Est. May 2008

06 February, 2014

Big Surprise, There

When I read this headline – ‘Most evangelical colleges teach evolution’ – my first reaction was, “So what?” The threefold reason for that reaction:

1) It’s a college.  The biology curriculum is going to include evolution.  It’s not avoidable.

2) The word ‘evangelical’ has lost its meaning, having been slapped onto so many Protestant (and a few Catholic) notions which don’t even adhere to Scriptural teaching anymore (case in point, the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America).

3) The hypothesis (not scientific 'theory', since evolution isn’t observable, testable, or falsifiable) of evolution ought to be addressed, even in ‘evangelical’ colleges, if for no other reason than to prepare students for the inevitable arguments regarding origins.

If the hypothesis of evolution was taught in comparison to Genesis Chapters 1 and 2, I’d have no problem with it; I also doubt many parents or administrators would, either.  But it’s obvious that this sort of side-by-side comparative treatment of both hypotheses isn’t happening, and isn’t likely to happen:
“[M]ost of the 50 percent of my students who rejected evolution at the beginning of my course accepted it by the end. My colleagues at other evangelical colleges report similar experiences.”
That’s a quote from Karl Giberson, professor of science, formerly of the Eastern Nazarene College in Quincy, Massachusetts.

In the accompanying article, Professor Giberson makes two rather telling admissions.  This is the first:
“Those of us teaching evolution at evangelical colleges are made to feel as if we have this subversive secret we must whisper quietly in our students’ ears: ‘Hey, did you know that Adam and Eve were not the first humans and never even existed?’”
Now, the article doesn’t address it directly, but I’m willing to take a wild guess – based on Professor Giberson’s obvious fear that someone will hear him speaking that way – and say that the college most likely has a policy against that method of teaching evolution; saying Adam and Eve weren’t the first humans probably breaks that policy.

Here’s the professor’s second admission:
Giberson’s solution is to teach evolution, and reinterpret the Bible to be consistent with evolution.
I’m figuring Eastern Nazarene is probably a Bible-believing school; that said, it’s completely understandable that they had heartburn with one of their professors saying that the Bible must be subservient to science.

And this begs for this question to be asked: if Professor Giberson was aware of these restrictions (and it certainly appears that he was), why in the world did he even accept a teaching position at the school; secondly, why did he stay ‘for many years’?

We can all hypothesize, but only the professor can answer that one.

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