Correcting a flood of misinformation: a new book debunks creationist views of The Grand Canyon.

Position:Interview

Eleven scientists have produced a new book titled The Grand Canyon: Monument To An Ancient Earth that debunks the claims of biblical creationists concerning the age and formation of Arizona's famed Grand Canyon.

The book includes 255 photographs (most in color), 17 photographs of artwork and 104 diagrams or sketches. It is available at Amazon.com and other online sellers and is being sold at all eight bookstores operating within Grand Canyon National Park.

The authors include professors of geology, biology, paleontology and other disciplines. Eight of the authors are evangelical Christians, while the other three identify as agnostic.

Steven Newton, a geologist at the National Center for Science Education, said that the book "does a great job explaining the science of Grand Canyon's spectacular geology, as well as helping readers understand how the creationist misuse of Grand Canyon finds no support from science."

One of the authors, Tim Helble, a retired hydrologist at the National Weather Service, discussed the book recently with Church & State.

Q. What led you to write this book?

Helble: All 11 authors wanted to help counter the misleading information being disseminated by the young-Earth creationist (YEC) ministries. For me, it started back in 1994 when I attended an "Answers in Genesis" seminar sponsored by the Institute for Creation Research. That was the first time I saw Ken Ham. I could see he was going to be a rising star in the young-Earth movement. But what really struck me was a book I found on a back table--Grand Canyon: Monument to Catastrophe--edited by Ph.D. geologist Steve Austin.

Having worked as a hydrologist at the Grand Canyon for six months while in graduate school, I couldn't resist thumbing through the book. Within a minute I found two pretty significant errors, but I bought it anyway so I could evaluate the whole book. With all the errors I found in this and other materials available at the seminar, I wondered how they reflected on Christianity. I decided something needed to be done to counter YEC teachings, which eventually led to my involvement in this book.

Q. Your publisher, Kregel Publications, is an evangelical firm, and Solid Rock Lectures, which is associated with the book, is evangelical as well. What can non-evangelicals take from this book?

Helble: We submitted manuscripts to many secular and Christian publishers. Kregel was a good match for us because they have experience doing color, published other...

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