Keeping the faith Down Under: Former CMI convert shares his story

In the end, evolution just made more sense to Luke Simpson (photo by H. Raab, courtesy Wikimedia Commons).

In the end, evolution just made more sense to Luke Simpson (photo by H. Raab, courtesy Wikimedia Commons).

Editor’s note: In a break from our last couple testimonies, we hear from an individual who was submersed in an young-earth creationist worldview, but chose to keep his Christian faith even after learning of the untruths he had been indoctrinated in.

We knew Luke Simpson was a man after our own heart after he told us of how he had been banned from Ken Ham’s Facebook page. That’s sort of a rite of passage for theistic evolutionists these days. Anyway, we hope you like his story.

When I first became a Christian, I struggled with evolution vs. creationism. A group of scientists from an Australian young-earth creationism organization known as Creation Ministries International came to a local church and put on a seminar. The feeling of reassurance hit me, so I converted to YEC without really thinking about it. It was less about the science and more because it seemed an easy scapegoat that would let me keep my faith and fend off doubt.

I started to apply the teachings of Answers in Genesis’ and CMI’s articles in conversations with evolutionists. But the more I studied their arguments or researched scientific articles in order to refute evolution, I would always come up with problems — especially with experiments disproving the claim “evolution can’t produce new genetic information.” I searched creationist websites for refutations of these valid experiments but found no results; the same was true with certain transitional fossils.

YEC proponents’ poor arguments and constant brainwashing, arrogant attitude and degrading of notable scientists just annoyed me so much that I wished to investigate the opposing position. I actually jumped back and forth for a little stage, because I was ridiculed and felt insecure even though I was beginning to understand that evolution was right. But I matured intellectually, following my brain objectively rather than my feelings.

I read Ken Miller’s book “Finding Darwin’s God” and, in the first chapter, it ripped through all the foundations holding my young-earth creationism beliefs together. By the end of the book, I was a convinced evolutionist and maintained my faith.

I went on later to read books by Richard Dawkins, Francis Collins, Simon Conway Morris, Stephen Jay Gould and more, plus documentaries, and unlike the creationist arguments and worldview, it was consistent, rational and easily explained by the evidence available. And I found it fascinating.

Now, I have a massive grudge against the young-earth creationism viewpoint for making me think I can’t be a Christian if I accept evolution. But I should add that I still love and care for young-earthers; we are brothers and sisters in Christ, and I want to help them have a better understanding of our scientific origins.

I nearly became an agnostic, due to the criticism I faced, but I found people and churches who were more aware and accepting of evolution, and even embraced it themselves. I have now met many such Christians along the way, and it has encouraged me to keep trusting Jesus.

Evolution was once a stumbling block, but now it is an element of my faith that — for me — confirms God’s glory.

Luke Simpson lives in Sydney, Australia, and is studying chemistry at the University of Technology.

Readers, do you have a story like Luke’s? If so, and you don’t mind sharing, email it to Tyler Francke for consideration on GOE’s Testimonies page. The American church needs to hear from you.

Category: Latest Developments, Science, Testimonies

  • http://nwrickert.wordpress.com/ Neil Rickert

    I grew up down-under. The unique flora and fauna were a constant reminder of the antiquity of the Australian biosphere. It must be very hard to be a YEC. I can understand Old Earth Creationist – that at least fits with what one sees. But the evidence against young earth creationism is all around. And yet Ken Ham comes from Australia.

    My congratulations to Luke, for recognizing the clear evidence.

    • http://godofevolution.com/ Tyler Francke

      Hey Neil, thanks for reading. I always appreciate your thoughts. I thought that was interesting as well — that Luke’s country of origin is the same as that of CMI and AiG. You probably already know some of the nastier parts of the background of those two organizations?

  • Jon

    VERY similar to my story, right down to reading Ken Miller’s book.

    • http://godofevolution.com/ Tyler Francke

      That’s cool! I only wish stories like yours and Luke’s were more common!

  • Rick Allen

    God bless brother Luke. “The fear of man lays a snare, but whoever trusts in the LORD is safe.” Took me a while not to be afraid of rejection from both sides. Took me until I was 29 to realise Jesus would have me even though i’m a scientist ;)

    • http://godofevolution.com/ Tyler Francke

      Hey Rick! Good to hear from you. It can indeed be a difficult road for those of us who refuse to “take sides” on a controversial topic like this. I’d love to hear more of your story sometime if you’d be interested in sharing :)

  • Chiefley

    If anyone is struggling with their faith as a YEC, I might recommend a facebook group called Celebrating Creation by Natural Selection. This group consists of religious people from a wide range of faith traditions, professional scientists in a number of fields, Bible scholars and a few very understanding atheists who respect the faith tradition of others.

    We would like to think we are a haven for those whose faith has been threatened by their possible rejection of their YEC beliefs. We have a few respectful YECs, but quite a few recovering YECs. And rather than have you reject your Christian beliefs entirely, I invite you to our group to see how many faith devout faith traditions find no conflict with modern science.

    Consider that some 1.8 billion Christians belong to denominations whose doctrines accept the findings and theories of modern science, including theories of origins, yet believe that God is the author of all things.

    Good luck and Christ’s Peace

    • http://godofevolution.com/ Tyler Francke

      Thanks for this! I, too, am a member of this Facebook group, and it has my wholehearted support! It’s an excellent community! Here’s a link.

  • Alden Smith

    I come from YEC church I love my church, but its gets annoying because we are forcing kids to decided between faith and science and lot of them will choose science rather than both

    • http://godofevolution.com/ Tyler Francke

      It’s sad how often I hear stories like this. And, of course! Why would any kid choose both when their church expressly conveys to them that “both” is not an option?

      • Alden Smith

        It is. But my church is filled with Doctors, Lawyers and business men its not that they are are dumb its just they believe in the Bible more. Its the Church of Christ. I believe literancy but thats why I’m a OEC slash Theistic evolution

        • Geoffrey Jones

          Is that the Campbell/Stone based Church of Christ? That’s what I’m a part of at the moment. I don’t get into discussions about origins and it doesn’t seem to come up anyway. I figure it’s better to leave it alone.

          • Alden Smith

            I think so