Sunday, August 1, 2010

Ontologically Naturalistic Christian Scripture

Science has closed the gaps. The material cosmos is naturalistically functional—there are no interruptions of the world's basic casual processes. The sun rises, chloroplasts take in sunlight, the tides turn, and the daylight ends without a single necessary supernatural interruption of world affairs. The reality of an uninterrupted state of naturalistic affairs can be shown true now and into the innumerable days and eons that precede the emergence of our fragile biosphere. There are no facts that demand the rejection of such a naturalism.

What of the Bible? Does it not evidence a divine imprint? Griffin, one of my favorite process theologians notes the following:

Modern biblical criticism has removed … any reason for thinking that the writing of the Bible involved any interruption of the normal thinking processes of its authors (p. 23).

In fact, if one wants to disprove absolute naturalism, one could attempt this with the Bible. All such would take is to show one instance of interruption—one moment where a biblical writer expresses something beyond the cognitive horizons of his life situation. As a lifelong student of religion and the Bible, I am quite certain that it is impossible to do this.

Griffin, David Ray. "Process Theology and the Christian Good News" (pp. 1-38) in Searching for an Adequate God. Cobb, John & Pinnock, Charles, eds. Eerdmans: Grand Rapids, 2000.