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John Hergenrather

john@creationencounter.com

1086 Tucker Road
Hood River, OR 97031

Why are creation field trips important?

"One of the consequences of this thinking is that young people are leaving Christianity in greater percentages than ever."

One of the consequences of this thinking is that young people are leaving Christianity in greater percentages than ever. Dozens of studies document this but one of the most comprehensive is in a 2018 book called “GEN Z” by Barna Research Group. They found the #1 reason the 13-18 age group holds negative perceptions of the church is “The church seems to reject much of what science tells us about the world.” Also, 55% of this age group “struggle to reconcile science with the Bible.” Some simply “side with science” and some believe “science and the Bible refer to different aspects of reality.” Another study by Summit Ministries focused on college age and found 60-80% of Christian students leave the faith after attending secular colleges.

 

Nevertheless, besides fulfilled prophecy, multiple evidences show the Bible is a supernatural document, flawless and without error. Yet these sound “apologetics” and reasonings seem to have little impact on our culture. Yet, we at Creation Encounter have found something changes in us when we get out and experience God's world with our five senses. Especially when we carefully ponder the geology and the landforms, the fossils and archeology, they really only make sense in light of the first several chapters of Genesis. That's why we believe creation field trips make such a difference. When we connect the events and people of scripture with our own time and place, something profound happens to our faith and our hearts. We grow closer to our Creator/Redeemer and gain confidence that His every Word from Genesis to Revelation can be trusted, lived by, and acted upon.

In our culture most people think that it took millions of years to make the natural world as we see it around us. But a straightforward reading of the Bible tells a different story. Again and again, the grammar and context of the Hebrew in the Old Testament tells us it was not too many thousands of years ago that, “...in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them...”(Exodus 20:11). Also, in the New Testament Jesus, Peter, Paul, Luke and John all regarded the Old Testament as true history. Jesus said in Mark 10, “But at the beginning of creation God made them male and female.” In John 12:49-50 Jesus reminds us, “For I did not speak of my own accord, but the Father who sent me commanded me what to say and how to say it . . . So what ever I say is just what the Father told me to say.” 

 

In spite of this clear testimony from scripture, it seems that many pastors struggle to proclaim the truth of the supernatural creation of all things in the way that Jesus Christ, our Redeemer and Creator believed it. It is regrettable that many Christian leaders have trouble believing what the Bible clearly teaches about the how and when of creation. This thinking causes error and inconsistency on many fronts both biblically and scientifically. The main problem is when we give more value and authority to naturalistic scientists than we do to God's Word; and give more credibility to people critiquing scripture than we do to what the Bible itself clearly says. So it is primarily an issue of authority – i.e. Where do we go to find truth?