Adam and Eve—The First Couple
Adam and Eve—The First Couple
By D. Joseph (Standing For Truth)
Featured in THE INDEPENDENT ORIGINS HANDBOOK
The evidence for the literal Adam and Eve is so overwhelming that it's even challenging to pick out a couple lines of evidence to discuss here in this handbook on Independent Origins. The vast amount of evidence and data confirming separate ancestry and a literal Adam and Eve is exactly why I have written so many books on the topic. This includes very technical books written specifically to refute the best arguments put forth by the critics of Biblical creation, as well as books specifically meant to be more basic, and that are not really meant to address every single objection the critic could resort to. The best evidence is almost certainly the fact that we have actually discovered the first couple in genetics. For example, we have discovered both mitochondrial Eve and Y chromosome Adam. There is no disputing the fact that there is one single Y chromosome ancestor, and one mitochondrial DNA ancestor. Every single Y chromosome on this planet is nearly identical, and we have very little variation in the Y chromosome. Our Y chromosome is also incredibly dissimilar to the chimpanzee Y chromosome (less than 35% dissimilar when we consider overall gene content, and overall architecture). The evolutionary community were shocked at the massive differences between human and chimpanzee Y chromosomes. Proponents of human evolution have had to invoke all sorts of rescue devices and hypotheses to explain the incredible discrepancy.
Source: Jennifer F. Hughes, et al., “Chimpanzee and human Y chromosomes are remarkably divergent in structure and gene content,” Nature 463 (January 28, 2010): 536-539.
We know that the Y chromosome mutates a lot faster than ever predicted or expected by the evolutionary community. The number of DNA differences separating men from the Y chromosomal Adam sequence is only a few, and since there is incredibly low variation in the male Y chromosome, this chromosome must be young! You cannot have a rapidly changing Y chromosome with incredibly low variation, and at the same time this chromosome is purported to be old. No—what we see in terms of this uni-parentally inherited DNA compartment is exactly what we would expect to find if Biblical creation were true. To be specific, the male Y chromosome has about 4500 years’ worth of mutation accumulation—which means that our last Y chromosomal ancestor would actually be Noah—and not Adam. This is fascinating news! By invoking a rapidly changing Y chromosome to explain the incredible dissimilarity in human and chimpanzee Y chromosomes only adds more problems for those who want to so desperately believe that humans evolved from ape-like ancestors. We should find some highly divergent Y chromosome sequences on the planet today, and yet we do not. All the data we have suggests that this male specific chromosome is young. The data we have from the Y chromosome strongly supporting separate ancestry has even led to some amazing testable predictions made by Dr. Nathaniel Jeanson of Answers In Genesis.
Please see: Jeanson, N. T. and A. D. Holland. 2019. Evidence for a Human Y Chromosome Molecular Clock: Pedigree-Based Mutation Rates Suggest a 4,500-Year History for Human Paternal Inheritance. Answers Research Journal. 12 (2019) 393-404.
Jeanson, Nathaniel T. 2019. “Testing the Predictions of the Young-Earth Y Chromosome Molecular Clock: Population Growth Curves Confirm the Recent Origin of Human Y Chromosome Differences.” Answers Research Journal 12: 405–423.
The mitochondrial DNA also has extremely low variation as well. Before I continue, I want to take a moment to go over some genetics basics to fully understand the importance of this evidence that points directly to our first parents, Adam and Eve. In genetics, the man passes down the Y chromosome and the woman passes down the mitochondrial DNA. These are the uni-parentally inherited DNA compartments. We can make some seriously good predictions using these DNA compartments. If the Bible’s account of human origins is true, we should be able to look at the mitochondrial DNA and the Y chromosome and trace them back to two common ancestors—two individuals. The data we have did not have to be true if evolution were true, but this did have to be true if the Bible were true. The Bible predicted this. The evolutionary community did not predict the genetic data that suggests we came from just two people in the not so distant past—mitochondrial Eve and Y chromosome Noah (coined Y chromosome Adam by the evolutionary community). Focusing in on mitochondrial DNA, and specifically, Eve the mother of us all—the mitochondrial DNA turns out to be exactly what we would expect if the Genesis account of human origins were true. Remember—this was not predicted by the evolutionary community. There is every reason to believe that if ape-to-man evolution were true, there would be multiple mitochondrial lines with many even being shared with the chimpanzee (human and chimpanzee mitochondrial DNA sequences are immensely different). Remember—the evolutionists did not predict this. They have decided to retrofit the data into their evolutionary story. Proponents of universal common ancestry are constantly having to invoke storytelling and rescue devices. Again—there was every possible reason to have discovered that this mitochondrial DNA ancestor was not so unique. We can construct some very revealing family trees with the mitochondrial DNA. Additionally, we can develop some very intriguing family trees with the Y chromosome as well. I will discuss both. First off, mitochondrial trees grow in branching like patterns. This is due to mutations (changes in the nucleotide sequence of DNA). Basically, we can reverse the clock back to the point where we would find Eve. We could also start with Eve; she would have children, and her children would have children. Every time a child is born, there is the chance that the child would have a mutation, and over time, due to mutations, the family tree gains more and more branches. The next step would consist of backing this process up to where we discover the woman of whom we have all descended from. We know the mitochondrial DNA mutates fast, and we know that there are only a few DNA differences separating any two people on the planet today. This all confirms that we have all descended from Eve—the mother of us all. Proponents of evolution cannot explain why there is such low genetic variation in the mitochondrial DNA, nor can they explain why there are such few DNA differences in this non-recombining DNA compartment. This is precisely why they do not like observed mutation rates. Pedigree based mutation rates where we can measure mutation rates in the present support the model of Independent Origins. And since there are only a few DNA differences in the mitochondrial DNA, with many generations since creation, we can still account for plenty of purifying selection.
Let us now focus on a Y chromosome phylogenetic tree derived by Dr. Robert Carter.
This is a tree—a Y chromosome phylogenetic tree (Figure 2). Dr. Robert Carter took all the Y chromosomes and made a Y chromosome family tree. This tree is remarkable, because what we are seeing is exactly what we would expect if separate ancestry and biblical creation were true. Visually, you will notice an explosion from a central point. This is an explosion essentially from Noah—the last Y chromosomal ancestor of us all. But the most important aspect of this tree I want the reader to notice is the length of the branches. This is essentially all a reflection of DNA differences—a reflection of mutations over time. What should be noticed is that when we focus on the length of the branches, we realize that this is an incredibly easy number of mutations to account for in the biblical time frame. This reflects far too few mutations if deep time evolutionary history were true. The reader will remember this was the same problem we covered when discussing mitochondrial DNA. We are not looking at 10s of thousands of mutations here—we are looking at just a few hundred mutations—as would be expected if the Bible’s account of independent origins were true. This data did not have to be true—and yet it is. Evolutionists are constantly having to retrofit the data into their evolutionary story. They did not predict low genetic diversity in humans today, they did not predict the one Y chromosomal line, nor did they predict the one mitochondrial DNA line. One last thing to consider is the fact that the length of some of these branches indicate that some people can pick up more mutations in the exact same amount of time. It is difficult to look at the branch lengths and conclude a definitive amount of time that has passed. Therefore, the pattern, and the overall data is what is so significant.
Source for Y chromosome phylogenetic tree: Carter, R., Patriarchal drive in the early post-Flood population, Journal of Creation 33(1):110-118, April 2019. https://creation.com/patriarchal-drive
“Figure 1. An unrooted neighbour-joining phylogenetic tree of the Y chromosomes, based on the Simons Genome Diversity Project (SGDP) data (from Carter, Lee, and Sanford 2018). SGDP attempted to sample from a wide range of peoples. The result is a tree that is a good representation of total worldwide Y chromosome diversity. Note the clear central ‘starburst’, and the irregular branches that display more mutations than close kin. In this ‘unrooted’ tree, branches are allowed to spread out naturally. The evolutionary root would be located midway along the ‘A1’ branch. Forcing a root at that point would produce the squared-off ‘stairstep’ tree perhaps more familiar to the majority of readers, with long spidery branches leading to a few rare African lineages. But this unrooted representation allows for a more natural reading of the data.”
Also, please see: Carter, R.W., Lee, S.S., and Sanford, J.C., An overview of the independent histories of the human Y-chromosome and the human mitochondrial chromosome. In Proceedings of the Eighth International Conference on Creationism, ed. J.H. Whitmore, pp. 133–151. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania: Creation Science Fellowship, 2018.
Sanford, J.C., and R. Carter. 2014. In light of genetics…Adam, Eve, and the creation/fall. Christian Apologetics Journal 12, no. 2:51–72.
This is a mitochondrial DNA phylogenetic tree.
This photo is also from Dr. Robert Carter. He took this from the 1000 genomes project. This is a family tree of all the mitochondrial genomes in the world. Just like with the Y chromosome phylogenetic tree, I want the reader to notice the obvious, and incredible pattern. This is typically where proponents of ape-to-man evolution close their eyes. This pattern is exactly what we would expect if biblical creation were true. We see an explosive pattern—explosive growth from a single person. In fact, there is history on this tree. We can see geography. For example, there are African specific groups, European specific groups, Asian specific groups, and so on. Not only is this fascinating data that confirms separate ancestry, but it is also empirical. When we focus on the pattern, we quickly recognize that this explosive growth starts from a center point. The Bible claims to be the history book of the universe. Genesis tells us God created two people, Adam, and Eve. Humans were supernaturally created by God and made in His image. The Bible gives no indication that we are related to chimpanzees, or any other form of life. We should be able to test these claims to modern scientific data. As you have seen in both the Y chromosome and the mitochondrial DNA, the claims made in Genesis pertaining to human origins have been confirmed by empirical scientific data. Modern science has discovered Adam (Noah being our last Y chromosome ancestor) and Eve. In addition to the overall pattern, I want the reader to pay close attention to the branches and the lengths of them. As with the Y chromosome family tree, we see these branches have different lengths. For example—have a look at the haplogroup in Europe, the H/V/R haplogroup. These differences in branch lengths indicate that various people groups have happened to pick up twice as many mutations as their cousin. Just like we have seen with Y chromosome DNA phylogenetics, this creates massive problems for the assumptions behind the evolutionary molecular clock. If people can pick up twice as many mutations as other people, then we clearly cannot make assumptions as to when humans and chimpanzees split from a hypothetical common ancestor. We cannot look at the genetic differences between humans and chimpanzees and use those DNA differences to make assumptions as to when they split resulting in a very slow unobservable mutation rate. Remember—proponents of human evolution never question their basic assumptions pertaining to universal common ancestry. They assume that humans and chimpanzees are related through common ancestry. What we are looking at in this phylogenetic tree is essentially random mutations in populations over periods of time. It is important to remember that with both the Y chromosome and the mitochondrial DNA, we see a pattern that fits the biblical based model of ancestry. In regard to the mitochondrial DNA family tree in Figure 3, we see evidence for one woman who lived recently. And so once again, and most importantly, this tree is an obvious reflection of only thousands of years as compared to hundreds of thousands of years as the proponents of human evolution would have everybody believe. These family trees do not have a lot of mutations, and without any preconceived ideas about ape-to-man evolution, and evolutionary molecular clocks riddled with assumptions, the clear conclusion is that this tree (and the Y chromosome tree in Figure 2) is young. Remember—this is one female ancestor from whom we have all descended from, and she is nothing like the chimpanzee. Once again—Independent Origins is confirmed.
Source for mitochondrial DNA family tree: Carter, R.W., Lee, S.S., and Sanford, J.C., An overview of the independent histories of the human Y-chromosome and the human mitochondrial chromosome. In Proceedings of the Eighth International Conference on Creationism, ed. J.H. Whitmore, pp. 133–151. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania: Creation Science Fellowship, 2018.
Please see references for further reading: Carter, R. W. (2007) Mitochondrial diversity within modern human populations. Nucleic Acids Research, 35(9), 3039–3045.
Carter, R. W., D. Criswell, and J. Sanford. 2008. The "Eve" Mitochondrial Consensus Sequence. In Proceedings of the Sixth International Conference on Creationism. Snelling, A. A, ed. Pittsburgh, PA: Creation Science Fellowship and Dallas, TX: Institute for Creation Research, 111-116.
Jeanson, N.T. 2015b. “A Young-Earth Creation Human Mitochondrial DNA ‘Clock’: Whole Mitochondrial Genome Mutation Rate Confirms D-Loop Results.” Answers Research Journal 8: 375–378.
Nathaniel T. Jeanson, “On the Origin of Human Mitochondrial DNA Differences, New Generation Time Data Suggest a Unified Young-Earth Creation Model and Challenge the Evolutionary Out-of-Africa Model,” Answers Research Journal 9 (2016): 123-130, https://answersingenesis.org/genetics/mitochondrial-dna/origin-human-mitochondrial-dna-differences-new-generation-time-data-both-suggest-unified-young-earth/.
Tomkins, J. P. 2015. “Empirical Genetic Clocks Give Biblical Timelines.” Journal of Creation 29 (2): 3–5.
Tomkins, J. P., and J. Bergman, J. 2015. “Evolutionary Molecular Genetic Clocks—A Perpetual Exercise in Futility and Failure.” Journal of Creation 29 (2): 26–35.
Howell, N., I. Kubacka, and D. A. Mackey. 1996. How rapidly does the human mitochondrial genome evolve? American Journal of Human Genetics 59, no. 3:501–509.
Howell, N., C. B. Smejkal, D. A. Mackey, P. F. Chinnery, D. M. Turnbull, and C. Herrnstadt. 2003. The pedigree rate of sequence divergence is the human mitochondrial genome: There is a difference between phylogenetic and pedigree rates. American Journal of Human Genetics 72, no. 3:659–670.
Parsons T. J., D. S. Muniec, K. Sullivan, N. Woodyatt, R. Alliston-Greiner, M. R. Wilson, D. L. Berry et al. 1997. A high observed substitution rate in the human mitochondrial DNA control region. Nature Genetics 15, no. 4:363–368.
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