“Hocus Pocus”

by Ken Ham on January 4, 2003
Featured in Answers Update

AiG received a number of letters and e-mails from people dismayed and shocked by Pat Robertson‘s recent comments on a couple of TV programs about those who believe in the six literal days of Creation.

Imagine you are on a TV quiz program. What would be your answer to this question:

“What famous person made this statement? ‘Now creation science … is really pretty bogus. … I think there’s a lot of hocus pocus in that stuff.’”

You might think of a leading evolutionary scientist, but you would be wrong.

So imagine the TV host giving you another chance and offering you the following hint:

“This well-known person also said, concerning what he called ‘creation science’: ‘Some of that stuff just doesn’t meet the smell test.’”

You might now be thinking of some leading secular humanist. Wrong also.

Imagine if you were then given one final chance:

“This famous person is a Christian leader who also scoffs at those who believe the Earth was created in six literal days. He is the president and chancellor of what is described on the Web as ‘America’s premier Christian graduate school’—Regent University?”

Yes, you would be right if you answered Pat Robertson.

AiG received a number of letters and e-mails from people dismayed and shocked by Pat Robertson‘s recent comments on a couple of “700 Club” TV programs about those who believe in the six literal days of Creation. I certainly wasn’t surprised by theses statements. You see, I visited Regent University a number of years ago and discovered that a number of its professors were teaching theistic evolution. And over the years we’ve had contact with a number of students who have confirmed this (although there may be some literal Genesis professors at Regent).

Because Pat Robertson has made some very public statements (to literally millions of people) about this, I felt we should answer them. In particular, let’s examine a couple of statements that he has included in a form letter he has been sending to those who have inquired about his TV comments.

Pat Robertson: “According to the Holy Bible, the creation of life was accomplished in ascending order from the more simple creatures to man himself.”

Answer: First, not even a single-celled organism can be described as “simple.” This idea of an ascending order is consistent with the traditional Darwinian idea of molecules-to-man—and of course fits with a theistic evolution position.

The whole order of creation in Genesis contradicts old-Earth teaching at over 20 points.

In fact, the whole order of creation in Genesis contradicts old-Earth teaching at over 20 points. For example, the Bible says fruit trees were made before fish— the “millions of years” view puts fish before fruit trees.

Pat Robertson: “The Bible records that this was accomplished in ‘six days.’ I stated that a solar day was different from an Earth day; a galactic day is different from a solar day; and a universal day is different from a galactic day.”

Answer: Such statements are, quite frankly, “gobbledy-gook,” and have nothing to do with the real meaning of the word “day” in Genesis. The Bible was written, of course, in a language. Therefore we must go to the words in that language, look at the context and, on the basis of the rules of grammar for that language, work out what it means. The word “day” in Hebrew, when used with a number or with the word “evening” or “morning”—just as in Genesis chapter one—means an ordinary day. After all, Christians don’t read the New Testament and say about the Resurrection: “A physical resurrection is different from a spiritual one is different from a resuscitation one—therefore we don’t know what sort of resurrection it was!”

No! We read the words in context according to the type of language, and then we can dogmatically state that Jesus Christ rose bodily from the dead, according to the Scriptures.

Besides which, as soon as you allow for millions of years of Earth’s history, then death, diseases (like cancer), suffering, and pain, etc., existed before sin—which destroys the foundation of the Gospel.

Pat Robertson: “In short, a ‘day’ does not have to be 24 Earth hours. The Bible itself says, ‘One day with the Lord is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as a day.’”

Answer: This is one of the most common, but inconsistent and error-laden applications of Scripture (in this case 2 Peter 3:8) that I hear in Christian circles. This phrase from the New Testament has nothing whatsoever to do with defining a Hebrew word in Genesis.

Not only this, but people who use this verse to question the meaning of the word “day” apply this only to Genesis 1. But the word “day” is used over 2,000 times in the Old Testament—why don’t they apply it to all the times it’s used? Maybe Jonah was in the great “whale” for 3,000 years, not three days!

Sadly the views of Pat Robertson are also held by many Christian leaders in America today. While these same leaders have a heart for fighting America’s culture war, Christians are losing the battle. The problem is that the culture war is being lost because Biblical authority has been lost. And this has happened because the majority of Christian leaders have rejected the literal history in Genesis in order to compromise with millions of years and evolutionary ideas. Until Christian leaders get back to accepting God’s clear Word beginning in Genesis, and thus reestablishing Biblical authority, Christians will not be able to fight the culture war at a foundational level—where the real battle is largely being won by the secular humanists.


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