Thursday, April 27, 2017

People after the Genesis Flood

We are not given a great number of details about the post-Flood people in the Bible, but some were so impressive that they warranted special attention, especially the giants. (The writers used giant the way most of us do today, for very large people and not for the impossibly huge people of fantasy stories.) 

Gaius Plinius Secundus (Pliny the Elder)
Gaius Plinius Secundus (Pliny the Elder), from Wikimedia Commons

I remember a lecture that Ken Ham gave where he reasoned from accounts of people of great size, photographic memories, and other talents that very few people have, Adam would have been a composite of all of them. After all, he was made flawless and sin had not entered the world and begun genetic degradation. Some of those abilities must have lingered through the ages. In fact, Pliny and others have given some interesting historical accounts of people with not only strength, but mental agility, memory, endurance, vision, and more.
It has been over 6,000 years since God created Adam and Eve. Because of the Curse, we have suffered and changed greatly. We do not have detailed records concerning the abilities of man when God created Adam. However, the Romans were very accurate at recordkeeping and give us a glimpse at what a few men could do as little as two thousand years ago. Let’s take a look at some of the abilities of men at that time so that we can get a better idea of the fantastic abilities God bestowed on Adam and his descendants in the beginning.
To read the rest, click on "What Were Early Post-Flood People Like?" You may also be interested in Dr. Robert Carter's lecture on genetics, "The Non-Mythical Adam and Eve".
 

Sunday, April 23, 2017

The Non-Bible Answer Man

by Cowboy Bob Sorensen

Dr. Walter Martin was the original "Bible Answer Man" after he founded an organization called the Christian Research Institute (CRI). He was a noted authority on cults and religions, having written books on the subjects, had a radio ministry, was a guest on various programs, and more [1]. After his untimely death in 1989 at age 60, the leadership of CRI was given to Hank Hanegraaff. Dr. Martin's teachings were very helpful in the development of my own theology as well as my growing interest in apologetics.

The family of Dr. Martin has serious difficulties with Hanegraaff's demeanor, methods, lack of formal theological training, and in other areas [2]. They are not the only ones, either [3]. In addition, he has not been friendly to biblical creation science, preferring the "Framework Hypothesis" [4]. It seems that someone taking over such a position from Dr. Martin should have formal theological training and have less controversy.


Hank Hanegraaff left Christianity for the Eastern Orthodox religion
Christ the Saviour, Pantokrator, a 6th-century icon at St Catherine's Monastery
On April 9, 2017, Hanegraaff formally joined the Eastern Orthodox religion [5]. Some say that he has left the Christian faith because the Orthodox religion is diametrically opposed to some basic tenets of Christianity [6] [7] and this conversion caused a radio network to remove the "Bible Answer Man" from their lineup [8]. Hank says he has not left the faith, and his beliefs are codified in his books and nothing has changed. That is ridiculous, because of the huge differences between his new religion and Christianity (see "How Is Eastern Orthodoxy Different?" for more information).

I don't know what's going on with the Christian Research Institute. They had someone who is controversial and unqualified in his position from the get-go, but now that Hank has jumped the corral fence and become a theological maverick, will it become the Orthodox Research Institute and have the "Orthodox Answer Man" program? I know it's asking a lot, but I hope you'll consider watching the video or downloading the audio from Dr. James White, "Can a Consistent Eastern Orthodox Believer Be the Bible Answer Man?"


Thursday, April 20, 2017

Authority, Personality, Familiarity

by Cowboy Bob Sorensen

Seems to be human nature to defer to someone in authority. Well, let me modify that: someone that seems to have authority. The scene of a traffic accident, a stranger stops, gives instructions, directs traffic, and takes charge overall until the police and EMTs arrive. (There is something that is called presence, where someone has authority and personality.) He or she may not have had any formal status, but people deferred to the air of authority. Atheists listen to Clinton Richard Dawkins, even though he is a lousy philosopher, and evolutionists believe his ridiculous claim that the human eye was "poorly designed". Unfortunately, Christians are often persuaded by people with what they perceive as authority.


Some teachers are good, but people succumb to perceived authority of bad ones.
Evangelist D.L. Moody, from J. Wilbur Chapman, 1900
As an illustration, allow me a personal anecdote. I was raised in the Untied Methodist Church (misspelling intentional), my father was a pastor. In an adult Sunday School class, I was allowed to give a presentation on why we can trust the Bible, which may have taken about twenty minutes. My father gave some closing remarks from his liberal perspective that essentially undermined my work. How could it happen? He was the pastor, so they were familiar with him. He also had authority and personality.

Some years later, I was giving talks in area churches on biblical creation science and theology. The pastors and churches had no reason to trust me aside from what I wrote to them and told them. Should I have done this? Should they have let me in? Looking back, I am uncertain. Sure, the pastor was usually there (I wanted them to hear the messages as well), and they could have corrected errors that a stranger could have presented, but that may not have been sufficient.

Don't be disunderstanding me, I'm not saying that a church should not have a teacher that they do not know personally. There are some established Bible teachers, those giving talks from respected creation science ministries, and others who can be welcomed. No matter who is invited, church leaders need to use prayer and discernment before allowing someone into the pulpit.

Taking this authority concern further, professing Christians are willingly deceived by false teachings, whether theistic evolution, liberalism, it's all about you instead of Jesus, the prosperity gospel, or other demonic doctrines. A major part of the problem is that too many of us are doctrinally weak, and do not know the Bible that we claim to believe. Then someone comes along that has a strong personality, a tremendous delivery, uses humor, presence . . . It's mighty difficult to speak against someone that people like, but is teaching things that are untrue. People like Paul Young's blasphemous book and movie The Shack, and he spews further heresy in his latest book.

There some professing Christians go, believing lies because they were gullible and uninformed. I'll be blunt, many are spiritually lazy, preferring to be like atheists who teach "truths" through "memes" that are suited to bumper sticker mentalities. Learning the Word is too much like work for some folks. Wonder if they ever noticed attitudes such as expressed in Psalm 1:1-2?

Now it's time for me to link to a lesson in discernment and how teachers can be deceptive — even demonic — while masquerading as teachers of righteousness. This takes a bit of effort, because the podcast is over two hours (!) long. I recommend downloading it so you can listen when it's more convenient. It's at Fighting for the Faith, and is called "The YOU Effect?" This message is done, but I still want to urge you to get into the Word, our final authority, and be discerning.


Friday, April 14, 2017

Creation and Crucifixion

A day called Good Friday is observed to some extent by most professing Christians around the world. Unbelievers ignore or even hate this day because there is no camouflaging it; no candy rabbits, baskets with shredded plastic grass, egg hunts, ham dinners or any other trappings like people do with Easter. The crucifixion of Jesus is plainly on display for all to see.


Jesus crucifixion resurrection Bible Genesis
Credit: Pixabay / congerdesign
The bodily resurrection of Jesus from the dead followed on a Sunday. He defeated death to reconcile those who believe with God the Father, and enemies of God don't rightly cotton to hearing about that none too much. They also dislike being reminded that Jesus is the Creator (John 1:1-4, Colossians 1:16), and that both the crucifixion and resurrection were prophesied centuries before those events happened. Further, the first prophesy about redemption after sin was in Genesis 3:15. For those who belong to God through faith in Jesus Christ (Ephesians 2:8-9, John 1:12, Revelation 21:3-4), this long-foretold event gives us joy and meaning in our lives. Those who deny God have no hope, only blind, pitiless indifference before their terrible final Judgement (Matthew 16:27, Revelation 20:11-15).
It may seem odd for people to celebrate the humiliating defeat of their leader and hero. But the suffering, shame and death of Jesus Christ are a source of hope to Christians.

No one wants to live in a world where evil is ignored, or worse still, approved. Everyone yearns for justice when they have been mocked, insulted, betrayed or abused.

Who has not rebelled when they have been treated like an animal or a thing? We have a deep desire for our wrongs to be put right, for our suffering to have meaning.
To read the rest, click on "Genesis and the Cross". Also recommended, "Easter and Good Friday: questions and answers — Does Easter have a pagan derivation? Was Jesus really crucified on a Friday?"


Thursday, April 6, 2017

Order of Creation Events Irreconcilable with Evolution

One of the main problems that many professing Christians have is ignorance of the Bible that they claim to believe, and this gets them into trouble. Such Christians get recruited into cults, follow false teachers, and are willing to compromise with evolutionism.

Days of creation do not match evolution time
Credit: Pixabay Mzlle
Some are willing to say that God used evolution for creation, but do not see the theological problems this causes. A frequent way that liberal religious folks force evolution into Scripture is to say that the days of creation match up with evolution Not hardly! This shows not only ignorance of a basic reading of the Bible, but ignorance of the story of evolution as well. The two cannot be reconciled, pilgrim.
A straightforward reading of the Bible indicates that God created in six 24-hour days a little over 6,000 years ago. This is the way the church has understood it for most of the church’s history, and the way Hebrew scholars have always understood it.

However, with the rise of long-age claims in geology led by James Hutton2 and Charles Lyell3 about 200 years ago, some conservative Christians became intimidated. So they proposed schemes by which the Bible could accommodate these long–age ideas. Various views, unheard of before this time, sprung up: day-age, gap theory, framework hypothesis, theistic evolution.
To finish reading, click on "Evolution/long ages contradicts Genesis order of Creation".


Saturday, April 1, 2017

Adam and the Gospel

Previously, we examined how professing Christians disparage Jesus, and that many of those are theistic evolutionists. Another way to undermine the gospel message is to say that Adam was just an illustration and not a real man. We hear that kind of thing and worse (such as the old "book of fairy tales" nonsense) from atheistic sidewinders, but people who actually believe the Bible should be above dismissing Adam.

Adam Eve Genesis Bible, Wenzel Peter
Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, Johann Wenzel Peter
If you study on it, you'll see that the Bible is written as history. Specific names, dates, events, and so on are provided. Mythology does not have such detail. The primary reason for Christians to reject a historical Adam (as well as special creation) is to force-fit evolutionary views into Scripture. These foolish folks cause themselves a heap of serious problems when they do this, such as needing to explain why a fictitious character is referred to as a real man in Luke's genealogy of Jesus (Luke 3:38), that Paul contrasts Adam with Jesus (1 Cor. 15:45), and Jude also calls Adam a real person (Jude 1:14).

There are some deeper issues involved as well, such as how rejecting Adam undermines the gospel message — which theistic evolutionists and liberal "Christians" claim to believe to some extent. One jasper plays semantic games by saying that in one particular place, the apostle Paul does not say the name Adam. Oh, please.
The Apostle Paul often found himself in a cultural context in which he had to deal with many objections to the Christian faith. In 1 Corinthians 15, for example, the Corinthian congregation was questioning the future resurrection of believers: “How do some among you say that there is no resurrection of the dead?” (1 Corinthians 15:12).
. . .
Two thousand years later, not much has changed. Just as the culture in Paul’s day was permeated with Greek philosophy, so it is today. The worldview that undergirds Darwinian evolutionary thought is essentially Greek at its core.1 Many Christians are still integrating Greek philosophy into Christianity; however we have just given it the name science rather than philosophy.
To read the entire article, click on "How Do Some Among You Say There Is No Adam?"