Exploring the Interface between Evolutionary Science and Christian Theology

My name is David Vinson and I'd like to welcome you to our webpage. Like many others, I have come to view science and theology as complementary disciplines. Below you will find resources that highlight facets of my own exploration into this fascinating nexus of two fields of study I greatly enjoy.
Let us know if you find typos or broken links (dare I call them "missing links"?). Drop a note to our webmaster: editor 'at' drvinson 'dot' net

NB: My growing research responsibilities since 2011 have not allowed me to tend to this website for a number of years now. The references have not been updated. But I trust the content might still prove useful. Best wishes.--David (Summer 2015)  
Table of Contents
  • About This Site and Its Author
    • Who runs this website and why was it created?
  • Endorsements
    • Biblical scholars, theologians, local pastors, and scientists voice their support for this clearinghouse of resources 
  • My Journey 
    • While an undergraduate at U.C. Berkeley David stepped onto the Christian path. (Isn't that what CAL is known for?) But he was soon told by his church that "orthodox Christians" shouldn't buy into "that evolution stuff," atheistic as they believed it to be. What was he to do? After all, he was getting a bachelor's degree in physiology (!). Fortunately, over time, this popular model of conflict between science and faith gave way in his understanding to a more integrative approach. This page narrates the milestones in that dynamic journey. 
  • Presentations: Reframing the Debate 
    • Here you will find handouts from earlier presentations that set the stage for the discussion of creation and evolution. The first is a sermon that puts center stage the meaning of creation. What might God want to communicate to us from these creation texts of Scripture? The second handout is from a presentation at a Christian liberal arts university and provides a biblical perspective on appreciating the diverse views held by the church on this topic. These two presentations frame the debate in a way that embodies Jesus' blessing on the peace-makers.
  • Complementary Disciplines 
    • We open with an introduction to thinking of science and theology not as enemies but as complementary ways of viewing the world. This page offers soundings from the past as well as voices from the present. 
  • What Christians in Science Can Teach Us 
    • Here you will be introduced to a variety of excellent academic organizations both here in the US (like BioLogos) and abroad (like Christians in Science) that explore the constructive nexus between science and theology. Many of them will link you to essays, audio and video lectures, and book recommendations for further study. The resources they offer are rich and abundant. 
  • What Churches Have to Say
    • Many Christian denominations (and pastors) articulate how they have integrated these two ways of understanding the world.
  • Creation through Evolutionary Means
    • Theology tells us who created and sustains the world...and why. Science begins to explain how. Here various Christians offer their explanations of this integrated model of complementarity.
  • The Science of Evolution
  • The Education Debate
    • The contentious debate in North America is inflamed by two polarized extremes. On the one hand are the anti-theists who assume science tells us all we need to know about life--everything else is irrational nonsense and inherently dangerous. On the other hand are the equally passionate religious anti-evolutionists whose particular interpretation of the biblical account of creation precludes any natural explanation that science can provide (I know; I've been there). This section lists a few valuable resources that shed new light on this fascinating cultural phenomenon.
  • The Biblical Accounts of Creation
    • Interpretations of Genesis 1
      • The lay of the land is here presented to acquaint us with the varied interpretive options within evangelicalism of Genesis 1.
    • The Ancient "Science" of the Bible and Three Interpretive Options
      • We introduce the pre-scientific worldview of the ancient Near East that is assumed by the biblical authors. We also present three ways that biblical interpreters handle that ancient "science."
    • Varied Interpretations of Genesis 1-3 throughout Church History
      • Some of our more conservative brothers and sisters in the Christian faith insist that there is only way to interpret the creation accounts of Genesis. The early church, as but one example, was comfortable interpreting these passages in a variety of ways. It seems the Christian church never took just one approach to this topic. Books that discuss ancient and contemporary views are listed.
    • Scholars Explore Non-concordism 
      • Here biblical scholars, well-versed in its ancient Near Eastern context, clarify the ancient cosmology assumed by the biblical authors. We also quote a variety of scholars who help us understand a non-concordist interpretation of Genesis 1, that is, where the ancient "science" can be left in its ancient context and not forced to agree with (or "concord") with more modern scientific discoveries.
    • Theologies of Creation 
      • Several scholars explore biblical "creation themes."
  • History & More
    • Here we reference a few books, DVDs, and blogs that provide a larger historical context in which to set these issues. Subjects include:
      • Science and Religion
      • Evolutionary Theory
      • Charles Darwin
        • Works by Darwin
        • Works about Darwin
      • The Response to Darwinism
  • The Polls
    • What do the polls tell us about the public opinion on evolution as well as our basic science knowledge? This page also includes essays on the popular conflict model.
  • What's New? (on hold for 2012--a little busy with my medical research!) 
    • This page is designed for those who want to see a sampling of what's new in the field, as well as for returnees who would like to see what's been added since their last visit
    • It opens with a "What's Coming?" section that anticipates books, events, TV specials, and more, that are coming down the pike as well as items that are soon-to-be posted
    • I also post links to additional resources I've found helpful