New Book by Nazarene-Affiliated Scholars Slams Biblical Creationists

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I have written a number of blogs previously concerning the biblically undermining teaching of Karl Giberson, until recently a professor at Eastern Nazarene College (Massachusetts) where he gave lectures on science, and religion. His co-author of a new book that slams AiG and other Christian groups, The Anointed, is a historian at this Nazarene College.

Dr. Giberson’s short summary of the book appeared on September 27 at Science and Religion Today.

It states the following:

Why Do So Many Evangelicals Prefer to Get Their “Science” From Ken Ham Rather Than Francis Collins?

In Mark Noll’s 1995 classic exposition of anti-intellectualism in American evangelicalism, The Scandal of the Evangelical Mind, he wrote: “The scandal of the evangelical mind is that there is not much of an evangelical mind.”

Nowhere is this more true than in the strange preference that evangelicals have for the discredited young-earth creationism of Ken Ham over the legitimate and well-founded science of Francis Collins. The ideas promoted by Ham are so obsolete that some of them were actually abandoned by the scientific community in the 18th century! Ham’s confident assertions that the earth is a few thousand years old and that there was a time in the history of our planet when humans co-existed with all other species had been abandoned by science when Darwin was a toddler.

In our new book, The Anointed: Evangelical Truth in a Scientific Age, historian Randall Stephens and I show how charismatic, media-savvy evangelical leaders like Ken Ham (natural science), James Dobson (social science), David Barton (history), and Tim LaHaye (biblical studies) lead their fellow Christians astray by convincing them to accept discredited ideas.

Anti-evolutionists like Ken Ham—and his colleagues at places like the Discovery Institute—constantly bash science as ideology claiming that its conclusions derive from “assumptions” rather than observations. After years of seeing science bashed, many evangelicals simply don’t trust it. And so they embrace a “science” that seems to agree with the Bible, oblivious to the fact that it has no support of any kind. And the irony is that their fellow evangelical, Francis Collins, and others have shown that you can hold traditional evangelical beliefs without rejecting science.

Well, I guess they must think AiG is making an impact since they spend so much time on me! I’m honored. Once again, they make the same old false accusation that Dr. Giberson has made many times before, that we “bash science” and that we reject science. This is simply not true. We love science.

Now, we also need to understand that the word science means knowledge, and as we have stated over and over again, there is a great distinction between operational science (based on repeatable tests, builds our technology, etc.) and historical science (knowledge concerning the past—history). In fact, three years ago I actually participated in a written debate with Karl Giberson on the Beliefnet website. I include all the links for the back and forth, but I encourage you to read at least the one I wrote called “Science cannot judge the Bible.” Karl Giberson knows what we say about science—it is all in writing in these debate articles—so he and his co-author are making false accusations in their just-released book.

Also, in the book, Giberson and his historian co-author revile us for speaking on topics for which we are not credentialed, but then they write about theology, eschatology, politics, and other topics for which they are not academically trained!

At least one of our PhD scientists is writing a detailed review of the book, particularly in its statements concerning me and AiG. We should have that available in the near future.

Here are the links to the Beliefnet debate articles. If you can read all of these you will certainly understand what Karl Giberson believes and how we respond to his claims.

Creation vs. Evolution on Beliefnet

Read them in the following order:

  1. Bio: Ken Ham
  2. Bio: Karl Giberson
  3. KG: “Why I am not a creationist
  4. KH: “The Bible teaches creationism
  5. KG: “Seeing God’s Revelation in Nature
  6. KH: “Are you certain about certainty?
  7. KG: “Why I came to peace with science
  8. KH: “Science cannot judge the Bible
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