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There was no death or decay before the Fall (Talk.Origins)

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Response Article
This article (There was no death or decay before the Fall (Talk.Origins)) is a response to a rebuttal of a creationist claim published by Talk.Origins Archive under the title Index to Creationist Claims.


Claim CH301:

There was no death or decay before the Fall of Adam and Eve, when sin came into the world.

Source:

  • Morris, John D., 2000. Creation's Easter message. Acts & Facts 29(4) (Apr.): 1-2.
  • Morris, Henry M., 1974. Scientific Creationism, Green Forest, AR: Master Books, p. 211.


CreationWiki response: (Talk.Origins quotes in blue)

1. The Biblical references to death refer to spiritual death. Romans 6:23, for example, says God, through Christ, already gave us eternal life. Obviously, physical death still occurs, so Christ did not save mankind from it. If the death from which Christ was supposed to save us was physical death, then Christ was a failure.

Actually, references in the Bible to death refer to both spiritual and physical death and Christ's was about both. Talk Origins does not recognize that the redemption from physical death is still in the future. When a person accepts Jesus as Savior, he or she is at that moment saved from spiritual death, but redemption from physical death waits for the future resurrection. This is paralleled by the fact that the moment Adam and Eve ate the fruit of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, they died spiritually, but it still took hundreds of years for them to die physically.

The fact that physical death and resurrection is part of this is shown by 1 Corinthians 15:21-22. The context clearly shows that this refers to physical death. Given this context, 1 Corinthians 15:21-22 makes it clear that physical death is a result of man's sin, and verse 22 shows that redemption from physical death is still future.

2. A world without death would be far from Edenic. Either there would be no possibility of new birth, in which case none of us could be alive today, or the world would become so overpopulated with living things that most people would be buried alive under others.

It is doubtful that without the fall anyone alive today would have been born, since sin has some part in getting many couples together. Those children born outside of marriage, and their descendants, would be at the top of this list. But sin had an indirect part as well. The ancestors of nearly every American left their home-lands to escape evils in their home country. Furthermore, many people have been removed from the gene pool as a result of the Flood, murder, disease, and war. Some people would not have been born if those so removed had not been removed. Any child born of a second marriage would not be born. The list goes on.

There are at least two other ways to prevent over-population other than those suggested by Talk Origins.

  1. God could have physically taken people to heaven without death. This has happened twice before and it will happen when Jesus comes to take Christians to be with him. In such a pre-fall situation, those who have gone on could visit Earth from time to time.
  2. Colonization of space. The universe is a big place.

Death is a necessary part of life.

This is only the case in the post-fall world. There is so little known about pre-fall conditions that there is no way to compare the two.