This post is going to be a critique of Ken Ham. Ham is the most well known Christian Young Earth Creationist in the world right now. He is the president of Answers in Genesis and the Creation Museum. Now, having respect for Ham as a Christian, I do not have any respect for him as an apologist. He has devoted his entire life to one section of the Bible, and he has done so in a very poor manner.
Ham believes that the earth is 6000 years old. Not only is this embarrassingly unscientific, but it is also unbiblical. To go with this assumption, he has to believe that the biblical language has stayed the same throughout all cultures of all times in all contexts. Ham takes the Bible at face value, and assumes that the text is being written to him. This is a very naive and intellectually lazy way of reading scripture. The Bible was not written TO us, it was written FOR us. We have to come to this understanding if we want to make proper sense of the Bible.
One of Ham’s arguments is that there was no death before Adam’s fall. Really? Where does it say this in Scripture? Even reading the Bible in a literal manner, I cannot get this idea. Animals die, and they have been dying for millions of years, but Ham seems to be perfectly fine with ignoring basic scientific facts to maintain his childish reading of Scripture. Not only is this manner of reading childish, but he puts things into the Bible that are not there. Ham will do anything and everything to preserve his dogmatic view of the Bible, even if that means making it say things that it really is not.
Ham claims that all of the Christian doctrine is founded in Genesis. On this point, he could not be more wrong. The central truth of Christianity is that we are fallen beings, we need a Savior, and this is why Jesus came and died for our sins. If we accept His gift of eternal life, we can spend eternity with Him. Now, part of this can be found in Genesis, such as the fall, however HOW it actually happened is irrelevant. Ham doesn’t seem to understand this, and it may be due to the fact that his entire life is centered around a couple chapters of the Bible.
The final point I want to talk about is Ham’s point on the definition of “day.” Ham claims these are literal twenty-four hour days. On this point I agree with him, however it is irrelevant. The people who were living during this time had a very ignorant view of what actual science is, therefore they wrote out a story that the people of their time could understand. What was “literal” back then is not “literal” now. Things change as the culture changes. Ham does not understand this concept, and He seems to think that the Bible was written directly to him in terms that he can understand on a literal basis, and ignores what the Bible actually says. I question whether he has actually truly looked into other arguments for Genesis. Ham takes one of the most dangerous approaches to the Bible. He believes that you can read modern science straight out of the Bible. I find this laughable, mainly because modern science was not around whenever Genesis was written. You should NEVER try to read science into the Bible, or out of the Bible. You lose biblical authority and the proper meaning of the text. The people during the time that this book was written had absolutely no concern about ancient cosmology or a very old earth.
Why am I writing this post? Not to insult Ken Ham, but to show how flawed his arguments are. I truly care about the gospel and, in order to further the Kingdom, we cannot be afraid of what is out there, but we have to embrace it. The mountains of evidence that we have for an incredibly old earth where life evolved is an issue for people who are taught their entire life that God created the world in six, literal twenty four hour days. Their first thought is to abandon the Bible and just go with science, and this is a tragedy. As Christians, we have got to embrace the truth of science if we want to save the truth of Christian Theism in our culture.