Friday, August 27, 2010

Noble-Broadmindedness

There’s a certain noble-broadmindedness about this claim:

On the historicity of Genesis, I suspend judgment, officially.  For rhetorical and investigative purposes, however, I'm going to proceed AS IF every word in Genesis speaks of historical fact.  If that's true, goody.  If that's not true, so what?

If Genesis isn’t true, then so what?

There is a lot of stake here.

There is the inspiration of Scripture. If God-breathed it out, then it must be true. Simplistic? Perhaps. But what else do we say about a God for whom it is impossible to lie? There is nothing in the Genesis account that would cause us to read it any way other than as historical fact. And there’s nothing in the character of God or the Bible’s teaching about itself that allows us to read it as anything other than historical fact.

There is the reality of brokenness in the world. If not for the historical fact of Genesis, there is no explanation for brokenness and fallenness in the world. Sin makes no sense other than as a cultural category rather than a moral category. Death is not the result of sin, and if not for sin, we would all die anyway.

There is the sufficiency of the atonement of Christ. If not for the historical fact of Genesis, there is no expectation that sin is a real problem that can only be dealt with by the seed of the woman conquering the serpent. Jesus’ death becomes only a moral example, a parable about the cost of sin, which really doesn’t matter anyway because sin doesn’t bring death.

And there are myriads of other implications.

The fact is that we cannot treat Genesis so glibly. There is a renewed battle over inerrancy, I think. And it starts where the word starts and where the Bible starts—in Genesis.

These superficial treatments of Scripture are unworthy of the grandness of God’s revelation that alone provides a rational metanarrative for life in this world.

Let us not be intimidated by those with no anchor. Their high-sounding language is really worldly and empty chatter, falsely called “knowledge.”

We know better.

Or at least we should.

4 comments:

Robert said...

There's a reason that Peter specifically said in the last days scoffers would deny the creation and the flood. If God didn't create and have the right to judge and even destroy, then man can do what he pleases. This latest round of attacks on Genesis is the fulfillment of that prophecy.

Peter described such people as "willingly ignorant." I think that shoe fits them rather well.

Bill said...

I think you took me a bit out of context, brother. I'm also not sure you got the point of my question(s). But that's okay.

In the comment thread, as elsewhere in the post, and also in one of the Noah links, I asserted that it very much *does* matter whether Genesis is true.

The point of my post was to argue against academics who think it has to be *proven* true before we're allowed to consider it as such.

Please read my post again, with the understanding that believers might converse differently with skeptics than we do with one another.

And thanks for your fire.

Grace & Peace

Bill said...

I forgot the check box thingy.

checking it now.

Larry said...

Bill,

Thanks for reading and commenting. I certainly will take another look at it. I have no desire to misrepresent your position. I did not read the comments. In fact, I think when I started this post, there were not yet any comments, but I don't recall. I have been sitting on it for several days.

Thanks again,
Larry