The Push for Millions of Years in Christianity

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In a number of articles I’ve written lately, I have warned Bible-believing Christians that one of the major battles we are going to be involved in this year is to counter the increasing push by leaders in Christianity to indoctrinate God’s people with the religion of millions of years. I personally believe this compromise is a major tactic by Satan to undermine biblical authority and adversely affect the coming generations in the church in regard to their attitude towards God’s Word.

Last June, we saw Christianity Today magazine publish a major article (a cover story) about the battle over a literal Adam and Eve. In that article, two Calvin College professors even discussed their belief that a Christian did not have to accept a literal Fall! I quoted from this issue of Christianity Today in my blog post of June 1, 2011.

The article quotes two Calvin College professors. These quotes really illustrate the ultimate end of rejecting a literal Adam and Eve.

For instance, Schneider, who sees conservative Protestantism as being on “the brink of crisis” on this topic, wrote that the evidence “seems to discredit” the Fall from original righteousness as a historical event. Vices we associate with consequences of the Fall and original sin, such as self-serving behavior, exist in lower primates and would have been passed on via evolution to humans. Thus Eden “cannot be a literal description of how things really were in the primal human past.”

Harlow proposed that understandings of the Fall may need to be “reformulated” and the church must be willing to “decouple original sin from the notion that all humans descended from a single pair.”

Now, a Calvin College professor of geology emeritus, Davis Young, is leading off a series on the website for the magazine Books & Culture. The editor explains his website this way.
A bimonthly review that engages the contemporary world from a Christian perspective. Every issue of Books & Culture contains in-depth reviews of books that merit critical attention, as well as shorter notices of significant new titles. While the magazine’s center is Christian, we seek common ground with like-minded souls from other communities of faith.

Books & Culture is published six times a year by Christianity Today International.

This month, Books & Culture announced the following on its website:
At the beginning of this new year, we are introducing a web-exclusive series of weekly pieces on science. Each month, we will focus on a particular book (or article or film). In January, the focus will be on Doug MacDougall’s Why Geology Matters: Decoding the Past, Anticipating the Future (Univ. of California Press). We’ll feature four responses to MacDougall’s book, beginning this week with a response from Davis Young, who writes that “Why Geology Matters should be mandatory reading for all scientists, school board members, and academic deans and presidents, but especially pastors, theologians, Christian school board members, and Christian college leaders.”
On the Univ. of California Press website, in a short summary about the book, we read, “In an entertaining and accessibly written narrative, Macdougall gives an overview of Earth’s astonishing history based on information extracted from rocks, ice cores, and other natural archives. He explores such questions as: What is the risk of an asteroid striking Earth? Why does the temperature of the ocean millions of years ago matter today?” The author accepts the secular dates of millions of years as fact, and of course his views of global warming are based on this acceptance of millions of years.

Because we already know that Davis Young is an ardent old earther (he emphatically teaches millions of years), it is not surprising he is recommending Why Geology Matters for pastors, theologians, Christian school board members, and Christian college leaders. We are seeing more and more articles like this where certain academics who profess to be Christians write about the idea of millions of years as fact. The more Christian writers do this, the more the church becomes indoctrinated with these false ideas that undermine biblical authority (and in reality are examples of bad science anyway). Also, if the author is wrong about millions of years (and he is), then how can one accept what he has to say about climate change and other topics when the very foundation for what he is writing about is simply wrong? So if Christian school students and college students are taught to understand “climate change” and many other issues on the basis of a totally wrong premise, they will not understand what is really happening on this earth and why.

One of my heroes of the faith, the late Dr. Henry Morris (the founder of the modern biblical creationist movement), warned people about Christian academics like Davis Young. He stated the following several years ago:

A good modern example is found in the writings of Davis Young, now teaching geology at Calvin College, an institution belonging to the ostensibly conservative Christian Reformed Church. As a beginning graduate student, Dr. Young originally believed in a literal six-day creation and flood geology. Under the guidance of his Princeton professors, however, he converted to “progressive creationism” and the venerable “day-age theory” of Genesis. This position he strongly advocated in two influential books. [4][5] He did acknowledge, however, that the “natural” interpretation of Genesis, as well as the teaching of the early Christians and the Protestant reformers, was the literal interpretation. He had simply decided this had to be abandoned because of its supposed geological difficulties. He did, at that time, still hold out for the special creation of a literal Adam and Eve.

His progressive creationism did not even satisfy his theistic-evolutionary colleagues at Calvin, however, let alone his geological peers at the secular universities. So he is now ready to travel further down the road.

[Young] I further suggest that both literalism and concordism have outlived their usefulness, and that these approaches should be abandoned for a newer approach that does not try to answer technical scientific questions with Biblical data. [6]
By “literalism,” Young means taking the six days of creation as literal days and the flood as worldwide in geological effects, the position advocated by most scientific creationists. By “concordism,” he means any theory (gap theory, day-age theory, etc.) that attempts to develop a concordance between the creation record in Genesis 1 and the geological ages. Young now wants to quit trying to relate science and the Bible at all!
[Young] I suggest that we will be on the right track if we stop treating Genesis 1 and the flood story as scientific and historic reports. [7]
This approach is essentially that advocated by Christian “liberals” a century ago and now taught in most main-line seminaries.
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