Creationist Wisdom #817: Grant County Preacher

All our readers know that Grant County, Kentucky is the home of Ark Encounter, the creationist tourist attraction run by Ken Ham (ol’ Hambo), the ayatollah of Appalachia, the world’s holiest man who knows more about religion and science than everyone else.

Today’s letter-to-the-editor appears in the Grant County News, published in the county where Hambo’s ark is located. It’s titled Evolution vs. creation, and the newspaper has a comments feature.

Unless the letter-writer is a politician, preacher, or other public figure, we won’t embarrass or promote him by using his full name — but today we’ve got a preacher. It’s Bob Tarasiak, the minister at Sherman Baptist Church of Dry Ridge, Kentucky — which is in Grant County. We’ll give you a few excerpts from the rev’s letter, enhanced with our Curmudgeonly commentary, and some bold font for emphasis. Here we go!

What do you believe has more validity? Evolution or creation? The impact of the theory of evolution is making its mark on many today, even within some church denominations. The millions of years verses the young Earth creation debate is alive and well in our society, universities, and yes, even within the ranks of many pastors and church leadership.

As you will see, the rev’s arguments are not only an ark-load of ancient creationist clunkers that we’ve seen a hundred times before, but he also uses some of Hambo’s arguments too. We’re not going to bother with any rebuttal. He says:

The evolution premise of millions of years has crept into the main-line denominations whereby many ministry leaders are giving credibility to science and the evolution premise of a universe that evolved over millions, even billions of years, compromising the foundation of the Bible. Who is right? Who has truth? Evolution or creation?

Who? Tell us, rev! After that he launches into one of ol’ Hambo’s favorites:

Science is something that can be divided into two categories; operational and historical …

Yeah, yeah. We all know that one. Then he tells us:

[H]ow can one deem the Earth is millions of years in age without having someone observe the so-called millions of years? How could science test millions of years? Even carbon dating has been proven to incorrectly date various earthly artifacts such as rock layers, minerals, etc., providing various same samples with age determinations off by thousands, even millions years. Can we take this so-called “testing” seriously and valid?

Were you there? Hey — we told you the rev uses the same arguments we’ve heard from Hambo. He continues:

Also, there is no evidence of any transitions in the fossil record.

BWAHAHAHAHAHA! Let’s read on:

A monkey is still a monkey, and we can see they have not evolved into some other species.

Why are there still monkeys? Another excerpt:

The ultimate question for any person who believes in evolution, a big bang theory and millions of years is where did matter all come from in the first place? I often ask evolution supporters “How can one get something from nothing?”

This guy is the greatest! Here’s more:

The creation response is based upon a premise that there was a designer, a creator who existed apart from time, the universe, galaxies and beyond the limits of observable human eye and telescopes. Our galaxy, even down to the Earth, is the only planet perfectly created to sustain life!

[*Begin Drool Mode*] Ooooooooooooh! [*End Drool Mode*] He’s almost done:

The Bible declares in the book of Genesis, chapter one, that God made the heavens and the Earth and all life in six days, not thousands not millions, not billions! Only six days!

How many? Oh, it’s six. And now we come to the end:

The question is will you believe mankind came from a big bang, apes, millions of years? Or a young Earth creation? I challenge you to read the word of the Creator and believe by faith, that there is a designer who created life and sustains even your life even today! Just believe my friend.

All we can say is that Hambo chose the right location for his Ark.

Copyright © 2017. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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24 responses to “Creationist Wisdom #817: Grant County Preacher

  1. Michael Fugate

    OUR PASTOR
    Pastor Bob Tarasiak is the Senior Pastor at Sherman Baptist and is married to his virtuous wife Mariana. He has been in ministry since 2002. He has served at Sherman Baptist since March 2015. He has served our Lord as an evangelist, full time missionary, and recording guitar player and vocalist. He is a graduate of Masters International University of Divinity with a Mdiv. degree and currently pursuing his Doctorate in theology. Pastor Bob’s passion is to connect you to Christ and then connect you with others spreading the Gospel! Join him and his wife Mariana as we come and grow in a relationship with Christ!

    Good to know he has a virtuous wife.

    And he went to a “Bible College, Seminary, and Divinity School All Rolled Into One Online Christian University!” Wowzah!

    A bible school that affirms: The beginning of the existing space-time universe, including all of its basic systems and organisms as revealed in the six days of the creation week, the fall of man and the Noahic flood as the historically factual account of origins, and the cause of the current condition of the physical earth as well as mankind upon it from creation to the present: (Genesis chapters 1 – 10; John 1:1-4);

    Perfect for Ham territory!

  2. Pastor Bob needs to get on board with the latest cutting-edge science from AIG – they now admit transitional fossils exist, just as evolution predicted. They just say that creationism predicts them too.

  3. On the last sentence of Curmy’s comment: Yes, of course Ken Ham chose his location well. Like they say in the real estate business, “Location, location, location!” If Ham had wanted to persuade, he would have taken his message to skeptics. Instead, he crossed the world to come to a place where churchmen like Tarasiak are the default. Ken Ham didn’t want to convert anyone. What he wants is to cash in on what’s already there. He doesn’t appear before audiences of skeptics, or anyone who knows and understands the evidence. Even his debate with Nye was carefully packed with acolytes.

    As to the rest, Bob Tarasiak has no clue about science, nor about the real evidence. He has picked up a sheaf of cleverly crafted lies from creationist sources, and has almost certainly never cracked an actual science textbook since junior high, if then. But Tarasiak thinks his opinion on the subject is as good as anyone’s, including those who have actually done the research and studied the material evidence. You could forgive the ignorance and credulity; the hubris is more difficult to stomach.

  4. Hard core, turbocharged fuel injected, dyed in the wool, young earth, fundamentalist, seriously committed, science denying, benighted, denominationally challenged Vatican hater. Clearly, pastor is not an oil and gas exploration geologist in the image of Hutton and Lyell. Oh dearie me.
    The church website shows an empty church parking lot. One must assume the parishioners are all over admiring the magical ark experience while paying for their parking.

  5. I want to thank the rev for making it clear for the first time what they have in mind when asking how come there are still monkeys.
    The monkey hasn’t turned into a new species!
    So one thinks that 1 monkey is a species 2 evolution says that the totality of a species turns into a new species 3 if the monkey species turns into the human species, how come there are still monkeys?
    Obvious, isn’t it?

  6. BTW Grant County, KY is named after an 18th century Colonel Grant.

  7. H]ow can one deem the Earth is millions of years in age without having someone observe the so-called millions of years? How could science test millions of years? Even carbon dating has been proven to incorrectly date various earthly artifacts such as rock layers, minerals, etc., providing various same samples with age determinations off by thousands, even millions years. Can we take this so-called “testing” seriously and valid?

    Even leaving aside the incoherence of this passage from Preacher Bob’s letter, how can we take him seriously when he thinks carbon dating can be off by “millions of years”? As readers here surely know, carbon-14 dating us useless on such time scales because the isotope decays too quickly.

    Now, to be fair, perhaps the good reverend was generalizing about radioisotope dating. In that case, his statement looks a little less kooky, but not much: scientists understand which isotopes are suited to which time scales. They also understand that on very long time scales (such as the billions of years of Earth’s planetary history) even small imperfections in measurement can produce numbers which are “off” by millions of years–but that error represents only a tiny fraction of the correct number.

    And how do we know what that number is? Easy: we take multiple measurements and average them to cancel out random errors. To get errors as huge as the ones young-earth creationists need, nuclear physics as we know it would have to be totally wrong, and there’s no evidence for that.

  8. @Dave Luckett: If Hambone (or any other creationist) actually wanted to disprove evolution, he’d take the cash he’s collected from his suckers and set off to try to find a rabbit fossil in Cambrian rocks someplace. But as you pointed out, he wants to keep the cash rolling in, rather than actually convince anyone who knows anything.

  9. And for the time measurements to be wrong, they have to be systematicaly wrong. There has to be a pattern, a design of some sort, which makes several different measurements make the same the mistakes, meanwhile not leaving any other traces of errors.
    For example, just for radioactivity, there are two different fundamental forces of nature: the strong nuclear force and the weak nuclear force, which would have to be changing according to some pattern which affects them both the same amount, many thousands of
    multiples, when if either of them were even a fraction of a percent different, it would make a profound difference in
    the world (see the anthropic principle).
    It would take a deep pattern in the laws of nature for this to happen.

  10. Michael Fugate

    Ham is in Kentucky and ICR moved from California to Texas.

  11. Our galaxy, even down to earth, is the only planet perfectly created to sustain life!
    Cmon now you know what he means he just gets a few technical terms wrong.
    All the laws of nature, including thermodynamics and information theory are fitted to the appearance of life on Earth. Right!

  12. “What do you believe has more validity? Evolution or creation?”
    This question needs to be reformulated.
    What do you think more valid? An honest attempt to understand what happens/happened in our natural reality or a heap of lies, some of them repeated by this very rev.?

  13. Rev. Bob has managed to slip an inspiring homophonic substitution past our Curmudgeon‘s generally diligent “[sic]”‘s, viz.:

    –millions of years verses the young Earth creation debate–

    On this pattern, I suppose we should say that, when Creationists pepper their screeds with scriptural references, they are quoting Biblical versus

  14. There is no “millions of years verses (sic) the young Earth creation debate”, anyway. Debate requires the production and scrutiny of evidence.

  15. Good catch, Megalonyx. Verses, versus. Of coarse! Your very alert today.

  16. I see what you did there, SC.

  17. Ditto. Fortunately, there was no emPHAsis on the wrong sylLAble in the HOmophonic subSTItution.

  18. “Even carbon dating has been proven to incorrectly date various earthly artifacts such as rock layers, minerals, etc.”

    That is ironically correct, and also totally misleading. Carbon 14 dating is only good to about 10 half-lives, which is in the 50K to 60K year range. It is *never* used to date rocks or minerals not only because of that limited age range, but *primarily* because it is only suited for organic matter that underwent metabolism – i.e. formerly living matter. Rocks and minerals do not metabolize CO2 so carbon 14 is worthless for dating them. The only cases that I am aware of where carbon 14 dating was used on mineralized fossils was done specifically by creationists trying to “prove” that carbon 14 dating doesn’t work. This minister is totally brain dead – but that is always *primary* requirement for creationism, so this is non-news.

  19. Robert Tarasiak

    You are great at attacking and name calling, yet none of you provide the evidence in support of evolution nor anything that requires an examinable and viable scientific proof of your premise. Again I ask you, how can one get something form nothing?

  20. Welcome to our humble blog, rev. It’s good to see you.

  21. Michael Fugate

    Robert, how can your god always have existed? How is that any more possible than matter or energy always existing?

    If you don’t understand why Christians who also studied the natural world determined that the Earth and the Universe were old, about a 1000x older than your claim, then you really need to study more. This conclusion was a given long before Darwin. I would suggest you buy yourself a copy of “Science and Earth History” by A. Strahler for Christmas. Read it, then get back to us.

  22. Michael Fugate

    Robert, a new paper just out showing how feathers could arise from scales. Birds are dinosaurs after all.
    https://www.theguardian.com/science/2017/nov/29/gene-discovery-may-reveal-how-scaly-dinosaurs-became-feathery-birds

  23. Robert, the theory of evolution says nothing about the origins of matter, Earth.or even of life. It is, rather, an explanation of how life diversified and is continuing to diversify.

    There is no such thing as scientific proof. A theory is an explanation of a body of evidence, that conflicts with none of the evidence. It enables testable predictions that have been shown to be correct. The theories of evolution and plate tectonics, for example, allowed Shubin and Jenkins to predict that certain strata on Ellesmere Island were a good place to find transitional fossils between fish and amphibians. They looked there and found Tiktaalik which is a clear transitional fossil.

    Members of the public have no idea of how strong the evidence is in favour of evolution. Every year, literally thousands of scientific papers pertaining to evolution are published, any one of which could call into question the theory of evolution, yet none ever has.

    Creationism and its spawn, ‘Intelligent Design’, however, are not theories because neither makes any testable predictions (although IDers will tell you ‘we predicted that’ after the fact).

    Referring to carbon dating of fossils is (with rare exceptions) a clear indication of someone who knows nothing of the subject, as is asking the question ‘if we came from monkeys, while are there still monkeys?’ If you don’t want to be ridiculed on sites like this, you urgently need to do some serious reading with the understanding that ALL creationist sites lie or misrepresent.

  24. Herbert Spencer wrote an essay in 1852 (that is, 7 years before “Origin of Species”) which pointed out that the creationists did not have an alternative
    explanation.
    https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/The_Development_Hypothesis