Genesis Recast: The War with Science is Over

The end of the semester has been particularly busy, so it’s been a while since my last blog post. I’m planning on doing a number of posts in June, but until then I can announce some upcoming events.

Conference in Western New York on Evolution and the Bible

The event I want to focus on here is a major conference being planned for western New York state addressing how the biblical accounts of creation might be compatible with contemporary evolutionary accounts of the cosmos and humanity.

The conference, entitled “Genesis Recast: The War with Science is Over,” is scheduled for September 18-19, 2015 (Friday evening and Saturday) at The Chapel at Crosspoint in Getzville, NY.

Jim Walton of The Third Choice

The conference is organized by Jim Walton (brother of Old Testament scholar John Walton); he will host the conference and introduce the speakers. After having been involved in pastoral ministry in Buffalo, NY for over twenty years, Jim became Founder/ President of The 3rd Choice, an apologetics/ evangelistic/ discipleship website designed to engage people in conversation about matters of faith.

The rationale for the conference is that Genesis 1-2 is a huge obstacle to faith in our country right now. Millions of students are turning away from faith because of “science,” and they think that the early chapters of Genesis have been proven to be fictional. Millions of Christian students are struggling to reconcile Genesis 1-2 with contemporary science, and it’s an unnecessary tension. This conference intends to help change the conversation.

Keynote Speaker John Walton

The keynote speaker is Dr. John Walton, professor of Old Testament at Wheaton College. He will give two talks, Friday night and Saturday morning, which will focus on the material from his books The Lost World of Genesis One (IVP Academic, 2009) and The Lost World of Adam and Eve (IVP Academic, 2015).

John Walton’s interpretation of Genesis 1 and 2 is informed by contemporary biblical studies and how creation accounts functioned in the ancient Near East. His approach has been immensely significant in helping evangelical Christians understand Genesis 1 and 2 better, which does not predispose us either for or against evolutionary science; that needs to be studied on its own merits. Walton has just completed a world lecture tour, to a very positive response on the part of the attendees.

Other Speakers on the New Testament, Science, and the Church

Walton’s presentation on Saturday morning will be followed by Dr. Craig Evans (a well-respected New Testament scholar from Acadia Divinity College, in Nova Scotia), Dr. Steve Schaffner (a scientist working in the area of genetics at the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT), and Skye Jethani (a pastor, consultant, and executive editor of Leadership Journal).

You can find short Bios of the speakers here and longer bios here.

This is the tentative schedule for the conference.

Conference Sponsors and Registration

The event is being co-sponsored by The Chapel at Crosspoint, InterVarsity Christian Fellowship and Campus Ambassadors at the University of Buffalo, and the Biologos Foundation.

Because the organizers/ sponsors are very excited about the conference and its potential for raising awareness of the compatibility of biblical faith and contemporary science in the entire Western NY area and possibly beyond (Pennsylvania, Ontario, Ohio), they are keeping the cost of attendance ridiculously low for an event of this caliber, in the hope that many students, professors, pastors, and others can attend.

The cost for registration is $20 in advance, $25 at the door, and only $10 for students.

I will post information on how to register as it becomes available.

Tell your friends about this event, and let’s pack the auditorium.

See a follow-up post on the conference here.