Henry Morris and the Ministry of Truth

The granddaddy of all creationist outfits is the Institute for Creation Research (ICR). We regard that institution as the fountainhead of young-earth creationist wisdom.

At ICR’s website we read A Flood of Influence: The Impact of Henry Morris and The Genesis Flood in Modern History. It’s about ICR’s founder, Henry M. Morris (1918 – 2006). We’ve written about him several times before, e.g.: Henry Morris: the Ultimate Creationist. Together with John Whitcomb, he wrote The Genesis Flood, published in 1961. Morris is regarded as the father of the modern creation science movement.

The ICR article we’re discussing today was written by his son, Henry Morris III, who is carrying on the family business as ICR’s president. Here are some excerpts, with bold added by us:

Darwin was not the first to embrace evolution by any stretch of the imagination. He was preceded by Lamarck and Charles Lyell and by the growing popularity of “naturalists” among the social elite of Europe. Prior to those relatively recent thinkers, there were literally millennia of pantheistic and polytheistic philosophers and religionists espousing mythology of every stripe and description. Atheistic evolution in one form or another has been recorded in history from ancient Babylonian days. It is not new. It had merely become “scientific” during the “enlightenment” of the Industrial Revolution.

It’s rare to see anything as scrambled up as that. Young Morris claims Darwin’s theory wasn’t new, but it became “scientific” [ICR’s scare quotes] during the “enlightenment” [ICR’s scare quotes] of the Industrial Revolution. Aaaargh!! It was the Enlightenment that gave us everything — reason, science, political and economic freedom, and as a consequence of all that (not cause!) we had the industrial revolution. Young Morris is a worthy successor to his father. Let’s read on:

Strangely enough, it was the scientists of those days who most vehemently opposed naturalistic thinking. Johann Kepler and Francis Bacon in the 1600s and Isaac Newton and Carolus Linnaeus in the 1700s all vigorously resisted the growing tendency to write God out of the design, order, and purpose in creation.

Now young Morris has his calendar all scrambled. What time period is he talking about here? If it’s the time of Darwin’s work, then why is he citing men who flourished centuries before the Enlightenment? We continue:

By the time of the Scopes trial in 1925, Christian scholarship had either embraced some form of theistic or day-age evolution, or had consigned the ages of evolution to a “gap” between the first two verses of Genesis 1. Creation was relegated to a “secondary doctrine” — not even included in the famous “Five Fundamentals of the Faith.” Science had become the purview of evolutionists, and Christianity essentially retreated from the scientific arena and capitulated to the intellectual pressure of academic secularism.

That sounds like a sensible arrangement — everyone sticks to his own field of expertise. What happened to upset things? You’ll see:

During the decade of the 1950s, Drs. Morris and Whitcomb met and began to collaborate on what would become the 1961 release of The Genesis Flood. That book, in the sovereign plan of God, became the catalyst that opened the gates to the pent-up flood of Christian professionals who, like God’s loyal “seven thousand” in the days of Elijah, had not yet bowed their knee to the Baal of evolutionary compromise. A revival among scientifically trained Christians had begun.

Hey, we ought to be grateful. Were it not for Morris and Whitcomb, what would your Curmudgeon blog about? Young Morris then describes the impressive progress ICR has made, and he tells us:

Where one small effort began as the passion of a dedicated educator, there are now hundreds of organizations teaching a recent creation to literally hundreds of thousands of Christians around the world. For example, Ken Ham of Answers in Genesis began his American ministry under ICR’s sponsorship and now has reached over one million visitors with the Creation Museum in Petersburg, Kentucky.

It is no stretch to say that over a million people each year read or hear accurate, scientific, and solidly biblical information about a young earth and a global flood from the various publications and media ministries of all these creation organizations.

The elder Morris has left us quite a legacy. Here’s more:

Dr. Morris went on to write some 60 books during his 36-year ministry with ICR, many of which are still in print. The Genesis Flood now celebrates its 50th year in continuous publication!

Impressive indeed! But young Morris fails to mention his father’s most infamous book — That Their Words May Be Used Against Them (Amazon listing). It’s a solid, cover-to-cover Ark-load of quote-mining. We can’t imagine how anyone could devote the effort required to produce an entire book of such material.

In response to that contemptible work and the imitators it inspired, the contents of which continue to appear on creationist websites, numerous scholarly refutations have been painstakingly researched, placing the mined quotes in their proper context. See, for example: The Quote Mine Project. But the elder Morris’s book is the mother lode of all quote-mines, and it — along with the ICR organization which exists in his shadow — testifies to his scholarship and integrity.

The final paragraph of ICR’s article is a bit mushy, but that’s understandable because young Morris is writing about his beloved father. The last two sentences are these:

We who have inherited his legacy are driven by the same passions. May God add His own blessings to the ministry of truth.

Yeah, the Ministry of Truth.

Copyright © 2011. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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8 responses to “Henry Morris and the Ministry of Truth

  1. “scholarship” and “integrity”

    There, fixed it for you.

  2. “The Ministry of Truth”. It sounds sort of Orwellian, doesn’t it?

  3. What a great concluding line!!

  4. Atheistic evolution in one form or another has been recorded in history from ancient Babylonian days.

    The IDiots say about the same, which raises the question of why they keep on telling us that life “looks designed.” The fact is that it always looked oddly connected, like a “chain of being,” or, as religious folk like Linnaeus would recognize, “related.”

    Throw out the gratuitous and false “atheistic,” and they’re practically admitting that life looks evolved. But as they “know” without any sort of sufficient evidence, it just couldn’t have.

  5. Ha – I just clicked on the link. I knew it was Orwellian!

    History will not be kind to Dr. Morris. He will be viewed as an anti-science eccentric who damaged the education of a generation of gullible and/or faithful Christians. His son may be the last to write glowingly of his “contributions”.

  6. Ed says: “History will not be kind to Dr. Morris.”

    If it is, we’ll all be living in caves.

  7. I’m willing to call Henry Morris one of the worst Americans of the last 50 years. No one else has been more destructive to science education in the United States.

  8. Atheistic evolution in one form or another has been recorded in history from ancient Babylonian days.

    Of course, they are using the word “evolution” in a barely recognizable sense. But “atheist” in ancient Babylonian days? If they find anything like “atheistic evolution” in any Babylonian writing, then they might as well count anybody, including Newton, as an atheistic evolutionist.