[asa] Carol Hill's Worldview Approach

From: Austerberry, Charles <cfauster@creighton.edu>
Date: Fri Jun 01 2007 - 11:07:11 EDT

I'm interested in discussing Carol Hill's article in the recent (June
2007) PSCF (yes, the one with the wrong front cover - no need to spend
money on sending me a replacement cover, however!).
The distinction between her view and Hugh Ross' concordist position
seems pretty clear. What is less clear to me is the distinction between
her view and Paul Seely's "divine accommodation" view, at least on some
For example, Hill's interpretation of Genesis 1 seems identical to
Seely's, Hyers', and many others. She calls it the "literary" approach.
I think some call it the "framework" approach. Regardless, I think it
is quite sound.
In theory, Hill's interpretation of patriarchal ages seems distinct in
that she believes one could know the actual ages of the patriarchs, but
... only if one knew how to interpret the numerology of the original,
inspired text. In practice, however, having access to the "original"
text, plus being confident in one's interpretation of the numerology,
are both highly unlikely. In practice, therefore, I think both Hill and
Seely would probably agree that we can't know the actual ages of the
patriarchs with much confidence, at least not now.
Regarding Noah and the flood, again I think Seely and many other
advocates of the accommodation view would agree with Hill that at least
one, and maybe a few, devastating floods occurred in the history of the
ancient near east, and that this/these flood(s) is/are reflected in both
Genesis and other ancient documents. It may be, however, that Hill and
Seely differ in their views on Noah and the ark. Also, I think Hill
expects Genesis, at least in its original text and with proper
interpretation, to accurately identify the time and place of Noah's
flood, whereas Seely would probably not expect such historical accuracy
even in theory.
On the person of Adam, I do see a clear distinction between the view
that Adam represents (hu)mankind in general versus the view that Adam
was an historical individual. Hill's view on Adam seems close to Dick
I guess I'm most interested in all this because of the motivation Hill
gives for wanting to distance her view from the accommodation view.
Hill writes: "Furthermore, if God actually teaches through fiction,
cleverly disguised as factual history, how can we separate fact from
myth when reading the Bible? How can we trust God as a God of truth?
If we cannot trust the historical accuracy of the Flood story, how can
we trust the story of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ?"
Glenn Morton and many others have voiced the same general question.
Personally, I find the approach taken by NT Wright to be the best. He
argues that the bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ actually happened,
not by insisting that the whole Bible (in its original manuscripts) is
"without error," but by patiently examining the evidence pertinent to
the resurrection itself. The "Bible-as-a-whole-must-be-accurate" view
might support some in their faith, but it has also led many to lose
theirs (Bart Ehrman comes to mind as a prime example).
Charles (Chuck) F. Austerberry, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Biology
Hixson-Lied Room 438
Creighton University
2500 California Plaza
Omaha, NE 68178
Phone: 402-280-2154
Fax: 402-280-5595
e-mail: cfauster@creighton.edu
Nebraska Religious Coalition for Science Education
http://nrcse.creighton.edu <http://nrcse.creighton.edu/>

To unsubscribe, send a message to majordomo@calvin.edu with
"unsubscribe asa" (no quotes) as the body of the message.
Received on Fri Jun 1 11:08:51 2007

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.8 : Fri Jun 01 2007 - 11:08:51 EDT