I have been traveling around the world and speaking for over 40 years (my first creation apologetics talk was in 1975!). I’ve also had so many media interviews and been on so many radio talk shows over the years that I can’t remember most of them! I’ve met thousands of people. You can imagine that during all this time I have been asked a lot of questions relating to what I teach concerning Genesis 1–11, the authority of Scripture, and the gospel. Surely by now you would think I’ve heard every question possible. But no, I think almost every week I get a question I haven’t been asked before—like the question I’m about to share with you.
During one of my trips to Australia, a reporter with a Christian media outlet had some different questions for me. I think you’ll be very interested in these questions and how I did my best to answer them. Often, after answering certain questions, I say to myself, “I need to remember how I answered that for next time!” I always pray for wisdom and ask the Lord to help me answer new questions, and I do believe he also helps me recall things I’ve heard or read.
Now, many of the questions are the same, so over the years I’ve had to learn how to answer the most-asked questions about Genesis, creation, evolution, Noah’s flood, moral issues, the gospel, biblical authority, and so forth—and do it quickly. Since we hear many of those same questions over and over again, we compiled the five New Answers Books to answer these most-asked questions. Actually, being out of the office and teaching in churches and colleges and interacting with Christian and secular media certainly hones our ability to answer new and sometimes difficult questions. Over the years, every time I hear a question that I don’t know the answer to, I follow up with research, sometimes meeting with our resident scientists/theologians at AiG. We discuss the topic to ensure I can answer the question even better next time. But let’s get back to that interview I had with a reporter for a Christian media group in Australia.
A Question I’d Never Had Before!
The media outlet heard I was speaking at a conference in Sydney and contacted the church to ask if a reporter could talk to me. The reporter called me a couple of days later, and I spent nearly an hour on the phone with her. I wasn’t able to record the conversation, but I took careful notes and compiled them to the best of my ability. I wasn’t surprised that it didn’t take long for her to ask a question about whether I believe someone has to believe in six literal days and a young earth to be a Christian. I emphatically stated that salvation is not conditional on the age of the earth or the six literal days, but on faith in Christ. I explained why it’s really a biblical authority issue, and I gave her many examples of how incompatible millions of years is with Genesis. But then she asked a question that I must admit I had never been asked before. She asked, “Can you love theistic evolutionists?”
I told her I had recently spoken at a secular university (the University of Central Oklahoma) with many of the LGBTQ group from the university present. I told the crowd that as a Christian, I didn’t hate them, because I’m a Christian. And as Jesus tells us, we are to love our neighbor as ourselves. However, I told the audience that I disagreed with the LGBTQ worldview—but that should never be interpreted as hate. I then said to the reporter who posed the question about love and theistic evolutionists, “I can love LGBTQ people, and I can love theistic evolutionists.”
Adding man’s ideas to Scripture in Genesis is undermining the authority of the Word of God—that it undermines all Christian doctrine, even the gospel.
Sensing why the reporter might be asking the question, I added that because I speak boldly about what I believe, sometimes people will falsely interpret my beliefs as hate. I often find that those who don’t take AiG’s stand on Genesis will demand we agree that people can have different views. I told the reporter that Christians can have different views, but I’ll tell them why I believe those views are wrong—and how they undermine biblical authority. Sometimes people get angry when I respond like this, and they may even, ironically, show hate toward me! They want me to say their position is a valid one. But I can’t do that if I do not believe it. I explained to the reporter why such matters are biblical authority issues. In detail, I pointed out that adding man’s ideas to Scripture in Genesis is undermining the authority of the Word of God—that it undermines all Christian doctrine, even the gospel.
Things Get Tense
The reporter asked me many other questions, and she got to the topic of climate change. Now, I would say that this was the only time during the interview when I believe things became somewhat contentious with this Christian reporter. (Climate change can be an emotional topic.) First, I told her there’s been climate change ever since the flood. I said I didn’t deny climate change, but the details as to why it’s happening and how serious it is (or isn’t) were matters that needed to be discussed.
I referred to one of the articles in our Answers magazine where a scientist shows that there have been warming and cooling periods in the past and that our current (quite small) warming trend could be a normal fluctuation. I further explained that we don’t have enough data to know for sure what has really been occurring. I added that scientists know the sun’s activity has a significant effect on climate change and that the main greenhouse gas is not actually carbon dioxide but water vapor. Then it became a bit tense.
I said that if you ask most people who are climate-change alarmists (including most young people) to explain the data and give the facts behind what they’re claiming, most have no clue. They just regurgitate what they’ve heard. She then said something to the effect that she didn’t need to do that. The reporter said that she could rely on the experts who have done the research. I replied that this is not the correct approach and that as Christians, we all need to search things out and be prepared to give reasons (1 Peter 3:15) for what we believe.
I told her my father wanted his kids to know why we believed what we did—and wanted us to be able to defend our beliefs. She then essentially accused me of refusing to accept what the majority of scientists are saying: that man-made climate change is a big problem. I replied by saying that the majority of scientists say there’s no God and that life arose by naturalistic evolution. Should we then say we have to reject God because the majority of scientists say so? I emphasized that we are obligated as Christians to check things out. I also explained that after the flood, God told Noah,
While the earth remains, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night, shall not cease. (Genesis 8:22)We should responsibly use the creation for man’s good and God’s glory.
She responded with, “Are you saying we should do nothing then?” Well, of course I wasn’t saying that. I responded that God gave man dominion over the environment, not the environment over man, and that Christians should have a biblically based worldview in regard to environmental issues. We should responsibly use the creation for man’s good and God’s glory. I gave an example that in the USA, trees are harvested for various reasons, but more trees are planted than are harvested. I also said that we need to understand how sin and the curse of Genesis 3:14–19 have affected the world. I recalled the verse, “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge” (Hosea 4:6).
Actually, that’s a major problem in the world and in the church! One of the reasons so many young people are being led astray by evolutionary ideas, climate-change alarmists, abortionists, the LGBTQ movement, and so forth is that they have been told what to believe and not taught how to think about such issues or look at all the evidence available. And sadly, much of the church has not taught their congregations how to think about these issues from a biblical worldview perspective or how to defend the Christian faith against the secular attacks of our day by equipping them with apologetics.
Yes, worldview matters—and we want to have a worldview grounded in the truth and authority of God’s Word from the very first verse . . . and raise up generations who will have this same worldview!
Thanks for stopping by and thanks for praying,
This item was written with the assistance of AiG’s research team.