The Lost World of Adam and Eve: Genesis 2–3 and the Human Origins Debate by John H. WaltonFor centuries the story of Adam and Eve has resonated richly through the corridors of art, literature and theology. But for most moderns, taking it at face value is incongruous. And even for many thinking Christians today who want to take seriously the authority of Scripture, insisting on a literal understanding of Genesis 2–3 looks painfully like a tear here strip between faith and science. How can Christians of good faith move forward? Who were the historical Adam and Eve? What if we’ve been reading Genesis and its claims regarding material origins wrong? In what cultural context was this couple, this garden, this tree, this serpent portrayed? Following his groundbreaking The Lost World of Genesis One, John Walton explores the ancient Near Eastern context of Genesis 2–3, creating space for a faithful reading of Scripture along with full engagement with science for a new way forward in the human origins debate. As a bonus, an illuminating excursus by NT Wright places Adam in the implied narrative of Paul’s theology. The Lost World of Adam and Eve will be required reading for anyone seeking to understand this foundational text historically and theologically, and wondering how to view it alongside contemporary understandings of human origins.
Book of Genesis
Adam and Eve usually get a pretty bad rap. After all, their story is normally referred to as The Fall—that can't be good. See, these two are leading a totally idyllic existence: in the buff with no shame ; and in a garden, with fruit trees , cool breezes , rivers , and a deity who's known to visit them while strolling in the evening The one thing that's off limits is the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, whose fruit God forbids them to eat But eat they do. Surprise, surprise. As a result of their eating, which might be understood as disobedience to God and hence the first sin , the two's idyllic existence is radically transformed into the kind of life that is more familiar to us mortals: death , endless labor , infertile soil , patriarchy , painful child-bearing , the threat of snake-bite , blame , shame , 10 , awareness of nudity , 10 , the need for clothing , and estrangement from the deity
God Sets The Stage
Adam and Eve are—along with the Lord and the serpent—the central characters in the second story of creation with which the Bible begins Genesis, chapters Metaphysically, in terms of universal spiritual principles, we understand the allegory differently. We don't see this human experience as a kind of global penitentiary, the purpose of which is to punish us.
I will go ahead and break the story of Adam and Eve down under the following captions. As Christians, we have to believe in the literal interpretation of the Bible. There are many secular and atheistic teachers and professors who are teaching in our high schools and colleges that man gradually evolved rather than actually being created by our Lord. However, the Bible tells us otherwise. The account in Genesis tells us very specifically, and without any other possible interpretation, that both man, the heavens, the earth, and all the creatures on the earth were all CREATED by the Lord — that they did not progressively evolve over some period of time. The very first verse in the Bible tells us that God created the heavens and the earth.