Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Will Ida the (alleged) Missing Link impact your Christianity? She shouldn't

I was a person who came to faith in Jesus through the scripture in Romans 1:20. I had been traveling the world and had seen His creation up close and personal. I could not square in my mind what science had been saying to me regarding the traditional view of old earth, fossils, and evolution, absent a creator, with what the evidence was before my own eyes: the beauty and majesty of a complicated world that seemed to my agnostic eyes to be Designed.

I feel that too little attention is paid to that scripture as a gateway to His feet, and I'm eternally grateful for a Christian whom was knowledgeable and prepared to respond to me on these issues and level.

I have been reading the buildup to this potential missing link with interest. Today when the news came out I felt compelled by the Holy Spirit to respond, and being a writer, I wrote.

The buzz has been building in both the scientific and the secular worlds for about a month now, and it has reached fever pitch. The commercials on the History Channel have been cryptic but constant: “After May 25 everything will change,” it says. “This will be a global event,’ it says. Speculation that scientists have discovered the ‘missing link’ in evolutionary science have run rampant.

Today it was announced that indeed that indeed, an ancient fossil scientists say represents the missing link has been found. One article states, ‘It took 200 years but the search for a direct connection between humans and the rest of the animal kingdom was presented to the world today at a special news conference in New York.’

I admit, I am not the best Christian at apologetics when asked about universal astrophysics in defending the 6-day creation statement in Genesis; nor am I fluent enough in evolutionary biology to defend creationism and God’s direct hand in making humans. One way I and others relied on an answer is to state the obvious: Darwin’s theory is only a theory. It has never been proven.

That answer will no longer suffice. The secular world is looking for the nails to pound in the coffin into which they have put Christianity. At every turn, they say Christianity is dead, or the bible is bunk. The latest news about an alleged missing link is yet another piece of ammunition for atheists to use. This news will undoubtedly create a quandary also for many agnostics who are leaning toward Christianity, and also perhaps for some Christians who believe the idea that God allowed His creation to unfold over eons of time.

We are told there will be scoffers and mockers in the days of the end. People will abandon the faith. We are told that when Jesus returns will He even find faith upon the earth? We are told that Christians will be persecuted. We are told that there will be a false prophet promoting a one-world religion. Brethren, you are not seeing the death of Christianity, but its glorious transformation into its final Self as represented by the Living King Jesus and His Redeemed and Raptured Bride However, until we get there, we have a job to do: defend the faith.

I want to be clear about my stance. I believe the bible literally. I believe God made man in His image, not apes. I believe He created the world in 6 days. I believe everything in the bible as it is presented: demons, hell, angels, sin, salvation, Jesus/God/Spirit as Trinity. I do not believe in evolution.

Brethren, we may be called to defend or explain this news of Missing Link Ida to unbelievers. We may be asked how “science” (which most secular people believe is infallible) squares with the notion of an invisible God moving His hand and speaking the world into existence. The idea of Ida the Missing Link will have powerful pull. How will you answer?

We must prepare. We cannot be lukewarm Christians. We should be prepared to say exactly how and why we believe as we do. Many of us spend a great deal of time raising our families and working for our supply, and being busy and productive for the Lord. We don’t spend a lot of time thinking about why we believe as we do, other than to simply say: “The bible is true because I believe it is true.” Normally that is a good enough answer when we say it because we believe it to the core. But even better, is to be credible and coherent on the subject. I’m not suggesting we become experts in natural history nor get a degree in evolutionary biology. But if we read up one or two of the flaws in evolution theory, have at the ready one or two reasons why the bible believed literally is not delusional, we can become more credible.

We owe Jesus our all, including a coherent defense of the faith in the face of the rising tide of skepticism. I recommend several sites to look for a simple answer and good rebuttals to evolution: including a fresh article rebutting the missing link hype from Answers In Genesis, the natural history apologetics ministry. GotQuestions.org also has several articles synopsizing flaws in Darwin’s theory. Here is one.

Five years ago, I was an agnostic adult. I was at a point when I was seeking meaning in something bigger than me, yet I was also curious about the world as explained through science. I was trying to reconcile what I had been taught in science class with what I saw around me through His invisible attributes, as stated in Romans 1:20.

I asked a Christian I knew how she could believe in the young earth in the face of all this (seemingly) solid science. She responded coherently and passionately with a plausible explanation of why she believed in the young earth of God as opposed to the old earth as presented in the secular fossil record. Her passionate and believable response was enough to keep the door in my heart open to Jesus, and soon after being impressed with her reply, I accepted Jesus as Savior.

It makes a difference if we can articulate our faith. And we all come to knowledge of our sins and the need for Jesus in different ways. My path was through seeing His attributes through His creation, His eternal power and divine nature on earth. Jude urges us to “earnestly contend for the faith.” One way is to be ready to respond to a person the Holy Spirit puts in your path, one who is curious about fossils and young earth and missing links. I pray you will be ready with a reply that very well could be eternal for that soul…and He will be glorified.

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