University Statement on Creation

 

A Reaffirmation of Creation

The Faith and Science Conferences that have taken place in the Church over the last decade have shown the wide range of views that exist concerning the origins of life and the early chapters of Genesis. Despite the fact that the Seventh-day Adventist Church has had a long-held fundamental belief concerning creation, some have:

called for a reinterpretation of the longstanding Adventist understanding of creation and the flood and proposed a view that is constructed upon evolutionary presuppositions.

argued that the lack of specificity in Fundamental Belief Six allows for a number of mutually exclusive views to coexist in the Church.

In response to the present focus on origins in the Church, and in response to requests that Southern Adventist University clarify its position in regard to creation, the Board of Trustees voted the following statement supporting the Seventh-day Adventist position on origins. The statement is also endorsed by the University Senate and the Administrative Council.

 

Southern Adventist University Proclaims Creation

In response to the Board of Trustees request in October, 2010, the University Senate formulated the 

following statement of affirmations on behalf of the university.

  • The University Senate voted approval of this statement on January 31, 2011.
  • The Administrative Council voted approval of this statement on February 10, 2011.
  • The Board of Trustees voted approval of this statement on February 20, 2011.

In response to the International Faith and Science Conference Organizing Committee’s report, “An Affirmation of Creation,” the General Conference Executive Committee at its Annual Council asked “all members of the worldwide Seventh-day Adventist family to proclaim and teach the church’s understanding of the biblical doctrine of creation.” The executive committee also called “on all boards and educators at Seventh-day Adventist institutions at all levels to continue upholding and advocating the church’s position on origins.”* We—the faculty, staff, and administration of Southern Adventist University—respond to this call with the following affirmations.

  1. We affirm the primacy, authority, and trustworthiness of the Bible in all areas of inquiry it addresses, including the origin of the natural world and the various kinds of life created therein.
  2. We affirm that Genesis 1-11 is an accurate and historical account of the events it presents. The description found therein is reaffirmed throughout the Old Testament, and every New Testament writer and Jesus Himself explicitly or implicitly affirms the historicity of Genesis 1-11.
  3. We affirm the supernatural creation of a beautiful and perfect world in one literal week of six consecutive, contiguous, 24-hour days of creative activity, followed by the Sabbath of rest.
  4. We affirm that the creation week and the origin of life on earth took place recently, a few thousand years ago, and that there was no life on earth prior to that time.
  5. We affirm that death came about as the result of human sin, that there was no death in the world as originally created, and that there will be no death in the new earth as restored by God.
  6. We affirm the value of Ellen White’s endorsement of the biblical teaching on the early history of earth, specifically a literal six-day creation, God’s rest on the literal seventh day, a short chronology for life on earth of a few thousand years, and a global flood.
  7. We affirm that the doctrine of creation is foundational for and interconnected with other important biblical doctrines, including the inspiration of Scripture, the Sabbath, the character of God, the plan of salvation, marriage, resurrection, and the new earth.

    We join other members of our worldwide church in proclaiming and teaching “the biblical doctrine of creation, living in its light, rejoicing in our status as sons and daughters of God, and praising our Lord Jesus Christ—our Creator and Redeemer.”*

*Excerpt from “Response to an Affirmation of Creation,” voted by the General Conference Executive Committee at the Annual Council in Silver Spring, Maryland, October 13, 2004.

 

Other Relevant Documents

  1. A Reaffirmation of Creation” Southern Adventist University School of Religion.
  2. An Affirmation of Creation” Organizing Committee for the International Faith and Science Conferences.
  3. Response to An Affirmation of Creation” General Conference Executive Committee.