Dr. John D. Morris Rejects Young-Earth Creationism

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.

10 Comments

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  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/08342566023774158670 Cliff Martin

    My understanding is that Ken Ham has gone even further. There was a news release earlier today that he has abandoned YEC in favor of a kind of theistic evolution. But I’m not sure of the details. I’ll try to get a source on that and let you know. Unbelievable, what is going on here, isn’t it. Makes you wonder if Morris and Ham timed their announcements to coincide. Hmm.

  • dan werner

    This is great news. Thanks for sharing Mike.

    Cliff,
    Please do tell us more about Ken Ham when you find out. I’m intrigued.

    Me, given all this news now believe that the sun, moon and stars are hanging in the firmament. Too much more news and I’ll believe the sky is falling.
    ;-)

  • dan werner

    No, the sky already fell and landed on my puny head. The sun, moon and stars are having a riot up above.

  • Pete

    Very funny. Thankfully I was already on my guard since my boss at work pulls April fool’s jokes every year. But then again, last night I fell for one on my favorite TV show, Pardon the Interruption. It is a sports talking head show, and they began the show by saying that Davidson and Kansas would have to replay the last 16 seconds of their quarter final in March Madness because one guy still playing had already fouled out. As bizarre as this was, and despite the fact that I was shocked I had not heard it from any other sports source including ESPN’s website where it would have been front page news, I bought it.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/10404666980227401390 Mike Beidler

    Ever find that source on Ken Ham’s conversion, Cliff?

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/10404666980227401390 Mike Beidler

    Dan,

    If the sun, moon, and stars are having a riot, does that mean the End is near?

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/14756060657783692713 Phil W

    LOVE IT… your blog got a google hit for John Morris young earth.. Loved the Wikipedia link. Well done

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/10404666980227401390 Mike Beidler

    Thanks, Phil! If you liked this satire, I know you'll like my other major piece. =)

  • Brad

    Very curious. It seems to be totally false because in this article written by John Morris himself on the ICR site January of 2012 (http://www.icr.org/article/gaps-geologic-column/) Dr. Morris derides old earth views when he says: “The geologic column as normally presented should not be considered accurate history and should be recognized as a statement of evolutionary old-earth dogma.”

    • Brad

      Okay, I got it now. Ha ha ha.