13 August 2007

In the beginning ...

God created the heaven and the earth. (Genesis 1:1)

What an opportunity for God (assuming there is a God who had something to do with the Bible) to reveal himself to us all. All that he needed to do is tell us just when the beginning was. Was it a relatively recent event (like a few thousand years ago) or is the universe immensely old (say 13.7 billion years)?

We had no idea, none at all, about the true age of the universe until the last few hundred years. All God had to do was tell us that it was really, really old -- over a million times as old as nearly everyone thought it was. That would have been some impressive evidence for the God of the Bible.

But the Bible's God is a young earth creationist. For although the Bible's begats do not provide a clear creation date (though many believers believe that they do), they do provide a range of possible dates. The universe (if you believe in the Bible) is 5500 to 7500 years old.

So right from the start we know the Bible is wrong. The universe is about 2 million times older than the Bible says that it is.

39 comments:

agnostic said...

Well that's why many Christians are now saying that the "day" in the genesis doesn't really mean "day" but a long period of time, it just shows how Christians are realizing that some stuff in the bible are wrong.

James said...

Steve,
While I agree the bible suggests a young earth, I don't think the list of begats can be used to determine an upper limit on the age of the universe. The events of Genesis 1 clearly transpire prior to the existence of Adam.

Jason said...

Hebrews 4:1-4, regarding the seventh 'day', strongly suggest the days of creation weren't literal 24-hour days.

agnostic said...

So Jason, how long do u think the "day" was?

Jason said...

No idea. :)

agnostic said...

Fair enough ;D

DRSimrak said...

I've read some interesting stuff on this blog. What amazes me is the amount of time spent disputing the notion of God. In reality the idea of disputing the notion/existence of God isn't that shocking. Sometimes you just choose not to believe and that's the end of it. The problem I have found though is the faulty logic used to "prove" there is no God.

It is ridiculous to state that God does not exist because evil exists because for there to be evil there needs to be good. For good to be established there needs to be a law. For there to be a law there must be a law giver. Which brings us back to the beginning.

Then people will take the Bible to disprove the Bible. I guess I can sympathize with this except that even in this article the logic seems fuzzy and ill-gotten.

Firstly, you cannot prove a negative. This is simply the way things work. What you can do is prove the opposite. This post sets out to disprove the creation account set forth in the Bible rather than to prove evolution.

Sadly from the get go the argument is rendered useless. Why not just say, "I don't believe in God because I don't want to" and just be done with it?

In regards to science I would hard stake my life on it.

By the way, Charles Darwin said that the fossil record would bear out evolution and we still haven't found the missing link.

We recently discovered that the universe is expanding. How does that fit into evolution? Doesn't that mean that the earth would have been a lot closer to the sun? If the earth were closer to the sun would it have been able to start life? What about the fact that the sun is shrinking in size as it "burns" up it's fuel? How big would the sun have been?

These questions can go on and on, but the important thing is to know what you believe and why.

It's senseless to try and prove there is no God because you can't. When you try to prove evolution you are left with huge questions of faith such as where did the matter come from that exploded.

I would just offer this piece of advice. Instead of reading the Bible to find what's wrong with it, try reading it to find out why so many people are willing to die for what it states.

zooplah said...

Dr. Simrak, why would anybody who believes the Bible to be the absolute truth read this site?

I admit, I haven't gotten all the way through the Bible. It could seriously use some editing. In basic writing, you learn the three Cs: concise, credible, and correct. The authors of the Bible apparently never heard of those, as demonstrated by how many sentences begin with a conjunction.

Besides, the Bible (as far as I've read) gets old fast: kill the uncircumcised, kill those who work on the Sabbath, kill the children who disobey their parents, kill those who occupy the promised land, kill kill kill. I guess you can't teach an old god new tricks.

Jason said...

The Bible was written in Greek and Hebrew, not English. Do you know enough about the former two languages to understand acceptable sentence structure and verbiage?

McGuire said...

By the way, Charles Darwin said that the fossil record would bear out evolution and we still haven't found the missing link.

Clearly you know very little about fossil creation if you believe that refutes anything.

agnostic said...

Jason
"Do you know enough about the former two languages to understand acceptable sentence structure and verbiage"

Shouldn't the bible be simple and for everyone?

GAD said...

Let me paraphrase;

Sometimes you just choose believe, despite all the evidence to the contrary, and that's the beginning of the insidious mind plague we call religion. The problem I have found is the complete lack of any logic or reason used to "prove" there is a God.

"It is ridiculous to state that God does not exist because evil exists because for there to be evil there needs to be good"

Read your bible, the world was created without evil/sin or death, man brought it into the world, and the world will end without evil/sin or death. I would also point out that before there was a world there was only god and if god is good then by your "faulty logic" evil had to exist with him, but since there was only god, in him. Then there is the paradox that god created everything, there is nothing that he did not create, thus if there is evil, he created it. So you could claim that because there is evil proves there is a god..... The problem of evil is a big issue and has been going on since the invention of god, check out http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Problem_of_evil as a starter. The leading solution to this issue is, that god created a perfect world and a perfect man, but to keep man from being robots he had to give him a choice of following gods will, or not. Man chose not, and god then made the law (after the fact of evil) to teach man and bring him back to god and a world of good without evil/sin or death. Now that's ridiculous!!!

"Then people will take the Bible to prove the Bible" By this "faulty logic" anything written that says it is true is true.........

"In regards to science I would hard stake my life on it."

You stake your life on 100's of times a day. If you don't want to stake your make believe soul on it that's just fine with us!

"By the way, Charles Darwin said that the fossil record would bear out evolution and we still haven't found the missing link."

As is typical, you have absolutely no idea about what your saying.

"We recently discovered that the universe is expanding. How does that fit into evolution? Doesn't that mean that the earth would have been a lot closer to the sun? If the earth were closer to the sun would it have been able to start life? What about the fact that the sun is shrinking in size as it "burns" up it's fuel? How big would the sun have been?"

OMG! Are you frakking kidding me with this!! This is a 5 year old statement, by 8 most of us understand........

"the important thing is to know what you believe and why."

Agreed, yet not one religious fool does!


"It's senseless to try and prove there is no God because you can't. "

This should read, "It's senseless to try and prove there is a God because you can't. "

"When you try to prove evolution you are left with huge questions of faith such as where did the matter come from that exploded."

When you try and prove god you only compound the issue with the question of where did the god come from who made all the matter that came from the explosion.

"I would just offer this piece of advice. Instead of reading the Bible to find what's wrong with it, try reading it to find out why so many people are willing to die for what it states."

We already know the answer, because men like to do bad things (kill) to other men, both in reality and in there minds, but they don't like it when people do those same bad things to them, but why should it be OK for them to do it others, because they are better then the others and to prove it they invented god to justify it.............. Quite simply really.

Jason said...

Agnostic said: "Shouldn't the bible be simple and for everyone?"

I was asking zooplah if he knew enough Hebrew and Greek to make a case about the improper use of conjunctions.

James said...

I want to address drsimrak's comment of "Sometimes you just choose not to believe and that's the end of it."

I am amazed at the number of people who simply claim that those who do not believe in God are those who don't want to believe in God. In my case, nothing could be further from the truth. I desperately wanted to believe in God and by leaving my religion I have alienated all of my family. There was no tangible benefit for me to leave the religion apart from a desire to know the truth about the world and the universe.
So, my reasons for disbelief aren't due to a desire to not believe, but because of the evidence and logic.

As far as the comment "Why not just say, 'I don't believe in God because I don't want to' and just be done with it?"...doesn't this seem a tad bit hypocritical? Why can't Christians just believe and be done with it? Instead they have to preach door-to-door and send out missionaries and try to get their beleifs in the school system. It's typical of a faith-based belife to try and silence opposing viewpoints, as it makes the faith easier to maintain.

DRSimrak said...

Hey James,
Don't think that just because I believe in God now that I always believed in God. I had to come to that belief.
A lot of people comment that people that believe in God do so blindly, and that is hardly the case. The evidence for God is astounding but as with anything you have the choice for what you will do with the evidence.
I searched and sought after God. I didn't think that maybe one day if I wanted it bad enough it would happen, but I put my heart and mind into finding the truth and knowing it. I have found that truth in Jesus Christ.
Also, if you are honestly interested in the truth, do not equate all religions as the same thing. They are drastically different.
You asked why Christians can't just believe and be quiet about it. The reason for that is because if the Bible tells us to tell all people about Jesus and the urgency is that if we don't, then those who don't believe will end up in Hell.
On the other hand, if you are right than the Christians simply missed out on a lot of fun but there's no after life so it really doesn't matter.
You said in your last line that it is typical of faith-based belief to try and silence opposing viewpoints, so that it is easier to maintain that faith. That's interesting because evolution is also a faith-based belief. Does the same hold true?

James said...

Drsimrak-
Fair enough, you make a good argument. I guess I'm just tired of family and friends always telling me I must not want there to be a God, or an afterlife. For me, at least, religion was a matter of chance, I was born into a family of Jehovah's Witnesses and so that was all I ever knew. To question it would have meant shunning/expulsion, so there was no drive during my formative years to research other religions or viewpoints that ran contrary to Witness doctrine.
Again, speaking as an ex-Witness, that religion tries very hard to limit the outside information its members take in and poses stiff penalties for those who voice opinions contrary to the current established beliefs. On the other hand, I am now free to research whatever I want. I agree that there is much that evolution does not explain regarding how we got here, but at least now I do not have to silence opposing viewpoints; I am free to hear and speak about differing opinions.
You said: "if you are right than the Christians simply missed out on a lot of fun but there's no after life so it really doesn't matter". That's true, I don't feel I'm sinning against God if I don't preach His message (like I did when I was a Witness). However, as I have said, many of my family and (ex-)friends are Witnesses and they refuse to have anything to do with me because I don't share their exact opinions on God and the bible. So, it would be to our benefit if I could persuade them that they are incorrect, so that we could again have a relationship. As it is, most of them have cut-off our relationships before I even had a chance to say a word to them.

James said...

Oops...
I forgot about two other reasons why I feel justified in expousing my opinion.
One, to not do so would be hypocritical. As a Witness, I was taught to "not hide my light under a basket" and to uncover truth and proclaim it to everyone I could. Witnesses pride themselves in having the "truth" (that's what they call their religion). One of their teachings is that Jerusalem was destroyed by Babylonia in 607bc. This is incorrect, yet they continue to insist upon this date. It's not a matter of faith, anymore than believing 2+2=5. It's just incorrect, plain and simple. Since Witnesses, again, claim to value truth, I find it very hypocritical that they disallow conflicting information to be brought into discussions.
Two, being in that religion has caused many of them harm. One Witness I spoke with recently provided a whole list of things they've had to endure as a Witness. She continues to stick with it, despite the abuse, becuase she believes it to be true. Another person I know was sexually molested by another Witness that held authority over them. Another Witness married very young in the belief that sex outside of marriage would have been a greater sin than marrying when they weren't ready to do so. Another pair of Witnesses remained marrie dto each other for years despite the fact that they no longer loved each other because they believed God hates divorcing. Other Witnesses dies from refusing organ transplants and blood transfusions. And that's just people I personally know! To not say anything seems almost criminal.
On the other hand, I recently spent a weekend vacation with my wife's family, most of whom are Catholic. Despite our different beliefs, they do no shun us. We are able to speak from differing viewpoints with them. If they are bieng harmed by following Catholocism, I am unaware of it. So, I don't mind their beliefs or way of life.

DRSimrak said...

James
I'm sorry to hear about your family. I have found that there are a lot of very "religious" people that do things like that without reallying understanding what they are doing.
As I Christian it makes me very angry that people who would claim to know the truth of Christ behave in a way that is contrary to His. Jesus said that there were 2 commands that summed up the law and the prophets. Those commands were to love God with all of our heart, soul, mind and strength and to love others as ourselves.
For me to shun someone because our opinions differ is not showing the love of Christ. So often people who claim to have the truth misrepresent the truth and when that happens, people are left skeptical. Jesus himself said that the world would know the Christians by their love for one another.
As you might have guessed I'm not a JW nor do I agree with their beliefs. Scripturally and logically speaking their position is very difficult to support.
I applaud your honesty in not blinding following something that you know is not right.
If you were to read about the life of Jesus in the Christian New Testament, you would find that He lived in a much different way than many so-called Christians claim.
I would encourage you to not give up your search for truth. I would encourage you to see what the scriptures really say. Read them for yourself and see who Jesus of Nazareth really is.
My hope is that you will really find the truth and the peace that you are looking for.

James said...

Drsimrak-
Thanks for your kind words. We appear to have more in common (our search for truth) than it initially appeared.
Yes, I found the Witnesses championing of "truth" while simultaneously shunning thousands of their ex-members a poor example of love. It seems to run contrary to the story of the good Samaritan (arguably the most popular story in the gospels).

agnostic said...

James i'm also an ex jehovahs witness

James said...

Agnostic-
Interesting. Let's talk. Not sure how to get in touch with you, though...

agnostic said...

well i'm on my space and yahoo :)

David Heggie said...

drsimark said :
> In regards to science I would
> hardly stake my life on it.

Just as well since your understanding of some basic scientific ideas (and indeed some simple statements of fact) is lacking.

> Charles Darwin said that
> the fossil record would
> bear out evolution and we
> still haven't found the
> missing link.

The "missing link" argument is an old, tired one that comes from a complete lack of understanding of the modern theory of evolution. Evolution doesn't progress in a series of discreet steps that can be nicely broken down into links in a metaphorical chain.

It's a gradual thing, with no real "intermediate" things there to find. You may think that evolution says that one day apes turned into something which then turned into humans, and we can't find that something, but that's just plain wrong. You could make a case that the "missing links" are all around you in the hugely diverse human gene pool. But then you probably don't "believe" in genetics either.

> We recently discovered that
> the universe is expanding.
> How does that fit into
> evolution?

How does that have the slightest thing to do with evolution?

> Doesn't that mean that the
> earth would have been a
> lot closer to the sun?

No it doesn't. When averaged out over the immense scale of the universe, yes, the "whole" universe is expanding, like a big balloon. But on small scales (and our solar system is at a very small scale compared to the universe) there's a lot of variation in the "lumpiness" of space, and in these dense regions, gravity plays a big part. In our solar system and indeed in our entire galaxy, the effects of gravity *so* outweigh any of these expanding universe effects, that absolutely no effects of expansion are observable. Certainly none that would have made the earth move noticeably further from the sun in the short while (on universal scales) that it's been in existence.

> What about the fact that
> the sun is shrinking in size
? as it "burns" up it's fuel?

'fraid that's another "fact" you've got wrong. The sun isn't shrinking as it uses up its fuel. If anything, it'll expand as it moves from its current phase of its life cycle (burning mainly Hydrogen) and begins to use up Helium.

Before you go using science to justify your irrational, un-scientific beliefs, at least do a bit of reading on evolution, biology, cosmology, physics etc etc

David

GAD said...

Great site on questions on the Sun (for those who don't get their info from god).

http://www.astronomycafe.net/qadir/asun.html

how much mass does the sun lose and how does it effect the orbit of the earth.

http://www.astronomycafe.net/qadir/q1491.html

Mike said...

You forget, science and law of physics, concept of time .. bla bla bla is irrelevant to God.

Keith said...

In a blog that has grown to this size, a lot of good intentions and misunderstandings are expressed and for some, become excepted as fact.

It's hardly the place place of a post to deal with every instance, but id like to deal with several.

Concerning the length of a day:
Psalm 90:4 tells us that a thousand years is like a day in the eyes of the Lord.

For a text that was written nearly 4000 years ago and accepted on faith, it explains quite beautifully something that we have only begun to understand in the last 100 years, the concept of relativity as it relates to time dilation.

Concerning the 6th day and the 24 hour period.
Does Einstein not tell us that in order for 2 observers to share the same time frame they have to share the same reference frame. I ask until God created man in his own image, how could God and man share the same reference frame. Now on the 6th day, and maybe even the 5th day god and man share the same reference frame and the 24 hour period.

I would like to direct every ones attention to how god measured the passage of time from evening to mornig
and hidden or lost in translation the root words for evening and morning had deeper meanings which implied not so clear or chaos and clarity or organized. This might be thought of as going out on a limb but consider the possibility thats what God was saying
and then reread the first day of creation

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.

Does this describe what happened when the universe was around 300,000 years old when the universe expanded and cooled down enough for electrons to fall into orbit around protons giving off light. Light could not freely exist before this as it would promptly be absorbed by free roaming electrons. Consider the state of the universe in light of the 2nd law of thermo dynamics (the universe tends to a sate of disorder). Before electrons fell into orbits the universe was at its highest level of entropy (disorder) and energy could not be extracted to do work, because of the level of homogenization.

Then as the universe expanded suddenly every ware at once electrons fell into orbits. Matter could condense and form the heavenly bodies that we know. At that instant the universe had the lest amount of entropy since the beginning of the universe. With each successive act of creation, new order came to our universe.

Is it not amazing to consider that each time "God said" and marked the passage of a day was a violated the second law of thermo dynamics, a miracle if you may.

All this is not really to prove God's existence, because the bible warns us that we wont be able to, but to address the attempts to disprove his existence though misunderstandings. Our understanding of the universe has changed many times, and might change again very soon, as we further explore and try to understand God's work.

Keith said...

Dealing with the creation/evolution discussion.
I am not trying to disprove evolution. I'd like to make clear that I believe that evolution doesn't conflict with creation. id also like to say to creationist that It is miss guided to use "ware is the missing link" to disprove evolution, because it fails to address what modern evolution theory tells us about evolution.

To quote from what was posted before me

"Evolution doesn't progress in a series of discreet steps that can be nicely broken down into links in a metaphorical chain. It's a gradual thing, with no real intermediate things there to find".

We define species with the ability of an offspring to reproduce as being the offspring parents that were of the same species. This closely relates to The creationist believes that 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.

Evolution theories tell us that over time with isolated populations, genetic mutations gradually accumulate until members of each population wouldn't be able to produce fertile offspring with members of the other population. While evolution theories are helpful in explaining some of the similarities different species share, remember that when 2 mates come together that the offspring are only able to reproduce if their parents were of the same species and that the offspring even potentially with a mutation is still of the same species.

This is not in disagreement with what the bible tells us that each produce after their kind. There for i state that evolution is not in disagreement with creation.

All this is not really to prove God's existence, because the bible warns us that we wont be able to, but to address the attempts to disprove his existence though misunderstandings.

Andrew said...

I'm somewhat confused as to why Genesis states that God creates the earth and the oceans on the third day, and then creates the stars on the fourth day. I thought that there were stars older than the earth?

crocusj said...

Genesis was written by men who knew nothing of modern science (otherwise Adam, and not some fossil chappie, would have named Tyrannosaurus Rex).Why should the bible be given any credence whatsoever in ageing the Earth? While I read some reasonable Christians on here and talk with many of the same on a personal level, those in the real world with a vested interest in having their voices heard are extreme rejectionists and should not be allowed within ten miles of any progress we might or might not make as humans....they really dont have a good record on promoting or even allowing science or liberal thought.

Jeff Goin said...

DRSimrak,

You say "you cannot prove a negative." That's true. But the Christian Bible makes a number of very falsifiable claims. Those we CAN prove false. The Bible exhorts believers to pray and that answers will be forthcoming. Yet we can show prayer most certainly does NOT work.

There are many other claims made by many religions that ARE verifiably false.

You're right that we cannot say "God doesn't exist" but we can certainly say that specific claims, such as many made by Christianity and Islam, are bunk.

Ask yourself, as I did for years, why doesn't god answer these prayers? Why do we take some scriptures as literal and some as figurative? Why doesn't God reveal himself in some reasonably obvious way? After all, he's the all powerful being. Why be so coy, especially when, according to each religion, 90% of all the earth's inhabitants going to hell? Why do I need some "special understanding" to make sense of these things. So much just doesn't add up. At some point, any reasonable person would question such claims if they had not already been inculcated in it.

Eventually, if you can escape the social and mental hold, it becomes painfully clear that you believe in a fairy tale. But I'd rather know the truth. For example, the evidence for evolution and a 13 billion year old earth is overwhelming. I was amazed. To say otherwise is just like the 15th century churchers who pontificated on the evils of Copernicanism -- the heretical belief that earth doesn't anchor the universe, that it orbits the sun and not vice-versa.

It's tough giving up long-held beliefs, especially when so much social and mental investment rides on them. I didn't like giving up belief in Santa, either, but would rather know the truth.

Michael said...

@ Keith:
Although you seem to have a pretty good grip on physics.. actually, the fact that you seem to have a pretty good grip on the basics of physics and yet somehow take the bible as literal fact is absolutely mind-numbing to me. Sure, Psalm 90:4 may tell us that a day is like a 1000 years.. or it could tell us whatever it liked. That doesn't make it so. That doesn't prove *anything*! My saying so won't change your mind, I'm quite sure, and alas these discussions are mostly fruitless (although I enjoy reading them) But I still feel like I have to say it. It is absolutely stupefying to see how someone could take, again, what appears to be a reasonable grasp on the basics of physics, and turn it into something as moronic as a stroke FOR the validity of Genesis as its written in the bible.

that aside..

What I'd like to make my main point in this, and what is generally my main point, is this: Any form of divine scripture, be it the book of Mormons or the Judea-Christian bible, cannot be taken as literal fact. The reasons are too many to discuss here, but any form of critical reading of these scriptures (not to mention the sources and how it came to be) will reveal the whole thing as dubious and erroneous at best... at its very very best. Most of the time its just plain silly/wrong/malicious/dangerous. And ANYONE who reads it can see this. It is plain as day.

Many will say "why argue?" "belief is harmless. We're all about goodness. We all want peace" etc. etc. etc. "let them believe what they will. Faith is personal" and so on and so forth.
And if that was only the case. I would happily let 90% of the world believe in ferries, ghouls or the flying spaghetti monster. Although I'd have to say, I wouldn't hire anyone who claimed they had seen either of those. .. but that's a different point I guess.
Whats more serious is that we are being run over by these religious nutcases. "Condoms are bad!" Its not just harmless belief anymore. Its death to millions. "Gay people are sick and should not be allowed to marry" The list of *current* issues, issues we face *today* is very long. Just the idea that the theory of evolution still has to fight to stay in schools (and to curb the discussion, its only a theory in name. In reality its as close to a fact as we can reasonably ask. Gravity is often referred to as "the theory of gravity", but you'd have to be pretty numb to dispute its broad validity. )

We cannot sit idly on the sidelines any longer and say "let them believe whatever they want. Its all harmless rubbish anyhow." We have to start fighting back! Not with weapons, but with our words. We (those of us with our reasoning intact) have to start being tougher. I won't say "I respect your faith" anymore. I simply won't. I respect you as a person and all the rights that come with it, but I don't respect your superstitious faith. I just don't. Why is it so that those who are religious can just waltz in and wreck havoc on our society and our world, bible in hand, but when reasonable people try to say "enough is enough" and call them out. We are suddenly "disrespectful" towards their religious beliefs and their fundamental human rights. ..

Sorry for the endless rant.. I guess it dragged out. Got carried away. Mind you, I'm not apologizing for what I've written, I'm just sorry it turned out this long.

PS. Keith, I'm sure I've got spelling errors on my own, but its "everywhere" not "every ware" ..

Tim said...

>>All this is not really to prove God's existence, because the bible warns us that we wont be able to, but to address the attempts to disprove his existence though misunderstandings.<<

All indications are the bible is just another book. I don't believe its god is any more real than allah of the koran or jim smith's angels of the book of mormon. If you want to believe it, fine, but don't extrapolate that on others--its up to you to prove your magical god exists, not me to disprove it.

In fact, I would have much less beef about all this if religious purveyors weren't trying to foist their beliefs into education and elsewhere, especially when it interferes with teaching real science.

www.CelebrationOfReason.com

vlada said...

If the Bible is not accurate on how long the day is, how can we know when not to work, since it clearly says:

For six days, work is to be done, but the seventh day is a Sabbath of rest, holy to the LORD. Whoever does any work on the Sabbath day must be put to death.

Must be put to death man.

But which one is the seventh day in this case, if, as some of believers say, one day lasts for thousand of years... Could it be the whole seventh millennia or so ?

Or is it like, one day for God is many many human years, one day for man is one human day... In that case, does anybody know any person that hasn't, at least once, done some kind of work on Sabbath day, being it Saturday or Sunday. Or any other day... Ridiculous.

We can not prove that there is no God. But we can prove that there is no God as the Bible describes him/her/it :)

audrey said...

Quote, "Hebrews 4:1-4, regarding the seventh 'day', strongly suggest the days of creation weren't literal 24-hour days."

If this is so, then in Exodus 20, are we commanded to work for six million years but the next million years we are to cease from all work under the penalty of death? A day is a day...one revolution of the earth.

passionatereason said...

I'm not really sure if it matters much. It was all in the past.
The past is just a memory of the TRUTH; the future is but a figment of your imagination.
In Reality, the only thing that matters is what you do this moment, and that is the TRUTH.

check out my blog, the post labeled 'in the beginning'. click on the links, for our common knowledge.

Thanx,
Daniel aka: Jesus 2.3

Jeff Goin said...

"If this is so, then in Exodus 20, are we commanded to work for six million years..."

Yes, its nonsensical to take this stuff literally. We don't believe the moon is perfectly smooth, the sun is held together supernaturally, etc.

The earth is 4+ billion years old as evidenced from many scientific and agreeing disciplines.

Catfish2 said...

'In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.' So says the Bible. Scientists say 'everything that exists is a result of the Big Bang when a tiny singularity suddenly exploded and an entire universe of matter suddenly came into existence. Which is harder to believe? And really, aren't they saying the same thing, that all matter was created in an instant from nothing? How? What caused it? Simply put, we just don't know and possibly never will. I submit that science as we know it now did not exist even 50 years ago. It is continually changing as we discover new things. Notice I said 'as we discover' new things. Science and the laws of physics have always existed...they didn't come into existance as we discovered them, and science is continually changing as we continue to make new discoveries. What was accepted as true yesterday will change tomorrow as something new is discovered. Also, man himself has never 'created' anything. We merely make use of the laws of physics and natural materials that have always been there. Science is simply the discovery of what already exists around us. We could have been flying airplanes thousands of years ago if we had only known about the rules of aerodynamics that have always existed.

I don't know for sure if 'God' exists or not. Believe me I wish I did. One thing is for sure...something caused the universe to begin, because the proof is all around us. I think we should all be very careful about putting all our eggs in one basket before we really know for sure what the truth really is.

I have a theory. Every religion I have come into contact with believes they have the only real truth and thus the path to heaven. My theory is, since they all claim to be the only true religion, by default none of them can be. Besides, where is the one true religion/church named in the Bible? They are all the result of people of similar beliefs gathering together and giving themselves a name to differentiate themselves from all the others. The Bible simply says to believe. It doesn't say when to gather or how many times a week or even where...just do it. Keep an open mind, look at the evidence all around you, and question everything. Then believe what you feel in your heart.

AuldLochinvar said...

Actually, catfish, the Big Bang is a most shocking revelation.
It is very different from "In the beginning ..."
It fits T.H.Huxley's dictum that no matter how beautiful a theory is, it can be slain by a single ugly fact. God is described as creating all things in a time-like continuum. To fit the Big Bang evidence, He'd have had to create Time first!
The Big Bang was so named by Fred Hoyle, a brilliant cosmologist who had a more beautiful theory.
The Big Bang says that time is not infinite, but semi-infinite, which is an extraordinarily ugly fact. It means that the Creator cannot have acted "before" the Big Bang, because "before time" is as oxymoronic as "colder than absolute zero".
Nevertheless, the evidence against an infinitely old Universe seems overwhelming.

AuldLochinvar said...

For a start, let's see if there is a description of God that can be tested scientifically:
Islam does it rather well:
"Allah, the Merciful, the Compassionate"

David Attenborough tests it with the Loa loa worm, which destroys the eyes of little children. There are plenty of other horrible organisms, of which even the Ancient Romans knew nothing.
If God created all things, then He is not compassionate. The authors of the ancient scriptures didn't know about that, and attributed the problems to demons.
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About the fossil record. There are three modern books far better than any of those chosen by an ancient council of bishops as their authorised Bible.

They are "Civilisation and Ethics" by Schweitzer, and "The Greatest Show On Earth" and "The Ancestor's Tale" by Richard Dawkins.

Both of these address questions of morality, in terms of what modern science understands. Schweitzer introduces "Reverence For Life" as his own moral code.
Dawkins tells us that the very best fossil record is the DNA that we can now analyse in every organism on Earth. He also gives us reasons to appreciate life and the universe in their own right, not as artifacts of some Being who "loves us".