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  Fall From Grace
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ContributorHomegrown Democrat 
Last EditedHomegrown Democrat  Aug 15, 2011 03:03pm
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CategoryBlog Entry
AuthorScott Jaschik
News DateMonday, August 15, 2011 05:45:00 PM UTC0:0
DescriptionReaders of The Banner, the publication of the Christian Reformed Church in North America, reacted instantly to the news in January that two religion professors at Calvin College had written scholarly papers suggesting that evidence of genetics and evolution raised questions about the traditional, literal reading of Genesis about creation, the story of Adam and Eve, and the fall of humanity out of an initial idyllic state.

The professors were not disavowing the role of God or of their church, but were arguing that modern science challenges traditional, literal readings of the Book of Genesis in ways that may require theological shifts.

Nonetheless, the reaction from readers of The Banner, as expressed in many (but not all) comments on the website, was clear: no deviation from Genesis as literal truth could be tolerated. "To protect the church and college from false teachers and contrary orthodox beliefs it would be right to let these guys go," said one comment. "Clearly, professors who deny the scriptures as interpreted by our creeds and who have broken the promise they made when they signed the Form of Subscription should be fired," said another.

One recent post says: "Why is it that so many Christians and academics in Christian colleges seem more concerned about keeping in step with what the world teaches than they are about what God's Word teaches? Are we ashamed of God's Word in the face of the beliefs of our worldly peers?"

Such comments weren't just posted on The Banner website, but were also sent to college officials, where the two professors were investigated. One -- John Schneider -- has now left the tenured position he held for 25 years, as part of an agreement with the college. The other religion professor, Daniel Harlow, remains at the college, and is refusing to back down from his views.
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