Saturday, February 7, 2009

Responses to Listeners (1)

We will use this blog to answer as many listener questions and responses as possible, particularly those generated by the current and past series dealing with scientific evidence relating to creation and cosmic history. Questioners will be anonymous. Sometimes the question is shortened in the interest of brevity or our blogpost response expanded in the interest of clarity. Questions emailed to will be answered by return email. Representative questions may appear on this blogsite.

Question: The Bible tells us that God created the world in seven literal days. How do you reconcile millions and billions of years with the seven day creation?
Response: There are hundreds of independent scientific indicators pointing to a very ancient universe, including indicators of the universe’s expansion, such as red-shift phenomena which enable scientists to calculate age, radiometric dating, ice cores, and deposition rates calculated from ocean sediments. Moreover, Hebrew scholarship points to four different interpretations of the Hebrew word for “day” (yom) including long period of time, and they are all “literal” interpretations in the original Hebrew.
Comment: The Hebrew word for day used in Genesis 1 and 2 does not mean very long period of time. I haven’t found a Hebrew word for day that can be translated into anything but from sunset to sunset, the daylight hours, or the morning.
Response: There are many fine Hebrew scholars, such as Gleason Archer, Walt Kaiser, and Norm Geisler who disagree with your proposal. It is my personal view that holding to a singular interpretation of “yom” negates not only good theological scholarship, but also negates perfectly good science as well. There’s good and bad theological scholarship; there’s good and bad science. If science and theology seem to disagree, there’s an error in one, or the other, or both. God bless you in your search for truth.
Comment: I was disappointed to read your recent letter (to the ATRI mailing list) stating your position on old-earth creation…I am disappointed by your slanted treatment of this issue. Many believe in the old earth. That is alright. But I would hope that you would treat this serious subject with appropriate circumspection and open-mindedness.
Response: Dr. Ankerberg has often given both sides of this debate the podium on his program. At other times, he presents one view, such as the view Dr. Ross is carefully presenting in the present series. He presents this view as representing, in his considered opinion, the TRUTH, because he believes truth is achievable.
Question: Are you good folks aware of the books by Dr. Gerald Schroder? ...His doctorate is in the Earth Sciences and Nuclear Physics. Response: Yes, I have checked out Dr. Schroder’s thesis. It seems to rely completely on a sort of “time warp,” a “perception deception.” If this were a scientifically valid proposal, no doubt it would have received much attention in the scientific community. I do not wish to disparage him or any of the many other creative proposals to reconcile old/young earth problems, but I feel the truth is achievable under the umbrella of mainstream science and orthodox theology. Dr. Hugh Ross definitely qualifies to speak from both of those perspectives. Thanks for writing.