April 11, 2007 - In the theater, the seats shake and audiences are sprayed with water at every mention of the flood. Nearby, a Garden of Eden is an animated vision depicting humans happily coexisting alongside dinosaurs and a little girl who laughs every time one of the giant reptiles bares its teeth. And nope, this isn’t your average theme park.
Welcome, instead, to the Creation Museum. Here, dozens of exhibits attempt to show the Bible as the literal truth and the theory of evolution as unsupportable by science. Creationists believe that the Garden of Eden did exist, that the world is 6,000 years old, that God created man and animals simultaneously, and that the flood wiped out every living creature that wasn’t inside Noah’s Ark.
The museum will open to the public in late May, and founder Ken Ham hopes it will attract 250,000 visitors in its first year. Located on a 50-acre piece of flat land in the little town of Petersburg, Ky., it is in the heart of Middle America—just a short drive from Indiana and Cincinnati, Ohio, and, say the organizers, no more than a day’s road trip for two thirds of the American population.
Ham, 55, went on to found the Creation Museum and become president of Answers in Genesis, the Evangelical ministry behind the project. In an interview, he recalls how, when he was first taught evolution in school at the age of 13, he asked his father—a dedicated Christian—about “those ape men.” “If you don’t believe in Genesis,” his father told him, “then the whole rest of the Bible falls.”
These words stuck. The Creation Museum, which has so far funded its $26 million cost through private donations, focuses on Genesis, the first book of the Bible. Its special-effects theater shows a video of Biblical history; when it’s time for the flood, the seats shake and the audience is sprayed with mists of water and air. There is also a planetarium—Ham calls it “one of the most powerful parts of the museum”—with big, comfortable chairs that tilt backward so that viewers can watch a video about the galaxy projected on the dome-like screen on the ceiling. “It gives them a taste of the kind of creator they have, and they say ‘wow,’” says Jason Lisle, who is in charge of the planetarium program.
Lisle is 32 and has a Ph.D. in solar astrophysics from the University of Colorado. One of his tasks, he said, is to review videos for accuracy. Has he ever found a contradiction between the scientific and Biblical claims in the videos? Lisle says this is the wrong question. “Science comes out of a Biblical worldview,” he says. “We don’t try to prove the Bible from outside evidence. We accept the Bible as presupposition.”
Ken Ham (reported on msnbc.com), Msnbc 42 Comments
[4/12/2007 12:00:00 AM]
Fundie Index: 6
Submitted By: Wise Son