Discontinuity Conference Report

From: pruest@pop.dplanet.ch
Date: Wed Aug 29 2001 - 11:08:34 EDT

  • Next message: pruest@pop.dplanet.ch: "Inerrancy (was: Why YEC?)"

    John Burgeson wrote:
    > Allen Roy wrote, in part: "To make a long story short, the conclusion was
    > that the grammatical structure and use of words in Genesis 1 leave no
    > room for anything but the clear and unambiguous intended meaning of six
    > literal 24-hour days."
    > OK, I'll buy that. That leaves three possibilities:
    > 1. The story is meant to be read as a spiritual truth wrapped up in a
    > myth.
    > 2. The story is meant to be read as literally true, and is literally
    > true.
    > 3. The story is meant to be read as literally true, and is not.
    > Obviously Allen takes possibility #2. His interpretation "trumps" known
    > science.
    > Dawkins et. al. take possibility #3, and, partly on that basis, reject
    > Christianity. A lot of people take that route, rejecting #2 as
    > intellectual suicide.
    > I, of course, as well as most Christians, take #1 as the most reasonable
    > position, given that I must accept Allen's statement above. Which may, or
    > may not, be true itself. I am suspicious of a person with so much
    > certainty.
    > John Burgeson (Burgy)

    If you interpret "read as literally true" in the YEC way, you are right.
    But then your three possibilities are not all there is. In fact, a
    reasonable interpretation of the biblical text requires a differentiated
    approach both in the scientific and in the exegetical domain. #2 and #3
    fail in both domains, mainly in the former, #1 fails in the latter

    Possibility #4 takes the text seriously, unlike YEC, but also unlike the
    "myth" myth derived from the theologically "liberal" JEDP source
    criticism, which itself is based on untenable enlightenment views (cf.
    Allan A. MacRae, "JEDP: Lectures on the Higher Criticism of the
    Pentateuch", Hatfield, PA: IBRI, 1994). Rather, the meaning of words,
    phrases, and contexts of biblical passages cannot be derived from any
    simple-minded historical tradition. It must agree with the use of these
    terms in other places, particularly in the Bible, and with the closer
    and wider context, including what is known (not assumed) of the culture
    of the time. It must also agree with the biblical concept of
    inspiration. For an example of what this might imply, see Armin Held &
    Peter Rüst, "Genesis Reconsidered", PSCF 51 (Dec 1999), 231-243. You may
    not agree with the details of our proposal, but if one wants to ignore
    the possibility of _any_ kind of harmonization, one should at least try
    to justify this assumption.


    Dr Peter Ruest, <pruest@dplanet.ch>
    CH-3148 Lanzenhaeusern, Switzerland
    Biochemistry - Creation and evolution
    Creative providence in biology (Gen.2:3):
    "..the work which God created (in order) to (actively) evolve it"

    This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Wed Aug 29 2001 - 11:08:04 EDT