I get called all sorts of names by some of my young-Earth brothers and sisters in Christ: Liar, Compromiser, Rabid Theistic Evolutionist, So-Called Christian. I am accused of listening to the hissing of the serpent, of following Baal rather than Yahweh, and of denying the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ.
I am sorry that my old-Earth beliefs bring up such anger. I am seeking to do my best to understand God’s Word and God’s world, and to communicate in love. I am certain that I fall short in all three of these efforts.
Here’s an applicable article from The Gospel Coalition: “10 Reasons to Be Humble Toward Opponents.” I will highlight a few items:
1. Because God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble (1 Pet. 5:5). — May I not be more zealous for my agenda than for God’s glory and the building up of my brothers and sisters in Christ.
2. Because we are sinners too. — I am certainly a sinner, and at times love the argument more than I love my brothers and sisters in Christ who disagree with me.
6. You aren’t the issue; God’s glory is. — I don’t have to win. I don’t have to defend myself. I do have to submit to God and love my neighbor.
7. A humble response to attacks will motivate church members to join you. — I could bulldoze the typical young-Earth creationist who comments on the Facebook pages of young-Earth organizations. What will be accomplished if I do so?
8. Your enemies may be right… about something. — There are young-Earth arguments that I do not fully know how to answer. There are old-Earth arguments that I might get wrong. My young-Earth brothers and sisters have valid insights into the Scriptures. I might be getting some things wrong about what the Bible says about God’s creation.
9. Humility will adorn the gospel for outsiders to see. — I try to make it clear that I consider myself to be on the same side as my young-Earth brothers and sisters in Christ. I find myself defending people like Ken Ham from charges of heresy (Ken Ham is not a heretic). The unity we have in Christ far outweighs those things that divide us.
I am sure there are things from numbers 3, 4, 5, and 10 in the Gospel Coalition article that would also apply to me as I interact with those who disagree with me.
Grace and Peace