Can’t Teach an Old Earth Creationist New Tricks

After scanning a few apologetics blogs today, I came away with the impression that many of them are content with the idea that Old Earth Creationism is a legitimate position to take with regards to the authority of God’s Word. This worries me because taking God’s Word as mythological when it is clearly teaching history will deteriorate the foundation of scripture. Once the foundation is mythologized, is it really even necessary anymore. The next thing you know, the Christian church will be ordaining homosexual ministers…ooops.

Unfortunately, none of the bloggers could adequately defend their belief. One of the bloggers simply referred dissidents to Hugh Ross’s website instead of engaging in the arguments. Another thought it was more appropriate to attack the character of young earth creationists. There were also a few that thought it a good idea to accuse young earth creationists of being ridiculous when rejecting the “proven” age of the earth at almost 14 billion years.

But I’ve never heard good hermeneutical arguments for converting to OEC. Below are some questions that need to be dealt with by OECers within the framework of scripture:

  • What was the writer’s intent in Genesis? 
  • Since the chrono-genealogies of Genesis limit the amount time between creation and Abraham to under 3000 years (even with liberal interpretations of missing names), how can OEC account for this time limitation?
  • Where in scripture does it say that there was death of the nephesh before Adam sinned? 
  • What did Jesus mean when in Mark 10:6 “At the beginning of creation, God made them male and female.” ?  Since mankind was created at the beginning of creation, according to the Creator, how does this fit with the OEC view that mankind has come into existence at the end of the old earth timeline of billions of years?
  • The YEC view fits nicely with what scripture teaches without contradictions or epicycles. Using only scripture, how could one build a case for OEC at the exclusion of YEC?

This would be a good start for an enterprising OEC apologist to answer. 

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2 thoughts on “Can’t Teach an Old Earth Creationist New Tricks

  1. I think it is important that we take a step back and be willing to rethink what we have traditionally believed. The idea that faith and science are at odds has created a significant division in the world/church and it causes me to beg the question, “is this necessary?”

    When we take a breath and look at the Bible as a whole, we can see we have writings that pre-date Genesis. John 1:1 says, “In the beginning was the Word…” We know that God WAS prior to Him creating anything. So we could pretty definitively say that God existed before He chose to create.

    Genesis 1:1: “In the beginning God created…”
    John 1:1: “In the beginning was God (the Word)”

    Also in John 1:5 we find out that God is light. So if it is true that God existed prior to Genesis 1:1 then it would also be true that before there was anything there was God. The Word. Light. No darkness comes from God, so the darkness we find in Genesis 1:2 could not have originated with God. Something happened between Genesis 1:1 and 1:2. Darkness entered existence, but God didn’t create darkness.

    1. God existed (only Light)
    2. God created
    3. Darkness entered

    If you take a closer look at the creation (re-creation) account in Genesis 1, you will find that it follows along at precisely the right order just as scientists claim… Take a look at the chronology and let me know what you think sir… 🙂

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    1. Great comments. Thanks for posting.

      faith and science are at odds has created a significant division in the world/church

      There are many scientists who believe the universe was created as the Bible says. They are at odds, not with science, but with those who have the presupposition that the universe is billions of years old. If we start with the presupposition that the Bible is true, then the science fits perfectly with the text. Astrophysicist Jason Lisle helps to frame the debate in more realistic terms.

      When we take a breath and look at the Bible as a whole

      This is the strongest argument for disregarding the old earth view. When viewed as a whole, scripture denies all attempts at allowing the old earth view from being possible.
      1. Genesis 1 : historical account. The writer’s intent was to give a historical account.
      2. Genesis 6-9 : Noah’s flood. Sediment/fossils were either the result of the worldwide flood or billions of years.
      3. Genesis 11 : Chronogenealogies. The calculated time from Adam to Abraham is within 2000 years…even with the liberal interpretation of missing lineages.
      4. Exodus 20 : Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God…For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day.
      5. Exodus 31 : See 4 above
      6. Genesis 3 : The curse for sin was explicitly stated to be death and thorns. The old earth view (while debated animal/human death) mandates that animals have died for billions of years prior to mankind’s sin. But this does not fit the Biblical narrative that death itself is the enemy (I Cor 15). The other curse of thorns would not have been a part of God’s original “very good” creation until after God cursed creation because of Adam’s sin. And yet, there are fossil thorns found in rock layers that evolutionists have dated to be millions of years old…long before they believe humans existed.
      7. Mark 10 : Jesus explicitly stated that he created man and woman at the beginning of creation.
      8. Romans 5 : Many old earth beliefs believe that Adam was a mythical/archetype character. This whole chapter compares Adam to Jesus. We know that Jesus was a real person, so we can very reasonably conclude that Adam was a real person too.
      9. Romans 8 : Paul says that the Earth is groaning in its curse to sin…sin from Adam. All of creation is waiting for the final redemption of the Savior that is spoken about in Revelation.
      10. New Testament : Jesus and Peter refer to the historical worldwide flood in validating Genesis as part of history.
      11. You can see more information and a more complete apologetic for this by checking out my Creation Manifesto.

      Also in John 1:5 we find out that God is light. So if it is true that God existed prior to Genesis 1:1 then it would also be true that before there was anything there was God. The Word. Light. No darkness comes from God, so the darkness we find in Genesis 1:2 could not have originated with God. Something happened between Genesis 1:1 and 1:2. Darkness entered existence, but God didn’t create darkness.

      When we look at the historical context of John’s gospel and his audience, I think we see more reasonably that he is trying to show that the gospel of Jesus is a fulfillment of the scriptures (for us that means Old Testament.) For his audience, they did not own copies of the scriptures. They would have learned Genesis in the synagogue, and for the pharisees, in their schools. John, is letting them know by his strong wording of connection to Genesis 1, that Jesus came to fulfill the Torah as the prophesied Messiah.

      To what are you attributing this darkness? Are you attributing the darkness to something other than mankind’s sin? If creation was tarnished by something other than mankind’s sin, then the that would have repercussions regarding redemption.

      What is darkness? Is it measurable? Can we get a kilogram or a meter or a liter of darkness? I would propose that darkness is an absence of light. Yes, Jesus/Logos/God is light. But God is not bound by his creation. So, within his created works, before he created light, there would very reasonably be darkness…because he had not infused light into his creation. Darkness existed within his creation before and after he created light. The light did not encompass his creation; it just became a part of it after He created it.

      If you take a closer look at the creation (re-creation) account in Genesis 1, you will find that it follows along at precisely the right order just as scientists claim

      This is how I understand the order of the secular scientist’s claim of origins:
      1. Nothing or Singularity
      2. Expansion or Big Bang
      3. Gravity coalesces gas into protostars
      4. Stars fuse chemicals over lifecycles of stars birthing/burning out/supernova
      5. Earth coalesces into rock
      6. Life emerges from primordial soup
      7. Random mutation/natural selection act upon life forms to help them develop evolutionary advances (lungs, wings, eyes…)
      8. Fish evolve
      9. Amphibians evolve
      10. Reptiles evolve
      11. Birds evolve
      12. Mammals evolve
      13. Humans arrive

      These events are not in the same order or scope of the Biblical account.

      I’d be interested to hear more of your thoughts after you check out the links.

      Like

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