My Confessions and Apologies

Hi. I want to tell you guys a little bit about myself. My name is Rohan Muny, and I am a 13 year old boy. For most of my life, I’ve dealt with autism, and still have issues understanding today. I suffer from anxiety and worrying. I have an unbelieving family that won’t let me get involved in religion, and I’m not allowed to purchase anything religious. About 6 1/2 months ago, I became a Christian, and I learned about the faith. However, in November, I’ve leanred about YEC and OEC, and have been facing doughts ever since. I’m sorry for being rude on some of my posts, and repeating questions, but because of my doughts, I’m starting to deal with depression almost, and I become impatient because I want to stop feeling this way! This causes me to sometimes be divisive and impatient on comments. I’m OEC, and there are no OEC’s that I can really communicate with, so this is my best bet. I apologize, but I need grace!

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We all need grace!

I was an OEC (for about 35 years) and a believer in ID until a few years ago, and I have six decades on you. :grin: I still believe in ‘id’, but lowercase, because it can not be scientifically demonstrated.

So a few things happened. I began to realize that ID cannot be scientifically demonstrated, and I learned about neutral drift and the neutral theory of evolution. Prior to that, I had understood that single mutations were the cause of speciation and ‘macroevolution.’ (That is what i was taught when I was 13 ; - ) When I learned that mutations could accumulate via neutral drift with no immediate result but only later become significant, and also create information and complexity, that was a significant realization.

In conjunction with that, a Christian molecular biologist said to me, “…the most common mutations, transitions, are not really ‘copying errors,’ because the keto-enol transition of the base is driving them and the polymerase is working correctly. So if you’d like, that can be seen as providence more than chance.” I liked, and that pretty well clinched it for me.

Then I personally learned, and with objective evidence, that our Sovereign God is providentially involved with DNA mutations, and particularly the timing in my case, as I attest in this account: my nephrectomy. I’m not saying God ‘gave’ me kidney cancer or that he ‘let’ me get it, but what I am saying is that God is trustworthy, even through difficult times.

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Rohan, Welcome to BioLogos and welcome to the faith.

I am sorry to hear that you have doubts.

Sadly, too many people make too much over how and when God created the universe. The important message of Gen 1 is that God created the world and us and that God cares about the world and us. Everything else is unimportant detail.

Still YEC insists that God had to do it in 6 days, which is not true. Evolutionary Creationists say God did it through the process of evolution. If you are not interested in science this should not bother you. OEC is fine for you.

A 13- year old should not be bothered by silly doctrinal discussions. Please read the creation story that starts with John 1:1 for a different point of view. Read the gospels and learn about Jesus Who is the center of our faith, rather than the OT.

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What does ID mean?

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Intelligent Design, sorry. It’s a fairly common term in these kinds of discussions.

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Hi Rohan,
Thanks for telling us a bit more about yourself – it’s helpful to have context and better understand where someone is coming from with their questions. Doubting can be difficult – I’m sorry you are struggling. I think Roger makes a good point above about being careful not to get carried away on minor things like how old the earth is – the most important thing about the Christian faith is the who, not the age of the earth, even though it can be interesting and important to study the Bible and learn what we can. But the purpose of the Bible is to point us to the person of Jesus – without him none of those other details matter.

I was encouraged recently reading the story of Jesus’s disciple Thomas doubting, and even though Jesus appeared to him and urged him to believe, he never reprimanded him for doubting – it’s something that many Christians have to learn to live with, to one degree or another. Sometimes the impulse can be to research like crazy until we learn enough information to calm the doubts, but in my experience that just makes them resurface again later. I am still learning that belief is about trusting a person – not having all your theological beliefs nailed down. I hope you are able to find some peace and I’m sorry your family is unsupportive – that is difficult. Thanks for reaching out here.

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Thanks! The thing is that when I have doubts, I backslide, and I pray less, and start watching secular things. That’s why I am worried about my doubts

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Good to know and welcome to the you we now know you are. You’re basically the age of the students I taught for 25 years. So many people would declare I must be a saint when what I did for work came up. But I loved being that age and enjoyed the opportunity to hang out with folks at that stage in their journey. You have something in common with @mitchellmckain. Good for you for listening to your own drummer. Best of luck!

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Thanks, Rohan for explaining where you are coming from. I’m sorry for all the times I expected you to act like an adult. Everything makes much more sense now, and of course you are always welcome to try to work through your doubts and questions here. Depression is a real illness and it is treatable. Is there a teacher or guidance counselor at school that you could share your struggles with? The internet is good for some things, but sometimes you need a real live human to talk to and help you cope.

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There’s no need to apologise, Rohan. I for one don’t think you’ve been rude or impatient at all. On the contrary, you’ve come across as gracious, polite, honest and mature, and I think that you’ve been an example to us all in that respect. Especially since you’re trying to tackle a subject where a lot of other people can come across as rude and impatient at times.

I do hope you’ll stick around – you ask some really good questions and you’re not satisfied with half-baked answers, and that challenges us all in ways that we perhaps need to be challenged.

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Pax Christi, Rohan!

It’s quite alright. We all get anxious and impatient from time to time; just a couple of months ago I was in a really bad spot myself! But what’s important is that you haven’t stopped asking questions and didn’t keep your doubt to yourself. You’re a part of The Church now, a family united in Christ, so come to us with your problems!

I have to ask, since you are OEC, have you read Hugh Ross’s Improbable Planet? It’s very good.

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This changes everything Rohan. Please forgive me.

Fresh air. Exercise. Walking. Running. Nature study. Every day.

School friends. Neighbourhood friends. Chess.

School work. Sport.

Reading for pleasure. Sci-fi.

Art, music - doing them as well as appreciating them, secular TV, gaming.

Giving yourself every dimension of expression and exploration until you find a passion in nature, botany, insects, whatever, drawing; whatsoever your hand finds to do.

Jesus would want you to have a full life, to find your passion that you excel at.

What are your favourite and best subjects at school?

Kind regards
Martin

PS are you in Sri Lanka? Or of Sri Lankan heritage?

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Live in US, but of Indian descent.

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Cool. What you good at mate? What do you enjoy?

@Rohan

Perhaps I should explain what he is referring to…

I was not raised Christian but by extreme liberals made very aware of many things wrong with the Christian establishment. Though my parents did not declare themselves atheists (agnostic at most). Nor were they hostile to religion in general. Both were psychology majors and my father was a Maoist communist, black listed even (and very deserving of that, frankly). A child of the sixties, I grew up with peace marches, communes, and the smell of pot in the air.

For my investigation of the truth, I started with science, and made my explorations into philosophy and religion from there. I embraced a great deal of existentialism and pragmatism, and these became my stepping stones to an understanding of God and Christianity. An understanding contrary to the scientific worldview was never even close to an option for me. The question was always whether religion and the Bible had any value in that context. And I don’t think I could ever have seen any truth in Christianity without the explanation of life according to evolution.

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I probably shouldn’t have volunteered you like that, Mitchell. In the interest of full disclosure, @Rohan my wife and I were pretty much like your parents except we didn’t discourage religion so much as entirely ignore it where my stepson was concerned. I can see now that probably wasn’t such a great idea but like a lot of parents I didn’t know enough to do otherwise at the time. I’d probably have deferred to his mom anyway but I would have talked to him more if I had it to do over again. From the point of view of people with an unsatisfactory religious orientation, it just seems like a non-issue, especially if you live in an area where religion isn’t very visible. Anyhow sorry you weren’t provided a better start but good for you for following your heart. Always the best policy.

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@Rohan, This is awesome advice from Klax (Martin).

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Hey Rohan - great to meet you and thanks for being so real.

I suffered a crisis of faith a few years ago and it definitely caused me to be more aggressive and mean and judgemental than I should have been because I was afraid that if some of my beliefs were wrong I was somehow bad or unworthy. This I see in hindsight to be unwise since I am called to serve and love others as best I can - not have the right opinion.

I think the story of Doubting Thomas can be helpful here. Thomas didn’t believe in something he couldn’t believe in, and while it wasn’t the best, Jesus doesn’t punish him or cast him out, he gives Thomas what he needs to alleviate his doubts. Thomas’ doubts opened up the way for Jesus to reveal the true miraculous nature of his resurrection. I would be open to the idea that your doubts will create a similar opportunity to glorify God.

As a Christian you are called to love your neighbor as yourself, and by extension that means that we must treat ourselves with the love that God has for us. Jesus’ healings and his desire for the well being of sinners are a key part of his ministry. Since we’re called to imitate Jesus your first responsibility is to forgive and love yourself just as you are, and to recognize that God cares more about loving you than He does about you believing the right things.

I would also recommend Keith Ward who made a good point - our earliest Church documents are the letters of Paul which are all about different churches doing very different things. If difference is in the essence of our church it means it is very OK to not be sure about things or disagree with others in the faith.

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Meh, not so much. Human hearts can be and more than that, are very deceptive. Putin is following his heart and his drummer, right?
 

The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can know it?
Jeremiah 17:9

[Blessed is the one who] speaks truth IN his heart.
Psalm 15:2

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Yes, for a minute I wondered if you were also a teen!
I remembered that couldn’t be, though. Thanks for your unique contribution.

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“Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” -Colossians 4:6

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