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Featured Is there a denomination that accepts theistic evolution/old earth?

Discussion in 'General Theology' started by Jamdoc, Nov 28, 2019.

  1. Jamdoc

    Jamdoc Member

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    I can't be young earth, Genesis 1 seems like a "this is a gist of it but I'm not telling you specifics" overview of creation rather than a step by step instruction, allowing for what has been scientifically discovered about the nature of the universe and its age to hold true while still being God's very good creation. I see ongoing geological, cosmological, and biological processes that take very long times to do anything and it only makes absolute sense that those processes have been going on for a very long time, canyons are still being dug by rivers inch by inch, Niagra falls recedes its bank inch by inch over the years. There have been cataclysms such as global flood but there have also been slow processes that continue to go on every day, I have witnessed microevolution in laboratory settings. So there's only so much you can do believing in young earth creationism, and not just blind yourself to everything around you that says the universe is older than 6000 years. You either have to believe that Satan created the evidence (where in scripture has Satan ever been able to create anything?), or believe that God created things to appear older than they really are which seems like, deception. Why create things that would intentionally trick people? God doesn't lie or deceive!
    So I can't be a young earth creationist, which puts me at odds with most pastors in most denominations of Christianity.
    I believe in Old Earth. I still believe God created it, but I believe he did so using processes we still see at work today. I am not sure if I full blown believe in theistic macroevolution or progressive creationism (God creating things according to "kinds" in waves, which is more consistent with the fossil record, and microevolution being a tool within the genetic code that God created as a blueprint for all life). But microevolution I can't ignore at all. I can't just pretend that DNA just doesn't exist and we're all just scooped up dirt breathed upon by God. In Genesis 2 God even describes anesthesia and surgery to remove one of Adam's ribs (as a source of bone marrow and stem cells) to make Eve (Genesis 2:21-23). Which had always confused me as to why Genesis 2 didn't have God just speaking Eve into existence, but then I learned about stem cells present in bone marrow and the ribs are a flat bone which is one of your main sources of hematopoiesis, it suddenly made perfect sense, God GREW Eve from stem cells from Adam's bone marrow.
    Is there any denominations that support old earth and either theistic evolution or progressive creationism?
     
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  2. Jonaitis

    Jonaitis Pilgrim

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    Scripture is not a science textbook, it gives a brief and necessary account of our origins. All that God has recorded, which is literal, has spiritual lessons too.

    Theistic evolution is heretical, regardless of the view of the churches of Christ under heaven. It is inconsistent with the gospel. Don't believe everything the world tells you, use your discernment with Scripture to determine what is true. If it doesn't line up with Scripture, it is false and should be rejected as pseudo-science.
     
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  3. Albion

    Albion Facilitator

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    This is just factually untrue. MOST denominations are fine with theistic evolution--Catholics, Episcopalians, Methodists, etc. It is a minority consisting mainly of the Evangelical and/or Pentecostal churches and pastors who insist upon the literal 6 day creation and even fewer insist upon it being 6000 years since Creation.
     
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  4. joshua 1 9

    joshua 1 9 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Swing and a miss, nice try though. The mysteries of God are contained within the literal scriptures. So we believe with the faith of a child until we have the understanding to comprehend the deeper things of God. Adam and Eve were real people that lived around 6,000 years ago in ancient Mesopotamia in the Tigris Euphrates river valley. Noah and his family were real people and his flood was a very real flood. Even if this was "Local" from our perspective. Also the animals he saved were not all the animals in the world so much as the animals we read about in the Bible that lived in the Middle East. A BIG part of theistic evolution is HOW farming spread from the Middle East to Europe. A lot of work has gone into understanding the domestication of plants and animals in the Middle East. Science does a lot to help us understand what we read in our Bible.

    Main line denominations have no trouble with theistic evolution. Usually they require their pastors to have a college degree in Science before they are qualified to go to seminary. It is the pastors with the two year associate degrees that do not know anything about science. They can preach a pretty good sermon out of the Bible but they are not very good at reconciling people that go to them for help.
     
  5. joshua 1 9

    joshua 1 9 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    We are told a day is 1,000 years. Theistic evolution tells us that around 14,000 years ago there was a major extinction where 90% of the species died off. This includes wholly mammoths and saber tooth tigers. There was massive flooding as there was massive global warming. All of this fits the timeline we read in our Bible. There is nothing wrong with Bishop Usshers book because he begins 6,000 years ago with Adam and Eve. He has nothing to say about anything that happened before Adam and Eve. I have a copy of his book here and it is possible to find a free ebook copy on the internet. For me when someone writes a book and 500 years later no one can find any errors that is outstanding and impressive.
     
  6. Halbhh

    Halbhh Everything You say is Life to me Supporter

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    Many denominations, including Catholic, ELCA Lutheran, United Church of Christ, to name only a few, recognize this isn't specified in Genesis, and evolution could be God's perfect design in action, fitting the text as well. About 1/2 of all Christians in the U.S. recognize that God is creator of all and think that means evolution happened and also that the scripture perfectly fits an old Earth.
     
  7. Oscarr

    Oscarr Senior Veteran Supporter

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    That's because many believe in a small God with not enough power to create a whole universe in six days and bring it to full maturity in that amount of time. But that is not the almighty and all-powerful God of the Bible.

    It is interesting that just at the time of the White Throne Judgment, the Bible says that the earth and the heavens will flee away in a moment of time.

    I thought I'd give that information, because that is what the Bible says in Revelation 20:11:
    "Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. From his presence earth and sky fled away, and no place was found for them."

    This says that God will un-create the whole universe in an instant of time. I don't think we have any conception of the awesome power of God, to be able to create a whole universe in six days, and then when He is finished with it, un-create it in an instant of time. This is tremendous power above anything that we could ever imagine!
     
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  8. JohnAshton

    JohnAshton Well-Known Member

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    The following is one poster's personal opinion, nothing more: "Theistic evolution is heretical, regardless of the view of the churches of Christ under heaven. It is inconsistent with the gospel."

    I disagree in that I believe in a theistic-Old Earth creation, which is my own attempt to understand this issue.
     
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  9. Albion

    Albion Facilitator

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    That POV is easily countered logically, but it's beside the point. The point was that most denominations are sympathetic to theological evolution, contrary to what our inquirer thought.

    For purposes of answering the OP, that is what matters.
     
  10. Jamdoc

    Jamdoc Member

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    Microevolution is literally applied genetics, we can demonstrate it in a lab with bacteria within a matter of weeks. There's no ifs about it, there's no "it's just a theory" about it. Macroevolution (creation of an entirely new species) is an expansion on that, and is hard to put to the test so it remains theory, but the framework is there, it very most likely requires God to get it to work (creating enough mutations that are beneficial in a population enough times to have a breeding population to propagate this new "species" separate from the ancestor). It's a logical "next step" in the information we have, but like I said, fossil record is more suggestive of progressive creationism in waves where God causes macroevolution to take place (it doesn't take place on its own) rapidly so we don't have much in the way of "transitional" species in the record.
    You said yourself that the bible is not meant to be a science textbook, so, God creating the scientific principles we see at work every single day, including genetics, you don't have to separate creation from that. If you separate, then you do have to pretend, everything we know, and can demonstrate and apply to real world situations, is fake and lying. The reason we have antivenom for snakebite, is because we can be compatible enough with horse immunoglobulins that we can use horses to be the host to produce it. One of the best treatments for gout is a recombinant version of the uricase enzyme from pigs that we don't produce on our own to break down uric acid. There is enough common genetic framework between beasts and men, that we can do these things successfully. If we were physically wholly separate (mind you we are SPIRITUALLY separate) from animals, we wouldn't share all this biology.
     
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  11. Jamdoc

    Jamdoc Member

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    I guess most of what I've been exposed to has been baptist, and there are many parts of baptist doctrine that I agree with, but young earth creationism is the one aspect where it falls flat.
     
  12. Jonaitis

    Jonaitis Pilgrim

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    The idea of 'macro-evolution' is a myth, propagated by those that want to discredit the biblical account, which is clear on how we got here. If you don't want to accept it, then you will have to deny the whole Scriptures. You cannot cherry-pick some truths and reinterpret other passages (which are essential) to fit your worldview without forfeiting the gospel. I'm sorry, but that's the truth.
     
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  13. Basil the Great

    Basil the Great Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Your post is a most interesting one. However, it seems to me that any God who has the power to create and sustain the Universe is a big God, regardless of how long that He chose to take to finish his creative work.
     
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  14. Jamdoc

    Jamdoc Member

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    Nothing is small about a God that created natural laws as a framework for creation. It's more simplistic and small to believe everything was created instantaneously than for something to be created with intricacy and fine tuning, with a plan with emphasis on a long view that could ONLY be done by someone who has billions of years to witness it come to fruition, and can see billions of years from now what's going to happen.
    Thousands is small, billions is large.
    Belief that a world is old and things happened gradually does not mean disbelief that He could do things instantaneously. God could have manifested the bible, complete from day 1, translated perfectly in every single language that ever was, and ever will be, directly into our hands from the day we're born. He can, but He hasn't, His will has been to have His Word written down by men given the gift of revelation.
    Why? He moves in mysterious ways.
    He doesn't always do everything that He can do, and only He knows the reason why He chooses to do something a particular way and not another way. He could have created a perfect world with no sin, and prevented sin from ever happening, but He didn't, He promises a perfect world without sin, but we have a sinful fallen world on the way there.
    His choice, His plan, His methods.
     
  15. Basil the Great

    Basil the Great Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Yes, God does indeed move in mysterious ways. Well said!
     
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  16. Jamdoc

    Jamdoc Member

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    We've already come to agreement that Genesis is not meant to be a "how to make a universe in 6 days 6000 years ago" instruction manual. It's meant to tell us that He did create us, and give a rough order in how things were created, namely, to make humans as one of the last things. It's a father explaining to a naive son why the sky is blue without going into depth about Rayleigh scattering, a simplified explanation. A handful of lines to create the entire universe, fastforwarding to the important and relevant parts for us, Adam's sin.
     
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  17. Oscarr

    Oscarr Senior Veteran Supporter

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    It all depends on whether they believe in the God of the Bible, who inspired Moses to write that He created the universe as we know it, in six days. Maybe there are people who believe in a different God who used evolution to form the universe. But the problem with that is that the God of the Bible said that He did not know of any other God besides Him.

    There are many who have constructed a God from their own imagination and who fits within their limited theology and natural reasoning. Of course, one can use natural logic to say that the universe was form through an evolutionary process, because there is no other answer other than there being a God who created the whole mature universe in six days by just using His voice and commanding it into being from nothing. That is just not logical to the natural mind.

    But then, the God of the Bible cannot be understood by using human natural reasoning, because it is limited to only the issues that exist in the natural, material universe. Anything outside of that is foreign to the natural mind. Any atheist will tell you that, and he will be right within the bounds of natural logic.

    But the God of the Bible is outside of natural logic, and therefore cannot be understood that way. This is why the Bible says that the natural man cannot understand the ways of God because they are spiritually discerned. And that spiritual discernment can only be made through faith in what God has said in the Bible.

    So, I would have no argument with most denominations being sympathetic to theistic evolution, because most of our religious organisations depend on natural logic and reasoning which they have substituted for the Holy Spirit whose input and revelation can come only through faith in what the Bible says as being true and correct in every detail.
     
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2019
  18. Jamdoc

    Jamdoc Member

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    anyway, I've been non denominational because of that conflict, and because of other conflicts in the doctrines of many denominations, such as catholicism's near deification of Mary (I don't believe she herself was immaculate, which is something I believe in line with the Baptists) and borderline idoltry of Mary and the saints (apparently orthodoxy has you praying to saints as well) and salvation by works (I'm a saved by grace believer). Been looking to going to church again but am a little worried because of being single over the age of 18 gets judged negatively a lot, also being poor means I don't have really nice clothes to wear for church. Would be helpful to narrow down if I had a denomination.
     
  19. ChristianForCats

    ChristianForCats Christ is born!

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    You are like me then. I totally agree with Baptists on communion, baptism, evangelism, and more, but no one can convince me just because God is powerful enough to make everything in less than a week He did that.
     
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  20. Jonaitis

    Jonaitis Pilgrim

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    If he says six days, why would you disregard that detail? It is clearly written right there.
     
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