Dr. R. Albert Mohler, Jr., serves as president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary — the flagship school of the Southern Baptist Convention and one of the largest seminaries in the world.
Recently, he has spoken at the annual Ligonier Ministry Conference on the topic ‘Why Does the Earth Look So Old?’, where he argued for the so-called ‘young earth theory’ and the creation of the world in sever 24 hour days (!!!), based on a literalist, fundamentalist, reading of Genesis 1-2. (You may watch HERE to his presentation. You may also read HERE a transcription of this speech.)
Obviously, Mohler, and anybody else for that matter, is free to opt for fundamentalism. However, as Scot McKnight rightly argues in his commentary on this presentation, a reason of serious concern is Mohler’s attempt to demonise those who disagree with him. McKnight says:
I am concerned that he dismisses the evangelical “elite” as compromised and compromising. I am concerned that he makes it a battle rather than a conversation. I am concerned that he… casts it as a fight to the death.
I am sure that those who are aware of the aggressive ‘intellectual’ habits of fundamentalism will not be surprised. Yet, this sounds quite outdated. It is a sort of deja vu. We feel like we have traveled in time at the beginning of the twentieth century, to the failed project of original fundamentalism. I am afraid this is not a sign of strength, but one of despair, if not one of historical amnesia.
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The BioLogos Forum hosts two responses to Mohler’s speech. You may read HERE the response of Darrel Falk, the President of BioLogos Foundation (established by Dr. Francis Collins, the famous Christian biologist who coordinated the charting of the human genome). You may also find HERE the response formulated by Karl Giberson, a science-and-religion scholar and active participant in America’s creation/evolution controversy.