‘equipping the church
on origins’

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News & Blog page 12

Creation ministry in Cardiff

4 September, 2017

Report by Matthew Pickhaver

Photo of Matthew Pickhaver speaking to the Cardiff Creation Group, matthew is standing at the front of the hall next to the projector screen that is showing slides for his talk

Matthew Pickhaver speaking to the Cardiff Creation Group.

Over the weekend of 20th-21st May I was pleased to be in Cardiff to speak at three meetings arranged by the Cardiff Creation Group.

In the first of two held at Tabernacle Cardiff on the Saturday, I took the subject ‘Adaptation – yes, evolution – no!’ This was a revised version of my previous talk about natural selection and the limit of its effects, i.e. within the Genesis kinds.

After a buffet tea I then gave a brand new presentation, requested for the occasion, entitled ‘Intelligent Design: what's the IDea?’ In this I explained the concept of ID itself, giving examples of irreducible complexity and the challenge of information, as well as tracing the history of its associated movement and assessing its strengths and weaknesses, before using Scripture to reveal who the designer is.

Overall about 40 were present for these sessions, including a number of interested undergraduate students (at least two of biological sciences) and science teachers. There were a number of questions afterwards too, which led to a useful discussion about apologetics and the ethical implications of conflicting worldviews.

Then on the Sunday at Leckwith Gospel Hall I addressed the question, ‘Was there really a worldwide flood?’ We looked at the text of Genesis chapters 6 to 8, scientific evidence consistent with this Biblical account and finally its Gospel application. There were more questions from the congregation afterwards – about time scales, coal and oil, and how evolutionary geologists would explain features consistent with the flood. 

Special thanks go to Chris Selby and others from the Cardiff Creation Group for providing these opportunities.

Student mentoring 2017

2 September, 2017

Report by Paul Garner

Photo of two students wearing hard-hats near the foot of a cliff, in front of them on the ground are many large flat rocks, the cliff is divided into two sections: the lower portion, about two thirds, of dark brown rock whilst the upper section is of white rock

Our student interns on a geology field trip to Hunstanton in north Norfolk.

This summer we hosted another two students on our mentoring programme. One is studying zoology and the other geophysics. Our programme is designed to give students a solid theological and scientific introduction to Biblical Creation and to excite them about the opportunities creation research presents to a young scientist.

Each student was provided with some preparatory reading several weeks ahead. This included a number of papers and articles on topics ranging from the historicity of Adam to plate tectonics to created kinds.

Then in July they joined us for a packed week of tutorials and discussions, supplemented with some practical work, and field trips to a natural history museum and to some coastal rock exposures.

Afterwards the students told us they had enjoyed the programme and found it very helpful. One said: “I found the course to be very informative and I was free to ask any and as many questions about origins as I could think of.” The other said: “I have learnt the importance of taking the Bible seriously when developing scientific models, and also the importance of community.”

We intend to provide students coming through our course with continued advice and support. If interest grows, we’d also like to develop our mentoring programme into a summer school we could offer to groups. We’d love to hear from you if you think a student in your church would benefit from this kind of ‘hands-on’ experience. I can be reached at paul@biblicalcreationtrust.org or BCT, PO Box 325, Ely, CB7 5YH.

Speaking ministry in Poland 2017

1 September, 2017

Report by Paul Garner

Paul Garner speaking at a meeting of the Baptist Church in Wrocław about human fossils, at the front with him is a translator

Paul Garner speaking about human fossils at the Baptist Church in Wrocław.

Somewhat belatedly, here’s a report of my ministry trip to Poland, which took place 13th–18th May. The first couple of days were based in Świdnica, in the Silesian region of south-western Poland, and the last day or so in Poznań, in the west-central Greater Poland region.

I flew into Wrocław airport, arriving late on Saturday evening. My first engagement was preaching in the Sunday morning service of the Pentecostal Church in Świdnica. I took as my theme ‘First Adam, last Adam’ based on 1 Corinthians 15:45. After the service, I enjoyed lunch with the pastor, his wife and friends from the Polish Biblical Creation Society (Biblijne Towarzystwo Kreacjonistyczne).

On Monday I had the opportunity to speak to about 40 students and staff at the Ark Christian school in Wrocław. The youngsters were 13-15 years old and very engaged with the subject, ‘Why I’m a creationist’. The talk was followed by about 45 minutes of questions and answers, but we could easily have gone on longer!

The next evening I gave a talk on ‘Ape-men, ancestors and Adam’ to a good-sized crowd at the Baptist Church in Wrocław. My talk examined the human fossil record and how we can make sense of it from a creationist perspective. The evening ended with another useful discussion time.

On Wednesday we travelled to Poznań, where Campus Crusade for Christ hosted a public lecture in one of the university buildings, also on ‘Ape-men, ancestors and Adam’. As well as answering questions from Christian students, there was also the opportunity to engage with one or two sceptics that came along.

Thanks are owed to all those involved in organizing and hosting my visit and to all the supporters that faithfully pray for my ministry, whether at home or overseas.

Origins 2017

7 August, 2017

Report by Paul Garner

Paul Garner and Todd Wood leading a discussion at the Origins 2017 conference

Paul Garner and Todd Wood leading a discussion at Origins 2017.

Origins 2017, the annual meeting of the Creation Biology and Creation Geology societies, took place 19th–22nd July at San Diego Christian College, California. The meeting is an opportunity for creationist researchers to share their work with their peers and to enjoy fellowship together.

For me the visit to California began with a trip to San Diego Zoo with Todd and Stephanie Wood of Core Academy of Science. The zoo was enormous and housed an impressive array of animals from orangutans and giraffes to pythons and gharials.

The conference proper began with dinner on Wednesday evening. All day Thursday was devoted to technical talks. Here are some highlights:

  • Matt McLain and his students (The Master’s University) reported baraminology studies of ‘mammal-like reptiles’, showing that the groups comprising a classic textbook ‘evolutionary lineage’ were in fact separated by significant discontinuities.
  • John Whitmore (Cedarville University) presented data from coastal dunes on the west coast of the USA showing that wind transport causes sand grains to become rounded over very short distances (less than 500 m). The implication is that angular sand grains in rock units such as the Coconino Sandstone provide evidence of transport by water, not wind.
  • Michael Radmacher (Independent Scholar) argued that the modern human diversity in the genes encoding a set of cell surface proteins (the major histocompatibility complex or MHC) could have arisen from the eight individuals on the ark, contrary to claims by some evolutionists.
  • Kurt Wise (Truett-McConnell College) presented evidence that the diversification of the kinds after the Flood proceeded in a ‘step-down saltational’ manner. In other words, there were very large changes initially, but then, with time, the size of the morphological jumps progressively stepped down.
  • Roger Sanders (Core Academy of Science) reported a preliminary baraminology study of fossil plants associated with the pre-Flood ‘floating forest’ ecosystem. He made some tentative suggestions about the number of kinds represented among these plants, but noted that more data was needed before definitive conclusions could be drawn.
  • Todd Wood (Core Academy of Science) revisited his earlier work on the baraminology of penguins, with an analysis of a new, expanded dataset. All living and fossil penguins appear to belong to a single created kind, with the possible exception of members of the extinct genus Waimanu, whose baraminic status was unresolved.

Paul Garner standing next to a statue of a polar bear twice his height at San Diego Zoo

Paul Garner alongside a polar bear statue at San Diego Zoo.

Dr Steve Austin pointing out geological features to a group of people at Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve

Dr Steve Austin pointing out geological features at Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve.

Abstracts for all the talks have been published: biology abstracts and geology abstracts.

On Friday delegates enjoyed a field trip to the Birch Aquarium at Scripps Institution of Oceanography, La Jolla. Here we were able to handle anemones, urchins and sea cucumbers in the tidal pools, as well as see a variety of marine animals in the aquarium itself, including moray eels, sharks, jellyfish and sea horses.

The conference concluded on Saturday with a tour of Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve, La Jolla. Geologists John Whitmore and Steve Austin drew our attention to evidences of rapid deposition and erosion in the post-Flood sediments exposed in the coastal park.

After the conference I travelled to northern California to visit some old church friends, and had the opportunity to see a special pterosaur exhibition at the Kimball Natural History Museum in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco.

The annual Origins meeting is always a great blessing, not only for the opportunity to hear about cutting-edge research and to participate in discussions. The meeting is also a place where relationships can be built and new research collaborations forged. Although there were fewer attendees this year – and fewer presentations – it was encouraging to see new faces at the meeting and especially to see many young people attending. Some were undergraduates, some doing PhDs, some early-career researchers. Please pray that these conferences will help to captivate this upcoming generation of creationists with the joy and excitement of doing science to the glory of God our Creator and Redeemer.

“Chronological creationism”: Foundations publishes important new theological paper by BCT’s Steve Lloyd

3 July, 2017

The latest issue of the Affinity theological journal Foundations features a substantial paper by BCT researcher and lecturer Dr Steve Lloyd.

He defines a new term “Chronological Creationism” to describe a biblical methodology that leads to his creationist position. Using this methodology he sets out the immense theological problems of attempts to reconcile the chronology of evolutionary history with the Bible. The paper then considers the negative apologetic implications of abandoning the Bible’s chronology. Finally Steve outlines the model-building approach necessary to produce a scientific account of earth history consistent with the Bible.

This is the most comprehensive, freely available explanation of our Biblical Creation ethos. Why not read it for yourself and pass onto others who would benefit in your church? Is this something a student or pastor you know would find helpful?

Is Genesis History? A night at the movies

8 May, 2017
The poster for the film 'Is Genesis history?' showing the text set next to the edge of a planet in space

Soham Baptist Church will be the next venue for the showing of Is Genesis History?

We are delighted to announce another showing of the hit new movie Is Genesis History? at Soham Baptist Church, Clay Street, Soham, Cambridgeshire CB7 5HQ at 7.00 pm on Saturday 10 June 2017.

Is Genesis History? is a fascinating new look at the biblical, historical and scientific evidence for Creation and the Flood. Learn from more than a dozen scientists and scholars as they explore the world around us in light of Genesis. The official website and trailer can be viewed here.

All are welcome to this free event. The church contact is Matthew Faulkner (Telephone: 01353 624255; E-mail: info@sohambaptist.org.uk).

In addition to the movie showing, there will be a bookstall – and popcorn! We hope to see you there.

UK premiere of Is Genesis History?

22 March, 2017
Photo of people sitting down at Little Hill Church in Wigston, Leicester where the film 'Is Genesis history?' was shown

Little Hill Church was the venue for the UK premiere of Is Genesis History?

Saturday 18 March saw BCT present the UK premiere of Is Genesis History?, a major new documentary film from Compass Cinema.

About 70 people came to see the film at Little Hill Church in Wigston, Leicester, and were greeted with popcorn and other refreshments on arrival.

Paul Garner of BCT introduced the film, which features more than a dozen scientists and scholars making the biblical, historical and scientific case for Creation and the Flood.

Responses to the film were very positive and interest was expressed in showings at other venues – so watch this space for further news on that front!

In the meantime, the official website and trailer for Is Genesis History? can be viewed here.

Is Genesis History? Special one-night only movie event

27 February, 2017
The poster for the film 'Is Genesis history?' showing the text set next to the edge of a planet in space

Announcing the UK showing of Is Genesis History? – the new movie that’s just premiered in the USA.

We are excited to announce a UK showing of Is Genesis History? – the new movie that last Thursday was Number 1 in the USA, seen by more than 143,000 people in over 700 cinemas.

Is Genesis History? is a fascinating new look at the biblical, historical and scientific evidence for Creation and the Flood, featuring more than a dozen scientists and scholars. The official website and trailer can be viewed here.

This special one-night only event is being hosted by Little Hill Church, Launceston Road, Wigston, Leicester LE18 2GZ at 7.00 pm on Saturday 18 March 2017.

All are welcome – but the church would appreciate expressions of interest in order to gauge numbers. Please contact Pastor Josh Harrison (Telephone: 07743 760756, E-mail: mail@littlehill.org.uk).

In addition to the movie showing, there will be a bookstall – and perhaps even some popcorn! We hope to see you there.

50 years of creationism

8 February, 2017
Paul Garner at Answers in Genesis’ Ark Encounter in Williamstown, Kentucky, USA showing the lifesize model of the ark behind him

Paul Garner at Answers in Genesis’ Ark Encounter in Williamstown, Kentucky, USA.

The February 2017 edition of Evangelical Times is a special issue celebrating 50 years of the newspaper’s publication. It features an article by Paul Garner reviewing ‘50 years of creationism’ (pp.5, 13).

In the article Paul points out that young-age creationism is not new, despite efforts by its critics to explain it away as a modern theological aberration. The article also traces the worldwide growth of the creationist movement over the last half-century and looks at the movement’s future prospects.

The article can be read online and subscription details for the newspaper can be found here.

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