Sunday, March 14, 2010

Does the Bible teach an old earth?

This week I received three emails regarding the age of the earth. In the first email MM advises to "familiarize yourself with the content better before making yourself look very foolish," but ones wonders if he took his own advice before writing to me. MM writes:

Your story about the bible stating that the earth is only 6,000 years old is pointless. The bible says mankind is roughly 6,000 years into his existence, it does not say anything about how old the earth is. The universe is obviously thousands or millions of years old, and that does not contradict the bible. When the bible says that the earth was created in 6 days, it is not saying 6- 24 hour periods. Besides the fact that the bible says that a day to God is equal to 1,000 of our years, the bible was obviously illustrating 6 creative periods, represented by "days." Also, it does not specify how long the earth sat in space without human existence. So, I propose that next time you write a story please familiarize yourself with the content better before making yourself look very foolish.

MM, have you followed your own advice, and familiarized yourself with my site before writing about what it says? If so, you would be aware that I wrote:

Many Christians have solved the problem by finding ways to interpret the Bible consistent with the geologic record. Some think the six days of Genesis are figurative representations of long eras, and not six literal days. Some think Genesis 1 is just a parable, an interesting poetic way of saying that God started it all. Some see the six days as representing the thought process of God deciding to create, not the actual acts of creation. There are many ways to interpret the Bible to fit the geologic evidence. So one way out of the difficulty is to find interpretations of the Bible to match science. (

Finding a way to make the Bible agree with an old earth only begins to solve the conflict between the Bible and science. Science has found that the order in which new species have arrived on earth does not match the order given in Genesis, that there were humans on earth long before the genealogies of Genesis would indicate, and that there was a long series of intermediate fossils leading to the first humans. Can MM reconcile these findings with the Bible? If so, I would like to know how he does that.

The next writer observes:

The 6,000 year old scam I think I first heard in the movie inherit the wind. I would hope no one claims that one LOL

Understanding Genesis is understanding a lot and few bible thumpers seem to even grasp key parts of it. For one thing it comes very close to describing a simple evolutionary process. Secondly it is made clear there is time distortion (one of Gods days is like being a thousand years to man), but did they have million or billion when it was written LOL The third thing is why they were barred from the Garden with deadly force (I am assuming a flaming sword is deadly LOL). No not for "sinning" LOL
Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever:

Hmm as one of us, and the only way to control it was to deprive him of the fruit from the tree of life which gave immortality if eaten of on some regular basis. If you think about it, you are seeing some extremely advance thinking or technology being dumbed down to be told to extremely primitive men who wrote t down or possibly retold over generations until it was written down. I won't even mention the concept of taking a rib from Adam (bone marrow) to create a new engineered "creature" LOL

A few things to think about--Dwight

Dwight seems to LOL so often, it is difficult to know what we should take seriously, and where he is joking. The source of his merriment seems to be that some people think that young earth creationists actually exist. He calls this a "6000 year old scam." I hate to burst your bubble, Dwight, but yes, there are millions of people that teach that the earth is closer to 6000 years old than 4.5 billion years. See for instance, Evidence for a Young World.

Okay, Dwight, now that you see that there are actually people that teach the earth is less than 20,000 years old, can you perhaps stop laughing at those who know that young earth creationists exist, and help us to educate people in the findings of science?

Finally, LC writes:

Actually, there is another understanding of the Creation Story that works exceptionally well.

P. J. Wiseman, in his book Creation Revealed in Six Days, contends that about six thousand years ago, a scribe was inspired to write the story on a cuneiform tablet a day for six days. In other words, God didn't create the world in six days, instead, He simply took six days to reveal how He did it to a scribe who wrote the story.

We have simply lost the true meaning over the centuries. I have the book in case you'd like more info.

As I explained in the quote above, there are multiple ways to explain the conflict of the 6 days of Genesis with the findings of science. LC writes that the six days represent the six days it took to reveal it to the scribe who wrote it down. Okay, but if the scribe is trying to tell us what he learned during each of six days of revelation, couldn't he have expresssed himself more clearly? Can you understand how people--such as MM--could read Genesis 1, and not understand it to be saying that the scribe who wrote this took six days to learn about the billions of years of earth history? If God revealed Gensis 1 to this scribe, why is it that a very small percentage of people believe this view is the correct view? If most people have completely lost the meaning of this passage, what other passages have we completely lost the meaning to? If the writer of Genesis 1 is universally misunderstood, is it also possible the writer of John 3:16 is universally misunderstood? If we need to read Creation Revealed in Six Days to understand Genesis, why isn't Creation Revealed included in the canon of scripture?

So go ahead and propose your ideas of how Genesis may be teaching billions of years, but also take the time to think critically as to whether your explanation truly resolves the conflict.

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