Having gone through several radical paradigm shifts myself in recent years, when I hear of others converting from one lifelong-held position to a fundamentally different position 180º out from where they began, it doesn’t really surprise me anymore. What surprises me is when certain personalities abandon a position that served as their “bread and butter” for decades. What surprises me is when certain personalities risk everything for what they believe to be the truth. Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead. So imagine my surprise when I came across yesterday’s news of John D. Morris‘ public rejection of young-earth creationism. Knowing John to be the son of the late Henry M. Morris, founder of the Institute for Creation Research, I just about blew a gasket. If true, a (scientifico-)theological event of this magnitude would be akin to Tim LaHaye rejecting his pre-tribulational rapturism for full preterism! Although I applaud John Morris’ bravery (he’ll certainly get an earfull from his peers at ICR), I certainly don’t agree with the position that he’s decided to embrace: progressive creationism. In his statement, Morris revealed that “about four years ago, I began to have fundamental doubts about the validity of the scientific methods ICR was using to achieve their data and support the presupposed conclusion that God created the heavens and the earth no more than 10,000 years ago.” At the same time, Morris began to dialogue privately with Reasons to Believe founder Hugh Ross, all the while keeping his father and ICR in the dark. “It was out of respect for my father and his legacy that I chose not to reveal my doubts at that time. But now, two years after his passing [in February 2006], enough time has elapsed that I feel comfortable announcing my resignation [as ICR President].” Meanwhile, John Morris has tentatively accepted a position at Reasons to Believe in a yet-to-be-announced role. Given ICR’s dedication to a literal hermeneutic (as opposed to utilizing the more scholarly historico-grammatical method), it’s not surprising that Morris felt comfortable with RTB’s concordist approach to Genesis 1. That being said, it would take one of Miracle Max’s chocolate-coated horse pills to turn Morris into a theistic evolutionist. Not unexpectedly, Henry M. Morris III (older brother to John) will serve as acting President of ICR in addition to his current duties as CEO until such time as the organization’s board elects a new president. John Morris’ “defection” will, of course, have a major impact on the organization’s morale as ICR completes its move from San Diego to its new headquarters in Dallas, Texas. You can read the entirety of John Morris’ RTB-hosted statement here.