Picture of Pastor Gettys

Sermon delivered October 24, 2009 by Pastor Don Gettys

McDonald Road Seventh-day Adventist Church

McDonald, Tennessee

Biblical quotations are from the New International Version NIV unless otherwise noted. Divine pronouns and titles are capitalized.

In the Beginning God Created

Responsive Reading #719 (Hymnal)

(RealAudio available)

I would like to read a verse in the Bible.  It’s found in the book of Genesis.  Genesis, chapter 1, and verse 1.  The very first verse of the Bible.  I think most of you probably have this memorized.  It says, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. “  How many of you believe that?  I can see why people believe in evolution.  I understand that. The first person that God created was Adam.  The second person was Eve.  It got better.  But it has not gotten better since then.  I believe in creation.  I do not believe in evolution.

A gorilla in a zoo supposedly stood holding a Bible in one hand and a copy of Charles Darwin’s Origin of Species in the other hand.  He looked confused.  Someone asked: “What are you doing?”  The gorilla supposedly said, “Well, I’m trying to decide if I’m my brothers keeper or my keepers brother.” 

Charles Darwin formulated his theory of evolution 150 years ago this year.    Let’s talk about it.  Many respected scientists say we evolved.  Many respected Bible verses say we were created.  That’s a dichotomy.  You can’t have it both ways.  Today I do not want to criticize honest scientists who believe in evolution.  I simply want to share with you why I believe that God is our Creator.  I want to share why I do NOT believe in evolution. 

I’ve noticed that 100% of any sensible written information originates from a person with intelligence.  This is true if the writing is on the wall of an ancient cave or if it is found on a headstone in the cemetery or in your E-Mail this morning.  Even the graffiti on the railroad boxcar comes from human intelligence, although I am not sure how intelligent that person really was.  Think about your DNA.  The information encoded on the DNA which is inside every cell of every living creature is simply written information.  Dr. Walter Bradley said “Each and every cell in the human body contains more information than is contained in all thirty volumes of the Encyclopedia Britannica.”  Each cell contains that much information.  Who wrote that information?  “It’s certainly reasonable to make the inference that this isn’t the random product of unguided nature, but is the unmistakable sign of an Intelligent Designer.”

When our kids were quite small my wife and I purchased for them some plastic alphabet letters to play with.  The letters formed a large pile there on our living room floor.  They played with them, but never once in all their handling of the letters did our kids ever manage to spell anything.  They chose the letters at random.  They were lined up haphazardly, including upside down and backwards.  I was hoping for a child’s version of the Encyclopedia Britannica.  I do not honestly think that given enough time and chance that our young unguided kids could ever have produced one nice sentence.

Isaiah, chapter 40 verse 26 makes an interesting statement.  It says, “Lift up your eyes and look to the heavens.  Who created all these?  He who brings out the starry host one by one and calls each by its name.”  Even science has not done that.  “Because of His great power and His mighty strength not one of them is missing.”  He keeps track of every one.  He created the heavens.  He created the stars.  And He created everything that is.

To me, The theory of evolution contradicts the scientific law called the second law of Thermodynamics.  It says that  in any system, energy moves from order to disorder.  In simple language, things tend to break down.  Sounds like  Murphy's Law?!?!  The earth that God created is waxing old.  It is breaking down.  Life spans used to be near 1000 years.  My hair does not get thicker, it just falls out.  I wish my hair were evolving. 

Have you noticed that the Earth is in an exact position so that the average temperature is balanced between the freezing point of water (32 degrees F) and the normal body temperature of humans (98.6 degrees F). If the average temperature ever varied very far above or below these two extremes for very long, we could not survive. If the Earth didn't rotate every 24 hours but rotated every 36 hours the temperature at noon would be well over 100 degrees fahrenheit and the temperature at midnight would drop below freezing even in summer. How could you raise a garden?   We would probably have daily tornadoes, and storms due to the wild temperature changes. (Thinkquest.org)

Psalms 19 verse 1 says, “The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of His hands.”  God made the beautiful heavens. God makes beautiful babies.

Have you ever heard of the “Ductus Arteriosus”?  Before a baby is born  this bypass valve routes blood directly to the developing fetus’s extremities and not to it’s lungs.  At the exact moment of birth suddenly the blood must pass through the lungs to receive oxygen because now the baby is supposed to breath air.  In a flash, a flap descends like a curtain, deflecting the blood flow, and a muscle constricts the ductus arteriosus.  After performing that one act, the muscle gradually dissolves and gets absorbed by the rest of the body.  Without this split second adjustment, the baby could never survive outside the womb.  – Dr. Paul Brand.   Imagine a muscle designed to be used only once.  Did that evolve?  To me that shows God’s design.  Psalm 139, verse 14 says, “We are fearfully and wonderfully made.”

Do cars evolve?  Many, many centuries ago, all this iron, glass, rubber, plastic, fabric, leather, and wires came up out of the ground.  Holes evolved at just the right places, and the upholstery began to weave itself together.  After a while threads appeared on bolts and nuts and amazingly  each bolt found nuts with matching threads. And gradually everything sort of screwed together tightly in place. A little later some correctly shaped glass glued itself in the right places. And you see these tires?  They became round over the years.  And they found themselves the right size metal wheels. And they sort of popped on. They also filled themselves with air somehow. And the thing rolled under this tree.  Gas leaked into the tank.  And one day, many centuries ago, a group of folk were walking along  found this vehicle sitting under the tree.  And one of them looked at it and said:  I think we should call it 'automobile.'  Today, These little automobiles have an amazing way of multiplying themselves year after year, even changing ever so slightly to meet the demands of the public.  The process is called “automutations”. [Chuck Swindol]  Could that happen?  Cars don’t evolve.  Legos don’t evolve.  People don’t evolve.  All of that has to have a creator.

Who gave our tongue the flexibility to form words and a brain to understand them, but denied it to all animals?  Microsoft programmers developed complex codes to create Windows XP software.  Our genetic code is much more sophisticated.  It equips  the human body with an elaborate miraculous duplication system whereby it can automatically replicate itself.  Can a computer do that?  If you soaked a blank CD in a swamp along I-75, would Windows XP  eventually evolve?  If I immersed my copy of Windows XP software in that swamp for a million years, would it eventually become Windows Vista?   I doubt it.  Things don’t improve.  They go the opposite direction.

I believe in creation.  My church,  the Seventh-day Adventist Church, believes and teaches that we were created by the hand of God in seven literal 24 hour days forming a week identical in time to what we now experience.  If you believe in evolution, I will still respect you, but just know that our Seventh-day Adventist church is NOT the one for you.  We believe in creation, not even Theistic evolution.  It is critical that in these last days we stand firm in what the word of God teaches.  We’ve got to stand firm on the word of God.

Some people believe that, “Well, a day is a thousand years.”  Think about that.  How long is a day?  It’s 12 hours.  How long is a night?  It’s 12 hours.  We call that one day, but actually it’s two 12 hour periods of darkness and light.  Let’s suppose that the first day was a thousand years.  You would have how much light?  5 hundred years of light followed by 5 hundred years of darkness.  Would anything have survived? 

The first angels message includes a call to the world to worship God as our Creator.  Look at Revelation, chapter 14.  Verse 6 of Revelation 14.  It says, “And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people,  saying with a loud voice, ‘Fear God, and give glory to Him; for the hour of His judgment is come: and worship Him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters.’”  God wants, in the last days, a people who will worship Him as Creator.  That’s why you come to church.  To worship God.

Speaking of Jesus,  Colossians 1:16 says:  “For by Him all things were created.”  He created everything.  Verse 17.  “He is before all things, and by Him all things hold together.”  What is created is held together by Jesus Christ through the power of the Holy Spirit and the guidance of the Heavenly Father.

In these last days we have a clear choice.  Either believe the Bible and therefore believe in creation.... OR....reject the Bible and reject God and accept evolution.  The two are not compatible.  Evolution starts with chaos, basically.  You start with primitive little squiggly things which eventually evolve into humans.  It goes from ‘goo’ to ‘you’.  There is no perfect state from which to fall from, and so Adam and Eve did not have a fall.  That makes the plan of salvation worthless.  You can’t fall below the basement, or ground zero.  If there was no fall by Adam and Eve then there can be no salvation from the fall. This eliminates the need for Jesus’ death to save us from our sin.  Creation and evolution are not compatible.  Both demand faith, and I think it demands less faith to believe in creation.  I choose to believe in creation.  Mount Saint Helens did a lot to prove creation and to disprove evolution.

It bothers me to read in the Chattanooga Free Press (11-25-1996) a statement from Catholic Cardinal John O’Connor made in St. Patrick’s Cathedral where he said: that Adam and Eve may have been “some other form” than human and “It is possible that the first living creature was a lower animal”.  He is saying that humans possibly evolved from lower animals.   I would say that if he is right and if God created Adam in His image and Adam was an animal, then we are no more than animals and so is God!  Even the Pope indicates that it is acceptable now for Catholics to believe and teach evolution.

How does that synchronize with Ephesians 3:9 which says God created all things by Jesus Christ.  And how about  John 1:3  “All things were made by Him; and without Him was not any thing made that was made.”  How do you get that together?  Can we take scissors to the Bible?  Can we pick and choose?  

Where did life come from?  If you believe in evolution you might as well believe that one day millions of years ago a fully loaded garbage truck fell off of another planet and eventually impacted this earth ending up deep into the bottom of the murky water of a swamp deep in the heart of Africa.  From there all life eventually came.  Unbelievable!

Charles Darwin himself said, and I quote him, “To suppose that the eye could have been formed by natural selection, seems, I freely confess, absurd in the highest degree.”  Even he did not believe that that could ever take place.  Friends, the next time you see a baby, look carefully at those beautiful eyes and just see if you think those eyes evolved.

The Bible is very clear:  Psalm 33:9  “For He spoke, and it came to be;”   Life happened quickly,  He spoke and it was. Many evolutionists believe in a slow mutation.  Billions of years ago the humble amoeba became an invertebrate which became an amphibian and then a reptile, a quadruped, an ape and eventually a human being.  To me this means that as we look around at the world right now we should see everything in the process of changing into something just a bit higher than itself.  We should find millions of living half-developed fish trying to transform themselves into amphibians.  Millions of living reptiles that are halfway to becoming birds..  I don’t find it.   Where are the millions of ancestors of highly formed life forms?  The truth is found in the Bible.   Genesis 1:25 says each was made after his KIND.   Each remains in its own species. Everything pretty well stays within a well defined boundary where God put it.  There is a lot of micro evolution or adaptation, but no complete crossover from species to species.    Copperhead snakes do not become birds.  It could be that some Democrats and some Republicans did mutate from the humble leech.

Seriously, I believe that we all came from the hand of God!  Do you believe that?  Genesis 1:1 “In the Beginning God created the heavens and the earth.”

I’d like to conclude by reading one verse back here, the fourth commandment.  You know why we keep the Sabbath as Seventh-day Adventist Christians?  To commemorate God and His love for this world and His creation of this world.  Come back here to Exodus, chapter 20 and I would like to begin reading one commandment.  Verse 8.  “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.  Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work,  but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the LORD thy God.  In it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor the stranger that is within thy gates.”  Why?  Verse 11 tells you why.  “For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day, and hallowed it.”  It would be my opinion that there never would have been an athiest or an evolutionist had the Sabbath always been kept, because every time you keep the Sabbath, you are commemorating creation.  Seven days.  Where do we get the seven day week from?  You don’t get that from the rotation of the moon or the sun or anything else.  That comes direct from creation.

I like creation because it answers the questions of life.  Where did I come from?  Why am I here?  And where am I going?  It answers those questions.  I am not some haphazard arrangement of molecules that were colliding together in a swamp.  I am a being that God loves and that He created from His hand that I might more fully reflect His image in my life.  That’s why we exist.  I believe we were made by a loving hand of God.  We are hand-made and I praise God for His love.  I want to sing about the mighty power of God in my life because He made me.  I hope you believe in creation and if you do I hope you will love the Creator because He made you to love Him.

Dear Father.  You have loaned us life.  Our lives are borrowed and we pray that we will return them to You with interest.  That we will honor You and uplift Your cause.  Be good neighbors.  Be good citizens of Your kingdom.  Dismiss us with the joy of Jesus Christ in our life, our home, and in all that we do and say and think.  We pray in Jesus, our Creator’s name.  Amen.

 Hymn of Praise: #26, Praise the Lord, You Heavens Adore Him
Scripture: Responsive Reading #719
Hymn of Response: #88, I Sing the Mighty Power of God

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McDonald Road Sermon transcribed by Steve Foster 11/14/09