I Was the 16-Year-Old Godfather of “Answers in Genesis”


#81

I find these comments to be of great interest.

If the scientific evidence did support a literal Genesis, do you think you would be saying the same thing? I doubt it. Instead, you would probably be talking about how important it is that the scientific evidence supports your interpretation of Genesis, right?

I think the discomfort you have is that what we see in the Creation does not fit what is described by a literal interpretation of Genesis. It isn’t evolution that conflicts with Genesis. Instead, it is the observable facts that conflict with Genesis. As Galileo said, God did not create us with the ability to use reason and logic only for us to forgo their use when we look at the world around us.

Also, our interpretations of Genesis are as much man made as our interpretations of the scientific evidence. The difference is that Genesis can be interpreted allegorically. Not so with the scientific evidence. If the two are in conflict, then it would seem the wiser choice to adopt an allegorical view of Genesis than to forgo reason and logic and keep them in conflict, at least in my view.


#82

What blows my mind (as a Canadian) is the connection between guns and “true Christianity.”


(Casper Hesp) #83

In the US many Christians are very comfortable with that connection.

political diversion alert


(Phil) #84

I’m sure it has something to do with Darwinism, Casper, but guess we better leave it there and move on!


(Chris Falter) #85

Hi Jonathan,

Good question. And the answer is a definitive yes. Thousands of years ago, many rabbis and early Christian scholars who looked carefully at Genesis concluded that it does not assert a literal from-nothing-to-everything-in-its-final-state-in-144-hours. The rabbis thought that each day of Genesis 1 was actually 1000 years, which solved the problem of how a world with man and without animals in Genesis 2 came to have animals. Augustine, easily the greatest scholar of the first millenium of Christianity, solved the same conflict between Genesis 1 and 2 differently: he asserted that the 6 days wete symbolic, and all of creation came into its final form in a single instant at God’s command.

I do not think the rabbis or Augustine were influenced by Darwin. Do you?


(Jonathan) #86

I do not. And thank you for making this discussion end on a different note than it was already about to end on! :wink:


#87

Nahmanides was one of those ancient rabbis who actually interpreted Genesis in a way that somewhat mirrors the Big Bang theory thousands of years before the theory was proposed. I won’t pretend that Nahmanides’ commentaries are cannon or even popular, but they do exist. I think Gerald Schroeder has spoken about this in many of his books, so that might be a good source.


(George Brooks) #88

@Chris_Falter,

You gotta help me with this one. How did interpreting 6 days of creation as 6 one-thousand-year periods help the rabbis of old deal with the question of how the world came to have animals?

I’ve never read a sentence like this before… but it sounds quite intriguing!


(David Heddle) #89

No just some of the rabbis, but many early church fathers. It solved the problem that on the day Adam ate he was to surely die, but alas he breathed 900+ years longer. No problem if a day is a thousand years. And then there is Augustine, who believed in instantaneous creation. It terms of “orders of magnitude” difference from a literal view, Augustine is the most mathematically radical of all Christians ever!


(George Brooks) #90

Ah! @heddle, Thank you for that explanation! That sounds very much like the Rabbinical process!

There is a logic to it … kind of odd I suppose, but you have answered my question perfectly. Thanks!


#91

Right, and some “reject” Augustine for reasons like this, but still “accept” other of his positions (that some might call innovations) like his definition of Original Sin.


(Chris Falter) #92

Hi George,

David Heddle’s explanation is on point. In addition, if a Genesis 2 day is 365,000 earth days, that solves the problem of how Adam was able to encounter/name every animal on the same “day” he took a nap and woke up with Eve beside him.

Blessings,
Chris