IF YEC is True, Why So Much Evidence Pointing to OEC?

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IF YEC is True, Why So Much Evidence Pointing to OEC?

#1

Post by Philip » Wed Oct 22, 2014 9:59 am

As there are substantial and strong evidences that would collectively appear to overwhelmingly support an OEC viewpoint, WHY, if the Creation evidences are collectively a further and powerful testimony to its reality, then why oh why would God not want to make that reality obvious? Why would God want so many carefully looking at the evidences to be misled, to supposedly have gotten it so wrong - IF the Creation is indeed young as opposed to ancient? Surely God does not want people to not believe due to their seeing Scripture at great odds with what they have long seriously, sincerely and intensively studied? Also, many reasonable Christians who are also scientists see a huge number of evidences in support of what they believe to be unmistakable signs of immense age. So we're not just talking about people seeing what should be obvious, yet who are simply not willing to accept it. And as so many qualified Christians ascribe to Progressive Creationism, we're also not merely speaking of those who also embrace evolution.

God well knew that the scientific age would, one day, arise and that current science's intense scrutiny and analysis would become methodical and widespread. IF the Creation period was mere, literal days as opposed to vast periods of time, then it would seem as God really doesn't want us to deduce the truth of this by analyzing the evidences, as the vast majority of those scientifically qualified to discern and discover such things point to a tremendous amount of evidences that they agree points CLEARLY to an ancient universe and earth (in the billions of years old). So, while the mere existence of the Creation certainly points to the obvious existence of God, either He doesn't see it as relevant whether the truth of the time issue is correctly deduced OR He only wants us to discern this from reading Scripture.

But it is also the THEOLOGY and SCRIPTURAL analysis that has prompted many, conservative, inerrancy-holding theologians to concur that the text most certainly allows for an OEC understanding of the "Days" in Genesis. Norman Geisler states that he has been studying this time issue for over 50 years and still can not come to a certainty about it. And more than a few theologians dismiss the notion that the Genesis accounts have anything at all to do with the time issue or scientific accuracy behind the original Hebrew, but that their original purpose was to correct theological misunderstandings imbedded via Israel's 400 years of absorbing pagan Egyptian religious teachings. So, many Christians with the proper training in science, theology, and Scripture's original languages have sincere and reasonable disagreements over this issue of time. But why is that? Why didn't God make it abundantly clear what the absolute truth is concerning the time issue is? And He most certainly COULD have. He also most certainly foreknew that many arguments and controversies would one day arrive, precisely due to the way He had the Genesis (and other) accounts recorded. He not only foreknew that this controversy would develop - but He let it happen - almost as if by design - even when He could have proactively prevented it by having the original, pertinent Scriptural accounts so specifically written so as to eliminate all reasonable questions related to the time and age of the Creation Days. And there are other places in Scripture where God chose not to correct His people's wrong SCIENCE views, as this was not His purpose.

The fact that God has not made it abundantly apparent from either science or Scripture the truth of the Genesis time issue makes me conclude that it's not particularly relevant. It's almost like people arguing over the validity of Jesus' turning water into wine while often acknowledging, at least, their Deist views that some great intelligence is behind the existence of the universe. They're hung up on the micro instead of the macro. That's much the same with the time issue.

I've also seen recent arguments (one in this forum, by Jac) in which great weight (concerning the Creation accounts) is placed upon Moses' personal understandings and intentions about what he had written down. But this was very likely no more sophisticated than the fact that He wrote as God inspired Him, yet - as is true with many prophetic things given by God and written down long before their fulfillment - he himself did not fully understand their meanings and/or we have misunderstood Moses' (and God's) purpose behind the wordings of the Genesis texts. And to suggest that the prophets always understood what God had them prophecy or that He told them (think Jesus and the initially clueless disciples) is simply not credible.

I say, IF the time issue of the Creation Days was so important, God would have made it extremely clear - and yet reasonable and qualified Christians from a wide range of appropriate expertise cannot agree about it - and for many well-reasoned and articulated reasons. What might that tell us?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J1G-TsdNWGg

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Re: IF YEC is True, Why So Much Evidence Pointing to OEC?

#2

Post by RickD » Wed Oct 22, 2014 10:20 am

Philip,

The only answer I could give would be that in the grand scheme of things, the age of the earth/universe, really doesn't matter.

But, I would think there are those who are dogmatic on either side of the issue, who say scripture is clear, and it's their view that is clearly shown.
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Re: IF YEC is True, Why So Much Evidence Pointing to OEC?

#3

Post by 1over137 » Wed Oct 22, 2014 10:24 am

Why is that? What might that tell us?

Maybe that it is not that relevant.
But examine everything carefully; hold fast to that which is good.
-- 1 Thessalonians 5:21

For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.
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Re: IF YEC is True, Why So Much Evidence Pointing to OEC?

#4

Post by Philip » Wed Oct 22, 2014 10:35 am

Rick: Philip, The only answer I could give would be that in the grand scheme of things, the age of the earth/universe, really doesn't matter.
Hana: Maybe that it is not that relevant.
Ding, Ding!!! We have two winners! Like so many other things, we Christians argue over the irrelevant until we reach an impasse, preceded by much fire, smoke, thunder and lightening. And then, as the smoke begins to clear and the terrible din subsides, we slowly begin to see the divisiveness and pointlessness of continually arguing over the irrelevant - which, HOPEFULLY, allows us to conclude that there are much more important issues and God-provided understandings to ponder - things that truly MATTER that CAN be more fully understood!

Perhaps only FL and I are old enough to remember "It's About Time": http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J1G-TsdNWGg

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Re: IF YEC is True, Why So Much Evidence Pointing to OEC?

#5

Post by PaulSacramento » Wed Oct 22, 2014 10:44 am

I agree that it isn't relevant.
That said, one can and should ask why some make such a huge deal of something this is based solely on interpretation and has nothing to do with the crucial message of the bible: Salvation.
We should ask why some feel they must adhere to something ( a human doctrine by the way since the bible does NOT make a comment on the age of the planet, much less the universe) that is being shown to be incorrect when there is really no fundamental reason to do so.
What I mean is that it has been shown that the OEC view can be just as scriptural ( if not more so) than the YEC.

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Re: IF YEC is True, Why So Much Evidence Pointing to OEC?

#6

Post by FlawedIntellect » Wed Oct 22, 2014 12:55 pm

PaulSacramento wrote:What I mean is that it has been shown that the OEC view can be just as scriptural ( if not more so) than the YEC.
You better keep an eye out for Jac. X3 :ebiggrin: :lol:

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Re: IF YEC is True, Why So Much Evidence Pointing to OEC?

#7

Post by Furstentum Liechtenstein » Wed Oct 22, 2014 2:42 pm

My wife is getting back from the Arctic on Friday. Please change that awful avatar, Philip. She'll be here until November 9th, at which time you can put your real photo back up. Thank you.

FL :shakehead:
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Re: IF YEC is True, Why So Much Evidence Pointing to OEC?

#8

Post by RickD » Wed Oct 22, 2014 2:48 pm

Furstentum Liechtenstein wrote:My wife is getting back from the Arctic on Friday. Please change that awful avatar, Philip. She'll be here until November 9th, at which time you can put your real photo back up. Thank you.

FL :shakehead:
Is she coming home to drop off all the mukluks shoes she's acquired?
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Re: IF YEC is True, Why So Much Evidence Pointing to OEC?

#9

Post by Philip » Wed Oct 22, 2014 3:33 pm

I was gonna say, I'll change mine whenever Rick changes his. I was having fun with Halloween - but what's Rick's excuse? I mean, I know the clown college is in FL, but Rick's a KLOWN, not a clown. :roll:

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Re: IF YEC is True, Why So Much Evidence Pointing to OEC?

#10

Post by Jac3510 » Wed Oct 22, 2014 4:08 pm

OP is begging the question. YECs would, of course, say there is no evidence for OEC. There is a particular idea that OECs have accepted that YECs have rejected (i.e., uniformitarianism) or to invert it, a worldview that OECs have rejected that YECs have accepted (catastrophism). Either of these becomes the framework by which one interprets the observations around us. As such, you have accepted a worldview by which you interpret certain observations and then ask why if an idea that rejects that interpretational framework is true that those observations can be interpreted by that rejected framework!

For example, I could ask, "If the Bible is inspired, why are there no instances of predictive prophecy in it?" You, of course, would be astounded at the question and point to myriads of fulfilled predictive prophecies. And if the person replied, "No, those aren't predictive prophecies. They were written after the fact. We know that because they were written late, and we know that because we know there is no such thing as predictive prophecy, and therefore, they must have been written late." It's just standard question begging.

Of course, it doesn't "matter" in the sense of salvation. But no one says it does, and it's an old myth that YECs tie salvation to YEC. It's a myth that even Ham has tied YEC to salvation. I've posted audio and video clips where he explicitly denies the connection, and yet people continually pretend like those connections exist anyway. It's dishonest, but we've had that argument before.

As for this . . .
I've also seen recent arguments (one in this forum, by Jac) in which great weight (concerning the Creation accounts) is placed upon Moses' personal understandings and intentions about what he had written down. But this was very likely no more sophisticated than the fact that He wrote as God inspired Him, yet - as is true with many prophetic things given by God and written down long before their fulfillment - he himself did not fully understand their meanings and/or we have misunderstood Moses' (and God's) purpose behind the wordings of the Genesis texts. And to suggest that the prophets always understood what God had them prophecy or that He told them (think Jesus and the initially clueless disciples) is simply not credible.
You are again question begging. I reject the underlined phrase, and I have explained why in some detail. That position results in what Radmacher has called hermeneutical nihilism, and it is exactly the same in terms of practical impacts as rampant allegorizing. Either the text means what the author intended or it doesn't. And if it doesn't mean what the author intended then it can mean anything at all. You can say, "Well, they didn't know it, but God meant THIS" and put anything there you like. And later on people can discover "new information" that you yourself were not, and could not have been, aware of, and it turns out that you couldn't know what the text meant, either. All because you lived in a time when there wasn't enough information to properly understand what God "really" meant. And what of the original audience? Poor them. They thought they could understand the text, but if the poor author couldn't, then what chance did they have? But then, the text was not revelation to the original audience after all. All that is a mere presentist fallacy, which I find particularly common anyway.

So yes, it matters. A lot. It matters for hermeneutical reasons. The backtracking on why it matters from OECs here is, to me, rather revealing. But it is something I feel like I've been watching happen for some time now. You should have seen the discussions 10 years ago. YECs have never moved. But you guys . . .

edit:

With all that said, I still insist that while this matters a LOT for hermeneutical and so ultimately theological reasons, this still ought not be allowed to be a test of fellowship. I can think you all are wrong on a very principled level and still love you. :) y@};- y>:D<

After all, ask my wife how many things I am wrong about . . . :econfused: (I bet you think that's a joke.)
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And that, brothers and sisters, is the kind of foolishness you get people who insist on denying biblical theism. A good illustration of any as the length people will go to avoid acknowledging basic truths.

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Re: IF YEC is True, Why So Much Evidence Pointing to OEC?

#11

Post by Philip » Wed Oct 22, 2014 6:35 pm

Jac: "you have accepted a worldview by which you interpret certain observations and then ask why if an idea that rejects that interpretational framework is true that those observations can be interpreted by that rejected framework!"
That's not what I'm saying. What I'm pondering is, as God foreknew and intimately understood how modern scientists would perceive, exhaustively study, and sincerely try to correct interpret the data - why would He not want to make it clear to them what they are sincerely trying to discern - IF the time issue is so important? It's one thing to be certain of the truth and to nonetheless reject it, but to truly want to understand it and still reject an understanding that God's made clear to them, merely because they don't want to believe it - well, that's another matter. But here, exhaustive research offers important and powerful reasons to believe in an ancient Creation - and a huge number of evangelical Christians also are convinced of this - a large percentage of whom also reject evolutionary causes. So why would God make evidences pertaining to HOW LONG it took Him create so difficult to correctly interpret and understand - as He most certainly wants people to accept Scripture as truth. My conclusion is either the science of "how long" was not what He was communicating and/or that is the least important aspect of the Creation accounts. And the incredible heights to which the accurate discernment as to the length of the creation time have been elevated is rather astounding. And most YEC science assertions are extremely problematic, as catastrophe theory is always their explanation without the proof it requires. It kind of reminds me of the theistic evolutionists who insist otherwise inexplicable aspects of macroevolution are easily solved by understanding that it was God, supernaturally driving the process. Whenever one wants to explain science difficulties via the Supernatural (God), then why try to simultaneously explain it scientifically, as key links in that chain would have likely been metaphysical and thus unprovable? Or are such things simply actual and traceable events caused by God. And which is which (instantaneous and miraculous or part of an actual, traceable process), though God-caused.

Jac, you apparently are asserting that those who were originally given or inspired what to write by God precisely and completely understood it, but that doesn't hold up. And whether Moses or others contributing, do you really think they had accurate scientific understandings? You also assume that you completely understand the Genesis writer's intention behind wording certain portions of the text. A pre-scientific culture just coming out of 400 years of absorbing pagan gods and religious teachings was the original audience. And the astonishing parallels - as well as important and key corrections pointing to Yahweh - are unmistakeable when comparing them to ancient Egyptian and Mesopotamian creation myths. This can in no way be a coincidence.

Jac, have you read, "In the Beginning... We Misunderstood: Interpreting Genesis 1 in Its Original Context," by Johnny V. Miller and John M. Soden? http://www.amazon.com/Beginning-We-Misu ... understood If not, I strongly suggest you do.

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Re: IF YEC is True, Why So Much Evidence Pointing to OEC?

#12

Post by RickD » Wed Oct 22, 2014 6:38 pm

Jac wrote:
...There is a particular idea that OECs have accepted that YECs have rejected (i.e., uniformitarianism) or to invert it, a worldview that OECs have rejected that YECs have accepted (catastrophism). Either of these becomes the framework by which one interprets the observations around us...
I just wanted to clear this up. I'm an OEC and I haven't rejected catastrophism. And I've heard Hugh Ross say he holds to both as well.

Edit***
Catastrophism goes beyond belief in a worldwide Noahic flood.
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Re: IF YEC is True, Why So Much Evidence Pointing to OEC?

#13

Post by Jac3510 » Wed Oct 22, 2014 7:23 pm

Philip wrote:That's not what I'm saying.
It may not be what you mean to say, but it is certainly what you are saying means.
What I'm pondering is, as God foreknew and intimately understood how modern scientists would perceive, exhaustively study, and sincerely try to correct interpret the data - why would He not want to make it clear to them what they are sincerely trying to discern - IF the time issue is so important?
He did make it clear. That people decide not to start with God's revelation is their problem, not His. It just goes to the old problem of unbelief. Beyond that, you could say that about any problem in interpretation. God foreknew that pagans would apply mystery religions to Christianity and would come up with gnosticism, so why not make that clearer?

But more importantly, I challenge your premise. I don't think that people are "sincerely trying to correctly interpret the data." I think that they are interpreting it within their accepted framework, and when you challenge that framework, they oppose it, not out of sincerity, but out of desire to hold on to their framework.
It's one thing to be certain of the truth and to nonetheless reject it, but to truly want to understand it and still reject an understanding that God's made clear to them, merely because they don't want to believe it - well, that's another matter. But here, exhaustive research offers important and powerful reasons to believe in an ancient Creation - and a huge number of evangelical Christians also are convinced of this - a large percentage of whom also reject evolutionary causes. So why would God make evidences pertaining to HOW LONG it took Him create so difficult to correctly interpret and understand - as He most certainly wants people to accept Scripture as truth. My conclusion is either the science of "how long" was not what He was communicating and/or that is the least important aspect of the Creation accounts. And the incredible heights to which the accurate discernment as to the length of the creation time have been elevated is rather astounding. And most YEC science assertions are extremely problematic, as catastrophe theory is always their explanation without the proof it requires. It kind of reminds me of the theistic evolutionists who insist otherwise inexplicable aspects of macroevolution are easily solved by understanding that it was God driving the process. Whenever one wants to explain science difficulties via the Supernatural (God), then why try to explain it scientifically at all, as key links in that chain are metaphysical and thus unprovable?
And, again, I charge you with begging the question. And now you've added an ad populum fallacy. It doesn't matter that a lot of people believe it. A lot of people can be wrong. Frankly, I think most people accept an old earth because they are embarrassed to say plainly what Scripture says. It's the same reason a large number of people believe that God wouldn't really send people to Hell.

[qute]Jac, you apparently are asserting that those who were originally given or inspired what to write by God precisely and completely understood it, but that doesn't hold up.[/quote]
Not at all. I am saying that they were capable of understanding it in principle. It's clear that people have misunderstood what the Scriptures say. They always have. But--and this is the key point--they do not misunderstand due to a lack of knowledge of context or future discoveries. Rather, they misunderstood because they intentionally rejected what the text plainly said. They just didn't want to believe it.

And that is precisely the same mistake OECs make today.
And whether Moses or others contributing, do you really think they had accurate scientific understandings?
Question begging. If the world really was created in six days, then yes, Moses knew (better than modern scientists) about such things. The difference in Moses and Einstein was not technical proficiency in math and experimental science. The difference was in the worldview by which they interpreted the world around them.
You also assume that you completely understand the Genesis writer's intention behind wording certain portions of the text. A pre-scientific culture just coming out of 400 years of absorbing pagan gods and religious teachings was the original audience. And the astonishing parallels - as well as important and key corrections pointing to Yahweh - are unmistakeable when comparing them to ancient Egyptian and Mesopotamian creation myths. This can in no way be a coincidence.
I do not claim to have a "complete" understanding of Genesis. I claim to have a sufficient understanding on this particular issue, i.e., the meaning of yom. To say that we mus have perfect knowledge before we can have any knowledge is a silly mistake. And of course I know about the parallels. I even have argued that Moses talked about creation the way he did in large part to counter the myths of his day. But I don't take that as a license to say that, therefore, Moses didn't mean what he actually said. Moses was perfectly capable of telling the truth in forms that were especially meaningful to his audience. And you need to be especially careful here, because if your form criticism undercuts YEC, it equally undercuts OEC. Now, if you are willing to give up your OEC model and write off Genesis 1-3 (at least) as purely mythical, then fine. At least you are consistent. But then you've dropped the most enticing thing about OEC, which is its claim to be a literal interpretation of Genesis 1.
Jac, have you read, "In the Beginning... We Misunderstood: Interpreting Genesis 1 in Its Original Context," by Johnny V. Miller and John M. Soden? http://www.amazon.com/Beginning-We-Misu ... understood If not, I strongly suggest you do.
No, and I'm not interested in it. I read reviews of it when it came out. Correct me if I'm wrong (and if so, I'll put it on my list), but the main thesis of the book is that Moses was not interested in presenting a historically accurate account of creation. Instead, by heavy comparisons with and usage of Egyptian and Mesopotamian mythology, his goal was to present Yahweh Elohim as the One True God.

In other words, the book tries to justify reading the Genesis creation account as a myth. I reject that approach, and therefore, I'm not going to waste my time with a book that defends that approach. So, again, if you think that Genesis 1 is a myth, than you can certainly think so. That's fine. And if so, I'll respond again that THIS is why the debate is so important. If you get to mythologize Genesis 1, why not anything else? You are left with hermeneutical nihilism. You can make the Bible mean anything that you want. Sorry, but that's nowhere near good enough for me.
Proinsias wrote:I don't think you are hearing me. Preference for ice cream is a moral issue
And that, brothers and sisters, is the kind of foolishness you get people who insist on denying biblical theism. A good illustration of any as the length people will go to avoid acknowledging basic truths.

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Re: IF YEC is True, Why So Much Evidence Pointing to OEC?

#14

Post by Jac3510 » Wed Oct 22, 2014 7:29 pm

RickD wrote:
Jac wrote:
...There is a particular idea that OECs have accepted that YECs have rejected (i.e., uniformitarianism) or to invert it, a worldview that OECs have rejected that YECs have accepted (catastrophism). Either of these becomes the framework by which one interprets the observations around us...
I just wanted to clear this up. I'm an OEC and I haven't rejected catastrophism. And I've heard Hugh Ross say he holds to both as well.

Edit***
Catastrophism goes beyond belief in a worldwide Noahic flood.
But, of course, it is primarily about Noah's flood.

Still, if you want to debate semantics, then I'll oblige and rephrase. OECs reject Noah's global flood and interpret the observations around them in accordance with that worldview. YECs accept Noah's global flood and interpret the observations around them in accordance with that worldview. Regardless, my point stands. You don't get to ask the title question without begging the question on that issue.

And I'll add this. As firm as I am that the linguistic evidence is absolutely undeniable that yom refers to ordinary days, it is more clear still that Genesis depicts Noah's flood as global. "Under the whole heaven" cannot be reinterpreted locally, a conveniently ignored fact in Rich's article.
Proinsias wrote:I don't think you are hearing me. Preference for ice cream is a moral issue
And that, brothers and sisters, is the kind of foolishness you get people who insist on denying biblical theism. A good illustration of any as the length people will go to avoid acknowledging basic truths.

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Re: IF YEC is True, Why So Much Evidence Pointing to OEC?

#15

Post by RickD » Wed Oct 22, 2014 7:42 pm

Jac wrote:
And I'll add this. As firm as I am that the linguistic evidence is absolutely undeniable that yom refers to ordinary days, it is more clear still that Genesis depicts Noah's flood as global. "Under the whole heaven" cannot be reinterpreted locally, a conveniently ignored fact in Rich's article.
Can't the word for "heaven", shamayim, mean "visible sky"?

Edit**
I'm just thinking out loud, but could "Under the whole heaven", be similar to when we say in English "the whole sky is gray today"? Obviously we mean the whole sky as far as we can see.
John 5:24
24 “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who hears My word, and believes Him who sent Me, has eternal life, and does not come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life.

Kenny wrote:
"You don’t need faith, logic, reason, proof, or anything else to be atheist, all you need to do is reject what someone told you."



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