Wednesday 31 August 2005

Creatio ex nihilo

A few weeks back I argued that a commitment to the doctrine of creation does not entail any specific belief about whether or not the universe had a definite “beginning.” A recent book by Paul Copan and William Lane Craig presents the opposite argument: Creation Out of Nothing: A Biblical, Philosophical and Scientific Exploration (Grand Rapids: Baker, 2004).


Tyler F. Williams said...

I haven't read the book you mentioned, though I would agree with you and argue on biblical grounds from Genesis 1 that creation ex nihilo is not necessary and more than likely not the best was to interpret Gen 1:1.

Ben Myers said...

Yes, I think you're right that the concept of "ex nihilo" shouldn't be read into Genesis 1. This kind of conceptuality is really foreign to the whole thought-world of Genesis 1.

Having said that, I certainly think that "ex nihilo" is a valid theological interpretation of the biblical witness as a whole (and the biblical witness to creation is obviously much more diverse than just the Genesis stories). But we should guard against confusing our theological interpretation with the texts themselves.

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