Crossley shares new insights on cosmology reactions
Laurinburg, N.C. – The Rev. Dr. Ronald Crossley returned to the Religion and Science Roundtable at St. Andrews University Tuesday evening to share additional insights on “Christ, Creation and Contemporary Cosmology.”
Crossley first presented his thesis that Christians have encountered for different worldviews that shaped the reactions of the faith during a Roundtable in February 2011. He expanded his insights with the presentation “Christ, Creation and Contemporary Cosmology: A Second Try.”
The four worldviews highlighted included after Babylon, after Aristotle, after Newton and the contemporary big bang and quantum cosmology.
“A crucial element I did not address in the first presentation was the 20th century theology revolution that took place during the fourth worldview,” Crossley said. “The theological revolution happened in an increasingly secular worldview. By the mid-20th century, Christians generally accepted the new cosmology, geology and biology.”
It was also during this time that Christian theology becomes more and more diverse and fragmented, according to Crossley.
“While the views of God changed dramatically, very few people noticed the revolution outside of the academics who were putting the information together,” he said. “Some of the new theological claims look very much like the old claims but the old vocabulary expressed new and radical ideas.”
Crossley highlighted five pieces to the new theology, including the globalization of Christian theology, the expanded role of women within the new theology, the doctrine of the trinity returning to the center of the theology, the identification of God with massive sufferings, and theology not engaging with contemporary scientific discoveries.
“Yet by the end of the century, organized institutional settings had engendered conversations between theologians and scientists,” he said. “It also became more common for participants in the dialog to get degrees in both science and theology. Thought leaders like Ian Barbor and Robert John Russell are prime examples. Often they get their scientific degrees first and then the theology because as everyone knows theology is not rocket science.”
Crossley concluded with his contemporary Christian reaction to the current cosmology.
“God’s creating the creation expresses God’s eternal love,” he said. “The Christ-event provides a core index how God always acts as Creator. God created the creation to provide a place and time for God’s incarnation as Jesus. Before creation, God in eternity chose to give God’s self to the creation. Loving the creation and its creatures provides God with a link to redemption.
“The Christ-event was moving us toward a human awareness of God,” Crossley continued. “God’s raising Jesus from death is the center of the Christian faith. If God raised Jesus from death to a new form of life is indeed the eternally loving creator than resurrection from death is a gift from an eternally loving God. It allows for transformation and change. In Jesus, God gives himself completely to creation in a new way.”
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