Is Genesis History? A Review

The scenes were magnificent. The production values were excellent. But did the movie “Is Genesis History?” answer its central and actual question?

“Is Genesis History?” was produced by Compass Cinema and hosted by Dr. Del Tackett of The Truth Project. In his introduction, Tackett asks several questions: “Did God create the world in a few days or billions of years? Is mankind descended from apes or did God create us instantly in his image. Was there a global flood that destroyed the earth or is that a myth? In other words, is Genesis history?” Tackett works to answer the main question of the film through interview segments with scientists and thinkers on various subjects dealing with creation.

Most of the segments deal with a sub-heading of the film’s central question. From the beginning of the film, the producers focus on the flood in the days of Noah. The flood, not Genesis 1-2 seems to be the answer to geological and biological phenomenon that we see in the world. This is a view known generally as catastrophism, the idea that Earth’s past has been shaped by sudden, violent, and unusual events. Also known in Christian circles as “flood geology,” it was introduced in the early 1900s by self-described “geologist” George Mcready Price. From the Grand Canyon to dinosaurs and the fossil record, the movie asserts that the flood explains them all. In fact, catastrophism is necessary to the film. According to paleontologist and biologist Kurt Wise, “…you can’t use the present to judge the past, to understand the past.”

The producers of the film definitely have a perspective which forms the foundation for all the assertions of Tackett and the interview segments. Young-earth creationism is the worldview perspective of the producers, which they call in various interviews the “Biblical view.” States Hebraist Steven Boyd, “The Biblical text is not compatible with the standard conventional paradigm.” This “Biblical view” is set in opposition to the naturalistic view, which embraces “evolution” and “millions (or billions) of years.” This is standard YEC fare, however, it is a false dichotomy. There are several options for Bible-believing Christians to take regarding origins. The producers do a disservice to Bible-believing Christians who disagree with their perspective by using this false dichotomy.

I found several other problems in the interview segments from the film.

Ad hoc and unfalsifiable assertions.

· Danny Faulkner, an astronomer, believes God used an accelerated process to bring light from distant stars and galaxies to Earth.

· Geologist Steve Austin indicates that although there are several theories about the formation of the Grand Canyon, the one that he likes is “catastrophic erosion by drainage of lakes,” which eroded the canyon in weeks.

· George Grant, a pastor, sees the universe as being “created for a twenty-four hour day.”

Cherry-picking.

· The Flood, according to paleontologist Marcus Ross, shows that the fossil record is one of “life’s attempt to survive an event that ultimately consumed them all.” Why, then, do we not find modern animals in those fossil layers?

All of this stems from an inability to accept evidence from general revelation, evidence which should be reliable since God is its Creator. The evidence from general revelation is such that no unbeliever will have an excuse (Romans 1:20).

“is Genesis History?” is, ultimately, disappointing. The film should be retitled “Was the Flood History?” or “Catastrophe Made the Earth What It Is Today.” If I were going to make a presentation with the title “Is Genesis History?”, I would direct the viewer to the very first verse of Genesis which tells us about the beginning of time and the scientific evidence for an absolute and fine-tuned beginning of the universe which leads to the conclusion that there was a Person who created the universe and inspired the book of Genesis.

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