Creation Seminar at Tunkhannock Baptist Church

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Last week end I did a four-part Biblical Creation Seminar at Tunkhannock Baptist Church in Tunkhannock, PA, “God’s land” (I grew up in western PA), followed by my speaking twice on Sunday at the church. Between the sessions on creationism and my Sunday messages, the interaction and hospitality of the church greatly encouraged me. I thank our Lord for the time of blessing that I had at Tunkhannock Baptist Church.

Here are the sessions that I did on Friday night and Saturday.

Genesis 1 and Creationism

Death & Decay in Genesis 3

The Impact of Noah’s Flood on the World Today

Two Contrasting Worldviews

On Sunday I spoke in the AM and PM services. Sunday morning I spoke on “God’s Delight in Creation” from Psalm 104, and in the evening on “The Works of God’s Declaring God’s Glory” from Psalm 19:1-6.

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Death & Decay in Genesis 3

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When you study God’s perfect creation in Genesis 1, it is hard to harmonize it with the world that we live in today. However, Genesis 3 provides an explanation for our tension. So, after having looked at the creation of Adam and Eve, last Monday evening we examined Genesis 3, as well as a few other relevant biblical texts, to see how and when death and decay entered in the created order. The point of this examination is to demonstrate that disease, suffering, and death did not become a part of God’s good universe until God’s vice-regent, Adam ate from the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil.

Here are the three parts around which our discussion was organized:

I. Temptation leads to the fall by magnifying disobedience, 1–7.

II. God responds to the fall by announcing judgment, vv. 8–24.

III. The fall has a fourfold significance for Biblical Creationism.

With the first part of the lesson, we focused on Genesis 3:1-7. This text shows that the satanically-possessed serpent deceived Eve who became the first human sinner when she ate from the fruit in v. 6. However, we should carefully note that God’s curse on humanity and the created order did not occur when Eve ate but when Adam ate from the fruit, v. 6 (see 1 Timothy 2:12-14 and Romans 5:12-21). In addition, we demonstrated from Genesis 3:8-24 and other pertinent biblical texts that God’s announcement of judgment focused on Adam & Eve, their posterity, Satan & the serpent, the animal & plant kingdoms, and finally the whole creation.

Finally, we saw how the fall has a fourfold significance for biblical creationism. (1) The fall teaches that disease, suffering and death were not part of the created world over which Adam ruled before he ate from the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. (2) Because the created order was cursed at the fall (Rom 8:19–22), this means that Adam’s rule as God’s vice-regent would no longer be peaceful, but would be marked by hostility. (3) Since the fall is the time when disease and death started in the world, this rules out any form of evolution, its supposed Christian offshoot known as theistic evolution or its more current form known as progressive creationism, day-age view, the gap theory and framework interpretation. If any of these hypotheses are correct, Adam and Eve, prior to the fall, ruled over a graveyard of fossils and not the Garden of Eden. (4) As a righteous judge, God had to hold Adam accountable to the standards he had established. Therefore, God had to impose the curse on his creation. However, in the midst of judgment, God announced in microscopic form, Genesis 3:15, his provisions to bring blessing to His fallen world.

With our next lesson, we will look at the nature of the Noah’s flood.

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Young-age Creationism’s Benefits for Science

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Though young-age creationists (YAC; aka young-earth creationists) are often dismissed as the lunatic fringe in the scientific community, this is an unhealthy position for both the scientific world as well as society as a whole (the above picture is from John Whitmore). As Brett W. Smith continues in his abstract, “the current treatment of young-age creationists in the scientific community and society at large is unfair and unwise. Scientists and philosophers of science, including old-age creationists and naturalists, should respect young-age creationists as legitimate contributors to science. Young-age creationists offer to the current origins science establishment a competing rational viewpoint that will augment fruitful scientific investigation through increased accountability for scientists, introduction of original hypotheses and general epistemic improvement.”

For the scientific community to regain respectability and make progress, Smith argues that scientists should learn an adversarial system, drawn from an ideal use of the US legal system, for making positive progress in scientific research. However, as he observes “YACs are already doing their part for adversarial science in a role that even the Intelligent Design movement cannot fill. YACs are showing, through real, responsible research that they have some valuable, original hypotheses to suggest based upon a biblical young-age model. Some YACs, such as Leonard Brand, Russell Humphreys, and Steve Austin have made scientific discoveries that were long overlooked by naturalists because the young-agers dared to suggest hypotheses which would never have occurred to one dedicated to an old-age view.” Smith has written an engaging article and everyone interested in biblical creationism should take time to read “Why young-age creationism is good for science.”

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Extending the Future Impact of Canyon Ministries

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One of the ministries that can have a great influence on educators in evangelical colleges and seminaries is Canyon Ministries. Rather than presenting a week of academic lectures in an air conditioned classroom, CM, under the leadership of renowned rafting guide Tom Vail, is able to have an impact on these educators by providing a week long white water rafting trip down the Colorado River. This trip provides explicit geological evidence from the Grand Canyon, God’s classroom of nature, that supports a literal interpretation of the Genesis Flood. For the past two years, CM has provided scholarships, with the financial help of a few other ministries and individuals, to specifically chosen Christian educators. 2010 will mark the third year that CM has offered this type of trip. What is distinctive about the Christian leader’s trip is the way it is set up. The objective of each trip is to invite 1/3 of the group who are committed to young-earth creationism, another 1/3 are those who adhere to old-earth creationism, and the final 1/3 are somewhere in between.

Because of my biblical studies, I have been convinced of a literal interpretation of Genesis 1-11 for many years, including the Genesis flood. Since I have been involved with other young-earth creationists for some time, I was invited to be part of the 1/3 of the group in the 2008 trip that were committed to young-earth creationism. Though it was not necessary for my convictions to be confirmed by anything other than the Bible, it was gratifying on this trip to see physical evidence from the Grand Canyon that supported the biblical view (for some details on my trip, read my blog post).

Besides Tom’s capable leadership as well as starting each of our trips on our rafts with the memorable “let’s go boatin’,” we had other capable scholars join us to lecture on various aspects of a literal interpretation of the flood narrative in Genesis (to see who these leaders are as well as their credential, you can return to my blog entry and scroll half way down the page). One of the scholars who had a profound impact on me was geologist Dr. Andrew Snelling. I often think of Andrew as a cornucopia of geological data as well as his ability to correlate how this data connects with a literal interpretation of Genesis. In addition, I was privileged to make friends with over 20 biblical scholars from other evangelical institutions.

Because of CM’s impact on me over the course of a one-week white water rafting trip, I would like to be able to assist this good cause by making two recommendations. First, if you are interested in the June 21st 7-day trip, there are a few seats still available (go here). Second, 24 scholarships have been provided for Bible educators from around the country (including Dr. Mark Snoeberger from DBTS). At this point CM is $30,000 short of meeting their scholarship expectations. Let me encourage you to pray and to financially contribute to this year’s “Christian Leader’s Trip.” If you are interested in financially partnering with this Christ-honoring trip, simply go to their website and scroll down to the bottom of this page where you are given instructions on how to contribute; or you can contact them at CanyonMinistries.com. I pray that God will continue to bless Canyon Ministries.

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Subscribing to Tyndale House’s Newsletter

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I have subscribed to Tyndale House’s Newsletter for a number of years; and, I would like to encourage you to do the same.

To assist you in seeing my interest in Tyndale House, here are some posts that I have done in reference to Drs. David Instone-Bewer and Peter Williams, Research Staff from Tyndale House.

My initial post, October 22, 2007, provided a link to Dr. David Instone-Brewer on the subject of “Divorce and Remarriage.”

I did another blog entry, on October 23, on “Divorce and Remarriage Update

On October 29, Dr. Instone-Brewer responded to my post on October 23, click here.

While preparing to teach a class on Haggai & Malachi, I did a post on June 8, 2009 “Preparing for Malachi 2:10-16

Finally, on January 1, 2009, I did a post about “Meeting Dr. Pete Williams

For those who read my blog, you will profit if you take advantage of this opportunity to subscribe to their newsletter, as well as checking out their website. To subscribe to their newsletter, click here.

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Climategate: Global Warming & Lies

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The scandal known as Climategate started on the night of November 19 when a compressed file with 1,073 emails and about 3,600 other files showed up as a download in Siberia. These emails and files had been removed from the University of East Anglia’s Climatic Research Unit, in the United Kingdom. To get quick information about key facts with this scandal, check out “Fast Facts About Climategate.”

Before Climategate began on November 19, evidence was available to call into question global warming, even though ex-presidential candidate, Al Gore (I did not vote for him), disagreed (for starters with this evidence, go here, here, here, and here). Unfortunately, because of the foolishness of our President (as you might expect, I didn’t vote for him either!) and the majority of our Congressmen, the American public will have to pay for their arrogance.

However, what concerns me more than our flawed governmental leaders are the evangelicals who have signed the questionable Evangelical Call to Action on Climate Change (here is a list of the signatories). If you want more information about this evangelical compromise, check out Fred Butler’s “False Prophets (for some helpful links, go to Steve Hays’ “Linkfest on Climategate“). In the last few weeks, the recent exposé “Climategate: the Final Nail in the Coffin of ‘Anthropogenic Global Warming’?” should challenge us to be careful before we get on any evangelical bandwagon.

I have been skeptical of global warming for many years and even did my first post on it in the first few months when I started blogging. However, you should not take my opposition to the climate change movement to indicate that I have no concern about the environment. Because of the dominion mandate in Genesis 1, I have some level of concern for my stewardship in taking care of the environment. However, IMNSHO, most of our politically correct governmental leaders and some evangelicals have elevated climate change to a virtual apocalyptic nightmare and this is unbiblical. Since all of life is in the hands of an absolutely sovereign God, the heavens and earth will not be destroyed until he choses (2 Pet 3:12). However, until that time, let me suggest that we attempt to think biblically. For example, Genesis 8:22 contains a divine promise: “While the earth remains, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night, shall not cease.” If we believe God, we should regulate our lives by this promise.

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Detroit Baptist Seminary Journal 14 (2009)

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Volume 14 of the Detroit Baptist Seminary Journal was released earlier in October. This issue has six articles and a book review. Here is a list of the articles and book review.

“Tongues–Are They for Today” by Mark A. Snoeberger

“‘His Flesh for Our Flesh': The Doctrine of the Atonement in the Second Century” by John Aloisi

“Once More: Quirinius’s Census” by Jared M. Compton

“‘As a Brother': 2 Thessalonians 3:6-15 and Ecclesiastical Separation” by Charles J. Baumgardner

New Testament Theology: Magnifying God in Christ: A Review Article by Andrew David Naselli

Coming to Grips with Genesis: Biblical Authority and the Age of the Earth: A Review Article by Matthew A. Postiff

Graham A. Cole’s He Who Gives Life: The Doctrine of the Holy Spirit, reviewed by Mark A. Snoeberger

Subscription rates for the Detroit Baptist Seminary Journal are $10 for two years and $19 for four years. You have two options to subscribe.

1. Pay for a subscription online

2. Send payment to: Detroit Baptist Seminary Journal, 4801 Allen Road, Allen Park, MI 48101

If you have any questions about subscribing to the journal, click here to go to the seminary’s website for further instructions.

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More on the Questionable Nature of Global Warming

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I wanted to do a brief update to one of my posts yesterday. As I noted yesterday, everybody (excluding Al Gore and the UN paid scientists) knows that we are not in a period of global warming. We seem to be entering a period of global cooling. Check out this article that caught my interest with its headline (BTW, when you see the advertisement about Ardi, return to my website and for a Christian perspective, go here):
What happened to global warming??”

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Getting the Facts Straight about Ardipithecus

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Because the Discovery Channel is doing a one-hour special on Sunday entitled “Discovering Ardi” (the above picture taken from Creation Ministries International reflects meager evidence for Ardipithecus), I thought it would be good to look at a Christian response to Ardi. When you look at the actual facts about Ardipithecus, all the surrounding hype is nauseating. In any event, I saw a good response on October 2 by Dr. Carl Weiland with Creation Ministries International.

“The papers and news sites,” according to Dr. Wieland, “are full of claims about what some still think is a ‘new”’ candidate for an evolutionary ancestor of humans. Called Ardipithecus ramidus (often just ‘Ardi’), most of the articles actually explain that it’s really a detailed reanalysis of a fossil category that’s been around for years, but still the phones run hot with concerned creationists or gloating skeptics. Perhaps this is not surprising, given the journalistic temptation to run with headlines such as ‘Before Lucy came Ardi, new earliest hominid found’—even though the article itself states that the bones were first discovered in 1994!1 In fact, though there is a lot of evolutionary spin, especially in the media, so far there have been few claims of this ‘proving evolution’, it is more a question of trying to score points and settle internal issues within the community of already-established ‘true believers’ in human evolution.” It is well-worth your time to continue reading “Ardipithecus again: A recycled ape-man.”

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