Literal Interpretation of the Bible
Divine Design and Purpose in Nature
A Universal Noachian Flood
Christ; God and Man;
Our Only Savior
This Newsletter distributed to those who request it -- Also in Bulk. It is financed by contributors.
-- Walter Lang, Grace Lutheran Church, Caldwell.
The last issue of the Bible-Science Newsletter received the largest distribution to date. Of the 4,000 copies printed, about 900 were mailed individually. Nearly all of the rest were distributed at the following conventions of the Lutheran Church -Missouri Synod: Southern Illinois District, Northern Illinois, Ontario, Indiana, Ohio, Western, South Wisconsin, Northwest, English, Eastern, and Alberta-British Columbia. Copies were also distributed at the convention of the Evangelical Lutheran Synod.
We thank all those who helped in the distribution. There was fine response from the Praesidium of the Missouri Synod and from presidents of the various Districts. Dr. Oliver Harms attending the Northwest District convention at Portland, Oregon, June 22-26, stated that he and the vice-presidents agreed with every word of Dr. Zimmerman's essay delivered at that convention. This essay was strictly creationist. Favorable reactions were noted from presidents of the Oklahoma, Southern Illinois, Southern Nebraska, Indiana, British Columbia and Alberta Districts. Dr. A. Nitz, a vice-president of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, has strongly supported both the Newsletter and the Creation Research Society.
At the Northwest District convention in Portland we noticed that each copy of the Newsletter distributed on the first morning at each desk, was picked up and kept. None was tossed away.
We are beginning to have a wider distribution in libraries. Some libraries have asked for the Newsletter and many individuals have asked that the Newsletter be mailed to certain libraries.
INSTITUTE IN LOS ANGELES
Negotiations are in progress between the Southern California Lutheran Men and the Bible-Science Newsletter staff to develop a Bible-Science Institute in the Los Angeles area. Spokesman for the California group is Mr. Paul Haekstedde.
According to present plans, the Institute will be held November 9-13, at six different locations. Lecturers will go from location to location so that each location will have a different lecturer on each of the five evenings. Locations being considered are:
ALHAMBRA - Emmaus First Lutheran
SAN FERNANDO - First Lutheran Church
ANAHEIM - Zion Lutheran Parish Hall
INGLEWOOD - Good Shepherd Lutheran Church
SAN DIEGO - Trinity Lutheran Church
DOWNTOWN LOS ANGELES - Church of the Open Door
The following lecturers have been engaged:
Dr. George Howe, biologist
- Westmont College, Santa Barbara, California. "God Created
Plants". Slide lecture.
Professor Wilbert Rusch, M.S. - Concordia Junior College, Ann Arbors, Michigan. "Science and the Bible''.
Dr. Walter E. Lammerts, geneticist, now retired. He will return from a four-month plant tour throughout the Pacific in time for the Institite and will speak on the subject of Mutations and God's Power.
Clifford Burdick, M.S., geologist - Tucson, Arizona will speak on "Geology and the Bible".
Dr. Bolton Davldheiser, biologist - Biola Institute of Los Angeles, speaking on Evidences of God in Biology.
The Rev. Walter Lang of Caldwell, Idaho speaking on "Genesis One and Two". This will be illustrated with slides.
At times there will be two lecturers
in one evening. There will be a registration charge. All persons
in the Los Angeles area will want to reserve these dates. We feel this
Institute will be a success as was the Institute held in Caldwell,
Idaho last January at which Dr. Paul Zimmerman was the lecturer.
THE CHRISTIAN AND SCIENCE
by Dr. Paul Zimmerman
The essay was divided somewhat like this: Proper Areas of Activity for Science and Theology, Verbal Inspiration, What Evolution and Creation Do and Do Not Say, Theistic Evolution, Genesis Creation Account Compared to the Babylonian and Other Creation Accounts, Is the Genesis Account Poetical?, The Gap Theory, Progressive Creation Theory, The First Man from the Viewpoint of Paleontology, Can We Create Life and Scientific Theories of Origin of Life, A Consideration of the Terms "kind" and Creation "days", A Discussion of the Age of the Earth, Various Methods of Dating the Age of the Earth.
of Activity for Science and Theology
First of all Dr. Zimmerman shows that those who think the Bible can no longer be accepted literally because of the advances of science, generally understand, neither science nor the Bible. Science must be limited "in its investigations to the things that are physical, the things which can be observed, measured, and subjected to experimentation. Science has no way of dealing with the supernatural, whether that includes the miracles reported in the Old and New Testaments or the activities of evil spirits or whatever supernatural affairs may be referred to in Scripture".
Zimmerman goes on to show the Bible does have something authoritative to say on origins. He quotes Dr. Stanley Beck from Dialog who says that evolution of the Darwinian type is proven as fact. Of this he says: "Actually Mr. Beck is making a statement which is more in the realm of propaganda than of scientific fact. It is not true that human evolution is no longer in contention. It is not true that evolutionary theory has been demonstrated experimentally".
Here Dr. Zimmerman points out that some people today claim the Bible is not inspired in every word, that it is full of errors, that its view of the world and its origins was borrowed from myths. Because of the influence of theories of science, we have a real problem.
and Creation Do and Do Not Say
In this section Dr. Zimmerman shows there is change, there is change within the kind, and from species to species. This might be called legitimate evolution. He indicates that what is often called micro-evolution and the doctrine of creation are about the same. When we speak of macro-evolution, where there is evolutionary change from kind to kind, we find conflict. He points out the neo-Darwinian theory of evolution is no proven fact. He quotes Dr. G.A. Kerkut of England and a Swedish botanist, Heribert Nilsson, who show the weaknesses of this theory. He continues by quoting Dr. Walter E. Lammerts and Dr. J.J. DeWitt of the Republic of South Africa. He then indicates how the Bible states man was perfect and degenerated and how Darwinian evolution has man evolving from a lower level and gradually developing his moral responsibility.
"Theistic evolution is the entire evolutionary theory modified only by insisting that God was behind the process and used evolution as his means of creating." Zimmerman quotes Dr. Kirtly Mather in "Science Ponders Religion": 'When a theologian accepts evolution as the process used by the Creator, he must be willing to go all the way with it. Not only is it an orderly process; it is a continuing one. The golden age for man - if any - is in the future, not in the past ... Moreover, the creative process of evolution is not to be interrupted by any supernatural intervention". He then shows how theistic evolution is against our confessions and against the Bible.
Account Compared to the
Babylonian and Other Creation Accounts
In this section Zimmerman shows the vast difference between the Babylonian and the Biblical accounts and how the Biblical account could not have been derived from the Babylonian. The Genesis account states God created matter; the Babylonian account claims matter is eternal. In Genesis God speaks, and it is so. In the Babylonian myth, chaos opposes God. The Babylonian account is heavily polytheistic. The stars are gods. Genesis is strictly monotheistic. Genesis has seven days in its account. In the Babylonian account seven occurs merely as the number of tablets on which the story is written. Finally, in the Babylonian 'Enuma Elish' epic the purpose is clearly to prove the world belonged to Babylon, Marduk, the city god, displaces Ea, the god of wisdom, as creator.
Is the Genesis
This is the common contention of neo-orthodoxy today. Zimmerman has a good bit to say on this point. He admits there is poetry in the Bible, even in Genesis, but this does not make it less factual. He speaks of the anthropomorphisms present in Genesis One and Two and quotes Dr. Ed. J. Young: "The words 'and God breathes' may be termed anthropomorphic, but that is the extent to which the term may be employed. The man was real, the dust was real, the ground was real as was also the breath of life. To these elements of the verse the term 'anthropomorphism' cannot legitimately be applied." He further quotes Young: "For that matter even the presence of figurative language or schematic arrangement taken by themselves do not warrant the conclusion that the days were not chronological".
Zimmerman shows that Roman Catholic
scholars can allow for evolution, though not all do. They speak of
the parallelism of the days; where day one deals with the creation of light
and may be much longer than twenty-four hours; where day four deals with
light bearers that parallel to day one; where day two deals with the firmament
and the dividing of the waters and day five is parallel and deals with
the filling of waters by animal life; and where day three deals with dry
land and day six with the filling of dry land with animals and man. He
then shows how this parallelism does not hold out. This does not prove
the account is Poetical, because Hebrew poetry is poetical.
Young is further quoted to show that characteristics of Hebrew poetry are lacking in Genesis One and Two; that the story is divided into paragraphs, not into Hebrew poetical strophes, that these two chapters are a prelude to a severely historical book which is labeled geneological. Young concludes this is sober history.
The Gap Theory
Dr. Zimmerman also spends some time speaking on the gap theory which says that the world was first made in Genesis 1:1, then destroyed with the fall of angels, Genesis 1:2, and then restored in six days in Genesis 1:3. He states that the proponents of this theory generally are good Bible scholars, they believe in verbal inspiration and in the days of creation as being twenty-four hours. Zimmerman himself does not accept the gap theory.
Zimmerman also distinguishes between the theistic evolution theory and progressive creation. Progressive creation allows the millions of years and development from one cell. It contends God created from time to time, when necessary, but over long periods of time. It answer to this he shows how vital the doctrine of creation is to the entire Bible and how often the Bible refers to it as stated in Genesis One and Two, hardly allowing any of the long periods of time the progressive creationists demand. Dr. John Klotz is quoted to the effect the proposition that two individuals were selected out of a race of anthropoid humanoids to become the first man and woman is not at all satisfying scientifically nor is it indicated in any way in the Book of Genesis whether Genesis is regarded as poetry or as prose.
Man from the Viewpoint of Paleontology
Here Dr. Zimmerman goes into discoveries in East Africa and quotes from J.J. DeWitt and from William Laughlin in SCIENCE magazine to show that no matter how far back we go, we still have man, Homo Sapiens. There is change, there is variation, but man is always man.
Can We Create
Life? Scientific Theories of Origin of Life
Here Dr. Zimmerman is on home ground as chemist. He demonstrates that it is virtually impossible to create life because of the tremendous complexities in the cell, in the genes, and acids which form the basis for the cell and life. He indicates we can take the components of a virus and somewhat restore it. Viruses are not life cells, but rather feed on them. This is still a long way from creating life.
of the Terms "Kind" and "Days"
The difference between species and kind is shown. There can be development of species, and scientists generally point to this to try to prove evolution of kinds. Kinds remain fixed. If kind meant species, Noah's ark could not have held the hundreds of thousands of species of various types of animals and birds. However, it could have contained all the kinds.
Of "days" Zimmerman says: "Moreover, interpreting these days as periods of time does not really solve the problem. For the plants come before the sun, and vegetation precedes animal life. Neither of these factors fit into an evolutionistic scheme". He shows the natural meaning of "day" to be twenty-four hours; that evening and morning fixes this as twenty-four hours, that the use of a cardinal number as first, second, etc. in the Bible is always a day of twenty-four hours. Exodus 20:11 also fixes these days as twenty-four hours.
of the Age of the Earth
On this point Zimmerman states we should insist the earth is a young earth, but we should not try too hard to fix an exact age. He says the Bible does not fix exactly the age of the earth and neither should we. He himself does not place the limit at a specific figure. He indicates some of the problems with genealogies upon which basis Ussher fixed the date of 4004 B.C.
of Dating Age of Earth
A good bit of time in his essay was devoted to the various radioactive methods of dating the earth. He explained their processes and showed how they vary and how little we know what God actually put into the world when He made it. Since these processes are used widely today to support an old earth, we should be familiar with the processes and their weaknesses.
In conclusion Dr. Zimmerman indicates we should know the weakness of science, know the Bible does not tell us everything, that faith in the Bible and in Christ should not be shaken. There is an excellent bibliography at the end of the essay.
CHRISTIAN LITERATURE AS AFFECTED
EVOLUTIONARY THEORY SINCE 1859
This is a class paper written by John Ellingson. This Newsletter assisted him in finding sources. 1859 is the date when Darwin published his "Origin of the Species". The material is divided into that which rejects evolution, that which reconciles to it, and that which accepts it.
Bettex - "The Six Days of Creation" (1924)
Wm. Bryan - "In His Image" (1922)
Francis Brunner - "The Evolutionary Theory ... Unsupported ..." (1900)
Jessie W. Gibbs - "Evolutionary and Christianity" (1930)
Theo. Graebner - "Evolution: An Investigation and a Criticism" (1922)
John Klotz - "Genes, Genesis and Evolution" (1955)
Meldau - "Why We Believe in Creation, Not in Evolution" (1955)
Henry Morris - "The Twilight of Evolution" (1963)
Byron C. Nelson - "After Its Kind" (1952)
George McCready Price - "The New Geology" (1913)
A.M. Rehwinkel - "The Flood" (1951)
B.N. Watts - "The Incomparable Book" (1946)
Whitcomb and Morris - "The Genesis Flood" (1961)
Zimmerman - "Darwin, Evolution and Creation" (1959)
lists the following works as attempting
to reconcile Christianity with evolution:
Barth - "Dogmatics in Outline" (1959)
Beecher - "Evolution and Religion" (1885)
Bixby - "The Crisis in Morals" (1891)
Derlodot - "Darwinism and Catholic Thought" (1922)
Dwight - "Thoughts of a Catholic Anatomist" (1912)
Goldsmith - "Evolution or Christianity, God or Darwin" (1924)
Grebstein - "Monkey Trial" (1960)
Hodge - "What is Darwinism?" (1874)
Lever - "Creation and Evolution"
McCosh - "The Religious Aspect of Evolution" (1888)
Mixter - "Evolution and Christian Thought Today" (1959)
Mivart - "On the Genesis of the Species" (1871)
Nogar - "The Wisdom of Evolution" (1963)
0'Brian - "Evolution and Religion" (1932)
Richardson - "The Bible in an Age of Science" (1961)
Woodrow - "Evolution" (1884)
Wright - "Some Analogies Between Calvinism and Darwinism" (1880)
Zahm - "Evolution and Dogma" (1896)
are listed by Ellingson as accepting evolution:
Abbott - "The Evolution of Christianity (1892)
DeChardin - "The Divine Millieu" (1960)
DeChardin - "The Phenomenon of Man" (1959)
Darrow - "Through Science to God" (1925)
Drummond - "Natural Law in the Spiritual World" (1884)
DuNouy - "Human Destiny" (1947)
Fiske - "Outlines of Cosmic Philosophy" (1874)
Frothingham - "Religion of Humanity" (1872)
Gray - "Natural Science and Religion" (1880)
Hauret - "Beginnings: Genesis and Modern Science" (1955)
Johnson - "What is Reality?" (1891)
Lack - "Evolutionary Theory and Christian Belief, the Unresolved Conflict" (1957)
Messenger - "Theology and Evolution" (1949)
Munger - "The Freedom of Faith" (1904)
Powell - "Religion as a Factor in Human Evolution" (1895)
Savage - "Evolution and Religion" (1886)
Shailer - "Contributions of Science to Religion" (1924)
Smyth - "Old Faiths in New Light" (1879)
Storr - "Development and Divine Purpose" (1906)
White - "A History of the Warfare of Science with Theology in Christendom" (1897)
(The on-line presentation of
this issue and those
following contain only excerpted sections and contents.)