John Stott: The Lineage of Christ from Monkeys

John Stott. A lot of evangelicals (so-called) quote him. He’s not the only one. Those who readily quote John Stott also are apt to quote and write articles in praise of men like C.S. Lewis, a man whose Christianity was, at the very least, partially based, not on the Word of God, but his own invention. In Lewis’s case, it’s more than partial, since he denied the penal substitutionary atonement of Christ.

Below I’ve presented a quote from John Stott’s book, Understanding the Bible. Now I know I have some very astute readers, and I’m sure you would not miss the errors of Stotts beliefs and his departure from reliance on the Word of God right away, but, for those not so familiar, here is what you will find to be crystal clear from the quote:

  1. The Bible does not demand a 6-day creation
  2. The ‘authority’ of science must be taken into account when examining God’s Word.
  3. The words creation and evolution are not mutually exclusive (theistic evolution is ok)
  4. Stott believed ‘that several forms of pre-Adamic ‘hominid’ may have existed for thousands of years previously’, you know, like monkeys and apes, or ‘homo-erectus’ and God created the first Adam out of one of these.

“Not many Christians today find it necessary to defend the concept of a literal six-day creation, for the text does not demand it, and scientific discovery appears to contradict it. The biblical text presents itself not as a scientific treatise but as a highly stylized literary statement (deliberately framed in three pairs, the fourth “day” corresponding to the first, the fifth to the second, and the sixth to the third)…

“It is most unfortunate that some who debate this issue (evolution) begin by assuming that the words “creation” and “evolution” are mutually exclusive. If everything has come into existence through evolution, they say, then biblical creation has been disproved, whereas if God has created all things, then evolution must be false. It is, rather, this naïve alternative which is false. It presupposes a very narrow definition of the two terms, both of which in fact have a wide range of meanings, and both of which are being freshly discussed today…

“But my acceptance of Adam and Eve as historical is not incompatible with my belief that several forms of pre-Adamic ‘hominid’ may have existed for thousands of years previously. These hominids began to advance culturally. They made their cave drawings and buried their dead. It is conceivable that God created Adam out of one of them. You may call them homo erectus. I think you may even call some of them homo sapiens, for these are arbitrary scientific names. But Adam was the first homo divinus, if I may coin a phrase, the first man to whom may be given the Biblical designation ‘made in the image of God’. Precisely what the divine likeness was, which was stamped upon him, we do not know, for Scripture nowhere tells us. But Scripture seems to suggest that it includes rational, moral, social, and spiritual faculties which make man unlike all other creatures and like God the creator, and on account of which he was given ‘dominion’ over the lower creation.”

-  John Stott, Understanding the Bible, Expanded Edition, 54-56)

You know what? Science and the Bible cannot and will never share authority. They cannot be reconciled. John Stott, like C.S. Lewis, invented many concepts and teachings we should avoid like the plague, not admire, much less laud. Neither Stott nor Lewis should be considered evangelical heroes, but they are. Stott also compromises the Bible’s teaching on eternal conscious punishment for unbelievers because it offends his sensibilities. Go figure.

You know, brethren, those who profess Christ and believe God’s Word to be inerrant, that God communicated what He meant, that Scripture interprets Scripture, need to separate from those who believe otherwise, even if he, or they, are most admired spiritual leaders.

Stott may have written Understanding the Bible, but it is clear that he either did not, or did not desire to.

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