Christians: Does age of earth matter?

Discussion in 'Creation vs. Evolution' started by Gina B, Mar 18, 2004.

  1. Gina B

    Gina B
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    For Christians who believe in either a young or older earth, why is it so important for you to prove your position right?
    What do you believe are negative results of the belief opposite yours?
    Gina
     
  2. Johnv

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    The age of the earth doesn't matter. The creator of the earth matters.
     
  3. Paul of Eugene

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    Hi Gina! Good question. I think that holding to an anti-science point of view gives people an extra barrier to accepting the reality of God as Savior and Lord. Insisting somebody GIVE UP their opinion on evolution or age of earth in order to remain in the church/denomination or be saved would force people to choose between salvation or intellectual integrity. Not a happy choice.

    At some point, if we press the issue, it can get personal and feelings can get hurt. This is not a happy choice, either.

    When we can agree to disagree, and then discuss our opinions with that understanding, that is the best possible situation, I think.
     
  4. Johnv

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    Amen!!!
     
  5. Joseph_Botwinick

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    It doesn't matter one bit to me since faith cannot be explained by science.

    Science can only really explain what is observable in the natural world. It does not deal with the supernatural. Therefore whatever is natural, is theoretically, truth. But also, whatever is supernatural cannot be denied by science because it is outside the bounds of what science can measure. Faith is, therefore, above science.

    Joseph Botwinick
     
  6. BobRyan

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    Because once you have read the NT and observed the details about the Gospel it is "clear" that God's Word requires that ALL of God's Word be true. And even MORE than that - because The NT gospel writers link the Gospel to the "DETAILS" of the Creation "account" of Gen 1-2:4.

    Romans 5 is a good example - of God saying that there was no sin and then ONE man sinned and by ONE man sin and death spread to all.

    In Acts Paul states that God made from ONE blood ALL nations of men.

    Paul tells Timothy that Adam was CReated FIRST and THEN Eve. He also says that Eve was FIRST to fall into sin.

    Jesus said that God made the Sabbath FOR mankind - a clear reference to the "making of both" as we see in Gen 2:3.

    Jesus then quotes the details of Genesis 2 regarding Man and Woman and the institution of Marriage. (A rejection of this literal truth is now a problem for the Christians in America)

    Peter argues that the World wide flood of Gen 7 is a fact that pagans choose to disbelieve.

    The ten commandments themselves - quoted in both OT and NT - provide a compelling summary of the Gen 1-2:3 event showing "explicitly" that the day of Genesis 1 is directly equated to the day of mankind at Sinai.

    This 10 commandment Las of God is then quoted by Christ in the NT as well as by Paul. And yet it appeals to "The very details" that evolutionists "most want to reject".

    God's Word says that "God Spoke and IT WAS".

    I suppose I could go on ... but I won't

    In Christ,

    Bob

    [ March 18, 2004, 08:54 PM: Message edited by: BobRyan ]
     
  7. BobRyan

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    (Ok maybe I will "go on a little")

    The amazing thing is that denying the creator's creation is divorced from denying the creator in some circles.

    But in Rev 14 we are to "worship Him who MADE the heavens and the earth and the springs of water" - quote from the "Creation" summary in the 10 commandments. Which is that part of Christ the Creator's Word that some are "most anxious" to reject.

    Christ the Creator - is not pleased to see His Word rejected, and the NT authors anchored their Gospel arguments in the "truth" of the "Account" of the Creative Acts of Christ - the Creator of mankind.

    In Christ,

    Bob
     
  8. Mike McK

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    I once took some Bible classes under a man named Harold Wilmington.

    Dr. Wilmington was convinced that the Earth is 12,000 years old.

    I honestly don't know.

    In any event, I agree with JohnV. Thew age of the Earth isn't nearly as important to me as the One who created it.
     
  9. BobRyan

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  10. Johnv

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    Of course. No one says otherwise. However, there's no requirement that requires all of God's word to be factual to every minute detail. If there were such a requirement, then the Bible would contradict itself in several obvious places. The problem we often run into is that many well meaning Christians have difficulty discerning the different between truth and fact, as though they were synonymous.
     
  11. UTEOTW

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    "What do you believe are negative results of the belief opposite yours?"

    I believe this question has an answer at two different levels. On the spiritual level I do not think that it matters. I agree with several of the above posters who draw the sharp distinction between matters of faith and of the supernatural and matters of scientific investigation. I do not think that this is a matter at the level of salvation nor do I think that misunderstanding this topic means that you have a complete misunderstanding of the Bible.

    But I think there is a second level. Above, Paul mentioned "intellectual integrity." If you have not studied the issue, you can hold to either position and maintain intellectual integrity. But, in my humble opinion, I do not see how you can have taken a serious look at the issue, gone young earth, and maintain intellectual integrity. Let me continue this with your other question.

    "For Christians who believe in either a young or older earth, why is it so important for you to prove your position right?"

    I was once YEC. When I decided to take a look at the reasons that support YEC it did not take long at all to move me away from YEC. Their own words showed me it could not possible be true. I slid around for a while until I was finally convinced that the only option that fit the available data was an old universe/earth. I still carry a bad taste in my mouth from my first experience with the logic and "facts" that pass for "evidence" for a young earth. Every time a hear another and then look into, I become more convinced.

    But the question you ask is "Why?" For me, it is because I think we pay for YEC in numbers. I think there are a significant number of people both who decide that they could not maintain their intellectual integrity and become a Christian if that meant having to be YEC and deny most of science without any evidence to support denying it. And I think that there are those who are Christian and when faced with the evidence that counters the YEC they have been taught have a crisis and lose faith. And I consider this to be a real problem and reason enough to for to hold the debate and decide which is right. I also think that the end result of the debate will be the same as it was in the days of Copernicus and Galileo. Christianity will find that science does not threaten it though there will be a few holdouts. It may take a long time to decide, however.

    It also happens to be a subject that interests me, for the above reasons partially, and that is intellectually stimulating to debate.
     
  12. Ed Edwards

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    AMen, Brother JohnV -- Preach it! [​IMG]
     
  13. john6:63

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    Jesus, Moses, Peter & Paul to name a few, didn’t seem to have a difficult time discerning the differences between truth and fact did they?

    If it’s good enough for them to believe and to preach it, especially when Jesus refers to the creation of both male and female as a specific event in history (Mark 10:6), then it’s good enough for me for me to believe in the entire creation event as historically fact, regardless of what the theories of science suggests. I’m keeping my eyes focused on our Lord and what He has revealed to me through His word and not some scientist and his agenda to discredit and disprove the very existence of God.
     
  14. Joseph_Botwinick

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    Did Jesus, Moses, Peter & Paul ever give an exact date when God created the universe? Did they teach anything about the age of the Earth? Scripture please?

    Joseph Botwinick
     
  15. john6:63

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    First of all I have yet to meet an ‘old earther’ who doesn’t believe in evolution a literal Adam and Eve and a literal Fall. It’s all a nice fairy tale. With that being said, the problem is some Christians are convinced through the theories of science in regards to Genesis that only certain parts of the Bible is actually inspired. They’re now comfortable with judging for themselves which parts of the Bible should be taken as fact and which parts shouldn’t. They then criticize other God fearing Christians who look to God and His entire Word as being divinely inspired front (Genesis) to back (Revelation), every jot and tittle.

    They are now free to discredit science when they feel it’s necessary to benefit their faith. Example, modern science says a man cannot be brought back to life after being dead for three days. Modern science says a virgin cannot become pregnant. They will be quick to dismiss this saying “…but with God anything is possible.” But they limit God and His power when the book of Genesis is opened.

    Furthermore, Christians who regard the creation stories as myths or allegories are undermining the rest of scripture. For if there was no Adam, there was no Fall; and if there was no Fall, there is no Hell; and if there is no Hell, there was no need of Jesus as Second Adam and incarnate Savior, crucified and risen. As a result, the whole biblical system of salvation collapses.

    The devil loves those that are willingly ingnorant.
     
  16. john6:63

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    The age of the earth is right there in Genesis and is traced through the genealogies of the Gospels. I know the genealogies of the Bible can be a boring read, but they can’t be overlooked. The book of Luke traces the genealogy of Jesus all the way back to Adam, who was created on day six and lived to be a mere 930 years old (which gives a good indication of the age of the earth).

    Was Adam a literal creation from the dust of the ground as God says? Or is Adam a figurative being that evolved from an APE? And why would the Holy Spirit inspire Luke to include a figurative Adam in his genealogy of Christ?
     
  17. cotton

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    The aspect of evolution and an old earth/universe was the first and biggest hurdle I had to overcome after coming to Christ; before coming to Him, it was probably the singlemost thing that kept me from believing the Bible was anything more than a myth. I went to public school and like most kids in grade school, liked dinosaurs (which of course, had to exist millions of years ago and every child is constantly reminded of this). Despite the fact that both my Grandfathers were IFB (I loved them dearly, but "obviously" they lacked "intellectual integrity"), I never even had the foggiest notion that scripture was anything more than a myth (I mean, why would my teachers lie?). High School and Collegiate teaching only hammered home the "fact" that modern science dispels any biblical notion of creation. Even after being saved, at first I didn't believe in the "Old testament" (and much of the "New"). Obviously the "O.T." was simply written down by superstitious men (or so I thought). After being in a bible believing Baptist Church for a while (though I'm no longer Baptist I'll always be greatful to them!) it didn't take long to realize that faith includes ALL scripture and sacrifice includes EVERYTHING I have! I had to 'ditch' one or the other.

    I spent the first part of my life learning the "wisdom of men"; I'll spend the rest of my life unlearning this "wisdom" and seeking the "foolishness" of the Lord.

    I learned that I had to give EVERYTHING (including so-called 'intellectual integrity' to Christ; it was NOT easy!). No, it doesn't mean I have all the answers (far from it), but I've learned to have faith in God (and that means His Word) instead of men.

    There's a lot more to my journey, but takes up too much space.
    Cotton
     
  18. CalvinG

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    John 6:63,

    Modern science does not say specifically that anything is impossible. Science is only an attempt to describe the behavior of the natural world.

    Even the most widely accepted ideas of science are in a philosophical sense only theories. For that is not scientific which cannot be falsified by experimentation or contrary observation.

    When you say that modern science says it is impossible for a man to be brought back from the dead after being dead for three days, you are philosophically incorrect. Because the occurrence of a thing (provided its occurrence is believed by the scientist) absolutely falsifies any theorum that the occurrence of this thing is not possible. That is what science is all about...coming up with rules to describe the behavior of the natural world (God's creation) and ammending or abandoning these rules when observation or experiment falsifies them.

    I am a scientist of sorts. And an Old Earther. Because that is what my present, fallible understanding of the world leads me to believe based on observation of the Creation. I think we all agree that God created the earth. He created it with continents that move 1 to 2.5 centimeters per year. At one point, the Genesis account implies that the earth was entirely together. Believe it or not, this idea is supported by science and the theory of "Pangea."

    When does Genesis indicate that God created viruses and bacteria?

    I see Genesis as God's explanation to a pre-scientific culture of how the world came to be. And unless one believes that Adam developed written language (a proposition not stated in the Bible), or that God restated everything verbatim to the author of the Pentateuch (presumably Moses) then what we have is oral history.

    I would like to hear how the young earth folks explain the fossil record, continental drift, the magnetic-orientation stripes in the ocean floor, carbon-13 dating, oxygen-18 dating, and similar scientific data. Is this viewed as the work of the devil designed to test your faith? Or a liberal scientific conspiracy to get discussion of faith in God out of the classroom? Or in some other way?
     
  19. Deacon

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    Gina asks:
    Does the age of the earth matter?
    The modern world is so exacting. We are used to precise answers and things that perfectly fit together. The "biblical" age of the earth matters deeply to those who base their method of interpretation on it.

    For as long as we have commentaries on the Holy Word, we have had different interpretations of what the opening chapters of Genesis really say.

    Until Darwin, the age of the earth debates didn't really matter, there were different theories and the debates were considered interesting conjecture.

    In modern times though we demand a higher calling for the Word of God.
    We try to make the Word of God fit into our present understanding of things. This is an indictment that can be equally applied to both sides of the debate.

    Sometimes it's best to trust God for present things and look to our future hope.

    The debates are an interesting diversion but not worth getting too intense over (unless you don't agree with me that is, [​IMG] )

    Rob
     
  20. jcrawford

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    If the age of the earth created by the Creator in six days doesn't matter then what makes you think that the One who created heaven and earth in six days matters if you yourself don't believe in His Biblical Law-Word?
     

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