1. Questioning The Faith of Christians Over This Issue Whether it’s the age of the earth, if the seven days were 24-hour periods or climate change, none of these issues are salvation issues, they aren’t even necessarily theological issues, but scientific issues with theological implications. The exception being the seven days, that should be understood in the context of the ancient near-east an the historical-grammatical method of interpretation. I’m happy to let the reader take their position as they may, the important thing is to not pretend someone is going to hell because their seven days don’t follow the Gregorian calendar.
2. Buzzwords and “Gotcha!” questions.
We are here to win souls, not just arguments. Regurgitated, rehearsed lines and responses are not the best way to engage someone.
3. Pretending you’re a Scientist or an expert in a certain field because you read a few articles on the topic.
This should be self-explantory, don’t pretend to be an expert in a field where you’re not.
4. Citing Shoddy Sites
We don’t need a convincing case of dinosaurs living with humans from dinosandhumanstotallyarebffs.com or iamgullibleandbelieveanythingagainstthemainstreamscientificopinion.com, cite proper academic sources to back up your claims.
5. Using Bad Arguments
“If humans evolved from apes, why are there still apes?” “How do explain the sunrise?” “Tide goes in Tide goes out, you can’t explain that” and other low-energy questions should be avoided at all costs. You aren’t going to convince the average Joe when you show a blatant misunderstanding the most basic features of their beliefs.
6. Accusing Christians who disagree with you for selling out to the world.
Disagreeing with someone on the conclusion regarding empirical data doesn’t necessarily mean someone is a sell-out or are on some bandwagon. Perhaps they’ve seriously considered this issue and their implications and find the conclusions thereof to be coherent. Get to know not just what someone believes but also why they believe what they do.
7. Using History to Disprove Science
History is not meant to address scientific claims, so appealing to the historicity of a belief is irrelevant to a self-correcting system.
8. Bully Christians Into Believing Your Interpretation
Rhetoric like “You don’t submit to scripture if you don’t believe the Earth is X years old” is harmful to our brothers and sisters and when you treat the age of the earth as an essential doctrine in which the Christian faith once delivered to the saints stands or falls. You’re standing on the quicksand of dogmatism that the rock of our salvation isn’t on.
I know it’s a joke in Reformed circles to look to a fortune cookie for wisdom but while eating at an asian buffet, there was a fortune that perhaps you’d like to hear. Regardless of the source, it has a point that you should take into consideration. It said “Speaking the Truth is a loving act.” This is my intention.