Obviously, animal and human life are different from plant life. In fact, the Bible uses the Hebrew word chay (life) and its derivatives 763 times in the Old Testament, never applying that term to plants or vegetation. No place in Scripture attributes chay to plants; only living creatures possess life.
Plants are indeed marvelous, beautiful, complex, and able to reproduce “after their kind,” but they are designed by the Creator to be a source of energy to maintain life. Plants are food—they are not alive.
Now, let’s all turn in our Bibles to the Epistle of Saint Paul unto the Corinthians, chapter 15, verses 35 through 38.
But someone will ask, “How are the dead raised? With what kind of body will they come?” How foolish! What you sow does not come to life unless it dies. When you sow, you do not plant the body that will be, but just a seed, perhaps of wheat or of something else. But God gives it a body as he has determined, and to each kind of seed he gives its own body.
So to understand the resurrection of Jesus, we need first of all to understand that plants are not alive, and therefore can never be said to “come to life.” Therefore what Saint Paul is telling us here is that when the dead are “raised,” they are raised in bodies that are not alive.
Wow, that explains a lot. Creationism sure makes the Bible a lot clearer. Thanks, Dr. Morris! But wait, it gets better.
Why do creationists try to deny that plants are alive?
If we do indeed “kill” (take the life of) plants as we consume them, then God Himself authorized that killing… If God authorized the “killing” of plants, then God designed death into the very essence of the creation—and pronounced it all “very good” (Genesis 1:31).
Here’s the heresy: If God designed death into creation, then death is as “good” as all other factors—and the atheistic evolutionary doctrine is right. Death is the “good” force that brings about the ultimate “fittest” in our universe. Death, therefore, is not “the wages of sin,” and our Lord Jesus’ death was not necessary for salvation—it was just the wasted effort of a deluded martyr.
Dr. Morris, meet theodicy. Theodicy, Dr. Morris. If God is good, and if Creation is good, and if God has all power and is sovereign over all Creation, and “worketh all things after the counsel of His own will” (as Eph. 1:11 says), then why do we have sin and suffering and evil and death? The standard Christian answer is that this is all part of God’s good and perfect plan—sin and suffering and evil and death are things God uses to bring about the ultimate salvation and redemption of creation, achieving some essential blessing that He could not have achieved without them.
“Here’s the heresy: If God designed death into creation, then death is as ‘good’ as all the other factors.” In other words, death (and related evils like sin and suffering) cannot be part of any good design or plan or creation of God’s, because that’s heresy. That means that God’s plan for Creation cannot depend on sin and suffering and evil and death, and still be a good plan, in the moral sense. Yet the Gospel teaches that sin and suffering and death are not only an essential part of God’s plan, they’re the whole focus of it, culminating in the death of Jesus on the cross as atonement for sin. In other words, it’s not evolution that’s the heresy here, it’s the Gospel itself!
Dr. Morris is right, there’s a huge theological problem inherent in admitting that plants are alive, because it exposes one of the major self-contradictions in the Bible. In the conflict between Scripture and living plants, though, it’s the plants that are the truth—not the Bible.
These teachings cannot be harmonized. Either the Bible is Truth (capitalization intended) or it is Error. The choice is clear. The message is clear.