Tuesday, 21 February 2017

Nephilim and dinosaurs and humans, oh my! Answers in Genesis embarrasses Christianity yet again

The Answers in Genesis Ark Encounter theme park has already attracted justifiable criticism for its pseudoscience and blurring of church-state boundaries. Now, Ham has published a series of pictures of a new diorama to be added to the Ark Encounter park which depict giant nephilim, humans, and dinosaurs fighting in an arena. Seriously.

Given Ham's claim to be faithful to the Biblical text (or his literal reading to be precise), it entirely justified to ask where in the Bible it says that giants fought humans in arenas while dinosaurs lurked at the arena entrance. As Ham would say, "were you there?" Then there is the frankly risible anachronism stew of Mycenaean Greece and Minoan style decoration in the arena which lend the diorama an unintentionally campy feel. This owes everything to a fundamentalist imagination gone wild, and little at best to the Bible.

Jacob Colvatio nails it when he describes this as Biblical fan-fiction:
However, Ham’s brand of Christianity is more like Bible fan fiction than the Christian faith most members of mainstream churches would recognize. It is important not to let Ham define what it means to be a “real” Christian, since his version is a modern confabulation of Victorian fundamentalism and bonkers pseudo-historical speculation. As I have reported in the past, his Ark encounter features elements drawn from fringe history, including visions of Mexican-style pyramids in the antediluvian world straight out of Ignatius Donnelly’s Atlantis, a fictitious global snake-cult drawn from Victorian pseudo-history and Theosophy, and claims about prehistoric global mapping technology that closely parallel ancient astronaut theories. He also happily invents fake details about Noah’s life that can’t be found in the Bible or even in the apocryphal literature of the ancient world.
Ham may rail against the media for "spreading fake news to deliberately malign" AiG, but to be blunt, AiG are the ones who are spreading "fake news" with their YEC distortion of natural history and the Bible. And when they do so with such embarrassingly campy attractions, it is hard not to get annoyed at how AiG are giving non-theists such an easy target to attack.