Monday, November 1, 2010

Churches with creationism in their statement of faith or constitution.

With the increasing emphasis on young earth creationism being central to sound, biblical Christianity I am surprised that I have not seen it adopted into the statement of faith of any of the local churches which promote it.

Having had a quick scout round the internet I suspect it will not be long before this happens as there are already a number of churches and Christian organisations in the USA which do have creationism written into their statements of faith. Presumably these organisations only accept people into membership who also hold those beliefs.

Here are some examples and the precise wording they are using:

http://www.grace4u.org/Topical/doct_stmt.htm
http://www.cruxmagazine.tv/what-we-believe.php (possibly UK based)

“We teach that man was directly and immediately created by God in His image and likeness.”


http://www.thebolthousefoundation.org/statement_of_faith.htm

“We affirm our belief that man was created in the image of God; that he sinned and thereby incurred not only physical death but also that spiritual death which is separation from God, and that all human beings are born with a sinful nature and that those who reach moral responsibility become sinners in thought, word, and deed.  (By this statement we affirm that man was created by a direct act of God in His image, not from previously existing creatures, and that all of mankind sinned in Adam and Eve, the historical parents of the entire human race.)”

Other variations include:
“Man was directly and immediately created by God on the sixth day of creation, with appearance of age, in His image and likeness. “

Do a quick google search to see for yourself what might be coming to a church near you.:

http://www.google.co.uk/search?q=%22Man+was+directly+and+immediately+created+by+God%22

This is further evidence of a narrowing of evangelical Christianity.


7 comments:

  1. [This comment would not post for some reason so I have salvage dit and am pasting it in under my username]


    As an Evanglical Christian, I find this a disturbing trend. Ultimately, these Churches will find that they become increasingly irrelevant in their attempts to engage society (when I find that somebody has checked their brain at the door, I tend to ignore what they have to say). I could be wrong, I suppose, and find that many people are willing to turn in their brains. I'm all for people being saved by God's grace, but when the rest of their combined actions ignore and/or exacerbate societies problems (e.g. global warming, etc.), ushering in scorched earth through God's grace seems a bit ironic. Think, Christian's, Think! For crying outloud, do people not realize that if the Garden of Eden was a factual place, then "the fall" would have resulted in of the most rapid evolutionary events ever seen on the face of the earth (rivaled by the flood, of course). Talk about punctuated equilibrium (I wonder what Stephen Jay Gould would have thought about that).

    The notion of creation as historical fact and scientific theory is ridiculous. Time for the Church to move on to something else (how about Jesus, for example).

    Gordon, thanks for keeping us up to date on these developments. Take care,

    Jeff

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  2. Hello Jeff.
    When I moved to Edinburgh in 1992 there were no visible creationist churches and the subject never came up. Now there are four highly visible ones and several more less so. One almost has it written into its statement of faith. The others view an acceptance of creationism as a sign of spiritual maturity and people not holding that position will not be put in positions of trust.

    Its an interesting trend. Edinburgh City Mission runs campaigns outside the university Science faculties too. See my article here:

    http://www.ecalpemos.org/2009/11/edinburgh-city-mission-another-example.html

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  3. I used to post occasionally on the Rapture Ready forum, and the first question I asked was whether believing creationism was a salvation issue or not. As I'm sure you know, these people are hardcore fundamentalists, but most of them said it wasn't, but that they wouldn't trust the ministry of anyone who didn't accept creationism. Unfortunately the discussion didn't continue much longer after they discovered I was an atheist, but it seems to me that creationism isn't such a central issue that they would deem it necessary to put it into a statement of faith.

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  4. I wrote an article about this a while ago which you can find here:

    http://www.ecalpemos.org/2009/04/can-you-be-christian-and-believe-in.html

    However, the evidence is that churches in the US are bringing this into their statements of faith so its only a matter of time before we have it here.

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  5. Hi Gordon, I read the above link you posted on the 8th. Had a good laugh, actually, because I've gotten the "I'll be praying for you" line before. I went to a conservative Christian University, but the biology dept. all taught evolution (not surprising, since biology, at its most fundamental, is the study of evolution)--they were Christians also (if that hadn't been the case then I probably wouldn't be a Christian today, but that was my first real exposure to the fact that one can reasonably believe in both). Anyway, some girl (who wanted to go to med school, which scared me a bit) gave me a Ken Ham tape to listen to (this was early 90's) to try to convince me to change my ways. I wrote a ~17 page rebuttal, as everything on the tape was complete bollocks. Really, just unbelievable crap (with Due respect to Mr. Ham). It frightened me, actually, because she was basically brainwashed into believing this stuff was true. It seems that it would be challenging for a Christian to present a reasonable Faith to the world when much of it is fundamentally unreasonable. Anyway, this whole episode ended with an "I'll pray for you." I'll take prayers any day, but please, not because I think creationism is bogus.

    So I agree that many a fundamentalist might think that a Christian can still be saved if they believe in evolution. They will probably also believe, as your link suggests, that their Faith has a fundamental flaw in it, and most will probably be unsure as to whether or not that person will really be saved (my opinion). You know their literature, etc., they ultimately believe that the belief in evolution is satanic and is responsible for practically every social ill in society today, and in my experience that isn't an understatement.

    Of course, excluding the satanic part, they're partly right (in my opinion). Afterall, the primary mechanism of evolution is death. Once could claim that evolution presents a better case for the need of the Gospel than does Genesis...well, one could try and claim it, anyway.

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  6. Thanks JJ. That article was just a rehearsing of what I used to say to people when I was a creationist.

    I helped to promote Ham's first tour of the UK in the early 90's. His main argument was that racism, teen pregnancy, homosexuality and the demise of the church was entirely due to Christianity being undermined by the teaching of evolution in schools. If I could go back in a time machine I would stand up at on eof the meetings (which were before he was known or revered as he is now) and ask him how all those things existed before Darwin was born, and are even mentioned in the bible.

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  7. I can confirm that we now have a church in Scotland with YEC in its statement of faith:

    "Independent Baptists believe the Genesis account of Creation. We believe that the Genesis creation record is to be accepted literally, and not allegorically or figuratively. We believe that man was created directly in God’s own image and after His own likeness. We adhere to the Biblical teaching that all things were created in six, twenty-four hour days, and not as the result of any form of evolutionary processes."

    http://www.bbcperth.co.uk/Pages/our_beliefs/default.html

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