(Please click the “more” link to read the entire post)
I found a blog called “The Wartburg Watch” about a year ago while doing a web search on some topic or another, and then forgot about it, until I found it again about a week ago.
Here is the link to the Wartburg Watch blog:
In this post, I discuss (sometimes only very briefly), Reformed Theology (Calvinism), gender roles (complementarianism), Young Earth Creationism, Christian speaker Beth Moore, New Evangelicalism (i.e., how important is “secondary doctrine”), spiritual abuse in churches, and other subjects, and how they are addressed at the WW blog.
Areas of Agreement
I do agree with many of the positions taken on the blog by Dee and Deb, who started the blog.
I agree with them on many of the topics they post about, such as authoritarianism and Neo-Calvinism are problematic in Christianity; that the very un-loving tone Christians take towards others can at times cause other Christians to walk away from the Christian faith; and that patriarchy and gender complementarianism are unbiblical and sexist teachings that are doing damage to many women and to the doctrine of the Trinity.
I also agree, to a point, with the blog owners that some Christians wrongly make issues that most would consider secondary into primary- level concerns, which can lead to needless divisions among Christians. (On the other hand, I sometimes get a little bit nervous by Christians who start saying love always trumps doctrine).
The blog owners are also very concerned about spiritual abuse in churches and how to prevent or rectify it, and they are also rightly concerned with the sexual abuse of children by pastors and priests.
So on those fronts, I do recommend their blog.
Areas of Disagreement
I do however, have one or two concerns or disagreements with the ladies behind that blog.
Deb and Dee seem concerned that Christians should be respectful and loving towards other Christians, even when disagreeing on secondary issues – which is a fine and laudable goal.
Young Earth Creationism
However, I don’t see them fully demonstrating that philosophy in regards to secondary issues such as YEC (Young Earth Creationism).
Repeatedly at their blog, I see much disdain for YEC. And I don’t pick up that the disdain is due to their assertion that some YECs are trying to push its relevance.
They claim that some YEC advocates conflate YEC with salvation or the Gospel itself, which I have not seen (though I am not denying that some YECs may do this, but I don’t think it’s as rampant as they make it appear – I have never personally seen or read of an occasion of a YEC saying “Agreement with YEC = necessary for salvation”).
About the only name I have seen them cite as far as YECs, especially famous YECs, who elevate YEC to salvation-level proportions is Ken Ham. (Ham’s site, Answers Outreach)
I’ve read Ham’s material before and have seen him interviewed on TV shows about his views on evolution and creation.
I have personally not seen Ham equate YEC to the Gospel itself.
I have only seen Ham make an argument along the lines that questioning YEC (which usually involves denying a literal interpretation of the Bible and/or allowing a secular / naturalistic-materialistic worldview to color one’s reading of the Bible, including the book of Genesis) can lead people (young people in particular, who are immersed with secular views on evolution during school and college) to question other portions of the Bible.
That is, rejecting a literal, six- day creation interpretation in turn can, or may, ultimately lead them to question if the Gospel is true and accurate, or cause them to wonder if other aspects of the Bible are true.
I think Ham actually has a decent and legitimate point there, and I don’t see that as necessarily “equating YEC to the Gospel,” or to making a belief in it a requirement for salvation.
In one thread on one blog page at Wartburg Watch, one of the blog owners seemed to ridicule or mock YEC Christians who believe that dinosaurs may have existed at the time of Noah and that dinosaurs were led on to Noah’s Ark, or that this could have been a possibility.
This is not the specific thread I am thinking of, but is close to it in content and tone:
As a YEC, I and other YECs do not “reject science,” we do not “reject reason,” and we are not “anti science,” as we are so often depicted as (including in the Wartburg Watch post above, sadly).
Most of us YECs merely disagree with other people over scientific topics, or how to approach scientific topics.
Disagreeing with someone else on the topic of evolution or the age of the earth does not mean we YECs are “anti science” or “anti reason.” To keep saying we YECs are “anti science” is a strawman and is mischaracterizing our views and beliefs.
In the discussion on YEC, one comment from the Wartburg Watch says (which is again at this blog page):
“No matter what the anointed would have us believe, the age of the earth, complementarianism, the size of our church, and the governing structure of the church are not primary issues. Folks, we have been given a brain. We need to use it.”
I do not believe that the earth is millions or billions of years old or that God used evolution to create and change life forms.
From this blog person’s comments at Wartburg Watch, one would assume that those who do not agree that the earth is millions/billions of years old have not been given brains or do not use their brains. I’m unsure if the bloggers mean that, or if it was an unfortunate choice of words.
(I wouldn’t be surprised if there are some Christian Old Earth advocates and believers of theistic evolution who make the age of the earth or evolution a primary issue, who tell YECs they are unsaved and going to hell.)
This comment is from a blog owner of Wartburg Watch (at the same page)…
“So what was his [the YEC person] solution [when confronted with material that disagreed with YEC views]? He refused to read anything more because it challenged him to the core. He said he would choose to believe Young Earth in spite of the evidence because ‘he couldn’t take it.'”
…Was somewhat uncharitable. Not all YECs are “afraid” to look at the opposition’s view points nor do all YEC advocates recoil in horror, in disbelief, or go into denial after having read work critical of YEC views.
I have read arguments for both sides of the evolution and age of Earth debates in the past, and I remain a YEC.
I was subjected to years of secular macro-evolution education in public schools and a bit in college and was told as a student that the earth is millions and millions of years old, but I still remain unconvinced for old-earth or macro evolution beliefs.
I have listened to Christian scientific personality Hugh Ross, who believes in theistic evolution (or some variety of it) and in an old earth, many times on Christian shows over the past fifteen years, arguing in favor of an old earth view (Hugh Ross’ site, Reasons To Believe).
Ross seems like a very nice man (and very intelligent, too – though he can, in my view, get a bit prickly or condescending at times when debating YECs), and I have no doubt he believes in Jesus as much as I do, but I disagree with him on these particular issues.
I did not find the “old earth” arguments, or arguments in favor of evolution, by Ross or by other Christians, journals, blogs, or TV shows I’ve read or watched compelling, nor was I convinced by secular sources who argue for old earth and for Darwinism.
I am college-educated and made mostly straight A’s while in college, so I am not a hick or a dummy. I made a “B” in a math class (college algebra), a “B” in one science class, and a “C” in one science lab course – everything else, I got an “A” (including one or two other college- level science courses).
I have read material that questions and criticizes the YEC and Intelligent Design view, both by Christians (who believe in theistic evolution and an old age of the earth view) and by atheists – and I am still a YEC.
There seems to be a belief held (and it is condescending), by Old Age proponents, that if only a YEC is confronted with criticisms of YECism by old-earth proponents, we will abandon our views of YEC, because, by golly, Fact, Science!, and Truth are so obviously on the side of the intelligent, educated, old-earth proponents…
And that further, it seems there is also a belief, or attitude, that simple-minded, doofus, red-neck, inbred, wrongly- paranoid- of- liberal- tinged public school system education Young Earth Creationists (who also watch NASCAR, marry their first cousins, have only one tooth, and keep broken washing machines on their front lawns, next to the pink, plastic flamingos) simply cannot challenge or refute anti-YEC teachings, or we are so weak minded, we will faint upon hearing them.
If the situation about the origins of life, creation of the earth and of mankind were as simple as all that, there would not be an old-earth / young-earth / evolution debate at all; all Christians would have converted to old-earth / theistic evolution perspectives many years ago. Obviously both sides have excellent points, intelligent people, and facts to back up their positions.
Dee and Deb of the Wartburg Watch blog may not be questioning the salvation of a Christian who believes dinosaurs co-existed with Noah, but in my view, it is no less alienating, or uncharitable to imply people who do believe that way are rubes, out- of- touch, un-scientific, anti reason, ignorant, or that all YECs everywhere equate YEC to the Gospel – and I do pick up that tone in some of the posts at the WW blog on this issue. I find that baffling, since both ladies usually seem very sensitive to other people’s feelings and concerns.
I am a YEC myself. I do not believe a person has to be YEC or agree with it to “be saved.” (Click the “more” link below to read the remainder of this post…)