Over the last century the church ceded credibility in the public square to evolutionists and focused rather on behavior and form. And in the process has watched its redemptive message lose effectiveness in the secular culture. But science and faith are friends, not enemies. And believers need to be equipped to discuss intelligent design since acknowledgment of God as Creator is a core foundational principle in the Christian worldview.
What in the World Was He Thinking?
A Biblical Look at Life, Letting Go and Leading Out: Why We Have to Run with the Herd
Family: The Need to Define it Rightly and Lead it Righteously
Worldviews Matter. Just Ask the Congo.
Success: The Right Ladder Against the Right Wall
Believers and Their Government: What Governs Our Usefulness in It
The Remedy for Redemption: The Final Framework of Truth
Explaining Evil: The Second Framework of Truth
The Creation Foundation: The First Framework of Truth
The Importance of the Foundations of the Heart
Lord, it is really good to be here with friends and just to laugh and to love each other in all our imperfections. It's great to be here just to be comforted, to have you just snap the plumb line of truth that we can declare through song and video and ideas so we might just get back on a path towards life. We realize there's a lot at stake here this morning. There's a whole lot more than just going through some activity on Sunday that the West, for many, many generations, thought was important. We really don't anymore.
We're here…at least, Lord, I pray we're here…not because of some societal norm but because of some special act of grace that's gone on in our hearts that makes us long to reconnect with our Father, who loves us, cares about us. I'm grateful for friends who are here this morning who maybe haven't reconnected with you all the way. Maybe they're angry at you because of the understanding of who you are.
I thank you, Lord, that we get to love them this morning, that we get to talk about who you are through song. Now, I get to talk about you through just your Word and just to remind ourselves that ideas matter, beliefs affect us. If any of us hold beliefs that are crazy and that are hurting us, show us. I pray that for me.
Lord, if someone's here who's going to pull me off course from where I am so I might go a better direction, bring it. We are grateful, Lord, that if you are there, you care about us and love us, and we can speak to you, that you've revealed yourself in many ways, so that we have evidence that you are. Thank you in your revealing that you've shown us you are good and not just great. Teach us what all that means this morning, and do a good work in our heart, and bring peace to the craziness that is off in our world. In Christ's name, amen.
We're a little series called What in the World Are You Thinking: Why the Lens You Look Through Matters. I have great conversations with many of you throughout the week. Some folks were really bothered by the idea that we talked about Scripture as a lens you look through because they say, "No. It's not something outside of you that makes you see the world correctly. It's something inside of you that orders all of your being." It's a metaphor.
Beyond that, God tells us what he wants to do is he wants to correct the heart. We talked about last week that the way we see things matters. The idea of a heart in Scripture is not tied solely to emotions. In fact, we see that biblically speaking, a heart is the seat of the intellect. That's why Jesus says, "It's not what goes into the man that is the problem with man. It is what emanates forward from him. Your ideas. That's what causes you to see things the way you see things."
We're unpacking this concept now for the next number of weeks. What I'm going to do for these next three weeks is I'm going to give you the frame. Whenever you put a puzzle together, what's the very first thing you do when you guys are putting a puzzle together? I always take one piece and hide it, so I get to be the hero at the end and put the last piece in.
What's the second thing you do when you're putting a puzzle together? You put that outside together. You build that little border, and then once that border is established, you can put that picture inside. The border determines what the inside is going to look like. It's what frames the rest of the reality.
Last week, I talked about the idea. I introduced what a worldview was. If I could narrow it down to one, again, little phrase that I borrowed from last week, it's a fundamental orientation of the heart that causes you to see reality, every aspect of reality… So what forms that fundamental foundation inkling, affection of the heart? The answer is these three things that we're going to talk about today and in the next few weeks.
The frame, the outside, is creation or your answer to the issue of origins. Where we came from, where we're going, and why we're here? That is a major question that you answer in every worldview that you have. The other one is…Why is where we are the way that it is? Why is it screwed up? The other one is…What are you going to do about the fact that it's screwed up?
Think about this as a triangular puzzle. What I'm going to make a case for is that every worldview's frame is established, the inside of this puzzle, which is then how we shall live, is bordered by, how they answer these four things. Where do we come from? Why are we here? Why is here the way that it is? What do we do to make it better? How you answer those four things determines how then you should live.
Some worldviews, those frames move a little bit, and there's not a consistent answer to them. But that's all okay. That is a worldview in and of itself. That there's no fixed reality or answer to some of those questions. What I want to make a case for this morning is if we are going to have a biblical worldview, we want to embed God's Word into your heart.
Because Jesus said, "The truth is what will set you free." He has told you to come into relationship with him. His Word is truth. He said, "I am the way. I am the truth. I am the life." Truth is a person. But truth is also what that person has revealed to us so we don't make our way through this life trying to form our own reality and come up with our own ideas of reality.
God says, "In your finiteness, in your limited ability to process reality, you will always come up with a flawed understanding of what reality is, and it will hurt you, and it'll hurt others. I'm a loving Father, so I'm going to help you have a good frame of reference to reality and truth, so you won't hurt yourself."
It's what you do with your children. You're trying to inform them. You're trying to grow them up out of their immaturity and pass on your decades of understanding and interpersonal relationships and truth and reality to your children. God is doing that from an infant (altogether different nature) because he loves us.
There's a great book by a gal named Nancy Pearcey. She wrote a book called Total Truth. It's a fantastic book. If you want to read some more on this topic, I highly recommend you buy it. Nancy, in that little book, tells a story about a high school theology teacher in a Christian school. This teacher early on in their class went to two separate sides of the blackboard, if you will. On this side, she drew a heart, and on this side, she drew a brain. Underneath the heart, she wrote, "Religion." On this side, she wrote, "Science."
She basically said, "These two have nothing in common with each other." That is a crying shame. What she was doing was talking and reinforcing this idea of what is called a fact-value split, that there are two different realms to truth, and how you define truth specifically is a major part also of a worldview. How you define truth emanates forward from your view of who we are, how we got there, why here is the way that it is, and what you do to make here better.
Let me read to you a quote by a guy named Francis Schaeffer, who really has done the yeoman's work on this topic in the early part of the twentieth century, and we continue to build upon it. This is what Francis Schaeffer said. He said, "…many Christians do not mean what I mean when I say Christianity is true, or Truth.
They are Christians and they believe in, let us say, the truth of creation, the truth of the virgin birth, the truth of Christ's miracles, Christ's substitutionary death, and His coming again. But they stop there with these and other individual truths. When I say Christianity is true I mean it is true to total reality—the total of what is, beginning with the central reality […] Christianity is not just a series of truths but Truth—Truth about all of reality."
What I'm going to talk about specifically today is the understanding of why truth and the foundations of truth in terms of all reality have been shaken. And because the reality of truth has been shaken, the foundation of truth, total truth, has been shaken, why we are unrestrained, why we are in this ongoing tournament of narratives, why in our Western culture specifically where there used to be a fundamental understanding about who we are, why we got here, how we govern ourselves, how we relate, what is moral, what is immoral. That has been shaken. I'm going to show you why.
It is because we have completely broken one of the borders of our puzzles, and we are remaking the picture. We still have an idea of why we're here and where we came from. It's just a different idea; therefore, the whole picture of our reality, of our world, of our government, of our behavior towards one another, of our views towards life, our view towards sex, our view towards art are all changed because of this one border being broken.
In John 3, Jesus is talking to Nicodemus, and Nicodemus is a teacher of the law. Jesus is talking to him specifically about some issues related to life and its beginnings. He's going to share with Nicodemus about how he needs to have a new beginning in his philosophical life as well. He says something in a poetic metaphorical way that Nicodemus misses. Jesus says this little statement in John 3:12, and I think it has a tremendous application for us today. He says this.
"If I told you earthly things and you do not believe, how will you believe if I tell you heavenly things?" In other words, what he's saying in effect here is this. "If I speak to you about things that are in the natural course of things that you can observe and test and verify, and those things are not truth and, therefore, you reject my observations on the reality of the world that we live in, how will you believe me when I talk to you about something you cannot see?"
If we reject God's Word as it talks to us about our reality, why in the world would we put our trust in God's Word when it talks to us about another reality? In other words, if you reject the Bible's worldview on who we are and we got here, it is not a long walk to rejecting what the Bible says about judgment, about sin, about righteousness, about eternity.
Why would you believe it if it didn't write on things that we can test and verify and see when it talks about stuff you can't test and verity and see? I wouldn't. If somebody told me something, and I could test what they just said and saw it was false… If they said, "Look, just believe me on this. Yesterday…" I'm going to go, "Why should I believe you on yesterday? Just saw you lie about today."
Isaiah 58:12 tells us that what we have to do in order to really be effective in our world, in order to enter into a discourse with our world, is we have a rebuild that foundation. This is a great little verse. Isaiah 58:12. "Those from among you will rebuild the ancient ruins; you will raise up the age-old foundations; and you will be called the repairer of the breach, the restorer of the streets in which to dwell."
I want to tell you what I want to hope to produce at Watermark. I don't want to produce a group of people at Watermark, I don't want to run with a group of folks who call themselves Christians who don't define truth the way Jesus defines truth. I want to raise up repairers of the breach, restorers of the streets in which people can dwell in safety and in truth. I want to raise up a group of folks who, when they think of the word and term Christian, they don't merely think of Christian as a set of activities.
Do devotionals. Do Bible studies. Pray. Gather. Sing songs. Those are things Christians do. If you're going to truly because a Christian, you must view reality this way. That's why Jesus said, in Matthew 22, "You want to love me? Don't just love me with what you're doing. Love me with how you think. If you're my children, you'll learn to walk in my ways and think as I think.
That's why he says in Romans 12:2, "And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind…" so that as your mind sees reality, as you set your heart right, then you will be able to, " … prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect." It's not defaced or flawed in any way.
So hang in here with me. Jesus says, "You have to love me with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind." It is not a group of activities that makes you a believer. It is a fundamental orientation of the heart. If your heart's orientation is not consistent with God's view of things, then you are not a God follower.
When you change what God says about who we are and where we came from, the foundations are shaken. If you can't believe what God's Word says about who we are and where we came from, why would you believe what God's Word says about where we're going? Does that make sense?
I want to tell you, my friend, Ken Ham has done yeoman's work on this. I'm going to show you, very quickly, a bunch of slides that he did, I don't know when. Ken is from Australia, and he communicates across a broad spectrum of ages. His slides are rather simplistic in this, but I think they communicate what I'm talking about, and why I'm saying what I'm saying this morning.
We're going to run through these slides very quickly. I'm going to show you what argument he made, and I absolutely agree with him. What we do is we throw up this little cross, and we say, "Just come to the cross and be saved." Then what happens is (we'll run through these rather quickly) is the world is going to start to attack us with this idea of the world being millions of years old. We go, "Okay. Well, no big deal." They missed the cross.
They're not saying the cross didn't happen, but what they did is they hit the roots of the cross. Why do I say that? Because if you don't believe me on earthly things, why would you believe me if I tell you of heavenly things? We miss it. "Creation is just a side issue. It's not that big a deal." So here we go. "Age-dating methods, evolution, ape-men, millions of years, no global flood." Again, the church comes back, and says, "Oh! It didn't hit the cross," and the world says, "No. Direct hit." They understood Jesus in John 3:12.
The church then says, "Here's what we have to do. We have to fit millions of years into our Bible," so we come up with theistic evolution, progressive creationism, the gap theory, day-age creationism, the framework hypothesis, all this different stuff, in order to try and say, "Well, you can still believe our Bible. I know science is telling us that we're crazy because we believe the earth was created by God, an intelligent designer, but here's how it can work."
What happened is that slowly, the thing we're trying to call people to, and you can keep scrolling through these, begins to die, and unbelief starts to happen. We're still staying, "Trust in Jesus," but prayers move out of schools, Bibles are outlawed in school, the Ten Commandments are removed from our courthouses. Yada, yada, yada.
There's no wonder why. They're going, "Why would believe you about these other ideas if your book is incorrect on geology, on anthropology, on astronomy, on basic fundamental sciences that we know and test." This is why if you're going to think… Look guys, 25 times your Bible says, "God created," numerous times in the New Testament. I wrote down how many times the idea of creation is alluded to, not in the Old Testament but in the New.
It talks about Jesus, when he talks about reality, he frames in the context of Genesis. If you throw out Genesis, you're setting folks up to walk away from (and I don't blame them) anything else you present them because they go, "You're crazy. Everybody knows we're the product of time and chance. Science has taught us we're the product of time and chance, and you guys keep holding onto this fairy tale, simpleton idea that has been used to pigeonhole an oppressed humanity." As a result of that, you are simpletons and fools in their eyes. Jesus is saying, "Let's talk about this."
Here's what's so great. We can go, and we can look, and one of the things that happens as science continues to move forward is we get to continue to evaluate science. When young Charles Darwin, about 150 years ago, first presented the idea of where we came from, the world and the church bowed to it, and went, "What do we do? How can we argue with science?" But I will tell you, hang in there.
Before Darwin and even his theories of evolution came into play, there were other men who were putting forth ideas that philosophically you couldn't compete with because they sounded so wonderful and so abstract that you'd come along and… "God created you, God loves you, God became flesh and dwelt among you," and you go, "That doesn't sound as smart as what Plato and Aristotle said before or what Kant and Heidegger and other guys said later." So you get shaken.
What I want to do this morning is tell you, "You can't be shaken." Let me go back to a fundamental question for you. I want to ask you to in your mind go through and ask yourself, "How do I answer these questions?" This will tell you if, currently, you have a biblical worldview or not. This will tell you if you're a God follower or Christ follower. Not if you go to church. Not if you read your Bible. Not if you pray. Not if you avoid sinful habits. Those are all things we do.
But if that's all you do, and God doesn't inform every aspect of your being, you are not following him, and you are not Christian in your worldview ending. Did I say you're not going to heaven? I didn't mean to if I did. What I'm saying is you're going to go to heaven if you get your sin issue right and God's solution to your sin issue right. But you're going to be ineffective on this earth. You will not be a restorer of the breach unless you learn to think like Jesus.
Here are some questions for you. "There's a private sphere of ideas…" Do you believe this? True or false? "There's a private sphere of ideas, values, preferences that should be left to individuals. Then there are matters of fact that are scientifically verifiable that should be the basis for public policy, discussion, and law." How about this one? How do you answer this one? "People are basically good or at least a blank slate before society pollutes them." Agree or disagree?
Agree or disagree? "Matters of belief, faith, or religion should not be talked about in public school science classes." I know you're all right now running to a letter that was written by Jefferson to the Danbury Baptist Association a number of years ago where this idea of the separation of church and state was introduced. But I'm not asking you what you thought Jefferson said to the Danbury Baptists even if you understand the context of that. I'm asking you what you think about that question.
How about this one? "When it comes to issues in morality, what's right for me might not be right for you." Truth is both subject and objective. "Some truths are not relevant in discussions about public education or policy." Agree or disagree? See, these are the prevailing ideas of our time, gang. I can tell you based on your answer to them what your fundamental understanding of creation, fall, and redemption is. I can tell you if you have a biblical worldview or not.
How about this? "The Bible is not a trustworthy source for matters of biology, geology, astronomy, and other similar disciplines." You've taken that pill whole. How about this one? "The spiritual should not be mingled with the secular. Values cannot be confused with facts. Values are culturally based, objective, and relative, whereas facts are rational, objective, and universal." Do you believe that? A lot of you do. I'm going to tell you what. Even if we don't, there are churches all around this country that do.
How you answer those questions tells me how you are able to really be useful to Christ in restoring the breach. Why are there so many ideas that are out there? I'm going to show you again a fundamental verse for all of this is in Romans 1:18. I'm going to read the rest of Romans this particular week. We touched on it last week. Watch.
"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. 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."
Again, God says, "If you look at the creative order that is there, to come up with a concept that would argue that this is the product of impersonal force plus time plus chance, then I don't know how to help you. It's just so fundamentally flawed against all the evidence that is before you that God says you are without excuse. It is what is called the argument for God's existence through general revelation. It's the cosmological argument for God. He's saying, "Nobody thinks as you look around when you see order that it came from chaos and chance. You just don't."
I'm going to give you numerous examples of that here in a minute. He says this. "For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing to be wise…" If you will, pontificating all their different ideas about life, where we come from, why it's the way it is, and how to make it better. " … they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man and of birds and four-footed animals and crawling creatures."
I'm going to tell you what happens, and why we are where we are in this tournament of narratives. Go back. Really what he basically says in Isaiah 44 (at some point, you need to go back and read that) is this.
"You have to go tell people why their idols are crazy to worship. They are made from wood. They are made from stone. They are made from gold, and you craft them with your own hands. You create them with your own mind. Half of it is melted off into the fire and the wood that you carve your God out of. Later, you burned to bake your bread. That's not a God worth following."
What he challenged them to do is show people the lunacy of following after their idols. Let me just tell you, the idols of today are not physical. They are philosophical. What God wants you to do is learn to reason with people to help them escape from giving their hearts and their lives to philosophical idols that are the creation of men like those wood, gold, and stone idols are that are not leading people to life. How do you do that? You must learn how to do that if you are going to help people today consider Christ.
The primary story, the primary worldview, the primary border that is embraced by a large percentage of worldviews (existentialism, relativism, materialism, atheism, nihilism) have a different border than us. Materialism, not the way we think of it in Dallas, but the idea that only matter is real. Where God says, "I am Spirit, and I am very real." That border is we are the product of impersonal force plus time plus chance.
Now, you (universal, not you individual in your seat) have been so influenced by this, and then we wonder why, when we go and have a conversation with somebody, they look at us like we're crazy, and they want to go, "You're so cute with your little belief. You're so cute. We love you. We're grateful for you. Go build another hospital, but just stay out of our world because you guys are nuts." How are you going to love that person?
You have to understand and take them and walk them through where their ideas go to their logical end. Many people embrace worldviews because they're comfortable for them today, but they don't run with them to their logical end. Let's go back now to Romans 1.
When they change the glory of God for a corruptible image in the form of whatever it is they come up with, it says when they rejected him, " Therefore God gave them over in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, so that their bodies would be dishonored among them." In other words, the different worldviews that are out there are not what brought about God's judgment. They are God's judgment.
He said, "Okay. You want to run away from the mind of God? Then chase your own little ideas and minds. But I'm going to warn you, thoughts lead to things. How you think about certain things will lead to certain practices. You sow a thought; you reap an action. You sow an action; you reap a habit. You sow a habit; you reap a character. You sow a character; you reap a destiny.
See America. We have abandoned the thought that all men are created equal and all men have been endowed by the Creator with certain unalienable rights. We have abandoned that thought. We've sown another thought, and now we produce on those actions. We can no longer have this understanding that because we are created in the image of God, we should have the morality of God and the ethic of God.
They go, "No, no, no. That is a fundamental flaw. Keep your little private ideas and values and morals and ethic over there. We're talking science and reality and the things of the world over here. You cannot mix the two." Why? Because they made a fundamental decision about creation. What I'm trying to tell you this morning, what I'm trying to make a case for this morning is what Romans 1 is arguing for is when you don't get this fundamental border in your life right, you're going to go off in every which direction, and that direction will end up in these things.
Whenever you see heresy, whenever you see some of you running away from God, they'll always be running towards money, sex, or power. It just will. That's where we always go. There's some sense of a freedom to indulge what we believe will bring us life, even if it's just freedom from any sense of conviction that there is an authority over us. Watch this.
In verse 25, it says, "For they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen." Then it goes on. Pick it up in verse 26 with me. "For this reason God gave them over to degrading passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is unnatural, and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error."
In other words, what I'm going to say here is that God isn't mad at the world because there are homosexuals. We are homosexuals because we've abandoned the foundations of truth which help us to live in a way which brings the things into our life which we all long for. But, hey, listen. Hang on. Because all sex is the first place we all run to in our perversion. You're going to start to show up here in a little bit, and you are further down the chain than just sexual perversion.
What I mean by that is where we are as a dead church is further down the descent from God than just sexual degradation. We think the homosexuals are the ones who are really far from God. God says, "No. That's just the first place that you run when you leave me because you're like a little kid. If it feels good, it must be right."
But, no. Watch. It says, "And just as they did not see fit to acknowledge God any longer, God gave them over to a depraved mind…" The first thing you do is you distaste your flesh. Then you start to justify what your flesh is doing, so your mind creates all different kinds of ideas. "…to do those things which are not proper…" Watch this.
"…being filled with all unrighteousness, wickedness, greed, evil…" You're about to show up. "…full of envy, murder, strife, deceit…" You're about to show up. "…malice; they are gossips…" Uh oh. "…slanderers, [and in doing so are] haters of God, insolent, arrogant, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents…" Do you see where that is on the food chain? It isn't first. It's where we have to go.
In other words, we're going to keep coming up with our own ideas. "…without understanding, untrustworthy, unloving, unmerciful." Concern with me first, my comfort, my pleasures. That's the idea. "…and although they know the ordinance of God…" People who read their Bibles, who listen to messages don't practice such things. "…those who practice such things are worthy of death, they not only do the same, but also give hearty approval to those who practice them."
We've redefined what it means to be a Christ-follower, and we have a secular spiritual division within the church. I can't tell you how many times I've been in conversations with people when we're trying to help them enforce a biblical ethic in their business or in the way they work through conflict. They go, "Hey, don't drag church into Monday through Friday. This is a big boy's world out here. Your Bible just doesn't work in these kinds of difficult financial complexities." Really? That is a fundamental flaw in your worldview.
I don't make this stuff up. I told you about my one little girl last week, Landry, in her fourth-grade class, when her teacher said something, she said, "Dad, what about that?" We walked through it and had a great conversation. This week, Kirby comes home and goes, "Dad, you won't believe it. My teacher in science this week starts to say the world is 4.5 billion years old. So I just raised my hand. She said, 'Yeah. Kirby?'"
She said, "Teacher, how do we know the world is 4.5 billion years old?" She said, "We know that because of rocks, and the way we can test rocks." Let's just say that the way we test rocks is correct. And before you get all freaked out by carbon-14 dating and other carbon methods, you need to know this. That is an incredibly unreliable and imprecise method of dating rocks. But let's just say it's correct.
Kirby follows up by saying this. "Okay. Well, isn't it possible that God could create something that looks older than it is?" The teacher went, "Look. I am teaching this stuff out of a scientific book, and that is what we're going to discuss in here. Leave your [very politely] other little ideas aside. This is what I'm asked to teach, and I teach science here."
My good buddy Kelly Shackelford at the Free Market Foundation sent me something this week where he talks about how right now in the Texas State Board of Education the curriculum in all sciences requires a study to strengthen weaknesses of pivotal theories. A number of years ago, as you know, that included even how we view creation stories.
There's right now an attack going on with the six-member advisory board for the state board of education and editorials are being written by the Austin American-Statesman that are saying, "We have to get rid of talking about strengths and weaknesses when it comes to evolution." Why? Because when you start to jack with their view of creation, guess what they know?
If they can take out this framework for our humanism and our sense that we don't have a God that we're culpable too, they're attacking our religion. And if this creation idea goes down, our understanding goes down, and we're back to this idea that there's a God who's our Creator who we're culpable to.
There are reasons they felt like they don't want to be culpable to that God who we know. Part of it is because we, as his children, haven't rightly communicated who our Father is. Men for years have reduced the loving relationship by a benevolent and kind and good God, who has explanations for evil and redemption into rules and organizations that further our power. Why? Because we left the Bible.
Men who are clergy established institution which made them great and made them rich. I won't even go to the perversions that they chased. So I understand why they don't want to go back to the other idea of creation, but let's help them understand what a biblical worldview is related to creation.
They say, "Let's stop teaching this. Even though there's a great little website called Dissent from Darwin (it's a wordplay). It's not descent like we've descended from the apes. These are 700 renowned scientists and PhDs who have come up with this website. They have decided, "We are skeptical of the claims for the ability of random mutation and natural selection to account for the complexity of life. Careful examination of the evidence for Darwinian theory should be encouraged."
These are not men who have a fundamentally biblical worldview. They're just saying, "We are intellectually honest scientists. You go to the next page, and you click on basically what they're saying, and they're saying this.
"During recent decades, new scientific evidence from many scientific disciplines such as cosmology, physics, biology, 'artificial intelligence' research, and others have caused scientists to begin questioning Darwinism's current tenet of natural selection and studying the evidence supporting it in greater detail. Yet public TV programs, educational policy statements, and science textbooks have asserted that Darwin's theory of evolution fully explains the complexity of living things."
It is the idol of our age. It informs most major worldviews. There are others (Eastern pantheism and things) that have different basic creation stories, but this is the one you run up against largely, so this is why I'm communicating largely about this one here. You need to know something. When you keep cheering if they haven't hit your cross, they're hitting the root of what makes your cross stand. You have to care.
Good news. You have your heart, which biblically speaking is the seat of the intellect. It is not away from science. You can bring your heart, and you can love your God with your mind, and you can take what we've seen through the sciences. God is the author of creation. He has put natural order into our creation. He has reserved the right to intervene into it and supersede it anytime he wants through supernatural events, which he has said he has done before and will do again.
The bottom line is get in the game. Quit bowing down. Quit coming up with ways you can work evolution into your Scripture. You don't need to. Science is catching up. The problem is we have run away. This little thing up here says, "The scientists on this list dispute the first claim and stand as living contradiction to the second [there ones that are just above]," which is this.
"Yet public TV programs, educational policy statements, and science textbooks have asserted that Darwin's theory of evolution fully explains the complexity of living things." They're saying, "We dispute that."
"The public has been assured that all known evidence supports Darwinism and that virtually every scientist in the world believes the theory to be true." We say, "Wrong." Here's why. Let me just walk you through some of their work, and others like them. This is so important. The reason we, our country, is where it is today, the reason we want to elect men who go, "Let's redefine marriage," the reason we elect men who are irresponsible fiscally is because we've redefined economic wisdom. We've left the foundations, and we are paying the piper.
Abraham Lincoln said (at least this quote is attributed to him), "The philosophy and the school room in one generation will be the philosophy of the government in the next." The chickens, darlin', have come to roost. But all we can do is to begin to restore the foundations. That is who we are. You have to be evangelists for truth. Why? Because the truth sets you free.
Ultimately, the greatest truth is Jesus Christ crucified, dead, and resurrected for you and your sins. It is the gospel. But that cross is rooted in your Bible, in creationism. Darwin himself said this. "A fair result can be obtained only by fully stating and balancing the facts and arguments on both sides of each question." Darwin would argue for intelligent design being presented alongside his ideas.
Let's look at three. Let's look at cosmology, which is the origin of the universe. Let's look at molecular biology, which is the origin of life. Let's look at paleontology, which is the history of life. Here's just one little quote from a physicist. "The temptation to believe that the Universe is the product of some sort of design, a manifestation of subtle aesthetic and mathematical judgment, is overwhelming. The belief that there is 'something behind it all' is one that I personally share with, I suspect, a majority of physicists." Yes, he does.
Einstein says this. "…the harmony of natural law, which reveals an intelligence of such superiority that, compared with it, all the systematic thinking and acting of human beings is utterly insignificant reflection." In other words, there's something here that speaks to intelligence and not randomness.
If you wanted to go and look at cosmology for a long time, you would summarize its findings in this way. The universe had a beginning and, therefore, requires a cause beyond itself that speaks to some intelligent designer. I have an idea of who that might be. The universe has an exquisite order that is governed by mathematical laws, and that testifies to a designer.
The universe and the earth are tailor-made for advanced life. If any factor were slightly different, life could not exist. That's a rather complex thing to get into in this particular moment, but the idea is it's called the anthropological or the anthropomorphic argument for the existence of God.
In other words, this is such a fragile world that we live in to sustain life, that if you alter even the tiniest bit of it, we would perish. But we don't perish. We continue to exist. Why? Because God is holding all things together. Because history is part of his redemptive plan to reveal himself, and he wants it to hold together. This is not just some random accident. There is not some explosion in the print shop which has created Shakespeare. There is an intelligent designer who has put this prose together that you might live in it and enjoy it and him.
Molecular biology. When Darwin first proposed his theory, the world thought the cell was very simple, that it wasn't complex. We're finding out that is not the case at all. Stephen Meyer says everything we know from our uniform and repeated experience is that information always comes from an intelligent source. So when we find information…
In other words, we're finding order the further out we go into the universe. We're also finding order the further we go into the body. This is really where Kirby's class was. They were talking about the atom. We've only known the atom's been around for about 500 years. So she said, "We're still learning about the atom. We're 4.5 billion years into this. We've just figured out the atom 500 years ago."
Guess what? Now, 500 years from finding out about the atom, we're finding (going back now to molecular biology) the cell is not just the simplest of building blocks for human life. It is extremely complex. So we find information on the cell in the form of digitally encoded DNA. The most likely source is that DNA had an intelligent source. This is a great quote. I'll read you this little intro, and then we'll read this.
"Modern high-speed supercomputers have now used large-scale number crunching to calculate the eons of time and probabilities that are required to develop a cell through chance and mutation. The result? The odds are essentially zero, no matter how many millions or billions of years pass." We couldn't get the cell through random mutations, time, and chance.
Now, watch this. "The famous astronomer Sir Fredrick Hoyle (Professor, and Founder of the Institute of Astronomy, Cambridge University) compares the probability of spontaneous life to lining up 1×10
(one with 50 zeros after it) blind people, giving them each a scrambled Rubik's cube, and finding that they all solve the cube at the same moment." What he's saying in the midst of this is that it isn't going to happen. That describes how crazy, in effect, this idea is.
This is Michael Behe, who talked about the problem of what it is called irreducible complexity in a little book called Darwin's Black Box. He says in here, "There is no publication in the scientific literature—in prestigious journals, specialty journals, or books—that describes how molecular evolution of any real, complex, biochemical system did occur or even might have occurred."
The point here is when you to cosmology, when you go to molecular biology, I don't even have time to go into paleontology, you'll see that it's not just your simple little believers that embrace the idea of intelligent design. I'm going to stop. I'll point you toward resources if this blesses you. But here's what I want to really challenge you with.
Quit bowing down to science. Science is our friend. It's always been our friend. The next time you hear somebody come up with an idea or build a new idol or find a new little system of research that disproves the Bible, just stick around. God has anchored his story in history. You can go back and test it.
You can see if there's a grave that is empty. You can see if there was a historical figure called Jesus. You can see what the evidence suggests about his resurrection. You can go back and look and see if the things we find in our world stack up with this idea of a universal flood. You can go back and see if there's a David. You can go back and see if there's a Pontius Pilate. You can go back and see if there's a Solomon. You can go back and see if there was a Jericho. You can go back and see if the walls fell a certain way.
I will tell you guys to quit bowing down, because when you let them rebuild the borders, the picture looks different, and it's killing us. Now, in Acts 17, look at what Paul says. In Acts 17, he is hanging out in a little town. He watches individuals who are struggling. Specifically, right before it happened in Acts 17, it says, "His spirit provoked him," because he loved people. He was talking to Epicureans and Stoics, who are people who build philosophies of the day.
He stood in the midst of them where the discussions of such kind happen. They said, "Come talk to us, Paul." He says this. "Men of Athens, I observe that you are very religious in all respects." In other words, you're thirsting for knowledge. It's good. "For while I was passing through and examining the objects of your worship…"
"You provided you might've missed something, so you built an altar to an unknown god because you haven't gotten to it yet. Therefore, you worship in ignorance what I proclaim to you. I have what you're looking for." Look where Paul goes. Right back to the foundation. Why? Because it's what forms your worldview. You have to answer this question.
"The God who made the world and all things in it, since He is Lord of heaven and earth, does not dwell in temples made with hands; nor is He served by human hands, as though He needed anything, since He Himself gives to all people life and breath and all things." It sounds like our Declaration of Independence.
Paul said, "This worldview that will lead you to freedom is founded in an understanding of a biblical idea of creation." Verse 26; "And He made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined their appointed times and the boundaries of their habitation, that they would seek God, if perhaps they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us; for in Him we live and move and exist…"
He quotes a poet (Epimenides) right there. Then he quotes another one from his own hometown of Cilicia. He quotes another one when he says this. "For we also are His children." In other words, you have embraced some ideas that are right and truth. Embrace the God who is the author of truth."
He says, "Being then the children of God, we ought not to think that the Divine Nature is like gold or silver or stone, an image formed by the art and thought of man." He says, "God, in his grace, is overlooking all this craziness that you've run to, and he's calling you back." Verse 31: "…because He has fixed a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness through a Man whom He has appointed, having furnished proof to all men…" This is the guy he's going to use to judge it. His name is Jesus. Deal with it. And here's how you can know him.
Do you see how that's all tied together? Do you see how that's not enough to do Christian things? You have to think like a Christian if you're really going to help people in your absence? You should. I want to shake you out of your little comfort zone of working your little world of evolution into your Scripture. You can't do it. You give away the farm, and the foundations are shaken. Why should they believe you on things you can't see when you give away and agree on things they can?
Father, I pray for my friends, that they would study to show themselves approved as the workman who does not need to be ashamed. They could rightly handle the Word of Truth, which is Scripture, and which is the revelation of truth put out not just in your Word but in all of creation. I thank you, Lord, for gifted, intelligent men, many men who don't yet know you've appointed that there would be a man who would judge the world one day in righteousness. But they still know truth when they see it.
I pray we would get off our little scared, selfish sometimes, insecure, what we think is unintellectual positions and study and speak with boldness, with gentleness, and with love. That we would get back in public square and reason with men that they would not be a slave to the thoughts of men, but they would find life, indeed. Help us, Father, to frame the picture of reality correctly so we then would know how we should live. Amen.
How do you look at the world? What influences your perspective on the challenges and people you interact with every day? In this 10-part series, Todd Wagner explains why your worldview ? the lens you look at the world through ? matters. You?ll discover what it means to have a biblical worldview, and how our failure to look at the world through God?s "lens" impacts our lives, culture and our world.