God’s creation of the universe was not rushed. It is common to pit creationism against evolution. But, it would be reasonable to consider that since God is forever and dwells in eternity, He was not in a hurry to create the universe and all of its inhabitants. He may have set the seeds for creation, so to speak, and then let creation evolved over long periods of time. This seems to fit with scripture: “And God saw that it was good.” a kind of assessment of how things had grown or progressed.
@wvc When I first started thinking about God’s creative process as a process I realized that unless He was making a fairly dramatic point (burning up water soaked rock) God almost always uses long stretches of time to accomplish a purpose. Especially now that we’re going on 2,000 years in fulfilling the Kingdom.
On a related point, I think it is very plausible that God simply enjoys the creative process. He takes satisfaction in his work to create life, the universe, and the 30 years up to Jesus’ ministry. Furthermore, we who were created in the image of God generally enjoy the creative process. If I were to disagree with your post it would be that God “…set the seeds for creation…and then let creation [evolve] over long periods of time.” A God who takes pleasure in the created and takes a rest following is, to me, a God who is very closely involved in molding and shaping everything over billions of years. Who are we to say that God didn’t create the dinosaurs just because he wanted to and thought it would be fun? Anyway, good post.
Well, you are putting things in scripture that isn’t there. I, myself would never do that. Furthermore, you are saying that while God looked upon death, and dying animals, ripping each other to shreds, disease running rampant. God looked at His creation, and said, “it was good”?? Please show me anywhere in scripture where God looked upon death in favorable manner?
Well, just for thought, consider altar sacrifice and burnt offerings. I am not sure what to think, though I am sure that the Lord finds the repentant heart pleasing, but death is certainly present.
Numbers 29:2 As an aroma pleasing to the LORD, offer a burnt offering of one young bull, one ram and seven male lambs a year old, all without defect.
@Wookin_Panub, you add a great deal of zest to these threads. I always appreciate your fascinating perspectives and you add a lot to the discourse. Thanks to you for that!
Much like @jpm, I’m absolutely astounded that you would post that challenge.
The Bible is obviously PERMEATED with death as central to God’s purposes and God most definitely considered it GOOD in various contexts. The very symbol of Christianity, the cross of Jesus Christ, is a reminder that God chose to create a reality where “the wages of sin is death” (i.e., death as the appropriate punishment, a good and just response to sin). Aand the greatest gift of all which God gave humanity was the death of his son on the cross. Do you that death a “favorable” example?
Even in Eden before the fall, death was central to the food chain. (Or are you going to maintain that—unmentioned in the Bible, and you never put things into the scriptures which aren’t there----there was a second creation of a NEW ecology and biosphere after the fall, where nutrients were recycled by an entirely new means: death and decomposition?)
I have not been reading your posts on Biologos (which I have greatly enjoyed) for all that long—but certainly long enough to be astonished to read these words of yours:
“Well, you are putting things in scripture that isn’t there. I, myself would never do that.”
Wow. Do you honestly think you never put ideas into the scriptures which aren’t there? Indeed, in your aforementioned post of this thread you do that very thing. You impose a YEC-traditionalist view of death and the fall that is very common on Young Earth Creationist websites (among others and for example) but which is entirely foreign to the Bible itself. As jpm/James mentioned, you even entirely missed the fact that God employed death as the appropriate response to all sorts of things. What happened after the fall? God killed animals so that Adam and Eve could cover themselves. What happened before the fall? Every time living things needed nutrients, they get them from the LIVING body parts of organisms, which DIE during the process of acquisition and digestion.Death fuels the entire nutrient cycle in nature. (If you insist that the the entire biosphere of nature operated differently before and after the fall, you are introducing a second creation event of which the Bible says absolutely nothing! Of course, I would also suggest that you study the meaning of the Hebrew word TOV in order to improve your understanding of “good” in the Genesis 1 contexts. Is it possible that your idea, and mine, of the word GOOD might be different from God’s? Do you really want to stake an entire doctrine of scripture—which can’t be found within the Bible itself—based upon your opinion of what is and isn’t “good”? Here’s a hint: Hebrew TOV meant “appropriate”, “fitting”, “complete and exactly as it should.” Yes, death and recycling of nutrients was exactly as God intended it to be and death prevented the overpopulation that would come with exponential reproduction that had no limiting factors.)
@Wookin_Panub wrote: “Please show me anywhere in scripture where God looked upon death in favorable manner?” I could meet that challenge with a very long list but I’ll start with just the first passage which came immediately to mind:
“Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his saints.”
— Psalms 116:15
Now, if you tell me that Psalms 116:15 does NOT say that God does not look upon death favorably, you have definitely “put things in scripture which aren’t there.” (You would have inserted “white-out” or the overstrike font.)
That example should suffice. And that should also sufficiently refute your claim that you never make claims about the scripture which aren’t to be found there. (As my favorite Biblical Studies professor used to say in shocked surprise at some of the answers he got from students while teaching Socratically: “Yikes!”)
@Wookin_Panub, I very much look forward to your response.