Adam and Eve have been taking a bit of a beating from some well known scholars within the Reformed tradition. Tremper Longman made statements recently that allowed for the first couple to be mythical as has Pete Enns. Bruce Waltke, one of the world's great Old Testament scholars recently made statements that seemed to indicate he too allowed for Adam and Eve to be something less than historical figures. I was therefore encouraged by the following clarification by Dr. Waltke:
I had not seen the video before it was distributed. Having seen it now, I realize its deficiency and wish to put my comments in a fuller theological context.
1. Adam and Eve are historical figures from whom all humans are descended; they are uniquely created in the image of God and as such are not in continuum with animals.
2. Adam is the federal and historical head of the fallen human race just as Jesus Christ is the federal and historical head of the Church.
3. I am not a scientist, but I have familiarized myself with attempts to harmonize Genesis 1-3 with science, and I believe that creation by the process of evolution is a tenable Biblical position. I apologize for giving the impression that others who seek to harmonize the two differently are not credible. I honor all who contend for the Christian faith.
4. Evolution as a process must be clearly distinguished from evolutionism as a philosophy. The latter is incompatible with orthodox Christian theology.
5. Science is fallible and subject to revision. As a human and social enterprise, science will always be in flux. My first commitment is to the infallibility (as to its authority) and inerrancy (as to its Source) of Scripture.
6. God could have created the Garden of Eden with apparent age or miraculously, even as Christ instantly turned water into wine, but the statement that God “caused the trees to grow” argues against these notions.
7. I believe that the Triune God is Maker and Sustainer of heaven and earth and that biblical Adam is the historical head of the human race.
8. Theological comments made here are mostly a digest of my chapters on Genesis 1-3 in An Old Testament Theology (Zondervan, 2007).
Bruce Waltke, Professor of Old Testament Reformed Theological Seminary