A Brief History of the Modern American Creation Movement by Jerry Bergman

From Contra Mundum No. 7 Spring 1993. Copyright © 1993 Jerry Bergman. Used by permission.

Summary: The creation-evolution controversy, often described as an issue that will be with us for some time, is a conflict essentially between naturalism, the position that life emerged out of mater and energy through natural forces, and the various theistic world views, all of which hold that the universe is a product of intelligence, order and control. The history of the major modern creation movements, from the early 1900s' work of George McCready Price to the most recent resurgence initiated by Henry Morris and John Whitcomb and their book The Genesis Flood, is reviewed. The social factors involved are also discussed, as are some of the main controversies and schisms. The various creation organizations were also reviewed, covering their history, the founders' backgrounds, and some of their major activities. From its start, considerable diversity has existed in the movement, including the extent of historical evolution accepted, the explanatory value of macro versus micro-evolution, the age of the earth and related issues. Many of the important persons involved in the movement were long-age creationists and a large number do not fit into the stereotype of creationists as often presented in the mass media today. The term progressive creationism would most accurately describe the view of most of those who have dominated the movement. Headings: Some of the More Prominent Early 1900 Creationists; Elements of the Movement;The Religion and Science Association; The Creation-Deluge Society; Creationism as a Modern Social Movement; The Creation Research Society; Other Creationist Groups; Non-American Creationist Groups; Jewish and Catholic Groups; Creation in Academia; The 1980 Legislation History of Creationists; Summary; REFERENCES