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Re: Theistic Evolution

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  • always_reforming
    Hi Paul, I must be brief. The Hebrew idiom, evening and morning need not be read as limiting features. As Jewish commentators note, the idiom is suggests
    Message 1 of 17 , Feb 4, 2011
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      Hi Paul,

      I must be brief.

      The Hebrew idiom, "evening and morning" need not be read as limiting features. As Jewish commentators note, the idiom is suggests work done only during daylight hours, not at night. In other words, each day begins with the dawn of the day. At the end of the day, we encounter dusk-night-dawn, then the next day begins. Also, we already have day and night noted on the first day. So the construct bespeaks a quasi-normal day.

      Now, as I mentioned to Rob, I'm not entire opposed to both seeing the days as literarily constructed as quasi-normal days and also seeing them as literary constructs. This would mean, of course, that they need not be mapped to either a specific series of actual days or a specific series of actual geological epochs. In other words, the days could be seen as presenting a logical sequence, not an actual historical sequence.

      On the other hand, while I'm not entirely oppose to that reading, I'm also not simply in favor of it. It has much to commend it, though it raises other considerations and specters of unsavory implications.

      An alternative view is to see the six days as with reference to a limited land, one being fashioned for Adam. This seems to be the view of such OT scholars as John Sailhammer and John Collins. If this is so, then "earth" for the six days is perhaps better understood to be "land" (same Hebrew, different and legitimate English translations). This would seem to imply that the light of day one is understood as the "dawn of a new day" upon the land. The lights of day four would be understood not to be created on that day, per se, but as assigned purposes on that day (purposes that, by the way, correspond nicely to Israel's cultic calendar).

      These are only suggestions, some considerations, and some observations. I feel I've muddied the waters sufficiently now.

      As for Adam naming the animals, well, that takes us into another facet of the discussion that I did not address. That would take us into discussing the relationship between the chapters, questions of corresponding chronology, whether the naming of animals is for ALL the animals in the world or only in the garden (and whether we are to see the garden as containing all the animals), etc. Personally, I think we far to often universalize features of Gen 2 that otherwise need not be. (Yes, I know that is vague and perhaps provocative, but I'll leave it there.)

      Cheers,
      Kevin
      Summit Oxford Study Centre
      www.summitoxford.org





      --- In biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com, Paul Leonard <anotherpaul2001@...> wrote:
      >
      >
      >
      > Hi,
      >
      > Just a thought on the days:
      >
      > In Genesis chapter 1 it is "Evening to Morning", hardly a complete day. In the
      > balance of the OT it is "Evening to Evening" for a complete 24 hour day. This
      > seems to eliminate a 24 hour day, as Adam certainly did not name the animals in
      > the dark ("Evening to Morning" is not known for a lot of light), nor sleep a
      > little and then awake to find Eve and say "at last".
      >
      >
      > Paul
      >
      >
      > 3) I also find it difficult to embrace the day-age reading of Genesis 1. The
      > passage does not naturally lend itself to that reading. The days being numbered,
      > and refrain of "evening and morning" are sufficient to suggest quasi-normal
      > days. (I say "quasi" because there was little else that was normal about these
      > days.) And if one is not going to take Adam as historical, I don't see why one
      > would feel compelled to match up the days of creation with historial epochs. But
      > even if we read the six days as quasi-normal days, the age of the earth may
      > still remain an open question. For instance, a structural analysis of the
      > passage indicates that each day begins with "And God said..." That being so,
      > vv.1-2 fall outside the six days. The heavens and earth are not created within
      > the six days. And just how long they existed prior to the pronouncement of light
      > is unstated. However, this observation, if correct, need not imply a gap theory
      > reading of the first two verses.
      >
    • Daniel
      Hi Rob, Glad to see that this group is still going. Here are my thoughts on the first few chapters of the Bible. As a teenager I was committed to the young-age
      Message 2 of 17 , Feb 7, 2011
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        Hi Rob,

        Glad to see that this group is still going.

        Here are my thoughts on the first few chapters of the Bible. As a teenager I was committed to the young-age creationist position; now for several reasons am I am more in the literary framework camp. The more I have studied these chapters, especially in Hebrew, the more this position (or a nuance of it) makes sense.

        When I read through the text, the description reads very much like a non-scientific (I did not say un-scientific or pre-scientific - like the flat earth theory) theological description of creation.

        For example, the purpose of the Sun and the Moon is "to rule the day and the night" so the passage says this "a big light in order to rule the day", "a small light in order to rule the night", however a scientific description of how the Sun and the Moon are composed and/or a scientific description of the their origins is missing, because the author was not concerned with such questions. By contrast, there is apparently nothing to say about the stars except "....and [he made] the stars"

        A creationist might say in response to this: OK, it does not give us a (detailed) description of how creation came to be, however it tells us in what order G*d created the universe, and we must therefore believe that G*d created the Earth on day one and the Sun and the Moon on day four.

        However, there are all kinds of problems with such reasoning. One problem is that Hebrew narrative is not sequential, as one might get the impression from reading translations. In the KJV the Hebrew word "waw" is translated rather slavishly into English as "and", however it may also mean but, now, etc.

        One may read several sentences which go like:

        "And G*d did this"
        "And G*d did that"
        "And G*d did something else"

        and conclude that the passage is clearly stating that the "something else" in the above three clauses happened last of all and the "did this" happened first, whereas Hebrew narratives contain flashback clauses and clauses containing parenthetic information, and the Hebrew preterite tense does not always mean simple past tense, but can be translated in other ways.

        For example, the first line of the Bible may be translated as

        "In a beginning, G*d created the heavens and the Earth"

        or "... when G*d began to create ..." (RSV footnote alternative)

        ( or even "G*d had created" )

        To the above, I would add that the creation story contains lots of Hebrew words plays (which by their nature cannot be seen in translation) and also, the English translations which we have are in some ways mediocre. For serious study, one should read the Hebrew text directly.

        Dan Cook

        --- In biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com, "Rob" <faithhasitsreasons@...> wrote:
        >
        > Kevin,
        >
        > This is the sort of discussion I was hoping to see here! And thank you for your very thoughtful comments in reply to Arcee's question.
        >
        > I agree with you that affirming the historicity of Adam and Eve is crucial to a biblically faithful understanding of creation. I also agree with you that Romans 5:12 concerns the entrance of death into the human population and does not address the issue of animal or plant death.
        >
        > The interpretation of Genesis 1 is something of a quagmire, with about a dozen different explanations finding serious advocacy among Christian scholars. The "day-age" interpretation of Genesis 1 poses no serious problems as I see it. For example, I see nothing problematic about a figurative use of "day" occurring with enumerated "days," nor any difficulty in using "evening" and "morning" figuratively along with the word "day" (compare our modern idiom "the dawn of a new day" or figurative statements such as "the sun set on the British Empire").
        >
        > I don't agree that Genesis 1:1-2 is not included in the "six days" of creation. Genesis 2:1-3 appears at least implicitly to include "the heavens and the earth" as a whole in the creative work of the six days (which is followed there by the "seventh day"), and this is made explicit in later passages (Exod. 20:11; 31:17). Nor will this exegesis provide a coherent way of reconciling the scientific evidence with Genesis 1. If the six days did not begin until long after God made the heavens and the earth, and if they began with the literal creation of light, then there was no light for that long period of time preceding the first day. I can't think of any coherent account of the origins of the universe in which that makes sense. The physical universe is composed primarily of light-generating bodies (stars, etc.); if there was no light, virtually all of what we find in the universe could not have existed.
        >
        > Although Genesis 1 is not technically Hebrew "poetry," its form is highly stylized, more than any historical narrative in the Bible of which I am aware. The six days divide the chapter into paragraphs that read almost like strophes, with a high degree of repetition and parallel expressions ("there was evening and there was morning"; "and God said...and it was so"; "and God saw that it was good"; etc.). The overall structure of the six days also appears to be thematically organized, with the first three days focusing on the environments or domains (space, sky and sea, land with plants) and the second group of three days focusing on the inhabitants that will "rule" in those respective domains (celestial bodies, birds and sea creatures, animals and man). These considerations seem to me to provide some good support for the "framework" view of Genesis 1. Both the framework and day-age views seem to work, as best I can tell, better than any of the other views. Neither of these views assumes or requires theistic evolution, although both would be compatible with it (and the framework view, ironically, would be compatible with young-earth creationism as well).
        >
        > I am going to post in the "Files" section of our Yahoo Group a document that contains various notes, outlines, and charts that I have created on science and the Bible. These include some material of relevance to the issues discussed here.
        >
        > Thanks again for such an excellent post.
        >
        > God bless,
        > Rob Bowman
        >
        >
        > --- In biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com, "always_reforming" <kevinbywater@> wrote:
        > >
        > > Hi Arcee,
        > >
        > > These are good inquiries to explore. Here are a few quick thoughts.
        > >
        > > 1) It seems to me that any position that cares to claim to hold to Scripture must affirm an historial Adam and Eve. Those who propose theistic evolution and claim to hold to biblical faith acknowledge Adam and Eve are seen as historical, as the first humans, in the NT. If one proposes (as I've encountered lately) that Jesus was merely speaking from the limitations of his own day, then it seems to me that little need remain, as all he said could be so described. So, this seems to me to be a limiting datum for whatever position one would care embrace regarding creation, if one cares to hold to the Bible in a meaningful way.
        > >
        > > 2) I don't think, however, that we need to hold that ALL death is the result of the fall. Surely, when Paul writes of death entering the world through the first man (Rom 5:12ff), we are to see that HUMAN death is the result of sin. But it does not appear that Paul is saying that animals or bugs or plants did not die prior to the fall. Indeed, it is difficult to find biblical resources to support the supposition that animals were somehow inherently immortal before the fall. And what of bacteria? And what of plants? Even so, it seems to me that another limiting datum for whatever position one would care to embrace is that human death is the result of sin, and thus of the fall of mankind.
        > >
        > > 3) I also find it difficult to embrace the day-age reading of Genesis 1. The passage does not naturally lend itself to that reading. The days being numbered, and refrain of "evening and morning" are sufficient to suggest quasi-normal days. (I say "quasi" because there was little else that was normal about these days.) And if one is not going to take Adam as historical, I don't see why one would feel compelled to match up the days of creation with historial epochs. But even if we read the six days as quasi-normal days, the age of the earth may still remain an open question. For instance, a structural analysis of the passage indicates that each day begins with "And God said..." That being so, vv.1-2 fall outside the six days. The heavens and earth are not created within the six days. And just how long they existed prior to the pronouncement of light is unstated. However, this observation, if correct, need not imply a gap theory reading of the first two verses.
        > >
        > > 4) Nor is Genesis 1 simply Hebrew poetry. We have Hebrew poetry in the OT, and in the Pentateuch in particular, and none of it reads like Genesis 1. Nevertheless, there appear to be poetic elements in the passage. For instance, the greater and lesser lights "rule" the day and night. That is a bit of personification. Also, God speaking need not imply anything akin to a human vocal system. The earth bringing forth animals and such also appears poetic. Arguably, God having a rest on the seventh day is poetic. So, while there appear to be poetic elements, the passage itself does not read like Hebrew poetry.
        > >
        > > Then we have questions of the age of the earth, of whether there is a "gap" somewhere between vv.1 and 3, of the relationship between Genesis 1 and 2, etc. I'll not venture into my thoughts on these questions. I'll merely offer the above as some considerations that come to my mind when I speak with folk about Genesis 1-3. I'd appreciate your thoughts, Arcee (or anyone else).
        > >
        > > Kind regards,
        > > Kevin James Bywater
        > > Summit Oxford Study Centre
        > > www.summitoxford.org
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > > --- In biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com, Arcee A <truthseeker41471@> wrote:
        > > >
        > > > I've recently encountered someone who believed in Theistic Evolution (or
        > > > Progressive Creation). He believes that God created the universe and the earth
        > > > and all that is in it initially, thereby allowing everything to run its natural
        > > > course and letting evolution take over. Therefore, according to this view, man
        > > > evolved from apes instead of being specially created by God on the sixth day.
        > > > He also sees the six days of creation as representing long spans of time
        > > > instead of the morning-followed-by-evening normal 24-day hours.
        > > >
        > > > For me, this is totally wrong since adopting this view would introduce death
        > > > coming before sin.
        > > >
        > > > Any inputs, anyone?
        > > > God bless!
        > > >
        > > > Arcee
        > > >
        > >
        >
      • Paul Leonard
        HI, The problem with Evening and Morning meaning the day light hours is in the construction. If it were morning and evening that would fit as the span
        Message 3 of 17 , Feb 7, 2011
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          HI,

          The problem with Evening and Morning meaning the day light hours is in the construction. If it were "morning and evening" that would fit as the span between them is daylight. However Evening to Morning spans primarily darkness.

          I still can't see Adam naming all the animals, even just groups, in the few hours of evening, a long dark and then the few hours of morning. Then to say "at last" about Eve (after sleeping) after less than 24 hours seems unrealistic. He must have been so busy naming animals that he probably didn't notice he was alone. :^)

          Paul



          From: always_reforming <kevinbywater@...>
          To: biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com
          Sent: Fri, February 4, 2011 7:54:40 PM
          Subject: [biblicalapologetics] Re: Theistic Evolution

           

          Hi Paul,

          I must be brief.

          The Hebrew idiom, "evening and morning" need not be read as limiting features. As Jewish commentators note, the idiom is suggests work done only during daylight hours, not at night. In other words, each day begins with the dawn of the day. At the end of the day, we encounter dusk-night-dawn, then the next day begins. Also, we already have day and night noted on the first day. So the construct bespeaks a quasi-normal day.

          Now, as I mentioned to Rob, I'm not entire opposed to both seeing the days as literarily constructed as quasi-normal days and also seeing them as literary constructs. This would mean, of course, that they need not be mapped to either a specific series of actual days or a specific series of actual geological epochs. In other words, the days could be seen as presenting a logical sequence, not an actual historical sequence.

          On the other hand, while I'm not entirely oppose to that reading, I'm also not simply in favor of it. It has much to commend it, though it raises other considerations and specters of unsavory implications.

          An alternative view is to see the six days as with reference to a limited land, one being fashioned for Adam. This seems to be the view of such OT scholars as John Sailhammer and John Collins. If this is so, then "earth" for the six days is perhaps better understood to be "land" (same Hebrew, different and legitimate English translations). This would seem to imply that the light of day one is understood as the "dawn of a new day" upon the land. The lights of day four would be understood not to be created on that day, per se, but as assigned purposes on that day (purposes that, by the way, correspond nicely to Israel's cultic calendar).

          These are only suggestions, some considerations, and some observations. I feel I've muddied the waters sufficiently now.

          As for Adam naming the animals, well, that takes us into another facet of the discussion that I did not address. That would take us into discussing the relationship between the chapters, questions of corresponding chronology, whether the naming of animals is for ALL the animals in the world or only in the garden (and whether we are to see the garden as containing all the animals), etc. Personally, I think we far to often universalize features of Gen 2 that otherwise need not be. (Yes, I know that is vague and perhaps provocative, but I'll leave it there.)

          Cheers,
          Kevin
          Summit Oxford Study Centre
          www.summitoxford.org

          --- In biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com, Paul Leonard <anotherpaul2001@...> wrote:
          >
          >
          >
          > Hi,
          >
          > Just a thought on the days:
          >
          > In Genesis chapter 1 it is "Evening to Morning", hardly a complete day. In the
          > balance of the OT it is "Evening to Evening" for a complete 24 hour day. This
          > seems to eliminate a 24 hour day, as Adam certainly did not name the animals in
          > the dark ("Evening to Morning" is not known for a lot of light), nor sleep a
          > little and then awake to find Eve and say "at last".
          >
          >
          > Paul
          >
          >
          > 3) I also find it difficult to embrace the day-age reading of Genesis 1. The
          > passage does not naturally lend itself to that reading. The days being numbered,
          > and refrain of "evening and morning" are sufficient to suggest quasi-normal
          > days. (I say "quasi" because there was little else that was normal about these
          > days.) And if one is not going to take Adam as historical, I don't see why one
          > would feel compelled to match up the days of creation with historial epochs. But
          > even if we read the six days as quasi-normal days, the age of the earth may
          > still remain an open question. For instance, a structural analysis of the
          > passage indicates that each day begins with "And God said..." That being so,
          > vv.1-2 fall outside the six days. The heavens and earth are not created within
          > the six days. And just how long they existed prior to the pronouncement of light
          > is unstated. However, this observation, if correct, need not imply a gap theory
          > reading of the first two verses.
          >

        • always_reforming
          Thanks for your thoughts, Arcee. Permit me a few brief responses. 1) I suspect you and I would agree that not all accounts of history are quite the same. Your
          Message 4 of 17 , Feb 7, 2011
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            Thanks for your thoughts, Arcee. Permit me a few brief responses.

            1) I suspect you and I would agree that not all accounts of history are quite the same. Your note about your break up song is, perhaps, apropos. Jonathan told a parable that spoke of real history. But one would not take Jonathan's parable as history, per se, but as a poetic rendition of history. The question regards what we find in Genesis 1 or 2 or 3.

            2) Regarding the 4th day, several OT scholars, quite conservatives ones that that (e.g. John Collins, John Sailhammer), suggest that it is not the creation of the light-bearers but the assignation of purpose to them that is being highlighted there. Perhaps an analogy here is that the land does not appear until the third day, though it already existed under the waters. As such, the land may have had a purpose, though it could not be assigned until its appearance.

            3) That there are poetic elements within Genesis 1 is rather undisputed: God resting, God speaking without a mouth, darkness over the deep, the land bringing forth animals, the waters bringing forth creatures, the greater and lesser lights ruling, etc. This is enough to indicate that we have here not simply historical prose. Nor does is the passage Hebrew poetry, simply. It appears something of a mixture. And the structure, while not poetic, per se, certainly doesn't read like Hebrew prose. Some have termed it "elevated prose," or something like that. But this presents us with something other than commonly supposed.

            4) It is commonly thought that God pronounced the productions of each day "good", and "very good" on the seventh day. But this is not so. I've heard it so many times, though, at conferences, in sermons, in apologetic presentations. Regardless, the second day does not have the commendation and the third day has it twice. Some time ago this suggested to me that we who have a high view of the Bible far too often fail to pay attention to the text itself. Even those who hang the gospel on this chapter fail to appreciate its details. There's little virtue to be found that that sort of presumption.

            Blessings,
            Kevin


            --- In biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com, Arcee A <truthseeker41471@...> wrote:
            >
            > Hi Kevin,
            >
            > 1. I have always believed that Adam and Eve as historical people and since I
            > was young, I've viewed the creation as a literal 6-day event. I don't know why
            > but when I read Genesis 1 & 2 I read it as a historical account just like the
            > rest of Genesis. It just makes sense to me that way. It's only when I was
            > being taught evolution in my school that I started to have questions about the
            > historicity of the Bible... that is, until I became a Christian.
            >
            > 2. Now, this is the first time I have heard someone say that plants and animals
            > deaths were not a result of the Fall. Very interesting. :)
            >
            > 3. Hmmm... Reading Genesis 1 again and focusing on verses 14-19, I understand
            > that God created the stars, the sun and the moon on the fourth day! Which makes
            > me ask, what was the light that God created on the first day that sustained the
            > rest of creation until the fourth day? What was the "heavens" or "heaven"
            > (depending on your Bible version) that he created on the first day?
            >
            > But concerning your point here, I agree that this goes against the day-age
            > theory. Imagine thousands and thousands of years of life on earth without the
            > sun, moon and the stars!
            >
            > 4. Personally, I have no problem reading a historical account in a poetic form.
            > We still do that today, after all. In fact, when I was a teen-ager I wrote a
            > song about how I felt when me and my then girlfriend broke up ;)
            >
            > God bless!
            >
            >
            > Arcee
            >
            >
            > "I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen. Not only because
            > I see it, but because by it I see everything else." - C.S. Lewis
            >
            >
            >
            >
            > ________________________________
            > From: always_reforming <kevinbywater@...>
            > To: biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com
            > Sent: Thu, February 3, 2011 9:26:16 PM
            > Subject: [biblicalapologetics] Re: Theistic Evolution
            >
            >
            > Hi Arcee,
            >
            > These are good inquiries to explore. Here are a few quick thoughts.
            >
            > 1) It seems to me that any position that cares to claim to hold to Scripture
            > must affirm an historial Adam and Eve. Those who propose theistic evolution and
            > claim to hold to biblical faith acknowledge Adam and Eve are seen as historical,
            > as the first humans, in the NT. If one proposes (as I've encountered lately)
            > that Jesus was merely speaking from the limitations of his own day, then it
            > seems to me that little need remain, as all he said could be so described. So,
            > this seems to me to be a limiting datum for whatever position one would care
            > embrace regarding creation, if one cares to hold to the Bible in a meaningful
            > way.
            >
            >
            > 2) I don't think, however, that we need to hold that ALL death is the result of
            > the fall. Surely, when Paul writes of death entering the world through the first
            > man (Rom 5:12ff), we are to see that HUMAN death is the result of sin. But it
            > does not appear that Paul is saying that animals or bugs or plants did not die
            > prior to the fall. Indeed, it is difficult to find biblical resources to support
            > the supposition that animals were somehow inherently immortal before the fall.
            > And what of bacteria? And what of plants? Even so, it seems to me that another
            > limiting datum for whatever position one would care to embrace is that human
            > death is the result of sin, and thus of the fall of mankind.
            >
            >
            > 3) I also find it difficult to embrace the day-age reading of Genesis 1. The
            > passage does not naturally lend itself to that reading. The days being numbered,
            > and refrain of "evening and morning" are sufficient to suggest quasi-normal
            > days. (I say "quasi" because there was little else that was normal about these
            > days.) And if one is not going to take Adam as historical, I don't see why one
            > would feel compelled to match up the days of creation with historial epochs. But
            > even if we read the six days as quasi-normal days, the age of the earth may
            > still remain an open question. For instance, a structural analysis of the
            > passage indicates that each day begins with "And God said..." That being so,
            > vv.1-2 fall outside the six days. The heavens and earth are not created within
            > the six days. And just how long they existed prior to the pronouncement of light
            > is unstated. However, this observation, if correct, need not imply a gap theory
            > reading of the first two verses.
            >
            >
            > 4) Nor is Genesis 1 simply Hebrew poetry. We have Hebrew poetry in the OT, and
            > in the Pentateuch in particular, and none of it reads like Genesis 1.
            > Nevertheless, there appear to be poetic elements in the passage. For instance,
            > the greater and lesser lights "rule" the day and night. That is a bit of
            > personification. Also, God speaking need not imply anything akin to a human
            > vocal system. The earth bringing forth animals and such also appears poetic.
            > Arguably, God having a rest on the seventh day is poetic. So, while there appear
            > to be poetic elements, the passage itself does not read like Hebrew poetry.
            >
            >
            > Then we have questions of the age of the earth, of whether there is a "gap"
            > somewhere between vv.1 and 3, of the relationship between Genesis 1 and 2, etc.
            > I'll not venture into my thoughts on these questions. I'll merely offer the
            > above as some considerations that come to my mind when I speak with folk about
            > Genesis 1-3. I'd appreciate your thoughts, Arcee (or anyone else).
            >
            >
            > Kind regards,
            > Kevin James Bywater
            > Summit Oxford Study Centre
            > www.summitoxford.org
            >
          • William
            Arcee, I agree that we need to be cautious in what order we read evidence in regards to creation, but we also need to use caution in reading translations due
            Message 5 of 17 , Feb 8, 2011
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              Arcee,

              I agree that we need to be cautious in what order we read evidence in regards to creation, but we also need to use caution in reading translations due to the bias of the translators. For instance, Hrry Orlinsky in "The Plain Meaning of Genesis 1:1-3" (Biblical Archeologist, 1983) suggests that stating that God created the heaven (reportedly the literal Hebrew) and the earth, merely implies that God created everything. Attempting to read more into these verses is to move beyond what the Bible claims.

              However, we also need to be cautious in seeking to place the Bible over the discoveries of science. Remember Aquinas "A mistake about creation will lead to a mistake about God" and that Maimodes argued that the Bible and science will not conflict when both are properly understood. The challenge is then to understand both science and the Bible in a way that allows both to be accurate. The materialistic approach will not do so. To resort to the MultiWorld Interpretation of quantum physics might offer a solution, but I would argue that in fact it fails to do justice to the Bible. Thus there are indications that such an approach will not be an easy task, for to do wo will require a paradigm shift.

              Bill

              --- In biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com, Arcee A <truthseeker41471@...> wrote:
              >
              > Hi William,
              >
              > I think the problem is not with the available evidence but how to interpret the
              > evidence. Do you start with what you see in the world and interpret the Bible
              > based on what you see, or do you start with the Bible and then interpret the
              > evidence based on what you have read in it? As for me, well... just take a look
              > at the bottom of my signature to see my position :)
              > God bless!
              >
              >
              > Arcee
              >
              >
              > "I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen. Not only because
              > I see it, but because by it I see everything else." - C.S. Lewis
              >
              >
              >
              >
              > ________________________________
              > From: William <eliadefollower@...>
              > To: biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com
              > Sent: Thu, February 3, 2011 11:19:24 PM
              > Subject: [biblicalapologetics] Re: Theistic Evolution
              >
              >
              > Arcee,
              >
              > I think it fits with all available evidence. This might force us to reconsider
              > the nature of "Sin" and "death", but that is not necessarily a bad thing. If we
              > try to force creation to literally fit Genesis, then we have a potential problem
              > between Genesis 1 and 2, namely was man created before or after the rest of the
              > creatures. HOwever, if we accept both accounts as either stories intended to
              > teach something or as reactions against other religious traditions, then the
              > problems, while not vanishing, at least shift and require us to ask different
              > questions.
              >
              > I personally do not think that it is so bad that I must reevaluate my
              > assumptions occassionally. I would rather be forced to rethink something than
              > continue to hold an incorrect understanding of God. Let me change my mistakes
              > sometimes.
              >
              > Bill
              >
              > --- In biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com, Arcee A <truthseeker41471@>
              > wrote:
              > >
              > > I've recently encountered someone who believed in Theistic Evolution (or
              > > Progressive Creation). He believes that God created the universe and the earth
              > >
              > > and all that is in it initially, thereby allowing everything to run its natural
              > >
              > > course and letting evolution take over. Therefore, according to this view, man
              > >
              > > evolved from apes instead of being specially created by God on the sixth day.
              > > He also sees the six days of creation as representing long spans of time
              > > instead of the morning-followed-by-evening normal 24-day hours.
              > >
              > > For me, this is totally wrong since adopting this view would introduce death
              > > coming before sin.
              > >
              > > Any inputs, anyone?
              > > God bless!
              > >
              > >
              > > Arcee
              > >
              > >
              > > "I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen. Not only
              > >because
              > >
              > > I see it, but because by it I see everything else." - C.S. Lewis
              > >
              >
            • Isa
              Hi, Arcee,Bill, and all: Here is the most relevant section of the position of the Roman Catholic Church, Re: Theistic Evolution and how to interprete Genesis:
              Message 6 of 17 , Feb 10, 2011
              • 0 Attachment
                Hi, Arcee,Bill, and all:

                Here is the most relevant section of the position of the Roman Catholic Church, Re: Theistic Evolution and how to interprete Genesis:

                Catholic theologian Ludwig Ott in his authoritative Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma, under the section "The Divine Work of Creation," (pages 92-122) covers the "biblical hexaemeron" (the "six days" of creation), the creation of man, Adam/Eve, original sin, the Fall, and the statements of the early Fathers, Saints, Church Councils, and Popes relevant to the matter. Ott makes the following comments on the "science" of Genesis and the Fathers:

                "...Since the findings of reason and the supernatural knowledge of Faith go back to the same source, namely to God, there can never be a real contradiction between the certain discoveries of the profane sciences and the Word of God properly understood." (Ott, page 92).

                (NOTE: "Word of God, properly understood!")

                As the Sacred Writer had not the intention of representing with scientific accuracy the intrinsic constitution of things, and the sequence of the works of creation but of communicating knowledge in a popular way suitable to the idiom and to the pre-scientific development of his time, the account is not to be regarded or measured as if it were couched in language which is strictly scientific... The Biblical account of the duration and order of Creation is merely a literary clothing of the religious truth that the whole world was called into existence by the creative word of God. The Sacred Writer utilized for this purpose the pre-scientific picture of the world existing at the time. The numeral six of the days of Creation is to be understood as an anthropomorphism. God's work of creation represented in schematic form (opus distinctionis -- opus ornatus) by the picture of a human working week, the termination of the work by the picture of the Sabbath rest. The purpose of this literary device is to manifest Divine approval of the working week and the Sabbath rest." (Ott, page 93, cf. Exod 20:8)

                Pope John Paul II wrote to the Pontifical Academy of Sciences on . . . how to interpret Genesis:

                "Cosmogony and cosmology have always aroused great interest among peoples and religions. The Bible itself speaks to us of the origin of the universe and its make-up, not in order to provide us with a scientific treatise, but in order to state the correct relationships of man with God and with the universe. Sacred Scripture wishes simply to declare that the world was created by God, and in order to teach this truth it expresses itself in the terms of the cosmology in use at the time of the writer. The Sacred Book likewise wishes to tell men that the world was not created as the seat of the gods, as was taught by other cosmogonies and cosmologies, but was rather created for the service of man and the glory of God. Any other teaching about the origin and make-up of the universe is alien to the intentions of the Bible, which does not wish to teach how heaven was made but how one goes to heaven." (John Paul II, 3 October 1981 to the Pontifical Academy of Science, "Cosmology and Fundamental Physics")

                As I have stated before, discussions of this kind belong to the academe which does not lead to faith or commitment or to action TO CALL ALL NATIONS TO LIVE ACCORDING TO THE WAYS OF THE SPIRIT AND NO LONGER ACCORDING TO THE WAYS OF THE WORLD but, as John Paul II said, is "alien to the intentions of the Bible, which does not wish to teach how heaven was made but how one goes to heaven." Or to attain eternal life!

                God bless.

                Isa
                -----

                -- In biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com, Arcee A <truthseeker41471@...> wrote:
                >
                > Hi Isa,
                >
                > Wow! Quite a lengthy read. I've not finished reading it though it seems that
                > we agree on this one point, and let me quote you: "FAITH and REASON are not
                > mutually exclusive but rather are mutually supportive of one another."
                >
                > And since you pointed me to this resource, let me point you to Rob's book, (yes
                > Rob Bowman, Jr. - our moderator and founder of this forum) which has this
                > title:
                >
                > Faith Has Its Reasons
                >
                > God bless!
                >
                > Arcee
                >
                >
                > "I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen. Not only because
                > I see it, but because by it I see everything else." - C.S. Lewis
                >
                >
                >
                >
                > ________________________________
                > From: Isa <isalcordo@...>
                > To: biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com
                > Sent: Fri, February 4, 2011 8:19:14 AM
                > Subject: [biblicalapologetics] Re: Theistic Evolution
                >
                >
                > Hi, Arcee:
                >
                > Here is a good link to see the views of the Roman Catholic Church on Theistic
                > Evolution.
                >
                > http://www.philvaz.com/apologetics/p94.htm
                >
                > Here is an excerpt topic of the material: "Theistic evolution" and "Evolution
                > and the Roman Catholic Church"
                >
                > The basis for the RC position is based on the fact that FAITH and REASON are not
                > mutually exclusive but rather are mutually supportive of one another.
                >
                >
                > Thus, "Pope Pius IX states in the following paragraph that faith and reason do
                > not conflict:
                >
                > "10. Not only can faith and reason never be at odds with one another but they
                > mutually support each other, for on the one hand right reason established the
                > foundations of the faith and, illuminated by its light, develops the science of
                > divine things; on the other hand, faith delivers reason from errors and protects
                > it and furnishes it with knowledge of many kinds." (Vatican Council I)."
                >
                > Have a good read.
                >
                > Isa
                > --------
                >
                > --- In biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com, Arcee A <truthseeker41471@>
                > wrote:
                > >
                > > I've recently encountered someone who believed in Theistic Evolution (or
                > > Progressive Creation). He believes that God created the universe and the earth
                > >
                > > and all that is in it initially, thereby allowing everything to run its natural
                > >
                > > course and letting evolution take over. Therefore, according to this view, man
                > >
                > > evolved from apes instead of being specially created by God on the sixth day.
                > > He also sees the six days of creation as representing long spans of time
                > > instead of the morning-followed-by-evening normal 24-day hours.
                > >
                > > For me, this is totally wrong since adopting this view would introduce death
                > > coming before sin.
                > >
                > > Any inputs, anyone?
                > > God bless!
                > >
                > >
                > > Arcee
                > >
                > >
                > > "I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen. Not only
                > >because
                > >
                > > I see it, but because by it I see everything else." - C.S. Lewis
                > >
                >
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