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Christianity 101

Why creation should be part of any basic discipling

iStock photo teacher-blackboard


Published: 11 April 2015 (GMT+10)
First appeared in a CMI newsletter in March 2010

Many CMI supporters may recall that a few years ago my family relocated from Australia to head up CMI’s US office. Changing cultures, even from one Western one to another, is a steep learning curve. Particularly when it comes to language and the way we encapsulate various local cultural ideas or concepts. One such US expression that has been exported overseas with American culture is the term ‘101’. You might have heard it used to describe basic mathematics or English courses, such as “English 101” or “Geography 101”. It actually refers to a form of basic study or an introductory course that one takes when one enters university in the US. Simply, it is entry-level study that one undertakes before embarking on further ventures etc.

Our ministry is an equipping and information ministry. It may surprise you to hear that the information that we share at churches and via our resources has never been heard before by the majority of Christians. But it shouldn’t surprise us if we stop and think about it. Education is not neutral (parents beware!). The world’s education system and the media do not teach creation—they teach a secular history from a non-Christian worldview. If everyone has been taught evolution it cannot be a side issue for Christianity.

The issue of all issues facing the church today

This realization should have alarm bells ringing in our churches. Because people have overwhelmingly accepted the ‘world’s science’ when it comes to origins, it obviously leads to doubts about the reliability of God’s Word. Tragically, the Christian culture that once dominated the West has been declining due to this number one issue—the truth and authority of Scripture—and the doubts start in the very first book.

If our faith is going to be relevant to the real world, and not perceived as something we just practice on the weekends to make us feel good, then we have to take the Great Commission seriously. As Christians, one of our primary roles is to replicate ourselves. That is, make disciples, who in turn will make more disciples. If those original disciples are being hampered because they cannot defend or answer the very questions that people are asking, then we are not going to discharge our duties and the call that was given to every Christian properly. When witnessing to people who regard both Genesis and the Gospels to be mythical it is simply inadequate to say, ‘Just believe in Jesus.’

A call for the church to take this seriously

I know it is only too easy to criticize the church as a lot of visiting preachers seem to do (this is actually something our speakers have been trained to steer away from). But we are actually trying to encourage the church to be proactive. But we have to recognize the problem before we can do something about it. If these are the questions people are asking us, then we are duty-bound to provide the answers (1 Peter 3:15). The highways of eternity are littered with millions of lost souls that believed evolution to be true.

Recently, Mike F. wrote to say:

“Just a note to tell you how much of a blessing CMI really is. … Recently, my seventh grade daughter was subjected to the evolutionary theory at school. … Debunking evolution should be a part of any Christian’s witness. Evolution is so damning to so many peoples’ worldview. So, thank you all for the excellent resource that is CMI”. (emphasis ours)

The skeptics and humanists know that creation information changes lives. This is why they spend so much time and energy in agitated blustering on their websites about what creationists allegedly believe. It’s because people are being affected, and they don’t want that to increase!

‘Christianity 101’ should include creation

We are calling for a revolution in the church—isn’t it about time? Let’s recognize that the culture has changed and meet the challenge. Churches (and parents) please start training your folks in creation apologetics, and when new Christians come along, creation should be a staple part of their discipling. Let’s make it a part of ‘entry-level Christianity’ and then when we reach out with the Gospel we’ll hear more testimonies like Jeannie J. who emailed to say:

 “I am thankful to our Lord for your ministry from Him. I grew up in an atheist/evolution home, married a ‘JW’ [Jehovah’s Witness], ended up a demonised witch by the time the Lord, our creator saved me at 46, 11 years ago. Almost all the Christians I’ve met don’t think it is important to take Genesis literally. I have to hang on to the hard truth of God’s word. … Thank you so much. My faith grows as I read and listen to [you].”

Thank you so much for supporting CMI to produce such material that helps change lives all around the world.

Helpful Resources

Readers’ comments

Theresa L.
Hi, I thoroughly creation. I teach my kids, but in the same time I learn. I want to know how do we get this into our Churches and Schools. To prevent children being lost, to educate parents. Hope you can give me ideas? I do speak to Johan Kruger on a regular basis. He will be able to tell you that I do not get to all my reading (lol, I am too keen and want to know everything), but I am working full time and am a single parent. But my heart is breaking because of the high way to hell and the small single track gravel road to Heaven. Wish we could save them all. Or not we, God with us. We cannot do this huge task on our own. Hope you can give me ideas how to get this into our schools and churches in our community?
Gary Bates
Theresa, if you talk to the SA office regularly then you should talk to them about having ministry in your church (if you haven't already done so), or you could help contact other churches, family members etc. to encourage them to have CMI ministry.
John N.
Many thanks Gary. We are grateful that CMI is here and sticking to the basics. And I remember your start here. This country needs much evangelism support. Especially here in NM. The creation science fellowship here struggles in finding churches that will be friendly to this ministry. We are desperate to get these simple teachings out yet so few accept them. Pray for us, pray for this state. Maybe some of the churches in this state will invite some of your speakers to come. Your friend in Christ.
Gary Bates
Thanks John. Great to hear from you. Why don't you speak to our Events Dept. about getting some help to get CMI speakers to your area again? We are always glad to help.
David James R.
Christianity 101 is surprisingly supported by science, especially as concerns the recent discovery of "DNA information" and "builder components inside the cell". If Darwin had known about the inner workings of his so called "simple cell", he probably would have become a fisherman or a cook instead of an antagonist against Creator God. Cellular activity, as depicted in a number of 8 to 15 minute secular teaching videos, including "Journey Inside the Cell" and Harvard's "Inner Life of a Cell", unwittingly portray the very fingerprint of the Living Creator God. No unguided happenstance process takes place within the cell. Only precise - purposeful functions are seen to take place under microscope. Inside the cell, thousands of components function according to millions of lines of highly complex biological code containing ACTUAL INFORMATION that is different for each component, and which directs each component to precisely fulfill its different amazing part in sustaining the life of the cell, and building connective tissue and body parts/components of creatures. Watching these videos is like watching an animated movie of God's actual daily work of creation within every living cell. Such activity further goes to prove the impossibility of random assembly of biological cells and their components, as simplistically posed by evolutionists. The activity inside each cell is one of the most powerful lessons to include with "Christianity 101", because it includes KNOWN scientific facts that also relate to "Creation 101".

And - Thank you CMI for being here for God and for mankind!

Gary Bates
David, are you aware of the animations and videos that CMI has produced just like these? If you go to our multimedia-center, for example, you will see our DNA translation video, our 'walking' kinesin video. In addition, our new documentary Evolution's Achilles' Heels has heaps of newly made animations. It's quite stunning!
Bob C.
I believe as you do that beginnings matter, and the central issue: who are we going to believe: the culture or the creator. I have felt so marginalized by my activities in churches that I have all but given up: almost accepting that God has turned His back on the world "as in the days of Noah." However my spirit cries, there has to be a way to reach some of the lost even yet. I'm not actually ready to take Enoch's route and ask God to "beam me up." my point being, I would like to again be a soldier on the field of battle. Do you have ways that I can serve? I have been writing some fiction based on Noah and that is a part of my calling, but my soul cries out to be a part of a larger mission.
Gary Bates
Bob, CMI's main mission is to go to churches to:

  1. Create awareness of the key battleground of origins.

  2. To show them the plethora of evidence to support biblical Creation.

  3. To equip them resources for their own edification and to reach others.

Sorry to be a damp squib on this but I've come across a lot of Christian science fiction, particularly about Noah, sons of God etc. and I confess to not being a big fan. In a fashion it's a bit like seeing or looking at bathtub Arks in children's books that give the impression that the Flood was a fairy story. If one can take poetic license with the early texts then, in effect, it could be taken that Genesis (Creation and the Flood), does not mean what it says (i.e. make up our own stories). This may sound a bit harsh but I do think such a style in these passages, although well meaning, is counter productive. If you really want to help I recommend chatting with our ministry department about getting CMI into your church and others in the area. You will see how and why we do what we do and can then do more of it in your own sphere of influence. There is no knockout punch as to reaching the others. That's why we've been following this method for over 30 years now. Feel free to contact us.
Mike W.
Gary, I've been a committed creationist and CMI supporter for many years now, the former largely due to this ministry. I broadly accept your article, except for the point about the church. Jesus mostly attacked the church of the day as whited sepulchers, i.e. looked good on the outside but rotten within. I feel it's the church that is saying just tell people about God's love, look after the poor and what I'm saying about creation is just a side issue. With respect, should not the church be critiqued for her unbelief?
Gary Bates
Mike, I don't think the analogy is quite correct. It's debatable as to whether you could call Old Testament, legalistic Pharisees (and indeed Sadducees) as the 'church'. He mainly attacked their hypocrisy over not practicing what they preached. Their beliefs were aimed in the wrong direction to start with and they did not accept the founder of the church (Christ). So Jesus was correct in pointing out their error because their salvation was at stake. Today, many churches do a good job of embracing biblical Creation and CMI is here to help them. For leaders who openly state it is a side issue or try to reinterpret Genesis in light of modern science, CMI has certainly also been at the forefront of critiquing their ideas. I think it is always important to focus on the false teachings and not the church or individuals ('Do unto others'), because too often creationists are attacked individually instead of their ideas.

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