In His Fear
The following article by Rev. John A. Heys appeared in the Jan. 15, 1960 edition of the Standard Bearer.
The improper use of freedom of speech, which is afforded us in this land of ours, places upon those who speak the truth the solemn obligation and calling to speak it boldly and repeatedly. When speech is multiplied to undermine the faith of God’s people, the efforts to counteract this spread of the lie must also be doubled and trebled. In His fear we may not be silent. For that reason we will add to what we wrote last time about this evil of relegating the Word of God to a secondary place, so that it must be reinterpreted to harmonize with “scientific” findings of those who hate and deny that Word of God.
Last time we made mention of the fact that to reappraise the stand of the Church throughout the ages in regard to the length of the creation days and the age of this world in which we live, in order to harmonize our stand with the discoveries and theories of sinful, atheistic men, should not stop there but by all means reappraise also the Church’s stand in regard to the wonder of the incarnation and of the resurrection of Christ from the dead. Is it scientific and scholarly to deny the one miracle because of certain findings of men and then disregard utterly the findings of these men as far as other wonders are concerned? Is it reasonable to apply human reason to the one work of God and to say that we need not apply it to another work of the same nature? And we asked, What do we gain by such tactics? Have we really exalted the Lord by such doings? Have we demonstrated before the eyes of men His majesty and divinity? In all this are we showing that reverence and respect for Him as GOD that gives us ourselves the confidence of doing this in His fear?
There are so many other things that can be added to the above. And no doubt in process of time these also will be treated as man becomes bolder in his unbelief, and in the wrong freedom of speech it will be published and be brought more widely to our attention. The thoughts are already there and must be there. Having left the line of the truth in the matter of the creation days one must either retract and honor the Word of God above the theories of men â€•which by the way they cannot prove, as we wrote before in another connection, for they know nothing of conditions before the Flood â€• or they must continue to proceed step by step, faster and faster until by human reason they have also “explained” the incarnation away and the resurrection of Christ from the dead. You are, perhaps, aware of the attempts of higher criticism to deny the miracles of Jesus. Jesus’ feeding of the five thousand with five loaves and two fishes is explained as an application of Jesus’ teachings rather than as an actual miracle of feeding and nourishing so many with so little Jesus taught the people to do unto others as they would have them do unto them. He taught them that it is more blessed to give than to receive. And so, having broken the bread and given it to His disciples, they gave it to those on the edge of the crowd. Each man, applying Jesus’ teachings, passed his piece on to the next man and so on till the other edge of the crowd where the disciples picked it up. There were twelve baskets full of fragments left! O, indeed, but that was not literally true. Twelve is a symbolic number of God’s kingdom and covenant, and so it simply means that His teachings were received and put into practice by the whole audience. So the miracle of Christ becomes the work of man instead. Or again, that wonder of Jesus walking on the sea in the midst of the storm. Really, He did not do that. It can be demonstrated scientifically that this is impossible. But He was walking on the shore. To the disciples it looked as though He were walking on the water. Let us be reasonable about such things!! So the unbeliever who poses as a student of the Scriptures will “explain” the Word of God so that it harmonizes with the limits of the human mind. How amazing! How utterly void of the fear of the Lord, to limit the Almighty and Infinite God in His works to the limits of man’s mind. If man’s little mind cannot solve the problem of carbon-14, of the formation of coal, of the Grand Canyon, the location of Niagara Falls so far up the gorge and the like, then he will question the wisdom of the infinite God. He will put a limit on God’s mind and accuse Him of not being able to express in word and writing the actual fact of the creation of the world. God’s freedom to speak intelligently and correctly will be questioned. And where will the end be? Or shall we put it mildly? God purposely speaks in veiled language so that only the big minds of the world can understand Him. The truth of Scripture is only for the learned; and those poor illiterate people of the Old Dispensation including Adam and Eve, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob died believing the lie. They died believing that the world was created in a week of days that were each only twenty-four hours long, while actually they were billions and billions of years long. And Adam died with the mistaken notion that he was the first man while actually there were many, many thousands before him. And Moses, though he was skilled in all the knowledge of the “universities” of Egypt also died with the mistaken notion. For when he wrote the first five books of the Bible and gave Israel the law from Mount Sinai, he, too, thought of days in a different way than God actually meant it. The fault is not with God, the fault is with man who had not advanced yet to this age of brilliant minds and bold hearts who dare to relegate the Word of God to a place where it must be harmonized with man’s theories. The fear of the Lord is not the beginning of knowledge (but see Proverbs 1:7), but this is knowledge and this is wisdom: Listen to the theories of unbelieving men as to how the things God created and as to the ways in which He works and then interpret His Word so that it does not deny the “findings” of the unbeliever.
And indeed, continuing on that path of reappraising the church’s stand in regard to the length of the creation days and the age of this world will bring man to question the way and the time of the appearance of man upon this earth. We understand that there are already voices raised in circles that have not as yet discarded the Bible, even though they have questioned the infallibility of parts of it, and so opened all its pages for the same questioning, voices that question already whether Adam was the first man upon this earth. Moses could have been wrong on that score too. Of course! If, the half-life of carbon-14 is five, 568 years more or less, so that in that period of time half of the given amount of this material that is found in a certain substance will have disappeared and then in another 5,568 years half of the amount left again disappears and in 5,568 years half of this amount disappears and so on till all is gone, then man must have been here a long, long time, and the sixth day must have been millions of years long. And is that the next step in this process of evolution? We mean this process whereby those who say that they believe that the Scriptures are the Word of God develop and finally evolve also into this denial of what the Word of God says about the creation of man.
To our great regret we misplaced the article we had read in which one of the scientists of our land either discovered or posited the theory that the radiation of a nuclear blast alters the age of carbon-14l. We do not recall whether the article stated that this added to the length or shortened the age of this material; but the point is the same: Some scientists concede that given different circumstances than are our lot at present carbon-14 will be altered as to the length of its life. And we repeat, no man living can prove that conditions before the Flood are the same as those of the world we know today. Whether that is the solution to the problem or not makes no difference, there is a solution even though we with our little minds and limited span of years cannot discover it; and we keep the Word of God as indeed the word of God, and we seek to harmonize all scientific findings with it and not that Word with all scientific findings.
Otherwise, what will we say presently to the achievements of the biochemist, Sidney W. Fox? In a simple four step process he has synthesized thousands of “spherules’ which show cell-like organization so that each one even includes membrane and a nucleus. These he produced out of simple inorganic chemicals which according to the theories of the evolutionists existed billions of years ago on the lifeless earth. Man waits now to see whether he can produce life in a test tube. Mr. Fox intends to take one more step and by this fifth step demonstrate that these cell-like spherules can divide and reproduce. If that can be achieved by further treatment upon these spherucles man has discovered (?) how life began on this earth. Well, let us assume that Mr. Fox is able to do that, let us assume that God is pleased to lead him to find a way to induce these spherucles to undergo some process that in a crude way at least resembles division and reproduction, must we quickly revise the Church’s stand throughout the ages in regard to the creation of life by God and the creation of man? Will we have to harmonize the Scriptures with this new theory of man as to the way in which life began on this earth? Why not? If the carbon-14 theory demands (? j it why not each and every other theory of man?
And so one can continue. What about the Flood? Reason would show you that all these animals two elephants alone have a tremendous demand for food and man could not live in an ark of that size together with all the food required for a year and ten days! And if the six days of creating are each millions of years long, how come the seventh which still belongs to the creation week suddenly becomes twenty-four hours? It must have been twenty-four hours and there surely could not have been according to that other theory that dares not make these days anything else than twenty-four hours each, but puts long periods between each day there could not have been a long period between the sixth and seventh days. For then the testimony of Scripture in Genesis 5:5 is in error. Adam must have been one million nine hundred and thirty years old when he died rather than nine hundred thirty years old.
Nay, let us approach this whole matter in His fear. Let us bow before Him as the wise,
almighty God that He is. Let, us not bow before the theories of sinful men and give their word the preference. And indeed “science” is so indefinite about these things. Some say billions and others millions and no one knows! In His fear let us rather say to all these things that are problems for our minds, There is a solution; there is an explanation even though I cannot see it; but I am convinced that the evil doer; the unbeliever who denies God does not have the answer. In His fear I will let God’s Word speak. I will not deny Him that freedom of speech; and I myself will in the true freedom of speech declare HIS praises.