Not All Doctrines Are Equal—Configuring Adam and Eve
Sometimes, out of fear or some sense of being required to defend our position, Church leaders and teachers have hastily set up a boundary marker around some doctrinal theory which they have confused as a core doctrinal issue.
Why the Church Needs Multiple Theories of Original Sin
“It’s tempting to think that the church needs to decide quickly which of these [original sin] scenarios is right, and which ones must be wrong. I believe the church is better served by taking its time, holding several different scenarios in tension for a while as we think through the implications of each.”
God's Extravagant Love in Creation
Critics of Christianity look to evolution to show how the emergence of human life on earth demanded enormous ruin and ravage, billions of years of apparent waste and futility, species extermination and organism road kill. Not only was the massive dying off rampant, it’s mandatory too.
Belief in God in an Age of Science: John Polkinghorne, Part Three
The gift of Love must be the gift of freedom, the gift of a degree of letting-be, and this can be expected to be true of all creatures to the extent that is appropriate to their proper character. It is in the nature of dense snow fields that they will sometimes slip with the destructive force of an avalanche. It is the nature of lions that they will seek their prey. It is the nature of cells that they will mutate, sometimes producing new forms of life, sometimes grievous disabilities, sometimes cancers.
Series: Excerpts from "Origins: Christian Perspectives on Creation, Evolution, and Intelligent Design" (7 entries)
These excerpts from Origins: Christian Perspectives on Creation, Evolution, and Intelligent Design, written by BioLogos president Deborah Haarsma and her husband Loren Haarsma, offer a sampling of the book's many topics, from exploring our disagreements and agreements on origins as Christians to explaining scientific processes to looking at how we read Genesis.
Southern Baptist Series: Evolution and the Problem of Evil
Were one to propose creation by means of theistic evolution, some of the presuppositions for these responses to the problem of evil no longer function. Therefore, advocating some form of theistic evolution poses problems for standard explanations of the problem of evil.
Series: “And God Saw That It Was Good”: Death and Pain in the Created Order (6 entries)
The tension generated by our understanding of God’s character, as revealed in the Bible, and by the reality of the natural world around us has been the focus of much debate within the Christian church since the first century. This series examines critically several of the proposed solutions to this problem, viewing them from the perspective of a geologist, paleontologist, and orthodox evangelical Christian.
Science and the Bible: Theistic Evolution, Part 3
As I stressed in my column about the YEC view, creationism is ultimately about theodicy—it’s not only about theodicy, to be sure, but the belief that animals must not have suffered and died before Adam and Eve committed the first sin is crucial to the “young” in Young Earth Creationism. To a significant degree, Theistic Evolution is also about theodicy.
Series: Southern Baptist Voices: Evolution and Death (4 entries)
This exchange brings together related essays on death in light of evolution and Scripture from Southern Baptist theologian Dr. John Laing. Laing argues that evolutionary theory requires death to play a central role in the creation of new life, but sees Scripture depicting death only "as an invader, disturber of peace, and a force of evil." A BioLogos response is given by Dr. Jeff Schloss.
The Questions Update: Did death occur before the Fall?
Today’s post features a preview of the updated Question, "Did death occur before the Fall?", revised by Senior Web Consultant and Writer Deborah Haarsma. This question provides an overview of the issue and points readers to more resources within and beyond the BioLogos website.
Series: Asa Gray and Charles Darwin Discuss Evolution and Design (5 entries)
Many Christians believe that they face a painful choice-- either life was designed by God or it is an evolutionary product of natural selection. Charles Darwin himself believed in this dichotomy, and people ever since have felt the need to "choose sides". However, looking back at history, we find that one of Darwin's chief scientific colleagues, Asa Gray, did not share this perspective. In this three-part essay, part 1 charts the relationship of Asa Gray and Charles Darwin. Part 2 describes Darwin's struggle with the problem of natural evil and design in nature, and part 3 explores how Asa Gray was able to embrace evolution without rejecting the idea of design.
The Creation of Beauty
Physical death is a necessary and, perhaps, disconcerting element of the evolutionary process for many Christians. It is difficult to imagine a perfect and loving God designing such a universe where forces such as natural death and entropy operate.
Weekend Sermon: A Tale of Two Cities
This sermon is a clear reminder that we each have a choice. We can work to build cities that celebrate God’s love for us (the lineage of Seth), or we can live in the destructive lineage of Cain. May the spirit of prayer, humility, and love characterize the world’s cities on this the tenth anniversary of America’s most stark example of “The Tale of Two Cities.”
Series: Science and Faith at the Movies: Creation (3 entries)
In this short series, Brian Godawa reviews Creation, a biographical film about Charles Darwin. He provides an overview and analysis of the film, highlighting various metaphors that reinforce the conflict between science and faith. He further addresses Darwin’s struggle with natural evil and discusses whether or not the presence of evil can align with the existence of a benevolent God.
A Pastor's Perspective on Death and Evolution
If death did not exist before Adam and Eve, how could God have used evolution to create man? And what about predators and natural catastrophes such as the mass extinction of the dinosaurs?
Snakes—especially the poisonous varieties—evoke a primordial dread in many people, a response sometimes even attributed to God’s curse of enmity between Eve and the serpent in the second chapter of Genesis.
Series: Genesis, Creation, and Ancient Interpreters: In the Garden (8 entries)
In this lengthy series, Pete Enns engages the peculiar and unfamiliar parts of Genesis 2. He first presents the details of the story which ancient interpreters often wrestled with, and then he discusses the scholars’ conclusions and offers his own insight. He addresses such particulars as the speaking serpent that tempts Adam and Eve, the idea that the couple was naked before their act of disobedience, and the fact that Adam and Eve did not physically die when they ate the forbidden fruit.
Philip Yancey on "What Good is God?"
In this video “Conversation,” Philip Yancey explains that on the way home from a trip to Mumbai, India, during which terrorists attacked the city, he began to form a list of the challenging situations he has experienced.
Series: How Could God Create Through Evolution? A Look at Theodicy (4 entries)
This series, written by Bethany Sollereder, seeks to address this question: “How could God create through a process that involves so much pain and death?” She first presents the two drastically opposite worldviews held by theologians and scientists. She also reflects theologically on how a world created through evolutionary means can be good, and concludes with some thoughts concerning the Fall, physical decay and spiritual death.