1. My Introduction to Young-Earth Creationism
Let me say upfront that I did not study Evolution when I was in school. I was an Arts student and where I come from, that meant that Science was studied only generally – General Science, it was called. General Science contained aspects of Biology, Chemisty, and Physics. Nothing too in-depth, you understand. Just enough to have a basic working knowledge of the world around us. I had read and understood that evolution was a scientific fact and that it tried to explain how life came about.
When I became a Christian, my understanding of how life came about did not change. In fact, I did not even think that there was any conflict between the account given in Genesis and the account accepted by the rest of the world. I knew that God was in control of everything.
Then when I was in university, something happened to change my outlook. I started hearing comments about how the earth is only 6,000 years old. How men did NOT come from apes, but were created in the image of God. How evolution is all wrong. I was not exposed to a lot of this type of talk, but these ideas started to germinate in my ready-to-learn-all-it-means-to-be-a-Real-Christian mind. The seeds were planted.
After I got married, we started attending a small, informal fellowship. The leader of that church was rather outspoken and opinionated. He believed that Genesis had to interpreted literally, which meant that the earth had to be no more than 7,000 years old. He mocked evolutionary theory – he gave an account of how whenever he heard someone say, “millions of years,” he would retort, “What a load of gaaaar-bage!” I felt uncomfortable with the idea of scoffing, but I began thinking that I HAD to reject evolution and fully embrace a literal interpretation of Genesis (especially the first 11 chapters).
Later, while still in this fellowship, I became acquainted with Young Earth Creationism leaders and spokespersons. They were all of the opinion that a true Christian MUST accept Young Earth Creationism. The idea was that evolution was synonymous with atheism. A Christian who believed in evolution was either ill-informed, or brainwashed by the world, or a compromiser. I swallowed this. I became a condescending, arrogant, judgemental scoffer. But I felt justified in my attitudes. After all, it was those evil, evil evolutionists who were teaching lies and pulling away millions of people (Christians!) from the Truth!
God was indeed taking me on a ride, but one which I had no idea where the destination would ultimately be!