My oldest daughter and I had a fun conversation this afternoon. She’s a 4th grader who is super smart and curious. I have a hard time keeping up with all of her questions. In fact, our new game includes her trying to ask me questions that I don’t know the answer to that she does. So she is constantly asking me random questions.
Today she asked me if human beings and dinosaurs coexisted. Then she asked me how old the earth is. As we discussed creation, she had many more questions related to the relationship between the Bible and science.
My own view is a non-committed-open-but-cautious perspective. I tend to hold to a form of the Literary-Framework view which means I read Genesis 1 theologically as a piece of literature. I know others read it differently, but that’s where I’m at. I do, however, see that this literary reading takes the days literally too., though I’m not sure the author’s intention is to communicate a chronological rendition of the creation account. All that is to say that I think Genesis 1 is primarily communicating to us that God created everything out of nothing. It’s not a science text book. I tend to view the earth’s age older than young earth creationists (YEC) but not nearly the billions of years that evolutionists claim. I think things are a bit more ambiguous than some are willing to concede. I’ve read the books on the subject and considered the arguments and simply don’t have a strong commitment to any of them. I’m non-committed, after all!
I’m not convinced that theistic evolution is a good option because it raises many exegetical issues and doesn’t fair well with my understanding of hermeneutics. I know others disagree with that as well.
At any rate, these are the questions I’m left with:
- If God created everything under 10,000 years ago, how do YEC’s explain the many neanderthal fossils that have been found? What of these subspecies of modern human beings? Some of the YEC literature I have read has been less than convincing in it’s explanation as most has simply ignored the actual issue. I read Bones of Contention and found it quite helpful, but still have questions. Since I’m not a scientist, all of the discussion on DNA and genetics and fossils doesn’t make a lot of sense to me, but I’m still left curious (and so is my daughter!!!)
- Were dinosaurs really on the ark with Noah and his family? I’ve read that there are about 700 named dinosaur species, while only about half are based on full skeletons. No matter what number is accepted, there were a lot of them. Were they all babies on the ark? Or eggs?
- Both YEC’s and Old Earth Creationists have a lot of “scientific evidence,” so how in the world are non-scientists supposed to evaluate their presuppositions without getting master degrees? Seriously… how am I, a pastor with a lot of theological training and little science training, supposed to evaluate the scientific side of things? What’s the best book
If you have thoughts and ideas, feel free to share them. If you are a Young Earth Creationist who is convinced that all other views are a sign of apostasy and that families who do not home school are wicked, please refrain from commenting. 🙂
Luke is a pastor-theologian living in northern California, serving as a co-lead pastor with his life, Dawn, at the Red Bluff Vineyard. Father of five amazing kids, when Luke isn’t hanging with his family, reading or writing theology, he moonlights as a fly fishing guide for Confluence Outfitters. He blogs regularly at LukeGeraty.com and regularly contributes to his YouTube channel.