Friday, December 12, 2014

Genesis in Space & Time

By Reverend Mark Hunnemann

There is an interpretive dance happening amongst a growing number of Christians regarding the historicity of Genesis 1-3 in general, and Adam and Eve in particular. BioLogos is a well-funded foundation which is pushing churches and believers to embrace evolution, and in the process how they read the bible.It offers grants to church, parachurch, and academic leaders and organizations that promote "evolutionary creation." They believe that churches that support macro-evolution will be more effective witness in a culture that reveres science.The disturbing thing to me is the number of evangelical pastors and theologians who not only embrace this notion, but are also being given grants to write books about evolutionary creation.In addition, at BioLogos conferences, those scholars who differ with them (intelligent design) are not being invited. Why would they do this when they are fellow Christians with impeccable scientific credentials? Isn't science about testing theories with those who differ? The result is the same old story--those in higher education are being taught evolution as fact, and not being introduced to any credible alternatives, making it seem moronic to disagree.However, the evidence for intelligent design--from astrobiology to cellular biology--is astonishing in its quality and quantity.

Frankly, the term "evolutionary creation" is an oxymoron in my opinion. The first three chapters of Genesis are especially hated by the Evil One because it is foundational to all that follows. If Satan can get even bible believing Christians to effectively undermine the foundation, then the results are disatrous. When the foundation crumbles......Jack Collins, Old Testament professor at Covenant Seminary says, "Christian doctrine...will come apart if we don't tell the story with the proper beginning."

The entire secular academic scene is wedded to evolution as fact. How sad that an influential Christian foundation is passionately pursuing the world's/Satan's agenda.

It is instructive to see how quickly Jesus appealed to Genesis 1-3 in some of His most heated debates (e.g. re: divorce) It is beyond the pale of this blog to discuss the scientific data. But it is crucial for us to embrace the fact that there is no final conflict between the bible and science. Truth is truth, and wherever the bible touches on matters relating to history or science it always speaks the truth.

Remember that the goal of BioLogos is not just to teach evolutionary creation but to re-interpret the entire structure of the creation narrative.Let me list some of the issues at stake-

1.If Adam was not a real man then he could not have acted as our covenant representative. This undermines the notion of substitutionary atonement which is based on Jesus being the second/last Adam.(Romans 5; 1 Corinthians 15) It also leaves us with no explanation of how sin entered the world. The biblical teaching on original sin (Psalm 51) would also unravel.

2.All of the major themes of the bible are found implicitly or explicitly in the Creation/Fall narrative (Genesis 1-3) God as Creator of all things (natural and supernatural realms) Hence, there is a distinction between the Creator and His Creation. God is both sovereign and immanent who populates the spirit realm (good and bad angels....nobody else..3:1, 24) the cultural mandate....the dignity of work mankind made in God's image Adam and Eve as progenitors of entire human race. Marriage between one man and one woman there is only one God (Trinity implied) the historical Fall which effected the whole cosmos (cf. Romans 8) the first promise of a Messiah (Genesis 3:15)

There is a sense in which the rest of the entire bible is an outworking of the first three chapters of Genesis, which happened in space and time. Hence, the denial of the historicity of Adam and Eve and the rest of the creation narrative, undermines all the major doctrines of the bible. The beauty of the unfolding drama of redemption becomes a devilish interpretive dance in which the sacred authority of the bible is vandalized.

I hope it is clear that embracing evolutionary creation is not an option. I hope it is equally clear how comprehensive and devastating the consequences are for embracing evolutionary creation.We need to firmly but winsomely engage this assault on the integrity of God's holy Word. This IS spiritual warfare.Thankfully the Intelligent Design leaders are responding. May the Lord bless their work and may their tribe increase!

May I suggest Lee Strobel's book "The Case for a Creator" in which he interviews some of the world's leading intelligent design scientists....much useful information in just one volume...very readable.

Mark Hunnemann is the author of Seeing Ghosts Through God's Eyes: A Worldview Analysis of Earthbound Spirits. It's also available in eBook format.