Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Dr. Godfrey's unwarranted judgment of YEC

Dr. Godfrey is generally kind and solidly orthodox, however he is not without faults. Here in his book, he slanders YEC as follows:

As Christians we must not tie our faith to a psuedoscience of human invention, whether by a fad of secular science or so-called creation science [W. Robert Godfrey, God's Pattern for Creation: A Covenantal Reading of Genesis 1 (Phillipsburg, NJ: P&R, 2003), 91]

My question is: what qualifications does Dr. Godfrey has for claiming creation science is "pseudoscience." What are his evidences for such a claim? Can he substantiate such a serious judgment? Is he willing to substantiate his judgment in debate with creation scientists like Dr. Jonathan Sarfati?

This is just one example of why I do not highly regard critics of YEC, because I have not seen they know what they are talking about in their lofty judgments.


hanguoxiong said...

Dear Daniel,

I stand in agreement with your critique of Godfrey's criticism of YEC.

Would you like to comment on why even sound and orthodox theologians become inconsistent in maintaining orthodoxy in their thinking, such as on this YEC issue?


Daniel C said...


well, I do not presume to know their motives. From what I have seen so far, it seems that a naïve view of science and knowledge is to blame. From the Middle Ages to the Reformation, orthodox Christianity has always been linked with scholarship and erudition. Therefore, there is a strong stigma to be seen as being anti-intellectual. The tradition of Old Princeton tried to show how the newly emerging fields of science are not in conflict with Christianity, and thus Christianity is "a reasonable faith."

Therefore, since all truth is God's truth, I suspect most orthodox theologians, being largely ignorant of the natural sciences, accept rather uncritically the conclusions of science where it does not seem the essence of the faith is at stake.

Secondarily, YEC is often linked with Dispensationalism and Fundamentalism. This is rather complex but it can be traced back to the Scopes Trial and how it has been misrepresented by the secularists to mock Christianity. It also can be traced back to ignorance of the early Reformed tradition on this issue, thus YEC came to be linked with Dispensationalism/ Fundamentalism. It does not help matters when scholars such as Ron Numbers and Mark Noll write revisionist histories linking YEC with anti-intellectualism. Sevent-Day Adventism and Fundamentalism. Noll especially wrote his book (The Scandal of the Evangelical Mind) in an effort to distance himself from is former view of Fundamentalism in a vindication of the supposed superiority of the New Evangelicalism.