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Open Letter to Richard Dawkins and to the UK's Channel 4 Television

I watched your programme broadcast on 16th January on Channel 4. You expressed indignation that Christians and Jews should be allowed to teach their faith to their children. Does it ever occur to you that what you believe about the origin of life is equally a ‘faith’ which is to be accepted without question by millions of children and adults who are taught it in the education system and the media?

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I watched your programme broadcast on 16th January on Channel 4. You expressed indignation that Christians and Jews should be allowed to teach their faith to their children. Does it ever occur to you that what you believe about the origin of life is equally a ‘faith’ which is to be accepted without question by millions of children and adults who are taught it in the education system and the media?

Since none of us were there when life began everything we believe about it is an act of faith. You are reading back into time supposedly scientific conclusions, which are actually extremely questionable. I have never found a satisfactory explanation from evolutionists for some very basic questions about your theory.

1. Where did the matter which exploded in the ‘Big Bang’ come from?

2. If the Big Bang is the explanation for the existence of the universe, how did an ordered world come into being out of something which would have generated disorder (an explosion)? Our observation of explosions (e.g. a bomb going off) shows that they cause matter to move from order to disorder, not disorder to order. How can you explain our marvellous planet which has all the hugely complex parameters necessary for life (distance from the sun, atmosphere, water cycle, soil, plants able to provide food etc) coming into being by a random process?

3. Darwin himself had little to say about the origin of the first life form by the forces of natural selection. Since the discovery of DNA we now know that there are no simple life forms but every cell contains a huge amount of information. To believe that this could have come about by random forces is the equivalent of believing the information in the Encyclopaedia Britannica could have been put there in the same way. According to your belief not only did such incredibly complex matter have to arise by accident it also had to have the power to reproduce itself otherwise the arrival of life would have been no more than a very temporary blip on the evolutionary horizon. All reproductive systems are highly complex but vital to the survival of the species.

4. Darwin acknowledged that 'to suppose that the eye could have been formed by natural selection (evolution) seems absurd in the highest possible degree.' You are on record as saying that 'it would only take about 364,000 generations to evolve a good fish eye with a lens.' This does not explain how a creature which needs sight to survive managed to carry on living for all these millions of years without eyes. Hugely complex organs like the eye, the heart, the brain etc are all vital to survival. Even more vital are the reproductive systems of creatures. All creatures that reproduce sexually require a perfectly functioning male and female to produce the next generation. How can such a system have developed over millions of years of trial and error as must be assumed by evolution? If the system is not functioning in the first generation the species dies out. The Genesis record that God made all creatures able to reproduce after their own kind makes much more sense on this issue than the conclusion of evolution.

5. Darwin acknowledged the absence of transitional forms in the fossil record and in observable life forms. There is no problem in believing in variation within species (short beaked and long beaked finches etc). But there is absolutely no evidence of variation from one species to another taking place or in the fossil record. There are also huge problems with this theory. For example how did the first bird develop the power to fly? If wings evolved over millions of years during the time they were evolving they would have been an encumbrance not an advantage. What would stop cat eating bird before the bird developed its wings? In which case bird species dies out before it learns to fly!

No doubt you have answers to these questions which satisfy you, but they do not satisfy everyone. You are asking people to believe that something could come out of nothing, that an explosion could create an ordered universe, that incredibly complex life forms could arise spontaneously out of non life and have the ability to reproduce and develop higher life forms. I don’t believe this! But you are allowed to teach this to our children and to ridicule those who don’t believe your theory on TV without giving them a fair opportunity to give a reasoned defence of your faith. The Christians you chose to interview were either on the very wacky end of the US evangelical scene like the man who agreed with killing those who work in abortion clinics or liberals like the Bishop of Oxford who agrees more with you than with what the Bible teaches.
On the subject of the Bible, your highly selective use of quotations to pillory the God of the Bible as a sadist ignored context and the overall teaching of the book. The significance of the Abraham and Isaac story is that Abraham did not sacrifice Isaac. Child sacrifice was common in the pagan religions of the tribes around Israel at the time and is consistently condemned in the Bible. In our time child sacrifice has again returned as we sacrifice unborn children to our gods of convenience and lust. There is a deeper message about faith in Genesis 22 which is beyond the scope of this letter. The incident of the man sending his daughter out to be raped by the mob in Judges 19 is hardly held up as a model of practice in the Bible! As the Bible is a realistic book it tells it like it is and does not gloss over gross acts. The period of the Judges is summed up in the last verse of the book ‘Everyone did what was right in his own eyes’ – i.e. everyone did their own thing rather than doing what was right in the eyes of God – rather like today!

Finally your view that supposedly scientific developments and the influence of evolution have always exercised a benign influence on the human race does not stand up to examination. Nietzsche, a disciple of Darwinism, wrote in his diatribe against Christianity, ‘The Antichrist’, ‘Pity on the whole thwarts the law of evolution, which is the law of selection. It preserves what is ripe for destruction; it defends life’s disinherited and condemned.’ The Nazis took hold of this idea to justify eliminating what they considered to be ‘life’s disinherited and condemned’ in the Holocaust. On the other side of the same coin, the Soviet Communists used pamphlets like ‘The part played by labour in the transition from ape to man’ written by Engels as the basis for their indoctrination of society with atheism and evolutionism. The end result was the gulags and the KGB and the persecution of non-believers in Soviet atheism (in particular believing Christians).

Not many people would agree that we are doing as marvellously in the moral sphere in our present society as you concluded in your programme. In fact we are on the brink of a collapse of the whole social and economic order as drug taking and alcoholism, sexual immorality, pornography and the breakdown of the family, violence and debt spiral out of control. We are fouling up the only planet we can live on and creating weapons of destruction which threaten the whole survival of humanity. All these things happening can be seen as the result of a rejection of God and the salvation offered us through the Lord Jesus Christ, not the result of following Him.
It would be interesting if Channel 4 or the like would be willing to put on a real debate on these issues, with Christians who know what they are talking about. Yours sincerely, Tony Pearce.

 

Harvard Professors and TV Producers – Do They really Know Much About the Second Coming of Christ

Everyone from the history channel to producers of the movie The Omen have cast their hat in the ring to help us understand the prophecies of the second coming. Do they have a clue…let’s see?

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In a world bent on acquiring ever more knowledge being referred to as being intelligent has supplanted the idea of a moral and decent life. I attended a funeral where the deceased was known for having been a cranky, ungodly, unloving man throughout his entire life. I thank God I wasn’t asked to give the eulogy. The person that had to deliver the eulogy was hard put to find a decent word to say about the deceased. I will never forget the single word he was able to find in praise for decedent. He said “he was as we all know, a very intelligent man.”

While being intelligent has never been a requirement for entering the kingdom of God it is also not required for interpreting the scriptures or the exposition of biblical prophecies. That does not mean that it is left to the ignorant to tell what is in the scripture. It is the believing and faithful alone that are allowed to see what the word of God is saying. Jesus said the Pharisees heard what he was saying but because they chose not to believe it, its truth was concealed from them regardless of their intelligence. Both the Pharisees and today’s scholars and scoffers are still making true the adage that “The worldly say let me see and then I’ll believe while the Godly say I believe and thus they see”

That revelation and understanding is kept from certain people has nothing to do with their intelligence or the lack of it. In fact it is God himself who promises to keep them in the dark because of their unbelief.

He answered and said unto them, Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given. Matthew 13:11

And he said, Unto you it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God: but to others in parables; that seeing they might not see, and hearing they might not understand. Luke 8:10

In that hour Jesus rejoiced in spirit, and said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes: even so, Father; for so it seemed good in thy sight. Luke 10:21

The Apostle Paul scoffed at the scoffers especially those who fancied themselves men of letters and of science. O Timothy, keep that which is committed to thy trust, avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called: Which some professing have erred concerning the faith. Grace be with thee. Amen. 1 Timothy 6:20,21

The learned have never understood the principle of revelation. It is not what we learn that shows what God is saying but it is what God reveals to us about what he has said that matters. This principle is seen in Christ’s answer to Peter when Peter told him that he knew Jesus was the Son of the Living God. And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven. Matthew 16:17

When the history channel aired its review of the Christian view of the apocalypse they called on several prominent university professors to comment on the renewed interest in the doctrines of the second coming of Christ. Many allusions were also drawn from movies like “Left Behind and the Omen. After presenting what is commonly believed in the church today about the second coming, the remainder of the program was used to de-bunk or cast doubt on those views. Calling on the views and comments of unbelieving doctors of divinity and TV and Hollywood puppets, they managed to raise more questions than they answered. Although not a laughing matter it seemed as if they were getting their best answers from Dr. Twiddle D.D. and Rufus T. Firefly. I think it’s safe to say that the apostles, prophets and certified bible preachers in any generation are far more believable than those the history channel chose to speak for them.

Before Christ was born in Bethlehem King Herod wanted to know where he was to be born. He asked his scribes and priests who after checking the writings of the prophets they informed Herod that he would be born in Bethlehem of Ephrata. Two amazing things can be learned from this little bit of scripture. First, what could be known about Christ’s first coming was readily available through prophecies contained in scripture. The second was that this knowledge was used to perform one of the bloodiest child massacres in the history of the world.

Nothing much has changed over the years. All that can be known about Christ’s second coming can still be found in the scriptures. And for those who are unbelieving and evil that knowledge will be scoffed at or misused to conduct themselves and others to their own inevitable judgment.

 

Christmas Television Specials – Do They Really Know the True Meaning of Christmas?

Christmas is celebrated by almost all of Christendom uniformly throughout the world. The origin of this celebration was instituted by the Catholic Church centuries after the death and resurrection of Christ. No one but the church fathers is responsible for this holiday. It is not something called for in the bible nor ever taught by Christ or his apostles. Regardless of this fact it is what it has become that is more in question than how it began.

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Some sects of the church do not observe Christmas at all. Probably the most well know modern church that refuses to celebrate this holiday is the Jehovah Witnesses. It may surprise many people to learn that most of the Puritans of the Massachusetts Bay Colony also banned this holiday. If approached without bias, an honest study of the origins of this holiday might not cancel all your Christmases but you would be certain of one thing, it is a man made mandate and nothing less. The advent is of God but the celebration of it, is of man.

I believe that the birth of Jesus Christ was the most important single event to happen on this old earth since it began. But I can’t prove to myself or anyone else that Christmas is a God given mandate. I don’t like the middle of the road stance on anything, I have always thought it is a cowards hiding place. I choose not to fight Christmas but to preach the Christ of Christmas. I abhor all that Christmas has become but I also know that it has a momentum that makes the speed of light look pokey. Suffice it to say that all the peripheral Christmas excesses and nonsense notwithstanding, I am glad for a season where at least some people are considering the birth of the Savior.

I don’t have an active battle going against Christmas but I cannot help raising at least one question. Where does Hollywood come into the picture? After feeding us sex, violence, crime, witchcraft, debauch and mayhem all year long how do they suddenly qualify for telling us the true meaning of Christmas?

The Christmas specials are like a black hole sucking in every ones attention from November first, to the dropping of the ball on Times Square. The Grinch, Little House on the Prairie, Charlie Brown, The Christmas Shoes, Scrooge and Marley, Robbie the Reindeer, Rudolph the Reindeer, Bambi the Reindeer (whoops), this is some of the specials fare and lest I forget, isn’t some network still playing John Denver’s Christmas specials?

Sure, some of them are ok and might be moderately entertaining, but the question still begs to be answered, how does Hollywood presume to tell us the true meaning of Christmas. Perhaps I should say, how do they even know the true meaning of Christmas. Do directors and producers take an October sabbatical to holy places, or secret themselves away and study the bible for a few weeks prior to the season? Not likely.

Almost everyone knows the biblical account of the birth of Christ. If you are one of those who somehow missed it just pick up a bible and read the entire second chapter of the Gospel of Luke. Remember you will only be reading the beginning of the story. If I were Paul Harvey I would urge you to take a break after which I would advise you to read “the rest of the story.” Jesus also lived a sinless life, preached the words of life, gave up his life and now offers you life. The rest of the story is what the full meaning of Christmas actually is. If taking a verse or passage out of context is truly only a pretext, then all of the meaning of Christmas dribble Hollywood serves up is just a pretext, regardless of how quaint or entertaining it may seem. The story of Christ’s humble birth is only the beginning and it is not supposed to end with television specials. It must end only with…”the rest of the story.”

Let me end with a “meaning of Christmas” thought that was given to me by the late Dr. Eathan Henry of New Orleans, Louisiana, a teacher in The Union Baptist Seminary. He said that “we are prone to think of the fullest meaning of Christmas as being a babe in a manger. Even though this is true, and even though the baby was the Christ child and promised Messiah of the scripture it still leaves something to be desired. When we consider that God was in Christ reconciling the world to himself 1Corinthians 5:19 then the picture is significantly altered. It is not just a babe in a manger but it is…God in a baby.”

You can’t get any closer to the true meaning of Christmas than this, and if should you choose to ponder this wonderful truth let me say to you with all sincerity…Merry Christmas.

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