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Cosmology, Cosmic Evolution, and Sacramental Reality: A Christian Contribution

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From the Christian perspective, creation exists through the Word of God. The Word of God does not create God again but brings forth the absolute “otherness” of God: creation. The nature of God is to exist. God is existence as unity in the diversity of God the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. The gift of created existence reflects the triune nature of the Word of God. It is synthesis of diversity into unity that creates. Nature brings forth new existence by unifying what it already brought forth previously. Therefore, the creative process of nature is self-similar and nonlinear: self-similar because at all levels it is synthesis that brings forth novelty; nonlinear because the properties of the new unities are not present in their (isolated) elements. The new properties of the wholes, however, do not destroy the properties of the parts. Rather, the elements integrated into new wholes become creatively transformed. This is because the parts become carriers of the whole, which transforms the parts through its presence. The parts become and express the qualities of the whole, qualities that the parts do not possess in isolation. Synthesis, therefore, transforms the parts creatively, because synthesis is creative. The qualities of the parts become “elevated” because the whole becomes present in and through the parts. The understanding of creation as the result of sequential, creative transformations offers a glance into the mystery of the Word of God present in the Eucharist. Here, too, the elements of bread and wine are not destroyed but elevated, creatively transformed into the Word of God. The elements (bread and wine) become the carrier of a transcendent “quality,” the Word of God. From this perspective, creation and the sacrament of the Eucharist illuminate each other. This is because the Word of God that creates the otherness of creation and the Word of God present in the Eucharist is the same.

Keywords: Christian doctrine of creation; Eucharist; emergent evolution; sacramental reality of creation

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Developmental Biology at Texas Christian University, USA

Publication date: 2002-03-01

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