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Who Was Adam?: a Creation Model Approach to the Origin of Man [Hardcover]

Fazale Rana , Hugh Ross
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 299 pages
  • Publisher: NavPress (7 Sep 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1576835774
  • ISBN-13: 978-1576835777
  • Product Dimensions: 22.9 x 15.2 x 2.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 801,810 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Multidisciplinary Masterpiece 8 Oct 2006
By Pieter Uys HALL OF FAME TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover
Biochemist Fazale Rana and astronomer Hugh Ross examine the latest discoveries in various branches of science and the hominid fossil record, testing these against evolutionary theory and a specific creation model. Who Was Adam? elevates the creation/evolution debate by evaluating new evidence from the disciplines of archaeology, astronomy, biochemistry and genetics. The book compares traditional evolutionist thought based on naturalism (materialism) to the science of nature (crion) according to the biblical account. Both views are then put to the test for scientific viability.

Part 1: What Is Man? contrasts King David's and Darwin's ideas on mankind's significance. David pereceived the universe with a sense of awe and marveled at the fact that God cares for human beings. This part also explores the current evolutionary models of humanity's origin in view of the hominid fossil record. Finally the scientific creationist model for human origin is presented, using testable methodology and making key predictions.

Part 2: The Song Of Science, goes into detail concerning the latest findings from the various disciplines. Chapters 4 & 5 look at archaeology, genetics and paleontology, demonstrating how the evidence impacts on thionality, incoherence and contradictions.e aforementioned models. The perfect timing for the appearance of humanity is analyzed from an astronomical perspective in chapter 6, whilst the next one discusses the reasons for the longevity amongst early humans as recorded in Genesis. This interesting section considers cutting-edge findings in the biochemistry of aging, with reference to amongst others: free radicals, calorie restriction, telomeres and historical variations in cosmic radiation.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Who was Adam? 25 Nov 2007
Format:Hardcover
I really enjoyed reading this book. It's accepting the evidence that the various hominid species existed in the standard geological time eras, but instead of going along with the theory of evolution, of hominids eventually into humans, it outlines another possible explanation, that they were separate creations, which became extinct, full stop. This theory is interesting, but I wonder why God would bother creating a series of hominid species which became extinct, prior to the creation of humans, which appears to give evidence for the theory of evolution. Perhaps it's because we see things now through evolutionary eyes, and can't see a creationist view such like, that humans hunted Nearndethals with rifles, (that's not in this book).
The book outlines the evidence against evolution in an honest way, and explores the interesting subjects of Neanderthal DNA, chimps and their relationship to humans, (besides tea advertising). Also, there's an explanation for human origins, in east Africa or the middle east, according to the genetic evidence, of ancestry of people living today around the world. Concluding that humans originated from a small group or an Adam, in east Africa. I'm quite sold on this idea, the evidence is good, but this does conflict with the bible, which says Adam was created in the mid-east, well Eden, as it's location is described by the four rivers, which directs us to northern Iran, near the lake Daryacheh-ye-Orumiyeh, so how does that work? The authors seem unsure of this, they say, 'east Africa, near the middle east', but it can't be both, can it? The genetic evidence seems to point to Africa, which is quite a long way from Iran/Armenia. That hasn't been worked though, or the answer to that is not known by anyone, so we can't expect an answer. This is a thoughtful investigation into how the creation of humans might have actually happened. And thus man became a living being.
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Amazon.com: 4.0 out of 5 stars  47 reviews
61 of 65 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent review of the current scientific literature 3 Oct 2005
By Richard L. Deem - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Are humans just advanced apes or have they been specially created in the image of God? Publications by scientists almost never ask the question, whereas publications by theists seldom examine the scientific data that relates to the question.

However, two scientists raised in non-Christian homes, Fuz Rana (Ph.D. in chemistry) and Hugh Ross (Ph.D. in astronomy), have written a new book (Who Was Adam?: A Creation Model Approach to the Origin of Man) that examines the question of human origins by comparing biblical and evolutionary models.

The second in a series of books designed to produce a comprehensive biblical creation model, Reasons To Believe scholars, Rana and Ross present a biblical creation model that makes 13 specific predictions on the nature and origin of mankind, then go on to examine the evidence published in the latest scientific studies. One example from the biblical creation model is the predicted discrepancy between the origin dates for male and female genetic lines. The Bible claims that there was a genetic bottleneck at the Genesis flood. Whereas all females can trace their ancestry back to Eve (through the three wives of Noah's sons), all males trace their Y-chromosomes through Noah (through his three sons). This predicted discrepancy for molecular dates of mitochondrial DNA and Y-chromosome data is actually seen in the scientific literature. In addition to the mtDNA and Y-chromosome data, Who Was Adam? examines molecular dates from nuclear genes, numerous varieties of non-coding genetic elements, and human parasites. All these data confirm a recent origin date for Homo sapiens sapiens. Other chapters examine the hominid fossil record as it relates to specific evolutionary models compared to the biblical creation model. Chapter 5 examines the question whether we can detect the image of God in modern humans that differentiates them from hominids in the fossil record. Specific hominid species are examined in detail, including Homo erectus, Homo neandertalensis, and chimpanzees. A chapter devoted to the development of bipedalism shows that the extensive changes required for this form of locomotion appeared in early hominids, with no apparent selective Darwinian driving force. An examination of hominid brain sizes shows no gradual increases within species, but large jumps as new species appeared on the scene. Opponents of the idea that humans are intelligently designed often point to the presence of "junk" (non-coding) DNA in the genomes of both apes and humans. Chapter 14 examines the most recent evidence that shows that non-coding DNA is certainly not junk, but provides vital regulatory functions for coding genes.

One chapter stands out as being somewhat out of place in a book on human origins. Chapter 6, "The best possible time" examines the timing of the appearance on humans in the context of the history of the universe and the history of the earth. Although peripherally-related to the question of intelligent design, it would seem to be more relevant to discussions of cosmology and the anthropic principle.

Although the book seems to be marketed to Christians (from the title), it will probably have more broad appeal within secular circles, since it does present an excellent, up-to-date review of the current scientific literature on human origins. Does a biblical creation model for human origins present a scientifically-respectable alternative to neo-Darwinian evolution? Read the book and make your own decision.
48 of 52 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Honest, unconvincing, interesting. 27 Nov 2005
By David Marshall - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
I am a Christian scholar who for the past year has been trying to figure out whether biology provides evidence for God. I like Ross and Rana because, unlike some critics (see below) they show a real love of science, and speak of those with whom they disagree with respect. Augustine noted that if Christians give bad evidence to defend the Gospel, educated non-believers will assume Christianity lacks evidence. Reviewers who insist that the world must be a few thousand years old fall into this trap, in my opinion. Evidence for an ancient universe is overwhelming; if that destroys your faith, I find that both surprising and sad.

But while I was rooting for Ross and Rana, I did not find their primary argument, against the common descent of man with hominids and chimps, as convincing as their previous book, Origin of Life. (Which was a series of sharp, knock-out blows to materialistic explanations for the origin of first life.) Sometimes they were so honest in explaining the facts, and the evolutionary interpretation, that the opposing argument seemed to win.

Some really bad arguments sneak in here, too. Isn't it nice (they say) that earth has more land in the northern hemisphere than the south, since life is easier in upper latitudes? (But is life really so intolerable in Tahiti or Sydney?) People in Genesis lived longer, because they don't live near cancer-causing igneous rocks! (Then why do Japanese, in their volcanic islands, have among the world's longest lifespans? And why do Hawaiians live longest among Americans?) "The geographical distribution of these first hominids was also quite extensive (Chad, Kenya, and Ethiopia." (Why should it surprise us if ape-men traveled a few hundred miles in a million years?) Rana and Ross offer an interesting discussion of anatomical changes needed for the first creatures to walk on two legs. But then they make the bare assertion that bipedalism appeared suddenly -- without a word about whether the first two-leggers met all the criteria they laid out. (Probably no one knows, since they point out that most hominid finds consist of only a few bones.)

Many sections of the book are great. R&R give a good description of various hominids. What they say about early human migrations is fascinating; I have notices similarities between peoples in some of the areas they trace. The chapter on "junk DNA" is highly informative. (But for how much of the "junk" has a use been found? It would be helpful to put the research they discuss in clearer context.) The origin of man does appears somewhat mysterious, as they argue. I am not sure mutations and selection have the powers ascribed to them, to create new orgins, assemble living systems, and induce specified complexity.

For me, the question is not, "Was God involved?" The evidence for miracles (modern and ancient) is strong. The Gospels have withstood the most determined attempts to explain them away. (As I show in my new book, Why the Jesus Seminar can't find Jesus, and Grandma Marshall Could.)

But while R & R do show interesting differences between men and munks, in the end their argument against common descent fails to focus on the big picture. Modern man follows Neanderthal, who looked a lot more like us than a koala or a kettlefish. That overall ascending pattern of hominids, with increasing cranial capacity and shared anatomy, is hard to gainsay. God, presumably, could have made man right after the first camel -- was He trying to fool us? After a talk by Rana, I heard a Christian biologist challenge Dr. Rana at precisely this point -- "Show us a fossil radically out of order in the evolutionary order, and you'll have a case." I didn't hear an answer. So while their arguments on cosmology and first origins seem strong, this one, I think, needs work.

I am not sure Rana and Ross prove their case. They do, however, give an excellent education on paleontology, human biology, DNA, and the enigmatic origin of man. Some arguments seem fairly convincing. Just as importantly, they model a fairness, honesty and charity that are refreshing and rare on this topic, that one would wish for from all apologists.
58 of 65 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Who was Adam?" Surprising, satisfying! 2 Oct 2005
By Kathy Clapper - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Who are these children who make their way to the nurse's office at school to see me-children whose disruptive behaviors and/or mental illness make it impossible for them to function in a regular classroom and qualify them for my school? And why should I care so deeply about them?

In their book on the origins of man, "Who was Adam?", Fazale Rana and Hugh Ross provide surprising, yet satisfying answers to my questions.

Surprising because of the breadth and wealth of cutting-edge scientific research they cite.

Surprising because the evidence from the fossil record, biochemistry, archeology, human and parasitic genetic studies, geology, and astronomy is at odds with the evolutionary model of human origins that I was taught.

Surprising because they propose a creation model for human origins that is both biblical and able to stand up under scientific scrutiny. (Mitochondrial-DNA research reveals that humanity originated from one woman, called "mitochondrial Eve", and Y-chromosomal studies reveal that humanity came from a single location!)

Their model posits that while humans share many similarities with animals, humans are qualitatively different from animals. Only humans bear the image of God. If their model is correct, then even the most difficult to manage children have inherent dignity and intrinsic worth.

"Who was Adam?" - an exciting exploration of the evidence.
29 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Great Help for Us Theologians and Apologists 7 Oct 2005
By John A. Battle - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
For those of us Christians who are interested in the question of human origins, this book is a real help. As a teacher of the Bible to graduate students desiring to be ministers and teachers, I often am asked how we can reconcile the Bible's statements about the creation of Adam and Eve with the findings of modern science. And how does the universal flood fit in, along with the historic occupation of the various continents by human beings? Most people have the impression that the two accounts-the Bible's and that provided by physical and historical anthropology-are contradictory. They assume that the Bible is mythological at this point, intended to teach only spiritual truths.

Who Was Adam? is a high quality work that presents a convincing case for what is called the RTB (Reasons to Believe) model. This model assumes that the Bible, interpreted consistently in all the relevant passages, is historically accurate, and that Adam and Eve were two humans created directly by God about 50,000-100,000 years ago. It also assumes the reliability of modern scientific investigations and conclusions, subject to correction by future discoveries. It concludes that the RTB model agrees with these two sources of information. In so doing, it favors the modern Out-of-Africa theory, that all humans descend from a small population in one location in the Middle East or eastern Africa. It further offers specific predictions for future research which can falsify or modify the model. This approach is unique in the modern theology-science debate and discussion.

In several chapters Rana and Ross summarize the latest findings in paleoanthropology, including the rapidly developing field of genetic history. Rana's specialization in molecular biology is especially evident in these chapters. Special attention is given to the appearance of bipedalism and increased brain size, and a lengthy chapter demonstrates that Neanderthals were not human. This book is a convenient collection of information from all the important scientific disciplines as they relate to the origin of humans. It is amply footnoted, with more than enough references to current original scientific papers and books written by leaders in the field.

I have few criticisms. A glossary would be helpful; while Rana and Ross explain the technical terms and abbreviations at their first usage, it is hard to find that definition when it reappears later. I also would like to see a more complete treatment of the arguments used by their opponents to suggest human characteristics in hominids, as the use of fire and simple tools, and how these may be based on communicating and learning from each other. There is a typo at footnote 20 of chapter 1.

As a non-scientist, I found the book particularly helpful in making the complicated array of ancient hominids understandable, and in offering a sensible and realistic way to understand the Bible's perspective on the origin of human beings. I highly recommend this book.

John A. Battle, Th.D., President and Professor of New Testament and Theology, Western Reformed Seminary, Tacoma, WA
38 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The fossil record from a different perspective. 3 Oct 2005
By Jeff Wilson - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
This book should be a must read for all students who take course

being taught evolution! This book is, I believe, what those

who want to learn the truth about evolution are looking for.

This is a well written and in-depth look at the fossil record

and its implications. Missing are the assumptions and leaps of

logic that the public is constantly fed about the fossil record.

This book points out the failings of evolutionary theory and

shows how the fossil record is consistent with the biblical

record - though not the 6 24-hour day (young earth) theory that

most Christians are force fed in churches. If the fossil record

evidence isn't convincing enough, the authors also relate

evidence from archeology, geology, biochemistry and other

sciences. This book is different from many other Christian

books - rather than avoid and dismiss scientific discoveries,

it embraces them. Scientific references from credible sources

are numerous and are used throughout the book! After reading

this book I am more convinced that Christian beliefs are safe

and sound and are strengthened with each new scientific

discovery.
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