Creation vs. evolution: A spiritual battlefield

You seem to be approaching the issue of origin of life with only logic and reason with the objective of winning the argument.  God is Spirit and I believe we should focus more on the spiritual battle rather than on science and persuasion.

I agree with you that we must focus on the spiritual battle.  I believe the debate between creation and evolution is a spiritual battle.  Furthermore, I believe that this is more a battle of belief than it is a battle of reason.  Interestingly, when I talk to atheists, the debate ends up with this simple question—do you want to believe God and His Word or not?

I do approach this issue with logic and reason and in doing so I try to support my viewpoint with Scripture.  I am convinced that this is an apostolic pattern the Bible teaches that we should all follow.  Paul says in 1 Corinthians 11:1, “Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ.”  Also, this idea of following the apostle’s pattern is conveyed in Philippians 4:9 and 2 Thessalonians 2:15.

So, what is the apostolic pattern that we are to follow in presenting the truth about God?  The answer is found in Acts.  Notice in Acts the words Paul uses as he takes the gospel to the world: “reasoned” (17:2, 18:4, 18:19); “argued persuasively and had discussions” (19:8-9); “proved Jesus is Christ” (9:22); “explaining and giving evidence” (17:3); “talked and debated” (9:29).

Finally, in Acts 17:16-34 Paul approached the intellectuals of the day in Athens at Mars Hill.  Remember, Athens was the home of Socrates, Plato and Aristotle.  Note that Paul started with the foundation of creation in his approach to them (v.24-26).  They had made an altar to the “Unknown God” (v. 23).  It’s as if he said, “You want to know the ‘Unknown God’?  Well, let me tell you who He is: He is the Creator.”  Therefore, we should not avoid this issue or be ill-equipped to defend creation to the intellects of today.

Also, Isaiah 1:18 says, “Come now, let us reason together.”  I am convinced that many Christians do not want to approach this debate intellectually because they are not willing to study the difficult-to-understand issues.  Perhaps, they reason, “After all, that’s what we pay the pastor for, don’t we?”  The Bible warns us against this attitude in Hebrews 5:12-6:1a: “For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you have need again for someone to teach you the elementary principles of the oracles of God, and you have come to need milk and not solid food.  For everyone who partakes only of milk is not accustomed to the word of righteousness, for he is a babe.  But solid food is for the mature, who because of practice have their senses trained to discern good and evil...”  Too many today would rather spiritualize these issues so they can avoid studying the meat of God’s Word.  I believe that is why so many people seek an “experience from the Holy Spirit” so they can avoid “conviction of the Holy Spirit.”   

God has given us the ability to reason; the ability to link things together to draw right conclusions.  Cornelius Van Til wrote, “The gift of logical reason was given by God to man in order that he might order the revelation of God for himself.” 

 

In Romans 1:18,19 we see that the truth about a creator is obvious and this truth is built into the very fabric of our being.  “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them.” 

Reason and rationality are built on cause and effect.  In verse 20 it is clear that God is the obvious “first cause” for all we see.  “For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse.”  Thus, to reject the logical first cause of creation is not rational.  Evolution simply is not rational.  Psalm 14:1 says, “The fool has said in his heart, there is no God.”  It is not rational to not believe in God.

Notice also in verse 18 that when the ungodly turn their backs on the only rational explanation by “suppressing the truth” that the wrath of God comes upon them.

Finally, this is not just a battle of intellect, reason and logic.   Winning arguments is not the objective.  You can win arguments and lose people.  We must realize that God must change the heart but we must also be prepared (with reason) to defend the authority of the Word of God.

7/29/00
Page 26

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©Tom Carpenter
Originally published in the Rockdale/Newton Citizen