Is BioLogos Promoting Heresy?

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BioLogos is an organization that is using millions of dollars (including considerable funding by the Templeton Foundation) to try to convince Christian leaders, Christians, and churches to adopt the ideas of evolution and billions of years into the Bible. On their website we read:

BioLogos invites the church and the world to see the harmony between science and biblical faith as we present an evolutionary understanding of God’s creation.

One of their core commitments states:

We affirm evolutionary creation, recognizing God as Creator of all life over billions of years.1

But are they just trying to impose evolutionary ideas onto God’s Word? No! It’s much more than that—they are trying to impose what I believe is really a heretical view of God’s character and the gospel. Can I justify this? Well, you judge for yourself.

On February 15, 2016, BioLogos posted a video by Rev. Leonard J. Vander Zee, who has an MDiv from Calvin Theological Seminary, and is a former pastor of South Bend (Indiana) Christian Reformed Church.

The president of BioLogos, Deborah Haarsma, is former professor and chair in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where BioLogos is currently located. She stated this about Reverand Vander Zee’s presentation (bold emphasis is ours to highlight statements):

He began to preach an amazing visual sermon, spinning a tale of wonder and beauty about “the true story of the whole world” (as N. T. Wright calls the Bible). Len brought the key events from billions of years of natural history right alongside the biblical narrative, with scientific images and beautiful artwork. My jaw dropped as he described the scientific wonders of the Big Bang as a reflection of the joy of the Trinity—God the Father, Son, and Spirit. He told the story of the evolution of plants and animals as an expression of God’s creativity, something we celebrate at BioLogos. He told of the development of the first humans and of how our sin tore us away from God’s intended path. He brought us on a journey through God’s plan for salvation in Jesus Christ and finally to the end of all things in God’s restored creation.2

Now the entire almost 12-minute video is on the BioLogos website and on YouTube. It’s nothing more than taking the secular/atheistic evolutionary views and attributing every aspect of evolution and billions of years to God!

I encourage you to watch the entire video later, but first watch these segments I have selected:

So, Reverend Vander Zee attributes millions of years of evolutionary processes (that involve death, suffering, disease, and bloodshed) to God—which itself is an attack on the character of our Holy God. But obviously he has no place for a literal Adam and Eve and literal Fall. He implies that there are more than two humans that evolved and that the whole universe and all life are in this continuous evolutionary progression.

Now watch this segment where he mentions sin—seemingly as something that is part of this evolutionary progression that spreads through human kind—not original sin by one man as the Bible clearly teaches (Romans 5:12 and 1 Corinthians 15:21–22)

Now watch how he describes salvation.

Reverend Vander Zee seems to be saying that salvation means that we evolve into some glorified state. Here are his words in print:

I want you to notice something important here that often gets lost in telling the Christian story. Salvation is not about leaving behind our broken humanity or the spoiled created order. Salvation is about becoming human, and as restored human beings in the image of God, bringing the created order to its full glory. Here is how Paul puts it in Romans 8, “The whole creation stands on tiptoe, waiting for the revealing of the children of God . . . in hope that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay into the freedom and glory of the children of God” (Rom. 8:18–20, paraphrase). Jesus Christ is the true and human image of the invisible God. By faith in Christ, through his shed blood and victorious resurrection, we are being restored by the Spirit to our true human identity as image-bearers of God. As Paul puts it, “We . . . are being transformed into his image with ever increasing glory” (2 Corinthians 3:18).

What could this possibly mean? He says, “Salvation is not about leaving behind our broken humanity” (a statement consistent with theistic evolutionists’ denial of Adam and Eve’s literal Fall). Yet we’re “restored” as “human beings in the image of God,” and we’re “restored” as humans “to our true human identity as image-bearers of God.” The definition of restore is “reestablish,” “to bring back to a former, original, or normal condition.”3 Which is it? If humanity wasn’t broken in the beginning, why restore it?

If, instead, Reverend Vander Zee actually meant “to bring back to a former, original, or normal condition” when he used the term “restore,” then what was the original condition? The original state (according to his evolutionary view) was deplorable—an existence filled with death and suffering and disease and every other evolutionary process that gave rise to humans! Since salvation normally denotes our eternal hope, are we as Christians to comfort ourselves in an eternity of death and suffering and disease and every other nasty evolutionary process?

Furthermore, Reverend Vander Zee says, “Salvation is not about leaving behind . . . the spoiled created order.” If so, then perhaps the current world in which we live—the one filled with death, suffering, disease, and bloodshed—will remain eternally. Is this picture any prettier or something to look forward to?

Whichever way you try to understand it, in the context of Reverend Vander Zee’s evolutionary narrative, his statement on salvation is confused and seriously contrary to Scripture.

Once you whittle away the beginning and the end of the story from the Christian gospel, is there much left to gut?

Theistic evolutionists can’t have it both ways. If you take away from the Christian worldview of the literal Fall and its cosmic effects, what happens to the Bible’s teaching about the new heavens and new earth? Is there any room for heaven in the theistic evolutionary worldview? Once you whittle away the beginning and the end of the story from the Christian gospel, is there much left to gut?

Not surprisingly, the BioLogos organization has a statement of faith that lacks any clear position on the Christian’s future hope. They claim to “believe in the historical death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, by which we are saved and reconciled to God,” but with respect to whether Jesus will return bodily, whether hell exists, and whether heaven is a place free of death and suffering, BioLogos has no explicit statement.

Why not? It probably goes back to their first—and even bigger—omission in their statement of faith: “We believe the Bible is the inspired and authoritative word of God.” Do you see what’s missing? They don’t explicitly endorse the inerrancy of Scripture! So they’re free to distort the beginning and the end of the Christian history of redemption. When BioLogos finishes their campaign, what will be left of Christianity?

Personally, I call it heresy because the definition of heresy is

opinion or doctrine at variance with the orthodox or accepted doctrine, especially of a church or religious system.4

Reverend Vander Zee’s description of salvation is a logical consequence of the acceptance of man’s fallible atheistic evolutionary beliefs combined with God’s infallible Word. BioLogos wants to call this “evolutionary creation”—but in reality it’s “theistic evolution,” which is only one step away from atheistic evolution. And the one step away is, in reality, one generation away, as we see increasing numbers of the millennial generation walking away from the church and rejecting the clear teachings of God’s Word. Compromised teaching like this from BioLogos is a major cause of this falling away, as revealed in the research we’ve had conducted and detailed in Already Gone and Ready to Return.

The thrust of BioLogos is not in accord with the biblical doctrines of Christianity; thus it is in reality from the spirit of anti-Christ. Church, be warned!

Footnotes

  1. “About BioLogos,” BioLogos, http://biologos.org/about-us/.
  2. Leonard J. Vander Zee, “The Story Behind the Big Story,” BioLogos, February 15, 2016, http://biologos.org/blogs/deborah-haarsma-the-presidents-notebook/the-story-behind-the-big-story.
  3. “Restore,” Dictionary.com, http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/restore.
  4. “Heresy,” Dictionary.com, http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/heresy.

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