We are immersed in a secular culture, bombarded with an ever-increasing vitriol and hatred. In bestselling books such as The God Delusion, God Is Not Great, Breaking the Spell, and The End of Faith, well-known atheists are advocating an all-out culture war to remove any vestige of Christianity from the public arena. Christians are blatantly branded as the enemy, a scourge to be eliminated.
Evangelicals are slipping more and more deeply into hybrid theologies and doctrines that seek "the praise of men more than the praise of God" (John 12:43).
The "emerging church" movement has "Christianized" the damnable error that absolute truth does not exist, and it is leading hoards of "seekers" into the mouth of hell. Popular Christian author Rob Bell is preaching that Love Wins in his book about the ultimate salvation of all humanity. Peter Enns, known for his disbelief in biblical truths such as a literal Adam and Eve, a literal Fall, the historical accuracy of Genesis, etc., has just published a Bible curriculum for homeschool children.
Darrel Falk and a growing number of "Fellows" at the BioLogos Foundation are insisting that the idea of an inerrant Bible is foolish and that "creation by evolution" is the best way to understand God’s "message" in Genesis.
How can we break this powerful onslaught against God and His people? May I humbly suggest that we teach our people the historical foundations in Genesis?
The Foundation of History…the "Beginnings" of Everything
Genesis is not just the first book of Scripture, it is the foundation for the rest of Scripture. If you do not understand Genesis, you cannot fully understand the person and attributes of the Creator Himself…Jesus Christ.
Genesis reveals the beginnings and foundations of reality…of our very existence. Without a clear understanding of these basic concepts, we are sorely lost among today’s plethora of conflicting ideas concerning the origins of:
- The universe, solar system, earth
- Life, man, marriage
- Language, government, culture
The Foundation of All Biblical Structure and Theology
All of biblical structure and theology is set in the book of Genesis. If Genesis is not accurate history, then the rest of Scripture is little more than "tradition" and "viewpoints" that were written by ignorant sages of times past…and is therefore irrelevant today.
Origin of Evil: If the Fall of man recorded in Genesis 3 is not true, then the gospel is both foolish and unnecessary. In fact, if man did not rebel against his Creator, then the death of Jesus Christ is nothing more than an idealist’s martyrdom…not a total substitutionary atonement and reconciliation of God with man.
Origin of Death: If Adam’s sin is not an actual event, then death is nothing more than a "natural" means to weed out the unfit. Indeed, the evolutionary system insists death is good. In Scripture, death is a judgment and an enemy that will be eliminated.
Origin of Chosen People: The Old Testament is mostly a history of Israel. Why such a selective record if not to inscribe the supernatural protection of the Messianic line and the unique fulfillment of the hundreds of prophecies focused on Jews?
Origin of Many Descriptive Names of God: As the great history of the world unfolded, God revealed His attributes to early patriarchs through the majestic Hebrew terms used to describe God’s dealings with men. He is the Elohim of creation; the El Shaddai of power and might; the ever-present El Elyon, the Most High; the One who sees, the El Roi; the Owner and Master, Adonai; and the eternal El Olam.
Perhaps if pastors and Sunday school teachers spent more time teaching the Lord’s people about the absolute truths of Genesis, we would have less difficulty UN-teaching the errors that abound in our churches.
* Dr. Morris is Chief Executive Officer of the Institute for Creation Research.
Cite this article: Morris III, H. 2011. Preaching Genesis. Acts & Facts. 40 (9): 22.