A Wacky Idea

Dear Reader,

So I has kind of a wacky idea. I don’t really know what conclusions to draw from it and I think it is probably better if I don’t try.

I was reading how scientists now think, based on DNA evidence, that early humans interbred with Neanderthals. Now I don’t quite know where I stand on the whole creation thing (though I have done a lot of posts on it; see the most recent example which includes many links here). One aspect I am not willing to let go of is that people are not just highly evolved animals. There is something fundamentally different about us — we are spiritual creatures, which they are not, and we are made in the image of God which means a whole host of things including that we are relational, have authority, and are creative among others. These are concepts I can’t give up for theological reasons. So my tendency is to think that whatever natural selection may have occurred in the earth’s history, people themselves probably did not evolve from animals.

Nonetheless, I found this idea — that there is evidence of other races in the human genome intriguing. (Of course, I don’t mean “races” in the sense we usually use it, to distinguish different people groups. But I don’t want to say “species” either because different species by definition can’t interbreed and these clearly could since it is evidence of interbreeding we are looking at.) Something started resonating in my brain when I read this. Where do we hear of humans interbreeding with other kinds of creatures? The beginning of Genesis 6 leaps to mind. We are told here that the “sons of God” came down and intermarried with “the daughters of men.” It is hard to know how to take this passage. I have never really heard a satisfying explanation. Some say that this simply means that good, godly men married ungodly women. Others look for a more extraterrestrial (if you will) explanation. Fallen angels seems to be the most common one. Though in other places it seems like it is implied that angels are not sexual creatures. Though  we are not given a lot of info on it, it does seem like there are various kinds of heavenly creatures so perhaps this is true of some but not others. Still, it is not a very satisfying answer. There are also other peoples in the Bible whose identity is vague. Their common characteristic seems to be that they are big. The Anakim and Rephaim are two such groups. Goliath and his family were perhaps their descendents.

What does all this mean? Again, I don’t know and am hesitant to try to say. Only there is this: science tells us that at some point in human history people interbred with other closely related creatures. The Bible also tells us that there was a time when people interbred with non-people (but creatures who were nonetheless genetically compatible with them).

Nebby

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