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A cynical reader asks how it is possible for us to narrow down the amount of false arguments to refute. Dr. Tommy Mitchell addresses his comments.
I’m looking forward to Tommy Mitchell’s new set of articles, but I have a few concerns. Firstly, with so much material to choose from, how is he going to select his subject? He could pick virtually any AIG article ever published, and find an argument that creationists should not use because it is either illogical or inaccurate. Secondly, where will he find material for the follow-on series Arguments a creationist can use? An impossible task if ever there was one. Finally, what possible interest could a Christian have in trying to support creationism? Surely a Christian’s first duty is to the truth?
– D.E., UK
One of the core purposes of our ministry is that we will strive to equip believers in their faith and call them back to the authority of God’s Word. On that basis, we seek to provide sound biblical answers to the questions that confront Christians on a daily basis. Time and time again, we hear testimonies from people whose lives were changed after they were provided logical answers to their questions and better understood the issues.
I’m looking forward to Tommy Mitchell’s new set of articles, but I have a few concerns.
I am glad that you apparently visit our website regularly. While I hope that the website and my series will be an encouragement and a refining influence on those who seek to better defend their faith, I also hope that these articles will allay the misconceptions of some skeptics and challenge the thinking of others.
Firstly, with so much material to choose from, how is he going to select his subject?
On the contrary, this is a rather easy task because there isn’t much to choose from, and it usually deals with a misapplication of how the evidence should be used, not the evidence itself.
See, some poorly reasoned answers to questions do not hold up to close scrutiny. Some are scientific models that, after further examination, can no longer be supported. Sometimes an argument is faulty at its premise, but continues to be perpetuated. These are the issues we will deal with in the Arguments series. Answers in Genesis is often confronted with these faulty arguments in a variety of ways, such as website feedback and as our speakers teach all over the world. We desire that Christians should use only arguments that are sound as they strive to defend their faith in an ever-skeptical world.
He could pick virtually any AIG article ever published, and find an argument that creationists should not use because it is either illogical or inaccurate.
Such as? We can actually reverse this statement about evolutionary arguments revealing the your arbitrary opinion. Have you actually read “virtually [every] AIG article ever published?” We have over 6,000 articles on our website. Are you truly suggesting that the majority of these articles (a substantial portion of which were written by people with advanced degrees in their respective fields, i.e., Ph.D, M.D., etc.) are actually “illogical or inaccurate”? If so, please do us the favor of pointing out specific errors. By making such a broad statement you are only showing your obvious bias, having already disregarded all creationist arguments on the basis of their existence rather than their substance.
Neither I, nor any person at Answers in Genesis, claim to be perfect. Far from it, we are all fallible humans, quite capable of error. We hope that where error is shown, we would be honorable enough to correct such error as it comes to light.
Secondly, where will he find material for the follow-on series Arguments a creationist can use? An impossible task if ever there was one.
Actually, this is not at all an impossible task – all evidence can be used for creation since it all belongs to God. God said the following:
The earth is the LORD’S, and all its fullness, The world and those who dwell therein. (Psalm 24:1)
“God, who made the world and everything in it, since He is Lord of heaven and earth, does not dwell in temples made with hands.” (Acts 17:24)
I would just point you to the Get Answers section of the Answers in Genesis website. This is where thousands of Christians have found sound biblical answers to their questions. The ongoing, overwhelmingly positive feedback we get about our website and the answers it provides is evidence that we are being used to change lives and equip people to take a stand against the humanist, materialist philosophies that are taking over our society.
You imply that there are no good arguments for creationists to use. However, as I explained in my introductory article for this series, arguments are reasonable models that seek to explain observable facts. Neither creationists nor evolutionists can honestly claim “proof” for their positions from the realm of operational science, since neither group can actually observe origins in action. Both creationists and evolutionists, operating in the area of “historical science” by necessity, must offer arguments to try to explain what we see in the world today. Both creationists and evolutionists are demonstrating beliefs about the past. A good argument is one that utilizes the scientific facts observable in the world today and is consistent with the truth revealed in God’s Word.
Finally, what possible interest could a Christian have in trying to support creationism?
Jesus Christ, the apostles, and the prophets supported creationism. Why would a Christian not follow their example? Furthermore, the Bible repeatedly affirms creationism.
God did not use millions or billions of years to bring everything into existence. Why would an all-powerful God need millions of years to accomplish His work? Would that not decrease His majesty? Could a loving God use such a horrible process as evolution, a process that requires millions of years of death and bloodshed, to accomplish His purpose?
“. . .but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.” (Genesis 2:17)
Death came after sin, not millions of years before.
For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. (Exodus 20:11)
If the earth is millions or billions of years old, then these verses are inaccurate, and therefore, God’s Word is not true. If that is the case, then death has been here for millions of years, making nonsense of Genesis 2:17. Simply put, if death has always been here, what would Adam’s logical response have been when God told Adam not to eat of the tree or he would die? “So what, I’m going to die anyway!”
If death has always been here, then how could death be the punishment for man’s disobedience? Then how could Christ’s death on the Cross be the atonement for man’s sin? See, if the Bible is not true as written, then the message of the Cross becomes nonsense.
Surely a Christian’s first duty is to the truth?
Actually Christ told us what our first duty as Christians should be:
Jesus said to him, “‘You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the first and great commandment.” (Matthew 22:37–38)
Christianity is not supposed to be a blind faith or a baseless emotion. Jesus Christ commanded the Christian to love God with every part of his being, including his mind. Elsewhere in Scripture, Christians are commanded to be ready with answers to justify the hope we place in Christ (1 Peter 3:15), and to study in order to correctly understand and apply the "word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15).
Jesus Christ is the truth (John 14:6), and He was a creationist (Matthew 19; Mark 10), which we expect since He is the Creator (John 1; Colossians 1). Yes, the Christian has a duty to the truth. He should understand that the Word of God is true and study to be able to correctly understand it, apply it, and defend it. The Arguments series is intended to equip the serious Christian to do so.
But consider the converse; if one is not a Christian, truth becomes meaningless. A non-Christian has no basis to argue for truth unless they borrow from the Bible to say truth exists.
Tommy Mitchell, M.D.
Answers in Genesis is an apologetics ministry, dedicated to helping Christians defend their faith and proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ effectively. We focus on providing answers to questions about the Bible—particularly the book of Genesis—regarding key issues such as creation, evolution, science, and the age of the earth.