Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Galileo Moment

Evangelicals Question the Existence of Adam and Eve

Quite a development in the evangelical seminary/theological community. Some scholars are now coming out and saying that the literal account of genesis can no longer be true, with all of the information obtained in the last half-century of the human genome, the geological studies and fossil findings have all been shedding light onto this subject. Some of these scholars are now beginning to see the light as their "Galileo Moment", a moment in their religious history where they can accept fact and adapt their beliefs and interpretations of the bible's meaning, or they can resist and find themselves on the wrong side of history and truth. Needless to say, the Adam and Eve story is one of the foundations of the christian religion and without this story, the whole point of everything begins to break down.

Albert Mohler, president of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, says that rebellious choice infected all of humankind. "When Adam sinned, he sinned for us," Mohler says. "And it's that very sinfulness that sets up our understanding of our need for a savior. Mohler says the Adam and Eve story is not just about a fall from paradise: It goes to the heart of Christianity. He notes that the Apostle Paul (in Romans 5 and 1 Corinthians 15) argued that the whole point of Jesus' crucifixion and resurrection was to undo Adam's original sin. "Without Adam, the work of Christ makes no sense whatsoever in Paul's description of the Gospel, which is the classic description of the Gospel we have in the New Testament," Mohler says.
"When you ignore science, you end up with egg on your face," Giberson says. "The Catholic Church has had an awful lot of egg on its face for centuries because of Galileo. And Protestants would do very well to look at that and to learn from it."
I think this is going to be a pivotal point in Church history," he says. "Because what rests at the very heart of this debate is whether or not key ideas within Christianity are ultimately true or not." But others say Christians can no longer afford to ignore the evidence from the human genome and fossils just to maintain a literal view of Genesis. "This stuff is unavoidable," says Dan Harlow at Calvin College. "Evangelicals have to either face up to it or they have to stick their head in the sand. And if they do that, they will lose whatever intellectual currency or respectability they have." "If so, that's simply the price we'll have to pay," says Southern Baptist seminary's Albert Mohler. "The moment you say 'We have to abandon this theology in order to have the respect of the world,' you end up with neither biblical orthodoxy nor the respect of the world."
Mohler and others say if other Protestants want to accommodate science, fine. But they shouldn't be surprised if their faith unravels.

No comments:

Post a Comment