Re: statement on creationism?

David Nunes (danunes@ucdavis.edu)
Fri, 19 Nov 1999 11:57:26 -0800

At 9:45 AM -0700 11/19/99, you wrote:
>At 11:20 AM 11/19/99 -0500, Dick Fischer wrote:
>>
>>What I am suggesting is that the ASA adopt a formal statement that reflects
>>the majority view, go on record, and announce it by way of a press release.
>> Allan Harvey's draft is a good place to start. Maybe it's just good!
>>
>>Of course we have a lunatic fringe, doesn't every Christian organization?
>>Or perhaps, they are keeping an eye on us hoping we remain the toothless
>>tiger we have always been. Speaking only for myself, I think YEC is a
>>cancer in the body of Christ, and I think the ASA should take a leadership
> >role in excising it.
>

Unfortunately, my experience has been that non-YEC beliefs are often
considered the _lunatic_ fringe within a large segment of the
Christian community.

Dr. Allan H. Harvey wrote

>Before my name gets associated with such an oncology effort, let me agree
>with what George Murphy said yesterday. The young-Earth view itself
>(while I believe it to be incorrect) is not nearly as much of a problem
>as the view of many who hold it that it is the *only* acceptable
>Christian view.
>
>My draft (which again I'm not necessarily advocating for an official ASA
>statement) tried to go at it from that perspective -- reserving the
>denouncement for those who make YEC (or the falsity of evolutionary
>science) essential to the Gospel. In fact, on further reflection, I'd
>want to change my lead paragraph from saying "the evidence ... clearly
>testifies [to an old Earth]" to something like "there is strong
>evidence", just to be more inclusive. So I only agree with the "cancer"
>remark if we take "YEC" to refer specifically to the movement in which
>some believers in a young Earth try to add their interpretation to the Gospel.

I definitely agree with Allan and George. Focus should be placed on
dispelling the _myth_ that "The young-Earth view... is the *only*
acceptable Christian view." I find that talking among Christian
friends there is a strong fear for dialog which includes "evolution",
"millions of years", etc. It is not so much a problem that people
believe that God said _poof_ and suddenly there was a universe, as it
is that other interpretations of creation are not _actable_ to a
large segment of Christianity and taboo subjects of conversation.
Rather than focusing on destroying the beliefs of others, I too find
it more constructive to gain acceptance for our own beliefs so that
dialog can proceed.

I personally am more interested in how the ASA can speak to
environmental and scientifically related ethical dilemmas.

"...The ASA is also committed to the equally important task of
providing advice and direction to the Church and society in how best
to use the results of science and technology while preserving the
integrity of God's creation. " - About the ASA
<http://asa.calvin.edu/ASA/index.html>

David Nunes