Is the Fall of Man Central to the Gospel Message

Discussion in '2004 Archive' started by Todd, Dec 4, 2004.

  1. Todd

    Todd
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    Just recently here on the Board, I was debating the issue of macroevolution with someone (who shall remain nameless). I was trying to prove that one can't make macroevolutionary theories of creation "jive" with Scripture, especially when one does correct exegesis and exposition of Gen. 1-3 and Rom. 5-8. The person with whom I was debating made this statement:

    How many of you agree with this statement? If so, would you care to attempt defending it? Please feel free to jump right in.
     
  2. Daniel David

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    One might not know about Adam, but one must know that he/she is separated from God because of their sin.

    I think a disservice is done if the origin of the sin is not explained.

    Those who think they have no sin are deceived and call God a liar.
     
  3. Todd

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    My point exactly. Yet, there are some posting here on the BB who say that a literal Adam and a literal Fall are not "central to the Gospel message." If man's Fall and inherent sin nature are not "central" to the Gospel, then how can anyone know with any kind of certainty that he/she is lost and really in need of salvation? If we're not "literally" sinners, what would we need to be saved from? Am I wrong in seeing things this way?
     
  4. Daniel David

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    No, but I am guessing that it was Johnv who said those things.
     
  5. Todd

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    Nope...I've chosen to protect the name of the guilty party. It'll be interesting to see if the person to whom this quote belongs actually comes in and claims it (I know I sure wouldn't). It'll be even more interesting to see him/her try and defend it.
     
  6. Soulman

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    Although a person can be saved without knowing about Adam as Daniel David pointed out, Adam and the fall of man should be some of the first milk a babe in Christ should drink.
     
  7. Dr. Bob

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    Salvation is based on two parts of the same coin: repentance from sin and faith in Christ.

    A person might not know "from Adam" about original sin, etc. But he must see his sinfulness and give godly repentance.

    So in that regard - seeing himself as sinful as the RESULT of the fall (his sinful actions as a result of a sinful nature) is a part of the plan of salvation.
     
  8. Pastor Larry

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    The gospel can be preached without the basis of the literal fall of Adam and Eve, but it is very inconsistent at best.

    Man must understand that he is a sinner, helpless before God. The origin of that sin is not necessary knowledge. However, denying the literal fall of Adam and Eve leaves no basis for sin to enter the world.
     
  9. OldRegular

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    This is off topic but I don't understand how anyone squares the Fall with evolution.
     
  10. Todd

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    Old Regular, it's pretty simple: Macroevolutionists consistently say that the first 11 chapters of Genesis are allegorical (non-literal). They do so because that's the only way they can even attempt to get around the exegetical consequences of those first eleven chapters (those consequences being that the six days of the creation account must be literal 24-hour days and that man was literally created in the image of God). Here's the problem: By saying that the first 11 chapters of Genesis are allegorical, they are left with two foundational characters (Adam and Eve) that are nothing more than imaginary figures contained within an old myth. Thus, if there was no literal Adam and Eve, then there was no literal Fall of man into sin - and if there was no literal Fall of man, then how can anyone possibly know that they are really a depraved human being really in need of salvation? If there were no literal Adam and Eve and no literal Fall into sin, then why the need for a literal cross and a literal resurrection?

    Maybe now you can see the connection. I agree with several who have posted here. When I was saved, I know I was told about Adam and Eve, but the important thing that was explained to me is that all men were sinners as a result of Adam's sin. Thus, the Fall of man is central to the Gospel message, for without it there is no basis on which we can say that anyone is a sinner in need of salvation. It would appear that those who say that Gen. 1-11 is allegorical have a little explaining to do here, doesn't it?
     
  11. Michael52

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    The most "literal" understanding of the Fall of man is when a person recognizes or understands that they are personally in that condition. It might occur that a person is convicted of their sin and are saved before they are fully able to discern all the theological implications (literal or otherwise) in the Bible.

    The Biblical account of the Fall of man (Adam) is not necessary for salvation, but salvation and the spiritual discrenment salvation brings allows one to understand what the Fall fully means. The scientific understanding one possesses is not nearly as important as correct understanding of the spiritual delimma of one's soul and his need of a Savior as a result of the Fall.

    Though, I don't usually post in them much, I usually read those threads in the other section. I also read (and am reading) that particular thread you have referenced. I think those you are debating would probably agree with what I have written above. I am not a "macroevolutionist", but being scientifically inclined myself, I have some insight into how other scientists think about their faith and reconcile (struggle with) their beliefs. Like Solomon said:
     
  12. Scott J

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    Another problem with evolution in Romans 5 is that Paul directly attaches a literal Adam to a literal Moses. This brings another element of God's redemptive plan into the mix, the OT Law and ordinances.

    I will acknowledge a degree of frustration with people who ostensibly believe in the same God I do (attributes in mind) but make secular science the limiting factor to what He said He did.

    The claim that either man's interpretation of physical data is correct or else God is a liar also deeply disturbs me coming from a Christian.
     
  13. OldRegular

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    Todd

    It seems to me that you are making my point. No Adam and Eve, no fall, and no need for the atonement of Jesus Christ.

    Evolutionist A. J. Mattell is very perceptive in his analysis of the contradiction between evolution and the Fall:

    “Those liberal and neo-orthodox Christians who regard the creation stories as myths or allegories are undermining the rest of Scripture, for if there was no Adam there was no fall; and if there was no fall, there was no hell; and if there was no hell, there was no need of Jesus as Second Adam and Incarnate Savior, crucified and risen. As a result the whole biblical system of salvation collapses. .... Evolution thus becomes the most potent weapon for destroying the Christian faith.”
     
  14. Craigbythesea

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    </font>[/QUOTE]Michael,

    I enjoyed and was blessed by reading this post! It was indeed a pleasure to see that Solomon did not receive all of the wisdom to the exclusion of other people.

    Thank you for your contribution and the spirit in which it was written. [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  15. Todd

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    Michael, I understand what it is that you are trying to say, but consider the logical contradiction contained within the sentence above. In one breath, you say that the Fall of man is not necessary for salvation (i.e. - central to the Gospel message), but in the very next breath you say that spiritual discernment allows one to understand what the Fall means. In other words, you begin your sentence based on the premise that the Fall was not literal, then you end your sentence by inferring that it was. For if there were no literal Fall, then why would someone need spiritual discernment in determining the underlying "lesson" of an imaginery event.

    This is the point I've been trying to make all along. Macroevolutionists don't want a literal Fall of man because they know that will cause them to change their minds about Gen. 1-11 being strictly allegorical, yet then they go on to make statements that prove that their theology can't live without a literal Fall of man. Which is it going to be? Did Adam and Eve literally Fall in the Garden or not? IF THERE WAS NOT LITERAL FALL, THEN YOU CAN'T POSSIBLY ASSERT THAT ALL MEN ARE DEPRAVED AND IN NEED OF LITERAL ATONEMENT FOR SIN THAT COULD ONLY BE SUPPLIED THROUGH A LITERAL CROSS AND A LITERAL RESURRECTION.

    You simply can't have it both ways. Those who try to make a non-literal Fall in the Garden and human depravity stand alongside each other have a logical and theological contradiction that they simply can't get around (not to mention the fact that they have to completely reinterpret the words of Paul from Rom. 5-8). Macroevolutionists would have no such problems if they would just accept by faith the clear testimony of creation and the Fall of man as they are revealed in Gen. 1-3. That would mean putting macroevolution to bed once and for all.
     
  16. Todd

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    Just be sure that you never disagree with Craig's position on creation or the Fall of man. You will then be branded as an "ignorant lunatic" - isn't that the way you said it Craig?
     
  17. Michael52

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    Michael, I understand what it is that you are trying to say, but consider the logical contradiction contained within the sentence above. In one breath, you say that the Fall of man is not necessary for salvation (i.e. - central to the Gospel message), but in the very next breath you say that spiritual discernment allows one to understand what the Fall means. In other words, you begin your sentence based on the premise that the Fall was not literal, then you end your sentence by inferring that it was. For if there were no literal Fall, then why would someone need spiritual discernment in determining the underlying "lesson" of an imaginery event.

    This is the point I've been trying to make all along. Macroevolutionists don't want a literal Fall of man because they know that will cause them to change their minds about Gen. 1-11 being strictly allegorical, yet then they go on to make statements that prove that their theology can't live without a literal Fall of man. Which is it going to be? Did Adam and Eve literally Fall in the Garden or not? IF THERE WAS NOT LITERAL FALL, THEN YOU CAN'T POSSIBLY ASSERT THAT ALL MEN ARE DEPRAVED AND IN NEED OF LITERAL ATONEMENT FOR SIN THAT COULD ONLY BE SUPPLIED THROUGH A LITERAL CROSS AND A LITERAL RESURRECTION.

    You simply can't have it both ways. Those who try to make a non-literal Fall in the Garden and human depravity stand alongside each other have a logical and theological contradiction that they simply can't get around (not to mention the fact that they have to completely reinterpret the words of Paul from Rom. 5-8). Macroevolutionists would have no such problems if they would just accept by faith the clear testimony of creation and the Fall of man as they are revealed in Gen. 1-3. That would mean putting macroevolution to bed once and for all.
    </font>[/QUOTE]Todd

    Maybe it would have been clearer if I had said, "Knowledge of The Biblical account of the Fall of man (Adam) is not necessary for salvation, but salvation and the spiritual discrenment salvation brings allows one to understand what the Fall fully means." This, I guess, speaks better to the point of the original quote you provided.

    I am not discounting the Fall. I stated, in another sentence, that knowledge of the fallen state of one's soul is essential for salvation. This is true whether one has ever heard of Adam or not. Obviously, most believers have heard of Adam and understand the source of the depravity of man. However, it is a not a logical contradiction to believe that that knowledge of the Biblical account of Adam is not necessary for salvation. If the "correct" Biblical interpretation or "correct" knowledge in general were necessary for salvation, a lot of us would be in big trouble. :D ;)

    Anyway, I did not say whether I believed in a literal or non-literal Adam. I will say that I know for certain that I am literally fallen and without Jesus I would be found in Adam. That is what the Bible literally says. [​IMG] ;)
     
  18. Johnv

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    I think the most central point to the Gospel message is that I have sinned, cannot pay the price for my transgressions, and must rely on Christ to pay for my sins for me. The fall of man issue is empty if one does not acknowlege the fall of oneself. There are many people here on the BB who accepted Christ long before they ever cracked opened a bible, stepped into a church, or had any familiarity with the fall of man topic. They all knew, however, that they were sinners and needed Christ to life the debt of sin from them.
     
  19. Michael52

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    I have found that when Craig's position tends to agree with mine, he is very persuassive and articulate. However, when we don't agree, I find myself thinking, "that's a little strong, I wish you wouldn't say that, Craig."

    I think our brother Craig delights in the debate.
    If he gets under someone's skin a little, he probably thinks he is doing his opponent a favor by helping them sharpen their arguments. It's no offence if none is taken. [​IMG]
     
  20. rjprince

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    I do not find discourse on the fall in any of the presentations of the gospel in the Book of Acts. Our sinfulness is assumed, but the fall and the doctrines of original sin, federal headship, or seminal participation cannot be found there.

    But, I do kind of wonder how we can take the Bible literally regarding sin and salvation but not literally regarding creation. Just seems to me to be an irreconcilable discountinuity. If we cannot trust the Bible in Genesis, why do we trust the Psalms, or the Prophets, or the Gospels, or the Epistles?
     

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