All Christians believe that God created our world and all that is in it. Human beings are the highest expression of God’s creation because they are made in God’s image and likeness. The book of Genesis bears witness to this fact in its opening chapters as it describes the six days of creation, the creation of Adam and Eve by God, and their subsequent fall from grace.
This view was widely accepted until the rise of modern science, which began to question this accepted world-view. Was the world created in six days as the Bible says? Did God create human beings from the dust of the earth? Scientific investigation seemed to suggest that this was not the case and, as science developed its investigative methods, more and more doubt was cast on the Bible’s reliability to give answers to the origins of the world and human beings. As a result of this, many people came to believe that it was impossible to reconcile science and its methods with belief in a creator God.
But this was not the only problem. Some Biblical scholars began to apply the methods of scientific investigation to their study of the Bible with the result that they began to discover more about the nature of the texts that they had been studying. Texts that had previously been understood as giving a literal account of an incident or event were explained in a different way as a result of this study. While this was welcome news to some Christians who found the challenge of science undermining their faith in a creator God, other Christians felt that this was an attack on the very foundations of their belief in God and how the world they inhabited had come into being.
Area 1: Sources of human understanding
To understand the significance of the concept of revelation for Christians, it is important to know...