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Sunday, June 7, 2009

Disbelief

"There is one race of men, one race of gods; both have breath of life from a single mother [Gaia]" Pindar, Nemean 6.

The question of origins is at root a question of belief.

The ancient Greeks, who invented evolution: that is, what is seen was prepared from things which are visible had to, as they saw their gods as also being within their world; within the cosmos.

Theistic evolution borrows this from materialism which starts from the same place as the ancient Greeks: but without the god bit.

The actions that God takes with his people are uniformily presented as immediate actions: Christ's work was accomplished on the cross at the moment of his death; his status as first born the moment he resurrected; we have new life at the moment of belief as a gift from God; the return of Christ will be an event, not a process, as I take it the Bible says of the bringing of the new creation.

Of course, the creation also was done quick smart (in 6 days, which Augustine thought was rather too long!) too. But this is denied widely in SAD in lieu of the position that derives from non-belief. Ultimately, the SAD, on this point, has to set aside belief on a number of grounds: that God is a reliable propositional communicator, that words have meaning, and that as he refers to the creation as his chief credential in relationship with us. Disbelief here is more complex. God represents his creation as coming from his will (and nothing else, no system or operation, no elaborate machine, which reeks of paganism, not the majesty and power of God). And then going back the other way, consideration of the creation (except that which at first denies God, but even this must finally fail to achieve credibility), leads to recognition of the creator.

But if consideration of the creation leads one to think that the creation could reasonably have made itself, we have come, not to the God of Abraham, but the gods of the Greeks: gods within the cosmos, not independent of it!

The key point at which creation is represented as not possibly being confused for the work of the creation itself, and non-god, is that we are told it happened in 6 days. There's the recipe for creating a cosmos: 6 steps not able to be achieved by other than God. This stands directly in the path of materialist-naturalist alternatives. Which alternatives the SAD seems to seriously entertain as being in the stream of the history of salvation! Well, gag me with a spoon!

To set this as naught, which is the habit in SAD, is to disbelieve God: to disbelieve that he can tell us what he did (ref. Numbers 12:8a), that what he tells as and what he did is unimportant in detail, and finally indistiguisable from that done by non-God.

That sounds a lot like rejection of God, to me!

4 comments:

neil moore said...

Sydney Anglicans who advocate Theistic Evolution as the creative process of God are propagating a heresy and to the ruin of the Church.

I note from the monthly newspaper of the Diocese ('Southern Cross')some are talking about the Diocese being prime candidate for a new and powerful work of "New Calvinism".

Let me just say that to advocate "New Calvinism" and be so far removed from Calvinist doctrine on origins as is the Sydney Anglican Diocese is to insult John Calvin.

It's not "New Calvinism" but "Non Calvinism".

Neil

Eric said...

Neil,

One of the tenets of Calvanism, misused in SAD, in my view, is the notion of the soverignty of God.

Those SADs who are progressive creationists and theistic evolutionists run into a dead end street of their own making, IMO.

They have to hold that God, the soverign creator, used something within the creation to bring the creation into being. Even on the surface this is crazy, if not self-contradictory. But looking beneath the surface it collapses in self-referential nonsense.

God is the author of the total creation: all that is within it is part of the creation. So to think that a process within creation was needed by God (or used by God, for which we only have the opining of those who have to set scripture to one side) is to limit God to the workings of his creation. But he is the author of creation, and so is not thus limited (John 1:3, 4).

It seems to be quite a pagan view that God was dependent on the creaiton, or operations within the creation for the resulting creation that we have. Notwithstanding that there are no such operations known (evolutionist fantasies not considered, of course), it doesn't seem credible that the creation is self reliant, or that God would need to make something prior to make the creation (contra Heb 11:3), thus being reliant on his creation, insteand of vice versa. This is how the Greeks regarded their gods: limited by the cosmos.

Many SADs also limit God and undermine his soverignty, perhaps unwittingly, asking that his creation, which as its author represents him to us, contains its own origin, at some level. This tells us that the source of creation is within the creation. Because the very tenor of the creation in the Bible is that it is not so, this is not a question that can gain biblical support.

The creation is consistently represented as an effortless result of God's will, not the effortful result of the workings of the creation itself. If the source of the creation is within itself, then it points, not to God, but to the creature: which we have in spades in modern evolutionary dogma; theistic evolution and progressive creation inevitably head in that direction too: the non-soverign God at work! So how can this god save? What was the fall? What is the new creation? I think it is all set on theological sand if we are directed to the creation, not the creator, in real as opposed to polemical terms.

Aquinus was right!

Over at Watcher's blog, he went on about this sort of thing at http://anglicanoriginsdiscussion.blogspot.com/2009/04/on-method-did-god-need-one-to-create.html

neil moore said...

Eric,

I agree that SADs misuse the Sovereignty of God. God is Sovereign but to clutch at this alone and say that that is all Genesis 1 is talking about is merely cowardly 'running with the hounds' on origins.

BTW, when you say "They have to hold that God, the soverign creator, used something within the creation to bring the creation into being" I presume you allow God to have used some content of the creation to create after day 1 of creation week eg, water,dust of the earth etc?

Neil

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