Seeing fruit from ministry can be a real encouragement that puts some spark in our not always exciting everyday activities. I had one of those moments recently when a former student talked at our church about going to Tanzania with Wycliffe as a Bible translator.
In response to my most recent post in my series on “The Evangelical’s Creation Conundrum,” A friend asked my opinion about the Mohler-Collins conversation about Scripture’s teaching on the age of the universe that took place on February 1. Rather than an extensive response, I picked out one of Mohler’s statements that I think is representative of the way young earth creationists sometimes rhetorically distort the debate by forcing us to go all in on a lopsided bet.
Creation was meant to be a place of provision and protection. That’s what the ordering of the six days of creation communicates. But Genesis 1:1-2:3 sets in motion a big idea that drives the whole biblical story from beginning to end. The temple theme is rooted in the seven day structure of creation and opens up the possibility that the author did not use “days” to express length of time, but rather to set up the all important temple metaphor as the lens through which we understand the creation narrative.
I recently got a question from one of my Slovak seminary students,
In the Roháček (a Slovak) version of Num 24:4 we read that Balaam, “fell into a sleep” while the Ecumenical version reads that he was in “a state of ecstasy.” Does this mean that the author is expressing some kind of physical sleep but that during the sleep the person is in a state of (prophetic) awareness?
Walking through the exegesis of this text turns out to be a pretty fruitufl exercise for demonstrating why we need to be careful as we interpret small segments of text.
During my research stint with The Creation Project I had the luxury of being contractually obliged to read in areas that I normally don’t have time to explore. One result is a deeper appreciation of the relationship between reading and living God’s story.
It’s always fun (and helpful) to take a quick look at the stats for our website at the end of the year. Through the stats we can see a cross section of our ministry and we can see how our supporters have shared our ups and downs. Sometimes, we’re surprised at some of the ways our web site reaches beyond the normal borders of our every day lives.
It’s finally time to turn to Scripture to see what Gen 1:1–2:3 teaches. At first glance the text seems to clearly teach that God created the world in six, twenty-four hour days. But if we look more closely we’ll see there is a very clear symmetry in the text that takes us in another direction. The primary teaching of this text has little to do with when God created and everything to do with why.