Ham believes it is essential Christians believe in and defend a six day creation. To help us to that end, he clarifies what science really is and how it differs from historical science. He defends the 24 hour understanding of yom. He helps us distinguish eisegesis (reading into the text one's own ideas) and exegesis. He critiques theories that attempt to reconcile an earth billions of years old with the biblical account of the earth, including evolutionary ideas. He reveals the problems with rejecting a global flood and identifies the necessity of believing in a historical Adam.
Ham writes, "This book is about the decline of the Church's view of Genesis 1-11, which has led to a catastrophic decline in believing in the absolute authority of the Word of God in the Church." (121) He is clear that a person's view of origins is not a salvation issue. But it is an authority issue and a gospel issue, he adds. (122)
He argues that this issue is not one where Christians can hold differing views, such as eschatology. It matter, he writes, "because it matters what God's Word clearly teaches." (124) Ham is adamant: "The authority of Scripture is what's at stake here." (131)
The strength of this book is emphasizing the ramifications of not believing Genesis 1-11 as presented in the Bible. This is a philosophical or theological work, not a scientific one. When he critiques the scientific view of the age of the earth, for example, he merely refers to man's fallible dating methods based on unproven assumptions.
This book will make you think about the literal days of creation, a global flood, and a historical Adam. It will also make you think about how the authority of science has been accepted over the authority of the Word. You will be challenged by Ham's call to return to the authority of God's Word - all of it.
What are our origins, how did we get here? Do we believe everything is true in the Bible, just as it is written? Or do we believe the theory of evolution? Perhaps, we want to have a foot in both camps. And that is what this book is about, Christians who want a little of each. A sort of hybrid Christian belief system made up of parts of the Bible, and parts of the evolution theory.
Currently, the biggest points of contention are the literal six-day creation, all of mankind descending from the same parents (a literal Adam and Eve), and a world-wide flood experienced by Noah in the ark. Some Christians today claim we are too modern or sophisticated to take the Bible at face value. Mankind's great intellect has developed "flawless" ways of dating the earth. Since humankind could not be wrong, man's postulations must trump the Biblical accounts, there has to be more to the story.
Quite a list of theories has been compiled by those who claim to know what God really did. This is a small sampling:
There might have been a gap of millions or billions of years between the very first and second verses in Genesis.
Or Adam and Eve were ape-like creatures that God brought into the Garden of Eden. God breathed the breath of life into them making them fully human. After that, they completely forgot about their animal past.
Perhaps the creation story and Noah's ark are just allegories or myths given to mankind.
And finally, a flood did happen, but not world-wide. Ancient man was too unenlightened to know the difference between the small space he occupied on this planet, and the entire globe. So if his tiny village flooded, he would say the whole world had a flood.
Many Christian universities now have one or more professors or administrators not only disbelieving in a six-day creation, but adopting one of these theories, and teaching it to our future pastors. Less the reader think this is only happening in liberal universities, it is going on in Christian colleges that were once thought of as very grounded and conservative.
Ken Ham states that in many churches today, the status quo seems to be not to worry about the accuracy of the Bible concerning man's history. Instead, ignore that question. Just believe in Jesus, and everything will work out okay.
Ken repeatedly makes the point that believing in a literal six-day creation, a world-wide flood, or Adam and Eve is not a salvation issue. Rather it is an issue of authority, the authority of God's word, the Bible.
By not believing part of the Bible, the foundation of the church is being undermined. Without a firm foundation, a fall will take place. Ken states that is just what is happening as shown by the mass exodus of youth from Christian beliefs. Man's theories, combined with throwing out, or adding to, God's word has caused many, including countless young people raised in Christian homes, to completely give up believing anything.
There was another time when man decided he knew how God really meant for events to happen. That whole affair involving Abraham, Sarah and Hagar, and the resulting fallout of that decision. The world is still dealing with the chaos involving the descendants of Ishmael and Isaac today. The old quote, "those who do not learn from the past are doomed to repeat it" seems to be appropriate here.
This is a five-star book that covers a subject I think all Christians should familiarize themselves with. The author does a good job in stating the case for believing the literalness of the Biblical accounts. Ham proves his points by using the words of Moses, Jesus and Paul who referred to an actual six-day creation, a world-wide flood and a real Adam and Eve. As Christians, we have been told to go to the Bible to discern truth. Depending on if something is in-line with the Bible, will determine what we will believe. I think the Bible should be used in that way with this subject as well.
Ham, a former atheist, is a seasoned Biblical scholar, a prolific writer and an enthusiastic believer in the literalness of the Bible. He has spent many years building an impressive museum devoted to proving the six-day creation account. This book contains a lot of information, and is not light reading. However, it is a readable work, and the knowledge gained will be well worth the effort.
Disclaimer: I received a copy of Six Days The Age of the Earth and the Decline of the Church from Master Books, a division of New Leaf Publishing Group free of charge in exchange for an honest review.
This new book, Six Days, will form a great foundation for many studies of Creation Science.
Ken Ham's writing epitomizes conviction and coherence, and as Christians we need to dispense both together whenever we write or speak.
As Mr. Ham points, out, there are many beliefs within Christianity about various doctrines. The end of the world, baptism, and speaking in tongues come to mind.
Those differences create a wild and beautiful variety of Christian expression, and lead to some deep debates. At the end of the day we acknowledge that we can't know for sure about most of those non-salvation issues, and many people would like to shelve beliefs about Creation in the same category, as things we must agree to disagree about.
And to some extent that is true, and we certainly don't have all the answers.
But as Mr. Ham points out, the end of the world is yet to come. We can't know for sure what God will do then, whereas Creation has already occurred and only one version of it can be true. And God has left us a record of His actions within the historical narrative of Genesis.
Six Days does a great job explaining the real difference between the many Creation theories: "Eisegesis Versus Exegesis."
It all comes down to what you bring to your Bible when you read it.
If you take your Bible and look at all the world, including fossils and apes and cavemen, through it, you will see vastly different things than if you take the dogmas of modern science and filter you Bible through them.
There is a time where each of us will have to ask: "Do I accept evolution because I really see it in the text? Do I see Adam and Eve as neolithic hunters? Do I see a gap of millions of years between verses one and two, followed by the so-called Lucifer's Flood? Or am I inventing those theories and fitting them into the Bible to accommodate modern science because 'They' will consider me ignorant and backwards if I don't?"
Because ,brothers and sisters, you are in good company if you choose to study Scripture, and if you see six day Creation in there, and if you see Adam and Eve as first man and woman in a sinless paradise. You are in the company of many well-read, professional, culturally-competent, highly educated men and women who are scientists in various fields.
After laying out the difference between exegesis and eisegesis, this book delves into several of the differing opinions on the age of the earth, the length of the creation days, evolution in Genesis, and the extent of the global flood.
I think that more people would take a stand for Biblical Creation if they knew they wouldn't be standing alone. The resources of Answers in Genesis remind us that we are in good company, thinking company, and that there are reasons for what we believe. We all need to be shown that the facts and observations of science can be viewed through either a Creationist framework or a naturalist framework. Our modern technology and all the inventions that make out lives better are not dependent on the theory of evolution, but on the study of our Creation and how it works. We can discourse logically and knowledgeably about true science without fear of crumbling faith or compromise.
So if anyone ever asks you what Creation Science is, or why people continue to believe in six day Creation, then you just hand them Mr. Ham's books Six Days and The Lie.
Those two books are the basic thesis, in my opinion, and will whet the appetite for more.
If we are going to interpret Scripture with Scripture starting at Genesis One, then we must be able to defend our own beliefs, and we need ask the right questions to continue learning even more.
The Answers in Genesis books are some of the best available today for the student of Creation Science.
Thank you to Master Books for my review copy of Six Days!
Ken Ham takes a strong stance on the literal 24-hour 6-day creation week which tends to rub some people the wrong way. He believes (as most people do) that his belief system is correct, so he goes on to defend it using the Bible. He then shows how not believing in the literal 6-day, 24-hour creation week can weaken some peoples faith. If you understand this, you'll be prepared for the type of book you'll be reading when you pick up Six Days: The Age of the Earth and the Decline of the Church.
In Six Days, Ken Ham begins with going over the importance of believing in a literal interpretation of Genesis and why having this foundation is important for all aspects of the Christian walk including salvation. (Without sin entering the world, there would be no need for a Savior.) He also talks about how evolution - man's worldview - has permeated every area of our society - including the church.
He then goes on to define science and talk about the difference between observational and historical science. He explains how historical science is not based upon observations but rather faith in either the Biblical worldview or man's worldview. He also talks about how Christianity and science are not mutually exclusive, and believers can indeed believe in a literal interpretation of Genesis.
These ideas are the foundation of the book while the rest of the book goes more in-depth into the ideas and gives more explanation and proof for the belief in the literal 24-hour, 6-day creation week. If you're familiar with Ken Ham and Answers in Genesis, you will see that this book takes all of those teachings and wraps them up all in one place. He shows the importance of believing in a literal translation, why adding evolution to the equation is hurting the church, and why we need to rebuild the foundation of our belief system for the church (and society) to turn away from its current downward spiral.
Six Days is a lot to digest, so it's not a quick read. It's going to rub certain individuals the wrong way, and it's geared, in my opinion, towards Christians. If you do not like Ken Ham's teachings, this book is not for you. If you want to learn more about the literal 24-hour, 6-day creation week and why it's important, this is a wonderful book as it covers everything.
Disclosure: I received a copy of this book to help facilitate the writing of a frank and honest review. A positive review is not expected nor guaranteed. All opinions are my own.
I have to say this book has surprised me. I expected it to be full of information that I already know. I was wrong. Ham (as usual) has done an excellent job of researching and compounding a large quantity of information. He brings together the proof and science of God's creation of the Earth in 6 days. In doing so he also brings to light the movement of some preachers and churches that are trying to change the Bible to align with Big Bang science and/ or the age of the Earth being millions of years old. I've personally heard preachers say things like, "We don't know that each of those first 6 days were thousands or millions of years long." Honestly I didn't give it much thought. That's how our minds our infiltrated and indoctrinated into ideas that aren't Biblical. Here he gives us the facts and reasoning behind belief in a literal 6 days. In his typical fashion he presents his information clearly using pictures and other visual effects when needed.
Ham also spends a good deal of time explaining why we need to make sure our children understand our belief and our reasoning behind those beliefs. He's right when he says that in general churches spend too much time teaching Bible stories and not enough time teaching apologetics. However I am one that is a strong believer in parents taking the time to teach their children Biblical truths and then attending a church that supports those teachings, not expecting the church to do all the teaching. In this busy world it is important that we take time to show our children our beliefs every day, not just on Sunday. It is no wonder that so many that are raised in Christian homes grow up to abandon those Christian beliefs because they were only modeled on Sunday mornings.
So from this book let's take away a strong belief in the Bible. The whole Bible. Including those first 6 days. Let's also take away the importance of talking with our children about our beliefs and how to defend them. And let's look forward to this debate and pray that God uses it as a time to strengthen believers, open the eyes and ears of the unbelievers, and spread His message.
I received a free copy of this book as a member of the Book Reviewers for New Leaf Publishing group. All opinions are my own.