AIG Defends Their Statement of Faith

You probably know about the Statement of Faith required by all employees of Answers in Genesis (AIG) — the creationist ministry of Ken Ham (ol’ Hambo).

To read it and then accept it requires one to remove his brain, toss it to the ground, stomp on it, and then embrace an unthinking life of mindless drool. That decision has been made by everyone who works at AIG.

They have just posted Is AiG and Its Statement of Faith Anti-Science? To anyone possessed of a rational mind, the question answers itself.

But does it? Today we’re presented with a very long essay which attempts to justify AIG’s anti-rational manifesto. It was written by Frost Smith, about whom we know nothing, but we’ve talked about his work at AIG a time or two before –for example: AIG: Chicken Necks, Dinosaurs, & the Flood.

Here are some excerpts from Smith’s defense of AIG’s intellectual code (or straitjacket), with bold font added by us. He begins with a question:

Secularists with an agenda often misrepresent and accuse Answers in Genesis of being anti-science. Are we?

Then he lovingly explains:

[I]f by science one is talking about unobserved and non-repeatable assertions from extrapolated data based on secular humanistic presuppositions — that have biblical alternatives that explain the data — then we are anti-that when it demands to be the only acceptable explanation. It has often fallen on deaf ears, but we’ve repeatedly explained the difference between historical and operational science. The sort of misguided science based on evolutionary ideas sadly isn’t limited to historical science, but we will start there.

Aaaargh!! We’ve discussed that bogus dichotomy in Common Creationist Claims Confuted, in the section titled “Operational” science vs. “Historical” (origins) science, so we’ll skip a lot of Smith’s labored attempt to justify his position. Let’s read on:

[W]e have a list of doctrinal points that are contrary to naturalist and Darwinian dogma (i.e., the religion of humanism), and a clear statement that we believe these things are foundational to understanding what we observe in nature and cannot be contradicted. But none of this indicates that we cannot do scientific inquiry and are anti-science. And we stand by this. As far as it being “unscientific,” I offer the following. Naturalists (who hold the humanistic belief that nature is all there is, hence denying that God exists) basically have an atheistic worldview and also have a “Statement of Belief” related to origins:

Then he lists several claims of “naturalists” which he asserts are merely doctrinal beliefs, including:

• The universe is 13.7 billion years old with primitive biological life on Earth evolving about 4 billion years ago, with man arriving only in the last few hundred-thousand years.

• The days in Genesis may correspond to geologic ages, but are not six [6] consecutive twenty-four [24] hour days of creation.

• The Noachian Flood was not a real event and much (but not all) fossiliferous sediment was laid down over long periods of time.

• The gap theory has no basis in science, though some find comfort in it.

After that he asks:

Why is one [set of beliefs] better than another? Both are dogmatic and jealously guarded with deeply held beliefs and presuppositions. But one has a logical foundation for scientific inquiry and one does not. Let’s delve into this subject more deeply.

Smith explains why his arbitrary beliefs are more logical than those of the “naturalists”:

The Christian has a good reason for scientific inquiry into creation in all fields — even origins — since we, of all people, have experienced God’s love toward us and His working (often miraculously) in our lives, and therefore want to know more about Him and to glorify Him. The naturalist really has only the desire of knowledge (that Christians also have) to spur himself into study — and even that is optional! And one might ask why the obtaining of knowledge is all that important if we’re just puny accidents in a random part of a huge universe who exist for a nanosecond in the grand scheme of its history, coming from and returning to nothing more than stardust at best.

Yes, only the creation scientists at AIG are truly motivated to engage in scientific inquiry. You, dear reader, have no reason to care about anything.

We’re going to skip most of Smith’s essay, because it’s too ghastly even for us, but you may find it entertaining. Jumping down to near the end, he declares:

Those who deny evolution are often painted with a broad brush implying we’re not normal people with educations, intelligence, or even social graces. It’s often easier to dismiss everything with the label creationist as trumped-up quackery than to examine what it really is, who we really are, or what we really say and believe. But we urge everyone to at least examine the claims of evolution and naturalism to see how they are intellectually unsatisfying as well as incompatible with what God says about our world.

So there you are, dear reader. Smith has presented what he thinks is a powerful defense of AIG’s Statement of Faith. We urge you to study his essay carefully. Then to let us know if you can refute it.

Copyright © 2015. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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13 responses to “AIG Defends Their Statement of Faith

  1. “dismiss everything with the label creationist as trumped-up quackery than to examine what it really is, who we really are, or what we really say and believe.”

    Oooohhh, this is 24 Carat. See, I have examined who creationists are, what they really say and believe, including AIG. It’s trumped-up quackery indeed.

    “But we urge everyone to at least examine the claims of evolution and naturalism to see how they are intellectually unsatisfying as well as incompatible with what God says about our world.”

    Almost as good! For some reason prominent evolutionary biologists Kenneth Miller and Francis Collins think those claims intellectually totally satisfying and think they are compatible what “God” says about our world. But for some reason Frosty Smith doesn’t deem it necessary to find out how that might be possible.

  2. I guess it’s easy for some people to conflate faith with science, especially when they have little knowledge of the scientific method. This just reflects the failure of our educational system to create critical thinking adults.

  3. Waiting for the evidence!!! Waiting! Still waiting! Also if your are right how about producing something or predicting something!?! Waiting! Still waiting!

  4. Frosty the Smithman: “But we urge everyone to at least examine the claims of evolution and naturalism to see how they are intellectually unsatisfying as well as incompatible with what God says about our world.”

    I find theoretical computer science to be intellectually unsatisfying and incompatible with everything God says about our world. Doesn’t make it untrue.

  5. Charles Deetz ;)

    So basically Frosty feels the ‘naturalism’ is empty without god and faith. I get that. But creationism feels empty because it requires made up stories to account for even ‘operational’ science. Super-super empty feeling, with helping of painful cognitive dissonance.

  6. > “the Naturalist really has only the desire of
    > knowledge. . . And one might ask why the
    > obtaining of knowledge is all that important
    > . . .”
    —————————
    Mercy – we have a desire for knowledge. The horror. The horror.
    ————————–
    > “Those who deny evolution are often
    > painted with a broad brush implying we’re
    > not normal people with educations,
    > intelligence, or even social graces.”
    ———————–
    Yep – you nailed it. Spot on.

    Normal people with an education and intelligence would want to free themselves from the mental damage that is childhood indoctrination.

  7. Then he lists several claims of “naturalists” which he asserts are merely doctrinal beliefs, including:

    • The universe is 13.7 billion years old with primitive biological life on Earth evolving about 4 billion years ago, with man arriving only in the last few hundred-thousand years.

    Evidently he doesn’t really believe in scientific evidence as such, but only in evidence which he thinks accords with the Bible.

    • The days in Genesis may correspond to geologic ages, but are not six [6] consecutive twenty-four [24] hour days of creation.

    The Genesis “days” can’t even correspond to “geologic” ages, if the sun is claimed to have been created three days after the earth.

    • The Noachian Flood was not a real event and much (but not all) fossiliferous sediment was laid down over long periods of time.

    Is there any evidence at all that there was ever a flood great enough to drown Mount Everest? Noah’s Flood was the inspiration for the dreadful movie Waterworld, but about all one can say in defense of this account that the Tigris-Euphrates river valley where the Noah tale originated is indeed prone to huge floods every few millennia, as are similar river valleys worldwide. This explains why there are great-flood stories in such places but none elsewhere (except where the cultural influence of river-valley people has become dominant, as in the United States).
    • The gap theory has no basis in science, though some find comfort in it.
    It also has no basis in young-earth creationism, which posits creation occurring on six successive 24-hour days, no gaps allowed.

  8. Off topic just a bit. This series of blog posts stands on it own as quite interesting. The part for the readers of this blog starts in Section Two, Two Kinds of Geology. Take that Ken Ham: http://waitbutwhy.com/2015/11/the-cook-and-the-chef-musks-secret-sauce.html#1

  9. “Evidently he doesn’t really believe in scientific evidence as such, but only in evidence which he thinks accords with the Bible.”

    Well, yes, of course. He’s defending the AIG Statement of Faith, which says, in part, almost exactly this.

  10. Rikki_Tikki_Taalik

    Speaking of having a statement of faith and eating your tax breaks too, Tracey Moody has a post up over at Friendly Atheist dishing out fresh goodies on how Ham is funding the Ark Disaster. Apparently it involves a lot of bending over the citizens of Williamstown and Grant County without so much as a complimentary reach around.

    What Ken Ham Isn’t Telling You About Ark Encounter Funding

  11. It is curious how easily they equate their own fixed and non-negationable doctrinal beliefs with scientific CONCLUSIONS. To Ham and his friends, the Bible-derived date of 6000 years as the age of the universe is something they feel they must defend no matter what the evidence shows. On the other hand, “evolution and naturalism” have no particular Scripture or creed spelling out how old the universe is, though ever since the 1800s it has been obvious to geologists that the world is enormously much older than just some millennia. You know, just like it is pretty obvious (just by looking at him) that Ken Ham is rather older than five years, even if he were to claim he is and even throw a tantrum appropriate for that age-group. (“WERE YOU THERE when I was born? No? Then there is no way you can tell, and I could SO be five years old!”)

    Even I can remember when the age of the universe was still far more uncertain, maybe somewhere between ten and twenty billion years. Then better data became available, and the age could be determined more accurately. But even in recent years, there has been some tweaking (is it 13.7 or 13.8 billion years?) No one is holding DOGMATICALLY to a specific figure, unlike the Bible-literalists who can never accept any change whatsoever to the Biblical date.

    Also, it is pretty absurd to ascribe to “naturalism and evolution” such specific views on the Bible as “the days in Genesis may correspond to geologic ages, but are not six [6] consecutive twenty-four [24] hour days of creation”. Honestly, natural science as such has no specific interest in, or views on, the Bible. That study belongs to the humanities instead.

    Scientists are generally profoundly uninterested in “the gap theory” (the notion, rejected by Ham, that the Bible can be reconciled with Deep Time by assuming that a long period passed between Genesis 1:1 and 1:2, i.e. “the beginning” and the start of the creation days). The ideas of various warring schools of creationists are NOT scientific topics at all!

    As for the claim that “the Noachian Flood was not a real event”, it is true that scientists have long realized that a global flood covering all the mountains is a physical impossibility (there isn’t enough water on the planet, for crying out loud!) Yet it is entirely possible that the Flood story can have some basis in a local flood, however repugnant that idea is to Ham and his followers.

    It is quite absurd to imply that scientists work from a list of dogmatic beliefs that are point-by-point comparable to the Answers in Genesis “Statement of Faith”.

  12. Thanks. The Statement of Faith deserves to be better known, so I’ve blogged it with h/t and a brief commentary: https://paulbraterman.wordpress.com/2015/11/12/what-answers-in-genesis-believes/

    The defence of the statement is highly informative. The account of the Grand Canyon, and of birds’ beaks, will be of particular interest to geologists and molecular biologists.

  13. It gets even more stupid:
    “But we urge everyone to at least examine the claims of evolution and naturalism to see how they are intellectually unsatisfying as well as incompatible with what God says about our world”

    Reality bites them in the ass:
    1) –see the problems raised by Chris Sharp here:
    http://www.csharp.com/lisle.html

    2)–https://answersingenesis.org/age-of-the-earth/biblical-chronology-and-8000-year-bristlecone-pine-chronology/
    The 8,000-year-long BCP chronology appears to be correctly crossmatched,
    and there is no evidence that bristlecone pines can put on more than
    one ring per year. The best approach for collapsing this chronology, one
    that takes into the account the evidence from C-14 dates, is one that
    factors the existence of migrating ring-disturbing events. Much more
    must be learned about this phenomenon before this hypothesis can be
    developed further.”

    Why is there any “need” to “collapse the chronology” at all then? Simple. As it is, the evidence shoots down both the creationist global flood AND a young earth.

    3) Look at all the attempts of YECs to deal with the “starlight problem”:
    http://pandasthumb.org/archives/2014/09/happy-jason-lis.html