This is in response to Bill D’s 21 May 97 post [on an online discusion group] concerning a radio program in which Hugh Ross appeared. As reported in Bill’s posting, it appears that Hugh Ross has committed a number of ‘Rossisms’, which I define as ‘confident overstatements which are clearly false’. Below I will cite and correct four of the Rossisms reported in the posting:
1. ‘[Ross claims] the book is full of mathematical errors.’ False. As evidence I point out that Ross has yet to make such claims in a peer-reviewed scientific journal where I can answer him. Furthermore, since 1994 Ross has backed out of several radio debates when he found out I was to be his opponent.1,2,3,4 These are not the actions of a man who is confident he has a real case.
2. ‘[Ross claims] Russ had acknowledged the existence of these math errors.’ No, I haven’t acknowledged any math errors. I did acknowledge one minor verbal error — a phrase in my book — which is irrelevant to my main argument.
3. ‘[Ross claims] that when these errors are corrected they prove an old universe rather than a young universe.’ Wrong again. Shortly after publication of my book, Ross made this claim in a newsletter to his supporters.5 On March 7, 1995 I faxed him a letter detailing the ‘off-the-wall’ nature of his criticisms and correcting them. He did not reply to me. On March 26, I sent him a hard copy. He still did not reply.
Finally in May I published my letter openly.1 He still did not reply to me personally, but in August he finally responded publicly.2 In that letter to an editor, Ross did not defend his criticisms specifically, but rather said that he had consigned that job to several of his friends. Thus far, no criticisms from those friends have appeared in any peer-reviewed scientific journal, creationist or otherwise. (I’m hoping that will change.) Instead, Ross’s friends are relying on back-door circulation of letters and unreviewed pamphlets. They are hiding from their supporters the existence of a public exchange of articles between them and me in a non-peer-reviewed layman’s newsletter,6,7 particularly concealing the fact that I replied. As far as I know, Ross himself has not personally committed to print any technical criticisms about my book since August 1995.
4. ‘[Ross] elaborated further that he had discussed these errors with Russ…’ That is not true at all. Ross has not communicated with me since his last letter to me on April 15, 1993. In that letter he finally answered my persistent requests that he be an official ICC reviewer for my forthcoming paper on cosmology. He refused to commit himself to that job. Since 1993 he hasn’t corresponded or spoken with me at all. So how can he claim to have ‘discussed’ the alleged errors in my 1994 book with me? If that is what Ross actually said, it is hard for me to imagine it as anything but a direct, conscious lie.
Bill seems worried that the enemies of young-earth creation science may eventually find something wrong with my paper. Some of my other creationist friends have the same worry. But what would be so bad about that? Do I, like the Bible, have to be inspired and inerrant? No. I’m proposing a scientific theory, not writing new Scripture! If any of you are placing your faith in any supposed inerrancy of mine, you're in for a rude shock. I make mistakes!
Instead, place your faith in an inerrant Word of God. Read it straightforwardly. Does it tell you that the world is young? That is the message I get, loud and and clear. Well then, even if my theory should turn out to be wrong, we know that a correct young-world cosmology exists.
Let’s seek it vigorously — and accept whatever mistakes we may make along the way with cheerfulness and courage!
Cordially in Christ our creator,
D.R. Humphreys, ‘An Open Letter to Hugh Ross’, Bible-Science News (BSN) 33(4):21–22, see Background Note. To get back issues and reprints of BSN, call the Bible-Science Association in Zimmerman, MN toll-free at 1 (800) 422–4253.
H. Ross, ‘More from Ross and Humphreys’, BSN 33(6):6, August 1995.
D.R. Humphreys, ‘There you go again, Dr Ross!’, BSN 33(6):6–7, August 1995.
D.R. Humphreys, copy of August 13, 1994 letter to Hugh Ross, BSN 33(6):7, August 1995.
H. Ross, ‘Progress Toward the Resolution of the Creation-Date Controversy’, Facts and Faith 9(1):12–13, First Quarter 1995.
S.R. Conner and D.N. Page, ‘Light-Travel Time in Starlight and Time’, BSN 33(7):7–16, September 1995.
D.R. Humphreys, ‘How We Can See a Young Universe’, 33(7):7–19, September 1995.