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Christian Reformed Church votes not to have committee on “evolution”


Karl Giberson, that guy who got snookered by a photoshopped picture of a human with a tail*, informs us, “The Christian Reformed Church Still Won’t Stand Up For Science”:

The evangelical Christian Reformed Church (CRC), an evangelical denomination centered mostly in the Midwest U.S. and Canada, voted last week not to set up a committee to examine the denomination’s theological positions involving the origins of the world and of human sin. The CRC’s 2014 Synod decided that there was no need for a six-year study of the complex issues surrounding the relationship between modern science and Christian theological beliefs because its affiliated scholars—especially at its flagship institution, Calvin College—were already conducting rigorous scholarship on the issue.

Well, good for them. Such committees inevitably get dominated by people lobbying for a viewpoint, usually at odds with that of the membership. The first rule in dealing with changes we don’t really support is: Don’t set up a committee to “discuss” it.

I live in Ottawa. How would I feel if I found out that Canada’s Parliament was setting up a committee to “discuss” whether Canada should implement sharia law? Well, I’d say first off that I have no idea why that is even up for discussion. People here are quite happy with English Common Law. So demonstrate good faith by disbanding the committee immediately. From Giberson:

Religious traditions expect the faculty at their colleges and universities to keep them informed about the advance of knowledge—but then they fire them when they don’t like the results. Calvin College drove away Howard Van Til because conservative elements in the CRC did not want to make peace with evolution and the Big Bang. Calvin fired John Schneider and muzzled Dan Harlow because these same elements don’t want to deal with the reality that Adam and Eve were not historical figures and there was no “fall.” And this pattern is repeated again and again at evangelical colleges and universities.

Schneider and many of his fellow evangelical scholars are convinced that Christianity can survive the loss of Adam and Eve. What is not so clear is whether evangelical Christianity can survive the loss of so many of its scholars.

It’s not clear that Van Til, in his later years, was in any sense an evangelical, which probably had something to do with his getting edged out.

And get this: “these same elements don’t want to deal with the reality that Adam and Eve were not historical figures and there was no ‘fall.’” So it’s not a subject of discussion, it’s a “reality”? I can see why these people made themselves unwelcome too.

Bluntly, it would be hard to make sense of Paul’s argument for the Christian faith, apart from the fall of man. “As in Adam all die, so in Christ shall all be made alive.” Believe it, don’t believe it—it’s pretty straightforward.

But I digress. The new Darwinian Christianity will be an affair of witch Sabbats, peace pipes, and rainbow balloons, I expect.

– O’Leary for News

See also: An old painting reminds me of what is at stake in the Adam and Eve wars

* Sure, it could happen to anyone, but don’t you have to be just a wee bit gullible first?

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For another "insider" perspective see http://grayt2.wordpress.com/2014/07/03/karl-thanks-but-no-thanks/. grayt2
Karl Giberson, that guy who co-authored the best book about the American origins controversy http://biologos.org/resources/books/species-of-origins, is mainly right about the facts, but the headline and its implications are off target. For a corrective from an insider (a CRC scientist at Calvin who works on origins and is active in the denominational conversation), see http://biologos.org/blog/the-christian-reformed-church-votes-to-support-scholarship-on-human-origins. Ted Davis
Believe it, don’t believe it—it’s pretty straightforward.
That's all. Some folks in other threads believe the complex functionality we observe in biological systems is a product of a cosmic fluke. The known evidences from experience point to an intelligent agent as the most probable cause for the whole timely choreography of elaborate mechanisms observed in labs. Nevertheless, some folks insist on their beliefs that a cosmic fluke or the magic 'n-D evo' formula RM+NS+T did it all. An old Spanish (originally Catalan) song said 'cada loco con su tema' (i.e. different strokes for different folks). However, at the end of the day, it's absolute truth that prevails. Wait and see. :) Just look at the information written in over 100 comments posted in the thread about the third way. Precise cell fate determination mechanisms, still poorly understood in many details. Overwhelmingly mind-boggling stuff. Saying that it is the product of a cosmic fluke could be interpreted by many engineers and computer scientists as a clear sign of ignorance and disrespect for their professions. Dionisio

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