Theistic Evolution vs. Progressive creationism

Discussion about scientific issues as they relate to God and Christianity including archaeology, origins of life, the universe, intelligent design, evolution, etc.
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Theistic Evolution vs. Progressive creationism

#1

Post by neo-x » Thu Aug 23, 2012 10:59 pm

Hi guys, your thoughts on this? I am looking for pros and cons of both theories and why you hold to one or the other. Just to clarify I am not asking for justification in the beleif of any one of these two but rather the explanation of how both fall short or rise up to the creation account of genesis.

Please, I would appreciate if this is not turned into a "my belief is better" debate, I just want rationale for why you believe and why you think the other or both of these fall short.
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Re: Theistic Evolution vs. Progressive creationism

#2

Post by Ivellious » Thu Aug 23, 2012 11:07 pm

Someone (a Christian) told me recently that progressive creationism didn't make sense to her in a biblical sense because it implies that God continued to create long after the Bible said He did...By that I guess she meant that the Bible said God created (out of nothing) life, and progressive creationism implies that God continuously created new things out of nothing for billions of years. By comparison, theistic evolution does not have this issue because, while God may have been continuously intervening via evolution, there was no more creation after the initial introduction of life.

I have no idea whether this is biblically accurate or relevant, but I figured I would post it, for whatever it's worth.

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Re: Theistic Evolution vs. Progressive creationism

#3

Post by Danieltwotwenty » Thu Aug 23, 2012 11:11 pm

Ivellious wrote:Someone (a Christian) told me recently that progressive creationism didn't make sense to her in a biblical sense because it implies that God continued to create long after the Bible said He did...By that I guess she meant that the Bible said God created (out of nothing) life, and progressive creationism implies that God continuously created new things out of nothing for billions of years. By comparison, theistic evolution does not have this issue because, while God may have been continuously intervening via evolution, there was no more creation after the initial introduction of life.

I have no idea whether this is biblically accurate or relevant, but I figured I would post it, for whatever it's worth.

Thanks Ivell, I never thought about it like that before. Interesting ............... 1000 posts :cheers: :dancing:
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Re: Theistic Evolution vs. Progressive creationism

#4

Post by sandy_mcd » Thu Aug 23, 2012 11:29 pm

Danieltwotwenty wrote:Thanks Ivell, I never thought about it like that before. Interesting ............... 1000 posts :cheers: :dancing:
Theistic evolution avoids the problem of conflict between the Bible and science. Progressive creationism creates a conflict with the Bible (as Ivellious points out) in trying to reconcile scientific observations with a more-or-less literal interpretation. As a result, it satisfies neither viewpoint.
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Re: Theistic Evolution vs. Progressive creationism

#5

Post by Canuckster1127 » Fri Aug 24, 2012 7:18 am

Progressive Creationism tends to see the creation of man in about the same time frame af 6 - 10 thousand years that YEC does while Theistic evolution effectively accepts whatever the current view is within Naturalistic Evolutionary views and sees the appearance of modern man roughly 50 thousand years ago, without a literal Adam and Eve or Noahic flood.
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Re: Theistic Evolution vs. Progressive creationism

#6

Post by Byblos » Fri Aug 24, 2012 11:40 am

Canuckster1127 wrote:Progressive Creationism tends to see the creation of man in about the same time frame af 6 - 10 thousand years that YEC does while Theistic evolution effectively accepts whatever the current view is within Naturalistic Evolutionary views and sees the appearance of modern man roughly 50 thousand years ago, without a literal Adam and Eve or Noahic flood.
Depends on the version of TE, there are many. Personally I'm on the fence between PC and TE, neither of which is a matter of salvation anyway (do we really need to mention this every time? :shakehead: ). If I were to go TE all of the way I'd still believe in a literal Adam and Eve (that's Catholic de fide by the way) when God granted rational souls upon 2 existing creatures. I would have no issue with a local Noahic flood either.
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Re: Theistic Evolution vs. Progressive creationism

#7

Post by RickD » Fri Aug 24, 2012 11:56 am

Canuckster1127 wrote:Progressive Creationism tends to see the creation of man in about the same time frame af 6 - 10 thousand years that YEC does while Theistic evolution effectively accepts whatever the current view is within Naturalistic Evolutionary views and sees the appearance of modern man roughly 50 thousand years ago, without a literal Adam and Eve or Noahic flood.
Bart, while some PCs may narrow it down to the last 6-10 thousand years, Reasons.org leaves the creation of modern man open to the last 100,000 years or so:
http://www.reasons.org/rtb-101/historicaladam
Genetic, linguistic and pathogen studies support a historical Adam and Eve. This research indicates that humanity arose 1) recently (within the last hundred thousand years or so), 2) at a single location (close to where Bible scholars place the Garden of Eden), and 3) from a small population, arguably as small as a single pair. Much scientific work remains to be done toward refining details, but ample evidence supports the historic Christian idea that all humanity descended from two historical persons, Adam and Eve.
And Rich Deem believes modern man has been around for at least the last 40,000 years:
http://www.godandscience.org/youngearth ... earth.html
Age of humanityOther than incomplete genealogies, there are other measures of the age of humanity found in the Bible. First, the Bible says that the Lord made a covenant and commanded his law to 1,000 generations:

•Remember His covenant forever, The word which He commanded to a thousand generations, (1 Chronicles 16:15)
•He has remembered His covenant forever, The word which He commanded to a thousand generations, (Psalm 105:8)
•but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments. (Exodus 20:6)
•but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments. (Deuteronomy 5:10)
•Know therefore that the LORD your God is God; he is the faithful God, keeping his covenant of love to a thousand generations of those who love him and keep his commands. (Deuteronomy 7:9)
Unless those generations are only 6 years long, these verses indicate that humanity has been around much longer than 6,000 years. In most instances, a biblical generation is ~40 years long,14 meaning that human beings have been around for at least 40,000 years.

Another, less accurate way to look at the age of humanity is to compare an early biblical event with earth's natural history. One example is the person Peleg, of whom it is said "for in his days the earth was divided..." (Genesis 10:25) This dividing of the earth was likely a result of the removal of land bridges at the end of the last interglacial period, about 12,000 years ago. During this time, seal levels rose several hundred feet as continental ice sheets melted and flowed into the oceans. Assuming the biblical genealogies were complete, we could calculate that Peleg lived ~4,000 years ago. However, since the dividing of the earth really occurred 12,000 years ago, one can determine that the genealogies represent only one third of the actual generations (12,000 ÷ 4,000). This would place the beginning of humanity at ~24,000 years ago, assuming the missing genealogies are missing at the same rate throughout human history. Since it would seem likely that more of the earlier genealogies are missing, the estimate is likely low, probably being more in line with the biblical 40,000 years.

From a scientific standpoint, I would place the creation of Adam as the first modern human (Homo sapiens sapiens), corresponding with the explosion of sophisticated tool making, art, and religious worship in Europe, about 50,000 years ago.15 I do not believe that Adam was a Neanderthal, Homo erectus, or other hominid species found in the fossil record, but a fully modern, spiritual human being.
And, Rich Deem and Hugh Ross both make the case that OEC/PC holds literally, to not only the creation account in Genesis, but also to all the creation accounts throughout all of scripture. I believe Hugh Ross mentioned around 27 creation accounts in the bible.
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Re: Theistic Evolution vs. Progressive creationism

#8

Post by Canuckster1127 » Fri Aug 24, 2012 1:10 pm

True enough. Whenever we generalize there are exceptions.
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Re: Theistic Evolution vs. Progressive creationism

#9

Post by jlay » Sat Aug 25, 2012 8:29 am

Theistic evolution avoids the problem of conflict between the Bible and science.
Such as the resurrection and the miracles of Jesus????
Please do tell.
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Re: Theistic Evolution vs. Progressive creationism

#10

Post by narnia4 » Sat Aug 25, 2012 11:45 am

jlay wrote:
Theistic evolution avoids the problem of conflict between the Bible and science.
Such as the resurrection and the miracles of Jesus????
Please do tell.
I believe this is probably referring to what's seen as scientific evidence for an old earth and against a young earth. While with the resurrection and miracles in general, there isn't any positive evidence (and almost certainly never could be, not unless Christ's bones were somehow conclusively identified... which obviously won't happen) against them. Unless you're committed to scientism and the impossibility of miracles, of course.
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Re: Theistic Evolution vs. Progressive creationism

#11

Post by sandy_mcd » Sat Aug 25, 2012 2:20 pm

narnia4 wrote:[I believe this is probably referring to what's seen as scientific evidence for an old earth and against a young earth.
Yep. old earth/young earth; instant creation/evolution; etc
http://academic.regis.edu/mghedott/evolut.htm
Since 1950, the Roman Catholic Church has asserted that a belief in the natural evolution of biological diversity (including the human body) through material processes is not inconsistent with Church teaching. The Church explicitly endorses neither an evolutionary nor a special creation view of the origin of biological diversity.
...
Pope Benedict the XVI made statements that some interpret as supporting the "Intelligent Design" movement in the United States. The Pope said that behind the natural world there is "the creative reason, the reason that has created everything, that has created this intelligent project." This statement largely has been interpreted as reiterating the position of the Church concerning the non-randomness of creation and the imanence of God in the world. Jesuit Father George Coyne, director of the Vatican Observatory said that "[t]he pope was not alluding in any way to intelligent design as it is understood in the United States,.... The pope was talking about God's love for his creation. God is in love with his creation, he nurses it along, he accompanies it. But that doesn't make God a 'designer.' That belittles God, it makes him paltry[.]"

... (intro moved)
When I began teaching at Regis, I was occasionally shocked when a student would ask me why I was teaching evolution at a Catholic school. We also have received inquiries in the Biology Department from parents of prospective students about the role of evolution in our Regis Biology curriculum. The fact that people were not sure about the position of Roman Catholicism towards biological evolution or that people believed that Catholicism and evolutionary explanations for biological diversity were incompatible was of concern and interest to me. I personally never thought that there was any conflict between evolutionary explanations of change in the natural world and Roman Catholic Christianity. As someone who attended Catholic grade school and high school, I was taught evolution in science classes and never encountered anyone who considered biological evolution to be "un-Catholic" (although I knew that some Protestant Christians thought that evolutionary explanations are not compatible with their versions of Christianity). Because I continue to get these questions I researched the issue further and decided to put together this page as a resource for students at Regis. I am not trying to convince anyone of a particular position. Rather I am attempting to provide general information to better answer these questions.
...

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Re: Theistic Evolution vs. Progressive creationism

#12

Post by Indurkar » Wed Sep 05, 2012 11:41 pm

Danieltwotwenty wrote:
Ivellious wrote:Someone (a Christian) told me recently that progressive creationism didn't make sense to her in a biblical sense because it implies that God continued to create long after the Bible said He did...By that I guess she meant that the Bible said God created (out of nothing) life, and progressive creationism implies that God continuously created new things out of nothing for billions of years. By comparison, theistic evolution does not have this issue because, while God may have been continuously intervening via evolution, there was no more creation after the initial introduction of life.

I have no idea whether this is biblically accurate or relevant, but I figured I would post it, for whatever it's worth.

Thanks Ivell, I never thought about it like that before. Interesting ............... 1000 posts :cheers: :dancing:
" progressive creationism implies that God continuously created new things out of nothing for billions of years."
And God is still creating. Take case of a Birth of a Child ( man , animal or any living entity). Yes, the DNA code sequence is all present there, but who decides and initiates for the time for making limbs, organs; in short making the progeny.
Surely there is no measure (Timewise or any otherway) in the coding.Because if it were so then the variations in basic traits of Brothers and Sisters will not be there. Alternative is identical Twins even in younger and older progenies.
Yes, you might say it is not a new thing, but it is an aspect of creation for sure.

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Re: Theistic Evolution vs. Progressive creationism

#13

Post by Philip » Thu Sep 06, 2012 7:26 am

Theistic evolution necessitates that the Genesis creation accounts are ONLY allegorical. They also ignore NT statements of both Adam and parts of the account. TE states that Adam was an offspring of a long evolutionary sequence of animals, of which God suddenly changed into the first man. This is ignores the completed and descriptively separate and COMPLETED sequences between the creation of Adam and all other life. It ignores that Adam was first created and THEN given life. It ignores that Adam was created "in OUR (God's Trinity) image," and not as all the animals each were ("after ITS kind), and it ignores how Eve was created from Adam own body, and how there were no suitable mates for Adam, until Eve's creation.

I am a progressive creationist - accepting of the ancient ages most scientist give for the earth and universe (4.5 billion years/13.73 billion years, respectively). So, in my mind, TE has two strikes against it: it embraces the unproven sequences of the various neo-Darwinists/evolutionary scenarios, AND it dismisses the clear distinctive elements found in Scripture. Personally, I believe that evolution is driving TE's dismissal of Adam and Eve's creation being precisely as Scripture states. It's one thing to argue over the length of time of the Genesis events, but quite another to simply say Adam and Eve branched off from the apes, and then God made them human.
Last edited by Philip on Thu Sep 06, 2012 8:07 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Theistic Evolution vs. Progressive creationism

#14

Post by RickD » Thu Sep 06, 2012 8:03 am

TBH Philip, that's where I have a problem with TE. I believe Adam and Eve are certainly symbolic, BUT I believe they were also literal people who existed. To be consistent with evolutionary beliefs, doesn't one have to believe Adam and Eve weren't created specially by God, but they were two creatures that God chose to begin our race of modern humans? Of course one could believe that there were preexisting hominids that evolved, and God created Adam and Eve as a special creation. While I believe that would be consistent with scripture, I don't see how it's consistent with evolution. Besides, I really haven't heard a TE that doesn't believe Adam and Eve were just two existing hominids that God gave a spirit to. The common belief in TE, that the Adam and Eve narrative is symbolic, has it's problems IMO. Adam is in the biblical genealogies, so I think he has to have literally existed.

I guess that's why I have no problem with the scientific age of creation, like TE also believes, but I just see inconsistencies in TE that keep me in the Progressive Creationist camp.

While I'm certainly not completely closed to the possibility that TE could be true, I just don't see it now. I believe science in the future, will help us lean towards PC or TE, as new discoveries are made, and one worldview will be a better interpretation.

I really don't think "evolution" is as evil of a word that some Christians make it out to be. Evolution, as change over time, really isn't anti-Christian.
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Re: Theistic Evolution vs. Progressive creationism

#15

Post by PaulSacramento » Thu Sep 06, 2012 8:30 am

The issue of Adam and Eve is a complex one because the story in of itself is full of symbolisim and it is hard to see IF Adam and Eve MUST be real people.
IF they were, it doesn't really effect the theory of TE because it can be handled in a few ways such as Adam and Eve being the first evolved humans or Adam and Eve being the "progenitors" of homo sapiens as we know them, etc.
Personally I think that Adam and Eve were the first evolved humans to be "endowed" with the HS and "made" in the image of God and placed in the Garden of Eden OR It may be that Adam was the first evolved Male and that God did indeed make Eve from Adam and as such, their decendents are "unique" amongst homo sapiens.

Or not :)

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