Reformed Legend Forced To Resign Over Theistic Evolution
“When it comes to incriminating videos these days, the one of Bruce K. Waltke might seem pretty tame. It shows the noted evangelical scholar of the Old Testament talking about scholarship, faith and evolution. What was incriminating? He not only endorsed evolution, but said that evangelical Christianity could face a crisis for not coming to accept science.
“If the data is overwhelmingly in favor of evolution, to deny that reality will make us a cult … some odd group that is not really interacting with the world. And rightly so, because we are not using our gifts and trusting God’s Providence that brought us to this point of our awareness,” he says, according to several accounts by those who have seen the video. Those words set off a furor at the Reformed Theological Seminary, where Waltke was — until this week — a professor. (The seminary is evangelical, with ties to several denominations.)” (USA Today)
He was immediately hired by Knox Theological Seminary, but the situation has rocked the Reformed academia.
For those who are unfamiliar with Waltke, I can’t think of any Reformed OT scholar held in higher regard by more people.
Waltke’s summary of his position:
“The best harmonious synthesis of the special revelation of the Bible, of the general revelation of human nature that distinguishes between right and wrong and consciously or unconsciously craves God, and of science is the theory of theistic evolution.
By “theistic evolution” I mean that the God of Israel, to bring glory to himself,
1. created all the things that are out of nothing and sustains them
2. incredibly, against the laws probability, finely tuned the essential properties of the universe to produce ADAM, who is capable of reflecting upon their origins
3. within his providence allowed the process of natural selection and of cataclysmic interventions – such as the meteor that extinguished the dinosaurs, enabling mammals to dominate the earth – to produce awe-inspiring creatures, especially ADAM
4. by direct creation made ADAM a spiritual being, an image of divine beings, for fellowship with himself by faith
5. allowed ADAM to freely choose to follow their primitive animal nature and to usurp the rule of God instead of living by faith in God, losing fellowship with their physical and spiritual Creator
6. and in his mercy chose from fallen ADAM the Israel of God, whom he regenerated by the Holy Spirit, in connection with their faith in Jesus Christ, the Second Adam, for fellowship with himself.”
To say that this concerns me is an understatement.
I don’t understand the scientific issues, but Waltke affirms a literal Adam and Eve , the fall, and every other major Christian doctrine.
He is renowned as a Hebrew scholar and thousands have profited from his insights on the OT.
Is he outside orthodoxy or just outside the Reformed confessions?
Can we disagree on this issue and remain brethren or does any acceptance of any form of evolution put you outside the camp?
The mans love of Christ is evident to anyone who has ever sat under his teaching…what do we do with Waltke?