Sunday, 19 June 2016

Origins, by Deborah Haarsma and Loren Haarsma

Deborah B. Haarsma and Loren D. Haarsma, Origins: A Reformed Look at Creation, Design and Evolution, 2007 Faith Alive

This book surveys various Christian views on issues relating to evolution and creation, such as the age of the Earth and Intelligent Design. It evaluates them from a broadly Reformed perspective. The authors tend to favour some form of evolutionary creation. No doubt the Young Earth ex-fundamentalists who call themselves Reformed would dismiss this as inauthentically Reformed.

Origins very much feels like a school textbook, but goes into quite reasonable depth. I like the way it recognizes that different positions are multi-layered and cannot be encompassed simply through labels. Hence 'Progressive Creationists' might adopt a range of views between direct creation and evolution, either accepting common descent or rejecting it. The chapter on Adam and Eve raises some real theological problems in the relationship between the Biblical story and evidence of ancient humanity. The authors admit there are problems with all suggested views in that area.

I was a little disappointed they did not discuss John Sailhammer's Promised Land view of Genesis chapter 1 or John Walton's Cosmic Temple view.

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