Atheist to Creationist One Professor’s Story

Jerry Bergman

(Investigator 161, 2015 March)

I was born in Detroit, Michigan to a nominal German Lutheran mother and a Finish atheist father. My earliest church experience was when I was four my older brother and I briefly attended a small local non-denominational church at the behest of my mother. Next to the church was a sign that said Jesus is coming soon and you must be born again. When my dad found out that my brother and I had attended this church, he immediately put a stop to it. That was the first fight I remember my parents had, but more were soon to follow. Their altercations culminated in a divorce instigated by my father when I was in 6th grade. 
I have always loved science, partly due to the influence of my father, who had a degree in engineering and was very involved in research and development. When growing up my free time diet was Mr. Wizard, Disney nature films and science experiments. I did well in my science classes and majored in science in college at Wayne State University. Exposed to evolution in many of my classes and, influenced by both my father and my professors, I accepted this worldview, as did many of my peers.

My peers and I also often accepted the philosophy that came with evolution, namely atheism. The university invited a number of speakers to lecture on religion, at least tangentially, all which were very negative towards Christianity, none supportive. I soon learned that, as a whole, academia is very biased against a theistic worldview. One speaker at Wayne State stressed that we have given Christianity 2,000 years to fix up the world, and it has failed, so it was high time to try atheism. Now I realize that we have had, at best, for 2000 years a nominal Christianity that most people have only half-heartedly followed.

As I became more involved in the atheist movement, I got tired of hearing that all the problems in the world were the fault of Christianity, as if we got rid of all Christians, the world would then be a wonderful place. What especially bothered me was that my atheist peers were determined to suppress Christianity by any means necessary, legal or illegal, first by banning it from the public square, then in the private domain. Atheists often felt that the ends justified the means, so have ruthlessly perused this goal. I soon realized this goal was evil because it has been tried in so many places, and in the end always did more harm than good.

We knew that the Establishment Clause, which says that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion” referred to establishing a state church, but we twisted it to mean that, for example, the Ten Commandments shall not be posted on public property, nor can teachers pray before football games.  Also, as I studied evolution, the doorway to atheism, it eventually became apparent that the theory had some major problems.

The first example that I researched in detail was the vestigial organ claim, and I concluded that this belief was out and out wrong. I found uses for all of the over 100 claimed vestigial organs. Next I studied the fossil record, then I examined other evolution claims, including the natural selection claim. Actually, natural selection only explains the survival of the fittest and the problem in Darwin’s day, and today, is the arrival of the fittest.

Sexual selection, instead of explaining sexual differences between males and females, actually serves to reduce deviation from the average, not cause evolutionary development of secondary sexual differences as Darwinists claim. Research that documents this conclusion includes computer combining the faces of many women to produce the most beautiful women, and ugliness is viewed a deviation from this average, and thus is selected against. After exploring all of the major arguments for evolution, I eventually concluded that Darwinism has been falsified on the basis of science.

I then realized that the evidence demands an Intelligent Creator, thus creationism, no matter how unpalatable this conclusion is, even to an atheist as I once was.  The biblical age question was more difficult to deal with, but, in my mind, a major factor in favor of a young creation was the evidence for genetic degradation. It is well documented that each new generation of humans adds about 100 to 150 mutations (genetic errors) per person, and an estimated 99.9 percent of these mutations are either near neutral, harmful, or lethal.

Consequently, there is no way that life could have first evolved 3.5 billion years ago and still be around today because life would have succumbed to genetic meltdown and cell catastrophe long ago, becoming extinct. Research by Professor John Sanford concluded that life originated no earlier than around 6 to 10 thousand years ago.

Another important finding that supports the YEC view was the discovery of soft tissue in dinosaur bones that were claimed to be over 65 million years old. This is a problem because destructive forces such as cosmic rays would long ago have destroyed soft tissue. I was not impressed with the evidence for creation, but the evidence against Darwinism was a critical factor in my acceptance of creationism that opened the door to my acceptance of Christianity, Biblical reliability and a creation worldview.

A clear teaching of all of the people of the book is creation ex-nihilo, meaning from nothing physical. Everything from an atom to a universe created ex-nihilo would have the appearance of age. The creation Ex Nihilo conclusion became credible in science only with the work of Einstein when he showed that matter is only another form of energy, as shown by the formula E=mc2. It is my firm conclusion that we must go where the evidence leads, and in this short paper I have briefly shown where the evidence has lead me.