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Evolution and Christian Faith Grantees Announced

Congratulations to the 37 winners of the Evolution & Christian Faith (ECF) grants competition! ECF is a new BioLogos program designed to support projects and network-building among scholars, church leaders, and parachurch organizations.

 

Series: Made in the Image of God: The Theological Implications of Human Genomics (4 entries)

This series by Denis Alexander reflects on advancements in genomics as well as their theological implications. He focuses on the relatedness of hominin genomes, arguing that this does not interfere with the image of God in humans. The image of God depends more on the capacity for relationship and covenant, not on a list of particular physical qualities. He then discusses why the recent studies of genomics provide “no grounds for genetic determinism.”

 

Series: The Meaning of mîn in the Hebrew Old Testament (3 entries)

The related ideas of the “fixity of species” and “natural kinds” have been prominent in the science and faith conversation. Some Christians take Genesis to mean that God created (bara) fixed species (mîn). But does the text truly indicate such a concept? Biblical scholar Dr. Richard Hess looks at the Biblical context and meaning of the Hebrew mîn, and suggests that when Christians use it to frame our understanding of the entire created order, we may be asking too much of this single word.

 

Series: But Does it Move? John Lennox on Science and the Bible (4 entries)

Taken from Chapter 2 of John Lennox's book Seven Days That Divide The World, this three part series looks at scripture interpretation. Lennox looks especially at the Galileo controversy regarding the movement of the Earth and why our own interpretations do not necessarily call into question the authority of the Scripture.

 

The Broken Made Whole

There is a sense in which we look at Temma and we want to affirm that she is made in the image of God by denying that the image of God has anything to do with her physical, material body.

 

Series: The Genesis of Everything (5 entries)

Theologian, historian and Christian apologist Dr. John P. Dickson addresses the history and interpretation of Genesis 1. Making no claims about human biological origins, Dickson urges us to treat the early chapters of Genesis as a literary and historical statement, and listen carefully to it on those terms.

 

Series: Chosen by God: Biblical Election and the Imago Dei (6 entries)

At the center of the theological and cultural controversy surrounding biological evolution stands the question: “How do human beings—creatures uniquely created in the image and likeness of God—fit into the scientific picture of life’s origins and development?” In this three-part series, Dr. Joshua Moritz endeavors to address this question by exploring what Scripture means—and does not mean—by the designation “image and likeness of God”.

 

Below the Surface; Behind the Scene

In this video, Alister McGrath discusses the importance of going beyond surface readings, both in Scripture and in the natural world. The parable of the sower, for example, contains a far deeper meaning than a story of a man scattering seed.

 

Gaining Perspective

In today’s video, Michael Ramsden discusses the humility and openness we need to have before we approach Scripture.

 

God's Accommodation to Humans

According to Calvin, accommodation is a pedagogical tool that God employs to communicate to human beings. If God wishes to speak to us, he must bridge the gulf by descending into our world and speaking our language. In other words, God accommodates himself to our ability to comprehend.

 

A Pastor’s Perspective on the Dangers of an Ultra-Literal Perspective

In this video Conversation, Greg Boyd notes that some believers conceive of their faith as a “house of cards”—where shifting one element will collapse the whole thing.

 

Series: What Does “Image of God” Mean? (5 entries)

In this series, Pete Enns discusses what it means to be made in God’s image according to Genesis 1:26-27. These verses show that humans are made in God’s image in order to rule over all creation as representatives of God. He argues that humanity’s image is not wrapped up in their soul, but in their role as caretakers. In this discussion, he mentions that God commands Israel to make no graven images to represent God because humans are living images themselves. Ultimately, Jesus is the perfect image of God, and humans are called to live in Christ.

 

On What It Means To Be An Image Bearer

In this video conversation, N.T. Wright suggests that what the book of Genesis and the apostle Paul mean by humans "bearing the image of God" is less a static picture and more of a creative, dynamic proposition-- specifically, how we "reflect" God into the world.

 

On Myth and Meaning

In this video, John Walton talks about ancient myth and how we might better understand it if we think about its intended functionality—that is, myths were a way to explain a culture’s origin and universal significance though they lacked the advances of scientific discovery.

 

N.T. Wright on Understanding Ancient Texts

In this video Conversation, N.T. Wright emphasizes the importance of understanding the context of biblical texts in order to know whether to read them as literal or metaphorical narratives.

 

Reading Nature and Reading Scripture

I recently led a seminar on faith and science at a large Christian music festival in rural Illinois. One pugilistic gentleman bulldogged me all week, insisting that geologists and biologists were misguided and mistaken. "If evolution is right," he said, "then the Bible is wrong―about everything."

 

The Lost World of Genesis One

Walton presents and defends twenty propositions supporting a literary and theological understanding of Genesis 1.

 

Evolution and the Imago Dei

Genesis 1:26-27 reads: "Then God said, 'Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.' So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them."

 

How could humans have evolved and still be created in the "Image of God"?

The meaning of the “image of God” has been debated for centuries in the church. A common view is that the image of God refers to the human abilities that separate us from the animals. However, scientists have found that abilities like communication and rationality are also present in animals on a basic level. Plus, theologians do not see the image of God as human abilities. Some theologians see the image of God as our capacity for a relationship with God. Other theologians see it as our commission to represent God’s kingdom on earth. Both of these theological positions are consistent with scientific evidence. Whether God created humanity through a miracle or through evolution, God gave us our spiritual capacities and calls us to bear his image.
(Updated June 25, 2012)

 

Comparing Interpretations of Genesis 1

For concordists, the temptation is to interpret every Bible verse to match the current scientific picture. For non-concordists, the temptation is to interpret every Bible verse that appears to disagree with science as figurative.

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