I sat across the desk of a pastor in the office of his medium-small church several months back. He said to me,
“Derek, one thing I’d like to see about your store are more books that critically think about the creation-evolution debate. Whenever I go in there all I see are books and pamphlets that promote a young six thousand year creation story.”
In all fairness, that perception is not exactly accurate. We do carry books by Karl Gibberson, Francis Collins, Hugh Ross and others. But yes, most of the books in our “apologetics” section promote and defend a six thousand year creation narrative. In fact, the fact that these books are classified under the section of “apologetics” rather than “science” tells quite a bit about the narrative of my store and target market.
I too wish that the store I work in would be broader in it’s approach to these matters. But that’s not the point of this post. I’m more interested in the fact that this Pentecostal pastor, who before entering the ministry specialized in biology, holds to the conviction of evolution. It made me wonder, how many other pastors believe in evolution.
Recently LifeWay published a poll where they asked 1,000 Protestant pastors three questions: 1) do you believe Adam and Eve were literal people, 2) do you believe God used evolution to create people, 3) do you believe the earth is 6,000 years old. Here are the results:
What do you make of these numbers? Is evolution an issue, do you think, that might motivate pastors to leave the ministry?