Comment on Dr. Geraty clarifies his “Challenge” to literal 6-day creationism by Justin Kim.
(reposted from Spectrum)
Christ’s love is not a robe for doctrinal error.
Geraty says he is against “a seven literal historical, consecutive, contiguous 24-hour day week of creation 6,000 years ago which is NOT in Genesis no matter how much the fundamentalist wing of the church would like to see it there.”
Then, he adds: “I wholeheartedly affirm Scripture, but NOT the extra-Biblical interpretation of the Michigan Conference.”
The reality is that the “Michigan Conference” did NOT add this so-called “extra-Biblical interpretation.” To clarify, point number 4 of the MCEC vote states:
“We request that the 2010 General Conference session vote a resolution affirming number 3 above, with the direction of bringing to the following GC session a statement that would serve to strengthen our fundamental belief number six. Hence, our Creation doctrine would clearly articulate our biblical view of ‘a literal, recent, six-day Creation,’ in which ‘the seven days of the Creation account were literal 24-hour days forming a week identical in time to what we now experience as a week,’ as the statement affirmed by the General Conference Executive Committee in October 2004 noted.”
[Emphasis note: “as the statement affirmed by the GC Executive Committee in Oct 2004!!”]
(1) Geraty has unfortunately misrepresented the facts. Nowhere did the Michigan Conference even suggest “6,000 years ago.”
(2) The MCEC statement was directly quoting the General Conference Executive Committee’s October 2004 statement, of “a literal, recent, six-day Creation,” in which “the seven days of the Creation account were literal 24-hour days forming a week identical in time to what we now experience as a week.” This is basically what the MCEC is asking the 2010 GC to take up. Yet, by ignoring this fact, Geraty seems to be falsely alleging that Michigan Conference is promoting “extra-Biblical interpretation”. What Geraty is really doing, is essentially claiming that the GC Executive Committee is promoting “extra-Biblical interpretation.”
(3) In part, Fundamental Belief number 6 states: “In six days the Lord made ‘the heavens and the earth’ and all living things upon the earth and rested on the seventh day of that week. Thus He established the Sabbath as a perpetual memorial of His completed creative work.”
Geraty asserts: “Fundamental Belief No. 6 uses Biblical language to which we can all agree; once you start interpreting it according to anyone’s preference you begin to cut out members who have a different interpretation. I wholeheartedly affirm Scripture.”
Notice what President Jan Paulsen states in his June 9, 2009 article in the Adventist Review: “Our position as a church in the matter of origins is clearly although somewhat broadly stated in our Fundamental Beliefs. This position is further amplified in a statement voted by the General Conference Executive Committee at the 2004 Annual Council [responding to ‘An Affirmation of Creation,’ submitted by the International Faith & Science Conferences]. To remind ourselves of the details of that action, I have included the wording in this appeal: ‘We strongly endorse the document’s affirmation of our historic, biblical position of belief in a literal, recent, six-day Creation. We urge that the document, accompanied by this response, be disseminated widely throughout the world Seventh-day Adventist Church, using all available communication channels and in the major languages of World membership. We affirm the Seventh-day Advenitst understanding of the historicity of Genesis 1-11: that the seven days of the Creation account were literal 24-hour days forming a week identical in time to what we now experience as a week; and that the Flood was global in nature. We call on all boards and educators at Seventh-day Adventist institutions at all levels to continue upholding and advocating the church’s position on origins….”
In a nutshell, Geraty is actually implying that the GCâ€™s statement is tantamount to interpreting Fundamental Belief #6 “according to anyone’s preference.”
(4) Thus, it appears that Geraty is really suggesting that the GC Executive Committee is “the fundamentalist wing of the church,” since it is simply their statement that the MCEC is really calling for inclusion in the current belief number 6.
(5) Also, it seems that Geraty is basically charging the GC Executive Committee with beginning “to cut out members who have a different interpretation.”
(6) Ultimately then, it looks like Geraty is accusing the GC Executive Committee of being one of the “forces at work that are disrupting the unity of the church.”