From Gary... Jesus, our FRIEND

Two unlikely friends; a dog and a cat. On occasion, I have seen a dog and a cat tolerate one another, but to actually seek out one another's company- never!!  Why? Well, they are just creatures of different natures. Yet, these two are friends- Amazing!!!  As I looked at the picture, I thought of a parallel; God and us. God is our friend, even though we are radically different from HIM.

Jesus as our friend...

Jesus is the friend of sinners

Matthew, Chapter 11 (WEB)
19  The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and they say, ‘Behold, a gluttonous man and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!’ But wisdom is justified by her children.  

If we are honest, we will be forced to admit that we are guilty of sin (perhaps multiple sins daily)? Yet, if Jesus could be the friend of people like those above; could he not be our friend? I am of the persuasion that he not only could, but in fact IS OUR FRIEND!!!  And, like the dog in the picture, seeks us out for company. Will we seek HIM out as well?

Jesus tells us what we really need to hear.

Luke, Chapter 12 (WEB)
 1 Meanwhile, when a multitude of many thousands had gathered together, so much so that they trampled on each other, he began to tell his disciples first of all, “Beware of the yeast of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy.   2 But there is nothing covered up, that will not be revealed, nor hidden, that will not be known.   3  Therefore whatever you have said in the darkness will be heard in the light. What you have spoken in the ear in the inner rooms will be proclaimed on the housetops. 

  4  “I tell you, my friends, don’t be afraid of those who kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do.   5  But I will warn you whom you should fear. Fear him, who after he has killed, has power to cast into Gehenna. Yes, I tell you, fear him.

Friends just don't tell you what you want to hear, but what they need to hear.  And this means putting friendship "on the line" for another's good.  And what greater good could there possibly be than to save us from HELL (Gehenna, above)!!! I want a friend like that because I can trust HIM!!! Do you?

Jesus taught a perfect friendship

Matthew, Chapter 5 (WEB)
 43  “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor, and hate your enemy.’  44  But I tell you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who mistreat you and persecute you,   45  that you may be children of your Father who is in heaven. For he makes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the just and the unjust.   46  For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Don’t even the tax collectors do the same?   47  If you only greet your friends, what more do you do than others? Don’t even the tax collectors do the same?   48  Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect. 

I remember the old ad for the Army- "be the best you can be".  Friends that are worth something always bring out the best in you; always challenge you to be better.  And what could possibly be better than the perfection of the creator of the universe? We can never be as perfect as God, but frankly, I like the idea of reaching out to be what God really wants us to be!!! Perfection, now there is a GOAL!!!

Jesus "walked the walk" of friendship.

John, Chapter 15 (WEB)
 12  “This is my commandment, that you love one another, even as I have loved you.   13  Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.   14  You are my friends, if you do whatever I command you.   15  No longer do I call you servants, for the servant doesn’t know what his lord does. But I have called you friends, for everything that I heard from my Father, I have made known to you.   16  You didn’t choose me, but I chose you, and appointed you, that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain; that whatever you will ask of the Father in my name, he may give it to you. 

Some people talk a good game, but when it come to "crunch time"- forget IT.  Jesus was our friend until he died and then was still our friend AFTERWARDS!!! Only one of his kind; somebody very special- in fact, PERFECT. Quite a number of people have done kindnesses towards me over the years, but not one of them ever died for me- EXCEPT JESUS.  

Love Jesus because HE is a TRUE FRIEND!!! Face it, in this world, good friends come and go, but friendship with Jesus can last forever. On his part, he will always be our friend, but I wonder- will everyone who reads this be a friend to Jesus??? And Gary- THIS MEANS YOU!!!

From Mark Copeland... "GOSPEL PREACHING IN THE FIRST CENTURY" Peter On The Day Of Pentecost


                     Peter On The Day Of Pentecost


1. Today we often hear people speak of "gospel preaching"...
   a. Where sometimes the gospel is not mentioned at all
   b. Or that preached is not the gospel preached by the apostles - cf.
      Ga 1:6-9

2. The gospel is "good news" which...
   a. Jesus wanted His apostles to preach to everyone - Mk 16:15
   b. His apostles proclaimed after Jesus ascended to heaven - Mk 16:19-20

3. But is this same gospel being preached today?  In the book of Acts...
   a. We have examples of gospel preaching in the first century
   b. Gospel preaching by the apostles and preachers of Jesus Christ

4. In this series, we shall consider examples of gospel preaching...
   a. Done by the apostles and preachers of Jesus Christ
   b. Examining the content of their sermons and response expected of
      the hearers

[We begin with very first gospel sermon proclaimed by the apostle Peter...]


      1. It was the day of Pentecost - Ac 2:1
      2. One of three major Jewish feasts, also called the Feast of Weeks
      3. Pentecost means "fifty", observed fifty days after the Passover
      4. Jesus had ascended to heaven just ten days before - Ac 1:9-11

      1. The apostles had been waiting for the promise of the Spirit
         - Ac 1:4-5
      2. Matthias had just been selected to replace Judas Iscariot - Ac 1:15-26
      3. With audible and visual signs, the Spirit came upon the
         apostles - Ac 2:2-4
      4. They spoke in foreign languages, understood by visitors from
         other countries - Ac 2:5-11
      5. Some thought they were drunk, but it was too early in the
         morning - Ac 2:12-15
      6. Peter explained that it was the fulfillment of Joel’s prophecy
         - Ac 2:16-21

[With the miraculous events explained, Peter now had the attention of
the audience as he began the first gospel sermon ever preached...]


      1. Peter proclaims Jesus as a Man attested by God through His
         miracles - Ac 2:22
      2. Done in their midst, they could not deny the signs Jesus did
         while alive!

      1. By crucifixion, which they themselves did with lawless (Roman)
         hands - Ac 2:23
      2. Though it part of God’s predetermined purpose and foreknowledge - ibid.
      3. Jesus’ death and their involvement they could not deny!

      1. God raised Jesus, having loosed the pains of death - Ac 2:24
      2. Peter offered three proofs that Jesus rose from the dead
         a. David’s prophecy, fulfilled in Jesus - Ac 2:25-31; cf. Ps 16:8-11
         b. Eyewitness testimony, by the twelve apostles - Ac 2:32; cf.  Ac 1:21-22
         c. Outpouring of the Spirit, which the audience themselves saw
            and heard - Ac 2:33
      3. Compelling evidence to those who were present!

      1. The outpouring of the Spirit was the result of Jesus’
         exaltation - Ac 2:33
      2. Jesus’ exaltation was prophesied by David - Ac 2:34-35; cf. Ps 110:1
      3. Thus the crucified Jesus was now Lord and Christ! - Ac 2:36

      1. Cut to the heart, many asked "What shall we do?" - Ac 2:37
      2. We note that the following was required:
         a. Believe in Jesus ("know assuredly") as Lord and Christ - Ac 2:36
         b. Repent of sins - Ac 2:38
         c. Baptism for remission of sins and gift of the Holy Spirit
            - Ac 2:38-39
      3. The follow-up:
         a. Peter exhorted them "Be saved from this perverse generation"
            - Ac 2:40
         b. 3000 gladly received his word and were baptized - Ac 2:41
         c. Those baptized were "added" by the Lord to His church - Ac 2:41,47
         d. Thus began the Lord’s church in Jerusalem - Ac 2:42-47


1. From Peter’s sermon we learn that gospel preaching in the first
   century involved...
   a. Proclaiming the death, burial, resurrection and lordship of Jesus Christ
   b. Calling on people to respond in faith, repentance, and baptism for
      the remission of sins

2. If you had been there on that occasion, how would you have responded...?
   a. Like the 3000, would you have gladly been baptized? - Ac 2:41
   b. Would you have continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine,
      etc.? - Ac 2:42

Or like many today have you yet to accept that gospel message preached
in the first century?  If so, may I like Peter plead with you:  "Be
saved from this perverse generation."

Respond to the same gospel Peter preached, in the same way 3000 did on
that occasion, by believing in Christ, repenting of your sins, and being
baptized for the remission of sins.  As Jesus said:

   "He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does
   not believe will condemned." - Mk 16:16

Executable Outlines, Copyright © Mark A. Copeland, 2011

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The Bible Always Passes the Test by Wayne Jackson, M.A.


The Bible Always Passes the Test

by Wayne Jackson, M.A.


Critics have claimed that the Bible contains all kinds of factual errors. Is the Bible trustworthy when it speaks of historical matters?


The Bible contains two kinds of information. Some of it can be checked; some of it cannot. For example, it is not possible to “check” scientifically the accuracy of Genesis 1:1—“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” While the affirmation is not in any way inconsistent with available scientific data, at the same time the statement is one of prehuman history and therefore does not lend itself to empirical investigation.
On the other hand, the Scriptures contain hundreds of references that arise out of the background of human history. These may be tested for accuracy. If it is the case that the Bible is demonstrated to be precise in thousands of historical details, it is not unreasonable to conclude that its information in other matters is equally correct.
In fact, one of the most amazing features of the Bible is its uncanny reliability in the smallest of details. Let us note a few examples of biblical precision.
During His personal ministry, Jesus once passed through the region of Samaria. Near Sychar, the Lord stopped for a brief rest at Jacob’s well. He engaged a Samaritan woman in conversation, during which He suggested that He could provide the woman with water that could perpetually quench her thirst. Misunderstanding the nature of the Master’s instruction, the woman, alluding to Jacob’s well, declared: “Sir, you have nothing to draw with, and the well is deep” (John 4:11). The statement is quite correct, for even now, some twenty centuries later, Jacob’s well is approximately 80 feet deep—the equivalent of an eight-story building!
Reflect upon another example. In Acts 10 there is the account of Peter’s visit in the city of Joppa. Luke declared that Peter was staying in the home of Simon, a tanner of animal hides. Then the historian said, almost as an afterthought, “whose house is by the seaside” (Acts 10:6). Hugh J. Schonfield, author of the infamous book, The Passover Plot (and certainly no friend of Christianity), has commented on this passage as follows: “This is an interesting factual detail, because the tanners used sea water in the process of converting hides into leather. The skins were soaked in the sea and then treated with lime before the hair was scraped off.”
Consider another interesting case of Bible precision. When Paul was en route to Rome for trial, the ship upon which he sailed became involved in a terrible storm. When it eventually became apparent that the vessel was in a very dangerous circumstance, the crew cast the ship’s anchors into the water. At the same time, they “loosed the rudder bands, hoisted up the foresail, and aimed the ship towards the beach” (Acts 27:40). There is an interesting and subtle point in the Greek text that is not apparent in the King James Version. The original language actually says that they “loosed the bands of therudders” (plural). This is amazingly precise, for in ancient times, ships actually possessed two paddle-rudders, not a single rudder as with modern vessels. In 1969, a submerged ancient ship was discovered in the Mediterranean Sea off the coast of Cyprus. An examination of the ruins gave evidence of dual rudder-oars by which the boat was steered (see National Geographic, November 1974), thus demonstrating the remarkable accuracy of Luke’s record.
The Bible can be tested—historically, geographically, scientifically, etc. And it always passes the test. Its incredible accuracy can be explained only in light of its divine inspiration.

Militant Atheism by Eric Lyons, M.Min. Kyle Butt, M.A.


Militant Atheism

by Eric Lyons, M.Min.
Kyle Butt, M.A.

The stereotypical scientist in a white lab coat who follows the facts wherever they may lead, and reports those data without prejudice, often does not correspond to reality these days. In fact, a large majority of scientists now believe that God does not exist. These scientists feel that they should militantly spread their ideas of atheism and evolution as far and wide as possible. They abhor the idea of a supernatural Creator and believe it should be eradicated from human consciousness. Just how determined are some of the leading atheistic evolutionists to expunge theism from the world? A recent issue of the journal New Scientist, which just celebrated its 50th anniversary, sheds some light on the subject. In an article titled, “In Place of God: Can Secular Science Ever Oust Religious Belief—and Should It Even Try?,” Michael Brooks recounted a recent meeting of “some of the leading practitioners of modern science” in La Jolla, California (2006, 192[2578]:8). They had gathered to discuss, among other questions, “Should science do away with religion?” Their answers are alarming. [NOTE: The following quotations are extracted from Brooks’ report.]
Cosmologist Steven Weinberg was first to address the question, “Should science do away with religion?” He responded with an unequivocal “yes,” saying: “The world needs to wake up from the long nightmare of religion.... Anything we scientists can do to weaken the hold of religion should be done, and may in fact be our greatest contribution to civilization” (p. 9, emp. added). Since scientists at the symposium used the terms “religion” and “God” interchangeably, Weinberg in essence was saying that ridding God from the world would be one of science’s greatest achievements. He seemed so certain that scientists could achieve this goal that he actually admitted he would “miss it once it was gone” (p. 9). How were Weinberg’s comments received, you might ask? According to attendee Michael Brooks, he received “a rapturous response” (p. 9), before being heavily criticized by some, such as Richard Dawkins, surprisingly enough, “for not being tough enough on religion” (p. 9).
Dawkins, who is perhaps the most celebrated evolutionist alive today, was one of the most militant atheists at the conference. He stated: “I am utterly fed up with the respect we have been brainwashed into bestowing upon religion,” i.e., God (p. 9; cf. Ecclesiastes 12:12-13). Passive atheism apparently should not be tolerated. Dawkins is “ready to mobilize” his “big...enthusiastic choir” of evolutionary colleagues (p. 11). He said: “There’s a certain sort of negativity you get from people who say ‘I don’t like religion but you can’t do anything about it.’ That’s a real counsel of defeatism. We should roll our sleeves up and get on with it” (p. 11, emp. added). Dawkins even compared evolutionary scientists’ position in the 21st century to that of homosexuals in the late 1960s: everyone needs to be “willing to stand up and be counted,” so that “they could change things” (p. 11).
Dawkins likely called for such drastic action because he has seen atheism lose some of its battles. In his book, The Blind Watchmaker, he admitted that modern creationists have been “disturbingly successful” in their attempts to combat evolution in “American education and textbook publishing” (1996, p. 241). He also wrote: “There are still those who seek to deny the truth of evolution, and there are disturbing signs that their influence is even growing, at least in local areas of the United States” (p. x). The influence of anti-evolutionists disturbs Dawkins greatly—so much so that he and his colleagues feel compelled to advance evolution, while doing “away with religion” (Brooks, 192[2578]:9).
Evolutionist Neil deGrasse Tyson of the Hayden Planetarium in New York “spoke with an evangelist’s zeal” (p. 10, emp. added). He referred to a recent poll taken of members of the U.S.National Academy of Sciences which revealed that 15 percent did not indicate they were atheists, and asked: “How come the number isn’t zero?... That should be the subject of everybody’s investigation. That’s something that we can’t just sweep under the rug” (p. 10). To Tyson, theistic members of theU.S. National Academy of Sciences represent “a problem that needs to be addressed” (p. 10). One wonders what Tyson would suggest if Louis Pasteur, Isaac Newton, Carolus Linnaeus, and other brilliant theistic scientists from the past were members of this group? Kick them out for not being atheists, even though their contributions to science likely far exceed any efforts put forth by most current members of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences? Even the staunch evolutionist Niles Eldredge admitted that “all the great biologists and geologists prior to Darwin were, in some sense at least, creationists” (2001, p. 49).
Dr. Harry Kroto of Florida State University also stepped forward at the conference declaring himself “ready to fight the good fight” (Brooks, 192[2578]:11). He proposed the launching of “a coordinated global effort at education, media outreach and campaigning on behalf of science,” using especially the Internet to take evolutionary science into every home (p. 11). If you think students in private religious schools will be untouched and invulnerable to the efforts of modern-day evolutionists, consider that Kroto has these schools in his sights as well. He declared: “We must try to work against faith schooling” (p. 11).
Michael Brooks summarized the overall attitude at the La Jolla, California symposium in the following words: “science can take on religion and win” (p. 11, emp. added). So, in the words of Richard Dawkins, “We [evolutionists—EL/KB] should roll our sleeves up and get on with it” (p. 11).
The irony of this militant attitude toward religion is that evolutionists sometimes downplay such aggressive tactics in an attempt to lull the religious populace into thinking that no battle is taking place. Niles Eldredge, the Curator in the Department of Invertebrate Paleontology at the American Museum of Natural History, wrote a book titled The Triumph of Evolution and the Failure of Creationism. In that book, he said: “Creationists have spuriously convinced many citizens that huge hunks of science are antithetical to their religious beliefs” (2001, p. 174). One would not have to read past the first page of Brook’s New Scientist article to understand that the evolutionists themselves openly admit that their atheistic, evolutionary beliefs are antithetical to religion. To add further irony to Eldredge’s statement, the back of his book quotes Booklist as saying that Eldredge’s book is “a clarion call rallying evolutionist [sic] to battle.”


In the mid-1990s, philosopher Daniel Dennett wrote a book titled Darwin’s Dangerous Idea. Leading evolutionists such as Richard Dawkins, Steven Pinker, Philip Kitcher, and Edward O. Wilson highly recommended the book, calling it “surpassingly brilliant” and “essential,” as it persuades readers that “evolution by natural selection is vital to the future of philosophy.” One of the most disturbing comments in Dennett’s book concerned parents who teach their children (among other things) “that ‘Man’ is not a product of evolution” (1995, p. 519, emp. added). Dennett wrote: “[T]hose of us who have freedom of speech will feel free to describe your teachings as the spreading of falsehoods, and will attempt to demonstrate this to your children at our earliest opportunity” (p. 519). Notice the jab at religious parents—accusing them of lying and not “freely” telling the truth about man’s origins. More important, observe how he then proceeded to testify that evolutionists like himself will endeavor to convince the children of theists that evolution is not fiction, but a fact that will be communicated “at our earliest opportunity.” How early? Consider one example.
The toddler pop-up “history” book titled Life on Earth was published in 2002 by Barron’s Educational Series. It is 21 pages of colorful illustrations, captivating pop-ups, and evolutionary dogma. It tells the story of evolution with less than 10 words per page. Beginning with “the first living things” in the seas, it proceeds with fish crawling out onto land and becoming amphibians. It then tells of the reptiles’ appearance, followed by the mammals, and eventually the first “hairy” humans. In case a child misses the point of the book, placed strategically just above a baby in diapers sliding down the tail of a large dinosaur, the text on the back cover reinforces the main point: “Millions of years ago life on Earth started in the oceans. Then it moved onto the land and eventually led to YOU!”
Those who teach evolution target children. Niles Eldredge wrote: “I maintain my conviction that the real battleground is in the classroom” (2001, p. 157, emp. added). In the same book, he asserted: “The real battle is still being fought at school board meetings and in public school classrooms” (p. 149, emp. added). Notice the military terminology used. Mark it down. Many within the evolutionary community recognize that the ideas of a supernatural God and organic evolution are at war. Eldredge and others offer a glimpse into their battle strategy: start early in the school system.
Near the end of his book, Eldredge included a list from Eugenie Scott, Director of the National Center for Science Education, of 25 things “parents, teachers, and even scientists” can do to help evolution win its battle over creation. The number one item listed: “Donate books and videos about evolution toschool and public libraries” (p. 178, emp. added). Number eight: “Share your views with school board members, legislators, textbook commissioners, and other educational policy makers” (p. 179, emp. added). Number 16: “PARENTS: Make sure your child’s teacher knows s/he has your support for teaching about evolution” (p. 179). Number 22: “K-12 TEACHERS: Work with your colleagues to create a supportive atmosphere in your school and community” (p. 180). Number 23: “K-12 TEACHERS: Work with colleagues to develop or publicize workshops and in-service units about evolution; take advantage of them yourself” (p. 180). A cursory reading of the list shows exactly the primary target of evolutionists: children and educational systems.
Dr. Dennett and his band of evolutionary guerrillas are serious about teaching evolution at the “earliest opportunity.” It can start with what parents perceive as “innocent” pop-up books, and continue into elementary school, middle school, and high school. Then, generally with more fervor than ever before, many evolutionary college professors make it their mission to verbally beat God out of their students. Sometime ago a gentleman visited one of our creation/evolution seminars. He had attended a well-known university in the southeastern United States. He recounted how he entered one of his science classes at the beginning of the semester, and heard his professor ask the class to stand up if they believed in God. Seven individuals stood up. The professor then went on to say that by the end of the semester not one of them would stand up when he asked that question. Sure enough, toward the end of the semester the professor posed the question again, “How many of you believe in God?” Only one student stood up.


If militant evolutionists have their way, what ultimately will become of nonconformists and disbelievers of evolutionary theory? Let us allow the evolutionists themselves to tell us. Richard Dickerson, a molecular biologist, wrote an article titled “The Game of Science.” In that article, he insisted that science cannot tolerate a supernatural Creator Who would perform miracles or create the Universe in six, 24-hour days. He also proposed that real science never can resort to invoking miracles as a legitimate explanation for anything that happens in the real world. Dickerson said: “[I]nvoking miracles and special creation violates the rules of the game of science and inhibits progress” (as quoted in Scott, 2004, p. 254). According to Dickerson, then, what should be done with any person who does believe in a supernatural Creator and a straightforward reading of Genesis 1? He is quick to offer his opinion. He says: “People who do not understand that concept (evolution—EL/KB) can never be realscientists, and should not be allowed to misrepresent science to young people from whom the ranks of the next generation of scientists will be drawn” (as quoted in Scott, p. 254, emp. added). Richard Dawkins quipped: “No serious biologist doubts the fact that evolution has happened, nor that all living creatures are cousins of one another” (1996, p. 287, emp.).
Consider one example of intolerance toward creationism in 2002 at Texas Tech University. When undergraduate student Micah Spradling requested a letter of recommendation from a biology instructor in order to enroll in a pre-medical program, Professor Michael Dini informed him that he needed to “‘truthfully and forthrightly’ believe in human evolution to receive a letter of recommendation” (see Kitchen, 2002). At the time, Dr. Dini’s Web site contained the following defense of why he asked students if they believed in the factuality of evolution:
Why do I ask this question? Let’s consider the situation of one wishing to enter medical school. Whereas medicine is historically rooted first in the practice of magic and later in religion, modern medicine is an endeavor that springs from the sciences, biology first among these. The central, unifying principle of biology is the theory of evolution, which includes both micro- and macro-evolution, and which extends to all species. How can someone who does not accept the most important theory in biology expect to properly practice in a field that is so heavily based on biology? It is hard to imagine how this can be so, but it is easy to imagine how physicians who ignore or neglect the Darwinian aspects of medicine or the evolutionary origin of humans can make bad clinical decisions....
Good medicine, like good biology, is based on the collection and evaluation of physical evidence. So much physical evidence supports the evolution of humans from non-human ancestors that one can validly refer to the “fact” of human evolution, even if all of the details are not yet known. One can deny this evidence only at the risk of calling into question one’s understanding of science and of the method of science. Such an individual has committed malpractice regarding the method of science, for good scientists would never throw out data that do not conform to their expectations or beliefs. This is the situation of those who deny the evolution of humans; such a one is throwing out information because it seems to contradict his/her cherished beliefs (as quoted in Thompson and Harrub, 2002).
In the eyes of some, such as Dr. Dini, it is no longer acceptable simply to know about the theory of evolution and be able to discuss it intelligently. Now, if you do not profess it, even though, admittedly, it is still simply a “theory” and “all of the details are not yet known,” you may risk the opportunity to further your education—a risk that Christians must be willing to take.
In 2003, following an investigation by the U.S. Justice Department, Dr. Dini supposedly “eliminated the evolution belief requirement from his recommendation policy and replaced it with a requirement that students be able to explain the theory of evolution” (Taylor, 2003, 27[4]:6). The wording in Dr. Dini’s policy changed to the following: “How do you account for the scientific origin of the human species? If you will not give a scientific answer to this question, then you should not seek my recommendation” (as quoted in Taylor, 27[4]:6, emp. added).
Notice that Dr. Dini simply changed his criteria to demand a “scientific” answer. Yet, when one explores the writings of these militant evolutionists, it becomes apparent that the word “scientific” is simply a synonym for “evolutionary.” For instance, Eugenie Scott wrote: “To scientists, using God to explain natural phenomena of any kind violates the practice of methodological naturalism, in which scientific explanations are limited only to natural causes” (2004, p. 119, emp. added). In other words, any idea that contains a hint of a supernatural, non-material Creator is, according to their definition, “unscientific.” In the National Academy of Science’s book Science and Creationism, the “steering committee” members, such as Stephen J. Gould, Eugenie Scott, Francisco Ayala, and others, put it like this: “[T]he teaching of evolution should be an integral part of science instruction, and creation science is in fact not science and should not be presented as such in science classes” (1999, p. 2). How convenient. Simply demand that all answers must be “scientific,” then define scientific as excluding any reference to a supernatural Creator. Needless to say, the great scientists of the past like Newton, Farraday, and Carver never would have accepted such a biased definition of science. Nor should thinking people today allow these sneaky, semantic tactics to go unchallenged and unanswered.
Ultimately, evolutionists would like to marginalize completely those who believe in a supernatural Creator. They would like to relegate all non-evolutionists to a tiny a band of “know-nothings,” or as Dawkins puts it, “backwoodsmen” who do not deserve the name “scientist” (1996, p. x). If these militant evolutionists have their way, no creationist will be allowed to enroll in the prestigious institutes of higher learning to earn advanced accredited degrees, much less have the opportunity to teach on college campuses. In the introduction to his 1996 edition of The Blind Watchmaker, Dawkins said as much: “I was reminded of the creationist student who, through some accident of the selection procedure, was admitted to the Zoology Department at Oxford University” (p. xi). To Dawkins, and others like him, a “properly” working selection procedure would have disallowed a creationist to enroll in an institute like Oxford, regardless of his or her intellectual accomplishments or abilities. Dawkins’ sentiments are clear from his statement in 1989: “It is absolutely safe to say that if you meet somebody who claims not to believe in evolution, that person is ignorant, stupid, or insane (or wicked, but I’d rather not consider that)” (7:34, parenthetical item in orig.). In contradistinction, the Bible says: “The fool has said in his heart, ‘There is no God’” (Psalm 14:1; 53:1).
The fact that these militant evolutionists want to silence the idea of creation is ironic in light of beliefs held by Darwin himself. In his book, Origin of the Species, Darwin wrote:
I am well aware that scarcely a single point is discussed in this volume on which facts cannot be adduced, apparently leading to conclusions directly opposite to those at which I have arrived. A fair result can be obtained only by fully stating and balancing the facts and arguments on both sides of each question... (1956, p. 18, emp. added).
Judging from the comments by Dawkins and others, Darwin’s suggestion that both sides should be heard was far too tolerant and soft on the “unscientific” idea of creation.


Highly acclaimed evolutionary scientists recognize that a war is going on—a war between atheistic evolutionary science and anti-evolutionary science. Evolutionists are ready to “get on with it” (Brooks, 192[2578]:11). They are speaking “with an evangelist’s zeal” and are “ready to fight the good fight” (pp. 10,11). Even now, they are attempting to position themselves to set evolution “in place of God” (p. 8).
Creationists must not shy away from this battle. We, too, must roll up our sleeves and heed the apostle Paul’s admonition to “fight the good fight of faith” (1 Timothy 6:12). We must strive to “speak the words of truth and reason” (Acts 26:25), and “be ready to give a defense to everyone” (1 Peter 3:15). Indeed, “the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God” (2 Corinthians 10:4-5).
What can creationists do? How can we fight against atheistic evolutionary science? If evolutionists have benefited from Eugenie Scott’s to-do list for the advancement of evolution, perhaps it is fitting to close this article with a list of suggestions for creationists in their fight against atheistic evolution.
  • Recognize that there is a battle over the most fundamental pillar of Christianity (the existence of God), and resolve to do something.
  • Begin teaching your children, grandchildren, nephews, nieces, etc. the case for creation and the case against evolution before they ever enter school. Then continue this instruction as they get older.
  • Encourage your children to ask questions about God, creation, and evolution. If you don’t answer their questions, someone will—and that someone probably will be an evolutionist.
  • Give your children (and yourself!) the tools needed to build a strong faith—one that is based on both reason and revelation.
  • Familiarize yourself with Web sites such as ApologeticsPress.org and ChristianCourier.com, which provide immediate answers to many of your questions. They also aid students with term papers, reports, speeches, etc.
[The final five suggestions are adapted from Eugenie Scott’s list (see Eldredge, 2001, pp. 178-180).]
  • Donate books and videos about creation to school and public libraries.
  • Make it a point to share your views about creation with school board members, legislators, textbook commissioners, and other educational policy makers.
  • Let your children’s teachers know that they have your support if they choose to teach about the errors and weaknesses of evolutionary theory.
  • Attempt to create an open-minded atmosphere in your school and community, so that creation and evolution can both be discussed.
  • Work with parents, teachers, churches, etc. to develop or publicize workshops or seminars about the errors of evolution and the evidence for God’s existence.


Brooks, Michael (2006), “In Place of God,” New Scientist, 192[2578]:8-11.
Darwin, Charles (1956 edition), The Origin of Species (New York: J.M. Dent & Sons).
Dawkins, Richard (1989), “Book Review,” The New York Times, section 7, April 9.
Dawkins, Richard (1996), The Blind Watchmaker (New York, NY: W.W. Norton).
Dennett, Daniel (1995), Darwin’s Dangerous Idea (New York, NY: Simon and Schuster).
Eldredge, Niles (2001), The Triumph of Evolution and the Failure of Creationism (New York, NY: W.H. Freeman).
Kitchen, Sebastian (2002), “Professor Rigid on Evolution,” Lubbock Avalanche-Journal, A-1,9, October 6.
Life on Earth (2002), (Hauppauge, NY: Barron’s Education Series).
Science and Creationism (1999), (Washington, D.C.: National Academy Press), second edition.
Scott, Eugenie (2004), Evolution vs. Creationism: An Introduction (Los Angeles, CA: University of California Press).
Taylor, Larry (2003), “Biology Professor Alters Evolution Statement for Recommendations,” Skeptical Inquirer, 27[4]:6, July/August.
Thompson, Bert and Brad Harrub (2002), “Quick, Let’s Discriminate Against the Creationists!” [On-line], URL: http://www.apologeticspress.org/articles/2504.

Did Darwin Repent? by Bert Thompson, Ph.D.


Did Darwin Repent?

by Bert Thompson, Ph.D.


A story often circulates that suggests Charles Darwin, on his deathbed, recanted his theory of evolution and repented of the damage that he, and it, had done. The story affirms that Darwin died believing in God and salvation through Christ. Is this true?


For many years, such a story has been circulated. It frequently appears in church bulletins, almost always under the byline of one of those three famous writers of our generation: “Mr. Selected,” “Mr. Anonymous,” or “Mr. Copied.” No doubt those who propagate the story mean well. But, regardless of their good intentions, or the sincerity of their motives, they are wrong. The story surrounding Charles Darwin’s alleged repentance simply is not true. And unfortunately, it is not just this story that makes the rounds. There are other “newsworthy” items that are published—again, no doubt by well-meaning people—which are just as false. Two come to mind: (1) the story of how IBM scientists are supposed to have discovered a scientific reason for the “long day of Joshua” in the Old Testament; and (2) the account of how Madalyn Murray O’Hair allegedly threatened to have all religious broadcasting taken off the airwaves in America. Neither of these stories is any truer, nor any more founded in fact, than the story of Charles Darwin’s repentance.
The story that is told so often—and there are almost as many versions of it as there are storytellers—goes something like this. A certain friend of the Darwin family, Lady Hope, was herself a Bible believer. On occasion she found herself in the company of Mr. Darwin. One such occasion happened to be during a beautiful autumn, just a few days before his death. At that time, so the account goes, she found him reading, somewhat to her surprise, the New Testament book of Hebrews. Upon further inquiry, Darwin began to speak about how he was so very young when he formed his ideas of evolution, and how he regretted that so many people had made those ideas their religion. He then insisted that Lady Hope return to his summerhouse that afternoon, at 3:00 pm, to read from the Bible to his servants, and nearby villagers. When she asked exactly what Darwin thought she should read, he is alleged to have turned to her with an emphatic voice and said, “Read about Christ and His salvation!” Lady Hope, so says the tale, quickly spread the good news that Darwin, now on his deathbed, had become a believer in God, and a Christian.
As with all spurious dramas such as this, it is impossible to trace the origin of this story. The search hardly is made easier when time after time the story is reprinted, attributing it only to “selected,” “anonymous,” or “copied.” But on rare occasions the story, in reprinted form, actually has been attributed to an American journal published in years gone by, The Watchman Examiner. However, a search through all available issues of that publication has provided neither the original account nor any references to it. Similarly, on occasion the story is attributed, in reprinted form, to a book by Luther Townsend, The Collapse of Evolution, but that, too, has proved to be elusive. In short, each time a search is made for any kind of original documentation, it ends in the proverbial “dead end.” This alone should make the honest inquirer a bit suspicious. Were that the end of the matter, suspicions might be afforded the benefit of the doubt, and the account accepted as true. However, there are other data that, considered collectively, expose the dubious nature of the story—in any form.
First, out of a sense of fairness, let me state that there really was a “Lady Hope.” Malcolm Bowden, in his book, The Rise of the Evolution Fraud, provided documentation from Mr. L.G. Pine, former editor of Burke’s Peerage in Great Britain, of the existence of Lady Hope (1982, p. 189). And, admittedly, she lived in England at the same time as Darwin. However, the mere existence of such a woman, in proximity to Darwin, does not establish the veracity of the story under consideration. Other factors must be taken into account as well. One such factor comes from the daughter of Charles Darwin himself. Around 1842, Darwin’s wife Emma gave birth to their daughter, Henrietta. Eventually, she married an English barrister by the name of Richard Litchfield. Apparently, even before her death the story of her father’s conversion at the hands of Lady Hope had begun to circulate, because she addressed this matter in a letter written on February 23, 1922 to The Christian, a religious journal. Her comments were as follows:
I was present at his [Darwin’s—BT] deathbed. Lady Hope was not present during his last illness, or any illness. I believe he never even saw her, but in any case she had no influence over him in any department of thought and belief. He never recanted any of his scientific views, either then or earlier. We think that story of his conversion was fabricated in the USA. In most of these versions, hymn singing comes in and a summerhouse where the servants and villagers sang hymns to him. There is no such summerhouse and no servants or villagers ever sang hymns to him. The whole story has no foundation whatsoever (see Hawton, 1958, p. 4).
Some supporters of the idea of Darwin’s repentance might suggest that his daughter Henrietta would not wish the story to be known even if it were true, and therefore may have distorted, or falsely presented, the facts of the matter. While at first glance this might seem a possibility, other factors militate against such a conclusion. In order to hold to the truthfulness of this story, one would, in essence, have to call Darwin’s daughter an outright liar. Such a charge would be very difficult to sustain for several reasons. First, she was with her father at his death. But to the best of our knowledge, there is absolutely no evidence that Lady Hope ever visited Darwin toward the end of his life. Second, those closest to Darwin at the time of his death knew nothing of his alleged conversion. Third, the story of that supposed conversion did not begin until years after his death, which hardly seems likely if the story is true—and known to be so by those whose lives were intricately intertwined with Darwin’s.
Also to be considered is this: many of the “facts” of the Lady Hope story are, quite simply, wrong. For example, Darwin died April 19, 1882. But the story of Lady Hope specifically states that she visited him on a beautiful autumn afternoon. That would have left six months between her visit, and his demise. Yet evidence available to us proves beyond the shadow of a doubt that Darwin was neither bedridden nor “on his deathbed” during that six-month period. Also, the story indicates that Lady Hope came to speak, at Darwin’s request, at the summerhouse on his property. Yet as Darwin’s daughter pointed out, there was no such summerhouse. Further, the story has Darwin opining to Lady Hope that he formed his thoughts on evolution when he was but “a young man with unformed ideas.” This makes little sense, because when Darwin finally published the Origin of Species, he was 50 years old! This hardly qualifies him for being a “young man.” The Origin of Species underwent no less than six revisions from 1859 until 1872—and each one was at the hand of Darwin himself. So the suggestion that a “young man with unformed ideas” was responsible for the Origin, and the concepts contained therein, simply will not withstand intense examination.
There are many more data available that establish the conclusion that the “Lady Hope” story is false. Wilbert H. Rusch and John W. Klotz have summarized them in their excellent work on this subject, Did Charles Darwin Become a Christian? (1988). The reader is referred to that volume for an in-depth examination of those data, which are far too numerous to reproduce here.
Did Darwin repent? Did he become a believer in God, or a Christian? The answer to both questions is a resounding “no.” Creationists and Christians do themselves no favor by circulating, even if inadvertently through good intentions, stories such as these that ultimately are without foundation. When the truth finally does come out (and eventually it will!), it reflects poorly on those who propagate such falsehoods. While there are many legitimate, valuable tools in the arsenal of the Christian apologist, such stories as the one reviewed here are not among them and should be avoided at all cost. If you should see this story reappear in the future, please take occasion to share this material with those who are telling it. There is enough false material being circulated without Christians fueling the fire with more.


Bowden, Malcolm (1982), The Rise of the Evolution Fraud (San Diego, CA: Christian Life Publishers).
Hawton, Hector (1958), “The Myth of Darwin’s Conversion,” The Humanist, 73:4, July.
Rusch, Wilbert H. and John W. Klotz (1988), Did Charles Darwin Become a Christian? (Norcross, GA: Creation Research Society Books).

Is America’s Iniquity Full? by Dave Miller, Ph.D.


Is America’s Iniquity Full?

by Dave Miller, Ph.D.

When one examines the sweeping scope of human history, it becomes readily apparent that progress is not technically linear. Rather, nations rise and fall. The progress that they achieve is often lost to later civilizations, who must essentially “reinvent the wheel.” Archaeological evidence exists to substantiate the fact that highly advanced civilizations have preceded modern times, creating many enigmas for researchers. The Moche were a highly developed society that vanished centuries ago. The ancient Paracas performed medieval wonders in brain surgery using only crude metal instruments. The fabled Macchu Picchu achieved incredible engineering feats (“Inca...,” 1995). The Nasca (or perhaps their predecessors) produced massive drawings that stretch for miles and are thus visible/discernible only from the air (“The Lost City...,” 2000; “Nasca Lines,” n.d.).
What happened to such civilizations? Why are they now nonexistent? One would expect that the likelihood of a nation’s survival would increase in proportion to the technological, medical, and economic progress. One explanation for this circumstance (perhaps the explanation) is provided by the Bible. Simply stated, the Bible affirms that as a nation moves in the direction of spiritual and moral depravity, becoming increasingly alienated from God, that nation positions itself for inevitable destruction. That destruction may come in the form of natural disasters—like volcanoes (e.g., Pompey). It may come in the form of external invasion—as in the case of the fall of Babylonia or Rome. It can even come in the form of direct, miraculous intervention by God—as in the case of Sodom and the other cities of the plain (Genesis 19:29).
This principle is alluded to repeatedly in Scripture. When God promised to Abraham that his descendents would be given the land of Canaan as their homeland, He noted that this gift would not be given for several hundred years. Why the delay? “[F]or the iniquity of the Amorites is not yet complete” (Genesis 15:16). God would not have displaced one group of people simply in order to give another group the land. That would be unjust and prejudicial—in direct contradiction to God’s nature (Deuteronomy 32:4). He eventually allowed the Israelites to conquer Canaan because the peoples that inhabited the land had grown exceedingly wicked. Concomitant with reception of the land, God used the Israelites to punish the Canaanites for their perversion and depravity.
For the land is defiled; therefore I visit the punishment of its iniquity upon it, and the land vomits out its inhabitants. You shall therefore keep My statutes and My judgments, and shall not commit any of these abominations, either any of your own nation or any stranger who dwells among you (for all these abominations the men of the land have done, who were before you, and thus the land is defiled), lest the land vomit you out also when you defile it, as it vomited out the nations that were before you. For whoever commits any of these abominations, the persons who commit them shall be cut off from among their people. Therefore you shall keep My ordinance, so that you do not commit any of these abominable customs which were committed before you, and that you do not defile yourselves by them: I am the Lord your God (Leviticus 18:25-30, emp. added).
Observe that God gives civilizations a considerable amount of time—even hundreds of years—to choose the spiritual and moral direction they will take. If they are determined to spiral downward in an ever-deepening devotion to idolatry, covetousness, sexual impurity, etc., then God eventually “lowers the boom” and destroys them for their iniquity (cf. the Genesis Flood—Genesis 6:3). The inspired writer of the book of Kings compared the wickedness of King Ahab to the previous inhabitants of the land of Canaan, noting the reason for their destruction: “And he behaved very abominably in following idols, according to all that the Amorites had done, whom the Lord had cast out before the children of Israel” (1 Kings 21:25-26).
This same principle is reiterated in the New Testament. Jesus summarized the history of Israel as one of frequent rebellion against divine precepts. He intimated that they were nearing the limit of God’s toleration and impending punishment when He declared to them: “Fill up, then, the measure of your fathers’ guilt” (Matthew 23:32). It was as if an imaginary cup had been gradually filling up with sin, and that it was nearing the brim—at which time God would respond with appropriate destruction. Paul verified this very understanding when he accused his fellow Jews of having been the ones “who killed both the Lord Jesus and their own prophets, and have persecuted us; and they do not please God and are contrary to all men, forbidding us to speak to the Gentiles that they may be saved, so as always to fill up the measure of their sins; but wrath has come upon them to the uttermost (1 Thessalonians 2:15-16, emp. added). As the Jews entrenched themselves against the will of God, they were guilty of piling sins on top of sins, until inevitable divine wrath would be forthcoming—as it did when the Romans sacked Jerusalem in A.D. 70.
Speaking centuries earlier, the inspired writer of Kings acknowledged this principle in his summary of the Jews’ national history:
And the Lord spoke by His servants the prophets, saying, “Because Manasseh king of Judah has done these abominations (he has acted more wickedly than all the Amorites who were before him, and has also made Judah sin with his idols), therefore thus says the Lord God of Israel: ‘Behold, I am bringing such calamity upon Jerusalem and Judah, that whoever hears of it, both his ears will tingle. And I will stretch over Jerusalem the measuring line of Samaria and the plummet of the house of Ahab; I will wipe Jerusalem as one wipes a dish, wiping it and turning it upside down. So I will forsake the remnant of My inheritance and deliver them into the hand of their enemies; and they shall become victims of plunder to all their enemies, because they have done evil in My sight, and have provoked Me to anger since the day their fathers came out of Egypt, even to this day’” (2 Kings 21:10-15, emp. added).
Observe that the writer compared the sin of the Israelites with the sin of the previous occupants of the land of Canaan, thus earning for themselves the same outcome: divine retribution and devastation. As the prophet Ezekiel reported: “‘Thus I will make the land desolate, because they have persisted in unfaithfulness,’ says the Lord God” (15:8).
It is interesting that the Founding Fathers of America recognized this eternal, biblical principle as having been posited in the fabric of the Universe by the Creator. They understood that while God will judge each individual human being at the Judgment when Christ returns (e.g., 2 Corinthians 5:10), He judges nations in history, in time, by bringing destruction upon them when their iniquity is “full.” That is why Luther Martin, a delegate to the federal Constitutional Convention, stated in 1788: “It was said, it ought to be considered, that national crimes can only be, and frequently are, punished in this world by national punishments” (Elliot, 1836, 1:374, emp. added). George Mason, often called “The Father of the Bill of Rights,” stated at the Constitutional Convention: “As nations cannot be rewarded or punished in the next world, so they must be in this. By an inevitable chain of causes and effects,Providence punishes national sins by national calamities” (as quoted in Madison, 1840, 3:1391, emp. added). The “Father of the American Revolution” and signer of the Declaration of Independence, Samuel Adams, explained: “Revelation assures us that ‘Righteousness exalteth a nation.’ Communities are dealt with in this world by the wise and just Ruler of the Universe. He rewards or punishes them according to their general character” (1907, 3:286). Thomas Jefferson likewise warned: “I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just: that His justice cannot sleep forever” (1794, Query 18, p. 237, emp. added).
Finally, consider the haunting, if not prophetic, warning issued by Daniel Webster:
[I]f we and our posterity reject religious instruction and authority, violate the rules of eternal justice, trifle with the injunctions of morality, and recklessly destroy the political constitution which holds us together, no man can tell how sudden a catastrophe may overwhelm us that shall bury all our glory in profound obscurity” (1903, 13:492-493, emp. added).
If this pattern of eventual divine retribution has repeated itself many times over throughout world history, and if God is immutable, i.e., He does not change (Numbers 23:19; Malachi 3:6), will He not respond to America’s iniquity in the same fashion? Yes, He will. So the only question that remains to be answered? “Is America’s iniquity full?”


Adams, Samuel (1907 reprint), The Writings of Samuel Adams, ed. Harry Cushing (New York, NY: G.P. Putnam’s Sons).
Elliot, Jonathan, ed. (1836), The Debates in the Several State Conventions (Washington, DC: Jonathan Elliot).
Jefferson, Thomas (1794), Notes on the State of Virginia (Philadelphia, PA: Mathew Carey).
“The Lost City of Nasca” (2000), BBC, [On-line], URL: http://www.bbc.co.uk/science/horizon/1999/nasca.shtml.
Madison, James (1840), The Papers of James Madison, ed. Henry Gilpin (Washington, DC: Langtree & O’Sullivan).
“Nasca Lines” (no date), [On-line], URL: http://www.crystalinks.com/nasca.html.
“Inca, Secrets of the Ancestors” (1995),
Time Life’s Lost Civilizations Series, [On-line], URL: http://www.utexas.edu/cola/llilas/centers/outreach/resources/topic/inca.html.
Webster, Daniel (1903), The Writings and Speeches of Daniel Webster (Boston, MA: Little, Brown, & Company).