I received the Summer 2019 Adventist Today magazine recently. This issue, on the power of grace, is one of the best AT has put out for awhile. The articles are excellent, especially the poignant one by D. Rice, and an honest article about the pastorate. We don’t need to be clergy to relate to these struggles.
The one article I didn’t agree with was by the science teacher from the Nazarene College, the same college where my husband took his pre-dental courses. I don’t believe any member who chooses to accept theistic evolution should be excommunicated from the church. We make our own informed choices and the church can’t force them.
Apparently the writer teaches evolutionary theory as a fact without offering believing students an alternative. I may be wrong but it appears she is in the practice of persuading her students to accept the theory. This is evidently contrary to the philosophy of the institution who hired her. As in any controversy, it’s best if the teacher does not take sides.
Evolution needs to be taught. Students leave their church environment eventually and must understand evolution and be able to explain it. They also need to know what does not fit the theory either theologically or materially.
Although not a biblical literalist, I believe the Gospel does not fit with violence and death for millions of years before sin. There may be an explanation for the dating methods, but we don’t have one now. We do have Christ. It’s better to say “I don’t know” and encourage students to concentrate on what the biblical account means rather than if it happened exactly as recorded after being passed on for many generations by people who did not know science. It’s still inspired and creation is a perfect completed seven.
Ella M. Rydzewski, Clarksville, MD
4 September 2019