Ken Ham, James McGrath and other shenanigans

Ken Ham (public domain)

Yesterday, I posted a photo of Answers in Genesis-U.S. founder and president Ken Ham, one of the most prominent and “successful” young-earth creationists in the country.

The photo was later reposted on the blog of Dr. James F. McGrath, a friend and supporter who shares GOE’s mission of showing that someone can passionately love and seek the God of the Bible without being forced to believe in children’s fairy tales.

Much to my surprise, the silly picture (here’s the link again — see how silly it is?), prompted a response from K-Ham on his Facebook page, which in turn led to an avalanche of troll attacks on McGrath’s blog, presumably by AiG supporters.

The debate over the silly picture continued today, with McGrath posting a detailed and well-reasoned critique of Ham’s Facebook post. McGrath, Clarence L. Goodwin Chair in New Testament Language and Literature at Butler University, correctly pointed out that is Ham, not him (ooh, wordplay!), who is misrepresenting the Bible in this case.

From McGrath (the parable he references is from Luke 16:19-31):

The parable does not accuse the rich man of having failed to accept that God created the universe, in any particular time period. We can be fairly sure that the Jewish rich man believed those things. His failure to listen to Moses, of which Abraham accuses him in the parable, was a failure to show concern for the poor.

Even with my limited resources, I am ashamed that I have not done more to help the poor. Even on an educator’s salary in the United States, I am in the top 1% globally. (My pastor recently shared with me a link to the Global Rich List. You can click through, type in your annual income, and find out where you stand among human beings living today.) If I were Ken Ham, wasting enormous amounts of money promoting misinformation about the Bible and science, I hope I would not have the audacity to arrogantly proclaim myself to have “obeyed Moses” in the sense that the parable of the rich man and Lazarus talks about.

For the record, here’s our take.

Tyler Francke