Was the title of a letter to the editor in the local newspaper… and its like ?????
Evolution is not a faith, it is not a religious practice, it is a scientific theory. One does not believe in Newton’s laws, or Maxwell’s equations, or even the space time four vector. One may use them, and may trust that they are reasonably accurate models of physical systems, but one does not believe in them. Granted, there are always extremists who elevate evolution, (probably Newton too) to a belief system, but that’s a different matter entirely.
The authors premise is that evolution causes one not to believe in the Bible, and it is a way for Satan to instill doubt, which then leads to not believing other parts of the Bible, which then leads to folks living a life of sin, which then leads to judgement, and then damnation.
Eek! we got another one of them works not faith propagators! Well,giving the benefit of a doubt… there is obviously a balance. Works are a result of faith, and one has to be really clear as to not get the order screwed up… but far too many focus on works and a theology of glory, as contrasted with a theology of the cross…. and a theology of glory often leads to a works based faith, rather than works based upon faith.
Getting back on track, in some ways, the author is correct. The theory of evolution may cause folks to question a literalistic Biblical interpretation, and that can lead to not taking other parts of the Bible literally… And if one has always held to a very literalistic framework, this can potentially be a bad path to go down, especially one without the support of other Christians. It can also be an awakening to a theology of the cross and a faith builder as well, but in shredding a theology of glory, there is risk.
I dont know, in some ways, the whole creation mess and evolution vs non-evolution is a distraction from the Gospel.. in others I am firmly convinced God uses it to bring us closer to him, and that’s irrespective of a path of a literal or a metaphorical Genesis.
The thing is, we all pick and choose what is literal, what is metaphorical, whats allegory, whats a parable, and what passed away when the OT was fulfilled, what is no longer applicable as the temple is gone, what falls under historical critical methods, what is applicable to a specific church, culture, or time, what is under a different dispensation, whats under a different covenant, what is in error due to translation, what is this, what is that, what is in general whatever is a good way to not hear of the mysteries of faith, to not hear of original sin, to not hear the free grace of God in Christ Jesus, to not hear the hard parts of God’s words
Please note, I said hear… I did not say act upon, that is the role of the Holy Spirit to convince, or not to convince. There are things which clearly are not applicable for today.. but each group will have different approaches to what is current, and what is not, and that diversity is probably a good thing, as it keeps us honest, and open to see how God reveals his truth across the body of believers. No one, not even the most fire and brimstone guy, or the most far out green dude, takes all of scripture literally.
A few examples/rants 🙂
- Only some take Christ’s words literally as to “This is my body”, instead it is replaced with the much easier to hear, this is a remembrance type of ceremony.
- Many do not use the model of Christian socialism as called out in Acts as something to follow, but more so.. it was good for people of that time, but social justice and taking care of the poor are the governments problem today, or no, we don’t need to take care of them at all, if they don’t work, they don’t eat!
- Few tithe 23-1/3″ as called out in the OT, saying it passed away, yet chose to pound on homosexuality as being an abomination, all the while tithing sub 5%, even though in other matters outside of tithing may believe the OT was fulfilled, or was under a different dispensation.
- Few forgive all debts every 7 years as called out in the OT, and instead delight when they can get 20% plus returns on their investments, despite the admonitions against usary. (well up until recently)
- Many do not take Jesus words literally as to turning the other cheek, and instead look for ways to wage war and/or use the death penalty or deadly measures of self defense.
It is a matter of picking and choosing what is literal, and what is metaphorical, and of course what laws to follow, and what laws we can dispense with… a huge problem with works based theology, as the works selected are the ones which are the social norms of a group of people/believers, not necessarily all the works presented in scripture.
Thus, I think the authors issue is more than his version of literalistic interpretation is in conflict with the theory of evolution. He likely depends upon a literal, and chronologically correct view of Genesis and the age of the earth, and his faith is likely based upon certain absolutes which he and his culture chose over the years. To consider that Genesis is a metaphor or a parable of something much more intense and much larger, to him is anathema. Instead, he finds comfort in the readings as they are.
I think thats a reasonable conclusion, but it is not without dangers, ranging from Biblioidolatry, to a theology of glory, to works based salvation, all of which are pretty scary, but over time, can hopefully be mitigated as folks work out their salvation.