Re: [asa] TE Evangelists

From: George Murphy <>
Date: Sun Apr 13 2008 - 13:30:33 EDT

MessageThe possibility of upsetting people is one reason why dealing with evolution in sermons may be a bad idea. But that is not a good reason for not dealing with it at all. Discussing these matters in an educational setting provides a much better opportunity for questions and discussion in order to deal with people's concerns than does treatment from the pulpit.

Neither understanding nor accepting the evidence for evolution should be a condition for church fellowship. But it is important that Christians have some minimal understanding of the evidence, and ways understanding it in a Christian context, so that they won't fall prey to wolves of either Dawkinsonian or Hamesque variety.

  ----- Original Message -----
  From: John Walley
  To: 'George Murphy' ; 'Dehler, Bernie'
  Sent: Sunday, April 13, 2008 9:00 AM
  Subject: RE: [asa] TE Evangelists

  I agree that there is a downside risk to incorporating TE too centrally to the gospel. One reason why is that I have found that people just aren't ready for that and you can end up shaking their faith too much and potentially doing them great spiritual harm.

  I agree with you Bernie that we shouldn't hold on to beliefs just because we want something to believe in but I also think that believing in something even though it may be imperfect or even misguided can be better than not believing in anything at all. This is a journey and TE is an advanced topic and not one for every young and fragile believer to have to grapple with especially if they are facing many more real problems in life.

  That said however, I am reminded of Ken Miller's presentation which if you recall I summarized on this list last year under the thread "Evo-langelist" which I think did a good job of making the case for a Designer even in the context of Darwinian evolution, i.e., TE, but that was in an educational setting not church, and as George mentioned that might be more appropriate. I don't think it is imperative that every believer know that the scientific evidence shows us that God created us gradually from lower life forms and equate that with the gospel, but there is definite value in understanding that the wedge between science and faith isn't as bad as some in the church make it out to be. To the extent that pastors can help heal that division in the church, I think that would be a good thing.



    -----Original Message-----
    From: [] On Behalf Of George Murphy
    Sent: Sunday, April 13, 2008 6:59 AM
    To: Dehler, Bernie
    Subject: Re: [asa] TE Evangelists

    We need to be a bit careful about "preaching TE theology." What is to be preached is the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the evangel - that's what qualifies one as an evangelist. Certainly it's appropriate to refer to evolution & related matters at times in the course of preaching but a sermon shouldn't just be a lecture on a theological view of evolution. That's best dealt with in educational settings.

    The distinction between proclaiming & teaching, kerygma & didache, isn't absolute but ought to be borne in mind, especially by would-be preachers.

    I think more examples of pastors who preach the gospel & teach about how to understand evolution theologically would be found if views were broadened beyond the evangelical community. In fact, I'm going to be doing the latter later this morning at St. Paul's, though I'm not preaching on this particular Sunday. (& if I were preaching on today's Gospel, John 10:1-10, probably nothing would be said about evolution.)

      ----- Original Message -----
      From: Dehler, Bernie
      Sent: Saturday, April 12, 2008 7:42 PM
      Subject: [asa] TE Evangelists

      I think it was Denis L. who said he was a little conflicted with those YEC, and OEC, because they preach the gospel, unlike those in the TE camp. I was thinking about it. People like Billy Graham and another major evangelist that I know may be TE or lean towards TE. However, they don't make their views on TE known. They preach the gospel without a central role for Adam and Eve, or may explain Adam in theological terms and skirting the "real person" question. So on one hand, there are YEC's preaching the gospel along with YEC theology, but TE (or TE friendly evangelists) simply just preaching the gospel, avoiding the controversy altogether. Yes, there are no loud TE's preaching the gospel and TE theology. I may be trying that in the future.



      From: [] On Behalf Of Dehler, Bernie
      Sent: Saturday, April 12, 2008 4:10 PM
      Subject: RE: [asa] Was Adam a real person? (ancient science)



      For those who claim there is no ancient science, I have two questions:


        1.. When, exactly, did science begin? Please be specific and concise- 5 sentences or less.
        2.. Is saying "there was no ancient science" like saying "there was no ancient business?" Business today didn't exist in the ANE. Today it is thousands (or millions) times more complicated. Today we have world markets, derivatives, high-speed computer stock trading, board of directors, stock, bonds, futures, commodities, mortgages, various forms of debt (home equity, credit card, reverse mortgage, etc).

      My point, there was ancient science just like there was ancient business, but the "memes" for each have considerably evolved.

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Received on Sun Apr 13 13:33:55 2008

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