Young-age Creationism’s Benefits for Science


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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  1. Tim Scott says

    I agree with this idea, but I wonder whether or not the other side sees it the same way. You have probably read Dr. Mohler’s blog article “Both Wrong and Dangerous” — Scientists Have Worldviews, Too.” There he describes how liberal scientists try to determine what is proper scientific discussion and what topics are off limits (e.g. global warming and creationism). The anti-supernatural bias of many if not most scientists renders such discussion virtually impossible. Hope it changes, but I’m not raising my expectations.

    • Bob McCabe says

      Thanks for pointing out Mohler’s “Both Wrong and Dangerous” for I had not read it prior to you pointing it out. Mohler’s article is informative. His response to “When politics and religion trump science, education suffers” by Charles C. Haynes, First Amendment Center senior scholar, is a beneficial read. Though Haynes does call for some semblance of balance, Mohler clearly lays out Haynes’ presupposition: “And yet, there is a far more dangerous assumption lurking underneath Haynes’ argument. Like so many others, he seems to assume that the world of science is a sanitized and self-regulating world of pristine knowledge. This conception of modern science has been fostered by the culture at large, but science is no such thing.” Mohler’s response is insightful.

      Yesterday, I posted about Brett Smith’s paper because he reflects the way the scientific community should go. Further, Smith’s adversarial system would be great if it could be pulled off; however, like the US’s adversarial legal system, it is abused all the time because it is governed by depraved people, most of whom are enslaved to an evolutionary and humanistic society. But all of this relates to one’s worldview. In the final analysis, Mohler’s conclusion in “Both Wrong and Dangerous,” understands the connection between science and society all too well: “Science is a cultural product that inevitably reflects the society it serves.”

      As an aside, I suspect you have seen Nettle’s critique of Dembski and then of Patterson & Allen. Nettle’s does a great job.

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