Thursday afternoon found Phil at the Landers’ doorstep. He idled for a moment, then reached out a timid hand to knock. Before knuckles hit wood, however, a lady of about 20 opened the door with a finger to her lips. Phil whispered, “Hi, I’m Phil, Daniel invited me?” The lady answered, “I’m Daniel’s sister, Bree. Come in.” then led him to a living room where he counted eight other young people with heads bowed in prayer.
Again motioning for silence, Bree pointed Phil to an empty chair. Feeling out of place, Phil awkwardly sat and closed his eyes. Bree herself stood with her head bowed until Daniel closed the prayer and his “Amen” was echoed by those present. She then sat next to her brother.
Daniel gave the newcomer a warm “Hiya, Phil!”, then shot off the names of the other young Bible students, two of whom Phil knew by sight from college.
“We are going through the gospel of John.” Daniel told him, “You’re in luck; today is our first lesson. Do you have a Bible?”
Sheepishly, Phil answered, “No”.
“No problem, there’s one for you.” Daniel pointed to an end table next to a solitary coach where Phil picked up a worn paperback.
“Ok, let’s get started.”
The group took turns reading the verses from John 1:1-18. Phil read verses three and thirteen:
3 “All things were made through Him, and without Him was not anything made that was made.”
13 “Who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.”
Having been enamored with the world of secular science for so long, Phil was startled to consider that perhaps the world and mankind could have come about apart from evolution. Moreover, Daniel had been to all the same classes that Phil attended and yet believed that GOD was the author of mankind. How could this be?
When they came to verse three, Daniel asked, “Does anyone have any thoughts on this verse?”
“I honestly don’t know what to think.”, Phil replied, “I mean, you’ve been to all the same classes and taken the same exams I have. How could you get top grades believing what you do?”
With an understanding look, Daniel answered, “Well, the first time a test asked questions about how the world came to be, I wrote an essay for that answer explaining my beliefs about how God spoke the world into existence in six days and has been keeping it in order ever since.
Seeing that all of my other answers were correct, and that I had taken the time to respectfully make my point, Mr. Cates decided to respect my beliefs as long as I knew ‘the practical stuff’, as he puts it. So now for those types of questions I just write ‘six day creation’ and Mr. Cates accepts that.”
Phil shook his head in unbelief. Mr. Cates, though friendly, was one of the strictest professors they studied under! The
“I’m going to have to think this over.” was all Phil could say to verse thirteen, and the study resumed with little more from him.