TEMPLETON DENIES FAITH
Famed Christian Evangelist Accepts Evolution
Becomes Atheist Evangelist
(Transcribed from the accompanying photo taken in
a museum display)
Born in 1915, Charles Templeton was generally acknowledged
to be the most versatile of the new young evangelists. Templeton soon rose
to prominence, even surpassing another dynamic young preacher, Billy Graham.
In 1946 he was listed among those best used of God by the National Association
As the pastor of the rapidly growing Avenue Road Church
in Toronto, which he had started with only his family and a few friends,
Tempelton also became one of three vice presidents of the newly formed
Youth For Christ organization in 1945. He then nominated his good friend,
Billy Graham, to be field evangelist for the new ministry. Templeton, Graham,
and a few others regularly spoke to thousands, winning many to Christ both
in America and in Europe.
Newspapers and magazines carried reports of his meetings
informing readers he was winning 150 converts a night. In Evansville, Indiana,
the total attendance over the two-week campaign was 91,000 out of a population
of 128,000. Church attendance went up 17%.
However, despite his popularity and seeming success as
an evangelist, all was not well with Charles Templeton. The more he read,
the more he found he was beginning to question the essentials in the Christian
faith because he could no longer believe God's Word beginning with Genesis.
. . .
Templeton, like Charles Darwin, had a big problem understanding
how one could reconcile an earth full of death, disease, and suffering
with the God of the Bible.
"Why does God's grand design require creatures with teeth
designed to crush spines or rend flesh, claws fashioned to seize and tear,
venom to paralyze, mouths to suck blood, coils to constrict and smother
-- even expandable jaws so that prey may be swallowed whole and alive?
. . . Nature is in Tennyson's vivid phrase, 'red in tooth and claw,' and
life is a carnival of blood."
Templeton then concludes, "How could a loving and omnipotent
God create such horrors as we have been contemplating?"
One can fully understand his dilemma considering he was
indoctrinated to believe the earth was billions of years old. Since the
fossil record would therefore represent billions of years of earth history,
he would have to believe that the same death, disease, and suffering in
the world around us has been going on for millions and millions of years
and cannot be the result of sin, the Fall and the Curse. . . .
From Bill Hillman's
REASON vs. SUPERNATURAL SERIES
A COMPENDIUM OF QUOTES BY FREE THINKERS THROUGHOUT
Charles Templeton (1915-2001) ~ Canadian journalist,
novelist and politician. If God's love encompasses the whole world and
if everyone who does not believe in him will perish, then surely this question
needs to be asked: When, after two thousand years, does God's plan kick
in for the billion people he "so loves" in China? Or for the 840 million
in India? Or the millions in Japan, Afghanistan, Siberia, Egypt, Burma
-- and on and on? . . . Should one continue to base one's life on a system
of belief that -- for all its occasional wisdom and frequent beauty
-- is demonstrably untrue?
Templeton entry in Wikipedia