Much of the science behind dating like Carbon 14 is not hard to understand. The science can be readily confirmed. The attached paper, written by Christian professors in Geology and Geoscience. The paper explains how 4 lines of evidence support each other in giving an ancient age of the earth and life as we know it. The authors also demonstrate the data absolutely cannot fit a young earth model (or even a young creation model). Ie no literalist reading works with the data. Brethren continuing to force their (semi) literal reading as the only acceptable/possible understanding are ignoring God’s reality and falsely judging His flock. Continue reading
A little over a year ago we discussed the Lampstand Magazine & Australian Christadelphian Bible Mission intervention in Taiwan. We compared the calamitous situation of the ecclesia pre and post the actions of Australian based brethren. Bro Jonathan Burke was disfellowshipped and his wife cut off (without a word) from the community as well. Today? An ecclesia of two (sometimes three?) remains affiliated with ACBM. Another group of sheep have no contact and the Burkes remain cut off. As the Australian community considers how to treat varying approaches to creation, it is worth remembering the fruit borne by literalist hardline actions. Continue reading
Debate about creation is not unique to our community. This link leads to a resolution described by an evangelical church who suddenly wrestled with evolutionary creation. They came up with 10 points on which they agreed. To quote the article:
“The upshot was the development of a series of ten theses on creation and evolution that we believe (most) evangelicals can (mostly) affirm. We weren’t looking for perfect unanimity. Our ultimate goal was to maintain the “unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace” (Eph. 4:3) and to prioritize the gospel as of “first importance” (1 Cor. 15:3). It was important for us to arrive at a position on creation and evolution that was in keeping with that faithful Christian saying, “In essentials, unity; in nonessentials, liberty; in all things, charity.””
While we don’t do science too much on this site, ignoring it completely would mean turning a blind eye to one source of information. Cats have a long history of association with humans. Sadly for literalists this history contradicts their claimed meaning of Genesis 1-3. Archaeology and genetics both demonstrate cats have been with humans – and tracked the spread of human settlements for 10,000 years – the domestic cat’s genetic diversity also plays havoc with global flood readings.
Student protests in Australia over climate change have been in the news of late. It makes sense that informed younger folk would be outraged by government inaction on climate – after all younger people will be disproportionately impacted. Climate denial in the Christadelphian community follows a similar age pattern. The blatant disregard for climate science is necessary theologically though. Tens of thousands (and in many instances hundreds of thousands) of years of climate records fly in the face of the literalist reading of Genesis 1-3. You can’t be an old or young earth creationist and accept climate science. The two cannot be reconciled. The heat on literalists will continue to grow – but much like old conservative politicians, the denial of reality is not over yet.
As requested by the Australian Conference, the AACE – a consultative Australian body – has commenced a process of considering the Bible’s teaching on creation. There are people of balance and goodwill on the committee. However the majority of the committee are decidedly literalist. A sub-committee will examine the issues. A sub-committee including zero Evolutionary Creationists. It does contain high profile anti EC individuals and some decent individuals, but ones whose opinions are literalist approved only. Anyone can have input but only anti-ECs can have a voice.
The project scope excludes any science. Ie no accountability to God’s reality for any conclusions. If we read the Bible to say the earth is flat, then it is flat. Simple, accessible and obvious evidence for ongoing ancient life (human and animal) is conveniently off limits. We can use archaeology as evidence in Bible lectures, but not to check what we think the Bible is teaching. Illogical. However this is a core demand of literalists on such “investigations”. Ignore inconvenient truths which might serve as a check on our exposition.
Optimism is somewhat hard to maintain. The AACE tried to establish a fair process, but the literalists succeeded in squashing the inclusion of any evolutionary creationists. Without a voice on the sub-committee, there is no pressure to address issues in an even handed way. The sub-committee proceedings are a closed book. The results of the handpicked review group will be delivered to the literalist controlled AACE. This body will then deliver a report. Barring a miracle, the result is a foregone conclusion and an opportunity to engage and learn has been effectively neutered.
A few times various ECs have been asked and encouraged to leave the community. That in the main ECs chose not to leave exasperates some zealous literalists. So why stay? The sentiment of Schurz’s famous line is appropriate ““My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right.” Further we could explain further while quoting from Fred Barling. He had a somewhat different relationship with the community post the Ralph Lovelock controversy, but still had this to say “I found Christ through the Christadelphian community“. Well said Fred.