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Evolutionists and Creationists fight over Genesis.. Explain why neither is correct - Term Paper Example

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The battle between evolutionists and creationists is one that has raged since the dawn of the modern era and the prominence of the theories of evolution put forward by Charles Darwin. However, as might be expected, the differentials between the stark contrast of these two…
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Evolutionists and Creationists fight over Genesis.. Explain why neither is correct
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Section/# Evolution and Creation: A Third Way? The battle between evolutionists and creationists is one that has raged since the dawn of the modern era and the prominence of the theories of evolution put forward by Charles Darwin. However, as might be expected, the differentials between the stark contrast of these two schools of thought reveal a grey area that is oftentimes not discussed or referenced. Rather, the common practice for the past many decades is to divide individuals and their belief systems into two staunchly asymmetrical camps; one insisting that pure and total evolution is the explanation of the diversity of life on planet earth and the other voicing, just as vehemently, that the origin of life lies within a divine and literal creation as lain out in the book of Genesis (Daggers 2010). However, as one might expect, due to the absolutist interpretations of both camps, there is little room left for a third path. What is most interesting with respect to this is the fact that although modern Western Christianity leaves little room for an alternate interpretation, the less common and less practiced forms of Eastern Christianity have a perfectly logical explanation for the origin of life that is neither entirely at odds with the science of evolution nor the belief in the Old Testament (Gräb 2012).
The key differential between Eastern and Western forms of Christianity lies in the interpretation of the Old Testament. As with most schisms and theological developments that have taken place over the millennia, the Eastern branches of Christianity most often clung to the idea that the stories related in the Old Testament were a combination of both spiritual and literal meaning (Haskell 2012). In such a way, the level fo which each and every text must be interpreted was allowed to have a degree of liberalism. As compared to their Western Christian counterparts, the Eastern branches of Christianity did not insist that each and every text represented a literal truism that must be accepted (Adelin Jørgensen 2011). Due to this level of interpretation, theories such as the theory of evolution and Christianity, at least in the Eastern Christian understanding, can readily exist at the same time. In such a way, one does not have to suspend belief in order to understand the scientific proofs and evidence that have been presented with regards to evolution. In the same way, one does not have to suspend faith in order to accept seemingly disjoint and/or illogical sections of the Old Testament. The key differential between Eastern and Western branches of Christianity is therefore the ability of the Eastern branches to view many texts through the lens of allegory (Reimer 2011).
This key level of difference is important to understand due to the fact that within the Western Christian mindset, invariably part of our culture, it is often thought and believed that the two competing explanations cannot exist harmoniously. However, as has been illustrated, one need only to understand and appreciate the allegorical nature of many of the texts in the Old Testament in order to make perfect sense from the Genesis story of creation.
Adelin Jørgensen, J. P. (2011). The future of systematic theology. Studia Theologica, 65(1), 3-17. doi:10.1080/0039338X.2010.532905
Daggers, J. (2010). Thinking “Religion”: The Christian Past and Interreligious Future of Religious Studies and Theology. Journal Of The American Academy Of Religion, 78(4), 961-990.
Gräb, W. (2012). Practical Theology as a Religious and Cultural Hermeneutics of Christian Practice. International Journal Of Practical Theology, 16(1), 79-92. doi:10.1515/ijpt-2012-0007
Haskell, R. (2012). Process Theology: A Christian Option or a New Religion?. Evangelical Review Of Theology, 36(4), 302-315.
Reimer, J. (2011). European Christian Renaissance and Public Theology. European Journal Of Theology, 20(2), 111-118. Read More
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