church President Ted N.C. Wilson forcefully asserted that life has existed on
the Earth for only a few thousand years, not millions of years, as he opened an
educators conference in Utah on Friday, and he said teachers who believe otherwise
should not call themselves Seventh-day Adventists or work in church-operated
spoke to a crowd of mainly teachers at the start of a 10-day international conference
on the Bible and science in Las Vegas, Nevada. Later Friday, the group traveled to St. George, Utah, a location chosen
for its access to three geological sites that the 443 participants will explore
between conference sessions on archaeology, geology, paleontology, and biology.
teachers on the campuses of Seventh-day Adventist academies, colleges and
universities, and leaders in God’s church … hold firmly to a literal recent
creation and absolutely reject theistic and general evolutionary theory,”
Wilson said in his keynote speech. “I call on you to be champions of creation
based on the Biblical account and reinforced so explicitly by the Spirit of
Read President Ted Wilson's entire speech here.
pointed to Bible passages such as Genesis 1, 2 and Psalm 33:6, 9 and the
writings of Adventist Church co-founder Ellen G. White to reject a popular
teaching that each day in the biblical creation week might have lasted millions
of years, thereby making the world much older than the 6,000-odd years that Creationists
believe have passed since the Earth was formed.
popular teaching, which mixes the biblical story with Darwin’s theory of
evolution, has crept into some Adventist schools in recent years and prompted,
in part, a decision by the Adventist Church to start organizing Bible and
science conferences in 2002.
his speech, Wilson quoted from White’s book
to Ministers and Gospel Workers
: “When the Lord declares that He made the
world in six days and rested on the seventh day, He means the day of 24 hours,
which He has marked off by the rising and setting of the sun.”
much plainer could it get?” Wilson asked.
said that the very name “Seventh-day Adventist” pointed to a literal six-day creation
because it would make little sense to commemorate a seventh-day Sabbath if the original
Sabbath had lasted for years instead of 24 hours.
one does not accept the recent six-day creation understanding, then that person is
actually not a 'Seventh-day' Adventist since the seventh-day Sabbath would
become absolutely meaningless historically and theologically and most of
our Biblically based doctrines centered in Christ and His authoritative voice would
become meaningless as well,” Wilson
against associating with scientists, humanists and “some who claim to be
Seventh-day Adventists” who have embraced an evolution-based creation theory.
not believe them nor participate in this manipulation of Biblical truth
regarding creation and the visible commemoration of creation — the Sabbath,” he
told conference participants. “In essence, evolution is not a science.”
said educators should support creationism from the heart or do “the honorable
thing” and resign.
is that important to God’s ultimate mission,” he said.
Zinke, an Adventist theologian, businessman and a member of the conference's planning committee,
explained in an interview that the implications of misinterpreting the Bible
could run deep and seriously harm a person’s relationship with God.
scriptural understanding of God makes it possible for us to have a closer
relationship with Him than if we have a false concept of God,” Zinke said.
remarks mirrored White’s writings about Cain and Abel, the first offspring in the
Bible. White said that Cain and Abel both thought they were worshiping the same
God with their sacrifices, but God rejected Cain’s sacrifice because Cain did
not worship the true God.
the Utah conference is rooted in the Bible, it is also about science and will include
presentations with fossils, rock formations, and recent archaeological findings
that King David’s name was carved on the entrance to city gates, offering
scientific evidence that the Israelite king is more than a Bible story.
seemed impossible to prove even 50 years ago, but now they are finding that the
Bible can be relied upon to guide you in archaeology,” Zinke said.
participants, who include representatives of Adventist schools around the world
as well as church leaders, scientists and a few doctoral students, will go on
three field trips for a close-up look at evidence supporting the belief that
the Earth is a relatively young 6,000 years old: to Virgin River Gorge, a long
canyon located between St. George, Utah, and Littlefield, Arizona; the Grand
Canyon in Arizona; and Utah’s Zion National Park, which has a 15-mile canyon plunging
up to half a mile deep at some points.
V. Chadwick, a geologist and professor at Southwestern Adventist University,
said scientists have to rely on faith no matter whether they support creation
we evaluate the data, we see things that are problems for creationists and we
see things that are problems for evolutionists,” he said by phone ahead of the
conference. “No one can claim that they believe one more than the other because
it is not transparent, it leaves the possibility of choice.”
has devoted his entire career to finding scientific evidence that supports
creationism and has authored 28 publications in peer-reviewed journals. He was to present some of his latest findings at the conference.
Zinke, who also was presenting at the conference, said he hoped that educators would take the latest scientific
research supporting the young Earth viewpoint from the conference and use it to
strengthen their own faith and that of their students.
hoping to enrich teachers so that they’ll be well informed in the classroom and
that they’ll understand the importance of portraying a biblical worldview to
their students, helping them understand how that impacts various disciplines,
including science, and how it impacts their personal lives and their commitment
to God,” he said.