Energion Publications is pleased to announce the addition of some exciting new titles to its catalog of books on the subject of creation and evolution.
In Creation in Scripture, Herold Weiss discussed the various ways in which creation is presented in the Bible. In Creation: The Christian Doctrine, Edward W. H. Vick examined what should go into constructing a doctrine of creation that is truly Christian.
Worshiping with Charles Darwin?
But does acceptance of the theory of evolution as the method, while affirming that God is the creator impact the way we worship? Bob Cornwall, pastor, writer, activist, and church historian takes on this controversial subject in Worshiping with Charles Darwin. Though this book does discuss the reasons why Bob accepts the theory of evolution and also why he believes this is compatible with his Christian faith, that is not its purpose.
Of this new book, Thomas Jay Oord, Professor of Theology and Philosophy at Northwest Nazarene University said, “Bob Cornwall’s sermons read like a great conversation with an articulate and well-read friend. The prose is lively! And the perspectives he offers on creation, science, Scripture, and God are greatly needed in an age of confusion over issues in science and theology. This book is an outstanding contribution to a better way!” (Emphasis mine.)
There are two collections in this book. The first is a series of sermons Bob has preached on Evolution Sunday (the Sunday closest to Charles Darwin’s birthday). If you’re a pastor who is considering what to do on this Sunday, Bob will provide you with ideas. If you’re a parishioner whose pastor is considering commemorating Evolution Sunday, these sermons might give you an idea what that could look like.
The second is a collection of essays presenting the idea of Evolution Sunday and God as creator to a broader audience. These essays were published as columns in the local newspaper where Bob Cornwall was pastor.
Finally, the collection has a supplement with liturgical aids for those planning worship services for Evolution Sunday.
There are a number of controversial aspects to this book. Besides the obvious question of of the relationship of the doctrine of creation to the theory of evolution–are they compatible or not–there is the question of whether the theory of evolution should be the subject of a Sunday in church. There are those who accept the theory of evolution and yet do not like, even vehemently oppose, the idea of putting such a Sunday into the church calendar.
So we’ve even titled the book controversially. We’ve also titled it honestly. But it’s not the most controversial book that we publish on this subject. Most importantly, as with all of the books pictured (including those forthcoming), it is not primarily about arguing which view of origins is true. Rather, it’s about examining the implications of accepting the theory of evolution.
Related Forthcoming Books
How will the forthcoming books follow up on what the earlier books have done?
Creation in Contemporary Experience will be released in March, 2014, and will discuss how our view of God as creator should impact the way we live in the world. How does this inform our ethics? How can we tell the story of creation in scientific terms?
Creation: The Science is to be written by science educator and Methodist Lay Speaker Tony Mitchell, Ph.D., whose doctoral degree is in chemistry education. This is again not primarily a book to debate the issues. In requesting this title (and it was solicited), I asked Tony to answer the question: What basic science would you like an audience to understand before they listen to a debate on creation vs. evolution?
Will We Publish All Sides?
I decided I should take this issue on directly. So here are five books on the topic of creation and evolution, and all of them are from the same general perspective. Is Energion Publications taking an official position on this and only publishing one side? We have a mission and doctrinal statement, and our doctrinal statement does not take a position on this issue. Neither do we. But it is not a question of “both” sides. There are a number of viewpoints on how faith and science relate, and with the right manuscript we’ll be interested in publishing any of them. (Read my notes on Energion Publications and my personal views.)
Let me give two examples of excellent books from other publishers and from other viewpoints. First, from the old earth point of view, we have John Sailhamer’s Genesis Unbound. While this takes Genesis literally, it takes it in a very different sense from the one that is usually called literal and so allows for an old planet in an old universe. The link above is to my review. While ultimately I disagree, Dr. Sailhamer’s book is one that is challenging and well worth having read, even if you continue to disagree.
Kurt Wise’s book Faith, Form, and Time was a pleasant surprise for me in terms of young age creationist reading. As I note in my review (linked above) Dr. Wise is very clear that he believes in a young earth because he believes that is what the Bible teaches, and that the Bible is to be taken over the observations of science.
Call for Submissions
Which brings me to a note on potential manuscripts. If you are a young age creationist, consider taking and developing that one point. Does the Bible challenge the observations of science? The theories of science? Is there a consistent way of interpreting the Bible that tells us when we should take our understanding of scriptures over our observation of and understanding of the physical world? We would be very interested in publishing a positive, consistent, readable, and challenging exposition of that point with strong examples from various parts of scripture, not just the traditional creation passages.