Category: apologetics

Admonitions to a Disappointed Young-Earther

This article was also published at SBC Voices

by Ken Hamrick

Recently, I came across a paper in the Journal for Baptist Theology & Ministry, written by Dr. Kenneth Keathley in 2013, entitled, “Confessions of a Disappointed Young-Earther.”[1] The piece is well done and gives an informative summary of the various arguments and supposed problems of the Young-Earth Creationism movement. After reading it, I must say that I’m just as disappointed as Dr. Keathley, but for different reasons. I’m disappointed that the enemy, who is delegitimizing the truth-claims of Christianity by undermining the authority of Scripture, is often met with so little resistance and so much well-meant, reasonable-sounding cooperation. I’m disappointed that not even the best among us are immune from a skeptical evidentialism. And I’m disappointed that one so capable of competent reason would falter in thinking that evidence has bearing on the question of a recent miraculous creation.

I’m no scientist, and I do not claim to be able to present all the scientific intricacies of the various arguments. To be fair, there do seem to be some valid points brought against Young-Earth “creation science” and even a few points in support of it. Nevertheless, I do not argue for a “young” earth, but for an old earth recently created—what Dr. Keathley presents as Philip Henry Gosse’s “Omphalos argument” or the mature earth view. The Bible clearly and explicitly reveals a recent creation by divine fiat. Miracles being what they are, we should not expect to find proof in physical evidences for this recent miraculous act. But, neither should we expect the secular scientific view to be free from error, overconfidence, and overreaching. Ultimately, though, the scientific argument is irrelevant to the vital question at hand—and that fact is sadly missed by Young-Earthers and Old-Earthers alike. Continue reading

Justin Taylor’s Doubts About 24-Hour Days of Creation – In Retrospect

by Jim Pemberton

A couple of weeks ago Justin Taylor posted an article entitled “Biblical Reasons to Doubt the Creation Days Were 24-Hour Periods”. Since that time, many have posted articles refuting Justin’s arguments. In this article I will post links to some of the ones I know about and make a couple of observations myself.

First, let me start off by saying that in general I respect Justin. He’s a well-reasoned man of good character and genuinely strives for biblical accuracy. I just think he missed the mark on this one. Nevertheless, his article seems to have given many of us the incentive to hash this issue out. Continue reading

Shedding Light on the Length of Pre-Sun Creation Days: A Text-Based Approach

by Ken Hamrick

In the ongoing debate over the Genesis creation account, one supposed problem that seems particularly troublesome for many is the question of the length of a day prior to the creation of the sun (on Day 4). Since the sun is the means by which a day is usually measured, then it is objected by Old-Earthers that we are left without any sure understanding of what God might possibly mean by the term, “day,” when it is used to describe the first three days of creation. Here’s the text:

Genesis 1 ESV
1 In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. 2 The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters. 3 And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. 4 And God saw that the light was good. And God separated the light from the darkness. 5 God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day. Continue reading

Answers in Genesis files lawsuit against Ky.

Baptist PressPETERSBURG, Ky. (BP) — Answers in Genesis is suing the government of Kentucky for alleged discrimination in refusing to extend a sales tax rebate incentive program to the Ark Encounter theme park the apologetics ministry is building in northern Kentucky.

The state’s decision to deny the tax incentive based on AiG’s status as a religious organization is against the law and violates legal precedent, the lawsuit asserts.

“The state was so insistent on treating our religious entity as a second-class citizen that we were simply left with no alternative but to proceed to court,” AiG president Ken Ham said. “This is the latest example of increasing government hostility towards religion in America, and it’s certainly among the most blatant. Our organization spent many months attempting to reason with state officials so that this lawsuit would not be necessary.”

via Answers in Genesis files lawsuit against Ky..

AiG to File Discrimination Suit against Kentucky | Answers in Genesis

answers-in-genesis-logoLawsuit to defend religious freedom explained in new video

by Mark Looy on February 3, 2015

Note: This article is slightly adapted from a news release being sent to the national media today. The release and this web article provide a link to a video of AiG President Ken Ham interviewing attorney Mike Johnson about the religious freedom lawsuit—watch the video at the link above.

Answers in Genesis (AiG), developer of the Ark Encounter theme park in Northern Kentucky, confirmed today it is filing a federal lawsuit against state officials for denying the park participation in the state’s tax rebate incentive program. Although the program is available to all qualifying tourist attractions seeking to build in the state, AiG’s application was rejected solely because of the religious identity and message of AiG. The lawsuit explains how this action by Kentucky officials, including Gov. Steve Beshear, violates federal and state law and amounts to unlawful viewpoint discrimination.

via AiG to File Discrimination Suit against Kentucky | Answers in Genesis.

Religion and Politics by Russell Moore | Reformed Theology Articles at Ligonier.org

Russell Mooreby Russell Moore

Tabletalk: How did you come to pursue a career as a systematic theologian and Christian ethicist?

Russell Moore: I felt a call to ministry early on and preached my first sermon at my home church in Biloxi, Miss., when I was twelve. I then drifted from that calling toward a career in politics. When I was working on Capitol Hill as a very young man, I picked up in the Library of Congress a copy of a Free Will Baptist manual on weddings, funerals, and so forth. After I returned home I wondered, “Why did I want this?” The Lord used that to rekindle my sense of His call to ministry. I never imagined how God would merge these callings together.

via Religion and Politics by Russell Moore | Reformed Theology Articles at Ligonier.org.

Answers for Teachers 2015 | Around the World with Ken Ham

Ken HamWe are offering all teachers and educators an opportunity to earn a CEU while learning to defend God’s Word in the classroom. Get answers for yourself and your students at this year’s Answers for Teachers conference.

This exciting, information-packed event is being held at the Creation Museum in northern Kentucky on February 20, 2015, from 8 AM to 6 PM. You will hear from AiG’s Dr. Georgia Purdom, Dr. Terry Mortenson, Dr. Andrew Snelling, Dr. David Mention, Dan Lietha, Tim Chaffey, and Bryan Osborne. During the seven sessions you will learn about cell biology, evidence for a young earth, ape-men, the Resurrection, and so much more!

via Answers for Teachers 2015 | Around the World with Ken Ham.

Why It Matters That the Exodus Really Happened | Christianity Today

Christianity TodayNo less than Western law, the civil rights movement, and Christianity itself rest on the historicity of the biblical event.

Gregory Alan Thornbury/ February 3, 2015

Men at work, detail from the frescoes in the Tomb of Rekhmire, thought to depict Egyptians with Nubians and Semitic slaves.

Does it matter whether or not the Exodus of Moses actually took place? In a recent screed in Newsweek, Kurt Eichenwald mocked the historicity of the Bible, questioning whether or not it was even possible to understand Scripture’s meaning at all. Rebuttals to the piece appeared immediately and forcefully. I, for one, noted the irony that such a poorly researched article passed muster at a magazine that once featured stellar religion reporting under legendary editor Kenneth Woodward. The controversy over Eichenwald’s article served to remind us that the Bible’s truthfulness remains on the front burner of national debate.

via Why It Matters That the Exodus Really Happened | Christianity Today.

Old-Earth Compromisers: Preconceived Skepticism Shrouded in ‘Open-Mindedness’

by Ken Hamrick

Old-Earth Creationists, who accept the evidence-based claims that the earth is billions of years old, ought to honestly acknowledge that their view does not rest on natural evidence, but upon their own prior skeptical denial of creation by divine fiat (or, command). It is dishonest to put forth such a view as being based on the evidence. Without first denying that a miraculous creation by fiat might have occurred, they would have no basis for giving weight to any natural evidence. This doesn’t mean that they have properly thought this out and realized that they must first deny the plausibility of a miraculous creation by fiat; rather, for most of them, their preconceived skeptical denial remains unrecognized, like a hidden assumption.

To answer the question, How long ago did God create the world?, they immediately look—as a matter of course—to what the scientific evidence ‘reveals.’ Ostensibly, this supposes to give equal weight to all sources of truth, whether God’s revelation in Scripture or God’s revelation in the physical world (nature). However, the bias of the scales toward nature becomes evident: whenever the two (the plain reading of Scripture and natural evidence) seem to contradict, they never opt for reinterpreting natural evidence in light of the inerrant Scripture, but always insist on reinterpreting Scripture in light of the inerrant natural evidence (at least where creation is concerned). Continue reading

A Reply to Bruce Gordon’s Biblical Critique of Young-Earth Creati | Answers in Genesis

answers-in-genesis-logoby Ashby L. Camp on January 28, 2015 […]

This paper is a response to the biblical criticisms recently leveled by Bruce Gordon against young-earth creationism. It explains why his arguments against a young-earth creationist understanding of the Creation Week, the origin and age of mankind, the consequences of the Fall, the extent of Noah’s Flood, and the scope of the judgment over the Tower of Babel are unpersuasive. Gordon shows little proficiency in the grammatical-historical approach he rebukes young-earth creationists for not properly employing. He routinely advances dubious and historically anomalous interpretations of Scripture while pronouncing his approach sophisticated and that of young-earth creationists naïve.

via A Reply to Bruce Gordon’s Biblical Critique of Young-Earth Creati | Answers in Genesis.

The Supreme Court and Same-Sex Marriage: Why This Matters for the Church | Moore to the Point

Russell Moore

Russell Moore

The Supreme Court announced today that they are taking cases on whether same-sex marriage is a constitutional right. Effectively, this means that the highest court in the land will decide, this year, whether marriage, as defined for thousands of years, will exist in our country any longer. Here’s what we should keep in mind.

First of all, this is not something we should shrug off. Marriage isn’t merely a matter of personal import or private behavior. States recognize marriage for a reason, and that reason is that sexuality between a man and a woman can, and often does, result in children. The state has an interest in seeing to it that, wherever possible, every child has both a mother and a father. The state doesn’t create this reality. It merely recognizes it, and attempts to hold husbands and wives, fathers and mothers, accountable to their vows and to their responsibilities. In every aspect of the Sexual Revolution, from the divorce culture to cohabitation to casual sex to the abortion revolution, children have borne the burden. Continue reading →

Of Science and Faith: Revelation, The Concurrence of Faith

by Jim Pemberton

Up to this point, I have made a case for faith based on reason. In this article, I want go back to a section of a previous article that talks about how reason is based on faith. This is the article where I discussed the limitations of the scientific method. The section comprises the first half of the article and is entitled Unprovable Presuppositions.

Of Science and Faith

We all rely on unprovable presuppositions. It’s unavoidable. This is why it is all too easy for one camp to level at the other the charge of circular reasoning. Continue reading

How I Almost Lost the Bible | Christianity Today

Christianity TodayHad it not been for the first editor of CT, I likely would have gone the way of liberal scholar Bart Ehrman.
Gregory Alan Thornbury/ January 14, 2015

I was born at the Evangelical Community Hospital in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania—a fact that once prompted a friend of mine to say, “You’re evangelical born, evangelical bred, and when you die, you’ll be evangelical dead.” My father, John Forrest Thornbury, was the model of a country parson, serving as the pastor of Winfield Baptist Church, a historic congregation in the American Baptist tradition, for 44 years.

My childhood environs prefigured what has become my life’s passion: the relationship of Christian faith to higher education. Lewisburg is home to Bucknell University, an elite private college whose alumni include two evangelical luminaries: Tim Keller, pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City, and Makoto Fujimura, acclaimed contemporary painter. Several years ago, Tim told me that he had occasionally attended my father’s church while at Bucknell. Continue reading →

Why Followers of Jesus are NOT Charlie Hebdo | themelios

Joel Rainey

Joel Rainey

“Know this, my beloved brothers; let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger” -James 1:19, ESV

Last weeks massacre in Paris in reaction to a satirical cartoon published by the famed Charlie Hebdo has sparked fresh debate about the virtues and vices of free speech. These brutal attacks were apparently precipitated by a cartoon in that publication featuring a disrespectful and lewd depiction of Muhammad, Islam’s founding prophet.

The world, it would seem, is appropriately outraged, as there is absolutely no justification for violence. If one’s ideas or beliefs can’t stand heavy scrutiny–even the disrespectful kind–without resorting to violence, then whatever you believe is demonstrated to be a lie. People from across all ideological and religious spectrum–including vast numbers of Muslims–are rightfully condemning this act. But what most–including Christians–are missing in this conversation is that it involves two very different questions. Continue reading →

2014 Most Notable News: Creation Is a Hot Topic | The Institute for Creation Research

icr-home2by Brian Thomas, M.S. *

Every generation of believers must settle for itself the core questions of ultimate origins. Where did everything come from? Can God’s account of beginnings in Genesis be trusted as actually history? The year 2014 illustrated that this generation is still interested in answers. If nothing else, recent events make it clear that Christians remain divided and passionate about origins.

Billed as a kind of debate of the century, Bill Nye defended evolution and Ken Ham defended creation during a February event that millions viewed online.1 Long afterward, discussions swirled over who may have won the debate. The number of viewers was unexpectedly large, showing that national interest in origins has not waned. It seems that people still want to know if humans really evolved through billions of years of birth, death, and mutation, or if they descended only thousands of years ago from one man and one woman in an originally “very good” creation. Continue reading →

In Light of Recent Events | GRACE to You

John MacArthur

John MacArthur

Recent and potential terrorist attacks in France currently dominate the news cycle. Analysts, experts, and commentators discuss and debate the facts, often with skewed and confused perspectives on Islam, and offer a variety of political and emotional responses.

It’s no surprise that every time tragedy occurs—especially at the hands of Islamic terrorists—the world struggles to find answers and understand the spiritual realities involved. Discussions about politics and how governments should respond have their place. But void of spiritual truth, no discussion can fully deal with how to think about and respond to these horrific events. Continue reading →

Teach the Uncompromised Truth of Genesis in Church | Answers in Genesis

answers-in-genesis-logoThis month, the pastor of one of the largest churches in Northern Kentucky (and close to our Creation Museum) is conducting a teaching series going through Genesis 1–11 for the congregation. This is the same church that will be hosting our annual Mega Conference, June 24–27. I was present at the service when Pastor Corey Abney1 (the lead pastor) introduced the Genesis series to the congregation. I thought his introduction was excellent (watch it at the video link below), and it could be used to challenge pastors, Bible teachers, and others to consider teaching through Genesis 1–11. We live in an age when the authority of God’s Word has come under attack, particularly the first book of the Bible. We also need to equip this current generation of young people to defend the Christian faith against the secular attacks of our day.

I encourage you to watch Pastor Abney’s short but powerful introduction to his teaching series on Genesis 1–11. I pray many more Christian leaders will be challenged and inspired to stand on God’s Word beginning in Genesis. Continue reading →

Decency, Pluralism, and the Christian Response to Charlie Hebdo | Andrew T. Walker

Andrew WalkerLast night, The Weekly Standard tweeted “Print Free or Die” with a picture of the prophet Muhammed, whose physical iconography is the purported reason that the terrorist attacks were carried out in the first place.

Always willing to play the part of social media provocateur, I readied myself to re-tweet that image myself, ready to join in the chorus of those wishing to thumb their nose in an act of First Amendment defiance toward the offended party. As a liberty-loving conservative, I believe one hundred percent in the free exchange of offense. The condition of freedom enlists the possibility, and perhaps requires, that all shall be ready to be offended. Continue reading →

Theological Extremism in a Secular Age | AlbertMohler.com

Albert Mohler

Albert Mohler

This is an edited transcript of The Briefing podcast from early Thursday morning, January 8, 2015.

The war on terror took on a savage new face yesterday when two gunmen entered the headquarters of a French satirical newspaper known as Charlie Hebdo and opened fire, killing 12 people—10 people connected with the newspaper and two police officers.

The Washington Post reported this morning, “France’s deadliest terrorist attack in modern memory unfolded with chilling precision here Wednesday as gunmen speaking fluent French burst into a satirical newspaper’s weekly staff meeting and raked the room with bullets, leaving behind what one witness described as ‘absolute carnage.’” Continue reading →

Are You Willing to Doubt Your Doubts? | J.D. GREEAR

J. D. GreearDoubt can be a tricking thing. Our society, for instance, has elevated doubt to an unquestioned virtue. Those who follow tradition or submit to any kind of standard—especially an ancient one—are viewed with smug condescension. “Well,” we think, “they may not be clever enough to question authority, but I won’t be fooled.” We’ve trained ourselves to see through everything, looking for the gimmick. But as C.S. Lewis said, “You can’t go on ‘seeing through’ things forever. The whole point of seeing through something is see something through it. To ‘see through’ all things is the same as not to see.”

Many Christians respond by asserting that doubt is a vice. It has no place in a life of faith. Questions are often discouraged, as religious leaders tell their flocks to simply believe. But this is hardly a better option. Continue reading →