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Presented to AVCSA July 14, 2007. "Progressive Creationism: The Dangers of Using Science to Interpret the Bible". What is Progressive Creationism?. God created the earth over long periods of time, one small miracle at a time, millions and millions of miracle all together.

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what is progressive creationism
What is Progressive Creationism?
  • God created the earth over long periods of time, one small miracle at a time, millions and millions of miracle all together.
  • This is not Theistic Evolution, the belief that God wound up the universe like a clock and walked away.
who believes in progressive creationism
Who believes in Progressive Creationism?
  • Most denominational leaders
  • Most Bible college professors
  • Dr. James Dobson, Focus on the Family
  • Charles W. Colson, Founder, Prison Fellowship Ministries
  • Walter C. Kaiser, Jr., President, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary
  • Dr. John Ankerberg, Host, The John Ankerberg Show
  • Dr. Jerry White, President/General Director, The Navigators
  • Dr. R. Neil Snider, President, Trinity Western University
  • Jack Hayford, President, International Church of the Foursquare Gospel
  • Trinity Broadcasting Network
  • Hank Hanegraaff of Christian Research Institute
  • Campus Crusade for Christ
why do they believe this
Why do they believe this?
  • To avoid ridicule from mainstream “Science”
  • To allow Christians (and themselves) to accept the teachings of “Science” and still accept (most of) the Bible.
so what s the problem
So what's the problem?
  • “Science” is an Atheist belief system
  • Founded on the denial of the existence of all things supernatural.
  • “Science” is used to interpret nature and what we see in geology and the fossil record according to this foundation.
  • “Science” is then used to interpret the Bible.
hugh ross and reasons to believe
Hugh Ross and “Reasons to Believe”
  • Main voice of progressive creationism
what does rtb believe
What does RTB believe?
  • Nature is a 67th book of the Bible, on equal terms with it.
  • The universe is 16 billion years old because the Big Bang and radioactive dating methods prove it.
  • For millions of years before God created Man, earth was populated with spiritless hominids. Man was created about 20,000 years ago.
  • Death, bloodshed, disease, and thorns ruled over the Earth since the beginning of creation.
  • Noah's flood was a local flood.
nature is a 67th book of the bible on equal terms with it
Nature is a 67th book of the Bible, on equal terms with it.
  • RTB says: “RTB believes that God has revealed Himself to humanity in at least two ways—the words of the Bible and the record of nature. Reasons To Believe's mission is to work rigorously to integrate both of God's revelations into one harmonious picture revealing the identity and character of the Creator. When properly understood, God's Word (Scripture) and God's world (nature)—as two revelations (one verbal, one physical) from the same God—will never contradict each other.” (emphasis mine)
nature is a 67th book of the bible on equal terms with it9
Nature is a 67th book of the Bible, on equal terms with it.
  • RTB says: “Not everyone has been exposed to the sixty-six books of the Bible, but everyone on planet Earth has been exposed to the sixty-seventh book - the book that God has written upon the heavens for everyone to read.”
nature is a 67th book of the bible on equal terms with it10
Nature is a 67th book of the Bible, on equal terms with it.
  • RTB says: “And the Bible tells us it’s impossible for God to lie, so the record of nature must be just as perfect, and reliable and truthful as the sixty-six books of the Bible that is part of the Word of God … And so when astronomers tell us [Ross uses the example of scientists attempting to measure distances in space and goes on to say that] it’s part of the truth that God has revealed to us. It actually encompasses part of the Word of God.” (Toccoa Falls College, Staley Lecture Series March, 1997).
nature is a 67th book of the bible on equal terms with it11
Nature is a 67th book of the Bible, on equal terms with it.
  • So what's the problem?
  • We must let the Bible speak for itself.
  • The Bible must be used to interpret what we see around us, in biology, astronomy, and the fossil record,not the other way around.
billions and billions of years
Billions and Billions of Years
  • RTB says: “Hugh Ross has been active for more than two decades in researching and communicating the most compelling evidences for God's supernatural fingerprint in creation. Instead of being an example of atheistic philosophy, big bang cosmology is one of the most potent evidences for the existence of God, pointing directly to the necessity of a Transcendent beginning of the universe.”
billions and billions of years13
Billions and Billions of Years
  • The RTB timeline of history:
  • 300,000 years atoms appear; light separates from darkness (outer space becomes black)
  • 365 million years first stars
  • 500 million years first galaxies
  • 2 billion years quasars and galaxies
  • 9 billion years solar system
  • 10 billion years first life created on Earth
  • 13 billion years Cambrian explosion
  • 13.5 billion years creation of dinosaurs
  • 13.73 billion years creation of man
  • 13.73 billion years the present
billions and billions of years14
Billions and Billions of Years
  • So what's the problem?
  • The whole theory is linked to an unproven story (the Big Bang) that contradicts the Bible.
  • If the Big Bang is used today to interpret the Bible, and tomorrow is replaced with another theory, what happens to our understanding of the Bible?
  • The Big Bang is not necessary to show the universe had a beginning. (the Kalam argument, the infinitely old universe problem)
billions and billions of years15
Billions and Billions of Years
  • There are problems with the Big Bang:
  • Halton Arp
  • The Horizon problem
  • Lack of magnetic monopoles
  • Lack of antimatter
  • Quantized red shifts
  • The Cosmic Microwave Background (and therefore the universe) is rotating, with us at the center.
  • Mass clumped together into galaxies and clusters of galaxies.
  • Spiral galaxies would take billions of years to form, but are present in the most distant (oldest galaxies)
  • Spiral galaxy arms would blur in only a billion years.
  • Gas will not condense into stars.
billions and billions of years16
Billions and Billions of Years
  • Most importantly, the whole theory contradicts the obvious message of Genesis of creation in six days.
  • There is a young earth creationist cosmology proposed by Dr. Russell Humphreys that results in an old universe and a young earth. (Starlight and Time)
mindless hominids
Mindless Hominids
  • RTB says: “RTB does believe that the fossil record is a reasonably accurate history of life on earth, including the existence of hominids before modern humans. But RTB also firmly believes that God supernaturally and miraculously created Adam from the "dust of the earth" (not a pre-existing being) just as described in Genesis 1 and 2. Adam and Eve were the first humans, and from them came the entire human race.”
mindless hominids18
Mindless Hominids
  • RTB says: ‘Starting about 2 to 4 million years ago, God began creating man-like mammals or ‘hominids.’ These creatures stood on two feet, had large brains, and used tools. Some even buried their dead and painted on cave walls...
mindless hominids19
Mindless Hominids
  • RTB says: ‘However, they were different from us. They did not worship God or establish religious practices. In time, all these man-like creatures went extinct. Then, about 10 to 25 thousand years ago, God replaced them with Adam and Eve.’ (Reasons To Believe Web Site, updated July 8, 1997)
mindless hominids20
Mindless Hominids
  • So what's the problem?
  • Neanderthals have been found with elaborate burial ceremonies, including rouge, jewelry, even chain mail.
  • Neanderthal DNA closely matches ours. Even secular scientists have proposed that modern humans and Neanderthals interbred. There is no distinct cutoff date for Neanderthals.
  • Neanderthal facial features and teeth match what we would look like if we lived to be several hundred years old, just as Genesis says about post flood people (Buried Alive, Jack Cuoso)
  • Australian aborigines and American Indians are also dated by “Science” as going back over 40,000 years. Are they “pre-adamic” races? (Spiritless Hominids?)
death bloodshed disease thorns
Death, Bloodshed, Disease, Thorns
  • RTB says: “A careful examination of Romans 5:12 shows that Adam's sin introduced death to all humans, not to all life forms on earth. Plant and animal death in no way attributes evil or cruelty to the Creator. Furthermore, a biblical and scientific case can be made that the laws of physics as known today have been in operation since the creation of the universe.”
death bloodshed disease thorns22
Death, Bloodshed, Disease, Thorns
  • The Bible says: Rom 5:12 “Therefore, just as through one man sin entered into the world, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men, because all sinned” (NASB)
  • 1Co 15:21-22 “For since by a man came death, by a man also came the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all will be made alive.” (NASB)
death bloodshed disease thorns23
Death, Bloodshed, Disease, Thorns
  • YEC says “The old-Earth teaching on animal death, violence and extinction before Adam sinned destroys the Bible's teaching on the cosmic impact of the Fall and of Christ's redemptive work consistently presented from Genesis to Revelation. This theological truth is a major reason that the age of the Earth matters. And sadly it is a truth that most old-Earth creationists ignore.” Terry Mortenson
death bloodshed disease thorns24
Death, Bloodshed, Disease, Thorns
  • How does RTB deal with Gen 1:31 “God saw all that He had made, and behold, it was very good.”
  • RTB claims this means “good enough”
noah s flood was local
Noah's Flood was Local
  • RTB says: “Reasons To Believe scholars make a solid case from the Bible that Noah's flood was "universal," impacting the entire human race and all animals associated with humanity, without necessarily being global. Given RTB's belief that early humans failed to spread out over the planet, the flood need not have extended beyond the Mesopotamian area. RTB clearly affirms belief that Noah's flood wiped out all of humanity in existence at the time, with the lone exception of Noah and his family.”
noah s flood was local26
Noah's Flood was Local
  • So what's the problem?
  • Why did Noah have to build an Ark? He could have walked to the other side of the mountains and missed it.
  • Why was an ark even needed? The rest of the earth had animals.
  • Why was the Ark big enough to hold all the different kinds of vertebrate land animals?
  • Why would birds have been sent on board?
  • More...
noah s flood was local27
Noah's Flood was Local
  • How could the waters rise to 15 cubits (8 meters) above the mountains (Genesis 7:20)?
  • Absolutely no humans had moved out of Noah's area in 1600 years?
  • God has repeatedly broken His promise never to send such a flood again?
in conclusion
In Conclusion
  • The Bible is the inspired word of God and must be the source by which we evaluate the earth and universe around us.
  • RTB says we, YECs, are the problem: “...[The author] points out two dangers of [the Young Earth] paradigm: our children losing their faith, and unbelievers be hindered from belief. He states, “If they come to think that the Bible is wrong in the first three chapters, they will likely reject the rest as well”” Review of “Peril in Paradise” by Mark Whorton