As a wild caver, both dry and wet (spelunkers will know what that means), I was particularly interested to learn recently about Peștera cu Oase (“the Cave with Bones”) in southwestern Romania where the oldest Homo sapiens remains in Europe were discovered in 2002.
These First Europeans were found with bear and other mammal skeletal remains from the Late Pleistocene era (think wooly mammoths/mastodons, saber tooth tigers, etc. – if you’ve been to the World Famous San Diego Zoo’s Elephant Odyssey you have a sense of Pleistocene era creatures).
Got me thinking of the Tower of Babel. In Latin, Homo sapiens means “wise man” or “knowing man.” I take the bible literally when it says God created man from the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life and man became a living being (Genesis 2:7), so I believe Adam was a Homo sapiens. The Genesis account certainly attributes “knowing” characteristics to Adam, such as keeping the Garden of Eden, and naming all of the animals – I enjoy the mental picture of God parading the animals past Adam “to see what he would call them.” (Genesis 2:19-20)
Early humans, after Noah’s flood, all spoke the same language and hunkered together in a comfy plain in Shinar, which is modern day Iraq. They pooled their resources and arrogantly started building a tower to heaven. God helped them get a better sense of their proper relationship to Him by introducing multiple languages, which of course messed up the construction project, and sent language groups heading off in all directions. (Genesis 11)
I wonder if some of those Romanian bones might be from that same humbling dispersion.
We sometimes hear people talk about “skeletons in the closet,” referring to past nefarious events. I remember times when God has dramatically humbled me and sent me in a new direction. Perhaps memories like those, rather than being skeletons in the closet, can comprise a type of Cave with Bones for each Thinking Christian Woman.
© 2011 Melody K. Anderson
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