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Westside Science & Religion Discussion Group Message Board › (Reference Notes) Creation vs.

(Reference Notes) Creation vs. Evolution @ Tualatin High School debate on Mon. 6-27-11

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Bernie D.
BernieDehler
Group Organizer
Hillsboro, OR
Post #: 834
Phil said:
"I'm just curious. Do you have any Christian friends that were fundamentalist YEC's, that now accept evolution, but otherwise still consider themselves fundamentalist Christians?"

I'm not sure if any Christians like to be called "fundamentalist." Ever since Falwell and the Moral Majority, it seems like politics has sullied the name. In the 80's 'fundamentalist' was a popular tag, that I used to also apply to myself. The new tag is 'evangelical Christian.'

And yes, there are evangelicals who fully accept evolution. But I see a massive tectonic shift going on in the evangelical academic world. The evangelical in the pew isn't aware of the earthquake that is happening amongst the evangelical academics. Being involved with the ASA (www.asa3.org), I've seen what's to come.

Evolution is a major debate point amongst evangelicals, between themselves. Evangelicals might love Francis Collins because he can be put head-head against (atheist) Dawkins, but when it comes to Collins' espousing evolution, it really throws a lot of cold water on their enthusiasm. People like Collins (by starting biologos) and Lamoureux (prof & author) are trying to shift the evangelical camp into accepting evolution, put it is wreaking havoc on theology.

Yes- the solution is to go more into mysticism, as I see it, and I didn't want to go there, so I left. I want to use my brain, and I think this mysticism aproach isolates the brain. It's brain vs. heart. The heart wants to follow God, but the brain wants to follow truth. For me, the brain won.
A former member
Post #: 1,282
Phil said:

"I'm just curious. Do you have any Christian friends that were fundamentalist YEC's, that now accept evolution, but otherwise still consider themselves fundamentalist Christians?"

Bernie said in rely:

I'm not sure if any Christians like to be called "fundamentalist." Ever since Falwell and the Moral Majority, it seems like politics has sullied the name. In the 80's 'fundamentalist' was a popular tag, that I used to also apply to myself. The new tag is 'evangelical Christian.'

Hi Bernie. Thanks for your post, including your comment of why you think few Christians today would consider themselves "fundamentalist". However part of Phil's question is still not answered, the part pertaining to whether any of your Christian YEC friends now believe in evolution (regardless of whether they consider themselves fundamentalists or evangelicals). Namely "Do you have any Christian friends that were ... YEC's, that now accept evolution, but otherwise still consider themselves ... Christians?" I am looking forward to your answer to that question.
Bernie D.
BernieDehler
Group Organizer
Hillsboro, OR
Post #: 836
Gavin said:
"Namely "Do you have any Christian friends that were ... YEC's, that now accept evolution, but otherwise still consider themselves ... Christians?" I am looking forward to your answer to that question."

Yes- Prof. and author Denis Lamoureux. I would consider him a friend. He has 3 Ph.D's (2 in science and 1 in theology). He started out getting his Ph.D. as a young earther with the goal of warring against evolutionists (changed his mind due to his studies). He's on the fore-front now of showing evangelicals how to be evolutionists too. In fact, when I was an evolutionary creationist, he was my role-model, theologically-wise.

His homepage:
http://www.ualberta.c...­

His essay:
http://www.ualberta.c...­

Some of his books:
1. http://www.amazon.com...­
2. http://www.amazon.com...­
Bernie D.
BernieDehler
Group Organizer
Hillsboro, OR
Post #: 837
Another one who went from anti-evolution to evolutionist evangelical is biology scientist Dennis Venema:
http://www.youtube.co...­

I know him too (met him at a conference and have had email exchanges with him.)

I also know an evangelical Christian who's a physicist and believes in multiverse theory. He's a prof. at Baylor University (a large evangelical university).
A former member
Post #: 1,283
Thanks Bernie.
PhilD
user 9315143
Portland, OR
Post #: 214
Hi Bernie,
I asked you if any Christians you know that now believe in evolution would still consider themselves Fundamentalists. It turns out that it was a trick question, although I didn't know it at the time.

Going back to the original definition of Fundamentalism, the five basic tenants were:
The inspiration of the Bible by the Holy Spirit and the inerrancy of Scripture as a result of this.
The virgin birth of Christ.
The belief that Christ's death was the atonement for sin.
The bodily resurrection of Christ.
The historical reality of Christ's miracles.

Whether the name changed, or not, many still believe all five things. The people that do, I would refer to as Fundamentalists, although I don't care what they call themselves as long as we are all on the same page about what they actually believe in.

The reason I say my question turned out to be a trick question, is because I think it's impossible to believe in the inerrancy of the scriptures, and believe in evolution and the scientific model. Genesis is not compatible with science. Those that claim that it is, either change the meaning of what the Bible actually and clearly says, and/or conjure up miracle after miracle when offering a "scientific" explanation that is compatible with the Bible.

On his web page, Lamoureux says:
"Evolutionary creation underlines that the Bible is NOT a book of science. Instead, it is a God-inspired revelation that offers inerrant, life-changing, Messages of Faith. Holy Scripture does indeed refer to the natural world, but it features an ancient understanding of nature. In other words, the Bible has an ancient science. ..."
So he claims that the Bible offers "inerrant, life changing, Messages of Faith", but claims that the science in the Bible is "ancient science" Well, if he was referring to "ancient furniture", then it would all be just a matter of taste, but "ancient science" is plainly full of errors. So the Bible has errors. Period. He shouldn't try to be so deceptive about it.

And if the creation story is a myth, and there really was no Garden of Eden, and there really was no talking snake, then what justification is there to insist that everyone inherited the sins of Adam and Eve, and God had to have his Son brutally killed so that He could forgive us? True, it makes no sense anyway, but once admitting that Genesis is a myth, then how do you get an inerrant Message of Faith from it? A justification for something, based on facts that are made up, is not a justification.

So let me reword my question to you. Of the Christians you know that now accept the Theory of Evolution, how many still claim the the Bible is the inerrant word of God?



Bernie D.
BernieDehler
Group Organizer
Hillsboro, OR
Post #: 839
Phil said:
"So let me reword my question to you. Of the Christians you know that now accept the Theory of Evolution, how many still claim the the Bible is the inerrant word of God?"

Prof. Lamoureux would say the Bible is inerrant (you even quoted it). But he defines that word differently than some others might. He says it is inerrant in teaching theology only (not science or history). (If someone claims that the Bible is inerrant in science and history, then he would say they are claiming more for the Bible than they should.) By theology, he means the Bible teaches we are sinners, and God is the creator and savior of the world. The stories are incidental vehicles for carrying the theological message.

You list 5 basic tenets. Lamoureux would accept those.

Here's some major problems I see for evolutionary creationists:
1. The problem of evil. Nature is VERY red in tooth and claw. This is the loving design of God???
2. Where did sin come from? (There's no longer a literal Adam and Eve to blame it on.)

For #2, I think the answer is "it's a mystery... to be resolved later... hopefully." I see no way to justify it, so I decided to leave the faith.

Also- in research for this debate- I discovered that Roman Catholicism teaches that it might be ok to believe in biological evolution, yet they still maintain there was a literal Adam and Eve. I think that fails to make sense. They are trying to have their cake and eat it too. RE: Catholic Answers article:
http://www.catholic.c...­






A former member
Post #: 1,284
Phil said:

Going back to the original definition of Fundamentalism, the five basic tenants were:
The inspiration of the Bible by the Holy Spirit and the inerrancy of Scripture as a result of this.
The virgin birth of Christ.
The belief that Christ's death was the atonement for sin.
The bodily resurrection of Christ.
The historical reality of Christ's miracles.

Whether the name changed, or not, many still believe all five things. The people that do, I would refer to as Fundamentalists, although I don't care what they call themselves as long as we are all on the same page about what they actually believe in.

.... but once admitting that Genesis is a myth, then how do you get an inerrant Message of Faith from it? A justification for something, based on facts that are made up, is not a justification.

Phil, it might be possible to derive an inerrant Message of Faith from a myth, just as fictitious fables can teach various truths, including moral truths. Regarding fundamentalism, it appears that theistic evolution might be compatible with it. I say that because Fundamentalist Christianity appears to have been originally defined by a series of publications called "The Fundamentals" and while that series of publications had an article on biological evolution it appears that it did not rule out the possibility of theistic evolution, though I think it ruled out the possibility of evolution independent of some kind of God. See this Wikipedia article for more information. The article includes a link to where "The Fundamentals" can be read online.
Bernie D.
BernieDehler
Group Organizer
Hillsboro, OR
Post #: 842
Gavin said:
"Phil, it might be possible to derive an inerrant Message of Faith from a myth, just is fictitious fables can teach various truths, including moral truths."

As Prof. Lamoureux would say, it is 'accomodation.' Just as a child asks how a baby is made, and talked down to (age-appropriate), God also talked down to us in terms that we could understand.

I remember as a kid reading about a rape in the newspaper, and asking what it was. I was told "when a guy pulls down the pants on a girl." I was wondering why a guy would do that, and also why it would be such news.
PhilD
user 9315143
Portland, OR
Post #: 215
Bernie (and Gavin),
As an ex-fundamentalist, at least in my church, it wouldn’t be OK to reword what “inerrant” meant. Haven’t you heard the expression, “if the Bible said it, I believe it, and that settles it”. Lamoureux would likely not ever say that phrase, so I would not call him a fundamentalist. He certainly never refers to himself as a fundamentalist. For fundamentalists, there is no wiggle room to accept the fact that the history of the earth did not match Genesis, nor that Adam and Eve, Moses, and Noah never existed. It simply would not have been OK to say, “If the Bible said it, I’ll reinterpret what kind of message of faith that I can get out of it, and that settles it”. So would you agree that Lamoureux is NOT a good example of a person meeting the criteria of my question? “Evangelical” is not synonymous to “Fundamentalist”.

And the Dennis Venema videos are quite good (I bookmarked them), thanks, but he clearly is not a fundamentalist.

So, having been a fundamentalist, and still dealing with fundamentalist family members, I’m telling you they don’t take kindly to associating with Christians that are not “true Christians”. A person that readily accepts evolution, and talks about it, would not be welcome in their church. Sure, that person could just change churches, but then there are the friends and family members that would equate leaving their fundamentalist church the same as leaving Christianity. So I don’t think you’re doing any fundamentalists a favor by suggesting that it’s perfectly OK to believe in evolution and still be a Christian. You’re technically right, but I think it’s a moot point for most.

And I still think we should do a poll at a debate to check out my hypothesis, which is, Christians that go to evolutionist v Creationists debates are fundamentalists. And if I'm right, I think that the evolutionists message should be tailored to their way of thinking. Saying that they can believe in evolution and still still be a Christian is an idea that is abhorrent to them.

If it turns out that there are also liberal Christians that attend these meetings, then suggesting that they are free to believe in evolution and still be a Christian might resonate with them, but by speaking it, you're losing points with the fundamentalist crowd.

Brandon: I would call you a fundamentalist. Do you concur? What do you think about it?
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