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Book Jacket

Trade Paperback
224 pages
Feb 2004
Broadman & Holman

Something From Nothing

by Kurt Wise & Sheila Richardson

Review  |   Author Bio  |  Read an Excerpt


Part 1

The Why, How, and When of Origins Study


What, another book to read? Many of you are currently in high school or college, where much reading is required. The demands of work, church, and social activities probably don’t leave a lot of margin for additional reading projects. Perhaps your parents, youth leader, or other well-meaning adult gave this book to you. Yes, some novels are fun for recreational reading, but this book? It isn’t an academic book and it isn’t a novel—part of it may not even be very easy to read. “Couldn’t I wait until it comes out in video?” could well be your natural reaction.

Seriously—this book just may contain some of the most important information you’ll ever read (apart from the Scriptures). It is a book about origins, which may answer many of your questions concerning evolution, fossils, dinosaurs, and the Flood. But the goal of this book is not predominantly to answer questions. There are currently many anti-evolutionary books on the market that critique Darwin and the naturalistic worldview. This book has a deeper purpose.

Part 1, three chapters long, will give you that purpose. It will establish the framework and the reason this book was written. The section deals with the how, why, and when of origins study. Later, part 2 will address some of the fascinating questions concerning origins. You may be tempted to go straight to part 2 instead of dealing with the “whys” and “hows,” the more philosophical aspects of the subject. But try to resist. The rewards that will result from your perseverance may surprise you.

Chapter 1

A Young Person Goes to College: The Why of Origins Study

Most of you who are reading this book have arrived at a point in life when you are actively thinking about your future. Is there life after high school? Questions abound: Do I want to go to college? Where do I want to go to college? What do I want to study? What will I be doing ten years from now?

Let us pose one more question. Where will you be with the Lord ten years from now? Will He have His rightful place in your life? You may at this point answer “Sure, church activities are very important in my life. I study the Bible. I go to church. I pray. My friends are Christians. Of course God will remain an important part of my life.”

News flash! No matter where you go to college—or even if you go to college—a major challenge to your faith will confront you in the near future. The pressures to abandon your walk with God will be huge. Will you stand? How can you stand?

This book is about origins—the beginning of all things. Strange as it may seem, the study of beginnings—the universe, the earth, life, and mankind—is intimately related to the question of your standing firm in your faith.

As you read this book, we ask you to put yourself into the shoes of a young man we will call Scott (or if you are a woman, substitute Scott with Susan). His story (actually a true story) is very likely to be your story as you encounter life in our twenty-first-century culture. Many of you will share his experience, regardless of whether you are in college or in the workplace.

First, an introduction. Scott grew up in a middle-class home in the South. He attended church and Sunday school all his life, and was taught all the stories: the creation of the world, Adam and Eve, Noah and the ark, and of course, Jesus and the salvation He offers. Scott attended a Christian high school, graduated with honors, and now wants to become a doctor. As he enters a prestigious Southern university, he is confident in his faith. Of course the Bible is true! Of course God created the world! Scott knows he belongs to Jesus. He begins his collegiate career full of anticipation and the desire to live a godly and productive life.
On Scott’s first day in chemistry class, the professor introduces the course to the group of five hundred students assembled in the auditorium. He begins by saying, “Those of you who are Christians might as well forget your faith right now because you can’t be a Christian and an evolutionist, and we know that evolution is a proven fact.”

Hmmm, Scott thinks, This is supposed to be chemistry? He is somewhat taken aback by the professor’s anti-Christian fervor, but he is even more concerned as he looks around the room and sees that a majority of his peers are nodding in agreement with the professor’s claim.

In biology class he is quickly told that the entire discipline of biology is built upon evolutionary theory. Life came about by chance and natural law, and developed from a single cell up through a chain of organisms culminating with man. The evidence seems well-reasoned and is presented in a powerful way in his textbook and lectures. The professor is extremely intelligent, surely more intelligent than his parents and Sunday school teachers? And the other students seem to be buying it . . . more nodding heads.

And so it continues. Scott takes the required humanities class, which declares man the measure of all things. No higher power is necessary. He learns that man invented religion. He hears that abortion is simply a way all animals (of which man is included) can get rid of unwanted offspring. The idea that homosexuality is a lifestyle that should be considered an equal option to heterosexuality is promoted enthusiastically. Christians who oppose or who dare to mention the word sin are labeled as intolerant bigots. Physics worships natural laws and declares that these laws “just happened.” Truth is loudly proclaimed to be a relative thing—and the only absolute truth allowed is that there is absolutely no absolute truth. The Bible, he is told, is an ancient collection of myths and folklore.

If you were Scott, what would you be thinking right now? Scott is beginning to have some doubts. This “evidence” he is hearing from all sides looks pretty impressive. Besides, all these smart people are ridiculing him and his faith. Even his friends are joining in. Scott feels more and more isolated from his world. He wants to do well in school and even impress his professors. He wants to be liked and accepted by the other students.

What should he do?

What would you do?

Is it any wonder that statistics indicate that approximately one out of two professing Christian students entering college walks away (at least temporarily) from his faith?1 Scott’s story is multiplied by thousands each year at colleges and universities throughout the land.