Silvestro, Anthony R. Dr. Jr. and Eckel, Ev. authors, On The Origin of Kinds, By Means of Creator God and The Preservation of Souls in the Struggle for Eternity, Remember Creation Publishing 2017. strivingforeternity.org and https://www.ontheoriginofkinds.com/ $15
Biographical Sketch of the Authors
On The Origin of Kinds was written by two main authors and one chapter is provided by Andrew Rappaport. Dr. Anthony Silvestro is surprisingly not a formally trained theologian. He is a disciple of Andrew Rappaport who has his MDiv, is a pastor, a fulltime evangelist, and he is the founder of Striving for Eternity Ministries. Dr. Silvestro got his doctorate in dentistry. Yet, he has spent countless hours studying the Bible, presuppositional apologetics, and creation apologetics. His education has helped him to be a great writer. He is also an open air evangelist and works with Living Waters as well as Striving For Eternity ministry. He also speaks at Answers in Genesis events.
Jonathan Eckel is an open air preacher, evangelist, and founder of Remember Ministries. He is very gospel oriented and it can be seen in his chapters that he contributes to the book. While the chapters that he contributes are few, they are essential in making the book so evangelistically driven.
Summary of Contents
On the Origin of Kinds cannot fit itself into any one kind of genre. It is an evangelistic, presuppositional, creation apologetic book that is designed to strengthen the lay Christian in sharing their faith. It is also a gospel, God glorifying, hermeneutic book. This book is designed to train the average Christian, but it is beneficial to the pastor or theologian. It could also be used as a gospel tract because it is so gospel saturated. It is composed of sixteen chapters. Each chapter fits into building and equipping the Christian worldview. Each chapter lives up to it’s title’s name: “The Christian Worldview; Origins; Basic Evolutionary ‘Science’; The Relevance of Genesis; Creation, the Fall, and the Promise; The Gospel; An Introduction to Presuppositional Apologetics; Problems With Evolution; The Reliability of the Bible; Textual Variants; How the Gospel is Affected by the Evolutionary Argument; A Call to Repentance; Basic Challenges- Age of the Earth; Basic Challenges- Part 1; Basic Challenges- Part 2; Strategy of an Encounter- and How to Use This knowledge.”
The logical order of the arguments in the book allow for the reader to build upon their worldview in a easy to understand way. Even though this was a work by more than one author, this book flows very well.
That being said, you can tell who wrote what chapter. Andrew Rappaport’s chapter on Textual Criticism is very in-depth. The reader will not walk away with any questions on whether or not the Bible is reliable. There is even a pie chart that shows the percentage of the types of variants. My only critique is you can tell this pie chart was originally created to be in color and it is in black and white. It is hard to tell the difference between meaningful and not meaningful variants on the pie; but, the text makes it clear what is meaningful and not meaningful. (By the way, meaningful variants are a whopping 1%, and they do not change any doctrine of the Bible).
Dr. Silvestro wrote the majority of the chapters in the book (13 out of the 16). His chapters heavily focus on presuppositional and creation apologetics. Chapter seven on Presuppositional Apologetics I found most helpful. He makes a basic statement on the Christian worldview “God exists, the Bible is His Word, and, therefore, the Bible is completely true.” (pg. 87). Then he takes this worldview and runs it through Dr. Jason Lisle’s AIP test, “1. It cannot be arbitrary (without justification). 2. It cannot be inconsistent. 3. It must satisfy the preconditions of intelligibility (such as having a basis for absolute knowledge, and absolute morality)” (pg. 87). When all is said and done, Christianity comes out on top as the only reasonable worldview.
Evangelist Eckel’s introduction is a wonderful part of the book that calls the church to be the church. He lists five biblical ways to grow the church. “1. We are to fellowship with those that are in our church. 2. We are to pray with each other, for each other, and for the church. 3. We are to be under strong, unapologetic, expository preaching. 4. We are to be His (Jesus’) witnesses among the people through Biblical Evangelism. Through this evangelism, believers will be added to the body 5. The discipling of new believers by older ones, which fulfills the great commission” (pg. 16).
I recommend this to four types of people: Evolutionists: Evolutionists will see the Christian worldview for what it is and not through their atheistic teachers. They will see the bankruptness of the Evolutionary worldview. They will also read the gospel. Lay Christians and formal pastors: This book shows that Christianity and Evolution cannot mix. It also shows that Evolution is bankrupt. It also shows that Christianity is the only consistent and logical worldview. You also cannot get away from this book without hearing the gospel. They will be trained on how also to defend and share what they read. the last group is people who are interested in how to interpret the Bible. This book lays the foundations that people need to do hermeneutics (the art and science of interpreting literature).
You can get this book at strivingforeternity.org and http://www.ontheoriginofkinds.com.
I did not make any money from this book review nor was I expected to give a positive review of this book.