I recently read an article entitled “Young Earth-ism Cost Her Faith” which my friend Mike Duran linked to on his Facebook page. The author made a case that “many apologists for young-earth creationism (including the writers of my Christian textbooks) actually appeared to have misrepresented evolutionary theory and the evidence for it in a way that I can only describe as dishonest,” which caused her to ” ‘lose my faith,’ as it were.”
I was curious where the responses to this article went, but the website proprietors closed comments which also apparently hid them. In the sidebar was another article that I thought might explore a similar subject, this one entitled “Why I Am A Darwinist–Mary Catherine Watson.” In similar fashion to the writer who lost her faith, Ms. Watson came to her belief in Darwinism through exposure to it after growing up with a creationist education: “I took AP Biology and found myself convinced that evolution made more sense in explaining the world around me than did the Bible.”
The irony is, I grew up with evolution, the Big Bang theory, Darwinism, taught in school as if there were no other possible answers. But I also grew up going to church where I learned the Bible was God’s authoritative Word, His revelation. Consequently, my experience was quite different from Ms. Watson’s.
From her study, she concluded, “And no, it is highly unlikely that every scientist is simultaneously deluded by this theory. Science is one of the most intellectually intense fields of profession around, and its workers have some of the highest IQs, they are not that naïve.” From my study, I concluded God who is omniscient, the Creator of all those high IQs, revealed that which only He could know with certainty.
Ms. Watson says she went to the Bible and found more questions. She admits evolution doesn’t answer all questions either but concluded, “in light of all the information I’ve come across from both sides, it seems to me to be the more logical option.”
On the other hand, I went to the Bible and found more and more facts that made the big picture come together in a logical whole.
Ms. Watson changed her opinions in part because of her questions about the flood recorded in Scripture.
such a flood would require steady, worldwide rainfall at the rate of about 6 inches per minute, 8640 inches per day–for 40 days and nights–so as to cover the entire earth with an endless ocean 5 miles deep, thus burying 29,000 ft. Mt. Everest (the tallest mountain) under 22 ft. (15 cubits) of water, made me think again. That is a lot of water, where did it come from, and where did it go?
Her study of Scripture seems to be less complete than her math computations. According to the Biblical record of creation, there was a considerable amount of water:
The earth was formless and void, and darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters . . . Then God said, “Let there be an expanse in the midst of the waters, and let it separate the waters from the waters.” God made the expanse, and separated the waters which were below the expanse from the waters which were above the expanse; and it was so. God called the expanse heaven. And there was evening and there was morning, a second day. Then God said, “Let the waters below the heavens be gathered into one place, and let the dry land appear”; and it was so. (Gen 1:2, 6-9)
Then in the account of the flood, this:
In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, on the seventeenth day of the month, on the same day all the fountains of the great deep burst open, and the floodgates of the sky were opened. The rain fell upon the earth for forty days and forty nights. (Gen 7:11-12)
In other words, this was not the typical modern day rain storm we’re familiar with.
But therein lies the divide between people like Ms. Watson and people like me–when the Bible records something that is outside my experience, I don’t conclude it was fabricated, mythologized, or inaccurate. I believe it is outside my experience and today’s scientific observation because things were different from what the scientists assume. And clearly, assumption plays a huge part in “observing” what transpired thousands of years ago.
The bottom line is this: Ms. Watson and the anonymous “lost her faith” writer read the same science I read and studied, read the same Bible I read, and yet we have arrived at vastly different places. I am far from thinking that I know all the details about creation, but I’m pretty confident that the scientists who deny a Creator have made a serious error. If you start with a wrong hypothesis, it’s pretty hard to believe that you are drawing closer to the truth as you persist with that line of reasoning.
In the end, I’ll take the word of omniscient, eternal God over finite, limited Man when it comes to the origins of the cosmos. After all, without God’s revelation, we’re trying to follow a bread crumb trail back to the first cause. As Hansel and Gretel discovered, bread crumbs aren’t so reliable.