I have a question about Theistic Evolution, which clearly puts death before sin. Evolution would state that many organisms died in the intermediate steps leading to man, which then sinned. How would you reconcile death before sin to Romans 5:12? "Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all men, because
all sinned". Romans 5:12.


I have to agree with you that physical death preceeded sin, at least if one does not take the "days" of Genesis 1 fully literally.  Even if you take Genesis 1 literally, it is nearly impossible to hold to the doctrine that there was no death before the "fall" of Adam and Eve.  Surely bacteria died and surely very short-lived insects died as well.  It is my opinion that the "days" of Genesis 1 are not literal twenty-four hour periods, and that a great number of generations of plants and animals lived and died before human beings made their appearance on the earth.
All this is reconciled by understanding the "death" which was brought in with the sin of Adam (and Eve) to be spiritual death.  "The wages of sin are death" (Romans 6:23).  This passage, also in Romans, indicates that the kind of death which sin earns is spiritual death.  Romans 6:1-10 or so clearly implies that in baptism we have a spirtual death and a spiritual rebirth.  When we sin we die, although the full implication of that may only be realized on Judgment Day.  Would Adam and Eve have suffered physical death if they had not sinned?  This is hard to prove from scripture and one’s theological assumptions come into play here.  I am not sure.  Was it God’s intention if mankind had not sinned for them to remain forever in the same kind of physical bodies we now occupy?  Or did he intend all along for us to occupy those "changed" bodies (1 Corinthians 15)?  I do not know, but I assume that the death which was caused by the sin of Adam was spiritual death and separation from God.
John Oakes


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