In view of this growing, hostile reaction to Christianity, you need to keep these three things in mind as you hash out your plan of attack–or retreat.
Books supporting evolution are not in short supply.
Stand just inside my local Barnes and Noble and you’ll see what I mean.
Lining a shelf of the new and notable science publications and you’ll see books like The Universe: Order Without Design.
But it’s that last one–by none other than Richard Dawkins–that did it…
That got the gears going.
An Abundance of Books Easily Amuses Me
What surprised me most about this book was not that he wrote a book on the evidence of evolution…
But that he keeps on doing it. Systematically. Deliberately.
Naturally, his other books are just variations on the theme. The Blind Watchmaker. The God Delusion. The Selfish Gene.
Then there’s the hundreds more published by other authors. It’s a veritable cottage industry breaking into the big time.
But it’s also indicative of a sense of alarm about the future of evolution and the threat of superstition.
So, in the face of this sleepless opposition, what are Christians to do? Enter the Christian apologists.
Soon We Will Resort to Cage Matches
To be fair, neither is there a shortage of books AGAINST evolution.
For example, a month or two down the road Alistair McGrath, Phillip Johnson, Michael Behe, David Aikman–someone in the camp–will write a book called Evidence Against Evolution.
Or The REAL Greatest Show on the Earth: Evidence for Design.
Well, I’m banking on history here, because this is nothing more than the thrust, counter-thrust, counter-counter-thrust, counter-counter-counter thrust of our current scientific-spiritual climate.
A climate brewing for the last forty years.
My observation boils down to this: We get our underwear in a wad, convinced our privileged nation is going to hell in a hand basket, and so we’ve got to roll up our sleeves and single handedly stop the steamroller called evolution.
Or atheism. Or pagan spirituality. Whatever you want to call it.
I’m Guilty, Too
Believe me, I hear that same voice every time a new book opposing Christianity is published.
Whether it’s by Ehrman, Dawkins, Young or Tolle.
I want to write the book that saws off the branch that evolution sits on. That pulls out the rug from under higher criticism. That drowns false prophets.
Vicious, I know.
And don’t get me wrong: This competition is healthy.
Yet in view of this growing, hostile reaction to Christianity, you need to keep these three things in mind as you hash out your plan of attack–or retreat.
Three Reasons Why You Should Chill
One, this shouldn’t surprise one thoughtful Christian at all. Jesus promised both joy AND opposition.
Second, evolution, like all scientific views, has a shelf life.
In fact, it may surprise many to learn that most biologists at the start of the 20th Century rejected Darwin’s theory of evolution.
Darwinism revived when a handful of scientists merged his theory with Mendelian genetics.
This is not an isolated event. The history of science is full of such turnabouts.
Whatever Happened to These Scientific Theories?
Ever heard of the geosynclinal theory? Of course not. It was buried alive by plate tetonics.
Geocentric view of the universe? Shoved aside by Copernicus and his trusty heliocentric view.
That phlogiston caused heat? Well, oxidation burned this one at the stake.
Yes, Darwinism remains the consensus. [As do the others.] How long? A lot longer, I believe, than most because it is truly a great idea.
But that’s where it remains. As an idea.
Didn’t See This Coming
My final and third point is this: the global south–the region that covers South America, Africa and China.
What’s so special about it? It’s a region of the world that’s experiencing unprecedented growth in Christianity.
And here’s the kicker: This is occurring in the face of rigid anti-religious cultures.
It’s really quite astonishing if you think about what’s going on in China, for example.
Millions of converts in a nation very unkind to Christianity.
And while not the poverty and persecution of the extremely repressive Cultural Revolution in 3 decades China’s gone from 3 million Christians to anywhere from 54 million to 130 million.
Conservately, that’s 18-fold jump in Christians. Go with the liberal number and we’re talking a 43-fold leap.
And get this.
This wave of Christianity is not led by foreign missionaries: Christianity in China spreads from person to person.
Government crackdowns and public scrutiny. Christians beaten, arrested and church leaders jailed. Converts remaining anonymous for fear of persecution.
As much as changed in China, much has remained the same. But Christianity spreads.
So, while we fight for legislation to protect our freedom of speech or prayer or our right to insist marriage should remain between a man and woman, our Christian culture weakens.
Quite frankly, we could use a little persecution. And not only of the academic sort.
In the West, we have lots of bandwidth to do much with. No surprise that Christianity comes in 356 colors.
And then some.
And neither is it a surprise that most Christians affirm the view that as long as people leave them alone they’ll leave them alone.
We are comfortable and want to stay that way.
Perhaps it would do us well be stripped of our freedoms. To be limited in our movement.
Perhaps creating laws that decreed publishing a book opposing evolution could lead to death. To make a stand against abortion punishable by torture.
I predict that much of what we know as the church today would run for the woods if this ever occurred…
Or commit outright treason against Christ. [I’m sounding rather alarmist myself, aren’t I?]
In a nutshell, rather than wring our hands over the fear that the sky is falling in, our time would be better spent if we simply rejoiced and made discipleship of the nations a singular and solitary pursuit.
If we first sharpened our sense of sound doctrine and gospel truth.
And that we started with our own people.
Once we get back on that horse, then we can get on with the business of trampling evolution. Whacha think?