The enemy revealed
The root cause of why Christianity is losing the younger generation—and what to do about it.
Published: 24 September 2009 (GMT+10)
This is the pre-publication version which was subsequently revised to appear in Creation 32(3):48–51.
We are losing our children! Research indicates that 70% of teens who are involved in a church youth group will stop attending church … 1
Similar statements from Christian leaders aren’t new, but many still can’t seem to identify the root cause of the problem. However, most front-line evangelists in the Western world have reached a consensus. The following quote is from a person who shares his faith more times in a month than most Christians ever will in their lives.
“I am an evangelist. I go around and talk with people. One-on-one conversations. My time on college campuses and talking to high schoolers, the number one answer that I get for there not being a God, so then I don’t have to believe in [God/the gospel], is evolution. ”2
That’s a Christian evangelist’s take (based on experience); how about an atheist’s opinion?
“The most devastating thing though that biology did to Christianity was the discovery of … evolution. Now that we know that Adam and Eve never were real people the central myth of Christianity is destroyed.
If there never was an Adam and Eve there never was an original sin. If there never was an original sin there is no need of salvation. If there is no need of salvation there is no need of a saviour. And I submit that puts Jesus, historical or otherwise, into the ranks of the unemployed.”3
So despite many compromising Christians saying there is no conflict between faith in the biblical God and evolutionary theory, intelligent people around the world see the inconsistency clearly.
What “not to do”!
Proverbs 26:4 (bold added) says “Do not answer a fool according to his folly, or you will be like him yourself.” Who is the “fool”? Psalm 14:1 says “The fool says in his heart, ‘There is no God’” (I.e. an atheist). So Christians should not answer atheists according to their way of thinking or else they will appear foolish themselves.
Christians that accept evolution as God’s way of “creating” are not winning the battle in debate situations. Take the following discourse between theistic evolutionist Francis Collins and atheist Richard Dawkins;
COLLINS: By being outside of nature, God is also outside of space and time. Hence, at the moment of the creation of the universe, God could also have activated evolution, with full knowledge of how it would turn out …
DAWKINS: I think that’s a tremendous cop-out. If God wanted to create life and create humans, it would be slightly odd that he should choose the extraordinarily roundabout way of waiting for 10 billion years before life got started and then waiting for another 4 billion years until you got human beings capable of worshipping and sinning and all the other things religious people are interested in.4
Point to Dawkins. Actually, several points. Collins says God “ … could have activated evolution … ” But the Bible isn’t about what God “could” have done. It’s about what He did. And how would Collins answer the number one question skeptics ask about Christianity (“If there is a loving God why is there so much death and suffering?”)? He can’t. Peter Bowler, a renowned Darwin historian known for his antipathy to biblical creationists, understands the implications;
“If Christians accept that humanity was the product of evolution—even assuming the process could be seen as an expression of the Creator’s will—then the whole idea of Original Sin would have to be reinterpreted.
Far from falling from an original state of grace in the Garden of Eden, we have risen gradually from our animal origins. And if there was no Sin from which we needed salvation, what was the purpose of Christ’s agony on the cross? Christ became merely the perfect man who showed us what we could all hope to become when evolution finished its upward course.”5
The bedrock of logic is the law of non-contradiction. People that contradict themselves in debates are made to look foolish by their opponents. Describing Genesis as compatible with evolution is indefensible against an informed opponent. Take these excerpts from a review by atheist Jerry Coyne of two books by theistic evolutionists;
“Why reject the story of creation and Noah’s Ark because we know that animals evolved, but nevertheless accept the reality of the virgin birth and resurrection of Christ, which are equally at odds with [secular interpretations of] science? After all, biological research suggests the impossibility of human females reproducing asexually, or of anyone reawakening three days after death.
Without good cause, Giberson and Miller pick and choose what they believe. At least the young-earth creationists are consistent, for they embrace supernatural causation across the board.” 6