Tag: Christian Apologetics

PERPETUAL CHANGE: YES, OR NO?

It seems to me that pronouncements from evolutionists always provide more questions than answers. Here’s just one more of those pronouncements…

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According to a BBC news report* the regular use of caesarian sections in birth is affecting human evolution:

“Women with a very narrow pelvis would not have survived birth 100 years ago. They do now and pass on their genes encoding for a narrow pelvis to their daughters.”

“Historically, these genes would not have been passed from mother to child as both would have died in labour”.

I can’t help wondering, after one million, or one-and-a-half million, or two million years of human evolution, or how ever long current thinking says it’s been going on, and at the outset of which only a couple or a few proto-humans started us all off, why we haven’t already bred out all those nasty narrow-pelvis genes. Wouldn’t all related women and children and so their inferior genes have died off by now? How did any survive at the beginning?

I know I’m no expert at all, but I’ve had the impression for decades that more and more doctors and surgeons are preferring caesarian birth as a simpler and safer option for their patient. Surely this could account for the six-in-a-thousand increase in caesarian births since the 1960s, and not human evolution taking a turn for the worse?

The expert quoted in this report lets slip one of the hardest matters for evolutionists and secularists to deal with. He said that the death of such women and their offspring:

“…is, from an evolutionary perspective, selection.”

I don’t think he meant to say so, but the natural inference of this view when considered with the mechanics of evolution is that if your wife and your baby die because of a narrow birth canal it’s okay: evolution is doing its work.

Being one of those not willing to blindly accept the conceit known as human evolution I can’t help asking some questions. From the perspective of natural selection and the survival of the fittest, are we actually attempting to oppose nature by having hospitals, doctors and fitness clubs? Shouldn’t we just let it all happen…death, disease and suffering? Are we tinkering with the ultimate goal of mud-to-god transformation by having police forces, prisons, governments, armies, laws and education establishments? Or are wars, hospitals, police forces and caesarian births actually an integral part of that evolutionary process-a product of it?

Gosh, that’s a tough nut to crack for the philosophers and politicians determined to shape our society. And make no mistake, they do think about and discuss those very questions. The Margaret Sangers  and the Adolph Hitlers of the world are infamous examples of people who’ve taken evolution seriously, but they’ve only been visible because they’ve taken gigantic, consequential steps to act upon their ideologies. How many more were and are acting unseen?

Atheists and evolutionists claim that we theists and Christians sweep under the carpet all the difficult issues they see in our beliefs. But they’re really no better off. At least Adolph Hitler was man enough (if totally insane and megalomaniacal) to state as plainly as day his view that nature needs a “helping hand” to wipe out those who are weakening the human gene pool.

The consequences of evolution, when confronted honestly, are far more serious than those that any unbeliever can cook up to stick on the believer. Yes, it does seem like an impossible task, on the face of it, to reconcile suffering and faith in a loving God. Search my series on suffering. But in evolution struggle and death are creative and necessary: in the creationist, theistic worldview struggle and death are destructive and bad.

Biblical answers make much more sense to me, and much kinder sense, than the hard, cold realities of the hypothesis known as “evolution”. Evolution is perpetual change, ostensibly for the better, but which in reality brings struggle and suffering, followed by annihilation, to every living thing. The Christian, on the other hand, knows that suffering and death are unnatural and temporal, and that everyone is offered an eternity of health, perfection and completion in Jesus Christ.

* http://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-38210837

 

 

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A VIEW FROM THE BOTTOM

Have you ever felt so down that you were ready to give up on your faith? Sometimes our circumstances, or our view of them, can make us think that up is down and vice-versa. In those times we may begin to see God as the bad guy, the failure, the trouble-maker, the liar. We can even imagine that He isn’t there at all, and that all our faith has been misplaced…

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(LORENZO MONTANA:”BYBLIS”) You really need bass with this-maybe headphones

One of the many sad aspects of this phenomenon is that too many of us are afraid to openly speak about how we feel, so that we shut up our struggle inside and try to put on a positive face. Conversely, those who’re in good spirits can be unwilling or afraid to hear negative testimony from someone who’s struggling. The pain gets buried deep inside the sufferer, and the potential friend exercises no love, compassion or encouragement. Here is a spiritual version of the parable of the man who fell among thieves while ostensibly religious people passed by on the other side, concerned only with their own well-being.

Having been a Christian for many years now, and being of a rather melancholy disposition, I’ve been through many periods in my life where I’ve struggled with doubt or disappointment and anger with God. I know in my head the Biblical truth of who God is, and who I am, and that we all live in a fallen world with fallen, sinful people like ourselves and with malevolent spiritual entities. I know in my mind that Jesus Christ-my example-suffered at the hands of men, as did his disciples and prophets. I know that there’s coming a day when all wrongs will be righted, and when righteousness and holiness will reign. But for some reason I just can’t help asking myself all those questions-you know-the questions you also have asked:

“Where are you Lord? Don’t you care what I’m going through ? Don’t you care how I feel? Why do the wicked prosper? Why is there so much injustice in this world that you made? Why don’t you straighten this rotten world out now? What are you waiting for?”

Yes, in my head I know the answers to all those questions, and I could write lengthy blog-posts on each one from a theological point of view, in defense of the God I profess. You can read my “Spiritual Defense Strategy” series if you want some head knowledge, which really is often invaluable in times of weakness. But like Job, it seems that when we’re in the middle of something awful or which seems awful, when we’re the ones who are suffering and not someone else, answers are not enough.

It’s really not so important what’s in your head: that can fail you. It’s what’s in your heart that counts.

Job discovered that he had a heart problem, and it was only when he completely surrendered his will to God that he found healing. We forget that God is God, and we are his creation. We have the choice to either submit and trust, or to go it alone. In the latter case, I can tell you from experience that there will be no satisfaction or resolution.

XIR84999 Job (oil on canvas) by Bonnat, Leon Joseph Florentin (1833-1922) oil on canvas Musee Bonnat, Bayonne, France Lauros / Giraudon French, out of copyright

What I mostly wanted to say here is that when we get to the bottom-when we’re scraping the bottom of our barrel of faith and hope, and when we’re rehearsing those questions which, after all, are putting to the test the very faith we’ve been professing for years, we need to realize what the alternative of faith and trust is. This is always my turning point. I liken it to the turning point Jesus’ disciples reached when, confused and challenged to see people so offended by the words of Jesus that they walked away, realized that to desert Jesus would be to desert the only person able to give eternal life (John 6:66-68).

When I hit the bottom and look around to see where else I can go, it quickly becomes clear to me that there is nowhere else to go worth going to. The world is full of hatred, selfishness and greed. The world is full of heartaches, broken relationships, loneliness, disappointment and rejection. The world has been brainwashed into thinking-without actually seeing any evidence- that we’re all descended from tiny slimy creatures which once wiggled around in mud, and evolution, honestly viewed, is all about survival of the fittest, the strongest, the biggest, and those who can devour or defeat all competitors.

It’s a world which looks at the beauty, the intricacy and majesty of creation and of the universe and sees no meaning or message in it all.

That’s not the kind of world I would give up my faith for. There is a God. There is a Creator. He’s mind-bogglingly clever and powerful. And he’s perfectly able to make himself known through his own loving, holy, sinless, humble Son, and through an amazing and profound written message which we call The Bible.

You can have all this world, but give me Jesus.

THE MOST SCARY PROSPECT OF ALL..

Some people would rather not know if God exists: they’re afraid of having their lives transformed…

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I first noticed this “willing ignorance” after reading the first two books I’d ever read by a creationist. I’d been a Christian for a year, and by good fortune and coincidence (ha!) I discovered “God, Science and Evolution”  and “Christ and the Cosmos”  by Prof. E.H. Andrews.  At the time Andrews was Professor of Materials at the University of London, and formerly the Dean of Engineering at Queen Mary’s college. He had a long list of scientific credentials.

(This is an edited version of a post I published in 2012).

Not long after reading these works I had a discussion with a new friend who challenged me to show him proof that God exists. I offered him my favorite answer then and now, “You’re looking at it!” This wasn’t a good enough answer for him, although in God’s economy, it’s all the evidence we need.  My friend went on to insist that all scientists believe in evolution and not in God, and  therefore the only logical conclusion was that there must not be a God. I offered my friend one of Prof. Andrews’ books, telling him that Andrews was well qualified and a fascinating read, and would at least help to get him thinking about the possibility of the existence of a creator.

“No thanks”, replied  my friend with a sneer.

The views of Andrews, and similar expressions made by countless other brilliant people before and after him, are intentionally blocked out of the education system and the public eye in general. Why? What are those who do the blocking afraid of?

A few years later I had something of a debate, along similar lines, with a Geology/ Geography high school teacher I knew.  At that time I had in my personal library a book by Dr. A J Wilder-Smith, an Englishman with three earned science doctorates from Oxford. It discussed and refuted many claims taught in schools as “evidence” for evolution. I offered to lend the book to her, as a way of letting her know that Creationism wasn’t just for “semi – insane fundamentalist American preachers”.

“No thank you”, she replied firmly.

The reason, or excuse, the teacher gave for declining the book offer was that she liked her world just as it was, and she didn’t want it changed. In this admission was a wealth of honesty and information.

As time went on my book, video and then DVD collection has grown. Not wanting to hoard the faith-building insights I’ve benefited from, I’ve offered them to family members, teachers, tutors, friends and strangers, who’ve almost without exception not been interested in having their minds and their lives changed. One book, called “In Six Days”, containing the comments of fifty scientists who believe in Biblical Creation, was rejected by a young man on the grounds that Richard Dawkins, who is after all on TV (and we all know that the TV only tells us the truth) said that evolution was a proven fact and that anyone who questioned it was ignorant and deluded. Is Mr. Dawkins a god? If he’s the purveyor of all truth and knowledge doesn’t that make him God? Hasn’t he disproved his own assertion that there is no God?

It’s virtually law now that scientists are not to even consider God in their studies or their presentations, since “that’s religion”. If they do, their work will be ignored or mocked. Once the Creator is reduced to a dispensable fantasy, He can be conveniently contained on a hard-drive in the “religious education” room and forgotten.  As scientists study the intricacies of our world and universe, constantly amazed and astounded by what they find, it doesn’t occur to most of them (it does to some) that they’re looking at the very evidence for God’s existence, character and power that they claim is nowhere to be found. Oh, and by the way, He’s not just on that hard-drive, because “…the heaven of heavens cannot contain Him” (1 Kings 8:27).

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Many people are far more interested in discovering the football results than they are in searching for God and for meaning in life. The most perplexing, soul-searching questions they could and should ask themselves are not being asked or answered, or when they are asked they’re not being given the benefit of a two-sided argument. Why? What does this say about human nature?

Scripture discusses this problem. Peter, in his characteristically direct and no-nonsense fashion, hit the proverbial nail right on the head. He said that people are “willingly ignorant” of God’s work of creation and the subsequent world-wide flood (2 Peter 3: 5-6 KJV). The NIV translation says that “they deliberately forget”.

Paul also comments on this willing ignorance:

“…the godlessness and wickedness of men who suppress the truth by their wickedness, since what may be known about God is plain to them. For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities – his eternal power and divine nature – have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse” (Romans 1: 18 – 20).

Paul’s contention is that it’s man’s love of sin that drives him to intentionally ignore God (verses 18 to 32). They’re afraid of having their lives changed.

Zeroing in to the heart of the problem, Jesus Christ explained it this way:

“This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but men loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. Everyone who does evil hates the light and will not come into it for fear that his deeds will be exposed” (John3: 19– 20).

Ironically, while the skeptic and the atheist mock believers for being ignorant and deluded, the Bible says that it’s the atheist who is deluded:

“The fool says in his heart, ‘there is no God’” (Psalm 14:1).

The problem is not lack of evidence, it’s the heart of man. It’s the fear of living life God’s way instead of their own way. At best we could say that the majority of willing unbelievers (I’m not speaking of those who haven’t had a chance to hear and consider the gospel) ignore God, and comfort themselves in the conviction that “all scientists” believe in evolution and not in God. People not only fail to search for God because they do not want to: they actively turn their backs on any light there is for fear of having their worlds changed.

MYSTERY ISLAND

Looking around, I saw that I was in totally unfamiliar surroundings, and alone. Where was I, and more mysteriously, why didn’t I know? I couldn’t remember coming here. In fact, I realized for the first time, I couldn’t even remember where I came from. Why did I have no memory of this place, or for that matter, of any other?

Earth

I looked down at soft white sand between my toes. I looked up at the ocean, and at the waves washing lazily against the shoreline. Behind me were low, sandy cliffs, decorated with patches of long grass. Tall trees further back from the beach swayed gently in the warm breeze.

Who brought me here, and why couldn’t I remember? If someone else were around, I thought, I could ask questions and maybe get my bearings. I decided I would scale the highest rock I could see and look around for others like me.

It was an easy climb. I felt strong and full of energy, and in no time at all I was atop the rock and taking in the view. It was an amazing view…but it only served to form more questions in my already perplexed mind. Somehow I had arrived on a small island, with nothing else in sight but endless sky and blue rolling ocean.

Scanning the island I detected movement on the farthest beach. Was I seeing other people like me, or just birds? I had to find out. Hopping over rocks and kicking up sand my steps quickened as I became more anxious to understand my situation. On a high grassy peak in the middle of the island a fresh thought halted my progress for a moment. A strange sensation washed over my body when it occurred to me that I didn’t even know who I was. I could not name myself. I had no recollection of my origin or of my life: I was a stranger to myself.

Oregon Coast

I slid and jumped down the slopes towards the beach, and running through a group of trees I almost crashed into someone standing motionless on the sand. I stopped, and greeted him, breathing heavily. I noticed that he had feet, just like mine, and hands, and hair.

“Hello” I said again, receiving only a shrug and a grunt in return. His eyes remained fixed on the ocean, or the horizon. Questions came from my mouth in a stream:

“Where are we? Who am I? Who are you? How did we get here? What is this place..?”

I stopped to allow a reply, and waited for what seemed a long time, until the man’s eyes finally turned my way.

“Don’t know, don’t care”, he mumbled.

I stared incredulously at his face and at his demeanor.

“You don’t care?” I demanded.

“Well” he said rolling his head slowly away from me. “Who can know?”

He wasn’t requiring an answer: he’d clearly decided that he couldn’t-or wouldn’t-answer me.

I turned and ran over to another man, laying on his side, holding a hand full of something close to his face, examining whatever was there with fascination.

I rehearsed the questions I’d given the first man:

“Where are we? Who am I? Who are you? How did we get here? What is this place?”

The man continued his examination, grunting in a “What did you say?” sort of a way. Standing closer, and directly in front of him now, I repeated the questions. I waited for a response, though I began to wonder if it would ever come. It did.

“Well…” started the man, his face wrinkling in the sun in order to focus to a greater extent on the contents of his hand. He paused his verbal emanation, as though he wished to take an eternity to complete it.

“Well, you know, we’ve all been here for, ooh…for ever really”

He let sand run through his fingers, then picked up more, and began to stare at it in rapt concentration.

“We’re made of sand, you know” he continued. “And there’s no doubt….it’s obvious…it’s indisputable…that you, and I, young man, are the very offspring…of the stuff you’re standing on.”

With my mouth agape in astonishment at this statement, I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry. He seemed to be serious. He meant what he’d just told me, yet it seemed to me there were no real answers in what he’d said.

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Spinning around, I spotted another, sitting facing the sea, cross legged, his palms together in front of him. Perhaps I could get some information from him.

“Where are we? Who am I? Who are you? How did we get here? What is this place?”

For a moment my hopes were raised when he turned his face towards me, but as I looked into his eyes, it was as though this man were somehow vacant-as though I were looking at a shell of a man. I was almost surprised when his lips moved, and he spoke:

“My friend… we are not here. I am not here, and you are not here. What you think you can see is just an illusion”.

I stood back, shocked at what I heard. For a moment, I asked myself if what he’d said could be true. I looked him up and down. I looked down at myself-my feet, my hands. I felt my arms and the grains of sand on my hands. I listened to my breath and felt a beating in my chest. I felt the breeze blowing on my neck. No, I could not accept what this person had told me.

From the corner of my eye I saw movement, and I turned just in time to see someone striding vigorously past me, panting heavily, his eyes fixed on the horizon.

“Excuse me” I called, running after him, and in a raised voice repeated my entreaty:

“Excuse me-where are we? Who am I? Who are you? How did we get here? What is this place?”

The man didn’t hesitate or even turn his head, but instead waved me away dismissively. I tried to keep up with him, and this time I shouted from behind him,

“Where are we? Who am I? Who are you? How did we get here? What is this place?”

“Can’t stop” he barked. Too busy! Too busy to even think about it!”

I stopped in his tracks, watching as he marched rapidly away, clearly determined not to allow me to engage him in conversation.

Feeling a sense of exacerbation building inside me, I decided to attempt to try speaking to one more of these people on the beach. As I scanned the scene, I noticed a man staring at me, standing with his hands clasped behind his back. I moved towards him, and seeing a slight smile break out on his face and his eyes meeting mine, I felt a little hopeful that this time I was in luck: this time I may get some answers.

Politely, he greeted me as I approached, and asked me how I was today.

“Oh, very well sir” I said, “…but I’m very confused, and I was wandering if you could answer some questions for me?”

“Ask on”, said the man in a winsome and relaxed way, seeming to be genuinely willing to consider what I had to say. Once again I expressed myself:

“Where are we? Who am I? Who are you? How did we get here? What is this place?”

The man nodded and smiled as though he was all prepared to put all my concerns to rest. However, I was not prepared for his take on the situation.

“There are some who say we can’t know the truth of any of these things. There are some who tell us with their expert knowledge and education that we are the offspring of the island we stand upon. Others insist we aren’t really here-we only imagine that we are. And still others tell me they’re too busy to even think about it.”

“But what about you-what do you say?” I said impatiently. “Who’s right, and who’s wrong?”

He smiled a wider smile, and turning his head to one side, said,

“My friend, there is no answer to any of your questions. No-one is wrong, and no-one is right: it really is a matter of opinion! We all must come to our own conclusions. And whatever is true for you, is true-for you!”

Copyright © Nick Fisher October 2016

PLEASE KNOW, dear reader who may not realize, that I have a very definite and clear understanding of where I am, who I am, who you are, how I got here, and what this place is, as you’ll see if you sample some of my other writing in this blog. In particular, please search my posts on the gospel of Jesus Christ. Thank you and God bless you with the light of Truth.

SCIENCE FOR THE BELIEVER

As a believer or a seeker of truth, do you ever wish you could find some credible information which supports your faith in a Creator? Do you ever wish that someone would give you answers to the nonsensical claims of evolutionists?

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For those questioning the story evolutionists give us via the education establishment, TV and movies, I’d like to recommend a wonderful, level-headed and well-credentialed bunch of scientists and commentators within an organization known as the Institute for Creation Research. ICR, akin to the highly active and faith-building “Answers in Genesis” organization, has for decades been presenting fascinating and helpful information in many forms, one of which I intend to highlight here.

ICR’s monthly publication “Acts and Facts” is available online, or sent to your door free of charge in the form of an attractive glossy magazine. I’ve been reading this uplifting rag for about twenty-five years now. I’ve kept every issue and often refer to them. I’ve never been harassed for money by ICR (though they certainly deserve and need generous donations) and I’ve had the good fortune and blessing of attending several of their seminars.

The highly readable articles in this month’s copy of Acts and Facts include a report on ICR’s new quality DVD series, “Uncovering the Truth About Dinosaurs”. This is designed for a wide range of truth-seekers. There’s far more to the extinction of dinosaurs than we’re told by a secular establishment determined to keep “religion” and faith in a Creator out of your consideration.

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On a rather more technical level an article by Jeffrey P. Tomkins, with a Ph.D in genetics, discusses findings from new research on internal telomere-like sequences within DNA, which add to the mounting pile of information showing that man and chimps are not descended from a common ancestor as we’ve all been told.

Next, another article which attempts to put technical information into a readable form is named “Gauge Bosons: The Glue that Holds the Universe Together”. This is part four of a series written by two Ph.D scientists, Jason Lisle with a doctorate in Astrophysics, and Vernon R. Cupps whose doctorate is in nuclear physics. I’ve written a post on Mr. Cupps.

A very helpful article for the Bible-believer and apologist is called “Genesis Compromise Unravels the Bible” written by Jake Hebert, with a Ph.D in physics.

Brian Thomas, M.S., discusses in layman’s terms why many identified “living fossils” demonstrate convincingly that the Flood of Genesis, and not eons of evolution, deposited the dinosaur-rich rock layers found all over the earth’s surface.

Randy J. Guliuzza, P.E., and M.D., has a very enlightening piece called “Evolutionists Can’t See Eye Design”. Guliuzza, who laments that “…the content of mainstream scientific journals passes through chokepoints controlled by evolutionists”, in other words, that you aren’t going to find anything that isn’t politically-correct and fitting the evolutionary narrative in such publications, refutes specific and weak arguments by evolutionists who claim that eyes, “if” they were designed, were poorly designed.

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Other articles in this issue are “So Many Skin Tones from Adam and Eve?” written by Brian Thomas, an interview with Pastor Richard Corwin discussing his graduation from an ICR Christian Education program, a report on a Creation Research Society annual conference, written by Frank Sherwin, M.A., and a promotion of ICR’s new Discovery Center for Science and Earth History by Henry M Morris IV.

For the layman with a little or a lot of scientific understanding or just plain common sense, Acts and Facts is a valuable link to a lot of cutting-edge research, analysis and thought which will build on your faith and understanding of God’s design.

THE INSTITUTE FOR CREATION RESEARCH:

http://www.icr.org/