The Question of Universal Age


(Matthew Mingus) #1

Good day everyone,

Many questions that I get asked in conversations with some of my atheistic or agnostic friends relates to the creation of the universe. These can range from discussions about the big bang theory, to the age of the universe, to scientific discoveries and biblical validity. One thing that I have found very interesting over the past few conversations that I have had about this topic is that, many times, it is more highly charged a discussion among Christians than it is among non-Christians. There seems to be a divide between Christian groups that centers around the universal age question.

I have had talks with many of my Christian friends about things such as the gap theory, the day-age theory, discussions on the meaning of time and infinity, and a wealth of other topics sprouting from just this one general topic. It is a topic that I could probably sit and discuss with anyone for hours. So, I thought I would pose the general topic on here to see what people have to say about what they have heard or discussed in their own lives.

I will leave my personal views and ideas out of this post and instead allow others to voice their ideas and thoughts on this subject. I will answer in another post to give my own personal thoughts and views as well but I really want to hear from others here and see what conclusions you have about this subject.

God bless you all and thank you. I look forward to hearing from you.

Matthew Mingus


(C Rhodes) #2

@mmingus36. My viewpoint involves the need for prioritizing. Especially when the present situation is overwhelming in its nature. My focus becomes very narrow. Some might accuse me of oversimplifying but that is not my intent. It is a matter of focus on what brings immediate results and relief. In the overall scheme of living, I cherish the peace of the certain, not the endless conversation about things that will not affect my living before GOD.

Still, my convictions lie within the belief that time in our world holds no structural limitations or definition for GOD. By the nature of our human limitations, we can never know what time is or how it is truly measured. But scripture supports that our sense of time bends to the will and manipulation of GOD. (See example in Joshua 10:12)

If time is just one of the tools of the Creator, then its relevance can only apply to this world, not anything signifying the truth of the existence of the Creator who exist in and outside of His Creation. Since time is an integral part in how we establish age than the aging process is also obedient to the manipulation of GOD. Readings such as Oz Guinness’ “Prophetic Untimeliness,” have been instrumental in formatting my convictions.


(Warner Joseph Miller) #3

Hey Matthew!!! Thanks, for broaching the topic, man! I wanted to ask, though, (just for clarity sake AND for potentially better [more] community engagement)…what exactly is the question you’re asking? Is it that you’re polling people on what they believe the age of the earth, universe, etc. is OR do you want people to give their opinions of even the very relevance of the topic of universal age OR something totally different? I think knowing that may help a bit in giving responses.

Thanks, again, man for broaching this very interesting topic. Blessings, brother!:v:t6:


(Matthew Mingus) #4

Warner,

Thank you for asking. I am looking to see how people feel about both of those things I suppose. First of all I suppose that I am looking to see what the particular beliefs are that people hold in respect to the age of the Earth and the universe, and why they believe that. I am also looking to see what they believe in respect to the importance of this issue.

It seems to me that this quickly becomes a very heated debate, among believers especially. But I also feel that on the other end of the spectrum, there is a certain amount of avoidance of the topic altogether. I believe that as God’s word tells us in Proverbs 30:5 “Every word of God is pure; He is a shield to those who put their trust in Him.” So, I am also looking to see what other people think in the terms of relevance for this issue.

Thank you for asking Warner and I hope that you have a great day. If you have any other questions, please let me know. God bless.

Matthew Mingus


(Jimmy Sellers) #5

I have attached a link with links to some good conversations. This is not to suggest that the subject has been settled but it will give you some food for thought when you talk with your friends.

SeanO

1

Sep 18

Not all Christians believe in a young earth . Below I have provided some threads on Connect that should help you grapple with how to interpret Genesis 1 and why there are different views of the age of the earth among Bible believing Christians. Personally, I have read the books produced by ICR that suggest that decay rates may not have been constant in the past and that we therefore cannot extrapolate beyond a few thousand years because catastrophic events like the flood may have altered decay rates (or God may have altered them). Personally, however, I do not think this argument would convince a skeptic who has a naturalistic worldview and the Bible says nothing about decay rates being changed - so it seems like the whole argument is circular. If the earth is young the decay rates must have changed - we believe the earth is young, so we posit that the decay rates were not constant. I do believe that this branch of science is particularly prone to bias both ways because the implications are believed to directly impact foundational assumptions of peoples’ worldviews. The issue of the age of the earth should not divide Christians, so I believe there is room for disagreement here.

This first link from Paul Copan gives a brief summary of different approaches to the science / faith dialogue and should help you get your footing.

May the Lord Jesus grant you wisdom as you study. Feel free to ask further questions.

https://connect.rzim.org/t/ask-paul-copan-april-10-14-2017/486/10

Here also is a book you may consider reading:

The Gospel Coalition

Why Christians Should Not Divide Over the Age of the Earth

“If I had the power to require every Christian parent, pastor, and professor to read two books on creation and evolution—ideally alongside their mature children, parishioners, and students—it would be . . .”

amazon.com

Controversy of the Ages: Why Christians Should Not Divide Over the Age of the Earth

Theodore Cabal, Peter Rasor II

Few topics have generated as much heat amongst evangelicals as the age of the earth and the doctrine of creation. Three camps have emerged to offer solutions: young-earth creationists (Answers in Gene …

4.7 out of 5 stars, ISBN: 978-1941337752, Weaver Book Company, May 1, 2017, $15.99

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