Nick Peters, moderate Christian apologist on Theology Web:
|If the Bible says there was a
walking, talking snake then by god, there was
a walking, talking snake!
Mike, conservative Christian:
Sorry Nick. You can’t state that as fact. Gary’s going to be shocked but fair is fair. We CANNOT just invoke symbolism wherever we wish and we certainly cannot expect skeptics to buy as fact these conjectures. Yes I know there is a whole lot of ANE comparisons and conjectures regarding Genesis 1 and 2 but frankly I think what some Christians do with Genesis and other passages feed the mouth of skeptics.
If you look at it objectively from the outside you are begging that skeptics accepts things that are not stated in the text and
A) thats not going to happen
B) its a slippery slope which begs the question – why can’t I invoke symbolism anywhere I wish
Mike: You are 100% correct. What Nick and Tabby are doing is a very dangerous slippery slope. I should know, I started onto that slope 18 months ago, and look where I am now. Inerrancy and a literal interpretation of the Bible is the best hope for the survival of conservative Christianity.
If my pastor had stuck to inerrancy, I might still be a Christian. But instead of preaching the “party line” of my conservative Christian denomination, he thought he knew better than the “dimwits” running the denomination. He didn’t believe in a literal Creation. He didn’t believe in a literal Tower of Babel. He didn’t believe in a literal world-wide Flood. He didn’t believe that Methuselah literally lived to be over nine hundred years old. He didn’t believe that Jonah had literally been in the belly of a great fish for three days and three nights…But he definitely believed in a literal reanimation of Jesus!
What does that do to the thinking of the man and woman in the pew??
If all or most of the supernatural stories in the Old Testament are simply allegorical fables, why should the man or woman in the pew believe, literally, the central supernatural claim of the Christian faith: the bodily resurrection of Jesus? If it doesn’t matter whether or not God created the universe as is described in Genesis, then why does it matter if Jesus was bodily resurrected? Why not believe that the story of the bodily resurrection of Jesus is just another of the Bible’s allegories?? Jesus’ body is still dead, it was his spirit that was resurrected, and it is his spirit that lives on in our hearts?
I believe that the best defense against the onslaught of skeptic attacks on conservative/traditional Christianity is holding a firm line on inerrancy. Moderate Christians who abandon a literal Creation, a literal world-wide Flood, and a literal Tower of Babel, etc., are only assisting in the demise of orthodox Christianity. The best response to any skeptic attack on the Christian faith is this: “Whatever evidence you present that skeptics believe proves the Bible false, whether with reason or science, is wrong. Period. No matter how true it may seem to our human brains, God says it is wrong, and I choose to listen to God, not man.”
Who can defeat that argument?
|Repeat after me:
“The Bible is right. Science is wrong.
The Bible is right. Science is wrong.