At the recent national Evangelical Theological Society (ETS) conference in November 2012 in Milwaukee, WI, Douglas Moo spoke in the second plenary session on “Biblical Theology and Creation Care.” I appreciated Moo’s emphasis on all truth being God’s truth. I have possibly been too dismissive of Scientists in the past. I agree with Moo that I should consider that Scientists may recognize truth in an area of God’s world that I know nothing about. Of course, Scripture has the final authority, for Science does not delimit Scripture, but in the future, I will consider the claims of Scientists more diligently before I reject them.
Zondervan recorded the plenary sessions, and offers them here. Moo is introduced at 01:03:03, and starts speaking at 01:05:25.
Summary of Main Points
Those who speak out against global warming are similar to the country preacher who cannot read transliterated Greek. Inviting different perspectives on man-made global warming is sort of like having a conference on Jesus in which we have equal representation from those who think Jesus existed and those do not think Jesus existed. Moo believes we should trust scientists in the field on this issue instead of meddling in stuff we don’t know anything about. Instead of dismissing scientists, theologians should consider the claims of scientists and return to the text trying to discern if there is any validity in the scientific claim. Western culture has an unbiblical view of dominion over creation. The church must be brought back to a more biblical view of humans and their role in creation. All truth is God’s truth. Therefore, truth learned in the scientific world reveals evidence God has left for us in creation. The issue is not scientific theory vs. biblical fact, but the interpretations of scientists vs. the interpretations of theologians. Scripture must certainly have the last word, and it is vitally important that information outside of Scripture cannot determine what the Bible can and cannot say. Nevertheless, we cannot dismiss scientific data unless there is sufficient biblical reason to do so. Creation care will be informed by Scientists as we examine their claims in light of Scripture.