Allegory

Discussion in 'Sacred Scripture' started by seagull, Aug 22, 2013.

  1. seagull

    seagull Active Member

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    I think I might have broken House Rules (already!) in that by denying creationism I've "denied scripture". But surely one could say that the intensely poetic words of the Genesis account are a fine allegory.

    It's a difficult subject. It's caused problems over transubstantiation. And surely no-one's claiming that Jesus is/was literally a grapevine ("I am the true vine"). And that we are literally sheep (woolly though my thoughts might be :) ).
     
  2. Lux Christi

    Lux Christi Active Member

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    How have you? I suppose that maybe I may have broken such rules too, because I myself am a theistic evolutionist. I regard the Genesis story as deeply spiritual, and while I do take the Bible seriously, I prefer to highlight the spiritual meanings of said text rather than its plain reading.

    Granted, I do believe in the Real Presence of Christ in the Blessed Sacrament, and certainly do not attempt to define or muddle that divine mystery with my own limited conceptions. But otherwise, I see why not. For me, the point of the Gospel of Christ is for his life, death and resurrection to transform myself into a better person, and to live my life in all manner of virtue and grace with thankfulness for Christ's example and redemption. Everything else is detail!
     
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  3. Admin

    Admin Administrator Staff Member Typist Anglican

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    We don't intend to make any editorial statements on the question of creationism or theistic evolution. That is for theologians to decide and Scripture can support both.
     
  4. Jeff F

    Jeff F Well-Known Member

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    I'm trying not to bristle up on this topic, after leaving the Episcopal Church recently, but they are masters at crying allegory with any passage that is too direct, convicting, or non inclusive. Jesus certainly used this method to teach, but taking entire books of the Old Testament and placing this label upon it is ridiculous.

    Jeff
     
  5. Ogygopsis

    Ogygopsis Active Member

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    I don't know. The bible is a story of faith. It's not a medical book, a science text, nor a manual on how to repair a chain saw (I have a broken one of these right now). It is a guide on how to approach life, how to understand the world, but doesn't contain specifics about a whole bunch of things. The creation story is one of those stories (or rather the 2 creation stories in the bible) which instructs us about God more than about the world. Those who told the stories and eventually wrote them down filtred them through the medium of language and through their understanding. They were as smart as we are (some probably brighter) but they didn't have access to what we know today from painstaking accumulation of observations and technology and knowledge.

    It is the inspired principles that the bible demonstrates that we need to attend to. The specifics of some things, well, they are not quite right, e.g., sun standing still. But that does not invalidate the instructive nature of it. There are also some rather bad examples of what not to do. Like the genocide in Joshua or the swindling concerning Jacob or Peter's denying. The convincing parts of these sequences, to me, are God's taking of rather poor material in humanity and making something rather good out of it all. Hope for us too. Plus, we get the psalms, and some wonderful phrasings. Like this one, that I have been recently studying: 14Then answered Amos, and said to Amaziah, I was no prophet, neither was I a prophet's son; but I was an herdsman, and a gatherer of sycomore fruit:15And the LORD took me as I followed the flock, and the LORD said to me, Go, prophesy to my people Israel. (Amos 7)

    So God takes a herder and farmer and makes something good with him. Thus: Hope for humanity, and for me, no matter how meanly and poorly my life is. God may well take you and me. Though we have to say 'yes' and go. To coin a phrase, the devil of our disagreements are in the details. Given our agreements are rather clearly in the intent this is what we need to pursue more.
     
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  6. seagull

    seagull Active Member

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    So do you call yourself a conservative Anglican creationist? Just interested.
     
  7. seagull

    seagull Active Member

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    I take the John Donne line: it's what Christ makes it. But I veer towards consubtantiation: the view that both bread and the body of Christ are present together.
     
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  8. historyb

    historyb Active Member

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    I'll be the odd man out and say I am a YEC. It is fashionable now to poo poo things like this for a more liberal idea but I am still an old school Conservative
     
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  9. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member

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    i am too historyb. you are not alone.
     
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  10. seagull

    seagull Active Member

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    I think I'm right in saying that both the Anglican and RC Churches allow people to believe in creationism if they want to, although, as I have said, it's virtually unknown in the CofE. I gather that that's also the case amongst English RCs, though a priest I know says he's come across one or two. His comment was, "rather scary".
     
  11. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member

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    Rather scary? Why? it's not like creationists run around with bombs strapped to their chests threatening to blow folks away if they don't convert to believing their Adam's grandchild instead of a monkey's uncle. What's so unsettling about people believing the bible means what it says? Ridicule and bullying are not the tactics of a scientific, much less, constructive argument.
     
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  12. seagull

    seagull Active Member

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    I am neither Adam's grandchild nor a monkey's uncle. Nor is my RC priest friend.

    I mentioned the working party my church had on Creationism. They tried to find a creationist to give his/her point of view but it seems that there are none in our congregation. It is true that there was a preponderance of well educated people in the working party and the leader was/is a chemistry graduate who is a priest. Doubtless that does not cut much ice with you. Neither, perhaps, will their observation that children who have been taught creationism could grow up to realise that they have been taught material that is untrue and therefore rejecting, sometimes after distressing mental conflict, not just this material but the entire Christian faith. There was also concern that opponents of creationism might feel the need to proclaim their opposition in terms which are likely to ridicule not just creationism but any kind of belief in God.
     
  13. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member

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    Why would the level of education possessed by a party of people rejecting creationism cut ice with me or anyone else? Argumentum ad popularum is a logical fallacy. Just because a concept is popular or unpopular among certain groups is no guarantee of its veracity.

    As for the children ( the first resort of demogogues), will giving up on a doctrine of the faith as fundamental as biblical creationism ensure that they will grow up to be good christians? I think not. Many people that leave the church do so because they find Christ' s deity to be an intellectual stumbling block, does that nesessitate teaching children that Jesus was a good man and nothing more? I hope not.

    My own experience, as one who grew up in a household and church that endorsed Darwinism and "theistic evolution" was that it pushed me out of Christianity, i felt i couldn't with a clear conscience call the bible an inspired book when I, and those around me treated it as a book of fairy tales. Because I had grown up in a faith community that had already ceded so much ground on any biblical assertions that might be unpleasant or unpopular, most of the work had already been done for the atheistic professors I was confronted by in college. I wasn't a hard target thanks to my upbringing.
     
  14. seagull

    seagull Active Member

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    Well it would with me because I'm in favour of good education. It has great benefits.

    And no-one seems to be able to tell me if Jesus is/was a vine and they are sheep.
     
  15. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member

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    I addressed your question in the thread where it was asked.
     
  16. historyb

    historyb Active Member

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    Well I am not in the CofE
     
  17. historyb

    historyb Active Member

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    The question you ask atheist use.

    So you think Christ was off His rocker when He talked about Creation?

    Jesus answered, “Haven't you read the scripture that says that in the beginning the Creator made people male and female?

    Matt 19:4

    and God was off His rocker to inspire the authors to write:

    the son of Enosh, the son of Seth, the son of Adam, the son of God.

    Luke 3:38

    Sin came into the world through one man, and his sin brought death with it. As a result, death has spread to the whole human race because everyone has sinned.

    Romans 5:12

    Of course since it's all myth and never really happened none of the Bible is to be trusted [/sarcasm]
     
  18. AnglicanAgnostic

    AnglicanAgnostic Active Member

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    Well you might be right to not trust the Bible. Seth became a father at 105 years old K.J.V., N.I.V. etc but the septuagint has it at 205 years old.

    "6 Now Seth lived two hundred and five years, and begot Enos. "

    Maybe things get lost in translation:D
     
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  19. historyb

    historyb Active Member

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    I trust the Bible, it was sarcasm :)
     
  20. Cable

    Cable New Member

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    I lean toward Old Earth Creation. I suddenly feel like the odd man out here. :D
     
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