Book Review: Saving the Original Sinner: How Christians Have Used the Bible’s First Man to Oppress

Original Sin according to the Christian dogma

Saving the Original Sinner: How Christians Have Used the Bible’s First Man to Oppress, Inspire, and Make Sense of the World

Source: Amazon

Book by Karl W. Giberson (Author)

A scientist and former evangelical argues that holding onto a belief in a literal, historical Adam has forced many Christians to reject science and become intellectually isolated from the modern world. 
The Bible’s first man stands at the center of a crisis that is shaking much of Christianity. In the evangelical world, scholars have been ostracized and banished from their academic communities for endorsing a modern scientific understanding of the world, even as they remained strong Christians. Self-appointed gatekeepers of traditional theology demand intellectual allegiance to an implausible interpretation of the Genesis creation story, insisting that all humanity must be descended from a single, perfect human pair, Adam and Eve. Such a view is utterly at odds with contemporary science.

It wasn’t always this way. Karl Giberson spotlights the venerable tradition of Christian engagement with new knowledge and discoveries. When global exploration, anthropology, geology, paleontology, biblical studies, and even linguistics cast doubt on the historicity of Adam and his literal fall into sin, Christians responded by creatively reimagining the creation story, letting Adam “evolve” to accommodate his changing context. Even conservative evangelical institutions until recently encouraged serious engagement with evolutionary science, unhindered by the straitjacket of young-earth creationism, intelligent design, or other views demanding that Adam be a historical figure.

Giberson calls for a renewed conversation between science and Christianity, and for more open engagement with new scientific discoveries, even when they threaten central doctrines. Christians should not be made to choose between their faith and their understanding of the universe. Instead, as Giberson argues, they should follow in the once robust tradition of exploring science openly within the broad contours of Christian belief.

Order the book in Amazon

Additional Reading

Charles Darwin: An Epiphany for the Muslims, A Catastrophe for the Christians

Categories: Biology, Evolution

4 replies

  1. Casting doubt on something does not mean that it has been proved to be wrong. Your obsession in finding faults in the Bible only even when the quran says exactly the same thing belongs to the gutter.
    I have not seen and you have not pointed out to any verse in the quran which contradicts the Biblical position on Adam. The Bible say he was the first human and so does the quran. The Bible says that God created the universe in 6 days. The author of the quran is confused about that. So he gives a number of days and is not specific about the period.
    But in Zia’s quest to validate evolution, he does not mind contradicting the quran and then tries to fold evolutionary theory to fit his idea of what the quran says and vice versa.
    On Friday, March 27, 2015, the Muslim Times carried an article by Paul Feyerabend, a philosopher of science, titled ‘EVIDENCE SUGGESTS THAT CHARLES DARWIN’S THEORY OF EVOLUTION IS WRONG’. He wrote : “THE SUCCESS OF THE EVOLUTION THEORIES ABOUT THE ORIGIN OF THE UNIVERSE AND LIFE IS ESTABLISHED NOT BY DATA BUT BY THE FORCE OF ‘PERSUASION, PROPAGANDA, SUBTERFUGE AND RHETORIC—‘”. That is what passes for science for some people.
    There is nothing to argue about someone who thinks that he/she is a descendant of apes through Neanderthal beings. Their behaviour bears them out.

  2. Namelee you are using an old rude ploy of the creationists that they try to link the better informed evolutionists with monkeys and it has not worked for 150 years and has only shown stubborn ignorance of the creationists.

    I do not contradict the Holy Quran, I only understand it better than most. You have asked me where the Holy Quran improves the Biblical understanding about Adam. Here is the verse and any one with little bit of Arabic knowledge will bear me out that I am translating it well, the emphasis is on the word “her”:

    O ye people! fear your Lord, Who created you from a single (early) life form and created from her its mate, and from them twain spread (other life forms) and men and women; and fear Allah, in Whose name you appeal to one another, and fear Him particularly respecting ties of relationship. Indeed, Allah watches over you.

    For the literalist it will mean that Adam came from the rib of Eve and not vice versa, which is also different from the Bible. I believe, here in this verse is a subtle hint at evolution without disturbing the earlier generations over the last 1400 years who did not know about evoution.

  3. Zia,
    Never once did I say or will I ever say that the quran ‘improves’ the Bible. The quran has nothing original to offer. One cannot give what it does not have. The quran merely echoes what the Bible says.
    The verse you quoted from the quran does not have the bracketed words. Those are just your creation to align the quran with your much cherished theory of evolution.
    But if the quran is the text book of evolution which recognizes that there were several early human beings, why does it mention only Adam by name? There is nothing said about the ‘other humans’. The ‘subtle hint at evolution’ only exists in the imagination of those who see evolution in everything.
    It is the evolutionists who link their ancestry to monkeys. They claim to have evolved from unicellular organisms through anthropoids culminating in their being Neanderthal creatures but with the missing link to modern humans in clear violation of Darwin’s position that his theory will not hold where such links are missing.
    Much as the quran has nothing to offer, it cannot be justifiably said to uphold a bankrupt theory like evolution.
    By the way, why is evolution still a theory after almost two hundred years and various claims of ‘scientific proofs’?

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