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17 Apr 2010 18:18
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Ken Ham

Psalm 11:3 (NIV) asks, "When the foundations are being destroyed, what can the righteous do?"


It is important to understand the relationship that the psalmist is making.  Society depends on moral foundations.  By a mutual agreement, which has sometimes been called a "social contract," man, in an ordered and civilized society, sets limits to his own conduct.  However, when such obligations are repudiated and the law collapses along with the order it brings, what option has the man who seeks peace?  The psalmist is looking at the fact that whenever the foundations of society are undermined, then what have good and righteous men done to prevent its impending collapse?


Some quite correctly quote the Scriptures in saying that Jesus Christ is the Foundation and He cannot be destroyed.  In the context in which this verse from Psalm 11 is used, we are talking about the foundational knowledge upon which our moral framework is built.  The foundational knowledge of Jesus Christ as Creator can be removed in people’s thinking, whether they are from Australia, America, England or any other society.  This action does not mean that Jesus Christ is not Creator; nor does it mean that He has been dethroned.  However, it does mean that, in those nations that abandon this foundational basis, the whole fabric of society will suffer the consequences.


If you destroy the foundations of anything, the structure will collapse.  If you want to destroy any building, you are guaranteed early success if you destroy the foundations.


Likewise, if one wants to destroy Christianity, then destroy the foundations established in the book of Genesis.  Is it any wonder that Satan is attacking Genesis more than any other book?


The Doctrine of Origins

The Biblical doctrine of origins, as contained in the book of Genesis, is foundational to all other doctrines of Scripture. Refute or undermine in any way the Biblical doctrine of origins, and the rest of the Bible is compromised.  Every single Biblical doctrine of technology, directly or indirectly, ultimately has its basis in the book of Genesis.


Genesis is the only book that provides an account of the origin of all the basic entities of life and the universe: the origin of life, of man, of government, of marriage, of culture, of nations, of death, of the chosen people, of sin, of diet and clothes, of the solar system … the list is almost endless.  The meaning of all these things is dependent on their origin.  In the same way, the meaning and purpose of the Christian Gospel depends on the origin of the problem for which the Savior’s death was, and is, the solution.


How would you answer the following questions?  Imagine someone coming up to you and saying, "Hey, Christian, do you believe in marriage?  Do you believe it means one man for one woman for life?  If so, why?"  Now, the average Christian would say that he or she believes in marriage because it is somewhere in the Bible, Paul said something about it,  and that adultery is sin and there are some laws laid down about it.


If you are not a Christian, consider these questions: Are you married?  Why?  Why not just live with someone without bothering to marry?  Do you believe marriage is one man for one woman for life?  Why not six wives?  Or six husbands?  What happens if your son comes home and says, "Dad, I am going to marry Bill tomorrow"?  Would you say, "You can’t do that, son!  It’s just not done!"  What if your son replied, "Yes it is, Dad.  There are even churches that will marry us."  If you are not a Christian, what will you say to your son?  Can you have any basis, any justification, for insisting that he should not have a homosexual lifestyle if he wants to?


When attempting to justify why they do or do not have a particular belief, many people today often have many opinions rather than reasons.  It is sometimes interesting to watch interviews on television news programs.  I recall one program on Australian television in which people were interviewed and asked to express their opinions concerning a government department's ruling to grant homosexual couples benefits similar to those received by married heterosexual couples.  Many of the opinions expressed went like this: "It’s not right."  "It goes against my grain."  "It's wrong."  "It's not normal."  "Why shouldn't they?"  "People can do what they like!"


After I had spoken on creation at one public school, a student said to me, "I want to write my own rules about life and decide what I want to do."


I said, "You can do that if you like, son, but in that case, why can't I shoot you?"


He replied, "You can't do that!"


"Why not?"


"Because it's not right," he said.


I said to him, "Why is it not right?"


"Because it’s wrong."


"Why is it wrong?"


He looked perplexed and said to me, "Because it’s not right!"


This student had a problem.  On what basis could he decide that something was right or wrong?  He had started the conversation by indicating that he wanted to write his own rules.  He was told that if he wanted to write his own rules, then surely I could write my own rules.  He certainly agreed with this.  If that was so, and I could convince enough people to agree with me that characters like him were dangerous, then why should we not eliminate him from society?  He then started to say to me again, "It's not right - it's wrong – it's not right."  If he had no basis in an absolute authority that sets the rules, it was really a battle of his opinions versus my opinion.  Perhaps the strongest or the cleverest would win.  He got the point.


Many people have the opinion that a homosexual lifestyle is wrong.  However, if it is just an opinion, then surely the view that homosexuality is acceptable is just as valid as any other.  The point is, it is not a matter of one's opinion.  It is really a matter of … what does God say in His Word concerning this issue?


Christians have high standards of right and wrong because they accept that there is a Creator and, as Creator, He has direct ownership over His creation.  He owns us not only because He created us but because as the Scriptures say, "…You are not your own; you were bought at a price…" (1 Corinthians 6:19-20 NIV).  God created everything; therefore, He has absolute authority.  Because humans are created beings, they are under total obligation to the One who has absolute authority over them.


The Creator Has the Right to Set Rules

It is in our own best interest to obey God because He is Creator.  What is right and what is wrong is not a matter of anyone's opinion but must be in accord with the principles found in the Word of God.  Just as a car designer provides a manual for correct maintenance of what he has designed and made, so, too, does our Creator supply His creation with all the instructions that are necessary to live a full, free, and abundant life.  God has provided His set of instructions, not out of some spiteful or killjoy design but because He loves us and knows what is best for us.


At one church, a very sad father came to me and said, "My sons rebelled against Christianity.  I remember their coming to me and saying, 'Why should we obey your rules?'  I had never thought to tell them that they weren't my rules.  I only realized this morning how I should have given them the foundations of God as Creator and explained that He sets the rules.  I have the responsibility before Him as head of my house to see they are carried through.  They only saw the Christian doctrines I was conveying to them as my opinions, or the church's opinions.  Now they won’t have anything to do with the church. They are doing what is right in their own eyes - not God’s."


Many parents do not realize they are not laying the proper foundation at home by not placing the emphasis on God as Creator.  When their children go to school, they are given another foundation: God is not Creator, and we are simply products of chance.  One cannot build a house from the roof down.  We must start from the foundation and build upon this.


Students in most of our schools are given a totally anti-Biblical foundation: the foundation of evolution.  This foundation will not allow the Christian structure to stand.  A structure of a different type - humanism - is the one built on this foreign foundation.


A Christian Worldview

Many Christians may be against abortion, sexual deviancy, and other moral problems in society, yet they cannot give proper justification for their opposition.  Most Christians have an idea of what is wrong and what is right, but they do not understand why.  This lack of reasons for our position is seen by others as just "opinions."  And why should our opinion be any more valid than that of someone else?


All these issues relate to an understanding of what the Bible is all about.  It is not just a guidebook for life.  It is the very basis upon which all of our thinking must be built.  Unless we understand that Book, we will not have proper understanding of God and His relationship to man and thus what a Christian worldview is all about.  That is why Jesus said in John 5:47 that we must believe the writings of Moses.


For instance, to understand why living as a homosexual is wrong, one has to understand that the basis for marriages comes from Genesis.  It is here where we read that God ordained marriage and declared it to be one man for one woman for life.  God created Adam and Eve, not Adam and Bruce!  One primary importance for marriage as stated in Malachi 2:15 is that God created two to be "one" so that they could produce "a Godly seed" (i.e. Godly offspring).  When one understands that there are specific roles, which God ordained for men and women, one has reasons for standing against any legislation that weakens or destroys the family.


Thus, a homosexual lifestyle is anti-God, and so it is wrong, not because it is our opinion, but because God, the Absolute Authority, says so. (See Leviticus 18:22, Romans 1:24, 26, 27; Genesis 2:23, 24.)


Consider the Issue of Abortion

I have been to Bible studies where groups are discussing abortion.  Many of the members give their opinion about what they think, but they give no reference to the Bible.  They say such things as: "…If [my] daughter were raped," or "if the baby were going to be deformed," or "if somebody wouldn't be able to cope with looking after the child," then, perhaps, abortion would be acceptable.


This is where our churches are falling by the wayside.  The idea that everyone may have an opinion devoid of a basis in Biblical principles has crept into our churches and is one of the main reasons why we have so many problems sorting out doctrine and determining what we should believe.  It is not a matter of autonomous human opinion about what is developing in a mother's womb – it is a matter of what God says in His Word concerning the principles that must govern our thinking.


Psalm 139, Psalm 51, Jeremiah 1 and many other passages make it quite plain that, at the point of conception, we are human beings.  Therefore, abortion in all instances must be viewed as killing a human being.  That is the only way of looking at the matter. It is time we woke up.  When it comes to such issues, we must take God’s view, not man's!


How Would You Answer?

Why do we believe in marriage?  Why do we promote the wearing of clothes?  Why are there rules?  Why are we sinners - what does that mean?  Why is there death and suffering in the world?  Why is there to be a new heaven and a new earth?


It is important to have reasons for what we believe.  In fact, God expects His children to be ready to give answers.  In 1 Peter 3: 15 (KJV) we read, "But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear."


Christianity, as distinct from atheism, is not a "blind" faith, but an objective one - our subject is Jesus Christ.  He does reveal Himself to those who come by faith believing that He is.


If reasons for the validity of the Christian's faith are not forthcoming, his witness is weakened and open to ridicule. Christians must be prepared to make an intelligent defense of the Gospel by arming themselves with knowledge and an understanding of the forms unbelief takes these days.  Many Christians do not know how to communicate the fact that God's Word and God's laws are true.  The net result is generations of wishy-washy Christians who believe in many things but are not sure why.  Personal witnessing can lose its impact if the Christian fails to share intelligent reasons for his faith.   This must be avoided, lest ridicule and dishonor come to the name of Christ.


Genesis Does Matter

God's Word (the infallible Word of the perfect Creator) has to be the basis of our thinking.  God, the Creator, is the One who provides the blueprint for happy and stable human relationships.  If His Word is heeded, He supplies the basis for a true Christian philosophy for every area of human existence - agriculture, economics, medicine, politics, law enforcement, arts, music, sciences, family relationships - every aspect of life.  In other words, there is a whole Christian way of thinking.  There are foundational Biblical principles that govern every area of life.  The Creator has not left His creatures without an instruction manual.


Concerned and convinced Christians must pray that the Lord will make clear to everyone the frightening direction in which man's rebellion is heading. Christians need to establish firmly the fact that God is Creator and that He has given us His law.  We need to recognize what sin is and what the results of sinful existence are.  We need to proclaim deliverance from sin through faith in Jesus Christ.


It is not easy for any human being to acknowledge that if there is a Creator we must be in submission to Him.  However, there is no alternative.  Man must recognize that he is in rebellion against the One who created him.  Only then will man understand the Law, understand what sin is, and understand the steps necessary to bring about the changes in individual lives that can ultimately effect changes in society.


The more our society rejects the creation basis and God's laws, the more it will degenerate spiritually and morally.  This has happened many times throughout history and should stand as a warning.  Let us consider a modern-day example.


Consequences of Rejecting God

Missionaries were sent to New Guinea because there were many so-called pagan and primitive people there.  The story is told of one cannibal tribe, which has since ceased to be cannibalistic.  Previously, men would race into a village, grab a man by the hair, pull him back, tense his abdominal muscles, use a bamboo shoot to slit open his abdomen, pull out his intestines, cut up his fingers, and while he was still alive, eat him until he died.  People hear that and say, "Oh, what primitive savages!"  They are not "primitive" savages; their ancestor was a man called Noah.  The Indians' ancestor was a man called Noah; the Eskimos' ancestor was a man called Noah; and our ancestor was a man called Noah.  Noah had the knowledge of God and could build ships.  His ancestors could make musical instruments, and they practiced agriculture.  What happened to those New Guinea natives is that, somewhere in history (as Romans 1 tells us), they rejected the knowledge of God and His laws.  And God turned them over to foolish, perverse, and degenerate things.


However, this same degeneracy can be seen in so-called civilized nations that cut people up alive all year long (one and a half million of them in the United States each year), and it is legal.  This is what abortion is - cutting up people alive and sucking out the bits and pieces.  The more our so-called “civilized” nations reject the God of creation, the more they will degenerate to a "primitive" culture.  Thus, a culture should not be interpreted according to whether they are primitive or advanced (as presupposed by the evolutionary scale), but every aspect of their culture must be judged against the standards of God's Word.


Accepting the God of Creation tells us what life is all about.  We know that God is the Lifegiver.  We know that life has meaning and purpose, and we know that all humans are created in the image of God and, therefore, are of great value and significance.  God made us so that He could relate to us, love us, and pour out His blessing on us, and so that we could love Him in return.