I just read your article online, “A Young Earth—It’s Not the Issue!”. The thrust of Ham’s argument in this article reflects my own experience with the evolution/creation debate. Many Christians believe in evolution because they figure the vast majority of scientists can’t be wrong, or that they wouldn’t lie -- I was one of those. This forced me to conclude that the creation account in the bible was symbolic, which then led me to question many other passages -- the collapse of the walls of Jericho,the parting of the Red Sea, and whether Lazarus was really dead. “is this real? or merely symbolic? If it’s only symbolic, what does it mean?”
Many christians have rejected a former belief in evolution by the efforts of creation science organizations which expose the scientific flaws in evolutionary theory. They come to question the science of evolution, then declare a belief in the word.
My path was different. I was firmly persuaded of the scientific evidence. The problem was that what I believed contradicted the plaintext of bible, and I had to choose one or the other. For me, the decision to believe the word came first, and the validation of the word by scientific evidence came later.
In light of the irreconcilable conflict between evolution and the word, I decided simply to accept the Genesis creation account as true, and review all I had previously believed about evolution in that light. In other words, I had to reject what I believed, accept what I had firmly rejected, and reframe and restructure my understanding of the word and of science.
Why? What prompted me to do this? Consider the vast amounts of information in the world -- from encyclopedias to construction diagrams to the Internet -- and now consider just how little, how very few words are contained in the bible. And yet, in this extremely concise record of the history of God’s interaction with his people, one of the things he chose to tell us was how he made the world. He must have considered it very important. And here I was, rejecting that account as untrue because I believed men rather that God. The same people who deny the creation account on scientific grounds also deny the resurrection of Christ, and yet I had chosen to believe that.
So I simply rejected the word of men, without waiting for supposebly logical or scientific reasons to do so. “Let God be true and every man a liar.” [Romans 3:4]
It was extremely unsettling, but over several weeks, through prayer, research, and faith that God would lead me, I found my faith affirmed. Moreover, accepting God’s word as being factually correct has opened doors for my faith that I had never known were there.
Can God save Christians who reject his account of the creation? I’m sure he can. But they deny themselves the riches of fully trusting God, and knowing their faith pleases him, as did Abraham’s.
And most critically, those Christians overlook the harm done to the next generation of Christians who are taught not to take God’s word too seriously. It’s tragic, and they should know better.
– Manuel Edwards, USA