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. 247 "Vital Articles on Science/Creation" January 1994
COMPOMISES AND CONSEQUENCES:
THE GENESIS ACCOUNT
by Fred Willson.
Copyright (c) 1993 by I.C.R.
All Rights Reserved
* Fred Wilson, M.S., is an ICR Extension Specialist in Science
"The world expects of Christians that they will raise their voices
loudly and clearly and so formulate their protest that not even the
simplest man can have the slightest doubt about what they are saying"
The world of unbelievers expects that those who call themselves
Christians will believe that the Genesis account is literally and
historically true. This is seen in their writings. These writers clearly
understand the plain meaning of these chapters, and most of them have
little respect for those who compromise on them.
Some readers may ask whether a non-Christian is really able to
understand what God wrote in Genesis One. After all, we read in I
Corinthians 2:14 that, "The natural man receiveth not the things of the
Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know
them, because they are spiritually discerned." However, this Scripture
must be compared to Romans 1:20: "The invisible things of Him from the
creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things
that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead; so that they are
without excuse." This verse teaches that all men should know that God
exists. The very fact that God states that all are "without excuse"
means that they can understand Genesis One. This concept is confirmed by
statements of many non-Christians.
Another good reason why unbelievers can understand the Genesis
narrative is based on the goodness of God. A good God would communicate
to His creatures. Thus, they could know where they came from, who they
are, why they are here, and how to live. God created language for
communicating content that could be understood. If people were unable to
understand what God has written, it would mean that God was neither
sovereign nor omniscient, and thus not good. Therefore, we should expect
the unbeliever to understand the creation account. We also should not be
surprised when they are somewhat dumfounded to find many Christians
accepting viewpoints contrary to the plainest understanding of what God
has written. This attitude is seen in a sarcastic rebuke of Christians
by T. H. Huxley, a man who actively labored for evolutionism and against
creationism. "If we listen to many expositors of no mean authority, we
must believe that what seems so clearly defined in Genesis . . . as if
great pains had been taken that there should be no possibility of
mistake . . . is not the meaning of the text at all. . . . A person who
is not a Hebrew scholar can only stand aside and admire the marvelous
flexibility of a language which admits of such diverse interpre-
tations." Scriptural language allows only one correct interpretation
(though many applications). For Christians to allow the Genesis account
more than one interpretation makes it meaningless. Huxley understood
this and reproached us for not being honest in our exegesis.
We can observe this attitude from other non-believers. Marcus Dods,
an evolutionist and Hebrew scholar, stated: "If, for example, the word
'day' in these chapters does not mean a period of twenty-four hours, the
interpretation of scripture is hopeless." If sense cannot be made of
the creation account, which is the basis of all the rest, then believing
the rest of Scripture becomes unrealistic at best.
Note the question raised by Frank Cassel: "I still wonder whether he
[the Christian who compromises with long ages] has given me more time
[in the genealogies of Genesis] because I demand it, or because it's
really there. The same question applies to the days of Genesis and to
the universality of the Noachian flood." Are Christians compromising
the truth merely to win a hearing? Unbelievers are sharp enough to
perceive this deceit. As Scripture states, "Cursed is the man that doeth
the work of the LORD deceitfully" (Jeremiah 48:10).
Tom McIver, writer of anti-creationist articles and books, raps
Christians for trying to make Genesis fit evolutionary science. In a
lengthy article (in which it appears he must have read everything
written by Christians on the day-age theory and gap-theory) he has this
to say: "Each ('day-age' or 'gap-theory') . . . involves critical
compromises with the plainest, most literal reading of the Bible to
force Scripture into concordance with scientific evidence regarding the
age of the earth."
Dr. McIver is perceptive enough, as are many unbelievers, to see
inconsistencies in Christian thinking. Therefore when we say we believe
in the inerrancy of Scripture, we must show it by our words and works.
Otherwise the world will treat Christianity as just another belief
system in the smorgasbord of religions, and not as the only true one.
For contrast we have a secular evolutionist who gives "three cheers"
for non- compromising creationists. He says: "Many creationists have
taken the dishonest way of lengthening the days into millions of years,
but the creationists make it clear that such an approach is nothing but
a makeshift and is unacceptable Biblically and scientifically. . . ."
These quotes by non-Christians show us the following: they understand
what Genesis means, even though they don't believe it; they do not
respect Christians who compromise on what it plainly states; and they
want Christians to be honest with the text. Obviously, then, we who call
ourselves Christians must stand firm for the truth of a literal and
CONSEQUENCES OF COMPROMISING
Having now considered what non-believers think of compromising
Christians, let us consider the effects that compromising has produced.
Ideas have consequences. As surely as effect follows cause, compromising
produces bad fruit.
Princeton Theological Seminary's road to liberalism began when some
of its stalwart Christian leaders compromised Scripture with
evolutionary science. It began with Charles Hodge, American Calvinist
theologian, who opposed evolution but accepted the great age of the
earth required by evolutionists. His compromise position was assumed by
his son when he succeeded his father at the seminary. "Like his father,
Alexander Hodge . . . admitted the evidence for a vast antiquity of the
earth and that man may have been introduced upon it much earlier than
the Genesis record seemed to allow. . . . Warfield, who succeeded him,
accepted this judgment. . . . Warfield assured his readers that
evolution . . . could 'supply a theory of the method of divine
providence.' . . . The thin edge of the evolutionary wedge was to prove
disastrous--not only for Princeton Theological Seminary, but for many
other seminaries on the American continent and in other English speaking
Consider also the sad results of the compromise position taken by
Augustus H. Strong (famous author of Systematic Theology). He wrote: "We
concede that man has a brute ancestry." Then in his less well-known
Christ in Creation, he frankly admitted that as man received his body
from an apelike ancestor, there was no reason why we might not admit
that this was how he also received his spirit. When Professor Strong
completed this manuscript, he requested that his son Charles proof-read
it for him. Charles was perceptive enough to see that his father was
misleading his readers. The end result was that Charles abandoned his
position as a Christian, becoming one of the most militant proponents of
atheism until the day of his death.
But that is not the end of the story, sadly enough. For the Strongs
were well-to-do and moved in wealthy circles. Among their friends were
such men as John D. Rockefeller, Chauncey Depew, and Andrew Carnegie.
The first made his fortune in oil, the second in the railway business,
and the third in steel. Each of them was totally ruthless in his
business tactics, arguing that they were only acting according to
evolutionary principles which were God's methods in nature. "They must
have received no little comfort from the fact their evangelical friend
and scholar, A. H. Strong, could be depended upon to support them in
This account illustrates that, when Christians try to make Scripture
fit the so-called science of the day, the results can be devastating.
The same sad decline happened in Western Europe, former bastion of
Reformation doctrine. Josef Ton, pastor of the largest church in
Romania, formerly living in exile in America but now back in Romania,
came to the conclusion that there were two factors which destroyed
Christianity in Western Europe. One was the theory of evolution, and the
other, liberal theology.
It is tragic to realize that Western Europe rapidly changed from an
area of strong Protestant faith to its present-day paganism. The cause
was not evolution by itself, but Christians compromising to make
Scripture fit evolution. Consider Great Britain, once a nation where
Christianity had great influence. It produced such eminent Christians as
John Wycliffe, Hudson Taylor, Charles Spurgeon, John Wesley, and others.
It spawned notable mission societies. And yet today, according to a
survey, "Britain emerges as one of the most irreligious countries in the
western World. . . ." What was the cause? Newman Watts, in compiling
his book, Britain Without God, stated: "I had to read a great deal of
anti-religious literature. Two things impressed me. One was the
tremendous amount of this literature available, and the other was the
fact that every attack on the Christian faith made today has as its
basis, the doctrine of evolution."
Evolutionary philosophy, coupled with compromise by Christians on the
Genesis account, changed the course of these nations. And what about
America? In its beginning, America was considered a Christian nation.
Today its major religion is secular humanism. What produced this change?
According to Oswald Skov, "Evolutionists use 'chance and millions of
years' to explain the origin of all things, a theory set forth by Darwin
in 1859. When he extended his hypothesis in his book, The Descent of
Man, in 1871, the churches put up a storm of protest for a while, but by
1900 the liberals had made it acceptable. A failure to plug this hole
caused the dam of conservative theology to burst with a flood of all
kinds of denials of Biblical truth." And what happens to the Church
when certain Bible truths are denied? According to R. J. Rushdoony, it
"begins to move in terms of humanistic and political power rather than
the power of God."
Causes have effects. As Ed Wharton notes, "Any view of these chapters
in Genesis other than authentic history will necessarily regard the
genealogies and the tracing of the messianic seed-line as unhistoric and
unimportant. This will eat away at trust in God's Word and cause faith's
fire to go out."
We see the faith of many in churches today being eroded away. This is
the result of too few pastors realizing the importance of the doctrine
of strict creationism. Is it any wonder then that a writer stated: "More
cases of loss of religious faith are to be traced to the theory of
evolution . . . than to anything else?"
To show how contemporary this issue is, consider the following letter
sent to a staff member at the Institute for Creation Research: "A good
friend of mine, formerly accepting the six-day literal creation, after
reading Hugh Ross's book (Ross teaches the big bang, a 4.6
billion-year-old earth, and a local Noachian flood), Fingerprint of God,
and some secular books, is now considering evolution and even doubting
God. He also said that Christian men he admired endorsed the book. . .
." This tragic example is what happens when scientists and Christian
leaders compromise on what Genesis says.
Let us summarize. We have considered the attitude of unbelievers
toward compromising Christians. We have seen from its consequences that
it affects nations and individuals, the Christian faith, and the
credibility of Scripture. It is therefore imperative that the Christian
Church once again return to the foundational beliefs it once held. This
will require that it view the first chapters of Genesis as literally and
historically true. It must not allow falsehood and truth to lie side by
side. Tenderly and lovingly, yet earnestly and firmly, without apology,
it must always be intensely bold for the truth.
Let's end where we began and be, as Albert Camus (a humanist) says we
should be, where "not even the simplest man can have the slightest doubt
about what they (we) are saying."
1. T. H. Huxley: Quoted in "God Spoke by Moses," by O. T. Allis, 1951,
2. Marcus Dods, _The_Book_of_Genesis_, Armstrong, NY, 1907, p. 4.
3. J. Frank Cassel, "The Origin of Man and the Bible," _Journal_of_
American_Affiliation_, XII, No. 2, June, 1960, p. 15.
4. "Formless and Void: Gap Theory Creationism," by Tom McIver.
_Creation/Evolution_ XXIV, Volume 8, Number 3, Amherst, NY, 1988.
5. A. J. Mattill, Jr., "Three Cheers for the Creationists," _Free_
Inquiry_ (Vol. 2, Spring 1982), p. 17,18.
6. Arthur Custance, _Two_Men_Called_Adam_, Brockville, Ontario,
Canada, 1983, p. 3-7.
8. _Our_Daily_Bread_. Radio Bible Class, Grand Rapids, MI., 1991,
9. Newman Watts, _Why_Be_An_Ape . . .?_, Marshall, Morgan & Scott,
LTD., London, 1936, p. 97.
10. Oswald Skov. _What_is_Truth?_ p. 8.
11. R. J. Rushdoony, _The_Necessity_of_Creationism_. A pamphlet.
Jotham Productions, Inc., Pasadena, CA.
12. Ed Wharton, quoted in "Genesis 1-11; Literal & Historical or
Mythological and Allegorical," _Reason_and_Revelation_, September,
1982, Vol. II, No. 9, p. 40.
13. Huston Smith, "Evolution and Evolutionism." _Christian Century_,
July 7-14, 1982, p. 755.
This "Impact" was converted to ASCII, for BBS use,
from the original formatted desktop article.
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