|An internal debate among Christians|
1) The really important issue we face in our science-worshipping, Naturalistic culture is not about when God created; it is that God created. This is the point the culture denies but that both YE and OE believers can agree on.
2) There are important theological considerations to the answer we arrive at that we cannot ignore and we need to seek the truth of the matter. The OE/YE topic should be an internal debate between respectful Christians who sincerely disagree.
Well, recently someone called me to task on the second point and challenged me to debate a YE Christian about this very topic. Put up or shut up I think they call it. So I will put up.
On March 22, 2012 I will debate Tim Chaffey of Answers In Genesis at Cincinnati Christian High School. For the record, I have never been involved in a public debate about anything so this is a stretch for me. But I believe the topic is too important for our young people to understand to allow me to avoid this opportunity. Mr. Chaffey has been publicly defending the YE view for several years and has even co-authored a book (with Jason Lisle) about this topic. I am reading it now. This allows me to study Mr. Chaffey's arguments and research OE responses to them. So, in order to also stand behind my belief that these kinds of debates ought to be respectful, and in the interest of fairness, I plan to offer a series of blog posts about the various arguments I plan to make in the debate. While I am sure he won't be caught off guard or surprised by any of these, and because I haven't written a book on the subject, this is the only way I know to give Mr. Chaffey the courtesy of being able to prepare to respond to my arguments just as I am preparing to respond to his.
For those who are interested, most of the material I utilize originates with Reasons to Believe, a scientific apologetics ministry based in the Los Angeles area. Mr. Chaffey is very familiar with their work. Though the details have yet to be established, the major topics we plan to debate are:
- The Age of the Earth
- The meaning of the Hebrew word for "day" (yom) in the creation account
- Death before the fall of Adam & Eve
- The Great Flood of Noah
These are the topics I will offer blog posts about.
I invite anyone who is interested in this type of thing to check out some resources and, if you live anywhere in the Cincinnati area, try to attend the debate on March 22, 2012. I will provide details about both of these in my future posts and I will also provide Mr. Chaffey with links to each.
My goal with all this is simple -- that we all honorably and respectfully seek the Truth.