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A Critique of John Stear’s
“No Answers in Genesis” Website

© 1999 J. Sarfati & Creation Ministries International.  All Rights Reserved.

A s some astute signatories to his guestbook have pointed out, John Stear’s “No Answers in Genesis” is short on substance but long on rhetoric against creationists. Not surprising really, since there is no hard evidence that particles have turned into people by themselves. All the evolutionists normally do is cite trivial examples of “change” which generate nothing new, and hope that people won’t realise that they haven’t proven evolution in the slightest, nor have they challenged creation. Now, unlike Stear’s scurrilous little site, the Answers in Genesis–Australia [now Creation Ministries International] site majors in issues, not personalities. But I can certainly play Stear’s little game of ad hominems, beginning with Stear himself.

Q: Who is John Stear anyway?

A: His beloved Australian Skeptic journal describes him as a “retired public servant” (Skeptic 18(4):74, 1998) or “retired bureaucrat” (17(3):74, 1997). What—do you mean that although he pontificates about science, he is not a scientist himself? Sir Humphrey Appleby, eat your heart out! (Of Yes Minister fame for those deprived of decent comedy.)

Q: What does John Stear really think about religion?

A: Surely, with posts on his site purporting to show that evolution and religion are compatible, he must have a benign attitude towards it. But no, in a book review entitled “Religion as a Health Hazard” he rails against “religion” in general and Christianity in particular for their “deleterious effect on society” (Skeptic 17(3):60, 1997).

Also, when a fellow skeptic, John Snowden, an agnostic, pointed out the many shortcomings of organised humanism, our dear John was quick to defend the humanistic faith. In the process he referred to something called the “Christian myth” and “the hazards of religion” and made this absurd statement: “Christianity has some deleterious effects on the well being of society” (Skeptic 18(2):52–53, 1998). Never mind the deleterious effects of atheistic evolution-based Communist and Nazi regimes, who have killed more people this century than all the religious wars in history put together.

[Stear, on his website, responded by actually claiming that Stalin and Hitler were Christians, a common assertion on atheistic websites. But this is either incredibly deluded or simply dishonest. Certainly, Stalin trained in a seminary, but used Darwin as an excuse for apostasy. By becoming a Marxist, by definition he was an atheistic evolutionist (Marx wanted to dedicate his book to Darwin, and Marxist dogma is anti-theistic). And Stalin’s atrocities were committed as a staunch atheistic evolutionary communist.

The evolutionary and anti-Christian beliefs of the Nazi regime are documented in The Holocaust and evolution, and Was Hitler a Christian? shows what Hitler really thought of Christianity. That is, when Hitler wasn’t trying to curry favour with the evolutionized liberal clergy (note that it’s no accident that the Holocaust happened in the country where liberal theology was invented). More recently, the Rutgers Journal of Law and Religion is publishing recently rediscovered extensive documents by one senior member of the US prosecution team at the Nuremberg Trials, General William Donovan, showing that the Nazis planned to exterminate Christianity. Similarly, many ardently atheistic evolutionists, like Stear’s hero, Ian Plimer, Australian Humanist of the Year (1995), pretend not to be anti-Christian, or even claim to be “practising Christians”, when trying to recruit compromising churchians to the anti-creationist cause.

We should also remember that atrocities committed by professing Christians were completely contrary to the teachings of Christ, while the atrocities of 20th century Nazi and Communists were totally consistent with evolutionary teaching.

To underline the incredibly harmful effects of atheism/scepticism on society, consider the international Humanist values and ethics convention Australis2000 held in Australia. One of the speakers was one Vern Bullough, the Humanist pedophile advocate and an editor of Paidika: The Journal of Paedophilia, an absolutely horrifying example of how low organized humanism can stoop.]

What’s happening here? Are there really two John Stears, both members of the Australian Skeptics, one having a benign view of Christianity and the other a rabidly anti-Christian bigot? Is it a case of “Will the real John Stear please stand up?”

Q: Where does John Stear really stand on the compatibility of evolution and Christianity?

A: On his website, John is concerned not to give the impression that evolutionists are anti-christian bigots, by citing a few Christian evolutionists. But in the Skeptic 16(2):62, 1996, Stear wrote: “If evolution is fundamentally correct, then there was no Adam; no Adam, no fall; no fall, no atonement; no atonement, no reason for Christ to have died on the cross. If Christ died for no reason then he was not divine and Christianity has no basis in fact. Is there really any need for scientific proof in order to debunk Christianity?” He goes on to fulminate against monotheism, and to chide Skeptics that it “could be seen by some as less than honest” not to attack religion directly.

Again, are there really two John Stears with diametrically opposed views?

It is tempting to speculate that John got a good telling off by some of the Skeptic hierarchy for giving the game away. “Don’t you realise that it’s terrible strategy, given that blatant atheism still repulses most people? Much better to follow Lenin’s strategy of cultivating “useful idiots”, who can promote our cause without realising that they are undermining their own position. We skeptics need people in the Church to convince Christians not to believe their own book, all the while under the impression that evolution is no threat to Christianity. Eventually we can tell them that evolution really is diametrically opposed to Christianity, and have a good laugh about their gullibility. But for now it’s too early to reveal our strategy (obvious as it should be to any discerning Christian), so take it easy, John, please!”

Profiles of some other Australian Skeptics and others who feature on John Stear’s site

Barry Williams
The editor of The Skeptic, who admits that he has no scientific qualifications whatever. He was a ‘conversationalist’ on ‘Secular Sex’ at the Australis2000 conference mentioned above—the one with the pedophile advocate—listed directly under the notorious euthanasia advocate Philip Nitschke.

“Sir Jim Wallaby”
He lists no scientific qualifications either. One claim to fame is his lightweight article attempting to rebut my defence of fitting all the animals on the Ark. Rather, his attempt, touted by the Skeptics as really convincing, is positively flyweight, showing that my layman’s article was out of his depth.

Ian Plimer
He is a mining geologist. It could be a case of “Would the real Ian Plimer please stand up?” Although both Plimers are Skeptics and anticreationists, one has claimed to be a “practising Christian” (letters on file) and to have a benign attitude toward Christianity. The other one was Australian Humanist of the Year, 1995. He wrote a nasty anti-creationist book called “Telling Lies …” that even other Skeptics thought was hysterical, dishonest and plagiaristic, and made some of the most amazingly crass scientific blunders — see "Plimer’s Bloopers" on the CMI website, and other articles in the Ian Plimer Files: There is a point-by-point rebuttal by CMI which the Skeptics have yet to answer despite empty promises. There is also a publicly published report by an independent committee of Christians with prominent public reputations, completely discrediting Plimer on ethical grounds. See also More nonsense from Professor Plimer and Facing the Fire: 20 Anniversary Documentary on the Plimer–Gish Debate..

Plimer has another claim to infamy — on a University of Newcastle letterhead, he said of an American creationist scientist who was vising Australia: “ … you would surely have noticed an entourage of young people (principally boys) accompanying [him] and who continually touched him.” (the creationist always travelled with his wife or the couple he was billeted with). But considering the involvement of the Skeptic Editor at the Humanist Australis2000 conference with the pedophile advocate, one must wonder if the Skeptics aren’t repudiating Plimer’s comment because they don’t actually consider it an insult. It is interesting that the Australian Skeptics have been publicly invited, from the podium at their tenth annual convention in Melbourne, to dissociate themselves from such gutter tactics, as well as the outright lies (and blatantly practising deception against creationists, which Plimer brags about in his book Telling Lies …) which Dr Carl Wieland documented on overhead at the time. They were put on notice that a refusal to do so would be a reason for AiG to refuse to debate them. Stear has also been confronted with this, but has also refused to repudiate such outrageous behaviour. Such a refusal indicates that they clearly think the end (combatting creationism) justifies the means (deception, lies and slander), so how can anyone be sure that anything else they write is not deception for the good of the “cause”?

Plimer seemed to go underground after losing a big court case (which was not connected with the then AiG-Au — see Ian Plimer Files). He even inexplicably failed to show on a radio program a little while later, where he was due to appear with Dr Wieland. Did he “wimp out” when he found that the government-funded Australian radio and TV network, the ABC, for a pleasant change decided to have someone on with him who might show up his duplicity? (Usually the ABC seems so biased that many conservative Christians say it stands for “Anti Biblical Christianity”, or similar).

But recently he surfaced at a Skeptics meeting in Brisbane, where some Answers in Genesis Ph.D. scientists were invited guests at a panel discussion. Despite all his previous hand-wringing about being bullied at creationist meetings, this was the first time any of us had ever laid eyes on him! And Plimer still continued his pretence of being concerned about the damage to Christianity caused by creationists (who actually defend the book they profess to believe!).

In April 2001, Mr. Keogh complained about being mentioned in this article. Keogh protested his being associated with the conduct of his colleagues, yet refused to repudiate their behaviour, claiming his involvement to be merely a hobby. —TW
It is most interesting that one Greg Keogh, Australian Skeptics Webmaster (and an atheist—what a surprise), amazingly accused the first edition of my critique of the “No Answers in Genesis” website of being “hate mail”. But this is such rank hypocrisy—although I “tell it like it is” about the Skeptics, I have never said (and never will say) the sort of scurrilous things the Skeptics have, e.g., I’ve never accused a leading Skeptic of pederasty (although Keogh evidently condones such a false accusation against creationists, since he has not dissociated himself from Plimer’s behaviour).

Of course, biblical creationists are committed to belief in God’s written Word, the Bible, which forbids bearing false witness. Atheistic skeptics like Plimer have no such inhibitions. I’m not saying that all atheists lie, or all professing Christians tell the truth, but that atheists certainly have no objective moral basis for refraining from scurrilous lies (or rank hypocrisy). Of course, some skeptics respond indignantly: “I don’t need to believe in God to avoid lying” but this is not the point. The point is, without a transcendent moral Lawgiver, where is the real basis for claiming that lying is objectively morally wrong, rather than just a personal feeling which evolved because it conferred some survival value to our alleged ape-like ancestors? The challenge is: logically deduce the proposition “Lying is objectively morally wrong” from either the propostion “God does not exist” or “Humans are evolved pond scum”.

Colin Groves
An anthropologist, so anything he says about radiometric dating should be taken with a large grain of salt. Also, he ardently supports Plimer’s book, which says something about his inability to judge good science or good ethics.

Richard Dawkins
Eugenicist and fanatical atheist and , and master teller of “just-so” stories to explain the origin of biological complexity. For some refutations, see “Climbing Mt. Improbable”, “Up A River Without A Paddle”, “Weasel Words”, “Atheist with a mission (critique of Dawkins’ God Delusion)”, “Misotheist’s misology: Richard Dawkins attacks Michael Behe”.

Anthony Garrett
A physicist and theistic evolutionist, who has chided the Skeptic for claiming “Australian Skeptics takes no position whatever on religion”, yet marketing blatantly atheistic and anti-Christian books (letter, The Skeptic 13(2):50). A (non-)response from Barry Williams followed, incredibly limp even by his standards, purporting to justify it on the grounds that the books sold well (now what does this say about the Skeptics?).

Ron Tolle
A mailman, not a scientist (and it shows), who has far too much time on his hands.

Frank Zindler
A leading light in the American Atheists. Isn’t it amazing how so many atheists love evolution and appear to be threatened by the massive scientific evidence for creation? Zindler took the atheism side in an Atheism v. Christianity debate in front of 7,500 people at Willow Creek Community Church, USA. His opponent, Dr William Lane Craig, tore his ignorant arguments to shreds so effectively that many atheists in the audience realised that Zindler had lost the debate. It was presumably to this debate that John Snowden was alluding when he wrote that a representative of the American Atheists, whom he used to support, lost a public debate to a “fundamentalist” (Skeptic 18(3), 1998).

Ken Smith
A retired mathematician, who attends a Baptist church, and former joint Skeptic of the Year for a book he co-edited attacking creation and mocking the Bible. Hardly a peep from him when his professed religion is attacked in the Skeptic, but he hardly ever misses the chance to write some inflammatory ridicule about those who actually believe the Bible. For example, Plimer (remember, a former Australian Humanist of the Year), in p. 10 of Telling Lies …, gave “special acknowledgement” to Smith among others, and Smith later praised this Bible-mocking book to the skies. But one would think that a retired mathematician would have realised that p is an irrational number rather than terminating after five decimal places as Plimer claimed. But then, if Smith had pointed out this schoolboy-level mistake by Plimer, then one of Plimer’s favourite Bible-mocking arguments would collapse, and Smith never seems to want to undermine a skeptical attack on the Bible! (for answers to this argument, see Does the Bible say pi equals 3.0?)

Recently his wife Helen stood unopposed for the position of President Elect of the Queensland Baptist Union. Normally such an election would be a formality. However, many delegates were sent a letter which presented nothing but the fact that Ken Smith was given “special acknowledgement” by a leading humanist in his Bible-mocking book, was a high-profile member of the Skeptics, plus some of the grossly anti-Christian articles produced by this organisation without a whimper of protest from Smith (again, we are very grateful to John Stear for providing such good ammunition). [I point this out because the Skeptics have claimed that this was “a grossly defamatory letter” when it merely presented the facts — admittedly I would regard it as a grossly defamatory attack on my integrity and intelligence if I were accused of being a member of the Skeptics!] So almost twice the usual number of delegates turned up to the meeting, and a majority voted against Mrs Smith. Presumably they were astute enough to realise that such a close connection to the predominately atheistic Skeptics was not a good thing for a president of the Baptist Union which officially believes in biblical inerrancy!

On the other hand, Creation Ministries International has most fields of science covered by highly qualified scientists:

The CEO, Carl Wieland
A medical doctor, who is thus properly called “Dr”. But Stear dishonestly refused to do so, unfairly juxtaposing “Dr Max” with plain “Wieland” in one of the articles.

Don Batten
A Ph.D. plant physiologist and expert tropical fruit researcher, who has made very important contributions to Australia’s agricultural industry. He has also published work on hybridization in secular relevant to the boundaries of the “created kinds”.

Russell Humphreys
A Ph.D. physicist with considerable research experience in a wide variety of fields, and is a creationist pioneer in areas such as galactocentric universe, white hole cosmology, helium retention in hot zircons, theories of accelerated nuclear decay, creation and decay of planetary magnetic fields that made a genuine prediction that was successful.

Jonathan Sarfati
A Ph.D. physical chemist (and former New Zealand national chess champion), whose scientific credentials even the Skeptics have had to acknowledge.

Pierre Jerlström
A Ph.D molecular biologist, whose high credentials were unreasonably doubted in the Skeptic, although he has many published papers in secular journals and one patent.

Tas Walker
A Ph.D. engineer who recently gained a 1st Class Honours degree in geology, specialising in radiometric dating, showing how isochron-like plots can be obtained with non-radioactive isotopes.

David Catchpoole
A Ph.D. agricultural scientist with wide experience, and first hand knowledge of the amazing design in the botanical world.

Emil Silvestru
A Ph.D. expert in caves and karst who was head of the world's oldest speleological institute.

Johan Kruger
A Ph.D. zoologist with considerable research experience in nematodes and Human and Sports Physiology.

Rob Carter
A Ph.D. marine biologist and expert geneticist, who licensed a spin-off product of his research (a patent-pending fluorescent protein) to a biotech company.

Philip Bell
A former secondary school teacher and biological scientist specializing in cancer research and the role of apoptosis.

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