There are some things I think I’ve said a few thousand times to try and break through the certainty of some devout evangelical Christians.
- Young Earth Creationism is not in the Bible.
- A “literal interpretation” is still an interpretation; “literal”, in this case, is empty of meaning.
- The radical young earth interpretation of Genesis would have been considered heretical only a hundred years ago. This is not an eternal truth of Christianity.
- The Bible is actually a messy, complex book full of contradictions and changing perspectives. You can’t treat it as the spiritual version of your car repair manual.
- Christianity actually has a long history of trying to reconcile faith with scientific evidence; it’s only with this creationist nonsense that they’ve given up and resorted to outright denial.
- Your Holy Book is not the Bible, but Whitcomb & Morris’s 1961 fan fiction, The Genesis Flood. Look it up. It’s a rationalization derived from Seventh Day Adventist prophecies.
- You can be a solid Christian and still accept evolution; you just have to realize that the Bible (or The Genesis Flood) is not a science textbook. Quit trying to pretend it is.
- Creationism seems to appeal most to people who only read the first page of the Bible and think they have all the answers. Surprisingly, most of the book says absolutely nothing about origins or evolution, and the core concepts of the faith are not found in Genesis 1.
(By the way, sometimes I have to remind atheists of these things, too.)
I never convince anyone with these lines of criticism, of course, because I’m a satanically inspired atheist. But there are a lot of theologians who will tell you the same things, and even more heretical stuff, because they’re far more familiar with the sausage-making of Biblical analysis and know where all the bugs and grit and organ meats have found their way into the grinder.
So sometimes you just have to admit that Christian Bible scholars can be more effective at dismantling the lies behind the weird cult that is Answers in Genesis.
This is what I find so fascinating about Ken Ham’s organization. Not only are all the “answers” they give actually not in Genesis (let alone anywhere in the Bible), but the answers they give are nonsensical in and of themselves.
Ken Ham likes to claim that he is a “biblical creationist,” but the fact is, he isn’t. It’s about time we stop letting him use that title. His claims about the natural created world are not biblical at all. Not only does he reject basic science, not only does he make up supposed biblical answers that aren’t actually in the Bible, but he ignores the historical and literary context in which Genesis 1-11 was written.
He is so obsessed with trying to prove Genesis 1-11 is a modern scientific description of origins, that he willfully ignores basic rules of biblical exegesis, rejects basic scientific facts, and comes up with completely impossible and incompatible claims that he doesn’t even take the time to recognize are impossible and incompatible…with each other.
Yeah. It’s all remarkable fringe garbage of poor quality, from dubious Protestant sources, yet somehow it has infiltrated itself into Catholicism, Islam, Judaism, and folk religion to the point where people actually argue that the nonsense of young earth creationism is a fundamental part of the Abrahamic faiths. All it really tells you is that most religious people don’t care enough about what their religion says to even try to study it, because what it really is is a tribal marker, nothing more.