Friday, May 17, 2013

A Catechism of Creation

I found this by way of a Pete Enns article on episcopalian attitudes toward science.  It is a catechism that integrates the scriptures with the world around us.  A downloadable version of it is here.  Of creation, it has this to say:
Our creation faith is a Trinitarian faith: the Father, who is the Source of all that is, creates and upholds the creation, that is, the visible and invisible universe, through the Son, who is the pre-existent Word who speaks the universe into being, and in the life-giving, sustaining and renewing Spirit.
About Genesis 1:
Genesis 1 teaches that the one true God calls the universe into existence, and all of creation responds to God’s call. The creation has order and structure. It is transfigured and reveals God’s presence, but it is natural, not divine. It is dependent upon its Creator for its continuing existence and for all of the powers and capacities it possesses. Each element is declared to be good and the whole of it very good. Finally, Genesis 1 teaches that the Sabbath, God’s holy day of celebration and rest, is anchored in the act of creation.
It specifically deals with the concept of an evolving creation and, instead of recoiling from it and rejecting it, as those who follow young earth creationism have done, the idea has been embraced:
...When astronomers look out into space they look back in time. Thus, they are able to see our universe at many stages of cosmic evolution since its beginning in the Big Bang. Here on earth biologists, paleontologists, geneticists and other scientists are showing that life has evolved over four billion years, and are reconstructing evolution’s history. None of these scientific discoveries and the theories that explain them stands in conflict with what the Bible reveals about God’s relationship to the creation.
Conspicuously absent, however, is any mention of Adam and Eve and how we are to integrate the fall in the garden story into our understanding of an evolving creation. I have written them to see how they reconcile this. I will let you know what I find out. Although the official position of the Episcopalian church on evolution is that they don't have one, that they are open to the ideas implied by the scientific evidence is good.

5 comments:

  1. I love the Catechism of Creation and I'm proud of my church for writing it. That mankind has fallen from grace is empirically verifiable by opening any newspaper or just looking around. As you know, we did not descend from 2 original humans. I believe that Adam and Eve is the story of each one of us.

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    1. "That mankind has fallen from grace is empirically verifiable by opening any newspaper or just looking around."

      No, it isn't. You are assuming that there is something meaningfully referred to as "grace", and that mankind once had it. You give no evidence for either supposition.

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  2. Yeah. Who knew I was Episcopalian. I sort of grew up being Southernpentacostomethobapterian.

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  3. My own story: As long as Southern Baptists continue to marry Roman Catholics there will be no shortage of Episcopalians.

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  4. Oh, that is very funny.

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