Institute for Creation (Credulous) Research (Retards), PO Box 2667, El Cajon, CA 92021 Voi
Institute for Creation Research, PO Box 2667, El Cajon, CA 92021
Voice: (619) 448-0900 FAX: (619) 448-3469
|||||| |||| |||| |||||||||| ||| |||||||| ||||||||||
|||| ||||| ||||| |||| ||||| ||||| ||||| |||| ||||
|||| |||||| |||||| |||| ||||| ||||||| |||| |||| ||||
|||| |||||||||||||| |||| ||||| |||| |||| |||| ||||
|||| |||| |||| |||| |||||||||| |||| |||| |||| ||||
|||| |||| || |||| |||| ||||||||||||| |||| |||| ||||
|||| |||| |||| |||| |||| |||| ||||| |||| ||||
|||||| ||||| ||||| ||||| |||||| |||||| ||||||| ||||
No. 220 "Vital Articles on Science/Creation" October 1991
Columbus and His Creator
by Paul G. Humber *
Copyright (c) 1991 by I.C.R.
All Rights Reserved
* Mr. Humbar, A.B., M.S., B.D., is a schoolmaster at The Haverford
School, Haverford, Pennsylvania.
Some years ago, the _Philadelphia Daily News_ published a cartoon
characterizing Christians who hold to the fundamentals of the Bible as
out of touch with reality. As an educator, I found it particularly
offensive. Sammy, standing on the Bible in a classroom with his back to
the others, was looking at a flat "globe" of the earth. The other
students and teacher, with quizzical looks on their faces, encompassed a
normal (i.e. round) globe. The teacher, presumably responding to a
student's question, is depicted as saying, "Because Sammy's mom is a
fundamentalist, that's why." The intent seems to be to ridicule
Bible-believing Christians and their view of science. Apparently
neither the cartoonist nor the editors realized that Christopher
Columbus, a round-earth activist of the highest degree, was driven far
more by the Bible than by the science of his day. A dedicated student
of the Scriptures, he put his faith into action.
COLUMBUS' OWN WORDS:
At last, after almost 500 years, _Libro de las profecias_ (Book of
Prophecies), written and compiled by Columbus, may be seriously
considered in English! In her _Christopher Columbus -- His life and
discovery in the light of his prophecies_, Kay Brigham has provided
translations of major portions and analysis of his book. She describes
it as "a compilation of passages from the Bible which the Admiral
believed were pertinent to his mission of discovery, selected by
Columbus himself with the help of his friend, Fray Gaspar de
Gorricio." Excerpting from folios 4-6 (using her book as source), I
quote Columbus, who in turn was addressing his Spanish sovereigns:
"At this time I have seen and put in study to look into all the
Scriptures, cosmography, histories, chronicles and philosophy and
other arts, which our Lord opened to my understanding (I could
sense His hand upon me), so that it became clear to me that it
was feasible to navigate from here to the Indies; and He unlocked
within me the determination to execute the idea. And I came to
your Highnesses with this ardor. All those who heard about my
enterprise rejected it with laughter, scoffing at me. Neither
the sciences which I mentioned above, nor the authoritative
citations from them, were of any avail. In only your Highnesses
remained faith and constancy. Who doubts that this illumination
was from the Holy Spirit? I attest that He (the Spirit), with
marvelous rays of light, consoled me through the holy and sacred
Scriptures ... encouraging me to proceed, and, continually,
without ceasing for a moment, they inflame me with a sense of
I am the worst of sinners. The pity and mercy of our Lord have
completely covered me whenever I have called (on Him) for them. I
have found the sweetest consolation in casting away all my
anxiety, so as to contemplate His marvelous presence.
I have already said that for the execution of the enterprise of
the Indies, neither reason, nor mathematics, nor world maps were
profitable to me; rather the prophecy of Isaiah was completely
Your Highnesses, remember the Gospel texts and the many promises
which our Savior made to us, and how all this has been put to a
test: (for example) St. Peter, when he leapt into the sea, walked
upon (the water) as long as his faith remained firm. The
mountains will obey anyone who has faith the size of a kernel of
Indian corn. All that is requested by anyone who has faith will
be granted. Knock and it will be opened to you. No one should
be afraid to take on any enterprise in the name of our Savior, if
it is right and if the purpose is purely for His holy service
.... The working out of all things was entrusted by our Lord to
each person, (but it happens) in conformity with His sovereign
will, even though he gives advice to many. He lacks nothing that
it may be in the power of men to give him. O, how good is the
Lord who wishes people to perform that for which he holds himself
responsible! Day and night, and at every moment, everyone should
give Him their most devoted thanks."
Noted author, Simon Wiesenthal, in his _Sails of Hope_, confirmed
earlier what is now clear from Columbus' own writings:
"That religious elements played a great part in Columbus's
thoughts and actions is evident from all his writings. It may
come as something of a surprise to us that his concept of sailing
west to reach the Indies was less the result of geographical
theories than of his faith in certain Biblical texts --
specifically the Book of Isaiah."
COLUMBUS - A SCOUNDREL?
William Loren Katz, though affirming Columbus' "enormous skills,
courage and ambition," added that "Columbus carried in his heart the
burning embers of hate" and repaid the "generosity" of the natives
with "treachery." Others have similar concerns.
Sadly, exploitation of peoples and lands followed in Columbus' wake,
and Columbus himself contributed in part. His own testimony of being
"the worst of sinners" has already been mentioned, but he also viewed
himself as "Servant ... of the Most High Saviour, Christ the Son of
Mary." He trusted apparently in Creator Jesus who forgives the sins
of repentant sinners. Indeed, he named the very first island he landed
on San Salvador out of regard for his "Holy Savior" (translation).
The esteemed Harvard historian, Samuel Eliot Morison, who dedicated a
copy of his Pulitzer Prize-winning book, _Admiral of the Ocean Sea_ to
his "shipmate," Lieutenant Commander Millard J. Klein, Kay Brigham's
father, was more generous in his appraisal of Admiral Columbus. He
wrote, "I cannot forget the eternal faith that sent this man forth, to
the benefit of all future ages." Columbus sought the conversion of
the natives. On the premise that people are lost without Christ, such a
concern could be interpreted as an expression of genuine love rather
than of hate. He prayed on San Salvador:
"O Lord Almighty and Everlasting God, by Thy holy Word Thou hast
created the heaven, and the earth, and the sea; blessed and
glorified be Thy Name, and praised be Thy Majesty, which hath
deigned to use us, Thy humble servants, that Thy holy Name may be
proclaimed in this second part of the earth."
According to Morison, Columbus and his family were different from
many of the others who wanted "to get gold quick and go home." Only
Columbus, "his family and a few faithful, humble souls" cared for
establishing a 'permanent settlement" and the transfer of Christianity
to the Indies.
Morison was not unaware of some of Columbus' shortcomings, but he
also wrote of his "humanity:"
It was to Columbus' credit that humanity prevailed over glory.
It must have been a temptation to parade this brilliant savage
royalty with their gold and feather ornaments at court. But he
thought of the cold weather in which they would suffer and die,
of what the pretty daughters might expect from his seamen, of the
disillusion that would await these innocent souls in Castile. So
he took compassion on them, declined the cacique's request, and
sent the Indians ashore in the ship's boat after receiving their
homage and fealty.
Kay Brigham's assessment of Columbus is very positive: "On account of
faith -- "being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not
see" (Hebrews 11:1) -- Columbus discovered America, the most significant
event for the human race after the birth, death, and resurrection of the
Savior of the world. Faith liberated Columbus from the chains of human
myopia, launching him on a divine mission and propelling him to a
providential destination ... initiating the histories of the United
States, Canada, and the numerous American Republics and the phenomenal
expansion of the Christian faith."
WHAT BIBLE PASSAGES AFFECTED COLUMBUS?
Scriptural passages cited by Columbus in his book, _Libro de las
profecias_ (Book of Prophecies) include the following:
The LORD reigneth, let the earth rejoice; let the multitude of
isles be glad thereof (Psalm 97:1).
Sing unto the LORD a new song, and His praise from the ends of
the earth, ye that go down to the sea, and all that is therein;
the isles, and the inhabitants thereof (Isaiah 42:10).
Listen, O isles, unto Me; and hearken, ye people from far
My righteousness is near; My salvation is gone forth .... The
isles shall wait upon Me, and on Mine arm shall they trust
I am sought of them that asked not for Me; I am found of them
that sought Me not; I said, Behold Me, behold Me, unto a nation
that was not called by My name (Isaiah 65:1).
Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the
name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching
them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: And,
lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world (Matthew
But ye shall receive power after that the Holy Ghost is come upon
you; and you shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in
all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the
earth (Acts 1:8).
"Columbus always loved to apply the Sacred Scriptures to his own life
and adventures," according to Morison. Wilbur E. Garret, _National
Geographic_ Editor, shares that this was also true at his death: "Son
Ferdinand reports that Columbus repeated the words attributed to Christ
on the Cross -- 'Into your hands, Father, I commend my soul' - and
1. _Philadelphia Daily News_, October 28, 1986, p. 33.
2. Brigham, Kay. _Christopher Columbus - His life and discovery in the
light of his prophecies_. Terrassa, Barcelona: CLIE Publishers,
1990, pp. 53, 61, 82, 85, 86, 115, 124, 125, 127, 129, 131, 167.
3. Wiesenthal, Simon. _Sails of Hope_. New York: Macmillan Publishing
Co., Inc., 1973, p. 122.
4. Katz, William Loren. "'Ill Winds' Drove Columbus," _The New York
Times_, October 8, 1979.
5. Morison, Samuel Eliot. "Christopher Columbus, Mariner," _American
Heritage_, December 1955, p. 93.
6. Morison, Samuel Eliot. _Admiral of the Ocean Sea_. Boston: Little,
Brown and Co., 1942, pp. 6, 206, 476, 494.
7. Marshall, Jr., Peter J. and David B. Manuel, Jr. _The Light and the
Glory_. Old Tappan, NJ: Fleming H. Revell Co., 1977, p. 41.
8. Garrett, Wilbur E. "Columbus and the New World," _National
Geographic_, November 1986, p. 564.
This "Impact" was converted to ASCII, for BBS use.
Comments regarding typographical errors
in the above material are appreciated.
Don Barber, ICR Systems Administrator
Fax: (619) 448-3469
All ICR staff members adhere to a Statement of Faith
in the form of two documents:
"Tenets of Scientific Creationism"
and "Tenets of Biblical Creationism."
(see Impact No. 85)
As a missionary organization, ICR is funded by God's people. The
majority of its income is provided by individual donors who desire to
proclaim God's truth about origins. Gifts can be designated for
research, the graduate school, seminars, or any special part of the ICR
ministry. All others will be used where most needed. We pledge to use
them wisely and with integrity.
If you would like to receive our free monthly newsletter "Acts & Facts,"
or our free quarterly devotional Bible-study booklet "Days of Praise,"
just request them by contacting ICR at (619) 448-0900.
We believe God has raised up ICR to spearhead Biblical Christianity's
defense against the godless dogma of evolutionary humanism. Only by
showing the scientific bankruptcy of evolution, while exalting Christ
and the Bible, will Christians be successful in "the pulling down of
strongholds; casting down imaginations, and every high thing that
exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into
captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ" (II Corinthians
Member, Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability
--- *** ---
E-Mail Fredric L. Rice / The Skeptic Tank