Creation and Evolution
I am starting this series first, even though it came in second, because I need to secure a copy of Baptism, Eucharist, and Ministry for the other series. I will intersperse the two series. Plus, Advent is approaching and I will have seasonal reflections. A friend of mine asked me to repeat my posts on the Virgin Birth every Christmas, but I am still debating that–I may simply link to them again. And, I think I have found my notes on Romans 1 and so can finally finish my series on the biblical basis for a revisionist (welcoming and affirming/fully inclusive) stance on gay, lesbian, bi-sexual and transgendered persons in the church! The long hiatus on that series has, I know, frustrated traditionalists, revisionists, and those still undecided (or–those who know I am a heretic; those who wonder if I have chickened out in standing up for GLBT folk, and those honestly wrestling with the issue! 🙂 ). I hope to resume that series this weekend while most of my family is out of town.
At any rate, here is an outline of how I think the Creation and Evolution series will go:
- Examining biblical creation texts: Gen. 1, Gen. 2, Ps. 8 and maybe some other creation psalms, God’s climatic speech in Job, the prologue to the Gospel of John, and the introduction to 1 John, the Colossians hymn–and maybe a few other passages. Part of the idea here is to stop people from constructing an entire theology of creation from Gen. 1-2 alone. The other is to show the theological interests of the biblical writers–they were NOT wrestling with scientific questions.
- A discussion of scientific method, the nature of scientific theory and how that differs from other disciplines or forms of explanation.
- A look at evolutionary biology before Darwin, Darwin’s contribution, Darwin’s “forgotten Christian defenders,” the evidence of genetics, etc.
- Theistic evolution as a theological position–compared and contrasted with “scientific creationism,” and “intelligent design.” Including a discussion of why all 3 positions are theological/philosophical and NONE of them are scientific.
- Stronger focus on why ID is not science and should not be taught in science texts or classrooms–but would be perfectly legitimate for discussion in a class on comparative religions or philosophy.
- Is there a political agenda behind the ID movement? Or why does this debate matter?
I may finish by reminding folks of the theological themes in the biblical creation texts because they tend to get lost in these kind of debates–and because I would find it fitting to begin and end with close attention to Scripture–read from a non-fundamentalist viewpoint. I will probably include in this series several good book recommendations–both for beginners in theology and science and those prepared to swim in deeper waters, so to speak.
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