Re: The state of suburban theology

From: Howard J. Van Till <>
Date: Tue Jun 15 2004 - 20:53:47 EDT

On 6/15/04 12:37 PM, "" <>

> This has been something that has bothered me about the YEC community for some
> time. They seem to divide nature into "natural" processes that proceed
> without divine supervision, and the miraculous, where God reaches into nature
> and disrupts something.

That is precisely the problem with dividing action into two, mutually
exclusive categories of "natural" action (the action of matter without
divine contribution of any sort) and "supernatural" action (determinative
divine action that overpowers or supercedes creaturely action). Whether that
division is done by the YEC community or any other portion of the Christian
community, serious theological problems follow.

> I prefer to think of nature -- the entirety of it --
> as God's creation that responds to His oversight. It seems to me foolish to
> posit that God would create nature He didn't want to interact with.

Some would say it this way: "God and World are so intimately related as to
preclude the idea that either one could be what they are without authentic
and intimate interaction with the other."

> It also
> seems foolish to posit that in order to interact with nature God must disrupt
> something.

For this very reason some would say that God's interaction with the world is
the very source of the world's fecundity, its meaningfulness, its value, its
purpose, its beauty, and the joy of life itself. Far from an disruption,
God's action in and through the world is what makes life in this world

> Rather nature is a mechanism designed to respond to the creator's
> direction at all times.

How about saying, "The world can be what it is only with the active
relationship that it has with God"?

> The response is totally governed by natural laws.

How about saying, "The world's response to God is an expression of the
natures of the world, God , and the God/world relationship"?

Howard Van Till
Received on Tue Jun 15 21:22:30 2004

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