"This doctrine of six day creation was ... the consensus of the theologians, ministers and elders at the Westminster Assembly"

There are 83 Comments

DavidO's picture

Darrell Post wrote:

"The author did not need a Creation Museum"

 

...a week cannot go by on SI that there is not at least one swipe at Ken Ham and AiG. There was a thread last week opened regarding the ark encounter, just for the purpose of belittling it. Now this swipe...But I do not understand how it benefits the body of Christ to use a public forum like this to just keep beating on a brother...It would be wrong for me to bring up their names only for the purpose of belittling them or attempting to encourage others to do the same. After all, God might very well use such ministries, and accomplish eternal fruit, while I am instead throwing rotten tomatoes...

Given that the AIG mention you cite from this thread is merely presented as one example (along with a CS textbook) of the whole of creation science, it seems to me that the point was to commend the rigorous and exclusive use of scripture over against what may be seen as reverse engineered attempts to prove the scriptures.  Science evolves.  CS will evolve.  Science that "proves" creation today will be tossed tomorrow in favor of a better model.  I don't think that process does much at all to justify the Words that were once spoken. 

Also, it's interesting, I think, the kind of language categorized as a swipe vs. that used in an exhortation to love the brethren.

And speaking of language, it seems to me that it is the real divide here.  The Creation Museum is primarily image based (yes, I've been there) as would be the new Ark.  The article referenced in the OP, is, obviously, primarily word based.  Can we judge one of those as better and more proper?  Might we even judge one of those as approaching impropriety?

dgszweda's picture

Quote:
Science that "proves" creation today will be tossed tomorrow in favor of a better model.  I don't think that process does much at all to justify the Words that were once spoken.

 

And herein lies the crux of the problem.  I have been in the creation science circles since the 70's.  And while AiG is definitely better than many in how it handles science, it is still faced with a problem.  Science is not truth.  So while the Scriptures are clear about Creation and they will never change, the science models are changing every day.  What was once a great argument for or against evolution becomes irrelevant after a period of time.  So we build website, set up museums, tour the country debating the evolutionists, and in a matter of years we need to change our tactics, adjust our arguments, change our models just to keep up with our arguments.  This is not what Scriptural Truth is about.  The message, the tactics, the arguments all need to stay focused on the truth and the arguments should not be changing with the times.  This is why our young people are abandoning a literal 6-day creation account.  What they were taught 10-15 years ago, may not even be good science.

 

While many of the scientists are nice within the creation circles, they are hardly world class scientists.  We are not going to win the argument for creation, using the basis for science, anymore than we will win the argument for the miracles using science or the proof of Jesus using historical documents.  The article posted at the top of this thread is great because it lays out the truth from a Scriptural viewpoint.  That article was just as relevant 2,000 years ago, as it will be 2,000 years from now.  We cannot say that about creation science.

 

I would not be half as critical if we were not talking about crazy sums of money here.  In order to maintain costs and attract visitors they are opening up zip lines and other attractions.  None of it is wrong per se.  But to maintain a $50 million museum complex for such a niche discussion point, is going to require them to be innovative and treat this more and more as an amusement park.  There is only so much people can do for a full day around creationism.

Darrell Post's picture

There is only so much people can do for a full day around creationism. On site, in addition to the Museum proper, which takes a full day, there are botanical gardens, petting zoo, and walking trails. As it turns out, there is so much to do, that last year, AiG expanded the ticket to cover two days for the price of admission because guests couldn't fit it all into one day.

 

 

"it seems to me that the point was to commend the rigorous and exclusive use of scripture over against what may be seen as reverse engineered attempts to prove the scriptures." 

 

And happily, I found after I visited the creation museum, that they put on display the use of the Scriptures as the authority, and made the Scriptures the platform for the entire presentation. That is what Paul Scharf and I have been trying to communicate here, that the very thing that some here are arguing for is what AiG is doing, even though they keep trying to paint Ham as what they are arguing against.

dcbii's picture

EditorModerator

Jim wrote:

  • "the building of a full-size Ark can stand as a reminder to the world of salvation"
  • "an Ark would also stand as a warning of coming judgment—to condemn those who reject God’s clear Word"

Jim, I'm not sure what I think of the ark project itself, or the other attractions.  However, in answer to your above two points, I not only agree with Chip about the word "can" (instead of "needs to"), I would point out this:

KJV wrote:

Joshua 4:5-7

5 And Joshua said unto them, Pass over before the ark of the Lord your God into the midst of Jordan, and take you up every man of you a stone upon his shoulder, according unto the number of the tribes of the children of Israel:

6 That this may be a sign among you, that when your children ask their fathers in time to come, saying, What mean ye by these stones?

7 Then ye shall answer them, That the waters of Jordan were cut off before the ark of the covenant of the Lord; when it passed over Jordan, the waters of Jordan were cut off: and these stones shall be for a memorial unto the children of Israel for ever.

Couldn't the word of the Children of Israel to their children have been enough?  Or the words written in the book of Joshua?  God thought it proper to make a memorial to remind people of what had happened.

Interestingly, in the N.T., Christ himself said of the woman that had poured ointment on him, that wherever in the world the Gospel was preached, her story should be told for a memorial of her (Matt. 26:13).  Pretty important for a seemingly minor actor in Christ's history.

Memorials are clearly not in the same league with planting a church.  However, I fail to see how they would be anti-scriptural.  And as I said before, as regards the "amusement park" nature of some of the other things planned, I'm not sure how I see that.

Dave Barnhart

Greg Long's picture

I, too, am puzzled by those who make a distinction between AiG arguments and scriptural arguments. If you think AiG arguments are solely based on science, you haven't visited their web site or museum, read their materials, or listened to any of their speakers.

-------
Greg Long, Ed.D. (SBTS)

Pastor of Adult Ministries
Grace Church, Des Moines, IA

Adjunct Instructor
School of Divinity
Liberty University

Greg Long's picture

And BTW, some of you are lauding the approach of this article, that is based on Scripture, as over against the supposed approach of AiG, being based on creation science. Well, in the article, the author's fourth point mentions the work of....creation scientists:

[4] My fourth reason for affirming six-day creation is the fine work of its present-day defenders. And here I will mention one who recently caught my attention. Dr. Jonathan Sarfati, Ph.D., was born in Victoria, Australia, but moved with his family to New Zealand as a child. He received university education in New Zealand, graduating from Victoria University in Wellington with Honors in chemistry, earning a Ph.D. While in University Jonathan became a believer in Jesus through the witness of Christian students there, and as a consequence was driven to investigate his Jewish heritage. As a Messianic Jew, he became a passionate seeker of knowledge about church history and theological issues. He also became interested in the debate over creation and founded the Wellington Christian Apologetics Society in New Zealand. (He also became national chess champion and even achieved a draw against former world champion Boris Spassky in 1988.) His writings on the subject of evolution and creation are some of the finest I have seen.

I also find the writings of Dr. John Byl — whose articles have often been seen in Christian Renewal — very encouraging in their defense of six-day creation. Dr. Byl is a retired University Science Professor, and has served as an elder in a Canadian Reformed Church. Both of these men have shown that six day creation is capable of a vigorous and cogent defense. I have thought for some time that it is a pity that our Reformed Seminaries are failing to extricate us from the effects of the mistaken concession made by some truly great men in recent history, but I’m also heartened to see a clear stand being taken for six-day creation at Mid America Reformed Seminary — and even more since the Greenville Presbyterian Seminary has been willing to openly state its rejection of the concession of faith which has produced such bitter fruit.

-------
Greg Long, Ed.D. (SBTS)

Pastor of Adult Ministries
Grace Church, Des Moines, IA

Adjunct Instructor
School of Divinity
Liberty University

GregH's picture

Greg L, I have no doubt that Ham has the gospel in his museum but surely we can all agree that a huge part of what he does is trying to prove creationism with science? He says that mainstream science is wrong and his scientists are right.

dgszweda's picture

dcbii wrote:

Memorials are clearly not in the same league with planting a church.  However, I fail to see how they would be anti-scriptural.  And as I said before, as regards the "amusement park" nature of some of the other things planned, I'm not sure how I see that.

 

That was a memorial that the Israelites setup for the Israelites benefit.  We don't have enough time to go into that, but Ken is creating an amusement park around the ark to remind the world of God.  We don't need that, because unlike the Israelites, we 1) have the completed Special Revelation of God that stands as a testament, 2) we have the Holy Spirit that indwells believers and 3) we have the church.  All three stand as a testament and a witness to God and they are ordained by God.

 

Does that mean that Ken is sinning, or that he is not sharing Christ?  No!  We are not saying what he is doing is wrong, we just question the wisdom, effort, costs and the real long term benefits of what he is doing.

Chip Van Emmerik's picture

GregH wrote:

Greg L, I have no doubt that Ham has the gospel in his museum but surely we can all agree that a huge part of what he does is trying to prove creationism with science? He says that mainstream science is wrong and his scientists are right.

No Greg H, I don't agree with this assessment. Ham starts everything with scripture and constantly returns to scripture. He simply brings science alongside scripture to show that is doesn't contradict but actually supports the scripture. One of his fundamental emphasis is that everyone has the same facts, but our presuppositions influence our understanding and interpretation of those facts, therefore, it is imperative to begin with scripture to properly understand science.

Why is it that my voice always seems to be loudest when I am saying the dumbest things?

dgszweda's picture

Chip Van Emmerik wrote:

GregH wrote:

Greg L, I have no doubt that Ham has the gospel in his museum but surely we can all agree that a huge part of what he does is trying to prove creationism with science? He says that mainstream science is wrong and his scientists are right.

No Greg H, I don't agree with this assessment. Ham starts everything with scripture and constantly returns to scripture. He simply brings science alongside scripture to show that is doesn't contradict but actually supports the scripture. One of his fundamental emphasis is that everyone has the same facts, but our presuppositions influence our understanding and interpretation of those facts, therefore, it is imperative to begin with scripture to properly understand science.

 

And yet ABC News at the opening of the museum stated that the two purposes of the Creation Museum (as expressed by the museum) are:

  1. Christians who need scientific evidence to bolster and defend their faith
  2. And non-Christians who need to be saved

And while we see lots of verses and Scripture in the museum and the AiG website, point #1 (as stated by the Museum) is what is really the undercurrent here.  So essentially we need man's interpretation of General Revelation to bolster and defend our faith around Special Revelation.

I know this might seem like straining here, and on the surface we don't see this, but this is the undercurrent that is problematic in my view.  Now if this was all conceptual that would be one thing, but I have had long discussions with many, many of our young Christian son's and daughters who have abandoned YEC specifically because of #1 above.  They were taught for 30 years that science could be used to prove creation, that the evolutionist were just looking at it wrong.  But once they started examining the science they began to question #1 and in some cases began to question their faith.  This is the harm that you may not be seeing, but which I am seeing.  And these are not young people at secular colleges.  You might be surprised at how many science majors at a place like BJU don't really believe in YEC and most of the reason is because #1 has failed.

 

GregH's picture

Chip, we are simply saying the same thing two different ways. "Simply brings science alongside scripture" means he is using science to attempt to prove or at least support creationism.  Regardless of whether we use your wording or my wording, I don't care for what he is doing and consider it potentially dangerous. I think he is a sincere Christian and I wish him well, but I am not getting on that boat with him.

Darrell Post's picture

dgszweda, if you actually toured the creation museum and saw it for yourself, you might be able to see what we are saying. The tour began with the authority of Scripture, and it built on that authority, and ended with a video presentation of Christ on the cross as the last Adam. I found it theologically sound, and very movingly done. Make no mistake, I would have been very very disappointed with the creation museum had I found them using science as their their basis of argument and resorting to calling evolutionists names, and so on.

 

If young people question their faith, or leave the faith, it is because the truth of God did not reside in their hearts, not because of what someone else argues or does not argue. Of course we should argue well, and appeal to the authority of the Scriptures, as Ham does. The embarrassment or fear of being laughed at over belief in YEC might have simply been what exposed the young person's lack of trust in God that was there all along. Jesus said He came to set parent against child, and so forth.

 

Yes, there have been abuses in the name of Creation Science, but the Biblically sound message presented at the AiG Creation Museum is not one of those abuses. When I was there, I was impressed by the overall message to trust God, and they repeatedly presented from the Scriptures how theology unravels once the Genesis creation account is rejected. I cannot speak for Ham, but I would guess based on what I saw there at the creation museum that he would put a hearty AMEN to what was written by the Presbyterian/reformed writer in the link above.

Darrell Post's picture

"'Simply brings science alongside scripture' means he is using science to attempt to prove or at least support creationism."

 

It would be more accurate to portray the Creation museum this way: Here is the evidence, the data. Those whose starting point is the authority of Scripture see the data and come to conclusions about that data. Those whose starting assumption is evolution, understandably arrive at different conclusions. The displays there that discussed scientific discoveries and so forth, simply showed the understandable conclusion reached by those whose starting point is the authority of Scripture, as well as the understandable conclusion reached by those whose starting point is evolution. So Ham is not using science to "prove" creationism, but rather is showing here is a logical interpretation of the data if your starting point is the authority of Scripture versus here is a logical interpretation of the data if your starting point is evolution. 

Paul J. Scharf's picture

I think I may finally understand what GregH and dg... are getting at (I actually wish that full names were required on SI so that we all knew who was speaking, but that is a separate issue).

It seems to me, whether they know it or not, they are getting at the distinction between Classical (Semi-Rational) Apologetics and Presuppositional Apologetics. Everyone involved in the matter is going to "use science" one way or the other, so that is not a legitimate criticism. What would be the alternative? To just pretend we are living in a bubble and quote Bible verses to one another - as if the Bible were supra-historical and its connection to history/science was utterly meaningless?? No - that is the very approach that AiG DOES argue against, and rightly so!!

No, everyone is going to "use science." The real question is which of the two - Scripture or science - is taken to be authoritative over the other.

As has been stated by Darrell and others, I think that AiG actually has a very healthy emphasis on placing science in submission to the Word of God, using science to illustrate and amplify Scripture, not to "prove" it.

Of course, it is the job of the theologians to make sure that the work of the scientists is put in its proper perspective. We would, of course, expect the scientists to behave like scientists and the theologians to behave like theologians.

Again, for what it's worth, AiG has given great honor to theologian Dr. John Whitcomb through the years, and he is a well-known Presuppositional Apologist. So I think that speaks volumes about Ken Ham's philosophy on the whole matter.

I hope that helps - it is my best (and probably final) attempt at doing so.

Church Ministries Representative for the Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry

Chip Van Emmerik's picture

dgszweda wrote:

Chip Van Emmerik wrote:

GregH wrote:

Greg L, I have no doubt that Ham has the gospel in his museum but surely we can all agree that a huge part of what he does is trying to prove creationism with science? He says that mainstream science is wrong and his scientists are right.

No Greg H, I don't agree with this assessment. Ham starts everything with scripture and constantly returns to scripture. He simply brings science alongside scripture to show that is doesn't contradict but actually supports the scripture. One of his fundamental emphasis is that everyone has the same facts, but our presuppositions influence our understanding and interpretation of those facts, therefore, it is imperative to begin with scripture to properly understand science.

 

And yet ABC News at the opening of the museum stated that the two purposes of the Creation Museum (as expressed by the museum) are:

  1. Christians who need scientific evidence to bolster and defend their faith
  2. And non-Christians who need to be saved

And while we see lots of verses and Scripture in the museum and the AiG website, point #1 (as stated by the Museum) is what is really the undercurrent here.  So essentially we need man's interpretation of General Revelation to bolster and defend our faith around Special Revelation.

I know this might seem like straining here, and on the surface we don't see this, but this is the undercurrent that is problematic in my view.  Now if this was all conceptual that would be one thing, but I have had long discussions with many, many of our young Christian son's and daughters who have abandoned YEC specifically because of #1 above.  They were taught for 30 years that science could be used to prove creation, that the evolutionist were just looking at it wrong.  But once they started examining the science they began to question #1 and in some cases began to question their faith.  This is the harm that you may not be seeing, but which I am seeing.  And these are not young people at secular colleges.  You might be surprised at how many science majors at a place like BJU don't really believe in YEC and most of the reason is because #1 has failed.

 

Of course, ABC News always gets the story exactly right. Just because the lost understand the museum from that perspective doesn't mean it accurately reflects Ham's position or presentation. And it doesn't match anything I've seen from Ham in more than 30 years of publication. 

Why is it that my voice always seems to be loudest when I am saying the dumbest things?

Chip Van Emmerik's picture

GregH wrote:

Chip, we are simply saying the same thing two different ways. "Simply brings science alongside scripture" means he is using science to attempt to prove or at least support creationism.  Regardless of whether we use your wording or my wording, I don't care for what he is doing and consider it potentially dangerous. I think he is a sincere Christian and I wish him well, but I am not getting on that boat with him.

No GregH, we are not saying the same thing. Ham does not hold up science as any kind of authority. Scripture is the only authority. He simply shows how science corresponds to the authority. He always, only (that I am aware of) promotes scripture alone as the final and supreme authority by which we understand the creation.

Why is it that my voice always seems to be loudest when I am saying the dumbest things?

dgszweda's picture

We probably won't change each other's minds and I think we are all skirting around each other.  I think we all agree that Ken is not an apostate, nor does he avoid Scripture.  He may even use it a lot.  My view, is and always has been, is to throw science out of the discussion entirely.  Use it for what it is for (I am a chemist), but don't use it or even try to argue for/against origins.  The origins are a supernatural event that occurred out of the realms of science.  Science changes at the whims of discovery and understanding (almost everything used at the Scopes trial, either for or against evolution is no longer accurate by either side).  Our sole authority is Scripture (which I know that you state that Ken focuses on - which I would agree to some extent), it never changes, it is absolute in its statements and it has sole supreme authority.  The more we try to loop ourselves into the evolution debate the more silly we appear to be from a scientific standpoint.  The great thing is that we don't have to worry about it.  I have complete confidence that in 100 years all of the scientific arguments used by AiG will not even be accurate anymore, just like most of them from 30 years ago aren't.  Teach our children to understand creation from Scripture and they won't turn away as science weaves and changes with time.  That is my presupposition and why I have concerns about creation science theme parks in general, but even more so at $50 million.

Darrell Post's picture

Paul Scharf mentioned AiG's association with Dr. John Whitcomb, and that jogged my memory that AiG has on their website a list of colleges and seminaries (places like MBBC, BBC-PA, FBBC, etc) whose presidents have specifically endorsed the statement of faith of AiG. Beyond this, they list also list schools who apparently have a more active partnership and are labeled as "Sponser Schools." These include:

The Masters College and Seminary

Northland International University

Appalachain Bible College

Cedarville University

Liberty University

Bob Jones University...

....and about a half dozen others.

 

 

 

James K's picture

Jim wrote:

Interact with these Ken Ham statements about the Ark ... not the museum

 

  • "the building of a full-size Ark can stand as a reminder to the world of salvation"
  • "an Ark would also stand as a warning of coming judgment—to condemn those who reject God’s clear Word"
  • "Yes. It’s time! It’s the right time to rebuild Noah’s Ark. We believe that God has called AiG to construct an Ark according to the dimensions in the Bible, to remind people of the truth of God’s Word and call them to salvation"

So is the Ark a God-directed necessity like Ham claims?

Jim, I am not sure why you are trying to grind this axe into oblivion, but I will take a stab at this as well.  Ham said "can" and you are saying "need" for what reason exactly?

He also said that he believes God has called them to build it.  That does allow for the human error element.  It isn't the same as saying "God has said."

Are there any major New Testament passages (like Mt 24) that warn of coming judgment directly associated with God's wrath that also makes mention of Noah?  (and parallel).  So...

1 Kings 8:60 - so that all the peoples of the earth may know that the LORD is God and that there is no other.

James K's picture

GregH wrote:

Greg L, I have no doubt that Ham has the gospel in his museum but surely we can all agree that a huge part of what he does is trying to prove creationism with science? He says that mainstream science is wrong and his scientists are right.

In your best judgment, do mainstream scientists tend toward or away from belief in God and the supernatural?

In your best judgment, is the upfront rejection of God and the supernatural potentially dangerous?

In your best judgment, is the fact that mainstream scientists receive grants from people with a bias against God and the supernatural a hindrance to their objectivity?

In your best judgment, could you actually come up with a better criticism that isn't rooted in the myth of objective scientists?

1 Kings 8:60 - so that all the peoples of the earth may know that the LORD is God and that there is no other.

dgszweda's picture

James K wrote:

GregH wrote:

Greg L, I have no doubt that Ham has the gospel in his museum but surely we can all agree that a huge part of what he does is trying to prove creationism with science? He says that mainstream science is wrong and his scientists are right.

In your best judgment, do mainstream scientists tend toward or away from belief in God and the supernatural?

In your best judgment, is the upfront rejection of God and the supernatural potentially dangerous?

In your best judgment, is the fact that mainstream scientists receive grants from people with a bias against God and the supernatural a hindrance to their objectivity?

In your best judgment, could you actually come up with a better criticism that isn't rooted in the myth of objective scientists?

 

Not directed to me, but I will throw my two cents into this Smile

 

  1. Science itself will tend away from a belief in God, but specifically the supernatural.  Science is man's (a flawed creature), observation (a limited view of only what our sense can experience), of the world around him and the characterization of the these observations.  There is no room for supernatural in pure science.
  2. Upfront rejection of God is dangerous period.  Is it dangerous to the work of science?  Not always.  Otherwise progress would never be made.  We can heal people, create computers, explain gravity all without believing in God.
  3. Science's bias is not based on grants per se.  That is not the real issue.  Science doesn't need God, that is what Theology is for.  I know this will shock people by saying this.  But the world is filled with unsaved people that use science every day.  I think the scientist are trying their best to explain the world around them.  Origins is 1)outside the scope of core science and 2)the scientists have no affinity toward God.  Yes, someday these two will live in harmony as God reveals Himself to his Creation and His Creatures.
  4. Don't quite understand your fourth question.

 

All too often we feel that Science needs to 100% agree with the Bible.  As a Christian we believe that ultimately they are in harmony, but the Bible does not reveal all aspects of this harmony (it is a book primarily focused on Christ and not a science textbook), nor is a full understanding of God required to practice Science.  The more we hold to the first sentence, the more we grasp the need to have a Christian explanation that can refute the world's science, and it just isn't always going to be there.  If God had written a Science book for mankind that would be the case.  Instead we take that on faith, and we stay thankful that God wrote a book that revealed Christ.

dcbii's picture

EditorModerator

dgszweda wrote:

That was a memorial that the Israelites setup for the Israelites benefit.  We don't have enough time to go into that, but Ken is creating an amusement park around the ark to remind the world of God.  We don't need that, because unlike the Israelites, we 1) have the completed Special Revelation of God that stands as a testament, 2) we have the Holy Spirit that indwells believers and 3) we have the church.  All three stand as a testament and a witness to God and they are ordained by God.


I suspected I'd get the typical "OT" argument that the canon is now complete, and such things are unnecessary today. That's why I picked that particular OT example, because it was intended to stand "forever" according to what the Lord told Joshua. And even though it was for Israel, not the church, Israel still has a future alongside the church, and memorials for OT Israel can still have meaning for us today. It is a teaching tool, specifically mentioned as being applicable to children, and a large Ark could indeed be used in just the same way.

Further, in spite of the fact we have completed revelation and the church, Christ's mention of the memorial of the woman who anointed him was NT, and was to be a memorial wherever the Gospel was preached. That certainly applies to our time, and to NT Christianity.

I actually agree with you that we don't "need" such a memorial as model of the Ark. That doesn't necessarily make it a vain undertaking. As to creating an "amusement park," we are mostly on the same page on that as well, which is why I am also ambivalent about this project.

Dave Barnhart

GregH's picture

James K wrote:

GregH wrote:

Greg L, I have no doubt that Ham has the gospel in his museum but surely we can all agree that a huge part of what he does is trying to prove creationism with science? He says that mainstream science is wrong and his scientists are right.

In your best judgment, do mainstream scientists tend toward or away from belief in God and the supernatural?

In your best judgment, is the upfront rejection of God and the supernatural potentially dangerous?

In your best judgment, is the fact that mainstream scientists receive grants from people with a bias against God and the supernatural a hindrance to their objectivity?

In your best judgment, could you actually come up with a better criticism that isn't rooted in the myth of objective scientists?

1) Yes

2) Yes

3) Yes

4) Maybe rephrase that so it makes some sense? Or better yet, perhaps you should go read what I said again Wink

Darrell Post's picture

"All too often we feel that Science needs to 100% agree with the Bible.  As a Christian we believe that ultimately they are in harmony, but the Bible does not reveal all aspects of this harmony (it is a book primarily focused on Christ and not a science textbook), nor is a full understanding of God required to practice Science.  The more we hold to the first sentence, the more we grasp the need to have a Christian explanation that can refute the world's science, and it just isn't always going to be there.  If God had written a Science book for mankind that would be the case.  Instead we take that on faith, and we stay thankful that God wrote a book that revealed Christ."

 

From all that I have heard from Ken Ham, he would endorse what is quoted here. The Scriptures are our sole authority, we don't arrive at truth via scientific confirmations, and we don't have all the specific answers to the questions that science raises, but we ultimately believe and trust God that He is right, and we embrace the truth that its all about Christ (as illustrated by The Last Adam presentation at the end of the creation museum tour.

dgszweda's picture

dcbii wrote:
dgszweda wrote:

That was a memorial that the Israelites setup for the Israelites benefit.  We don't have enough time to go into that, but Ken is creating an amusement park around the ark to remind the world of God.  We don't need that, because unlike the Israelites, we 1) have the completed Special Revelation of God that stands as a testament, 2) we have the Holy Spirit that indwells believers and 3) we have the church.  All three stand as a testament and a witness to God and they are ordained by God.

I suspected I'd get the typical "OT" argument that the canon is now complete, and such things are unnecessary today. That's why I picked that particular OT example, because it was intended to stand "forever" according to what the Lord told Joshua. And even though it was for Israel, not the church, Israel still has a future alongside the church, and memorials for OT Israel can still have meaning for us today. It is a teaching tool, specifically mentioned as being applicable to children, and a large Ark could indeed be used in just the same way. Further, in spite of the fact we have completed revelation and the church, Christ's mention of the memorial of the woman who anointed him was NT, and was to be a memorial wherever the Gospel was preached. That certainly applies to our time, and to NT Christianity. I actually agree with you that we don't "need" such a memorial as model of the Ark. That doesn't necessarily make it a vain undertaking. As to creating an "amusement park," we are mostly on the same page on that as well, which is why I am also ambivalent about this project.

 

Yes, but your example also doesn't apply to the ark theme park.  Memorials were setup in Scripture, some are to be held to today, but I am not sure we are expected to create memorials today that have the same authority as those in Scripture.  Those were established by God, these are being established by man.

josh p's picture

Paul J. Scharf wrote:

I think I may finally understand what GregH and dg... are getting at (I actually wish that full names were required on SI so that we all knew who was speaking, but that is a separate issue).

It seems to me, whether they know it or not, they are getting at the distinction between Classical (Semi-Rational) Apologetics and Presuppositional Apologetics. Everyone involved in the matter is going to "use science" one way or the other, so that is not a legitimate criticism. What would be the alternative? To just pretend we are living in a bubble and quote Bible verses to one another - as if the Bible were supra-historical and its connection to history/science was utterly meaningless?? No - that is the very approach that AiG DOES argue against, and rightly so!!

No, everyone is going to "use science." The real question is which of the two - Scripture or science - is taken to be authoritative over the other.

As has been stated by Darrell and others, I think that AiG actually has a very healthy emphasis on placing science in submission to the Word of God, using science to illustrate and amplify Scripture, not to "prove" it.

Of course, it is the job of the theologians to make sure that the work of the scientists is put in its proper perspective. We would, of course, expect the scientists to behave like scientists and the theologians to behave like theologians.

Again, for what it's worth, AiG has given great honor to theologian Dr. John Whitcomb through the years, and he is a well-known Presuppositional Apologist. So I think that speaks volumes about Ken Ham's philosophy on the whole matter.

I hope that helps - it is my best (and probably final) attempt at doing so.

Paul I agree that the discussion is basically revolving around presuppositional vs evidential apologetics. Since you are involved in John Whitcomb's ministry let me just say that when I was attending Tyndale I took his class on presuppositional apologetics ( they were recorded lectures) and I loved it. Reading Van Til was not exactly a barrel of monkeys but the lectures were very helpful. To me it really is neat that a person who has done so much with creation science can still be a presuppositional apologist.

Ed Vasicek's picture

Interact with these Ken Ham statements about the Ark ... not the museum

 

Ken Ham is hyped up; you would be too if you were completing a massive project.  I have seen hype like this when a church building is completed.  Even putting praise bands together elicits great enthusiasm.

  • "the building of a full-size Ark can stand as a reminder to the world of salvation"

If believers use the Ark with lost friends and  parallel it to salvation, then it could.  As a matter of fact, I have no doubt that it sometimes will.  Of itself - not often (except perhaps to unsaved but religious people who already accept the truth of the Flood).  This might be an exaggerated statement, but it is conceivably true in the way I have mentioned.  The Ark IS a great object lesson.

  • "an Ark would also stand as a warning of coming judgment—to condemn those who reject God’s clear Word"

Once again, if believers explained it as such, the potential is there.  Of itself it will not likely be perceived that way.  But again, people dedicate church buildings and say similar things about people coming to salvation as a result of a new facility.  What they mean is that Christians will USE the new facility to reach people.

  • "Yes. It’s time! It’s the right time to rebuild Noah’s Ark. We believe that God has called AiG to construct an Ark according to the dimensions in the Bible, to remind people of the truth of God’s Word and call them to salvation"

There is nothing in the Scripture that says this cannot be.  Unless you believe it is impossible for God to lead a person or organization.  It is their belief that God has so led them.  They may be wrong, but all I can say is that God has led me to do some things in my life and ministry that were not based only upon logic or direct statement in the Word.  Maybe I mistook my imagination for God's leading; but maybe he really did (as I believe he did). As long as I don't try to tell you what God is leading YOU to do, or unless I am contradicting Scripture, you should give me space to do so.  Same thing wtih AIG, a ministry which has impacted lives.

 

The only thing these statements might be guilty of is exaggeration from zeal and enthusiasm.  If you held seminaries, mission boards, or evangelistic organizations to the same standard, I would venture to say you could find many similar statements by their founders.

 

I have said things a lot dumber than this when pumped up.  Ham's statements may need to be doctored, but they are not that far off.

"The Midrash Detective"

Jim's picture

About Ham's Ark only:

  • How many on this thread have or would buy a peg, plank, etc to help build it?
  • How many pastors would recommend their church take on this project as a missions item? Or recommend to individuals to do the same?

 

DavidO's picture

the building of a full-size Ark can stand as a reminder to the world of salvation

If I'm not mistaken we have a standing memorial to God's mercy to sinners demonstrated at the flood.  It's called a rainbow (which God left with us instead of the actual ark).  Maybe that's substantial enough?  It's also free.

ChrisS's picture

I can vouch for what Mr. Ham has said to me personally.  He does not want to see people converted to being creationists, he wants to see people being converted to being CHRISTIANS.  One can believe in a young earth and literal 6-day creation and still die and go to hell.  He specifically stated he does not seek to prove creation, no more than he (or any of us) seeks to prove God, but he knows first and foremost creation is true because of the authority and inerrancy of Scripture.  God's Word says it, therefore it is true.  God's Word is, and seemingly always has been Mr. Ham's starting point.

As for "world class" scientists, AiG collaborates with other sources, such as Institute for Creation Research, who now employs such scientists as Jason Lisle, Ph.D..  Why is someone like him "less" a scientist?  His credentials seem to me to be up there with "world-class," having received his Ph.D. in Astrophysics from a secular institution, I believe.  But he is just one.

I went to a conference at AiG a few years back, and heard talks on the in-depth Hebrew narrative of Genesis 1-11;  the talks were not to "prove" anything, but rather to technically and exegetically look at what was written, something I assumed pastors enjoyed doing (not being one yet myself).  The OP even points to the simplicity with which God explained what He did, so such studies seem relevant, at least to someone like me who does not yet know Hebrew.  A Liberty biology professor demonstrated skeletal issues with apes and man.  Molecular biologists explained complex issues we see that defy evolutionary theory.  None of the data presented "proved" anything, apart from simply being science (observable, recordable, repeatable), and those mainstream 95+% hold to so many of their own presuppositions related to evidence that was never observed and cannot be repeated.  That is a key point to AiG's ministry, pointing out the difference between a Biblical worldview and the secular.

Bottom line, good science supports Scripture, not the other way around.  95+% of scientists today cannot accept the supernatural, so they have a different starting point, and that key presupposition is what I have seen and heard AiG consistently point out.  To oppose these mainstream 95+% is to be ridiculed as a scientist, and for the church to side with that mainstream 95% ("whatever science says it is, it is", to quote one popular theologian) when it comes to evidence we can all see and filter through Scripture, God's Word is relegated inferior, and our kids see the hypocrisy, such as is described in Already Gone.  I, for one, appreciate AiG describing what we can do with such evidence, in the face of mainstream science.

Finally, to answer Jim, I have not bought a plank or peg to help build the Ark project.  I also would not recommend our church take on the project as a mission effort, given that our focus of such faith-based missions giving is on men and their families who report back to the local sending and supporting churches, with a clear vision of indigenous church planting.  Granted, that could be in the U.S., but AiG ministries are not in that scope.

Pages