For the past century or so, the North American Christian has had a selection of Bibles from which to take a personal choice. Very often that choice will have been the Bible with the most extensive footnotes perceived to be study-helps for the many difficult passages. Based upon the King James version, The Scofield Reference Edition, published in 1907 and revised in 1917, has been one of the most popular. A more recent alternative with even more footnotes is Dake’s Annotated Reference Bible, also based upon the KJV and first published in 1961. The footnote to Isaiah 45:18 in Scofield’s edition suggests that Genesis 1:1-2 refers to a pre-adamic age ruled by Satan, judged by God then left desolate for an indefinite interval before a re-creation of the earth. Dake rehearses the same account more forcefully directly under Genesis 1:1-2. Although both Scofield and Dake claim to reject evolution, their footnotes silently claim its possibility by adopting all the billions of years for the first “day.” Today’s new Christian has been indoctrinated with evolution and naturally tends to adopt these footnote interpretations without question. It is therefore important to be aware of the source and especially the implications for the idea of a pre-adamic civilization.
The Dutch ecclesiastic, Isaac de la Peyrére [1596-1676], published his Systema Theologicum ex Prae-Adamitarum Hypothesi in 1655. In this book he claimed that the Bible is only concerned with the history of the Jews. Peyrére argued that God separated one man from His pre-adamic stock, and he became Adam, the father of the Jewish nation. The Gentiles of all colors today were said to be descended from that pre-adamic race. Even so, Peyrére argued that salvation was available to all men but he had problems explaining the original sin. Recalling that there were only eight individuals on the ark, all of Noah’s family and reasonably of the same color, Peyrére had to face the fact that a global flood would have drowned the Gentile stock; therefore, he concluded the Genesis Flood had to be local – somewhere in Mesopotamia. Isaac de la Peyrére was severely condemned by the Church of his day, and his name is now generally forgotten. The notion that the Genesis Flood was merely local is popular today and this will be addressed in Question 5. However, there are problems associated with a pre-adamic age theory. In the first place, the creation account specifically tells us that the sun, moon and stars were created on the fourth day [Genesis 1:14-19]. Therefore, unless every one of those days of creation was a normal 24-hour day, including the first day, that pre-adamic civilization would have been in total darkness where no living thing could survive. Nevertheless, the belief in a pre-adamic age lingers on usually together with some belief in evolution among a great many Christians today.
In the face of continuing difficulties to explain the spontaneous origin of life on early Earth by evolutionary processes, the scientific community today is pursuing a new theory. It is being argued that ancient earth was “seeded” with life from outer space via the comets. This effort is being aided by influential writers convincing their readers that sophisticated building complexes have been discovered on Earth. These are usually at the bottom of the sea or remote “observatories” such as that at Nazca, Peru. Most of this is merely speculation grasping for evidence to support it. Unfortunately, in the absence of sound teaching there are those who wish to believe all this and even claim it as the remains of that pre-adamic world. As far as the Christian is concerned, a pre-adamic world complements the theory of evolution, relegates to myth God’s creation of planet Earth in six days and therefore denies the fourth Commandment [Exodus 20:11].
Pre-Adamic Man by Ian Taylor – Creation Moments.
Image: Stone ruins – Pixabay.com