Genesis I: Theological Dimensions/Implications

Speaker: Categories: Oct 09, 1999

 

[1hr, 19min, 27sec / 55min, 12sec]

ABOUT THE TOPIC:

After thirteen weeks ofdedicated(!)andintense(!)study of the creation story in Genesis 1 and 2, as guided by the adult Sabbath School lessons, some may be breathing a sigh of relief that"now it all makes sense"while others may be sighing for totally different reasons. Certainly the discussions in the various adult classes must have been stimulating and provocative, maybe even tension-filled and adversarial. What was your experience? And are you sighing, glad that at last we can get on to another focus for study?

The interest generated by these class discussions during this past quarter, the interest generated at the August San Diego Adventist Forum meeting when Dr. Erv Taylor identifiedCrises in Adventist Creationism, and theDivine Creationseminar weekend at Loma Linda, September 24-25, all make this change in topic from the previously announced October 9 meeting most timely. And, though Dr. Blazen has not promised to answer all the questions you may have about the story of earth's origin(s), he will offer some insights into the Genes is account which may expand our understanding -- maybe even challenge us further to dig more deeply for the meaning(s) the writer of this book of beginnings had in mind.

Dr. Ivan Blazen notes:"There is a certain curious unity between those creationist scientists who have tried to fit Genesis 1 into the ever-changing understandings of the universe, as presented by scientific discovery, and those evolutionary scientists who have dubbed Genesis 1 as unscientific and to be rejected. Both these groups, from either positive or negative angles, read Genesis 1 in terms of scientific truth and have missed the real character of the chapter! It will be the purpose of [the October San Diego Adventist Forum presentation] to clarify the theological truths and practical concerns of Genesis 1 in terms of the history and worship of ancient Israel, to whom the text was originally addressed, and the experience of believers today, who live in a threatening, disordered world."

Does that assurance seem to suggest that one ought to read the textin context-- the context of the biblical passage as well as the context of the culture and time of the writing? Does the absence of such a broader look in the past quarter's lessons have any significance?

ABOUT THE SPEAKER:

Ivan T. Blazen is a Professor of Biblical Interpretation and Theology at Loma Linda University. He has served as a professor in the Religion department of Pacific Union College and as Professor of New Testament in the Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary where he also chaired the Department of New Testament. Though perhaps best known for his research and understanding of Paul's writings, he is also skilled in understanding theological implications of other passages. He has made significant contributions to San Diego Adventist Forum in his four previous presentations: 9/90, 5/97, 4/98, and most recently, 5/99, on topics ranging from divorce and remarriage, Corinthian theology, the meaning of Jesus'sacrifice, and the relationship of God to human suffering.

 

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