Ken Ham & Creation Museum claim to have an evangelistic tool, but who is it promoting, Ham or Christ? Sorry, Ken … just not kosher.
Have you heard of the children’s book, Flat Stanley? The character in the story, Stanley, gets bonked on the head by a bulletin board while sleeping, and is flattened. The cool thing about being flattened is that now Stanley can slide under doors. And he’s also very portable, as he can be sent to fun and exciting places in a stamped envelope. That sounds like a fun way to travel to me.
A third-grade teacher in Canada thought this would be a great learning tool for students, “meant to facilitate letter-writing by schoolchildren to each other as they document where Flat Stanley has accompanied them.”(Source)
When we were living near Portland, Oregon, a friend of my daughter’s who lived in Virginia, sent Flat Stanley to my daughter. We took Flat Stanley around Portland and across the Columbia River into Washington State and took pictures with the Flat Stanley paper cut-out, identified the location, and sent the pictures back to Virginia Beach. My daughter’s young friend was able to see all the places Flat Stanley traveled, not only with my daughter, but other kids as well. Can’t you see how kids would learn geography with this tool? I love it.
The first announcement of “Flat Ken” was in this article, Flat Ken is Here. In that article, you can see a Creation Museum promotional video narrated by a cartoon version of Ken Ham. My eyes caught this statement from Mr. Ham about the “Flat Ken” concept:
But once I understood the idea, and that it was based on the “Flat Stanley” character, I was willing to go along with the idea for the sake of reaching more kids with the truth of God’s Word and the gospel.
A flat cut-out of Ken Ham is going to reach “more kids with the truth of God’s word and the gospel?” Earlier in July, I posted a link of this original article to the SSB Facebook page, which yielded quite a few responses. Now I see Ham has a new blog post plugging this venture:
Evangelistic opportunities? Ok, let’s think this through. A kid takes a cartoon-cut out and gets together with friends. Now what? How does a child get from a flat cartoon cutout of Ken Ham to the life-saving gospel message of Jesus Christ?
I’ve seen other evangelistic tools, like the gospel bracelet. If you are wearing the gospel bracelet, one can easily explain the colored beads (red is for the blood of Christ, white represents our purification). There is a direct gospel message with this evangelistic tool. But to get from Flat Ken to the gospel? What does Flat Ken have to do with the gospel? Flat Ken represents a man with a ministry/business. It seems like a big stretch.
In the article, he posts a quote and photo from a family who used the Flat Ham “evangelistic” tool:
Got to providentially introduce AiG to some youth from South Mount Bible camp on the way to the Creation Museum. Flat Ken Ham is being held by one of the girls who had not heard of AiG before. Our families (2) got to share with them about how God created everything in six literal days. It was amazing how just pulling of an exit in a Swiss reformed area of North Carolina turned into an opportunity to share with young people who never heard of AiG! We got to pray with them as well. God is good!
Sharing with another family how God created everything in six literal days is not the gospel message. And frankly, what exactly are they evangelizing? Is it the gospel of Ken Ham and AiG or Christ’s gospel: “It was amazing how just pulling of an exit in a Swiss reformed area of North Carolina turned into an opportunity to share with young people who never heard of AiG!”
Take a look at the very next sentence from Ken Ham’s blog:
“The Flat Ken photo contest is really an evangelistic tool for Answers in Genesis and the Creation Museum. “
It’s a tool for what? Where is Christ in this picture? And there’s more:
“What’s more, when I speak at conferences, children regularly come see me afterwards to show me their Flat Ken pictures.”
Oh, I get it – it’s not an evangelism tool for Christ. Silly me, it’s an “evangelism” tool for Ken Ham, Answers in Genesis and the Creation Museum. Shoot, and I thought using the word “evangelism” had to do with spreading the gospel. There’s more:
Now, the Flat Ken contest may seem like a silly promotion to some, but it actually draws attention to the ministry and mission of AiG and the Creation Museum—and we are finding adults and kids are loving it.
Don’t miss out on this fun and exciting opportunity share the message of God’s Word!
No, I’m sorry, this is not an evangelistic tool, this is a promotional tool for a business.
Another important note about this is how he talks about the gospel. The gospel is about Christ on the cross, dying for our sins, rising again so that we can commune with Him. Christ was the ultimate sacrifice for us. Ken Ham’s says “gospel” all the time, but where is his sole focus? Creation and his business.
We truly desire to reach the lost with the gospel of Christ—using creation apologetics—and to equip the church to take God at His Word, beginning in Genesis 1:1.
Ken Ham is making 6-day creationism as the gospel message. This is the basis of his whole ministry. 6-day creation does not equal gospel. Sorry. It just does not. 6-day creation is about creation. Gospel is about gospel. Let’s see what Scripture says about the gospel and please take note and see if there is any mention of 6-day creation:
Now, brothers and sisters, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you, which you received and on which you have taken your stand. By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain.
For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures . . Corinthians 15:1-4
Children do not need Flat Ken mediators to get to Christ and the true gospel message. If Ken Ham wants to use Flat Ken to promote his business, then fine, just say so, but to say that this cartoon image of Ken Ham will pave the way for evangelistic opportunities? Come on, give me a break.
Here’s the definition of Farce:
a comic dramatic work using buffoonery and horseplay and typically including crude characterization and ludicrously improbable situations.
In the comments on the SSB Facebook page, there was talk about taking pics with Flat Ken and posting them. I’ve decided that Flat Ken’s pseudo “gospel” message is a #FlatKenFarce and will have a little fun on Twitter as I take my Flat Ken cutout around town in the desert of Eastern Washington. If you’d like to join in and send in pics to the SSB Facebook page or to me at firstname.lastname@example.org, I”d be happy to post them. Here’s where you can get your Flat Ken cutout.