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Paul on a Young Earth #54627
Sun Dec 31, 2017 2:03 AM
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Quite some time ago, I read a quote from someone at Biologos; which is supposedly a Christian organization that supports theistic evolution. Unfortunately I did not copy the quote for another time. The quote went something like; “Undoubtedly Paul believed in a young earth; but Paul was clearly wrong.” That probably is not an exact quote; but I think it represents what was said properly.
I believe the same person also mentioned that Paul was also probably wrong when it comes to Adam and Eve being the sole mother and father of all humans.
This quote of course shows the person’s view of the Bible. It is obvious that the person does not believe in biblical inerrancy; among other things. Which is really all I really need to know about the organization.
However, I have a question related to the quotes from Biologos; that I have been trying to find out more by studying Paul’s writing.
I am looking mainly at the writing of Paul, to show that he did indeed believe in a young earth and a real historical view of Genesis one and two. In the later case, some of what comes to mind is Romans 5 – Sin and death infecting the entire human race through Adam. Which is why Christ had to come, if Adam and Eve were not actual historical people; then I see no reason why writers like Paul would write in this manner. In 1 Cor.15, Christ the last Adam; Paul uses the creation narrative.
I am still looking for information that shows definitely that Paul wrote about a Young Earth.
The reason why I am asking this is if I find it, it could be helpful in showing what Paul and other writers taught on the issue.
Thank you
Tom

Re: Paul on a Young Earth [Re: Tom] #54628
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Paul doesn't address the historicity of the earth didactically. Yes, in Rom 5:12-18 and 1 Cor 15:21,22 Paul references that the entire human race fell in Adam. But this doesn't state that Adam was the first and only man God created and Eve the only woman God created from whom the entire race came. Of course, the passage in Romans does state that Adam was the federal head of the entire race and which was negatively effected by his transgression, i.e., Original Sin; imputed guilt and inherited corruption of nature. The specifics of the creation are to be found in Genesis 1-3, but even there no mention is given as to the time it was created. The creation narrative does strongly state that God created the earth "mature" and thereafter Adam and Eve were created thus disallowing the Theistic Evolution view. Some, e.g., Archbishop Ussher used the chronologies of the OT to determine the age of the earth in his book The Annals of the Old Testament (1650).
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The date forever tied to Bishop Ussher appears in the first paragraph of the first page of The Annals. Ussher wrote: “In the beginning, God created heaven and earth, which beginning of time, according to this chronology, occurred at the beginning of the night which preceded the 23rd of October in the year 710 of the Julian period.” In the right margin of the page, Ussher computes the date in “Christian” time as 4004 B.C.

Personally, methinks that the case can be made for a young earth although I would be hesitant to state an exact age of the earth's creation because I am not sure if the chronologies given in the OT are 100% complete. Whatever the exact date that God created the earth and Adam it surely wasn't 100,000+ years ago or some ridiculous period spanning billions or even millions of years ago as some prognosticate. Nor did the creation evolve from one micro organism as Evolution postulates.

Sooooo, the bottom line in regard to finding proof for a young earth in Paul I believe is an exercise in futility since I find nothing to support that venture. ALL Scripture is given by inspiration of God and therefore "proof" for any doctrine or view must be based upon the entire teaching of Scripture, aka: The Analogy of Faith. grin:


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Re: Paul on a Young Earth [Re: Tom] #54631
Mon Jan 01, 2018 8:45 PM
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Thanks, that is my take as well. The basic reason I asked this was because the person did concede that point. He probably did so, because he became convinced of it. Yet, because of his view of Scripture he had no problem saying Paul was wrong.
I think if we could show people that Paul believed in a young earth, it would shut a lot of mouths who have a high view of Scripture.
Tom

Re: Paul on a Young Earth [Re: Tom] #54633
Mon Jan 01, 2018 11:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Tom
I think if we could show people that Paul believed in a young earth, it would shut a lot of mouths who have a high view of Scripture.
Tom

I guess I'm at a loss to understand why it is important that Paul believed in a young earth which he didn't state anywhere in Scripture that I am aware of. I have no doubt whatsoever that Paul understood Genesis 1-3 as a real historical narrative and thus he believed that God created the heavens and earth in the span of 6 24-hour days. Although sheer speculation on my part, I would think that since Paul was personally taught by the LORD Christ Himself over a period of 3 years and since the Son of God dwelt in Christ and made all things (Jh 1:1-3; Col 1:16,17; Heb 1:1-3,10-12; 3:3,4; Rev 4:11), it seems reasonable to me that Paul was told how He, the incarnate Son created the heavens and the earth exactly as the Spirit moved Moses to write the same in Gen 1-3. grin


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Re: Paul on a Young Earth [Re: Tom] #54655
Thu Jan 04, 2018 6:42 PM
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I agree with Pilgrim in that a literal Adam & Eve is more important than YEC.... I think Ken Hamm's ministry is noble but an unfortunate place to remain wholly fixed..... That said, all evidence points to perfect design....

Re: Paul on a Young Earth [Re: Anthony C.] #54656
Thu Jan 04, 2018 7:19 PM
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Just to make myself perfectly clear..... I firmly believe that Scripture teaches a "young earth". I'm just not 100% convinced that Ussher's date of 4004 B.C. is absolutely correct. He might have been off by a 1000 years, for example due to what I wrote above regarding whether the OT chronologies are to be taken as complete vs. parts were deliberately not included if for no other reason than the fascination which some men have for calculating dates and times as we all know is done on the matter of Christ's second coming. rolleyes2 However, Ussher may have been correct. But no matter to me personally whether the earth was created and prepared for the habitation of man Adam at 4004 B.C. What is not negotiable for me is the actual time frame within which God created the heavens and the earth, i.e., 6 24-hour solar days and on the 7th day, He rested; ceased from any further ex nihilo creative work.

I simply don't want anyone to misconstrue something I wrote above and conclude that I would accept a view that postulates that the earth is 75,000 years old or 50,000 years old, etc. I seriously doubt that the age of the earth is more than 10,000 years old +/- and it just might be considerably less than that. grin


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Re: Paul on a Young Earth [Re: Tom] #54657
Thu Jan 04, 2018 7:45 PM
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Biologos is very orthodox..... About naturalism!!!
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those who do know the science are more likely to reject ID not on scientific but on theological or philosophical grounds. That is rich with implications.

Currently at the theistic evolutionary website BioLogos, Discovery Institute’s Stephen Meyer helps clarify this. BioLogos published a series of critical reviews of Meyer’s book, Darwin’s Doubt, and graciously invited him to reply. Dr. Meyer writes:

I have especially appreciated how the reviews in this recent series have unexpectedly clarified the nature of disagreement between proponents of the theory of intelligent design (ID) and the proponents of theistic evolution (or evolutionary creation) associated with BioLogos. I — and many others — have long assumed that the debate between our two groups was mainly a scientific debate about the adequacy of contemporary evolutionary theory. Surprisingly, the reviews collectively have shown that the main disagreement between ID proponents and BioLogos is not scientific, but rather philosophical and methodological.

In particular, the reviews have revealed that the central issue dividing the BioLogos writers from intelligent design (ID) theorists concerns a principle known as methodological naturalism (MN). MN asserts that scientists must explain all events and phenomena by reference to strictly naturalistic or materialistic causes. The principle forbids postulating the actions of personal agency, mind, or intelligent causation in scientific explanations and thus limits the explanatory toolkit of science to strictly material processes or physical causes. The principle of methodological naturalism is, of course, not a scientific theory nor an empirical finding, but an allegedly normative methodological rule, against which I have argued in depth, both in Darwin’s Doubt (see Chapter 19) and in my earlier book, Signature in the Cell (see Chapters 18 and 19). My colleagues have also argued against MN in their responses to some of the BioLogos reviews of Darwin’s Doubt (see, for example, here and here).

Recall that Darwin’s Doubt argues that intelligent design provides the best explanation for the origin of the genetic (and epigenetic) information necessary to produce the novel forms of animal life that arose in the Cambrian period. In making this case, I show first that neither the neo-Darwinian mechanism of natural selection acting on random mutations, nor more recently-proposed mechanisms of evolutionary change (species selection, self-organization, neutral evolution, natural genetic evolution, etc. — see Darwin’s Doubt Chapters 15-16) are sufficient to generate the biological information that arises in the Cambrian period. Instead, I show — based upon our uniform and repeated experience — that only intelligent agents have demonstrated the power to generate the kind of functional information that is present in biological systems (and that arises with the Cambrian animals). Thus, I conclude that the action of a designing intelligence provides the best ("most causally adequate") explanation for the origin of that information.

Now, one might have expected that Ralph Stearley, a paleontologist, and Darrel Falk, a geneticist, both of whom have extensive knowledge of evolutionary theory, would have critiqued the main scientific argument of Darwin’s Doubt on scientific grounds. In particular, one might have expected that they would have argued that either the neo-Darwinian mechanism, or some other evolutionary mechanism, does have the creative power to produce the information necessary to build new forms of animal life. Instead, except for raising a few minor objections about incidental scientific matters, both acknowledged that evolutionary theory has left the problem of the Cambrian explosion unsolved — i.e., that the mutation/natural selection mechanism lacks the creative power to account for macro-evolutionary innovations in the history of life.

As Stephen Meyer notes, the difference between ID and theistic evolution, as articulated by theistic evolutionists who are also scientists or philosophers of science, centers on an issue apart from the science:

Of the three reviewers, Wheaton College philosopher of science Robert Bishop was the least persuaded by DD‘s arguments — but, interestingly, he was also the most explicitly committed to the principle of methodological naturalism. Indeed, he objected to the thesis of the book precisely because it openly rejects (and violates) the principle of methodological naturalism.

Consequently, his four-part critique, by far the longest in the BioLogos series, said very little about my scientific arguments. (He did argue that I was wrong to claim that newer models of evolutionary theory represent significant deviations from neo-Darwinian orthodoxy. Yet, notably, biologist Darrel Falk’s review affirmed my assessment of these newer theories over and against Bishop’s.) In any case, Bishop focused his critique on what he called my "rhetorical strategies," giving particular attention to philosophical issues concerning the legitimacy of design inferences in biology.

In Bishop’s judgment, intelligent design flagrantly violates the rule of methodological naturalism — a rule that he regards as normative for the practice of all natural science because he believes (incorrectly, as it turns out) that "methodological naturalism is the way scientific investigation has been done since before the time of the Scientific Revolution." Indeed, as my colleague Paul Nelson pointed out in his response to Bishop’s critique, Bishop badly misreads the history of science. The design arguments developed by Isaac Newton — in the Opticks and the Principia, for instance �– alone contradict Bishop’s claims.

You sense that between the view of Stephen Meyer and Robert Bishop there is room for a fascinating and profound discussion — not so much about the science, though, as about philosophy"

Last edited by Anthony C.; Thu Jan 04, 2018 7:46 PM.
Re: Paul on a Young Earth [Re: Pilgrim] #54658
Thu Jan 04, 2018 8:07 PM
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Of course..... you don't don't need to wave the flag for YEC to believe the earth and man's existence upon it came about exactly as written in the Word within a relative time frame.... But biologos cares more about seeming academic..... At least IDers poke the multitude of holes in ToE and ultimately TE

* I just think we can get too weighed down by this discussion..... These folks don't want to submit to the full authority and reliability of scriptures.... This is the true issue at hand and the crux of the matter

Last edited by Anthony C.; Thu Jan 04, 2018 8:12 PM.
Re: Paul on a Young Earth [Re: Anthony C.] #54659
Thu Jan 04, 2018 8:12 PM
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Just a quick note regarding "Intelligent Design" theories. None of the various morphs that are being promoted are to be understood as being synonymous with biblical Christianity nor even totally compatible with biblical Christianity. Deism, for example, certainly allows for "intelligent Design" and even an "Intelligent Designer" yet openly rejects any notion of the biblical God who is not only transcendent but most definitely immanent and Who is personally involved in every facet of His creation, having decreed all things after His own good pleasure as a display of His majesty and holiness. Some years back, some thought that if "GOD" were put outside the building and that the debates on origins simply mentioned the possibility of... some type of "Intelligent Design", there might be the possibility of winning some over to at least then consider a "god" who was 'behind' the origin of all things in some way or fashion. Dumbing down biblical truth has rarely produced a genuine convert. nope


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Re: Paul on a Young Earth [Re: Pilgrim] #54660
Thu Jan 04, 2018 10:12 PM
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True..... I just think they do a good job of exposing some pretty blatant short comings of those camps..... But so do many Creationist ministries..... IDers often forsake, or cast aside, the inherent truths of Biblical Creation, and the Creator, so yeah, use discretion

Last edited by Anthony C.; Thu Jan 04, 2018 10:16 PM.
Re: Paul on a Young Earth [Re: Tom] #54663
Thu Jan 04, 2018 11:25 PM
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I started this thread, because I wanted to find out about the claim that Paul believed in a young earth. I did so because I had not read anything specific from Paul's writing that would show this.
That being said, it seems to me that if Adam and Eve were literal (as I believe they were), then it points to a YE. In theistic evolution circles, such as the people at Biologos, they do not believe in a literal Adam and Eve. Yes I am aware that there are people who believe in theistic evolution that believe in a literal Adam and Eve, such as cough...Tim Keller. Yet, I am not even sure how evolution and a literal Adam and Eve can be compatible.
I would also like to point out that I have seen a list of names of over 1000 scientists, both Christian and non-Christian that do not believe in evolution. I mention this because of the ignorant claim that often stumps some Christians, that all legitimate scientists believe in evolution.
Also fairly recently I watched a documentary called ‘Is Genesis History?’ It was very well done and I can’t recommend it enough. If my memory doesn’t fail me, Pilgrim even watched it and liked it.
I am including a link to one review. https://www.challies.com/articles/is-genesis-history/
Tom

Last edited by Tom; Thu Jan 04, 2018 11:27 PM.
Re: Paul on a Young Earth [Re: Tom] #54684
Tue Jan 09, 2018 7:05 AM
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I had forgotten... something that seems to be happening on a more frequent basis as I get older rolleyes2.. that there is an excellent article by John K. Reed on The Highway which addresses this debate and the divide which reveals to me at least, who is what they say they claim to be which you can access here: Response to the Old-Earth Advocacy of "Modern Reformation" Magazine.


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Re: Paul on a Young Earth [Re: Tom] #54686
Tue Jan 09, 2018 9:34 PM
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I just don't get those who cling to old earth..... Especially Christians..... Old earth is the evolutionists alibi..... What would God do with an old uninhabited earth?....it makes no sense on any level.... Especially, in a scriptural context


Last edited by Anthony C.; Tue Jan 09, 2018 9:36 PM.
Re: Paul on a Young Earth [Re: Tom] #54687
Tue Jan 09, 2018 11:47 PM
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Anthony, I hear you and agree. I think it is only fair to say that not all Christians who believe in an Old Earth believe in evolution; many of them believe in a literal Adam and Eve. I believe they are sincerely wrong, but....
I will also state that years ago I bought into an Old Earth as a fairly young believer out of ignorance. Mainly because a scientist from NASA came to our Church and preached on Genesis. He did not say anything definite, but he seemed to believe that the six days of creation were compatible with 'big bangs". I thought God could very well have used big bangs to create. Back then, I was not mature enough to understand some of the ramifications of this view. Similarly to how at that time I was a Dispensationalist simply because that was the only view I heard about.

Tom

Re: Paul on a Young Earth [Re: Pilgrim] #54688
Tue Jan 09, 2018 11:48 PM
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Pilgrim, yes I read that article some time ago. It is a good read.

Tom

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