There is so much to tell you that I can only highlight a few fascinating recent developments. It's an exciting time for the ministry, as AiG is poised at just the right time in history during the "culture wars."
When I saw a cartoon in the Cincinnati Enquirer (below), it made me realize even more that the secular humanists are really scared by what's happening in society.
The cartoonist is saying that some Americans may now want to move back to England to get away from Christianity-an obvious recognition that Christians are becoming a force to be reckoned with in American society.
England has all but abandoned Christianity-which the cartoonist also obviously recognizes. Church leaders in England began to compromise with millions of years and evolutionary ideas 200 years ago. Belief in the Bible declined, and subsequent generations have walked away from the faith. England is now pagan.
The message of the cartoon is that the secular humanists want freedom from Christian morality-and Christianity as a whole.
"Creationism" is one of the three items listed, an indication of how secular humanists see groups like AiG as a major threat … and want freedom from them.
In National Media “Frenzy”, I described the increasing media interest in AiG and the Creation Museum. That interest continues to grow (including a mention on the NBC Nightly News and PBS's News Hour recently), and so when the museum is opened, I believe it will receive worldwide headlines in major secular media.
One reason for the media's increasing interest in AiG is that the secular world is finding that more and more Americans are vocally questioning evolutionary ideas. Indeed, there is a growing grassroots movement to counter evolution and an old earth.
This is all going hand in hand with the fight for Christian morality in this nation: battles about "gay" marriage, euthanasia (Terri Schiavo), abortion and so on. The point is, Christian morality can't stand without the Bible-and the Bible can't stand without Genesis 1-11 as true history. The culture war is heating up.
Here are some examples:
- Certain IMAX theaters, according to a secular news source, "have decided not to show a film on volcanoes out of concern that its references to evolution might offend those with fundamental religious beliefs."
- About 20 states currently have school board battles in regard to the teaching of creation/evolution in public schools.
- The head of the National Academy of Sciences expressed his alarm at "the increasing challenges to the teaching of evolution in public schools."
- His letter was sent after the National Science Teachers Association published a survey that revealed "nearly one-third of science teachers say they feel pressure to include creationism-related ideas in the classroom."
(By the way, after reading this report, an AiG supporter at a secular science journal told us how much she appreciates our grassroots approach: "The work that you guys have been doing is not in vain, and it shows students and parents are challenging science teachers in the classroom; it's encouraging.")
- Secular news reports around the world connected US voters in the last election with the creation/evolution issue. This is because the secular world (which understands the issue more than many in the church, sadly) equates believing in the Bible with not believing in evolution and millions of years!
- Recently, I was asked by a subcommittee of legislators from a state to educate them in regard to the creation/evolution/science issues.
- During an interview with a reporter from Newsweek magazine, I was told that leading evolutionists had shared with him that AiG was having a significant effect across America in arming more people.
The list could go on and on. So why is all this happening?
One European reporter was so bewildered, he asked me, "Why is it so many Americans believe in creation? Why do so many believe in God and Christian morality?" He was in disbelief that people could be so "naïve," from his perspective.
I explained to him that America was founded on biblical principles (e.g., the Pilgrims and others), and I also said that America has the largest creation ministries in the world. And for many years now, AiG has been pumping information into the culture through our teaching meetings (we'll do 300 this year, praise God), books/videos, 700 radio outlets and a very popular website (1.2 million visitors a month!).
Our ministry philosophy has always been that if you're going to influence a nation, it has to happen from the ground up.Our ministry philosophy has always been that if you're going to influence a nation, it has to happen from the ground up-it has to be a grassroots movement. That's why we have spent so much time and energy in producing and distributing as many resources as possible.
From day one, I have looked on AiG as a giant reservoir, with lots of pipes distributing information throughout the country. As more and more people become equipped to be able to defend their faith, they become bolder in pressuring school boards, professors, politicians, church leaders and so on.
One reporter asked me, "Where do you see the battle going in the future?"
I replied, "Even as we do more conferences, as we produce more resources such as curricula, and as we approach the time when the Creation Museum opens and reaches hundreds of thousands of people a year-you haven't seen anything yet!"
But these things aren't just happening in America. In March, a group of businessmen rented the large Waterfront Hall auditorium in Belfast, Northern Ireland, for me to speak. The auditorium of 2,000 seats was packed to capacity (the box office told us they could have sold tickets to fill the auditorium three times over!).
This was probably the largest public creation meeting ever held in Europe. The air was electric-people were hungry for answers.
Also, the British Broadcasting Corp. (BBC) reported this month that "the rise in creationism is not just an American phenomenon [and the BBC also mentioned AiG's $25 million Creation Museum]. … A large and growing number of British Christians are defying Darwinist orthodoxy in favour of creationism."
Another BBC correspondent, one who lives in America, also this month even linked the "right to die" case of Schiavo to AiG. He observed that Schiavo "received support from the most powerful Americans in the land." And who are they? Read a portion of the bizarre report he filed for his British audience:
"America is often portrayed as [a] place of Bible bashers [thumpers] … and religious bigotry, a place lacking in respect for evidence-based knowledge.
"I know that is how it is portrayed because I have done my bit to paint that picture, and that picture is in many respects a true one.
"Look no further than the $25 million creationist museum in Kentucky. Complete with models of Adam and Eve being chased by dinosaurs, surely some mistake, and explanations of AIDS that blame the disease on homosexuality [sic].
"There is plenty of nastiness here if you look for it … ."
Then back here in America, nationally syndicated columnist Dan Thomasson also made a similar link between Schiavo and creationists! He wrote this month that those who deny science (i.e., creationists) also took the wrong side in the Schiavo case when they argued that her feeding tube should have remained.
He is worried that there are "concerted efforts [grassroots efforts, we might add] in a number of states to make sure young people aren't tainted by Darwin's blasphemous theories no matter how many bones of early humans are dug up."
But he has faith in the American people that they will not "adopt the theory that God created monkeys and people at the exact same time." As long as AiG is around, however, people will be increasingly told the truth!
What's happening here and in the UK is summed up well by an email I received from a 16-year-old girl named Lorna in Northern Ireland:
"I was one of the youths in the Waterfront Hall in Belfast. God is using your work in MIGHTY ways. Young people have SO many questions and it is so easy to doubt. I left that meeting feeling more assured of my faith than ever before.
"I also really want this event to happen again. I went into school the next day and so many of my non-Christian friends wished they had been there because so many of them are longing to know the TRUTH that I know.
"I REALLY hope you will come back to Belfast. Your message is so very relevant to get to people at my age-before their hearts harden and they no longer search."