Tuesday, October 13, 2020



Adam and Eve in the Eden- (file:///C:/Users/Aida.HFC05201-WL/Pictures/%E1%90%88%20Garden%20of%20eden%20stock%20pics,%20Royalty%20Free%20adam%20and%20eve%20pictures%20_%20download%20on%20Depositphotos%C2%AE.html)

2020’s Columbus Day weekend has certainly reflected the spirit of those marauding bands of conquistadores who descended on the new world wreaking havoc, enslaving and devastating its population, and setting a legacy of violence that still inflicts us.[1]

The week that preceded this year’s Columbus Day saw the thwarting of a plot by an extremist militia to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer in a “stunning indication of the potential for domestic terrorism.” [2] As we entered the weekend, on Saturday evening, October 10th, rallying right-wing and left-wing activists clashed, ending in a fatal shooting in Denver. That same night, Portland, Oregon police broke up “the 123rd night of protests for racial justice” by arresting “almost all of the demonstrators outside the Portland Police Bureau’s North Precinct.” Objections were raised by “The Oregon Justice Resource Center, a civil rights-focused legal group which said in a statement that the arrests effectively chilled free speech and fit into a pattern that could put the city on an authoritarian path,” while Police charged, “‘The crowd’s posture, including their armored attire’ suggested to police that protesters planned to have another event that could lead to ‘arson, riots, and assaults on officers.”[3] Also that night, backed by the National Guard, police terminated three nights of protesting the fatal shooting by a police officer of a black youth, Alan Cole, killed while running from police at Wauwatosa, Wisconsin’s Mayfair Mall. The police tear-gassed protestors for throwing bottles at them on the charge that the crowd had ingredients in some confiscated backpacks for eventual Molotov cocktails. Sunday’s daily headline website, The Day, observed: “The protests in Wauwatosa are just the latest in a series of demonstrations against police racism and brutality that have erupted across the country since George Floyd’s death.”[4] The Wisconsin Police appeared to be reacting in fear to the prospect of a similar result yielded by just such a recent demonstration in Louisville, Kentucky (my wife and my home in the late 1970s – early ‘80s) where a protest against a grand jury ruling on the death of Breonna Taylor, the 26-year-old emergency medical technician who was a shooting victim caught in police retaliation after her boyfriend fired on them,[5] included the wounding of two police officers by a protestor. By Sunday night, October 11, 2020, Portland “Protesters overturned statues of former Presidents Theodore Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln in Portland, Oregon, on Sunday night in a declaration of ‘rage’ toward Columbus Day.”[6] And so, in the midst of the crisis over the corona virus, when we should be banding together to protect each other and stop this pandemic, the United States is seized in the grip of racial ideological estrangement and violence on all sides, the right-wing, the left-wing, police, and protestors. All of these incidences at their core appear to be racially-driven, the result of a pernicious belief by all sides that the United States as a nation is deeply involved in a clash between races for the survival of its sectarian members.

From a Christian perspective, however, all of this ideology is based on a myth – a fallacy that is contradicted by the Bible, a contradiction recently supported by the brilliant and innovative work of Dr. Bryan Sykes and his team of genetic researchers.

The Bible is very clear in its united witness. In Genesis, chapters 1 and 2, in the Hebrew Bible (or Old Testament), we see God creating two human beings, a man and a woman, and all succeeding humans, including every human alive today, descending from these. This revelation is repeated by the brilliant philosopher/theologian Paul of Tarsus, as recorded in the New Testament, in his address to the Greek intellectuals at their forum center on the Areopagus in Athens before the Parthenon, when he announces God “made out of one human [anthropos] all humans that live upon all the face of the earth” (Acts 17:26).

Today, this primal view has been challenged by a secular theory called multiregionalism, a speculation that many different progenitors produced the different people groups that we see in today’s world, so that these people groups are indeed separate races, hence the clashes that we see for survival and supremacy.[7] But this prevalent idea has been exposed as a myth by the work of Dr. Bryan Sykes, Emeritus Professor of Human Genetics at the University of Oxford and currently a Fellow at Wolfson College, science advisor to the British House of Commons. Chairman of the Oxford Ancestors, Ltd., 2001-, along with his able staff.

Finally gathered into his groundbreaking 2002 book, The Seven Daughters of Eve, which was based on research Bryan Sykes recorded in a long series of technical articles stretching back as early as 1983,[8] he and his team explode the common but now antiquated definition of race: “a group of persons related by common descent or heredity.” In light of their discovery, that definition only appears to be salvageable if restricted to individual family lines or if expanded to the human race as a whole. How did they do that?[9] After testing the mitochondrial DNA of thousands of people of all nationalities, they discovered Europeans were not that much different from the rest of the world.”[10] All of us humans, around the world share a common ancestry, whether we are Polynesian or Celtic, or any other nationality. We are all related through our DNA.

Further, Dr. Christopher Stringer, a Natural History Museum principal researcher in London with the Science Editor of Britain’s Observer Robin McKie in their research summarized in the book, African Exodus, concluded, “Though modern humans may not always look alike, our biological constitutions are unvarying: An Eskimo and an Australian aborigine, a Chinese and a Swede – people worlds apart – are more alike than two gorillas from the same forest. It is the same DNA lineage that points unmistakably to a common ancestor whose offspring evolved into Homo Sapiens shortly before the African Exodus.[11]

From the beginning of their announcements, independent researchers checked their findings, and as early as January 26, 1987 Time Magazine recorded, that, “Now biologists suggest in a report to Nature that a single female living between 140,000 and 280,000 years ago in Africa was an ancestor of everyone on the earth today. Inevitably – and to the probable delight of creationists – many scientists are calling her ‘Eve.’”[12]

Again, because we know from the study of techtonics, which records the shifting of the plates of the earth and maps the changes due to earthquakes and volcanos and other factors, [13] the Mediterranean Sea did not exist in the earliest years. Eden’s garden, where Adam and Eve were first formed could easily have been in the area of what has since become Africa, divided from the upper land mass up the upheaval that created the Mid-land, or Mediterranean Sea. The human population then spread out across the world from what was now the more southern land mass (see, for example, the journey further eastward of Eve and Adam’s son, Cain, in Genesis 4:16).

Essentially, that is, as we consider the essence of all humans on the earth, it is clear that multi-regionalism, the theory that humans descended from various pockets of Neanderthals or Apes or Mud People or Clay People, or whatever else one speculates, all evolving in different locations from different progenitors, is a modern myth, neither based in any biblical text nor scientifically supported in the light of the establishment of common ancestry, demonstrated by the checked and double-checked mitochondrial research of the Oxford Genetics lab and the corresponding studies elsewhere.

Therefore, all United States citizens, even the extremist groups, whether they call themselves “Three Percenters” or “Five Percenters,” “The Black Guerilla Family” or “Wolverine Watchmen,” neo-Nazis or Marxists/Maoists, all share the same common ancestor. All human beings on the earth today share a common DNA descent from a single progenitor, a single ancestor, a single set of parents.

There are no “races,” separate people groups descended from separate initial progenitors, but only brothers and sisters who may have different degrees of melanin, i.e., skin and hair tint, varying nose, eye cavity, or cheek shapes, different accents and languages, due to “clines,” caused by “the gradual change in certain characteristics exhibited by members of a series of adjacent populations of organisms of the same species.”[14] But everyone’s species is exactly the same, homo sapiens, human being.

What we are seeing today is not an heroic racial war but a deplorable family feud, a fight not among separate “races” for supremacy but a squabble among relatives motivated by fear, greed, lust for power, and all the other failings that destroy families on the nuclear and extended level.

What the United States, and any similar nation in such a plight, needs is a reality check. Whatever loyalty combatants think they have is only partial. Blind brutality is a devil’s game that pits a house against itself and ensures an eventual fall. Nobody should want to commit fratricide, or matricide, or patricide (1 Tim. 1:9-11). Everyone is a brother’s and sister’s keeper. As Cain was warned by God, sin lurks at each door, lusting to possess us, but we must master it (Gen. 4:7).

As a result, no one has an excuse for prejudice against a family member – no police, no protestors, no “Oath Keeper,” no “Liberator.” We are all sisters and brothers according to God’s revelation in the Bible and the demonstration of our common heritage by mitochondrial research. We need to stop fighting and start talking with respect, civility, and love to each other.


Anyone interested in further information, please see our new book, which we edited: Christian Egalitarian Leadership, House of Prisca and Aquila Series (Eugene, OR, Wipf and Stock, 2020).

[1] For an explanation of this legacy of violence, see my chapter, “God of Power versus God of Love: The United States of America” in Aída Besançon Spencer and William David Spencer, eds., The Global God: Multicultural Evangelical Views of God (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker, 1998).

[2] By Molly Hennessy-Fiske and Jaweed Kaleem, Los Angeles Times, What if armed, far-right groups go to the polls? Some plan to be there, https://www.theday.com/nationworld-news/20201011/what-if-armed-far-right-groups-go-to-polls-some-plan-to-be-there. Published October 11. 2020 1:40AM | Updated October 11. 2020 1:43AM, accessed October 11, 2020. See also Nicholas Bogel-Burroughs, New York Times, “What We Know About the Alleged Plot to Kidnap Michigan’s Governor,” https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/09/us/michigan-militia-whitmer.html October. 9, 2020, accessed October 11, 2020.

[3]Sergio Olmos (OPB), “Portland Police make blanket arrests minutes after Saturday protest starts.” https://www.opb.org/article/2020/10/11/portland-police-make-blanket-arrests-minutes-after-saturday-protest-starts/. Posted October 11, 2020, accessed October 12, 2020.

[4] “28 arrested, tear gas used in Wisconsin police protests” 12:05AM  https://www.theday.com/nationworld-news/20201011/28-arrested-tear-gas-used-in-wisconsin-police-protests. Posted October” 11. 2020, accessed Oct 11, 2020.

[5] By Cecelia Smith-Schoenwalder, U.S. News and World Report, “Protesters, Police Clash in Louisville Following Breonna Taylor Ruling,”  https://www.usnews.com/news/national-news/articles/2020-09-24/protesters-police-clash-in-louisville-following-breonna-taylor-ruling, Sept. 24, 2020, at 1:11 p.m. The city of Louisville agreed earlier this month to pay $12 million to Taylor's family to settle a wrongful-death lawsuit. More than six months after her death, protesters who were angered and saddened over the grand jury decision took to the streets chanting ‘No lives matter until Black lives matter.’" “Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear called on Attorney General Daniel Cameron to release the evidence from the investigation to the public. ‘Let people read it,’ he told CNN. ‘Put it out there. Trust people with the truth.’ [Breonna]Taylor, was killed during a police raid on her home after her armed boyfriend confronted the officers and fired at them. Police shot Taylor at least six times.” Posted Sept 24, 2020, accessed Oct 11, 2020

[6] Ellington CMS, News for Monday, Portland, Ore. (Ap), “Protesters knock down Roosevelt, Lincoln statues in Portland October 12, 2020, https://dailyinterlake.com/news/today/ Posted October 12, 2020 1:09 a.m., accessed October 12, 2020.

[7] “Advocates of the rival multiregional theory say modern humans evolved simultaneously in Africa, Europe, and Asia from multiple early humans, maybe including Neanderthals and Homo erectus who left Africa in a much earlier wave.” However, a study based at the University of Uppsala y Swedish and German geneticists using refined techniques from the Human Genome Project supported the common ancestor findings, discovering “a common ancestor of all modern humans might have lived about 170,000 years ago in Africa.” According to chief researcher Ulf Gyllenstein, “modern humans left their African homeland relatively recently, perhaps 50,000 years ago.” Reacting to the study, University of Pennsylvania evolutionary biologist Blair Hedges commented. “I think people are not going to be too much concerned with the multiregional” anymore, see Jeff Donn, Associated Press, “DNA study backs ‘out-of-Africa’ theory for origins of man,” The Boston Globe, December 7, 2000, A40.   

[8] See a list of Bryan Sykes 77 articles at Research Gate, https://www.researchgate.net/scientific-contributions/Bryan-Sykes-38917996

[9] Random House Webster’s Unabridged (New York, NY: Random House, 2001), 1590, col. 2.

[10]. Bryan Sykes, Seven Daughters of Eve (New York, NY: Norton, 2002), 125-126: “When we looked at the data, the biggest number of mutations we found between two people was the fourteen that separated Teri Tupuaki, a fisherman from Mangaia in the Cook Islands, and Mrs. Gwyneth Roberts, who cooks the school lunches in Bala, North Wales. These two people, half a world apart, between them solved a puzzle that had divided scholarship for most of the twentieth century. Europeans were not that much different from the rest of the world; certainly nowhere near different enough to justify believing that they were all descended from Neanderthals. And since it was all or nothing, the Neanderthals [a previous humanoid species] must have become extinct. All modern Europeans must today trace their ancestry back to much more recent arrivals – to the Cro-Magnons, with their lighter skeleton, their much improved flint technology and their wonderful art. This was an absolute replacement of one human species by another…replacement was so complete…These were not our ancestors.”

[11] Christopher Stringer and Robin McKie, African Genesis, cover summary.

[12] Michael D. Lemonick, reported by Cristina Garcia/San Francisco, with other bureaus, “Everyone’s Genealogical Mother: Biologists speculate that “Eve” lived in sub-Saharan Africa,” Time, January 26, 1987, 66. Interesting to note is that Thomas J. Parsons, et. al in an article entitled, “A high observed substitution rate in the human mitochondrial DNA control region,” note their data “indicate that extremely rapid segregation of CR sequence variants between generations is common in humans,” which, along with other factors, drops their date for a “most-recent common ancestor” as low as 70,000 years ago. Nature Genetics vol. 15 (April 1997), 363, http://nature.com/naturegenetics 

[14] Random House Webster’s Unabridged Dictionary, 386, col. 3.