An Opportunity for Critical Thinking!

The Southeast Homeschool Convention begins tomorrow, and I have six talks to give. I am excited to go, because the convention is organized by the same group that did the Midsouth Homeschool Convention two weeks ago, and it was a great success. My excitement partially gave way to disappointment, however, when I read Ken Ham’s blog entry from yesterday. Mr. Ham is a speaker at the same convention, but he is obviously upset at the fact that someone who disagrees with him will be speaking at the same venue.

He starts off his blog this way:

Sadly, one of the speakers also listed to give presentations does not believe in a historical Adam or historical Fall (he will also be promoting his “Bible” curriculum for homeschoolers). In fact, what he teaches about Genesis is not just compromising Genesis with evolution, it is outright liberal theology that totally undermines the authority of the Word of God. It is an attack on the Word—on Christ.

Then he gets really nasty. He claims that the speaker, Dr. Peter Enns, doesn’t have a Biblical view of the inspiration of Scripture and that his approach to Genesis and Romans will shock people.

Since Mr. Ham has decided to rip into a well-educated scholar with a publication list that includes such important journals as the Westminster Theological Journal and the Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society, I thought it only right for another young-earth creationist (yours truly) to offer a different view.

First and foremost, I do not agree with Dr. Enns’s view of the first few chapters of Genesis. For example, unlike Dr. Enns, I think the creation account is best taken as historical narrative. However, I recognize that the Christian church has never been unanimous in that assessment. As the post I just linked demonstrates, even Jewish theologians that lived during the time of Christ did not unanimously agree that the creation account should be taken as historical narrative! Thus, while I disagree with Dr. Enns when it comes to the creation account, I hesitate to call him a “compromiser.” I don’t think Clement of Alexandria (c. 150 – 215 AD), Athanasius of Alexandria (c. 293 -373 AD), Augustine (354-330), or Hilary of Poitiers (c. 300 – 368 AD) were compromisers, and they didn’t view the creation account as historical narrative, either.

Second, Ken Ham is simply dead wrong when he claims that Dr. Enns doesn’t have a Biblical view of the inspiration of Scripture. Dr. Enns doesn’t have Ken Ham’s view of the inspiration of Scripture. However, he clearly has a Biblical view – one that just happens to be different from that of Ken Ham. All one has to do to see this is to read Dr. Enns’s seminal work, Inspiration and Incarnation: Evangelicals and the Problem of the Old Testament. In this book, Enns lays out an “incarnational” view of Biblical inspiration. He thinks that God entered the world of the Biblical authors and spoke to them directly, using stories and symbols to which they could relate. This is perfectly consistent with 2Timothy 3:16 and is therefore a Biblical view of the inspiration of Scripture.

Now please understand that I do not agree with this view, but to say it is unBiblical is just plain wrong. In fact, when I read Enns’s book, I could not help but think how similar his view of Scripture is to that of John Calvin, who said that God lisps to us when He speaks through Scripture. I disagree with Calvin’s view as well, but I am not about to say that it is unBiblical!

So, unlike Mr. Ham, I don’t think it is sad that Dr. Enns is speaking at the Southeast Homeschool Convention. In fact, I am thrilled to be able to share a venue with such a well-known Evangelical scholar, and I hope to be able to speak with him at length during the convention. I disagree with a great deal of what Dr. Enns says, but that’s what will make the conversation interesting!

More importantly, however, listening to serious scholars who disagree with you is an important part of the process of critical thinking. The only way I can properly evaluate my positions is to listen to those who disagree with them. That way, I can root out any lack of discernment, poor scholarship, or misunderstandings that can lead to bad theology. As a result, I plan to attend all his talks except the one that conflicts with one of mine. In the name of serious critical thinking, I strongly encourage everyone at the convention to do the same! I also strongly encourage you to listen to Ken Ham’s talks. You can come to my talks as well, if you don’t have anything better to do…

One of the reasons I am so excited to be a part of the four Great Homeschool Conventions this year is because of their diverse list of speakers. I don’t know of any other homeschool convention where you can hear such a broad range of Christian views. In my opinion, that alone is worth the price of admission!

624 thoughts on “An Opportunity for Critical Thinking!”

  1. And this is yet another reason we need to teach our children to be thinkers. They need to engage with the world and dialog with others. How can any of us do this if we don’t learn about what is being said/taught/written?

  2. You are a wolf in sheep’s clothing spreading lies just like the rest of the perishing world. Repent.

    1. You certainly have the right to believe that, Your mammy, but it says more about your ability to think than it does about me!

  3. Mr. Ham is justified in his criticism. You’re really arguing that the Christian church decides truth through unanimity? Dr. Enns view that Adam was not the first man, but represented Israel is clearly not Biblical. What was Eve then? What was Abel, Cain, etc.?

    All Mr. Ham did was criticize his viewpoint, you’ve criticized him, too. I guess I don’t see the problem.

    1. Think, I will have to vehemently disagree with you. Mr. Ham is NOT justified in his criticism. I am also not saying that the Church decides truth through unanimity. However, I am saying that when devout, Bible-believing Christians can’t agree on a specific interpretation, it is the height of arrogance and absurdity to say that yours is the absolutely correct one.

      Mr. Ham criticized the man, not his viewpoints. He calls Enns a compromiser and says he doesn’t have a Biblical view of inspiration, even though he clearly does.

  4. I dont know… You either believe God from start to finish or you don’t. I think you are apologizing for a person who doesn’t. I am not sure why.

    1. But that’s the point, Leigh! Enns DOES believe God from start to finish. He simply disagrees with Ham’s Biblical hermeneutic.

  5. While I accept full responsibility for my views now, I do believe that AIG had a part in helping along my loss of faith. I appreciate people like Dr. Enns who has helped me see other points of view and theology (having held to mr. Ham’s theology, my faith did not hold well once I found that certain scientific paradigms fit my understanding better than others). While I have still not accepted Christianity again, organizations like Biologos are very helpful and encouraging to me. I defended Dr. Enns (respectfully) on Ken Ham’s Facebook site and was subsequently banned. I appreciate your words Dr. Wile (I found this post from Mr. Ham’s twitter page).

    1. Keith, thank you so much for your honest comment. Please do not let poor critical thinking turn you away from the Truth!

  6. {Delurking for the very first time} EXCELLENT post, Jay. Well done! {Back to lurker mode}

  7. Oh! Dr. Bauer I bought your book “The Well Trained Mind”. I just clicked on your name and realized who you were. I was home schooled myself and am currently homeschooling my five (great at reading) and three year old daughters (my third daughter due any day now). It is a great book. Thanks so much!

  8. How can you say someone who does not believe the historical text of Genesis as it is written believes the word from start to finish? I think we perhaps have a different view on the word “believe”.

    1. Leigh, do you believe there was an actual sower in Jesus’ parable of the sower? Parables are not historical narrative. Enns uses serious theology to say that Genesis 1 and 2 are not historical narrative, because God did not intend them to be taken that way. You might disagree with Enss’s theological methods, but to claim he doesn’t believe the Bible is not only wrong, it is an ad hominem attack.

  9. I too am rather disappointed but not by Mr. Ham. I fully believe we can agree to disagree with professing brothers and sisters in Christ but simply blurring the lines serves to help no one. It is evident that Dr. Enns does not realize the branching implications of his personal, not biblical, interpretation of the Genesis account of Creation. If Adam is not to be taken literally, then at what point should any figure be taken literally and who may decide where that line of interpretation happens to be. Is Abraham a literal figure or merely an analogy for, let’s say the Father? How about Moses, could he not be skewed to represent the future King David? And what of David himself? Isaiah? Why stop in the Old Testament? Let’s take it to the New. Are we sure that Jesus was a literal figure or was He just an archetype of the combined personas of the previous self-professing false messiahs who faded into history? Maybe Paul himself was not a real person? Perhaps Luke conjured him up as a pen name to hide behind for his own missionary trips.

    This becomes a very slipper slope but one that cannot be ignored Doctor. While I appreciate your intention, your efforts are misguided and misdirected. Rather than rebuking Mr. Ham, why not stand solely on Scripture and say, “Dr. Enns, I realize your view is your own to have, but sir, you are wrong and your error reaches much further than just Adam and the account of Creation”. That much I could agree with. Soli Deo gloria!

    1. Adam, I am sorry to say that your view is the misguided one. Dr. Enns does realize the implications of his theology, as it is NOTHING like you characterize it. Tell me, Adam, how much of Dr. Enns’s theology have you read? He is not on a slippery slope. He has a serious hermeutic to address when the Bible is speaking in historical narrative and when it is not. If you choose not to learn enough about his theology to understand that and yet still criticize his theology, I think it’s quite clear who is misguided.

  10. However Ham and Co. claim they don’t “interpret” scripture, but rather read it straight out. There is no “hermeneutic” they use, so they claim. Of course I disagree, but this is their view, as seen in this video discussion (quite civil I might add) between Dr. Georgia Purdom of AIG and Dr. Michael Shermer of Skeptic Magazine (24 min long but very interesting): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a_CLIGJW6Ic

    1. You are right, Keith. AiG does use a hermeneutic, and unfortunately, they claim that theirs is the only correct one. It saddens me greatly. I am sorry you were caught up in such poor theology.

  11. Dr Jay this seems all to telling. I hope you, Dr Susan B know what door your swinging open by your acceptance and subtle endorsement of Dr Enns and Bio Logos. “Defending Dr Enns is like defending Rob Bell. The strategy behind Enns is a subtle introduction, with an ultimate goal of the Church accepting of evolution. Enns deceptive stradegy is aggressively leading the charge into biblical compromise, teaching that the Bible is not completely without error, that the biblical writers just didn’t get it right, that Adam was symbolic and not real, that Genesis does not teach the creation of the material world, and many more aberrant ideas that run counter to sound doctrine. They have had the audacity to publish on their website (bio logos) that if Christians today do not accept the theory of evolution, the Church will die off in the form of an insignificant cult!” At the very least you must agree these are unbiblical views? Does this not constitute compromise??

    1. Anthony, I have no idea if defending Dr. Enns is like defending Rob Bell, as I have not read any of Rob Bell’s theology. I have read Enns’s theology, however, and it is clear you have not, because what you say about him is quite wrong. Enns is not leading the charge into Biblical compromise. He is simply interpreting the Bible with a different hermeneutic than yours. It is unfortunate that you haven’t bothered to inform yourself about the theology you are so ready to denounce.

      I certainly disagree with the statement that the Church must accept evolution or die off in the form of an insignificant cult. However, that is no more wrong than AiG’s refrain that anyone who accepts millions of years does not have a Biblical worldview. I disagree with Biologos on many things, and I disagree with AiG on many things. Nevertheless, I can see that they both have made worthwhile contributions to the Church. It is unfortunate that you cannot.

  12. Ham is being “called on the carpet” for calling into question a person’s theology, yet this page’s link to AiG says their “theology leaves a lot to be desired.” Why can you critique their biblical interpretation, but he may not crituque another’s? Seems like a double standard. It should also be obvious that the Creation account is not to be taken as a parable. When Jesus gives a parable, it is set apart as such. If Creation is a parable, what else is just mere story w/ a good lesson? the lives of the Patriarchs? the birth of Christ? His death and resurrection? That is a very dangerous approach to God’s Truth.

    1. Thanks for your comment, Dawn. The difference is that I do not say AiG’s theology is harming the cause of Christ. I also don’t say that AiG’s views aren’t Biblical. I also don’t call Ken Ham a compromiser. There is a proper way to disagree with brothers and sisters in Christ.

      I seriously doubt you have read any of Enn’s theology, because he does not have a dangerous approach to God’s truth. He also has a very serious hermeneutic that leads him to believe the creation account is to be taken symbolically.

  13. Dr Jay –
    Not sure how I am wrong about Dr Enns views. It has been documented by many folks for over a year. Does Dr Enns not believe that we evolved from ape like ancestors on this earth? Over billions of years? – how can this fit in any way shape or form into the absolute text of scripture? If you watch the video Mr Ken has linked, you can hear for yourself Dr Enns say Paul was wrong. He was claiming Paul the Apostle of having bad theology. – you defend this hermeneutic?? Is not Exodus 20:11as clear as can be? Do we as Christians need to have a PHD to somehow see that this does not mean what it says?? For crying out loud – Exodus 31 tells us God Himself inscribed SIX days for us. Was not Eve created from Adams side?? Is this not easy to understand?? Or did she come from an ape man/woman?? Not sure why Dr Jay you would defend views that are NOT biblical, but are views that are CLEARLY adding to Genesis. In my non-PHD view if Genesis is not a historical account – but instead a mythical account as Dr Enns claims – then the entire Bible cannot be trusted.
    Here are some pieces from Dr Mohler. Maybe he can see something you cannot. – For the sake of the Gospel!

    A MUST see video –
    http://www.christianity.com/ligonier/?speaker=mohler2

    http://www.albertmohler.com/2011/02/01/creation-vs-evolution-the-new-shape-of-the-debate/

    http://www.bpnews.net/BPnews.asp?ID=34514

    1. Anthony, Dr. Enns does believe we evolved from apelike ancestors over billions of years. Many conservative evangelical theologians see nothing contradictory between that and the absolute text of Scripture. The reason is simple. They think the absolute text of the first few chapters of Genesis is not to be taken as historical narrative. They believe the text of Scripture clearly tells them this. They even have arguments to back up their views. I disagree with those arguments, but to call some of the most well-educated, devout theologians of the world “compromisers” is arrogant and absurd in the extreme.

      Dr. Enns does not say that Paul was wrong theologically. He says that God spoke to Paul using symbols and signs that he would understand. As a result, what Paul writes must be understood in terms of culture. Unless you force women to wear head coverings, insist that they cannot speak in church, etc., etc., then you are doing the exact same thing. You are comfortable with what you do, but you are uncomfortable when Enns does the same thing.

      You ask whether or not Exodus 20:11 is clear. It is. What about Leviticus 25:1-4? It also uses the creation week as an example, but it is talking about years, not days. Now I personally think the days in Genesis are 24-hour days, but a lot of serious, devout, non-compromising Christians do not, and they have serious, devout, non-Scripture-demeaning arguments to back up their beliefs. To think that such Christians don’t know what Exodus 20:11 says is not only absurd, it is demeaning to your fellow Christians.

      I agree you don’t need a PhD to read and understand the Bible. However, a serious education does help you learn to think more critically. I am not asking people to accept Dr. Enns’s views. I don’t accept many of them. However, I ask that they accept him as a brother in Christ and listen to his views. If nothing else, it will help them critically examine their own views!

  14. It is time heretics such as this Enns fellow and you are silenced. Where do you get your money from anyway? Is someone paying you to blaspheme the Word of God? You know like Richard Dawkins or Larry Krauss? Repent while there is yet time.

    1. Brad, it is truly hilarious that you think Dawkins or Krauss is paying me. Have you actually read anything I have written besides this piece? I make my money from my award-winning YOUNG-EARTH CREATIONIST textbooks!

  15. There is a premise in your discussion that is disturbing. You are suggesting that certain Christians in the past who were not believers in a the Creation account as a historical narrative and thus it’s OK if Christians today do not believe. There were Christians in the south during the civil war that believed in slavery. Is that ok if Christian today still believe in slavery? My concern is you seem to use history as your final authority on the issue and not the Bible, which even you believe is a Historical Narrative. Especially with the scientific knowledge we have today, there is no reason not to believe Genesis as it is written. There is no excuse anymore for a Christian who will run and twist Genesis to support any other view aside from what is clearly written.

    1. Jeff, nowhere did I even remotely suggest that it is okay to believe something because people in the past have believed it. However, I did make the factual historical statement that many of the GREATEST theologians who have ever lived have taken the creation account as something other than historical narrative. That should give anyone who claims that it is obvious what the Genesis account of creation is saying reason to pause…if that person has any desire to learn the truth. I agree that there is no excuse for Christians to twist ANY Scripture to support a view aside from that which is clearly written. What you (and apparently many others) seem unable to grasp is that Christians like Dr. Enns honestly believe that their view is clearly written in Scripture.

  16. Well said Jay. I think we can all agree with what the Bible says, but there is a huge diversion in what it means. May we all be spurred on to deeper and more critical thinking.

  17. “The strategy behind Enns is a subtle introduction, with an ultimate goal of the Church accepting of evolution”
    ————
    um… as Dr. Wile pointed out, the theology espoused by Enns has been around longer than the idea of evolution. 😉 Regardless what Enns himself believes about evolution, the ‘strategy and ultimate goal’ have NOTHING to do w/ evolution.

    Thank you Dr. Wile for such an excellent article.

  18. I’m sorry to read about what looks almost like a feud between you and Ham. I’ve respected both of you in the past for your adherence to the authority of God’s Word. Christians are to be like Christ, full of grace and full of truth, but are often deficient in one or both. As a Ken Ham fan, I see times when he needs to exercise a little more grace. But I also see a number of Christians, including some scientists, who are heavy on the grace but light on the truth. We all need to pray for more balance.

    1. Thank you for your thoughtful comment, Tara. Mr. Ham and I both adhere to the authority of God’s Word, but so does Dr. Enns. That is the entire point. He is not a compromiser. He is a devout Christian with a deep love for the Word. All you have to do is read his works to see that. The problem is that many people who have a different interpretation of Scripture than his are more willing to brand him a Bible-hater than to investigate his theology and develop arguments against it. It is always easier to call people names than it is to address them substantively.

  19. I don’t pretend to argue as well as Dr Wile, but I do agree with his position here.

    It is not a question of compromise, it is a simple question of respect. One does not have to agree with what somebody says in order to respect their right to say it. For example many perfectly Christian churches differ on their theological stances on many issues. You do not need to accept predestination to acknowledge a Calvinist theologian is a Christian, and a man worthy of respect. Likewise one does not need to deny predestination to acknowledge the same of an Armenian minister. And the same for other theological disputes, such as over infant baptism, transubstantiation or the precise chronology of the end times.

    You may examine biblical and material evidence and come to your own conclusion on any issue, you may not declare that anyone who arrives at a contrary position is anathema. It is for God and not for you to judge his servants.
    “Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God 1 John 5:1”

    It is also worth noting that a great amount of scripture is already acknowledged to be metaphorical. For example the visions of Daniel illustrate in remarkable detail the rise of the Persians and then of Alexander the Great. However they illustrate them through the medium of goats with one, two or four horns. It is not a slippery slope to acknowledge that parts of scripture are allegorical as indeed we must do to properly understand such passages.

    Dr. Enns position is defensible and the view he legitimately came to on examining the scriptures. It may be correct. It is an insult that stems from conceit to declare that he’s wrong simply because he disagrees with you, which is what Dr Wile feels Ken Ham did wrong. The actual question of whether Genesis is metaphorical is beyond the scope of the discussion.

    1. Josiah:

      1. You need not pretend. You have an excellent way of presenting your ideas with honesty and clarity. I expect that I will continue to learn from you as time goes on.

      2. At the risk of sounding like a broken record, I cannot tell you how pleased I am that you are a regular commenter on this blog!

  20. Dr. Wile,

    I would like to express my appreciation for your well thought through articulation of a very reasonable, Biblical stance. Though my husband and I are young earth leaning Christians, we have been appalled by the polarizing, in-your-face, complete lack of grace speech that has erupted within the Christian community. We hope to instill in our children, through our homeschooling, the Biblical principle of living Jesus to the world, and to that end, this means learning to disagree in love. We also hope to impart to them the critical thinking tools necessary to defend their faith and views in the public arena, but not at the expense of extending God’s love to others, much less wrongfully judging another person’s soul.

    On a side note, I just wanted to thank you for your science series. We are impressed with how much our children are learning, how well their scientific thinking is being developed, and how much they retain. Lest you ever get discouraged, take heart in this. Our daughter, a homeschool grad of 2009, is now a paramedic and pre-med student. Her high school science credits came from Exploring Creation with Biology, Chemistry, Advanced Chemistry, Anatomy and Physiology, and a home designed astronomy course using college texts. She is carrying a 114% average in her paramedic classes in one of the highest rated paramedic programs in the United States, and her lowest grade in any of her pre-med classes is 95%. Thank you for preparing our girl for the rigors of serious college science!

    Our next oldest, a NOT science oriented child (God has a sense of humor because we are the completely geeky science freaks in our county)is thriving in your Physical Science.

    Again, thank you for your reasoned response on theological matters and your wonderful curriculum!

    Patricia Hansen

  21. Dear Dr. Wile, I am seriously disappointed in your response here. I am a homeschooler and have used your curriculum for several years. But why on earth would you want to promote heresy? Instead of upholding the Word of God and contending for The Truth, you are giving Biologos a credible platform to spread their heresy.

    1. Sharon, I am certainly not promoting heresy. I am promoting graceful discussion among brothers and sisters in Christ. I am also promoting critical thinking, as I do in my curriculum.

  22. So I suppose that if I were a theologian and had a Dr. in front of my name, and had a following, and believed that the account of the death and resurrection of Jesus were not in fact historical truths, but symbolic of something that perhaps happened on another planet, it would be a problem to you if someone called me a compromiser. As long as I based my beliefs on the Bible (my interpretation of it’s “symbolism”) and called myself a Christian. Right? And the fact that many, many others agreed with me would justify the idea that my ideas should be respected, preposterous and blasphemous though they may be? Would you defend me if someone called me a compromiser and said I didn’t have a Biblical view?

    Scripture itself tells us when something is to be taken figuratively. Mr. Enns believes we descended from monkeys. I’d like a chapter and verse for that. That is NOT what the Bible says. We have to take God at His Word. If we don’t – we are placing ourselves above God Himself, and making ourselves critics of His Word. Romans 9:20

    1. Bree, you clearly haven’t read what I have written, because I don’t even imply that. What I say is that there are many views of Scripture in the realm of orthodox Christianity, and I consider Dr. Enns to be within that realm. Even if you don’t agree with me, you should not attack him personally. You should educate yourself on his views and attack them.

      Dr. Enns does not believe we are descended from monkeys. He believes that monkeys and people have a common ancestor. If you are going to attack someone’s views, at least learn them first! Whether or not this is true depends on your INTERPRETATION of Scripture. Your interpretation if Scripture says it is not true, Enns’s interpretation (and most other orthodox theologians’ interpretation) says it is true.

  23. Your post confuses me. Isn’t it a bit like the pot calling the kettle black?

    Mr Ham has his beliefs, which he clearly states, and are the reason for his blog. Those beliefs include the concern that children are leaving the church because they are being told that the Bible isn’t true (per his book Already Gone) and his belief that if you introduce death before the fall, you take away any meaning for the whole tragedy of human history. These issues are his passion, and his blog is consistent with that.

    Now I’m aware that very good Christians disagree with Mr. Ham. But if his whole ministry is to bring Christians back to a literal reading of the Bible, then his blog seems totally consistent with the spreading of that ministry.

    If your whole ministry is to help Christians to get along, then your blog is consistent with that. That makes sense. But you’ve set up this blog entry as if Mr. Ham is doing something that you are *not* doing. Yet, I respectfully see you as doing the same thing as Mr. Ham.

    And some of your answers comparing the law to the history are not logical, in my mind. Comparing changing legalism of head coverings (i.e. Jesus fulfilled the law and took us to the heart of the law) to the inerrancy of Biblical history (i.e. changing the Bible history to just “stories”) are not the same.

    Julie

    1. Julie, my ministry is not about helping Christians get along. I have no idea how you could possibly come to such a conclusion with even a cursory reading of just a couple of my posts. My ministry is about apologetics and education. This is not an example of the pot calling the kettle black. I am not attacking Ken Ham’s status as a Christian. I am simply saying his behavior is unacceptable. Ken Ham is attacking Dr. Enn’s status as Christian simply because Dr. Enns disagrees with him. Not only is that unacceptable behavior, it is not even honest, as he levels a false charge regarding Enns’s view of Biblical inspiration.

      Also, I am not comparing the law to history. A commenter claimed that Dr. Enns says Paul made a theological error by saying Adam is real. I corrected the commenter, as that is not at all what Dr. Enns says. He simply says that Paul’s writings were immersed in a culture, and you have to separate the culture from God’s message. Most Christians do that for many aspects of Paul’s writings, because Paul says things like you should not allow women to speak in church and that they should wear headcoverings. Most Christians say that this was simply a part of Paul’s culture and is not applicable today. That is EXACTLY what Enns says about Paul’s idea of a literal Adam. Thus, to criticize Enns for saying that would only be consistent if you forbade women from speaking in church and required them to wear headcoverings.

      I truly wish people would learn what Enns actually says before attacking him.

  24. Dr. Wile,
    We use your curricula here at our home and our children love to learn from them. Our oldest son is currently studying Traditional Logic so I had him come and read your blog and some of the comments and once again you taught our son an important lesson, that of being a Berean and thinking for yourself using logic and critical thinking. Thanks for standing up for clear thinking and grace. I love the Great conventions for the very same reason.

    1. Thank you so much, Dawn. It is good to know that even the bad comments on this post can be used for good education!

  25. Dr. Wile,
    Specifically referencing notes from Laura and Josiah, in addition to your post itself, I would like to add this to the conversation: The comment that I can’t reconcile with everything else said, making this sound like a personal attach on Ham is this: “Then he gets really nasty.” I read Ham’s article, and have to say that I would not categorize his tone as “nasty.” In the interest of critical thinking, it might be better to be understated and let the readers experience shock, if they will, at Ham’s or Enn’s statements.

    It seems the fulcrum is who determines what constitutes a “biblical” view. I personally would classify a belief in millions of years and macroevolution as unbiblical. That does not mean that Enns and I don’t agree on other things, or that his salvation is in question, for instance.

    Having stated my disagreements, I completely agree with you about critical thinking. It might be noted, however, that the purpose of homeschool conventions is not expressly to discuss dissenting views, although some of that would be expected.

    Although I understand your purpose was to call for critical thinking, (as it is aptly named) I’m afraid that the lasting impression will be “Wile criticizing Ham for criticizing Enns.” It leaves one with the impression of arrogance on your part and perhaps that you have a personal gripe with Ken Ham himself. This comment is not meant to be an attack on you, but perhaps can be useful “constructive criticism” for how one person, and perhaps others, perceives the tone of what was said.

    My personal preference would be thoughtful criticism of one another’s beliefs couched in gentle speech. Well, we can all have our preferences for what we’d like! 🙂

    1. Dr. Hines, thank you for your thoughtful comment. I will have to disagree with you, however. When Ham says that Enns is a “compromiser,” he is attacking Enns both personally and spiritually. When he levels a false charge that Enns doesn’t have a Biblical view of inspiration, he is further attacking Enns by virtue of the fact that the charge is demonstrably false. I find that incredibly nasty.

      I am glad that you don’t think Enns’s salvation is in question. However, that is not the point. The point is that you should not call him names or level false charges at him, as Ken Ham does. I can’t imagine how you think my response is arrogant. I am not the one saying that Christians must agree with me or they are “compromisers.” That’s the arrogant position to take.

      The proper characterization of this post would be, “Wile criticizing Ham for attacking Enns and leveling a false charge.”

  26. After three years of globe-trotting with an evangelical organization, our family is returning to the US (and a life-style of home school) this fall. Today is the day I happened to begin my search anew for home school connections. What an interesting first read for me! My children do not fear an opposing opinion. To understand it is to better understand one’s own convictions. In doing so we better understand our relationship with our Creator.

  27. Let me see if I understand what you are saying: Ken Ham is being nasty and divisive by writing what he believes on his own blog and you believe that he is certainly not entitled to do that. You, however, are free to be nasty and divisive in talking about Ken Ham by publicly rebuking him. Is this a double standard or what? And while you agree with young earth creationism, you attack a fellow young earth creationist. Do you not know that it is illogical to say that two opposite views can be true? The Bible is quite clear and the facts are quite clear that it is indeed a young earth and if you teach the it is an old earth, you indeed are compromising with the world who desperately want to believe in an old earth for the sake of their evolutionist theories. Why would anyone do that except to
    be more acceptable to the world? And may I make the assumption that you are attacking Ken Ham for the same reason? I, for one, will pray that Dr. Enns will not stumble any little ones at the convention for if he does, it would be better that a millstone be hung around his neck and he be cast into the sea.

    1. Ariel, you certainly do not understand what I am saying. I am criticizing Ken Ham for falsely accusing Enns of not having a Biblical view of the inspiration of Scripture. In addition, I am criticizing him for calling Enns a name that Enns does not deserved to be called. Nowhere do I do such things to Mr. Ham. Thus, there is no double standard. Mr. Ham is clearly a man of God who loves the Word. Dr. Enns is also clearly a man of God who loves the Word. Unfortunately, Ken Ham claims this is not true and uses a false charge to do so. That’s what’s unacceptable.

      The Bible does not clearly say that the earth is young. This is why devout, orthodox theologians throughout the history of Christendom have disagreed on this point. These theologians are (and were) not trying to be more acceptable to the world. They are (and were) simply searching the Scriptures for truth.

      I am also not saying that two opposite views can be true. I am saying that we don’t know which view is true. While many Christians interpret the Scriptures the way Ken Ham does, many interpret them the way Dr. Enns does. It’s possible neither position is true, or it is possible one of those positions is true. However, we just don’t know. There are MANY issues in Christianity for which we just don’t know which interpretation is correct. I encourage you to read Josiah’s comment from a while back. He makes this very clear in an easy-to-understand manner.

  28. I think I love you. 😉 Fabulous post on tolerance; thank you! There are so many different interpretations of scripture that if all of us refused to ever listen to those speak who believed a separate Christ-following theology than our own, there would be little discourse indeed.

  29. Dr. Jay, I read your & Mr. Hem’s post. I have to say that I’m very disturbed. Why R U defending Mr. Enns? Why can’t he speak for himself? Why allow satan another foot hold in the church? Why allow him more poison to spread? As a homeschooler I’m very concerned that The Southeast Homeschool Convention would allow unbiblical speakers to share their views. It is sooo humiliating to believe that we R no different than animals( apes). The bible says Adam was created in the image of God. That God breathed His Spirit into him. I call Adam my ancestor, I carry the image of God not ape. If Mr. Enn wants monkeys as ancestors that’s his choice. God’s word will not change upon his beliefs. I’m also very concerned for these men & women that call themselves Christians, but R not willing to walk in the truth as He is in the truth. we know that the truth will set us free. Especially free even from satan’s lies.I pray that as Christians we will wake up.
    U say that for the sake of “the process of critical thinking” we should listen to “those who disagree with them” so we can “properly evaluate my positions”. I am reminded of Jesus not having much time to listen to the pharisees and sadducees because of their view point only poisoned the simple.
    In heaven it will all be cleared. Lord Help Us.

    1. Concerned mother, your comment perfectly illustrates the problem. Dr. Enns is NOT in any way, shape, manner, or form related to satan. He is a man of God who loves the Word. However, because he disagrees with Ken Ham’s interpretation of Scripture, people somehow think he is the devil’s servant. He is not. He is a man of God encouraging God’s people in the way he thinks the Lord wants him to. I am terribly upset that anyone would even try to relate him to the enemy, which is why Ken Ham’s behavior needs to be rebuked.

      I also think you need to read your Bible a bit more carefully. Jesus spent a LOT of time discussing things with the Pharisees and Sadducees. And even though they attacked him unmercifully, he showed grace and politeness to them. It is unfortunate that many Christians choose not to follow Christ’s example on that point…

  30. Although I am not a YE believer, I am a fan of your Apologia textbooks! Your tolerant POV is standing in the gap of the offense created by Mr. Ham. Thank you for clarifying to us that not all YEs are like Mr. Ham. I enjoy discussing different points of views and think it is healthy to do so. I applaud your efforts to welcome Dr. Enns to the convention.

  31. I have noticed that many commentators have been stating that Dr. Enns might “lead little ones astray” or cause their faith to be hurt. I think just the opposite is true if one takes the “acid” position that Ken Ham and others take. I have noticed there are several different approaches Young Earth Creationists take when approaching theology. While many interpret the scripture as Ken Ham does (as does Dr. Wile to a certain extent… they have somewhat of the same hermeneutic approach), they do not extend that to say that anyone who does not apply that same approach is lacking or leading people astray. It is a very unfair form of ad homenim and tends to give the impression to children growing up in that environment that they can in no way choose a different hermeneutic approach without serious consequences and becoming a “compromiser”. I, having grown up with AiG, eventually realized I was not honestly listening to what other viewpoints were saying. Having finally understood opposite viewpoints (and not just “the world’s” understandings) I found that they made more sense. It is true that I lost my faith through the process, but I am very attentive to the thoughts and understandings people like Dr. Enns provide. I went through an “angry atheist” stage because I felt in some way I had been betrayed and lied to by people like Mr. Ham. I continued to make very poor choices and reasons for the position I held. Unfortunately I think many who do eventually leave thinking like Mr. Ham will continue to stay in that “intellectual rut” instead of continually listening to other honest positions. As I originally began by trying to clearly and charitably understand an opposing viewpoint (as Dr. Wile is saying we all should do), I now strive to do that for people like Dr. Enns. It is organizations like Biologos that are bringing fresh incites and understandings to Christianity for me. Organizations are not “leading people astray” but rather drawing people back to God from the wreckage that AiG can sometimes cause (and I don’t mean to attack AiG with that statement). I really appreciate young earth creationists like Dr. Wile and Dr. Todd Wood, who “get it” when it comes to talking with people of other world views. I hope they continue to inspire people, they certainly have me.

    1. Thank you, Keith. I am sorry you were brought up in such a angry, unmerciful environment. I pray that the Lord shows you what real Christianity is all about and allows you to understand that you should not judge Christianity based on the horrible actions of specific Christians.

  32. Personal preference or truth? I think that Ken Ham was correct is stating that this is compromise.

    If self acclaimed atheist Richard Dawkins can recognize that millions of years and evolution are completely incompatible with the Bible, how is it that Dr. Enns, a self-proclaimed Christian does not.

    Charles Darwin authored the theory of evolution….God authored the Bible. If the Bible is the Inspired and Inerrant Word of God, then does God’s Word carry greater authority than Dr. Enns and Charles Darwin?

    What we teach our kids matters…introducing the idea that Darwin is right and God is wrong, that the Bible is a nice storybook and does not carry the authority and inspiration or TRUTH of God…well, that’s heresy. Wouldn’t that have a profoundly negative influence in the heart of these young children and the Christian faith? I think so.

    Will the Old Book stand, when the “higher critics” state
    That grave errors are discovered on its page?
    Will it save the sinful soul? Will it make the wounded whole?
    Will its glorious truth abide from age to age?

    Will its message still abide, when the scientists decide
    That its record of Creation is untrue?
    Tell us the ascent of man is by evolution’s plan;
    Will its principles the sinful heart renew?

    When in language wondrous fair, “Christian Scientists” declare
    That there is no evil, only mortal mind.
    When mental treatment fails, and seeming death prevails,
    May we in the Bible consolation find?

    When infidels parade the mistakes which Moses made,
    When the truth of Revelation they deny,
    Will the Ten Commandments still the demands of justice fill?
    Will its word support us when we come to die?

    Yes, the Word of God shall stand, though assailed on every hand,
    Its foundations are eternally secure;
    It will bear the critic’s test, and the idle scoffer’s jest,
    Its saving truth forever shall endure.

    1. Anne, I appreciate your comment, but you seem very confused. This isn’t an issue of taking Darwin over the Bible. It is an issue of using the Bible to interpret itself. LONG, LONG, LONG before Darwin, many serious, devout theologians viewed the creation account as something other than historical narrative.

      Your poem is quite true. The Word of God will stand. What DOESN’T stand is a particular interpretation of the Bible. You seem to equate a specific man’s interpretation of the Bible with the Bible itself, and that is a VERY dangerous path to tread!

  33. Well said. On some things Christians must agree to disagree, and this is one of them. Genesis 1 is not doctrinal nor is understanding it requisite for salvation.

  34. This is a quote from Dr. Enns:
    “The biblical depiction of human origins, if taken literally, presents Adam as the very first human being ever created. He was not the product of an evolutionary process, but a special creation of God a few thousand years before Jesus—roughly speaking, about 6000 years ago. Every single human being that has ever lived can trace his/her genetic history to that one person.

    This is a problem because it is at odds with everything else we know about the past from the natural sciences and cultural remains.” SO, why is it he has a problem believing Genesis? It’s science………..
    He chooses to believe whatever “science – falsely – so called” over what the Bible says. I would definitely consider that a compromiser. I choose the word of God.

    1. Ariel, you are doing what many people do – taking a quote completely out of context and using it to falsely accuse Dr. Enns. Dr. Enns DOES NOT come to his interpretation of Scripture because of science. In this quote, he is simply giving the audience ANOTHER reason to back up his claim. His main argument is based solely on the Bible itself. If you would actually read his works before roundly condemning him, you would see that!

      Dr. Enns is not a compromiser. Furthermore, he does not take people’s words out of context in order to level false accusations. I would ask that you return that courtesy.

  35. Certainly Mr. Wile I do not base my unbelief on the actions of others. I understand that point clearly. It is a point well taken and accepted. The thing about my past is more an illustration that I still hold onto vestiges of the type of theology that to be a Christian one should hold to the interpretation of the Young Earth. As I find that position incompatible with the reality I observe around me (with my senses), I lost my faith. Lately however, my understandings of other theologies are becoming clearer and these are starting to seem compatible with the reality I observe around me. That, to me, is kind of exciting.

    1. Kieth, I am glad that you are seeing the false nature of the theology you were brought up in. Being a Christian means accepting Christ as savior. It has nothing to do with your beliefs on scientific issues. I also glad that you are excited about seeing this reality!

  36. Thank you for this post! I am homeschooling Christian mom who believes that the Word of God is true and that what can be scientifically observed in the world God created is true as well. I believe seeming scientific contradictions exist due to a misinterpretation of the world around us or a misinterpretation of the Word of God, or more likely, both. The division in Christ’s church over science distresses me greatly. Thank you for defending a brother in Christ you strongly disagree with and for not equating science with theology.

    1. Thank you for your kind comment, Elizabeth. It does my heart good to know that the church has people like you in it!

  37. Genesis may not be a prerequisite for salvation, but the attack on it may be a roadblock for someone else to come to Christ. “If the very first book in the Bible isn’t right, then the rest of it may not be either…why read it?” Ken Ham’s defense of the accuracy of the Bible is commendable! We are not supposed to be conformed to the world…and we ARE supposed to call out those who might lead our children astray. You either believe in the accuracy of the Bible or you don’t.

    1. But Christine, Dr. Enns’s view is NOT an attack on Genesis. Dr. Enns does not say that the first book in the Bible is not right. What he says is that parts of it are not historical narrative and are not meant to be taken that way. I agree that Ken Ham’s defense of the accuracy of the Bible is commendable. What is NOT commendable is for him to say that because someone disagrees with him, that someone does not accept the authority of Scripture. In addition, it is not commendable for him to level false charges against someone, as he clearly did against Dr. Enns.

      If you are worried about a view of Genesis being a stumbling block, read Keith’s comments. He says he walked away from the faith because he was taught what Ken Ham teaches. Now I don’t think Ken Ham’s teachings harm the cause of Christ, but there are many Christians who do think that. My point is that while you see Dr. Enns’s teachings as possibly causing a stumbling block, there are a lot of people who think that about Ken Ham’s teachings. That should at least be some food for thought.

  38. Jay-“The Bible does not clearly say that the earth is young.”

    Really? Gen 1:5 “God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day.” This means millions of years?

    Jay-“Dr. Enns does not believe we are descended from monkeys. He believes that monkeys and people have a common ancestor.”

    Gen 1:26 “Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness.” So the image of God is therefore some kind of human/animal hybrid?

    Jay-“Jesus spent a LOT of time discussing things with the Pharisees and Sadducees. And even though they attacked him unmercifully, he showed grace and politeness to them.”

    Matt 23:27,28 “How terrible it will be for you, scribes and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs that look beautiful on the outside but inside are full of dead people’s bones and every kind of impurity. In the same way, on the outside you look righteous to people, but inside you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness.”

    I’m really confused now because you say Ken Ham was nasty but Jesus showed grace and politeness. That’s some fancy critical thinking. It’s very interesting that you demand Mr. Ham be tolerant of Mr. Enns views, but you do not excuse yourself from this same tolerance.

    1. Think, you need to read some theologians. There are many theologians who make the argument that specifically because the phrase “evening and morning” is repeated, that is a signal that the entire Genesis account is poetry. As Augustine said, the creation account is at least clear on one thing – the days in Genesis were unlike any days we have experienced, given that the sun was not even created until “day” 4. Thus, the idea that the creation account MUST involve 24 hours days is not supportable theologically.

      No, the image of God is not some sort of human/animal hybrid, because even in the evolutionary view, humans are distinct. They are not hybrids. Once again, please at least understand someone’s position before falsely accusing him of believing something.

      I think you are very confused over Scripture. Jesus was quite graceful to the Pharisees. However, he did call them out on their ACTIONS. This is exactly what I did with Ken Ham. I am very tolerant of Ham’s VIEWS. In fact, I agree with Ham’s interpretation of Genesis. What I am not tolerant of is him leveling false charges against a brother in Christ.

  39. My food for thought is the meat of the Word. I believe the Bible to be 100% true…and it is still true when it tells me I am a sinner. Some people don’t want to hear that. Maybe the hypocrisy of the church is what drives people away, when they say that we’re supposed to believe the Bible but then live their lives in ways that are contradictory. There are many reasons people leave the church…sometimes looking into the mirror that is the Bible is the reason.

    In your comment to Keith, you told him that being a Christian has nothing to do with your scientific beliefs. I mean no disrespect by this, but then why should I have my children study your Exploring Creation books? If someone’s scientific beliefs can’t stand in the face of their religious beliefs, then one has to give way to the other. The Bible tells me that you can’t serve two masters, and I choose to hold my scientific beliefs up to the light of the Word.

    1. Christine, you should use my books because you are trying to determine what is true scientifically. However, that has no effect on your salvation. That was my point to Keith. I agree with you that the Bible should be the foremost source of truth for any Christian. However, what you seem to be missing is that there are many aspects of the Bible that cannot be agreed upon by Christians. If you are a Calvinist, does that mean Arminianists don’t have a love for the Word? Of course not. There are good THEOLOGICAL arguments for Calvinism, and good THEOLOGICAL arguments for Arminianism. As a result, I don’t think any Christian can say that either one is DEFINITELY what the Bible teaches. Given the fact that serious, devout theologians from the beginning of Christendom have argued about what the creation account really means, I think it is clear that there are good THEOLOGICAL arguments for several different interpretations of Genesis. As a result, a Christan cannot categorically state that the Bible can only be interpreted in one way on that issue.

  40. I had prepared a long post, but perhaps this will be more useful. Those who see the core of this issue as the nature and sanctity of the Bible, listen and obey:

    “Welcome all the Lord’s followers, even those whose faith is weak. Don’t criticize them for having beliefs that are different from yours.
    Some think it is all right to eat anything, while those whose faith is weak will eat only vegetables.
    But you should not criticize others for eating or for not eating. After all, God welcomes everyone.
    What right do you have to criticize someone else’s servants? Only their Lord can decide if they are doing right, and the Lord will make sure that they do right.
    Some of the Lord’s followers think one day is more important than another. Others think all days are the same. But each of you should make up your own mind.
    Any followers who count one day more important than another day do it to honor their Lord. And any followers who eat meat give thanks to God, just like the ones who don’t eat meat.”

    Romans 14:1-6 CEV

  41. I find it very telling that nearly every time someone who is ultra conservative (i.e. ken ham) is questioned, people get in an uproar and rush to step in. It’s like they’re afraid of difference of opinion on ANYTHING. No matter what the difference is, if you don’t believe exactly as they do, you’re being unbiblical and certainly can’t be a “true” Christian. This is the very definition of legalism, folks. It’s ugly and not Christlike.

    1. I have to say that I completely agree with you on that point, Sharon. I guess that means you are a true Christian 🙂

  42. Mr Jey, now I’m really concerned on how U understand someone’s comment. My point did not state that Mr.Enn is “related to satan”. U R adding words to my post. U can say that satan is using Mr. Enn as a tool to poison the truth in the church, ’cause that is what I meant.
    U R right, And I will read my bible more carefully, so I can help my kids how to identify the lies. That they will be aware who is in the truth & who claims to know the truth.
    Also the reason why Jesus was spending “a LOT of time discussing things with the Pharisees and Sadducees” was because THEY were fallowing Him SO they could trap Him.
    Do U think Jesus “showed grace and politeness to them” when He called them “you hypocrites”(Mat.22:18); or “You are mistaken, not knowing the Scriptures nor the power of God” ( Matt 22:29); or “……They crush people with unbearable religious demands and never lift a finger to ease the burden”( Matt 23);or ““What sorrow awaits you teachers of religious law and you Pharisees. Hypocrites! For you shut the door of the Kingdom of Heaven in people’s faces. You won’t go in yourselves, and you don’t let others enter either”. I could go on & on for there R lots more.
    U said “It is unfortunate that many Christians choose not to follow Christ’s example on that point…” Should I be like Him to this point?

    1. Concerned mother, your affirmation that you think Enns is being used by Satan is incredibly troubling. How many of Enns’s books have you read? How many times have you listened to him discuss Biblical topics? I have read one of his books, two of his articles, and at this conference have heard him speak twice. I can tell you flat out that Satan is not using him. Indeed, as the latest post shows, he offered some profound truths in his first talk. Later on, I will summarize his second talk, which gave me a brand new insight on the Bible. I have sat through countless sermons that have offered nothing new to me. This man you say is being used by the devil offered me a brand new insight on Scripture in just two sessions. Shame on you saying he is being used by the devil without even BOTHERING to learn the details of what he teaches!

      As I told “Think,” Jesus called the pharisees out on their ACTIONS. That’s what the verses you quote show, and that’s what I did with Ken Ham. His actions were 100% wrong. Jesus never called the pharisees out on what they BELIEVED. Indeed, as Josiah clearly shows, Romans 14:1-6 tells us specifically NOT to do that. So you SHOULD be more like Jesus on that very point. Call people out on their ACTIONS, not their beliefs.

  43. To be honest I don’t think that the relationship between Jesus and the Pharisees make for a good analogy. In the first place Jesus main complaint against the Pharisees had to do with the discrepancy between their hearts and actions. We however cannot see into or judge people on their hearts, and so cannot take such a course of action. Secondly the Pharisees weren’t Christians, so we can’t extrapolate to a intra-church disagreement. It also takes a bit of additional theological understanding to know why the Pharisees got on better with Jesus than the other religious groups of the day.

    In my opinion it would be better to take an example from the council of Jerusalem or a similar controversy.

  44. Although “Jewish theologians in the time of Christ… may not have unanimously agreed that Genesis is historical narrative,” those same Jewish theologians would have also agreed with Mr. Enns that (as he stated in his lecture at Westmont College) “in the OT, we see God giving the Law with the expectation that they can actually keep it.” That is one reason why I DO believe Mr. Ham is justified is saying Mr. Enns is a “compromiser.” Reading the NT side by side with the OT, we can be assured that God never had the expectation that even one person could keep the law even temporarily. I also heard Enns explain many times in his lecture that his interpretation of Genesis “lessens tension with evolution” and that “Paul’s [historical] Adam can be “reconciled with evolution” if we simply see Paul as an ancient Greek man who didn’t have the volume of scientific knowledge that we now have.

    First, because Enns ideas are not new, or have been around for thousands of years, means nothing to me in arguing that he is not a compromiser. Certainly Satan, whose only language is lies, has been encouraging compromisers since the beginning. Even the godliest of theologians with godly intentions can compromise.

    Second, it seems quite obvious to me that Enns scientific beliefs are foremost to him, and although he too believes in Christ as a historical figure who offers us salvation, he chooses to read the Bible through the filter of his scientific beliefs. What discourages me about this is that it then becomes so easy to pick and choose what parts of the Bible are literal and what parts are merely poetical. What I respect about AiG is that they choose to take every word of the Bible as literal. If my fallible ideas don’t seem to reconcile with the Bible, I don’t want to add my ideas into the infallible authority of God. I want to honestly critique my opinions in the light of God’s word.

    Truly the part of Enns’s lecture that convinces me personally that he is a “compromiser” is at the very end. He uses his water bottle as a prop to explain that if it (the bottle) was evangelical theology we can’t simply glue on evolutionary thought, like attaching our hand to the bottle. According to Enns we have to synthesize the two areas. I could be misinterpreting Mr. Enns on this point, but I view this as saying we need to reinterpret any parts of the Bible that don’t agree with the current views of science and reread the Bible through the “light” of scientific discovery. Science itself admits that it is changing and it is fallible. If I reread the Word of the ever-constant, all-knowing God through the eyes of changing, fallible science I am a fool.

    I have to say I am thankful that AiG refuses to read the infallible word of God through the filter of current scientific evidence but reads the current evidence through the filter of God’s infallible word. They are one of very few sources we as a family have found that help us learn more about the detailed complexity of God’s universe through the eyes of His infallible word, and we are very thankful for that resource.

    I agree with you, Mr. Wile, that “the only way I can properly evaluate my positions is to listen to those who disagree with them.” But I also believe that we need to hold other Christians accountable, and if we feel they are compromising, we need to respectfully call them on it so that their compromising views do not lead others astray. In many areas that he mentions in his lecture, I felt Mr. Enns is compromising.

    1. Michelle, I appreciate your thoughtful comment. However, I will have to disagree with you that the historical facts regarding the church’s disagreement over Genesis are not relevant. The very fact that serious, devout theologians had these same ideas LONG before evolution and “millions of years” indicates to me quite clearly that this kind of theology is not a compromise with science. Indeed, how could ancient theologians compromise with an idea that didn’t even exist back then?

      Dr. Enns certainly does not reach the position he reaches because of evolution. His core arguments are theological, not scientific. In the end, he discusses evolution as a sidelight – something that can be integrated into the theology because of the nature of the theology. That seems to be the core of many people’s misunderstanding of Enns’s and other non-young-earth-creationist’s views. While I am sure there are people who interpret Genesis specifically to force it to agree with evolution, that is not the case for most serious theologians like Dr. Enns. Instead, these theologians start with the text of the Bible and develop their theology from that alone. Then they look at science and see how science relates to that. This is exactly the same thing Ken Ham does. He starts with the text of the Bible, develops his theology, and then discusses science in light of that theology. However, when people like Dr. Enns do EXACTLY the same thing, Ken Ham calls them “compromisers.”

    1. Thank you, Greta. You will not regret hearing Dr. Enns’s talk, especially the one entitled, “What Is the Bible, Anyway (and what do we do with it)?” It happens the same time as one of my talks, but his is the better one to attend.

  45. Dr. Wile, I listened to the video of Enns that Ken Ham linked to and don’t understand how anyone can say he’s not compromising the Bible. He clearly reduces Paul’s writings to just that – PAUL’S (unscientific) writings. He completely rules out the Bible being inspired by God by claiming that Paul was only writing his own (flawed) idea of who Adam was. (We all know that Paul did, by the inspiration of God, share his personal, uninspired ideas at least twice, but each time he clearly classified them as such, and does not state them as fact.)

    In other words, it would seem if Paul stated a fact about Adam that is not a fact after all, then he was either writing out from under the Holy Spirit and didn’t tell us (in which case none of the Bible can be considered truly reliable since we wouldn’t know where else this had occurred), or the Holy Spirit lied (which we know God cannot do).

    I don’t see any way to understand Enns’ position here as anything but an attack on the inspiration of Scripture, which certainly says “compromise” to me.

    1. Matthew, you are simply incorrect. Dr. Enns certainly DOES NOT say that Paul’s writings are Paul’s writings. As his book clearly states, he says that God INSPIRED Paul (and the other writers) by using symbols and ideas that were readily accessible to them.

      You set up a false dichotomy that seriously mischaracterizes Enns’s views. Paul was certainly writing under the Holy Spirit, and Enns clearly says that is the case. The Holy spirit did not lie to Paul. The Spirit simply used symbols and ideas with which Paul was familiar in order to inspire him. I disagree with this, of course, but I at least am willing to describe his views honestly. I wish you would do the same.

    1. Thank you for that link, Cshannon. That article demonstrates the proper way to criticize Enns’s views. One would expect Dr. Geisler (who Ken Ham also thinks is a “compromiser”) to behave properly in such a situation!

  46. Dr. Wile: I attended a session of Mr. Enns’ at the Memphis convention, then later a session of Mr. Ham’s. Near the end of Mr. Ham’s he showed some disturbing pages of evolutionary curriculum that was being sold in the exhibitor hall. I knew whose it was. Mr. Enns’ talk left me with a bad taste in my mouth. I am not a scholarly type, but the Lord is in me. I believe He warned me of the false teaching that Mr. Enns was passing along. I am thankful for one thing about Mr. Enns’ session that I attended and that is this: there were only about 6-8 others there. I pray that he and those that are similarly blinded will see the Truth before it is too late.

    1. Judi, I am glad that you actually went to the talk to see for yourself. I spoke to about a dozen homeschoolers at the convention who mentioned at least one of Dr. Enns’s talks very positively, so there were some to whom he ministered. I personally thought both of the talks that I attended were amazing. One gave me a brand new insight into the Bible, and the other spoke profoundly about how poorly the church misses its mark in ministering to those who are hurting.

      I am not surprised Ken Ham found time in one of his talks to criticize someone else’s curriculum. It seems to be something he does regularly.

      I pray that those who are too quick to condemn their brothers and sisters in Christ eventually learn the truth of God’s amazing grace.

  47. This has been a very interesting discussion. Thank you, Dr. Wile, for sharing your views. I was very troubled when I read Mr. Ham’s nasty attack on Mr. Enns, and I am so glad that you have spoken out about it.

    Christians need to show love–not disdain–for those around them, and I am disappointed that Mr. Ham has chosen to do the latter. As a Christian homeschooler, it makes me sad to see this in our community.

    I especially appreciated your comments about the theologians’ different views of Genesis. I agree that there are some questions for which we do not have definitive answers. Some things will remain mysteries until God chooses to reveal His answers. Until then, why can’t we agree to disagree and support each other in Christian love?

    Christ called us to love each other, and I would like to see the Christian homeschooling community bear this witness to the world around us. Mr. Ham’s name calling serves only to diminish Jesus in the eyes of those who do not know Him.

  48. Dr. Wile, in light of all this recent discussion back and forth about Dr. Enns, I simply have one question for you: Do you personally subscribe to any of the beliefs espoused by Biologos? Or are you simply defending Dr. Enns’ right to hold such beliefs?

    1. Tina, the people of Biologos and I do hold some beliefs in common. In fact, the people of Biologos and Ken Ham hold some beliefs in common as well. However, the way I interpret the Bible is much closer to the way Ken Ham interprets the Bible (creation in six 24-hour days, young earth, etc.) than it is to the way the people of Biologos do.

      I am not just defending Dr. Enns’s right to hold such beliefs. That is such an obvious fact that it need not be defended. I am calling Mr. Ham out for leveling false charges at Dr. Enns and calling him unwarranted names. Dr. Enns is a brother in Christ, and he should not be treated that way….period.

  49. Thanks for your quick response. I do appreciate Mr. Ham enlightening people about Biologos and those involved with it, but I am less concerned about that than about your underlying philosophy/theology on the topics addressed by Biologos. That’s because I’ve used your Apologia materials and want to continue to use them – so I want to be able to know if I can feel comfortable doing so. Thus, without taking up too much of your time, could you quickly list the Biologos tenets with which you agree? Thanks so much, sir.

    1. Tina, I believe that the Bible is the inspired Word of God, as does Biologos. I also believe that science and faith should be in dialogue, as does Biologos. I agree with them that the six 24-hour day creation doctrine was questioned LONG before evolution and “millions of years” came along. I (like most evangelical theologians) also agree with them that there is no contradiction between animal death before the Fall and the atonement. Indeed, the idea of no animal death before the Fall is, at best, an extraBiblical notion.

      While I agree with them that animals do adapt and change over time due to the effects of many factors (like normal genetic shuffling as well as mutation) acted on by natural selection, I disagree with them on the range over which animals can adapt and change. They think that one organism can eventually evolve into a completely different kind of organism. I think that change is limited by the information content of the genome and thus one basic kind of organism cannot evolve into another basic kind of organism.

      I am very concerned that my support for a Christian brother has made you uncomfortable about using my courses. I would rather that you investigate the actual courses themselves instead of subjecting me to some theological/philosophical purity test.

  50. Thank you for this response, Dr. Wile. I am impressed that you would take the time to address Ken Ham’s attack.

  51. This is key to me: “More importantly, however, listening to serious scholars who disagree with you is an important part of the process of critical thinking.”

    I have no problem with scholars criticizing each other’s work. I have a serious problem with people trying to control who is allowed to speak at different venues. That is something for the venue to decide, not its speakers.

  52. Thanks for clarifying, Dr. Wile. I’m sorry if I’ve made you feel as if you’re on the defensive; that wasn’t my intention. I also don’t believe I’m subjecting you to a “purity test.” It’s just that, in light of the recent controversy regarding Dr. Enns, I wanted a bit more information on your personal position on the issues – because I think it’s really important to know the theological stance taken by those who write curriculum I may (very likely) use with my children. It’s, of course, not necessary to agree on every minute theological point, I do think it’s fair of a parent to want agreement with an author on “the biggies,” since any author’s underlying beliefs surely dictate how content is presented. I have the highest regard for the Apologia materials you have written, and I fully intend at this point to use them (as they are endorsed by my core curriculum, My Father’s World), but I just wanted to hear directly from you about some of these things. And, truly, I really appreciate the time you’ve taken to provide thoughtful, personal responses. That speaks very highly of your character.

  53. Please take the following in all love that was intended as I write some thoughts.

    when I hear the word ‘diverse’ I get real uneasy. God’s Word is very narrow, limiting, non-inclusive and dividing.

    @Dr. Wile@tina: “I am very concerned that my support for a Christian brother has made you uncomfortable about using my courses. I would rather that you investigate the actual courses themselves instead of subjecting me to some theological/philosophical purity test.” Dr. Wile, I am a simple homeschooling mom—and simply, all I have been taught is to evaluate the worldview of the author. The End. :o)

    1. Gail, it is unfortunate that you have that kind of aversion to the word “diverse.” If you look at the history of Christendom, diversity is what you see. God created a very diverse world – indicating that He enjoys diversity. While certain people have MADE God’s word very narrow, limiting, non-inclusive, and dividing, I think they have done a great disservice to Scripture.

      It is not evaluating the worldview of an author that I have a problem with. I have a problem with the idea that my theology is suspect simply because I am trying to get one brother in Christ to treat another brother in Christ in a Christian manner!

  54. “I am very concerned that my support for a Christian brother has made you uncomfortable about using my courses. I would rather that you investigate the actual courses themselves instead of subjecting me to some theological/philosophical purity test.”

    Dr. Wile, thank you for saying this. I was oh so disturbed similarly by that poster’s line of questioning.

    We use your science books for my dd14-now doing Physical Science. She loves your books! She says they are not boring because it is written like you are just talking to the student, explaining things, in a conversational tone. I, too, enjoy reading them! She attended about 3 of your teen track workshops at Memphis and liked them.

    Good for you urging Christian charity and I will have my daughter read this blog.

    1. Lakota, thank you very much for your very kind words. I am glad to know that my courses are working so well for your daughter, and I appreciate the Christian charity in your words. There seems to be a shortage of that in some of the comments here!

  55. For someone who is a promoter of the scientific method, I am finding some of your comments very confusing, Dr. Wile! For example, you praise Dr. Geisler’s critique of Dr. Enns, contrasting it to what you see as Ken Ham’s unfair criticisms, yet Geisler says, “When the true view of Enns is unveiled, it is easier to understand the kind of theological paranoia Enns reveals about his view when he exhorts others not to speak of his views like his with ‘judgmental suspicions’ (172) or ‘predispositions against new ideas,’ or to consider such views to be ‘on a slippery slope.’ Likewise, (h)e warns against ‘power plays’ and attempts to ‘vilify person(s) holding’ such views, or against those who ‘go on the attack’ against it and ‘jump to conclusions’ about one’s motives and engage in ‘build[ing] our own kingdoms’ All of this he calls the ‘angry evangelical syndrome’ (173). Of course, the net effect of ad hominem phrases like these is to build a protective wall around his admittedly minority and clearly unorthodox views. By so doing, he hopes to ward off any critical analysis that would consider them unbibiblical and/or unorthodox.”

    So how is his description of “theological paranoia” and “ad hominem phrases” and “clearly unorthodox views” better, in your view? The only “name-calling” Ken Ham did was say Enns was a “compromiser” (as in compromising biblical teaching by trying to reconcile it with his scientific beliefs, which he does do though he protests not…a literal Adam is “a problem because it is at odds with everything else we know about the past from the natural sciences and cultural remains”) and saying that those views were “liberal theology,” which they are if you accept words at face value and don’t have an postmodern view of language which allows you to think it means what you want it to mean, and gives a lot of wiggle room for plausible deniability.

    1. Carmon, I am sorry that you are confused, but my comments follow scientific reasoning quite diligently. Indeed, because of my scientific training, I have a hard time NOT thinking about things scientifically. For example, as a scientist, I find it interesting that you are using one person Ken Ham calls a “compromiser” to defend Ken Ham for calling another person a “compromiser.” That is certainly not something a scientist would do! After all, Ken Ham says both of these men have suspect theology. Thus, using one “suspect theologian” to defend Ken Ham’s attack on another “suspect theologian” is hardly logical! On the other hand, I see NEITHER Enns NOR Geisler as suspect, so I can appreciate the thoughts of both men.

      Leaping over the problem of poor logic, however, the difference between what Geisler does and what Ham does is quite simple – Geisler does not attack Enns personally, and he does not level false charges against Enns. Geisler attacks Enns’s THEOLOGY. I have no problem with that. Indeed, I think there are things wrong with Enns’s theology, and thus it deserves to be attacked. However, nowhere does Geisler call Enns any names. He points out bad aspects of his WRITINGS (“theological paranoia” and “ad hominem phrases”, for example) and bad aspects of his THEOLOGY (“clearly unorthodox views”, for example), but never does he imply that Enns is someone who doesn’t respect Scripture. When Ken Ham says that Enns (and Geisler, for that matter) is a “compromiser,” it means he doesn’t have respect for Scripture. That crosses the line. As you read Geisler’s review, it is clear that Geisler thinks Enns has a deep respect for Scripture. Read the very first paragraph, for example. There Geisler lays out Enns’s specific words that make it clear that Enns respects Scripture as much as any Evangelical. Note also that Geisler confirms that Enns rejects cultural relativism (even though you imply that Enns accepts it). Thus, at no time does Geisler even imply that Enns’s respect for Scripture is even a bit suspect.

      Second, and more importantly, Geisler levels no false charges at Enns. Ken Ham says that Enns does not have a Biblical view of the inspiration of Scripture. That is simply 100% false. As I showed in my post, Enns’s view of Scriptural inspiration is different, but it is wholly consistent with 2Timothy 3:16. Nowhere does Geisler even imply that Enns doesn’t have a Biblical view of the inspiration of Scripture. Instead, in the second paragraph, he affirms that Enns does believe in the inspiration of Scripture (“He correctly points out that similarity of Genesis with other ancient texts does not diminish the inspiration of the Bible”).

      Once again, I disagree with Dr. Enns’s theology. I have no problem with someone attacking IT. Even if I agreed with his theology, I would still have no problem with someone attacking IT. I have a problem with someone attacking Enns, especially with false charges.

  56. Well spoken Dr. Wile. You are a true gentleman and scholar.
    It saddens me that some of my homeschooling icons have been attacked by other Christians. I hope and pray they read your article, apologize to those they’ve spoken against and take to heart that there are ways to convey your viewpoint that do not involve invective. I truly admire Ken Haam but it saddens me that he would behave in this manner.

    1. I wholeheartedly agree, Lizzie. I have been praying for Ken Ham since I read his terrible post. I spoke to Dr. Enns about Mr. Ham’s horrible words, and not surprisingly, Dr. Enns has already done the Christian thing and forgiven Mr. Ham.

  57. It also concerns me when links to sites are given with the warning to not be led astray. Or specific instructions on how to read a text. Or instructions are given to not listen to or read certain things.

    It reminds me of certain trends in the church in previous ages that attempted to control thought.

    I’ve always liked Ken Ham and AIG, but I’ve read a couple of things like this and it leaves me a little discouraged. He really needs to focus the debate on the evidence for creation since that is what his ministry defends. If he wants to talk about the curriculum available in the vendor hall, it should be in terms of certain things to look for not “don’t touch it, don’t even look at it, we say it is bad” which is the impression I have been getting recently.

    Homeschooled children are going to be exposed to all kinds of things we disagree with once they leave home. If they have never heard a contrary idea, where is that going to leave them?

  58. I’ve used a variety of texts to teach science. Most of them are not Christian. They were what was available from the library or simply the best resource I could find on the subject we were studying.

    I took my eldest to a bee class on Saturday and it wasn’t five minutes before the presenter said bees have been here for millions of years, are well-adapted to what they do and that our job as beekeepers is to take advantage of that biology to take some surplus honey.

    She shook her head, but listened politely. We didn’t throw out the rest of what he said because he said “millions of years.” The first thing she said when we left was “He wasn’t Christian was he, mom?” And we had a discussion about how we know he doesn’t share our beliefs in that area, but that doesn’t necessarily mean he isn’t Christian.

    Our salvation is based on our relationship with Christ, not specific views. And while I believe that creation is an important doctrine, I didn’t believe in a literal 6 day creation the day I was saved, either.

    1. Dana, I think that’s the key. You don’t throw out everything a person says because he or she disagrees with you on specific points. I am glad that you are teaching your children this!

  59. John 1:1-6 “In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.”

    Matthew 10:32-39 “Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven. Think not that I come to send peace, but a sword. For I come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. And a man’s foe shall be they of his own household. He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me. He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it.”

    Matthew 12:36,37 “But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgement. For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.”

    Matthew 18:5-7 “And whoso shall receive one such little child in my name receiveth me. But whoso shall offfend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea. Woe unto the world because of offenses! for it must needs be that offenses come; but woe to that man by whom the offense cometh!”

    Thank you Ken Ham for revealing the dangers that these fallible thoughts of men present. It saddens me that people will attack a man who sees the danger ahead and tries to warns others of this danger. If you saw someone with blinders on his eyes walking toward a cliff, would you not warn them of the danger ahead. I have listen To Peter Enns and all I heard was confusion and the destruction of God’s Word. May the Lord give him eyes to see and ears to hear the stumbling blocks they are laying for our future generations.

    As for Jay Wile, please read the warnings of Colossians 2 and 1st Timothy 4. What you call an attack, I see as a sound warning to those who hold fast to the authority of Scripture. I pray that as in 1st Corinthians 13:6, that you would see that love rejoiceth in truth, that it is love that motivates Ken Ham.
    The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.

    1. Greg, I strongly disagree that love can possibly motivate untruthful attacks on brothers and sisters in Christ.

      The Scriptures you cite are excellent. I expect that Dr. Enns would appreciate each one of them. I note that you left one out, however:

      Romans 14:1-6:
      “Now accept the one who is weak in faith, but not for the purpose of passing judgment on his opinions. One person has faith that he may eat all things, but he who is weak eats vegetables only. The one who eats is not to regard with contempt the one who does not eat, and the one who does not eat is not to judge the one who eats, for God has accepted him. Who are you to judge the servant of another? To his own master he stands or falls; and he will stand, for the Lord is able to make him stand. One person regards one day above another, another regards every day alike Each person must be fully convinced in his own mind. He who observes the day, observes it for the Lord, and he who eats, does so for the Lord, for he gives thanks to God; and he who eats not, for the Lord he does not eat, and gives thanks to God. ”

      I pray that you learn how to take this to heart! God Bless you.

  60. Dr Wile,
    Well said on all. I think you have been very clear on your view of making a distinction between someone’s theology and them personally. Christ did it all for us on the cross. He is our only judge, we are all a work in progress. We must all learn to evaluate, with God-given discernment, what we read and hear. No conversation can exist with only one person/view.
    God will one day reveal all, until then, we must learn to love one another.

    1. Patty, thank you so much. You are right. We are ALL a work in progress, and God should be the one who judges. We simply need to discern.

      The software that runs this site is called WordPress, and it has a “gravitar” feature, where it looks at pictures you have used in the past to represent yourself in Google comments, WordPress comments, and other blog-type comments. I expect you set that picture up long ago as a gravitar and just forgot about it.

  61. Dr Wile,

    You are so wrong! Your friend Giesler DOES judge other people or groups. For example he says that Aig is hindering people from coming to Christ by holding to a young earth.
    Can you tell us who you consider a compromiser?? Benny Hinn, Robert Schuller, Joyce Meyer?? Is there such thing as a compromiser?
    So you do believe in animal death before the creation of Adam and Eve?? How long would this have been taking place??
    Thanks for your answers..

    1. Anthony, can you please give me a quote from Geisler (not Giesler) saying that AiG is hindering people from coming to Christ? It certainly doesn’t sound like him. Even if he said that, however, he is not attacking an individual. He is attacking an organization. There is nothing in Scripture forbidding that. Also, he is not my friend. I have never met him. Finally, I did not set Geisler up as the ideal Christian or the perfect example. I simply said that his critique of Enns is the proper way a Christian should critique another Christian.

      Since I try to obey Scripture, I try not to attack people. I attack specific theologies. There are lots of theologies that compromise. If a theology denies salvation by faith, that is a compromising theology. If a theology denies the trinity, that is a compromising theology. If a theology denies the inspiration of Scripture, that is a compromising theology. If a theology denies the atonement, that is a compromising theology. If a theology tries to change the canon, that is a compromising theology. Those are just a few examples of a compromising theology.

      I do not believe in animal death before the creation of Adam and Eve. I am not sure where you got that. I don’t know about animal death before the Fall. I really have no idea. All I know is that the concept that there was no animal death before the Fall doesn’t come from Scripture.

  62. Cancel the speaker. Let Enns go to Southern Methodist or TCU and share his views. I will not recommend Enns curriculum. I side with Ken Ham on this. The real thing here is Enns has accepted millions of years, so he has to do something about Genesis to accommodate. This is eisegesis – very bad hermeneutics from a “scholar” of evangelical integrity. Dr. Wile should not defend this and should know better that the Battle for the Bible starts with Genesis. There is no waggle room on this.

    Actually, there is plenty of evidence to contradict the millions/billions of years offered by evolution. The “science” behind evolutionary long age paradigm is pretty poor. Ask the hard questions and they beg the issue and ask you to just accept it – just believe. lol

    1. Mike, if you took the time to peruse my writings on even a cursory level, you would know that I agree with you when it comes to the science. In addition, if you had even bothered to read the article on which you commented, you would know that I am not asking people to recommend Enns’s curriculum. I am only asking that Christians think critically and behave in a Christian manner. I guess that is too much to ask…

      You are quite wrong when you claim that the acceptance of millions of years comes from a bad hermeneutic. In fact, the bad hermeneutic is to say that there is no way millions of years is consistent with the Genesis text. The battle for the Bible does begin with Genesis, and if you are unwilling to treat the text seriously, you are not aiding in the battle.

  63. Julie, Eatonville, WA: Romans 10:9-10 (NIV) That if you confess with your mouth, Jesus is Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved.

  64. Thank you for responding to my (now buried) post.

    Yes, Enns claims to believe the Bible is the inspired Word of God. Yet, he also claims the following:

    * Adam was not the first man
    * Paul *thought* Adam was the first man
    * Therefore Paul wrote that Adam *was* the first man

    Paul’s statements are either absolutely true, or absolutely false. So, from Enns’ line of reasoning above, either Paul wasn’t writing under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit (because what he wrote wasn’t true) or else the Holy Spirit lied to Paul (and all of us) about who Adam was.

    There can be no third option within Enns’ line of reasoning.

    So while Enns may technically believe in the inspiration of Scripture, he undermines it by implication, at least in this talk (and I would argue in others, although that’s outside the scope of this comment thread).

    By the way, even though you disagree with me, couldn’t you at least assume I might be mistaken instead of dishonest? I notice you don’t question Enns’ character even though you also disagree with him; it seems I might be given the same courtesy.

    1. Matthew, I never meant to imply that you are dishonest, and I am sorry that you took it that way. I simply meant that you had not studied Enns’s views, which is apparent in your comments (even now).

      You are quite wrong when you say, “So, from Enns’ line of reasoning above, either Paul wasn’t writing under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit (because what he wrote wasn’t true) or else the Holy Spirit lied to Paul (and all of us) about who Adam was.” That is a false dichotomy, and it doesn’t help the discussion at all.

      Using Enns’s line of reasoning, Paul was writing under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, and the Holy Spirit did not lie. He used Adam as a symbol. This is not a lie, as symbols are real and can have real meaning. For example, my father is a military man. He speaks of “the flag” all the time. He is not referring to an actual physical flag. He is referring to the SYMBOL of the American flag. He is not lying. He is speaking of a real thing – a symbol that carries meaning and truth.

  65. Well, the Convention decided to cancel Dr. Ham. I am very disappointed in that decision.

    I would have preferred to get Drs. Ennis and Ham in a session and “duke it out”, biblically speaking. Actually have a debate on the issue.

    1. Jeff, it was probably the best decision. It doesn’t work when one speaker at a convention attacks another speaker at the same convention. Mr. Ham’s view will be represented, because Dr. Jonathan Sarfati will be speaking in Ham’s time slots.

  66. Hi there… I have read through most of these posts & responses… yes, this is going to be a hot subject… we use your books & so what you have to say on this subject is important to me… I haven’t seen anything in your books that I would disagree with, but if your theology had changed I would have a hard time recommending your new or revised books… thus, my appearance here…

    I generally stay out of these conversations because for the most part people have their opinions & they are not really wanting to hear/listen but rather convince… myself included… but I wanted to put in my 2cents 🙂

    I believe that every single solitary word in the original scripture is from God – breathed by Him – written by man… I believe that when He said lets make man in Our image – He made a MAN… not a type of man… not a vision of a man… but a MAN in THEIR image… when He says He created it in a day – He created it in a day… He also says each came after its own kind… no jumping across species is allowed… when we start going down the road of deciding what is literal & what is not, we than leave all scripture up for debate on what is valid & what isn’t… In different kinds of books of the bible there are definitely types used – don’t get me wrong – but when God says I did… He did… when He says He raised Jesus from the dead… Jesus was actually dead & God actually raised Him from the dead to live again & is now alive…

    mind you, I am not saying that you are saying that you don’t believe those things to be true or not… that isn’t my point… but having gone & read some of Mr. Enns thoughts/writings (yes from him) where he questions those things I do believe we need to say wait a moment… having him write a curriculum teaching bible… well, that might not be the best thing to sell at a “Christian” event… unless those leading the event agree with his writings… yes, we can put in a caveat, and yes, we all need to be Bereans & test for ourselves… but you know, as well as I do… if you personally endorse a science curriculum – I will initially take your word for it – because I trust you… scripture talks about teachers bearing a greater responsibility for those they lead astray… now if Dr. Enns was teaching/writing about grammar – that’d be a whole other ball game (in my opinion) do you understand what I mean?

    I agree – we don’t need to be attacking the man… but if the leaders of a convention believe that someone is teaching a bible theology that the convention leaders disagree with – then that needs to be addressed – because as leaders they are responsible for that…

    there are many ways to teach phonics & no one is going to get all hot & bothered by someone advocating one way over another… but theology is bottom line… it matters…

    I was previously a leader of a Christian home school convention – i brought in speakers & authorized curriculum sellers and we cannot have speakers that we disagree with as a leadership team speaking at a convention we are hosting… they are free to speak – just not where I am endorsing them – and when I have them speak at the convention that I run – I then am endorsing their theology…

    does any of that make sense… I sure hope so… with much respect… michelle (who could use that grammar class eh???)

    1. Michelle, even though he disagrees with your beliefs, Dr. Enns has every right to write a Bible curriculum, and it SHOULD be sold at a Christian convention, as it represents a view in Christendom. The point here is that the leaders want a conference that spans the various beliefs in Christian homeschooling. Dr. Enns’s view fits in there, especially given that a major publisher in homeschooling publishes his work. Mr. Ham took it on himself to destroy that by attacking Dr. Enns directly. It is truly unfortunate.

      In addition, the way this convention is set up, the leaders DO NOT endorse the theology of their speakers, as their speakers have a wide range of theologies.

  67. I would like to respectfully say that while the issue at hand is a hot one for both sides my main disappointment after reading a large amount of the comments submitted is how rudely some were addressed by you, Dr. Wile. We have been an Apologia family for several years now, so I would have liked to see more kindness shared. We all need to remember that in all things we need to share love. I, too, speak (and write) with emotion. I’m just saddened to see how this has become something that has respected members of the Christian homeschooling and academic communities reduced to such things.

    1. Stephanie, I certainly didn’t mean to be rude to anyone. I also want more kindness shared. That’s why I wrote the post to begin with.

  68. Dr. Wile,
    If Peter Enns views are orthodox and not heterodox, why did Westminster Theological Seminary remove him from his professorate? Westminster is not known as a raging Biblicist or Young Earth seminary?

    Also, all this hand-wringing on criticizing public teachers intrigues me. Would you say that the Apostle Paul should not have criticized Peter? Or that Athanasius should not have fought took and nail for Nicaean orthodoxy? Should Martin Luther have remained silent in the face of Tetzel’s abuses? I think not. So why draw the line with Ken Ham? Your idea of criticizing the idea but not the messenger is a distinction without a difference.

    1. Reformed Esq, Westminster Theological Seminary dismissed him DESPITE the fact that a panel of faculty members decided that his views ARE orthodox. It is clear Westminster has a LOT of issues!

      I am saying that we are to obey the Scriptures. Romans 14:1-9 clearly says that we are to treat other brothers and sisters in Christ with respect, regardless of whether or not we agree with them. Neither Mr. Ham nor I are apostles. As such, we need to follow the Scriptures. Athanasius and Tetzel were fighting heresy. Dr. Enns is not engaged in heresy.

  69. “Since I try to obey Scripture, I try not to attack people. I attack specific theologies. There are lots of theologies that compromise. If a theology denies salvation by faith, that is a compromising theology. If a theology denies the trinity, that is a compromising theology. If a theology denies the inspiration of Scripture, that is a compromising theology. If a theology denies the atonement, that is a compromising theology. If a theology tries to change the canon, that is a compromising theology.”

    A person who practices thievery, one calls a thief. A person who murders someone, one calls a murderer. A person who lies, one calls a liar.
    A person who bakes is a baker; a person who sings is a singer; a person who teaches is a teacher; a person who preaches is a preacher…. The lists continue, etc and so forth.

    My question, Dr. Wile, is simply this:

    Someone who practices compromise, would not that one, by definition, be called a compromiser?

    I fully support Ken Ham and his stand on pointing out the compromisers of Biblical Doctrine. Matthew 7:13-23 (KJV)says:

    13 Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:

    14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.

    15 **Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.**

    16 **Ye shall know them by their fruits.** Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?

    17 Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.

    18 A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.

    19 Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.

    20 **** Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them. ****

    21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.

    22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?

    23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.

    Yes, Dr. Wile this is the same chapter that tells us to “Judge not, that we be not judged,” and to “cast out the beam out of [our] own eyes.” Yet, it gives us a warning that we are to know those false prophets, those ravening wolves in sheep’s clothing by their fruits.

    Dr. Ham is only trying to warn people of the false doctrine presented in Enns’s theology, which you yourself multiple times stated you disagreed with as shown by this quote:

    “Once again, I disagree with Dr. Enns’s theology. I have no problem with someone attacking IT. Even if I agreed with his theology, I would still have no problem with someone attacking IT.”

    You say, “There are lots of theologies that compromise.”

    Enns’s theology is a compromising theology, and that, respectfully sir, by definition, makes Enns, the practiser of the compromising theology, a compromiser.

    I thank God that there are still some men out there in this world that stand up for the Word of God. Men like Ken Ham.

    1. Eliza, the point is that Dr. Enns is NOT a compromiser, because he does not have a compromising theology. He has a theology different from you and I, but it is a Christian theology. I absolutely agree with the Scriptures you quoted. For example, we are to judge a tree by its fruits, and Dr. Enns’s books have produced a lot of fruit. Just ask the Christians who use them. In addition, the publishing company that publishes his homeschool-oriented books has also produced a lot of fruit. Just ask the Christian homeschoolers who use their materials. We are, indeed, to know false prophets. And we are to know them not because someone tells us that a person is a false prophet, but because we test the doctrines ourselves.

      I thank God that there are those who respect their brothers and sisters in Christ, even when they disagree with them.

  70. According to Wikipedia (with a cite to Westminster’s records)
    “On March 26, 2008, the Board of Trustees at Westminster Theological Seminary voted 18–9 to suspend Enns from his position effective May 23, 2008. Though the faculty voted 12–8 that the work falls within the parameters of the Westminster Confession of Faith, the chairman of the Board said that a majority of the members on the Board at that time felt the book was incompatible with the Confession.”

    And who determines if he is heretical? Who determined if Tetzel was heretical? Denying Adam as a federal head does seem to be heterodox if not heretical.

    A public teacher should expect public criticism. Agree or disagree? This is not an issue of Matthew 18.

    Let’s be consistent.

    1. Reformed Esq., the members of the board were not theologians. The faculty were. Thus, they were the ones qualified to make the decision, and they said he was in the realm of orthodoxy. When a board has to go against the decision of its own faculty, you know that it is not considering orthodoxy in its actions. If Enns’s views were heretical, the faculty would have said so overwhelmingly. Instead, they said quite the opposite.

      I agree that a public teacher should expect public criticism, and as was linked earlier, Dr. Normal Geisler shows how that should be done. That’s not how it was done by Mr. Ham.

  71. I disagree totally about who is qualified to determine orthodoxy. It is not the Academy that defines orthodoxy it is the Church. Like many closed societies, academia is specifically noted for its willingness to protect its own.

    We should not be captive to the opinions of so called experts but to Godly men who have the courage to stand as Athanasius did – contra mundum. Instead, too many like the whispers of praise they receive from their esteemed academic colleagues. Remember at one time, Harvard was Christian, Yale was Christian, Princeton was Christian, even Oberlin was Christian. Somehow, the academics were not able to keep it that way.

    1. But Reformed Esq., are you going on record as saying that the faculty who determined that Dr. Enns is orthodox are NOT Godly men? The fact is that MANY Godly men support Dr. Enns. When many Godly men support a person’s views, it is hard to call him a heretic.

  72. Yes, when 40% of his colleagues believe that he falls outside of the Confession that he swore to uphold, I view that as a great indictment that he is heterodox. Even moreso considering that the academy doesn’t like to criticize its own.

    My question to you – if academic theologians are good guardians of orthodoxy, how did Harvard go Unitarian? How did Princeton leave the solid orthodoxy of Warfield for the liberalism that J. Greshem Machen railed against?

    1. When the majority of his colleagues say that he falls within the Confession he swore to uphold, then he is clearly within the Confession. Otherwise, the majority would have said the opposite!

      Perhaps Harvard and Princeton became unorthodox because its Board took actions against the recommendations of the theologians on its faculty!

  73. Dr. Wile:

    Your quote, ” He has a theology different from you and I, but it is a Christian theology.” bothers me greatly. There is on ONE theology. It’s either true or it isn’t. I do regret not knowing (and it’s strictly my fault) that one person can have his theology and another his theology. Your curriculum has been impressive over the years, but I have to say I am sad to hear how you really believe. I should have investigated better when the kids were younger. I just went with the flow instead of making my own informed decision. Regrets.

    1. Julie, I am sorry to hear that you do not accept Christians who believe differently from you. There is, indeed, one correct theology. However, I am not willing to be the sole arbiter of what that is!

  74. So since the majority of Christian scientists are theistic evolutionists, then I guess they are correct and we should buy their textbooks instead of yours.

    1. Reformed Esq., you make an excellent point! A majority of theologians determined that Dr. Enns is orthodox in his teachings. If he were not orthodox, a majority of theologians would not have found him to be. Not only are a majority of scientists who are Christians theistic evolutionist, but so are a majority of Evangelical theologians. Once again, this indicates to me that theistic evolution is in the realm of orthodoxy. This doesn’t mean it is correct. It just means it is a possible correct interpretation of the Bible. Arminianists and Calvinists cannot both be correct, but they are both in the realm of orthodoxy. Thank you for making my point so well!

  75. “He has a theology different from you and I, but it is a Christian theology.”

    Sir, if that is the case, if his theology is just as Christian as yours or mine, though different, then so are those of the Mormons, the Seventh Day Adventists, Jehovah’s Witnesses, and others that are listed under the broad category of “Christian” though the beliefs are vastly different from those found in the Word of God. For instance, the Mormons add another set of books to the Bible by the book of Mormon, though in the writings of Moses, Solomon, and the book of Revelation, we are told not to add or take away from the word of God:

    Deuteronomy 4:2

    Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish [ought] from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you

    Deuteronomy 12:32

    What thing soever I command you, observe to do it: thou shalt not add thereto, nor diminish from it.

    Proverbs 30:5-6

    Every word of God [is] pure: he [is] a shield unto them that put their trust in him. Add thou not unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar.

    Revelation 22:18-19

    For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and [from] the things which are written in this book.

    So based upon these verses of Scripture, the Book of Mormon is very wrong, an addition to the word of God; yet, Mormonism is under the category of “Christian” in their eyes, and in the eyes of those in the world. Not to pick on the Mormons, but I actually spent extensive time studying this religion out for myself.

    Their theology differs from mine. They believe that hell is not necessarily eternal in that it lasts forever, but that it is only eternal in the sense that God is eternal; they believe also that a person can receive Christ as Savior after said person rejected Christ while alive and died in their sins. They believe that the paradise in which Jesus told the thief on the cross he would be with Him, was a compartment of hell: that there are two sides of it and the thief would not that be with Christ in Heaven. They believe that God finds it acceptable to have multiple wives, and base it on Scripture. They believe that Jesus Christ was a created being and the brother of Lucifer.

    I believe in a literal hell that is eternal, that lasts forever and ever and that no one who denies Christ in life has an opportunity to repent in death. I believe that marriage is an institute designed by God meant for one man and one woman until death. I believe that thief was in heaven with God. I believe Jesus Christ is the Son of God, and that Lucifer was an angel, a created being, who defied God, tried to usurp His throne, for that offense was cast out of heaven, and is now walking around in this world as a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour.

    Therefore, here is an example of “Christian” theology that is different from mine, and hopefully yours, and Enns’s. This is what I would definitely call compromising theology.
    Yet, you state that Enns’s is just different so it is not compromising, so this also must not be compromising right?
    The sad thing is when one gets a lie that is so close to the truth. Satan is the father of lies, a deceiver. He and his minions are at work in this world today trying to undermine the authority of God’s word.
    If we accept the undermining of Scripture, and do not speak up about it as Mr. Ham has done then we are just as bad as the compromisers themselves! When we undermine (or do not speak out when someone else does this) a literal Adam and Eve as the first and only man and woman God created by something like “Who did Cain marry? It could not have been a daughter of Adam and Eve, someone else must have existed in the world; if we undermine that authority by making those days into eons trying to justify evolution in the creation account (and yes I read that blog you posted on the literal days and the “ongoing” debate since early Christians) in which evolution occurred, or dinosaurs (that lived 4.6 billion years ago) all died out before man was created; if we undermine the authority of Scripture by saying death occurred before sin (animals such as dinosaurs that died all those eons ago you know?)…then we undermine the whole of scripture. We make God out to be a liar! Moreover, God is not a man that He should lie!

    You said in an earlier response: I (like most evangelical theologians) also agree with them that there is no contradiction between animal death before the Fall and the atonement. Indeed, the idea of no animal death before the Fall is, at best, an extraBiblical notion.
    And in another: I don’t know about animal death before the Fall. I really have no idea. All I know is that the concept that there was no animal death before the Fall doesn’t come from Scripture.
    How do you reconcile those statements with Romans 5:12?

    Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, ******* and death by sin; ****** and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:

    And death by sin! If animals died before the fall, before sin, which this verse says brought death, then for what did Jesus have to die? His death would have been in vain. Death is the result of the curse of sin…the first animal that was slain God Himself killed to clothe Adam and Eve with coats of skins. The blood was required for the atonement of the sin. The animal sacrifices were not a permanent solution to the sin problem, but were to point us to that ultimate sacrifice of Christ. Now, if blood was shed before that sin, for what was Christ’s blood shed?

    By the way, I grew up in an unchristian home, under the teaching of a public school education that forced evolution down my throat. Evolution and teachings such as the Gap Theory were instrumental in confusing my mind and keeping me away from the truth found in Jesus Christ. If we discount Genesis, then the first prophecy of a Savior in Genesis 3:15 was a lie. In addition, if that is a lie, then so is Christ, and if He is a lie, we live in vain.

    People who teach doctrines that undermine the truth of Scripture compromise God’s word, and, therefore, are compromisers.

    1. Eliza, you are quite right that the Mormons, the Seventh Day Adventists, Jehovah’s Witnesses are all unChristian theologies. There are many reasons for that, and you have listed a few good ones. However, Dr. Enns’s theology is not unChristian, as it does not add to or take away from Scripture. Dr. Enns is NOT undermining the authority of Scripture. He is simply using a hermeneutic that indicates that the first few chapters of Genesis are not to be taken as historical narrative. That is quite different from adding to or taking away from Scripture. It is INTERPRETING Scripture in a legitimate way. You really need to learn the difference between heresy and the beliefs of orthodox Christians who disagree with you. They are not one and the same!

      I have linked my explanation of Romans 5:12 several times. I am sorry you didn’t read it. Please read it. As you will see, the death discussed in Romans 5 refers specifically to the death of men. Anyone with even a basic understanding of Greek knows that. In addition, to claim that Romans 5 refers to animal death requires you to believe that the Greek word for death carries the same meanings as the Hebrew word for death, which cannot be defended.

      Dr. Enns is not discounting Genesis. I wish you would actually read his theology so you can understand that. He is simply disagreeing with you on how it is to be interpreted. Thus, he is not undermining the truth of Scripture and is therefore NOT a compromiser.

  76. I am not a Biblical scholar. I can not argue theology. I have Jesus, The Word, and The Holy Spirit. That’s it. But let me tell you, The Spirit grieved within me when I read the things you wrote about ken Hamm. You attacked him the same way you accused him of doing to Enns and yet you are still favored at the convention. Why can you be so ugly with your words to hamm and others and still not suffer the same pumishment? You can not argue with what I felt in my spirit or my feelings on this. But as one believer to another, shame on you for attacking someone like that. I am very disappointed in what I am reading and hearing. How grieved Christ must be to have His Word compromised and to have us be such poor witnesses fo Him.

    1. Rentia, I did not attack Mr. Ham the way Mr. Ham attacked Dr. Enns, and that is the point. Mr. Ham attacked Dr. Enns’s Christianity, not his theology. The Spirit grieved within me when I read Mr. Ham’s attack on Dr. Enns, and it continues to grieve in me when Christians do not treat their brothers and sisters in Christ fairly, as Romans 14:1-9 demands.

  77. Dr. Wile,

    Thank you for your science texts. I have learned so much from them (probably more than my children). I also appreciate your post on the subject matter at hand. It, and the subsequent comments, have really made me think.

    So, I very respectfully inquire:

    I feel like I’m missing something: aside from the word “compromiser” in the title of Ken Ham’s blog, it appears that he IS criticizing the beliefs/views/theology of Dr. Enns and not the person. I agree that Mr. Ham may choose some (purposefully) provocative language in describing those beliefs/views, but I don’t read any personal attacks. Maybe I’m too thick-skinned?? (Or, thick-headed…)

    It may be that my beliefs/views/theology line up with AiG and Ken Ham, but I appreciate the “heads up” regarding Dr. Enns’s curriculum. I need all the help I can get!!!

    1. Tinmarweb, thank you for your kind words. I am glad that this post and the comments have made you think. In answer to your question, calling him a “compromiser” is one of the problems I have with Mr. Ham’s attack. That is a direct attack on Dr. Enns. It is uncalled for and goes against Romans 14:1-9. However, he also makes a false charge, and that is the worst thing. He says that Dr. Enns does not have a Biblical view of the inspiration of Scripture. He clearly does. 2 Timothy 3:16 tells us what a Biblical view of the inspiration of Scripture is, and Dr. Enns’s view is wholly consistent with that verse.

      I would not mind Mr. Ham giving a “heads up” regarding Dr. Enns’s curriculum. My problem is that he attacks Enns personally and uses a false charge to do so.

  78. Wow, this is an interesting issue. To Dr. Wile, I commend your approach on this issue. Personally, I agree with Dr. Ham’s view, respect his passion to speak against what he considers compromise, and will gladly defend his right to speak it. However, it seems to me that this conflict is more of a “Paul vs. Barnabas conflict” (Acts 15) rather than a “Paul vs. Peter conflict” (Galatians 2).

    That is, this issue does not appear to be a primary essential issue. Though Dr. Ham would probably disagree with that sentiment, I doubt he would disagree with me that someone’s salvation in Christ doesn’t require a specific view of creation (otherwise if it did, we would see far more discussion on that issue in the New Testament; most of the discussion about creation is related to how creation is evidence of God’s existence that would hold all people accountable to seek God, like in Romans 1). I would consider a primary essential to be the very conflict that Paul uncompromisingly called Peter out for: appearing to return to a works-based salvation rather than on faith alone.

    Is it a slippery slope to not believe the creation account is literal or historical? I would argue it could be evidence of someone potentially believing other views not historically considered orthodox, but I do NOT believe it necessarily places them outside the realm of saving faith. When we begin to add rules to God’s words and commands, we set ourselves up for failing His very words we’re trying to protect. For example, the Jews added hundreds of rules to help protect them from breaking the 4th commandment (honor the Sabbath), but despite their very good intentions, the rules were elevated to the same level of the commandment. As well, in order to ensure they don’t break the 3rd commandment (God’s name), they inserted the vowels of adonai into YHWH in order to remind them to call Him “adonai” instead and ensure they don’t accidentally say His true name in vain. In both examples, Jesus challenged them head-on by breaking their human rules for the Sabbath and referring to Himself as YHWH. What was the Jews’ response? They were deeply offended because they elevated their rules to the same level as God’s.

    Could this help explain some of Dr. Ham’s strong offense to these differing views on creation, etc.? Is he elevating his interpretation of scripture to the same level as scripture itself to the point where compromising his interpretation is the same as compromising scripture? I hope not. I would absolutely support him if his defense were on the primary essentials of salvation which are pervasive throughout all of scripture; but for what I would consider important yet secondary essential issues not directly related to salvation, I think tolerance (which does not imply acceptance, compromise or support) reflects a more humble, Christ-like, “love one another” attitude.

    Unfortunately, that intolerance to someone’s interpretation of a non-essential issue seems to be a frequent response in the world of apologetics. That’s why I have a personal aversion for it. But if it gets the gospel out and leads people to Christ despite my opinion, then I’m all for it!

    1. Matt, you are quite right. Mr. Ham would never claim that your salvation is dependent on your interpretation of Genesis. However, he would claim that you do not accept the authority of Scripture unless you agree with him. That is false, of course. I know many, many serious, devout Christians who fully accept the authority of Scripture and are not young-earth creationists.

      No, it is not a slippery slope to believe that the Genesis account is not historical. There are many parts of the Bible that are NOT supposed to be taken historically. The parables of Jesus are an example. As a result, one must develop a hermeneutic to determine when the Bible is speaking historically and when it is not. If your hermeneutic is a solid one, you are not on any kind of slippery slope.

      I am not sure that Mr. Ham is “elevating his interpretation of scripture to the same level as scripture itself.” I do think he has lost sight of many aspects of Scripture (like Romans 14:1-9) in his zeal to do what he thinks is protecting the Word of God. Ken Ham is clearly a man of God who loves the Word. Unfortunately, he cannot accept that those same words describe Dr. Enns, and that is the root of this problem.

  79. Mr. Wile,

    You say Mr. Ham was “upset at the fact that someone who disagrees with him will be speaking at the same venue.”

    If you were portraying the facts correctly, I think that you would clarify that Mr. Ham was upset that someone who disagrees with his interpretation of Genesis will be speaking at…”

    Mr. Ham was pointing out that this curriculum taught the millions of years approach, including (with further examination) the “man evolved from other creatures” approach.

    Perhaps the very “beginning” of your argument (above, the idea that Mr. Ham is only angry that a speaker that disagrees with him will be there too) throws off the credibility of the rest of your argument, just as disbelieving portions of Genesis would undermine the authority of the rest of Scripture!

    To say that Mr. Ham is being “really nasty” by standing up for what he believes in is resorting to needless characterization of his comments. As Mr. Ham said, he was attacking the ideas (the undermining of Scripture that was taking place by Mr. Enns) NOT the person (Mr. Enns himself).

    1. Rich, I appreciate your thoughts. Mr. Ham and Dr. Enns disagree on other aspects of Scripture, but you are correct. I could have worded that first part better. However, “really nasty” is an accurate description of what Mr. Ham says. When you level a false charge at a brother in Christ, that is really nasty.

  80. I didn’t think that what Ken Ham said was ugly at all and although I agree with you that discussion and respectful disagreement can be intellectually invigorating for adults, I am certain that a parent purchasing a Bible curriculum with which to teach their children, would like to be fully aware of the beliefs of the author. For someone else who is knowledgeable about the content of that curriculum to point out where they differ from another group or individual can be helpful. That is really the kind of information we are seeking from speakers at a conference and certainly we expect to hear each speaker express themselves based on their own convictions- how could they do otherwise?

    1. MeritK, I have no problem with Mr. Ham pointing out the problems he sees in another’s curriculum. However, that is not what I am upset with. I am upset with Mr. Ham called Dr. Enns an unwarranted name and leveling a false charge against him.

  81. “The biblical depiction of human origins, if taken literally, presents Adam as the very first human being ever created. He was not the product of an evolutionary process, but a special creation of God a few thousand years before Jesus—roughly speaking, about 6000 years ago. Every single human being that has ever lived can trace his/her genetic history to that one person.

    This is a problem because it is at odds with everything else we know about the past from the natural sciences and cultural remains” Paul’s Adam Part 1 by Peter Enns.

    Enns’s would have us believe with evolution and “natural sciences,” that we are getting better and better!

    “In addition to cultural artifacts, there is also the scientific data from the various natural sciences that support a very old earth (4.5 billion years old) and the evolutionary development of life on it…. Most recently, the genetic evidence for common descent has, in the view of most everyone trained in the field, lent great support to the ***** antiquity of humanity and sharing a common ancestry with primates. *****” Evolution says we come from a single celled organism that turned into a fish that turned into an amphibian that turned into a lizard that turned into a mammal that turned in to a monkey (primate) that turned into a man. Ok that is (maybe) an (over)simplified version of what they are asking us to believe, but, it is that. I single celled organism over eons becomes a monkey/ ape, that over more eons becomes a man. We are just getting better and better! Right? WRONG!!!!!!!! Adam was, as Mr. Enns’s notes in the first part I quoted here, “a special creation of God.” God made Adam in perfection, Adam disobeyed, and as a result, sin and death entered the world. A curse. A promise of a Savior (Gen. 3:15). That means we are getting worse and worse! We were created from the dust of the ground and to that dust upon death, we return, just as God said we would in Genesis. That is all I need to read of Enns’s “theology” to know it is a compromise of theology and biblical Doctrine. I believe that Reformed Esquire person is spot on to say Heretic! If this teaching had been presented in the early church days, or even in say the 15th or 16th centuries, he would have been dubbed a heretic and excommunicated from the church! Has the Christian community really gone so far as to defend and endorse these teachings? Dr. Wile, sir, I respectfully must disagree with your comment that he is no compromiser. His few statements related here are definite compromises to sound doctrine.

    Another thing…he is trying to say that not all people come from this one couple but that it is the start of the Israelites…umm, excuse me?

    If it were to deal strictly with the beginning of the Israelite nation, then why does it follow the history and document all those other people groups and nations? I am afraid to discover what he believes about the flood…probably it was not a worldwide disaster, but a localized event and that no people on earth were drowned in the waters, except for Noah and his family, who were saved alive in the ark.

    Seriously, when you start undermining the authenticity of Genesis, the whole foundation of the Bible breaks up. There is no need of a Savior, which, interestingly enough, Enns’s points out with these statements:

    “Jesus came to undo what Adam did. He came to reverse the curse of Adam.

    There is really little doubt that Paul understood Adam to be a real person, the first created human from whom all humans descended. And for many Christians, this settles the issue of whether there was a historical Adam. That is what Paul believed, and for his argument to have any meaning, both Adam and Jesus have to be real people. *****If there was no Adam, there was no fall. If there was no fall, there was no need for a savior. If Adam is a fantasy, so is the Gospel.*****”

    Hmmm. As I said earlier, it is sad when the lie is so close to the truth. Here we have a man that is taking the word of God, and, instead of looking at Science as something that is only observable through the five senses of touch, sight, hearing, taste, and smell, and, therefore, cannot deal in origins (because origins cannot be proved by these five senses, no matter how much evolutionists and natural science want to make it so) but that we have to have FAITH to believe how the origins came into being. Man it takes a whole lot more faith to believe evolution than creation! However, I digress.
    Enns, instead of looking for a way to fit “science” with Scripture, tries to fit Scripture to “science” by questioning the authenticity of the Scripture!

    Oh, we all do it in some way or other, try to fit the Word of God into our little box, try to make it fit into our mindsets, try to make it mean what we want it to mean instead of what it says. I have a person in my life who believes it is ok to be in a same sex relationship because God is a God of love and wants us to love one another. When presented with the Old testament passages that refute this practice the reply was that is the Old testament and now we live under a new covenant. When presented with the verses in the new testament that refute it (Romans chapter 1 for instance) they said that was not meant for all people but only for the people who were doing in worship to false gods in the temples. They took clear scripture and formed it to their own ideas. They took the truth, rejected it, and accepted a lie from Satan.

    This happens so many other ways. Mr. Enns is teaching a false concept of Scripture, that makes him a false prophet, a wolf in sheep’s clothing, and we have to look at what he is teaching and what it is doing with the authority of the Bible.

    It is not wrong to call one who practices compromise a compromiser, any more than it is wrong to call someone who murders a murderer. Therefore, by definition, Enns is a compromiser.

    1. Eliza, Dr. Enns is not a compromiser. I can see that you disagree with his interpretation of Genesis, but just because he disagrees with you does not make him a compromiser. Also, Dr. Enns is not looking for a way to fit science into Scripture. You can always pull people’s quotes out of context in order to get them to sound any way you want them to sound. However, if you actually educate yourself on Dr. Enns’s views by reading his theology, you will see that this is not the case.

      I am truly sorry that you are not willing to treat Dr. Enns with the love that you should treat a brother in Christ.

  82. I just went to Dr. Ham’s site and read the article. I don’t know where Ken Ham said that Dr. Enns doesn’t have a biblical view? I think that statement was taken a bit out of context…Here is what Ken Ham said

    “He does not have the same view of inspiration as I do. In fact, he doesn’t have the biblical view of inspiration: “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness,” (2 Timothy 3:16).”

    He said that Dr. Enns doesn’t have a biblical view of INSPIRATION. Well, from what I read that is true.

    Michaela

    1. Michaela, Mr. Ham is clearly attacking Dr. Enns’s view of the inspiration of Scripture. He uses 2 Timothy 3:16 as his proof text, and that deals with the inspiration of Scripture. Dr. Enns’s view, of course, is completely consistent with that verse, indicating that Dr. Enns has a Biblical view of the inspiration of Scripture.

  83. Dr. Wile,
    It seems to me many of the commenters miss the point of your original post. While making it clear that you disagree with Dr. Enns on certain theological points, you have no reason to question his personal relationship with Christ or his acceptance of the authority of Scripture.

    In contrast to your view, Ken Ham and certain other young-earth creationists have personally attacked Dr. Enns and those who are or seem to be sympathetic to his views. Ham’s vicious, uncharitable attack is the reason given by the board of Great Homeschool Convestions for his disinvitation. To quote from their letter to him (which he made public): “Our Board believes Ken’s comments to be unnecessary, ungodly, and mean-spirited statements that are divisive at best and defamatory at worst.”

    The Board members go on to state that while every one of them personally holds a young-earth view, the vehemence of Mr. Ham’s verbal barrage flatly contradicts the spirit of Christian charity.

    For several years now, I have been greatly disturbed by the manner in which many high-profile young-earth creationist leaders vilify fellow Christians who do not share their view. Notably, Mr. Ham, Doug Phillips, and ICR have publicly and repeatedly berated old-earth (or age-day) creationists such as Dr. Hugh Ross as compromisers. Although they may not openly use the label “heretic,” the clear implication is that only those who hold to a 24-hour creation day framework are within the pale of orthodoxy; all others are to be viewed with suspicion as closet evolutionists, who if they do not change their ways, will probably end up in the same camp as Richard Dawkins and other raving God-haters.

    Although my background is in social science rather than physical science, I have studied this issue extensively. While leaning toward an old-earth view, I see full well certain evidence that appears to contradict that position. The truth is that there are men who love the Lord Jesus and His word who come down on both (or more) sides of the age of the earth and related questions. I would rather die than deny Jesus as Lord. I would take a bullet rather than spit on the Bible. But when it comes to the age of the earth and similar issues, despite the unwavering pronouncements of AIG, it is just not that clear. I would not be willing to die for this, nor question the orthodoxy of those who disagree with my particular view.

    Mr. Ham, Mr. Phillips, and others need to stop the theological bullying and consider the virtue of humility. For all I know, they may be right in terms of their view. In just a few short years, each of us will stand before our Creator and I think He will be more concerned about (and hold us accountable for) whether or not we exhibited true charity more than where we came down on the age of the earth. There is nothing wrong with tenaciously holding to and defending a view, but when done without charity, it profits us nothing!

    Has Mr. Ham attempted to privately speak with Dr. Enns to discuss their differences? Several years ago when Mr. Phillips publicly blasted Dr. Ross as a compromiser, I sent him a note encouraging him to speak with and get to know Dr. Ross, who is a man of Christian dignity and intellectual rigor. To my knowledge, no attempt was made to do so. It’s always easier (and sometimes more financially profitable) to blast away with one’s mouth or pen than to take the more arduous route of personal dialog seeking mutual understanding.

    True followers of the Lord Jesus should seek the way of peace and attempt reconciliation. That does not mean we will always agree, and there certainly is a time to publicly denounce error, but even then, there is a right and a wrong way to go about it.

    I hope Mr. Ham will prayerfully weigh the words of the Board in their disinvitation, but my fear is that he will play the victim and trump it up as just one more unwarranted attack on his version of biblical orthodoxy. May God have mercy on us all.

    Grace to you.

  84. Dr. Wile,
    Thank you. I walked away from the church a little over three years ago because of dogmatic beliefs and intolerance for those who hold a differing opinion. I have went so far as to not call myself a Christian because I do not wish to be grouped with those I feel give Christ a bad name. I am a follower of Christ, period, and dislike ‘church’ people that hold with the notion that ‘it’s their way or no way.’ I believe in YE theory but I don;t believe one should behave as Mr. Ham did; it was unprofessional. Worse, it gives credence to my views that too many Christians are chained in legalism and more akin to the Pharisees than to Christ.
    Now, I want to tell you that I was saved late in life (25) and was not raised in a Christian home. I thought all Christians were hypocrites and mocked them. Then I was saved and turned 180. For a time I was hard core legalistic, etc. Then I settled down and began to once again think critically. That is when I saw the rampant hypocrisy of the church, this time as a believer. It sickened me; still does. I studiously avoided any christian curriculum because of my distaste for all things ‘Christian” but, after reading your post today, and your responses to the comments, I am eagerly awaiting our homeschool conference in June so that I may purchase your science texts. Further, even though my homeschool group’s conference is meant to be an inclusive conference as is fitting for our inclusive homeschool group, I would gladly have you speak; you represent the
    best in Christians and I am in no doubt that you would treat non-believers with the utmost respect; I cannot say the same of Mr. Ham, based on his actions of late.
    Again, thank you for restoring my faith in Christians; it is nice to know that there are real, genuine people out there who strive to have a heart like Christ.
    I also commend Dr. Bauer for her actions in regards to this and was very glad to see that my support of her and her curriculum was not misplaced. I hold her in very high regard and now add you to that very short list.
    Sincerely,
    Rachel Lundy,
    CEHE Conference Coordinator
    Savannah Georgia

    1. Rachel, all I can say is “thank you” from the bottom of my heart. Dealing with intolerance is very difficult for me, but you and David (the previous commenter) have helped immensely. Most importantly, however, I am glad that the kind of intolerance you are seeing here did not ultimately push you away from Him. God is amazing, isn’t He?

  85. I know that in his original statement Ken Ham intended to present “Compromiser” in the context of compromising something that is sacred, in view of the concept “what communion does light have with darkness”. As such it was certainly an insulting thing to say.

    However considering Eliza’s post I’d question whether “Compromiser” is in fact a negative word. Substitute instead mediator, or peacemaker, and you will see what I mean. To compromise implies the humility to acknowledge that your view is not necessarily the only option, and the love to acknowledge the needs of others. For example the Angels who evacuated Lot Compromised

    “But Lot said to them, “No, my lords,[b] please! Your[c] servant has found favor in your[d] eyes, and you[e] have shown great kindness to me in sparing my life. But I can’t flee to the mountains; this disaster will overtake me, and I’ll die. Look, here is a town near enough to run to, and it is small. Let me flee to it—it is very small, isn’t it? Then my life will be spared.”

    He said to him, “Very well, I will grant this request too; I will not overthrow the town you speak of. But flee there quickly, because I cannot do anything until you reach it.” (That is why the town was called Zoar.)”
    Likewise God promised to compromise with Abraham over the same incident.

    The council of Jerusalem is fundementally about Christian Compromise. Acts 21:25
    “As for the Gentile believers, we have written to them our decision that they should abstain from food sacrificed to idols, from blood, from the meat of strangled animals and from sexual immorality.”

    Likewise the Romans passage I referred to earlier.

    Overall I think that a lack of such humble compromise, in this positive definition of the word, is exactly what is lacking in many of the commentators on this thread.

  86. I am surprised at how much authority you are willing to cede to the majority. In essence, you say that consensus determines what is acceptable. May I say that Pilate believed the same thing. And, so did Hitler. Majorities can be and are often wrong.

    1. Reformed Esq., you clearly haven’t read much of what I have written. I am ceding nothing to the majority, other than the fact that they can represent a particular view. Majorities can often be wrong, but so can minorities. That is why you have to actually reason things out for yourself, rather than simply following what one person (or a group of people, or the majority) say.

  87. I am very thankful for your graciousness and scholarly view on this matter. Indeed … a breath of fresh air.

  88. It only took me reading the first few paragraphs of your post to realize that you don’t have a firm grasp on what a compromiser is.The very definition: “To reduce in quality, value, or degree; weaken or lower” perfectly fits what his teaching does to the Bible. Secondly, you sir are “taking a dog by the ears” by inserting yourself into a situation that doesn’t involve you. Read Prov 26:17

    1. Michael, you don’t seem to have a firm grasp on what Dr. Enns is doing. He is not reducing the quality, value, or degree of the Bible. He is simply using a different hermeneutic from yours.

      This situation does, indeed, involve me. I speak at the Great Homeschool Conventions as well, and I had to deal with the strife of Christians who were harmed by Mr. Ham coming to me. After all, I have the same views on creation as Ken Ham. As a result, those Christians who were harmend by Ham’s behavior came to me to tell me how “my” view of Scripture is causing strife. I had to make it clear that while I share Ham’s view of creation, I certainly don’t share his view that those who disagree with him on creation are compromisers. I also had to make it clear that Ham’s charge that Dr. Enns doesn’t have a Biblical view of inspiration was false.

  89. I’m not so learned in theology like so many of you, but I do know that when someone purposely misrepresents the Bible (as in the Creation Story), they compromise. PERIOD. Oh sure, you can continue to argue the point, but that doesn’t make it right or Biblical… it just makes an argument. No one treated Dr. Enns badly… Get over that! He is a spade and he was just called a spade. It’s not unchristian-like or disrespectful to call him that. Like I always say, ” If it looks like horse, acts like a horse and smells like a horse, use your common sense, IT”S A HORSE!

    1. Ellen, Dr. Enns does not compromise the Bible. Period. I am simply calling a spade a spade when it comes to Mr. Ham.

  90. Dr. Wile,

    I am a homeschooling mother of three. I’m very discouraged by your blog. You critize Ken Ham for his critical review of Dr. Enns, but then you go on to be critical of Ken Ham. So, it’s not okay for Ken Ham to warn Christian parents of what is taught by Dr. Enns? But it is okay for you to critize Ken Ham? Isn’t that a double standard?

    Also, the Scripture does tell us to test ‘teachers’ words against Scripture as there will be many false teachers. In my humble opinion, this is what Ken Ham is doing. He was NOT nasty towards Dr. Enns, but if you think he was, then you in return were nasty to Ken Ham.

    Futhermore, I’m as disturbed that you do not agree with a lot of what Dr. Enns believes, but think it’s great he’s speaking at a homeschool convention, which claims to be a Christian Homeschool Group. This is how we become deceived as Christians.

    Lastly, we, as Christians, cannot have conflicting views of the Scriptures. The Lord didn’t mean two different or multiply things with each passage. Either there is a literal Adam or there isn’t. One is truth and one is false teaching. It is as black and white as that!

    I think you have done your ministry a disserve as now I have to seriously considering whether I want to continue using your curriculum, as I’m sure a lot of other homeschooling parents are, too. If you are willing to compromise on letting a false teacher teach to our Christian children, then what else are you willing to compromise on?

    1. Angela, there is no double standard here. I did not level any false charges against Mr. Ham, and I did not call him any names. He did both to Dr. Enns. I simply pointed out the wrongness of Mr. Ham’s actions.

      We are, indeed, to test teachers. However, we are not to level false charges against them. We are also not to call them unwarranted names.

      We can be deceived as Christians when we start looking to individuals instead of looking to Scripture. There are many, many Christians who appreciate Dr. Enns and his writings. There are obviously many who do not. We should test Dr. Enns individually, not call him unwarranted names and level false charges.

      While you think I am compromising on Scripture, you are quite wrong. In fact, I am simply asking Christians to obey the Scriptures. That is not a compromise. Whether or not you use my curriculum is up to you. However, if you simply look to others to make that decision, you are not doing what Scripture tells you to do.

  91. Thanks Dr. Wile, for being fair minded and accurate. I am so tired of these attacks and personal destruction against fellow Christians that may disagree. You are a breath of fresh air.

  92. For those who want to know what Peter Enns teaches (and study it for yourselves as Dr. Wile suggests, I recommend these links to this report of the 8 Professors (including the President of the Seminary).

    http://www.bible-researcher.com/enns2.html
    http://www.bible-researcher.com/enns1.html

    Especially interesting in the light of the discussion regarding civility is this quote from the report:

    “Finally, we are troubled by the dismissive approach that the book exhibits towards other well-respected scholarly evangelical positions with which [Enns] disagrees. We are also troubled that at several points those scholars who hold these views are described variously as being irresponsible and verging on the intellectually dishonest, without citing any representative names, offering any evidence for this startling claim, or attempting in any way to outline their alternative positions or to engage constructively with their arguments. To give a specific example, [Enns] declares, “It is a distortion of the highest order to argue that Jesus must have cleansed the temple twice”. *** It is regrettable that [Enns] makes such a categorical dismissal of a position held by such respected scholars (particularly given its claim to be writing for a broadly evangelical audience) and that it does so without any interaction with the relevant arguments of those with whom [Enns] disagrees. This is most surprising and unfortunate, given that it simply contradicts [Enns’] closing appeal for theological discussion to proceed by means of humility, along with charitable listening to, and conversation with, the positions of others.”

    So, apparently, Peter Enns does not practice the charity toward others that Dr. Wile finds so attractive.

    To bring this full circle, I am very disappointed (but not surprised) that Mrs. Bauer chose Enns to do her Bible curriculum and providing him with his current platform. This was a conscious choice of hers and one that will result in me (and hopefully others with whom I have influence) avoiding the purchase her products in the future.

    1. Reformed Esq., thank you for those links. They represent a minority opinion among the faculty, but they are quite valuable. Most importantly, like a previous link that was given to Dr. Geisler’s review of Dr. Enns’s book, they show the PROPER way to evaluate a person’s views publicly. No name-calling. No false charges. Indeed, the authors even point out the value Dr. Enns’s book has. They simply attack the theology expressed in it. I have no problem with that, and it is perfectly consistent with Scripture.

      You do manage to misunderstand the part you quote, however. Nowhere does Dr. Enns fail to practice charity towards others. As the quoted section clearly states, he attacks “a POSITION held by such respected scholars.” He is not attacking the scholars, he is attacking the POSITION – just as the scholars who wrote the pieces you linked attack Enns’s theology.

      I am very disappointed (but not surprised) that you will boycott a publisher because she met the needs of many Christian homeschoolers.

    1. Kathy B, we MUST interpret it. We have no choice. Indeed, even a translation is an interpretation. More importantly, the truths expressed in Scripture are very deep. We have theologians for a reason!

  93. “Dr. Enns does not compromise the Bible. Period.”

    And, because you say it, it is so. I think there is a logical fallacy there.

    1. Reformed Esq., because you (and Ken Ham) say Dr. Enns compromises the Bible, it must be so? The fact is that he does not. He simply uses a different hermeneutic.

  94. Thank you, thank you, thank you, Mr. Wile!!!!

    I am concerned with the caustic “group think” that is becoming widely accepted within my homeschooling world. It’s very isolating and damaging. I SO appreciate your willingness to oppose the iron mindset.

  95. “The fact is that he does not. He simply uses a different hermeneutic.”

    So does a “Christian” like the Episcopal Bishop John Spong who denies the reality of the bodily resurrection of Jesus compromise the Bible or does he simply use a different hermeneutic?

    1. Reformed Esq., I have no idea who Bishop John Spong is, so I cannot comment on him. However, denying the reality of the bodily resurrection of Jesus does, indeed compromise the Bible. That seems to be what many people cannot grasp. There are certain things the Bible is quite clear about, and they form the foundations of our faith. There are many things the Bible is less clear about, and they form many of the secondary issues that should be debated in the spirit of love.

  96. Your blog on critical thinking is extremely patronizing. You rag out Ken Ham for disagreeing with Dr. Enns and basically applaud yourself with disagreeing with Dr. Enns in a low key whispering kind of way so as not to draw the scorn of the homeschool convention. Ken Ham simply boldly states that Dr. Enns doesn’t view the Bible as inspired word but merely a symbolic body of information based on interpretation rather than literal. Ken Ham in no way shape or form talked about the man’s intelligence, integrity, and salvation. He merely disputed the “idea” or “view” that Dr. Enns has concerning the Bible and disagreed with it.
    You on the other hand hide on a blog post and try to make it seem like you’re the more sophisticated mature Christian that nurtures a healthy forum of politically correct Christian debate. It appears Ken Ham holds his position and you play the political game.
    Your curriculum is excellent and I will continue to support it but frankly I feel you should have just kept silent on the issue between Ken Ham and Dr. Enns especially when you support a young earth theory anyways. Instead of trying to play semantics on the situation and trying to be politically correct. Ken Ham and Dr. Enns disagree ok let’s not make it a “Christians not showing love to fellow Christians” debate out of it.

    1. Dave, I am sorry that you see my post to be patronizing. I have spoken on the topic of critical thinking for a number of years now, and most who hear it don’t see it that way. Ken Ham boldly states a false charge and then calls Dr. Enns an unwarranted name. He was wrong to do so, and that’s what I called him on. This is not me trying to be sophisticated. It is me trying to honor Scripture.

      I am sorry that you don’t see it this way, but this debate most certainly IS a “Christians not showing love to fellow Christians” debate. Thus, I will continue to focus on it.

  97. Ken was dropped and Peter Enns is now promoted on their blog. another thing that disturbed me about Enns are his tv choices. he says, “I am also a Simpsons and The Office fan.” these shows completely blaspheme the Holy Spirit and are God hating shows. this is worldly Christianity.

    1. Marco, Dr. Enns was ALWAYS on their website. Also, I really couldn’t care less what television shows an author watches. Do you really check the personal lives of all authors before reading their works? I truly hope not. I care about what an author writes, not what television shows he watches!

  98. It concerns me that in your article you over and over again classify yourself as “a scholar”. I would be more concerned that people see me and classify me as a Christian rather than some world held position or title such as a scholar! For all of you trying to justify Dr Enn’s beliefs, remember Satan will give a little bit of truth to get people to believe a great big lie! He quoted scripture to Jesus, we need to remember that! We also need to remember that we are called to spread the good news and reach others with the truth of Jesus! Notice I say “truth”. Lets not get caught up in the politics of he said/ she said stuff! These are distractions from the real importance of reaching the world with the truth and hope that can only be found in Jesus! Our time is short and need not be wasted with all of this!

    1. Heather, I completely agree that our time is short and it should not be wasted. It should not be wasted by one Christian calling a brother unwarranted names and leveling false charges. That’s why I posted what I did. We need to be able to talk with fellow Christians and learn from them.

      Please tell me where I portray myself as a scholar. I most certainly do not. Dr. Enns is a scholar, and I correctly identify him as such.

  99. Dr.Wile,

    I don’t have a problem with all of this controversy over what was said and by whom – in general. In fact, by following the links provided in Ken Ham’s and your blogs I have a much better understanding of what the actual theological controversy entails.

    That you consider Mr. Ham’s comments beyond the pale is your opinion, well thought out and well argued. You and anyone else interested have every right to form, back up and state your opinion – Including Ken Ham.

    I do take issue with AIG being dis-invited to the next two Great Homeschool Conventions. Mr. Ham spoke in precisely the manner I’d expect from his writings (most of which I agree with and appreciate). His views are well known and well documented – his behavior is/was exactly what one expects. Why in the world was he invited in the first place if those in charge had a problem with his style or rhetoric? It just seems very disingenuous to dis-invite a group for behaving as expected. How does censoring AIG’s views from the conventions further the educational objectives of the conventions? Wouldn’t a disclaimer on their website and in the convention materials have served the same objective without reducing the content available at the convention. As it is, one voice won’t be heard – I find that sad and unfortunate for the parents/teachers attending.

    I also find it particularly patronizing to assume that the adults attending the conventions aren’t intelligent enough to weigh each speaker’s words – accept what they like or agree with, disregard what they don’t or (preferably) act like a grown-up and discover whether or not a speaker’s philosophy, theology, and curriculum line up with what is best for their own child – who knows, they just might learn something new! (I certainly did!)

    I attended the Memphis convention, listened to both you and Mr. Ham. I enjoyed each very much and look forward to listening to the MP3s of the lectures I couldn’t attend.

    In case this comment appears critical of you personally let me state clearly – I appreciate your argument and your position as well as your right to express them here. Reading through this blog and the related links has been enlightening. This blog and others like it are an excellent venue for just this type reasonable debate.

    1. Cjblac, thanks for your comment. You seem to be under the mistaken impression that AiG’s views are censored from the convention. They most certainly are not. In fact, the convention bent over backwards to make sure those views were not censored, by bringing in Dr. Jonathan Sarfati at the last minute to take Mr. Ham’s place. He has the same views, and AiG sells his books. Thus, their view will be represented, but in a proper manner. No content has been reduced at all.

      I think the convention really thought that Mr. Ham would behave professionally. I would have expected it of him. It is one thing to write something on your own blog or in your own books, but when you are INVITED by an organization, you need to show some respect for the organization and its goals. That apparently didn’t happen with Mr. Ham.

      Like you, I do not want to appear critical of your comment. I appreciate it. However, I needed to clear up the misconception that you have regarding censorship.

  100. I missed the false charges and unwarranted names from Ken Ham. Could you put them in quotes for me? I see Ken Ham addressing Pete Enns’ view and approach to Scripture, but not about Enns personally. Also, the Institute for Creation Research addressed much of this in July 2010 and Ham isn’t saying anything different.

    1. Tonja, the piece is titled, “Another Compromiser – Speaking at Homeschool Conventions.” Thus, Dr. Enns is wrongly called a “compromiser,” simply because he has a different hermeneutic than Ken Ham. The false charge is, “In fact, he doesn’t have the biblical view of inspiration: “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness,” (2 Timothy 3:16).” As I show in my post, Dr. Enns’s view of inspiration is completely in line with 2 Timothy 3:16 and thus is a Biblical view of inspiration.

  101. Wow! What a refreshing and respectful piece to hear from a young earth creationist. Unfortunately, most of my experiences with YECs are along the lines of Ken Ham’s self-righteous polemics, but you have given me new hope, Dr. Wile.

    1. Thank you, Jordan. I do wish young-earthers didn’t have that reputation, but they do. Please know that some of us actually do try to obey Scripture when it comes to how we treat our brothers and sisters in Christ!

  102. Wow, You have gotten really angry about all this. At first you are mad at Ken for calling Dr. Enns “names”, but now you are calling names. (I am simply calling a spade a spade when it comes to Mr. Ham.) Which is it? Is Ken guilty or are you? Go check out the mirror… You might have started this blog with good intentions, but now I think you have digressed and are being even more “unchristian” than you claim Ken to have been… I agree with the other homeschoolers… Rethinking my choice of curricula.

    1. Ellen, I am not sure where you are getting anger for me. Sadness, yes. Anger, no. I am sad that so many Christians refuse to treat their brothers and sisters in Christ with the proper respect. Ken Ham refused to do that, and I called him on it. That’s how I called a spade a spade. I called Mr. Ham on his actions.

      I find it quite odd that you are rethinking your choice of curriculum. You have every right to do so, of course, but have you wondered about why my curriculum is so well-loved among homeschoolers? Part of the reason is because it stems from a solid theological base. My theology hasn’t changed since I wrote that curriculum. If it is such an evil theology, you would think some homeschoolers would have noticed by now…

  103. “If Jesus as a finite human being erred from time to time, there is no reason at all to suppose that Moses, Paul, John wrote Scripture without error. Rather, we are wise to assume that the biblical authors expressed themselves as human beings writing from the perspectives of their own finite, broken horizons.””—Professing Evangelical Peter Enns, BioLogos.

    Jesus erred? Moses, Paul & John wrote Scripture with errors? And, yet, Mr. Enns believes in the infallible inspiration of Scripture? Umm, his own words belie this claim. Mr. Ham did not get “nasty” on his blog; I just re-read it. He says nothing at all about Mr. Enns’ character, intelligence or salvation — he simply calls a wolf a wolf. Mr. Enns’ compromises God’s Word, teaching a different gospel. Do you think Paul, or Jesus, or any other apostle, would NOT call him out on this? All over the NT, we see Jesus and His disciples rebuking false teachers — not agreeing to disagree with them. True, Godly love imposes upon us a duty to warn others of false teaching, and I thank God for Ken Ham and his desire to protect God’s people from false teaching.

    1. Anne, Dr. Enns’s words do NOT belie the fact that he believes in the infallible inspiration of Scripture. He is simply making the case that humans can, indeed, err. There are many, many orthodox Christians who do not believe that the Bible is inerrant, but they do believe it is infallible. That is what Dr. Enns believes, and it is a view that has been consistent throughout the history of orthodox Christendom.

      You claim that Mr. Ham does not get nasty, and then you proceed to call Dr. Enns a WOLF! You then go on to say he is teaching a different gospel! I can see why you didn’t think Ken Ham was nasty. You don’t seem to see when you are being nasty!

      I have no idea what Jesus, Paul, or any other disciple would do with Dr. Enns. I would be really worried if you think you do. What I want to do is follow Scripture, and Romans 14:1-9 tells me that Dr. Enns was not treated properly by Mr. Ham.

  104. I just heard about Ken Ham being dis-invited from the remainder of the homeschool conventions. As a person who was sitting in the audience at one of his amazing lectures, I can honestly say that he did not attack anyone personally. What he did show what images of textbooks that depicted the human being as being an animal as well as the theory of evolution. I’m glad he made families aware of these compromising views.

    1. Kimberly, please understand that MANY Christians did not get that message when they listened to Mr. Ham. The convention is responding to complaints from Christians. Furthermore, the convention bent over backwards to make sure Mr. Ham’s views would still be represented by bringing in Dr. Jonathan Sarfati at the last minute.

  105. Guess I need to “act like a grown-up” and admit that I misread part of the blogs. I thought that AIG was ‘dis-invited’ I see now that it was Ken Ham who was personally asked not to speak. I believe most of what I said above still applies, just insert Mr. Ham’s name where I wrote AIG, but I wanted to admit my mistake.

    1. Cjblac, thanks for your correction. I think that is a significant error, however, since it is not AiG’s views that are the problem. It was the behavior of a specific AiG representative.

  106. And who gets to decide which things the Bible is less clear or more clear about, You?

    1. Heather, I most certainly DO NOT get to decide which things the Bible is less or more clear about, and neither does Ken Ham. That is something I decide for MYSELF. I cannot decide that for someone else. However, if you want to know what helps me, it is a good look at history. The fact that the creation account has been debated by orthodox Christians since the history of Christendom means to me that it is not clear cut. The fact that the bodily resurrection of Christ has not been debated among orthodox Christians indicates that it is very clear cut.

  107. I have supported AiG for some time giving monthly and purchasing products.

    My first thoughts regarding this mess was that Mr. Ham is being influenced, sadly, by Doug Phillips. The cult like actions, tactics, manipulation and beliefs of Doug Phillips and Vision Forum are seeping into and contaminating AiG.

    Did Mr. Ham ever consider this association?

    For the second time in four years I am seriously considering terminating my AiG support. I will give it thought, but I must use my discernment.

    1. Ju Mordecai, please don’t act too harshly. Ken Ham acted horribly in this situation, but AiG is clearly doing the Lord’s work. You should not stop supporting the Lord’s work because of the bad actions of one man.

  108. I appreciate the fact that Ken Ham enlightened me about Dr. Enns beliefs. I don’t agree with you that he was REALLY nasty he is simply stating the facts and warning homeschoolers about these liberal beliefs. I want to know what these speakers stand for so I can make a good decision on who to listen too at the convention. I’m very saddened by this whole ordeal and the fact that I cannot listen to Ken Ham. He was one of the main reasons I was going to the midwest convention. I have appreciated your seminars in the past but this gives me pause on several speakers as to whether I want to listen to what they have to say. The purpose for parents at these conventions is to learn more so they can teach their children more effectively. Not to listen to speakers they don’t agree with and will never agree with.

    1. Tracy, you will be able to listen to an incredible speaker, Dr. Jonathan Sarfati. AiG publishes his materials, so he will be giving the AiG viewpoint. Who knows, you might find that he is more informative than Mr. Ham.

      I wonder why you would be hesitant to listen to speakers just because they haven’t been “approved” by Mr. Ham? I personally listen to a LOT of speakers with whom I disagree. I find it an incredible opportunity for critical thinking, and from time to time, I have actually learned something quite valuable. For me, I look at the topic of the talk, not the speaker.

  109. I am now concerned about two things: continuing to use Apologia science books and allowing my daughters to attend the Teen Track of the Cinc’y Homeschool Convention. Hmm, maybe a trip to the Newport Aquarium instead of the convention would be better?

    I am saddened at this debate, but I have to agree that if you question God’s Word, you are on the wrong track. I don’t see Ken Ham questioning God’s Word.

    1. Debbie, I find it interesting that this situation has caused you to be worried about using Apologia curriculum. Have you ever wondered why my courses are so loved by homeschoolers? Part of it is because they stem from a very solid theology. I have not changed that theology since writing my first course. If my views are so incredibly bad, you would think someone would have noticed that in my curriculum by now…

      Neither I nor Dr. Enns is questioning God’s Word. We are trying to UNDERSTAND it.

  110. Dr. Wile, In Dr. Enns presentation at Westmont, using his terms and definitions, he contrasted the “scientific model” (billions of years, evolution) with the “biblical model” (recent 6 day creation, Adam first human being). He stated there is a tension between these models and proceeded to explain “another way” to look at Genesis to remove the tension.

    It’s rather clear that he believes that current consensus science’s opinion of origins is factual, and that we need to look at scripture in other ways to remove the conflict.

    Can you explain what you meant by “Dr. Enns is not looking for a way to fit science into Scripture. You can always pull people’s quotes out of context in order to get them to sound any way you want them to sound.”

    1. Richard W, Dr. Enns’s presentation at Westmount was addressing a particular issue. He is simply bringing up the apparent difference between “science” and Scripture to set up a tension and gain the audience’s interest. It is much like what I do. I spend a lot of time on science in my talks, but that’s not what I base my theology on. This is what I mean by pulling quotes out of context. The context of one talk given in a specific place on a specific topic does not inform you of his theology.

  111. Dr. Wile,

    As I stated previously, I sincerely wish your detractors would carefully read your original post to see what you are actually saying, instead of putting words in your mouth.

    I know we’re all adults and should be able to follow basic logic, but I think you may presume too much of some readers in that regard. There is a spirit of almost willful ignorance and arrogance that seems to emanate from many of the comments. They need to read 1 Cor. 13 several times and compare their attitudes with Paul’s words.

    Have you seen this blog post by Martin Cothran?
    http://vereloqui.blogspot.com/

    I might not have worded it exactly as he does, but the logic is clear and should cause sober reflection on the part of those like Mr. Ham (and his supporters who have commented here) who think you cannot be a good Christian if you do not hold to the AIG party line on creation.

    Keep pressing on, and don’t let the naysayers drag you down. Truth will prevail, if not right now, then at least in the long run.

    1. David, thank you so much. I had read Martin Cothran’s post, and it is an excellent one. I agree with you that there is a lot of willful ignorance and arrogance in many of the comments. It is truly unfortunate.

  112. I just re-read Mr. Ham’s blog entry and I don’t understand where the “really nasty” part came in. Clearly, he is expressing his opinion on his blog similarly to the way you have expressed your opinion on your blog. While I agree with Mr. Ham’s views on a young earth, I don’t always endorse his approach, but that is how he is. I saw no name-calling and no false charges.
    I would have preferred that you stayed out of this debate between Mr. Ham and Mr. Enns. I love your homeschool texts and use them daily, but your involvement in this disappoints me and has made me lose a little respect for you and that saddens me.

    1. Jc78, the “really nasty” part is the false charge. He states that Dr. Enns doesn’t have a Biblical view of inspiration, when he clearly does. I am sorry that my defending a brother in Christ has caused you to lose respect for me. However, that will not stop me from doing what is right.

  113. I wish that you would not have written this blog. I wish that you would have gone directly to Ken Ham and discussed your concern with what he did instead of talking about him. I understand why Ken Ham did what he did. He was warning others about the information in Dr. Enns’ books. Do I agree with him calling Peter Enns a compromiser? I don’t know. I am still processing that. Why couldn’t all of this been done privately. I also wish that other Christian home school leaders would not have responded to this post. Sigh.

    1. Betsy, Ken Ham is the one who started this by publicly calling Dr. Enns an unwarranted name and leveling a false charge at him. I had no choice but to respond publicly, because Mr. Ham’s egregious comments were public.

  114. It saddens me that the body of Christ is involved in this. We should come together, love one another through our differences and work for the Glory of the Lord. I appreciate your view.

    1. Carrie, I so wholeheartedly agree. I pray that Mr. Ham and several of these commenters take your comment to heart!

  115. “But there were also false prophets among the people, even as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Lord who bought them, and bring on themselves swift destruction. And many will follow their destructive ways, because of whom the way of truth will be blasphemed. By covetousness they will exploit you with deceptive words; for a long time their judgment has not been idle, and their destruction does not slumber.” 2 Peter 2:1-3

  116. Dr. Wile its not a false charge. The point is that Ken Ham and Dr. Enns disagree on Genesis. Therefore Ken Ham has every right to show how he is compromising the view of the literal Genesis view and undermining the Word of God. Ken Ham prefers to openly disagree and does so with the Dr. Enns own writings and videos. There is nothing “unloving” about showing the errors in a person’s teaching especially when you are documenting your point with Dr. Enns videos and writings. Your “loving vs. unloving” debate is not applicable because by that is the same logic that every unsaved person in the world uses to say that Christians are being unloving to them when Christians confront them with the error of their ways with the Bible.

    1. Dave, it is a false charge. When you say someone has an unBiblical view of inspiration, you must back it up with Bible verses about inspiration. Dr. Enns’s view of inspiration is wholly consistent with 2 Timothy 3:16, which means it IS Biblical. Also, the idea that you are undermining God’s Word when you disagree with Ken Ham on creation is another falsehood. Do you think William Lane Craig, who fiercely defends the Bible against the most vicious attacks undermines Scripture? He disagrees with Ken Ham on creation. How about St. Augustine? How about Clement of Alexandria? The history of Christendom is FILLED with devout defenders of Scripture who disagree with Ken Ham on creation. Did they all undermine Scripture by defending it?

      The “loving vs. unloving” debate is quite applicable, as a Christian’s responsibility to another Christian who disagrees with him is quite clearly spelled out in Romans 14:1-9. There are certain ways I have seen Christians confront unbelievers that are definitely unloving. If you level false charges at unbelievers and call them unwarranted names, for example, you are not sharing Christ in a loving way. However, you can share Christ in a loving way, just as you can disagree with your fellow Christians in a loving way.

  117. It is done in an admonishment to you. You are a proud, puffed up, easily defensive man who does not stand on the truth. You are so busy being intellectual that you no longer represent the Spirit that you so quickly lay claim. You are a mirror of all that is wrong with Christianity today. This roaring debate is Satan’s work hiding behind a politically correct vocabulary. You are a being used sir, and a very pathetic tool it is.

  118. If you disagree with Dr. Enn’s view, then you think that it is unbiblical. To say that you disagree with him, but his view is not unbiblical is double-speak. And yes, St. Austine and Clement and others who have held views contrary to Scripture do undermine Scripture, but some errors are more serious than others.

    1. Mike, you are quite wrong. The term “unBiblical” means not consistent with the Bible. There are many conflicting views that are consistent with the Bible. One (or all) of them are wrong, but none of them are unBiblical if they are consistent with the Bible. For example, I am an Arminianist. I think that’s what the Bible teaches. As such, I disagree with the Calvinists. However, a Calvinist view is consistent with Scripture. Thus, even though I think Calvinists are wrong, they are not unBiblical.

      In the same way, I think the Genesis account is best read as historical narrative. However, other interpretations are consistent with the text. As such, they are not unBiblical. I simply disagree with them. This is why Paul wrote Romans 14:1-9. There will be times when Christians disagree, but that doesn’t necessarily mean one of them is being unBiblical.

  119. It is the glory of God to conceal a matter; to search out a matter is the glory of kings. (Prov. 25:2)

    There is no glory for Christ in this. This needs to be resolved privately. If you believe that Ken Ham is wrong, then two wrongs do not make a right. I am sorry, but I disagree with you. I wish you would not have posted this thus adding to the division.

    1. Betsy, I can understand what you are saying, but I disagree. Mr. Ham publicly attacked a brother in Christ. It was only right for me to publicly defend him.

  120. It’s not always “right” to jump into the fray, as Dr. Enns and Mr. Ham are quite capable of handling things themselves. You were correct and within your purview to post your thoughts. I’m sorry if you found my post offensive, but I am truly concerned over this entire situation. With all of the issues that Christians are facing on a daily basis, we should be spending our time furthering the kingdom of heaven, not arguing Mr. Ham’s opinion. None of what is being said by either side is helpful as more people are confused than ever before (this is clearly evident within these comments). I will continue to pray over this situation and for you, Mr. Ham and Dr. Enns.
    Please don’t feel that I am picking on you as I have written these same things to Mr. Ham. It is starting to feel like a point of pride as opposed to anything resembling glorifying God. I think this is what makes me feel so very unsettled and sad.

    1. Jc78, I am concerned over the situation as well. I did not take your comments as picking on me. I am also praying for the situation. It is unfortunate that it had to happen.

  121. In light of the quote below, you still hold that Enns has a Biblical view of the inspiration of scripture?

    Dr. Enns is Senior Fellow of Biblical Studies for The BioLogos Foundation, which views Christ and scripture as follows:

    “If Jesus as a finite human being erred from time to time, there is no reason at all to suppose that Moses, Paul, John wrote Scripture without error. Rather, we are wise to assume that the biblical authors expressed themselves as human beings writing from the perspectives of their own finite, broken horizons.”

    1. Lynnie, the Biblical view of inspiration comes from 2 Timothy 3:16:

      “All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness”

      There is nothing in Dr. Enns’s quote that is inconsistent with that verse. There are many orthodox theologians who through the centuries have believed that the Bible is infallible, but not inerrant. I personally believe that it is inerrant. However, I do not call those who think it is infallible names, as their view is fully consistent with 2 Timothy 3:16.

  122. I have a simple question. In the many posts listed above there seems to be a distinction trying to be made between Dr. Ken Ham and AiG. However if the convention believes there is a difference and has a fundamental problem with Dr. Ham then why is AiG also never allowed to be at the conference as referenced within the first sentence of their stance on the subject? I have also noticed on their web site they have also taken AiG off their vendor list. As i have viewed many Facebook, blogs, tweets, and etc. What i am witnessing is a mass exodus from the convention, which is sad since my family is planning on attending.
    The problem i have is too many people are speaking from both sides of their mouth (as politicians do on a regular basis) however unlike a political those speaking are not any good at this form of speech since they don’t have any practice. Either you have an issue with the speaker or you have an issue with Dr. Ham AND AiG. Since I believe the world is on a downward trend morally, ethically, and any form of belief in God then we as Christians must begin to take stands on certain basic principles of the Bible of which Creation is one of them.

    1. Matt, I have no idea why AiG was asked not to be a vendor. You will have to ask the convention that. I know that the convention thinks it has been true to its vision by bringing in Dr. Sarfati and Creation Ministries International. Since they sell a lot of the same materials, I don’t think there will be less available.

  123. Dr. Wiles, just a simple statement to what you address about not caring what a person watches or I guess you meant their private lives. Am I correct to understand you on that? I beg to differ with you…one may use words to speak but actions…their life styles….their home is what they really are. Yes, Dr. Wiles it does matter what a person’s private life is. How we live our lives speak much louder than words. Well, Dr. Wiles you might have a PHD but that does not speak to my heart. Jesus’s disciples were uneducated men but the pharisees marvel at them because they had been with Jesus. PHDs will hold no weight when we stand before the Lord Jesus. The Word of God is simple truth to be believed and trusted because they are inspired by our LORD God.

    1. Vickie, if you really think an author’s personal life is important when it comes to whether or not you use his books, you have every right to investigate personal lives as deeply as the law allows. I personally do not care about an author’s private life. Whether or not the author helps me to understand the topic is all that matters to me. The private lives of my friends are important, of course, as I deal with their private lives. I do not deal with the private lives of the authors I read.

  124. Before I even knew about all this controversy I read Dr. Ham’s FB post via a friend. I was very disappointed with him speaking in a disparaging manner. He did not just address the view point of Dr. Enns but did indeed attack his character & the convention as well. That kind of behavior is most definately addressed in Scripture & you were right to call him out.
    Ephesians 5:29-32 “Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear. And do not greive the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice, Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.”
    Yes, we should address our differences and stand firm in our Faith in Christ. That is done correctly by discussing the the topic at hand NOT by attacking ones character and calling them names.
    We use your Science texts in our homeschool. It is refreshing to have a textbook who’s author encourages critical thinking. You encourage students to not just take your word for it, but to test what you say and form their own opinions. That is a breath of fresh air for my family. So many texts tell you what to think. They don’t encourage critical thinking. That was another thing that struck me with Dr. Ham’s post. He was telling homeschoolers what to think and not encouraging us to come to our own conclusions. “…let each man be convinced in his own mind.”
    Again, there is nothing wrong with words of warning or in expressing our disagreements. It is wrong when we speak with a judgemental & critical spirit.

  125. Dr. Wile, your main problem with Ken Ham seems to be his blunt accusation that Enns is a “compromisor.” YOu seem not to like the word.

    Geisler’s criticism, of which you approved, was: “It is always a danger when one sets out, as Enns does, to reconcile his view of Bible with ‘modern biblical scholarship’. More often than not, when this takes places one trades orthodoxy for academic respectability.” What is Geisler saying other than that Enns COMPROMISED orthodoxy with academic respectability?

    Ken Ham may be blunt where Geisler is not, but the bottom line is still the fact that Enns trades orthodoxy to acheive academic respectibility, i.e., he is a compromisor.

    Of course, as Christians, we should treat each other with respect and grace at all times, and if a Christian trades orthodoxy to acheive academic respectibility, perhaps the erring Christian should be dealt with gently. But Enns is a TEACHER and is consequently under a heightened scrutiny and burden (James 3:1). The effort to keep false teaching out of the Church should be the serious business of every Christian.

    Ken Ham is justified in his accusation. It is accurate, though blunt. You should be more critical of Enns than of Ham in this little dust-up. It is curious, and disturbing, that you are not.

    1. Greg, Geisler didn’t say that Enns did anything. He simply pointed out a real danger with trying to make the Bible consistent with modern scholarship. This was to point out that he thought Enns’s was on some pretty thin ice. He did not call Enns a compromiser.

      Ken Ham’s description is not accurate. Dr. Enns is not a compromiser, and he does have a Biblical view of inspiration. Thus, this is not an issue about Mr. Ham being too Blunt. It is an issue of Mr. Ham not treating a brother in Christ the way that brother should be treated. I am not critical of Enns because he has done nothing wrong in this situation.

  126. I am very saddened by this whole affair. I greatly respect both you and Mr. Ham. Perhaps Mr. Ham could have chosen his words better and spoken the truth in love. However, could you not agree that his motives in trying to warn Christians against false teaching were right even if you did not agree with his word choices? I do believe that when Christians compromise on the book of Genesis, it can be a slippery slope to compromise in other areas. Also, trying to fit Biblical theology into an evolutionary framework just doesn’t work on so many levels. Perhaps you could all get together privately (even electronically) and sort this out in Christian love and unity.

    1. Linda, Mr. Ham’s motives were quite right. He honestly believes that he is “protecting” the “unsuspecting.” However, you can’t do that if you are not treating your brother in Christ properly.

      Once again, as I have said before, Christians who disagree with Mr. Ham on Genesis are NOT necessarily compromising. The meaning of the creation account has been debated among orthodox Christians since the beginning of Christendom. It is not “compromising” to admit that and look at alternate interpretations with the respect they deserve.

  127. Dr Wiles, Enns carefully defined two models, the “scientific model” and the “biblical model” and pointed out that they conflict. Are you saying that he does not believe this?

    1. Richard, he certainly does believe that. However, you want to claim that it is the MOTIVATION behind his theology. It is not. If you read his theology, you will hopefully see that.

  128. This is just so discouraging…on both sides of this matter. It comes down to this, either you believe the ENTIRE Word of God or you don’t believe any of it.

  129. Plus, you can say Ken Ham acted unChristian all you want, you have drawn this matter out and have become what you were so against in the beginning.

  130. In conclusion, it is merely your opinion that Ken Ham is “unloving” by calling Dr. Enns a compromiser. Frankly your vague and seemingly “splitting hairs” position on the matter has simply left more people confused and skeptical about where and when you will actually defend your beliefs and any material you may present going forward. People now have to wonder is Dr. Wile going to include other viewpoints as merely one good choice vs another good choice even if there are glaring difffences instead of boldly defending one point clearly.

    1. Dave, there is no difference in my stand now than when I started writing curriculum. The idea that I am willing to defend a brother in Christ causes me to be suspect is absurd!

  131. I have not read any of the comments, but I would like to add MY reason for completely disagreeing with this blog post. I will be attending the cincinnati convention that Ken Ham has been banned from. NOWHERE on the list of speakers or topics was Dr. Enns views of creation or sin listed. I will be bringing my children, ranging from age 12 down to a toddler, into the workshops with me…’nuff said. If I am going to expose my children to alternate views of God’s word, then I would think it only fair that it would be MY choice to do so. Yes, I present my children with alternating views so that they will not be naive about the opposing views that are out there. However, I DO appreciate the fact that Ken Ham was the ONLY one that was kind enough to inform attendees of the convention so that it could be THEIR choice. Should he be treated as divisive for doing so? Absolutely not. I don’t mind that people with opposing ideas are invited to the convention, I just believe that they should be VERY upfront about those ideas. Oh, and by the way, I don’t believe there is anything wrong with accusing Dr. Enns of having “compromising, liberal theology”. It IS liberal theology. Own it. Ken Ham’s accusation that this theology is an attack on the Word of God is accurate. Let Dr. Enns now speak up and defend his ideas. Oh wait, the discussion (as far as the convention is concerned) has now been stopped because Ken Ham has been banned from the conventions. Maybe I will cancel my trip to the convention and take a trip to the Creation Museum instead….

  132. Dr. Wiles, if not his motivation, why would he present it as his motivation? Why not present his ‘real’ motivation?

    1. Richard, because he is speaking to a particular group on a particular topic. It could very well be that this is what the group wanted him to concentrate on. Who knows. You just can’t determine his theology based on one talk.

    1. Marco, I am glad that God will be judging me. He will see my defense for what it is. I really couldn’t care less how people judge me.

  133. First, thank you for engaging in this discussion so minutely. I know it’s got to be taking a lot of your time.

    I understand Enns’ position perfectly. Yes, he says Adam was a symbol to Paul. I get that.

    But that doesn’t change the fact that Paul’s statement is one of absolute, literal truth, and he says Adam was the first man. There’s nothing symbolic about that.

    I understand what you’re saying about your father and “the flag.” But you would never think he was saying “the flag” figuratively if his sentence was “The flag being raised on Mt. Suribachi was the most moving picture to come out of World War Two.” He’d be talking about that specific flag.

    However, analogies and figures of speech are actually irrelevant in this case since Enns clearly states in his presentation that Paul believed Adam was really the first man, and therefore that’s what he intended to convey in the text. If Paul was writing under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, and made a literal statement, it follows that the Holy Spirit told him to make it literal – which, if the statement itself was only true in a figurative sense, would mean the Holy Spirit lied.

    Look at it this way – Paul’s statement about Adam being the first man is obviously intended to be as literal as his statements elsewhere about the resurrection, the identity of Christ, and, for that matter, his statements about Christ in that same passage. Enns acknowledges this, so he himself eliminates any options other than those I’ve already laid out. Those options are clearly wrong; therefore Enns is just as clearly compromising the Bible.

    1. Matthew, I completely disagree. You do not need to look at Paul’s statement as one of absolute, literal truth. If Adam is the symbol that God has used to teach Israel about sin, he is the symbol that Paul uses to teach about sin. It is still fully true, even if Adam is just a symbol.

      It most certainly does not follow that the Holy Spirit told Paul to make it literal just because Paul thought Adam was a literal person. The Holy Spirit is much more powerful than that. He can make up for our weaknesses. The Holy Spirit could use a symbol to communicate the truth and allow Paul to communicate the truth using that symbol, even if Paul didn’t completely understand it. That’s how powerful God’s inspiration can be.

      No, Paul’s statements about Adam being the first man are not obviously intended to be as literal as his statements elsewhere about the resurrection. Paul met the resurrected Lord. Thus, he is an eyewitness. That carries a HUGE indication of historical narrative. Paul is not an eyewitness of Adam. Adam was not written about by eyewitnesses. Now God doesn’t NEED eyewitnesses to write historical narrative, but when they are writing, it becomes obvious that the text is historical narrative.

      Thus, Enns is not compromising the Bible. I disagree with this, of course, but that’s not the point. The point is that none of what Enns is saying compromises the Bible. It simply approaches the Bible with a different hermeneutic.

  134. Dr. Wile, Geisler states: “It is always a danger when one sets out, as Enns does, to reconcile his view of Bible with “modern biblical scholarship…” Translation: Enns sets out to reconcile his view of the Bible with modern biblical scholarship.

    Geisler says “Modern biblical scholarship is based on antisupernatural biases and is not reconcilable with the Bible), which he wishes to accommodate.” Translation: Enns wishes to accommodate modern biblical scholarship, which has a bias against God.

    You object to Ken Ham calling Enns a compromisor but does not Geisler call Enns, in so many words, an accommodator?
    It is descending into the absurd to argue over what Geisler means by what he says, and to argue semantics. It is there for all to see. If you object to Ken Ham calling Enns a compromisor, you must object to Geisler calling Enns an accommodator. But, what is the difference between a “compromisor” and an “accommodator”?

    1. Greg, There is a HUGE difference between accommodation and compromise:

      accommodate:
      1. to make fit, suitable, or congruous
      2. to bring into agreement or concord : reconcile
      3. to provide with something desired, needed, or suited (as a helpful service, a loan, or lodgings)
      4. to make room for b : to hold without crowding or inconvenience
      5. to give consideration to : allow for

      compromise:
      1. settlement of differences by arbitration or by consent reached by mutual concessions
      2. something intermediate between or blending qualities of two different things

      When you accommodate, you simply see if there is a possibility that two views are both correct. You see if one is congruent with the other. Dr. Enns most certainly tries to see if there is a way for the Bible and modern Biblical scholarship to both be correct. I think that is one of Dr. Enns’s strengths. He doesn’t dismiss scholarship out of hand.

      When you compromise, you make concessions. You blend. You take bits from both so that neither is wholly right. That is not what Enns tries to do in his book. Geisler is exactly right. Enns wants BOTH modern Christian scholarship AND the Bible to be fully correct. Geisler is right that this is a dangerous position to take. However, Geisler never comes close to saying that Enns is compromising.

      Words mean things, and those words matter.

  135. Dr. Wiles,

    So basically you’re admitting that Enns may have presented belief in current consensus science as the motivation for reinterpreting Genesis, but also are claiming that his other writings show this is not his real motivation….

    BTW, I never said I was trying to determine his ‘theology.’

    Have you listened to Enns’ presentation pointed to by Ham?

    Dr Enns specifically stated:

    “the problem that we have a Christians when we talk about origins…is that there are two different models … scientific…biblical”

    and Enns believes the scientific model is factual. He then proceeds to explain a technique for changing the meaning of the biblical model to make it concordant with the scientific model.

    As far as this being a valid hermeneutic, consider this logic: Adam can be considered symbolic for Israel, therefore Adam is not historical.

    However, Joseph is often considered symbolic for Jesus…does Enns consider Joseph to be historical?

    The fact that historical events can and have been used by God to symbolize future events undercuts his biblical rationale for reinterpreting the Genesis creation account.

    Furthermore, Enns claims the Genesis account implies other people who are not descendants of Adam and Eve by using the often answered question ‘Where did Cain get his wife?’ In defending this Enns applied the Levitical law to Cain…I hardly believe that he thinks this is proper hermeneutics.

    My point is that while couched in the language of a hermeneutic, the logic is selectively applied to remove the conflicts with the scientific model. One can not deny the influence of the belief in the scientific model as the guiding force in such application of hermeneutics. You may not want to call it motivation, but by the plain meaning of the word it is.

    1. Richard, I am not saying that science is Dr. Enns’s motivation. That’s the whole point. That specific lecture uses science as a jumping off point, as I do in many of my lectures. That doesn’t mean science motivates my theology.

      Of course I have listened to the lecture linked by Ham.

      Enns does see Joseph as historical. There is a good reason for that. He was talked about in a section of the Bible that clearly is to be read as historical narrative. Thus, there is every good reason to see Joseph as historical. Adam is talked about in a section of the Bible that many think was not meant to be taken as historical narrative. As such, to them, there is every good reason to think of Adam as symbolic, not historical.

      His rationale for seeing the Genesis account as not historical narrative is based on the text itself, not science. To him, there are many textual clues to indicate it was not meant to be taken as historical narrative. I know you want to think Dr. Enns’s theology is based on putting science over Scripture, but it is not. He uses the text to determine what is historical narrative and goes from there.

  136. Ok, I never called your curriculum “evil”…. Putting words in my mouth doesn’t help your cause. (If it is such an evil theology, you would think some homeschoolers would have noticed by now…)said by you. The words you write IMPLY that I said that and I did not. Now, the point is, Ken Ham is defending God. You on the other hand are defending a man. If that is the kind of person you are, choosing to defend man instead of God, that is why I would question using your curriculum. You are not the man I thought you were. That was my only point.

    1. Ellen, I did not mean to put words in your mouth. My point was that this supposedly horrible theology I have seemed to produce some books that have done a lot to educate children in a Biblical worldview. That’s a bit hard to understand if my theology really is so horrible. After all, we are told to judge a tree by its fruits.

      Ken Ham is certainly not defending God. He is defending his interpretation of Scripture by unfairly attacking a brother in Christ.

  137. Dr. Wiles,

    One last comment on this and I promise to stop. You must admit that Enns is motivated by science (at least in part) as he wrote the following:

    “The biblical depiction of human origins, if taken literally, presents Adam as the very first human being ever created. He was not the product of an evolutionary process, but  a special creation of God a few thousand years before Jesus—roughly speaking, about 6000 years ago. Every single human being that has ever lived can trace his/her genetic history to that one person.

    This is a problem because it is at odds with everything else we know about the past from the natural sciences and cultural remains.”

    1. Richard, once again, this quote does not even come close to indicating that Enns is motivated by science in his interpretation of Scripture. He is simply giving people reasons to believe in his view. I do the same thing. I give lots of people scientific reasons to believe in a young earth. However, that’s not why I interpret Scripture the way I do. I interpret Scripture using the TEXT of Genesis. You can pull several quotes from my lectures that make it look like I am basing my interpretation of Genesis on science. However, that’s just pulling my statements out of context.

      Enns believes in a non-historical approach to Genesis because of the text of Genesis. He simply gives science as one of the many reasons you should agree with his view, in exactly the way I give science as one of the many reasons you should agree with my view!

  138. One topic that keeps coming up is that a person’s private life does not matter; even authors in which we read their works. I totally disagree with that statement. Character is everything, in public and private. One thing I have taught my children is TO KNOW THE AUTHOR so you can properly discern their writing. An Atheist can write a biblical book if they have head knowledge, and many do. Does that mean if they write something ‘biblical’ that helps me, that I should not be concerned with their private life (beliefs)? That is craziness. I never knew of Dr. Enns (or whatever his name is) before today but respect both Ken Ham and Jay Wile. I have supported both men by purchasing their materials and visiting the Creation Museum. I, too, wish this could have been handled privately.

    1. Thanks for your comment, Teri. I am a bit confused, however. Do you know anything about my private life? You say you respect me, and I really appreciate that. However, if an author’s private life is that important, how can you really respect me without knowing my private life? Furthermore, how can you use my books? I am not being sarcastic in any way. I really want to know.

      My favorite authors are John Morris, J.C. Sanford, and Michael Behe. However, I don’t know anything about any of their private lives. I respect them all because of the work they have done and what their work has done for me. That’s how I judge authors.

  139. Jay, what I find unsettling is that you have said that Ken Ham is “attacking a believer in Christ”, yet you attack Ken for doing so. That is the very point Jesus taught when He said, “Judge not lest ye be judged”. He was commanding us against hypocritical judgment, not evaluating something that is unbiblical and cautioning people against it. Thanks’s for putting up this article. It has opened my eyes. I will only be buying my science books for my boys from AiG. I will also be staying away from Dr. Peter Enns & Susan Wise Bauers books. While I believe my boys should not stay in a bubble and they should learn different view points…when I read a creation science book, I expect it to be Biblical! Enns & Bauer have very heretical views. After reading Enns actual words from his Bible curriculum I was appalled. Compared to how Paul, Peter or Jesus would have handled such heresy, Ken Ham was actually being nice! It’s sad to see you believe Ken is being “nasty” and that “he is obviously upset at the fact that someone disagrees with him will be speaking at the same venue.”

    Jay, Ken Ham obviously is the only one bold enough to speak against false doctrine.

    1. Corrinne, Mr. Ham attacked Dr. Enns personally and leveled a false charge. That is simply wrong. I am not attacking Mr. Ham personally or leveling any false charges. That’s the difference. If Mr. Ham wants to speak out on what he thinks is false doctrine, he should do it in a Scriptural way.

  140. I think I’m more disheartened by some of the comments than I am by either Dr. Ham’s or Dr. Wile’s statements. I don’t know about anyone else out there, but I certainly don’t know everything there is to know about the interpretation of scripture or the origin of the universe. This conversation reminds me of the radio talk shows after the ball games where armchair fans call in to tell the coach what he did wrong.

    I know what I believe, and more importantly, in whom I believe, but I also know that “we see through a glass darkly”. Who of us understands the WHOLE truth? God alone. We all need to approach our belief system with a dose of humility.

  141. Dear Wiley,
    Your passive aggressive posture is the same taken by Rob Bell and Brian McClaren. You pretend that these two radically different points of view do not have extreme ramifications to the rest of Scripture. You paint one side as having been intolerant and judgmental while whitewashing what the other side has perpetrated in damaging Biblical truth.

    We are not on an endless merry-go-round of trying to determine what truth is. The Bible has clearly revealed it and we should not treat this matter as if God had floundered in His communication or as if truth was somehow inaccessible in the matter of origins.

    Ham has defended Scripture in a Biblical fashion. Is the Scripture less Biblical when it calls men who deny the Flood scoffers (2 Peter 3)? When the writers of the Proverbs depend upon us being able to perceive who is the “wicked man”, the “man without wisdom”, “the fool”, “the sinner”, “the harlot” and a myriad of other labels, are the writers being any less Biblical? Perhaps you take umbrage with the apostle Paul when he unleashed his “whitewashed wall” comment? Should we think Jesus un-Biblical when he tosses out “brood of vipers”?

    Would the words of Galatians 3 ever roll smoothly off of your tongue? “O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you?” Doesn’t the term Compromiser seem to be almost a dim word in comparison to the barbs of Paul that were used with Christian brothers?

    You contend that Enns is within the house of faith and you flash 2 Timothy 3:16 as if this was the very definition of orthodoxy and yet the Mormon can claim the same passage. They only supply one extra phrase — “as far as it (the Bible) has been accurately translated/interpreted”. Is that not what Enns might add? Enns who deconstructs the first chapters of Genesis so that there is no true sin and death to redeem us from since God has used sin and death as the building blocks of the homo sapien? Nature is red in tooth and claw and God has hewn out of the gore the pinnacle of His creation?

    Far be it from you to correct Enns publicly! You are a more gracious man than the Scriptures themselves. Oh, for men like young Martin Luther who would speak truth with a bit of passion and without this endless game of conceited chivalry!

    1. Owen, my name is Wile. I am sorry you feel the need to psychoanalyze me. The problem is that the other side is not damaging Biblical truth. You think it is, but it is not.

      Please reread 2 Peter 3. It does not talk about people scoffing about the Flood. It is talking about people scoffing about the second coming. It uses the Flood as a symbol of hope. Since the Bible was inspired by God, it is not being “unBiblical” to call people “sinners,” “harlots,” etc. As sinful humans, we need to be a LOT more introspective. Jesus knew the hearts and minds of people. Thus, for him to call the Jewish leaders a “brood of vipers” is no problem. If you think you have Jesus’ knowledge of others, you can be that bold as well.

      I do not “flash” 2 Timothy 3:16 around. Instead, I use it to demonstrate that Mr. Ham falsely accused Dr. Enns of not having a Biblical view of inspiration. It is not the definition of orthodoxy. It just exposes Mr. Ham’s false charge for what it is. You continue the false charges by claiming that Dr. Enns deconstructs Genesis so that there is no true sin and death. That is absolutely false.

      You might call my proper treatment of Dr. Enns “conceited chivalry.” I call it obeying the Scriptures.

  142. Very disappointed in what I am reading! Regardless how Ken Ham has ‘called out’ someone for their beliefs and how you feel about it, you are ‘watering’ down your belief by defending Dr. Enns. I find it very hypocritical and I think you believe you are using “better” words to rebuke Ham so it makes it okay. What? God sees the heart – you don’t & I don’t either. So you are judging Ham’s heart but are convinced about Enns’ heart…how is that? No one is perfect; Christians rely on grace, God’s grace. However, I am, quite frankly, somewhat concerned of what you truly believe,Dr. Wylie, because I am seeing a fork in the road and I don’t know which way you are going and I am very curious as to the motives you have. You throughout these comments high five and compliment those that agree with you, but you are not as welcoming to those that don’t. Hmmm – think about that for awhile.

    1. Carol, I am sorry you feel that way. However, I am not judging Ken Hams’ heart. I am judging his actions. He called Dr. Enns an unwarranted name and leveled a false charge against him. That is wrong, and I called him out for it.

      I have no idea why you think you are seeing a fork in the road and don’t know which way I am going. My theology has not changed since I started writing my books. The theology that made my books what they are is this theology.

      I thank those who are kind to me and correct those who are making false statements. You can take that any way you want, but it is nothing more than trying to make sure that misinformation is not spread on this blog.

  143. Dr. Wile, you say: “Words mean things, and those words matter.” I couldn’t agree more. The words “accommodate” and “compromise” are more similar than you would concede, especially within the context of this issue.

    You say “accommodation” means:
    1) to make fit, suitable, or congruous
    2. to bring into agreement or concord : reconcile
    3. to provide with something desired, needed, or suited (as a helpful service, a loan, or lodgings)
    4. to make room for b : to hold without crowding or inconvenience
    5. to give consideration to : allow for

    But, isn’t it the whole point that orthodoxy and modern biblical scholarship cannot be made to fit with each other; reconciled, allowed for, call it what you will. Geisler warns that biblical orthodoxy and modern biblical scholarship cannot be reconciled without diluting orthodoxy. This is the very result of the definition of “compromise” that you point out; biblical orthodoxy is diluted.

    If Enns did not have a biblical orthodox view to start with, then I’ll concede that he is not necessarily “compromising” his view when he aligns his views with modern biblical scholarship. In that case, he would not be a compromisor. Ken Ham would be wrong, but only technically.

    However, if Enns exchanges biblically orthodox positions in order to accommodate modern biblical scholarship and/or to gain academic acceptance, then he is compromising biblical orthodoxy. He appears to do so, and it appears that Ken Ham is correct.

    1. Greg, you are quite right that Geisler says that modern Biblical scholarship and orthodoxy cannot be made to fit with each other. I would agree with that. My point is that he did not even begin to imply that Enns was compromising Scripture. He simply made it clear that, as far as he was concerned, Enns was not successful in his attempt at accommodation. I would agree with that as well.

      Ken Ham is clearly not correct. Enns does not have any desire to compromise Scripture, and Geisler doesn’t even imply that he does. This is one reason Geisler attacked Enns in the proper way, and Ham did not. The other reason is the Geisler levels no false charges at Enns, as Ham did.

    1. Eliza, I think that the blog post is full of a lot of problems. For example, he talks about what Jesus said in rebuking the Jewish leaders. Jesus knew the hearts and minds of the people involved and was thus very qualified to address that subject.

      Likewise, he talks about what Paul did in Scripture. Paul was writing under the influence of the Holy Spirit. Thus, it was not Paul who was writing these things, it was God. Once again, He knows the hearts and minds of others and this is very qualified to pass judgment on them.

      He talks about people who want to harm the cause of Christ. We should, indeed, speak out against their actions. However, Dr. Enns is NOT trying to harm the cause of Christ. He is trying to aid it.

      I certainly agree with his statement, “First read, then believe, then obey every word of the Bible.” I would say a good place to start is Romans 14:1-9.

  144. “Don’t be a free love Christian! Don’t excuse sin and unbelief in the name of love. First read, then believe, then obey every word of the Bible. Sometimes it is necessary to name the apostates and call out the perverseness of their sin. It doesn’t mean we don’t love. This is true love, for loving God and loving God’s words comes first (Matt. 22:37-38). May God raise up more men who will preach God’s words with passion and conviction without backing down.”

    This is the end of the link I referenced above…and IMO it could not be better put! It is what I wanted to say all along!

  145. From 1 Peter 3:

    8 Finally, all of you, be like-minded, be sympathetic, love one another, be compassionate and humble.

    13 Who is going to harm you if you are eager to do good? 14 But even if you should suffer for what is right, you are blessed. “Do not fear their threats; do not be frightened.” 15 But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, 16 keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander. 17 For it is better, if it is God’s will, to suffer for doing good than for doing evil.

    Humility, gentleness, respect.

  146. I love Ken Ham (have heard and read his stuff for 20 years) and I love Jay Wile (have taught classes with his awesome curriculum for 8 years). My knowledge of Enns is limited to what I’m reading in these recent blogs. This whole situation saddens me deeply. Satan is having a field day seeing Christians bicker at each other this way. I think Ken was right in warning parents. It would be a shame for them to purchase a curriculum, only to go home and realize it was not what they wanted. If they want that viewpoint, that is their business, and they should purchase it, but the warning as information is a good thing. I do not think Ken was calling Enns a nonchristian or attacking him as a person, but was calling his theology into question. We all have a right to our opinion. I do believe that Ken’s stance on the Bible is correct and would personallly appreciate his warning. However, I realize my own fallibility, so also agree with Wile that it is possible that I am mistaken. When we get to heaven, we may see how foolish we’ve all been, but in the meantime, I intend to stand on the absolute authority of the Word of God and interpret it according to what I think it really means and not according to man’s changing ideas. Ken should have the right to express his views, as should Wile and Enns—Ken absolutely should be able to speak at the next conventions. Let the homeschoolers think critically!

    1. Linda, thanks for your thoughtful comment. However, I will have to disagree with you. The purpose of Great Homeschool Conventions is to minister to ALL Christian homeschoolers – not just the ones that agree with Mr. Ham. It was not Ken Ham’s VIEW that was the problem. It was his BEHAVIOR at the convention. It kept many attendees from being ministered to. Thus, the convention pulled him and replaced him with someone else who has essentially the same views.

      Thus, the homeschoolers will still be able to think critically, but in a more loving environment.

  147. Dr. Wile,

    The clear force of Enns statement is a belief in something *known* from science (ie fact — not a possible understanding, or one interpretation of the data) which is “at odds” with the literal understanding of Genesis. Thus he is saying that a literal Genesis is contrary to fact. If one believes this it *is* a motivation to understand Genesis in a different manner. That is, unless one is willing to believe in a logical contradiction. Given Enns stated belief in what science “knows”, he is incapable of believing in a literal Genesis. You can choose to try and label this something other than motivation if you wish.

    The YEC references to science usually are statements that the actual data is not at odds with YEC even though the current consensus interpretation is. Show me where you or any YEC has written something equivalent to the statement that a biblical interpretation accommodating billions of years and evolution “is a problem because it is at odds with everything else we know about the past from the natural sciences and cultural remains.”

    1. Richard, that is not the clear force of Dr. Enns’s statement. He is simply using science to provide evidence for his interpretation of the text of Scripture, as I often do. Here is an example:

      In many talks, I discuss dendrochronology – the counting of tree rings. I make the point that you find the oldest LIVING tree to be just over 4,500 years old with this method, which indicates that the Flood happened about 4,500 years ago. Now I don’t use dendrochronology to determine the approximate year of the Flood. I use the Bible to do so. However, dendrochronology SUPPORTS my interpretation, so I use it as EVIDENCE that my interpretation is correct. If you just lifted that quote out of my talk, however, it would appear that I was using dendrochronology to date the Flood, ignoring the text of Scripture. That’s what you are doing with Dr. Enns, and it is truly unfortunate.

      Once again, as should be intuitively obvious, you cannot determine a person’s theology from one or two talks. You have to actually study it.

  148. One of the comments above provides a link to Ken Ham’s son’s blog. One of the comments on that blog mentions Francis Schaeffer, implying that Dr. Schaeffer would agree with the views posted there. I made this comment there, but am repeating it here with hopes it might be of benefit to someone.

    Readers might be interested to learn that Dr. Schaeffer (as with many other sincere Bible-believing Christians) was open to the possibility of an old earth. In addition, he would never personally criticize and level false charges against another professing believer. His words and writings were characterized by grace, not arrogance and condescension.

    Here is a link to a long (but incomplete) list of respected Christian leaders who either advocate or are open to the possibility that the days in Genesis 1 are literally long periods of time:

    http://oldearthcreationism.blogspot.com/2007/07/christian-leaders-who-are-open-to-old.html

    Unfortunately, whether it is intentional or not, Ken Ham, Doug Phillips, and many of the commenters here come across as if their young-earth view is the only truly biblical one and that anyone who disagrees is a compromiser. However, the reality is that there are many godly men both past and present who are old-earth creationists.

    It is one thing to discuss differences, but it is another to malign others merely because they do not share one’s view. This is the issue at the heart of this controversy. It’s not wrong to promote one’s view, but arrogance and incivility in defense of presumed truth are not Christian virtues.

    1. Thank you Drew. Actually, I think my view is by far the most prevalent one in Christianity. Unfortunately, it is often overshadowed by the louder voices.

  149. Dr. Wile-
    I am greatly troubled by many of the things that you have posted on your blog regarding the whole Ken Ham/AiG and Enns “debate”.
    One thing that I am questioning you on, is your use of the word “unwarranted name”. I assume that you mean the word “compromiser”. If a person undermines the word of God and goes AGAINST what God’s word teaches, is that not compromising??

    I have supported you since your products first came out. I don’t agree with you on things which *I* find to be vital in my own life and my obedience for our family as Christians, but I don’t call you out on your version of “truth”.
    The reason for that is because it’s not that your views directly oppose God’s word. If they did– believe me, I’d call you out on the carpet with every single thing.

    In this situation regarding Enns & Wile, it is clear that Enns opposes God’s word with many of his views and what he teaches. Is he a Christian? Sure– I’m sure he is a wonderful man who loves the Lord. Can he be deceived in his views? Absolutely. So can we all– but the thing that strikes me is Enns’ views undermine God’s word itself. If a person undermines God’s word, again, is that not compromising the word of God, and is it not compromising Christianity itself? So wouldn’t Dr. Wile’s word be perfectly fitting?

    Dr. Wile, not only in his profession as a Creation Scientist who believes the bible is the inerrant word of God, but also in his spiritual life as a brother-in-Christ to Enns, has every biblical authority to call him out on his beliefs that are opposing God’s word.

    I feel for you as a respected man of God, and Science, to get involved in this little scuffle, is, well… a bit beneath you, isn’t it? Dr. Wile was debunking an IDEA or a VIEW, but you are attacking a person’s character in what you have said speaking about Dr. Wile’s words about Enns. That saddens me– although I still respect you and support you as a Scientist who is a Christian.

    Would you consider that you are wrong in supporting one brother in Christ while speaking out against another?? Is this something we as Christians REALLY need to do, publicly or privately?
    I have been involved in enough church “implosions” to know that there are Godly men out there on both sides of the coin, and for us to choose the side of a man rather than the word of God, is just going to get ugly.

    Ken Ham wasn’t attacking another brother in Christ, but was debunking an unbiblical view lest other Christians hear those untruths and become deceived. His motives, I believe, to be pure in heart/spirit. But what were your motives when speaking out against him as a brother in Christ?

    🙁

    1. Becky, thank you for your thoughtful comment. If someone does undermine God’s Word, he most certainly is a compromiser. However, Dr. Enns does not do that. In fact, he loves God’s Word and lifts it up. He interprets it differently from Ken Ham, but that does not make him a compromiser. I am sorry that you feel otherwise.

      I do not think it is wrong to attack a brother’s ACTIONS when he unfairly attacks another brother by leveling a false charge and calling him an unwarranted name. I certainly would have loved to do this privately, but unfortunately, Ken Ham made that impossible, because he publicly attacked Dr. Enns.

      Defending a brother in Christ from such an unfair, public attack is not “beneath” me. In fact, defending a brother in Christ from a false charge and unwarranted name-calling is not beneath anyone!

  150. Through reading all 300+ comments here, I find it interesting the desire to say that one may agree with Giesler calling some of Dr. Enns theology “unorthodox.” Yet, being “unorthodox” in ones’ theology does not equate with being a “compromiser.” If this is the case, then what exactly does holding to “unorthodox” positions equate to?

    Dr. Wile, you mention that Ex 20:11 does reference the six day creation towards the six days of work. Yes, it is a very strong argument to taking the days of creation literally. You then quickly mention to another that though this is a “clue” you bring into question that Lev 25 talks about years. Yet, looking up both texts, Lev 25 never associates the “years” with the six days of creation at all. Only Ex. 20 equates the six days of creation with the six days of work.

    Lastly, regarding that the possibility that one could defend inspiration and believe that Paul was wrong theologically is difficult to achieve through the context of his argument,1 Cor 15:45ff “Thus it is written, “The first man Adam became a living being”; the last Adam became a life-giving spirit. 46 But it is not the spiritual that is first but the natural, and then the spiritual. 47 The first man was from the earth, a man of dust; the second man is from heaven. 48 As was the man of dust, so also are those who are of the dust, and as is the man of heaven, so also are those who are of heaven. 49 Just as we have borne the image of the man of dust, we shall also bear the image of the man of heaven. (1Co 15:45-49 ESV)

    This passage would indicate that Paul believed in an actual, literal man being created according to what type of hermeneutic of Genesis? Dr. Enns and the Apostle Paul cannot both be right on this. Either Paul is unknowingly equating a symbolic man, comparing him with Jesus or Paul is rightly comparing two historical figures.

    Likewise in his writing to Rome, “Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned–
    13 for sin indeed was in the world before the law was given, but sin is not counted where there is no law.
    14 Yet death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those whose sinning was not like the transgression of Adam, who was a type of the one who was to come. (Rom 5:12-14 ESV)”

    How is it possible in this context that Adam is not literal but Moses is?

    I am unaware of any person who can logically hold unto the inspiration of the Bible and calls out an apostle for being wrong either literally or theologically. One cannot contend that “Adam” is just a symbol while Moses and Jesus are not. It is similar to Ex 20. One is very hard press that God is not equating that the six days of creation are equal to the literal six days of work and need rest on the seventh day.

    If “Adam” is symbolic is the “created from dust” symbolic too, but “heaven” isn’t?

    This is a hard twist for any person to do and this is not even going into the passage dealing with sin bring death into the world.

    1. Shaun, thank you for your thoughtful comment. I certainly agree with you that Exodus 20:11 is a more direct reference to the creation account than is Leviticus 25:1-4. However, the Leviticus passage does seem to follow the same pattern, even down to calling the seventh year a “rest.” Thus, while I disagree with those who say that it tells you the Genesis days aren’t 24-hour days, I can at least understand how they would think that.

      I think you misunderstand Dr. Enns, because he does not think Paul was wrong THEOLOGICALLY. He believes that the Bible is infallible, just not inerrant. Thus, Paul could be wrong on minor things, but nothing that affects theology. You are certainly right that Paul thought Adam was a literal man. However, it doesn’t matter what Paul THOUGHT. It matters what the passage MEANS. God is powerful enough to inspire people to write truth, even when their thinking is wrong. So God’s original intent is the issue, not Paul’s. That’s the point. There is nothing in the passage to indicate that Adam must be a literal man. A symbol is just as truthful as an actual man.

      I would say that in the context of Romans 5:12-14, you don’t know whether Moses was an actual man. From that passage alone, he could be a symbol as well. However, from the Old Testament, we learn that Moses is an actual man, as the accounts that speak of him are clearly historical narrative. That is not so clear-cut for the accounts that discuss Adam. This is why it is important to develop a serious hermeneutic to be able to understand what the Bible means.

      You might not be aware of people who can logically hold to the inspiration of the Bible and allow for errors. However, there are many theologians in the history of Christendom who have. I personally don’t agree with such theologians, but they are definitely not compromisers, and they definitely have a Biblical view of inspiration.

  151. I think the real problem here is NOT a theological one (basically). I think the real problem might be that it’s strictly your OPINION that Ken Ham was calling out Enns because “he is obviously upset at the fact that someone who disagrees with him…”, and it’s just sheer opinion that Ken Ham was “nasty”. I think the problem here is that you were making assumptions about Ken Ham’s heart and motives (by saying he was upset and WHY, especially, and assuming his tone and feeling). I personally didn’t see that he was being nasty, and neither did a lot of people–so who’s right? Ken Ham is just more passionate about what he believes the Bible to say, as many of us home school moms are. We, on the contrary found the information to be of vital importance, basically, so we don’t waste our time, efforts and money buying curriculum with which we will eventually disagree. What we choose to teach our children is VITAL to us and we welcome information to help us make that decision.

    I have to just disagree that he was nasty. I have to laugh because you think calling someone a “compromiser” is one of a most terrible, nasty things you can do. I don’t know you, but I see some “wisdom” in your hair, and I would think you would have understood that Ken Ham meant in context that he believes Enns is “compromising the Word of God” (even if you disagree with that)…thus that makes him a “compromiser”. That is like someone calling me a red head because my hair is red. That’s not “name calling” you know? It’s just calling it as they see it. Same way with Ken Ham…he did NOT purposefully set out to offend Enns, or to be nasty, but rather INFORM his readers/convention workshop attendees as to what Enns believes and that it is a compromise to the Word of God. And remember this is something we all have to remember that you are very allowed with which to disagree, but that doesn’t make Ken Ham nasty…know what I mean?

    Now, before you get all “freaky” on me, hear me out. So, you are MORE than certainly able to disagree with Ken Ham’s statements that you don’t believe that Enns is compromising. THAT is NOT the issue from what I see. You should–show the other side if that’s how you feel. If you feel it’s wrong, tell your point. HOWEVER, now YOU are simply conveying an OPINION by calling him “nasty”, or assuming his motives. Many feel he was not nasty, and feel he is just standing on truth. It’s just not a fact like you so put it.

    In addition, I am very confused though when you said, “More importantly, however, listening to serious scholars who disagree with you is an important part of the process of critical thinking. The only way I can properly evaluate my positions is to listen to those who disagree with them. That way, I can root out any lack of discernment, poor scholarship, or misunderstandings that can lead to bad theology.” I must laugh a little at this Mr. Wile because this statement can really NOT be supported anywhere in Scripture, however, it can be REFUTED many places including Acts 17:11, “11 These were more fair-minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so.” Did they evaluate their position by listening to serious scholars? As well in 2 Tim 3: “16 All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.” Does it say seek your information out from serious scholars to be “complete”? Not to mention, I don’t have the TIME to seek out all “serious scholars” right and wrong, so I can see if I’m right. God’s WORD and the Holy Spirit is supposed to do that, not a man.

    I would just have to ask you lovingly to be careful when presenting that idea, because it doesn’t line up with Scripture (oh, unless others in history never agreed with it, then it’s okay…right?).

    1. Kelly, thank you for your comment. I agree that “nasty” is an opinion. However, the false charge and unwarranted name-calling are not opinions, and that’s why I called Ken Ham out. If someone calls you a redhead and your hair is actually red, then you are right – that is not name-calling. If someone calls you a redhead and your hair is brown, then it is name-calling. Ken Ham called Dr. Enns a “compromiser,” and he is not. He also said that Dr. Enns doesn’t have a Biblical view of inspiration, but he does. These are falsehoods, and they must be corrected.

      Actually, the process of critical thinking is quite clearly spelled out in Scripture. 1 Thessalonians 5:19-21 commands us:

      “Do not quench the Spirit; do not despise prophetic utterances. But examine everything carefully; hold fast to that which is good;”

      Note that we are told to examine EVERYTHING carefully and then hold fast only to the things that are good. That’s exactly what I am talking about. You disagree with Dr. Enns. That’s fine. However, until you have examined his views carefully, you have not obeyed Scripture. We are, indeed, to look at the other side of things. That is the only way we can make sure our understanding is correct.

      Acts 17:11 is also talking about the same thing! Verse 10 tells us that the Thessalonicans received the word. In other words, they listened to Paul and Silas. THEN they checked the words of Paul and Silas against the Scriptures. That is also critical thinking! Please note that this verse simply indicates why so many of them believed. It does not even imply that the Thessalonicans stopped learning after that, and it certainly doesn’t say what they did to learn more!

      2Timothy 3:16-17 are excellent verses that clearly show Dr. Enns’s view of inspiration is Biblical, as Dr. Enns’s view is consistent with them. They also indicate how important Scripture is. Since Scripture is important, you better be interpreting it correctly, and listening to those who disagree with you is a way to improve your interpretation.

      Thank you for giving such excellent Scripture references!

  152. There is only one biblical view of scripture! We need to be able to argue with one another about what we see the one biblical view to be, to hash it out, to debate. The only way to do that is by declaring that we think someone is promoting a view that we see is unbiblical. How can we have conversations if that word is banned? We need to be able to say that! Of course we shouldn’t be nasty and we should support our opinion with scripture and handle others’ works with integrity, but the bottom line is there is only biblical view of scripture and the rest of the views are unbibilical!

    I am scandalized by the comment, “then he gets really nasty.” What can you possibly mean by this? What would be truly nasty is not warn others about the dangers of the teaching that there is not a historical Adam or a historical fall!

    1. Leslie, I agree that there is only one correct view of Scripture. However, I am not willing to set myself up as the sole arbitrator of that truth. You ask how we can have a conversation if that word is banned? How can we have a conversation if we name call and level false charges? That’s what Ken Ham did, and that’s what I called him out for.

      What I mean by “nasty” is simple. He levels a completely false charge – that Dr. Enns does not have a Biblical view of inspiration. In my mind, that’s a very nasty thing to say when it isn’t true.

  153. Dr Wile,

    Thank you for being one of the few voices to stand up in support of Dr Enns. I am unfamiliar with Dr Enns writings, I have no opinion on his teachings. I am saddened at how many Christians are willing to publicly denounce Dr Enns as a Christian, without reading his material for themselves, solely on the basis of what another Christian thinks. There is a wide variety in thought of how to interpret the Bible, and while not all the ideas of interpretation can be correct, honest mistakes in interpreting does not preclude one from the kingdom of Christ. It seems especially suspicious for a Christian to publicly denounce a competitor’s teachings as being an attack on Christ. It is one thing to positively speak out for ones viewpoints, it is another to denounce by name others. I am sure the homeschool convention in Cincinnati did not lightly make the decision to disinvite a main speaker, and that there is probably even more going on than all the rumors being spread through facebook.

  154. Ken Ham correctly warned parents and grandparents of presentations and curriculums that COMPROMISE God’s Word. People can try to sugar coat it but that is exactly what Mr Enns does with his literature. This controversy has shown me that, even though I enjoyed the recent convention, my family will not return to another one where compromise is portrayed as a good thing. One of the problems in the world today is to many Christians refuse to call a spade a spade.

    1. Skipper, I will simply have to disagree with you. Dr. Enns is not a compromiser, and he has a Biblical view of inspiration. I have made that very clear.

  155. We cannot read the Bible–we must interpret it.

    I respectfully dissent.

    Translation is not interpretation.

    All his arguments boil down to a fundamentally different view of the Word of God.

    I would like to change your mind on this subject, but I probably cannot.

    1. Kathy, you can’t change my mind when you state things that are simply incorrect. Translation is, indeed, interpretation, and any competent translator will tell you that. Furthermore, the original autographs were written in ANCIENT languages that are not spoken that way anymore. That requires even more interpretation!

  156. Depends on how you define “interpret,” doesn’t it?

    There is no such thing as a word-for-word translation. But we are blessed with many English translations to study and compare. I would also like to suggest that ancient languages, such as common Greek, are not that difficult for anyone to access and understand.

    But this discussion boils down to one thing: you find that AIG’s theology “leaves a lot to be desired.”

    1. Kathy, the word “interpret” is defined as:

      “to explain or tell the meaning of”

      Thus, any translation is an interpretation, as you must take something that the reader cannot read and explain or tell its meaning.

      You are exactly right that there is no such thing as a word-for-word translation. However, you are quite wrong when you say that the ancient languages are not hard to understand. I agree that COMMON GREEK is not hard to understand, but the New Testament wasn’t written in today’s common Greek. It was written in 2,000-year-old Greek. Languages change dramatically over time. Thus, a knowledge of modern Greek does not allow you to understand ancient Greek. It is just too different. This is why we have theologians who study these things for their careers. They are NOT easy.

      You are right. It boils down to AiG’s theology leaving a LOT to be desired!

  157. Dr. Wile,

    The problem you are suggesting is that what Paul believes and means are different. Neither you or I are allowed to state that though Paul believed in the literal man, Adam, this is not what he actually meant when he wrote it. That is what is called eisegesis. We must allow Scripture to interpret Scripture. If Paul believed that Adam is literal than that is what the author meant when he wrote it. Paul is not dealing in prophesying the future but is teaching didactic truth.

    If Paul does believe in the literal man, Adam, how did he come across with such belief unless he took Genesis to be historical narrative? For Dr. Enns to hold that Genesis 1&2 not to be narrative, he has to come up with that the apostle Paul is in error.

    Even if one was to think that “God-breathed” words could possible contain “minor” errors, what Dr. Enns is expressing is not minor but major. Paul is setting up a major argument comparing Jesus to Adam. Also, Paul uses Adam more than once proving a theologically important point so Paul’s error would be huge. Yet, if all Scripture is God-breathed, one has to say that God breathed out error into His book.

    I do find it remarkable that you can say “God is powerful enough to inspire people to write truth, even when their thinking is wrong. So God’s original intent is the issue..” and at the same time think it is okay for someone to espouse that God is not powerful enough to prevent Paul from writing error in the first place. At least you agree then that Dr. Enns says Paul is wrong, you cannot argue it both ways.

    You err in thinking that a robust hermeneutic can leave out the author’s thinking (intent). One cannot have it both ways.

    Your comment about Romans 5 proves my point. Scripture must interpret Scripture. Paul’s argument breaks down if Adam is not a literal man and Moses is, as you say it would be illogical.

    Your comment regarding Lev 25 is true, yet you did not seem to imply that in the previous comment you had when using it as an example. For though it may have at its premise the created order, it may also be reflexive of the six days of work and one day of rest commanded which actual is based on the six days of creation.

    We cannot arbitrarily pick out what parts of Paul’s writings that Paul thought wrongly. It is not how inspiration works. Going back to 2 Tim. 3:16, if someone thinks that Paul is wrong than that person must say that not all Scripture is useful in teaching and correcting and,… since it has error in it.

    Yes, I am fully aware that there are many who try to cling to Inspiration and error in the text at the same time (which seems to be a logical fallacy “God-breathed error”). But none of them have ever cited these texts of Paul as being erroneous.

    Put another way, if Dr. Enns is correct that Adam is just a symbol and if I recall correctly Adam is symbolic of Israel. Then whenever “Adam” is used in Scripture we can replace “Adam” with “Israel” or whatever Dr. Enns thinks it meant and the text would make sense. If not, then it would surmise that Dr. Enns would be wrong. It would be simple algebra right? If we find out that the symbol “x” equals 2 than everywhere that “x” is at in that context must be 2. If not, than the solver is wrong.

    1. Shaun, this is not eisegesis. It is, indeed, allowing Scripture to interpret Scripture. If you think Scripture is quite clear that the parts which discuss Adam are not historical narrative, then you will use that Scripture to interpret Paul’s writings so as to conclude that Paul is not writing about a historical Adam. Once again, what Paul’s intent was is irrelevant. God’s intent is all that is relevant, and using Scripture to interpret Scripture leads some (not me) to conclude that Adam was not a specific individual and that Paul was writing about a symbol, which is no less truthful.

      Of course Dr. Enns says the Apostle Paul was in error when it comes to his interpretation of the Genesis account. However, I hope you don’t think that Paul was completely without error in all his beliefs? He is only without theological error in what he wrote in the Scriptures, because God was inspiring him only then. If you think Paul was completely without error in all his views, you seem to be elevating him to a place that I don’t think is right.

      It is not remarkable to say that God is powerful enough to inspire people beyond their errors. In fact, it is a common view in orthodox Christianity. The means by which God inspired people is not determined in Scripture. God could have inspired them in MANY ways, and some of them are completely consistent with Dr. Enns’s views. Of course, some are consistent with your view and my view as well, but to exclude views based on no Scriptural evidence is just plain wrong.

      I truly hope you reconsider your idea that you are looking for the WRITER’S intent in Scripture. It is much more healthy to look for God’s intent, since He is the actual author.

      Paul’s argument in Romans 5 does not break down if Adam wasn’t a real person. In fact, the idea is utterly irrelevant to the passage. Adam is being used as a symbol for sin entering the world. That’s what’s important to the passage.

      I didn’t mention the argument against Leviticus 25 in my previous post to make the point that if you read it, it could very well be reflective of the creation account, which destroys the Exodus 20:11 argument. That is quite true, even though young-earthers have a counter argument to that. My point was that this is clearly not OBVIOUS in Scripture, as the commenter said.

      You are quite incorrect to say that because Paul is wrong it could go against 2 Timothy 3:16. Please read the passage:

      “All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness;”

      If Paul incorrectly believed something, his writings are still inspired by God, profitable for teaching, profitable for reproof, profitable for correction, and profitable for training in righteousness. Indeed, because the literal Adam has no bearing on the teaching in Romans 5, it is still profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness.

      You are also wrong with your mathematical analogy. Adam is a symbol, and symbols can mean many different things. The American flag can be a symbol for freedom. It can also be a symbol for democracy. It can also be a symbol for those who died to protect us. Thus, symbolism does not follow mathematical rigor.

  158. Dr Wile, may I just take this opportunity to thank you for demonstrating your Christian charity in your post, & in your added comments.
    It is good to hear a voice speaking in love at a time when there is so much anger being thrown about. (No doubt to the delight of the enemy of our souls).
    God bless all here.

  159. Dr. Wile,

    I don’t think Ken Ham was accusing Enns of compromising his beliefs, rather that he was compromising traditionally, generally and long-held understandings of the Bible (orthodoxy). You have attacked Ken Ham for calling Enns a “compromisor.”

    The following critique of Enns’ book can be found at http://www.bible-researcher.com/enns.html:

    “The substance of it was, that in his opinion the traditional doctrine of inspiration is clearly wrong, because modern critical study has established beyond all reasonable doubt that the Bible contains mythological and legendary material borrowed from various Ancient Near Eastern traditions, that it is composed of parts which contradict one another in many ways, that the New Testament interpretations of the Old Testament are invalid and misleading, and so forth….”

    Enns, a TEACHER, believes that the Bible contains mythological and legendary material and many passages are contradictory. That is the accusation from this review. We have already engaged in the absurdity of arguing over what Geisler’s criticism of Enns was. Rather than compromise, are you suggesting that it is a “principled reinterpretation of scripture, in light of new and fresh ways of looking at the scripture”?

    Here’s the problem as I see it. How did Enns arrive at these beliefs? What did he decide to hold as superior to the authority to the Bible? Current scientific fads? Modern biblical scholarship (which has an anti-God bias)?

    I know you aren’t suggesting that biblical orthodoxy is that the creation account is a myth or mere legend. But, if Enns believes those things, how has he NOT compromised biblical orthodoxy?

    1. Greg, the paragraph you quote mischaracterizes Enns’s position, as is made clear by Geisler’s review. Geisler clearly indicates that Enns takes great pains to say that the fact that the Bible contains mythological elements from other cultures does not change the fact that it is inspired by God. It did not “borrow” the symbols from legends. God USED those symbols to inspire the writers.

      It is not surprising that the link you give mischaracterizes Enns’s views. Here is what it admits:

      Most of the professors at Westminster found nothing objectionable in all this, and tried to protect Enns from the criticism that he provoked. We will pass over their arguments in silence.

      First, then, this is a minority report. The majority see Enns clearly in the line of orthodoxy. Second, of course they will pass over the arguments of the majority of theologians in silence, because they can’t answer them!

      This review, then, is fatally flawed. Unlike Geisler, it doesn’t discuss the supporting evidence at all. That is truly unfortunate, and it is not unlike Ken Ham’s wrongful actions.

      Enns has not compromised Biblical orthodoxy because his views are not in violation of any of the creeds that measure orthodoxy. You want to include all sorts of side issues in the standards for orthodoxy. Fortunately for the cause of Christ, that is not what the majority of orthodox theologians do.

  160. Your support for Peter Enns would have been more forthright had you pointed out that he was dismissed from Westminster Theological Seminary for his unbiblical teaching. You say that Enns’ view of inspiration is biblical, though different from Ken Hamms’ view. This is completely false by any standard evangelical understanding of inspiration. His book is anything but seminal but is rejected by virtually the entire conservative evangelical world. On the biologos website, Enns states that 1) Paul believed in a historical Adam; 2) evolution says there cannot have been a historical Adam; 3) therefore Paul (along with the Bible) is in error. This is your idea of a biblical view of Scripture? You are losing credibility by your support of Enns, and you should lose it.

    1. Rob, I had no idea that Dr. Enns was removed from Westminster. However, upon investigating the issue after a commenter brought it up there, I found that he was removed DESPITE the fact that the MAJORITY who evaluated his views saw NO unorthodoxy in his teachings. So you are clearly wrong when you say it is “completely false by any standard evangelical understanding of inspiration.” In fact, the MAJORITY of orthodox theologians who looked at it had no problems with it.

      I certainly did not mean to mischaracterize the board. However, a group of theologians evaluated him, and the majority had no problems with his views. The board should have listened to them, but they did not.

      Yes, Dr. Enns’s view is a Biblical view of Scripture, as it is completely consistent with 2 Timothy 3:16. I use Scripture to support my views, not the teachings of men. Scripture shows Enns’s view to be Biblical, which is why a MAJORITY of Christian theologians had no issues with his view.

  161. In an earlier post, you defend Peter Enns vis a vis his dismissal from WTS, saying that the Board did not consist of theologians and therefore should not be considered competent to judge Dr. Enns. Did you take the time to inquire as to the membership of that board? How about Philip G. Ryken, now President of Wheaton College. How about Harry Reeder. How about the large collection of well-respected, published, and able pastor-scholars on that board. Could you please do some homework before you slander good men in defense of a false teacher?

  162. Mr. Wile
    Two of our children have used your curriculum and have had problems in Science when entering University. The schools do not see things the way you do but we continue to use the curriculum you wrote because it is from a Christian worldview. Sadly however after seeing your true worldview we will be looking for something a little more closely related to the actual Bible; beginning with Genesis.

    1. Bonnie, I am sorry to hear that your children had trouble in university after using my science. What I typically hear is that students do incredibly well (see here, here, here, here, here, and here). If your students are doing poorly, you should definitely switch, regardless of worldview.

      I will say, of course, that my worldview has not changed one bit since when I started writing those books. Since we are to judge a tree by its fruits, then, the fact that you admit my books are from a Christian worldview should tell you something…

  163. A lot of people believe that the concept of guided evolution is necessarily unbiblical (oh no, not that word again!)

    It does go against much of what a YEC assumes about the origins of the world and humankind, including how they interpret the Bible on such issues. This however is inevitable, as those interpretations are based the assumption of a 168 hour creation.

    However there is stylistic evidence that the genesis passage is poetic in nature. Jewish poetry placed great emphasis on repetition, as you can infer from a preliminary glance at the psalms. There is inconsistency in the account such as “days” defined without the sun. Again “a day” was from sundown to sundown, not some arbitrary period of hours. There is the question of Genesis 2. In other words there are indications WITHOUT compromising with evolutionary thought that the literal Genesis 24 hour day may indeed be metaphorical.

    C. S. Lewis, in his book “the magician’s Nephew”, tells of the creation of his mythical world of Narnia. Without even suggesting that’s a commentary on how our world was made, it does raise an interesting example. After bringing the world and its inhabitants into being Aslan selected some of the animals for the special honour of becoming “talking beasts”. He gathered them into a ring and breathed on them. These became particularly large, strong, and intelligent creatures who were the real citizens of Narnia. It is valid theology to assert that phrase “God breathed life into the man” refers to a special moment at which God set apart humans from the other creatures, giving them a soul. As such Adam would be a literal first man who is genetically similar to his ape father, but is spiritually distinct.

    This is not my position, which is that God created man and the other animals on his own. Nor is it Dr Enns’ theology to the best of my understanding. It is however a valid position to take. That is what must be understood in treating this as an opportunity for Critical thinking, there are a number of valid positions to take on such an issue. We don’t have the mark scheme! We don’t know for sure which is which.

  164. Dr Jay,
    Here are some words from Dr. Al Mohler, I think you should at least take heed. Dr. Peter Enns is CLEARLY an “opponent of biblical inerrancy!”

    -Professor Peter Enns, formerly of Westminster Theological Seminary in Philadelphia, has argued that the biblical authors clearly erred. He has argued that Paul, for example, was clearly wrong in assuming the historicity of Adam.

    His arguments, also serialized and summarized in a series of articles, are amazingly candid. He asserts that Evangelicalism has “painted itself into an intellectual corner” by claiming the inerrancy of Scripture. The movement is now in an “intellectual cul-de-sac,” he laments, because we have “crossed an evidential threshold that makes it intellectually unsuitable to defend some of the standard dogmas of the conservative evangelical tradition.” And, make no mistake, inerrancy is the central dogma he would have us let go.

    His conclusion: “If Jesus as a finite human being erred from time to time, there is no reason at all to suppose that Moses, Paul, [and/or] John wrote Scripture without error.”

    The rejection of biblical inerrancy is bound up with a view of God that is, in the end, fatal for Christian orthodoxy. We are entering a new phase in the battle over the Bible’s truthfulness and authority. We should at least be thankful for undisguised arguments coming from the opponents of biblical inerrancy, even as we are ready, once again, to make clear where their arguments lead.

    http://www.albertmohler.com/2010/08/16/the-inerrancy-of-scripture-the-fifty-years-war-and-counting/

    1. Marco, I have dealt with this many times before. Dr. Mohler is clearly wrong on this point. Rejection of Biblical inerrancy is not fatal for orthodox Christianity, since many, many orthodox theologians have rejected it, and it hasn’t affected their orthodoxy one bit.

  165. Dr Jay,
    Susan Wise Bauer (who’s writings are NOT Christian) and yourself have led the charge to get AiG kicked out for calling someone a “compromiser”
    and now you have –

    ‘Dr. Refuting Compromise’ speaking at one of the largest homeschooling conventions in the country

    http://infobytes.creation.com/emailnewsletters/viewonline/cmi_us_dr_refuting_compromise_cincinnati_homeschool_convention.html

    will you attempt to do the same to him, as he clearly will be calling out compromise?

    1. Marco, I have not led any charge for AiG to be kicked out of anything. I have properly called Mr. Ham out for his wrong attacks on Dr. Enns, but Great Homeschool Conventions kicked Mr. Ham out with no help from me, and no urging from me. I have no idea about Dr. Bauer. I do know that she is a Christian, however, so I am VERY disappointed in your libel of her.

      I have no problem with Dr. Sarfati defending his position. The question is whether or not he calls any other speaker an unwarranted name or levels a false charge against any speaker. If so, I will oppose that. However, since I have no power in the Great Homeschool Conventions (I am just an invited speaker), there is nothing I can do to see that he stays or goes. That is up to the convention board.

  166. Mr Wile,
    With all due respect. I have used a number of your Apologia science curriculums and have been happy with them. I am, however, very surprised that you would jump to defend Mr. Enns, if what I have read about his beliefs is true. If he truly believes that Jesus was falliable and that the scripture may not be without error, that is blasphemous and not biblical. We are not talking about a different view of the scripture (such as the view of the rapture which all can possibly back up with scripture, nor Calvinism vs Arminianism which can also be backed up with an interpretation of scripture.) The Bible makes it very clear that the Bible is GOD BREATHED and without error and it also makes it very clear that Jesus was without sin. It really does not matter how many PhDs he has. Mr. Ham was right to warn us of this.

    1. Terri, I am sorry, but you are not at all correct. While I understand that many view inerrancy as a central doctrine, it is clearly not. Lots of orthodox Christian theologians do not believe in inerrancy. Instead, they believe in infallibility, and it has not affected their orthodoxy one bit. You are right that 2 Timothy 3:16 tells us that all Scripture is God-Breathed, and Dr. Enns believes that. Other orthodox theologians who believe infallibility rather than inerrancy also believe that. Thus, their view of inspiration is demonstrably Biblical. Now I personally believe in inerrancy. However, I understand Scripture enough to know that it is not the only orthodox position to take.

      Mr. Ham has every right to warn people. He does not have a right to call a Christian brother an unwarranted name or level a false charge against him. That’s what this blog post was about.

  167. I am so blessed to attend a church (Philippi Baptist) where my pastors do not hesitate to call out false prophets (as Paul did) like Joel Osteen and Rick Warren (yes, I did name them and call them false prophets.) I only bring that up to say that the pulpit is not the only forum for this type of proclamation. I am blessed as well to have access to godly people such as Ken Hamm calling out those who are teaching things in other forums that are in direct contradiction with the Word of God. His being pulled from the convention in Cincinnati is akin to censorship. Certainly the organizers have a right to invite (or disinvite) whom they wish. As a thinking person however, I am disheartened to see silencing tactics used in the homeschool community that are abounding in liberal forums. I do not fault Ken Hamm for his passion– not nastiness– as it is his life’s mission to provide people with the truth of God’s Word concerning Creation. My pastors get rather passionate when they discuss the teachings of false prophets.

    When I learned of your opposing position to Hamm’s comments about Enns/BioLogos, my heart plummeted. Apologia is one of the few homeschool curricula that I stand behind and recommend ad nauseam. I HAD to read your words for myself (as I did Hamm’s and Enns’s.)

    I appreciate that you are holding fast to Biblical truth. I am however concerned for your compromise as others in this conversation have mentioned in one way or another.

    Compromise is nasty, pointing it out is godly.

    Readers– please visit these blogs by one of my pastors to further strengthen your understanding of compromise and discernment. (The title follows the date in each link.)

    http://tommycmann.blogspot.com/2010/09/dogmatic-christians.html

    http://tommycmann.blogspot.com/2010/08/closed-minded-christians.html

    http://tommycmann.blogspot.com/2010/01/to-save-life.html

    May the glory of God and His truth shine ever brighter as the scales of compromise are lifted from our eyes!

    Acts 9:18
    Immediately there fell from his eyes something like scales, and he received his sight at once; and he arose and was baptized.

    1. Cherie, you are quite incorrect when you say that Great Homeschool Conventions is censoring Mr. Ham’s view. They are only censoring his behavior. They have already replaced him with Dr. Jonathan Sarfati, who has essentially the same views. Thus, there is no censoring of views – only censoring of behavior.

      I am not compromising one bit. I am simply pointing out that there are orthodox Christians who do not agree with me or with Mr. Ham. That is not a reason for calling them unwarranted names or leveling false attacks against them. Please take this Scripture to heart.

      Romans 14:1-9:

      Now accept the one who is weak in faith, but not for the purpose of passing judgment on his opinions. One person has faith that he may eat all things, but he who is weak eats vegetables only. The one who eats is not to regard with contempt the one who does not eat, and the one who does not eat is not to judge the one who eats, for God has accepted him. Who are you to judge the servant of another? To his own master he stands or falls; and he will stand, for the Lord is able to make him stand. One person regards one day above another, another regards every day alike Each person must be fully convinced in his own mind. He who observes the day, observes it for the Lord, and he who eats, does so for the Lord, for he gives thanks to God; and he who eats not, for the Lord he does not eat, and gives thanks to God. For not one of us lives for himself, and not one dies for himself; for if we live, we live for the Lord, or if we die, we die for the Lord; therefore whether we live or die, we are the Lord’s. For to this end Christ died and lived again, that He might be Lord both of the dead and of the living.

  168. Thanks, Jay, for courteously answering me. But anyone who has served on a college or seminary faculty knows better than to trust the objectivity of faculty members when judging their peer. Moreover, many of the faculty who supported Enns were far from specialists in the matters under discussion (practical theology professors, etc.), while some of the most emminent scholars vigorously opposed him (Drs. Gaffin, Poythress, Trueman, etc.). You are very unwise and unfair to say that “the board should have listened to the faculty,” when I doubt you have sufficient knowledge of the long and careful process that resulted in Enns’ ouster. Moreover, you may be a great scientist, but if you think Enns’ views on Scripture are acceptable, then… you should stick to science. Evolution is not just “another disagreement among Christians,” but a systematic rejection of biblical authority. The denial of a historical Adam is a huge matter that is directly connected to the gospel. I don’t expect you to go on a jihad against Enns, but your support of his obviously errant teaching has cost you all credibility with me.

    1. Rob, you should not cast dispersions on people just because they disagree with you. When a committee is formed in such a matter, it is formed to evaluate the issue. I have been on such committees (obviously not for theology). It is formed properly with a lot of forethought, and it is made up of a group that fits the need. The majority of the committee in this case had no problem with what Enns teaches, as it is clearly Biblical. If it were clearly unBiblical, the majority would have gone the other way. It did not. You don’t like that, so you are trying to cast the minority as being right by questioning the credentials of the majority. That is truly unfortunate.

      You are simply incorrect about evolution. It is not a systematic rejection of Biblical authority. Many great theologians are theistic evolutionists, and they have not rejected any Biblical authority. The denial of a historical Adam is not a problem for the gospel at all, as my previous replies clearly show.

      If I have lost credibility with you, so be it. I would rather strive for the approval of God than to gain the approval of man.

    1. Thanks for that excellent link, Nan! Like the Geisler link that came before, it clearly shows how to PROPERLY discuss Enns’s theology. There is no name-calling, and there are no false charges. Instead, the author discusses the good and the bad of his major book. He ends up not recommending it as a basic text, because he does not think it does enough to promote confidence in Biblical truth. However, he sees a lot of valuable material in it. I have no idea who John Frame is, but I wish he could give lectures on how Christians should critique other Christians!

  169. Jay, this is a thoroughly postmodern discussion if there ever was one. My point was to guard you against making assumptions about a matter in which I do not believe you are adequately informed, that is, the WTS board decision about Dr. Enns. I did not accuse the faculty who supported him, but merely pointed out that one should not assume they have the objective high ground, along with making the simple observation that not all of the faculty are experts in the questions under discussion. There is no criticism involved in those comments. You respond by saying how unfortunate I am in questioning peoples’ credentials. Yet the whole point was your questioning of the boards credentials. You really have your heels dug in, but please show the consideration of reading what critics are saying rather than sanctimoniously labeling it “unfortunate” and then giving yourself God’s pat on the back. And again, if you think it is okay to deny the historicity of Adam, good luck with the Christian homeschool crowd.

    1. Rob, this is definitely not a postmodern discussion. I am trying to concentrate on the facts. Unfortunately, you are not. You want to cast the minority decision as more important than the majority. You specifically said that, “many of the faculty who supported Enns were far from specialists in the matters under discussion (practical theology professors, etc.), while some of the most emminent scholars vigorously opposed him (Drs. Gaffin, Poythress, Trueman, etc.)” In other words, the majority were unqualified, while the minority were qualified.

      I am not worried about having “luck” with the Christian homeschool crowd. I am worried about striving for the approval of God rather than that of men. That’s why I took this stand.

  170. I could just cry. I am so sad that you have chosen to support this false teacher. I LOVE your science curriculum and am currently working on Advanced Chemistry. But my estimation of you has fallen. Do you not realize your hypocrisy? You are attacking Ken Ham for attacking Peter Enns. Regarding your argument that Peter Enns view cannot be called unbiblical, can you not call anything unbiblical these days? No, you cannot call anything bad anymore, unless it is someone being “mean”.

    If the Old Testament is up to personal interpretation, then the Romans 14 text should be up to personal interpretation as well. You should take that text to heart as well, “Who are you who judge another?” I am simply following your logic to its conclusion.

    I think your next post should be about how horrible Paul was for attacking the Judaizers in his day. Lord help us!

    Lulu

    1. Lulu, there is no hypocrisy here. I am defending Dr. Enns specifically because I believe the Bible. Thus, I try to follow its commands. Romans 14:1-9 tells us how to treat our brothers and sisters in Christ who disagree with us.

      You most certainly can call all sorts of things unBiblical these days. You can call any teaching that questions any of the fundamental doctrines of Christianity unBiblical. However, Dr. Enns does not do this, so he is not being unBiblical.

      I do take the Romans 14 text to heart. That’s why I stood up for Dr. Enns. I agree that we should not judge ANOTHER. Thus, we should not call people names like “compromiser,” especially when they are not. However, we can judge people’s ACTIONS. We are, in fact, told to judge a tree by its fruits. That’s what I did. I judges Mr. Ham’s actions as wrong, and I acted accordingly.

  171. I just have one comment. If Adam wasn’t a literal man then why is he listed in the lineage or genealogy of Christ as if he was a real person (Luke 3:17)

    1. NWitt, I think that is an excellent argument for the fact that Adam was a literal person. I am not sure how someone who doesn’t believe in a literal Adam would answer that. I expect it would be along the lines that all those mentioned in the first few chapters of Genesis are not real, because it is not written as historical narrative. Thus, they problem represent the part of the genealogy that reaches into the distant past. If I have a chance to talk to Dr. Enns at the convention, I will ask him.

  172. Dr. Wyle, Peter Enns states : (From the Biologos website)

    In my last post I suggested that the Adam story could be viewed symbolically as a story of Israel’s beginnings, not as the story of humanity from ground zero.

    If Adam is viewed only as Israel’s beginnings, why does Paul write ” And He has made from one blood (ESV: one man) every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth, and has determined their preappointed times and the boundaries of their dwellings” Acts 17: 26

    Verse 17:30 The times of ignorance God overlooked, but know he commands all people everywhere to repent, 31 because he has fixed a day on which he will judge the world in righteousness by a man whom he has appointed; and of this he has given assurance to all by raising him from the dead.”

    Has God only given assurance to Israel that they should repent? Or to all men everywhere?

    1. Betty, I don’t see how Acts 17:26 requires a literal Adam. Once again, if Adam is a symbol of the one man, that makes the verse say exactly the same thing. You seem to think that a symbol must mean one thing and one thing only. It does not. The American flag, for example, is a symbol of freedom, but it is also a symbol for democracy. Symbols have more than one meaning…

  173. Dr. Wile,

    I just read this in your previous comments.

    “While I understand that many view inerrancy as a central doctrine, it is clearly not. Lots of orthodox Christian theologians do not believe in inerrancy. Instead, they believe in infallibility, and it has not affected their orthodoxy one bit. You are right that 2 Timothy 3:16 tells us that all Scripture is God-Breathed, and Dr. Enns believes that. Other orthodox theologians who believe infallibility rather than inerrancy also believe that. Thus, their view of inspiration is demonstrably Biblical. Now I personally believe in inerrancy. However, I understand Scripture enough to know that it is not the only orthodox position to take.”

    I just about fell over. That God’s Word is inerrant is not a central doctrine? If you actually do “personally believe” that the Bible is inerrant, then please defend your belief and don’t buy the postmodern lie that says that we cannot say anything is true. We can stand on the Bible and on the fact that Paul knew what he was talking about when he said that Adam was a literal person. I am sorry, but when someone picks and chooses which parts of the Bible they think are right and which ones are not, then they are outside the bounds of orthodoxy, and their positions are open for Biblical scrutiny. If someone doesn’t believe that the whole Bible is true, then they have no business standing on any of it.

    Lulu

    1. Lulu, I appreciate your opinion on this, but it is just plain wrong. The fact is that inerrancy is not a central doctrine to Christianity. Is it in any of the major creeds? Of course not. I do personally believe the Bible is inerrant, but I have no problem with those who believe it is infallible but not inerrant. Now, of course, if the Bible is not at least infallible, then you have a problem. However, I see no problem with an infallible Bible that is not inerrant. This is not “picking and choosing” what parts of the Bible to believe. It is a matter of studying the Bible to determine what is says.

      Mr. Ham did not show that Dr. Enns is outside of orthodoxy. In fact, he leveled a false charge against Dr. Enns.

  174. Dr. Wile,

    Yes, we can jugde people’s actions and their beliefs. When a person has legitamently shown that they are not inside orthodoxy, then they can be called out on it. That is what Ken Ham has done and I commend him for it.

    Lulu

  175. To all those accusing Dr. Wile,

    Doctor Wile is not agreeing with Mr. Enns, he is simply stating a biblical principle that we are not to judge men. If Mr. Ham was judging Enns personally, then not only is that biblically wrong, but it is a poor argument.

    Discussing disagreements is good. I am shocked that so many of you would accuse Doctor Wile in ways that I have seen on here. He is a godly man, attempting to prevent unbiblical attacks on another man’s character, whether that man is right or wrong isn’t the question. Jesus said to “love your neighbor”, it doesn’t say “unless you disagree with him” it simply says to love him. You can disagree and debate all you want, and that is fine, but to judge Dr. Wile as a bad Christian is both poor sportsmanship and unbiblical. I applaud Dr. Wile for being able to stand for the defense of Dr. Enns, though I disagree with Enns beliefs.

    In the end, I think it is a shame that Christians would be so unwilling to properly discuss issues with other Christians, that they would resort to bashing and ridicule (Dr. Wiles, Dr. Wiley, etc…) of a godly man. It is both immature and unbiblical.

    Keep up the good work, Dr. Wile!

  176. Dr. Wile,
    Thank you so much for helping others see that we must be thinkers, not just take what scholars tell us as the absolute truth. I too disagree with Dr. Enn’s view, but appreciate the right to decide for myself. Christ’s followers must use our intellect and the Holy Spirit’s guiding when confronted with views differing from our own. What better way to solidify truth than to be challenged from a different viewpoint?

  177. My family and I have reservations to attend the Midwest Homeschool Convention, but we will not be attending now. We were tottering on whether or not to attend when we found out they did not welcome HSLDA to their conventions. HSLDA is a champion in the Christian cause as well as the homeschool cause. I thought their spirit for not welcoming HSLDA was questionable, however, my family was going to give them the benefit of the doubt and still attend. With this new disinvite to another Christian champion, we cannot in good conscience attend. That is too bad, Dr. Wile, because your booth was one that I was looking forward to stopping at and making a purchase.

    1. Jodi, I do not have a booth at the convention. I am simply a speaker there. I am sorry you won’t be attending. I think you are making a bad decision, but it is your decision to make.

  178. Wow! You sure have gotten a lot of attention on you blog concerning this issue, sir. I believe Mr. Ham has only in his heart that other shouldn’t be led into deception. I’m not sure what your objective is. Perhaps the attention? If you only wanted to be pleasing to the Lord, then perhaps you should have stayed out of the “mess” of all of this and just prayed for your Christian brothers.

    1. Indyz, I agree with you about Mr. Ham. He has the right desire, but he wronged his brother. Since I was going to be speaking at a convention with BOTH of them, I had no choice but to call Mr. Ham on his wrongful actions. You can think whatever you want of me, but I am striving for the approval of God, not the approval of men.

  179. Dear Mr. Wile,

    I’m hesitant to post because I have not read every source, nor am I an authority on the issue. I’m actually a quite young reader who stumbled across your blog while researching this recent issue.

    But, speaking plainly, from my heart, on this important topic, could you answer the following for me? I am confused and curious about your views.

    What is heresy?

    How are we commanded to deal with heresy, especially when it comes from authoritative voices in the church?

    To believe and teach that the first Adam never existed, and was in fact a symbolic myth given to the Patriarchs by God, destroys the foundation for the second Adam, Jesus Christ.

    According to Dr. Enns views humanity came about through millions of years of evolutionary processes, orchestrated by God. Years and years of death and decay. The Word teaches us that death is the direct consequence for sin, it happened after the fall. When exactly did the world fall from its perfect state in Dr. Enns understanding? Did God let millions and millions of years of death happen for no reason at all? Was there never a perfection we fell from? Without Adam, without the fall and mans subsequent bondage to sin and death, the gospel makes no sense at all.

    Christ came to save us from the penalty of sin – death. He came to give us new life in Him. Without a literal fall, a real first Adam, the second Adam is superfluous. Christ’s blood means nothing.

    I do not need to convince you of this – you have stated, and I truly hope, that you do not hold Dr. Enns views. What I am trying to understand is how you, in light of holding the convictions you do, cannot see that Dr. Enns views are highly heretical? They NEED to be exposed as making the blood of Christ meaningless – no matter how he may explain it. The bottom line is, if we go down the road of calling the first Adam merely a symbol, and not reality, where will it end?

    Every Christian is responsible to God for preaching the true gospel, pure and undefiled. It is our job to expose confusion, twisting of the truth, heresy, wherever we find it. It is a shame Dr. Enns has been allowed to promote his curriculum in the first place, it holds heresies which ultimately strip away the meaning of precious blood of Christ, of HIS sacrifice. Gods holiness will not be mocked. When we lean on our own understanding instead of the wisdom of God, when we excuse heresy and give it a platform to speak out of “fairness” and “tolerance”, when, in other words, we care more about our reputation than truly representing God himself, we are open to lies and corruption.

    We must choose our stand, there is no middle ground on this issue. Two completely different types of gospel are in the balance. Which do you believe? You cannot truly believe the truth and at the same time demand courtesy room for the other.

    Speaking out against heresy and corruption for the glory of God IS what Jesus did. Calling the pharisees a “brood of vipers”, scourging with whips, overturning the tables. There is no room for corruption in the church, this is GODS holiness we are talking about! This is GODS gospel! Have we forgotten that we are only the ambassadors for Him? We do not set the standard!

    It is ridiculous to say we are so concerned with keeping the Gospels commands to “love” and be civil, and then with the same breath say we do not really care if heresy is taught – how does that glorify God?

    I have spoken strongly, I feel strongly that sometimes as Christians we forget WHO it is we are talking about. The issue here is that if Dr. Enns views are heresy, then we have a duty before God to expose it. That Ken Ham is the ONLY one speaking up about it, rather than whether or not he did so in a “biblical” manner, is the real concern here…

    1. Lauren, thank you for your post. I appreciate your honesty. Heresy is teaching against orthodox Christian doctrine. In general, if it cannot be defended Biblically, it is not orthodox. According to Romans 16:17, we are to keep an eye on and avoid heretics.

      You are just not correct when you say that teaching that the first Adam never existed destroys the foundation for the second Adam. There is no reason to think that because Adam is a symbol rather than a man, Christ is not who He is. Christ’s redeeming blood is the same regardless of how sin entered the world. It entered the world, and Christ redeems us from it.

      The Word teaches us that HUMAN death is the direct cause of sin. Sin is not the reason for plant or animal death. A theistic evolutionist would not say that God let millions of years of death happen for nothing at all. He let it happen to build creation. Theistic evolution is most certainly not heresy, as some of the greatest orthodox theologians of our time are theistic evolutionists.

      There certainly never was a perfection from which we Fell. The idea that the pre-Fall world was perfect is not supported in Scripture. It was VERY GOOD, but it was not perfect. If it had been perfect, the creation account would have used that word (shalom). It did not. It used the word tob, which means good.

      I cannot understand how you can think Dr. Enns’s views are heretical. I know that you don’t agree with them. I don’t, either. However, you, I, and Ken Ham are not the arbiters of orthodoxy. The Bible is, and Dr. Enns is not teaching things that are contrary to the Bible.

      It is most certainly NOT a shame that Dr. Enns’s books have been published and used. I talked to Christians who have been ministered to by them. They have helped people in their Christian walk. We are to judge a tree by its fruits, and Dr. Enns’s books do produce good fruit.

      I most certainly care if heresy is taught, but Dr. Enns is not teaching heresy. Thus, he needs to be treated like a brother in Christ.

  180. “Mr. Ham has every right to warn people. He does not have a right to call a Christian brother an unwarranted name or level a false charge against him. That’s what this blog post was about.”

    Perhaps I missed something, but what “unwarranted name” did Dr. Ham call Dr. Enns and what exactly was the false charge?

    1. Kristi, the unwarranted name is “compromiser.” Dr. Enns is not a compromiser. The false charge is that Dr. Enns does not have a Biblical view of inspiration. He clearly does, as his view is wholly consistent with 2 Timothy 3:16

  181. Matthew 7:21-23 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22 On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ 23 And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’

    A lot of people that profess to be Christians and Scholars will be in the category above. I appreciate Dr. Ham’s passion for what is right. Just because you disagree with his passion doesn’t make him wrong. If you saw a lion in the road and went back to warn others of the lion, and you had people you loved continuing down the road after your warning to them. How much passion would you have to stop them? I would be screaming STOP in their face to keep them from the impending doom that awaited them. That is what I mean by passion. Did the prophets of the Old Testament get killed for saying people were wrong? Did Jesus? Wasn’t it the religious leaders that had him crucified? I too have used your curriculum with confidence, until now, because of your view of Dr. Ham and Dr. Enns. My confidence in you and your curriculum has changed. I will now question everything. Your and Dr. Enns is clearly compromising. Many deceivers come from inside the church. You talk about Romans 14:1-9, but that is not relating to those who are teachers. Teachers of the word will be held at a higher standard of judgment than those who are not teachers.

    Matthew 18:6 “Whoever receives one such child in my name receives me, 6 but whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a great millstone fastened around his neck and to be drowned in the depth of the sea.

    Revelation 22:18 is very clear about this discussion and is on the side of Ken Ham – I warn everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: if anyone adds to them, God will add to him the plagues described in this book, 19 and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his share in the tree of life and in the holy city, which are described in this book.

    2 Timothy 4:1-5 I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom: 2 preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching. 3 For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, 4 and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths. 5 As for you, always be sober-minded, endure suffering, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.

    You have lost a lot of respect, confidence, and support from the homeschool community and so has the Homeschool Convention community. I am a homeschool mom and member of a local homeschool group. This discussion has not gone unnoticed. The discussions going around are not in your favor. You can defend yourself all you want. But your opinions about Dr. Ham and Dr. Enns have made us re-evaluate our opinion in you and your curriculum. I could go on and on quoting scripture against your view, and for Ken Ham. But I’m going to leave you with one more scripture:

    But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. 2 For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, barrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3 heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, 4 treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, 5 having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people. 6 For among them are those who creep into households and capture weak women, burdened with sins and led astray by various passions, 7 always learning and never able to arrive at a knowledge of the truth. 8 Just as Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses, so these men also oppose the truth, men corrupted in mind and disqualified regarding the faith. 9 But they will not get very far, for their folly will be plain to all, as was that of those two men.

    1. Vicki, I have no problem with warning against real threats, like a lion in the road. However, Dr. Enns is not a real threat. He is not teaching heresy, and in fact, he is producing a valuable offering to the Christian discussion of what the Bible is saying. You might not agree with it. I certainly don’t agree with it. But that doesn’t give you, me, or Mr. Ham the right to publicly mistreat him.

      If I have lost a lot of respect in the homeschool community, then so be it. I strive for the approval of God, not the approval of man.

  182. Mr. Wile,

    Prior to today, I had never heard of you or Dr. Enns. I approached your blog and others as, I’d like to believe, an objective “blank slate” in soaking in everyone’s opinions regarding this present ordeal.

    You have made your opinions clear, and I will do the same as well.

    I have been a follower of Christ for over 35 years, having been blessed to receive several years of Biblical education and training; but I know, based on your previous posts, that there’s really nothing that can be said to influence your declared stand. So, I will only say this, and I say it in godly fear and trembling:

    You have a wide assortment of “blindspots” in your defense and justifications of Dr. Enns, and all I can do is pray that God will open your unconsciously-closed eyes.

    You are unequivocally and categorically in error, plainly wrong in your defense of Dr. Enns and your subsequent comments about the doctrines of original sin, Creationism, redemption, etc.. You are also a slave to postmodernist thinking, and you couldn’t be more unaware in your touted “awareness” in these matters. Dr. Enns has written and teaches heresy, plain and simple; and what you call “orthodox theologians” who share his heretical beliefs are obviously not truly orthodox (though it is obvious that you firmly and erroneously believe they are).

    All that your responses have done, as observed by many others’ responses, is expose your “blindspots,” which by definition means that there are many truths not currently being caught in your peripherals. While I am confident that this will not change your seemingly closed mind, I implore you to objectively re-read your posts through the lens of postmodernist thought, and come to grips with this cancer in your “eyesight.”

    Thank you for also helping our family get off the fence on whether to attend the Midwest Homeschool Convention, to which we’ve had tickets for several weeks. Upon hearing what happened to Ken Ham, I decided to investigate others’ responses to his “dis-invitation.” Your comments, in addition to Dr. Enns’ and other convention speakers, make it clear that the convention is moving forward in embracing a more liberal, unbiblical mindset regarding God, His Word, and the Gospel. We will not support such an insidious cancer, one to which are mind-bogglingly blind.

    As for me and my house, we will go to the Creation Museum instead.

    1. Tim, I am sorry to hear that you will miss the incredible speakers at the convention. It is certainly your decision to make, but in my view, it is a very unfortunate one. Dr. Enns does not teach heresy, and I have made that clear in several of my responses.

      I find it interesting that you think MY mind is closed, when you won’t even consider listening to the man you falsely accuse of heresy before making a decision. I think that tells us exactly whose mind is closed on this issue!

  183. In your response to Lauren,

    First off, you and Dr. Enns’ GOD must be a little God. For my GOD is able to do all things. Including speak creation into existance from the beginning. GOD created and then pronounced it Good! Sin is bad, it is not good! GOD would not have declared it Good if it were mixed with sin. The wages of sin is death. Also, the bible is specific when it says GOD called the light day and the dark night. There was evening and there was morning – the first day! Not the first million years. Light! Dark!= one day! The snake said to eave, you will not surely die, for GOD knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like GOD knowing good and evil. The Bible is a whole. You can’t take parts and leave parts. GOD is Holy! And so is his word. You can judge a tree by it’s fruits. But most of us don’t see you behind closed doors, and we are judging you and your thoughts on who you endorse. And on how you respond. “Those who are not for me are against me.” I praise GOD for Dr. Ham keeping the light on other curriculum writers. “I know your deeds, your hard work and your perseverance. I know that you cannot tolerate wicked men, that you have tested those who claim to be apostles but are not, and have found them false. Rev. 2:2-3. I have to say, after reading your comments, I am very disappointed that I ever let my son use your curriculum. Proverbs is packed with descriptions of the fruits of a wise man and the fruits of a fool. Over and over your comments resemble that of the fool rather than that of the wise. Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. Ga 6:7 You are really bringing your fruits to light. I would never had thought of these things had it not been for watching you in this forum. I know I have a lot of like minded homeschool friends that buy… or bought your curriculum. Hmmmm…. you may see a decline in your market from this. But, to see a bright side for you, your endorsement will bring the liberal homeschoolers to your curriculum. Shalom!… Peace!

    1. Vicki, I understand your interpretation of Scripture. In fact, I mostly agree with it. However, I do not think I am the final arbiter of Biblical truth, so I am willing to listen to others on the issue. It is unfortunate that you are not.

      I hope that I am “bringing my fruits to light.” My fruits are to obey Scripture and be kind to my brothers and sisters with whom I disagree (Romans 14:1-9). My fruits are to actually listen to the ideas my brothers and sisters in Christ have and to consider the fact that I am not the final arbiter of Biblical truth. Those are my fruits, and if they bother you, I am sorry!

  184. I heard that you no longer produce Apologia material because you had sold it and are not writing anything at the moment (I suppose they meant Curricula wise sense you obviously are writing this blog). Is this statement true?

    1. Eliza, I am no longer with Apologia. That is true. I am definitely writing something, however. Because of the contract related to the sale of Apologia, the young-earth-creationist curriculum I am writing will debut in foreign countries before it appears in the U.S., if the Lord continues to lead me to work on it.

  185. Dr. Wile, you state :”It is not surprising that the link you give mischaracterizes Enns’s views. Here is what it admits:Most of the professors at Westminster found nothing objectionable in all this, and tried to protect Enns from the criticism that he provoked. We will pass over their arguments in silence. First, then, this is a minority report. The majority see Enns clearly in the line of orthodoxy. Second, of course they will pass over the arguments of the majority of theologians in silence, because they can’t answer them!”

    I have to tell you, sir, that I am staggered by this response. And I consider it over the line. While apparently taking great delight in pointing out that the review was a ‘minority report,’ you intentionally fail to point out that Westminster is a liberal seminary, teaching “modern biblical scholarship” (which cannot be reconciled with biblical othodoxy because it has an anti-God bias-as Geisler admits). So, it is true that the majority of the theologians at this LIBERAL seminary tried to protect Enns. Hardly surprising, since Enns is one of their own. It is thus even more notable that his offense was deemed egregious enought to be fired anyway. What is surprising is that you intentionally miscast the incident.

    I too am currently using Apologia’s 7th grade textbook, which you authored. I had been planning to use the 8th grade book this fall. I had had faith in you and your work before this last comment, but now I am forced to reconsider. I can’t begin to tell you how disappointed I am, and sad.

    As another has noted, you have your heels dug in on this one and there will be no convincing you of a position contrary to the one you’ve staked out, or of convincing you that you err for Enns. It’s too bad. And I really mean that.

    1. Greg, I certainly did not miscast the incident in any way. The majority said that there was nothing unorthodox in Enns’s theology. You might disagree with their point of view, but the comment to which I was replying specifically mentioned the incident as a means of casting dispersions on Dr. Enns, and I simply wanted to make the record clear. The majority did, indeed, support him, and the board specifically went against the recommendations of the majority. Also, as I noted, the link specifically said they weren’t even going to address the majority’s comments. If anything, that should give you pause…if you are interesting in learning the truth of the matter.

      As I have told others, my theology and ideology have not changed one bit since writing those courses. It is interesting that only NOW do you seem to think there is a problem, simply because I am urging people to follow Scripture. We are to judge a tree by its fruits, and the fruits of my courses are quite clear.

  186. Ken Ham ‘s blog about Peter Enns’ and BioLogos theology and teachings is here:
    http://blogs.answersingenesis.org/blogs/ken-ham/2011/03/15/another-compromiser-speaking-at-homeschool-conventions/

    The Great Home School Conventions Public statement banning Ham and AiG is here:
    http://www.facebook.com/l.php?u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.cincinnatihomeschoolconvention.com%2F&h=6d82b

    Here is a link to the page for all of Enns’ blogs at BioLogos for anyone interested:
    http://biologos.org/blog/author/enns-pete/

    An article giving a a sample of the teaching to be found in Telling God’s Story,A Parents’ Guide to Teaching the Bible, Peter Enns, Olive Branch Books Charles City, Virginia. This book is to be used in conjunction with the Telling God’s Story series: Year One. With this an other excerpts from the book:

    “The Flood was an attempt by God to set it right, but it didn’t work.” (Page 70)”
    htttp://www.facebook.com/notes/ken-ham/this-will-be-promoted-at-the-convention/187124177999723

    Interveiw of Ken Ham on Wretched Radio via Youtube http://www.facebook.com/l.php?u=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DRhC1y7RT2e4%26feature%3Dplayer_embedded%23at%3D48&h=43ba8

    Ken Ham’s offer to any who were going to the Great Homeschool Convention to hear him speak:
    “CREATION MUSEUM OFFER: ON 3/31/, 4/1/ , 4/2 OR 4/3 ONE FREE ADMISSION PER PAID REGISTRATION FOR CINCINNATI HOMESCHOOL CONVENTI0N (2 tickets PER PAID FAMILY REGISTRATION) and FREE MP3 (one per family) of 4 of Ken Ham’s major talks – –must show proof of paid registration.. Special discounts on books/curricula etc. Thurs,Fri,Sat—early opening 9am. Fri open til 9pm.”
    http://www.facebook.com/TomsofMaine#!/aigkenham

    Article by the Institute of Creation Research: “A Time To Keep Silent, and a Time to Speak”
    http://www.icr.org/

    Group on FB in Support of recalling Ken Ham to Great Homeshcool Convention for anyone interested. http://www.facebook.com/home.php?sk=group_137412766329682

  187. Let me say up front so as not to be misunderstood, I am against Dr. Enns and will not purchase his books nor will I advise anyone to. He clearly does not believe the Bible to be the Word of God. I listened to his lecture Paul, Adam and Evolution given Feb 9, 2011 at Westmont College and I was appalled from the beginning at his disdain for God’s Word. He must have been laughing inside as he presented his material which he pointedly testified was his opinion and could change in a few years. Why is he some authoritative figure? He has no business teaching. And you with your earned PhD had better wake up and realize the damage that a man like Dr. Enns can do with young minds. This also cast doubts with me on your beliefs. When are we going to find a remnant of apostasy in your teaching?

    1. David, there is no reason to think there is a “remnant of apostasy” in my teaching simply because I try to get Christians to follow the Scriptures and treat their brothers and sisters in Christ with respect. You would think that since my courses have been wildly popular in the homeschooling community for years, and since I have many, many letters and E-MAILs stating how much they have helped people in their Christian walk, such things would have already been found. If you want to follow the Scriptures, then judge a tree by its fruits, and treat your brothers and sisters in Christ with respect.

  188. You say “You are just not correct when you say that teaching that the first Adam never existed destroys the foundation for the second Adam. There is no reason to think that because Adam is a symbol rather than a man, Christ is not who He is. Christ’s redeeming blood is the same regardless of how sin entered the world. It entered the world, and Christ redeems us from it,” and:
    “There certainly never was a perfection from which we fell. The idea that the pre-Fall world was perfect is not supported in Scripture. It was VERY GOOD, but it was not perfect. If it had been perfect, the creation account would have used that word (shalom). It did not. It used the word tob, which means good.”

    I have this to say. If Adam was not the first man, then it does destroy the foundation of Christ. This is because sin entered the world through Adam, and death by sin. I am not going to get into the debate on death before the fall, because that is not the point I want to make here. I will say however that Death is the result of the sin of Adam entering into the world.

    Now onto that second comment: You do not believe the world was created in a state of perfection, but was merely, “very good.” I agree that it was very good. I will pose the point, not that I agree with it, but maybe God said very good because He knew that Adam would choose to sin when He gave Adam free will. Because, as we all know, God knows the end from the beginning. So let us for the sake of argument agree (based upon the condition that God knew all before it happened) that the world was not perfect. We still have a flaw in the Adam was not the first man part.

    See, if Adam was not the First man, then there were other men in the world. If there were other men in the world, then Adam’s sin, because it was ADAM’S choice to sin, not those other men that did, then there would have still been, not perfect, because you don’t believe that, but SINLESS men. The Bible clearly states that by ONE man (ADAM) sin entered into the world and death by sin. If it is true, other men were in the world God was unjust, ungracious, and unmerciful to place Adam’s sin upon their heads. Because by ONE man sin entered the world…they all sinned. Now I do not know about you, but my King James Version of the Bible teaches me that God is a Holy, Just, Merciful, and Compassionate God.

    We come to the flood. Adam sinned, so there is this curse, but we have these other people who were sinless, if God stays true to His character, because far be it from Him to act unjustly…He would have saved Sodom and Gomorrah for TEN righteous souls in the land! He did save Nineveh, when they all repented after Jonah’s message, and the New Testament says that God is not willing that ANY should perish, but all would come to repentance. (I am paraphrasing here.)

    Therefore, if God remains true to His character and Hebrews says Jesus, Christ the same yesterday, today, and forever. Moreover, John 1:1 said Jesus (the Word) was made flesh, and was God.

    Therefore, if God is true to His character, then He would not have placed Adam’s sin on all those other people that were living and did not make Adam’s choice. Therefore, when we get to the flood, we have another serious problem. God destroyed the earth with a flood. He saved only Noah and his family alive, (which incidentally the bible says Noah was perfect in his generations, but Noah was a son descended from ADAM!) Then all those sinless people drowned in the flood? Here again we have a picture of an unjust, unmerciful God. If He would save Noah alive, and Noah was a son of Adam, upon whom the curse of sin and death must fall, then SURELY, He would save the others who, because they were sinless, and, therefore, the curse had not been placed upon them, because God does not act against His character. He would have SURELY saved them, alive… right? However, it says ALL flesh that lived upon the earth, whether of fowl, or beast, or creeping thing, and ALL MEN, save Noah and his family in the Ark… his wife and their three sons and their three wives!

    This is why people are taking issue with Enns and you. Because you are defending what this man is teaching. He believes Jesus erred—that God in the flesh, because he was human made errors. You say you believe He was God, and knew the hearts and minds of men in one of your replies to me, yet, you seem to take no issue with the claim that Jesus made errors. Dr. Wile, you say, “I do personally believe the Bible is inerrant, but I have no problem with those who believe it is infallible but not inerrant. Now, of course, if the Bible is not at least infallible, then you have a problem. However, I see no problem with an infallible Bible that is not inerrant.” How can you see no problem with a Bible that has errors in it? That is the definition of inerrant is it not? That it means without error? If one part of the Bible has error in it then other parts would have error, and how would anyone be able to be certain that part they do agree with is not wrong, with errors in it, if they believe another part of it does? How can you not see these issues? How can you not understand that this is why so many are grateful to Ham for showing them what they otherwise may not have known until it was too late?

    I would greatly appreciate it if you answered my actual questions in your reply, and did not merely address one part that you take issue with, though I welcome your comments in those areas as well.

    1. Elizabeth, I still have to disagree with you. There is nothing in a historical Adam that is necessary for orthodoxy. The point of the account by which sin entered the world is that it DID enter the world. How it entered the world is irrelevant. Christ was sent to redeem us from sin, and how that sin came into the world does not, in any way, change who Christ is or what He did.

      You set up a hypothetical situation as if it is the only alternative, but it is not. Suppose there were several men, not just Adam. In order for sin to enter the world, they simply ALL would have had to sin. Given human nature, that would most likely happen. Thus, the idea that ONE man has to sin for it to affect all men is just not right. Sin is a part of human nature, and whether one man sinned or a lot of men sinned to bring it into this world, it is in the world, and Christ must now redeem us for it. Now please understand that I don’t agree with this scenario. However, it is a scenario that is clearly possible, and it destroys your argument. God is a Holy, Just, Merciful, and Compassionate God. He did not punish people in any unwarranted manner. However, the idea that there would be sinless men in the world if there weren’t one original sinner doesn’t stand up. The only thing necessary for God’s judgment to be just is for ALL men to have sinned. That isn’t hard to believe, even if there were a LOT of men initially.

      I see no problem with a Bible that has errors in it because the DOCTRINES taught by the Bible are important, not the value of pi or the precise number of people who heard Christ. Thus, an infallible Bible that is not inerrant is not a problem for me or many other orthodox Christians.

      I try to answer all your questions, but you write an enormous amount of things, and it is hard to keep up.

  189. In your response to Lauren’s post you suggest that Dr. Enns is not teaching things that are contrary to the Bible, yet he teaches against a physical Adam and a worldwide flood. These are not symbols in scripture. If you defend Dr. Enns it suggests that you believe not God’s Word either.

    Dr. Enns is clearly tailoring his curriculum for the purpose of making money under the guise of the term biblical and it would appear that you have likely done the same.

    I will remind you that not all who say Lord, Lord will enter the kingdom of heaven (Matt 7:21) and it would be better for some to have a millstone hung around their neck who lead little children astray (Matt 18:6) and “let not many of you become teachers, knowing that we shall receive a stricter judgment. (James 3:1)”

    How confident are you that your motives are right and you are not teaching heresy? By the way, heresy is going against right thinking as dictated by God’s Word. Dr. Enns is a heretic. Are you going to stand with a heretic?

    1. David, you seem to be very good at assigning motivations to people you don’t know. I try not to do that. I believe God’s Word. All you have to do is look at my courses to see that. I seriously doubt that Dr. Enns is just trying to make money. If he were, he would probably cater to all the people who are unwilling to listen to any viewpoint but their own. In addition, he would probably tell them not to listen to anyone with a different viewpoint. It seems to me THAT’S the way to make money.

      I agree that not all who say Lord, Lord will enter the kingdom. I would never stand with a heretic. However, I am standing with Dr. Enns, as he is not a heretic. How confident are you that YOU are not teaching heresy?

  190. Dr. Wyle,

    The thing that is so disturbing to me here, is that my family and I sincerely love your work. My children have greatly benefited from many of your Exploring Creation books and curriculum. Up until now, I have highly extolled them to anyone who has asked me for a science recommendation. But now I am troubled in my conscience.

    On the other hand, I have no loyalty to Ken Ham. I do not own a book by him, have never been to his museum (although I’d like to go eventually) and have never heard him speak.

    Since I know your work, I wish you had been the one standing up for truth. I wish you had written something similar to what Ken Ham wrote. I wish you were warning us all away from any teacher that claims the name of Christ and yet denies the heart of the gospel (which is that although a historical Adam brought us all sin, a historical Christ conquered Adam’s sin.)

    I could wish that you would go to all lengths to warn others against any teacher that undermines something so foundational to the gospel. I wish that you had been willing to bear the very shame that you are bringing on Ken Ham–the shame of being called nasty and divisive–and the shame of being disinvited to a large conference, for the sake of warning even one family away from false teaching.

    But this serves me as a reminder to pray for myself and my family that we will take the hard stands, and that I will not simply criticize you for not doing so and deriding those who do, but live it myself. I know we are not immune to such temptation. For my family, I believe the stand we need to take is no longer buying or recommending any of your curriculum, and for that I am truly sorry.

    Covered in the blood,
    Leslie

    Mark 14:38
    Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.”

    1. Leslie, my name is Wile. If you have loved my books so much, that should tell you something. We are to judge a tree by its fruits. Part of what makes my books meaningful to Christians is that they come from a serious theology – one that doesn’t dismiss other views simply because I disagree with them.

      I am standing for the Truth. That’s the entire point. Unfairly calling someone a “compromiser” and falsely accusing him of not having a Biblical view of inspiration is not the Truth!

      Obviously, you should do what you think is right for your family. However, it seems you are not following the command to judge a tree by its fruits. It also seems you are not following Romans 14:1-9. I pray you consider that.

  191. Furthermore, can you please give me the definitions of infallible, and inerrant? I only ask because every dictionary I have looked at so for say they mean the same thing and are interchangeable. That is to say Infallible means unable to fail, and incappable of erring, while Inerrant means free from error, and Inerrancy means infallibility, and a synonymn to Infallible is unerring. Do you have a different definition? and if so I really would be interested in knowing what it is, and where you found it…

    From Dictionary.com:
    in·er·rant   /ɪnˈɛrənt, -ˈɜr-/
    [in-er-uhnt, -ur-] –adjective
    free from error; infallible.

    Origin:
    1645–55; < Latin inerrant-, equivalent to in- in-3 + errant-, stem of errāns present participle of errāre to wander, err; see -ant

    —Related forms
    in·er·ran·cy, noun
    in·er·rant·ly, adverb

    infallible (ɪnˈfæləb ə l)
    — adjective
    1. not fallible; not liable to error
    2. not liable to failure; certain; sure: an infallible cure
    3. completely dependable or trustworthy

    — noun
    4. a person or thing that is incapable of error or failure

    infalli'bility — noun

    in'fallibleness — noun

    in'fallibly — adverb

    Origin:
    1375–1425; late Middle English < Medieval Latin infallibilis. See in-3 , fallible

    —Related forms
    in·fal·li·bil·i·ty, in·fal·li·ble·ness, noun
    in·fal·li·bly, adverb
    non·in·fal·li·bil·i·ty, noun
    non·in·fal·li·ble, adjective
    non·in·fal·li·ble·ness, noun
    non·in·fal·li·b·ly, adverb

    —Synonyms
    1, 2. See reliable.

    1. Elizabeth, here is a website that gives a good discussion of the difference between inerrancy and infallibility when it comes to the Bible. The quote from Stephen Davis sums the idea up nicely:

      “The Bible is infallible but not inerrant – there are historical and scientific errors in the Bible, but none on matters of faith and practice.”

      I disagree with Davis on this point, but it is not a heretical idea.

  192. Reading your comments Dr. Wile, I came to the conclusion that you are always correct while even the most theological individual is always wrong if they disagree with you, especially about Dr. Enns.

    I am also surprised how you seem to have no trouble trying to make my statements lead towards elevating Paul to Jesus status. I never said Paul is perfect, but I will state that all of Paul’s writings that we have since they are only found in the Bible are inspired and not with error, unless you know of an example where Paul has erred, please share and I am more than willing to change my remarks.

    You agree that Dr. Enns believes that Paul’s interpretation of Genesis is wrong which does stem from Paul’s theology since Paul is making a theological argument in both Romans and the Corinthians passage. Since it is a theological argument, Dr. Enns must then argue that Paul is theologically wrong as well.

    I find it surprising that you would argue that it isn’t eisegesis to call Paul wrong thinking when Dr. Enns disagrees with Paul. He disagrees, because he cannot fit his interpretation of Genesis into Paul’s writings. That sir, is eisegesis not exegesis of the 1 Cor. passage. Proper exegesis of the Corinthian passage argues that Paul believes in a literal Adam. Since God inspired Paul to write this then why doesn’t Dr. Enns question his understanding of Genesis 1 & 2 instead of questioning Paul’s interpretation.

    Hermeneutically speaking, I have yet to find any theologian with a PhD, which seems to be the criteria here, that would agree with your statement that Paul’s intent does not matter, that we can easily divorce Paul’s intent with God’s intent. This is not the definition of inspiration. Paul’s intent and God’s intent are the same in regards to the interpretation, both of them are the authors of the book, both have the exact same intent. Otherwise, anyone could then simply say that it was nice that John told us why he wrote his gospel, it is just too bad that this was not the purpose God wrote it. It would seem from the argument you were laying out is more closely resemble “reader’s response criticism” than to the exercise of hermeneutics.

    Essentially, Dr. Enns is calling Paul a compromiser of the truth and I think that should be offensive enough.

    1. Shaun, there is nowhere that I even imply that I am always right. However, when someone is accused of not having a Biblical view of something, I require strong evidence. So far, I have seen no evidence.

      I am glad that you don’t think Paul was perfect. I agree with you that Paul’s WRITINGS that we have are inspired and without error. Dr. Enns would only agree that they are inspired and without THEOLOGICAL error. Once again, you seem to not be distinguishing between Paul’s WRITINGS and his IDEAS. There is no theological error in Paul’s writings, because according to Enns, Paul is using the symbol of Adam in a theologically correct way. Whether or not Paul actually believed in a literal Adam is irrelevant to the theology of his actual WRITINGS.

      It most certainly isn’t eisegesis to use Scripture to interpret Scripture, which is what Enns does. He thinks the TEXT of Genesis tells us that it is not historical narrative, and he uses that text of Scripture to interpret Paul’s writings. It’s not that he can’t “fit” Paul’s writings into his view of Genesis. It’s that Paul’s writings make better sense to him in the light of his interpretation of Genesis than Genesis does in the light of Paul’s writings. You are using Paul to interpret Genesis, he is using Genesis to interpret Paul. Both of you are using Scripture to interpret Scripture, so neither of you are involved in eisegesis.

      I guess you haven’t read much theology if you can’t find a PhD theologian who thinks that Paul’s intent doesn’t matter. N.T. Wright, Alister McGrath, Thomas Jay Oord, and John Polkinghorne all have the same view.

      What is offensive is a Christian calling another Christian an unwarranted name!

  193. Dr. Wile,

    In your reply to a comment made by Terri, you said that Mr. Ham called Dr. Enns an “unwarranted name.” I have read through Mr. Ham’s blog posts and am wondering what he called Dr. Enns. Could you please clarify this for me?

    Also, are your comments against Mr. Ham in violation of your contract with Great Homeschool Conventions?

    Finally, if you read excerpts from the phone conversation between Brennan Dean and AIG’s CCO, Mark Looy, you will learn that Mr. Looy made it clear to Mr. Dean last November that in his workshops Mr. Ham would “mention compromise in the church and probably bring up BioLogos”. Mr. Dean replied with, “I would expect nothing else from AIG”. You can find the details of this conversation on AIG’s Mar. 22 blog post.

    Thank you for taking time to respond.

    1. Shannon, I am happy to. The title of Mr. Ham’s post is “Another Compromiser – Speaking at Homeschool Conventions.” Thus, Mr. Ham calls Dr. Enns a “compromiser,” which is unwarranted.

      I have no contract with GHC. If you read GHC’s statement, there is not a single word about a contract. I have no idea, but I assume that Mr. Ham did not have one, either.

      Mr. Ham was not disinvited because he spoke about compromise and BioLogos. He was disinvited because, according to GHC:

      As an invited guest, Dr. Ham’s spirit toward our convention was unkind. Dr. Ham’s spirit toward our attendees was not gracious. Dr. Ham’s spirit toward other speakers was unprofessional. In short, a proud, ungrateful and divisive spirit was projected from Dr. Ham. Regardless of the message, Dr. Ham’s approach sullied the atmosphere of the convention. We know that many of our attendees agree with Dr. Ham’s young earth position as we do. What created this problem was Dr. Ham’s spirit.

  194. I think you all should be ashamed. Spend your time praying for the issue, not fueling it with more debate! Would God, our Father, really want us feuding with each other about this? As Christians, we may not always agree with each other but that is were it is best to pray for each other in love.

  195. I’ve been trying my best to stay away from this blog because every time I see the new posts I get even more upset. It seems to me that Mr. Ham is being looked at as being unChristian because he wanted to make others aware. You say you defend Dr. Enns because it is your Christian duty. It was Mr. Ham’s Christian duty to let people know about some of the curriculum and views that were going to be at the convention. It seems to me that it is okay for you to do the Christian thing, but not Mr. Ham. Maybe he didn’t go about it the way you and a few others thought he should, but at least he stood up for something and just didn’t roll to the side like so many other people in today’s world. That’s why our world is in the mess it is today. There are too many people rolling to the side and letting things slip in that should never have been allowed to. I respect Mr. Ham for doing what he did.

    1. Kimberly, I completely agree that it is Mr. Ham’s Christian duty to point out the problems that he sees in Dr. Enns’s theology. That is not a problem for me, and it never has been. However, he called Dr. Enns an unwarranted name and leveled a false charge at him. That’s what my blog post is all about. I have problems with Dr. Enns’s theology, but two commenters have provided two EXCELLENT links that show the PROPER way to point out problems in a brother in Christ’s theology. Here they are:

      http://www.frame-poythress.org/frame_articles/2008Enns.htm

      http://www.normangeisler.net/Review-of-Inspiration-and-Incarnation-Evangelicals-and-the-Problem-of-the-Old-Testament.html

      Note that Ken Ham would call Dr. Geisler (author of the second link) a “compromiser” as well, but at least Dr. Geisler knows how to properly address the theology of brother in Christ.

  196. Here is what Dr Wile is defending as Biblical Orthodox Christian teaching. I note Dr Wile believes Dr Al Mohler, Dr John MacAurthur, AiG, CMI, Mr Doug Phillips, ICR, and most of you are wrong.

    Judge for yourself-

    Warning – you may need some Tums after reading through this.

    From (Telling God’s Story,A Parents’ Guide to Teaching the Bible, Peter Enns, Olive Branch Books Charles City, Virginia. This book is to be used in conjunction with the Telling God’s Story series: Year One.  Peter Enns states:  I have been working on a Bible curriculum for Olive Branch Books, the religious instruction imprint of Peace Hill Press founded by well-known author, historian, and homeschooling guru  Susan Wise Bauer)

     “Jesus is described in full color in the Gospels. He weeps, laughs, becomes angry, has compassion, loves, has determination, prefers times of isolation, grows tired. In the early grades, we should focus on bringing out this full portrait of Jesus. What should not be emphasized is the child’s miserable state of sin and the need for a savior.

    Please do not misunderstand me. I believe Jesus rescues us from our sin. But we cannot and should not expect adult comprehension of the depth of sin and the grace of God from our children. As parents, we can be so concerned that our very young children make a “profession of faith” that, without wanting in any way to harm the child, we wind up manipulating the child rather than teaching. The child knows that we want him to be baptized, or confirmed, or dedicated; and if the child loves you, he will do his best to comply. But we must remember that our children’s salvation is not our work, it is the work of the Spirit. Fuller lessons concerning sin and grace will come in time, and certainly parents and churches have the responsibility to teach the fullness of what the Bible has to offer. But most young children simply do not have the emotional or intellectual maturity to grasp the adult concepts in the Bible.”  (page 31)

    “I believe in God’s displeasure with sin. But to introduce children to the God of wrath right at the beginning of their lives, without the requisite biblical foundation and before the years of emotional maturity, can actually distort their view of God. What children do understand is warmth, comfort, acceptance: “Little children, come to me!”

    Having said all this, let me add that you can’t talk about Jesus for too long without seeing him get upset with people—mostly the self-confident religious elite. He becomes angry, speaks some harsh words, and is even sarcastic at times. We will certainly take this head on, but the fully realized Jesus of the Gospels is intended for adult consumption.” (page 33/34)

    “The Flood was an attempt by God to set it right, but it didn’t work.” (Page 70)

    “It is entirely accurate to understand Israel’s kings as messiahs: they were anointed by God to do his work. We need to resist the temptation to think that “messiah” in the Old Testament means the supernatural, second person of the Trinity, who will die for our sins. Yes, Jesus is the ultimate and final messiah, who far exceeds anything any messiah before him did. But that is just the point. To appreciate Jesus’ messianic role, how impressive and amazing it is, we need to be familiar with what the concept meant in the Old Testament. There, the “messianic hope” was not in a heavenly being coming down, but in Yahweh raising up a mighty warrior-king who would keep the Law and would rule and guide his people. Israel’s kings were God’s representatives on earth, there to rule for him as intermediaries.” (page 83)

    “For many parents, the Bible looks a little bit like my child’s room. It’s a mess. Names, places, events are all over the place, and you hardly know where to start cleaning up. It’s such a mess, in fact, that if someone ripped twenty pages out of Leviticus or 1 Chronicles, you might not even notice it was missing. And if your aim is to teach the Bible to your children, the mess isn’t just confusing. It’s stressful.” (page 10)

    “Our first struggle in reading the Bible is to move from the “What about me?” perspective to the “What does this tell us about God in that context?” question.

    Knowing something about what the Bible is designed to do, what its purpose is, will help us adjust our expectations about what it is we hope to find in the Bible. If our expectations are modern instead of ancient, we will get ourselves into a bind. Before we can ask the hard questions—for example, “Is Genesis 1 in harmony with scientific thought? Or does Genesis 1 trump scientific thought?”—we must ask a more foundational question: What do we have the right to expect from God’s word as a book written in an ancient world?” (pages 18/19)

    “What is not addressed in the Bible are specifically modern situations. There is no Bible verse that will, either directly or indirectly, answer many of the questions that confront Christian families today: When do you begin dating? Is it OK to watch an R-rated movie? What kinds of books should your children read? What sort of education should they receive? In this light, I want to introduce what I think is the single most important biblical concept for living a Christian life, not only today, but during any era: wisdom.” (Page 24)

    “There is nothing wrong with knowing good and evil. In fact, you might think that God would actually want Adam and Eve to eat of this tree. But what is at issue here is how the first humans decide to gain this knowledge. Rather than doing it God’s way, by eating of the fruit of the tree of good and evil, the first humans took matters into their own hands and tried to be like God in their own way. In other words, they tried to break down the boundary God had erected, part of the order he made out of chaos. In eating the fruit, humans became agents of chaos in disrespecting the boundary God had established. They were not simply being naughty: they were acting contrary to the creation order. Taking the fruit was like pulling at the loose end of a knitted sweater and watching the whole thing unravel. This is at the root of human woes: forgetting the place that God has made for us. We are the height of his creation. He even wants us to be like him, knowing good from evil. But it has to be done his way, through obedience to him. We are not the Creator.” (page 63/64)

    “The issue is that I read him a very complex and intricate biblical narrative—the story of Adam, Eve, and the serpent—as if it were a child’s story. This biblical story was meant to convey something profound, mature, and foundational to ancient Israelites. Sitting down and reading this story with my son set him up to receive it as one tall tale among others. The Garden narrative is deeply theological and symbolic. Despite the neat talking snake, it is not the type of story that we should toss casually to our young children. When, at a more mature age, children are asked to revisit this story and begin dealing with it in earnest, many can hardly refrain from snickering. (“I outgrew talking animals years ago!”) Or consider another Bible story commonly taught to children: the story of the Flood. The boat, the animals, the rain, the drama— all lend themselves to videos, snappy tunes, macaroni art, flannel graphs, and furry friends. What is obscured is the simply horrific notion that God would bring down such drastic destruction on the earth, rather than finding some other solution to humanity’s rebellion. And that is a question young adults should ask.” (page 44/45)

    1. Anthony, thanks for the quotes. I would correct you that I am not DEFENDING this view. I disagree with it. I am saying that it falls within the range of Christian orthodoxy.

  197. Hello Dr. Wile,
    I undertand that you are taking a position in support of the decision to withdraw Ken Ham’s invitation to the Midwest Homeschool Conference in Cincinnati next week. I must say that I admire and respect your willingness to take a very difficult stand on this multi-faceted dilemma that is a breeding ground for confusion and anger among Christians. Like you, I agree completely with Ken Ham’s doctrinal position, and think it is quite dangerous to allow for a non-literal interpretation of scripture for many reasons. One argument is that it opens the door for deception, and Satan would like nothing more than to crack the door open and then lead someone down a path of compromising some truths that eventually impact the salvation doctrine itself (a domino effect). Another argument is that any non-literal interpretation of scripture will carry with it humanistic overtones (i.e. if the human mind cannot comprehend it, then it cannot be possible). God clearly says that His thoughts and ways are higher than ours, so any argument against a literal interpretation must be examined very carefully from this perspective. Although,I don’t agree with HOW Ken Ham chose to handle this situation, and it brings his integrity into question, I think none of us would question his sincerity and overall integrity. He is a man who is extremely passionate about his belief and his defense of the literal interpretation. Unfortunately, his passion in protecting the integrity of God’s Word has led to a perceived compromise of his own integrity in this instance. I believe you have recognized this and are espousing that the most important aspect of this controversy is the preservation of perceived integrity of the event. If I understand your stated position correctly, you are supporting the overidding position that the “perceived integrity” of a conference speaker is paramount to everything else. So regardless of theoligical position, the first and foremost priority for a teacher or conference speaker is that his/her integrity must not be in question. This is where I would completely agree with your position and respect your level of integrity in being willing to endorse that point of view. Now, that being said, if Ken Ham issues an apology for his “tone” and choice of words, then I think the best way to bring this whole thing to a nice peaceful closure would be for Ken Ham and Dr. Enn to have a friendly debate on the topic. Assuming Ken Ham does the right thing and apologizes, would you be able to help to arrange or promote a debate? Whatever is done from here MUST be done in love, and I think that is what you are trying to facilitate. I will pray for continuing wisdom for you in this matter… In Christ

    1. Ken, thanks for your thoughtful comment. I am not sure what I could do to promote a debate, but I certainly would be happy to help in any way I can. It is an EXCELLENT idea – probably the best thing that has been written in all the comments so far! Since I am not part of a homeschooling company anymore, what I can do is limited. Nevertheless, I would do anything I could.

      I certainly agree with you that theologies we think are errant should be addressed. However, there are proper ways to do it and improper ways to do it. In this comment thread, two excellent links have been given, one from Dr. Geisler and one from John Frame. Both show the proper way a Christian tries to correct another Christian.

  198. Dr. Wile, in the above blog you write, “Then he gets really nasty. He claims that the speaker, Dr. Peter Enns, doesn’t have a Biblical view of the inspiration of Scripture and that his approach to Genesis and Romans will shock people.” Do you really think that is considered a “nasty” comment in the theological world? No, of course you don’t; but what you are conveying to us is that Mr. Ham is in the wrong for doing it, but for you and others who are “open minded” it’s okay.

    As a Christian homeschooler I’m interested in teaching my children a Biblical worldview, not a particular creationist’s, theologian’s or even a successful homeschool guru’s worldview. That being said, I was disappointed to see Enns name on the list of speakers because I knew of his ever-changing view of the scriptures. Dr. Ham was right in warning others if they didn’t know, simply for the mere fact that most homeschoolers don’t have the time to entertain a man’s “ideas” about what the bible means.

    1. Lesley, it is nasty because it is a false charge. If it was not false, it would not be nasty. So of course I DO think Mr. Ham was being nasty.

      As I have said before, I have no problem with Ham pointing out problems with someone else’s theology. However, you don’t do that with name calling and false charges. As the links from Geisler and John Fame in this comment thread show, there is a RIGHT way to call out someone’s theology. That’s not the way Mr. Ham did it.

  199. The fact that you delete all the posts that don’t agree with you and only keep the ones that do speaks VOLUMES about your “fruit”

    1. Homeschoolingmommy, I have no idea what comment thread you are reading, but it is not this one. I allow every comment to be posted. There are more negative posts on this thread than positive posts! In fact, one commenter who vehemently disagreed with me took the time to thank me for allowing the comments that disagree with me.

  200. Dr. Wile,

    You are very unclear about what you regard as heretical. Is it limited to things that contradict the magisterium or historic creeds?

    If Enns is teaching doctrinal error, then I fail to see what is wrong with pointing that out.

    If Enns is teaching people to follow another god–Science–then you are manifestly a “useful idiot.” If Enns is teaching people to worship Science, then Ken Ham is being far too mild and inaccurate in labeling Enns a “compromiser.”

    Is God omniscient, or does Science know more than God?

    1. TomH, there are many ways you can be heretical, and essentially, any teaching that is not consistent with Scripture is heretical.

      I have no problem with pointing out doctrinal error. As the links from Dr. Geisler and John Frame on this comment thread show that there is a RIGHT way for Christians to do that. It is not by calling people names and leveling false charges. I am not upset with Mr. Ham for pointing out what he thinks are errors. I am upset with him for doing it by calling Dr. Enns an unwarranted name and leveling a false charge at him.

      Dr. Enns is not teaching people to follow science as god or to worship science. You clearly haven’t read his work if you even begin to think that. God is omniscient, and Dr. Enns teaches that.

  201. Just a note that we love you, Dr. Wile. My middle schoolers think you are truly awesome! You have given clarity to my view of what went on in Greenville, and I appreciate that. I am sorry you are taking so much flak from the commenters on here, but please know that there are many conservative Christian homeschoolers who know you by your fruits. Homeschoolers tend toward extremsism by nature, and can quickly lose sight of the forest for the trees. Much love and many prayers coming your way!

    1. Jennifer, thank you so much. Don’t worry about all the flack. The Bible tells us that we will be persecuted from time to time when we stand on the Truth!

  202. Dr. Wile, you said, “I see no problem with a Bible that has errors in it because the DOCTRINES taught by the Bible are important, not the value of pi or the precise number of people who heard Christ. Thus, an infallible Bible that is not inerrant is not a problem for me or many other orthodox Christians.”

    Does this mean you hold the view of errors/contradictions in the Bible?

    As for Enns, he clearly denies a historical Adam. Jesus and Paul clearly affirm a historical Adam. That’s the problem in a nutshell.

    1. Michael, I believe the Bible is inerrant. Thus, I don’t think there are errors or contradictions in it. However, I am not willing to say that those who believe it to be infallible but not inerrant are heretics.

      I would disagree with you that Jesus and Paul “clearly” affirm a historical Adam. A symbolic Adam takes no meaning from any of the New Testament. This is why many serious theologians do not believe in a historical Adam.

  203. Dr. Wile,
    As someone posted earlier, this kind of junk is exactly what Satan wants…..confusion, anger, frustration, etc. I personally have studied your blog, Dr. Enns’ and Ken Ham’s and have come to my own conclusion that both you and Dr. Enns are what I call “educated idiots”. You overthink, overanalyze, stumble all over your words, and add more confusion. I will not attend your presentations.

  204. Dr Wile,It really saddens me that we as a community of believers are more concerned with being, “nice” than standing for God’s word. God interprets his own word whether we like it or not. It is also funny to me that those who condemn Dr. Ham for boldly standing up for God are now the same ones questioning his integrity (why is their wrong right and his “wrong” wrong?) Our Christian community is trying to rewrite the word of God; when will enough be enough. Jesus didn’t ask us to play nice or give into open mindedness but to stand for the truth. To be watchful and ready.
    “I give you this charge: 2 Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction. 3 For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. 4 They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths. 5 But you, keep your head in all situations, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, discharge all the duties of your ministry.” 2 Timothy 4 1:b-5

    Why can’t we (the church) see that God’s word is being perverted? Believer’s, Be watchful DO NOT look to man but to God. Believe and do not compromise. Be willing to stand up for God not man.

    1. Cristina, I am not saying that you need to be “nice” over standing up for God’s Word. I am saying that you should FOLLOW God’s Word when it comes to how you treat brothers and sisters with whom you disagree. Romans 14:1-9 tells us how to do that, and it is decidedly NOT what Mr. Ham did. In addition, we have brothers and sisters who have shown us how to do that. The links from Dr. Geisler and John Frame show you how to challenge a brother’s theology without name calling and false charges.

      I agree that we should stand up for God and not man. That means following God’s Word when it comes to arguing with our brothers and sisters in Christ!

  205. Mr. Wile, what I don’t understand is that you have publicly denounced what Mr. Hamm has said on your blog, and yet you have not been uninvited to speak at this homeschool convention. According to the conventions letter, the reason they are uninviting Ken Hamm is because he has spoken out against other people who are also speaking at this conference. Seems like a double standard to me. I will note the scripture in Matthew that speaks about the “sheep” being led astray by things that are false. Mr. Enns’s theology is incredibly dangerous because it completely takes away God’s power of what he did to create us and the world. I am also very disappointed at the way you have responded to some of the comments that have been left for you. Ezekiel tells us that there will be “watchmen” to point out these false teachers- praise God for that!!!

    1. Bltmom, please read the convention’s letter. This has nothing to do with Mr. Ham speaking out against other people. It has to do with the SPIRIT in which it was done and that fact that his attacks on Dr. Enns were unprofessional.

      I have not called Mr. Ham names, nor have I leveled false charges against him. He did both to Dr. Enns. In addition, as the letter said, the convention thinks Mr. Ham spirit towards the convention and its attendees was unkind. I have not been unkind to the convention or its attendees. Thus, there is no double standard. In addition, this has nothing to do with Mr. Ham’s views, as they have brought in Dr. Jonathan Sarfati to replace Mr. Ham, and Dr. Sarfati has almost exactly the same views.

      Dr. Enns’s theology is not dangerous. It is different from mine, but it is not dangerous. I am sorry that you think it is.

  206. “I would disagree with you that Jesus and Paul “clearly” affirm a historical Adam.. A symbolic Adam takes no meaning from any of the New Testament”.

    The theology of Romans 5:12-21 and 1 Cor. 15:20-28 depends upon on a historical Adam to make sense to the reader.

    Enns agrees that Paul clearly believed Adam was a real person. He says “There is really little doubt that Paul understood Adam to be a real person, the first created human from whom all humans descended.”
    http://biologos.org/blog/pauls-adam-part-i

    Enns thinks Paul was wrong because he did not have our modern day scientific understanding of things.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_daT7chLPZE

    To reconcile this, Enns has to admit Paul was wrong. Which is where you end up when you deny inerrancy. This may be why Enns says Jesus erred, because He believed in a historical Adam (Matt. 19:4 which is a clear reference to Gen. 1:27). Inerrancy itself may not be heretical, but where it leads certainly can be. Without inerrancy, one begins to create their own theology and insert it into the gaps (where the errors may be.)

    Enns:

    “And whatever way forward is chosen, we must be clear on one thing: we have all left “Paul’s Adam.” We are all “creating Adam,” as it were, in an effort to reconcile Scripture and the modern understanding of human origins.”

    Dr. Wile, you may continue to assert Enns is within orthodox understanding of the Bible. But for this to be the case, one must really stretch “orthodoxy” to MacLaren/Bell type levels to fit Enns’ views on Adam and evolution in.

    1. Michael, what Paul believes is irrelevant to the passage. What is important is what God is saying. God is powerful enough to inspire Paul to write the truth, even if Paul believes something that is wrong. If Adam is a symbol, the message of Romans is exactly the same.

      I have no idea about the theology of MacLaren or Bell. However, given the fact that Dr. Enns’s theology is very similar to that of C.S. Lewis , N.T. Wright, Alister McGrath, Thomas Jay Oord, and John Polkinghorne, I am comfortable in calling him in the realm of orthodoxy.

  207. My question to you, Dr. Wile, is how do you define compromise? When do YOU think a person’s views get dangerous enough to require rebuke from ones peers?

    1. Theresa, compromise means teaching or believing things that are inconsistent with the Bible. Even then, however, there is a way to rebuke a brother, and name-calling with false charges is not the way to do it.

  208. Dr. Wile, you said “Michael, what Paul believes is irrelevant to the passage. What is important is what God is saying.”

    This is illogical. What God is saying is what Paul is writing (assuming you hold to the divine inspiration of Scripture!) What Paul believes is what Paul is writing to the churches. Paul is not speaking prophecy like the OT prophets, who spoke exactly what God told them, and may not have understood the prophecy fully. Paul is writing on the authority of Christ, using Paul’s own mind, with his own background, all of which was providentially brought about by God.

    Dr. Wile also said, “God is powerful enough to inspire Paul to write the truth, even if Paul believes something that is wrong.”

    Are you agreeing that Paul is wrong too? Hopefully you are speaking for Enns here, and not agreeing with him.

    1. Michael, what you are saying doesn’t make sense if God really was inspiring Paul. I believe that God inspired Paul to write the things he wrote. Because of that, Paul’s views are simply irrelevant. God is the author, so we should be looking for what God meant, not what Paul meant.

      I am speaking for Enns in all of this. As I clearly point out in my post, I don’t agree with Enns. However, to call him a “compromiser” and to level a false charge at him is wrong.

  209. My wife will be attending the Cincinnati HS Convention and, I know, would love for Ken Ham to be there. We are big fans if AIG and are life-time members of the Creation Museum. However, the Homeschool Convention organizers have worked way too hard for people to boycott. I must assume they knew their decision would ruffle many feathers. In fact, it has ruffled mine. Yet, year after year these organizers put on an amazing convention and probably receive little thanks. I would even venture to say that no one even knew Mr. Brenan’s name until now.

    Needless to say God will somehow work all this out to His glory. In fact, I’m encouraged by the boldness of all involved such as yourself answering e-mails all day long and for Ken Ham who has been a hero of mine for so long. And while I don’t agree with Dr. Enns in the least, he is also courageous for writing what he believes. For too long we Christians have been too timid to stand up for what we believe. I just wish we would stand up to the “world” rather than against each other.

    The solution to this is not easy. I think we’ve all known that Ken Ham will not compromise when it comes to the Bible and we should not be surpised when he calls people out on the carpet when he thinks they have mis-represented Scripture. So I disagree with the board’s decision to remove him from the convention. Is anyone really shocked about what he said? It does sound like people should be aware of Dr. Enns teaching. For him to say that kids shouldn’t be exposed to the idea of sin seems to me rather concerning as a parent and spiritual leader of my home. However, I wouldn’t classify him a heretic either, as you, Dr. Wile, have stated.

    Yet I will pray for a solution to this matter and I will pray for the board to reconsider their decision for future conventions. In fact, let me pray through this e-mail:

    “Father God. We implore you to soften our hearts and curtail our emotions at this moment to seek a peaceful resolution to this issue. It’s difficult because we all want to be consistent with a biblical world-view and at the same time be tolerant and loving like You (Jesus) were with tax-collectors. Please provide wisdom to Mr. Brenan and the board, to Jay Wile, Ken Ham, Peter Enns and others who want, and desire, to do what is right in Your eyes. We hope and pray for the thousands of attendees who aren’t sure how to process this because we don’t like conflict in the Church. But often you allow it to awaken us and quicken our spirits to come together and be unified. So please unify us as one this day. We love you so much. And we love your ambassadors who teach us and write books and travel to homeschool conventions to speak to us so that we can know your truth and leave a legacy for our children and the next generation. We know you are glorified through our weaknesses and right now our weaknesses are shining through big time. Somehow use them to bring the Church closer together and that the “world” will see our love for one another. In the Name of Jesus Christ I pray. Amen”

    1. Eric, thank you for your excellent comment. You have added a serious Christlike spirit to this discussion, which (unfortunately) has been lacking in many cases. I would suggest that you hear Dr. Sarfati’s talks. He has essentially the same views as Mr. Ham, but I expect he will speak them more appropriately.

  210. Dear Mr. Wile,
    I am a homeschool student and I use your Apologia science books. I absolutely love, and agree, with them. However, I believe you are wrong in you stance with Mr. Enns.
    This is not what my post is going to be about though. Rather it is about the division that this controversy is causing. Sadly, (I’m sure you know this) but most homeschool companies and even Creationists are taking side on who is right and who is wrong. Personally, I believe that Satan is using Mr. Enns to cause this to happen; and all the Christian leaders who normally would not argue or put someone down, are just playing into the devil’s hands.
    Especially these critical days when the end times are certainly at hand.

    Thanks for taking the time to read this,
    Kailee Peterson

    1. Thanks for you comment, Kailee. I strongly disagree that Satan is using Dr. Enns. Mr. Ham is the one who is clearly in the wrong here.

  211. Let’s be honest. Peter Enns is compromising. He’s not believing this ignorantly. He’s studied this and made his decision to not believe the Bible for what it says, but to force his own ideas into scripture….then goes on to teach children to not believe the Bible as well? Are all interpretations equally valid? Don’t ideas have consequences and bad ideas have devastating consequences? How horrendous to teach our children that “it doesn’t matter” what one believes, or that one “can’t know for sure” about Genesis. The Lord revealed himself to us in Genesis as our Creator and then as our Redeemer. It’s so simple that a child can understand. It’s so exciting to know that the Lord did not hide these things, but wrote it out for all to hear. To deny what the Word of God says is an affront to its Author and our Creator.

    1. Sharon, let’s be honest. Dr. Enns is not compromising. You obviously disagree with him, but that doesn’t make him a compromiser.

      All interpretations are not equally vaild. However, not all interpretations with which you disagree are compromising interpretations. No one is teaching children that it doesn’t matter what you believe. We are teaching children how to properly deal with brothers and sisters who disagree with you.

  212. So, Mr. Wile, have you tried to contact Mr. Ham, to talk to him to see if he will apologize? You are a Christian, he is a Christian. You have seen him err, so will you facilitate reconciliation where the homeschool convention board failed to do?

    I thank God and you for your work.
    I thank God and Mr. Ham for his.
    I thank God for putting people with “ideas” like Mr. Enns in our midst to sharpen us.
    However, if it weren’t for people like Mr. Ham some of us might not have the discernment to see the shortcomings in Mr. Enns ideas of the bible.

    1. Shelly, I would help to facilitate reconciliation in any way that I could. I have not tried to contact Mr. Ham, and he has not tried to contact me (as far as I know). I think that would be inserting myself where I do not belong. This needs to happen between the convention and him, as Mr. Ham thinks he was treated badly by the convention, and the convention thinks they were treated badly by Mr. Ham.

      I agree that Mr. Ham should have pointed out the deficiencies he saw in Dr. Enns’s work. However, as the Geisler and Frame links that have appeared several times in this thread show, there is a PROPER way to do that. Ken Ham did not do it that way.

  213. Dr. Wile,
    I have come into this discussion late and I marvel at the time and energy that you have put into replying to these numerous comments. I am impressed with your willingness to defend Dr. Enns, even to the extent that you have staked much of your personal creditability out on this issue.

    I have not read Dr. Enns’ books, as if I understand it correctly you have not either. I was wondering if you had read G.K. Beale’s review of Enns’s book, Inspiration and Incarnation, in JETS. This is a very insightful exchange because Enns responses to Beale’s review. Then Beale provides a final response in the Southern Seminary Theological Journal.

    Enns does seem to have a view of inspiration but it is dynamic at best. Anytime that theologians raise to the level where they become the determiner where they can identify where the true word lays and the myth begins this is very problematic. This has been the common position of liberal and neo-orthodox scholars particularly of the past two centuries. As a student of history once the church surrenders the position that all scripture a period of decline and farther compromise. Yes, there has been famous theologians that have held that the Bible contains myths, but what has happened in their seminaries and denominations in subsequent generations? Enns appears to be another theologian repacking liberalism. It may seem clever, new, and novel but it is the same old game. There is doubt. Interpete

    1. Phil, thank you for your comments. I HAVE read his book, Inspiration and Incarnation: Evangelicals and the Problem of the Old Testament. I thought I made that clear in my post. I have also read several reviews, two of which I have repeatedly linked in this thread. As I said in my post, I disagree with much of what Dr. Enns believes. The two reviews I have repeatedly linked in this thread (Dr. Geisler’s review and John Frame’s review) show flaws in Dr. Enns’s book. However, that’s not the point of this post. The point of this post is that Dr. Enns is not a compromiser, and he does have a Biblical view of inspiration. That comes out clearly in his book, and even Dr. Geisler’s negative review makes that clear.

      Also, if you read Geisler’s and Frame’s reviews, you find the PROPER way to point out what you see as flaws in Dr. Enns’s views.

  214. I’ve been following several blogs on this issue and have yet to find one person at the Greenville conference that felt Ken Ham’s spirit was un-Christlike. Am I missing something? Dr. Wile, can you give us an estimate as to how many complained?

    1. Lesley, I am not a part of the convention’s board. I am just an invited speaker. Thus, I have no idea how many people complained to them. However, I listened to several. I really can’t remember exactly how many, but it was probably on the order of six separate conversations. Some of those (probably three or so) complained to me because they thought I supported Mr. Ham’s behavior. They obviously had not seen this post before attending the convention.

  215. Mr. Wile, is it just me or are many Christians leaders becoming extremely sensitive? Should we spend hours writing about how someone hurt our feelings and request an unwarranted apology for something that was written on someone else’s blog? Please! I have yet to see a passage in the Bible that says that Christians should be tolerant. As Christians, we shouldn’t have to tolerate distorted teachings.

    How is Ken Ham’s blog so offensive? What seems to be the trend is that most people here agree with Dr. Ham but don’t like it when he calls people out for undermining the word of God. Should Christians stand by while false interpretations of the Bible are being taught to the Christian community? Last I checked, there was a man named Jesus Christ that called people out for not teaching the truth. It is our duty as Christians to stand up for the truth and refuse to let false doctrine enter the Church.

    Mr. Wile, you mentioned that you disagree with Dr. Enns on the creation account but are thrilled to have him at the conference. If you see someone distorting the truth does it not anger you? Do you not believe that it is your duty to stand up and defend the truth, even if it means refuting other “well educated scholars?”

    1. J. Jackson, there is a very specific passage that CLEARLY says Christians should be tolerant of brothers and sisters in Christ. It is Romans 14:1-9. Thus, this is not about being sensitive. It is about expecting Christians to live up to the dictates of Scripture.

      As I pointed out in my post, Mr. Ham’s blog is offensive because he calls a brother an unwarranted name and then levels a false charge against him. That’s what this post has always been about.

      The problem is that I DO NOT see Dr. Enns as “distorting the truth.” Instead, I see him as offering a different hermeneutic. I am ALWAYS excited to learn what those who disagree with me have to say. If nothing else, it helps me to hone my views.

      It is my duty to defend the truth, which is why I posted this to begin with!

  216. Dr. Wile,

    I have come into this discussion late and I marvel at the time and energy that you have put into replying to these numerous comments. I am impressed with your willingness to defend Dr. Enns, even to the extent that you have staked much of your personal creditability on this issue.

    I have not read Dr. Enns’ books, if I understand it correctly you have not either. I was wondering if you had read G.K. Beale’s review of Enns’s book, Inspiration and Incarnation, in JETS. This is a very insightful exchange because Enns responses to Beale’s review. Then Beale provides a final response in the Southern Seminary Theological Journal.

    Enns does seem to have a view of inspiration but it is dynamic at best. Anytime that theologians raise to the level where they become the determiner of where the true word lays and the myth begins this is very problematic. This has been the common position of liberal and neo-orthodox scholars particularly of the past two centuries. Once the church surrenders the position that all scripture is true then a period of decline and further compromise begins. Yes, there have been famous theologians that have held that the Bible contains myths, but what has happened in their seminaries and denominations in subsequent generations? Enns appears to be another theologian repackaging liberalism. It may seem clever, new, and novel but it is all the same. There is doubt. Then, interpret in light of that doubt to make the Bible seem more intellectually defendable. The only problem is that the problem was never with the Bible to start with, but the problem was us all along.

    Thanks for the time and my prayer is that this whole mess is not damaging to your ministry, because God has greatly used you. Trust is something easily lost but hard to regain. God bless you.

  217. In response to your response to my comments, as I mentioned earlier in my posts, Romans 14:1-9 is not relating to a teacher. Dr. Enns is a teacher. And so are you. Teachers are held to a higher standard of judgment than normal people. The bible is clear on that. You keep reciting Romans 14:1-9. But what about all (and there are a lot of them) the verses about false teachers. Dr. Enns is one of them. That is not a nasty statement. That is a fact. It is compromising to not take Genesis for what it is. If GOD would have made the world in millions of years, after much death, before sin, he would have mentioned it somewhere in the bible. It never says the world is millions of years old. It specifically says light and dark the first day. It spells out GOD’s interpretation of word day here. It seems that you are doing everything that you say Dr. Ham is of publicly mistreating Dr. Enns by saying he was being nasty. He is warning others, which is what Paul was doing in many of his letters. Warning of false teachers. As for GOD’s approval, taking the bible as a whole and not picking and choosing what you will believe in will meet with GOD’s approval. How do I know this…? The bible says so in Rev. 22:18-19. What bothers me about your fruits, is all your comments and your hypocrisy about public mistreating. You are doing exactly to Dr. Ham what you said Dr. Ham did to Dr. Enns, but you are wrong. The fact that you keep defending your actions, denying the truth, not what you think the truth is but what the truth really is shows your fruits. It is the fruit of a mocker who cannot handle rebuke. I spoke with someone tonight, that went to the convention, she said the only reason she went to this convention was Dr. Ham. She even traveled to another state to go to that convention. She was disappointed to hear of your position on anything other than a literal interpretation of Genesis also. She will no longer buy your books either. I understand that you don’t worry about man’s approval but GOD’s, but based on the word of GOD, you have false peace. You should pray that if you are wrong, that GOD would open your heart to the truth, rebuke and renounce any false peace, and lying spirits, and give you true discernment. You need to read about Micaiah and the lying spirits in 1 Kings 22. Do you remember back in my earlier comments that I said I would shout stop to those that were heading toward the lion. YOU Dr. Wile ARE HEADED TOWARD A LION! YOU NEED TO STOP! Even if you think all these people are wrong. Humble yourself before GOD and ask him to give you wisdom and discernment about this issue. The issue of whether or not you are being hypocritical, about your endorsement of Dr. Enns, and and about whether your interpretation of reading other things into the Genesis account is truth. When I have humbled myself and prayed for wisdom and discernment, GOD has never failed to show me the truth. For your good, not mine, I write these things. The foolishness of preaching is the true wisdom. The wise in their own minds will become fools. I was thinking that apologetics was about being an arbiter of Biblical truth. The fact that you keep defending your actions says you listen to others, but still keep your own interpretation. That would be ok if you were defending the actual truth of the Bible. And not your interpretation of it. Even satan can quote scripture. I wish you well. If I didn’t, I would just do what many Christians today do. Just let it go. But there is that lion!

    1. Viki, there is no indication that Romans 14:1-9 does not apply to teachers. Yes, we are to point out false teachers, but once again, there is a PROPER way to do that, as Dr. Geisler’s review and John Frame’s review clearly show. If you want to point out a false teacher, leveling a false charge is NOT the way to do it! You don’t teach Truth with a falsehood!

      The point is that there are those who think that God’s Word clearly does say that He made the World in long, unspecified periods of time with much animal and plant death. You think God’s Word clearly says something else. Both you and they have Biblical arguments. I agree that taking parts of the Bible and not other parts is wrong, but Dr. Enns clearly doesn’t do that. In fact, his theological book makes it very clear that he is trying to come up with a good interpretation for the ENTIRE Bible.

      You are quite wrong that I am doing the same thing to Mr. Ham that he did to Dr. Enns. I did not call Mr. Ham any unwarranted names, and I did not level any false charges against him. Mr. Ham did BOTH to Dr. Enns. I would ask YOU to humble yourself towards God. You seem to have set yourself up as the sole arbiter of what is True. That is not a very humble position to take, at least not in my opinion!

      I agree that when we humble ourselves before God, He shows us what to do. That’s why I wrote this post. After reading Mr. Ham’s post, praying, and searching the Scriptures, it became clear to me that God was leading me to write this post. I even talked to my wife, whose Christian walk I have always admired, and asked her advice. She agreed that it was the right thing to do.

  218. As a chemistry teacher currently using the Apologia textbook, I have great respect for you, Dr. Wile. However, I cannot agree with you on this matter.

    First off, I think you are calling Mr. Ham names (“nasty”) and are speaking in the same spirit as Mr. Ham. I did not see anything explicit in Mr. Ham’s comments that indicates he does not believe Dr. Enn is a Christian. Personally, however, I have many big problems with parts of Dr. Enn’s theology. In fact, I’d call them wrong. Just because they appear in other people’s view of orthodoxy does not make them less wrong.

    I believe in an inerrant scripture. I believe once you allow people to pick and choose “errors”, you open the whole thing up to personal interpretation. If Adam was symbolic, why not Christ? Perhaps the resurrection was not a bodily resurrection, but a spirit instead. Maybe Paul was wrong about the rapture as well. Where do we draw the line?

    I think that Mr. Ham’s tone offended you. Perhaps it felt closed minded, even similar to what you have dealt with in your own situation. But I suggest you consider the possibility of supporting Mr. Ham’s opportunity to voice his opinion as vociferously as you support Dr Enn’s.

    I assume that you hold the beliefs you hold because you have worked through them and come to a conclusion. As have both Mr. Ham and Dr. Enn. You can’t all be right on the differing points, tho. I think you feel that Mr. Ham assigned motives incorrectly to Dr. Enn. That may be true, tho I would ask Dr. Enn about his motives as well. I have known too many Christians who feel evolution is “proven” so the bible must be wrong. Those people have “compromised” their own faith to fit what worldly scientists have told them.

    Anyway, I do hope that you can take some time to reflect on this, and maybe give Mr. Ham at least as much Grace in his errors as you are giving Dr. Enn in his.

    And thanks again for the textbook. It’s great to see someone else as interested in Chemistry as I am.

    1. Tom, thank you for your kind comment. I did not call Mr. Ham a name. I said his WORDS were nasty, which they clearly were. When you level a false charge at a person, it is nasty, plain and simple. I would agree with you that many of Dr. Enns’s views are wrong, even though they clearly fall within the range of orthodoxy. However, that does not give anyone the right to call him names and level a false charge against him.

      I also believe in an inerrant Bible. However, I do not call those who merely think it is infallible “compromisers.” They are clearly not, as that view has been within orthodox Christianity for some time. You ask where we draw the line? That’s what a hermeneutic is for. Have you ripped out an eye and thrown it away? Have you cut off your hand? Do you keep women silent in church? Do you make sure women wear headcoverings? The Scriptures tell you to do those things. Do you think the end times happened already, as the plain reading of Matthew 24 says it would have? You must have a serious hermeneutic to determine when the Scriptures are telling you literal truths and when they are telling you spiritual truths. You also need a good hermeneutic to determine when to use an alternate definition of some of the original words. That’s all Dr. Enns is trying to do.

      It was not Mr. Ham’s TONE that offended me. It was the unwarranted name and the false charge, as I state in this post. I have also never even implied that Mr. Ham doesn’t have the right to voice his opinions. However, he should do it in a way that does not involve name calling and false charges, as Dr. Geisler and John Frame have done in their reviews that I have praised.

      I am more than willing to give Mr. Ham grace on this. Indeed, two commenters have asked if I would be involved in any reconciliation effort between him and the convention, and I have eagerly agreed.

  219. If Mr. Ham were in fact in the wrong in how he talked about Mr. Enns, is Mr. Dean’s and the convention’s advisory board in the right in their response to him? He and AIG are prohibited from all future participation in those conventions. 1 Thessalonians 5:15 reads, “Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always strive to do what is good for each other and for everyone else.”

    It seems to me that wrong has been paid back for perceived wrong and this hasn’t been good for anyone. How much better it would have been to go to Mr. Ham and ask for an apology to Mr. Enns for anything that was conceived as a personal attack. And how much better it would have been not to have these two speakers at the same convention, especially when Mr. Dean was apparently advised that Mr. Ham would be speaking against Dr. Enns’s theology ahead of time.

    As it is, the reputations of many have been tarnished, including homeschooling’s and Christianity’s. Whatever we believe about this situation, my prayer is that we will not permit Satan to do any more damage with it.

    1. Psychowith6, I am not defending how the convention did what they did. They could have done it a lot better. However, they were certainly within their rights to do what they did. As their statement clearly says, they think Mr. Ham’s spirit towards both the convention and it attendees was unkind and that his treatment of a fellow speaker was unprofessional. Since their MAIN job is to minister to their attendees, they were certainly within their rights to remove him. In addition, I think they bent over backwards to make sure Mr. Ham’s VIEW was well represented by bringing in Dr. Sarfati to replace him.

      I wholeheartedly agree that it would have been great for the convention to ask for an apology and to ask Mr. Ham to behave better at the next convention. However, I STRONGLY disagree that they shouldn’t have had both speakers at the same convention. We are ALL brothers and sisters in Christ. We should be able to get along, DESPITE OUR DIFFERENCES, as Romans 14:1-9 clearly asks us to do. One of the GREAT things about Great Homeschool Conventions is that they are trying to minister to ALL Christian homeschoolers, not just the ones that someone deems “theologically pure.”

      It is terribly sad for me to think that Christians who disagree cannot treat each other with respect, when atheists who disagree have NO problem doing that! That’s the REAL damage that Satan has done here. He has used this to show people that Christians can’t even get along with one another! I join in your prayer that Satan doesn’t gain any more victories in this.

  220. Dr. Wile,

    I was at your talk when you announced to the audience that you would take a few questions but wanted to catch Peter Enns talk, so your intention has not only been to come to his side but you also promote him.

    In defending a compromised view of scripture your logic must breakdown. For example, say things like this:

    “Suppose there were several men, not just Adam. In order for sin to enter the world, they simply ALL would have had to sin. Given human nature, that would most likely happen. Thus, the idea that ONE man has to sin for it to affect all men is just not right.”

    Let’s think critically on this statement. If someone said that, I would ask where “human nature” originated?

    If they agree it was original sin, this would indicate circular reasoning in the statement. ALL those men couldn’t have a “human nature” in the sense of the statement because there would be no basis for it. You would have to conclude that Satan tempted ALL those men. But the bible says Satan tempted one man (and one woman).

    Did the bible motivate this person to prefer the many-Adams argument?

    If so, what role does Eve play? How many animals were slaughtered to cloth these people? Which one fathered Cain?

    If one uses faulty logic (which will grow to challenge ones faith) are we not responsible to point it out so that person can return to a more literal interpretation of scripture?

    Corey Alix

    1. Corey, I did not promote Enns at my talk. I simply said that I needed to get to his talk. That’s not promotion. It is being honest. If I had said, “I can answer some questions, but then I need to use the restroom,” am I PROMOTING using the restroom?

      There is no breakdown in logic. What caused Adam to give into Satan’s temptation? I believe that Adam brought sin into the world. Thus, it was not sin that motivated Adam to give into Satan’s temptation. It was something inside him. Thus, there is no reason to think that several other Adams would not also give into Satan’s temptations. Do you think Satan couldn’t have tempted more than one person? He seems to be able to tempt lots of people today. This is all very logical.

      The Bible did, indeed, motivate Dr. Enns to believe what he believes. That is clear in his book if you would read it.

      As I have said COUNTLESS times, I have no problem with you pointing out the errors you perceive in a person’s work, even if they aren’t really errors. Indeed, I have praised others (Geisler and Frame) for doing just that. However, Geisler and Frame did it the PROPER way. Ham did not. That’s the point of this blog post.

  221. Years ago I read Dr Wiles position statement on vaccinations. In my correspondence I found Dr Wile to be arrogant and anything but a “critical thinker”. So it comes as no surprise to me that he is in the camp of those who pay lip service to inspiration while supporting those who would undermine it. Frankly, I am happy to see the real Jay Wile exposing himself for what he really is, a fraud.

    1. Dan, it is interesting that you are calling me “arrogant,” since several other commenters have posted how humble they think I am being. I expect your view of me has more to do with the fact that you don’t like my opinions than it does with my actual attitude.

      I am not paying “lip service” to inspiration. I am actually trying to be faithful to what the Bible says about inspiration. That’s better than trying to be faithful to a man’s view of inspiration! That’s the real Jay Wile, and I am glad that it is getting out as well!

  222. Dr. Wile,

    Thank you for taking a stand for critical thinking, and against the view that teaches children to be afraid of ideas different from their own. That can be a hard line to walk as a Christian, and our family, like many others, usually finds ourselves “dis-invited” from Christian homeschool groups for believing so. Kids can’t be salt and light if they live in a spirit of fear, which, in my opinion, is what this whole issue comes down to. Keep up the good work.

    Leslie Connor

  223. I don’t agree that Mr. Ham was “nasty”. I read his blog, watched the video he references, and read the position of the organizers of the conference. I think Mr. Enns is teaching that Paul misinterprets Genesis. This is an impossibility since God inspired the entire Bible. What Mr. Ham did and the spirit of the blog he posted are correct. He is properly alerting people to the aberrant views of Mr. Enns (ref Eph 5:11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them.) This way attendees are ready to discern truth from error.

    1. Brad, leveling a false charge is, indeed, nasty, and that’s what Mr. Ham did. God did inspire the entire Bible, but that says nothing about whether or not Paul’s interpretation of Genesis is correct. In many orthodox Christains’ view, the Bible is infallible, but Paul is not.

      As I have said repeatedly, I have no problem with Mr. Ham pointing out what he thinks are errors. However, there is a PROPER way to do that, and people like Geisler and Frame have done it that way. Mr. Ham did it by leveling a false charge and using an unwarranted name. You don’t stand for truth by leveling a false charge!

  224. Dr. Wile,

    I was at the Southeast Convention and was alerted by the Well-Trained Mind blog to this dust-up. This post done before the conference even started is the most balanced understanding of this issue I have heard!!!! Thank you for defending Dr. Enns and for modeling for the homeschool community the need to critically assess our views. I also do not believe in evolution, but I really like Dr. Enns curriculum which has nothing to do with evolution. You can disagree with some of what he says in his curriculum but what he says that has so many people upset is well within the bounds of what Christian have believed and taught for centuries. Just not what they personally have been taught or exposed to. If you insulate yourself from other strands of evangelicalism you get knocked off your seat quite easily. Finally I want to say that it is the local churches job to help individuals assess heresy- not homeschool curriculum writers/speakers. Every person should assess the curriculum they use with their pastor-not Ken Ham or Peter Enns.
    Again, a thousand thank yous for this post and I am sorry for how much flack you are getting for even defending Enns!!

  225. I have read all the letters, blogs and what ever else with the situation of Ken Ham being uninvited to the homeschool convention. I heard the clip Mr Ham posted where he mentioned Peter Enns in his lecture. I heard nothing wrong in his presentation. To say he was mean spirited is far from the truth. Mark Looh (sp) even talked to the organizers ahead of time. They were okay with what Ken was going to say!

    As far as Peter Enns’ interpretation of the Bible, he is far out there just like the Mormons. Mormons are NOT Christians. When they refer to Adam and Jesus, they are not the same as the Christian Adam and Jesus. The road Peter Enns is taking with his belief of Adam and Jesus is quite similar in nature. I would not venture to even put Peter Enns in the camp of Christianity in it’s true sense as I would not put Mormons in the same group as “Christian.”

    One must be careful when they “open up their mind” to everything out there. It gives Satan the perfect foothold to enter false teachings into one’s thinking and thus embraced. Please do not let yourself fall into this trap.

    1. Cassie, I have no idea what the details are regarding the convention. Obviously, however, the convention did not expect Mr. Ham to have such an unkind spirit at and towards the convention. That’s why they disinvited him, as their statement clearly says.

      You are correct that Mormons are not Christians. That is clear because they try to add to the canon, which goes directly against the Bible. Thus, it is clear that they are not Christians. Dr. Enns is NOTHING like the Mormons. He has no desire to add to the canon. He simply wants to properly interpret the Bible. In his view, he is doing that properly, and many theologians agree with him.

      However, whether or not you think that Dr. Enns is right is totally irrelevant. The point of this post is to show that Mr. Ham called him an unwarranted name and leveled a false charge. That’s what was wrong.

      I agree that you need to be careful when you have an open mind. I have an entire talk about that – “Be Open-Minded but Don’t Let Your Brain Fall Out.”

  226. The plain-sense meaning always reveals the *application* of a *principle* This principle would need to be interpreted or applied through reason. The point I was making is that the plain-sense meaning is always *obvious*. I tell my children about Jesus “in their heart” and they think they are headed to the OR for surgery, or something! The plain-sense meaning of Genesis is very obvious — 24 hours days.

    Reading his books through in entirety is soemthing I guess I need to make time and money for, now!

    The point is that the dude is marketing children’s Bible curriculum that reflects his “unorthodox” bias!!! This is just plain WRONG!! What was Ken Ham supposed to do?

    Look at this quote:

    “The boat, the animals, the rain, the drama— all lend themselves to videos, snappy tunes, macaroni art, flannel graphs, and furry friends. What is obscured is the simply horrific notion that God would bring down such drastic destruction on the earth, rather than finding some other solution to humanity’s rebellion. And that is a question young adults should ask.”

    Enns encourages us to question God’s judgment!!! He is undermining Scripture in the hearts and minds of kids and he was called to account. I could see Peter/Paul doing the same thing.

    1. Elizabeth, I agree that the plain sense meaning is obvious. However, we as Christians do not always take the plain sense meaning. We don’t do that when the Bible tells us to cut out our eyes and cut off our hands. Most don’t do it when the Bible tells us to keep women silent in church and make them wear headcoverings. We also don’t do it with Matthew 24. Thus, to say that you must take Genesis at its plain sense meaning is not consistent. That’s why it is important to develop a consistent hermeneutic.

      Do you really think it is wrong to ask young adults to think through whether or not killing lots of people in the Flood was the best thing for God to do? I think it is an excellent question. It allows them to get ready for the common atheist complaint that God is not moral. I encourage such questions, as they allow us to be ready to defend our beliefs, which is what 1 Peter 3:15 demands that we be able to do. Dr. Enns is not undermining Scripture. He is helping young adults to get ready to defend it!

      You ask, “What was Ken Ham supposed to do?” He was supposed to point out his disagreements PROPERLY, as Dr. Geisler and John Frame have done. Instead, he called Dr. Enns an unwarranted name and leveled a false charge against him.

  227. It does not matter what “many” theologians believe. To throw that up as a way of giving credibility to a statement is meaningless. Even the Pharisees were totally off base. They too were the respected religious leaders of their time.

    Here is a link to the lecture where Ken mentions Peter Enns. Where is the name calling? You can hear Peter Enns giving his own interpretation of scripture.
    http://blogs.answersingenesis.org/blogs/ken-ham/2011/03/25/listen-to-this/

    As far as conference details, this is what has been released:
    http://www.answersingenesis.org/articles/2011/03/22/kicked-out-homeschool-conferences
    AiG’s CCO, Mark Looy, had a very frank but cordial discussion with Mr. Dean about this BioLogos/Dr. Enns matter in November. Mark took notes during the phone conversation; here are excerpts from his summary:

    Since I know Brennan a little, I called him a few weeks ago and told him our deep concerns about BioLogos [being at the convention]—but informed him we will not be pulling out.

    He told me that many h.s. conventions are becoming “less Christian”—that they will have vendors there to cater to the secular and even Jewish families that are becoming good-size segments within the h.s. movement . . . . Brennan made it sound as if he might avoid BioLogos in 2012 and beyond, but he did not promise that. I told him that Ken would still mention compromise in the church, and might bring up BioLogos by name in his keynotes, and Brennan replied: “I would expect nothing else from AiG.”

    Ken and I decided that we will just live with BioLogos there. At least we can counter their compromise messages with solid teaching from Ken.

    We often find today that if we speak against someone’s theological compromise, we are accused of being “un-Christian” or “unloving.” This is a bigger topic for another time, but for the moment let us state that we need to understand what the Bible means by “love.” It does not mean one doesn’t publicly stand against error.

    1. Cassie, I happen to care what people who have studied the Scriptures for a living have to say. Thus, I do think what many theologians have to say matters.

      My blog post is not about the video you posted. It is also not about what happened at the convention. It is about Ken’s words on the blog post I referenced. That contains both name-calling and a false charge. That’s what this post has been about. Please don’t try to divert attention from that.

      I agree that we must publicly stand against error. That’s what I have done – publicly stood against Ken Ham’s error of calling Dr. Enns an unwarranted name and leveling a false charge against him.

  228. Found an interesting passage last night: Titus 1:13…”Therefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith,…” Basically, this refutes your “nasty” remark…apparently, rebuking sharply would be okay if you think that was indeed Ham’s response. Mr. Wile, it really doesn’t matter that you think Enns is sound, Ham does NOT (even if you think he’s wrong in that thinking), and so his response WAS indeed Biblical and RIGHT because he believes Enns is wrong. The fact that Enns is wrong or not really ISN’T the issue, you know? Basically, you’re saying Ham isn’t allowed to have an opinion, and that YOU are right b/c you think Enns is right. But, critical thinking has to use sensibility and basic wisdom to understand that Ham was fine b/c he BELIEVES that Enns is incorrect on his Biblical stance. Your issue should ONLY be that you think Enns is right in his doctrine, and to give another side since you feel so compelled; but that doesn’t make Ham wrong since he believes Enns is incorrect–does that make sense? I think that’s really the bottom line here.

    1. Really, Titus 1:13 does not condone leveling false charges and unwarranted name-calling. Rebuking sharply is very good, but you cannot defend the Truth with a false charge!

      You are incorrect about Ham. He was quite wrong. Dr. Geisler was not wrong in his rebuke of Dr. Enns. Neither was John Frame. Both of them pointed out the errors they thought were contained in Dr. Enns’s theology, but neither of them engaged in name-calling or false charges. Had Mr. Ham pointed out errors in Dr. Enns’s theology without the name-calling and false charges, I would have never posted this.

  229. … and to think if it were Jesus up giving a lecture instead of Ken Ham. How about the time Jesus called the Pharisees and Sadducees a “brood of vipers?” So does that makes Jesus a sinner? Should He have been permanently banned from the temple? Should he have apologized because it wasn’t said in a loving spirit or tone? After all, that sounds pretty “mean spirited” to call someone a brood of vipers.

    1. Cassie, there is a BIG difference between Jesus and Ken Ham. Jesus knows the hearts and minds of us all. Ken Ham does not. Additionally, Jesus would not stoop to leveling false charges at someone!

  230. What you consider to be “nasty” in Ken Ham’s statement is plainly speaking the truth; this is not a matter of any one disagreeing with Mr. Ham, but with the counsel of Scripture and its historicity of the creation account.
    Being well educated, accredited, and having one’s articles published in various publications is not the criteria for truth. The scriptures themselves are.
    The fact that the church has never been unanimous in their belief regarding the scriptures is not the point here.
    Where did you get the fanciful notion that “stories and images” are what God used to communicate the Word to us, and then use 2 Tim. 3:16 as justification? I believe God used these writers of the Bible to convey every word by inspiration, not “stories and images”; Matt. 4:4; Prov. 30:5.
    “Critical thinking” has been a buzz word in the church for the past 2 centuries, but if you want to know the truth, don’t compare what you believe with what others believe. Compare what you believe with the Word of Truth, the Holy Scriptures themselves; they are the source for discernment and to understand good theology from bad, not Christian authors (Heb. 4:12; 5:14).

    1. James, I agree that the Scriptures are the only criteria for the truth, which is why Ken Ham was being nasty. He claimed Dr. Enns’s view of inspiration is unBiblical, when I showed that the Scriptures themselves say otherwise. Leveling a false charge is nasty, no matter how you slice it.

      I do not have any notion about God using stories and images to communicate the Word to us. However, Dr. Enns believes that God inspired the writers using symbols that were readily available in their culture. This is perfectly consistent with 2 Timothy 3:16, indicating that Dr. Enns’s view of inspiration is, indeed, Biblical.

      The Bible is quite clear that we are to engage in critical thinking. Read 1 Thessalonians 5:19-21, where we are commanded to EXAMINE EVERYTHING carefully and then hold fast to what is good. That’s the very model of critical thinking that I am trying to encourage.

  231. After reading the letter from the homeschool convention leaders, Dr. Ham’s blog post, and another article that supports Dr. Ham, I definitely think that Dr. Ham was in the wrong. It shows bad character on his part, to call someone a heretic (basically the same as Compromiser, especially using the word “Bible” in quotes when referring to Dr. Enns’ curriculum).

    I’m shocked and saddened that such a respected man would stoop so low. One article said that this blog post slammed Dr. Ham. Well, if that’s the case, then his blog post murdered Dr. Enns, since his was far more judgemental and accusatory than this one!

    This makes me question whether to use his homeschool materials. I need a curriculum that teaches my children about Creation and God’s plan, but also about how to deal with others who don’t agree. What I really need is a curriculum that teaches evolution, Creation and then compares them with what the Bible says. Our children will one day be old enough to make their own decisions, and whether they choose to believe a young or old Earth, they still need to know the facts of both. I won’t have my children be ignorant.

    1. Dy, thank you for posting your thoughts. Please do not question using AiG’s homeschool materials without evaluating them yourself. We are to judge a tree by its fruits. Thus, you should evaluate the materials, not reject them because of one representative’s poor behavior.

  232. Dr Wile,

    I first want to say that the fruit of your labor/ministry/life has been amazing in my kids life. My two older children accomplished General Science, Physical Science, Biology, Chemistry and The Human Body with you. My two younger ones just did General Science, Physical Science and Biology before going on the the Junior College here locally and doing very well in Chemistry and Physics. They are both going for engineering degrees. I have also been very blessed. I worked together with them on General Science, Physical Science and Biology. I think I have them memorized after going through them 3 times.:) Thank You.
    I would like to respectfully ask what you find as bad theology on Ken Ham’s sight. You refer to this next to his link. Are we talking Arminian/ Calvinism or is it deeper than that?
    I would also like to ask your opinion on why Christian Scientists struggle with evolution. With the lack of evidence of an intermediate link and the compelling testimony from the flood why do they still believe in evolution? I have a friend who as a total unbeliever went to UC Berkeley as a major in evolution. Her freshman year she was disillusioned because she saw the falacies so clearly in their reasoning. She began question and sought after God. She is a Christian today. If that happened to a young unbeliever why do very intelligent mature believers struggle with it?
    My final question is, and I do ask this sincerely and respectfully, why do some intelligent believers (I say intelligent here because I think that they struggle with it perhaps more than those of us not so blessed) believe the part about Jesus, the Son of God, dying on the cross for their sin but not the part of creation. It seems to me that you have to take the whole Bible not just part. I’m not sure that I have articulated this well. Let me try again. If they read and believe the one part why do they not read and believe the other part especially as Psalms 19 says so well, “the heavens declare the glory of God, the skies proclaim the work of His hands.” As scientists, It seems to me thay the “work of His hands” would be evident to them.

    1. Christine, thank you for your kind words. Your children’s success in college is mostly due to their excellent education and their God-given talents, but I am thrilled that I could play a small role in it.

      In answer to your question, my biggest problem with AiG’s theology is that it says the only possible proper interpretation of Genesis is with 24-hour days. I think that is shown to be wrong not only by the Biblical arguments given by others, but also because the 24-hour-day interpretation was questioned LONG before science started talking about millions of years and evolution. Also, their idea that there was no animal death before the fall is, at best, extraBiblical. The Bible is clear that there was no human death before the Fall, but it says nothing about animal death.

      I would say that the reason believers struggle with evolution is probably because of their education. If you are not taught how to think critically and look at many sides, you can easily be convinced by propaganda. Since many educational institutions tend to engage in pro-evolution propaganda, it is very easy to be seduced unless your education has taught you to be able to critically evaluate arguments. Your friend obviously had a good education in critical thinking. Please note that critical thinking is important even when you are taught the truth. I know many students who left the faith even though they were brought up learning only young-earth-creationist materials. I think this happens because you need critical thinking to fight propaganda, or you will just end up trading one one-sided idea for another.

      I agree that you have to take the whole Bible, not just part. However, you have to know how each part was intended to be taken. You don’t cut out your eye or cut off your hand, do you? Jesus told you to do that. Are you ignoring a part of the Bible because you don’t? Of course not. You are using a good hermeneutic that tells you those passages are not meant to be taken literally. There are good hermeneutics that indicate the creation account shouldn’t be taken literally. I disagree with them, but they can be Biblically defended. Thus, I don’t think alternate views of creation are necessarily the result of a struggle to believe. They are a result of a struggle to develop a good hermeneutic that tells you when to take the Bible literally and when not to.

  233. Dr. Wile,

    Biologos implicitly teaches that Science is omniscient (as Biologos claims that Science provides the most accurate statements about the past) and that any reading of Genesis must be constrained by the statements of Science. The attack is hermeneutic in nature, but the underlying plan is to teach people to follow another god–Science. I see no problem in calling Dr. Enns (or any of the Biologos teachers) a “wolf in sheep’s clothing.”

    Explicit statements by Enns regarding his belief in God’s omniscience must therefore be read skeptically. Enns’ hermeneutic approach to Genesis at best shows inconsistency with his explicit statement. The controversial issue at hand is Enns’ treatment of Genesis, so we must look at that separately from his explicit statement.

    The Biologos site makes it clear that Science and Genesis should converge. How does that convergence take place? What is the mechanism? Does evolutionary thinking necessarily follow from Genesis? Or does convergence take place by placing Genesis on the Procrustean bed of evolutionary thinking? Is this “compromise” or something else? What word would you use? “Scripture-mangling?”

    1. TomH, what BioLogos teaches is not relevant to this discussion. What Dr. Enns teaches is what is relevant, and there is nothing in his teachings that says science is omniscient and that Genesis must be constrained by it. Thus, I see a BIG problem with calling him a wolf in sheep’s clothing.

      I am not a fan of trying to assign motives to people. Jesus can do that, because He knows our hearts and minds. I cannot. Thus, I am going to take people at their word, unless there is strong evidence to do otherwise. In the case of Dr. Enns, I find no strong evidence to do otherwise. Thus, I will do him the courtesy of actually believing what he says about his beliefs.

      Once again, BioLogos is not the issue here. Dr. Enns is. I would not use the word “compromise” to describe his teachings, and I certainly wouldn’t use the words “Scripture mangling.” I would use the words, “honest but incorrect attempt to understand what the Bible actually says.”

  234. Dr. Wile,

    As a homeschool grad, I appreciate your thoughts on this issue. I happen to learn towards an old earth creationist viewpoint, an opinion that has earned me no small criticism from the strict six day young earth creationist proponents. That said, I am highly pleased with the way you approached the debate. Christians will continue to debate on this point.

    As to the controversy, I see no reason why Enns shouldn’t be allowed to speak (even though I don’t totally agree with him). If Ken Ham can speak, if you can speak, then why can’t he? We’re not talking about a church that has to uphold standards of orthodoxy. This a homeschool convention, presumably one attended by people of a variety of different Christian views. It just makes sense to have speakers of different opinions.

    I’m sure Ken is a Christian and truly believes in what he preaches, but his methods leave me with a bad taste in my mouth. I’ve seen those types of judgmental people who are extraordinarily uncomfortable with others of differing views. Theoretically speaking, I think he reflects a modern type of fundamentalist, just like W J Bryan and so many others before him. While well meaning, many of these people have given Christians a bad name not just in the scientific community, but in academia in general (my grad work was in history). A more moderate approach, conceding that we don’t know it all, along with an ear to at least hear others’ views would go long way in helping the situation. I think you’re on the right track- keep it up!

    -David Petersen
    Miami, FL

    1. David, thanks for your excellent comment. I am sure that your views have brought on the same kind of “love” as that which I have been receiving from some of my brothers and sisters in Christ here. As a young-earth creationist, I apologize for that.

  235. One thing I keep reading is that Dr. Ham was right to rebuke Dr. Enns and that’s all he was doing. Jesus would have done the same. Etc. HOWEVER, when Person A is rebuking Person B, PERSON B IS ACTUALLY PRESENT. Person A is actually talking TO Person B. This is not the pattern that Dr. Ham followed.

  236. Mr. Wile I don’t think you are realy getting the point that I’m trying to make. I did not mean that Mr. Enns has anything to do with Satan. What I was saying is that Satan is using this situation to bring discord to the Christian world. Case in point: you saying that Mr. Ham is “clearly in the wrong here.”

    1. Thanks for clarifying, Kailee. I am sorry that I misunderstood you. I do think Mr. Ham is clearly in the wrong, given that he publicly leveled a false charge at Dr. Enns and called him an unwarranted name.

  237. This is for those who have purchased in the past or are considering purchasing or not purchasing in the future the Apologia materials because of this debate that now also involves Dr. Wile:

    Here is Ken Ham’s statement in support of Apologia http://www.facebook.com/notes/ken-ham/answers-in-genesis-stands-with-apologia/187448381300636

    Here is what Apologia believes and holds to for all of their past and future writings, and publishings, as well as their level of involvelment with Dr. Wile:
    http://www.apologia.com/news.php?item=75

    1. Thanks for the link, Elizabeth. I disagree with it, of course. I don’t see any virtue in name-calling. Even if the article is correct, however, leveling false charges has no virtue at all.

  238. Dr. Wile,
    You’re speaking in such circles, you’re confusing yourself. I’ve read everything I can and cannot find an “unwarranted” name called by Dr. Ham. You have an opinion. Does Dr. Ham?(Don’t answer that…you’ll just confuse yourself). You’ve claimed to do no name calling but I’ve read on this blog that you called Dr. Ham “nasty”. Please don’t post back and say something like “I didn’t call him nasty—just his actions”. That’s untrue if you even go there. You blatantly called him “nasty”. You’ve shown your true colors throughout this whole mess.

    1. Diane, I said that Mr. Ham GOT nasty. He did. Leveling a false charge is nasty, pure and simple. The unwarranted name is “compromiser.”

  239. My take? 1-I didn’t think Dr. Ham’s blog post was mean spirited and 2-isn’t it our duty to call out teachings that claim to be Biblical in nature but aren’t?
    But, honestly, regardless of my thoughts, Dr. Wile, perhaps it would have been better to let these men work out their own differences without adding your comments. Now we have three Christian figures-prominent ones at that-embroiled in baiting each other and mud-slinging, while the entire non-Christian community looks on while we devour each other. Not exactly loving one another.

    1. Leah, I agree that this is not exactly loving one another. All you have to do is look at many of the comments on this thread to see that love is the last thing on many people’s mind!

      It is certainly our duty to point out teachings that are wrong. However, there is a right way to do that, and the links to Dr. Geisler’s comments and John Frame’s comments show the proper way to do that.

  240. Thanks Mr. Wile for your input against Ken Ham. I have been weighing my options between AIG and Apologia. You have decided that for me. I choose the TRUTH spoken by Answers in Genesis!!!

  241. Dr. Wile,

    First off, let me say that you were the keynote speaker at my family’s first homeschool convention. I was very encouraged by your talks and we have stuck with Apologia as our science due in no small part to you. For that I am thankful.

    Today, however, I am troubled by your stance on this issue. It seems that per your 2:00 pm post, that maybe you don’t fully subscribe to 24-hour days. That answers many questions for me if true.

    Peter Enns is a dangerous wolf. He is a false teacher. I say this without any reservation or discomfort in my soul. I say it to warn others, and you.

    Enns does not believe in a literal Adam (thus no need for Christ, despite his double-speak in trying to have it both ways). He actually believes that Paul was wrong about Adam (despite being taught personally by Christ). Enns does not believe that God created the earth unless by evolution, despite what the Bible says.

    Enns judges the Bible by the standard of evolution. Hear it from his own pen:

    “New Atheists point out that Genesis is wholly out of sync with scientific reality. This is true…”

    “Lack of elementary scientific credibility renders the Bible suspect.”

    “What if God likes telling stories? Why assume that fiction is a problem? Why assume that for God to be God he needs to speak in modern ways of knowing?” (Enns implying that the Creation story is a fictional way of telling about the earth’s beginning)

    Enns judges the Bible based on his belief in so-called science, not the other way around as Christians do.

    More cases in point, he says in one post:

    “To bring this all the way back to the beginning: SYNTHESIZING EVOLUTION and Christianity is not a matter of starting with what Paul is “obviously” saying. Paul’s Adam is challenging, and was so long before EVOLUTION ever entered the mix.” (In Enns’ mind, evolution is the bar that the Bible must meet.)

    In another: “The question is this: Does Paul’s status as an inspired author of Scripture mean that his views of human origins and the world as a whole are SCIENTIFICALLY ACCURATE?” (again, science is the standard, not the Bible)

    Enns clearly judges the “foolishness” of the Gospel by the standard of the wisdom of men (which God says He will put to shame).

    Enns is judging the Bible based on the “bar” of evolution. He seems to have “discovered” something that has escaped the grasp of millions of Christians for 2,000 years. That’s a heresy red flag. He was fired from his position at Westminster, which is not even considered the most conservative of seminaries, for his unbiblical views. That’s another huge red flag.

    Dr. Wile, you can’t have it both ways. This isn’t a “conversation,” this is a spiritual battle. There is nothing admirable about being “balanced.” There is a time for that, this is is not one of those times. There’s nothing admirable about accepting a false teacher in the name of Christian charity. It’s not love or charity, it’s compromise disguised as love. In truth, it’s unloving and even hatred to the sheep as it leads people astray. In the homeschooling community, it causes little ones to stumble.

    You judge Ken Ham as “nasty”(which he was not), you would have to render the same or worse judgment on many who have come before him who have spoke out strongly against false teachers (the term “woe to you” comes to mind).

    The shepherd doesn’t have a conversation with the wolf, he doesn’t love the wolf, he doesn’t tolerate the wolf – he kills it or chases it away because he loves the sheep.

    Ken Ham has taken a stand like many before him to protect the sheep. May God produce many more Ken Hams who are willing to stand for truth no matter the cost instead of inviting the wolf into the flock. May God bring glory to Himself through the persecution of those who are willing to stand for Him and His Word. God Bless you Dr. Wile, but my family and I in California stand with Ken Ham and AIG.

    In Christ,

    Matt

    P.S. I don’t expect or need a response, nor do I wish to debate on this issue. This will be my only post. I wish you all the best and will be praying for this whole situation. God Bless.

    1. Matt, I am sorry you feel the need to accuse me falsely. As anyone who spends any amount of time on this blog or reading my science texts can tell you, I fully believe in the 24-hour day interpretation. I am simply not willing to call those who disagree with me unwarranted names or level false charges at them.

      Dr. Enns is most certainly not a dangerous wolf, and I have no discomfort in my soul correcting your false charge against him. Like your false charge against me, it is just not right.

      If you read through this comment thread, you will learn why not believing in a literal Adam does nothing to compromise Scripture. I have explained that several times already and really don’t care to do so again. In addition, you will learn why evolution is NOT incompatible with Scripture. I believe that Adam was literal, and I think evolution is a terrible idea scientifically. However, neither of them compromise Scripture.

      I am sorry that you don’t see this as a conversation. It should be, since it is among Christian brothers and sisters. I would suggest that you read Romans 14:1-9 to learn how to treat your brothers and sisters in Christ with whom you disagree. Leveling false charges is not the way to do it!

      I definitely wanted to respond, as I do not allow false charges to stand!

  242. Mr. Wile, I couldn’t tell by the post if you are aware that Dr. Enns departed from the orthodox doctrine of Scripture and thus has had to leave the seminary (Westminster)? To clarify, I am not supporting his exclusion. I support having both parties at the convention. Let there be debate! 1 Cor 11:19 says, “for there must be factions among you in order that those who are genuine among you may be recognized.” Paul publicly called people out by name. Jesus also had harsh words.

    1. Ruth, the comments on this thread discuss the details. A panel of theologians reviewed Dr. Enns’s work, and a firm majority stated it was orthodox. The board of the seminary rejected the recommendation of the panel of theologians, however. That is why Dr. Enns was removed.

  243. Ham is obviously agitated that he sees in Enns’ writings the same accommodation that Christians gave to Darwin when Origin of the Species was published. Enns (for the sake of science) has turned Adam into merely a symbol even though Jesus and the Church fathers treated Adam as the literal great-grandfather of all humanity. I think Ham’s rather mild term “compromiser” falls short of the example manifested by the apostles who used terms like “scoffers”, “clouds without rain”, “wandering stars”, etc.

    Ham has been labeled Un-Christian and it has been said that his message is right, but his spirit is wrong…

    Is the Scripture less Biblical or Un-Christian when it calls men who deny the Second Coming scoffers (2 Peter 3)? When the writers of the Proverbs depend upon us being able to perceive who is the “wicked man”, the “man without wisdom”, “the fool”, “the sinner”, “the harlot” and a myriad of other labels, are the writers being any less Biblical? Perhaps the convention organizers take umbrage with the apostle Paul when he unleashed his “whitewashed wall” comment? Should we think Jesus un-Biblical when he tosses out “brood of vipers”?

    Would the words of Galatians 3 ever roll smoothly off the tongues ofthe convention leaders? “O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you?” Doesn’t the term compromiser seem to be almost a dim word in comparison to the barbs of Paul that were used with Christian brothers?

    What we believe about the early history in the Bible will eventually have a profound impact on our understanding about other areas of the Bible. If we turn Adam into a symbol for national Israel, if we make death and destruction God’s mechanism for evolving humanity, then we are not left with the historical underpinnings for a Fall from which God must redeem us. In such a schema, our children will logically make death, decay and destruction the hero of the narrative (since they always have a way of making our contradictions more consistent).

    Peter Enns has taken the revelation of God in nature and, even worse, the revelation of God in Scripture and has compromised it. He has taken that which has plainly been revealed and suppressed it. He is without excuse because he is suppressing clearly revealed truths.

    In writing about the Flood, Enns does not believe it to be a true historical account in the Bible either. It simply borrowed from the other stories. In an article he penned for the Biologos Foundation, he writes “The Israelites adapted the well-known ancient Near Eastern flood motif. The similarities are clear and universally accepted by biblical scholars. But Israel did not just copy a story—instead it made it its own. The old story—with its ancient ways of thinking about the cosmos—became a new vehicle for talking about their God and what made him different.” In other words, this is no divinely inspired history. This is merely borrowing and re-fabling.

    In another portion of Enns’ writings, he states “Jesus is described in full color in the Gospels. He weeps, laughs, becomes angry, has compassion, loves, has determination, prefers times of isolation, grows tired. In the early grades, we should focus on bringing out this full portrait of Jesus. What should not be emphasized is the child’s miserable state of sin and the need for a savior.” He says those words on page 31 of his book “Telling God’s Story”.

    Parodoxically, after just telling us to present the full portrait of Jesus (minus the confusing sin stuff and the very reason why Jesus came), he goes on in page 33 and 34 to state “Having said all this, let me add that you can’t talk about Jesus for too long without seeing him get upset with people—mostly the self-confident religious elite. He becomes angry, speaks some harsh words, and is even sarcastic at times. We will certainly take this head on, but the fully realized Jesus of the Gospels is intended for adult consumption.” In other words, these sides of Jesus are embarrassing and too complex to explain to young minds, so let’s save them for later.

    Where is his Scripture for this? No where to be found. Does that meet the definition of suppressing truth (Romans 1:18-32)? Absolutely!

    Ken Ham used the Biblical approach of calling Peter Enns a compromiser (Jesus, Peter and Paul used people’s names and even used helpful “labels”). Wayne Grudem went the extra step to demand that Westminster should can Enns for the same grounds – http://greenbaggins.wordpress.com/2009/04/27/wayne-grudems-letter-regarding-pete-enns/.

    1. Owen, it is very difficult to compare the actions of a Christian today with that of the Apostles writing under God’s inspiration. God knows the hearts and minds of men. We don’t. Thus, we must be a bit more careful when we start judging people.

      I am not sure that anyone is calling Mr. Ham unChristian. His actions were clearly wrong, and the convention said his spirit was unkind. If someone is calling him unChristian, that person is also behaving wrongly.

      You are certainly mischaracterizing Dr. Enns’s views. He believes that all the Bible was inspired by God. However, he believes that God used currently available images and symbols to do that. This is not compromise. It is an honest attempt to understand Scripture. I disagree with it, but I do not see it as compromise.

      Dr. Enns is certainly not suppressing truth. He is trying to help the parent decide how best to give the complex messages of Scripture to children. You might disagree with him, but that is no reason to label him a compromiser.

  244. Nice try Jay. But no cigar. You’re attempting to claim that ideas such as those espoused by Enns are just another honest approach by good, sincere, Christian men. Dude! I don’t even KNOW you. And I don’t know what universe you live in. In one of your responses you try to include Enns’ opinions under the rubric of Romans 14:1-9 which talks about being tolerant of such things as what a person eats or what days he considers holy. It is most obviously NOT talking about being tolerant of doctrines that undermine the Bible.

    And if you cannot see that teaching a non-literal Adam totally destroys the Gospel, then there is no hope for you. If there is no literal Adam then the entire message of the New Testament is nonsense. And THAT’S what this discussion is all about. THAT’S what it comes down to and all the references to ancient writers’ opinions (e.g. Origen, Augustine, et al.) are irrelevant. Peter Enns wrote: “the Adam story could be viewed symbolically as a story of Israel’s beginnings, not as the story of humanity from ground zero.”

    So what’s the argument here? There is no argument. Enns credits this heresy as legitimate and I don’t care how many people you drag up to say they agree with him. Now I can credit that he doesn’t spout a heresy intentionally. Many of us have, from time to time, erred in one way or another. But a spade needs to be called a spade. Even Paul had to publicly rebuke Peter at one point for what is essentially the same thing. Iron sharpens iron, so to speak. So suck it up, stop arguing about it, and move on. Ken Ham was telling the truth and calling a spade a spade. And it’s about time that people started doing that.

    1. Doug, Dr. Enns’s teachings do not undermine the Bible. That’s the point. Since they do not focus on central Christian doctrines, his views do fall squarely in the realm of Romans 14:1-9.

      Teaching a non-literal Adam does nothing to the Gospel. The Gospel tells us of our sin and our redeemer. The details of specifically how that sin actually got into world is secondary. It is here, and Jesus saves us from it. That is the message of the Gospel, period. C. S. Lewis, N.T. Wright, Alister McGrath, Thomas Jay Oord, and John Polkinghorne all understood that. They did not compromise the Gospel by rejecting a literal Adam.

      As I have pointed out several times before, I would have no problem with Mr. Ham pointing out his doctrinal disagreements with Dr. Enns. However, there is a PROPER way to do that, and other Christians (such as Dr. Geisler and John Frame) have done so. They did it without name-calling and false charges.

  245. Anyone familiar with Ken Ham knows what he means by “compromise.” Isn’t this Peter Enns quote a perfect example of that compromise?

    “This is a problem because it is at odds with everything else we know about the past from the natural sciences and cultural remains.”

    If this isn’t compromising scripture (putting more trust in evolution then scripture) then else can it be classified?

    1. Corey, you are using one quote to attempt to determine someone’s motives. That’s a dangerous thing to do. Lots of AiG materials talk about how science supports their position. They are not “compromising” to point that out. That’s all Dr. Enns is doing here. He is pointing out that (as far as he is concerned) science supports his position. It is not compromising when AiG does it, and it is not compromising when Dr. Enns does is.

  246. Dr. Wile, you said “…not believing in a literal Adam does nothing to compromise Scripture.”
    I really have a problem with this statement. I don’t see how you can think that God meant a literal day when He said day, a literal star when He said star, a literal heaven when He said heaven, a literal Savior when He said Savior and not think He meant a literal Adam when He said Adam. The scripture can not be “compromised” in that way. If you take away Adam, you take away sin, thus taking away the need for Christ to be our Saviour. Let’s see where we can go with this. Maybe God didn’t really mean that we shouldn’t murder or commit adultery. Maybe He didn’t really mean that we should love one another. Maybe He didn’t really mean that we should pray. Maybe He didn’t really mean that we sin. Maybe He didn’t really mean that we can’t get to Heaven all by ourselves. Maybe He didn’t really mean the Jesus died on the cross to cover our sins, and bridged the gap between man & God. Can you not see that? If Dr. Enns believes that Adam is not literal, he is compromising scripture and is thus a “compromiser”. That is not a nasty thing to say. It is true.
    Dr. Wile, it’s a slippery slope you’re standing on.

    1. Cindy, I totally disagree with you. First, you decide when the Bible is to be taken literally with a solid hermeneutic. Some parts of Scripture are clearly not meant to be taken literally, so you have to use the text to determine when it is to be taken literally and when it is not to be taken literally. When you develop a solid hermeneutic, taking one part of the Bible as not literal does not mean you will take other parts as not literal unless the text is actually telling you to do so. The Gospels and many other parts of the Bible are so clearly historical that no honest hermeneutic can take them as not literal.

      You do not take away sin when you take away a literal Adam. Plenty of Scripture passages that everyone agrees are to be taken literally talk about sin in the world. Thus, the DETAILS of how sin entered the world have nothing to do with the REALITY of the fact that sin is in the world. Because of that reality, we need a redeemer, and Jesus is our redeemer. Now I certainly agree that a literal Adam helps us understand HOW sin got into the world, but it is not a necessary component to the Gospel.

      Dr. Enns is most certainly not a compromiser. He is attempting to develop a solid hermeneutic to help him determine what Scripture actually means. That is not compromise – it is what a theologian does! This is not a slippery slope. It is simply obeying Romans 14:1-9.

  247. Dr. Jay Wile,
    I have used your science textbooks for a few years and am disappointed with your view toward Ken Ham. My trust in you has gone down because of it and it causes me to reconsider using your curriculum or even recommending it to others in the future.

    1. Ruth Ann, you need to do what you think is right. However, I do not look for the approval of men or women – I look for the approval of God. You also need to know that AiG supports Apologia, of which I haven’t been a part for several months.

  248. Mr. Wile, recently you wrote, ” I believe that Adam was literal, and I think evolution is a terrible idea scientifically. However, neither of them compromise Scripture.”

    You seriously don’t think that evolution comprises scripture?!?! How do you think Jesus would have responded to Pharisees if they were preaching out in public that Genesis is completely wrong and you evolved from apes?

    Don’t you understand that if Genesis, the foundation for the rest of scripture, is compromised then the rest of scripture is compromised?

    Did you know that the number one reason why teenagers are leaving the church is because the theory of evolution caused them to doubt the truth of the Bible? That is why Ken Ham has been stressing that we CANNOT compromise the Word of God. This is an extremely dangerous thing.

    What people don’t realize is that Dr. Ham isn’t trying to be offensive. He loves people enough that he is willing to speak the truth even if it means people getting offended and banning him from their conferences.

    In my opinion, its somewhat of a good sign what he said was offensive. That’s usually a sign that you are doing something right. Last I checked, Jesus and the disciples offended a lot of people, namely the Pharasees, when speaking the truth.

    I hope you can see why compromising scripture isn’t something that should be ignored.

    1. J. Jackson, Genesis is the foundation of Scripture, but a historical narrative interpretation of it is most certainly not. That’s why many incredible men and women of God throughout the history of Christendom did not believe the creation account was historical narrative but still produced incredible fruit. Thus, evolution clearly does NOT compromise Scripture. That’s why theistic evolutionists such as C.S Lewis, Alvin Plantinga, N.T. Wright, Alister McGrath, Thomas Jay Oord, and John Polkinghorne have done such great work for the Gospel!

      I agree that compromising the Word of God is terrible and should not be ignored. However, Dr. Enns does not compromise the Word of God, and neither do C.S Lewis, Alvin Plantinga, N.T. Wright, Alister McGrath, Thomas Jay Oord, and John Polkinghorne.