Friday, July 23, 2010

Does It Really Matter?

Do our personal creationism beliefs really matter? During 2010, many of our posts have focused on various aspects of the issue of creation time scales. It seems to be a matter of intense interest both within the faith community and among others examining our beliefs. However, the subject matters more to some than to others.

Recently an acquaintance proposed the idea that the age of the earth really doesn’t matter to her. To paraphrase her statements, whether the earth is 6000 years old or 4.5 billion years old makes no difference with respect to her Christian faith, her belief in God, her embrace of Christ as Savior, or her daily experience as a Christian.

My friend made a good case. I agree with each and every point and I respect her decision to leave it at that. But I would go further because I am keenly interested in and care deeply about the origins issue. I’ll share a few reasons.

The natural world is an open book. Its pages invite inspection and reveal plentiful information about present and past conditions on this earth. How, when, and under what conditions did things happen? Active inquiry into natural history reveals how God has worked to produce our exquisitely designed cosmos and its life forms. The fact that the universe appears to have developed over an extended time scale speaks even more eloquently of God’s tender care for His creation.

Since the secular world generally accepts the findings of mainstream science, that segment of our population wishes to discover if Christian interpretations of the natural world accord with the discoveries of mainstream science. Secularists demand evidence for God’s existence. Scientific discovery of an actual beginning of finite time, matter, space, and energy in the distant past, affirmed by many independent lines of evidence, speaks persuasively of scripture’s claim of God’s existence and His activity as Creator over long ages.

It is natural for people to be curious about history--family history, community history, or natural history. Inquisitiveness often correlates with our degree of enjoyment, especially if our quest yields knowledge. Knowledge of and trust in the truths of general revelation help us clarify the meaning of scripture.

Much of my interest in creationism relates to my enthusiasm for science as a discipline and for the knowledge that results from application of scientific inquiry. It is the continuing goal of this blog to promote science as a God-given means of discovering truth, whether in the study of creation history, or the establishment of a sense of wonder for God’s created world.