Spending priorities

What should Congress cut?

According to a recent Pew Research Center poll, American Evangelicals are most likely to favor reducing funding for the following items in the federal budget:

  • Aid to the world’s poor
  • Unemployment
  • Environment
  • Health care
  • Scientific research
  • Aid to U.S. poor

In each of these cases, Evangelicals were more likely than non-Evangelicals to favor spending cuts. At the same time, Evangelicals were considerably more likely than non-Evangelicals to favor increases in military spending.

I’m all in favor of some serious cuts in the federal budget, but what does it say about American Evangelicalism when the number one item we would slash funding for is “aid to the world’s poor?”

Note: my question is not, “Should government be involved in humanitarian foreign aid?” but more along the lines of “Why do Evangelicals view governmental humanitarian foreign aid as of such a low priority?”

Article in Christianity Today: Polling Evangelicals: Cut Aid to World’s Poor, Unemployed

Grace and Peace

Poll: Understanding Genesis 1

Welcome readers from Skepchick. I invite you to look around; a good place to start would be my Best of The GeoChristian page, which is only partially complete.There are newer posts beneath this one.

Ever since eighteenth century geologists suggested that the Earth might be older than 6000 years, Biblical scholars have attempted to reconcile the Scriptural record with the geological record. Many have taken a closer look at what the text actually says and doesn’t say about the origin of the Earth and biosphere, and come to the conclusion that there are valid alternatives to the traditional “literal” interpretation that would require a young Earth. Many other Christians have concluded that all such efforts are futile, and that the Biblical record is incompatible with modern geological thinking. They believe that modern geology somehow has the story of Earth’s history wrong. Others have used this apparent conflict between geology and the Bible as a reason to reject the Bible altogether.

What is your preferred way to understand Genesis One? I have the poll set up so you can pick up to three answers.

I am aware that some of the positions I have listed as “Old Earth,” such as the analogical days interpretation and framework hypothesis, actually make no statement on the age of the Earth. It could be young, it could be old. But it is pretty rare for a young-Earth creationist to hold to these interpretations, so I have labeled them as Old Earth.

No poll is perfect, so feel free to add your comments.

I’ll have this poll up for the entire month of February.

Grace and Peace



If one removes, the swarm of “Genesis is a myth” votes that came from the Skepchick blog, the poll results look more like this:

19 votes (13 percent) — Young Earth
30 votes (20 percent) — Old Earth — not committed to an interpretation
22 votes (15 percent) — Old Earth — day-age
5 votes (   3 percent) — Old Earth — gap theory
21 votes (14 percent) — Old Earth — analogical days
26 votes (18 percent) — Old Earth — framework
5 votes (   3 percent) — Old Earth — revelatory day
11 votes (  7 percent) — Old Earth — cosmic temple inauguration
9 votes (   6 percent) — Christian, but Bible contains errors

Unfortunately, I don’t know what percentage of my readers were voting for “myth” before the inundation, but from previous polls and comments, it seems that around 10% of my readers are in the “skeptic” category.

It looks like a pretty broad variety of viewpoints among the readers of The GeoChristian.

October poll results

Thank you to the 65 people who took my October GeoChristian poll. The question was, “Which statement most closely matches your position on creation and evolution?” Here are the responses:

  • 15% — I am a Christian and a young-Earth creationist
  • 23% — I am a Christian and an old-Earth creationist who rejects most of biological evolution
  • 37% — I am a Christian and an old-Earth creationist who accepts natural causes for the origin of life and/or biological evolution as the best explanation for the diversity of life (theistic evolution).
  • 9% — I am a Christian and do not have a strong opinion about evolution or the age of the Earth
  • 0% — I am not a Christian but believe there was some sort of supernatural involvement in the origin of the universe, life, or the diversity of life.
  • 15% — I am not a Christian and believe that naturalistic explanations are completely adequate to explain the existence of the universe and life.

A little bit of analysis shows that:

  • 85% of my readers consider themselves to be Christian. This is consistent with the September poll results, which had 86% of my readers indicating they were Christians.
  • 15% of my readers are not Christians. I certainly welcome these readers, and appreciate their input into the discussions.

Grace and Peace

October poll — creation and evolution

P.S. A reader pointed out that someone like Michael Behe (Darwin’s Black Box) would probably fall somewhere between 2 and 3. If that is where you are at, you will have to make a difficult choice. My apologies.

September poll results

Thank you to the 66 people who took my first poll, which was a survey of the faith and education of the readers of The GeoChristian. The results of that poll are:

  • 48% — I consider myself to be a Christian and have a college degree in science
  • 38% — I consider myself to be a Christian and do not have a college degree in science
  • 8% — I consider myself to be a non-Christian and have a college degree in science
  • 6% — I consider myself to be a non-Christian and do not have a college degree in science

A little bit of shuffling reveals that:

  • 86% of my readers consider themselves to be a Christian
  • 14% of my readers consider themselves to be a non-Christian
  • 56% of my readers have a college degree in science
  • 44% of my readers do not have a college degree in science

I am delighted to have both Christians and non-Christians reading my blog, and I will continue to seek to write on topics that will be of interest to both groups. Likewise, I hope that what I write is useful both to those who have a strong background in science, and to those who do not.

My thanks to all of you.

Grace and Peace

September poll — who reads The GeoChristian?

I’m averaging a little over 300 visitors per day at The GeoChristian, and am curious to know more of the make up of my audience. This is my first attempt at polling on my blog; I think you can vote only one time.

I am still seeking employment as either a geoscience or geospatial professional (or both combined in one position). Click here for a brief resume, or go to Ten reasons why you should hire me.