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Saturday, January 27, 2007

A One Trick Pony?

We no death before the fall salvationists have been accused on the Anglican Forum (the gossip column) as being 'one issue' merchants. I guess there is a concern that we are not fully rounded individuals.

Of course this whole blog is about one issue, because it is the treatment of this issue that raised the matter and got a number of us excluded from the gossip column (the pain of it is that of an author being excluded from a remedial reading class).

The significance of this matter is twofold: at one and a very practical level, it is connected with the evangelical approach to the dominant religious stream of thought: see previous posts; but there is also a matter of the approach to the Bible. If the approach used in Genesis runs elsewhere, then the knowledge of the Bible falls in tatters.

Thus, if the appraoch to the Bible is paganist here, what elsewhere? It betrays an hermeutic of convenience, reflective of an unexamined adoption of extra-biblical thinking; thinking not transformed as Paul enjoins (Col 2:8 and Norman Geisler "Beware of Philosophy: A warning to biblical scholars" JETS 42(1):3-19 March 1999, I also mention "Philiosophical natualism and the age of the earth: are they related?" by Terry Mortenson, The Master's Seminary Journal 15(1):71-92, Spring 2004). There is and never has been by the contributors to this blog any accusation of the bretheren with whom we differ not being Christian, just of not being consistently biblical, logical, or honest in their thinking, debating, and handling of debate. The approach has been that if the view is being put too strongly, exclude them from the gossip room. Although, I suppose if one's logic is as full of empty space as swiss cheese, that is quite an understandable response to questions that you can't handle.

It is interesting to consider a few numbers: the evolution forums in the Anglican Forum are by far and away the most popular. A Sydney Morning Herald blog on origins (a debate between Creation Ministries staff and the Sceptics Society) was attracted the most interest of any of the blogs run by that newspaper, meetings on matters related to creation typically attract large numbers of people, the efforts of 'creationists' are frequently in the press. So here we are, with the hottest topic related to Christian faith, and the Anglicans, busily reversing into a cul-de-sac to avoid the real interest and easy point of contact with the gospel, claim that it is of no importance. And this is in a world where Richard Dawkins, who claimed that Darwin made atheism intellectually respectable, is one of the most popular authors in this area: people are fascinated about origins because it speaks of who we are, at every level. And this is, I have little doubt, the reason that the Bible's revelation as to God's creating is the starting point of soteriology, dominant in Paul's theology, refered to by Jesus and underpins all major lines of doctrine.

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