The Promise of Life and Curse of Death (RJS)

It is not uncommon for those who hold to a specific view of young earth creationism to claim that rejection of this view is rejection of the gospel itself. In particular, the acceptance of animal death before Adam sinned makes a mockery of the Christian story. James Stambaugh’s article Death Before Sin is one such [Read More…]

A Lot of Trouble (RJS)

The destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, a story used extensively in Scripture and in Jewish and Christian writing as an example of judgment. But what is the sin under judgment? We are in the midst of a slow meander through Genesis, using the commentaries by John Walton (The NIV Application Commentary Genesis), Tremper Longman (Genesis [Read More…]

Suffering and the Plan of God (RJS)

Suffering is an undeniable part of life on this planet. Accident, natural disaster, predators, and old age. If the earth is 4.5 billion years old all of these are part of God’s creation independent of any sin of Adam and Eve. If evolution is responsible for the diversity of life we see around us disease, [Read More…]

Creation as a Worldview Statement (RJS)

Several years ago Richard F. Carlson and Tremper Longman III published a short book Science, Creation and the Bible: Reconciling Rival Theories of Origins. Longman refers to this book in his essay How I changed My Mind About Evolution. A combination of factors led him to think more deeply about the biblical story of creation [Read More…]

A Day in the Life of Adam and Eve (RJS)

Mark Whorton in Peril in Paradise accepts Adam and Eve as real people, the progenitors of the human race, but this still doesn’t lead to a young earth or a perfect paradise in the garden of Eden. Nor does it mean that death entered creation with the sin of the pair. Whorton makes a number [Read More…]

A World From Dust (RJS)

In popular imagination, even the imagination of of many trained in technical fields, evolution is a messy, chaotic, highly contingent and random process. Mark Whorton in Peril in Paradise comments that while he finds the evidence for an old earth convincing, the evidence for evolution is far less convincing. Most importantly, as a Christian he [Read More…]

A Sojourn in Egypt (RJS)

Out of Egypt I called my son. (Hosea 11:1) Sojourns in Egypt plays an important role in the sweep of Scripture running from the opening frames of the story of Abraham and the covenant promise in Genesis 12 through the early story of Jesus (Mt 2). Abram obeyed the call of God and went to [Read More…]

Christ as Redeemer From the Beginning (RJS)

Adam and Eve did not introduce evil into God’s good creation. Christ as cosmic redeemer was part of God’s plan from the beginning. Genesis 3 tells a story of disobedience and consequences for that disobedience, but we must not lose sight of the fact that the snake was in the garden. If the snake is [Read More…]

A Perfect Plan not a Perfect Paradise (RJS)

I’ve been reading a book Peril in Paradise by Mark S. Whorton. In this book Dr. Whorton, a rocket scientist (Ph. D. in aerospace engineering, worked for NASA) and a Christian, puts forth a case for an old earth and digs into problems with a young earth scenario. Throughout the book he tells a little [Read More…]

No Evolution Allowed (RJS)

The stories in How I Changed My Mind About Evolution: Evangelicals Reflect on Faith and Science are fascinating. Twenty-five authors give twenty-five different perspectives.  There is no one pathway to grapple with these issues. The contributors include pastors (e.g. John Ortberg, Daniel Harrell, Ken Fong), biblical scholars (e.g. N.T. Wright, Scot McKnight, Tremper Longman III), [Read More…]