A clear view of origins is important for the same reason that a foundation is important to a building. Christianity is established in the book of Genesis chapter one, with “In the beginning God created . . . .” This one statement affirms creationism and opposes any view that embraces naturalism (the belief that the universe started without the intervention of God and/or proceeds without His involvement).
One’s views regarding creation reflect whether we believe the Word of God or call its truthfulness into question. As Christians, we must differentiate between creationism and naturalism; that is, how are they different? Which one is true? Is it possible to believe in both creationism and some form of evolution? These questions can be answered by defining what biblical creationism is and how it affects our fundamental belief system.
The importance of biblical creationism is that it answers the fundamental questions of human existence:
1. How did we get here? Where did we come from?
2. Why are we here? Do we have a purpose, and what is the cause of all or our problems? Are the issues of sin and salvation important?
3. What happens to us when we die? Is there life after death? A person’s stance on origins is important because Genesis is the foundation for the rest of Scripture, in which these questions are answered. Genesis has been likened to the root of a tree in that it anchors Scripture. If you cut the root from a tree, the tree dies. If you discredit Genesis, you remove the authoritative value of all Scripture.
Genesis 1:1 says, “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” This gives us three great truths foundational to biblical creationism and the Christian faith. First, God is one. This stands in contrast to the polytheism of the pagans and the dualism of modern humanist philosophy. Second, God is personal and exists outside of creation. This is in contrast to pantheism, which sees God as immanent but not transcendent. Last, God is omnipotent and eternal. This is in contrast to the idols that people worship. God was before, is now, and always will be—He created all that is out of nothing by His spoken word.
This answers our creation question of beginnings, but what about our second question: why are we here?
Biblical creationism answers the question of the condition of the human race. Genesis 3 deals with the fall of man but also gives us the hope of redemption. It is important that we understand we are unified in one man, Adam—a literal, real-life person. If Adam is not a literal person, then we have no plausible explanation for how sin entered into the world. If mankind, in Adam, did not fall from grace, then mankind cannot be saved by grace through Jesus Christ. First Corinthians 15:22 says, “For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive” (NJKV). This parallel—Adam is the head of the fallen race, and Christ is the head of a redeemed race—is important to our understanding of salvation. “Therefore, as through one man’s offense judgment came to all men, resulting in condemnation, even so through one Man’s righteous act the free gift came to all men, resulting in justification of life. For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so also by one Man’s obedience many will be made righteous” (Romans 5:18–19, NKJV).
We must look to biblical creationism as the basis for our value system. The creation narrative must be factual and not just a myth, for, if it is fictional, then the values it imports are man-reasoned, subject to change as man “evolves,” and therefore invalid. The basis of the modern-day conflict between science and religion (especially Christianity) is the assumption that (atheistic) science is fact and religion is merely superstition and myth. If this were true, then our Christian values are just that—values for Christians with no relevance in the secular world.
The last basic question for mankind is what happens to us when we die? If man is merely part of an un-designed and accidental universe and simply changes from one kind of matter to another when he dies, it means we have no soul or spirit and this life is all there is. This belief leaves us with only one purpose in life: to follow the plan of evolution, which is survival of the fittest.
Christianity, on the other hand, presents us with a moral good established by a transcendent, supernatural Being. The moral nature of God sets an unchanging standard that not only promotes a better life for us personally but also teaches us how to love others and ultimately bring glory to our Creator. This standard is exemplified by Christ. It is through His life, death, and resurrection that we find purpose for this life and hope of a future life with God in heaven.
Biblical creationism is important because it is the only system that answers the basic questions of life and gives us significance greater than ourselves. It should be clear to all Christians that creationism and naturalism are mutually exclusive and stand in opposition to one another.