Biblical Creation

Within the last few weeks there was released a poll done by the Pew Forum on American adherence to the theory of evolution, theistic evolution, and creationism.  It is disappointing to hear that only roughly one out of every three Americans still believe in creationism.  Let me define these for you…

Evolution – Life as we know it has come to be through natural process over a time span of what is now estimated to about 14 billion years.

Theistic Evolution (old earth creation) – Life as we know it has come through natural process guided by God according to the same time period that evolutionary scientists point to.

Creationism (young-earth creation) – Life as we know it has only been within the last six thousand years and that God created the universe in six literal days.

The real issue for myself is not whether science and faith have a place together.  Of course they do.  Reason and faith really do go hand in hand.  The Christian faith is a reasonable faith, not blind.  Blind faith means there is no reasons for believing.  Christianity has a rich archive of reasons for a person’s faith in God and His Word.  So, I am not arguing over the Christian and evolutionist interpretation of scientific facts in this blog.

The issue that I tackle is that of theistic evolution.  That a self-proclaimed believer in Christ could adhere to evolution as God’s method of creation has always confused me.  The only explanation I could think of was that they pick and choose their scriptures and perverted the rest (which has serious implications on a person have true faith and salvation).  The first experience I had with someone from this camp of thought was with the teacher of a class on reasonable faith.  The course description was that proofs of God’s word through science and prophetic fulfillment in ancient and modern history.  The course description was never fulfilled.

The course ended up being this teachers opportunity to propagate evolutionary theory among creationist under the disguise of Biblical teaching.  In the end of the course he walked people through the evolutionary line.  The ending conversation of the class is this…

Teacher: Evolution is God’s method of creation.  We see that with the day-age theory of Genesis 1.
Me: So, God didn’t create Adam straight from the dust of the earth?  You mean it is only a metaphor that he shares the common elements?  That man is evolved from ape-like ancestors?
Teacher:  Yes, that is correct.
Me:  Your saying that God took some ape like creature then and put a soul in them?
Teacher: Yes.
Class then ended very quietly.
   That was my introduction to theistic evolution and it was closer to home than I would of ever imagined.  Since then I have come across it in college and seminary.  My question still remains the same.  How could a believer say they believe the Bible and evolution?  I know there are entire seminars given on how to make a harmony between the two.  I read blogs by Craig Adams and Scot McKnight that are scholars on the subject but still never find that harmony or my questions answered.   It could be that my questions are more theological than scientific.  Which is the heart of the blog.  Evolution not only causes problem for science but more inevitably for theology.  Here are my questions.
1. What of the soul of man compared to any other animal if he evolved from them?
2.  If there is more value on man because of an eternal soul then when did man receive it in the evolutionary line?
3.  Is there any real meaning to the scriptural teaching of man being made in the image of God?
4.  If evolution is how God created than when did the ape-like ancestry of man become the image of God?
5.  If we are no different than animals metaphysically than can animals sin?  Do they repent?  Does God forgive them?
6.  If Adam is only metaphorical than when does sin come into the picture?
7.  Is the book of Romans treatment of sin coming by one man to be understood metaphorical?  Therefore, disrupting the understanding of the origin of sin and how each person is born into sin?
8.  Is the Bible trustworthy when it makes statements about the natural world?
    Depending on how those questions are answered one can change the whole framework of Christian doctrine.
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