Understanding Our Preconceptions

Before proceeding further with this series on Creation, it is helpful, nay necessary, to examine preconceptions about nature, science, and the like.

Scientism (called by many names today) has as its core tenant “nothing is true until proven so by empiricism.” This is not really a correct view, although it has some helpful elements. As a scientist, I generally require proof before believing in magnetic monopoles, for instance.

This empiricist model claims that it preconceives nothing in order to arrive at truth. That’s simply impossible. First, you must suppose that logic is a thing that even exists, and that you are capable of understanding it. Then, you must assume that nature is uniform everywhere, and that your observations in one corner of the universe are applicable in every other square. Then, you must assume that your mind is equipped to handle observations about nature in the first place. None of this is able to be proven, yet scientists routinely take it on faith that these things are so (I believe them to be true as well, so I’m allowed to do science).

The only position that makes any rational sense of the universe (and indeed accounts for rationality at all) is the Christian position. This is the basis for presuppositional apologetics. The above principles are in fact consistent with and implied by Scripture.

So what am I presupposing? I am presupposing that the Bible is God’s unfallible and unchangeable revelation, perfect and true in all its teachings, though not exhaustive in its subject matter. Even an attempt to prove this puts us in the jury seat while the truth of God is held in doubt, if just for argument’s sake. That’s unacceptable.

What does that mean for our studies in Genesis?

  1. We must think as the Bible thinks. When the Spirit inspires the word “day,” is it internally consistent for this to be interpreted “age?”
  2. The only standard to compare to is the rest of the Bible which is always internally consistent. Babylonian texts that contain the same literary structures use those (usually heptameric) structures because the Bible does, not the other way around.
  3. Is creation/evolution consistent with the God revealed in Scripture?
  4. Science is a tool, not a worldview or a hermeneutic. Although it is often used as such, this is absolutely incorrect. Saying “I only believe in science” is equivalent to saying “I only believe in hammers.” So what? Hammers hammer nails because the Bible allows them to. They do not hammer nails despite what the Text may imply.

I am continuing to explore Meredith Kline’s framework hypothesis in order to respond accordingly.

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