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Theological Impacts of Creation Ideas

Discussion in 'Natural Revelation and God's Creation' started by FrozenChosen, Apr 17, 2004.

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  1. FrozenChosen

    FrozenChosen Puritan Board Freshman

    I am just curious on a handful of questions I've been thinking about lately. Because I ask these questions doesn't not mean that I support the ideas they suggest in the least, I'm just being obnoxious.

    1) Is a literal, 6-day creation important? How?

    2) Why should we take creation literally; we treat Revelation as a symbolic book, why not the beginning chapters of Genesis?
     
  2. Puritan Sailor

    Puritan Sailor Moderator

    [quote:5a64e01384][i:5a64e01384]Originally posted by FrozenChosen[/i:5a64e01384]
    I am just curious on a handful of questions I've been thinking about lately. Because I ask these questions doesn't not mean that I support the ideas they suggest in the least, I'm just being obnoxious.

    1) Is a literal, 6-day creation important? How?

    2) Why should we take creation literally; we treat Revelation as a symbolic book, why not the beginning chapters of Genesis? [/quote:5a64e01384]

    It really comes down to the intent of the text. Why is it important to hold a 6-day creation? Because Gen. 1 says that's what happened.
    Why not take it symbolically? There is no indication in the text to take it symbolically. It's written in plain narrative style. And the confirming text of Duet 5 "for in six days the Lord made heaven and earth" indicates to me that Moses took it as a matter of fact that it was 6 days. Gen. 1 is not written like the Psalms or prophets which do use poetic language to describe God's work in creation.

    And if you are going to take it symbolically, then you have to ask the logical consequences of such a position. Did God really "create" trees, animals, and people as described there? Or perhaps if this is symbolic then we can say they evolved? Did God really speak and instantly create light? Was Adam a literal person? And with this last question, if Adam is taken only symbolically, the Gospel is overthrown, because now you have to ask how Christ can be a second Adam? Symbolically?

    Now, obviously, those reformed folk who take a non-literal view do not deny that God specially created all things including Adam. But on what grounds do they take those parts literally while not taking the days literally?

    [Edited on 4-18-2004 by puritansailor]
     
  3. FrozenChosen

    FrozenChosen Puritan Board Freshman

    Yeah, that's the way I think I would have answered it.

    To be symbolic for a couple of pages and then totally shift into something that must be literal would not make much sense.
     
  4. jfschultz

    jfschultz Puritan Board Junior

    :ditto:

    I would go a bit further into the trustworthyness of Scripture. Much of what is set forth in Scripture cannot be proved but must be taken as a matter of faith. So if one doubts that Gen 1 is true then how can one be sure of John 3:16 being true. One goes from a faith based upon a reasonable approach to divine revelation to a blind leap of faith of what can and cannot be trusted.
     
  5. john

    john Inactive User

    Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy.

    The literal 6 day interpretation is important because it has something to do with salvation, it is a sign and a very bright one.
    The 7th day God rested from His labour and the invitation goes out for us to enter that rest. Hebrews is full of it.

    HEB 4:9-11 There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; 10 for anyone who enters God's rest also rests from his own work, just as God did from his. 11 Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will fall by following their example of disobedience.

    Their disobedience was lack of faith.
     
  6. pastorway

    pastorway Puritan Board Senior

    If you mess up the first of Genesis then you have no God, no creation, no Adam or Eve, no Satan, no original sin or fall, no promise of salvation through the Seed of woman (Christ), and no reliable sure Word from God!

    If we lose Genesis we lose it all!

    Phillip
     
  7. a mere housewife

    a mere housewife Not your cup of tea

    I don't understand all of the implications of this kind of discussion, but I recently read [i:71226463d1]Miracles[/i:71226463d1] by C. S. Lewis, and was struck with how much he had to give away when he gave away the literal Genesis account. He made such a decisive case against the naturalists, and established so clearly that the world is such a world that it has to have proceeded from the Supernatural-- and then, because of concessions to science, he wrote off Genesis as well as the rest of the OT as mostly allegory, or sanctified fable. It was rather like saying, "The Bible is true when it says... (and gloriously proving it) ...in the same way that a moral story is true." It was just such a weak thing to come to at last.
     
  8. fredtgreco

    fredtgreco Vanilla Westminsterian Staff Member

    While I certainly am a zealous advocate for ordinary calendar days of creation, and I think that the failure to take this view does have implications for the view of Sabbath, I would be careful to insinuate that those who take a analogical or long day view are incapable of orthodoxy.
     
  9. Puritan Sailor

    Puritan Sailor Moderator

    [quote:8b7a7e9f6e="fredtgreco"]While I certainly am a zealous advocate for ordinary calendar days of creation, and I think that the failure to take this view does have implications for the view of Sabbath, I would be careful to insinuate that those who take a analogical or long day view are incapable of orthodoxy.[/quote:8b7a7e9f6e]
    I agree with you there. My concern I guess is regarding the inconsistent hermenuetic used by those who deny the natural day view. Once you open the door to poetry in the creation account, you then lose any grounds to take any of it literally, especially when there is no reason to take it as poetry. This is the problem that Hodge and Warfield seemed to lose sight of when they compromised to the "geologists" of their day and compromised on the "natural reading" of the passage.
     
  10. Contra_Mundum

    Contra_Mundum Pilgrim, Alien, Stranger Staff Member

    Orthodoxically speaking (apart from the vital hermeneutical issue), I think the issues of 1) Common Ancestry from Adam and 2) No Death before the Fall (of man primarily, and also of animals to some degree) are matters of paramount importance. The more open someone is to naturalistic acceptance and interpretation in these areas, the less I think he has grasped the primacy and interrelatedness of of Scripture truth.
     
  11. Ex Nihilo

    Ex Nihilo Puritan Board Senior

    Another issue for me was the idea of exactly what fell in the Fall. If there were a few billion years of earth history before the Fall (assuming that that is literal!) then the Fall seems to concern only man. However, the text seems to indicate that before the fall, ALL THINGS were better, that thorns and thistles didn't plague the land, etc. Later texts promising restoration indicate this as well--but if an idyllic state never actually existed, as it cannot if we put a few billion years (with death and decay) before the Fall, then how can we take promises of future restoration (however you take that eschatologically) literally? I don't feel as if what I'm saying makes a lot of sense, but what I mean is that it obviously affects the meaning of the Fall and even eschatology.
     
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