Saturday, 21 February 2009

Skeptic Michael Shermer Ventures On Board a British Noah’s Ark

There’s room for many-a-more on this boat. This model is at the Answers in Genesis Creation Museum.

Joel Kontinen

In the latest issue of E-Skeptic, Michael Shermer recounts his adventures in a rather exceptional place. Shermer, the editor of Skeptic magazine, was bold enough to venture into Noah’s Ark Zoo Farm in Wraxall, Bristol, England during his recent visit to Charles Darwin’s homeland.

The zoo, which houses animals such as white rhinos, giraffes, boa constrictors, ostriches and iguanas, attracts 125 000 visitors per year.

Anthony Bush, who runs the farm with his wife, believes in a literal global flood and is sceptical of radiometric dating methods. So far, so good.

However, he is not a traditional young earth creationist. He believes that God created the world 100 000 years ago. Before the creation of Adam and Eve approximately 21 000 years ago, these was a pre-Adamite period when dinosaurs lived.

Even this is too much for Shermer, a true believer in millions of years of Darwinian struggle for life. Bush’s explanations did not convince him.

Skeptics are known for their skepticality. There is one notable exception, however. When it comes to Darwinian evolution, they dare not question it. For a pure-bred skeptic, evolution must have happened so it cannot be doubted.

While Mr. Bush’s stand against evolution is to be lauded, his decision to expand the beginning of earth history beyond the creation week is problematic.

Genesis clearly teaches us that death came into the world after Adam and Eve sinned and the New Testament authors affirm this in several passages. The Apostle Paul, for example, states in Romans 5:12:

Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all men because all sinned.

And in 1 Corinthians 15:21 he says:

Death came through a man.

The fossil record is a record of death, suffering and violence. Old bones are witness of what Lord Tennyson wrote in a poem published in 1844, fifteen years before Darwin’s On The Origin of Species:

Tho' Nature, red in tooth and claw
With ravine, shriek'd against his creed.

It was a far cry from the very good world of Genesis 1 and 2. Adding extra years to the Genesis record is bad exegesis. While all efforts to undermine belief in Darwinian evolution are welcome, the main issue should be the veracity of God’s Word.

And the Bible does not speak about millions of years. Exodus 20:11 says:

For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day.

This verse alone should refute the possibility that there were 79 000 years between the beginning of creation and the creation of Adam and Eve. Moreover, Jesus Himself says in Mark 10:6:

At the beginning of creation God 'made them male and female’.

The beginning was not 79 000 years after the beginning, however.


Noah’s Ark Zoo Farm web pages.

Shermer, Michael. 2009. A Skeptic Goes Inside Noah’s Ark. (17 February)