Henry Morris, founder of the Institute for Creation Research, died at age 87 in California.
The institute – where Morris remained president emeritus after his retirement – announced he died Saturday afternoon after suffering two strokes.
Beginning with his book “The Genesis Flood” in 1961, Morris was a key figure in the modern creationist movement, which believes God created the world in six days less than 10,000 years ago and that the biblical flood covered the entire Earth.
Morris, who earned a Ph.D. and M.S. from the University of Minnesota, served on the faculty at Rice University, University of Minnesota, University of Southwestern Louisiana and Southern Illinois University.
He headed the department of civil engineering at the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University from 1957 to 1970.
Morris’ expertise in hydraulic engineering, along with his belief in the Bible’s accuracy, led him to seek an explanation of the Genesis flood in scientific terms.
He maintained that the dominant evolutionary theory of the world’s origin influenced “nearly every aspect of modern life, especially in its fostering of an almost universal rejection of historicity of Genesis and of biblical Christianity generally.”
In the introduction to his 1961 book, he stated, “If a worldwide flood actually destroyed the entire antediluvian human population, as well as all land animals, except those preserved in a special ark constructed by Noah … its historical and scientific implications are tremendous.”
Morris wrote or edited some 40 books. His book “Scientific Creationism” set him at odds with philosophers of science, asserting science cannot prove any particular theory of origins.
“This is obvious from the fact that the essence of the scientific method is experimental observation and repeatability,” he wrote. “A scientific investigator, be he ever so resourceful and brilliant, can neither observe nor repeat origins! This means that, though it is important to have a philosophy of origins, it can only be achieved by faith, not by sight.”