other old earth theories?

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by nodak, May 19, 2010.

  1. nodak

    nodak
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    I know folks that take Genesis literally but are not young earth, and are not gap theory.

    Are there other well defined understandings that are both literal and old earth?
     
  2. preachinjesus

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    There lots of other theories. John Sailhammer posits an Eden-only view of the creation epic and takes it and the events around it as a literal series.

    Others suggest that even in reading the passage literally the understanding of the words used for "day" "age" "Adam" "man" are not confined temporally until after the Fall and personalization of sin.

    There's a book out called A Biblical Case for an Old Earth that has some other theories around its thesis. Check it out here: http://www.amazon.com/Biblical-Case-Earth-David-Snoke/dp/0801066190/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1274288956&sr=8-3

    My view, which I rather like, is that we can understand creation as a literal-6 day event. That is fine, I don't think its a hill I'll die on but I can reasonably accept that God could have done it in one day but seems to have explicitly recorded it as 6 so there its 6 days as we can best understand it. We can accept the literal 6 day creation and still hold to a very old earth/universe since: a) God seems to create things with age built in, b) we have no reason to think God could not have structured things in a complex way in order to help us see His handiwork. That is fine.

    I believe that the nature of time in the Garden of Eden and time outside the Garden (in the created world) is much different than what we experience in the created world. (Not that Eden was uncreated, not at all it was created though a different kind of place than the outside world.) After Adam was created he had to take time to name everything and tend to the Garden and wasn't instantaneously lonely (unless he is really that guy) so more than an afternoon passed. Then after Eve was created they had to get to "know" each other and experience time in the Garden. They were pretty familiar with the animals and God's presence...that probably didn't happen over dinner. Thus the Fall was likely long beyond the existence, placement, and coupling events. Given that Adam and Eve had uniquely different natures before the Fall they wouldn't have suffered from the wearing effects of aging. Thus the space between creation and the Fall was substantially longer than day seven God rests, day eight Adam and Eve fall into sin. Coupling that with the evidence that we live in an old world that has age built into it plus the degrading impact of time passage. We live in an old world.

    Just my thing. I still believe God created in 6 literal days and created ex nihilo and Jesus is the Savior.
     
  3. Deacon

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    The key word you used was “literal”.

    Another literal origin models is Progressive Creationism.

    This model presents the “day” in Genesis 1 as representing God’s workday, a time period of unspecified length.
    These days are broadly sequential and successive.
    As God’s workdays they are analogous to our human work week (Exodus 20:8–11; 31:17).
    This broadened interpretation of the word “day” is supported in Psalm 90, a prayer of Moses, where a thousand years in God’s sight are likened to a night watch.

    The term Progressive Creationism was coined by Bernard Ramm in his book, The Christian View of Science and Scripture (1955)
    [Ramm also authored the respected manual, Protestant Biblical Interpretation: A Textbook of Hermeneutics (1970)].

    The theory has been more recently presented in three popular conservative Systematic Theologies;

    1) Wayne Grudem (Systematic Theology, 1994).
    ”Both ‘Old Earth’ and ‘Young Earth’ Theories Are Valid Options for Christians Who Believe the Bible Today.” (p298).


    2) Millard Erickson (Christian Theology, 1983)
    “...[T]heistic evolution views God’s later creative work as occurring through immanent means. While this view is able to handle quite well the scientific data, it has some difficulty with the biblical account of creation. And any view that is to be acceptable, given the understanding of the Bible and of general revelation adopted earlier in this volume, must be in accord with both the biblical data and the scientific data. More adequate is the position termed progressive creationism. According to this view God created in a series of acts over a long period of time. … This view fits well the biblical data. “ (383-384). (Erickson dedicated his book to Ramm)

    3) Norman Geisler (Systematic Theology, Volume 2, 2003)
    “There are numerous ways that one can account for long periods of time and still accept a literal understanding of Genesis 1-2. That is, one does not have to give up the normal historical-grammatical way of interpreting the Bible in order to embrace these views. Therefore, there is no necessary conflict between Genesis and the belief that the universe is millions or even billions of years old.” (646).

    Rob
     
  4. nodak

    nodak
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    Thanks! I will definitely check into those resources!
     
  5. Grasshopper

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  6. Salty

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    Bumping as this subjet is very popular
     
  7. BobinKy

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    What do these theories say about the age of the Earth, Moon, and Universe?

    ...Bob
     
  8. BobinKy

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    It has always amazed me how some Christians base their salvation--and the salvation of all Christians--upon a few chapters in Genesis.

    Personally, I have been in most corners of this issue. And I do not think that it matters all that much.

    Today, I look around my study and I see Bibles and biblical study books. I also see books on English romantic poetry, Greek classical literature, seafaring novels, bird watching, geology, biology, astronomy, nature field guides, and local history. I also have a microscope, two telescopes, geology hammer, field bags, insect boxes, and several binoculars in my study. I consider all of these to be compatible.

    My salvation does not depend upon what I see in a telescope, microscope, or a few chapters in the book of Genesis. Nor does my salvation depend upon Calvinist, dispensational, or fundamental theologies. My salvation is based on John 3:16 and other passages.

    I have heard and read all of the major arguments from all corners of this issue. This is what I believe.

    ...Bob
     
  9. mets65

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    I fully believe the earth has been here about 7,000 years, but I've never really made this a point by which I base my faith. No matter how long it's been here it doesn't change God's love for us. It really doesn't change anything.
     
  10. kyredneck

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  11. mets65

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    I've heard the gap theory many times and I think it's a plausible theory. However I just don't feel there's any way to know for certain. I personally don't lean towards it, BUT I don't completely disregard it either.
     
  12. quantumfaith

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    If you are interested, "The Science of God" by Dr. Gerald Schroeder (former MIT Professor, now professor of physics in Jerusalem).

    His contention is that due to relativity and the fact that we KNOW the rate of time passage is not constant, he explains that the days of creation in Genesis are in fact literal, and simultaneously equivalent to the 13.7 billion year age of the universe.
     

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