Dinosaurs

Discussion in 'Creation vs. Evolution' started by Administrator2, Sep 16, 2002.

  1. Administrator2

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    [Note from the Administrator: This thread was taken from a discussion on another forum. After it was put here a comment on the other forum was "I don't understand why we can't discuss creation from a fundamental perspective occasionally without it being swithced to the other forum where the liberal input is found."
    http://www.baptistboard.com/ubb/ultimatebb.php?ubb=get_topic;f=48;t=000075

    As was stated before here, if a thread is transferred here and the original participants want to confine it to Christians only or Baptists only or creationists only, that is allowable. Therefore this thread will be limited to Christian creationists only. Because the original post opening the thread by Eric_B stated that he was taking the first two chapters in Genesis as literally true, there will be a strong preference for responses from young earth creationists here.

    Also, one link was left out of the references by others below. It has been added.
    ]

    ERIC_B

    I accept on faith that the first two chapters of Genesis are literally true, that the earth was created in seven (actually six) days, and man was created on the sixth day. I don't believe man evolved from ape-like creatures or anything like that.
    But I'm at a bit of a loss about how dinosaurs fit in this picture, how do other creationists explain them? Did they really exist? If so, when? And when and how did they stop existing?
    I'm also interested in good book recommendations on this general topic.

    SBG
    Try www.icr.org
    it has a lot of good info.

    ROMONE16
    Another good link is
    http://www.angelfire.com/mi/dinosaurs/dinoindex.html

    C.S. MURPHY
    As to dinosaurs I think one question was did they exist, of course read the last part of Job.
    When were they made, no mystery, when God made the other creatures. When and why they died, now I don't know on that one. Some say Noah had a few on his ark but I wasn't there and I don't know if scripture is clear on it. Can anybody help me here (he said as the volleyball thundered back over the net and bounced off his head)sorry just a weak attempt at humor.

    SCOTT J
    The best explaination that I have ever heard for "Where did they go?" is this: There were changes in the environment after the flood. The air was less oxygen rich. Food was sparse compared to the need of very large herbivores. The temperatures were more extreme.
    In this new environment, the dinosaurs were slowed by the lack of oxygen and were unable to compete with smaller more adaptable animals.
    I personally think that they existed fairly recently and may account for the dragon legends.

    DEACON
    Can I offer you a different perspective?
    While it is currently popular in the fundamental Christian community to believe in a six-day creation, the Genesis passage has been studied and questioned from even the earliest of times. The “age of the earth” issue was even discussed in the book that started Fundamentalism, called “The Fundamentals”. Fundamentalism is wide enough that it can include “old-earthers” like me . The question of dinosaurs can be answered in a number of different ways depending on your viewpoint of this issue.
    Old Earthers have been accused of not taking the Bible literally (but that’s another topic for a different forum) Young Earth creationists on the other hand, in their rush to prove a point, rush head long into poor hermeneutic (interpretative) techniques. The topic of dinosaurs in Scripture is one of those areas.
    Just like America, dinosaurs are almost certainly not mentioned in the Bible. There are passages that can be twisted to allude to them, but direct, convincing evidence remains illusive.
    I would argue highly against looking for information from organizations like Answers in Genesis, Creation Research Organization, and others. Their sites offer a great volume of information and articles, including much that is not even current with even their own positions. Many of these sites also have a tendency to twist scripture to fit a particular viewpoint and can be misleading or at least confusing. May I suggest another perhaps less divisive site? Try Probe ministries . http://www.probe.org/menus/wp-scien.html (Here’s an article titled How to Talk to Your Kids About
    Evolution and Creation, by Dr. Ray and Sue Bohlin that I recommend highly. http://www.probe.org/docs/cr-evol.html
    They offer a more balanced approach that leans towards a Young-earth perspective without the dogmatic, backbiting, seen in the more widely known sites.
    There is not a quick and easy answer to your question about dinosaurs. It will require you to develop a position on a variety of topics including the age of the earth, science, naturalism (evolution), Biblical interpretation, miracles and a myriad of other topics.
    Pursue Truth,
    Study the Word,
    Be willing to read opposing points of view,
    And be humble enough to say, as you did in the opening post, “I just don’t know”.

    C.S. MURPHY
    Deacon as a Pastor I normally don't argue with Deacons but sometimes I must, in reference to your comments above,
    I don't feel Job needs twisting at all to explain leviathian. If you can explain how your view of an old earth fits into a literal interpretation view I would love to read your posts.

    DEACON
    Pardon me. Oh, you mean dinosaurs… Big lizards…
    Etymology of the word "dinosaur": Latin Dinosaurus, genus name, from Greek deinos terrifying + sauros lizard -- Date:
    1841 /Greek deinos, monstrous + Greek sauros, lizard.
    A word study of Leviathan takes the researcher into various aspects of Hebrew history and their interaction with pagan cultures and legends.
    Historically, the descendants of Abraham were semi-nomadic shepard’s and had limited experience with the great sea.
    Leviathan occurs five times in the KJV, (Job 3:8; 41:1; Psalms 74:14; 104:26; Isaiah 27:1) and is left untranslated.
    Each description of the animal should be examined individually rather than making a list of the traits and attempting to find an animal that fits them all.
    In the margin of Job 3:8 and text of Job 41:1 the crocodile is most clearly the animal denoted by the Hebrew word.
    Psalms 74:14 also clearly points to this same animal. The context of Psalms 104:26 seems to show that in this passage the name represents some animal of the whale tribe, which is common in the Mediterranean; but it is somewhat uncertain what animal is denoted in Isaiah 27:1
    Do we know exactly the species and genus of the animal(s) mentioned? No. Could the animals mentioned be much larger than the modern animal of today, probably. To say that a Leviathan is a dinosaur is totally conjecture and putting something into Scripture that isn’t there.

    SHE EAGLE 911
    Deacon, huh? When do you think Job lived, right before David (since Job comes before Psalms)??
    Or do you believe Job lived before the Great Flood? Do you believe the Great Flood happened?
    I agree with Murph.

    RSR
    http://www.reasons.org/resources/apologetics/longdays.html?main
    Deacon: Conjecture, yes. Certainly a weak reed on which to build a theory.

    DEACON Deacon
    I have merely stated that I hold the position of old earth creationism. Regarding the topics I suggested the brother study before making a decision on dinosaurs was the age of the earth. Personally, I do not believe that God has given us enough information in His Word to make a dogmatic declaration regarding the earth’s age. And I am not convinced that the Scriptures have provided us enough information to make the demand that Young earth creationism is a fundamental doctrine. You may disagree, that’s Christian liberty, a Baptist distinctive.
    My criticism of those who search for dinosaurs in the Bible still stands. We should let Scripture stand on its own and not try to make it say what we want it to say, twist it to support our own pet doctrines or ideas, or ignore those feature of the text that make us uncomfortable. Most people simply don't take the trouble to read the context or to do their homework on the meaning of the Bible.
    The truth about a text takes far more work and understanding than just reading the text and assuming that whatever we think makes sense to us is what it really means.
    To do otherwise is the abuse of Scripture and shows a lack of respect for the Bible. We need to confront those who wrench verses right out of their contexts because the words agree with what they already believe.

    C.S. MURPHY
    Thanks She Eagle. rsr I don't see it as theory, the species we don't know this is true but I hardly believe God would speak as powerfully of a crocodile. Job 41 : 10 None is so fierce that dare stir him up who then is able to stand before me. Even if they were bigger I don't see this statement fitting a crocodile. vs 27 He esteemeth iron as straw and brass as rotten wood. I don't think this fits a crocodile. I am still wondering about the way Deacon sees an old earth theory fitting a literal translation. Concerning old earth I suppose Job 40:15 is hard to reason " Behold Behemoth, which I made with thee; he eateth grass as an ox.. Go ahead I am sure you will say this is an elephant with his mighty tale like a cedar.

    RSR
    Deacon obviously has studied leviathan; I have not.
    I had supposed, not really giving it thought, that is was a whale.
    I have no idea what it was, but there is no reason to suppose it was a dinosaur. BTW, if you'd been chased by a big, hungry crock, you might not think those descriptions out of line.
    But it's also poetic language, in the same fashion of the entire book.
    Humongous mammalian herbivores of many species survived until recently. Why not?

    MRS, KJV
    I believe that Job was written before the flood. I also think that some forms of dinosaurs still exsist. Like the alligator,hippo, elephant. Just my opinon.

    SHE EAGLE 911
    Why wouldn't this be the description of a brontosaurus (in recent years named something different). And why wouldn't the triceratops be related to present day rhino?
    The description of leviathan in the next chapter of Job would seem to describe a dragon. Some people think dragons are mythical. Don't know why though. Some people think unicorns are mythical. But I don't think they are either. Just extinct.

    KEN HAMILTON
    That is now called an Apatosaurus.

    MAVERICK
    Remember that longevity was greater in those days, so a monitor lizard that grows a foot a year and lives 20 year would be quite a beast if we even increased the life span by 100 years.
    So some of what we have today may just be small versions of some pre-flood animals have had some micro-adaptive changes since then. From time to time some things thought to be extinct crop up as well. Maybe Nessie is a pleiosauraus.

    DEACON
    SheEagle, If the earth were just 6000 years old then either next to nothing is related (except through the act of creation) or “natural selection” (micro-evolution) had to work exponentially faster than even evolutionists say it does.
    And, no, I don’t know when Job lived, I can guess, I have heard someone say that perhaps he may be the man called Javan (in Genesis 10). But there is no proof, so you’ll hear absolutely no argument from me if you disagree.
    1) Job’s age – 210 years, probably places him after Noah, and probably before Abraham.
    2) Job’s occupation – manager of livestock, etc.
    But when Job lived isn’t exactly the whole story though. When was the book written? This can give clues to a words meaning too. Again a guess, but there are some clues.
    1) No mention of, or following of Mosaic law.
    2) Use of certain words only used in early passages of scripture.
    Job was probably written before or around the time of the captivity in Egypt. This may lend credence to the idea that the leviathan was a crocodile

    C.S. MURPHY
    Deacon I am not passing judgement on your post but the views above sound alot like a person is saying that the writer couldn't have understood the sea so he was incomplete in his description of the creature. If this is what you are saying you are over the line of literal translation which also holds that God had every word written as it pleased him.
    Why? simply because an old earth believer cannot place dino's at the same time as men, or is there another reason that this absolutely positively cannot be a dinosaur, you have already said that we cannot know for certain exactly what it was so why not a dinosaur? And I am still waiting on the old earth reasoning and how it can function with a literal interpretation of Genesis.

    ERIC_B
    What's so difficult about accepting the former possibility ("next to nothing is related except through the act of creation")? If I can create two sculptures that look similar, why can't God create two species of animals that look similar?

    OPTIONAL
    Although I believe dinosaur and man were contemporary, dinos weren't reptiles. They were warm-blooded.
    Another point was when was Job written? I was under the impression (perhaps mistaken) it was the oldest book of the Bible.

    MAVERICK
    The point was that drastic changes in the atmosphere can drastically change how everything functions so it is very hard to base anything on what we see now and then suppose it was like that pre-flood.
    So God can't do fast food chaing changes? If He can make the whole thing in six days then 6,000 years is a lot of time just to make a few adjustments for climatic changes.
    Remember our lads only stepped into a quarter of ince of dust on the moon. If it were as old as suspected the module should have sunk miles into the dust from million of years of hits from meteors and such.
    Wasn't it MIT that turned two tons of garbage into oil in something like a few days of presuure treating?
    There is really nothing substantiating an old earth at all.

    DEACON Deacon
    Let me take back anything I said about there not being dinosaurs in the Bible. I did a little more research. In a book I haven’t opened in a long time about crocodiles, The Amateur Zoologist’s Guide to Turtles and Crocodilians by Robert T. Zappalorti, (Stackpole Books, 1976. p 26,27). It reads:
    Perhaps ‘crocs’ are dinosaurs of a type… Yet I still believe the text does not support the belief that this was a Dinosaur (in the classic sense of the word).
    In my initial message I did not ask you to look to old earth perspective for a answer to your dinosaur question, I just wanted you to know where I was coming from. In fact I sent you to what I still believe is a Young earth site that provides a sound, biblical perspective on the issues. I have not offered any type of persuasive arguments for old earth creationism. Nor will I here! IT IS ENTIRELY POSSIBLE THAT GOD CREATED THE EARTH IN SIX - 24 HOUR DAYS! After a lot of study though, I think the text allows for a wider interpretation. God is still the Almighty Creator in any event, in fact every day I’m amazed at His creative wonders.
    I did say that there is a tendency for young earth creationists to misuse and abuse the Scriptures to prove their point. I realize that this can be leveled at anybody taking any position but reading some of the posts, even on this thread, seems to vindicate my charge. I have tried to point you to what I think the text of Scripture says.
    I don’t know how to send you to another thread but there was a discussion on this topic last year, called “6000 years and Dinosaurs” that covered the main topics regarding ‘Old earth creationism vs. Young earth creationism’. Its’ worth reading if your interested. The responses in the post were much better than I could ever fashion.
    C.S. Murphy responded:
    You are still trying to place the charge of “non-literal interpretation” upon me. Pastor Murphy, the text of Scripture is inspired by the Holy Spirit, but He worked through the frailty of man. There is a diversity of expression in the Bible. God worked with a variety of men and a variety of personalities. The Bible includes the use of nonscientific language, and the use of a variety of literary devices. We read this text through the eyes and perceptions of the author. Job’s nonscientific description does not necessitate a charge of non-literary interpretation. God used Job to describe a most-powerful animal that God has power over.
    It’s sort of like the gospel accounts; each one describes the sign above the cross that Christ was crucified on differently. Is this a biblical contradiction? Of course not, the disciples perceived things differently and had different purposes for writing their gospels. The descriptions were not complete but they fit the purpose of the author.
    Young earth creationism does allow for the potential interaction of man and dinosaur. But does the text? I’ve merely offered a simple study of the word “leviathan”.
    Concerning your beliefs about dinosaurs in the Bible: Just recognize, that you can call the beast of Job (behemoth/leviathan) a dinosaur, but to do this you are making assumptions that may be beyond what the literal text says. Literary interpretation or true to the textual intent? What is the simple interpretation? A crocodile that spouts vapor from its nostrils or a fire-breathing dragon? I’ve decided, now you decide.
    One thing is for certain, we have to admire the translators of the KJV for their decision to leave the words untranslated due to their uncertainties about the meanings.

    HELEN
    Dinosaurs are/were NOT 'big lizards.' Lizard legs go out 'sideways' from their bodies and dino legs 'down' like most four-footed land critters such as dogs, cats, and horses.
    Also, size is a major factor in body construction. You can't just grow a lizard 'bigger and bigger' and end up with a dinosaur. You'll just get a dead lizard.
    In other words, the giants of the animals were species unto themselves.
    There is also very good evidence from just about every continent that they co-existed with man. In China we have the dragon -- the old name for dinosaur. We see some very accurate pictures of some of the sea monsters (not dinosaurs, however) on some Roman and Greek vases and other pieces of art. Stories from Europe include everything from Beowulf to St. George and the Dragon. They may be exaggerations, but there was a 'something' they were exaggerating, and there are too many of these stories to discount. In America we also have recorded traces of animals the evolutionists declare long extinct.
    As far as the Loch Ness monster and the possible monster in the Congo, etc., they are very real possibilities, actually. Again, too many reports to discount as mass hysteria, fiction, or mythology.
    What happened to them? A change in world environment. They survived the Flood of Noah, as the book of Job attests. (Job is actually the earliest complete book of the Bible, being written sometime around the time after Babel or Peleg), and is only predated by Genesis 1-11. Job definitely seems to have been aware of these animals mentioned by God and they bear no resemblance to animals we are aware of today (despite various text and explanatory notes by various translators!).
    If you look at Genesis 7:11, you will see that the first waters of the Flood were subcrustal eruptions. If we give any credence to extra-biblical sources from other cultures, these waters were violent and scalding. They probably marked the lines of the incipient crustal plate boundaries. The eruption of these waters would have resulted in some severe downwarping at a number of areas at the boundaries. A good example is the Jordan Rift.
    These downwarped areas, apart from being resultant river valleys, would also have been steamy for some time to come, due to the still escaping pressurized hot waters from under the crust. These areas, while not at all attractive for human habitation in that condition, would have been ideal for the large 'monsters', as the warmth, the humidity, and the resultant lush growth all would have fostered their continuance in a changed world.
    This would also be why we do not see dinosaur remains with human remains. They would not have lived in the same areas at all, even though humans were certainly aware of their existence.
    Those we hear about which survived later into history after these steamy river valleys settled down into simple river valleys and the catastrophe of Peleg's time destroyed so many of these environments, were smaller, and more able to live in 'normal' areas. So we see the Chinese tamed some and even raised one or two varieties. And we hear of other reports, from time to time, around the world.

    MAVERICK
    Remember, it was eveolutionists that gave the name to the creatures found as dinosaurs. Their theory is totally shot to pieces by so much modern science that who knows if anything they have found is properly named or classed. They may have been part of one whole kind that while saved aboard the ark was either made extinct by the climate changes or men over hunting them since one would feed a family for a long time and one egg would make a meal by itself. That God created these creatures as the same time as man is no big problem. Before the fall, no creature killed another so there was no threat to man. Man was a vegetarian so no animal was in trouble either. What kind of knowledge man actually got from the tree of good and evil we do not know, but part of it may have been how to kill and avoid being killed or God gave that knowledge to him to enable him to survive in a new and dangerous world. So, did man kill more "ancient beasts" than they killed him? Obviously, since we are still here. The only problems these beasts cause is that they do not fit into someone's concept of young earth because they want or need an old earth.
    God made wine and really good wine instantly. What if he made the world with seeming age or the flood aged the earth like surfer's skin and it became old before its time? "Judge not according to appearance, but judge righteous judgment." Since six days is tied to what a man should work and rest on the seventh, why do we have to guess that in Genesis it means 6,000 years or long ages just because God measures times in millennial days? He was telling us the story of creation and used our time like we have Central and Pacific time. Maybe God is on millennial time, but we are on 24 hour day time. He could have easily described millenial time for us, but He did not so it is much easier to assume that day means 24 hr day in Genesis than a long period of time if God did not use something more specific to tell us. Take it for what it says and if it was not a 24 hour day we won't care when we get to heaven and we cannot prove it here so it is basically a waste of time when we could be researching things we can prove.

    [ September 18, 2002, 05:57 AM: Message edited by: Administrator ]
     
  2. Administrator2

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    HELEN

    Maverick:
    I think maybe we tend to villianize some awfully good scientists a bit much, simply because they are evolutionists. Granted dinos are not big lizards, but nevertheless "dinosaur" is not a bad name in and of itself!

    A couple of other points regarding some of your statements. You said, "What kind of knowledge man actually got from the tree of good and evil we do not know, but part of it may have been how to kill and avoid being killed or God gave that knowledge to him to enable him to survive in a new and dangerous world. So, did man kill more "ancient beasts" than they killed him? Obviously, since we are still here. The only problems these beasts cause is that they do not fit into someone's concept of young earth because they want or need an old earth."

    The tree of the knowledge of good and evil was not a tree of 'knowledge' in and of itself. It was a test of obedience, and the lack of obedience led to evil. Adam and Eve already walked with God. They certainly knew good! All that was 'missing' was knowledge of what would happen if they disobeyed God. This was knowledge of evil. God did not want that, but gave them the freedom to choose to obey or disobey, the same way He gives us that freedom today. The tree was what He used -- it did not have any kind of special powers of knowledge or learning.

    About man killing ancient beasts -- in Job we find that the behemoth and leviathan were not thought of as being 'killable' but rather creatures so large as to strike terror into men. Given this, I rather assume men would prefer to stay away from them altogether!

    And, lastly, regarding time during creation week: the fact that evening and morning are mentioned indicates the earth was rotating on its axis. This would indicate a 24 hour day from the start.

    And, personally, I don't think it is a waste of time to study this. We do need to know we can trust God's Word to say what it means and mean what it says. If not, then there are a number of people who would have a hard time with faith in God at all. I cannot even tell you how many times I have read emails and other testimonies regarding the fact that in college (university), a student abandon his own faith because of evolution. Or that it was a compromise with the 'long ages' idea that led a person to be willing to compromise other sections of the Bible as well, leading to even changes in lifestyle that were later regretted.

    I will always do my best to show that both scientifically and historically the Bible is accurate and can be trusted starting with Genesis 1:1. And also that it can be understood by men, because God did it that way so we could know Him a little better, and thus love Him a lot more.

    In the meantime, these large critters have been discussed here before:

    http://www.baptistboard.com/cgi-bin/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic&f=36&t=000071&p=

    http://www.baptistboard.com/cgi-bin/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=36;t=000130
     
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    PHILLIP

    Deacon, I have been reading your posts and offer you something to ponder. This very item (among other quotations in later portions of the Bible) changed my views on the six day creation. I have always held fast to either a gap theory or an "age" theory when reading my Bible and justifying that I was being literal by doing this. Then, after spending many unproductive arguments with people far more knowledgeable than I, such as Helen; I found something in the Bible right in front of me.

    If I am to take the Bible literally, then it destroys my theory of "old earth". Read Genesis chapter 3 carefully and see if you get the message. My point is, the earth was a perfect creation, man and beasts were to live together with no sorrow, pain, suffering, etc. which would have included death. Then man, in his infinite wisdom, sinned and one of the punishments became that of death. The entire world was changed. Thorns and thistles began to grow among other things that would and could harm man and beast. As shown by most evolutionists, most beasts were herb eating animals, not carnivores. This has always been a contention of argument, but it fits in perfectly with the Creation story where animals ate the plants (again read Genesis carefully).

    My final point is, if you take the Bible literally, you realize sin did not enter the world until AFTER the seventh day on the timescale. This completely eliminates the long-age theory where fossils were formed and dinosaurs lived and died.

    It is right there in front of you and makes a literal interpretation and "long-age" theory incompatible.

    The evolutionists on the site will argue with me because they do not take the first eleven chapters literally; however, you say that you are a conservative Christian and take the Bible literally, so this point should not be missed on you.

    I hope this helps.
     
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    ZCOSTILLA

    Have you checked out Kent Hovind with Creation Science Evangelism ? You can find him at www.drdino.com and it's pretty good. I've heard him in person, and he explains everything pretty thoroughly. I highly recommend the Creation Seminar Series. It's worth the money, especially since he encourages you to give copies to friends to get the truth of the word of God out. You can listen to it online at http://www.drdino.com/cse.asp?pg=seminar_online
     
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    DEACON

    Phillip, thank you for your concern.

    I assure you I have read Genesis three before, many, many times. I can also readily affirm that I don’t have all the answers, (I don’t even have all the questions). I enjoy a statement by Martin Luther, who wrote concerning Genesis,
    I haven’t and I won’t try to persuade you to change your view about Young earth creationism. I’ve only asked that you not add to scripture what isn’t specifically mentioned. We each bring our own preconceived notions to the text when we read Scripture. Part of the process of interpretation is examining these biases and understanding how they affect the text we read.

    (for example: In your post above, you wrote, “the earth was a perfect creation” , Examine the text again, the Scriptures do not say this, it says it was “good”. From the foundation of the world God has known that this is not where His children belong. - Matt. 25:34).

    More importantly, believing that dinosaurs are mentioned in the Bible should not change what the text is trying to convey: God is All-powerful and terrifying in his judgments.

    I must add: Do not use these verses to confirm Young earth creationism. If you believe the Behemoth and Leviathan are dinosaurs because of your YE Creationist viewpoint, you can’t go on to say you believe YE Creationism because Job writes about dinosaurs. That’s circular reasoning.

    Here is a simple, uncomplicated booklet by Radio Bible class staff writer Dean Ohlman that is “offered with the prayer that it will help us to respect one another in our differences, while affirming together that the Genesis account of creation is true”.

    Booklet by Radio Bible class Dinosaurs and the Bible http://www.gospelcom.net/rbc/ds/q1112/

    To be fair I’ve added Ken Ham’s (of AIG) response to the booklet. http://www.answersingenesis.org/news/aig-rbc5-30.pdf

    And lastly Martin Dehaan’s closing response to Ken Ham: http://www.answersingenesis.org/news/0701rbc_letter2.asp

    Heb. 12:14
     
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    HELEN

    Hi Deacon,
    I have read your exchange with Phillip and I also read the links on your post. So far Phillip hasn’t responded, so I would like to present a response on at least a temporary basis until he has time to do so.

    Firstly, although I hold Martin Luther in great respect for his courage in doing what might have been impossible for others in his day, that does not make him an authority on anything – especially science! I don’t think God has “reserved” the understanding of Genesis to Himself alone, else why would He have presented it to us? The entire Bible has been given to us so that we may understand more about God in many ways, not just concerning sin, death, and salvation. As the Psalmist says, the heavens themselves declare the glory of God.

    And as the wife of a scientist who is deeply involved in the areas of research connected with Genesis, I would have to say that the more we are learning in physics and astronomy and even geology, as well as in the life sciences themselves, the more we are realizing that a young creation is not only credible, but that it turns out to be the only possible conclusion when all the data is taken into consideration.

    In other words, we were safe believing exactly what Genesis said all along.

    The data has nothing to do with biases. It just sits there waiting to be examined. It was data that changed me from an evolutionist to a creationist, and data again which changed me from an ‘old earther’ to a ‘young earther’ (and young universe as well). So this not only had nothing to do with preconceptions, but had to defy them. It took five years of mental struggle and reading everything I could get my hands on to finally arrive at the conclusion that the young-earthers, whom I had originally regarded with such scorn, were, in fact, correct about the general age of the universe. The data indicate about an eight thousand year age rather than a six thousand year age, and, interestingly, this is in line with the most ancient of the LXX texts (the Alexandrian) rather than the abbreviated genealogies presented in the later LXX and Masoretic texts.

    Now, about the earth being a ‘perfect creation.’ I think Phillip had every reason to use that phrase. After all, Jesus said “only God is good,” so when God declared His original creation “very good”, I don’t think “perfect” is such a bad synonym. In either of its meanings (complete or without fault), “perfect” would be descriptive of anything God made in its original form.

    If Genesis doesn’t mean what it clearly says, which is also in line with Exodus 20:11 and the book of Job, then there is an indication that God may not be as omnipotent as the Bible claims, and people know that. If God cannot get the basic facts of science and history right in the book that is called His Word, and which claims to be divinely inspired all the way through, then WHY, if the things we CAN check are false, should anyone believe anything else written in the book? Selective believism is, from what I can see, an insult to God.

    If the Bible needs ‘interpreting’ to be understood in terms of its basic message of creation, then we are back with the need for Pharisees and a specialized class of scholars and priests to intercede at least intellectually, if not spiritually. This is exactly what Jesus destroyed. This is why the temple veil was rent from top to bottom (and not bottom to top). God is clear. He uses the foolish things of the world to shame the ‘wise.’ Any child can therefore read Genesis and know that the book says the world was created in six days, with days not meaning anything other than it seems to mean – a 24 hour period involving an evening and a morning.

    Yes, we can study history, cultures, archaeology, and all sorts of things. These things can add depth to the Bible, but they will not change its meaning which is even clear from one reading by a child.

    God knows how to communicate, and that is exactly what He did in Genesis and Job. He is not the one mixed up. He knows what happened. He did it. And He told us. It is simply up to us whether we are going to believe Him or not. For me, however, there is real joy in knowing that the actual facts of science are coming down squarely where the Bible indicates they would have to. It’s a young creation.

    To Z Costilla – I do not recommend Hovind to anyone. He combines fact and opinion so charmingly that it ends up causing great confusion as to what is actually substantiated fact in his message. He does not keep up with science, and yet tries to present it. As a result, much of his material is not just outdated but plain wrong. To me, this is an embarrassment. To the church, it can be devastating, for when one of those who listen to him presents his material to someone who knows science, they are laughed out of the ballpark. This can cause a crisis of faith in the presenter and additional reasons to the person listening why Christianity as a whole is often considered a bunch of bunk. In other words, I sincerely believe Hovind is causing more harm than good and strongly recommend against using anything from his camp.

    As an alternative, you might enjoy some of the essays written by a variety of scientists and apologists at www.trueorigin.org
    In my personal consideration, the work there is valid and up-to-date.
     
  7. Administrator2

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    PHILLIP

    Thank you for answering, Helen, I could not have said it better myself. My first reaction was very similar to yours. Martin Luther is a fascinating person and very interesting to read about, but he was not a highly ragarded Biblical Scholar. For instance, he considered the book of James to be "strawy" (his words, if I spelled it correctly) because he felt it contained too much emphasis on "works". This showed his lack of understanding of James' message in context with the New Testament and the doctrine of Grace and the responsibilities of Christians; however, Luther is to be highly commended for the stand he took against his church.

    In my opinion the entire Bible has something in every book and verse for every generation of people. Therefore, Genesis (just as Revelation and prophecy, or the gospels) is written to provide us with information regarding the Creation and God's role in that creation. If we tokenize the information in any book of the Bible, as Paul indicated about the truth of the gospels, we might as well not even bother wasting our time.

    It is not only to our advantage to understand and read God's Word, but it is our responsibility as Christians.
     

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