It was early in 2010 that I was introduced to the book “The Undefended Life” by an Anglican priest – Simon Walker. As a former Anglican I could relate to much of what Simon was saying, and made some quite extensive notes purely for my own benefit.
Around the same time I was introduced (by another Anglican priest) to the writings of a former Anglican, Richard Holloway who had been Primus of the Church of Scotland until 2000. Richard has many controversial views that make interesting reading, but there was one in particular that struck me as being especially significant – the place of broken myths.
Elsewhere Richard suggests that the myth of original sin has to be one of the most unsympathetic Christian doctrines – those who are not baptised go to hell after death! What is this sin that babies are born with? The doctrine is not found in the story of Adam and Eve. Genesis 3 says nothing about the transmission to humanity of Adam’s guilt. It is interpreted by Jewish scholars as an allegory of the human condition, not an historic event – a myth!
It was in August 2011 just at the time that I was reconsidering the content of my blog and moving from Blogger to WordPress that the controversy surrounding the reality or otherwise of Adam and Eve, came to a head again (in America) when John Schneider, a conservative theologian who taught at Calvin College in Michigan until recently, said that it’s time to face facts, “There is no historical Adam and Eve; no serpent; no apple; no fall that toppled man from a state of innocence”. To many evangelicals that is absolute heresy! Schneider went on to say, “Evolution makes it pretty clear that in nature, and in the moral experience of human beings, there never was any such paradise to be lost”.
Albert Mohler, the president of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary responded by saying that the denial of an historical Adam and Eve as the first parents of all humanity and the solitary first human pair, severs the link between Adam and Christ which is so crucial to the gospel. He went on to say, “If we do not know how the story of the Gospel begins, then we do not know what that story means. Make no mistake; a false start to the story produces a false grasp of the Gospel”.
Here was an evangelical leader saying that if we do not accept the literal reality of Adam and Eve we have a false grasp of the gospel!!!!!!!
This just reinforced the conclusion I came to a few years ago that there is an enormous difference between the Christian RELIGION (or Christendom) and the Christian FAITH.
It was at this point that I edited my own notes on the book “The Undefended Life” to reflect what I now see as my own undefended faith based on a relationship with a Father who loves us far more than we can imagine.
What do you think of “Follow me“?