Science & Genesis Finally (& Simply) Reconciled?

Discussions on creation beliefs within Christianity, and topics related to creation.
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BNR
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Science & Genesis Finally (& Simply) Reconciled?

#1

Post by BNR » Mon Mar 09, 2015 7:03 pm

Views of Biblical Creation generally fall into two opposing camps. The first is the view of Young Earth Creationism (YEC). In a nutshell, this view holds that Genesis Chapters 1-11 are true in their plain and apparent form, that the universe is approximately 6,000 years old, that any science in opposition to this is bad and incorrect, and that this bad science will eventually give way to good science that will prove this young age. The second is Old Earth Creationism (OEC). This view looks at Genesis Chapters 1-11 as true as well, but either in a much more poetic, metaphoric, and/or symbolic way that was never intended to be scientifically accurate; or that was intended to be scientifically accurate but in ways that have been lost or distorted through time, culture, and translation. It then looks to publicly founded and accepted scientific findings as largely true, including an earth and space that is billions of years old.

Followers of YEC get ridiculed as holding to pseudo-sciences and being blind to reality; and followers of OEC are accused of effectively re-writing scripture to support their own beliefs and agendas. What is a Christian and Scientist to do? Which form of blasphemy must we live with? That of the Church, or that of our scientific colleagues?

The  entire debate, however, seems to me to flow from a common assumption, and it is this. Everything we see around us, God created in some incipient form as we would understand that same matter to look when newly formed in current times. In simpler terms, newly created stuff should look new. However, for those who believe the Bible to be true, which should encompass both camps, I believe we can find reason to believe that this fundamental assumption is not necessarily accurate. We can do this by looking at the recorded Biblical miracles that involve the creation of new things, and especially of organic matter. I believe that by doing so we can show that it is possible for the universe to be young, based on a plain reading of the Genesis creation records, and that it can simultaneously and accurately appear to be very old, as our sciences seem to be telling us.

An incredibly important and central belief of Christianity is that of resurrection. Accounts through Elijah, Elisha, Jesus, Peter, and Paul are all recorded in the Biblical records. While most of these happened only days after death had occurred, such that one may doubt whether or not significant decay had actually set in, at the death of Jesus many of the Saints were resurrected, went about through Jerusalem, and were seen by many (Matt 27:52-53).

As a result of these accounts and of the teachings of Jesus (as well as several of the Prophets and Apostles), it is the fundamental belief of Christianity that a resurrected body is in the future for each of us as well (John 5:28-29). 

Now, if a team of modern-day biologists, chemists, physicists, anthropologists, psychologists, and any host of others were to look at these resurrected bodies, what would they find? By tapping the sum of their knowledge, expertise, and experience, I think they would probably all come to agree on the ages of each. One might be in his early teens, another in his 50's, another in her 70's, and so on. Their science - that is to say their observations in the context of the natural laws around them - would not have been wrong. I do not believe the flesh of the one newly created/resurrected would have looked any different than the one who had aged naturally. Nevertheless, they would have all been wrong, as each when resurrected was effectively a brand new creation.

Another very relevant miracle is that of Jesus turning water into wine at the wedding in Cana. Wine is a product of grapes that have grown over the course of weeks and months on the vine, then pressed and drained, and finally aged. However, it was created by Jesus in less than a few minutes. It is my guess here as well that no matter who looked at that cup of freshly filled wine, they would come to the conclusion that it was finely aged. Experts might even have been able to agree, based on flavor, texture, aroma, appearance, acidity, chemical composition, etc., on an approximate age and perhaps even a likely vineyard of origin. Again, their science would not have been wrong; but it would not change the fact that they were beholding newly created matter.

Another interesting miracle to look at in light of this debate is when Jesus feeds thousands of people through the multiplication - or creation - of bread and fish. In this, the fish are created as both fully grown and fully dead, and the same can be said for the wheat grains comprising the bread.

In addition, twice God through Elijah caused oil to be significantly multiplied - or in other words, created - in almost no time at all. Oil is a derivative of organic matter, and therefore we again have the creation of matter in a form that would typically take weeks and months to be grown and collected.

My conclusion after having considered each of these accounts is this: God at times speaks and creates matter out of nothing, and this matter in no way must be confined to what we would understand as a beginning or incipient form. More simply, God sometimes newly creates old things.

In light of these miracles and their implications, I can therefore be comfortable saying that approximately 6,000 years ago, in accordance with a plain reading of the Creation accounts, God created the universe and everything in it. In addition, as one with a decent understanding and healthy respect for the usefulness of good science (I say good, as I think plenty of bad is still out there), I can also say that according to sound scientific principles the same universe does in a multitude of independent ways have the appearance of being vastly older. Distant starlight, polar ice cores, rock in advanced states of radioactive decay, large deposits of oil, coal, and natural gas - I can now take no major exceptions to any of it. In my journey to worship God with all of the mind that He gave me, this has helped me immensely. I hope that it can help others in their pursuit of Truth as well.

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Re: Science & Genesis Finally (& Simply) Reconciled?

#2

Post by neo-x » Mon Mar 09, 2015 9:34 pm

welcome! hell of a first post. :D
It would be a blessing if they missed the cairns and got lost on the way back. Or if
the Thing on the ice got them tonight.

I could only turn and stare in horror at the chief surgeon.
Death by starvation is a terrible thing, Goodsir, continued Stanley.
And with that we went below to the flame-flickering Darkness of the lower deck
and to a cold almost the equal of the Dante-esque Ninth Circle Arctic Night
without.


//johnadavid.wordpress.com

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Re: Science & Genesis Finally (& Simply) Reconciled?

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Post by abelcainsbrother » Mon Mar 09, 2015 10:02 pm

I've got to give to you,you really do make a lot of sense but I think you have overlooked something a lot of Christians have no matter if they believe the earth is young or old but let's examine 2nd Peter 3:5-6 very carefully because I believe many have overlooked it,yet it has been in the word of God the whole time and it is this 2nd Peter 3:5-6 "For this they willingly are ignorant of,that by the word of God the heavens were of old,and the earth standing out of the water and in the water:Whereby the world that then was being overflowed with water perished.

If there was a former world on this earth that perished then it means the earth is old and not young.I also don't like the idea that God deceived man and created the heavens and earth to appear old when it is'nt.Satan is the deciever.I think it has more to do with our interpretation of God's word and that we are wrong.Science has a lot of evidence the earth is old and despite evolution it was discovered the earth was old by Christians who started modern science and it challenged their interpretations of God's word,it was later that evolution became popular.You have to deny a lot of evidence the earth is old in order to hold to the young earth interpretation.

William Buckland who was a Christian and became the very first geology professor at Oxford knew the earth was old and he discovered the first portion of a dinosaur long before Charles Darwin wrote his book.
Hebrews 12:2-3 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith;who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross,despising the shame,and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

2nd Corinthians 4:4 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not,lest the light of this glorious gospel of Christ,who is the image of God,should shine unto them.

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Re: Science & Genesis Finally (& Simply) Reconciled?

#4

Post by Storyteller » Tue Mar 10, 2015 3:57 am

Hey BNR :)

First, welcome. Great post!

Second, I`m new to Christ and I`m kinda finding my feet. One of the things that I hadn`t really looked into was whether I go more with OEC or YEC. I`m still not sure but there`s a lot of info in your post that has given me food for thought.

Quick question for anyone who believes YEC... where do the dinosaurs fit in?

I think, right now, I`m inclined to go with OEC and possibly even the gap theory but I`m not convinced so any pointers would be appreciated.

I am really looking forward to more of your posts if that one was anything to go by!
Faith is a knowledge within the heart, beyond the reach of proof - Kahlil Gibran

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Re: Science & Genesis Finally (& Simply) Reconciled?

#5

Post by Audie » Tue Mar 10, 2015 3:28 pm

BNR wrote:Views of Biblical Creation generally fall into two opposing camps. The first is the view of Young Earth Creationism (YEC). In a nutshell, this view holds that Genesis Chapters 1-11 are true in their plain and apparent form, that the universe is approximately 6,000 years old, that any science in opposition to this is bad and incorrect, and that this bad science will eventually give way to good science that will prove this young age. The second is Old Earth Creationism (OEC). This view looks at Genesis Chapters 1-11 as true as well, but either in a much more poetic, metaphoric, and/or symbolic way that was never intended to be scientifically accurate; or that was intended to be scientifically accurate but in ways that have been lost or distorted through time, culture, and translation. It then looks to publicly founded and accepted scientific findings as largely true, including an earth and space that is billions of years old.

Followers of YEC get ridiculed as holding to pseudo-sciences and being blind to reality; and followers of OEC are accused of effectively re-writing scripture to support their own beliefs and agendas. What is a Christian and Scientist to do? Which form of blasphemy must we live with? That of the Church, or that of our scientific colleagues?

The  entire debate, however, seems to me to flow from a common assumption, and it is this. Everything we see around us, God created in some incipient form as we would understand that same matter to look when newly formed in current times. In simpler terms, newly created stuff should look new. However, for those who believe the Bible to be true, which should encompass both camps, I believe we can find reason to believe that this fundamental assumption is not necessarily accurate. We can do this by looking at the recorded Biblical miracles that involve the creation of new things, and especially of organic matter. I believe that by doing so we can show that it is possible for the universe to be young, based on a plain reading of the Genesis creation records, and that it can simultaneously and accurately appear to be very old, as our sciences seem to be telling us.

An incredibly important and central belief of Christianity is that of resurrection. Accounts through Elijah, Elisha, Jesus, Peter, and Paul are all recorded in the Biblical records. While most of these happened only days after death had occurred, such that one may doubt whether or not significant decay had actually set in, at the death of Jesus many of the Saints were resurrected, went about through Jerusalem, and were seen by many (Matt 27:52-53).

As a result of these accounts and of the teachings of Jesus (as well as several of the Prophets and Apostles), it is the fundamental belief of Christianity that a resurrected body is in the future for each of us as well (John 5:28-29). 

Now, if a team of modern-day biologists, chemists, physicists, anthropologists, psychologists, and any host of others were to look at these resurrected bodies, what would they find? By tapping the sum of their knowledge, expertise, and experience, I think they would probably all come to agree on the ages of each. One might be in his early teens, another in his 50's, another in her 70's, and so on. Their science - that is to say their observations in the context of the natural laws around them - would not have been wrong. I do not believe the flesh of the one newly created/resurrected would have looked any different than the one who had aged naturally. Nevertheless, they would have all been wrong, as each when resurrected was effectively a brand new creation.

Another very relevant miracle is that of Jesus turning water into wine at the wedding in Cana. Wine is a product of grapes that have grown over the course of weeks and months on the vine, then pressed and drained, and finally aged. However, it was created by Jesus in less than a few minutes. It is my guess here as well that no matter who looked at that cup of freshly filled wine, they would come to the conclusion that it was finely aged. Experts might even have been able to agree, based on flavor, texture, aroma, appearance, acidity, chemical composition, etc., on an approximate age and perhaps even a likely vineyard of origin. Again, their science would not have been wrong; but it would not change the fact that they were beholding newly created matter.

Another interesting miracle to look at in light of this debate is when Jesus feeds thousands of people through the multiplication - or creation - of bread and fish. In this, the fish are created as both fully grown and fully dead, and the same can be said for the wheat grains comprising the bread.

In addition, twice God through Elijah caused oil to be significantly multiplied - or in other words, created - in almost no time at all. Oil is a derivative of organic matter, and therefore we again have the creation of matter in a form that would typically take weeks and months to be grown and collected.

My conclusion after having considered each of these accounts is this: God at times speaks and creates matter out of nothing, and this matter in no way must be confined to what we would understand as a beginning or incipient form. More simply, God sometimes newly creates old things.

In light of these miracles and their implications, I can therefore be comfortable saying that approximately 6,000 years ago, in accordance with a plain reading of the Creation accounts, God created the universe and everything in it. In addition, as one with a decent understanding and healthy respect for the usefulness of good science (I say good, as I think plenty of bad is still out there), I can also say that according to sound scientific principles the same universe does in a multitude of independent ways have the appearance of being vastly older. Distant starlight, polar ice cores, rock in advanced states of radioactive decay, large deposits of oil, coal, and natural gas - I can now take no major exceptions to any of it. In my journey to worship God with all of the mind that He gave me, this has helped me immensely. I hope that it can help others in their pursuit of Truth as well.

You can say all that with two words: Last Thursdayism

Or one word: Omphalos.

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