Saturday, November 27, 2004

Big Bang, Darwin and the Bible

I just finished Brian McLaren's book The Story We Find Ourselves In. The book tells God's story anew through the fictional narrative of a group of friends at various stages of their spiritual journeys. I found myself nodding and underlining at much of this retelling of the greatest story of ever told. McLaren takes apart many of the underlying assumptions and filters which usually guide our understanding of "biblical concepts;" the concept of Eden as perfect (in the Greek sense of the word) to name but one.
The one that I found most challenging however, was the notion that evolution may be one of God's greatest creations. At some level, I guess I always thought that there was some kind of happy medium between the strict fundamentalist "God created the world in seven literal (24 hour) days" school of thought and the whole big bang deal. But it was like I was reading the idea for the first time. At first I was offended and angered "Of course that can't be right. It has to be one or the other, either the bible is right or Darwin is wrong..." Even writing this now feels a little awkward. Can I even hint at agreeing at the notion that Darwin discovered one of God's greatest miracles?
What would such an admission on my part mean ? Is it sell-out? A cop-out? It doesn't feel like either of those. Copping-out and selling-out usually equate to following the path of least resistance. This route allows for resistance from all sides.
Father, I pray that my mind might be open and that you would grant me discernment to know what I need to know and not obsess about the rest.

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