalt not give unto his son, nor his daughter shalt thou take unto thy son. 4For they will turn away thy son from following me, that they may serve other gods: so will the anger of the LORD be kindled against you, and destroy thee suddenly.

Question: Where is the sin in Adam and Eve wanting to participate in a pre-existing society?

Answer: First, the sin is in disobeying God’s command. Next, the sin is in desiring to participate in a life which is not intimately united to God in the way and with the dignity in which Adam and Eve were created. It is the same as rejecting the love of God.

Question: Where does the snake come into all this?

Answer: I prefer to call him the dragon (See Revelations 12). The Dragon, his name is Lucifer, was once the most beautiful of angels, he became jealous of men when he saw that God had clothed himself in flesh and created beings in His image and likeness. He knew that these beings were inferior to him and that he would be called upon to minister to them as all angels are. Therefore he cried, “I will not serve!” He was thrown from heaven to earth and took 1/3 of the angels with him. Then he decided to trick the humans as well. He showed them their family tree and told them they could be like Gods amongst them.

cont’d


#14

cont’d

Question: Like Gods? Then Adam and Eve were already prideful!

Answer: No. Notice that Satan worked on the Woman first. He used her good, maternal feelings to make her believe that they could, with their higher intellligence and strength, take care of these poor creatures. Adam and Eve had never known anything but a loving nurturing God and that is what they wanted to be, loving and nurturing towards these creatures which resembled them so much.

Question: Don’t most people say that the Original Sin was a sin of the flesh?

Answer: Yes. But I personally don’t subscribe to that answer. The entire Bible characterizes the relationship between God and His people as a marriage covenant. Anytime they sin, it is considered that they have been unfaithful. Sin is characterized as adultery.

In this sense, the sin of Eve was an act of adultery. If we go back to the serpent reference we can readily see that the metaphor fits. Satan is depicted as a serpent that has entered the garden. This is the same garden that Adam must till and protect Genesis 2:15 “And the LORD God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it…” This garden is a metaphor for the Woman.

cont’d


#15

cont’d

Question: Where does the nakedness come in?

Answer:

  1. Adam and Eve had seen these creatures from afar and had come in for a closer observation. They hadn’t realized that, although they were the same color and overall shape, they were different. They were naked, they had no fur. Their eyes were opened and they were ashamed. They realized that these creatures were not human after all. They realized they had sinned in disobeying.

  2. Adam and Eve realized they were naked after they had disobeyed God’s command. That is, they realized that they no longer had God’s protection and like wild animals searched for a place to hide. They had never known fear before, until then.

Question: Who did Cain marry?

Answer: It is important to note first of all that Cain’s line did not survive. It was destroyed during the flood.

Note that Cain’s age was not specified as to when he married. This suggests that Cain married immediately after he was exiled from his family. If you notice, Cain never repented from his sin and when he left he had not reconciled with God. His soul was dead and he was essentially no better than the animals that surrounded him. Cain united himself to an ape. His children inherited no soul and their behavior illustrates that they fell further and further away from God. Genesis 4, “23And Lamech said unto his wives, Adah and Zillah, Hear my voice; ye wives of Lamech, hearken unto my speech: for I have slain a man to my wounding, and a young man to my hurt. 24If Cain shall be avenged sevenfold, truly Lamech seventy and sevenfold.”

Seth, on the other hand, married within the family. The Spiritual Soul given man by God remained in tact and was passed on by the Sons of God (Seth’s line). That is why they are called the sons of God. Genesis 4:26 “And to Seth, to him also there was born a son; and he called his name Enos: then began men to call upon the name of the LORD.”

At that time, the sons of God (Seth’s line) began to mix with the daughters of man (Cain’s line) and the result was that fewer and fewer men were born with a Spiritual Soul until God had to lament, “My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years…Genesis 6:3”

And the only ones who remained blameless in that age were Noah and his sons, who were from Seth’s line. Then came the flood and all of Cain’s line was destroyed. A new beginning.

We know thru DNA that there was no “one set of parents” as told in the allegory of the Garden of Eden. We know that modern day humans interbred with other sapiens like neanderthals etc.

We do? I think it takes a lot of faith in science to make that claim.

So how do we explain the fall, and original sin, and the need for a savior, when science shows us that the reality of our historical ancestors are as clear cut as the Bible would have one think?

Faith and reason do not contradict. Whenever scientists contradict the Word of God, it is the scientists who are wrong. Not faith or reason.


#16

Not true.


#17

Adam and Eve were special creations and were given gifts from God - preternatural gifts.

impassibility (freedom from pain)
immortality (freedom from death)
integrity (freedom from concupiscence, or disordered
desires)
infused knowledge (freedom from ignorance in matters
essential for happiness)

#18

darwinssoup


#19

Thanks for the responses. Some have been helpful, others, not so much.
We do know, thru DNA testing, that modern day humans mated with Neaderthals. I have DNA traces of it myself.
I have known that the Biblical account of Adam and Eve can’t be taken fully at face value. That science does show us more of our origins.
As a Catholic, I just wanted to know how do we address the clash between what science reveals about us, as a species, and Catholic teaching.

Still not sure how the whole idea of the fall comes into place when in the face of all of it.
Thank you, De_Maria for your more detailed and thought out reply. I know you stated it was speculation on your part, thus to be taken in that light, but at least it was a thought out reply. I do take into account that your reply isnt’ Church teaching, but at least you are looking at the bigger picture.

I don’t throw science under the bus. I believe we learn more about the true nature of God if we pay attention to it


#20

Original Sin happened. It was caused by our first parents disobeying one command from God. Science cannot know this but the Church does.

"Adam and Eve: Real People

"It is equally impermissible to dismiss the story of Adam and Eve and the fall (Gen. 2–3) as a fiction. A question often raised in this context is whether the human race descended from an original pair of two human beings (a teaching known as monogenism) or a pool of early human couples (a teaching known as polygenism).

"In this regard, Pope Pius XII stated: “When, however, there is question of another conjectural opinion, namely polygenism, the children of the Church by no means enjoy such liberty. For the faithful cannot embrace that opinion which maintains either that after Adam there existed on this earth true men who did not take their origin through natural generation from him as from the first parents of all, or that Adam represents a certain number of first parents. Now, it is in no way apparent how such an opinion can be reconciled that which the sources of revealed truth and the documents of the teaching authority of the Church proposed with regard to original sin which proceeds from a sin actually committed by an individual Adam in which through generation is passed onto all and is in everyone as his own” (Humani Generis 37).

“The story of the creation and fall of man is a true one, even if not written entirely according to modern literary techniques. The Catechism states, “The account of the fall in Genesis 3 uses figurative language, but affirms a primeval event, a deed that took place at the beginning of the history of man. Revelation gives us the certainty of faith that the whole of human history is marked by the original fault freely committed by our first parents” (CCC 390).”


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