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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

One way to drive potential converts away

"The evangelical posture toward modern science has missional consequences."

Indeed it does, and they are mostly negative. The attitude of many evangelicals toward science is causing many people who need Christ and salvation to shut off what evangelicals say. If, for example, we say that the earth is no more than 10,000 years old, because the Bible tells us so, why should a reasonably well-educated person who hasn't been brought up as an evangelical take seriously anything else we say that the Bible says, including what we say it says about Christ?

The statement quoted above is from a relatively brief post on the BioLogos Forum, and is by Ken Wilson. It is the first of three parts. The post must have struck a nerve -- so far, it has 160 comments, with, no doubt, more coming.

Thanks for reading. Read Wilson's article.


Pastor Jason said...

I fully disagree.

But maybe he is onto something...maybe we can win the entire world if we take out all the truths that cause them to stumble...because sound exegetical, theological, and hermeneutical truth is really secondary to evangelism.

We could get rid of the exclusivity of Christ, nobody feels good about one way to heaven. Or hell, that's a good one to jettison, who could stomach a god who sends people there. Or depravity, nobody's experience tells them that their goodness is like filthy rags. Or God's sovereignty, a god who would allow bad things to happen to good people is contrary to our sense of fairness. Or election, obviously a man determines his own destiny. Or complementarianism, what a barbaric way to look at women, no god would design a system like that. Or stances on abortion and homosexuality, our common sense tells us that evangelical views here are out of date with modern science. Or maybe the Lordship of Christ, nothing in our world operates on grace, faith, and repentance, nor could we believe in a god who calls us to deny ourselves and follow a narrow road. Or church discipline, everyone knows that you catch more flies with honey, than with accountability. Or sanctification/holiness, we all know that "you can't judge a book by it's cover."

if we take down all these barriers, making the gospel palatable to all (since these are really all just matters of opinion, not truth), millions would come to Christ, and bow down before a god of their own design, perfecting idolatry, all the while calling it true religion and throwing off the great I AM.

Martin LaBar said...

I understand where you are coming from.

I agree that there are truths that are unequivocal in scripture, and they must not be compromised.

But where in the Bible does it say, for example, that there's no global warming?

Good, Christ-honoring, Bible-believing Christians disagree over the interpretation of Genesis 1 and 2, and, in particular, over how old the earth is. The most important question that those chapters answer is "Who?" They don't say "When?," "Where?," "How?," or "Why?" To claim that a 10,000 (or shorter) year age of the earth is a fundamental doctrine, on the same level as our need for redemption from sin through Jesus, or as the resurrection of Christ, is a mistake. It will turn some people off unnecessarily, and it isn't supported as well by scripture.

Thanks for your comment, Pastor Jason.