I’m in Oklahoma City, OK at the National Christian Homeschool Basketball Championships this week.
My 17-year-old son Daniel is the point guard for the Summit Sports Club varsity team, a Christian homeschool basketball team. There are about 300 teams — boys and girls, junior high through high school — at the Championships of which about 70 are boys varsity teams. This is the 17th year the tournament has been held.
It’s warm, shirtsleeves weather down here in Oklahoma with lots of pick-ups, horses, and southern accents. There are also more than a few illegal aliens running around, all the dirt is red, and Avon apparently sells Diesel cologne throughout the city.
My wife, 4 youngest kids, and I drove down Saturday and Sunday. We stayed overnight at a motel in St. Clair, MO along I-44. The lobby had a warm hunting lodge décor with a fire in the fireplace. The motel clerk with a trim goatee and crisp shirt and tie warmly welcomed us, offering extra linens, free coffee, hot chocolate, popcorn, and newspapers. One of his selling points was a free ample breakfast (milk, juices, waffles, oatmeal, cereal, breads, boiled eggs, biscuits & gravy) the next morning.
Moving into our room, we noticed a Scripture calendar adorning the wall and a recent Focus on the Family magazine. A Bible was open on the dresser with this verse highlighted: In peace I will both lie down and sleep, For Thou alone, O LORD, dost make me to dwell in safety. (Psalm 4:8)
When my wife went back for the popcorn and hot chocolate, she couldn’t help overhearing a fascinating conversation between the congenial host and four outdoorsmen on whom he was working his hospitality charm.
Woodsmen: Do you have a bar, or a lounge?
Host: No, I wish we did. I sure wish we did have one. Best thing to do is to go down here to the gas station and get yourself fixed up at that convenience store. They have whatever you need.
Woodsmen: Funny there’s no lounge.
Host: Well, this is a Christian place, but of course, once the door’s closed, you can have whatever you want in the privacy of your room.
Woodsmen: What do you mean, it’s a Christian place?
Host: It was started by a Christian lady, and the people who run it are very devout Christians, and they put the Bibles out, open all over the place; you’ll see that. For me, I can’t get past the first chapter of the Bible, my own self.
Woodsmen: What is the first chapter?
Host: Genesis 1! Creation! “In the beginning God created the earth,” and all that. But I’ve just had too much science. I can’t go along with all that kind of stuff.
Woodsmen: Yeah, guess that’s not what we’re supposed to believe these days.
Several thoughts popped into my head when my wife related this story to me.
First, the motel owner provided an attractive hospitality service at a reasonable price with a positive Christian witness. “Above and beyond” amenities added to the motel’s ambiance. Despite the dapper host’s current belief system, he did not disparage the owner’s beliefs.
Second, the woodsmen’s reactions clearly show we’re living in a post-Christian culture. They had hardly any understanding of Christianity and did not even know what the first chapter of the Bible was about. But they did realize that origins is an issue of belief more than evidential proof, for they said, “Guess that’s not what we’re supposed to believe these days” regarding the host’s reference to Creation. This is much deeper understanding than that of many self-identified intellectuals.
Third, it’s not science (literally, knowledge) of which the motel clerk had had too much. Rather it was a particular interpretation of the facts of which he’d been persuaded. His worldview (way of looking at the world) had led him to believe a false explanation of origins.
Fourth, it shows how important Genesis is. Your understanding of Genesis determines your response to the rest of the Bible, including its message of salvation through Jesus Christ in the New Testament. The host couldn’t accept the Bible, because he couldn’t believe Genesis. He understood Genesis to be saying that God created everything in six days, but he couldn’t believe that because of his scientific mis-training. Why should he believe the rest of the Bible, if he “knows” Genesis is false?
It’s clear that with many people we encounter in daily life, like the motel clerk and the woodsmen, we have to start with Genesis to explain who God is and why He is relevant. Sometimes, like with the motel clerk, a lot of deconstruction work has to be done before reconstructing a valid worldview. With people like the woodsmen, we have to start with Genesis to introduce who God is. But the “woodsmen” may be more reachable with the truth.
I wonder if the woodsmen used the Bible in their room to learn what Genesis said. Maybe God will use this conversation to begin leading them to the truth.
Soli Deo Gloria.
Subscribe – Don’t miss future blog posts!
Click the sidebar’s “SUBSCRIBE” button to follow the
Bible-Science Guy Blog. You’ll automatically receive
new posts free by email. Click SUBSCRIBE NOW!
©William T. Pelletier, Ph.D.
“contending earnestly for the faith”
“destroying speculations against the knowledge of God”
(Jude 1:3; 2 Cor 10:4)
Tuesday March 11, 2008 A.D..
“Thou alone art the LORD. Thou hast made the heavens, The heaven of heavens with all their host, The earth and all that is on it, The seas and all that is in them. Thou dost give life to all of them And the heavenly host bows down before Thee.” (Nehemiah 9:6)