Eleven years down the line
As an Honours graduate in applied physics enrolling in a master of science research program in the same field, my first brush with creationism was via a small slip of paper handed to me at the university entrance. I was invited to hear Dr Gary Parker talk on ‘Creation vs Evolution’.
I was brought up in a Christian home, and never doubted that God existed. I was equally convinced that scientific method and evolutionary mechanisms were His manner of working. I went along to the talk more as an amusing recreation than anything (as well as expecting opportunities to put this poor misguided creation ‘scientist’ straight on a few points). My preconceptions were somewhat shattered when the soft-spoken speaker—obviously well trained in scientific method—proceeded to build his case, which was:
the ‘evidence’ used for evolution equally well fits the Bible, and,
many fossil finds and other physical observations do not fit evolution—they are embarrassingly unexplainable for evolutionists—yet they fit harmoniously with the Bible.
True, I did not agree totally with all the man said. After all, scientists’ millions-of-years dates might be out by about 50 percent, but to be out by four orders of magnitude? Impossible surely! None the less, I was intensely intrigued. I spent a fair portion of the next three months of my spare time solidly digging through technical journals to check whether Dr Parker had given a true picture. By the end of that time I concluded the following:
Dr Parker had accurately represented the known facts of science.
All available evidence fit the biblical account of our origins far more neatly than the evolutionary hypothesis.
I had made a considerable fool of myself by reasoning out my own ideas of what God was like, instead of politely letting Him prove what He is really like.
God was a smarter ‘technologist’ than I’d previously figured. The simple literal truth of the Genesis account had been right under my nose for 21 years while I blithely dismissed it as inaccurate metaphor.
I could never be a significant technologist working independently of God. Hence I ought to do the smart thing and join His team.
Even my initial scepticism of the young age of the earth turned out to be unfounded.
Going into partnership with God is hardly a light thing. I realized I was totally outclassed and couldn’t lay aside a lifetime of effectively ignoring Him without first apologizing to Him (repenting). I took God up on His promises of forgiveness preserved in hard black and white in such places as the Apostle John’s first letter (1:9) and began life with Jesus—instead of myself—as Boss.
What’s it been like since then? Hypercosmic! Jesus has altered my whole personality from that of a self-centered technological recluse to a far more competent technologist who now appreciates the immense worth of other people also. (To really get a true view you would have to ask them!) I have gained the power of prayer, and have received an entirely new communication ability through a deepening relationship with His Holy Spirit.
Times without number, when stumped on a mathematical or circuit design problem—or a ‘bug-ridden’ computer sub-program—I and my colleagues have achieved a breakthrough only after specifically requesting God’s help. I find I can handle hair-raising situations that occur in real life through His promised power on the inside (Philippians 4:13). Quite a nervy person previously, I can now enjoy—and share with others—His inner peace and assurance. I know who I am, most of why I was made, and a good deal of exactly where I am going. Looking back I would say that previously I was dangerously under-equipped for handling life.
Christ asks only one thing in order to make life meaningful, successful and super-enjoyable: That we give all of ourselves over to Him for Him to teach us how to live to the full (Deuteronomy 6:4–5; Matthew 22:37–39).
Rewards beyond input
Old behaviour patterns reappear occasionally, but as I’ve learnt to give The Expert total jurisdiction over my actions I’ve found the rewards to be far beyond all proportion to my tiny input.
It was an initially very cautious and sceptical (though determined) Stephen Bewlay who handed his life over to the Creator-God Jesus Christ in early 1980. But as I put His statements to scientific trial, and found them true time and again, I gradually learnt that I could put faith in all His statements—irrespective of whether or not I’d had time or the means to ‘grill’ them and see their truth with my physical eyes. Following right choices has become almost automatic, and there’s never been evidence to suggest that any of His principles or promises recorded in the Bible are unreliable or untrue—only some things do you have to leave in the ‘too hard’ basket for a while.
God has looked after me and all my brothers and sisters in a small dynamic local church like His enlisted soldiers-in-training just as He promised (Matthew 6:33). He even arranged for me to get my present job.
There’s no way I’d go back to the old self-directed manner of bumbling through life trusting to my own imperfect ability to work things out. Instead, I will continue to travel on with Jesus—looking forward to harder challenges, greater lessons in love and self-sacrifice and fun teamwork with other people (John 14:12). His projects bear fruitful results that last for ever. That’s what I call a good deal!
Every person on this planet is entitled to a clear understanding of where he/she came from and why he or she is here, as well as how to have the most abundant life while you’re here and how to make it last. A false or inaccurate view of where we come from is a poor basis on which to decide where we should go next. I would conclude that if you haven’t given Jesus a fair go at showing you what real living is all about—in a scientifically tangible and no-nonsense way—then you need to start now and not keep putting it off.
Stephen Bewlay, B.App.Sc.(Hons), M.Sc., GAIP, MAPS, trained in applied science in Australia, and has held government and private industry technical and teaching positions. For the past six years he has been employed as an underwater electroacoustic engineer for GEC Marconi Maritime Systems. Return to top.