Tuesday, September 24, 2013

We are Supernaturalits First: What John 1 Has to Say About Creation

In their book Explicit Gospel, authors Matt Chandler and Jared Wilson suggest that the New Testament account of origins is more relevant to the controversy over evolution than the Old Testament's account in Genesis 1 and elsewhere. He begins by quoting Phillip Johnson from his book The Wedge of Truth (151-152):
The place to begin is . . not in Genesis; rather, it is the opening of the Gospel of John.
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God; all things were made through him, and without him was not anything made that was made. (Jn 1:1-3 RSV) 
These simple words make a fundamental statement that is directly contradictory to the corresponding starting point of scientific materialism. Using the Greek word logos, the passage declares that in the beginning there was intelligence, wisdom, and communication. Moreover, this Word is not merely a thing or a concept but a personal being. (99-100)
The authors then add:
Why is this important for the evolution controversy? because, as Johnson notes, "if a personal entity is at the foundation of reality . . .there is more than one way of pursuing knowledge." This puts the Christian interested in honoring God's written Word in an arguably flexible position as it pertains to the age of the earth, but it stands opposed to the theory of the evolutionary development of mankind. How? Because John 1:1-3 tells us there is a personal origin to creation, and when we track that foundation back to the "in the beginning" of Genesis 1, we see that God creates man through the speaking of words into the dust of the ground in the matter of a day, not over billions of years from primordial soup an species to species.

Furthermore, the triune God said that he has made man in his (God's) own image. The transition of man's creation, then, is wholly personal and practically instant. The supremacy of God's proclamation over science's theorization demands this view. The cohesiveness of Christian theology and ministry demands this view. Because we believe in the revelation of God in the written Word and in the incarnation, the resurrection, the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit, and the miraculous in general, we are supernaturalists firsts, not naturalists. The only reason we feel compelled to accommodate science is that science tells us we ought to. But it is science that should accommodate revelation. Revelation has been around much longer. (100)

For more:
Its About Christ: A Lesson on Hermeneutics
"Explicit Gospel": A Sermon Preached by Matt Chandler
Matt Chandler on the Idol of March Madness
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