First Issue - September 1963
PUBLISHED IN THE INTEREST OF AN EXCHANGE OF IDEAS BY THOSE WHO ARE CONCERNED WITH SCIENCE DEVELOPED FROM A FRAMEWORK IN HARMONY WITH A CONSERVATIVE VIEW OF THIS BIBLE
This Newsletter is being mailed to you from Caldwell, Idaho. There is no subscription price. Contributions to assist with the costs of mimeographing, secretarial help, and postage will be appreciated.
CREATION RESEARCH SOCIETY
Led by a tip from the Rev. Herman Otten of New Haven, Missouri (publisher of the "Lutheran News") we wrote to Dr. W.E. Lammerts of Livermore, California with reference to organizing a Bible-Science group which could coordinate the various sciences along thoroughly Biblical lines. He replied that a group of fundamental Christian scientists had already formed the Creation Research Society. Their creed is as follows:
1 The Bible is the written Word of God, and because it is inspired throughout, all its assertions are historically and scientifically true in all the original autographs. To the student of nature this means the account in Genesis is a factual presentation of simple historical truths.
2 All basic types of living things, including man, were made by direct creative acts of God during the Creation Week described in Genesis. Whatever biological changes have occurred since Creation Week have accomplished only changes within the original created kinds.
3 The great Flood described in Genesis, commonly referred to as the Noachian Flood, was an historic event world-wide in its extent and effect.
4 We are an organization of Christian men of science who accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior. The account of the special creation of Adam and Eve as one man and one woman and their subsequent fall into sin is the basis for our belief in the necessity of a Savior for all mankind. Therefore salvation can come only through accepting Jesus Christ as our Savior.
Membership in this group is presently
limited to scientists with a Master of Science degree or its equivalent
in experience. Membership is $5.00 per year. The group intends to publish
quarterly and annual reviews.
President is W.E. Lammert and treasurer is Wilber Rusch.
To understand the need for a group such as this one must realize what happened to a group of Christian scientists, the American Scientific Affiliation, which was formed about twelve years ago. One of their publications in 1959 was "Evolution and Christian Thought Today" by Russel L. Mixter and others from this group. The authors allow for millions of years as the age of the world and maintain that a fundamental Christian may hold to this. While editing this book, Mixter was a professor at the conservative school of Wheaton. The Moody Bible Institute has directed us to "The Christian View of Science and Scripture" by Bernard Ramm of Baylor at Waco (1954).
We note these authors who have been influenced to believe in the millions of years, in time also reject verbal inspiration, and the factuality of the first eleven chapters of Genesis.
This seems to indicate there is a split not only between fundamentalists and modernists, but also a split in what was once the fundamentalist camp.
Because of this existing situation which bids fair to undermine the fundamental and evangelical position, that another organization on the research level is necessary. We welcome comment and exchange.
In this first issue it will be difficult to cover extensively all the fine material which is available. One worthy book is "The Genesis Flood" by Morris and Whitcomb. The authors advance the theory that the waters above the firmament in Genesis I, made on the second day, were in greater quantity than now. They shielded out radiation and produced an even climate, permitting the patriarchs before the Flood to live an average of 912 years. During the Flood these waters poured down and have not been replaced to their previous extent. Also, during the Flood there was much volcanic action. This would account for great changes in geography and climate and the large canyons of rivers which could hardly be made by present processes. It would also account for the vast numbers of fossils and fossil fuels.
Following the Flood there was rain and the rainbow, more radiation, more storms, people living much shorter lives. The Flood would account for most of the geological features which generally are ascribed to millions of years. These authors allow for an Ice-Age following the Flood. Morris believes the changes in carbonation after the Flood would allow first for the ice-caps over large sections of continents and then for the warming later which would melt them.
This book contains a detailed section on carbon-dating, showing its weaknesses, and pointing out other systems of dating ages, none of them going back more than about seven thousand years.
F.L. Marsh in "Evolution, Creation, and Science" (1947) says we have wasted at least one, if not two, generations trying to find a missing link. Had we used that time to develop straight research and better understanding the laws of nature, we could be two generations further ahead in research. We need men who will take the sciences and develop a different framework from the common evolutionary one. Morris and Whitcomb do this in geology, taking up where George McReady Price left off forty years ago.
Some of you may be familiar with the book "Creation, Facts, Theories, and Faith" by Theodore L. Handrich. Handrich is principal of a Lutheran school at Glencoe, Minnesota. In this book he accepts the special creation theory but mentions other theories which attempt to harmonize the Bible and evolution. He devotes considerable space to showing the Bible could allow more than 6000 years, according to Usher, going into the uncertainties of genealogies in the Bible. The book contains an excellent chapter on the formation of coal beds, indicating these tend to prove the Flood theory more easily than the evolutionary theory. His chapter on radioactivity as an age indicator is good, but not as up-to-date and complete as that by Morris and Whitcomb, his having been written in 1953 whereas Morris and Whitcomb wrote in 1962.
According to correspondence with Handrich he is interested in finding a pre-world in Genesis 1:1. He wants to allow for a world made before this world. His argumentation is detailed and thorough. Herman Otten and I hesitate to accept such a position which tends to indicate the Bible is not clear or that perhaps God merely accommodated Himself to men's ways of speaking. Perhaps others of you would like to engage in correspondence with Handrich, providing for more exchange.
THE ICE AGES?
In his book "Flood", Rehwinkel sort of ridicules the idea of ice ages. Handrich in "Creation, Facts, Theories and Faith", indicates there was at least one ice age following the Flood. He inclines to the view of Ymmanuel Velikovsky who published "The Worlds in Collision" in 1950 and who tries to prove that a meteor came close to the world to shift the world on its axis and this brought a melting of the ice caps. Handrich quotes from Velikovsky as follows: "If we lock at the distribution of the ice sheet in the Northern Hemisphere, we see that a circle, with its center somewhere near the east shore of Greenland or in the strait between Greenland and Baffin Land near the present magnetic pole, and a radius of about 3,600 kilometers, embraces the region of the ice sheet of the last glacial age. Northeastern Siberia is outside the circle; the valley of the Missouri down to 39° north latitude is within the circle. The eastern part of Alaska is included, but not its western part. Northern Europe is well within the circle; some distance behind the Ural Mountains the line curves toward the north and crosses the present polar circle. Now we reflect; Was not the North Pole at some time in the past, 20° or more distant from the point it now occupies - and closer to America? In like manner, the old South Pole would have been roughly the same 20° from the present pole." page 325 in Velikovsky and page 205 in Handrich.
Morris and Whitcomb, however, believe that change in carbonation after the Flood would be sufficient to explain the formation of the ice cap and when this normalized again, the ice-cap would recede. They see no reason why this could not have occurred after the Flood. They also see no reason for more than one ice age. The going and receding of the ice cap would explain what some think is evidence for four different ice caps.
It might be interesting to have more opinions on this; namely, was there an ice age or ice cap, or were there more than one, what caused it and what caused it to recede?
THE LONG DAY
In Joshua 10:12-14 we read: "Then spake Joshua to the Lord in the day when the Lord delivered up the Amorites before the children of Israel, and he said in the sight of Israel, Sun, stand thou still upon Gibeon; and thou, Moon, in the valley of Ajalon. And the sun stood still, and the moon stayed, until the people had avenged themselves upon their enemies. Is not this written in the book of Jasher? So the sun stood still in the midst of heaven, and hasted not to go down about a whole day. And there was no day like that before it or after it, that the Lord hearkened unto the voice of a man: for the Lord fought for Israel."
Many people have felt that since the earth is considered to go around the sun, God was merely accommodating Himself to man's way of thinking. This presents problems. If God does that here, could He not also do this in Genesis I? What about the doctrine of verbal inspiration?
One thing Morris points cut in another book entitled "The Bible and Modern Science" is that references to the long day are made in mythologies. He refers to T.W. Doane's book "Bible Myths". References to the long day are made in the Orphic hymns, in legends of the Hindus, Buddhists, Chinese, and the ancient Mexicans.
American Indians have a legend of the theft of the sun for one day. M.W. Stirling in a 1945 report of the Smithsonian Institute says the Polynesians have such a legend. The Greek legend says Phaethon disrupted the sun's course for a day. Herodtus, a Greek historian, states that priests of Egypt showed him records of such a day. Velikovsky states: "We go to the books with the historical traditions of the aborigines of Central America. In the Mexican Annals of Cuauhtitlan - the history of the empire of Clhuacan and Mexico written in Nahua-Indian (Nahuatl) - it is related that during a cosmic catastrophe that occurred in the remote past the night did not end for a long time."
Another explanation might be that the sun itself did stand still even in our theory of the earth revolving around the sun. Even in this theory the sun does not stand still but moves, as does the moon. Perhaps it was a change in the movement of the sun and moon which brought about this long day - even though today we generally believe the earth revolves around the sun.
In a textbook "General Biology" edited by William W. Bloom and Carl H. Krekeler of Valparaiso University, Interesting observations are made on viruses. On page 211 we read: "Viruses, too, are nucleoproteins, of the same order of size, as the genes", and like the genes, capable of self-duplication, though only in the presence of the cytoplasm of cells of other organisms. It has been profitable to think of them as naked genes, and basic studies on the viruses contribute to our understanding of the gene." On page 60 we continue: "it is impossible to say with certainty whether they are living or nonliving." They go on: "One would be inclined to call them living for they are capable of self-duplication, one of the most fundamental characteristics of living things, though they are capable of self-duplication only in the protoplasm of other organisms. Yet they can be obtained in chemically pure crystal form which is a characteristic usually associated with non-living substances. Some persons feel the viruses represent a stage between the non-living and living, illustrating a definite step in the process of evolution. Others feel the viruses represent organisms which have lost their own cytoplasm and are thus naked genes dependent on the cytoplasm of other cells."
What Bloom and Krekeler are trying to intimate (both of them avowed evolutionists) is that in the viruses we might have a missing link between inanimate and animate. The problem is they are always evil, producing disease. To the Christian this rather indicates a process of degeneration. Perhaps the viruses once were genes which controlled the body, perhaps toward eternity. Since the entrance of sin, they have degenerated to produce nothing but disease. There is no such thing as accidental development toward the better unless Christ enters to remove sin. Because of the influence of sin, there is inherent degeneration of the viruses standing in the way.
In a book "After Its Kind" by Byron C. Nelson, published by Augsburg in 192?, the author states quite strongly that Mendel's Law sounds the death knell to evolution. He says Mendel proved there is quite a variety within the species, but in a definite pattern. He indicates how Mendel's Law proves there is no possibility of crossing from one kind to another. He quotes Bateson, a famous British biologist, who says that Darwin would never have written his "Origin of Species" had he known Mendel's work. Mendel's work not only proves there is no variation outside the limits of natural species, but that nothing new can appear in the species. What may be new to man is not new to nature. Whatever appears in a species was already in its ancestors. Mendel's work also shows that the seat of all heredity is in the germ of "seed". Mendel shows how the earth could be repopulated from comparatively few forms after the Flood. Because of Mendel's Law, Nelson states on page 122: "The method of evolution is no longer said to be by gain but by loss."
These statements by Nelson interest us and we feel here is a real basis for exchange and discussion. Perhaps some of you readers would care to comment.
AND SECOND LAWS OF THERMODYNAMICS
Morris and Whitcomb in "Genesis Flood" point out two laws which militate against evolution in physics. First is the law of the conservation of energy, affirming that although energy can be converted from one form to another, the total amount remains unchanged - energy is neither being created nor destroyed at the present time. The second law states that, although the total amount remains unchanged, there is always a tendency for it to become less available for useful work. This is called "entropy". This would indicate there is no gain, no progress, no basic evolution toward the better. This indicates rather a retrogression, since energy becomes less useful, unless an outside force intervenes.
On page 222 these authors state: "It is not too much to say that these two laws provide the very foundation upon which the great superstructure of modern science and technology has been erected, All the various geological processes as well as all other physical and biological processes operate in accordance with these principles. In none of them is any energy or matter (matter may be regarded as one form of energy) being created. But during the six days of creation, both matter and energy were being created. Still more significantly, this newly-created matter and energy were being organized into increasingly complex and highly energized systems in exact contradistinction to the universal tendency toward, disorganization and de-energization experienced at the present time."
All of this would show that these laws universally accepted by all, militate against any evolution and point more to de-evolution than to evolution. It is because of these laws that perpetual motion is impossible. The laws of nature degenerate rather than show improvement. Improvement comes only when outside forces intervene. Real improvement comes only when the power of Christ's redemption intervenes to take away the source of degeneration, namely sin.
This Newsletter is to be an exchange, providing opportunity for theologians and scientists to correspond. Below are listed names to whom this Newsletter is presently being mailed.
WALTER E. LAMMERTS, PH.D., Livermore, California
JOHN W. KLOTZ, Ph. D., Fort Wayne, Indiana
FRANK MARSH, Ph. D., Berrien Springs, Michigan
EDWIN Y. MONSMA, Ph. D., Grand Rapids, Michigan
WILBERT H. RUSCH, SR. M.S., Ann Arbor, Michigan
ALFRED REHWINKEL, M.A. LLD, St. Louis, Missouri
ROD O'CONNER, Ph.D., Boseman, Montana
REV. PAUL OTTEN, Hill City, Minnesota
REV. WALTER SYLVESTER, Everett, Washington
MARK BARTLING, Springfield, Illinois
BERNHAKD E. KEISER, Ph.D., Trenton, New Jersey
MORNING CHAPEL HOUR, Huntington Park, California
REUBEN HAHN D.D., Chicago, Illinois
PAUL H. ZIMMERMAN, Ph. D., Ann Arbor, Michigan
RAYMOND F. SURBURG, TH.D. Ph.D., Springfield, Ill.
HENRY MORRIS, Ph.D., Blacksburg, Virginia
REV. HERMAN OTTEN, New Haven, Missouri
WILLIAM J. TINKLE, Ph.D., Eaton, Indiana
DUANE T. GISH, Ph.D., Kalamazoo, Michigan
JOHN J. GREBE, D. Sc., Midland, Michigan R.
LAIRD HARRIS, Ph.D., St. Louis, Missouri
THOMAS G. BARNES, D.Sc., El Paso, Texas
CLIFFORD L. BURDICK M.S., Tucson, Arizona
CARL W. LINESMANN, M.D., Midland, Michigan
JOHN N. MOORE, ED. D., East Lansing, Michigan
HAROLD SLUSHER, Ph.D., El Paso, Texas
DAVID A. WARRINGER, Ph.D., East Lansing, Michigan
WILLIS WEBB, Ph.D., White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico
LARRY HAGEN, Ph.D., Caldwell, Idaho
JEROLD DUGGER, Ed.D., Caldwell, Idaho
THEODORE LAETSCH, M.S., Caldwell, Idaho
LAURENCE W. FAULSTICK, M.A. Ph.D., Los Angeles 42, Calif.
THE REV. REINHOLD GOETJEN, North Hollywood, California
WILLIAM R. WRIGHT ME.D., West Allis, Wisconsin
ROLLAND NOTWHER, Springfield, Illinois
LUTHERAN RESEARCH INSTITUTE, North Arlington, New Jersey
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