Thursday, July 26, 2018

Geology and Apologetics REVIEW

Geology and Apologetics Course
In our current times and with what our kids are bombarded with daily I do not think they can ever have enough of apologetics.  The timing was perfect for us to review the Geology and Apologetics six-part class from Northwest Treasures.  We just finished apologetics and earth science classes last semester.  This was a perfect follow up to both of those.  This is a digital product and I received Vimeo access to the course for 6 months.  I also received complimentary access to their 20-minute Taking the Mystery Out of Geology course for 3 months.  Because you access this through Vimeo you can watch it on anything that can play Vimeo (phone, laptop, tablets, smartTVs).  I was happy that I was able to download the Vimeo app on our Roku and watch it that way on our TV.

Take the Mystery out of Geology Online Course
What exactly is apologetics?  According to Wikipedia "it is the religious discipline of defending religious doctrines through systematic argumentation and discourse. Early Christian writers (c. 120–220) who defended their beliefs against critics and recommended their faith to outsiders were called Christian apologists."

Taking the Mystery Out of Geology is a nice short 20-minute basic lesson on how geology is the foundation of biology (In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth Gen 1:1) and the instructor, Patrick, reviews the 13 terms he feels are necessary for understanding geology.  It is recommended for grade 5 and up.  It really was very informative and really does help clarify some of the "fuzzy" thinking we get into if we have ever learned or believed in the traditional secular geological timelines. 

Biblical creation timeline as opposed to traditional geological (deep time) timeline

Patrick Nurre states that there are two important pieces for giving our kids a biblical foundation in life and their studies of science.  We must stand on the Word of God (the Bible) and make sure that we teach Geology and Earth Science from a biblical standpoint (and not just once but throughout their studies).  He explains the time differences between secular and biblical timelines as he reviews the 13 important terms.  If you are an old earth believer then this will challenge your beliefs.  We believe in a  young earth so this was just perfect for our studies.  At just $5 for a 3-month subscription, I think this is a great buy for some foundational information for your homeschool.  There were discussion questions at the end of the video that reinforced what was learned and opened up opportunities for further discussion.

The Geology and Apologetics 6-part course consists of 6 video lessons accessible through Vimeo that last a total of 1 hour and 36 minutes.  The lessons range from about 11 to 22 minutes each.  There are wonderful discussion questions to cover at the end of each video.  There is no answer key for this study since the answers to the questions are either in the text of the video or simply questions to discuss with no right or wrong answers.  This study can be used in your homeschool, personal study or even a group study. You can do a quick overview of the study and complete it within 6 days (6 lessons) or use it more like a unit study and complete a lesson a week with additional assignments to support the lesson for the week.  My goal was to cover 1 lesson per week and really take time to discuss the topic for the week.  The 6 lessons include:
  1. Knowing the Scriptures in the Secular Geological Age (13:24 min)
  2. Clarifying the Conflict between Science and the Bible (10:59)
  3. The Genealogies and Chronologies of Genesis, Are They Accurate and Reliable? (17:31 min)
  4. Evolutionary Gaps in the Fossil Record, How Serious Are They? (16:57)
  5. Dinosaur-to-Bird-Evolution, The Story That Never Seems to Die (21:25)
  6. Time and Chronology in the Secular Geological Age (15:34)
I really liked his statement in the first lesson about not just needing to learn the facts but also to be able to share our faith and hope in Jesus.  It is important to not just know the facts but be able to defend against false beliefs and teachings that are contradictory to the Word of God.

What happens when we take God out of the picture

Patrick reminds us that apologetics is NOT about winning the argument but more importantly about clarifying the issues and setting the record straight by sharing the truth about our biblical foundations.  He continues to reference scripture throughout all the video lessons that our kids can put in their toolbox to help them in defending their faith.  I like his statements in lesson 2 that "the origin of the earth is not a matter of science" and "genuine science will NOT contradict the scripture."  Throughout each of the 6 lessons he continues to go into more depth to define the 13 original terms that he stressed were necessary as a foundation in being able to defend the faith against false ideas and facts.

Lesson 3 begins with Patrick stating that we can indeed see an accurate chronology in the scripture.  He challenges us to read through Genesis Chap 5 and then he goes on to explain and walk through the scriptures to show the biblical timeline.  I have never taken the time or seen yet in our studies the timeline below.  Look and see what you think.

Biblical timeline from Adam to Noah and the flood.

In lesson 4 Patrick reminds us that most of modern geology has not been observed or tested but rather is based on interpretation of data.  This, of course, allows for error.  Uniformitarianism is the foundation for all modern geology and it is flawed.  There are many errors and discrepancies in the fossil record that Patrick reviews in the lesson.  Lesson 5 was my favorite about the dinosaurs probably because they have always been a favorite of my son and we have done a lot of studies on them over the years.  Patrick takes time to go over the history of the controversial Archaeopteryx and its supposed evolvement into a modern bird.

Picture showing errors in the timeline of the supposed evolvement of dinosaurs

Finally, in lesson 6 he introduces James Hutton, the father of Modern Geology and the introduction of Geochronology (old Earth).  It was the foundation that did away with any biblical chronologies and chalked them up to a myth of ancient man.

If you are looking for a good foundational apologetics course or are studying geology or even biology, I would highly recommend you take the time to check out both Taking the Mystery Out of Geology and Geology and Apologetics (on sale right now for $19.99 for 6-month access).  Northwest Treasures has so many more interesting courses to study including the high school level Northwest Treasures Curriculum Project and the Pre-K to 3rd-grade Geology for "Little Eyes."  I think we might check out Geology and the Hawaiian Islands next.

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Be sure to click the link below to see what others have to say about this, Dinosaurs of the Bible and other courses available.

Online Geology Classes{Northwest Treasures Reviews}

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