As a Christian, how do I support Creationism without sounding like a bigot? I haven’t been approached by anyone on this topic just yet, but I know that someone along the line will come up to me one day (while I’m doing my daily devotionals at a coffee shop or something) asking me a load of questions on God and my beliefs. I worry that I won’t know what to say in order support WHY I believe in God. As you can tell by this comment already, it’s not my greatest forte.
I sort of love how you phrased this question because it just cracked me up. I’m not trying to be mean: but if no one has approached you about Creationism Vs. Evolution and you’re trying to get your ammo ready, that should give you a big hint already about priorities.
While it’s cool to be well-versed in the latest apologetics, in the end no one actually cares about evolution or young-earth-theory or the homosexuality debate or predestination or neo-con politics or the defense of evil or any of the other ghetto subculture arguments within religion.
If you’re honest with yourself, you don’t really care about it either. Not when your wife is in the cancer ward; not when your five year old is on life support; not when the bills keep coming and you got laid off; not when you get that phone call that changes your life. When I was lying in a hospital bed near death from swallowing a bottle of pills to off myself: trust me, I was NOT thinking of how to rationally defend God nor how to disprove Him. Rational humans go way deeper.
What you really want to know during the valley is how to make it one more day, and cold-comfort theology will not work there.
I’m not being melodramatic: I’m saying that on your deathbed, you’ll have a clarity over the entire scope of human history about what was really important, and the second you step into Heaven, all the weight of false burdens in our world will appear like the nonsense it really is.
People have a way of latching onto one trivial topic, pushing it WAY over the top, beating that hobbyhorse to death, and continually emphasizing tired points because they love the sound of their own voice.
It still amuses me that debates on homosexuality and abortion have “two sides” simply because this is the way we’ve always done it, with no subtlety, while homosexuals and pregnant women are struggling just like everyone else to make huge decisions in their lives — and the church ain’t lifting a finger to help.
If you don’t want to “sound like a bigot,” it’s not enough to avoid bigotry. You just love people. That sounds like a simple answer, but in practice it’s insanely difficult — because we tend to only love the people we agree with, or who can give us something back, or who are likeable.
But if that guy ever comes up to you in Starbucks and slams you about Creationism, I really hope your response will NOT be, “Let me tell you the nineteen reasons why evolution is wrong.” You might be right in some sense, but you won’t be right at all.
I remember reading a popular apologetics site recently where the blogger just deconstructed an atheist argument piece by piece, and while it was well-written with sound points, it just had such a crappy attitude that rang hollow and ugly. No atheist will ever read that and think, “Oh wow, okay I get it now. Time to give my life over to the Bible.” No. One. Ever.
In every single one-on-one counseling session, when people ask me about Creationism or atheism or sexuality, I try to hear the question underneath the question. Why has this person latched onto this single topic as their obstacle to knowing God? Sure, people can deny they have an agenda. But dig deep enough, and you’ll hit the real issue.
It’s almost always the same. Someone might yell, “Why you Creationists so bigoted?” And I say, “You don’t actually care about that.” And after some digging, they say, “Yeah — this church really screwed me over.” Everything is relational, human, personal, and don’t let anyone ever tell you otherwise.
It’s in that moment you keep loving them. You share your testimony, because your belief in God will partly equate to how much Jesus has uppercut your whole life. Transformation is evidence, you know. Sure, know your doctrine and stay sharp on theology and have a reasoned response to the hard questions. I do believe Christianity satisfies all our intellectual needs and the greatest minds of human history. But Jesus didn’t die on a cross to answer all our crazy questions. He is above every question; he himself is the answer. If you start there, then faith has a reason that the intellect cannot deny.
Check out my Facebook.