In fact, I would suggest he should have bothered to read the first five chapters of the Genesis account he is criticizing, before bothering to write into a newspaper about said criticism.
Had Merle bothered to read the first five chapters of Genesis, he would have known that his entire premise is faulty, as seen in Genesis 5:4, where it clearly states, “And the days of Adam after he had begotten Seth were eight hundred years: and he begat sons and daughters.”
While it doesn’t mention the daughters by name, this is simply commonplace in Biblical genealogies, where only the most prominent members of a genealogy are mentioned by name, or those directly in a key lineage (e.g. the Davidic). How many sons and daughters Adam had we don’t know; it could have been dozens.
What is more, these “siblings” — if they may be so called — would have, at least according to the Bible, lived to be 700-1,000 years old, and thus while they apparently married one another, they could well have been centuries apart in age for all we know, given those tremendously long life spans.
As such, our concept of “polygamy” may not have applied given siblings who did not necessarily grow up with one another; which would also explain why the commandment against polygamy was not given until Moses. Human life spans as seen in the biblical genealogies did not begin declining until after the flood, when God decided the human life span should become 120 years (Genesis 6:3). And as Paul says, if a commandment wasn’t yet given, the sin would not be imputed (Romans 5:13).
I do not believe creationism should be taught in science classes, but evolution is an equally tenable theory with both better suited for philosophy classrooms if anything. While I believe in seeking truth and skeptically evaluating the Bible, one should at least read it honestly. Merle’s accusations are careless and disingenuous.
—Joshua D. Zambrano