I think there is a Hebrew word for universe
at least that’s what I was taught it means
In any case, no matter how old Olam is, the most important thing is that highly ordered creation requires a personal Creator.
Also, I’m no anthropologist, but I’ve never seen any evidence for organization of society older than 6000 years.
I think there is a Hebrew word for universe
One argument I have heard in favor of an old Earth, and Universe, has to do with the stars.
When you look at a star today you are seeing it how it was years ago, depending on its distance. Some of the closest stars are about 100 light years away but some of the more distant ones might be as many as a million light years away.
So you are seeing that star how it looked a million years ago. If it even existed then. Certainly it is possible for God to create the star more recently but with a light trail that APPEARS to be a million light years long, but that seems to go against God’s nature since it would be very strange for God to create something with deception in mind.
So that would seem to point to an old earth/old universe. With Genesis 1 explaining more of a hierarchy of creation rather than an actual time frame. (Remember a day to the Lord is like 1,000 years).
There is another possibility too. Like Einstein said “time is relative”. Since time and space are woven together in a “fabric” called “space/time”, perception of time will be different depending on your position in space. 1 day in God’s eyes could literally be a million years in mans eyes.
It gets complex, but that is something to think about.
I think there was a book called “Genesis and the Big Bang” where I read some of that.
I am no astrophycicist either, but if time is not an absolute standard, we can’t know how old anything is, really. Something to ponder . . .
I also am in the YEC camp, but am always open to the possibility of being wrong. As long as we believe in the central message of the Gospel, we are all part of the church/family of God. We will know things better once He comes back! (Still very grateful for forums/ministries like this though - and civil ones at that )
I’m not officially an apologist, nor an astrophysicist haha, but one thing that makes me lean more towards the YEC side is the thought that - when God created Adam, He created him as a man, with age. I’m wondering, can’t we also apply that logic to other created things as well? I suppose I have to read more on the other explanations as well, but this is something that made me think.
Yes I agree ‘ with genesis describing A hierarchy of life rather than a time frame. There is also an evening and morning for days 1-6 but not day seven . Implying we are still in the seventh day.
I agree light travels at speed and consistency. When we look st the sun it is actually looking back in time as to when the sun was 8 minutes ago . That’s how long it took the light to travel from the sun to our eyes. With this in mind the same goes for other stars . But they are a long way away. If we got in a rocket ship and were able to travel at just 10 percent the speed of light( which we can’t yet) it would take 40 years to reach the next nearest star. They are millions of light years away. Light speed is a resolved mathematical equation. For me my God is big enough for the universe to be as old as he wants it to be or endeavours it to be for earth to accumulate the resources we need in the 21st century. But that’s another story . God bless
Heres another point. The Genesis account fits the scientific chronology of how the universe and earth were formed.
Ie when the spirit of god was hovering over the surface of the deep and darkness and water was all that there was . The science shows that all planets start on this way . A watery mass. There’s more I’ll mention later if anyone is interested.
Good point. How old was Adam on the day he was created? Only He and Eve never had to grow up to be adults, they were old when they were created. How old? Could be any span of time, we only know that it was on the sixth day, man’s day, that he was formed.
Hope that’s all ok now Sean sorry about that
@Bronie Haven’t been keeping up with this thread, but thanks for sharing your thoughts Bronie
Great points . While it is irrelevant as far as salvation goes. I personally don’t care how old the earth is because I’m saved . But this fact does hinder those who don’t know Christ and think that the bible teaches YEC. Interesting fact ‘There is not one scientist outside Christianity who believes the earth is young. ‘So it would appear to them that Christianity contradicts the scientific evidence and this would be I would suggest hinder them from considering Christ . I’ve worked with these people in the teaching field and it is hard to share with them if you retain a YEC viewpoint. Moreover we live in a world where many people just believe there isn’t a God. They vehemently suggest that science disproves him. How can we get them to John 3.16 if we can’t get them past genesis?? In Australia the salvation soil is even harder than in America. At least you gave a heritage to draw from.
I am in the YEC camp as well. The ‘there was evening and there was morning’ behind each day leads me to believe that ‘day’ is a 24-hour day. Also, I cannot get past the passage in Exodus in which God tells Moses to tell the people that He made everything in six days and rested the seventh (Ex. 20:11).
As for the science (as it pertains to testing the age of the Universe/Earth), I simply do not trust the math that is used to determine the age; I believe there is something missing.
How would we know how old anything is if it preexisted recorded history? We judge the cause by the effect. By looking at the laws that currently govern our universe such as gravity, and extrapolating them back in time, we come up with an educated guéss. But what.if those laws are not universal? What if even time itself is warped by gravity? Or what about a cataclysmic event such as a worldwide flood? Then we might not be so sure of our estimates.
I’ve never considered this question actually.
I suppose he would be one earth day old chronologically (regardless if you are YEC or day-age perspective; I’m still currently in the YEC camp at this stage) - although presumably as a fully formed adult. Also consider that before the fall, God has created mankind to live forever; only when sin entered the picture did Adam start to physically die and age as we know it today.
Great thought Dean to bring up.
I also am a young earth creationist, but feel when trying to reach people and get them to question their worldview it can become an evolution vs creation or a science vs religion argument (a lot of secular atheism in Australia; I live in Aus ), I go back to the question of origins.
You can simply ask them the two part question on origins and see if they believe in a self creating universe (a logical impossibility as Lennox points out here: https://www.rzim.org/read/just-thinking-magazine/stephen-hawking-and-god).
How do you think the universe came into existence?
How do you think human life began?
What is the purpose of human life?
How do you determine good and bad?
What will happen at the end (at death)?
Not sure if you’ve seen it but there are some nice short ‘make people think’ videos here (https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL3gdeV4Rk9EfL-NyraEGXXwSjDNeMaRoX)
Another short book which might be used as an outreach tool to a friend is John Lennox book ‘Can science explain everything?’; it’s a well written book and would be great for a skeptic who is worried about having to choose between science and God. Lennox proves both are true. It’s not an either or.
I don’t think we have to know all the answers; perhaps just enough questions to ask someone else to make them think about whether there is a God, and has he revealed himself through the person of Jesus Christ. Like the sower, we just try and plant some seeds, and leave it to the Holy Spirit to convict of sin, righteousness and judgment.
Hope that helps…
Hi Mat I appreciate the clips , thanks .they are very usable. I agree all these arguments are great. The first one is the most powerful I find in this very argumentative world. .While from a yec view you could use it. it is using scientific evidence which equates to the universe being billions of years old so it’s only really convincing, I believe if you believe it to be true. Thanks for the clips
Hi Dean hey you make some good points . Here is a couple of things to consider . Astronomy is unique amongst the sciences in the fact that it directly access the past . When scientists look through the telescopes they are in fact looking back in time. When we look at the sun it takes 8 minutes for the light from the sun to reach us . We are in fact looking at the sun as it was 8 minutes ago. (Looking back in time) Now keeping this in mind . As we continue to look back over the universe we are seeing it at earlier and earlier stages in time. They can now view the universe right at the beginning . The amazing thing is that their observations have identified a beginner. Here is a spacetime Theorem that they came up with .“If mass exists and general relativity reliably predicts cosmic dynamics, then space and time must be created , implying a casual agent who transcends space and time.”(Hawking, Ellis,Penrose)
So astronomy has now shown us that what the bible said is true. The bible is unique amongst the religious texts in that it identifies a creator existing beyond time. So instead of ignoring the science astronomy has shown us we as Christians can use it to reach the lost for Christ. You won’t get a bigger miracle then the beginning of the universe . The reaction by the scientific community has been to point to the miraculous Here is a quote from Steven Hawking in his book a brief history of time ( best selling book in science of all time
“It would be very difficult to explain why the universe should have begun this way except as an act of a God who intended to create beings like us.” Great hey
Hope this has given more insight
A couple of my main concerns with Old Earth Creationism are death before the fall and the problem of evil. Isn’t pain in the world a result of sin? Would a perfectly good God use competition for resources and survival of the fittest as His method for creating animals and man?
Hi Jennifer , interesting question and very thought provoking. One thing to consider though is that in the cycle of life many herbivores need carnivores to ensure their species actually survives. Without the sick or generically weak or indeed the numbers of animals cut down through predatory behaviour the larger herd will eat all their food and starve to death. Those who believe animal death prior to Adams sin implies a cruel God need to consider again what God was willing to suffer for our sake. Nothing was more costly and painful for him than allowing his son to die for all our sins. Jesus’ death was the ultimate expression of Gods love. We also need to consider that Romans 5.12 declares that “sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin came to all people. “ By saying “ all people “ rather than “ all life “and by specifying “ death through sin” Paul here clarifies that Adam’s fall did not inaugurate animal death. This verse addresses death through sin not animal death. Another biblical passage 1 Corinthians 15.20-22 also clarifies that the death Adams sin introduced was limited to humans. This text speaks of the resurrection of humans ( in Christ) whose death was sealed “ in Adam “ Nowhere does the Bible claim that plants and animals did not die before Adam sinned. In regard to evil , God has created this world to eradicate evil from the human heart . Unfortunately there was no other way. Once evil is dealt with God will give us a “new heaven and a new earth.”something to look forward to.you can find this and more detailed explanations in Dr Hugh Ross’s book “Navigating Genesis”and “A matter of Days. “Cheers
Hi Jonathan . Good point ! Yes Evening and morning are used to frame the days but there is an evening and morning for day 1/2/3/4/5/6 but not seven. Psalm 95, John 5, Hebrews 4.) Refer to us still being in God’s seventh day. This would mean a long period of time. So couldn’t the other days be longer also.
It’s interesting that the word day has 4 literal meanings which the yec answers in Genesis agree can mean a finite long period of time. As for the antiquity of the universe. When we look at the sun it takes 8 min for the light to reach us . So effectively we are looking at the sun as it was 8 min ago. The speed of light does not change. Scripture tells us God has fixed the laws of heaven and earth . This includes the speed of light. It travels at 300000 kms s second and 10 trillions kms in one year. That means in one second light can circle the globe 7 and a half times.
So by looking further and further into space we are effectively looking back in time. I understand where your coming from though . Thought provoking anyway
I actually don’t see the references to the seventh day in the chapters you gave, at least not in Psalm 95 and John 5 (I’ll reread it again later). Hebrews 4 gave me some pause (for a time), but rereading that passage, I do not see anything that would make me think the seventh day still happening now.
I don’t think that the seventh day not having the evening/morning is too important; I would have a different position if one of the days in between didn’t have that phrase though … God resting on day seven was then end of the creation account (as a general overview of creation); it makes a good breaking point.
“So effectively we are looking at the sun as it was 8 min ago”
What is interesting to me is that evening starts the day. Could it be that this complements the length of time it takes sunlight to travel here?