Young Earth and Evolution
/ Geologic Column Models
Proof of Why the Earth is Old
By Sharon Cornet
This article is written from the ethnocentric and encultrated view of the Christian believer (these views may or may not hold true to its author since we all hope to grow spiritually, and sometimes grow up and out of our old skins and into new paradigms, for better or for worse):
As a minister's daughter, I grew up being taught something similar to the gap theory (Christians typically know about this belief), but as I got older I was exposed to people in other churches and was given some books (for children) on dinosaurs and the Bible. It was a young-earth view of the creation of our world, and it promoted a literal 6-day creation by God of the earth itself, the cosmos, the continent(s), water, atmosphere, fish, whales, cattle and other mammals, insects, and all life on this marvelous blue planet. Mankind, of course, was made last and was given dominion over the earth (and all the life therein). Then, mankind had become so evil that God told a peaceful man named Noah to build an ark, and put every kind of animal in existence within it so as to save the world from total destruction via a worldwide flood. At least, that was the interpretation of those particular dinosaurs-and-the-Bible type of books I read, and the Bible, according to what seemed obvious at the time. At first I was intrigued, because I remembered that it was the book of Genesis that I had read over and over as a youth, always curious about how this world and reality came to be. There were mysteries within those texts and I wanted to know what they meant! I thought that the Bible had all the answers, but I was unsure of which interpretation of it was the truth. What unfolded over the course of many years would lead me to the strong realization that the Young Earth Creation hypothesis (not theory, since theory is based on a host of already proven facts) is a belief that is based solely in the realm of Biblical faith, not factual reality.
Before the realization of such a belief being false came to me, I was still deeply imbedded within it. It was one day, during the summer in the late 1990's that something occurred to me as I was pondering over the whole creation-dinosaur issue, Noah's flood, etc. It was so marvelous a thought, so simple, and so absolutely revelatory because it was based in reality rather than simply notions or beliefs (which may or may not be true). It was something that many people have, and could have thought about on their own as well, had they been given enough time, and put in enough effort. Here's what occurred to me...
1) Dinosaur bone fossils are very real, factual proofs of previously living creatures.
2) I knew that dinosaur bone fossils were found in, and dug out of certain areas, or certain layers of ground.
3) If the story of Noah's flood were true, and dinosaurs really did go on board, then the fossils of the ones left behind would be jumbled up together in the same layer of earth as humans and all the other animals, since they all supposedly lived at the same time and were subjected to the same globalized flood.
The devastation would be world-wide, just as the Bible said, if true. All the fossils of all the plants, animals, people, etc. would be one big soup-pot of bones, flesh, and matter, most of which would rot, and some of which would be preserved as fossils. The fossil shells I had found on the surface of dry mountaintops might then be evidence of such a global flood that once occurred on this planet, because it would show that the ocean was once over what is now dry land.
My goal was to go to the local dinosaur museum and ask the curator to explain to me about how dinosaurs are dug out of the earth, and what the deal was with "different layers" of earth. My biggest question, which would provide the absolute factual proof I needed (through the answer) was:
DO DINOSAURS ALL COME FROM THE SAME LAYER OF EARTH OR FROM DIFFERENT LAYERS?
Somehow, though, I never made it to that museum, and the question stood as a serious doubt in my mind begging to be resolved. It would not be until many years later that I would take a geology course in college before I got the answer that I was looking for. Not only this, but I got answers to almost every question I ever had about earth's formation, fossils, earth's layers (called strata), dating methods, the theory (not hypothesis) of evolution, comparative anatomy, biology, etc. through that class. The evidence was clear, crystal clear, and completely fact-based, not just faith-based. The information had been discovered, observed, recorded, witnessed, handled, collected, documented, and verified and reverified by thousands and thousands of scientists around the globe, and they all agreed (minus the few, very few, who put faith over facts)! There was no question anymore...
Dinosaur bones are indeed found in different layers!
Not only that, but all kinds of fossils are found in different layers/strata, each representing a different time in the past. Geologically speaking, it was obvious that there were/are times of flooding, and times of drought, times of erosion/layers dissolving, and times of sediments accumulating, etc. These natural processes are occurring all of the time, at different degrees, and at different places around the globe. I repeat: IF A GLOBAL FLOOD OCCURRED AND DESTROYED ALL LIFE THAT SIMULTANEOUSLY EXISTED, THEN ALL LIFE FORMS WOULD BE SUBSEQUENTLY FOUND DEAD, AT THE SAME TIME, IN THE SAME LAYER/STRATA OF EARTH, SINCE THEY WOULD ALL SINK TO THE BOTTOM OF THE SURFACE OF THE EARTH AT THAT TIME. This simply is not the case in the real world.
One *might* argue that perhaps the swirling of the ocean, and the pounding of the rain, and the opening of the fountains of the deep, and the catastrophic intensity which accompanied Noah's flood might have been enough to cause certain groups of fish or herds of animals to be swallowed up, and covered over, and fossilized in groups. Or that some were fossilized higher up on a mountain, while others were fossilized down in the lowest of valleys, or even swept into the ocean at its deepest places, and that this is why some fossils are found "higher" or "lower" than others. But correlation of the strata is not about "higher" or "lower" as much as it is about events, separate situations in time. A river flowing through a valley and carrying sediment with it, downstream, all the way (eventually) to the ocean, causing a huge delta to form where it opens up at the ocean is one situation. A deep chamber of magma pushing up the earth and displacing rock, causing fault movement and earthquakes, and eventually rising up to spew out as a volcano is yet another situation. Shall we call these situations one and the same? Dare we go even further and say that they happened at the same time? Of course not. There are ways to tell which layers are newer and which ones are older, and what the basic story was surrounding those strata, i.e. what happened to create that situation in that area at that time.
If we look again at the diagram above, we see a picture of a global flood occurring, with a hodge-podge of ALL life forms (from trilobites, to mankind, to dinosaurs, to birds, to fish, to plants, etc.) being mixed up together and all falling on the same surface of earth, all under the same vast and rising ocean. All the turbulence would undoubtedly cause separation of a few heavier things (to sink faster), and a few lighter things (to float and/or sink later), and could possibly account for different types of fossils in different locations. But remember, when discussing the Biblical flood, we are talking about one single situation, one single event, one single worldwide flood, one single creation, one single "group" of living beings from mankind all the way down to the tiniest cell of algae. Everything is accounted for, and nothing can be excluded in this "worldwide" event.
Notice, in the picture (scroll up and take a look at it again, then come back and read further)... that the whole soup-pot of living beings/creatures on the entire earth are all floating around the ocean at the same time, until they either quickly or finally find their place in the sediments accumulating below. Now here's what is actually found in the fossil record. Note that the most primitive fossil life is found in the lowest and oldest sediments, and the highest forms of life (most complex) are found in the highest levels of sediments, each layer representing different situations in time, different circumstances, and indeed, different levels and forms of life existing at any particular time.
READ THIS CAREFULLY!
The only way that a single globalized flood event could cause this is if all the different forms of life "magically" assembled themselves into an order that made simple-celled fossils at the bottom (therefore being the oldest), with successive layering going from worms and soft-bodied animals, to hard-bodied animals and fish, then land plants showing up above that, then pre-amphibian-like creatures, vascular plants, and bony (like salmon) and cartilagenous fish (sharks), and then assembling next, in order and above that, the ferns and seed ferns, reptiles and amphibians. These things are not found in layers below, except in more primitive form, or not at all. These same things ARE found in younger layers above, but only until they either go extinct, or have similar or more advanced forms.
It goes further... the fossils would then have had to assemble themselves (as they fell to the bottom of the flooded world) to only put mammal-like reptiles, etc. in a layer above that, and then flowering plants (angiosperms) and certain types of dinosaurs above that, then in a new layer that this supposed global flood caused, bird fossils and yet different species of dinosaurs would be placed. Then, as if these miracles of automatic fossil assembly through swirling waters weren't enough, placental and marsupial mammals would come next, and yet more different and unique types of dinosaurs would be placed in the layers above that (definitely none below). These things are not found in layers below, except in more primitive form, or not at all. These same things ARE found in younger layers above, but only until they either go extinct, or have similar or more advanced forms.
On top of all of this was a section of strata that would include reptiles and mammals that were all small in size (and definitely no more dinosaurs allowed in this layer!). After that includes a layer of strange mammals that resemble hyenas and whales, and a strange little horse-like creature (Hyracotherium)... then amazingly, another strata section on top of that which actually includes all-out whales, plus apes, and more developed-looking horse-looking creature (Mesohippus), etc. Above that includes even more diverse types of animals such as giraffes, pigs, camels, deer, and yet further advanced-looking horse type creatures (Merychippus) than in the previous layer, etc., but still not dinosaurs any longer. In fact, almost no dinosaur fossils ever show up again in any of the layers above the Cretaceous. These things are not found in layers below, except in more primitive form, or not at all. These same things ARE found in younger layers above, but only until they either go extinct, or have similar or more advanced forms.
Very early and primitive, short, erect bipedal ape-like creatures (Australopithecines) followed in the layer above that. Did I mention that fossils of yet another bigger, further changed (intermediate) form of horse-like creature (Pliohippus - resembling a colt of sorts) is also located there? Then, in the strata above that (and other intermediate and sequentially overlapped advanced forms of hominids), we have Neandertal and Cro-Magnon man co-existing, as well as a horse like we see today (Equus). Finally, in the top layer (still no dinosaurs), we find modern man, alongside common animals (but not previous animals which existed in prior layers/strata). These things are not found in layers below, except in more primitive form, or not at all. These same things ARE found in younger layers above, but only until they either go extinct, or have similar or more advanced forms.
The absolute logical life-order, and factual conclusions of the many types of preserved plants/ creatures/ beings (that once were actually alive on this planet) that exist in the strata of earth is concretely evidenced by empirical data - the actual fossils themselves. These FACTS cannot be refuted, for it is a worldwide phenomenon!
The fossils also would include index fossils, which are specific fossils of now-extinct plants and/or life forms that only lived during certain periods of time, evidenced by their existence or absence in the rock record at any particular location. Trilobites are one such example (of MANY). They show up in the lowest layer of the Cambrian and died out by the Permian. Index fossils are just one of the ways that geologists are able to correlate strata and help determine age (relative age dating). Trilobites are among the plethora of index fossils that existed and departed long before dinosaurs or mankind existed.
There is no denying the facts, and the facts tell the story of what really happened (it cannot be the other way around, that we twist the facts to suit our "beliefs")... life has, over much time, changed on this planet, in a successive order (some might call this intelligent design - or even possibly Intervention theory if they are so inclined - if they believed a higher hand was "involved in the evolved" on this planet) that bespeaks of a process that is as natural as the earth itself, as life on the earth, and as rain falling from the sky (just not all at once). To deny these FACTS, in favor of the alternative (false beliefs), is contingent on just how far one prefers to go with willed-ignorance and complete and total denial. The alternative to understanding the fossil record for what it is (and what it shows) would be to accept the Young Earth Creation model theory as fact, despite the facts. Can you imagine a global flood, of such immense proportions, and the chaos within its waters actually being the cause of all of these amazing life-successive, order-successive, strata-successive, time-successive, event-successive fossil assemblages in the permanent rock record? It is physically impossible! In fact, to claim such is absolutely and fundamentally ludicrous! Asinine! Look again at the geologic column and the order of life history it holds within it, hundreds of years of work by thousands of geologists and scientists (from many disciplines) worldwide, all based on physical evidence of fossilized remains.
I don't claim to be "religious" at all any more, but I do consider myself to be spiritual. Many people do not know or understand the difference. I look at the geologic column now with awe, and to the creator of it (whatever "it" may be) with even more awe. The fact that life has proven to start simply, and change and improve over time is indeed a creative act! It appears to be "self-forming," but that could be a debate among philosophers and theologians as to what exactly this mechanism is/was. Perhaps there's more of us who believe evolution is the METHOD God (whatever your personal version of "God" is, if any) chose to do it, than previously thought... at least by 6-day literalists. I think that there is far more to this earth, and the life on it (and off of it), and whatever changes are in store for this earth, and its inhabitants, for our future, than what is put forth via the near-sighted vision that young-earthers' believe for mankind. I no longer base my beliefs about this world on what other people say is "true," but what can be proven as true. A bird in hand (as evidence) is worth two in the bush (that is only speculated upon). After having the "facts of life" as my foundation, I take a more spiritual stance and move on from there.
(c) Sunstar Solutions 2006
Go to TOPIC 2: Flood Geology, When Could It Have Happened, and DID It Happen?
Additional notes for concerned Christians:
Folks (and I'm speaking directly to young-earthers from here on, so if you are not one of them you can choose to stop reading now), all I can say is that if you still have questions, or are confused about certain things you've been taught (that's your culture - learned behavior! Can you un-learn it?) concerning this subject, then I highly recommend going and taking a college-level geology course that is fact-based (empirical evidence), rather than filling your heads (and egos) with mere belief-based stories that tend to perpetuate into grand schemes like the Creation Museum that answersingenesis.org is building. They (and others within these circles) are also attempting to get Young-Earth Creationism taught in public schools. Am I for censure of such things? Absolutely not! I say, bring it on! The bigger they get, the harder they fall. Lies, built on lies, built on lies (or ignorance, built on ignorance, built on ignorance, depending on how you want to look at it) will have no leg to stand on in the end, period. Much like the faith that keeps our (often paperless) economy going when there's not enough gold in Ft. Knox (or elsewhere) to back it up, it is the shameless "education" of the young, and/or ignorant and its blind faith in the young earth hypothesis that keeps the trend going when there's not enough facts to back it up. It's like the young child who is trying to prove that Santa exists and brings him/her presents every year because the "reliable" adults said it was so. As long as you believe the story is true, then it will continue and you won't lose your presents... it boils down to a fear of the loss of their religion (their presents) if they fail to believe as they've been taught to regarding the age of the earth. One of the ploys that young-earth creationists use is the classic straw man argument, a putdown of the opponents argument to uplift ones own view. It's a discrediting tactic based on verbal slashing rather than a real comparison (or contrast) of the actual facts as they are laid on the table, face up. Once the basic facts of the Young Earth Creationist hypothesis is laid out, side by side, against the theory of evolution and geologic column then the facts will stand and the falsehoods will fall away naturally. No muss, no fuss (except by those that resist change and still desire to hold on tightly to their old regimes).
It's NOT about Creationists vs. Evolutionists (if you think it is then your priorities are likely competitive in nature, rather than out of love or a desire for reconciling your beliefs with reality), it's about a level of maturity in reading ancient texts such as the Bible, and interpreting it from a spiritual level, rather than a literal one. Isn't that the point of the Bible? To guide us toward spirituality? That is why the legalism/law of the Old Testament was the type and shadow, and what the concept of Jesus freeing humanity from that law, covered in the New Testament, was all about -- first learning to obey the rules, and then moving beyond it and becoming more spiritual in our nature! Did not Jesus speak in parables for the reason of telling those who had "ears to hear" a (spiritual) reality that transcended the natural, limited, carnal (literalist) reality? Moses had to work hard, and spend 40 years in the wilderness (note a similar Gematria meaning to 40 days/nights of rain) to finally get the point across to the children of Israel that they were to obey the law of God (Ten Commandments), and stop foolishly worshiping their false idols (false gods). And oh, Israel so loved their idols! It was the disobedience of the wicked of the earth, in the story of Noah that brought on the flood (of fear of loss) so that they perished. Do you fear losing your religion? That your beliefs might be false, or wrong? In the story of Moses it was a lesson in obedience to the law, in the natural world, just as parents teach their children to first obey the rules of the laws of the world (i.e. "Don't touch the fire or you will get burned!"). It is the same story, retold again and again. Haven't we learned it yet? If children don't learn these rules early, then they have it much harder down the road into adulthood. If they are deprived of a proper foundation in life, then they suffer the consequences later on. These are simple spiritual truths laid down into the very foundations of the world as an example that we can first perceive with our senses, through these bodies (vessels) that we live in, so that we can understand them at the elemental level. It is after we think that we are earthly beings having a spiritual experience, that we wake up and realize that we are really spiritual beings having an earthly experience!
Eventually we all have to grow up, and mature in our mental and emotional faculties as well as spiritually. First must come the mental (facts learned), then the emotional (self-control/temperance), and lastly the spiritual (re-birth and new growth). If we try to do it in reverse order then it simply doesn't work out the same way... we then wind up trying to be "spiritual" when in fact we have no foundation set within us for such! We can choose to fill our heads with a global-flood worth of chaotic fossil-jumble beliefs, or allow the facts to sort our thoughts/beliefs out by observing the foundation of the orderly physical record (fossils) of life history as it was set forth on this planet FIRST. This foundation precedes us, and for a reason, unless we choose to ignore it. The physical record is like the law, and only when we can "get it" first, and finally let go of our false beliefs and false idols / false gods (in this case the Young Earth Creationist view that many hold up on a very tall pedestal) can we move on to a truly higher understanding in spiritual matters (that subsequently follow the same order, but on a much higher level and way). The Bible is full of metaphor and symbolism and spiritual meaning. Literalist interpretations bring dysfunction to a spiritual book! Any distance or rift between the facts and our chosen religious beliefs, is certainly self-caused, and self-perpetuated, and will be the demise of any true spiritual growth. In this sense, we can use the tool of the physical evidences to instruct us, and guide us, toward a real spiritual understanding of what and who and what God really is (not claiming we understand His truth and then continue to try to skew the facts to fit our belief system... that just doesn't work!). I guarantee you, that God/Elohim, like the fossil record He put in place, is not what people try to alter and box Him/it up to be via false teachings. He is a God of eons, of ages, and indeed, of infinity! He is a God without beginning, nor end. Time is nothing to Him, and is only given to us (for our use) for times, cycles, seasons, and awareness of where we are at in the grand scheme of things. Millions, Billions, and even Trillions of years is but a blink of an eye to an infinite God! A mere 6,000 years is such a puny, narrow-minded vision in comparison of what He's really capable of, and working towards... Don't you think?
Think on these things...
(c) Sharon Cornet, December 2005
Go to TOPIC 2: Flood Geology, When Could It Have Happened, and DID It Happen?
I often receive interesting, and sometimes even curious responses from readers, some of them argumentative. That is fine as it doesn't really matter to me what people choose to believe. No one person is at the same place and time in their beliefs as any other person, and we learn and grow at the pace we need to. God shows us revelations in His time, as we are ready. Anyway, below are some of the responses I've written, and that I place for those interested...
The Bible is a spiritual book, and can be read on many levels, but is ultimately meant to be understood at the spiritual level (many levels in fact), as God (the Lord, your higher self, or whatever else you envision as the Source/Energy of all things) opens our eyes and hearts to it. Some people are simply just not ready for spiritual truths and are caught up only in the natural/carnal and literal world. Sometimes people cannot see any higher meaning to the words of Jesus, or Moses, Buddha, or any others because of our enculturation (the way we were raised and the bias and prejudice that goes along with what we were taught) that works like blinders once outside of our own culture. All the rest is simply interpretive, belief-based, manmade (not God-made) religiosity. We can choose to be Biblical literalists, or we can choose to understand what it says in 1 Co 2:13 regarding Adam, Eve, and the Trees in the Garden of Eden. See also Ezek 31... shall we take these things literally also? Did he turn into a tree, or was he born that way? Was he a man or a literal cedar tree in Lebanon? What about Eden? There are other references to people as trees also in the Bible there. Just what is this concept of Eden, and the Adam and the Eve, and the other "trees" that co-existed there anyway? Were they archetypes and peoples or were they single individuals only? Were the authors of the scriptures mistaken? If "trees" were actually references to "people" then we see a garden full of people! We also see a serpent that is symbolic of an evil inclination, and the tree of life as the good inclination, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil as the personal CHOICE we all have, as individuals, as to which fruit (deeds) of which "tree" we eat of as well.
Although I accept some of the beliefs from many religions, I also tend to realize the consequences of having a Biblical faith, just not in a church or organized religious setting, but mostly because of my upbringing I'm sure. Like most people, it is this way through a sense of comfort and familiarity. I also believe that one should get out of the "box" of the culture and beliefs we grew up in, at least once in our lives. To see a different view, a different perspective, and to mature as individuals on emotional, mental, and spiritual levels. I definitely believe in a higher spirituality than religion(s) can bring, since they are most often misconstrued and have changed, split off into sects and creeds, and is the sole reason why we have so many religions today. Christianity alone brings MANY alterations of the Christ-view, and our cities are littered with the same "them" and "us" ethnocentrism that pervades the rest of the world.
I do believe in God (although a lot of peoples' feelings of who or what God is can vary greatly from one person to the next), and that the Bible was inspired (which means "in spirit" just as many writings are inspired) to be written as it is, although most Christians are aware of the fact that the texts were changed over time by the church, and especially today with the many versions and translations of "Bibles" we now have. To go back to the original meanings (Hebrew/Aramaic for the OT, and Greek for the NT) brings far more insight into what the authors meant when they wrote these scriptures. They were, after all, men who lived their lives, in their own times and cultures, spoke in their own languages and dialects, and believed much like how we all do, by our sense of culture (learned behavior and beliefs). None of us was in the womb, with the pen in hand, already writing as we were born into this world. We all have to go through the same steps in learning, and our culture shows more variations than our biology.
Because I see the truth in the rock record of this earth of actual creatures that were once alive, now preserved as fossils, and the evidence heavily supporting evolution (which, interestingly enough, literally means an "unfolding" of creation -- in logical and successive order) rather than a literal 6-day interpretation (that implies "magic" of sorts, or "miracles" at best with absolutely NO version of HOW this was done other than to say "God said it, God did it," which is far too simplistic and unreachable, and goes against the hoards of physical evidence that is available to us). Some might interpret this to mean that I have "lost my faith" in a complete omnipotence of the Father and the accuracy of the scriptures. I say... Are you sure? Perhaps the people who think that are simply projecting their own insecurities on to me, and others like me, feeling that if they dared believe in the physical fossil evidence that they'd be betraying their beliefs. Indeed, they might be, but it would be the process of shedding old regimes, false beliefs in a story that was depicted to mankind as an illustration, and certainly a generalization at best, concerning the origins of our earth and life upon it. How can a mere two chapters of a book written by someone who was not there (at the "beginning") even come close to containing within it the details of chemistry, biology, geology, paleoanthropology, microbiology, molecular biology, botany, zoology, geochemistry, biochemistry, astronomy, physics, etc. within those few verses? It isn't possible! And yet, there IS an order, a design if you will, in the "days" of creation (with some seemingly problematic issues of Day 4 on the sun, moon, and stars, especially when those are all included in the original "God made the heavens and the earth" in Gen 1:1). The basic "days" of Genesis, when taken with the other meanings of the Hebrew YOM (not as only a 24 hr day) fit in very nicely with the old earth dates - one cannot pick and choose that which fits best to our limited view and ignore the rest!
But we must ask... Is there more accuracy
in scriptural literalism, or in spirituality, when it comes to the Biblical texts?
If one is inclined to defend the fundamentalist stance, they must therefore think that the
facts and proofs (as they stand, not as they are misconstrued by young-earthers) of an old
earth are bogus, in favor of ones' own particular belief. I feel, at least for me,
that it shows far more integrity for me to reconcile the facts of God's earth with the
Word of God, rather than attempt to justify a belief that goes against the reality He set
up and put us in, in this world. It's just simply not in me to lie to myself to
favor man's opinions and false beliefs, beliefs which are very changeable and that have
proven, over thousands of years, that they change despite being based from the same texts.
It's not my job to convince you, or anyone else, what to believe. I simply state the facts that I have researched in my article above, and my personal experience regarding those facts, and the beliefs that were influenced by them. Beliefs are symbolic and heart-felt by those that own them. They are a tender topic with most people. I once believed in the fundamentalist view, and then felt a total and complete fool when the day came that I found out the truth -- that I asked God to show me -- regarding His world, specifically concerning how the world came into being. I don't need to "defend" my faith, because my faith is consciously chosen (as is yours), and my faith is, in my view, in agreeance with reality as well as scripture.
I cannot emphasize this enough... to believe in evolution (which was, and is, the PROCESS of the creation we now see) does not conflict with my faith in God. To me, it simply explains HOW God did it... something that no fundamentalist Christian 6-day literalist can even begin to do without reiterating the rehearsed Genesis account over and over... and the Genesis account does not explain HOW God did it, only the fact that "God said" the word, and it came into being.. it happened.
But HOW did it happen?
The process between those two simple steps is not at all covered in the Biblical account... but it IS covered in the rock record! The same rock record that fundie Christians claim God made, yet they ignore all the signs. If God made the earth, and God made the life on the earth, then how did He do it? The answers are there - just need to get out of the old paradigm of believing everything we're TOLD to believe (yes, we are ALL enculturated) and just seek for answers, and the door will be opened.
At this point, instead of defending the Biblical texts and their faith, all people are then put on an even playing field and must rely on science and observation, testing and retesting, and validating or falsifying a working hypothesis until it has enough supporting evidence to become theory. Theory does not become theory without that supporting evidence from many disciplines in science. Once a certain portion of the theory is falsified then it is modified, retested, and the process continues and grows. Like life on the earth, theories evolve. Like religions on the earth, peoples' beliefs evolve. People change. People grow, learn more. My grandfather came out of a strict Mennonite upbringing, and when he was filled with the Holy Spirit he left that doctrine in favor of a Pentecostal view. He was ostracized for doing so. And yet, he still believed that women should not cut their hair; he also had a little booklet that showed deformed people, and crippled people in wheelchairs, who supposedly got that way because they masturbated... he believed this was true! How many people believe the little booklets (or worse, whole volumes!) on a 6-day creation and think that the "evidence" is overwhelming, so it must be true? Especially when they haven't actually seen that evidence themselves, and have merely believed the opinion of someone who's hypothesis had not truly been tested, or fully examined, and would be utterly revoked once they discovered the truth of the matter.
This analogy is not unlike what has happened regarding the supposed 6-day creation compared to the heavy evidence of how life truly came to be on this planet. Faith-based beliefs can only be that. Fact-based beliefs can only be that. Reconciling the two should be the goal of every Christian and person of faith, otherwise there is a twisting of the truth, a lie in fact, that overshadows the entire thing. It is called self-deception. We cannot change the facts, but we can change our interpretation of them. We can change our beliefs about God's creation, to match His own physical creation which He made for us to properly identify and examine and learn from. Anything less than that is a form of self-deceit. Self-deceit is usually based on a fear of loss of what what one thinks they have gained.. in this case, religion. Spirituality works out of something much higher than religious beliefs and doctrines forced upon the masses (followers of those doctrines) who rarely do their own thinking. Leaders in spirituality are much different than leaders in religion. One is based on a higher understanding and truth, rather than leaning on the truth of another. Questions we must ask ourselves include: Who did I learn my truth from? Where did I get my ideas about what truth is? Was it my church? My parents? My Bible study group? A book(s) I read? Someone I met? This is our culture folks! Worthy of investigation and critique and consideration, both for its own merit as well as how it compares to other truths that other people hold.
By itself, there is no way to
"prove" God exists any more than there is a way to "prove" God doesn't
exist. It is a personal choice for ALL of us, based on our experience and
information we've come to know in this short life. Any belief in an omnipotent,
omniscient, omnipresent God is our own choice. I have no problem taking
responsibility for my beliefs, or changing them if I learn a higher principle that sheds
new light on my former beliefs. My belief in God speaking the word of creation, and
setting the rules and laws (chemistry, gravity, electromagnetics, physics, quantum
physics, etc.) of this universe into action so that creation could indeed form,
absolutely defying entropy in its wake as it ever-increases in complexity, is also my own
choice. Entropy only works in a closed system. LIFE is
anything but that! The sun's energy is mostly responsible for that input of energy,
for it promotes life on all levels. As long as lifeforms on this planet can eat
(energy input), not die (live), and reproduce (the key to evolution since minute genetic
mutations and variations are passed on this way), then negentropy prevails. Life
goes forward -- as itsy bitsy tiny changes, one after another, after another, after
another, after another, and on and on into infinity. It's the way God designed it to
be, for He is a God of ages, of eternity. If you are a Christian or a Jew or anyone
else that believes in Spirit or a higher power then you cannot see life on this planet any
other way, without God (or Goddess, etc. depending on your choice of faith). I
choose this view, that evolution is HOW God did it, how the process of creation came into
being. I also refuse to deny the physical evidence that He put into place as to how
He did it, in favor of a man-made, fear-based view that is in favor of causing dissension
between peoples of the earth. In my view there is but one God, one earth, one
people, and *should* (ideally) be one belief; however, God is also a God of diversity, and
it is this diversity which has helped life progress to the next level. Without
diversity we might all be doomed. So let us celebrate diversity, while aiming for a
globalized acceptance of each other, no matter where we are in our beliefs, without
attack, without the "them" and "us" syndrome of thinking (very
competitive and surely not one out of God's love). That is all I have to say about
A good website: www.religioustolerance.org (opens a new window)
Go to PART 2: Flood Geology, When Could It Have Happened, and DID It Happen?
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