Yesterday, the Christian Post reported that Casting Crowns, one of the most popular Christian rock bands, toured Ken Ham’s Ark Encounter in Kentucky. That in itself is not a big deal. What the band’s lead singer, Mark Hall, said about the visit was especially facepalm-inducing though, even for a heathen like me:
I compare this to getting to go to the Holy Land for the first time, and there were all these pictures in your mind of what it would be like when we read Scripture… And just walking up… and seeing this boat… it’s all these abstract images… of what could have been, and you’re standing in it, and it really is a bit of a foundation for your mind to work with. It reconciles things.
First of all, the Holy Land is an actual geographic place. So reading about it as described in the Bible, and then seeing it in person is a relatable personal experience. For me, it would be like when I toured parts of Europe and visited the Colosseum or the Sagrada Familia, or even the Vatican. These were all places I read about and saw pictures of, but when visiting them in person, you can be easily overcome by their magnitude, knowing you’re standing on the same soil where famous historical events occurred.
But getting that same feeling from touring a recreation (I use that term as loosely as possible) of an ark allegedly built thousands of years ago by a 600-year-old man, based on a 2500-word fable about a scientifically impossible global flood? Just, no.
If visiting the Ark Encounter “reconciles things,” then you possess the critical thinking skills of a 3-year-old.
The Ark Encounter is purported to be a replica of Noah’s Ark, except for the fact it was built with materials that were unavailable thousands of years ago (like steel), with tools that were also unavailable (like cranes), contains features not invented/discovered yet (like electricity and HVAC), will not float, and is far too small to house two of each animal (including dinosaurs for Christ’s sake!), much less hold enough food to survive over a year. And we won’t even get into the logistical dilemma of removing animal waste.
So no, the Ark Encounter shouldn’t reconcile anything for you, unless you’re trying to illustrate the implausibility and unrealistic nature of this story. Yet sadly, Hall’s comments on the Ark Encounter will be touted by Ken Ham as an endorsement of his local economy-draining monstrosity and will reinforce the willful ignorance of other Young Earth Creationists who believe this crap.
If you’re into torturing yourself, check out shameless publicity whore Ken Ham’s Facebook Live recording of the visit with Mark Hall, where you’ll be treated to Ham’s unrivaled sense of humor and polished on-air presence.