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What scientific evidence do we have about the first humans?

In recent decades, scientists have discovered more about the beginnings of humanity. The fossil record shows a gradual transition over 5 million years ago from chimpanzee-size creatures to hominids with larger brains who walked on two legs. Later hominids used fire and stone tools and had brains as large as modern humans. Fossils of homo sapiens in east Africa date back nearly 200,000 years. Humans developed hearths for fire, stone points for spears and arrows, and cave paintings by 30,000 years ago. By 10,000 years ago, humans had spread throughout the globe. Genetic studies support the same picture. Humans share more DNA with chimpanzees than with any other animal, suggesting that humans and chimps share a relatively recent common ancestor. Also, the same defective genes appear in both humans and chimps, at the same locations in the genome—an observation difficult to explain except by common ancestry. Genetics also tells us that the human population today descended from more than two people. Evolution happens not to individuals but to populations, and the amount of genetic diversity in the gene pool today suggests that the human population was never smaller than several thousand individuals. Yet all humans, of all races, are descended from this group. Humanity is one family.

 

How does original sin fit with evolutionary history?

Original sin often refers simply to the current state of humanity, in that all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23). Evolution does not raise questions about our current state of sinfulness. It does, however, raise questions about how and when the first sin occurred, and how this fallen state was transmitted to all people. The sciences of evolution and archaeology can provide some insight into these questions but are not equipped to answer them. These questions are theological, and over the centuries the church has considered many possible answers. Some of these options are consistent with the scientific evidence currently available.

 

The Collapsing Universe in the Bible

In this essay, Godawa argues that the decreation language of a collapsing universe with falling stars and signs in the heavens was actually symbolic discourse about world-changing events and powers related to the end of the old covenant and the coming of the new covenant as God’s “new world order.” In this interpretation, predictions of the collapsing universe were figuratively fulfilled in the historic past of the first century.

 

How Does a BioLogos model need to address the theological issues

Science and Religion scholar Denis Alexander presents two models for relating Adam and Eve with the findings of contemporary anthropology. This essay was presented at the November 2010 Theology of Celebration Workshop

 

The Believing Primate

The Believing Primate aims to describe and discuss the scientific accounts of religion as well as to assess their implications. -Amazon

 

Creation or Evolution

Dr. Denis Alexander believes that we do not need to choose, since both are true.

 

Lord Jesus Christ: Devotion to Jesus in Earliest Christianity

This outstanding book provides an in-depth historical study of the place of Jesus in the religious life, beliefs, and worship of Christians from the beginnings of the Christian movement down to the late second century. -Amazon

 

Evolution and Ethics

Evolution and Ethics examines the burning questions of human morality from the standpoint of Christian thought and contemporary biology, asking where the two perspectives diverge and where they may complement one another. -Amazon

 

The Resurrection of the Son of God

This book, third in Wright's series Christian Origins and the Question of God, sketches a map of ancient beliefs about life after death, in both the Greco-Roman and Jewish worlds. -Amazon

 

Mere Christianity

A forceful and accessible discussion of Christian belief that has become one of the most popular introductions to Christianity and one of the most popular of Lewis's books. -Amazon

10 resources found