Open Letter

Reader Responses to the Open Letter:

The following readers of Watchman Magazine have made known their agreement with the principles espoused in the Open Letter

If you would like to express your agreement with the sentiment of the letter regarding the literal nature of the biblical account of creation, please click here, and explicitly indicate in the body of the email your desire. Your name will be added to this page.


Note: These comments are excerpted from actual emails. As such, any misspellings, grammatical errors or typos are retained. Also, the sentiments expressed in the comments of the email are the respondents alone, and do not necessarily represent the views of either the editors of Watchman, or the views of any of the other respondents.

Current count: 77 responses


"Go ahead and add my name to the list, please. Prayfully, this will do some good. If not for them (FC faculty), maybe for someone else. Thanks for all your hard work!"

Joe Hafley (June 29, 2000)
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"Having followed the latest incidents at FC with a concern for the truth, such digression has done nothing but confirm my belief that a man-made substitute for the work of the church such as FC's Bible department is doomed to failure and corruption of the truth. In light of this, please append my name to the open letter as currently presented on your webpage."

Kelly G. Spencer (June 29, 2000)
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"I would like to co-sign the open letter to F.C. regarding, among other things, the error being taught concerning creation by bro. Roberts and bro. Scott."

Steve Lee (July 3, 2000)
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" To support the Big Bang Theory in itself is to deny the basic attributes of God. A major tenant of the Big Bang Theory is that no law governs it and consequently the outcomes were unpredictable. There was no guarantee that it would ever emit a configuration of particles that would ever evolve into an animate universe. Random, singular, and chaotic are terms used in "Big Banguage". If God intended to create a universe that would eventually contain living beings, then why would He begin with a universe with a completely unpredictable singularity? The Big Bang Theory contends for a totally chaotic, unpredictable beginning. This is both irrational and inefficient and is contrary to the divine nature of God.

"If the Genesis account is on 'God's Clock', then the unit of time given by God is the same for Day 4 as it is for Day 5 and would be the same amount of time for Day 3. This would mean that it took God the same amount of time to make the stars, sun, and moon (Day 4) as it did to make the creatures of the sea (Day 5) or the creatures of the earth including man (Day 6). This would not be supported by the Big Bang Theory and totally contrary to any "empirical" data that exists today.

"As a Science teacher and a Christian, I urge brethren to honestly and earnestly contend for the truth on this issue. Each day our children are bombarded from the world with one side of the story and now this from an institution that most feel comfortable sending their children to. There is no way to use the Big Bang Theory to justify the creation of the inanimate universe without it leading to the justification of the animate universe and stripping our God of His power and might. This teaching allows for too much interpretation by man, which should be our litmus test on its validity and its intention."

Joe Ferrara (July 5, 2000)
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"Please add me to the list of preachers who have signed this open letter to FC. The Scriptures are clear in their intent to describe literal days in creation as in 'The evening and the morning were the first day.' Epochs very seldom have one morning and one evening so the language is completely sufficient to prove what it means without scientific elaboration and guessing. 'Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season.'"

Marc Smith (July 5, 2000)
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"...I will sign it. It is well written and deals with a very serious problem. I was pleased to see the many names that have already signed and made a statement for the truth."

Dickey Howard (July 5, 2000)
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"Please add my name to the list of those agreeing with the letter to Florida College!"

Larry A. Bunch (July 5, 2000)
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"I believe in the literal statement made in the Bible, and it should not be taught different at Florida College."

Douglas Head (July 5, 2000)
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"YES - please add my name to the list - - I preached on this very subject Sunday night. I pray that this letter will cause those who teach such error to repent and return to the Truth as found in Genesis."

David Charles Morrison Jr. (July 5, 2000)
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"I really appreciated your open letter. We must stand against the faith destroying doctrines of those who deny the literal interpretation of the Genesis account of Creation. This is a dangerous trend that I see as a threat to the faith of all. I've had to deal with theistic evolutionists in local congregations that I have worked with in the past and we cannot give place for an hour. I certainly stand with you in these efforts. If you want to add my name to the list of those standing in agreement with your letter, feel free to do so."

Eddie Bragwell (July 5, 2000)
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"I without a doubt believe that God created the world in six (6) literal days. 'So the evening and the morning was the first day', etc,etc. I find this to be really disheartening, to know that something as rediculous(?) as this is coming from FC. How plain can it be?"

Larry E. Long (July 5, 2000)
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"I agree that the days of creation were 24 hour days, there is more than adequate evidence to establish that the days of creation were 24 hour days. The concept that the days were ages is without Scriptural support and that is the only support that really is valid.

"I would like to be added to the list of supports of the 24 hour days of creation."

Garreth L. Clair (July 6, 2000)
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"I WISH TO STAND WITH THOSE WHO HAVE SIGNED THIS LETTER. PLEASE ADD MY NAME."

RAYMOND E. HARRIS (July 6, 2000)
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"I wholeheartedly agree with the sentiment of the letter. I have been concerned from sometime about the teaching of the "Lord I Believe" series. Numerous congregations in the area of Alabama where I preach have used them in recent years. Please attach my name to the next posting of the open letter."

Mike Webb (July 6, 2000)
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"It is with great concern that I write you this email in response to the letter I have just read. This is my first awareness of this situation and I hope that your action as well as that of others has already started the mending process. However, I would feel negligent if I did not comment on your letter and this issue.

"It is my concern that many are becoming more concerned with being tolerant and less concerned about taking a stand. The truth is black and white. It is our feeble minds that allow us to become confused and wander from the truth.

"I pray God with show these leaders of FC the truth and will promptly stop any further movement away from the truth. I believe your letter is accurate and we should take Genesis 1 and 2 literal. I believe any tolerance of any kind that allows teachings that do not follow this perception should be pointed out and admonished for all to see that we do not agree or tolerate false teachings.

"My son is starting college this fall. We considered sending him to FC. Now I am glad we did not. He can do more good, with the teaching he has already learned at Athens Bible School and at Eastside Church of Christ and at home, in teaching others at our public colleges.

"I will continue to read your letters and comments praying that others will see the error of their ways and will recognize false teaching for what it is. I pray God will bless you in your endeavors and will allow us the opportunity to teach his word to all that will hear."

Randy Hudson (July 6, 2000)
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"I wish to be in the number of those who hold fast to the truth that the world was created by God in 6 literal days because to deny this would be to deny the plain teachings of God as revealed to us. I also wholeheartedly agree that those who advocate or tolerate any other interpretation present themselves as false teachers and therefore, by the command of God, cannot be accepted into fellowship. That the first 2 chapters of Genesis are not literal is a dangerous doctrine that, while being false in itself, has far reaching implications that lead to the necessary destruction of a first principle upon which God's word explicitly says that we can place our faith, that is, that if we humbly search God's word, we will find the truth and we will understand it (Eph. 5:17)."

Kris Braddock (July 6, 2000)
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"I would like to thank you and the rest of the men who continue to do battle and stand for the truth. While so many try to criticize you all for the job you are doing acting like you all are so wrong for contending for the faith."

Rocco Lucari (July 6, 2000)
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"I agree with the open letter concerning the Creation/Evolution controversy. Your letter must be written to correct those brethren involved. A public discussion would be one way to let the people know what is at stake. I would hope that the situation will be settled without splits occurring. You can add my name to the list."

John Anthony (July 6, 2000)
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"I would like it to be know that I whole-heartedly agree with the stand Watchman Magazine is taking against the false doctrine of the "non-literal seven-day creation." Although the Bible's intent, according to my understanding, was and is never to be a textbook on science, each time anthropologists, archaeologists, and modern scientists have set out to discredit a historical or scientific claim in God's word, the accuracy and historicity of the Bible has been considerably strengthened. To deny God's word about the literal seven-day creation is to open a door to deny other doctrines fundamental to the Christian faith. To put it simply, if God's word is not reliable in its account of the creation, then how can we trust anything else found therein? Thank you for your good work."

Michael W. Rhodes (July 6, 2000)
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"I am in full agreement with the biblical account of creation. I would like my name added to the list of those who support this view."

John A. Veyon (July 7, 2000)
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"Please add my name in agreement with the literal 6 day creation."

Glynn Grant (July 7, 2000)
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"I would like to have my name recorded as one signed to the letter concerning Florida College and the age of the earth."

David Baker (July 7, 2000)
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"I am deeply grateful that someone has taken the time to so concisely lay out the problems with the teaching that seems to be endorsed by not only the staff at FC but by far too many Christians who have been exposed to such teaching. My prayer is that those concerned will not turn a deaf ear as they have to other pleas, and return to the pure and simple teaching of God's Word."

Gailen E. Evans (July 7, 2000)
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"Please add my name to those who have signed the open letter and believe that the Bible teaches that both the animate and inanimate creation were fully accomplished in six literal, consecutive days."

Jack Critchfield (July 7, 2000)
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"I would like to side with those are actively opposing this blatant, damnable heresy. Feel free to use my name."

Justin Monts (July 7, 2000)
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"You can add my name to that list of individuals who believe in the seven days of creation. I support your open letter."

Bobby G. Goodman Jr. (July 7, 2000)
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"Please add my name to the list of those who oppose what Florida College is allowing to be taught."

Mark Dunagan (July 7, 2000)
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"I appreciate so much that you have made this letter available for all to see and review so that everyone can become aware of the false teaching that is contrary to God's Creation that is taking place at Florida College. 2 Tim 3:16-17."

Dan Torres (July 7, 2000)
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"I agree with the letter in that the Genesis account of creation is miraculous, instantaneous, and contradictoro to the Theory of Macro Evolution. If possible, please add my name to the list of co-signers."

Matthew R. Miller (July 8, 2000)
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"If we must view Genesis creation account as not literal, then other parts of the bible that are perceived as difficult can now be viewed as literal. The word of God is plain and clear! Too many they are unable to accept that fact. Let us all strive to read and understand the context. To go beyond the context leads us to another form of doctrine that is not of God.

"Genesis 1 is literal and by faith we believe it!"

Wendell R. Welch (July 9, 2000)
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"I will side with the Genesis account of creation, rather than theistic evolution or any other attempt to explain the origin of the universe and the life that inhabits the earth."

David Goodman (July 9, 2000)
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"I concur completely with all this well-written letter states and hope and pray that Colly, the board, the adminstation of FC will be "MEN and/or WOMEN" enough to put a stop to this erroneous teaching and rid the faculty of teachers who persist in such doctrine. I am amazed that it has been tolerated; I had confidence that Colly would have taken issue with Mr. Scott the minute he was aware of his teaching.?? May God give them courage to make this imperative correction! I am an ex-Middle Tennessee Board of Friends of Florida College. We have raised lots of money for scholarships even this year. Of course, if this situation is not corrected I cannot continue to promote the college. I recognize most of the people who have signed this letter are gospel preachers; but I just wanted you to know that there are others who appreciate your efforts in trying to rid this school of this le..."

(Note, the email was unfortunately truncated, and as such the end of the message, and signature were lost. The email signature indicates that the email came from the following...)

John & Marylin Hart (July 10, 2000)
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"I am writing to express my complete agreement with your open letter to Florida College which appeared in the current issue of 'Watchman Magazine.'

"As was so ably pointed out, this is but the beginning of a headlong plunge into modernism. I am reminded of certain events that happened within the Methodist church (before they were "united"). First, deny the literal nature of the biblical account of creation, and, unless this digression is reversed, it won't be long before they will deny the virgin birth and other biblical truths.

"Please include me on your list of those who are in agreement with the sentiment of your open letter."

Lloyd P. Atherton (July 10, 2000)
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"You may add my name to those who signed your letter as presented in Watchman Magazine, as it was sent to Florida College. I am in agreement with the sentiments of your letter."

Bart Campbell (July 11, 2000)
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"I wish to express my complete support for the contents of the open letter to F.C. regarding the "Long Day" theory that is being advocated by brethren Hill Roberts and Shane Scott and F.C.'s fellowship with these brethren. It is a sad day among God's people when the miraculous creation of the universe, the world and all therein included, in six literal days is put to a question mark. We must all stand firm against these innovations brought on by modernism and encourage brethren everywhere to not be led astray by the 'devices of Satan.'"

Bobby R. Holmes (July 12, 2000)
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"I am appalled that men such as Hill Roberts and Shane Scott would be allowed to peddle their false doctrine denying the creation of the world in six literal days. This flys in the face of Divine inspiration. F.C. has encouraged and aided these men in their false teaching by not publicly rebuking them and challenging their doctrine. Instead, F.C. has maintained a 'hands off' policy. They thus become as guilty of the sin as are the men teaching it. I am solidly behind the open letter to F.C."

Billy Dollar (July 12, 2000)
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"Our God created this world in six (6) days and rested on the seventh day....That's what God's word says and that's all that matters. Evolution is a lie and so are all those who teach it as being true."

Rocky Cook (July 12, 2000)
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"I sure want to add my name to the list of those who oppose the false teaching of some at FC concerning the 'day/age' theory."

RAYMOND BREUER (July 12, 2000)
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"Please sign my name to the open letter. I appreciate all the men that signed the letter and commend them in their strength and boldness to oppose apostasy from God's word. I pray that others will wake up to the danger the college can be if error continues to go unmet and tolerated. While the college is not the church, most of the students there do belong to the church, and they will bring in their taught innovations to the Lord's body."

Steve Monts (July 12, 2000)
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"Please add my name to the list of brethern who oppose the false idea of a literal day as taught in Geneses 1-2 to mean a long peord of time (Millions or Billions of years) Let God, [The Bible] be true and every man be a liar."

ROY E. DAVIDSON (July 13, 2000)
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"Please add my name as a signatory to your open letter to the Florida College. if we believe the Bible as it is, there is no room for any other speculative theories. Thansk for your firm faith! Continue to fight the good fight of the faith."

Lordy G. Salunga ~ Philippines (July 13, 2000)
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"I have read all that has been posted on the subject at hand from the following websites: Bible World, Gospel Anchor, and the Watchman Magazine. I have made copies of every page of material that I can find on it so I can distribute these facts to all of the brethren I know out there that do not have access to the internet. My wife, one brother-in-law, and some very trusted brothers and sisters in Christ have graduated from F.C. I would hope that the college would publicly rebuke those teaching error and false doctrine and would take immediate action to see that those teaching it, are no longer able to do so. It has yet to happen. Now I am faced with taking this material home and discussing with my other brother-in-law, who may be a returning student, why he needs to seriously reconsider his future educational environment. He just so happens to think the world of that school. It is no surprise to me that so many people, that I have spoken with, have been so surprised to hear of this matter, because of their wonderful trust and faith in F.C. It is my prayer that brother Ferrell Jenkins and brother Colly Caldwell do the right thing before the reputations at stake are unrecoverable.

"As I have previously stated, I have thoroughly read the details to the argument at hand, as much as is available electronically, and believe that this "open letter" is worthy of a whole hearted AMEN.

"Please add my name to the list."

Jamie A. Helmick (July 13, 2000)
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"Unity-in-perversity strikes again! Why must men pervert God's inspired, unfailing, inerrant, incorruptible word to sustain the theories, speculations and ideas of science. Indeed, can we not trust the Creator to tell us all we must know about creation? Do we not believe that our God is omnipotent, and that He can create the world in 6 - 24 hour days - PERIOD? No ages, no gaps, no theories, no speculation - just the plain and simple fact that this is how it was done! Why must we entertain "alternate explanations" of God's creation? Why can we not accept it just the way IT IS WRITTEN?

"When I think about God's authority ... I understand the creation account to be a STATEMENT OF FACT ... but as such men would have it, it is not! I understand that we are to RESPECT GOD'S SILENCE and not intrude upon it ... yet these men would fill in what they call blanks, to harmonize God's account with their uninspired account -- science! I also understand that GOD REVEALS HIMSELF IN NATURE ... but these men want us to believe that man's infinitely-limited understanding of nature is God's revelation!

"Let us unite, not in perversity, but in truth -- the plain, simple truth of God's word. We do not need science to confirm (if that's what they call this) that God is! All we need is to open our eyes and look about us. All we need is the Bible to know that He is! Last time I looked, the Bible says, "Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God" (Rom. 10:17). But, since we feel the strong need to use science to append to God's complete inspiration on creation, why not add the words "and science" to the end of this passage be done with it?!? Truth is, such theories of science regarding creation prove to be nothing more than addition to God's word! I'd hate to have to give answer for that in the day of judgment!

"Our prayer is that bro. Jenkins will stop giving license and pulpit to those who profess such a concept, even on his website www.bibleworld.com (see Tom Couchman's article recommended by bro. Jenkins as "interesting reading") and that bro. Caldwell will stand by his zero-tolerance policy. May Bros. Roberts and Scott both see the dangers of their theories and leave God's word alone! Let these uncertain sounds be silenced among us!"

Jonathan and Sally Perz (July 14, 2000)
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"From the first time I heard of this controversy, I could scarcely believe it. Having read Ferrell's Evidences book and listened to him preach several times, I immediately loved him for his excellent work and courageous, faithful stand on the integrity and inspirtation of God's Word. But hearing these allegations, I thought, "Surely there's some misunderstanding here." Misunderstanding is often the root cause of the problem between brethren. But when Luther Bolenbarker told me of Watchman's coverage; and then my friends Jeff Smith and Steve Locklair echoed the same story, I had to find out for myself.

"There can be no doubt that serious and false teaching has been disseminated (and then lightly dismissed) by the leaders at Florida College. It is a very serious concern to me, and disheartening. As you know, we have six kids and my wife and I have felt for many years that they would be blessed to have the opportunity to attend a conservative college, where they could be shielded from so much liberalism and compromise in Biblical teaching, so common at institutions of higher learning. I like too, that it is funded privately and kept out of church budgets. Supporting it was my way of taking a stand against institutionalism within some churches of Christ. In fact, I have often wished I was baptized at a younger age, and could have attended F.C. myself. The good Christian environment, godly professors, and standards of modesty far excelled anything I saw at the University of Santa (paragraph was truncated here in the email)...

"My wife, Patty, and I will weigh with much gravity whether any of our other kids will attend F.C. We love our brethren and are hoping for the best, but the verdict seems to remain in the balance. It is ironic that many good conservative-minded fellows among the denominations can discern better that some of our own brethren the harm of what has happened and what is at stake. Organizations like the Institute for Creation Research (El Cajon, CA) and "Answers in Genesis" would probably be appalled that anyone in the Churches of Christ would doubt or allege the kinds of things which we are talking about (Luke 16:8). It is a shame to us that it is even "named among us."

"Please add my name to the signers of the letter.

"My compliments to you, Stan and Harry, for the excellent documentation and treatment of the issue.

"With deep concern and prayers for all those involved,"

John & Patty West (July 14, 2000)
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"I agree with everything stated in the open letter. FC has once again compromised with the "Unity-in-Diversity" crowd. Please add my name to the letter."

Dan Gatlin (July 14, 2000)
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"Please add my name to the list of those who agree with your open letter. It is a shame that some of our brethren have sought to "clarify" and justify, rather than correct themselves (Prov. 24:16; 28:13). It will help no one for us to make provisions and excuses for false teaching, whether it be our own or that of others (Prov. 17:15; 28:4; Isa. 26:10; Jer. 23:14).

"Moreover, accusing those who demand a "thus saith the Lord" of causing trouble, is a pattern which is well established in scripture (I K. 18:17; Amos 5:10; I P. 4:4). In times past, brethren have been accused of "nitpicking" over musical instruments in worship, the use of the Lord's treasury for things unauthorized, and the organization of the church. Yet many "among us", cannot see the parallel to similar accusations today. If we were to follow Tom Couchman's philosophy (pg. 2, in his article which Ferrell Jenkins' advertises as "interesting reading" at www.bibleworld.com), we would never have separated ourselves from the Christian church or the institutional churches of Christ. We must confidently replace the responsibility for any division squarely upon the shoulders of those who depart from God's word."

Jeff Belknap (July 14, 2000)
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"I have read the material concerning the teaching of the day-age philosophy at Florida College. It is unfortunate that this has been tolerated there. However, sooner or later this is predictable. Satan knows full well that he can infect more churches with error by using a human institution that too many brethren place too much trust in and he is always looking for an opportunity to spoil the best intentions of men. If people would always remember that current science said the world was flat, they would be less inclined to place their confidence on what current science says. Add my name to those in support of the Open Letter and the literal interpretation of the biblical account of creation."

Fred Gosnell (July 15, 2000)
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"As a former FC student, I am appalled at the teaching being done in that institution today. In the late 1960's, a literal interpretation of days was taught. Various meanings of "yom" were given, but the power of God was not diminished nor compromised by modern scientific teachings. I fully support the open letter and pray that the FC bible staff will repent of this teaching."

Robert Ward (July 15, 2000)
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"I do agree with the message in the open letter. How anyone can reach the conclusion of evolution from the scriptures is beyond me. I thank the men who have stood up and expressed their concern in this matter. I pray that you will always stand for the truth and never waiver.

"I also believe, however, that there is more at stake here than just false teaching. Florida College's mission statement clearly shows that they are in clear violation of the scriptures according to what is the business of the church. They offer 'an atmosphere conducive to MORAL and SPIRITUAL growth, ' strive to 'develop young people mentally, physically, socially, and SPIRITUALLY,' and offer an 'environment that encourages [students] MORAL and SPIRITUAL developement (sic).'

"Is spiritual development the job of a school? Who shall teach the young? The Bible makes this clear: Parents (Eph. 6:4), Apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors (elders), and teachers (Eph. 4:11-12), Older teach the younger (Tit. 2:1-8), and Preachers teaching others to preach (2 Tim. 2:1-2). Never is a school mentioned to teach others in the work of the Lord. Is Florida College the church? Clearly not, as there is only one body (Eph. 4:4). If FC is not the church, then it can't do the work of the church.

"I urge brethren everywhere to stand for the truth at all costs! 'Be ready in season and out of season.'"

Jeff Gary (July 15,2000)
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"Please add my name as one Christian who has no problem believing that the Almighty, Omnipotent God had no difficulties creating the universe in six literal days as He stated in His Word, even though atheists, agnostics, denominationalists, and now lamentably some brethren have difficulties in believing in that Power and Revelation. As the centuries pass, when will Christians wake up to the fact that creating man-made institutions to supplement and/or supplant the church that our Lord built causes nothing but division and apostasy? Regardless of the original good intentions of founding, or the great number of conservatives" present in the institution, or the attempts that will be made to soften, deny or hide the bad PR that parents of students will hear from this particular occurrence, the age-old pattern seems to be that with growth and success of these human organizations, the opportunities ripen for unscriptural teachings to creep in. My prayer for my sons and their offspring is that whenever the Lord comes, He will still find the same faith we read of in the New Testament, not some compromised, "diverse" faith that brethren have developed on their own over time."

Joel W. Meier (July 15, 2000)
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"I too am concerned about the Day/age teaching. Either gaps between the day or each day being a long period of time is of great concern to me as a Bible believer. I reject such as false doctrine and extremely dangerous. But I am also concerned with the notion of pushing (in my judgment) too far the idea that "I do not know the age of the earth" kind of statements. Yes, I admit that I do not know the exact age of the earth. However, I am not prepared to even suggest that the earth can be Billions of years old and be in harmony with Genesis. Where in Genesis 1 are these Billions of years to be found? Are they in a gap between the first two verses? Between some other verses? Where? Did the earth lie dormant (or whatever) for these Billions of years before plants and animals were created?

"I wish that brethren who suggest that if scientists could prove that earth is Billions of years old and that this would not conflict with Genesis would tell us plainly where the Billions of years are located (or might be located). Otherwise, leave out such remarks as they only confuse and leave open the door for speculation (or compromise)."

John Humphries (July 16, 2000)
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"I am amazed that F.C. would employ a teacher for the Bible Dept. that holds to the views of Shane Scott. I could not in all good conscience encourage anyone to send their children to F.C. until they show by action what they say they believe in their responses to the "Open Letter". We all know actions speak louder than words."

Michael L. Vierheller (July 16, 2000)
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"I would like to express my agreement with the sentiment of the letter regarding the literal nature of the biblical account of creation."

Robert S. Swain (July 17, 2000)
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"Never had a problem with the Biblical account of creation. A day is a day.-End of discussion. It is not complicated. Thanks for adding my name."

Richard W. Megronigle (July 17, 2000)
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"Please add my name to the fine sentiments of your letter to FC."

Donald P. Ames (July 18, 2000)
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"The administration of Florida College is dishonest or they would not keep Shane Scott on the staff. I wonder what is their motivation?"

Deborah L. Rowen (July 18, 2000)
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"Six literal days of creation versus millions of years of evolutionary time. Which is more reasonable to believe? This is the question believers of the Bible have always posed to unbelieving scientists. Now, it seems, some brethren have decided that it is unreasonable to believe that God could have, or did, create the earth in six literal days. To some, it seems most likely that God employed six ages of millions of years each to create and then 'cook' His creation.

"Why?

"Why must there be millions of years between Genesis 1:1 and 1:2, and then six eons following? On whose authority shall we revise the first fact of the Bible? How long until we revise other Bible facts in order to satisfy skeptics? Many believe the crucifixion and resurrection of Christ to be foolish and unreasonable (1 Corinthians 1:18-25). Shall we dismiss the death and resurrection as well, just because skeptics say it isn't so?

"Why must the six days of creation be anything more than 'an evening and a morning?' On whose authority will we decide that the days must be vast geological ages?

"Why could not the God who created man from dust, and who made a woman from the man's rib, make the universe, sun, moon, stars, earth, and every form of life in six literal days?

"Why should rocks, strata, and fossils that look old be assumed to be millions of years old? Why should we dismiss that God has the power and capability to create an earth (in six literal days) that appears ancient to the modern skeptics' dating tests?

"Why must I abandon my faith in the Bible's account of God's creation for an explanation that is more reasonable to scientists?

"No, I will not do that. I firmly reject and oppose the non-literal interpretation of the creation account. Perhaps this attitude will be considered unenlightened, but so be it. I am compelled by faith to accept God's creation in six literal days (Hebrews 11:3)."

David Weaks (July 18, 2000)
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"Over the last several years, we have become increasingly concerned with things that have been happening throughout the brotherhood. We have heard things that concerned us dismissed as merely 'a preacher's fuss' and 'splitting hairs' and 'people trying to make a name or themselves.' We have heard from brethren for a few years now that you cannot identify a false teacher if you believe that he is honest and sincere. Jesus said concerning false prophets 'you shall know them by their fruits' (Matt. 7:16) not by their sincerity. That false argument has been allowed to germinate in many hearts for a few years and now we see the evil fruit that is being produced. Some brethren are having fellowship with those who are teaching error and refuse to listen to warnings from Scripture. 'Have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them' (Eph. 5:11). I hope and pray that we all have the attitude that if we become aware that we are teaching error that we will be humble enough to repent of our sins and make the correction so that we will not be lost and cause others to be lost.

"As a result of studying these issues for a few years and reading and comparing the arguments with the Scriptures (cf. Acts 17:11), we have made a personal decision to no longer lend support to Florida College. That decision did not come lightly, as we met at Florida College lectures in 1990 and then spent three years living there, working there (Bettye) and taking Bible classes there (Steve). We had planned from the time that Andrew (7 now) was a baby that he would go to Florida College, but not anymore. After we moved, we traveled back each year at lecture time until 1999, when I went to preach in the Philippines, but don't plan to attend again unless there are drastic changes. We enjoyed our time there, learned a lot, and made some dear friendships and understand that the stand that we are now taking will jeopardize some of those friendships. However, we do not intend to compromise ... especially on whether God created the world in six days or not. By inspiration of the scriptures, we are told that the evening and the morning were the first day, and so on, and that is what we believe. If we compromise on that, then what is next? ... the virgin birth? ... the one true church?... salvation?

"I have recently read again a book by Cecil Willis called 'W.W. Otey: Contender for the Faith' written in 1964. It is an excellent book that I highly recommend, as he deals with the controversies that he faced in the 94 years he lived. No, Br. Willis and Br. Otey are not divinely inspired, but he writes with some merit that all colleges operated by brethren eventually go into apostasy. Cecil lists some advantages of them then writes, 'However, Bible colleges are human organizations, and human organizations do not remain static. Furthermore, their change is seldom for the better. Many of the activities in the colleges tend toward worldliness. The colleges' greatest danger, to Otey, was that they might be afflicted with unscriptural teaching. With perhaps 98% of the preachers receiving some training in these schools, they, therefore, could turn out upon the churches a host of false teachers. The history of colleges proved Otey's point. He felt that every school from the first down to the five infants among the brethren had become the source of false teaching. While this in itself did not indict the five then in existence, it did show the tendency. The best that could be said of Bible Colleges was that they were an experiment. All the previous ones had gone bad.' (p. 292).

"We realize the great influence that Florida College has throughout the country, and while we understand that they are not the church, the faculty and administration are individually members of the church. The Scriptures demand that they and all of us must abide in the doctrine of Christ to have God's approval (2 John 9). We are thankful for the Watchman Magazine and many faithful brethren who are willing to 'contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints' (Jude 3). We appreciate those who signed the open letter, understanding that they would face opposition in taking this stand against such a powerful and influential institution. We have both read the open letter and the additional information from Ferrell Jenkins and Colly Caldwell, both of whom we have admired and respected for many years. We must, however, keep personal feelings out of it, and must stand firm against the toleration of error of any kind. While it has been said that Hill Roberts was not teaching the day/age theory in his class and that no one on the staff of F.C. believes in theistic evolution, in cannot be denied that he was allowed to distribute information. Even if this had not been allowed, his influence upon many young college students cannot be underestimated. Also, Shane Scott being on the Bible staff and introducing and/or promoting the day/age theory in his class and on his website has dangerous consequences. We continue to pray for all of these men and brethren everywhere that they will stand united in the truth."

Steve and Bettye Locklair (July 18, 2000)
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"Please ad our names to those who are standing against the error fellowshipped by Florida College."

Heath & Christy Rogers (July 20, 2000)
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"I agree wth your opposition to FC's teaching regarding creation!"

Harry W. Cline Jr. (July 20, 2000)
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"I want to be on the list, too. Florida College used to be a good place, but I'm tired of so many so-called 'conservatives' riding the fence on every issue. Christians should not be guilty of making 'uncertain sounds' (1 Cor 14:8). If you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice. I will choose a path that's clear!"

Neal Peart (July 20, 2000)
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"Please add our names to your list that agree with your open letter. It is good to know that there are some with enough backbone left to stand with the Lord. Keep up the good work."

Doyle & Sarah Castleberry (July 21, 2000)
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"Calvin E. Reed, a gospel preacher of some 60 years experience, has asked that his name be added to the list of those who agree with the open letter. Brother Reed is not on-line and requested that this means for adding his name."
(Posted by Ron Lloyd)

Calvin E. Reed (July 21, 2000)
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"There have always been, and will continue to be, those among our brethren weak in faith who 'err, not knowing the Scriptures nor the power of God,' Matt..22:29. Such are those among us now who profess, or tolerate the false teaching of, the 'Big Bang & Evolution' theories of man as fact, when in fact such teaching plainly contradicts the revealed Word of God.

"The prophet Jeremiah had no such misconceptions concerning God, and God's power. Consider his prayer in Jeremiah 32:17, 'Ah, Lord God! Behold, You have made the heavens and the earth by Your great power and outstretched arm. There is nothing too hard for You.' Notice the Lord's response to Jeremiah's statement, in verse 27, 'Behold, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh. Is there anything too hard for Me?'

"Some of our brethren have and are answering, 'Yes, there are some things too hard for the Lord,' But, as for me and my house, we choose to believe in the Lord, and in the power of His might, rather than in the fallible rationalizations and theories of men (Jeremiah 10:23).

"Therefore, we fully endorse the 'Open Letter,' and the sixty-seven men who have boldly cosigned this letter."

Art & Carolyn Maxey (July 21, 2000)
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"We believe in the six, literal 24-hour days of creation."

Evan and Lydia Casey (July 21, 2000)
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"I am in full agreement with the sentiment of this letter regarding the literal nature of the biblical account of creation. 'God called the light Day, and the darkness He called Night. So the evening and the morning were the first day.' It couldn't be more simple."

Jennifer Head (July 22, 2000)
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"It did not 'take' God 6 days to create all things. He could have done it in an instant. He chose to spread it out over 6 literal days. I should think that it would take those in charge at FC less than six days to stop the false teaching you have so ably pointed out that is taking place there. The letter is well written and must be answered better than it has been to date."

John Gentry (July 22, 2000)
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"'for (in) six days made Jehovah ( the Lord , KJV , NKJV, NASV ) the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all which (is) in them', The Interlinear Bible HENDRICKSON. I agree with the open letter."

Phillip M. Brown (July 24, 2000)
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"Please add my name in agreement with this Open Letter.

"For two plus years I have questioned my personal association with Florida College. Many issues encompass my reasoning for no longer having an association with FC effective 6/30/2000.

"The issue surrounding years/ages vs six solar days of creation (Gen 1: / Exodus 20:8-11) under consideration in this Letter just happens to be the latest. I so much appreciated reading written responses in correspondance by Bro Caldwell that certain doctrines were absolute and would not be tolerated at FC. Sadly, his words are not consistent with his actions thus far considering the evidence presented plainly in the writings, teaching and websites of those in question, specifically herein, Shane Scott and Hill Roberts. I was equally disappointed in Bro Jenkins lecture of toleration Feb 8, 2000.

"Brethren, the leadership at FC is divided. Bro Caldwell uses the words 'absolute' and 'intolerable.' Bro Jenkins lectures 'Must we decide? ...is it an issue that we really have to say absolutely.' All the while Shane Scott teaches the days of Gen 1 cannot be literal.

"I have watched subtle digression continue and grow in my personal associations with FC. For too many, it appears defence of FC as an institution, its faculty and Bible department has become more important than 'defence and confirmation of the Gospel.'

"I pray this among other issues will be corrected at FC. It would be a nice beginning."

Gary M. Johnsen (July 24, 2000)
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"We applaud the efforts being made by those leading the fight against incorrect teaching of Creation at FL College. Please add our names to those who oppose this error."

Bob and Ann White (July 24, 2000)
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"It is with great sorrow in my heart that this event has come to pass. I can only pray for these men to 'speak the same thing' as admonished by Paul. In the moment we find that we differ we ought to extend every effort to discuss, study, meditate, and pray for truth to be upheld once again, and that all matters of faith resolved to the point of total unity.

"It saddens me that the well respected men at Florida College have not sought to engage in private or public discussions over these things. Especially seeing from whom the open letter had come. Brethren, these are not enemies to the college or the men addressed. They are blessed and dear fellow workers! Former faculty, even. They are for FC and its future, not against it or against these men in a personal fashion.

"Our nation is built upon freedom of expression and freedom of religion. These men do have this right, but do they have the right to teach error and still demand our toleration and support? We have an obligation to Christ to stand firm against anything that is not of the truth.

"When God said 'Let there be light,' He did not imply that only the source of light was made. God also divided the light from the darkness. That implies that the light had traveled through that darkness and split it just like when you turn on a lamp it splits and divides the darkness of that room from the darkness all around. It did not say it started to divide, but that God divided (past tense) the light from the darkness. The light rays were created according to Gen 3:3-4, and verses 14-15.

"Do we forget who God was writing to? To man, and in man's own language. To us God wrote that the light was called 'Day,' and the darkness was called 'Night.' Day and night were put together and this was called a 'day.' Most assuredly, if written to men, this would mean one 24 hour day and nothing else.

"The open letter was the right thing to do. It was not presumptuous on their part to question public teaching of any kind. Those men at Florida college are just that: men. They need to 'take heed lest ye fall' just like every other Christian. They are not to be set on a pedestal (Mr. Hailey's incident should have taught us that), and due to respect and reputation held to a different standard or tolerated for any error taught. Even if they teach 99% truth and only 1% error. A little leaven will leaven the whole lump.

"Part of our spiritual warfare is to cast down imaginations. This imagination concerning the creation account needs to be cast down. We should stand only on the revealed truth. Although the men the letter was sent to do believe that they are doing just that, by advocating and tolerating any teachings not advocating literal 24 hour days is an 'imagination' that needs to be 'cast down.' {2 Cor 10:5).

"Please add me to the list to endorse the Open Letter."

Michael J. Proctor (July 24, 2000)
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"How terribly unfortunate that, over the years, so many issues, perpetuated by so many brethren who have insisted on going beyond that which is written, have rent asunder the body of Christ! Who might have predicted this new error? My fear is that, unless those who are promoting, condoning, and/or defending this form of theistic evolution repent, repudiate the error, and work to undo the harm it already has caused, inestimable additional damage might be done to the cause of Christ, and countless souls might be led astray and be lost, including their own. Brethren Caldwell and Jenkins are tremendously able Bible teachers whom I have respected and admired for many years, and I pray that will not be the case. If men of their caliber can err, so can anyone among us. Therefore, let this situation serve as a warning to us all to take heed unto ourselves and unto the doctrine, and to continue in them, that we should not fall, but that we might save ourselves and them that hear us. May this open letter, along with these endorsements, stir those men to rectify this problem before it is too late. To that end, please add my amen to the list of those who believe the Truth of God's word regarding the literal Genesis account of creation, and support the righteous efforts of the open letter's original co-signers."

A. A. Granke, Jr. (July 30, 2000)
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"I agree with the sentiment of the letter regarding the literal nature of the biblical account of creation. I have not quite been a Christian three years, but I believe that we can all understand what God has revealed on this subject the same way regardless of our age physically or spiritually! ...Some will follow the Truth & others will believe the lie by tolerating whatever the school tolerates. It is my prayer that the men at Florida College who are allowing this to continue will stand where God would have them to be ... by His Holy Word before it is everlastingly too late! I also hope that that their supporters will not be carried away along with the wickedness of their emotional deeds. I appreciate the good that Florida College served in the past, but it is now leading Christians to another senseless great apostasy. Christ's name will once again be trampled under foot & He crucified all over again to the sight of the world & denominations around us!!! God's word has been around longer than we have, shame on anyone who attempts to add to it by not respecting its silence. Silence is golden! Please include this on the Reader Response page."

Leroy Klice (July 31, 2000)
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"Please add our names to the list of those who wish to stand for the truth, that God created the world in 6 literal days, not over eons of time.

"Thank you for your good work."

Jerry and Alice Bechler (August 4, 2000)
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"I agree with the letter. The world was created in six literal days just as told to us according to the word of God."

Craig D. Straight (August 4, 2000)
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"I am glad for those that stand for the truth. Florida College has alot of problems and the false teachings is only part of them. We all need to stand for the truth and speak only where the bible speaks. I'm sure at one time FC might have only taught the truth, but they have been falling away from it just to please man's ways and the thoughts of the world around us. It's truly sad that it has involved so many of the young people that has attended FC and will involve so many more that continue to attend FC.

David Balderson (August 11, 2000)
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"I must say that I agree with the premise that God created the earth in six literal days with no time in between. Please put my name on the Reader Response page."

Bobby Mullens (August 18, 2000)
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