It’s getting closer to the Bill Nye vs. Ken Ham debate and creationists are girding their loins for what they think is yet another assault on religion/attempt to do science. But there is a schism between the Intelligent Designers and the Young Earthers with what’s right and what’s wrong.
The age old creation versus evolution debate has been getting some press recently. The press is the result of Bill Nye (as in “Bill Nye the Science Guy”) announcing he would be debating Ken Ham, the president and CEO of Answers in Genesis.
To be honest, I don’t particularly care about the outcome of this debate. Creationists and evolutionists have been debating for a long time, and I don’t expect this debate to solve any significant issues. But generally speaking, I think it’s important for us as Christians to think through what really does and does not matter when it comes to this debate. We Christians need to wrestle with what Scripture really does and doesn’t say about the creation of the world.
He is right. Science does not progress by debate but through peer review and experimentation. This will change nothing, but it will empower a new generation of creationists to bring their arguments back into schools and a new generation of secularists who think that teaching fairytales instead of science is detrimental to children.
So it’s amusing that there are creationists dictating what should and should not be part of creationism anymore.
So what are the non-negotiables and where is there room for flexibility?
- I wish that Christians would stop insisting the earth is 6,000 years old, given that this particular number was calculated by Bishop Ussher based on a poor interpretation of the chronologies in the Bible. The chronologies in Scripture are primarily theological, not historical. An example of this is Matthew’s chronology of Jesus. Matthew’s point is to illustrate that Jesus is truly descended from Abraham and David. In doing so, he skips over numerous generations. To dogmatically hold to a particular number of years regarding the age of the earth does not do justice to the theological reasons for most of the biblical chronologies.
No, even with historical evidence Judaism is not the oldest civilisation on the planet and this ignores the non-language artefacts left behind by neolithic civilisations such as their architecture.
This abandoning of the 6000 year old Earth is in the face of the realisation that the world is not 6000 years old but closer to 6 billion years old and that human life on this planet is for a tiny portion of that.
But here in lies the problem, evolution explains what happened before us quite handily while these creationists are forced to acknowledge a older earth than the likes of Ken Ham but still an Earth that’s much younger than it’s real age.
- There is room for flexibility in regard to the literal six day creation of the earth. The creation account in Genesis 1 suggests that the earth was probably created by God in six literal days. However, the creation account is organized according to a very particular literary device. Days 1-3 show God organizing the chaos into organized “spheres” (land, ocean, sky, etc.). Days 4-6 show God populating each of these spheres with plants, fish, animals, and birds. Because the author uses this intentional literary device to demonstrate God bringing order out of chaos, I don’t think we can dogmatically insist that God absolutely, without a doubt, created the world in six literal days. Like I said, the creation account indicates God probably created the earth in six days.
Sure, but even if that’s the case the world’s still a lot older.
The earliest evidence for humans dates back to around 200,000 years. This ignores other hominids that were around. Are you seriously suggesting 200,000 is somehow better than 6000? It’s slightly more accurate.
There is no probably to this, the evidence points that the creation myth of the Abrahamic faiths is just that.
A myth. It doesn’t matter how much you weasel its not going to change.
- There is one non-negotiable in the creation account, and that is the unique creation of Adam by God. We must hold fast to the doctrine of Adam being created uniquely in the image of God, apart from the entire animal kingdom. Adam was not the result of divine evolution. Why is this non-negotiable? Because the doctrine of justification by faith alone hinges on Adam being a real historical person created uniquely by God in God’s image. As God’s image bearer, Adam was responsible to bring God’s rule to the earth. When Adam sinned, he failed in his divine mandate. Adam was the representative for the entire human race, and as our representative, he colossaly failed.
Do you know how foolish and childish and inane this sounds.
Do you know how idiotic this is? Your entire faith hinges on the existence of one human being who was magically cloned and altered to form his mate and that the entire humanity has come about out of this one individual and his clone and incest? Cause Adam’s sons married Adam’s daughters.
No there is a Y chromosome Adam and a Mitochondrial Eve but neither of them were contemporaries. In the same way that your great great great great grandfather from your father’s side of the family and your mother are not related and are not contemporaries but you inherited their genes.
Only in the Abrahamic faith is such a poisonous notion that knowledge is dangerous. Ignorance is only a bliss because you don’t know how much better the world can be.
No, this is just laughable. We still think you are as foolish as Ken Ham when you sprout such nonsense. That there was an actual physical Garden of Eden knocking about for thousands of years while the rest of life simply got on with it.
Adam must exist. Or then we are not special and there is no reason to believe in a magical entity.
- Jesus succeeded in every way Adam failed. Paul says in Romans 5:18, “Therefore, as one trespass led to condemnation for all men, so one act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all men.” Adam was a real man who sinned against God. When he sinned against God he plunged all of humanity into sin and darkness. Jesus was also a real man. Through his perfect obedience to God he secured righteousness for all who would believe in him.
If we are to accept Jesus as real then we have to accept the Buddha, Mohammed, Krishna, Mahavira and various other world religious figures as real too. And just as we are skeptical about them we are skeptical about your god. The only reason for the incredible “evidence” is that the existence of Jesus is so vital to the existence of Christianity that we gave too much veracity to fantastic stories in the same way that to a Hindu the existence of the divine city of Ayodhya has to occur lest Rama not be real.
If Adam was not a real person created uniquely in God’s image, the doctrine of justification begins to fall apart. Paul clearly understood that Adam was the first representative of the human race, and that Jesus was a second representative of the human race. Adam cannot be merely a theological idea. He must be a real person because Jesus was a real person.
Ah so there is no evidence for Adam but he HAS to be real otherwise you have to contemplate a world where there is no god.
That’s like suggesting there must be a gravity fairy because the alternative is a scientific process rather than a being you can petition.
There is room for flexibility on a number of issues related to the creation of the world. However, we must hold fast to the doctrine of the historical Adam. Justification hinges on a historical Adam, and I’m not willing to budge on that doctrine.
Then you are just as wrong as Ken Ham or Ray Comfort and just as foolish, unscientific and dangerous to the educations of others. Reality is more fantastic than all the magical claims of your religion.
Both you and Ken Ham wish to go stand on the Sun but while he wants to do it during the day, you are insisting that you should go at night because it’s cooler. And then you sneer at him for being an idiot without realising your own failings.