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God at Work through You
It’s often easier to avoid difficult conversations, but God has “committed to us the message of reconciliation” and has called us to be His ambassadors, even to those who hold differing opinions (2 Corinthians 5:19–20, NIV).
Reaching reconciliation, especially concerning controversial issues like the age of the earth, is not a quick or easy process. But, a well-prepared approach along with gentleness and respect is a great place to start. Today, a message from a 46-year-old husband, father, and airline pilot reminds us just how great of an impact this approach can make in one’s faith journey and how humble patience can make all the difference.
I am somewhat new to the Kingdom as God opened my eyes in a conversion experience just a few years ago. My first prayer after this event was, “Please make me effective.”…I became immensely interested in apologetics. I, like many, became convinced that creationism implied a young earth, so therefore I studied only this view. I felt an uneasy tension with the scientific community, and with anyone who claimed Christ, yet said [Earth] is old.
There was something though that profoundly perplexed me. How is it that some of the most intelligent and well spoken [Christian leaders] I know say [Earth] is old?...Someday, I told myself, I’ll have to look into it….So, I slowly began my search.…I had formed such an emotional attachment to young earth that slow was all I could muster. I’ll admit, the first time I saw Fuz (at the RZIM Summer Institute last year) I watched him with a wary eye. It was then that I learned about RTB.…I realized that…I didn’t have to cringe with every mention of “millions or billions” that is inescapable in our times. And, I didn’t have to compromise any portion of my faith to [believe the earth is old].
What drew me within listening distance [of the old-earth perspective] was the humility of those professing their faith in profound ways yet saying [the earth] is old. This is important and cannot be underscored. My compliments to your team in this. Second, I learned that emotional attachments are very real, and we need gentleness and compassion on those who have them. …We need to give them room to work this out. Lastly, I learned that the quest for knowledge, and the absolute right knowledge at that, can easily lead to terrible consequences, [namely,] division within the body of Christ. If any quest for knowledge begins to crowd out the Good News of our salvation by Christ’s blood alone, then we have not yet begun to know anything.
I just want to thank you all for being there. While I like to play around the edges of science, I am not, nor ever will be, a scientist. We are all made differently and what your team does every day is mind-blowing to me.…I’m thankful for you and look forward to learning more from you as time marches on.
In Christ, Matt
As we continue celebrating 30 years of God’s faithfulness, we hope you’ll see how Matt’s gratitude extends to you, our RTB friends and dedicated supporters who have come alongside this ministry as committed ambassadors for Christ. That commitment to spreading the gospel is the exact reason why Matt and so many others have been able to hold onto their faith, with a firm grip and without compromise. Thank you “for being there,” for RTB and for standing with us as we continue pursuing reconciliation while rejoicing at the amazing work God has enabled us to do together.