Saturday, August 23, 2008

Methodist Advocates Evolution

Holy Cow! Some time, the timing of these things are uncanny.

I had just finished writing (or maybe it is more accurately described as "ranting") against a newspaper article that argued that more pastors and ministers should be teaching "science" as part of religious studies. Then along comes this news article of someone within the United Methodist Church to explicitly accept evolution and to declare that it isn't in conflict the the church's teachings.

One of Kuelling’s proposals amends the Science and Technology section of the church’s Book of Discipline. It was approved by 80 percent of voting delegates.

It now states, in part: “We find that science’s descriptions of cosmological, geological and biological evolution are not in conflict with theology.”

The second proposal, which passed with 96 percent of the vote, was added to the church’s Book of Resolutions. It endorses The Clergy Letter Project led by David Zimmerman, an ecologist and dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at Butler University in Indianapolis.

The proposal encourages Methodist pastors to sign an open letter on evolution that affirms that “the timeless truths of the Bible and the discoveries of modern science may comfortably coexist” and supports the teaching of evolution alone in schools instead of as “one theory among others.”

A third evolution resolution, advanced by a church regional body in Kansas, puts the church on record as opposing the teaching of “faith-based theories such as Creationism and Intelligent Design” in public-school science classes.

There ya go!

This implies one very important conclusion: that the view of life and the universe within the christian church does not have one single, unique interpretation! This is a FACT. Even within those who accept the literal interpretation of creationism, there is still conflicts between "Old Earth" versus "Young Earth" creationism. So when you have such varying view even among religious scholars and experts, how can someone holds such a definitive stand in accepting creationism based simply on religious grounds?

But the kicker of that article, which the writer in the previous article that I ranted about should read, is this passage:

If the church doesn’t acknowledge the legitimacy of evolution in science, religion comes off as “out of touch with reality” and loses credibility when it makes moral statements on areas involving science and technology,” he says.

“What we’re saying is the Bible … tells us who created the world and what we should do to care for it,” he says. “Genesis teaches about relationships and responsibility. But it does not teach science.”

BINGO! Who's going to tell that other guy that he shouldn't be teaching science? :)


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