Proclaiming Creation in a scientific age1
Published: 20 August 2015 (GMT+10)
If we consider what most characterises our age, certain things immediately stand out. In the West, we tend to think of the high level of affluence, the fact that we have every conceivable mod con at our fingertips. We are wowed by a steady stream of impressive scientific advances, remarkable technological achievements and monumental feats of engineering. As a result, many people have great faith in humanity’s potential, a belief that civilisation is evolving, progressing and advancing—that ‘the sky’s the limit’. They think we’ll eventually eradicate poverty, find solutions to society’s pressing social problems, and develop cures for dreaded diseases.
However, an honest observer must acknowledge that such thinking is the fruit of a materialistic mindset. So, hand in hand with these acknowledged successes, we also see:
- A growth in humanistic philosophy with its implicit glorying in man, rather than God;
- Wholesale belief in the secular, evolutionary worldview concerning the origin of all things;
- Marked unbelief with respect to the Bible, especially its historical accounts of Creation/Fall/Flood/Babel;
- Increasing antagonism regarding the faith claims of uncompromising (biblical) Christianity;
- Greater intolerance of moral absolutes and, instead, a preference for moral relativism—proclaiming man’s ability to define morality;
- An increasing rejection of the sanctity of human life, as shown by widespread abortion, rampant euthanasia and a constant pushing of the boundaries on related ethical issues (witness the ongoing debates on such things as human cloning or so-called ‘3-parent babies’);
- The inexorable shift in attitudes towards human sexuality, with promiscuity and adultery considered normal, the legalisation of ‘gay marriage’, and every conceivable sexual ‘orientation’ celebrated (some bioethicists even arguing for the decriminalisation of paedophilia).2
A scientific age?
Is it any wonder, then, that many ordinary people seem unable to distinguish right from wrong (c.f. Jonah 4:11)—relying instead on what looks good or feels right? In spite of the achievements of our age (both real and pseudoscientific), it would seem that people are as religious as ever. Incessantly, the media confronts us with the alarming growth in religious (especially Islamic) extremism and the destabilisation of many countries resulting from the threat of terrorism. Those with a more western mindset engage in widespread idolatry—whether of possessions, film stars, pop idols, sports teams or personalities—and many also have embraced Buddhism or any of a host of other religions or cult philosophies. The same was true of the various pagan philosophers encountered by the Apostle Paul two millennia ago: “Men of Athens”, he said, “I perceive that in every way you are very religious”(Acts 17:22).
For all our undoubted prowess in science, medicine, technology and communications, the idea, cherished by some, that we are on our way to some sort of secular Utopia is frankly ridiculous. The Bible proclaims: Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people (Proverbs 14:34). People are deeply religious—including atheists—and have given the glory and worship that is rightfully due to the Creator to man and other created things. This is just as Paul observed and taught in Romans 1:18-23. In fact, he went on to link this worship-transfer (from the Living God to created objects) to moral decline and depravity generally (Romans 1:24-32).
The crying need for the faithful proclamation of biblical creation should hardly need highlighting. Is the Church as a whole awake on this issue? The answer is a clear and categorical no! On the contrary, there is a widespread refusal, even on the part of many professed evangelical Christians, to emphasise (or even to acknowledge) Paul’s teaching. The Bible makes clear that Creation-denial (“the things that have been made”, Romans 1:20) is tantamount to Creator-denial (“For although they knew God, they did not honour him as God”, Romans 1:21), and that idolatry directly follows (“because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator”, Romans 1:25).
We believe in proclaiming Creation
The hope of the Gospel is the only answer to this sorry state of affairs. The message “that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners” (1 Timothy 1:15) is Good News indeed. The trouble is, our ‘enlightened age’ has cast off the claims of the Son of God as an irrelevance, coming as they do from a Bible which, they say, is riddled with historical and scientific inaccuracies.
Without an understanding of the reliability and relevance of biblical creation, people will continue to languish in their ignorance, deceived and deceiving each other (2 Timothy 3:13), their minds dulled and blinded to their spiritual poverty (Ephesians 2:1-2). Oblivious, too, to the seriousness of their eternal predicament—that they are, “by nature children of wrath” (Ephesians 2:3), “having no hope and without God in the world” (Ephesians 2:12). By proclaiming Creation in a scientific age we expose the folly of worldly thinking, while simultaneously pointing people to the Creator-and-Saviour of the world, the Lord Jesus Christ.
All true science is God’s science
Many more important reasons could be advanced to emphasise why we proclaim Creation. We must dispel any notion that this defence of an historical Genesis (by an acknowledged minority of today’s Christians) is akin to Custer’s Last Stand3 —a sort of forlorn hope in the teeth of the evidence from the sciences. Nothing could be further from the truth. Contrary to the protests from the critics of biblical creation (whether identified as theistic evolutionists, atheistic evolutionists or secular humanists) there is abundant evidence from molecular and cell biology, biochemistry, anatomy, physiology, palaeontology and anthropology, all supporting the unassailable inference of Design regarding all life on Earth. This, the Bible affirms to be the work of the Creator, Jesus Christ (John 1:1-3, Colossians 1:15-17, Romans 1:20). Add to that the numerous evidences from geology, geomorphology, cosmology, history and archaeology, and the case for an historical Genesis 1-11 is truly impregnable. We really can say that all true science supports the biblical record—which it would do, being God’s science!
These same scientific facts, supporting biblical Creation, are demonstrably inconsistent with the whole molecules-to-man evolutionary story. Moreover, with the easy access to information via the Internet, the fatal flaws in this great delusion of our age are being exposed. An excellent source of such information was compiled during CMI’s Evolution’s Achilles’ Heels project (now available in book and documentary form). The existence of such readily-available tools ought really to lay to rest, once and for all, the well-worn, empty mantra of evolutionary propagandists, that “there are mountains of evidence for evolution!”4
Answering questions about origins
Seeing that our age is one of amazing electronic gadgets, ground-breaking medical advances and pioneering space missions, the public is understandably bamboozled by all the media razzmatazz accompanying these things—plus the constant drip-feed of evolutionary claims masquerading as science. For the most part, unwary people swallow the scientifically groundless (and godless) speculations about origins, unable to distinguish these from genuine breakthroughs of experimental science and technology. CMI speakers frequently meet people who have been swayed by the evolutionary mantra, “science has proven the Bible wrong”; this deceitful statement wrongly equates evolution with science. Others are more candid, plainly declaring “Evolution is a fact, so Genesis cannot be true history.”
None of this is of any comfort to the millions of people searching for answers to their many nagging questions. What happened to the dinosaurs? Aren’t the fossils proof of evolution? What about the Big Bang? What about carbon dating? Could Noah’s Flood have really happened? How did the different human races arise? Doesn’t DNA support evolution? Could God not have used evolution? How could a loving God allow death and suffering? Of course, a large part of CMI’s work is given to dealing with exactly these questions and many others besides. Our dozens of qualified staff writers and speakers globally5 network together and keep abreast of new origins-related discoveries and fresh claims. In this way, we seek to provide informed critiques and thought-provoking reflection that is up-to-date and reliable.
Walking fish? Walking snakes?
For example, recently our attention was drawn to a video on YouTube which showed fish called mudskippers ‘walking’ around on exposed mudflats in mangrove swamps—“a creationist’s worst nightmare” exulted our antagonists. We took up the challenge and demonstrated the evolutionary penchant for half truths by showing that mudskippers are, in fact, marvellous specialists with a unique suite of features: stereoscopic vision; liquid-filled skin ‘cups’ to keep their eyes moist when out of water; a ‘ramped’ retina allowing them to focus through the upper and lower sections of their eyes in/out of water; the special ability to breathe through the mouth and skin (rather than gills); and a lubricant slime covering with antimicrobial properties. As our article showed, these characteristics refute the evolution of these mudskippers, instead supporting a design explanation.
In January 2015, the media loudly proclaimed that four new fossils had been discovered, pushing back the fossil record of snakes by nearly 70 million years. These “rewrite the history of snake evolution” proclaimed one writer.6 According to the article, “the researchers say all four may have had some form of reduced forelimbs and hindlimbs.” Pictures used by news outlets around the world showed one of them (called Diablophis gilmorei) with tiny hind and fore limbs and another (Portugalophis lignites) with suggested fore-feet. However, the actual scientific paper revealed that no trace of limb bones had been found, nor even hip or shoulder girdles. In fact, most of the fossil material was made up of skull and jaw bones. Thus, the new snake fossils actually challenged existing evolutionary ideas, while reinforcing the biblical view that snakes have always been snakes, as CMI’s article explains in detail.
Creation believers hold your ground!
Some find it distasteful, but exposing falsehoods and demolishing arguments against “the knowledge of God” is not merely an optional extra for the Christian (see 2 Corinthians 10:4-5). Much as some would shy away from this, the military analogy is a biblical one—Christians are to engage in this “warfare” against strongholds, whether they be worldly, fleshly (pertaining to their own sinful nature) or satanic (see 1 Timothy 1:18, James 3:15, Ephesians 6:12). It’s a biblical imperative. The evolutionary stranglehold on education—maintained and perpetuated by a mendacious mainstream media—is a significant obstacle to the knowledge of God in the 21st century. The Bible clearly teaches the creation of all things in six days a few thousand years ago (Genesis 1-2); the intrusion of sin and the Curse, blighting the originally perfect universe physically and morally (Genesis 3); the geographically global, devastating Flood (Genesis 6-9); and the historicity of Babel, with the confusion of human language (Genesis 10-11). Furthermore, Jesus and all the New Testament authors affirmed this view of Genesis 1-11.7
We proclaim Creation, not only because it is true, but because effective evangelism requires it. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is founded on an historical Adam and Eve, the serpent tempter, the taking of the forbidden fruit, and the promise of the Victor over Satan (Genesis 3:15). This simple message—that all are sinners; sin’s penalty is death, spiritual and physical; Christ came to deliver us from sin’s penalty and power, and from the sting and dominion of death—is founded on historical events recorded in Genesis.
Last, but not least, God is glorified when we uphold the Word of God and proclaim its teaching on Creation and the Creator. His name is honoured. The same cannot be said for teaching which undermines the same—whether overtly or subtly, by well-meaning Christians, secularists or avowed anti-Christians. Christians seeking to live godly lives in this ungodly world should be at the forefront in repairing and restoring the breaches in the foundations and walls of Christendom (Isaiah 58:12). We need to be holding fast to our confession of faith in Christ (Hebrews 10:23), making every effort to contend for the faith handed down to us by previous generations of faithful believers (Jude 3). Proclaiming Creation in a scientific age should be part of every Christian’s engagement in the good fight of faith (1 Timothy 6:11-12). CMI is privileged to serve the Body of Christ by providing tools which believers can use to proclaim biblical truth. Please do pray that we may have many more opportunities to train and equip the Church to bring the light of Christ into a dark world.
References and notes
- Modified version of CMI’s Update newsletter, May 2015. Return to text.
- Vasagar, J., Germany’s Green Party leader regrets campaign to ‘legalise paedophilia’, 16 September 2013, telegraph.co.uk. Return to text.
- Refers to the heavy defeat of battalions of the US Army’s 7th Calvary Regiment (led by George Armstrong Custer) at the famous ‘Battle of the Little Bighorn’, during the Great Sioux War of 1876. Return to text.
- See, A ‘mountain of evidence’ for evolution? Creation Magazine LIVE! (2–18), youtube.com, 22 May 2013. Return to text.
- This represents a large pool of qualifications and experience across all major scientific disciplines, theology, engineering and other apologetics-related subjects. Return to text.
- Dunham, W., Remarkable fossils push back snake origins by 65 million years, uk.reuters.com, 27 January 2015. Return to text.
- See, Batten, D. & Sarfati, J., 15 Reasons to take Genesis as history, Creation Book Publishers, 2006. Return to text.