Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Creation Articles’ Category

Early this summer I had a student ask me a question by e-mail: “Do you think it is truly possible for someone to find the correct answer to the Drake Equation? If so, how would they prove it?”

After some research I gave the following reply:

“”The equation was written in 1961 by Frank Drake, not for purposes of quantifying the number of civilizations, but as a way to stimulate scientific dialogue…”(1) Therefore, the terms in the equation are considerations of what would have to be known in order to quantify (that is, count) civilizations. It is a thought experiment, and since we cannot go to many of those places (or probably any of them) because the distance is too great for even several lifetimes of travel [“Hey, grandkids, the goal of this mission when we started out 60 years ago was for you to visit two planets around the third star from our home star, Sun, to see if there is anybody living there. We’ll be there 40 years or so after your grandchildren are born.”], the whole scheme is pure speculation. In fact, I would go a step further and say that it is not even useful speculation.

So, to answer your question, no, it can neither be solved nor checked (proven). Based on my belief in the God of the Bible, I believe that it is not even a useful thought experiment. The Scripture says,”in as much as it is appointed for men to die once and after this comes judgment, so Christ also, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time for salvation without reference to sin, to those who eagerly await Him.” (Hebrews 9:27-28) Since “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,” (Romans 3:23), and since “Christ…offered once [died]”, then if any civilizations did exist, they would be without hope because God has not redeemed any of them. Instead, I think that it means they do not exist. And because of the distance we cannot know if they exist. The whole thought experiment becomes fruitless, a deceptive worldview way of avoiding the real truth about how [we got here and how] we “die once” and need that salvation.

A better thought experiment would be to explain how the rocks and ice we see confirm what God said about a worldwide flood in Genesis 6-9. Check out the “Lost Squadron” that landed on Greenland(2). Ask yourself some questions. 1) How deep were the “Lost Squadron” airplanes under the ice? 2) How long did it take for the ice to accumulate? 3) In how long of a time could the whole ice sheet have accumulated at that rate? 4) Has the rate of accumulation always been the same? 5) Is there any evidence for the rate of accumulation changing? 6) Comparing these estimates to the “declared age” of ice cores in Greenland, is there a problem with the present explanation of how the ice sheet got there?”

I think you will realize that the standard explanation for what the layers in the ice sheets means is flawed. Therefore, distractors are thrown up to keep us from seeing the logical fallacies of the ill-conceived conclusions masquerading as a scientific theory. There are many worthy thought experiments to be done. Einstein was particularly good at those, but much of today’s theoretical science is lacking in a creativity that adheres to truth as its basis, instead heralding false agendas and distracting from useful science. Let us be done with having any part of that.

1- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Drake_equation

2- https://creation.com/the-lost-squadron

Read Full Post »

I have been a Six Day Creationist for as long as I was read to from the first several chapters of the Bible. I became a much more informed one with the reading of “Scientific Creationism” by Henry Morris in 1977 when I was 17 years old. The more evolution I heard, by the grace of God, the more I rejected it as I got a Biology degree in college. I have made a lifelong study of the subject, finding nothing that evolution explains better than the Bible. On questions I could not answer I have always assumed that the Bible is true and the answer will be revealed, either in the Bible or by observational evidence. So far I have not been disappointed. I’ve been called foolish, ignorant, and blinded for believing the Bible over “science”. But Big Bang Theory, Origin of Life Scenarios, and Evolution by natural selection are worldview interpretations of evidence, not science. “Let God be found true, though every man be found a liar” (Romans 3:4)

All that having been said, I have been encouraged by numerous people to see the Answers in Genesis Creation Museum in Petersburg, KY. I thought it might be nice to see but didn’t feel any compulsion or need to see it since I know where I stand and have a full range of evidence and had no opportunity until recently. One of my sons was going to a wedding near Louisville and wanted a traveling companion. He suggested that we go see the Ark Encounter and then go to the wedding. I convinced him to see the Creation Museum and Ark Encounter while we were in the neighborhood. I knew Answers in Genesis’ take on presenting the controversy and feared that I might be disappointed in the level of science presented. It certainly was a popularized version for the general public, but it was well done with serious attention to the science that was communicated. The presentation was aligned around the AIG’s 7 C’s of Creation: creation, corruption, catastrophe, confusion, Christ, cross, and consummation. I wondered at the outset how the salvation message would be presented. I was very impressed with the Gospel presentation.

I saw most everything that I wanted to see and read most things in a somewhat rushed fashion because of our time constraints, even taking a quick walk through the outside gardens and seeing the short movie, “In Six Days”. On the bottom floor was an amazing insect collection. There is much evidence based science at the museum, but I hope as they expand, the designers will delve even deeper. Enjoy a few pictures I took while there.

20190608_092000

Swinging Bridge in the Gardens

20190608_092104

Extensive, well kept gardens lead to the museum

20190608_092821

20190608_112445

These are very diverse interpretations of the same facts. They cannot both be right. The horizontal lines about 1/3 of the way up on the “orchard” represent the Flood.

20190608_121335

“In Adam’s Fall, We sinned all” New England Primer

20190608_121350

“Christ crucify’d, For sinners dy’d” New England Primer

20190608_102528

In the Garden

20190608_113120

“Ebenezer”, Allosaurus fragilis, one of the best preserved skulls extant; approximately 30% of the skeleton is actual fossilized bones with the rest reconstructions from other specimen

20190608_132032

Very rapid burial!

20190608_124444

Models

20190608_105604

Noah and Son: They weren’t ignorant primitives (Genesis 4:17,20-22)

Read Full Post »

I have long been curious and fascinated by Biblical chronology. It is right that I should be so, since I believe that the Bible is true and all other truth claims are to be interpreted in light of its meaning. It is not, however, a straight forward pursuit since various factors have obscured the truth that is contained therein. Various people deal with this problem in various ways, but it seems to me that the main procedure that they use, on some level, is to discount  the validity of the Scriptures. So, while I believe and can confidently say based on Scripture and corroborating scientific evidence that the Earth was created recently, perhaps six to eight thousand years ago, I can equally confidently say that no one knows the exact number of years ago that “God said, “Let there be light”, and there was light.” (Genesis 1:3) Others refuse to explore these issues and say, ‘What difference does it matter?’ I believe that it matters for at least the following reasons:

•An old Earth laced with death means death is not a result of Adam’s sin.

•If Adam’s sin did not bring death, then there is no need for a Savior.

•If we cannot place the Flood in the correct time where it fits with what else we know of history, we cannot apply logic to see how the modern Earth has resulted.

It is this latter idea that I want to explore on an admittedly shallow level and give my opinion. My musings here will not resolve the problem, but they will help me to clarify what I have come to suspect and perhaps stir some readers to consider different legitimate perspectives.

As a kind of introduction to the problem, has it ever bothered you about how rapidly post-Flood changes took place? Nations of peoples in a very few generations, Tower of Babel, Ur, and most of the planet settled in 300 years? And all of these people came from three women who came off of the ark. (It does not say that Noah had other sons and daughters, but it does say “These three were the sons of Noah, and from these the whole earth was populated.” (Genesis 9:19)) Abraham could have known Shem who “ was one hundred years old, and became the father of Arpachshad two years after the flood; and Shem lived five hundred years after he became the father of Arpachshad” (Genesis 11:10-11). 500 years after the flood would be long enough for him to be alive when Isaac was born. Noah and Abraham could have even known each other because “Noah lived three hundred and fifty years after the flood.” (Genesis 9:28)

What I have not told you is that this chronology and the resulting seemingly odd consequences come from the Masoretic Text (MT) of Scripture. The Septuagint (LXX for 70 scholars who translated the Old Testament from Hebrew into Greek.) extends the date of the Flood earlier by about 900 years (exact numbers are not really possible for many reasons). This extra time easily and neatly fits many historical and scientific claims.

I come across examples of how the LXX chronology fits with what we know about the world every now and then. Following are a few examples that I can remember. The first Egyptian Dynasty is said to have begun around 3150 B.C. (1) Now if it were said that Egypt was around in 4500 B.C. or some such date, I would not accept that because it clearly contradicts Scripture by any reasonable, straight-forward reading of the text. Even the dates they do give could be skewed, but they seem reasonable.

Bristlecone Pine ring cores have dated Methuselah at 4845 years old and Prometheus, which was cut down, at just over 4900 years old. And more recently one unknown, purposefully hidden specimen was dated at 5062 years old. (2) Even with a number of double rings (two sets of rings grown in one year), these trees would have sprouted before the ~2400 B.C. of the Masoretic Flood date.

I was listening to a video with students about a month ago on the subject of the Great Alaskan Earthquake of 1964. The USGS geologists studying this 9.2 megathrust earthquake took soil cores from the zone near the inter-tidal zone where barnacles were suddenly thrust up out of the sea about 8 feet in 4 minutes. When they drilled down deep, they found the sudden occurence of land based plants at nine places in the core, going back about 5500 years, based on the C-14 dating. The researcher said that this suggested that the average time between large quakes was about 630 years.  (3)

These examples may seem random and anecdotal with respect to biblical chronology, but they have one thing in common. All three examples originated in the range of 3500 to 3000 B.C., meaning that the events would have happened after the Flood as recorded in the LXX text of Scripture. I don’t think that experience and “scientific” and “historical” evidence mediates Scriptural discussion. In fact that is what has gotten us into the unbelieving mess we are in now. But when multiple lines of evidence line up with what the Scriptures say, it lends some credence to the argument.

Tell me what you think. Have you read or heard evidence from secular or Christian sources that suggest that the Flood happened before 3000 B.C.? Or do you have a well thought our reason to remain with the 2400 B.C. date? If you begin to explore these ideas, be aware that there is a boat load of information. It is not worth getting swallowed up by, but it does merit some curiosity, particularly if it pushes you to examine Scripture for more truth. Let me know what you think.

(1) https://www.ancient.eu/First_Dynasty_of_Egypt/

(2) https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/how-one-man-accidentally-killed-the-oldest-tree-ever-125764872/

(3) http://www.earthquakenewz.com/1964-quake-the-great-alaska-earthquake-5/

Read Full Post »

   A worldview must be able to withstand the rigors of reality. It must match up with truth. If there is no absolute truth, then there is no basis for purpose, moral code, love, or rational thought.

         I believe literally what the Bible says about our origin- created in six literal days approximately 6000 years ago, as separate and fully formed kinds of plants, animals, and humans. This view, which simply takes God at His word, leaves no room for evolution between kinds of organisms, so called macro-evolution. How should a Bible believing individual respond to the claims of evolution? Does evidence overturn the plain reading of Scripture?

         In an online video, “The Making of the Fittest: Natural Selection and Adaptation”, the presenters describe what they believe to be an airtight example of modern evolution: “Thanks to Nachman [the researcher],” says the narrator, “Science has an example of evolution clear in every detail.” Michael Nachman has studied pocket mice on the lava beds of Southeast New Mexico. Based on his population field studies and laboratory DNA studies, Nachman believes that a combination of mutation and natural selection has resulted in the pocket mouse being “evolved to be dark like the rock.” He says, “When a black mouse appears in a white population of mice, that is usually going to be due to a new mutation, and those are random and rare events.” He concludes that studies of the mice at other lavabeds show that “the genetic changes that made the mice black were different in each case. What’s amazing to me is how similar the black mice are…completely different genes. The narrator concludes, “The rock pocket mice show us that evolution can and does repeat itself and why evolutionary change is never ending.”

         But not so fast! First of all, before and after this event they are still pocket mice. Secondly, Nachman assumes that the genes for black fur arose by random mutation. But as Carl Wieland points out in an article about the peppered moths of England:

“Actually, even as it stands, the textbook story demonstrates nothing more than gene frequencies shifting back and forth, by natural selection, within one created kind. It offers nothing which, even given millions of years, could add the sort of complex design information needed for ameba-to-man evolution. Even L. Harrison Matthews, a biologist so distinguished he was asked to write the foreword for the 1971 edition of Darwin’s Origin of Species, said therein that the peppered moth example showed natural selection, but not ‘evolution in action.’”

         Thirdly, a very simplistic understanding of genetics results in only one possible conclusion for how multiple gene variations result in black fur. Given the relatively recent understanding of epigenetics, the better explanation lies in shifts within the expression of genes already resident within the mice. As Marc Ambler says about a different mice study,

“Scientists conducting experiments on agouti mice found that by manipulating nutrition they could switch off a certain gene. When the gene is active (‘on’) the mice are normally obese and a yellowish colour; by switching the gene off the mice are of a normal, slim appearance, and brown. By feeding a combination of nutrients including vitamin B12 to the mother before mating, the gene was able to be turned off in the babies.”

         Bible believer, do not give in to the wiles of evolutionary thought. We know God from His Word and our personal experience of His saving grace, and science supports rather than contradicts that knowledge. Only conclusions based on a naturalist worldview that excludes the need or possibility of God deny His plain communication about who He is and how He created all that we see. Those of you holding to a naturalist view, I challenge you to consider the possibility that God is real and evidence of nature rightly understood points toward Him.

Read Full Post »

Having taught for 25 years, I have indeed seen many changes in public school. Some represent major cultural shifts while others reflect minor cycles of fad and fashion. One very curious change I have witnessed is a loss of faith in Science. Students used to almost universally confess that science and technology would eventually solve all of man’s problems. Disease will be defeated, genetic difficulties overcome, hunger eradicated, environmental problems will be historical artifacts of developing technologies, mysteries solved, a perpetual motion machine created that would solve all energy problemss, the galaxy traversed. Older minds may have written this off as so much blissful, youthful optimism and ignorance. Instead, I think that it was a product of a worldview that viewed science as the source and conduit of all truth. There were, of course, the rare skeptic that did not trust science or its message.

I see the opposite trend to be generally true today. It is the rare student that has an unflinching faith in Science, or anything for that matter, other than himself. Science and Technology have not solved all of our problems. Epidemics continue, hunger persists, climate change threatens, nuclear proliferation has rebooted, natural disasters terrorize, and people still don’t get along with each other. Unfulfilled expectations and personal discontent are on the rise. Science and technology are frequently viewed as the cause of environmental problems and stressed out living styles.

There could well be many sociological, cultural, and economic reasons for this shift, but I think that in a narrower sense of views about science as a human endeavor, both the blind faith in science and the skepticism of its merits arise from a basic misunderstanding of what the limits of science are. Science is neither the source and conduit of all truth nor the cause of the world’s most pressing problems. Science is a tool. As such it has limits. When I use my large ratchet as a hammer, I damage the tool and very poorly drive the pin I am trying to remove. In a similar way Science used in the wrong way brings harm to its prestige and to the understanding and application it is meant to drive. Science has at least 4 related limits.

Science may only be applied to things which are observable. This observation includes our 5 senses and any other remote sensing we may devise: camera, thermometer, radiation detector, ultrasound, etc. If only time, space, material, and energy exist as many insist, then this observability is not a limit. There is, however, evidence of more than the physical world (the source of beauty, information, purpose, emotions and will) and observability does not automatically exclude the spiritual realm. Scientists use inference (drawing conclusions) as a powerful tool, but it must be based on observation (quantitative data or measurement enable the observation to be unambiguous).

Science is also limited by the requirement of being testable. Scientists test hypotheses with controlled experiments to acquire a deeper understanding of the physical world. There are things that an experiment cannot test which nonetheless exist and effect our lives.

Scientific experiments must be repeatable. Other scientists must be able to use clearly set forth procedures and obtain the same results. If the results are different, some variable has not been controlled for or the experimenters were not careful enough in their observations. Therefore, scientists ask for procedures, data, and analyses from colleagues in order to determine if the conclusions are valid. The best way to do this is to repeat the experiment.

Finally, conclusions resulting from observations must be falsifiable. This does not mean that all evidence or conclusions will be falsified, but rather there must be the possibility of demonstrating that a conclusion is wrong. The essential function of Science is not to reveal truth but to eliminate falsehood. Based upon observation alone, one may never know for sure if something is true. But the ability to falsify wrong ideas narrows down what science accepts as true sufficiently to act upon it. This does not mean that there is no truth. It means that science does not have the ability to state truth in any absolute way. That must be done from other pursuits.

Many ideas are parading around, claiming to be scientific theories when they do not rise to the level of even a hypothesis, let alone a well substantiated hypothesis, that is, a theory. As an example, consider the issue of origins. How did we get here and how did it all begin? Can anyone who is living or has lived observe the beginning of the world? Since they cannot, can they possibly do an experiment on beginning a world? Is that experiment repeatable? If no experiment or observation by scientists may be done directly on the beginning of the world, then it is not a falsifiable idea. Therefore, though evidence may be given from subsequent events as to which version of origins is most likely, presuppositions are inevitably required in any discussion of origins. Another name for presuppositions, those assumptions made in order to begin a discussion or make inquiry, is beliefs. Any discussion of origins by definition is based on a worldview or belief system. It may be labeled religion or science, it does not matter, but it is essentially based on belief.

What this means for any discussion of origins is matching present evidence to the best presuppositional explanation. Does your belief about origins fit the evidence?

What this means about faith in or loss of faith in Science is a need to reconsider its value. Science is a valuable tool wielded by mechanics of varying training and skill, operating from differing worldviews. Retain a healthy skepticism that desires to understand what has been discovered and understood. Don’t throw the baby out with the bathe water. That is, don’t throw out the valuable tool of Science or the useful evidence it provides when you have to wade through false claims, poorly substantiated ‘theories’, intentionally falsified conclusions, or presuppositions that don’t match up with what you know to be true. Science is a useful tool.

Read Full Post »

Evidently, last night a spider had laid three lines of silk down the windshield of my truck squarely in the line of my vision for driving. The Sun shining in from just south of my predominantly easterly direction on the way to church down the interstate produced little repeating rainbows in the silk. From bottom to top they gleamed: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and the last two just looked like black gaps before the next red. The colors were brilliant and made the silk appear much wider than it did when the Sun was obscured once or twice by tree branches. I noticed that when I moved my head left or right the colors changed. When I moved to the right the color transitioned to longer red beads up and down the silk. When I moved my head left the color transitioned toward blue. Just before I exited the interstate the roadbed trends slightly more North and I finally began seeing violet when I leaned left.** I was thankful for light traffic on the interstate since I was focusing on 5 lines, one solid white, one dashed, and three multicolored. I thought of lunar eclipses, when the Moon is blood red or orange. Light from the Sun is refracted by the atmosphere onto the surface of the Moon which is moving through the shadow of the Earth. The shorter wavelength colors bend more evidently, careening off into space between Moon and Earth. I also reflected on the refraction that occurs in a droplet of water on a leaf producing and fisheye view of flowers or landscapes behind. The Sun was also pleasantly warm on me. I praised God for beauty He instilled into Creation which points to His superior beauty and His goodness that allows me to be aware of and see it and experience warm Sun and have a truck to travel in, and so on. I went to a corporate worship service later, which I would always recommend, but I got started early with three lines of evidence for God’s beauty and love of beauty.

**I don’t think that I ever see indigo, or is it violet I don’t see? That is, I don’t discern two colors, indigo and violet. I had the thought for the first time today that perhaps I don’t see violet. When I get in discussions with my family about a transition color between green and blue, they always say it looks blue and I most usually say it looks green. Does that mean that I see colors differently than most people, seeing what normal (whatever that means in this situation) eyes discern as blue as green or that I just name them differently? If it is the former, then perhaps I also see indigo as blue and violet as indigo and don’t see a separate violet color. If this is true it in no way changes reality, but only casts a shadow of doubt on my perception of reality. Afterall, certain people certainly hear more or most frequently less than 20 to 20,000 Hz frequency of sound.

Read Full Post »

          I have long known from the second law of thermodynamics that all systems involving energy are less than 100% efficient. As I would say to students, “The good news is that you can’t get something for nothing [1st law of thermodynamics or law of conservation of energy], but the bad news is that you can’t even break even [2nd law of thermodynamics]” Emotionally that only discourages people with an engineering turn of mind. To show you just how little the idea penetrates many people’s thoughts, I almost always get a “How about a machine that produces energy that it can use to run…[perpetual motion machine]?” question from one or more students immediately after explaining the laws and sharing the good news/bad news. We have come so far that some have a blind faith in the ability of human ingenuity and technology to overcome the most formidable barriers to progress, even laws of Physics.

         Evolutionists have a similar resiliency in their emotional attachment to what Dr. John C. Sanford calls the Primary Axiom: “man is merely the product of random mutations plus natural selection”. Dr. Sanford, retired plant geneticist of Cornell University, presents an altogether formidable opposition to the Axiom: genetic entropy. Robert Carter simply defines genetic entropy as “…mutations (spelling mistakes in DNA) are accumulating so quickly in some creatures (particularly people) that natural selection cannot stop the functional degradation of the genome—let alone drive an evolutionary process that can turn apes into people.” Dr. Sanford says that useful information in DNA is degenerating; living organisms are degenerating; populations of organisms are degenerating. He referred to Darwinian believers as those who think that populations are getting better by natural selection, but based on his research, they are not. He said that he once also believed that natural variation (arising from mutations in DNA) plus natural selection (of the fittest through conflict resulting in death and survival) equals all that we see biologically. I believe that evolutionists are asking the wrong question based on their false presuppositions: How are species progressing from simpler to more complex? Instead, they we should be asking how species are able to resist extinction in light of genetic deterioration.

         In a recent Facebook discussion one person claimed to have observed modern examples of evolution through bacterial mutation. I pointed out that these adaptations are not species-changing evolution. But Dr. Sanford presents a more damaging argument of the devolving of species by viral and bacterial mutation. One of his examples is the flu pandemic from 1918 to 1920 that killed about 3% of the world’s population. When the frozen body of a soldier who died from that flu was exhumed for research purposes several years ago there was fear of the accidental release of the virus and a return of the epidemic, because it was known that the older strains were stronger. The newer strains of H1N1 are weaker due to genetic entropy. “A key point is that because of the high reproductive rate and the documented phenomenon of genetic entropy, the influenza virus is degenerating rapidly by accumulating 14.4 new mutations per year… It seems that when they leave their proper winged hosts and infect humans, they run out of control and go downhill rapidly because of mutation accumulation, which will lead to their extinction.”

          But doesn’t high mutation rate mean that natural selection has more material for driving evolution forward? This idea could only be true if there were sufficiently more beneficial mutations to increase an organisms’ long-term (mutli-generational) survival than destructive mutations. “Far more mutations are deleterious than advantageous,” says Dr. Sanford. These bad mutations degrade the genome at a much faster rate than good ones could possibly benefit the organism.

          The genetic conclusion of this discussion is that species are definitely not evolving and could certainly not have been around for millions of years at the rate their genome is deteriorating. The belief that “the creation was subjected to futility” and “we know that the whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth together until now” (Romans 8:20,22) because of the sin of man fits with the evidence far better than the belief that natural selection through mutation is evolving species.

Read Full Post »

     On July 7th The Ark Encounter opened in Williamstown, Kentucky, as a full-sized representation of the biblical description. Bill Nye said he wished that the ark in Kentucky had never been built because it would “indoctrinate children into this extraordinary and outlandish, unscientific point of view.” What many public school science classes have been doing for years is this very type of indoctrination in Big Bang Cosmology and Evolution, rather than in biblical literacy. The result has been that either those people who trust secular science (i.e. Scientism-the belief that science answers all questions that can be answered) have written off the Bible as Bill Nye has done, or many who believe the Bible have written off Scientism and all science, resulting in the science illiteracy Bill Nye decries. But there is a real alternative that does not oppose the methods of experimental science nor deny the literal truth of God’s Word. Science is a very good tool for exploring the world and solving problems, but it has its limits in explaining truth. The Bible points to realities that may be known beyond empirical data while not contradicting plain evidence. For instance, the apostles were eyewitness to evidence concerning the resurrection of Christ, which no longer can be tested other than historically. They recorded what they saw and experienced (I John 1:1-4; I Peter 5:1; Acts 26:12-18). Christians accept their eyewitness authority.

     If the alternative of a Biblical Worldview coupled with useful science is to be considered, it must be able to predict what we should find in the world and explain what we see. I believe that a literal reading of the Bible actually does that better than Scientism (a subset of Naturalism which encompasses Big Bang Cosmology and Evolution). Dr. Robert Carter of Creation Ministries International presents examples of how these statements are true. I intend in the few words I have left to present some of the evidence he outlines. These evidences answer the following question: What would we observe and what would be our understanding of the world if the biblical text is true? As a first example, if God created Adam and Eve and languages resulted from the confusion at Babel, then races do not exist. Adam and Eve could have had the genetic diversity that results in every skin and hair color and facial characteristic. Is it true? There have only been about 150 generations since Noah and his wife and people of all colors and locales have 99+% DNA in common. Thoroughly biracial parents have had fraternal twins, one significantly darker and one significantly lighter than the parents. If we really believed the Bible, racism would be an immediate non-point.

     What would we expect to see if the Flood was real and worldwide? There would be evidence of worldwide destruction from massive hurricane winds, massive erosion and deposition episodes, and volcanic action. Sedimentary Rocks show evidence of these things. For example, fossils are frequently formed in alternating layers with volcanic flows and ash. Also, large amounts of sediments needing large amounts of water, dead plants and animals all dumped on the continents and later turned to rock do exist. The catastrophic and sudden nature of fossil and sediment formation is seen in polystrate fossils (fossils through numerous layers), tightly folded rock layers that must have been soft when they folded or they would have cracked, and sediment layers of continental extent (that is, spreading over the whole continent as with the Tapeat Sandstone in North America). As the flood progressed, amazingly large erosion events should be expected. We indeed see these in the great canyons of the world, which show evidence of being remnants of catastrophic events rather results of slow river erosion. The suddenness is further indicated by the lack of erosion within the fossil record and conformities (interfaces (meeting and interaction) of two differing rock layers). One such interface in the Grand Canyon (Hermit Shale and Coconimo Sandstone) has no erosion even though secular geologists claim there is a 12 million year gap where they meet.

     There is far more that could be said on the deposition and erosion of layers and fossil formation alone and on cosmology, biology, and the rest of geology, but these give a few telling examples. A literal reading of the Bible is a much better and more powerful predictor of the world as we see it than Scientism. It is amazing, credible, scientific, and far more Mr. Nye.

Read Full Post »

In one sense we are a society full of skeptics and well we might be since we have many and conflicting sound bites and philosophies foisted upon us with very little solid truth. Some think that the solution to this dilemma is to operate fully on the relational side and not hassle with truth claims and others think the solution is to come up with your own truth. Neither of these approaches leads to truth, however, because one avoids it and the other is self-contradictory. So where is a person to go to ask hard questions? Civil public discussion is one good source. Not intended to be truth by majority rule but rather a gentle airing of views and questions, it is a good way to open up conversation about truth. Recently at our nearby community college such an open discussion was begun. Prem Isaac of Southern Evangelical Seminary presented a clear, engaging rendition of the Cosmological and Teleological Arguments for the existence of God. Several audience members challenged details of the arguments presented to Mr. Isaac and three of his colleagues on a Q&A panel. One person asked, “Why does the Law of Causality not apply to God?” The answer was given that “Who made God?” is a category mistake, that is to say, saying God is created means He is not God. If we retreat to infinite regression, namely that god was created and then who created god and who created that god and so on, then we have not really answered the question. But the cosmological argument logically presents an answer in that everything that has a beginning has a cause. Science and religion both posit that the Universe had a beginning, therefore, it has a first cause, and since that cause is not part of the effect, namely the Universe, that first cause must be wholly different from the effect. That First Cause is God. What if the Universe had no beginning? The question was couched in more complicated terms, “How about the quantum correction and the suggestion that the universe had no beginning?” The answer was proposed that many math problems produce imaginary numbers. Mere pure math solutions to problems have no real world antecedent. I think that it is reasonable to add that General Relativity and Quantum Theory have existed in tandem for 90+ years now. Both have significant experimental evidence for their validity and yet both contradict each other. Mostly this contradiction seems to be because they evaluate similar situations in different ways, but when they evaluate the same thing in the same way they still contradict each other. Obviously, one or both theories need to be revised to come into line with reality. So how do you use mutually contradictory theories to judge God’s existence, theories that are by their empirical nature limited in what they can evaluate? And this brings me to the last question asked at that meeting, “How scientifically do we account for six days?” My answer is we do not account for six literal days scientifically just as the Big Bang theorists do not actually account for the singularity scientifically. God has revealed that He created all that physically is in six days; we accept that. Then we show by scientific evidence that there is nothing in the world that contradicts that idea. The Big Bang theorist posits a singularity, described as a point, wherein space and time do not exist and all the laws of Physics cannot apply. Then he inserts an “inflationary period” after the Big Bang to get the universe up to speed, so to speak, which cannot be evaluated with physical rules because it obeys none we know, all so the universe can look something like what we now observe. The background radiation was supposed to have been the confirmation of the inflationary period, and even though the observers recently denied the validity of the results, it could never prove that period apart from the presuppositions of the theory. The theorist further injects continuous acceleration of the expansion of the universe without cause, that is, net force to accelerate it. In other words, Big Bang theorists rely on “blind faith” of which they accuse the Creationists. Creationists, however, rely on the Word of an All Powerful, Intelligent Designer, who has given much evidence of being reliable. Civil, public conversation must be polite but it can pull no punches if it is to be constructive and pursue what is true. If you see the truth of this statement, I invite you to enter into just such conversation with a Creationist.

Read Full Post »

Growing up I was taught that the Bible is true, but at the same time I caught that the National Geographic held truth about the beginnings and progress of the world. My young mind was in conflict. Even at a young age I understood that both could not be true about how we got here and what changes have taken place in the world. God’s grace gave me faith to believe that what the early chapters of Genesis say about the Creation and worldwide Flood are true as plainly read regardless of what others say in print or in person. A good portion of my life has been spent searching and waiting for answers to evolutionists’ barrage of denials of God and His work. My history and perspective opens me to accusation that I am religiously biased and unscientific. On the first point I agree, but on the charge of being unscientific I disagree for two reasons. First of all, Science is a tool limited to investigation of natural phenomena. Science is a tool for understanding what God has done, not who He is. Naturalists insist that this is the reason that they do not accept the supernatural or remain agnostic on the subject. They emphatically claim to only accept empirical evidence. This claim is false in practice and of necessity. They are not admitting to their beliefs and faith. Where did we come from? What is our purpose? What happens after death? What is the source of love, beauty, and kindness? They have no answer for these questions apart from faith, and particularly on the subject of purpose, they cannot continue to live without it. Therefore, my second reason for denying that I think unscientifically is the fact that it impossible to think scientifically without faith. Frequently I read or hear accusations from Naturalists that God must not exist because we cannot observe Him, but the Bible says otherwise: “For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse” (Romans 1:20).

As Christians who believe what the Bible says and believe that Science and Technology are God given tools for advancing knowledge and solving real world problems it is a time to rejoice and speak up. The Naturalist’s evolutionary model is proving to be very poor at explaining evidence and making predictions about how the world works. I had the privilege just recently to attend the premier of a documentary, “Evolution’s Achilles’ Heels”1, written and produced by Creation Ministries International. In this 96 minute documentary, 15 scientists explain why evolution’s proclaimed strengths are actually its weaknesses and how the Creation model based on Scripture explains better what we observe and makes predictions that are being confirmed in various areas of science. The areas discussed in the film are natural selection, genetics, the origin of life, the fossil record, the geologic column, radiometric dating, and cosmology. Two subjects that were the longest holdouts in my understanding of how science could reflect what the Bible says were radiometric dating of rocks and fossils and the redshift of cosmological objects (stars, particularly pulsars, and galaxies). How could we deny the time indicated by decaying radioactive elements when their half-lives can be measured in the laboratory. The documentary discusses assumptions (beliefs really) that are made to come up with these dates and evidence that it simply does not work so easily.2 Redshift of starlight is said to be a result of Doppler Effect as stars speedily retreat from us. This Doppler Effect is the same one that causes a siren or race car to change pitch as it approaches, passes, and speeds away from you. There are other reasons why the light may be shifting toward red and evidence is given of stars located in the wrong place to be red shifted as claimed. I urge you to get the DVD for yourself and hear the evidences and conclusions. The final discussion drives home a major practical reason it matters to us and our children: ethical implications. This documentary is not a Sunday School answer, “because God said so.” It meets scientific evidence and evolutionist claims head on with evidence and logic. On the other hand, it does not neglect to bring up what the Bible says and why it matters. I have long believed and proclaimed what the Bible says about the origin and progress of creation. With consistency I now can joyfully add scientific reasons for my faith that I hope will assist those blinded by the glitz of evolution’s false faith-based claims.

 

1It would be well worth your time to acquire your own copy of this documentary and you may for a very modest price at http://www.creation.com. I do not work for them.

2”Thousands Not Billions” by Dr. Don DeYoung, Master Books, 2005, or the DVD by Institute for Creation Research are excellent resources for digging deeper into why radiometric dating is better explained by creationism.

Read Full Post »

Perhaps the reason I don’t have a very big following for my blog is that I mostly write for my own posterity and the comfort of getting my burning thoughts down in “black and white”, or whatever other colors I choose. I thought it was humorous and somewhat gratifying the other day when a student said to me about midway through a monologue I was giving in class, “Mr. [Leon], I could listen to you rant all day!” “That’s and interesting comment,” said I, “why do you feel that way?” “You are not afraid to be honest about what you think and always do it without being profane. There is alot of truth in what you say” Wow, so perhaps others are not so honest or insightful and are profane?

So, you might well guess that we are preparing for a rant, though this one is quite mild in delivery compared to the sarcastic and cutting version the student heard about the real deficiencies of public education (Perhaps that one will serve for another day. Oh, no, not another prescriptive education rant!). No, this one is about a significant blind spot that is preventing science education and political action from moving forward and it is not being caused by the uninformed. If after all of that you are still up for it, click on  Stop Writing Us Off    I look forward to some rousing comments.

 

Read Full Post »

My previous poem, “It Is a Moral Issue”, is in our society largely, I believe, the result of believing that chance, time, matter, and energy (CTME) are the cause of all that we observe. If CTME is our god we have no purpose and no responsibility. But the universe screams a different message:

Nothing random in the way the world works
Order and sequence the rule of the day
For observers consistency has perks
Cause and effect reveal the rules at play

What is the source of this order we see?
Of design in the cosmos’s scenery
Even random disorder follows laws
And beauty is objective and enthralls

Design points to an Architect with skill
Information an Intellect reveals
Beauty an Artist with canvas to fill
Order a Mathematician Who wills

Read Full Post »

I have thought about 2 Peter 3 extensively and even written about it (see “Four Singularities”). It is all amazing to me but verses 10-13 are just fascinating:

” But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, in which the heavens will pass away with a roar and the elements will be destroyed with intense heat, and the earth and its works will be burned upSince all these things are to be destroyed in this way, what sort of people ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness, looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be destroyed by burning, and the elements will melt with intense heat! But according to His promise we are looking for new heavens and a new earth, in which righteousness dwells.” (underlining mine)

Many of the words describing the demise of the created order as we now know it must certainly be metaphor. Indeed, they must be for our quantum mechanics and relativity still cannot fathom what God will do then. But our present understanding does align with what the Scriptures say and very possibly give us some insight into what God is saying through Peter. I am particularly interested as a student of science in the words I have underlined. I am fully aware that this passing away is not the main point of the passage but rather the certainty of judgment and the certainty of a future home where righteousness dwells and the result of compelling us to live for more permanent things. For these I am thankful. But I still muse on how God accomplishes His works. The word destroyed is variously translated as “destroyed” (NASB, NIV), “dissolved” (HCSB, ESV), and “melt” (KJV). The Greek (anytime I mention this it means I only have a dictionary to look it up in, not more knowledge than that) has the meaning of “loosed, released, dissolved”. “Intense heat” (NASB) is also rendered “burned up” (ESV), “fire” (NIV), “fervent heat” (KJV), and “burn” (HCSB). The word in Greek for “roar” means a “rushing sound”. The word rendered here as “elements” has the meaning of “in a row” as letters or bits of knowledge. These words strongly suggest to me properties of matter and energy. But since Einstein and E = mc2 matter and energy are really convenient descriptions of the same thing. E = m. Energy = matter.  c, the speed of light in a vacuum is a constant that relates the two. Since speed of light is so large and squared in the equation, matter is seen to hold “crazy” amounts of energy. When matter is destroyed it becomes energy, and when energy is organized just so it is matter. I like to think of matter as “condensed” energy. That suggests that energy is the fundamental “stuff”. But here is where science becomes vague. What is energy? We know what energy does but we do not know what energy is. It is as Feynman said an abstract idea. Could it not be that our lack of understanding stems from viewing a spiritual matter rather than a totally physical one? The elements roar with intense heat and are released. That sounds like the destruction of all matter into energy to me. All of the particles of matter, discovered and undiscovered (muons, electrons, strange, flavors, and so on) becoming intense abstraction. But the abstraction is real, and what is it? 

“By the word of the Lord the heavens were made,
And by the breath of His mouth all their host.
He gathers the waters of the sea together as a heap;
He lays up the deeps in storehouses.
Let all the earth fear the Lord;
Let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of Him.
For He spoke, and it was done;
He commanded, and it stood fast.”  (Psalm 33:6-9)

God spoke His word and it stood fast. Out of nothing, physically speaking, but out of a substantial word from God, everything. “In the beginning God created….Then God said,” (Genesis 1:1,3) His Word was condensed into physical creation and will one day soon be “melted” into His Word. When it happens will not this Scripture be fulfilled for Creation?

“So will My word be which goes forth from My mouth;
It will not return to Me empty,
Without accomplishing what I desire,
And without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it.” (Isaiah 55:11)

It, that is His Word, will return to Him in an intense flame out, not empty or simply annihilated, but fully complete in His intention and accomplishment. So all of the elements, atoms in fact, lined up in their orderly fashion, controlled and compelled by fundamental forces will dissolve or melt back into energy. Am I saying energy = God’s Word? Certainly not. But God’s Word accomplishes energy and all His works return after fully accomplishing what He set out for them. It is so with man’s spirit as well:

“For man goes to his eternal home while mourners go about in the street. Remember Him before the silver cord is broken and the golden bowl is crushed, the pitcher by the well is shattered and the wheel at the cistern is crushed; then the dust will return to the earth as it was, and the spirit will return to God who gave it.” (Ecclesiastes 12:5-7)

So it is with all things. God gets ultimate glory because all things proceed from Him and all will return to Him and be assigned to the place He has ordained for them to be in His presence or excluded from it. In the meantime His Word holds all things together. Is not this the Grand Unified Theory, the Fundamental Force?

“For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things have been created through Him and for Him. He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.”  (Colosians 1:16-17)

The physical world will be destroyed by thermonuclear annihilation, coming unglued as it were:

“You, Lord, in the beginning laid the foundation of the earth,
And the heavens are the works of Your hands;
They will perish, but You remain;
And they all will become old like a garment,
And like a mantle You will roll them up;
Like a garment they will also be changed.
But You are the same,
And Your years will not come to an end.”   (Hebrews 1:10-12)

These words are spoken of Jesus, God the Son, who will not end as the created order will end. He endures and so does His Word. So in the transience of the what seems so permanent I see the permanence of what I have I have seen to be transient. God’s Word is permanent.

Wow! Roar on to completion.

Read Full Post »

Our “Gospel Project” lesson today was about God’s nature revealed in the Creation story and in the results. I produced a table that summarizes the differences in how God’s nature is revealed in the two different (but not contradictory) stories of Creation in chapters 1 and 2 of Genesis.

  God’s Nature Clarification God’s Name Exhibitied in Creation Response in us

toward God

 

 

 

Above

 

Transcendent

 

Separate

 

Elohim

“Stong One”

“In the beginning God” Have to

must have

-allegiance

-worship

-accountability

Powerful

 

Able to effect He spoke into existence

ex nihilio

(“out of nothing”)

Authoritative Rules

 

 

 

Beside

Personal Identity, relational Yahweh

“Pre-existent One”

Speaking Want to,

gladly

-desire

-seek

-trust

The lesson speaks of four ways that man is made in the image of God based on Genesis 1 and 2. I think there is clearly from the text a fifth way:

    “27 God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. 28 God blessed them; and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth, and subdue it; and rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the [a]sky and over every living thing that [b]moves on the earth.””

We relate- God gave us as male and female to have relationship and commanded multiplication so there would be many people to interact. In fact, all God ordained institutions (family, church, government) reflect the interaction within the Triune Godhead.

We rule- Both the words rule and subdue occur. This is a stewardship that should neither result in abuse of the creation nor worship of it, but care for our benefit. All authority we have is delegated from God and should be carefully dispatched as such.

We work- 1″5 Then the Lord God took the man and put him into the garden of Eden to cultivate it and keep it.”  Work that is purposeful, creative, orders chaos, and work with God’s plan was ordained before the Fall and is a good gift. The type of work we dislike is the punishment on man because of sin and is toil (literally “pain” 3:17) that causes sweat (3:18).

We reproduce- It says “multiply and fill the earth”. When we procreate God provides the spirit so He is still active in creating and allows us to be involved in the process.  God is always involved in the process of giving life. 

We rest- “3 Then God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because in it He rested from all His work which God had created and made.”  God was not tired but He was satisfied with the result of His completed work. Christ has completed the work of salvation in us so that we need to rest in Him, faith rest:  “10 For the one who has entered His rest has himself also rested from his works, as God did from His. 11 Therefore let us be diligent to enter that rest, so that no one will fall, through following the same example of disobedience.”

I hope that you will consider how to bear the image of God in you in such a way as to point to Him rather than to yourself. It glorifies Him and satisfies you because you are at peace with Him.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Read Full Post »

Logic is good and should be sound when used but no matter how sound the logic if the beginning point is wrong (wrong presuppositions) the end result (understanding of God, man, sin, eternity, reality, the world around us, fundamental forces and particles) must also be wrong at some level. For that reason I endeavor to pursue a study of science that begins with a true beginning and is most supported by evidence. Galileo was restricted because he believed truth both in terms of the Creator and in terms of the revealed evidence the Creator gave (most notably four moons orbiting Jupiter rather than Earth). Eventually the truth of his observations was accepted by all. Sometimes the opposite happens and ideas are accepted that start from the wrong place, making assumptions that are not true and do not hold up under scrutiny, and yet still persist. Evolution is just such a false idea but because of the metaphysical commitments (read, ” secularized ‘beliefs'”) it yet stands under the onslaught of truth. So then true science involves a correct starting place, opened-minded and careful observation, and sound logic. In the last generation it seemed that people gave an unerring allegiance to science and technology for all of the problems of humankind that it solved. But recently there is a growing skepticism toward “scientific theories” because they have led us to dead ends so that the heart is not satisfied, the real problems of society are not solved, there are major gaps in the explanation of the observed, health is treated for symptoms rather than promoting long-term health, and technology deceives by reducing the quality of life when fully embraced (Note that our country spends more on healthcare than any other and yet ranks 37th on the World Health Organization’s list of health systems. Many health enhancing practices are ignored or disdained by much of the world.). The summary of what I am saying is as follows. I applaud the efforts of many practitioners of science for their attempts to explain their various disciplines from the evidence they have based on logic that they work hard at making consistent. But turning a blind eye to influences outside of the natural system that effect all that we see both as to its origin and its progress is stubborn and wrong. God impinges daily on this terrarium we call the universe all the way from holding the forces and particles in check to controlling where it is headed. 

Read Full Post »

What do we have here? Oh, just the trimmings on a burial stone  of Richard Bell (1410-1496) in Carlisle Cathedral.  Curious though how those beasts look like Apatosaurs.                                                                                                                                                                   http://creation.com/bishop-bells-brass-behemoths

Wow! That’s 350 years before dinosaur bones were dug up in mass or called dinosaurs.

Check out the drawing of a North American Anasazi Indian in a cave:     http://www.genesispark.com/genpark/ancient/ancient.htm


Look at the websites for more drawings of creatures the evolutionists say didn’t exist when the drawings were made.

Read Full Post »

     In eighteen concise verses of II Peter 3 the Holy Spirit by the apostle Peter gives the believer significant motivation for godly living and insight into God’s works. The historical scope of the verses is nothing less than ‘beginning to end’. 

     God, based on His authority and the worthiness of His person, could simply command man what to do with no further information or motivation.  But knowing our frailty and sinfulness He gives us every conceivable reason and motivation to enable us to please Him:            1)     Christ died for us.   2)  The Holy Spirit indwells us.   3)  He has     given many evidences of who He is through his teaching, miracles, and providence.   4)  He has given us promises.

We are privileged and responsible for what we do with these great helps. The passage I am considering refers to each of these motivations.

     v.1-3: Why is Peter going to write about the huge events of God’s workings?  First of all, Peter wants to remind these hard pressed believers of the teachings of God through the prophets and apostles.  They are all God’s teachings, what Peter later calls Scriptures (3:16, literally, “The Writings”). The apostles communicated that part of God’s teachings are commanded by Jesus, the One Who is Lord and Savior.  Even as he does later with Paul’s writings specifically, Peter here is declaring the apostles’ teachings to be equal with the prophets and clearly God’s teachings.  And is there a difference because Jesus commanded it? In time and voice (that of our Lord, Savior, Elder Brother, Friend, Gloried Son of the Father), yes, but in content, not really.  When Jesus speaks you feel at once as though you have heard this somewhere before and as though He is repeating Himself.  And of course He is as any frequent reader of the Old Testament will know. Peter’s letter is the second reminder he is giving, the first one fortifying them by way of attention to godly living against persecution and suffering. The second part of Peter’s purpose is the specific subject of His reminder, which is somewhat different in approach from I Peter. Chapter 2 spent much time revealing the false teachers within the Body who disturb the faith of many. The “mockers” (v.3) may be one and the same with the “false teachers” (2:1), as many commentators assume, but I rather think these represent a second threat, external scoffers rather than internal deceivers. Rather than gaining advantage by tickling ears (II Timothy 4:3) they combat sound teaching by supposed empirical evidence to the contrary.  “They all are not of us.” (I John 2:19) It is as true today as it was then. The content of the mocking now, as I hope to show, is amazingly similar though increasingly sophisticated. The underlying purpose of the mockers is the same then as now.  As Alduous Huxley so honestly confided, “The philosopher who finds no meaning in the world is not concerned exclusively with a problem in pure metaphysics, he is also concerned to prove that there is no valid reason why he personally should not do as he wants to do,… For myself, the philosophy of meaninglessness was essentially an instrument of liberation, sexual and political.” He agrees with Peter that his purpose was to follow his own lusts.

          v.4-7: The mockers’ question concerning unfulfilled promise is not very intimidating by itself, but couched in the plausibility of empirical data’s absence, supposed historical evidence, and the implied principle of unchanging progress of phenomena with time, what answer might the beleaguered believers broach? And now we have a name for this ‘unalterable’ principle that reveals why history records no empirical data on promises fulfilled- uniformitarianism.  We are told that Nature is the “whole show” (“Miracles” by C. S. Lewis) and within that show the pace of processes (chemical and physical weathering for example) observed now is the pace at which they have always proceeded. That is, “all continues as it was” (v.4). In reality, if this is true, then God is not active in His creation and therefore didn’t create this “show” anyway. Therefore, the mockers today as well as then mean something else by “beginning of creation” than we do, for we are not Deists. Evidence that they believe something else about what creation means follows immediately in their willful ignorance of God’s creative process.

           Peter confronts the fallacy of the mockers’ argument not on the basis of unsound logic but on the basis of a willfully incorrect starting point.  Wrong conclusions are inevitable from wrong presuppositions regardless of how sound the logic. In fact the more sure the logic the more sure the wrong conclusions from the wrong beginning. So Peter sets the record straight by way of four unmistakable works of God, singularities if you will. A singularity is defined in various ways depending on the discipline of study. In math it means a point at which a function is not defined. In physics a gravitational singularity is a point in space where density is infinite and volume is zero (commonly called a black hole). In mechanics (physics again) and technology it is an event, position, or configuration after which subsequent behavior cannot be predicted. The event or place changes what would have happened in a way that cannot be immediately predicted.  Peter is talking about four such events that have and will change the consequences for nature and its creatures in ways only God knows.

           The first of these is the Creation (v. 4-5) whereby God made the rules of the game. Next was the Flood (v. 6) which destroyed the equilibrium by overturning all the pieces on the game board.  In the future comes the Day of the Lord (v. 7,10-12) with the return of the Game Designer and meting out of judgment, game over. Lastly arrives the New Heaven and New Earth (v. 13) which awards those selected as the winners- a new game with new rules. The game metaphor focuses on the reason why these singularities changed what happened afterwards.

     God has and will intervene in His Creation to fulfill His purposes.  The mockers may deny it or ignore it or explain it away but their blindness is willful and their deceit is shallow in light of the evidence.

           Peter reviews details of the 4 events some of which teach us brand new facts. The Creation comes about, as do the rest, by God speaking them into existence (Psalm 33:6). In the case of heaven He spoke it out of nothing (“ex nihilo” as the creationists like to say). The earth at this point it seems was a part of the heavens in the form of water. As it says, “the earth was formless and void” (Genesis 1:2), as fluids are apt to be, taking the shape of a container, if they have one. The solid earth or land was formed by bringing it up out of the water (Psalm 136:6) in which it now sits and is fully saturated, and it was also shaped by the water through erosion and deposition no doubt as the dry land was appearing (Genesis 1:6-10). The heavens, that is the atmosphere, were formed between two layers of water, and the Psalmist declares “Praise Him…waters that are above the heavens” (148:4). Evidently God formed the heavens, including all that came from nothing and subsequently the earth from water. God is the “Maker of all” who “stretched out the heavens” and “made the earth by His power” (Jeremiah 10:12,16).

     Peter rushes right on through the next big event, the Flood of Noah’s day. He is doing considerable clumping by saying “at that time” for an event that was 1600+ years later.  But it was all ancient history and the point seems to be that the agent God used for creating, water, could just as well be used for destruction, flooding. We know of course based on God’s promise and the symbol of the rainbow that God is not going to repeat this type of destruction, but that does not prevent or slow Him down from His purpose. His Word is just as powerful to destroy by fire as by flood, and He is not slack (II Peter 2:5). “Present” denotes that this heavens and earth are neither in its origin pristine form nor the “new” form to be later created. God has not forgotten nor has He been rendered unable. Rather it is reserved and kept for fire. The appointed destruction and judgment are determined for the ungodly, so mockers beware.

           v. 8-10: Verse 8 is frequently misused by the skeptic to mean that since God overlooks lengths of time then the days of Genesis 1 could just as well be ages of time in which great geologic and biologic changes took place by slow naturalistic processes. But the context of Psalm 90:4 from which this thought comes indicates the timelessness of God as compared to the short life span of man, not His inability to tell time. For God clearly gave Moses the record of numbered days in the Creation Week and evening and morning delineating literal 24 hour days. And because God is timeless, He can be patient and exact about the timing of fulfilling His purposes, which is not slowness. He gives a legitimate invitation to all “for whoever will call on the name of the LORD will be saved” (Romans 10:13), and yet only those He calls will be saved (Acts 13:48).

           He is patient now and many are being called to Him (3:15) but things will change suddenly and unexpectedly like a thief breaking and entering while you are asleep. The day of the Lord is usually referred to as a period of time in which judgment falls as in verse seven, but the suddenness and finality of this event speaks of one actual day or moment in time. The references to fire (v.7), pass away with a roar and intense heat and burned up (v.10), and burning and elements melting with intense heat (v.12) seem to the modern mind to so obviously  refer to thermonuclear annihilation of all matter. But how could Peter, who at best would have an Aristotelian view (earth, air, fire, water) of matter and more likely had none (untrained, Acts 4:13), give such an accurate description of matter’s demise? The prophet need not fully understand what God is giving him to describe. The Psalmist could not have understood the type of crucifixion Christ would undergo when he described it in such clear detail in Psalm 22. Ideas about God’s nature like the Trinity that we read in Scripture are still not understood. But there it is. In Christ “all things hold together” (Colossians 1:17), but when He withdraws His hand it will cease to hold together and every fundamental force will cease its function as the physical world comes unglued and is no more. In the case of believers “this perishable must put on imperishable” (I Corinthians 15:53).

           Verses 11-18: God will then create a new heaven and new earth that are not perishable where believers in their new imperishable state of righteousness will see God and dwell with Him forever. All that the first heaven and earth failed to be because of Adam’s sin the new ones will be without the threat of being tarnished by sin. Peter has said that the Creation will be destroyed three different times, making clear his point that the mockers are totally wrong. This leads to the point of application for the believers. Peter is so intent on presenting the solution that he gives most of the answer in the question, “What sort of people ought you to be?” I see 4 applications in the final verses:

1) True awe brings about holy conduct, anticipation of glory, and working with His plan  (v.11-12)

2) The conduct will be characterized by a diligence for holiness permeated with peace (v.14)

3) This awareness will produce a guard against error (v.17)

4) and a life characterized by growing in grace and knowledge of Christ (v.18)

Verse 16 seems to be included by Peter as a last shot at those who disbelieve what God has said.  And in so doing he excludes modern positions about Paul’s epistles not being equal with the rest of Scripture.  Mockers, false teachers, whoever else is untaught and unstable distort what the “Writings” of the Prophets and Paul have to say. And since Scripture is spiritually discerned who would expect them to do otherwise, but Peter has pre-warned you, so that you may be on guard and grow.

Read Full Post »

As time passes I seem to have more, not less, on my mind than I can bring to the front burner and cook. I have so many incomplete questions and thoughts that sit on back burners and in warming alcoves that some will spoil before they ever get cooked.  Rather than a source of discouragement it reminds me that there are life times of ideas to explore in God’s person and works and I shan’t ever get bored  in this one. And it encourages me also that my mind is more active, albeit somewhat slower, than at earlier times, so that I am confident of God’s continued work in my heart and mind.

After college and some number of years of self study in “true science”, unbiased by evolutionism and naturalism (OK, highly and proudly biased by biblical thinking- what of it?), I had come to the conclusion that naturalistic thinking had only two difficult to confront evidences against 6-day Creationism. The first was radiometric dating which gave a clear cut way to measure time since the formation of rocks.  After years of study and a number of different evidences to the contrary, I feel confident in saying Creationists have overcome this difficulty. Polonium halos forming is less than three minutes in granite, the possibility of additive or subtractive contamination in parent and daughter isotopes, evidence for changing decay rates in carbon-14, and most significantly the absence of large amounts of helium from the alpha decay in the uranium series strongly suggesting the youth of the rocks (Don DeYoung’s Thousands . . .Not Billions (Master Books, Green Forest, Arkansas, 2005)) have given sufficient alternative evidence and explanation of this phenomena to render great age unneccesary.  The second difficulty I saw was distant starlight as inferred from redshift data. How could the universe be less than 10,000 years old if starlight had been coming from stars for millions and billions of years? The “appearance of age ” suggestion by some Creationists was never satifactory to me since it means practically that Christians could always retreat to a “miracle” to answer unanswerable questions. Now don’t get me wrong. I not only believe God has but does interfere with Nature for His purposes to accomplish great and actual, albeit rare, miracles. But if God is the God of order and reason then His Creation reveals Him and His work in reasonable and orderly ways, though incompletely without Scripture. And though I much prefer correct explanations, that is not the main point of giving a reasonable explanation, for we can no more know if our scientific explanation is right than can the Naturalist. Sorry, it is simply the limited nature of science. However, we now have a reasonable and convincing explanation for the “starlight problem”. And as such Naturalistic explanations are unneccesary. This fact does not mean that my faith was weak before and stronger now. God said it; that is all that matters, but since I was not created with fins or scales, I get tired swimming upstream in this Naturalistic culture. A little slowing of the downward current on occasion is pleasant . It turns out that the explanation is a matter of relativistic perspective. Einstein chose a convention (rule of thumb, reference frame, or perspective if you like) that was useful and convenient for his mathematical and scientific thought experiments but is not required. Einstein was concerned with observers at different locations. In order to retain this perspective he had to consider them going at the same velocity in the chosen frame of reference. If instead the location of the observers is forfeited so that they are at the same location then the velocity may vary. The result is a new definition of simultaneous that matches the Bible’s explanation for how starlight arrived at earth on the same Day Four that it was created. For considering the age of the universe, the author argues convincingly from evidence that Einstein’s convention is not the correct one. If you are neither faint of mathematical or logical thinking you may like to read it as well:   http://www.answersingenesis.org/articles/arj/v3/n1/anisotropic-synchrony-convention    Even though I cannot revel in a complete understanding of every detail it adjusted my perspective by comparison to a new one and that is pleasant.

Read Full Post »

Everybody is talking about change but little is occurring.  That’s mostly because real change comes from within, not from without.  The external can work upon the internal, but essentially the needed changes in our nation will only result from changes of heart-repentance, paradigm shifts, worldview renewals, actions born out of changed beliefs.  I don’t have all of the answers but God does.  I have merely tried to point out some of those answers in the area of God’s involvement in His Creation. I conclude that effort with this 15th in a series article about The Basic Issue.

Read Full Post »

In this 14th in a series I do a cursory survey of the lack of evidence for macroevolution.  To put it bluntly, the Christian’s faith is reasonable because it is based on evidence both past and present, but the Naturalist has no such evidence for evolution on which to base his faith.  Check it out by clicking on Fly in the Soup

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »