Are you ready to witness to the Truth?
Published: 10 December 2008 (GMT+10)
Guest article contributed by Patrick Currie, who for a number of years served with the Christian prison ministry Kairos, in New South Wales, Australia.
When Charles Darwin wrote On the Origin of Species, the cell was thought to be just ‘a blob of protoplasm’. But today it’s known to be staggeringly complex—irreducibly complex, in fact.
I want to start out by saying that I am not a scientist with a Ph.D. nor do I work in a scientific field. For most of my life I have been an automotive parts salesman. It seems to me that my being a layman was a key factor in the success of the ministry I had a few years back, in which I would use ‘creation science’ in my witnessing. People seemed to connect with the fact that if a layperson such as me can get at least something of a handle on the seemingly complex creation-evolution debate then maybe there is hope for anyone! Of course there is a vital reason for those with the appropriate qualifications to stand up and deliver whatever facts they have to hand but to have a layperson deliver facts in just as a convincing way as a scientist does, then it can make the whole process more accessible to the average person.
My point is that anyone can witness in this way. All it takes is some passion and some easily achieved preparation.
My experience with Kairos
During my time with a Christian prison ministry called Kairos I was privileged to give my testimony with regards to my journey from evolutionist to creationist. I have always loved science and have marveled at all things from the immense cosmos to the nature of the smallest building blocks of matter. Interestingly enough is the fact that after each presentation I was never ridiculed or put down for my views because I had to hand much more information than those to whom I was speaking. Before I detail the outcomes from these presentations it might be prudent that I first share a part of my ‘journey’.
The first part of my journey was when I came across a copy of Creation magazine back in the mid 1990’s. It was then that I discovered that the exact opposite of evolution teaching was couched in exactly the same language. I.e., scientific, and not in ‘biblical terms’. This was a revelation to me as I had always thought that those who believed in creation were Bible-thumpers who talked in terms of chapter and verse and not real scientists themselves. If scientists could hold to a literal 6-day creation then I needed to have a close look at what I held to be true.
In my reading of Creation magazine I came across a wealth of information that clearly showed me that what the Bible said was not only believable or possible but true. So, in this article I want to share with you the power of witnessing to people when you have shaken the one thing they hold on to that ‘protects’ them from a belief in God and the subsequent need to commit to something other than themselves.
In the five years that I was part of Kairos I gave perhaps 10 talks about the improbability of evolution. I never tried to force them to believe anything. All I wanted to do was to present the evidence from a (biblical) creation viewpoint, thus shaking them out of their complacency and offering them an alternative line of thinking. I wanted to plant a seed and to let the Holy Spirit do the rest.
During these talks I would go into a wide variety of ‘creation’ subjects—just as published in Creation magazine, e.g. ‘intelligent design’ and the concept of irreducible complexity. In response to other prison chaplaincy workers—who did not normally cover such subjects—many of these ‘tough guy’ prisoners were happy to at least consider the life-changing philosophical concepts and moralities of the teachings of Jesus as a simple philosophical abstraction, as something that would give them a better go at interacting with society. But with my talks, to tackle science itself was to challenge something much deeper! They felt that if I was able to remove their faith in something as all-pervading as evolution then what were they left with? The ONLY alternative was God and that would require MUCH more than acquiescence to moralities and philosophies. It would mean a commitment to something other than self.
The irreducibly complex living cell
It was the subject of irreducible complexity that in the end I found raised the most questions in their minds. In fact to this day I can look at the immensity of the cosmos, listen to astrophysicists and astroscientists of all types describe the majesty and elegance of what space is all about, but for me the smallest living organism, the single cell, is one of the most profound things I have come across.
The cell is an incredibly complex entity that even today is far from being completely understood. When you add the concept of irreducible complexity to the mix you have an even more awe-inspiring situation. The confronting power of irreducible complexity, in terms of challenging evolutionary theory, is this: It would have been impossible for the cell to exist at all let alone propagate if just one of its key components was missing. As an analogy, take for example something like the internal combustion engine. If you take away just the camshaft, or the piston, or the crankshaft or the valves or the distributor, then it simply can’t work at all. It needs all its components to work. The relevance of this to the supposed evolutionary origin of the cell is that if single cells started from a primordial soup as the evolutionists state, then they must have started as a complete and impossibly complex entity from the very beginning! I found this to be the most convincing argument against evolution because it was an easily observable and just as easily understandable concept.
Of course some came to me with the theory of panspermia which has the central idea that simple organisms came from another planet through outer space on meteors and finally landed on Earth. Well then, where did that collection of cells start from? With that scenario the same questions about the origin of life still apply. Whether life is said to have arisen (meaning ‘evolved’) here or elsewhere just changes the location and not the question.
At no time did I use PowerPoint presentations or pictures or any special equipment. I had simply read Creation magazine and other ‘creation science’ resources, thus arming myself with quotes and other useful information that gave me the confidence to speak on this subject. And as I spoke and they could see that I was presenting a cogent argument that was not only couched in the same language as the scientists but made logical sense of the evidence, then many of them began to understand—or, at least understand where I was coming from. At no time did they feel less than me nor threatened by me. People don’t have to try very hard to be open-minded if you present your position with confidence, passion, and compassion. They may not come to a decision there and then but at least the seed has been planted. Remember, we cannot convert a person, we are not even called to convert but to disciple which is very different, only the Holy Spirit can convict and convert.
Two points I would like to make:
- Do not be put off witnessing about creation just because you are not a Ph.D. I have found that my ‘layman’ status actually assisted me because at all times there was the unspoken understanding that if I could grasp this then so could they!
- To find the material you need to speak with authority on the matter is easily found in CMI’s Creation magazine, online store and the thousands of articles on its website. So perhaps you can now start to equip yourself so as to be able to address this topic with confidence whenever this subject is raised—whether at your church, or when you’re witnessing to non-believers.
Lastly, on a personal note, when I came to God, in my case it was not through argument, or philosophy, or discussions on morality. It came about through a total and sudden realization that I was incomplete without Him and that I could no longer go on without Him. Not everyone will be convinced or converted by this debate about creation-evolution because God will use different situations and different circumstances for different people at different times. His options and combinations of options are endless. We simply have to be ready in season and out of season to be His tool for His purpose. Are you ready to be used by Him for His Good Purpose?