Ken Ham, Young Earth Creation

Young Earth Creationism, Ken Ham, The Creation Museum . . . and Dragons?

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There are some topics that can really get Christians all worked up and young earth creationism (YEC) is one of them.  At a church we attended years ago (not the church that sued me), it was discovered that an elder who had been voted in by church members did not believe in a literal 6-day creation. This created quite an uproar among folks who believed in YEC and he was asked to step down.  In that same church, I heard of a father who was searching for colleges for his high school students.  In his research, he could only find a handful of Christian colleges across the nation that accepted the 6-day creation theory and actually taught it.  This was extremely important to him and his kids only attended colleges that taught young earth creationism (YEC).

I had a clue that this was a hot topic when we were at homeschool conventions and Ken Ham was frequently at our state-run Christian convention.  Whenever he spoke, there was a crowd. He sold lots and lots of creationist and dinosaur books and our family still has these books. My husband loved attending the workshops and bought quite a few of the books over the years.

A message from the founder
(Photo credit: ellenm1)

Do you know about Ken Ham?  He moved to the US from Australia in 1987 and is the president and founder of Answers in Genesis (brief introduction follows).   Ham is a biblical apologist, popular speaker, author, radio host on his own show Answers … with Ken Ham, founder of Answers magazine.  He is the brainchild of the Creation Museum and also the full-size Noah’s ark (still under construction).  He has a bachelor’s degree in applied science and several honorary doctorates.

In case Answers in Genesis is new to you, here’s an excerpt from the site:

Answers in Genesis is an apologetics (i.e., Christianity-defending) ministry, dedicated to enabling Christians to defend their faith and to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ effectively. We focus particularly on providing answers to questions surrounding the book of Genesis, as it is the most-attacked book of the Bible. We also desire to train others to develop a biblical worldview, and seek to expose the bankruptcy of evolutionary ideas, and its bedfellow, a “millions of years old” earth (and even older universe). (Source)

Ken Ham, President of Answers in Genesis discusses the importance he sees of the literal Genesis account of creation:

The majority of Christians in churches probably aren’t sure whether God really created everything in six literal days. Many believe it doesn’t matter whether it took six days or six million years. However, it is vital to believe in six literal days for many reasons. Foremost is that allowing these days to be long periods of time undermines the foundations of the message of the Cross.

Do you believe people can be a Christian if they don’t put as much credence into the literal 6-day creation as Ken Ham?    I am not convinced that if you don’t believe in YEC that you are undermining the message of the Cross as he states.  When I read about being a Christian, the Bible says to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ in order to be saved (Acts 16:31, Romans 10:9-11).  It doesn’t say to believe in the literal 6-day account of creation to be saved.  The important part of Genesis to me is that God created the world and everything in it.  He’s the Master designer/creator.  But hey, that’s just me.  Of course your opinion my differ from mine.

Let me give you more of Mr. Ham’s explanation of why he thinks the literal days is important:

If we allow our children to accept the possibility that we can doubt the days of creation when the language speaks so plainly, then we are teaching them a particular approach to all of Scripture. Why shouldn’t they then start to doubt that Christ’s Virgin Birth really means a virgin birth? Why shouldn’t they start to doubt that the Resurrection really means resurrection?  (Source)

Whoa!  This guy does not mess around.  He’s serious as a heart attack about the literal six days.  He’s so serious that he founded the Creation Museum.  Here’s the Wiki summary which is notably slanted against creationism:

This is a photo I took on 2 June, 2007 at the ...
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Creation Museum is a museum near Petersburg, Kentucky that presents a biblical account of the origins of the universe, life, and humankind, portraying a creationist narrative based upon a literalist interpretation of the Book of Genesis, rather than scientific knowledge. It opened its doors to the public on May 28, 2007.

The Creation Museum has been criticized as promoting fallacy over fact and attempting to advance the tenets of a particular religious view while rejecting, overlooking and misconstruing authentic science. The museum has received criticism from the scientific community, educators, Christian groups acquainted with the scientific method, and in the press.

Its exhibits reject universal common descent and biological evolution, and assert that the Earth and all of its life forms were created 6,000 years ago over a six-day period. In contrast to the scientific consensus, exhibits promote creationist claims including the proposition that humans and dinosaurs once coexisted, and that dinosaurs were on Noah’s Ark.   Scientific evidence supports the conclusions that the earth is approximately 4.5 billion years old, and that the dinosaurs became extinct 65.5 million years before human beings arose.  

Take a look at the admission prices charged at the museum:

Screen shot 2013-07-05 at 8.33.10 AM

I just did the math and guess how much it would cost the Smith family?   $211.60.  Whoa, Nellie!

Ham is definitely a literal 6-day creationist purist and he very much defends the accounts in Genesis and gives a warning to those who do not view it with equal importance:

Ken’s emphasis is on the relevance and authority of the book of Genesis to the life of the average Christian, and how compromise on Genesis has opened a dangerous door regarding how the culture and church view biblical authority.  (Source)

Ok, that quote comes from Ham’s site.  But check out this new exhibit (I bolded the key text):

Screen shot 2013-07-05 at 8.27.54 AM

Dragon Invasion

A dazzling new exhibit will soon descend upon the Creation Museum. Dragon Legends will bring visitors face to face with fantastic tales of dragons from all over the world.

Regale yourself with delightful artwork and other beautiful adornments as you stroll beneath extraordinary Chinese dragons in the museum’s portico. Learn about fabulous encounters with these incredible beasts from China to Africa, Europe to the Americas, and Australia to the Middle East. Discover what ancient historians have written about these creatures, and examine armaments that may have been used by valiant dragon slayers.

Why are there so many dragon legends from cultures around the globe? Why do descriptions of these magnificent animals often sound similar to what we call dinosaurs? How could our ancestors carve, paint, or write about these creatures if they have truly been extinct for millions of years?

Evolutionists struggle to explain the intriguing evidence that people lived at the same time as dinosaurs. God’s Word indicates that dinosaurs and man were created on the same day, so biblical creationists are not surprised to uncover clues that ancient man had indeed seen these beasts.

Were dinosaurs dragons? Find out at the Creation Museum’s new Dragon Legends exhibit, and prepare to believe.

What do you think?  The word “dragon” is mentioned in the bible.  At this site, if you do a search for dinosaurs, you will not see the word “dinosaur,” but they search engines pull up verses that someone believes refers to dinosaurs.   But even secular media is noticing the conflict in this short news clip:

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For your enjoyment, I want to leave you with a video of a real dragon – – one of  God’s creations, a real bearded dragon.  This is no imaginary creature.   PS – if you have kids, they may appreciate this.   Mine did – – – oh, and don’t miss the last couple of seconds.   🙂

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110 thoughts on “Young Earth Creationism, Ken Ham, The Creation Museum . . . and Dragons?”

  1. Ed, in reference to your “eat the meat” comment, I think that is the point some of us (at least me) are trying to make. Making your study about the days has to a certain degree become “junk food”, neither milk nor meat. To more directly answer the question of how I handle people who want to harp on that specific issue, I generally acknowledge that there is debate at this and that there is not a consensus even within the faith on that particular issue, but that I personally think that the scripture is saying a whole lot more there that is getting lost in the shuffle. I try to move the conversation to what the word actually says about God, creation, man, Israel, etc. If you are interested in the framework that I am coming out of I have a copy of the email that I sent to the pastor I mentioned earlier here:

    https://www.evernote.com/shard/s90/sh/2fc208b0-4d06-4fa0-9fcb-6f438940e958/a09c1f59a6d4e4f66dcd9dc63b08b8ef

    It’s not exactly formatted for mass consumption, but it contains a broader base of my main points.

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  2. Hi Dallas,

    I read your email. I think that your main point in all of this is, “Does it really matter?”

    I say, yes, it does matter, and that it is not junk food. None of the word of God can ever be considered junk food.

    Here is the reason that I say that it does matter. Julie Anne has made a hint of that above, in that people are leaving the faith, because they are being taught in church a young earth, and then being taught an old earth in schools.

    So it begs the question. Who is telling the truth? It is very easy to debunk YEC, even from a non-scientific means, but more specifically, from an educational means of science.

    That makes the YEC’ers question their faith, and then ultimately, leave their faith. So, it is indeed a very important topic to VERYIFY, to put it bluntly. If it is that important for people to leave their faith, it is not junk food.

    We believe that Life Begins at Conception!!!! At least, I hope you don’t consider that to be junk food. But I have a question. WHY do you believe it? Science, or the Bible? Or Both? What verses can you site that proves that life begins at conception? Or, do you just take it on faith? Can life begin 3 weeks after conception, or does life begin when you take your first “breath of life” as the Jehovah’s Witnesses say? They say that life begins at birth, and if you have an abortion, you are killing a “potential life”? So, when does life begin, and what bible verses prove it?

    I remember President Obama being asked by Rick Warren when life begins, and Obama’s response was, “That’s above my pay grade”, in that he “personally” thinks that abortion is wrong, but that he can’t say when life begins.

    I think that he was being politically correct, so as not to tick off his base, the supporters of abortion.

    People have legitimate questions about what is written in the bible. We cannot just assume the points that you bring up in your email, minimizing it to junk food. People’s faith are being lost because of it.

    So, if the conclusion is, people are learning that if the Bible is wrong about an important topic such as this, what else is the Bible wrong about? THOSE PEOPLE are questioning the validity of God, and the Bible, very legitimately. And some, in the church, are becoming atheists because of it. Does that concern you?

    So, does it really matter? Yes, it does matter. The creator of matter tells us that it matters. It is wrong to just simplify and minimize it as “Does it really matter?”

    Ed

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  3. Sadly, a lot of people do doubt and even leave their faith because of doubts on topics such as this and other important, though non-essential, beliefs. The entire Christian faith, as I said earlier, stands or falls on the person, work, death, and resurrection of Christ.

    It is a historical event that if true (and I believe there is more than enough historical evidence, both Biblical and extra-Biblical, to believe it is true) then the Christian faith is true. Evolution could be the way God brought about life (though I don’t believe it is) and if Christ’s death and resurection are true, Christianity is still true. The story of the Flood could be a huge exageration, myth even, but if the resurection is true then Christianity is true. There could be errors in numerous places in the Bible, but Christianity still stands on the historical fact that Christ lived, died, and rose again.

    That is what our faith should be built on. Christ alone. Are other topics important? Is it important that what we believe about creation is accurate? Certainly! But our faith should never be built on those things. I think a lot of churches and pastors do their congregates a great disservice by elevating the importance of such beliefs beyond what they should be. We would be wise to remember that science and the Bible are not at odds with one another. Science seeks to explain how the universe around us works the way it does. If science is showing us something that appears to go against the Bible, such as showing the earth is much older than the Bible (on the surface) appears to say it is, then just maybe the literalist approach with those passages isn’t the right one. So many churches teach those kinds of views though, that it build up the faith of a person in the wrong thing, rather than strengthening their faith in Christ. When those beliefs are shaken by hard evidence, faith itself can be shaken.

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  4. I’m catching up on comments on this thread. Ed, this is good:

    That makes the YEC’ers question their faith, and then ultimately, leave their faith. So, it is indeed a very important topic to VERYIFY, to put it bluntly. If it is that important for people to leave their faith, it is not junk food.

    I was going to post Hannah’s story about this very topic today and then reading Grudem’s stuff got me all worked up and so As the Blog Rolls . . .

    Stay tuned.

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  5. Looking forward to hearing Hannah’s side of the story. I meant to get into the Grudem stuff, but I had to work last night until this morning. Now, much needed sleep.

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