An Historical Adam: Why It Matters

In reading the various articles on creation and evolution, it can be easy to say: What does it really matter?

One of the topics that must be considered in the creation vs. evolution debate is how to handle Adam. Was Adam a real, historical man created by God as Genesis 2 describes and the father of all mankind? Was he a homo sapien, a result of macroevolution, that God adopted to be the first homo divinus? Was he simply a metaphorical figure who represents the origins of man and sin?

Dr. Mike Reeves has written an essay for a book, Should Christians Embrace Evolution?, that examines various theological objections to macroevolution. The following article is from Chapter 3 of the book which addresses why Adam matters:

Adam and Eve

Evangelical Christians have generally resisted the demythologization of the events of the Gospels, whereby, for example, the resurrection of Jesus is interpreted as a mythical portrayal of the principle of new life. Indeed, they have argued strongly that it is the very historicity of the resurrection event that is so vital. However, when it comes to the biblical figures of Adam and Eve, there has been a far greater willingness to interpret them as mythical or symbolic. The simple aim of this chapter is to show, in sketch, that, far from being a peripheral matter for fussy literalists, it is biblically and theologically necessary for Christians to believe in Adam as first, a historical person who second, fathered the entire human race. Continue reading