Apologetics Christianity science

Stumbling Blocks to Christianity 3 – Science

This is the third of our series on stumbling blocks to Christianity. We discussed science – the final one will be on sex and sexuality….

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This is the Undeceptions podcast mentioned in the talk – well worth listening to…https://undeceptions.com/podcast/science-wars/

A.S.K 8 – Science, Knowledge and God

Stumbling Blocks to Christianity 2 – Suffering

Stumbling Blocks to Christ – 1 – Scripture

13 comments

  1. Thanks David. Personally I think if we should have read the biblical record without a scientific old earth in the back of our minds we would almost to a man believe in a young earth. This is telling. I just don’t know how reliable the scientific case for an old earth is. At the same time I can see that Genesis One is a highly stylised chapter. This may, just may, mean it is not to be understood literally though what the alternative would be I am not sure.

    The creation of the sun and moon on the fourth day is an odd phenomenon. Why? Clearly the original writers knew that the sun and moon shaped the day. They would not have naturally made it the fourth. That it is seems a sign of inspiration. Theologically God creating light as something independent of the sun before giving it as a function of the sun undermined these orbs as deities and sourced light directly in God. I know formed and filled dictate structure too.

    In the final analysis I think the case for a young earth rests on Moses saying ‘in six days God created…’. (Ex 20) and the Lord’s comment regarding divorce ‘in the beginning it was not so”. (Matt 19). Here ‘beginning’ seems to suggest the absolute beginning yet Adam and Eve are there.

    I think it still stands that science properly considered deals with mechanics and not metaphysics. It observes how things are and not why they are. It can never lead to God because of itself it is not asking God questions. It can never prove or disprove God for that is not its remit. Thus when atheists use science (or the scientific method) to disprove God they are acting illegitimately.

    This has become a longer comment than I intended. Sorry.

  2. We understand the meaning of the word day by how it is used. For example “in my grandfather’s day” we understand that this “day” is a period of time, days or years, at some time in the past. However if I say, “the first day of my holiday” we know this to mean a particular single day. We understand a 24 hour day by the period of light and dark which requires a morning and and an evening. So the use of a number and the period of light and dark , morning and evening, clearly indicate a single 24 hour day.
    The creation of the sun and moon in addition to the function they play in the physical working of the earth also give us the reference for measuring a day as 24 hours.
    Consider the days in Genesis 1, each is numbered and each has a morning and evening, which would indicate that the intention is to convey to us that “day ” in this context is one that we would recognise as a 24 hour day.

    1. Yes. I agree with that. Only the seventh day has no evening/morning. It seems a continuous day.

  3. ‘Holy Scripture containeth all things necessary to salvation’ might be a get out clause? If the Bible was written to make us ‘wise to salvation’ (according to the Anglican Articles) then the Bishop Ussher (YEC) to Theistic Evolution (TE) spectrum arguments are a sideshow. Holding to a literal Genesis 1-11 may inevitably draw one into a YEC framework (6000-7000 years only), although a few-‘get out of jail’-tin opener responses from the world of philosophy can be applied. Romans 1-20 may unite all Christians, YEC to TEC, everything in between, or a very large group-the confused and perplexed folk of the Apostle’s Creed. The personalised numberplate of Jesus OSL 153 (One Solitary Life, Isaiah 53) may draw us more quickly to what is really important, so many thanks to the bedouin’s lost goat who inadvertently brought the Dead Sea Scrolls to the world 75 years ago. Did the goat do more to confirm our Isaiah manuscript accuracy than all the Moderators or Archbishops put together?

    1. Partly true. If a sufficient amount of Scripture were proven to be untrue then belief in Christ would crumble.

      On the creation narrative if there is no Adam and Eve then the gospel comes under threat. Adam, after all, is the biblical reason for the present chaos and is a parallel to Christ.

      1. No one knows for sure if the Adam and Eve story is literal or metaphorical-or even some mysterious combination. Linking the Cross to the YEC position may be placing a stumbling block before others, so they are less likely to take a serious look at the message of the Apostle’s Creed: a tragedy. I would avoid linking credal faith to Adam. It rests on Christ: not Christ plus Adam…..

      2. Jim – the only problem is that both Jesus and Paul believed in a real Adam. This is not Christ plus – but when you take away from the message of Christ then you end up with Christ minus…

  4. Did Jesus come to teach us about Human Origins-or to die to save us? The reality of sin and evil is all too evident as we get older. Do we lose credibility with excess emphasis on Adam, Noah, Babel? There are plenty of passages in the gospels (or even the words of Jesus at times) where we accept mystery and just have to remain puzzled. The days of Adam might be read ‘since humans first existed’. Why the need to squeeze Adam in, when Christ alone suffices?

  5. Adam can be included as a metaphorical character. Is it wise to simply be honest, admitting none of us know the mystery of human origins? As a student some people I encountered had been very damaged by YEC and Adam being presented as an article of faith. An-‘all or nothing’-fundamentalism is unhelpful or downright dangerous at times. Biblical literalism can set a stumbling block before others.

  6. Can we believe the core theological content of Anglican Article 9: whether YEC, TEC, undecided or other?

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