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Freeper Views on Origins
Alamo-Girl | 7/16/2002 | Alamo-Girl

Posted on 07/16/2002 9:33:12 PM PDT by Alamo-Girl

IMHO, there are many Freepers who either have a curiosity about origins or have formulated an opinion they would like to share. However, the debate on many threads frequently gets side-tracked – which makes it difficult for a reader to explore all the alternative points of view.

Therefore I’m starting this new thread in the hopes that anyone who wishes to do so, would present their full overview of origins– along with their sources and logic. Rebuttals would be nice, but I strongly hope the rebuttals will follow the same format, providing sources and logic.

I’ll start the discussion by providing my "take" on origins, which is a Christian creation point of view but reconciles with science, including evolution and intelligent design. I use both Scripture and science references for sources.

Alamo-Girl’s "take:"

My perception of reality drives my understanding of creation. I perceive the physical realm to be a manifestation of the spiritual realm and therefore science and Genesis are consistent on origins. Those who perceive the physical realm as all that there is, and the spiritual realm to be an illusion, will be prejudiced and thus will vigorously disagree.

Following are foundations to my understanding:

The Bible is the inerrant Word of God. It is a revealed truth which cannot be discovered scientifically, a person either hears His voice or not.

My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: - John 10:27

Not everyone is able or willing to hear. To many who don’t, we who do seem foolish.

But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;
And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, [yea], and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are:
That no flesh should glory in his presence – I Corinthians 1:27-29

One phrase from the previous quote has a bearing to my understanding of science: "and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are: That no flesh should glory in his presence". The laws of physics break down in singularities, e.g. at the inception of the "big bang." Velocity, density, mass, size and so forth have no finite meaning in a singularity because they either become 'zero' or infinite with nothing in between in a mathematical sense.

The Bible is inerrant even to the tense of each word.

But as touching the resurrection of the dead, have ye not read that which was spoken unto you by God, saying,
I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living. – Matthew 22:31-32 (emphasis mine)

The phrase "have ye not read that which was spoken unto you by God" makes it clear that the author of the written Word is God and that it is written to us, to be read carefully. The second verse makes it clear that we ought to apply logic to the Word.

For all these reasons, I know that creation was accomplished by God in 6 days just like He said. I also recognize that the universe appears to be billions of years old. I see both statements are true and compatible due to the effect the expansion of the universe has on the perception of time depending on the observer’s point of view.

As an example, let’s say a galaxy is so far away that the light from it that we see today left the galaxy when the universe was a small fraction of its present age and has been traveling for 14 billion years. If the galaxy was only 1 billion light years away at the time the light was sent out to us, why would it take 14 billion light years to travel 1 billion light years distance?

The short answer is that space itself expands. The light from the far galaxy is traveling towards us essentially at a constant speed, but because space itself is expanding, it takes longer to get here.

Interesting space-time chart

What came before the big bang?

Inflation for Beginners

Neither space nor time pre-exist. Space-time is the effect of the universe expanding. Our viewpoint is from some point in the expansion – which is clearly not from God’s viewpoint. God alone was the observer of creation. Genesis is written by Him, from His point of view.

As a final principle, because God uses words which have common usage but are also defined as symbols elsewhere in His Word, I look for these defined word-symbols and read verses with both the common usage and the symbolic usage to see which "rings true" spiritually.

Who hath ears to hear, let him hear.
And the disciples came, and said unto him, Why speakest thou unto them in parables?
He answered and said unto them, Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given. – Matthew 13:9-11

Following is my "take" on creation:

Day 1

The first Day of creation, 24 equivalent solar hours from the point of view of God as the observer, would appear to be about 8 billion years elapsed from our viewpoint today. In other words, if He sent me a message on a photon at the beginning of that day, if I existed, I would have received it 8 billion years later, from my point of view.

In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.
And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness [was] upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.
And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.
And God saw the light, that [it was] good: and God divided the light from the darkness.
And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.

The first day was spent in creating light and separating it from darkness.

The word "darkness" is used repeatedly in the Scriptures to symbolize evil.

Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness. – I Thess 5:5

For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to [give] the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. – 2 Corinthians 4:6

The word "light" is used repeatedly to symbolize His divinity, holiness, goodness.

This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. – I John 1:5

Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life. – John 8:12

I am come a light into the world, that whosoever believeth on me should not abide in darkness. – John 12:46

Notice that both "Day" and "Night" are capitalized as proper names. As we can see in I Thes 5:5 "day" parallels "light" and "night" parallels "darkness" - spiritually. Believers are children of the light, a point to keep in mind as we explore Adam in the subsequent days.

The use of the phrase "without form, and void" indicates that there was originally no physical existence.

The phrase "the deep" is symbolized in Romans 10:7 to mean death (lifelessness.) Or, Who shall descend into the deep? (that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead.)

The word "waters" is symbolized in Revelation 17:15 to mean peoples, multitudes, nations and tongues. And he saith unto me, The waters which thou sawest, where the whore sitteth, are peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues.

Since obviously there was no physical life, the word "waters" must mean "tongues." There has been much discussion about what the term "tongues" means. It is used throughout Scripture along with references to nations, peoples or beings – but, in context at this point of the creation, I understand "tongues" to mean intelligent sounds or thought.

Now, brethren, if I come unto you speaking with tongues, what shall I profit you, except I shall speak to you either by revelation, or by knowledge, or by prophesying, or by doctrine?
And even things without life giving sound, whether pipe or harp, except they give a distinction in the sounds, how shall it be known what is piped or harped? - I Corinthians 14:6-7

I find the phrase "God said" to be very important in understanding what was going on in the physical realm while all this was happening in the spiritual realm.

I believe the resonance of God speaking caused the physical realm to come into existence because it was, in effect, a higher dimensional shockwave. It would be known as the "big bang." In the physical realm, the consequence of His speaking in Day 1, from our four dimensional viewpoint, would look like a cosmic soup.

Publications on the big bang and higher dimensional dynamics

Exactly when, during the first day, He spoke, it doesn’t say. He moved upon the face of the "waters" before He spoke. So my 8 billion years for the first day might be a tad high.

Day 2

The second Day of creation, 24 equivalent solar hours from the point of view of God as the observer, would appear to be about 4 billion years elapsed from our viewpoint today.

And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters
And God made the firmament, and divided the waters which [were] under the firmament from the waters which [were] above the firmament: and it was so.
And God called the firmament Heaven. And the evening and the morning were the second day.

The word "heaven" can mean a number of different things based on how it is used. Sometimes it refers to the firmament, as in the above passage, and sometimes "heaven" refers to the spiritual realm or the sky above. Sometimes it is used in plural. In every usage, the word speaks to a higher order, an "aboveness" - and here it is capitalized as a proper name.

And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. – Matthew 16:19

And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel;
Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven. – Acts 1:10-11

These [are] the generations of the heavens and of the earth when they were created, in the day that the LORD God made the earth and the heavens, - Genesis 2:4

I find the use of the plural of heaven interesting in light of the "multiple universe" theory currently being proposed. Although the theory doesn’t do violence to my "take" on creation, it should be noted that the "multiple universes from multiple quantum fluctuations" is a rather convenient answer to why our universe happens to have just the right physical laws to support life, i.e. the other ones that don’t have the right physical laws may also exist if there are multiple universes. In other words, without more research, the multi-universe theory feels contrived to me.

IMHO, it was a good and proper thing when Einstein raised a red flag on his own cosmological constant simply because it appeared kluged. Of course, the cosmological constant has gained support today, but by Einstein’s disclaiming his own theory, he has the higher moral ground IMHO.

Again, I take "waters" to mean tongues (intelligent sounds or thoughts.) Since physical realm beings don’t exist yet on day 2, I take this to mean that He was separating the spiritual realm from the natural realm. Or to put it another way, all lower waters (tongues, sounds, thought) were relegated beneath the firmament, which I believe is also a barrier between the spiritual realm and the natural realm.

I do not believe the barrier can be defined by geometric coordinates like a physical location. I see the physical and spiritual realm coexisting everywhere but separated by the firmament.

Some Kabbalist analysis arrived at this concept and suggested that the barrier is the speed of light and resonance itself (superstrings in the natural realm) along with thought are the only known common properties between the two realms.

Physics and Kabbala

This is appealing because we occupy our thoughts (Proverbs 23:7 - For as he thinketh in his heart, so [is] he:) and it is through thought that we receive Christ, pray and worship. And of course, Jesus emphasized in the Sermon on the Mount that thinking an evil deed has the same effect as doing it.

The Kabbalist view is also appealing because the speed of light is the delimiting factor to much of our current understanding. And the resonance observation would fit well with current research on higher dimensional dynamics.

In search of extra dimensions (Fermi Lab)

I see the barrier firmament like a one way mirror. The physical realm cannot clearly see into the spiritual realm, but the spiritual realm can see into the physical realm. The reason I suspect it works this way is because of I Cor 13:12 and what happened on day 6 (see below.)

For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known. – I Corinthians 13:12

Current theory is that the sun formed some 4.55 billion years ago from a supernova 5 billion years ago and that the earth is 4.5 billion years old, with the chemicals to support life existing on (physical) earth about 4 billion years ago. The NASA Genesis spacecraft will return with solar material in 2004 that will help test these theories. If all these theories hold true, then these building blocks to our solar system as we know it today were spawned during the 2nd Day.


Day 3

The third Day of creation, 24 equivalent solar hours from the point of view of God as the observer, would appear to be about 2 billion years elapsed from our viewpoint today.

And God said, Let the waters under the heaven be gathered together unto one place, and let the dry [land] appear: and it was so.

And God called the dry [land] Earth; and the gathering together of the waters called he Seas: and God saw that [it was] good.
And God said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, [and] the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed [is] in itself, upon the earth: and it was so.
And the earth brought forth grass, [and] herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed [was] in itself, after his kind: and God saw that [it was] good.
And the evening and the morning were the third day.

On this day I believe God created in the spiritual realm a perfect growing garden for spiritual beings. In this context, I believe "waters" refers to the common usage of the term, but the phrase "under the heaven" instead of "under the firmament of heaven" indicates that it was happening in the spiritual realm, above the firmament. Here the word "earth" is capitalized as a proper name. I believe this is supported by this later verse where God refers to having made the plants before they were in the earth (physical realm.)

And every plant of the field before it was in the earth, and every herb of the field before it grew: for the LORD God had not caused it to rain upon the earth, and [there was] not a man to till the ground. – Genesis 2:5

My understanding of what was happening on day 3 has a lot to do with the garden of Eden. In Genesis 2 and Revelations 2 we see that the tree of life is in the center of Eden (Genesis) and Paradise (Revelation.) That tells me that Eden is either in the center of, or is the same thing as, the spiritual realm of Paradise.

There may be a physical "model" of Eden in the natural realm (like with the ark or the temple) – but it would only be a model and not the real (perfect) thing. After the creation week, I believe Adam was banished into a physical body in the natural realm specifically to make him mortal. Before then, there was no death or decay in Adam’s "world." (Genesis 2)

I believe Adam was banished into the body of a hominid, a modern physical earth-man, probably on Day 7. I believe other hominids existed, but only the spiritual descendants of Adam could have his essence, the life that was breathed into him.

And the LORD God formed man [of] the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul. – Genesis 2:6

I suspect these spiritual descendants are the ones who have ears to hear and are the ones for whom the Bible is written, the ones He already knew.

For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate [to be] conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.
Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified. – Romans 8:29-30

But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you.
My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:
And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any [man] pluck them out of my hand.
My Father, which gave [them] me, is greater than all; and no [man] is able to pluck [them] out of my Father's hand.
I and [my] Father are one. - John 10:26-30

Speaking of "ears to hear," the Word comes alive especially quick to me when reading the gospel of John. It is a love letter.

Current research shows that there are microfossils at 3.5 billion years in the fossil record and that atmospheric oxygen increased about 2.1 billion years ago. That would indicate some modeling activity was occurring in the physical realm to correspond with creation of the garden Earth in Paradise on Day 3.


Day 4

The fourth Day of creation, 24 equivalent solar hours from the point of view of God as the observer, would appear to be about 1 billion years elapsed from our viewpoint today.

And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years:
And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth: and it was so.
And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: [he made] the stars also.
And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth,
And to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness: and God saw that [it was] good.
And the evening and the morning were the fourth day.

Because of the phrase "firmament of the heaven" I believe this refers to the physical realm, the structure of the solar system as we know it today – specific orbits and such. Notice how the word "earth" is now lower cased, not a proper name.

As mentioned previously, the Genesis project of NASA will help to clarify what was happening in the formation of the solar system. I am curious if any catastrophic events occurred in our solar system approximately 1 to 2 billion years ago.

We already know of strange phenomenon in the solar system: that the orbits of the planets and satellites lie roughly in the same plane (the plane of the ecliptic) – that they orbit and rotate in the prograde direction, with axis tilts of less than 30 degrees and nearly circular orbits.

The fossil record indicates the oldest cellular organisms date back to 1.2 billion years, which would be towards the end of Day 4.

Day 5

The fifth Day of creation, 24 equivalent solar hours from the point of view of God as the observer, would appear to be about 1/2 billion years elapsed from our viewpoint today.

And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl [that] may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven.
And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that [it was] good.
And God blessed them, saying, Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let fowl multiply in the earth.
And the evening and the morning were the fifth day.

Again the phrase "open firmament of heaven" causes me to view the 5th day in the physical realm.

On this day (a 500 million year period to us) God directed the physical realm waters to abundantly bring forth creatures. I see this as what is called "evolution" but clearly guided by intelligent design. The blessing I believe corresponds to the "Cambrian explosion." God’s interventions might be what is known as "punctuated equilibrium."

Of course, the debate rages on evolutionary biology and intelligent design. These verses indicate that we will find evidence of both - because on the one hand God tells the waters to bring forth abundantly (biologically) and other hand He says that He created whales and every living thing that moves, that the water brought forth abundantly (intelligent design.)

From that verse I would expect the fossil record to make a better case for evolutionary biology in the most simple of life forms and for intelligent design to make a better case for the more complex. For a graphic representation of the differences:

Charts of conflicts between Darwin theory and natural history

Day 6

The sixth Day of creation, 24 equivalent solar hours from the point of view of God as the observer, would appear to be about 1/4 billion years elapsed from our viewpoint today.

And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so.
And God made the beast of the earth after his kind, and cattle after their kind, and every thing that creepeth upon the earth after his kind: and God saw that [it was] good.
And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.
So God created man in his [own] image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.
And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.
And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which [is] upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which [is] the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat.
And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein [there is] life, [I have given] every green herb for meat: and it was so.
And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, [it was] very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.

The sixth day is a split screen to me, because it doesn’t delimit to the firmament. The first two sentences continues the "evolution" on the earth, especially with regard to animals, but limits the creatures to reproduce after their own kind.

So far, the fossil record has shown no new animal phyla after the Cambrian explosion about 500 million years ago. The animals simply proliferate and diversify in agreement with the first two sentences. If the process were entirely natural at this point, I would expect to see fossil evidence of new animal phyla to correspond with the extinctions of 250 and 65 million years ago. I would also expect to see a much larger and diversified fossil record.

The split screen starts in the third passage where He says "Let us make man in our image." I believe this happened in the spiritual realm, i.e. spiritual man (Adam) was given authority over everything in the physical realm, but actually existed in the perfect spiritual realm which was set aside in Day 2 and furnished in Day 3. I believe Adam was banished from the spiritual realm to occupy a mortal body in the physical realm so that he would experience death and decay as punishment for disobediently obtaining the knowledge of good and evil which was established in Day 1.


Day 7

The seventh Day of creation, 24 equivalent solar hours from the point of view of God as the observer, would appear to be about 1/8 billion years elapsed from our viewpoint today.

Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them.
And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made.
And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made.
These [are] the generations of the heavens and of the earth when they were created, in the day that the LORD God made the earth and the heavens, - Genesis 2:1-4

This is the day God rested from His work.

The latest Hubble Constant of 72 kilometers per second per megaparsec sets the age of the universe at 14 billion years, or about 12% younger than my total estimate of 15.875 billion years. The 72 measure was based on Cepheid stars, so if there turns out to be a problem with this approach, the constant may be revised again.

Cephid stars

Cepheid stars are stars that have evolved off the main sequence into the Cepheid instability strip. They are regular radial-pulsating stars, with a well-defined period-luminosity relationship, which makes them ideal stars to be used as primary distance indicating standard candles. These stars also show radial velocity variations which correspond to the photometric curves. Brighter cepheids have longer periods than fainter (less luminous!) cepheids.

I haven’t yet discovered how this measure is reconciled with star M92, which was estimated to be 15 billion years old M92 --- but the currently held number is close enough for me because, as I noted in day 1, it is not disclosed exactly when on Day 1 God first spoke.

The effect of the expansion rate of the universe on time is not relevant to subsequent verses, because the focus of the Scriptures changes from the Creator’s viewpoint to the Adamic viewpoint --- life on (lower case) earth.

The countdown began when Adam was banished. We are at about year 5762 of the countdown.

The physical realm is still under the Adamic dominion and therefore suffers empathetically.

For the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God.
For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected [the same] in hope,
Because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God.
For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now.
And not only [they], but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, [to wit], the redemption of our body. – Romans 8:19-23


The creation week begins with language, thought, tongues, sounds. On personal experience, I know the Word is alive. And it is the written Word that tells me that Jesus is the Word made flesh. From John 1:

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
The same was in the beginning with God.
All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.
In him was life; and the life was the light of men.
And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not..
He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not.
He came unto his own, and his own received him not.
But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, [even] to them that believe on his name:
Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.
And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth. – John 1:1-14

The spiritual descendants of Adam were not made for the physical realm – we were made for the spiritual realm. The Bible is a spiritual work and should be read that way. It shows us the way back home, which is through Jesus Christ (Romans 8:29-30)

Of course, I cannot be sure if my "take" on how the Bible reconciles with science is correct until the rest of me gets to the other side, but the flow of what I have written here rings true to my spirit, and in the end, that’s what counts to me.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Extended News; Miscellaneous
KEYWORDS: agnostic; atheism; belief; creation; crevolist; evolution; genesis; god; intelligentdesign; philosophy
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Ok, it's your turn...
1 posted on 07/16/2002 9:33:12 PM PDT by Alamo-Girl
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To: Alamo-Girl; Admin Moderator
I think this would be better served in religion, and would be sure to clog up news/activism, wouldn't it?
2 posted on 07/16/2002 9:35:36 PM PDT by gcruse
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To: Alamo-Girl
Ok, it's your turn...

Bump while I read....

3 posted on 07/16/2002 9:36:11 PM PDT by The Mayor
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To: gcruse; Askel5
Gimme a break. When was the last time Agirl posted anything?

Leave it up mods. For God's sake.

4 posted on 07/16/2002 9:38:13 PM PDT by nunya bidness
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To: gcruse
Whatever the moderator would like to do is fine with me!
5 posted on 07/16/2002 9:39:58 PM PDT by Alamo-Girl
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To: Alamo-Girl
Wow. You did a lot of work.

This is a near-verse by verse Bible lesson on Genesis Chapter one. I am indebted to Dr. Hugh Ross (http://www/ and Don Stoner "A New Look at an Old Earth", for much of this lesson. This lesson is meant to be read along with a Bible open to Genesis Chapter One.

This explanation of why the text of Genesis one almost demands that we use a day-age interpretation of the chapter is near the end of this lesson, so if you are perplexed on that one, keep reading.

The first thing we need to do for Genesis Chapter One is determine the perspective of the observer. Descriptions that follow will make more sense if we know from what position the observer is describing the scene. For Genesis 1 we see that the position of the observer is not out in space somewhere, but just above the Earth's surface. Verse two says the Spirit of God was "hovering over the surface of the waters". Once it is understood that the things which follow are being described from this perspective it is much easier to reconcile science with the Bible. The two, far from being at odds, actually support one another.

The word used for "create" in verse one is the strongest possible Hebrew word for creating. It indicates a fiat miracle. The heavens and the Earth were created from scratch. This is another lesson, but the Big Bang is actually supportive of the text of Genesis one. Not every creation story has a begining for space and time. Many are more akin to what would be a "steady state" view of the universe. Hinduism and its ilk view the universe as eternal. The Big Bang affirms Genesis 1:1.

The Earth was "without form and an empty waste". It was dark, and watery. Science teaches that planetary systems form in huge solar nebulas. Stars form with disks of gas and dust around them that condense into planets. Scientists believe the early Earth was "without form" because it contained a large number of radioactive elements that produced tremendous heat. It had no solid surface, the heat from the decaying elements in the interior caused the surface to constantly melt and then re-cool. Today, the earth is mostly solid all the way down to the outer core. The outer core is still "formless" today in that it is hot liquid.

In the very early stages of this process of solar system formation, new stars shine very weakly and even inner planets have super thick atmospheres like the outer planets still do today. We think that the outer planets retain their original atmosphere due to their great distance from the Sun, while Earth's early atmosphere was blown away by the solar wind. It also undergoes other changes that have certain effects as we shall see later in the chapter.

The upshot of all of this is that it is dark if you are stuck just above the surface of the very early Earth. The crust is still molten just below the surface, and no continents have had time to form. In such a situation it is natural that water should cover the early Earth. The surface is flat. No pileup of continetal crust has had time to occur. The planet also had a lot of interior radioactive minerals that have since cooled down, so it was a lot hotter then, despite the Sun's weakness. Lots of steam is coming off of the world-wide ocean.

Verse 3. Basically God says it then it happens. No creative word is used here. That may indicate that it was unfolding according to God's plan. He did not have to intervene (i.e. "do anything"). Or perhaps His intervention was as subtle as it was profound. This is akin to the idea that you can change the course of a hurricane by manipulating a butterfly to move in the right direction- if you know enough, it does not take a lot of force.

What verse three is describing is the point where the Sun gets strong enough to poke through the nebula and thick atmosphere that surrounded the very early Earth. It would be a "bright nebula" at that point. In other words, a glowing cloud just like the ones we see today. This would either be an all-encompassing nebula or a dusty disk which had the early Earth enveloped within it. Light from the star would be diffused in all directions, and so there would be no night at first. No matter which side of the planet one was on as Earth rotated, one would see a dull glowing light in the sky. The observer is on a planet in the middle of a glowing cloud or disk. There is no "night" at this point, but as soon as the atmosphere gets thin and cools enough so that the steamy surface disapates somewhat, he can see the light that is diffused in the nebula (or disk).

Verses 4 and 5 speak of the point in Earth's early history when the nebula/disk is pushed away by the solar wind. God may have also done something providential to cause it to separate in "just the right way" to keep Earth on track for habitation later. Once Earth is out of the Nebula/disk, day can be distinguished from night.

Our observations of stars with planets shows that it is very unusual to have an orderly solar system like ours. Either a nearby huge star blows all the disk away (including the part that could later become a planet) before a planet gets a chance to form, or the dust stays around long enough to drag the local Jupiter into a super-close orbit. That Jupiter-like planet would wipe out any inner planets as it was dragged in.

Verses 6-7 seem to speak of the forming of a stable water cycle. We take it for granted, but it is by no means automatic that a planet will develop one. Before this there was probably a continous mass of steam from the ocean's surface to high in the sky. Now we have a cloud layer of water above and the larger layer of water in the world-wide ocean beneath.

Verses nine and ten speak of the emergence of continents. The radioactive elements that kept early Earth so hot that the crust was always melting and reforming have now decayed enough for solid rock to start piling up. The flat, water covered Earth now has a separate water and land part. These verses are another case where God did not have to "do anything". He just spoke it and it was done. Once again this may indicate that things were unfolding according to His plan.

Verse 11 indicates the emergence of plants. Once again, it is a case of where God said it and it was done. He did not have to "do anything" extra. He told the earth to sprout plants and the text says that THE EARTH did it. If the Earth did it (albeit on command), does the Bible have anything to say against the guided evolution of plants? The question is perplexing to me, but the fact is that the Bible uses words that indicate direct intervention for the creation of the universe and man, but much weaker words regarding plants. I don't want to rule out evolution where the bible itself does not rule it out, so I will just have to say "maybe, show me the science".

It is interesting to note that the three types of plants listed in verse eleven are listed in the order that the fossil record says they appear. "Tender vegetation" is stuff like mosses, liverworts, and the like. Those whose seed is in themselves (but without fruit) sounds like conifers (pine trees). Flowering plants come last in both the fossil record and Genesis 1:11.

It is no coincidence that verses 14-18 come after plants in verses 11-12. The setting of the Sun, Moon, and stars in the sky comes after the introduction of plants has substantially altered Earth's atmosphere.

The word for "made" in verse 16 is a very broad and general word. It can mean "caused (made) to appear". In this verse it apparently does mean that. Hebrew does not have verb tenses per se, but it does have a way of designating already completed actions. I am not an expert in Hebrew, but I am told that here it speaks of somthing that is an already completed action. I. E., the Sun, moon and stars were created in 1:1, but were not distinct or visible from the surface until the changes in the atmosphere prompted by the introduction of plants occured.

CO2 was changed into O2 in massive quantities when plants came on the scene. At first, there were no animals to turn it back into 02. This meant that global temperatures plummeted (from their previous steamy levels) as the greenhouse gas CO2 was removed from the atmosphere. This meant much less evaporation, and this meant much less cloud cover. As the world-wide cloud layer disapated, Earth had its first sunny days and clear nights.

The "waters that were above" referenced in verses six and seven became much less significant than the oceans at this point. So much so that later skeptics would say "how could those Hebrews think there was an ocean of water in the sky?". Truth is that there was, but it has lessened since that time.

Verses 20-22 are at least partly talking about what scientists know as the Cambrian Explosion, but I think it goes well beyond that to other creative events. The waters suddenly swarm with living creatures, and creatures that multiply in the water by swarms (certain insects?)

The word used here is translated "created", not the more vague "made". It is the same word used in 1:1 and indicates a fiat miracle. I have looked at it from every angle and I don't see how it permits pure naturalistic evolution to be fully or even mostly responsible.

That word is very strong. I have no objection to the idea that God built in a certain amount of adaptablilty into His creatures, and that evolution plays a role in their diversification, but I don't see a reasonable way around Divine (or at least intelligent) intervention either scripturally or scientifically.

The "winged creatures" or "fowls of the air" part is not so clear cut. Those words are sometimes translated as winged insects. If that is true it could be speaking about a very short period of direct creative acts and a lot of evolution since then. If it means birds as well, then we are talking about God the Son dropping newly created critters into the biosphere from the Cambrian to the Mesozoic at the least.

I don't know why this should be so hard to accept. We have scientists right now conducting genetic experiments that create creatures that evolutionary mechanisms alone would never create. Monkeys with the glow gene of a jellyfish in their skin for example. So God did what we are now doing, but on a massive scale.

Who would have guessed that birds came in the fossil record before Cows and dogs? They did though, as early as the dinos themselves for all practical purposes, and certainly before any land animal that the Hebrews would be aware of. It makes sense to put birds before the land animals spoken of in the next verses.

Verses 24-25 refer to the creation of land animals. The weaker word "made" is used. It does not mean that there was no direct divine intervention, I think there was. But the word is less strong than that used in 1:1 and the prior verses. I believe the word as used in this verse allows (barely) for God-designed natural systems to providentially work it out (evolution) even though I am not scientifically convinced that this is what happened. My guess is that the word is used because evolution did most of the gruntwork, while God dropped in some new life forms from time to time. An example would be a new family of animals being created in a very generalized form, and then diversifying into more specialized types within that family.

Verses 26-27 are where man is created. Guess what. Verse 27 uses the stronger word translated "created" rather than the more indirect "made". It seems that God (the Son) had a very direct and personal hand in the creation of the Human Race.

I do want to point out that if you read on in to chapter two, you realize that the text does not speak of the seventh day ending. There is no "and the evening and the morning were day seven". The implication is that the seventh day, where God has rested from His creative works, is still ongoing. This allows for a testable creation model. That is another topic though.

My main point here is that the Hebrew word "Yom" used for DAY is a very vague and broad word, much like our english word day. We can use the word for an age as in "the day of the dinosaurs". So did the Hebrews.

The phrase "morning to evening" means a 24 hour literal day, but the phrase "evening and the morning" DOES NOT necessarily refer to a literal 24 hour day. Even numbered days can mean a long period of time: In one place (Hosea 6:2) it seems to have a double meaning that indicates three days and a long period of time. In Daniel Chpater eight he was given a vision of 2,300 evenings and mornings in which the sancuary would be desolated. At the end of the chapter, the whole vision is referred to as the "vision of the evening and the morning". The plural is added in some translations, but it is singular. In other words, the phrase here seems to refer to a period of time equal to 2,300 evenings and mornings (7 years).

In Genesis chapters one and two, it is clear that the sixth day lasted more than 24 hours. Man tended the garden and kept it, named the animals, and had an operation that resulted in Eve. Quite a days work!

The issue of why God "had to do it this way" instead of desinging a world that would use all evolution and just unfold is a separate lesson. If God is all knowing, why did He have to make the universe, then jump in later and make animals and man?

Why did He not make a universe where it would all unfold without further direct intervention? After all, 98% of it seems to unfold without His direct intervention. A lot of it has to do with Freewill vs. Predestination and the question of how a loving God could create people that He knew would reject His love and be exiled to Hell. That one is going to have to wait for another night.


6 posted on 07/16/2002 9:46:35 PM PDT by Ahban
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To: Admin Moderator
So are you going to shove A-Girl's post over to religion because it might get in the way of a kitty barbecue or some lame regurgitated Klayman slugfest?
7 posted on 07/16/2002 9:47:09 PM PDT by nunya bidness
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To: Alamo-Girl
I like this post, no matter where it resides.
I look fwd to reading the comments.
8 posted on 07/16/2002 9:52:40 PM PDT by wallcrawlr
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To: Alamo-Girl
I can't post all this. it's long. But if you want an interesting read. check out
9 posted on 07/16/2002 9:58:04 PM PDT by Orblivion
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To: Alamo-Girl
Herculean effort bump.
You're amazing.
10 posted on 07/16/2002 9:58:27 PM PDT by PRND21
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To: Alamo-Girl
Wow! Outstanding research. I scanned most of it, but droopy eyes got the best of me. Bump for a later read.


11 posted on 07/16/2002 10:01:57 PM PDT by ForGod'sSake
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To: *crevo_list
12 posted on 07/16/2002 10:02:54 PM PDT by Libertarianize the GOP
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To: Ahban
Thank you so very much for sharing your view of origins! Hugs!
13 posted on 07/16/2002 10:04:24 PM PDT by Alamo-Girl
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To: nunya bidness
Thank you so much for standing up for me!
14 posted on 07/16/2002 10:06:07 PM PDT by Alamo-Girl
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To: wallcrawlr
Thank you so much for the encouragement!!!
15 posted on 07/16/2002 10:07:22 PM PDT by Alamo-Girl
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To: Orblivion
Thank you for the link, Orblivion! I am familiar with the website, and will read the page as soon as I can.
16 posted on 07/16/2002 10:09:02 PM PDT by Alamo-Girl
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To: Alamo-Girl
Your take on "waters" as tongues is very interesting. The following is from the Blue Letter Bible concerning the various definitions of the Greek word for "waters" (which from this organization's point of view does not include "tongues" as a definition, but I see how this might apply):

5204 hudor {hoo'-dore}

Personally, I don't care much when or how the Lord created the Universe. To me, such investigations fall under the realm of science and are not a point of salvation. Metaphysically though, your opinions are very interesting. Thank you for posting this.

17 posted on 07/16/2002 10:09:25 PM PDT by LeeMcCoy
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To: PRND21
Thank you oh so very much for the kudos (blushing...)!
18 posted on 07/16/2002 10:10:06 PM PDT by Alamo-Girl
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To: Alamo-Girl
No problem. I think people around here forget what research is about.

It's not something to be pushed to the side.

Keep up the good work.

19 posted on 07/16/2002 10:10:12 PM PDT by nunya bidness
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To: ForGod'sSake
Thank you so very much for the kudos! Hugs!!!
20 posted on 07/16/2002 10:11:33 PM PDT by Alamo-Girl
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