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Quote Forum: The Time & Duration of Creation
This month we’re presenting the second of a two-part series on the subject of origins-in this issue dealing primarily with two questions: How long ago, and over how long a period, did creation occur? Just how literally should we interpret Scripture? While making a sincere effort to preserve the integrity of all sources in terms of context, we readily acknowledge having arranged the following quotations on this ‘hot topic’ (even among Christian believers) with some editorial bias.
“It appears ill-advised…to make an issue out of such a trivial doctrinal point.” -Hugh Ross, astrophysicist, referring to the timing of God’s creative acts, in Creation and Time, p11, ©1994 Navpress-a 187-page book dealing with precisely that subject.
“It pleased God the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost……..to create or make of nothing the world, and all things therein, whether visible or invisible, in the space of six days, and all very good.” -the Westminster Confession of Faith, chapter 4, written 350 years ago.
“After years of experience speaking to many thousands of people, visiting hundreds of churches as well as Christian colleges and schools, I am convinced that the main reason many Christians don’t accept the days of Genesis as literal days is because they believe that scientists have proven that the earth is billions of years in age.” -Ken Ham, Back to Genesis, No. 21, ©1990 ICR
“There is no scientific method available to mortal humans that can positively prove the earth is very old-or very young, for that matter. It is very import-ant to recognize that scientific interpretations are not the same as scientific fact.” -Mark Van Bebber and Paul S. Taylor, responding to the assertion of Hugh Ross in chapter 9 of his Creation and Time that “hundreds of reliable scientific tools demonstrate that the creation (all but modern man) is old”, p105 of their own book Creation and Time, ©1994 Eden Publications.
“God did not create everything in six millions years and rest for another million years and tell us to do the same. This makes no logical sense.”
“Many seekers and nonbelievers, if taught that a young universe is the unquestionable teaching of the Bible, will conclude, under the barrage of compelling scientific evidence for the antiquity of the universe, that the Bible must be false and thus turn away from considering the claims of Christ. Meanwhile, many sincere Christians, trained in the tenets of young universe creationism, will be thrown into consternation, falsely convinced that they must shut out science and its facts altogether to preserve their faith.” -Hugh Ross, in Creation and Time, p102, ©1994 Navpress
“I’m embarrassed to admit this now, but it was a big deal back then, I used to believe that Adam and Eve were literal, historical persons.” -Dan Baker, referring to the period just before he rejected Christianity out-of-hand, in Losing Faith in Faith: From Preacher to Atheist, ©1992 Freedom from Religion Foundation, Inc.
“…there are an awful lot of Christian moderates out there who wholeheartedly accept evolution. They are valuable allies in our fight against creationism; we shouldn’t be too quick to write them off.” -Tom Flynn, editor, in the Secular Humanist Bulletin, Summer 1995
“My first tiny step away from fundamentalism was not to discard the historicity of Adam and Eve… but to realize that it shouldn’t matter to me whether other Christians held it historically. I could still fellowship with these liberal Christians. Sounds silly, but that was a big step in the direction of tolerance. Finally, at the far end of my theological migration, I threw out all the bath water and discovered there is no baby there. There is no basis for believing that a God exists… To my list of religious metaphors, which included the Prodigal Son and Adam and Eve, I now added God. That made perfect sense.” -Dan Baker, referring to the period before he rejected Christianity out-of-hand, in Losing Faith in Faith: From Preacher to Atheist, ©1992 Freedom from Religion Foundation, Inc.
“In six days the Lord made heaven and earth, but on the seventh day He ceased from labor, and was refreshed.” -Exodus 31:17b, NAS Bible
“If we question the days, when it is so obvious from the language what they mean, then why not question the resurrection?” -Ham, Back to Genesis, No. 21, ©1990 ICR