This is not an easy thing to do given that BioLogos is a place for conversation among people of diverse viewpoints and traditions. The BioLogos staff members represent assorted backgrounds in the protestant evangelical tradition. Our current church affiliations include for example, fellowships which are Calvinistic, Baptist, Anabaptist, and Wesleyan. Furthermore, the BioLogos community as a whole is even broader than that. BioLogos is a place for conversation among Christians — a very broad umbrella for a wide set of theological perspectives.
Sure, I get that. You have differences of opinions about communion and baptism and ecclesiastical polity and other fine points of doctrine. On the other hand, every group of Christians that has ever published a statement of faith surely disagreed about something, and yet, they managed to come up with a basic list of tenets that they could all stomach agreeing to.
I must admit, I am a little disappointed, because a theistic evolutionist statement of faith could do so much good. No longer would “theistic evolution” need to be a vague, boogeyman-sounding word synonymous with “heresy” and “blasphemy” in conservative churches and Christian circles across America. No longer would each Christian who is open to the idea of evolution be forced to build his or her faith back up from the ground floor, virtually on their own, without a simple list of precepts by which they might judge or nourish their beliefs.
The funny thing is, there already are plenty of Christian faith statements that would accommodate evolution just fine. That includes the one that is probably the most well known, which makes sense, since it’s more than 1,600 years old: the Nicene Creed. Nothing about Genesis or evolution in there, and it’s still recited in Christian churches the world over (true to form, there are roughly a million different versions of it out there).
But, for some reason, we evangelicals tend to balk at anything that has even a hint of liturgy about it, so I took the liberty of drafting a statement of faith of my own.
It’s intended to be ecumenically Christian, so I hope it might be something you can use, or at least adapt, to your own purposes. And if you can, please feel free to. You can find it in the form of a Word document here and a PDF here.
My sinister ulterior motive in writing this is to save me a bit of work moving forward. You see, when my more traditional brethren visit my site, they seem to frequently come to the conclusion that — since I accept evolution and all — I must be just one small stumble away from being a godless heathen. So I often get asked about my views on Jesus, the resurrection, scripture, miracles and so on.
Hopefully, this might begin to put their fears to rest. But, if nothing else, it gives me a simple link I can post rather than reiterating my beliefs again and again and again to skeptical literalists.
These are my convictions. It’s certainly not the only Christian statement of faith out there, but I bet it’s one of the very few that contains an allusion to a famous Charles Darwin quote.
I believe in one God, infinite in power and perfection and being, eternal and unbound by time, creator of heaven and earth and all that is seen or unseen. All living things came to be at his command and proceeded according to his divine will and providence; he is the author of every natural process and he alone sustains them by his powerful word.
I believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, the Messiah, the Word of God and God incarnate, worthy of glory and honor and praise, through whom and for whom was made every thing that ever has been or ever will be made, who came to earth in the form of a man to reconcile the world to himself and save all people from their sins. He, like us, was tempted in every way, yet did not sin, and instead submitted himself to God, being obedient even to death. I believe he suffered, died and rose again on the third day, as both he and the Hebrew prophets foretold.
I believe in the Holy Spirit, the promised gift of God and the third Person of the Trinity, who has come now to convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment and to lead us into all truth, who indwells believers and empowers them for peaceful and godly lives and fruitful ministry.
I believe mankind, male and female, were made in the spiritual image of God and offered everlasting life through obedience to and communion with their Creator. But we went astray, as scripture teaches, and seeking to be our own gods, we severed ourselves from our source of life, corrupting our natures toward sinful desires and condemning us to the ultimate punishment — a fate from which we may be liberated and redeemed only by penitent faith in the Lord Jesus.
I believe the Holy Bible to be inspired by God and hence, infallible and authoritative on all matters on which it was and is intended to teach. I believe that through the study of scripture and the guidance of the Holy Spirit, the one true God will make himself known to those who seek him, as he promises in his word.
I believe God’s creation was and is very good, and serves as a reflection of his divine character. Nature, like scripture, is a book written by God, and it cannot lie, just as he cannot. Therefore, the study of nature, in good faith, will yield truth, continually revealing the grandeur breathed into it by its creator since the beginning.
I believe in one Church, established and knit together by the living God, which is to serve as his hands and feet in the present age and will be welcomed by him, spotless and beloved, in the age to come.
Well, there you have it. If you have any questions or suggestions, please feel free to comment below or email me. I’d love to know if anyone uses it or a version of it in their own churches, ministries, small groups, etc. And if you like it, please share it around using the buttons below, and Like us on Facebook (every time we get a new fan on social media, an angel evolves new wings!).
Update: A representative of The BioLogos Foundation has graciously informed me that the group actually does have a “We Believe” statement it drafted sometime after the aforementioned post by Darrel Falk. You can find it here. It goes into much greater detail than mine regarding the scientific positions that BioLogos supports or rejects, and we at GOE are in agreement with each point. So I’m not really disappointed in them at all anymore.