> I have not had time to fully examine the letter by Jason Alley
>regarding my previous posting. However, let me qualify somethings I
>First, I have had the opposite problem: people rejecting Christianity
>and Christ because of a perceived inconsistency in Bible
>interpretation. These persons (engineers mostly) have stated, in
>essence, that they cannot see how you can believe in the claims of
>the resurrection and Christ, yet reject the rest of the Bible,
>especially when Jesus and the apostles (as these persons have pointed
>out) hold to the entire Bible as being true. I pointed out some of
>their objections in my previous post.
Maybe I need to clarify something: I do not reject the miraculous
power of God by any means. I personally believe in the flood, the
tower of babbel, etc... the only "miraculous" event in Genesis I
question as it is literally read in the Bible is the creation event,
and my interpretation of it (I have it written out if you're
interested) doesn't contradict a single word of the scriptural account,
if you read the account as an analogy or illustration given to
unscientific people who newly were taken from one pantheistic society
and are about to be sent into another. The didn't need to know about
how God used Natural Selection. They wouldn't have understood it. God
gives us what we can know. This is also well-illustrated in scripture.
"His ways are not our ways..." "The wisdom of God is foolishness to
men..." "Now we see but poorly, as in a reflection, but then we will
see face to face..." God HAS revealed himself to us, to be sure, but
we cannot comprehend the entire reality of Him or His ways. We can't
even stand to see his face. There is more to God than what we can
know, here and now, as humans, and there is probably also more about
the origin of life than He has chosen to make plain to us. What the
Hebrews needed was to know that the spirit of the tree didn't make the
tree and that the god of the waters didn't bring storms. They needed
to know that God was in control of it all and that it was a product of
His handiwork. This, I believe, is the purpose of Genesis, and my
interpretation (again, available upon request) does not contradict a
sylable of the account if read in this light.
>Second, in your professional capacity and ministry, by no means do I
>mean you should not discuss what you believe. The focus of my post
>dealt with a perceived desire of some persons to bring this debate
>into the church. Until this debate is complete in the scientific
>circles, being concluded with incontrovertible, repeatable proofs as
>is the requirement of science, it has no place in the church.
Unless the church is wrong in its teaching, in which case a correction
should be attempted so that others aren't cut off from fellowship
because they're right (if they are).
>Perhaps I should rephrase my warning/advice: you may personally be
>secure in your faith and hold to an evolutionary point of view about
>the origin of the universe. While I may disagree with you
>personally, I have no problem with accepting you as a brother or
>sister in Christ. Your position is between you and God, not me.
>However, there are many in the church who are not so strong as you,
>their faith is weak and is founded on an all or nothing stance. If
>you take away a piece of their foundation, you destroy the totality
>of their faith (I have been a pastor and have seen this). "
So have I, and so have I. However, I've seen more of the other problem
than the first. I don't know of many Christians who've left the church
because of the fossil record, but I know of many who can't join the
church because of it.
>thus, by sinning against the brethren and wounding their conscience
>when it is weak, you sin against Christ." (1 Cor 8:12, NAS). This
>was my point: be quiet in the Church about this issue, lest you wound
>the conscience of the weak and thus sin against Christ.
Again, my friend. I would never use my position or ideas to "combat" a
Christian. That is not the purpose of my study. I see this as a
bridge, not a weapon. In my discussions with Christians, I only talk
to the ones that I believe can handle the discussion (like the members
of this listserv) or those that have ostracized a seeker because of his
opinions. That is all. Again, I can't speak for others, but I'm not
out on a crusade to make all Christians evolutionists. That's
rediculous. I'm on a crusade to make all evolutionists Christians.
>William M. Frix
>Assistant Professor, Electrical Engineering
>John Brown University
>Siloam Springs, AR 72761
>Phone: (501) 524-7466
>FAX: (501) 524-7499