1. We believe in the triune Godhead; one God expressed in the Persons of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.
2. We believe that God is transcendent, and as such created the entire universe in six literal 24-hour days approximately 6,000 years ago as recorded in Genesis 1:1—31 and Exodus 20:9—11.
3. We believe that Adam and Eve were the first humans created by God in His image, but that they failed to obey God in the Garden of Eden and from this disobedience sin and death entered the world. As descendants of our first parents all of humanity stands guilty as sinners before God (Romans 3:23; 5:12; 8:22; 1 Corinthians 15:21).
4. We believe that the Eternal Word and Son of God Jesus Christ came into this world by being born of a virgin to identify with humanity, and did so for the purpose of being the once-for-all sacrifice for the forgiveness of sins and salvation for all who will believe (John 3:16).
5. We believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross, was buried, but on the third day rose in triumphal resurrection and victory over death (1 Corinthians 15:20).
6. We believe the 66 books of the Bible are the written and divinely inspired Word of God, and that they form a united whole. Therefore, they are the final word of authority on all matters of faith and practice. The Bible in its entirety is totally accurate regarding every subject it deals with, whether spiritual, moral, historical, or matters related to present-day science (2 Timothy 3:16).
7. We believe that the Holy Spirit of God draws, convinces, convicts, and enables sinners to repent of their sins and accept Jesus Christ as their Savior, thus bestowing the gift of salvation and eternal life (John 6:23,44; 16:8).
8. We believe the Holy Spirit is given to each believer to teach, lead, strengthen in the faith, and equip for fruitfulness in the work of the kingdom of God (Acts 1:8; Romans 8:26).
9. We believe Satan is a real personage who works in opposition to God and mankind, but that he is to be eternally doomed to the lake of fire with those angels who follow him—including all who have neglected or refused to accept Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior (Revelation 20:10).
10. We believe that the Book of Genesis is of great significance in that it lays the foundation for the understanding of origins, the purpose for mankind’s existence, and specifically for the doctrines of the Christian Church.
This is really God’s vision, not mine. In the summer of 2007 I visited several dinosaur museums in different states (including one in Branson, Missouri) that were totally evolutionary in philosophy. One day in September 2007 I was literally meditating about this while resting and it suddenly came to me like a vision from heaven—Branson needs a creation museum.
I soon began to share this vision with personal friends and acquaintances, and the idea was greeted by all with much enthusiasm and encouragement. It seems that before I could blink my eyes a nucleus of a corporation was formed and key people agreed to come on board as advisors. I felt led to ask Darel Biggers to be our vice president and Curtis Baker to be our secretary treasurer, and they both felt that God wanted them to be involved. Advisors so far include: Dr. Dale Scheusner, Dr. Fred Husted, Ron Walser, Dr. John Morris (President of Institute for Creation Research), and Bill Mundhausen (President of Orion Center).
God also favored us with a Christian lawyer, David (Chuck) Replogle who kindly agreed to process our application for incorporation at no charge! Creation Museum of the Ozarks is now officially incorporated in the State of Missouri as of January 9, 2008. The next necessary legal step is to apply for tax exempt status as a nonprofit organization. I just received the information today (January 22, 2008) from our secretary treasurer, Curtis Baker, that a local CPA has agreed to help us through this process at half the normal cost. Again, we thank God for His favor.
On January 21, 2008, Darel and Marie Biggers, Curtis and Sherry Baker, and myself were given a tour of some of the properties available in the Branson area. A long-time Christian realtor in Branson, Rex Grady, was very informative as he took us to various sites. The prices of land in the Branson area have skyrocketed in recent years. It has become very evident to us that we must trust God for the great financial miracles that are needed to see the fulfillment of this vision. We are just beginning this journey, but we do so with the knowledge that all things are possible with God.
The year 2008 realized the accomplishment with God’s help of Creation Museum of the Ozarks gaining the 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status on August 27. Supporters can now claim their donations as charitable gifts under IRS code if so desired.
In March, 2008 we welcomed Barry Dullum as our new vice-president after Darel Biggers decided to step down for personal reasons. We are certainly thankful to Darel and his wife Marie for their encouragement and counsel in those early days.
On April 17, 2008 we had a combined meeting of the board and advisors with 18 people present at a local Panera restaurant. Bob Stockdale’s Creative Ink staff presented tentative ideas for our first concept drawing which came to fruition after two more meetings with just board members and Bob Stockdale and his staff. Now the concept drawing can be seen on the home page of our Web site.
Our Web site is gradually growing as new material is added. One important accomplishment was beginning two-minute radio spots on KLFC radio station in Branson, Missouri. These are played Monday through Friday each week at 3:30 p.m. CST. We have now recorded 100 of these, and hope to expand to other radio stations to further promote the vision.
After three years since the vision for Creation Museum of the Ozarks began we now have a beginning temporary headquarters and mini-museum located in Strafford, Missouri. On September 11, 2010 we opened a partially prepared museum in our newly leased building at 112 East Pine Street, Strafford, MO 65757. We consider this temporary until God opens up a location for us in the Branson, MO area, where our focus has been from the beginning of this vision.
We have developed a team of CMOTO associates and speakers over the last year besides me, Rod Butterworth, and Curtis and Sherry Baker who have developed a great ministry with children. Ron Walser, a member of our advisory board, has been a tremendous help by being instrumental in reaching out to academically qualified individuals to become part of our team, and this has added considerable credibility to CMOTO as a ministry based on a solid biblical and scientific foundation. So far this year, September, we have had the privilege of ministering at over thirty speaking events.
We continue with radio ministry on three stations: KLFC Radio 88.1 in Branson; KWFC Radio 89.1 in Springfield; and KVTS-LP Radio 107.9 in Springfield. There are now 120 of these radio spots going out Monday through Friday each week with more to come. Our monthly newsletter now goes out to over 950 addresses plus a small number to email addresses.
Our vision for a larger facility in the Branson area remains strong. We believe the promises given to us by our Lord in His Word, and thus are expecting God to provide land in a good location. Besides the need for land and financial miracles, we need more exhibits for our new location that will relate to the truth of God’s Word. Please include us in your prayers.
We mentioned above that we envisioned our facility in Strafford to be a temporary office headquarters and mini museum. However, some of us now feel that the Lord may be pleased for us to keep this facility here in Strafford even as He opens up the door in the future for the larger vision in Branson. Time will tell, and all we know at this point is that we must continue to faithfully and consistently seek the Lord for His wisdom and direction. This vision for Gospel ministry through the medium of a creation museum is something that we want to be God inspired, God led, and brought about through God’s provision by faith.
With all this in mind we continue to improve and add to the exhibits at our Strafford location. For example, we are currently nearing completion of an in-house cave that is already fascinating visitors and getting across the message that the Genesis flood had a lot to do with cave formations around the world.
Without going into details it came to our attention earlier this year that we would have to make a name change for our ministry and museum. The umbrella and official corporate name of our ministry is now “Creation Ministries of the Ozarks” (keeping the same acronym of CMOTO), while the new name for our museum in Strafford is “Creation Experience Museum.” The name of our faith-vision future museum in Branson would need to be a new one in order to keep the two museums distinguished from one another. Of course, our new Web site address is now simply CMOTO.ORG.
We estimate that during the first nine months of this year we have been privileged to host approximately 1000 visitors to the museum. Just recently we had visitors from Kansas City and Brooklyn, New York. God has been gradually increasing the financial support for this ministry, and part of the benefit from this has enabled us to create a store with a good number of creation/apologetic resources including books, DVDs and children’s creation activities. I want to mention that Curtis and Sherry Baker have become invaluable partners in this work of the Lord from hosting tours to practical work such as construction and office organization. Also, Linda Butterworth has become a great asset through her gift of art and design ideas.
We need more volunteer help and are praying for God to send along the right people. We cannot adequately express our thanks and gratitude enough to those who have caught this vision and support us through their prayers and giving. God bless you all, RB.
Psalm 27:14 reads: “Wait on the Lord; be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart; wait, I say, on the Lord.” As mentioned above, the vision for a creation museum ministry in the Branson, Missouri area began in the fall of 2007. The waiting period for the fulfillment of a vision is often the most challenging part of the process. We must stay unwaveringly in the spirit of faith and expectancy.
Since the above update we have seen the Lord bring to pass the amazing reality of providing a physical location for our expansion museum just north of Branson on Highway 65. I say expansion because our museum in Strafford is still currently receiving visitors weekly, and we are trusting in God’s guidance as to whether to keep the Strafford location operating after the Branson museum is open. We were given two years rent-free occupancy at the new Branson location (beginning June 1, 2013) with the understanding that we would undertake necessary renovation of the building as necessary. Like most renovation and construction projects, this turned out to be much more work and financial cost than any of us realized. However, the Lord knew all about this before we took the step of faith, and we have now seen the building almost completely restored to good health with a new solid metal roof and siding, with air conditioning, heat and hot water. Also, our Christian landlord (the Brown family) has graciously extended our free rent by another six months.
It has been a lot of work so far, and will continue to be so as the internal design of the museum and exhibits begin to develop. God has sent just the right people at the right time with the expertise, equipment and creativeness to help fulfill this practical part of the vision. The exciting thoughts we have about the future effectiveness and spiritual ministry of this vision give us confidence that this move to the Branson area (God willing) will impact thousands with the absolute truth of God’s Word (we have now seen over 4,500 pass through our Strafford museum in three years). I am asking God to help us be ready for visitors by early spring 2014.
When God brought the vision to me in 2007 that Branson needs something better than a dinosaur museum like the one I visited which supported the scientifically unsupported idea of millions and billions of years, I did not know exactly what was ahead for me and the team God has surrounded me with. But the Lord has led step by step, and given wisdom for each step along the way. This is truly God’s vision, and we absolutely know that we ourselves have not done this. He is the One who has led the way, and we will continue to trust Him. After all, He says to us, “Do not worry about your life…For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you” (Matthew 6:25,32,33).
We are humbled that God has seen fit to surround us with an increasing number of supporters. Our monthly newsletter mailing has now grown to over 1500 including a number who receive it by email. Our radio spot ministry is now aired from Springfield, MO, Kansas City, MO, Omaha, Nebraska, and Chattanooga, Tennessee. Our job is to continue to trust Him to complete what He has begun. Our saying is: “We can’t do it; God can; and we believe He will.”
To be a ministry and educational resource instrumental in alerting the Church to the pervasive influence of secular, humanistic, evolutionary philosophy, and by so doing to equip believers with answers based on the absolute truths of the Bible and true empirical science. We believe this will strengthen the faith of Christians in the authority of God’s Word and embolden their witnessing.
We envision Creation Museum of the Ozarks as being hand-in-hand with the Church in seeking to obey the Great Commission: “Go therefore, and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age” (Matthew 28,19,20).
Dr. Rod Butterworth was born and raised in England and immigrated to America with his wife, Joanna, in 1963. Prior to this he served for two years in the British Royal Air Force. Now an American citizen since 1982, Rod and his wife (Joanna is now deceased) have ministered the Gospel in the New England States, New York, New Jersey and Missouri, and have been participants in evangelistic outreaches to Albania, England, Cyprus, Greece, China, and Mexico.
Dr. Butterworth has an earned master’s degree in education and a master’s and doctorate in Biblical Studies. He has served as curator of Springfield’s Biblical Archaeology Museum. For many years he has given meetings and seminars on the subject of creation from a Biblical perspective, and shows that true science and the evidence available is in harmony with the historical record of the Bible.
Rod has four grown children and seven grandchildren, and has lived in southwest Missouri for over 30 years. Recently (2009) Rod has had the privilege of marrying a lovely Christian lady by the name of Linda. In 2004, Joanna, his first wife of many years went to be with the Lord. He feels greatly blessed that God has allowed him another companion with whom to share life and ministry.