Thursday, July 24, 2014

A Road to Heresy

By Derrick Zuk

Photo Credit: Derrick Zuk

I hear my fellow believers talking about geology and science and the age of the earth and I find myself wondering, do we believe in two different gods? If you believe the earth is millions of years old and hold consistently to that view, then logically you cannot believe in the same God I do.
It is frightening and worrisome that believers cannot see that “millions of years” inserted into the first verses of Genesis is a subtle, yet very serious error that has heretical conclusions. Our passion is to point out this urgent theological issue and urge our brothers and sisters to defend the Truth!

All it takes is a subtle perversion of truth to produce disastrous results and lead us astray from true doctrine. Cunning lies can slip in without our knowing and they will affect the true conversion of souls in the next generation if we don’t root out the falsehood and stand firm upon the Word of God.

So just how could the belief in millions of years affect a person’s salvation? Isn’t the issue of the days of creation a minor, open-handed one? Certainly not a hill to die on, right!? Maybe these few points will cause you to reconsider.

Step One: Questioning God’s Word

In Genesis one God clearly describes the seven days of the creation week, most plainly interpreted as regular 24-hour days; yet you interpret Him to mean “millions of years” because that’s what “science” tells you? Where did this kind of rebellion start? In Genesis 3, the serpent, Satan, twists God’s words just slightly enough to spread seeds of doubt. And Eve chose the serpent’s words over God’s.

We choose the same lies of Satan today. We like the subtle perversions that seem more comfortable to us and less confrontational to others. This comes from a lack of faith (full assurance, confidence) in God and His Word. Millions of years is a theory of man; why trust faulty man over the God of the universe? Are you starting with a fallible science or with the authority of an infallible God?

Step Two: Questioning God’s Character

Who gets the credit for millions of years of death? The fossil record, layer upon layer of geologic formations filled with fossils of dead things, thorns, and evidence of disease and killing had to be laid before Adam walked the earth. If you say those “millions of years” were part of creation, then you credit God with creating them.

Not only that, but does God call death and suffering very good (Genesis 1:31)? How then are you defining “good”? Furthermore if God created it, then what happened when Adam sinned? Why would the punishment of death mean anything to Adam?

 Step Three: Removing the foundation of our faith

Let’s think about how this affects our theology concerning Jesus Christ, the cross, and the gospel itself. This is indeed where the rubber meets the road.

Technically speaking, Christ (the second Person of the Trinity) is Creator of all things (John 1:3).  Therefore, from the “millions of years” perspective, Christ is the author of death, disease, and suffering (evidenced by the fossil record). These are all things we would consider “not good”.  These are things that God promises will pass away (Rev. 21:4). Indeed the Father sent His Son, Jesus Christ, to die on the cross to rectify—wait—His own mistakes from creation?

You argue: Ok, so maybe Adam’s sin in the garden only brought spiritual death as a punishment since physical death was part of God’s design.

So did Jesus Christ only die spiritually on the cross? If Jesus only died spiritually, then He didn’t need to die physically OR resurrect physically. Without His physical resurrection, we have no hope for a resurrection body in the eternal future and our faith is in vain!
 But if there is no resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised. And if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain and your faith is in vain. (1 Cor. 15:13-14)

You argue: Well maybe it was only human death that Adam’s sin brought, not animal death.

So the suffering of animals is good? And when Genesis 1:30 states that God gave all the animals plants to eat for food, they went against His design on their own – and that was good? And what of the thorns and tumors and disease that are evident in the fossil record, those things were created good as well and are not the consequence of sin?

 For the anxious longing of the creation waits eagerly for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God. (Romans 8:19-20)

End of the Road

Photo Credit: Derrick Zuk
There’s no light at the end of this tunnel, only heresy. The belief that the earth is millions of years old holds no hope for the sinner. When projected to its final conclusion, it describes a different god or multiple gods. If you credit God with creation and include the records of “millions of years” of death and suffering as His handiwork, then you redefine “good” (it now includes what we would call “evil”) and you destroy His character. That’s not the God of the Bible I know.

Guess what? The idea of God creating evil isn’t new. The Gnostics believed the god who created material things was an evil, inferior god; there was also a transcendent god who was over spiritual things and was good.

Here at Jackson Hole Bible College we don't believe this is a light, open-handed issue. We must proclaim the gospel from start to finish, from Genesis to Revelation. And we must do this with accuracy, leaning wholly on the Word of God and implementing good, proper hermeneutics in our studies. We start with the Bible and interpret the world through Scripture, not the other way around. Either the Bible is the authority or the “science” is.

Praise the Lord, for He is good!

Coming Soon!!

For a more in-depth discussion of this apologetic defense, watch for the release of our new booklet "Death Before Sin: Did Jesus die for His own Mistakes" which addresses this very important issue and will be a great apologetic resource and tool. 

Until then, read more about this defense for a young earth: 

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