Tying Up Some Loose Enns, part 2

March-Fun-198Following up on my previous post, found here…..

I’m not sure why there is such an intellectual struggle for some when it comes to reconciling science and faith.  It’s a false dichotomy to pit the two against each other.  The Scriptures are God’s divine revelation of Himself and of His works in history.  Science is the discovery of how things work and how they relate to one another.  If creation itself was a supernatural event, why insist upon a natural explanation when it comes to human origins?  Professor Enns insists that modern discoveries in evolutionary theory, particularly the human genome project, prove that man evolved from a common ancestor.  But why is he interpreting such information within a secular worldview?  How does Dr. Enns know the scientific evidence points to a common ancestor rather than to a common design?  It seems to me he is quick to put his faith in scientific consensus (a consensus largely produced within a community of unbelieving scientists) rather than in God’s revelation.

The problem with putting faith in scientific consensus is that science is a puzzle with a lot of missing pieces.  As the pieces are discovered, from time to time, the overall picture changes.  Should we not rather put our trust in the One who created it all?  Should we not rest in the fact that science will say no more in the end than that which corroborates what God has already told us?  Isn’t it already scientific consensus that people cannot be raised from the dead, and that miracles do not occur?  Why doesn’t Professor Enns accept consensus in these areas as well?

I don’t think Genesis 1 – 11 is meant to convey scientific facts about the creation of the world, and therefore anyone attempting to exegete physics and geology from these texts is asking more of them than God intended.  However, it is a historical account of what God did and it records the fact that He specially made Adam and Eve.  If this be rejected, what in Scripture cannot be?  Why isn’t Jesus a divine myth as well?  I have yet to receive an explanation of this from Dr. Enns or his proponents.

C.M. Granger

Related Links at No Extra Charge:

The Explanatory Power of False Theories

Adam, Eve, and Chimpanzees

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3 thoughts on “Tying Up Some Loose Enns, part 2

  1. I should note that explanations have been offered, but not compelling ones. It is asserted that Genesis, the historical books, the Gospels, the epistles, etc. are different genres or “kinds” of literature and therefore have different purposes, context, and meaning. Of course, genre should be taken into consideration when seeking to accurately interpret a text. But as far as knowing which books of the Bible are to be taken as historical, and which ones are myth and metaphor, that is an exercise which says more about the interpreter than it does about the text. It’s also a useful tool for getting off from under any divine revelation which makes one uncomfortable. If you don’t like something the Bible says, re-categorize the genre.

    Typically the proponent of the Ennsian position easily explains away most of the OT since, in their view, it was culturally conditioned and so clearly influenced by ANE literature. Since taking the same angle on the gospels would cause them some theological problems (particularly within Evangelical circles), they will assert that good portions of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and even John are historical accounts of the life and works of Jesus.

    Now, let’s try a little theology experiment. Let’s say, as a postmodern theologian, I believe the OT is primarily historical and the gospels are myth and metaphor. Would my fellow believer assert that I am holding a heretical position (essentially denying the actual occurrence of the crucifixion and resurrection)? In my experience, hardly. In spite of all the insistence that the Scriptures are authoritative from those like Enns, one’s hermeneutic is ultimately a matter of personal opinion. Of course, you may disagree with someone holding such a position as I’ve described, but condemning it would be an act of neo-Puritan arrogance.

    One thing that has not been explained to me though is how it is determined that the gospels in particular are historical accounts. That, I would like to hear…

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