Though some may believe that moving the science/faith dialogue forward is best left to scientists, scholars, and theologians, we at BioLogos recognize that our pastors play an invaluable role in the conversation. Across the globe, pastors are helping their congregations work through difficult issues of science and faith with honesty, insight, and a gentle spirit. To this end we present an ongoing series recognizing sermons (and the pastors who give them) that are helping to promote the harmony of science and faith. Today's sermon comes from Dr. Ben Cross, senior pastor of First Baptist Church of Eugene, Oreg. The full sermon can be downloaded here. Finally, if you know a sermon or podcast related to science and faith that has especially spoken to you, please let us know.
One of our readers in Oregon suggested that we would be interested in this, a sermon her pastor preached a couple of years ago. She’s right. Dr. Ben Cross, of First Baptist Church in Eugene holds a young earth view of creation. In this message he lays out various positions that evangelicals hold, including what he calls “theistic evolution.” The issue is not whether we agree with his assessment of what science does and does not tell us about God’s mechanism of creation, or whether scientific tools are a reliable way of learning about past events. We don’t agree with what he says about that.
However, in this message, Dr. Cross illustrates a principle even more important than each of us getting our respective facts right—as important as that is. Here we sit at the feet of a man who is showing us what it means to be like Jesus as we think about issues wherein we disagree.
Paul tells us in I Corinthians 13: “If I have the tongues of men and of angels and have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophesy and can fathom all mystery and all knowledge…but have not love I am nothing.”
Jesus, speaking initially of his disciples but then moving on to us in the present age, prays the following: “My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them might be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me.” (John 17: 20,21)
Dr. Cross, then, in this message is demonstrating the most profound principle of all. Even though we may disagree profoundly, unless we love even more profoundly we have nothing of lasting value to say.
Perhaps the third chapter of James says it best: “But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere. Peacemakers who sow in peace raise a harvest of righteousness.”
Thank you, Dr. Cross, we all have much to learn from you.
Commentary by Darrel Falk