Posted on June 20, 2014
Two Different Realms?, Part 2
Last week I talked about the other young lady I met in the hall while waiting for lab to start. When I asked her about her thoughts on evolution and Christianity she said, “I just think that those are two different realms that weren’t meant to be crossed”. Unfortunately this is the way that a lot of Christians think. My hall friend is definitely not the only person I have encountered in college who believes that faith and science are two separate realms. I’ve encountered some pretty twisted ideas about the creation account, some of which are rather disturbing – one of which I would like to make you aware of today.
This spring, I decided to go the fifty-cent lunch held by the Baptist Student Ministry (BSM) on campus. I had seen it advertised before, but had never gone because I’m not particularly fond of loud crowds of people. Since I knew with my spring class schedule I’d be having lunch on the late side, I decided to try out the BSM lunch, thinking I might be encouraged by meeting other Christians at my college. I thought I might even find a like-minded creationist, but turned out to be very wrong. I ended up finding an ardent old earth Christian who I tried to debate over the noise of contemporary Christian music being blasted over loud speakers as well as whatever he was listening to on his ear buds.
The guy at the BSM loaned me his book, The Lost World of Genesis One, By John Walton, to read his ideas. I tried to read the book, but became pretty disgusted with the demeaning tone and the disrespect for the Bible (written by a Bible scholar – they tend to be some of the most likely to compromise with “science” because they don’t understand true science). I ended up skimming it for main points. Creation Ministries International has an article on their website that addresses the claims made in this book, if you would like to know more on this topic.
Walton’s main idea in this book is that by “create”, God meant that He gave purpose and function to things, and that the Hebrew culture interprets things more figuratively than literally. But, the original Hebrew text of Genesis is written in historical narrative style (like 1Kings), not poetic style (like Psalms). Walton said that his interpretation allows us to believe whatever we choose about how the physical world came into being and helps us avoid “scientific gymnastics”. Wait a second – so we want to use Biblical gymnastics, re-interpreting what God’s Word says, to avoid “scientific gymnastics”, simply re-interpreting what people say? Friends, that is not right – this is God we are talking about!
Perhaps even more disturbing was how this book addressed the issue of sin and death. Believing in millions of years and/or evolution requires suffering and death long before Adam and Eve came along. However, the Bible makes it clear that death and suffering are in the world because of Adam and Eve sinned. We cannot have a consequence for something Adam and Eve did before they existed. Walton argues that only human death is a consequence of Adam and Eve’s sin. But what does the Bible say? It says that the whole creation groans and suffers in pain because of sin (see Romans 8:19-22, below). Only the true, plain account in Genesis can explain our pain and the pain we see in the world around us. Cling to God and His Word alone.
“For the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God. For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected the same . . . for we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now” (Romans 8:19-20,22)