The Place of the Fall in the Overall Vision of the Hebrew Bible
The notion of the “fall” of Adam and Eve, our first parents, has played an important role in Jewish and Christian theology. It has been used to explain the “brokenness” of the world, and it has also been declared unbiblical, or at least of little historical and theological consequence. This paper will focus on sound reading strategies and show, first, why we should indeed read the Hebrew Bible as presenting the “fall” as a reality. Second, it will consider some of the consequences (for humankind, and for the non-human creation). Third, it will show its importance in the rest of the Bible beyond Genesis 1–11. Finally, it will take up the matter of the enduring relevance of the “fall,” and how the world can still be called “good.”
||C. John “Jack” Collins (PhD University of Liverpool) is Professor of Old Testament at Covenant Theological Seminary, and was a Senior Research Fellow for the Creation Project. He was Old Testament Chairman for the English Standard Version of the Bible, and is the author of Reading Genesis Well: Navigating History, Poetry, Science, and Truth in Genesis 1–11 (Zondervan, 2018), Did Adam and Eve Really Exist?: Who They Were and Why You Should Care (Crossway, 2011), and Science and Faith: Friends or Foes? (Crossway, 2003).