By Carl Wieland
Carl Wieland chats with geologist, marine scientist, author and educator Roger Gallop.
After receiving a bachelor's degree in geology from the University of North Carolina, Roger G. Gallop obtained a master's degree in oceanography from Florida Institute of Technology in 1975, where he also earned his Ph.D. in science education in 2002. A certified professional geologist, he has spent more than 35 years as a geotechnical and marine scientist.
Roger says he was greatly blessed by growing up in a Christian family but despite being baptized at age 10, he says, he progressively became 'disconnected' from his faith, much of which had to do with being indoctrinated with evolution and millions of years. This started at high school, and was particularly acute while attending college. "This period can be a real 'stumbling block' for many students from Christian families," he admits.
"Nonetheless, I was open-minded enough to question what they were telling me, especially in geology. I was fortunate to have a visiting professor who admitted that the earth's landforms were better explained by large-scale catastrophic processes rather than 'slow and gradual' over billions of years, and who said that other geologists were thinking along those lines too. That was important to me later on."
While serving post-Vietnam at the US naval base in Cuba, Roger started attending a weekly Bible study with fellow marines. "I began reading books about Bible prophecy and Genesis creation, and renewed my faith in Jesus Christ and God of the Holy Bible."
After ten unfulfilling years with the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP), Roger resigned to start his own business. What followed were years of much struggle and sadness for Roger and his wife, Katharine, due to death and illness in the family.
“Prior conditioning is immensely difficult to challenge”"We found ourselves walking through a dark and uncertain time of our lives (financially, physically, and emotionally—but not spiritually). God answered our heartfelt prayers, including for Katharine's total recovery [from cancer], and we persevered.
"In fact, one of the big things I've repeatedly learned throughout my life is perseverance; the other ones are humility, and learning to overcome adversity through prayer and faith."
Eventually Roger was able to return to his studies at FIT, and obtained his doctorate over a span of five years—all while overseeing his growing business some 300 km away.
During the 1980s and '90s, Roger says, "I grew increasingly weary of public television, the secular media and public schools and colleges continually promoting evolution as 'fact'. Eventually, fed up with the way in which people were being led astray, he says, he was motivated to write and self-publish his book with the no-holds-barred title of evolution—The Greatest Deception in Modern History (deliberately missing the opening capital letter). It is well illustrated and covers a wide range of topics and arguments.
Regarding why the majority of scientists believe in evolution, despite the evidence against it, Roger said: "I can think of several reasons.First, they are the product of a secular educational system, one that assumes evolution and long ages 'as fact', and contrary evidence is simply ignored.
"Then there is the fear of being ridiculed—any time you bring up your belief in creation, or even the name of Jesus, you are considered an outsider or a freak. You cannot get a federal grant for research if you are labelled a creationist. It's easier for most to 'go with the herd'.
"And of course, as 2 Peter 3:5 indicates, people 'deliberately forget' about creation and the Flood. They just choose not to believe. This is part of that general post-Fall tendency of humans to rebel against the Creator, which is described in Romans 1:18–32—it reads like today's headlines.
"Despite the common perception that scientists are 'objective', they actually tend to be some of the most biased people," Roger reveals.
"I did my doctoral dissertation on this very subject, that when people learn something and vocalize it repeatedly it's very difficult for them to change their mind. It seems that the mind finds it hard even to process information that conflicts with previously accepted data; prior conditioning is immensely difficult to challenge."
Nonetheless, Roger says, "It still amazes me that people with a science degree are not willing to step back and say, 'I want to know the truth', and ask serious questions. It's always a wonder to me, too, why people would actually favour evolution over creation. Any credible scientist should know that today's 'big evolutionary story' goes against the laws of science—such as the law of causality, the law of biogenesis, and the laws of thermodynamics;1 but creation is perfectly consistent with such laws. Biblical creation fits the facts."
Today, he and Katharine continue to routinely read the Bible together each night, and he says, "The Lord blesses your life through the time you spend in His Word each night—never forgetting that life's securities and blessings are gifts from God.
"Ultimately, it is not about where you have been, it's where you are going that matters."