I came across an article on the existence of Pre-Adamite beings. The article refutes their existence but claims it is a belief held by "many evangelicals". As far as I can find, no major denomination endorses this teaching. Nor could I find any official statements addressing/rejecting it at all.

Do any mainstream denominations have a stance on this issue?

  • 1
    It's a widely held belief by many Evangelical believers who don't hold to Young Earth Creationism, Hugh Ross being a good example. Lots of evangelical groups consider such a belief acceptable, in the sense that they won't throw you out if you hold it, but few will endorse it as doctrine (meaning they will throw you out of you don't hold it) because it implies a rejection of Biblical Literalism and Young Earth Creationism. CMI is stanchly Young Earth Creationist, so they would consider Pre-Adamites to be heresy. Dec 9, 2020 at 19:55
  • @DJClayworth 'CMI' ... ?
    – Nigel J
    Dec 9, 2020 at 20:16
  • 2
    @NigelJ Creation Ministries International, who wrote the article linked in the question. Dec 9, 2020 at 20:32
  • 1
    Interesting read. I took this away from that article “As sincere as they may be, those [Christians] who espouse the pre-Adamite theory and its history of death before Adam are actually endangering the very doctrine of salvation they hold dear.”
    – Adam
    Dec 10, 2020 at 5:53
  • 1
    'Mainstream' and 'major' : the true church has always been a 'little flock'. The majority (on earth) have never been the ones to follow. // The theory produces not a shred of evidence (from scripture) to support its wild and weird hypothesis of sub-adamic creatures pre-dating Adam, himself. // The theory has all the characteristics of a heresy, whether anyone recognises that, or not. // Up-voted +1.
    – Nigel J
    Dec 10, 2020 at 9:09

3 Answers 3


I guess that, for any denomination, the answer depends on whether those Pre-Adamite beings are posited to be human in a metaphysical and theological sense, i.e. with an infused spiritual soul, or only in a biological sense, without an infused spiritual soul.

In the case of the Roman Catholic Church, the first option is heresy but the second is not. The Thomistic philosopher Edward Feser defended the compatibility of the second option with Catholic doctrinal orthodoxy a few years ago in his blog.

  • +1 for referencing Feser's philosophically, theologically and biologically informed explanation of the Catholic requirement for accepting a possible Pre-Adamite being. Dec 16, 2020 at 1:19

The question of "Pre-Adamite beings" arises from an approach taken by some Christians to reconcile the Genesis creation story with the fossil and archeological records that shows human or human-like beings were around tens or hundreds of thousands of years ago. In this approach these beings are considered to pre-date Adam and the Fall. They are thus not fully human. In some versions of the theory Adam was created physically from the Pre-Adamites, but imbued with the spark of Humanity by God. In other versions the Pre-Adamites are unrelated to Adam.

For strict Young Earth Creation believers the existence of Pre-Adamites implies a belief in an Old Earth, and in their view a disagreement with the Bible. They would consider a belief in Pre-Adamite beings a heresy.

Most churches do not take a specific view on Old Earth versus Young Earth. Christians within such denominations may hold either view. Therefore they may also choose to believe in Pre-Adamite beings as well. There are no denominations I am aware of that would consider disbelief in Pre-Adamite beings a heresy, and it is unlikely they exist.


Is Pre-Adamism considered heretical by any mainstream denominations? The answer is yes!
Not only is it considered heresy by some, it is rejected by the majority of Protestant evangelicals on several grounds.

In regards to Johannes answer, "I guess that, for any denomination, the answer depends on whether those Pre-Adamite beings are posited to be human in a metaphysical and theological sense, i.e. with an infused spiritual soul, or only in a biological sense, without an infused spiritual soul" - it may make a difference in the Catholic Church, but to most Protestants, this is a distinction without a difference.

Let's break it down and examine both scenarios - following basic principles of Hermeneutics - or Bible Interpretation.
Scripture always interprets scripture. Compare and cross reference other passages, and clear passages take precedent over vague passages.

Those like Hugh Ross and others who hold this view, do so because they start with the humanist macro-evolutionist views, and then try to make the Bible fit it, much like wrapping a tennis ball with aluminum foil.
They see evidence of human footprints with dinosaurs, but believe the secular macro-evolution idea that dinosaurs existed tens of millions of years ago.

  1. Let's start with the notion that that these alleged pre-Adamic creatures had spirits - the part of man that doesn't die - the part that lives forever and that is connected to salvation, either being forever in heaven or forever in hell. This is blatantly contradictory to scripture because Genesis says that Adam was the first man.
    Paul also confirms this in I Corinthians

The Bible says that Adam was the first man. The Book of Genesis says: "Then God said, Let us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness . . . And the Lord God formed man out of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being (Genesis 1:26, 2:7). The Apostle Paul wrote: "And so it is written, the first man Adam became a living being" (1 Corinthians 15:45). According to these verses, there were no humans before Adam and Eve. The first created humans were Adam and Eve. The Bible gives no hint that any pre-Adamic race was created before them. https://www.blueletterbible.org/faq/don_stewart/don_stewart_697.cfm

-2 Then let's examine the other notion that is espoused by Hugh Ross and others - that these were sub-human spirit-less pre-Adamic beings, not human, and thus not capable of regeneration or being saved.
This is also problematic at many levels - and only creates more issues for those who claim to believe the Bible.

  • It also contradicts the passages that say that God created land animals and humans on day six.
    "God’s creation of the earth is found in Genesis chapters 1 and 2 and consists of the following seven days of creation: Days of creation list Day 1: Light Day 2: Atmosphere / Firmament Day 3: Dry ground & plants Day 4: Sun, moon & stars Day 5: Birds & sea animals Day 6: Land animals & humans Day 7: The Sabbath of rest" “Then God said, ‘Let the earth bring forth the living creature according to its kind: cattle and creeping thing and beast of the earth, each according to its kind’; and it was so. And God made the beast of the earth according to its kind, cattle according to its kind, and everything that creeps on the earth according to its kind. And God saw that it was good.” "So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. Then God blessed them, and God said to them, ‘Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.’” Then God saw everything that He had made, and indeed it was very good. So the evening and the morning were the sixth day” (Genesis 1:24-31).


Secular Darwinian Macro-Evolution requires millions of years of death and mutations, but according to Dr Ken Ham, and many other creation scientists, mutations are 100x more harmful to a species than beneficial, or in other words, going in the wrong direction.

Scripture says that death came as a result of Adam's sin, and so splitting hairs about whether these creatures had a spirit or not, were part human, or part ape, or mostly frog without an ever-living spirit is pointless.

The ones who deny a literal creation account - and suggest that the days were really long epochs of thousands of years are not able to explain how plants could have lived for 1000 years without the sun.
Furthermore, when you reject the clear words of scripture for six days as defined by evening and morning, - it totally undermines the doctrine of the sabbath.

Bible Methodists, Church of God Holiness, most Pentecostals, most Southern Baptists, and Freewill Baptists, most all Nazarene, most Assembly of God, most 7th Day Adventists and most Evangelical Free Church of America churches reject this notion as heresy.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .