Hugh Ross - Big Bang

(Mazrocon) #1

What do you guys think of Ross’ Big Bang descriptions in the Bible? Is he turning poetic language into scientific description, or is it scientific truth “dressed up” in poetic language?



I think he’s trying to pound a square peg into a round hole. Concordist interpretations generally fail. Let’s see what Father Georges Lemaître himself had to say about the matter: Georges Lemaître, Father of the Big Bang

(Patrick ) #3

Ross is a little late. Catholic priest George Lemaitre put forth the Big Bang Model of the universe in the 1930’s. Penzias and Wilson proved its validity with the discovery of the cosmic background radiation in 1965, (right here in Holmdel NJ). The FLWR (where the L is for Lemaitre) model of the universe has been shown to be accurate to 0.1%. Planck satellite 2015 results show that the big bang occurred 13.799 ± 0.021 billion years ago. All Ross is saying is that he accepts current cosmological findings and that they are not contrary to biblical interpretation, something that the Catholic Church has been saying for about 400 hundred years.


Actually, Ross is trying to tie it to specific Bible verses, and that doesn’t work.

(Mazrocon) #5


I don’t think Ross is proposing that he came up with the Theory (that belongs to Laimtre) — just expressing his idea that perhaps the Bible described this before anyone else.

When I was still YEC, I found Ross and thought he was a pretty smart guy. The “stretching of the heavens = Big Bang” was something I never heard of before — some YEC don’t believe in expansion and yet there’s this particular phrase in the Bible that seems to imply it.

I considered his Day-Age interpretation for a spell. I liked how it helped get rid of some inconsistencies in the text (the creation of light before the sun and a more consistent interpretation of evening and morning). But I quickly realized that those cleared up inconsistencies actually created MORE inconsistencies … Just in a different way. So I more-or-less just ditched concordism.

So while I can’t say for sure what the Bible is referring too with the phrase “stretchest out the heavens” — are the “heavens” the starry host or the blue sky? What does it mean by “stretching” and how does it pertain to the worldview of the Ancients and Ancient Hebrews?

But I can say it’s interesting to think about…


(George Brooks) #6

So … how does God mean a “day” . . . on the days of creation where the Sun is yet to exist?

George Brooks


Stretching out refers to the firmament.

(George Brooks) #8

It’s the same kind of stretching involved in spreading a lump of gold into a sheet of Gold.

George Brooks

(Mazrocon) #9

Ahhh this is the quicker isn’t it… The million dollar question. When I closely analyze the text I don’t think it can be talking a literal 24 hour day. However, I also don’t think the text is demanding of “day=epoch” either. So what it does it mean then?

It’s probably more of a figure of speech or had some connotations and associates that are lost on us today. John Walton (who goes for the cosmic temple view) makes the point of how Hebrews setting up (or blessing) a temple often took 6 days… And thus Genesis 1 can reflect that reality. The phrase “evening and morning” is difficult to square with an Epoch View, and it’s also difficult to square with a 24-Hour View.

If you view as polemical (written against other cultures theology) then it makes a lot more sense. Also the Framework View fits in with it nicely — Days 1 and 4, 2 and 5, 3 and 6, all correlate with one another. The first three days talk about “habitations” while the other three days talk about “inhabitants”. Verse 2 says “the earth was formless and void” <<< this is the conflict and incomplete state. The first three days help solve the “formless” problem by giving it more shape and dimension … Different realms such as light, darkness, water, land, and plant life. The second set of three days help solve the second problem of being “void” or “empty” by filling the creation with inhabitants. The Sun, Moon, Stars, Living Creatures, Man and Women. Yes I am calling the celestial objects “inhabitants”. This is because they move through out the sky, through out the day, and through out the year — as opposed to plant life which is largely stationary.


(George Brooks) #10

My explanation is much simpler.

  1. The reference to days as Epochs only makes sense if you really think the writer thought the earth
    was considerably older than a day. I don’t think he had any idea. The “epoch” explanation is for
    harmonizing - - not for suggesting that the writer really knew what he was writing about.

  2. If the writer of Genesis had been an Athenian Greek, I think the odds are we wouldn’t see
    references to Evening and Morning prior to the creation of the Sun. The Greeks were close
    observers of nature. I think they would have realized the difficulty of having a day without
    having the sun.

  3. So what is the explanation for a discussion of days BEFORE there was
    even a sun?

It was a mistake!!!
It is the mistake of a story teller … not of an expert in the natural
order. When movie critics find holes in the plot structure of a movie, it’s because
the movie is fictional, and so only the intelligence and wit of the writer can make it
possible to avoid plot structure flaws.

If a story is HISTORICAL … plot structures don’t have holes because the events
actually DID happen . . . and so the rules of the real world keep the story on track.

This is just another reason for not taking the story of Genesis literally.

George Brooks

(Mazrocon) #11

George, I didn’t imply in my message that I DID take the first chapter as Literal-Historical. That was my point.

If you look at Genesis 1 as a sophisticated literary poem then it all comes together (in my opinion). Even Augustine thought that the days were literary devices (though for him they described instantaneous creation of everything split up into 6 segments).

I don’t think the Hebrew author was ignorant of what the cause for Evening and Morning were. It has to do with Gods work week and our work week. The Hebrews characterized Him (to honor him) by “putting God on a work schedule” complete with surise and sunset. The reason for the creation of the celestial objects on Day 4 has to do with 1) literary structure and 2) to de-divinize the sun and moon — as opposed to other cultures that glorified and worshipped the sun and moon as gods. Do you wanna know how the Hebrew author characterized the sun and moon? He puts them late in the creation on day 4 and doesn’t even call them by their usual names… They’ve been demoted to simply “great lights”. They are aren’t even described as being responsible for life, but are just cosmic calendars — that’s because God (the creator of the sun) is responsible for life.

So while I don’t argue against Day-Age and can see why people come to those conclusions for the reasons you mentioned, I can’t tell if that was the author’s purpose or not — to me they just seem like literary devices, and one can see the repetitive and sing-song like structure of it if you pay close enough attention.

Like Jon Garvey I don’t really like saying it was a “mistake” on the author’s part to say the Sun was created later, after the Earth — but rather that wasn’t even the purpose of the text. Trying to find poetry in meticulous scientific journals isn’t much different than trying to find science in sophisticated poems.


(Mazrocon) #12

To give wen further perspective George, the Jews (in the sixth century AD I believe) actually removed the 6 days from their calendar and treated it as a separate thing. Why would they do that? I don’t think modern science at the time demanded it.

To the Jews the 6 days wasn’t even on the same “plane of existence”, but was something altogether different.


(system) #13

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