Biblical creation: the only real way?
Published: 2 January 2016 (GMT+10)
We not only try to convince people that biblical creation is true, but we also try to show why it is the best way to approach both the Bible and the physical evidence in the origins debate. G.S. writes:
You mean, how to get others to think and believe the way you do as if it was the only real way? Instead why not help others see that ancient biblical documents were first of all written to the people and cultures that are foreign to us? How about helping needy Christians and nonbelievers see that God’s revelation in His ancient words and in His really ancient world can be trusted even if we don’t understand everything in them both?
CMI’s Shaun Doyle responds:
Of course we believe that biblical creation is the only correct option in the origins debate, and of course we would advocate believing that—we think it’s true! Truth excludes falsehood by the very nature of truth; does that mean truth is by nature arrogant? But that doesn’t work; truth is a concept, so it can’t have emotions or will, and so it can’t be arrogant. If truth can be arrogant, then a principle can be a principal! Of course, people (including biblical creationists) can be arrogant in the way they present truth, but that has nothing to do with the truth; it has to do with the moral weakness of the person presenting it.
This idea that ‘exclusivism = arrogance’ is perhaps one of the most influential (and ironically, arrogant) falsehoods in the Western world today. And yet, Jesus believes that He is the only real way to God (John 14:6). And please don’t think I mean that we have to believe in biblical creation to be saved. I don’t think that (Do I have to believe in a historical Genesis to be saved?), and I wasn’t saying that. I’m merely making a point; if Jesus can be exclusivistic, then it’s clearly not intrinsically arrogant to be exclusivistic (assuming you’re a Christian, of course; after all, the New Testament is clear that Jesus is sinless. If you’re not a Christian, that’s a different discussion … for which I would invite you to read Christianity for Skeptics).
Moreover, we are not merely convinced that the historical reading of Genesis 1–11 is correct; we are also convinced that it is clear. In other words, even though Genesis 1–11 was written in a time and culture very different to our own, our culture retains the ability to translate the text and render it generally understandable to the average person. And yes, there are some parts of Scripture that are not so easy to understand, but Genesis 1–11 is not one of those passages, at least as regards understanding the general gist of the passage. And the general gist of the passage clearly contradicts deep time and evolution in numerous ways. See our Genesis Q and A page and Genesis Verse-by-Verse, and our resources The Genesis Account, 15 Reasons to Take Genesis as History, and Creation, Fall, Restoration for more information.
As for how we can trust God’s word even when we don’t understand everything in it; we have articles that do just that. Please see e.g. Jesus Christ on the infallibility of Scripture and The authority of Scripture. The idea is very simple. Since Jesus believed the Scriptures to be entirely trustworthy, and we can trust Him and the Spirit to vouchsafe His message to us in the New Testament as securely as God did for Israel in the Old Testament (John 16:13), then we don’t have to worry about things we struggle to understand, or even how to reconcile supposed ‘discrepancies’ in the Bible, because we know that Christ’s view of the Bible is the right view of the Bible. Who has better credentials to tell us what to believe about the Bible than the risen Lord of all? But if that’s the case with the Bible, then it’s also the case regarding the interpretation of the Bible; and Jesus clearly accepted Genesis 1–11 as history: Jesus on the age of the earth. In other words, we can use the same principle to establish the truth of biblical creation that we use to establish the trustworthiness of Scripture—Jesus’ personal endorsement.