Tuesday, 17 April 2012
[This is reposted as part of our Best-Of Revelife Week. It was originally posted on March 3, 2011.]
"For Christ did not send me to baptize but to preach the gospel, and not with words of eloquent wisdom, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power." 1 Corinthians 1:17 (English Standard Version)
Seeing as the whole creation/evolution debate has calmed down from when it exploded a week ago, I thought I would throw out some of my thoughts on the whole issue. Not to stir the pot hopefully, because I sit on the fence, and truly, I have no clue anymore. Once upon a time I used to be the poster child for Creationism, and for a period of time I did used to understand evolution, reading all the magazines and articles, I knew a lot about the whole thing.
I don’t know what happened next, maybe a few too many debates on evolution and creationism, I became somewhat ambivalent about the whole issue. When 90% of a debate is spent on this issue of how the world became how it is, instead of whether Jesus Christ was who he said he was, and the historicity of the resurrection, the whole experience loses its shine. The truth is, I also find a lot of obstacles for believing whether God created the earth in 7 days or 7 billion years.
What I can agree on is whether we take the creation account as literal or as figurative, the essential idea is that God is the beginning and source of human life, and he is sovereign over all creation. Whether God uses evolution or things were created already specifically, the person of Jesus Christ is what I care about most above all.
That being said, when push comes to shove, I find Creationism is the belief I would defend. Recently, through the whole drama, I found a lot of times I would feel inclined to write something defending the creationists as opposed to the evolutionists. As for convincing me, I find a lot of evolutionists seem very anti-theistic and come off sounding like they like bashing Christians more than the science they uphold. Here are some questions I have nevertheless, which stop me from embracing either field, I do realise there are a few more position than these:
What way would you reconcile the New Testament, especially in Romans 5 where Paul compares the death through Adam’s sin, and the life that comes through Christ. If Adam is a metaphorical figure here, how is Jesus not a metaphorical figure? Paul treats the person Adam as a literal figure, and how then does that affect our interpretation of Genesis 1?
Death is essential part of evolution of species, but depicted as a negative experience in the Bible. How do you reconcile death, which is essential to evolution, occurring before the Fall when Man had not died a spiritual death yet from consuming the fruit of the Tree?
How do you deal with the interaction of human wisdom and godly wisdom? That is to say that there is a line between what “science” (speech marks intended) tells us, and what God has already said. As much as Christianity can be man-motivated, I think that some scientists can be similarly atheistic-motivated.
At what point does the narrative in Genesis become not literal? Some place it at Abraham, but others just after the creation account. The notion that the line is ambiguous in Scripture, does this suggest we are reading into the account something that isn’t there?
How does the death of animals correlate with the Fall of Man? How is it a domino effect that since man fell, that animals suddenly became dying as well?
I’ve been reading the bible in 1 year, and alot of the feel seems crazy similar to how the Ancient Greeks would have written their myths of how the world came about. In comparison to other creation accounts in other religions, it is strikingly similar. How do you explain the almost mythical poetry writing style of Genesis chapter 1 to (let's say) 11?
How does a global flood account for the sifting of animals into a chronological order in rock strata? I’m speaking in a general sense, geologists have been able to gain a whole insight into millions of years through rock strata which show general evolution. How does that work with the flood if all creatures were on the earth at the same time?
A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. Play nice and you might get your hot cup of cocoa. (skit i am referring to which is ironically not very Christian)