Using scripture to interpret scripture is essential to understanding the Bible. Most of the people and events in the first chapters of Genesis are referred back to by both Old and New Testament authors. Even more importantly, Jesus Himself spoke often about Genesis.
It is these divinely-inspired statements that provide the interpretive framework for recognizing the historicity of Genesis. Three things become apparent when looking at these passages:
The Biblical authors saw the events and people of Genesis as real history.
They understood those historical events had spiritual and theological consequences.
They realized those consequences continue to have an impact on the present day.
Since it is helpful to read what was actually said, here are some of the more important statements about Genesis.
Moses & Isaiah
“For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all…
For I want you to know how…to reach all the riches of full assurance of understanding and the knowledge of God’s mystery, which is Christ,in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. – Colossians 2
To truly have knowledge and wisdom, you must start with God, who has revealed Himself in the person of Jesus. Mike Robinson writes a short article on why this is so important as today’s culture erects arguments against the knowledge of God.
It doesn’t seem to make sense to argue that immaterial objective truth comes from a material-only world; therefore, for the consistent materialist, immaterial objective truths do not exist. I will maintain that the only consistent and righteous system of thought comes from Christian theism. It is justified and it is impossible for it not to be true because Christianity supplies the necessary veracity conditions for immutable truth. Mutable materialistic atheism ultimately tumbles into epistemic nihilism.
Atheism is impossible because it falls into absurdity inasmuch as it lacks an ontic base for its epistemic rights; it is self-befuddling. Non-theistic worldviews lead to conclusions that are incongruous with their knowledge claims.
Darwinism’s much-touted and largely doubted mountain of evidence feeds a valley of death–the cold, purposeless, meaningless death of natural selection makes life in the valley heartily attractive to the strong, and hardly attractive to the weak.
The great failure of Darwinists is not only their failing to produce any evidence to support their theory in its strong form (all life from non-life in ever increasing information-bearing specified complexity), but in their obstinate refusal to admit and own up to the fact that their force-fed ideas (that few people believe) have predictable consequences (that no one likes).
Ideas have consequences. If Darwinism is correct, and we truly are the result of unguided, chance mutations that made us more successful at killing off weaker beings, then we must live with the difficult task of trying to formulate any reason why we all should not simply continue nature’s task. Unguided purposeless processes produced our mind, but what is to produce our morals? If science has defined our facts, can’t science define our values? So far Darwinists have not been able to come up with any coherent ethic consistent with both the inherent human ethos and their heartless killing machine. Look it up, no one can do it. And no one ever will.
The argument (evolutionism) that has set itself up against the knowledge of God is impotent.
…also, if anyone has links to Roddy Bullock’s blog entries, please let me know.
The book of Amos is a reminder to humanity that worshiping the Creator is the purpose of creation. When mankind wants to worship themselves, God gives the gift of suffering (Amos 4) as a megaphone to re-calibrate one’s thinking.
Interview with Dr Ting Wang, lecturer in Biblical Hebrew
by Jonathan Sarfati
Dr Ting Wang earned his M.Div. from Westminster Theological Seminary in California (Escondido) and his doctorate in Biblical Studies at the Hebrew Union College, Jewish Institute of Religion (Cincinnati, Ohio). He now lectures on biblical Hebrew at Stanford University in California,1and is a pastor for the Youth and Children’s Ministries at Korean Central Presbyterian Church. Dr Wang is a member of the Society of Biblical Literature and the National Association of Professors of Hebrew. He has also been a college instructor in biblical and classical Greek. Dr Wang lives in Palo Alto with his wife, Becky.
While the creation evangelism message is helping to win many people to Christ, there is strong resistance within parts of the church. While most attacks focus on the science involved, many otherwise conservative theologians claim that Genesis really doesn’t mean…
This is my part of an interaction I had with an atheist. They claimed over and over that my claims of revelational epistemology were nonsense. I hope you find encouragement in reading through my comments and that they help you more faithfully share the gospel.
Revelational epistemology is a valid field of philosophy. Philosophers such as Val Til, Bahnsen, White, and Lisle did or are teaching this branch of Christian thinking. So, my statement is not nonsensical…in fact, it is the reason we can actually determine ideas to have rational value in the 1st place.
God revealed Himself in creation. Even Dawkins recognizes this fact even though the idea of design by God is abhorrent to him. Dawkins conjured up the contradictory idea of “bottom up design” in an attempt to explain the clear design of the universe out of philosophical convictions…not scientific ones
God revealed Himself in the Bible. The Bible claims to be the Word of God, & it records many prophecies that, once fulfilled, have verified its authenticity. The Bible also records historical events that forensic scientists have over and over corroborated the truthfulness of the recordings.
God revealed Himself in Jesus. Jesus claimed to be God during his earthly ministry. His claims make him either a liar, a lunatic, or the LORD of glory. Which do you think Him to be? His appearance, life, and resurrection both fulfilled numerous old testament prophecies and verified his claims of divinity. Recognizing these facts and repenting of one’s rebellion against the Creator brings forgiveness and abundant life.
Now, to get to the consistency of one’s WV. For Christians, all of these elements are both internally and externally consistent:
matter – God is outside of time/space and brought all of the cosmos into existence (John 1). Because of the curse of sin, we would expect to see decay, suffering, and death in anticipation of God’s ultimate victory (Isaiah 11)
truth – God claims to be source of truth (John 14:6, Prov 26:5)
laws of logic/reason – Laws of logic are unchanging, abstract, and universal. God provides a foundation for LoL because He is immutable and transcendent
Unchanging physical laws, uniformity of nature, induction – Like laws of logic, these laws are abstract and unchanging…like God
morality/human value – Mankind is created in God’s image so has great value (Gen 1:27, Matt 22:37-40)
Generally reliable senses – Although perverted by the curse of sin, senses still function to glorify God, so Christians would expect them to be generally reliable
Human consciousness – God breathed life into humanity (Gen 1:27)
Human ability to comprehend matter, truth, physical laws, morality – It is expected that humans be able to comprehend the things of the universe and abstractions because by doing this, humans bring glory to God.
You can dislike this line of argumentation, but it is illogical & irrational to claim that my WV lacks internal coherence. It is also externally consistent because it solves the problem of induction, provides a truth anchor and has verification through the Bible and Jesus.
“IF you say something like “X Y and Z are true, therefore I believe that God has revealed himself, ergo these other things are true”, then perhaps a conversation could be had”
This is a fundamental misunderstanding of the fundamentals. Since God is my ultimate authority, there is no HIGHER authority by which to compare his revelations. He is my epistemological foundation. But it is because He provides this foundation that we can evaluate things using logic, science, evidence to determine things to correspond to rationality or not.
You very much want the ambiguous term “evidence” to be your epistemological foundation except that to evaluate evidence, you have to justify laws of logic, truth, and morality for the evaluation to make sense. Besides, everyone interprets evidence according to their worldview. So, evidence makes a poor epistemological foundation.
The idea for this post came from reading A Meaningful World by Benjamin Wiker and Jonathan Witt, so I want to give them some credit for a wonderful book and for pointing out how amazing even the simple things of creation truly are.
Consider air. Following is a list of many amazing things about air that reveal the praiseworthiness of the Creator!
Earth’s atmosphere protects humanity from harmful radiation.
It’s transparent for vision.
It’s the right composition for controlled combustion. Too much oxygen and combustion is irrepressible. Too little oxygen and no fire is possible.
It’s the perfect ratio of elements for both respiration and photosynthesis. Also consider that God designed an amazing process to keep the ratio in balance. The respiration process has a by-product of CO2, which is needed for photosynthesis to take place. Conversely, the by-product of photosynthesis is O2, which is vital for creatures that respirate.
It’s not too dense to move freely.
It’s dense enough to provide lift for flight. Flight/lift is useful for birds, bats, insects, flying fish, flying squirrels, and humans. Trees and plants were designed to make use of lift to spread their seed and spores.
It’s also dense enough to provide thermal protection against extreme heat and cold.
It can be absorbed by water, so that marine organisms can use oxygen.
It can hold water vapor and transport it all over the world to be a key part of the water cycle.
It can carry scents. Scents can be sweet to create feelings of delight and strong memories. Scents can also be sour as a protective measure against corruption and disease.
It is an incredible medium for passing sound waves. Because sounds pass noticeably slower through air than light travels, someone with two working ears can determine the direction of the source of a sound. If sound traveled faster through air, this would be more difficult.
Because it is an insulator, air currents are created between areas of heated and cooled air, which can freshen and renew
An an insulator, it also prevents runaway lightning from electrocuting everything.
Air can be compressed for use as
Underwater breathing apparatus
To recognize any one of these things would make air remarkable, but that all of these advantages exist within a single entity that we refer to as air speaks of a truly Grand Designer! All of creation speaks to his glory, and God is worthy of all praise.
Can you think of other design features of air? Add them to the comments.