Ham, president and founder of Answers in Genesis -- which runs the Creation Museum -- says Genesis 1-11 is foundational to the rest of the Bible.
"We must start with Genesis if we are going to teach God's people how to defend the faith in this age of unbelief and skepticism," Ham said.
An Australian by birth, Ham moved to the U.S. in 1987 and has become one of the most in-demand Christian conference speakers and radio talk-show guests in the nation. He co-founded Answers in Genesis in 1994 with the purpose of upholding the authority of the Bible from the very first verse. The Creation Museum helps do that.
Opened in 2007 near Cincinnati in northern Kentucky, the nearly five-year-old Creation Museum is a 75,000-square-foot facility that offers the visitor a high-tech, multimedia experience that shows how science affirms the Bible's account of history. More than 1.5 million guests have visited.
The museum includes 150 exhibits (many with lifelike animatronic features) taking the guest through the "7 Cs of History" that are foundational to the Bible's message: creation, corruption, catastrophe, confusion, Christ, the cross and the consummation.
One exhibit features the first Adam in the Garden of Eden surrounded by animals. Next to the Adam of Eden, the federal head of the human race, is a lamb representing the second Adam, the Adam through whom our redemption is made possible.
The museum also includes a 225-seat special effects theater that offers guests a visual thrill ride through the major events of biblical history. Guests experience more than 6,000 years of biblical history with the aid of stunning visual effects including videos, slides, dioramas, animated figures, riveting music, sound effects and sensory experiences that will be sure to surprise the audience and keep everyone immersed in the story.
Astrophysicist Jason Lisle designs the programs for the Creation Museum's planetarium. He cites Psalm 8:3, where the psalmist David wrote, "When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou has ordained; what is man, that thou art mindful of him, and the son of man, that thou visitest him?"
Lisle presents the truths of Scripture with a stunning perspective that combines eye-popping images and state-of-the-art animation with faith-affirming facts from science and Scripture.
The Creation Museum with all its exhibits and theaters provides a faith-strengthening chronological walk through history that is both informative and inspirational.
THE ARK ENCOUNTER
The next major project for Ham and Answers in Genesis is the Ark Encounter. Plans are underway to construct a full-scale Ark according to the biblical dimensions, with the goal to use it as a modern-day illustration to help people accept the Bible as true history -- and to present the Gospel. It would open in 2014.
Fox News reported in 2010 that wooden remains of Noah's Ark had been discovered on Mount Ararat in eastern Turkey, although there are plenty of skeptics. A group of Chinese and Turkish evangelical explorers claimed that carbon dating proved the relics to be 4,800 years old. Mount Ararat has long been suspected as the final resting place of the craft. While the explorers insisted that they were 99.9 percent sure they had found the remains of Noah's Ark, some skeptics suggested that it was a hoax. Officials with Answers in Genesis are among those who have expressed doubts.
"You know, even if Noah's Ark were to be found somewhere on the mountains of Ararat, how many people would ever be able to visit its remains?" Ham asked. "Not many. Yet the Ark is a topic of great fascination today."
A Vanity Fair 2009 online survey revealed that the discovery of Noah's Ark would please far more people than the discovery of Atlantis, Amelia Earhart's plane, Nixon's lost tapes or Cleopatra's barge.
Vanity Fair explained, "Noah's Ark continues to capture the imagination of the general public, and its interest spans all social, religious, and economic segments. The Ark and the Flood is one of the few historical events which are well known in the worldwide global circle."
The Ark replica would become the largest timber-frame structure in the U.S. Because two national U.S. studies indicated that the Ark Encounter will attract up to 14,000 guests on certain days and an average of 8,000 guests a day during the summer -- creating long lines to enter the Ark -- even more attractions are now a part of the master plan.
The Ark Encounter (arkencounter.com) will be family-oriented and (in stages) include a replica of the Tower of Babel; a Walled City; a first-century Middle Eastern village; a journey in history from Abraham to the parting of the Red Sea; a walk-through aviary, live entertainment; a children's adventure area, petting zoo and animal shows; themed restaurants.
HOMESCHOOL PRODUCTS, BOOKS AND A WEBSITE
But Answers in Genesis is involved in far more than a museum and an ark-in-production. Answers in Genesis' curriculum includes Sunday school lessons for all ages, Vacation Bible School curricula, homeschool curricula, study guides, online courses, newsletters, books, devotions, DVDs, CDs, apologetics material, an Answers magazine.
The Answers in Genesis website (www.answersingenesis.org), which provides information about these resources as well as details about the museum and the Ark Encounter, had over 17 million visitors last year. It is one of the most-trafficked Christian websites in the world.
"Answers in Genesis has a staff of writers that is incredible," said Jason Nave, who works in the office of advancement for the ministry. "They produce biblically based resources that are of the highest quality and the amount of material they produce is unbelievable."
Ham said Christians must not back down from defending truth.
"We need to stand boldly and uncompromisingly on God's Word and pass that on to the next generation so that it can be perpetuated for years to come," Ham said. "What kind of legacy are we leaving to our children? We are losing two-thirds of the next generation in our churches because we doubt the Book. Many conservative leaders have succumbed to the Genesis 3 attack, where Satan asks, 'Did God really say?'
"Where England is today America will be tomorrow unless we stand uncompromisingly on the Bible beginning with the first book."
J. Gerald Harris is editor of The Christian Index, newsjournal of the Georgia Baptist Convention.
Copyright (c) 2012 Southern Baptist Convention, Baptist Press www.BPNews.net