Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Creation - Evolution Debate....

Tim Challies had a link to C Michael Patton's article putting into a nutshell the six different views of the Creation/Evolution Debate. The link to his article is here. Four of the six positions seem to be bent towards a more biblical understanding of things. However, Patton defines the Relationship between science and Scripture for the Literal Biblical View (much better than YEC, and will be known as LBV) as follows:
Scientific discovery always submits to Scripture in all matters. Science is interpreted in light of Scripture. YECs see the early chapters of Genesis, taken at face value, as an accurate and authoritative (even scientific) guide to the basic details of the origin of the universe. Science is of great value so long as it starts with the Bible
The difference between this position and the other three (OEC, Time-Relative Creationism, Gap Theory) in regards to this vital relationship is that the three:
Typically sees nature as a complementary guide from God which speaks authoritatively to issues about which the Scriptures are unclear or silent. Whatever source is more clear is the authority in matters of origins. If both seem equally clear, yet seemingly conflicting, Scripture is the final source.
Comparing these two statements regarding the relationship, it would seem that for the latter positions, nature is not equally weighted but heavily weighted. At the same time, none of these three positions seem to clearly agree with one another so would it be fair that by this definition that Patton is using would disqualify science in regard to origins? Would it not be obvious that if nature is so clear that there would be overlap in such a way that the differences would be minimal? Yet, this does not seem to be the case. At the same time, one would think that the proposed definition would raise a red flag in regards to biblical inerrancy and inspiration. For the definition, Patton is arguing for the specific case of origins which would seem to be quite clear from Scripture as to where we have come from.

I propose that the definition given for the latter three positions grant the following freedoms: 1) they can simply ignore the hermeneutic argument; 2) gives them liberty to question the veracity of Scripture; 3) have a common enemy, the LBV position.

Reading comments and original arguments, those who seem to hold to the latter three positions have a hermeneutical problem inherent with their position. When one decides that the historical position of a more literal understanding of the creation story is wrong, one would suppose that they must demonstrate a strong argument to jettison the older understanding. Instead, they reframe the discussion around their interpretation of the "scientific evidence" regarding the origins of man. No longer is the Bible the starting and ending point, it is on the sidelines and will be called upon when it is necessary. The hermeneutic argument seems to go along the lines of a) the term "day" in Hebrew is not clearly define and b) apparent age is a deception that God cannot use for that makes God a liar. Then the positions move quickly to all of the "scientific evidence."

The second freedom is the most problematic. Carl Truman mentioned recently that one of the two major issues that Evangelicals will be facing in the next ten years is the positioning on the historicity of the first man, Adam. As David P. Murry stated,
Not everyone who denies literal-six-day-creation ends up denying the literal Adam. However, from what I've read, everyone who ends up denying a literal historical Adam began by denying a literal-six-day-creation.
This should shake the foundations of evangelicalism. We see Biologos writers denounce the existence of a historical Adam, and pushing the envelope by essentially arguing that Paul errs in believing that Adam was a historical person when he wrote 1 Cor 15 and Romans 5. In fact, Biologos seems eager to support that Adam & Eve is a story of Israel's origins or just stereo typical figures representing the human race as a whole.

In essence they are saying, "Let us brush aside the inerrancy and inspiration of Scripture. It is obvious that not all Scripture is useful for teaching and training a person for the authors are wrong in their understanding of the historical Adam." We must not forget that it is not only the Apostle Paul that they are willing to challenge but the great historian, Luke and our Lord Jesus whom believed in the historicity of Adam as well.

The other attack on the veracity of Scripture goes along the lines that God would never create an earth with apparent age because then God would deceive us. Yet, if one wants to attack the historicity of Adam, they would have to advocate that God deceived the very authors of Scripture to believe an error (a lie) and still write it into Scripture. One cannot have it both ways.

In my next post, I will dive further into the theological problems that occurs when one desires to make Adam and Eve: a myth, or a symbol, and not historical as the Biblical writers argue for and believed.

No comments:

Post a Comment