What Hath Darwin to Do with Scripture?

Comparing Conceptual Worlds of the Bible and Evolution

This title was previously available on NetGalley and is now archived.
Buy on Amazon Buy on BN.com Buy on Bookshop.org
*This page contains affiliate links, so we may earn a small commission when you make a purchase through links on our site at no additional cost to you.
Send NetGalley books directly to your Kindle or Kindle app

1
To read on a Kindle or Kindle app, please add kindle@netgalley.com as an approved email address to receive files in your Amazon account. Click here for step-by-step instructions.
2
Also find your Kindle email address within your Amazon account, and enter it here.
Pub Date 19 Dec 2023 | Archive Date 18 Jan 2024

Talking about this book? Use #WhatHathDarwintoDowithScripture #NetGalley. More hashtag tips!


Description

Believe it or not, the book of Genesis might have been the most Darwinian text in the ancient world. And throughout the opening books of Scripture, we find ideas that would also become prominent insights of the biologist Charles Darwin interlaced with the Bible's one-of-a-kind origin story. Key plot markers come to the surface again and again, driving the history of Israel and the Jesus movement forward to its cosmic completion.

Biblical scholar Dru Johnson calls us beyond typical creation-versus-evolution debates to explore the conceptual worlds underlying both Scripture and evolutionary science. He points toward remarkable continuities and discontinuities between the Bible's central concerns and those of Darwin and modern science—ideas so fundamental that they can easily escape our notice.

The Hebrew creation accounts, Johnson argues, weave together three key themes on the origins and development of humans and animals, themes that are also essentially Darwinian:

  • the connection among scarcity, cooperation, and violence
  • the fitness of creatures to their environments
  • the genealogical aims of sexual reproduction

Can the ideas of Scripture and evolutionary science be mutually illuminating? When we enter deeply into the metaphysical imagination of the biblical authors, we discover surprising ways in which the two accounts converge—and conflict.

Believe it or not, the book of Genesis might have been the most Darwinian text in the ancient world. And throughout the opening books of Scripture, we find ideas that would also become prominent...


Advance Praise

"In this highly readable and fascinating book, Dru Johnson offers readers an intriguing, imaginative, and eye-opening account that offers a window into two disparate worlds—a world of evolutionary science and a world of (some of) the biblical authors—while also showing them to be, in many ways, complementary to one another. What is especially laudable is Johnson's balanced approach that succeeds in being at once both cautious and creative."

-Andrew Torrance, University of St. Andrews

"Johnson raises distinctly relevant considerations about the historical and future nature of reality and the distinctions leaving biblical and evolutionary narratives in tension. I will be pondering much of what Johnson has to say for years to come and look forward to conversations his contributions invite others to. I revel in the idea of understanding some things anew and pondering deeper things still in tension, and I appreciate Johnson's faithful scriptural exegesis to aid me in my considerations. Can evolutionary and biblical narratives converge, as Christians who embrace evolution's explanations of origins claim? Or are persistent, irreconcilable tensions inevitable as one metaphysical position clings to an embedded and inescapable narrative of exclusion, competition, scarcity, and existential insecurity?"

-Anjeanette "AJ" Roberts, molecular biologist, author, and chaplain

"What hath Eden to do with the Galápagos Islands? As Dru Johnson explains, more than one might expect. We who live in a culture of affluence have difficulty grasping how powerful the message of Edenic flourishing would have been to the original audience, a culture threatened constantly by scarcity and violence. Johnson demonstrates that Moses and Darwin dealt with many of the same subjects but came to very different conclusions."

-Kenneth Keathley, senior professor of theology at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary

"In this highly readable and fascinating book, Dru Johnson offers readers an intriguing, imaginative, and eye-opening account that offers a window into two disparate worlds—a world of evolutionary...


Available Editions

EDITION Other Format
ISBN 9781514003619
PRICE $24.00 (USD)
PAGES 224

Available on NetGalley

NetGalley Shelf App (PDF)
Send to Kindle (PDF)
Download (PDF)

Average rating from 2 members