Why This Is Here

Posted on April 23, 2010

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Welcome to my blog. I plan to discuss various topics centering around theology, philosophy, and science, and I hope you can join the conversation. I’ll be starting with a series of posts exploring evolution and the surrounding debate from the perspective of a thoughtful Christian. I have read extensively on the issue, and I have been investigating a particular angle about which I am very eager to share. What I’ve discovered in the process forced me to adapt my position, and I’ve come to accept an evolutionary understanding of biology yet have maintained and developed my belief in a loving God and Jesus’ atoning sacrifice. Learning that these ideas are not mutually exclusive and finding that many other people share my convictions brought me encouragement at a difficult time in my life, and now I hope that I can help a few others that have found themselves in the same confusing situation.

I’m aware that many of those near and dear to me may be upset or disappointed in some of my conclusions. I know it will cause some stress and difficulties as I have experienced first hand from speaking with some loved ones. I have not been outspoken on the issue for many years, but now I feel that it’s time to speak up for a number of reasons.

1. Intellectual integrity. I want to be honest and clear on the issue. I have personally been hurt in part because many people holding these views have not been outspoken. This ambiguity has allowed many to continue believing that a Christian must be a Young-Earth Creationist when in fact so many Christian scientists, theologians, apologists, scholars, priests and pastors are not (C.S. Lewis, to name just one example, held an evolutionary view and is still considered one of the most influential Christian thinkers and apologists ever.)

2. To defend my faith against the false assumption that science has disproved it. I see the supposed war between science and religion is a false dichotomy propped up by extremists at both ends. Critics of religion often attempt to use science as a weapon against faith, and people of faith have at times rejected good science and refused to integrate new information into their understanding. I believe that those drawing lines in the sand and trying to kick Christian scientists and theologians out of the Kingdom of God for not toeing the creationist line are contributing to their own destruction and needlessly forcing God into science’s line of fire. I believe in a great God who is not threatened by scientific discovery or limited by the boundaries of human understanding.

3. To clarify the issues and terms that seem to be misunderstood and misrepresented, such as “Intelligent Design.” I’ve witnessed a serious disconnect between what scientists say and how their words are used and explained in the public square

4. To once again challenge my own views in an effort to find the truth. It’s my belief that the truth will always prevail, and does not need the interventions of censorship and selective study. I don’t want to cushion my views in guarded privacy, I want to expose them to be challenged as I’m sure they will be in the following blogs/notes. Whether you agree with me or not, I hope that you can be part of this process through your input, suggestions, intellectual contributions, criticisms, and feedback.

Understanding that the origins debate is in many ways more about one’s view of The Bible than biology, (as evidenced by comparing attitudes on evolution to lesser understood scientific theories that are widely accepted) I will also write about Genesis and the Bible as a whole. First, I will outline why I think the biological evidence strongly supports descent with modification [read post]. If it were not for the compelling case for this scientific principle, I may have continued believing the literal, 6-day creation model that I was taught throughout my early life. Even still, I found many theological issues and textual problems unsettling and the process of trying to better understand these questions eventually turned out to coincide with my interest in biology and natural history. I find all of this quite fascinating, although it has also created some drama and brought its own set of problems. Sometimes the truth can be difficult, but this realization in no way tempts me to give up or close my eyes to the vast and intriguing world around us.

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