are grateful for the efforts of the creation science ministries
(CSM's), among whom the Institute for Creation Research
(ICR), and Answers in Genesis (AiG)
are in the forefront. These major organizations are invaluable
sources of information which supports the basic premise of a literal
creation during a period of six 24-hour days during which
God created the physical universe as we know it. We wholeheartedly
agree with this scientific creation premise, and encourage everyone
to attend these seminars whenever possible.—(Note: all
emphasis in bold is ours unless otherwise noted.)
despite our support, we feel it is important to clarify our position
in two specific areas where we have significantly different views:
1. Their presentation
of the gospel, and
2. Attacks on all
versions of what they call the "Gap Theory."
gospel presented by the CSM's is typical of that found in most
of the evangelical world. Their audience is an eclectic mixture
of preservationists (fundamentalists), neo-evangelicals, and sacramentalists,
so a free-grace, faith alone gospel would certainly alienate most
of them, but the CSM's have successfully avoided this because
of their version of the "Lordship salvation" gospel.
following quote from "The Great Dinosaur Mystery SOLVED!"
by Ken Ham illustrates the point. In the section headed, "How
Can I Become a Christian?... What Do I Need to Do?," (p.
100) he says:
I need to repent!... I must turn from... any desire that
takes priority over the Lord Jesus Christ... In Philippians
3:8, Paul makes a statement that needs to apply... "I count
all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ
Jesus my Lord... that I may win Christ."
is absolutely necessary... Some people say that so long as I
confess my sin, I'll be OK... that is not sufficient.
[28:13] tells us that, "Whoso confesseth and forsaketh
[his sins] shall have mercy." Repentance is a complete
turning from my former life... living the same life that the
Lord Jesus lived... to imitate [Him] in every respect.
from the fact that this standard cannot possibly be met by a Christian,
including Paul himself, how can it be demanded of one who has
not yet been justified, and so does not have the benefit of the
indwelling HS and a new nature? This is a mystery far greater
than that of the dinosaurs.
And he goes on to say...
I need to put my faith in Christ... Faith is like an
instrument the Lord provides by which we can believe
in Christ... that channel that the Lord gives me by which
I can trust and believe...
is the ultimate extent to which one can go who believes in the
Reformed error that faith is a gift. As a result of the misinterpretation
of Ephesians 2:8, faith becomes a "commodity" we possess
that can apparently remain in an "unexercised" state
until one "places it" in something or someone. In other
words, someone can have faith without believing anything.
keeping with the typical neo-evangelical error, Ham teaches that
forsaking all sin, living at the level of the Lord Himself, and
believing in Christ as Savior does not, in itself, save. The believer
must then pray before faith (believing?) becomes effective...
I need to pray... [He then goes on to discuss prayer
that would characterize someone who was already a Christian,
and then says...]
not pray now, repent of your sin, receive Christ, and accept
what He has done for you in His death and resurrection [to his
credit, Ham very clearly presented these facts of the gospel
earlier in the chapter].
he said that repentance was first in the order, and prayer was
third. Now, however, prayer precedes repentance, and receiving
is distinct from and precedes "accepting." Is anyone
confused yet? One wonders how someone who is so brilliantly logical
when discussing creation can take such a different course when
discussing the gospel.
the seminars, and benefit from the wonderful scientific information,
but beware when they speak or write about the gospel, especially
when teaching children.
claims that one of the most frequently-asked questions they receive
concerns the alleged time period between the first two verses
of Genesis, which they seem to define as the "Gap Theory"
(GT). The following quote from "The Answers Book"
by Ham, Sarfati, and Wieland is typical:
versions of the GT place millions of years of geologic time
(including billions of fossil animals) in between these first
two verses of Genesis. This is the "ruin-reconstruction"
(R-R) version of the GT...
versions of the GT impose outside ideas on Scripture and thus
open the door for further compromise. (p. 57)
importantly, the GT undermines the gospel at its foundations.
the GT was an effective "anesthetic" that put the
church to sleep for over 100 years. (p. 71)
of the major problems we have with the CSM's is that they are
able to make a tenuous distinction between the GT and the R-R
version, but refuse to recognize the significant distinction between
that view and our Creation-Renovation (C-R) model, which
accepts the legitimacy of the Genesis discontinuity—the
time period between the first two verses of Genesis—but
does not place the geologic ages and fossils before Adam.
prefer to use the term Gap Theory to describe the original,
unscientific version which assigned the geologic ages and fossils
to a pre-Adamic earth; the Ruin-Reconstruction view to
describe those who recognize the fall of Lucifer as the primary
issue in the discontinuity; and the Creation-Renovation
model as the subdivision of the R-R view which rejects pre-Adamic
to what the CSM's teach, recognition of the discontinuity is not
an "extra-biblical, compromising human invention," but
a legitimate, scholarly interpretation of the original Hebrew
text that is consistent with the modern, scientific creation position.
Genesis discontinuity was recognized by virtually all of the early
"Brethren," among whom were some world-class experts
in the original languages (e.g., Darby, Kelly, and Wigram), as
well as others who were influenced by them—notably, Sir
Robert Anderson (see "Editor's Remarks" on The
Buddha of Christendom), Dr. C. I. Scofield, and
Lewis Sperry Chafer, all major pioneers in the dispensational
movement, which had an unparalleled influence in clarifying
the gospel, reviving the church, and evangelizing the world.
more than 100 years, the successors of this movement have not
succumbed to evolutionary theory, but remain among the most stanch
supporters of the scientific Creation position. In view of what
actually happened, it is difficult to understand how Ham and associates
came to their conclusions about the damaging effects of the GT.
Creationists generally fail to communicate that, until very recently,
no one understood or had the resources to understand,
what they teach today. Except for an obscure treatise written
by a Seventh-Day Adventist in 1923, it was not until some time
after 1961, when Dr. Henry Morris published "The
Genesis Flood," that Flood geology began to be widely promoted
among evangelicals, and seriously challenged the assertions of
the scientific community. Until then, the GT was arguably the
best explanation available. We are certain that, given the opportunity
to evaluate the information available today, the original proponents
of the GT—especially among Brethren writers—would
abandon it in favor of the C-R model.
CSM's fail to distinguish among the widely divergent views held
by those who recognize the discontinuity, and tend to use demeaning
language and misrepresentation to disparage them. Maintaining
this characteristic adversarial stance creates an unwarranted
division in the Body of Christ.
the GT was used as an attempt to accomodate the scientific evidence
of the time, the Genesis discontinuity is part of a far more important
theological point that the CSM's fail to recognize.
pre-Adamic fall of Lucifer is essential to a full understanding
of the conflict between Satan and Christ as the eternal First-born,
and is, therefore, an important element of the dispensational
understanding of Scripture. As we have already pointed out, the
original proponents of the R-R view were dispensationalists, so
absolute rejection of the Genesis discontinuity is essentially
a rejection of dispensationalism.
Scofield Reference Bible, originally published in 1909,
played a major role in promoting the literal interpretation of
Scripture—the dispensational perspective—among fundamental,
Bible-believing Christians. However, in keeping with the times,
it included several notes advocating the GT.
of this, the Scofield Bible is specifically targeted
by the CSM's, leaving the impression with the typical seminar
student, that dispensationalists in general are false teachers
who should be avoided.
PA2 dispensationalists, who "know" the Church didn't
start at Pentecost, but can't tell you when it did begin, the
creation organizations can only offer assumptions about the circumstances
surrounding the creation and fall of Lucifer, and so have little
grasp of its real significance in the overall dispensational plan.
(Ruin-Reconstruction) Model (C-R)
credible dispensationalist today believes in the GT. Virtually
everyone understands that no human or animal life was created
until the fifth and sixth days, and fossils are adequately explained
by the Flood.
C-R model leaves no room at all for a pre-Adamic biological earth,
as the CSM's consistently—and falsely—imply. It recognizes
that biological death did not occur before Adam's sin, and assumes
a relatively short angelic period—probably
about 2,000-4,000 years, but possibly much less—between
the original creation and the chaos.
slide show will give you a general idea of the C-R model, and
the Genesis 1:1-2 article provides an in-depth study
of the scriptural basis for it. We hope you find it helpful in
maintaining a discerning mind when attending Creation seminars
or reading their books.