"Genesis 1 Through Ancient Eyes", by John Walton
The Christadelphian Berea Portalites are excited about this video of John Walton giving a talk about understanding Genesis 1 against the background and understanding of the people in the 7th Century BC who first heard or read the narrative.
John is in his talk saying that although God's inspired word is crammed full of mistaken science, this is excused by the fact that the readers were mistaken about science in the same way as the text of Genesis conveys mistaken science.
Lets get this right: The readers of Genesis were mistaken about science and the text of Genesis repeats the same mistakes as the readers already believed. This somehow excuses God's deliberate interjection of erroneous science into text.
- This is something to get excited about - yeah?
Even if we accept this ridiculous claim that the supernatural power that created the universe promotes and supports human ignorance by feeding them more of the same; we unbelievers can make the point that this sort of mumbo-jumbo does nothing to convince anyone that God actually inspired the narrative in the first place.
All we can say of Genesis 1 is that there is nothing there to contradict our view that humans not inspired by God were writing the narrative and that they were repeating the erroneous science of the times. If we had a touch of Heliocentrism or Evolution in Genesis (as for example we had atoms in Ancient Greek manuscripts) then we unbelievers might show a whiff of interest. But to tell us that Genesis is crammed with mistakes because the readers were ignorant does not exactly make us want to rush back into fellowship!
Not only do we need some sensible empirical evidence for belief in the existence of God, but Christadelphian academics need something sensible to support their own faith. Because in the absence of that evidence for the precious religion of their parents, they are going to continue to hear howls of laughter from Unbelievers who have managed to break free from their religious cult.
Published: Sunday, September 01, 2013