Not the Last Word

I have just read the articles in the CT Institute of August 12. The question is posed: Why can’t evangelical scientists agree? Answer: For the same reasons people can’t agree on eschatology, baptism, and a whole slew of other questions—imperfect knowledge.

An orthodox position on this is undesirable for many reasons, among them being the necessarily tentative nature of such positions. For my part, I am satisfied with a tentative position. Twentieth-century science is not necessarily the last word, and new knowledge will alter the outlook.


Jackson, Miss.

I strongly recommend all who are interested in the issue of evolutionism to read the important book Evolution: A Theory in Crisis, by Michael Denton. It is the work of an impeccably qualified scientist and specialist who, apparently, has no Christian axe to grind. Denton devastatingly demonstrates the impasse faced by scholars whose minds are controlled by the presuppositions of a fundamental faith in evolutionism.


Rydal, Pa.

Howard Van Till says “evidence drawn from independent concerns and a multiplicity of disciplines provides the theory of macroevolution with a degree of certainty beyond a reasonable doubt.” Van Till does not appear to be aware of a great deal of current research that refutes this statement by evolutionists of every persuasion. Macroevolution in its present form is a belief system with little supporting scientific evidence.


Boulder, Colo.

Revival By Boycott

Forget the Four Spiritual Laws. They’re too easily tossed aside. Forget friendship evangelism. It takes too long. Here’s introducing a new evangelistic strategy that is certain to succeed: “Boycott Evangelism.”

The power of the purse has removed pornography from many a shelf. Surely it can introduce Christ to many a heart.

Go to your local convenience-store manager and thank him for freeing us from Playboy and Penthouse. Then tell him he’s got one month—no, make it a week—to become a born-again, baptized, Bible-believing Christian, or he’s boycott target number one. Look for him at church on Sunday—tithing.

If in each community we could find just one Christian department store owner, car mechanic, dry cleaner, and so on, we could bless our fellow believers with our business and boycott the competitors. The result? Revival! Just like the Crusades—only no violence.

The strategy does not have to stop with evangelism. It can work with discipleship, too. Suppose the choir director is spotted attending a PG-13 movie. Boycott her! The pastor has missed a week’s worth of his daily quiet times. Boycott him! You get the idea.

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This strategy is not without sacrifice, however. If cooperation is not immediate, we might have to go for a time without, say, a VCR, or a new car, or a custom-made patio.

But the personal cost would be worth it. Imagine, a world full of born-again Bible believers who look, think, and act just the same. Comforting, isn’t it?


Kenneth Kantzer is right in saying cause and effect as we know it cannot have appeared in God’s personal creation of man or any origins. Furthermore, human perception is tainted due to man’s fall and cannot be trusted. God’s revelation is required to correct it. Science can only be used to uphold the Bible, not to correct it.


Louisville, Ky.

Is it not possible the anatomical and physiological similarities between, say, men and apes, is by God’s design because both must live within the same Earth ecosystem? Anatomical, physiological, and genetic similarities do not necessarily imply or point to evolutionary links, but may indicate what is a common requirement among living organisms to survive on planet Earth. Is this too obvious?


Grace Bible Church

El Toro, Calif.

Immediate help needed

Rodney Clapp’s editorial, “Remonking the Church” [Aug. 12], is interesting and pertinent. But may I make one observation: The article speaks of “the problems of the evangelical church.” It is obvious the same thing can be said of the so-called mainline churches. They all need and require immediate help!


The concept seems extremely dangerous for the church today. In fact, the initial monastic movement did not enhance, but rather hindered, the church. Renewed monasticism does not deal with the problem of sin but only serves as a coverup by shifting the burden of being holy onto a select few. It even makes holiness synonymous with asceticism. The only solution is for the church to deal first with the problem of sin and know again the cleansing from sin given by the power of the Holy Spirit.


Sterling, Wash.

I was taken aback by your reference to John R. W. Stott as one of “three thoroughly Reformed Christians.” In the way you use “Reformed,” I understand you to mean he is of a Reformed church or Calvinist tradition.

Having just last year returned from a two-year stint in England, I am aware that Stott is an Anglican clergyman, Rector Emeritus of All Souls Church in London, and an honorary chaplain to the Queen. Since the monastic tradition lives on in the Church of England, I think one could safely make the assumption that Stott would be quite familiar with monasticism within his own Anglican tradition. Therefore, I would understand him to be calling for an additional monastic order for and within the church.

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USS Enterprise

San Francisco, Calif.

Stott is an Anglican, but moves within the Reformed stream (as opposed to the Anglo-Catholic stream) of that tradition. Eds.

It is not enough to enlist only a select few to live a life of poverty and prayer. In order to be “a city that is set on a hill,” the whole Christian church needs to return to the example and teachings of our Lord.



McMinnsville, Tenn.

A garbled report

In the News article, “Jewish Missions Face Surging Opposition” [Aug. 12], I never said 40,000 to 100,000 Jews come to faith each year; somehow things got garbled. What I said was, “There are some who estimate the number of Jewish converts to Christianity to be between 40,000 and 100,000.” My estimate is 20,000 to 45,000 converts alive. Second, I never said anti-missionary activity is keeping Jews from deciding to believe in Jesus. If anything, the conduct of the anti-missionaries with their patent exaggerations is driving more Jews to consider the claims of Christ. Furthermore, I attributed the counter-missionary movement to the fact that “The rabbis know that there are many intelligent, sensitive Jews who are asking about the identity of Jesus and they realize that these Jews are ‘vulnerable.’ Hence, they want to head off what they see as being a landslide of conversions by undertaking missionary activity.” I would never say anti-missionary activity was ever effective in keeping people from Christ.


Jews for Jesus

San Francisco, Calif.

Protection from wrong influences?

Although “The Kitchen Classroom” [Aug. 12] related some interesting observations, it failed to mention the rationale for home schooling that I have encountered most often. The majority of Christian parents I know have opted for home schooling not only to “protect their children from the secular humanism being taught,” but to protect them from the negative influence of peer pressure. But shouldn’t we be helping and assisting our children come to grips with the reality and temptations of life within our public schools, rather than removing those temptations from them?

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The United Methodist Church

New Ringgold, Pa.

“The Kitchen Classroom” was a well-timed article as far as our family is concerned. We are planning to home school our 12-year-old for the first time this fall. As a former principal of a large (1,000 students) Christian day school, I found Paul Kienel’s comment that a home schooler is a “misfit” and “not in stride” very offensive. Were not Moses, Paul, and Jesus himself “misfits” in this world? If home schooling can help my son to be an “out-of-stride misfit” like these men, and more like our Savior, then I can’t wait to get started!


Overland Park, Kan.

Having been home schooled for eight years starting in the third grade, I would give anything to relive my life and have the privilege to live a normal twentieth-century childhood. As a child home schooler, I was extremely ashamed and humiliated whenever confronted by another child my age and asked where I went to school.

To me, home school advocates ignorantly recommend it as the ideal utopia. But what if the kid as an adult goes out into the competitive work force and only has half the education he needs to comfortably make his transition? He is great on the three R’s, but socially immature. I would be grateful if you could help me inform folks on the hidden dangers of taking their children out of the classroom, especially before they become sold on the home-schooling concept. You could prevent healthy, normal, and happy children from having to miss out on what life offers the ordinary child.


Tualatin, Oreg.

Letters are welcome. Brevity is preferred, and all are subject to condensation. Write to Eutychus, CHRISTIANITY TODAY, 465 Gundersen Drive, Carol Stream, Illinois 60188.

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