Friday, August 27, 2010

Can Biologos Save Christianity?

Dr. Karl Giberson has apologized to Al Mohler for his schoolyard tactics of "debate". As I mention in an earlier post, Dr. Giberson, in a piece for the Huffington Post, accused Dr. Mohler of not being interested in the truth. While I would quibble with some of the details of Giberson's apology, it is not mine to accept or reject the apology which seems to be sincere.

However, the problem still remains that Giberson and his cohorts at Biologos continue to do just exactly what
Mohler and many others contend. That is, the Biologos program is inherently hostile to the doctrines of God, creation, man, sin, and redemption revealed in the Scriptures. Astonishingly, Dr. Giberson states that the work of Biologos to bring about the full embrace of Darwinism within the church is for the purpose of saving Christianity. I don't know which is worse: the ignorance or arrogance of such a statement.

Giberson writes:

Is it not here that we find the central truth of our faith? Our sinful nature is a simple reality… But is it not possible that we might have different ideas about how we came to have that nature? Does the saving power of Jesus vanish if sin becomes something that developed through natural history, rather than appeared all at once in the Garden of Eden? It seems to me that there is a conversation to have here, beyond simply drawing a line in the sand. Satisfactory answers to questions like these are truly ‘How to be a Christian and Believe in Evolution.’

At BioLogos we have made our peace with evolution, and it has been liberating and even faith-affirming. We encourage conversations to further that agenda and make no excuses for that. We are not destroying Christianity. We are saving it. (emphasis mine).
In related news, Al Mohler comments on an article by John Farrell in the Wall Street Journal.

The American literary critic Frederick Crews once spoke of defenders of evolutionary theory who attempt to make Darwinism appear more congenial to the Christian faith than it truly is. These defenders, Crews wrote, present a vision of Darwin and Darwinism that “is often prettified to make it safe for doctrines that he himself was sadly compelled to leave behind.” The prettifying of evolution continues, even in today’s edition of The Wall Street Journal.

Writing in the paper’s weekly “Houses of Worship” column, John Farrell argues that the 60th anniversary of the Roman Catholic Church’s encyclical Humani Generis should be cause for celebration, since that historic document, issued by Pope Pius XII, “confirmed, in broad terms, that there is no intrinsic conflict between Christianity and the scientific theory of evolution.”

However, As Dr. Mohler points out, the Catholic Church continues to maintain that any theory of evolution that denies human ascent from the man Adam and the historicity of the Fall is incompatible with Christianity. This of course is the proverbial rub. There simply is no way to be committed to Darwinian evolution and at the same time maintain belief in human ascent from a specially created Adam as well as the historical Fall which is affirmed by both Jesus and Paul.

Mohler points out that Farrell "affirms the work of the late Catholic theologian Karl Rahner, who 're-interpreted Genesis in light of evolution, arguing that the story of Adam and Eve needed to be read metaphorically.' He also applauds John Haught at Georgetown University, who proposes 'that the new cosmology of the expanding universe and the evolution of life require a more dynamic sense of God’s role in a world that is still not complete, a work in progress.'"

But this "more dynamic sense of God's role" has profound implications.

Actually, John Haught argues that the entire structure of Christian theology should be recast in light of evolution. In his recent book Making Sense of Evolution, Haught asserts that “Darwin has altered our understanding of almost everything that concerns theology.”

Let no one doubt just how comprehensive Haught’s alteration of Christian theology will turn out to be. “Other disciplines such as geology, cosmology, anthropology, psychology, sociology, computer science, and medicine have already undergone a major retooling in the wake of Darwin’s findings,” he asserts. “Can theology realistically expect to escape a major metamorphosis?”

In Making Sense of Evolution, Haught provides ample evidence of what this “major metamorphosis” would mean. Every doctrine is brought to terms with evolutionary theory, including God. The revised deity of Haught’s evolutionary model is inseparable from his creation and stripped of sovereignty.

This kind of theological revisionism is not limited to Roman Catholic theologians, of course. John Weaver, a former Baptist minister and geologist who currently teaches at Regent’s Park College at the University of Oxford, also argues that we must surrender belief in an historical Adam and an historical Fall. Adam is a
symbolic, rather than a genetic head of humanity, he asserts. As for the Fall, he argues: “Within the movement of evolutionary development, there must have been a moment when Homo sapiens came to full moral consciousness for the first time.” He suggests that a proposed “bottleneck” in the evolutionary past probably reduced human populations to “fairly low numbers for a time,” and that this made “the significant moment of moral choice even more critical for humankind as a whole.” The historicity of Genesis 3 is just dismissed.

Read Mohler's entire article HERE.

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