Leave room for God

Sometimes science claims to affirm the Bible, but itís a facade that actually denies the truth of the Bible. And sometimes Christians feel they need to establish technical evidence to support a supernatural event. Itís great when itís there but letís allow room for an all supernatural God to do it His way. That is just a reminder of what we really know, but then I add a different take on Creation, and that is food for thought.

Created: 2009/09/26. Updated 2012/01/10.

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A very bad example

I saw a television program claiming that ďScience confirms the BibleĒ. It discussed the events that happened during the Exodus under Moses. Basically a volcano erupts in Northern Africa and spews red mud into the Nile which explains the Nile seemingly turned into blood. This drives out the frogs and hence the plague of frogs is explained. The frogs die and flies breed up and hence the plague of flies. Volcanic dust in the atmosphere explains dramatic weather effects that explain other plagues and so it goes on until a tsunami wipes out the Egyptian army that is pursuing the Israelites. It was just one long sequence of natural disasters.

This is actually an attack on the Bible because it suggests that no God was required and the Israelites simply embellished the account of these events to put God in it. Many of the details of the events are incorrect in this presumed scenario, and the fact that everything happened when Moses commanded it and stopped when Moses commanded it is ignored. By contrast, creation scientists take great pains to ensure that all the details in the Bible are consistent with what they propose. Creation scientists have also debunked the claims of this program and others like it and effectively put God back into event.

A great encouragement

Problem: We measure the distance to a star as 100,000 to millions of light years. The speed of light is a proven constant. So the star is at least 100,000 years old. But the Bible describes a young earth.

A New Physics is being proposed based on data that clearly suggests our galaxy is close to the centre of the universe. It points out that if all the mass were initially at the centre and expanded (stretched) outward, then based on the theory of General Relativity, time would be running slower at the centre than the extremities. So time runs faster the further we go away from the centre and so there is time for distant star light to reach the earth even though the earth is young.

Quite separate from this New Physics, the recognition that the earth is close to the centre of the universe is tremendously encouraging. Itís a great thing for those who stuck to the Bible when science observed stars that seem to be thousands of millions of light years away, seemingly inconsistent with a young earth creation. But the lesson learned is not General Relativity. It is that everyone was making the wrong assumption. The speed of light was an observed constant but the speed of time was not! How obvious in hindsight. I donít think God wants us to wait for our understanding but to trust His word now.

I donít know if this new physical model for the creation of the universe will explain everything to manís satisfaction. The last guess was the ďBig BangĒ, and it certainly failed, yet many have placed their trust in that. I even made up my own model of creation in Appendix C4 of Page-1-God, the COI universe model. The trick is to know that God wanted us to see this awesome universe as a reflection of His glory, so He created it in a way that we could see it all and be amazed. He did it and scientists still have not figured out how Ė no surprise.

Cutting through the smoke

A question occurred to me: We can now observe wobbles in relatively near stars that suggest some planetary body is orbiting them. Scripture only declares that God created the stars. Why would God create planets around stars that we can never see? God did name each star. Guess what? I donít care! But some people get threatened because evolutionists tout that our planet is not unique. Of course this is totally unproven. Donít worry. Donít be threatened by the world or feel we have to react to every suggestion it makes. Actually, itís evolutionists that are being threatened and are desperately trying and put their spin on anything they can.

Perhaps some future physics will predict how this could be a natural side effect if a sun was to be created in some special way. Perhaps we will discover that these planets are just failed suns in some un-balanced binary system. (Perhaps creation scientists already have an answer.) However it turns out, God really did not spend any great effort over it. Our earth is special because God spent an extraordinary amount of effort over it.

Another title I considered for this section was ďTrust God Ė Let Him set the agendaĒ. It seems that a lot of what the world suggests is just a smoke screen. Donít look to this site, but to other creationist sites like CMI where excellent, Bible first scientists cut through the smoke.

When physics fails

Iím encouraged by modelling and physical properties that reveal that God does not have to work too hard for things to be the way they are. But more so I am encouraged that although things seemed wrong, we are increasingly seeing that the Biblical account is reasonable. Long ago I got to the place where I did not need understanding because I knew God did it. The world wonít accept our proof anyhow. That doesnít mean that we donít try, because clearly some people are turned back to God when they see that Genesis is technically sound.

I offered up some models of my own to help transition people from worldly to Godly thinking. Are all my Models correct Ė No! But I actually got surprised in how many ways God has got it covered and I discovered some things along the way Ė that His purposes were far beyond a declaration of the mechanical details.

But always hang on to that picture of the Israelites crossing the Red Sea with a wall of water on each side. No level of physics will explain this. Nor the miracles of Jesus. There were a million or more eye-witnesses that walked between the walls of water and it was committed to writing within a few years.

Pushing the limits

In general I get excited to hear how various modelling shows that the events of Genesis are quite plausible. I consider this an encouragement to the body, but we are pushing the limits a little? See if you can see what I mean about the flood event. God just described water rising for about 6 months and then the ark rested on a mountain, then the waters receded for about 6 months. But here is a small sample of what we postulate:

Some of it is really good deduction of the side effects of the flood. But this is what worries me about where we are headed: are we reducing the flood to a series of natural events? What if I suppose that a meteor of just the right size hits the earth, and stirs up the molten core raising the temperature under the mantle? Itís easy to suggest that this would cause continents to sink and sea floors to rise for a period of time. At the end of the day I have reduced God to a meteor strike and everything is a sequence of natural disasters.

Do you see how little room we have left for God? Creation scientists have discovered things about the mechanics but we have lost a focus on Godís role. Before you know it, someone will suggest that benevolent aliens studying our planet saw the meteor coming and warned the residents to build boats. (If someone does do this, itís not the fault of creation scientists. The enemy will always find a way to put another spin on things that affirm the Bible.)

Telling it a different way

In this telling I choose to put a focus on Godís role and Godís heart to care for the ark. As we focus on His role, a range of questions start to evaporate. For example, the technical details about how to feed all these animals. Yes, God told Noah to bring all sorts of food on board and the ark was very big, but once we grasp Godís close presence and concern for the ark and its passengers, then to me, this is a non-issue. Jesus miraculously multiplied food when the people with him were in need, so why not on the ark? Letís not just defend the technical feasibility of the flood, but letís also reveal Godís heart.

More on the miraculous

In several places in the Gospels and Acts we see miraculous transportation. There is the transportation of Philip in Acts 8:38-40. When Jesus got into the boat after he walked on the water, it suddenly reached its destination (John 6:20). Of course, this also happened when Jesus appeared to his disciples after he was raised (John 20:19, John 20:26). Scripture does not make a big deal about these transportations. It was a big deal the first time Jesus appeared, but that was because his disciples thought he was dead. It was not the second time.

So what was my purpose in talking about transportation? Well, itís natural in the New Testament. I have heard personal testimony and read accounts of this in recent times. So now letís step back to the flood. Do you think God had angels herd the animals across continents to get all the animals in place just before the flood, or do you think He transported them? And after the flood, couldnít God transport them to all corners of the earth. This does not deny that natural migration was one mechanism, but it takes the pressure off. We donít have to find natural land-bridge explanation. We have a supernatural God. God did not stop being supernatural after day 6. Itís the evolutionists who have to constrain themselves to the natural!

Similarly, when we consider the scattering of mankind at the Tower of Babel. Canít miraculous transportation be seen to be at work to spread isolated groups of people throughout the earth? We know that languages are likely to change under such circumstances with small isolated groups in different environmental conditions. But God said that He mixed up the languages. Well I believe He imparted a language to Adam and Eve and this is the language in use at Babel (Genesis 11:7-9). But we see in Acts 2 that God was able to impart new languages temporarily and instantly.

These points are not contentious nor really even debated. But sometimes I feel that we are hesitant to claim miraculous intervention. I think this is an attitude that comes from the idea that everything was complete at the end of day 6 and God shut up the shop. There are probably other and worse reasons, mainly because most people in the West are so unused to seeing miraculous intervention.

Again, back to the flood. Genesis 7:11 says that, ďall the fountains of the great deep burst forth, and the windows of the heavens were openedĒ. Now I see the day 2 events, where the waters above were separated, as a creation of an atmosphere and this became the mechanism by which water rained down from above. So obviously I and most people do not require some water layer ďup thereĒ which opens and closes. Similarly I do not require great underground water supplies to have suddenly burst forth. Both phrases indicate a great outpouring of water, both welling up and raining down. Was this miraculous multiplication or the sea floor rising to redistribute what is there? Was there more water then than now just as Mars has lost all its water? I donít know. Recent discoveries have revealed large masses of water beneath the earthís crust in places. Could that have been part of fountains of the deep? Yes, but who cares? It started supernaturally and ended supernaturally and God supported the ark at each step. The earthís surface is presently about 2/3 water with enough water to cover the surface to a depth of several kilometres if the earth was flat. Our God created this and can upgrade it any time!

Science and the miraculous

On one hand we have creationist scientists who reveal scientific evidence that demonstrates Biblical truth. In this case evidence that shows a world-wide flood occurred. The evidence is that it occurred but the reason for the flood is still supernatural.

Then we have secular scientists who claim that the evidence denies a world-wide flood. These scientists deny even the possibility of a world-wide flood, and using present day observations they are correct because there is insufficient water based on the current topology. The funny thing is, they also say that the Martian landscape was shaped by water erosion but there is no water.

Scientists have developed an attitude that it is their job to understand the physical world. To some extent I agree. But when their faith position denies that there is a God then they must filter all data within that understanding. So their faith causes them to ignore contrary evidence.

In the context of this article, understanding the physical world is cool but denying that supernatural causes exist is not cool. Everyone in the world has had their thinking coloured by the idea that we can explain everything Ė if not now, then one day. But I encourage believers to entertain the supernatural option and not be tricked into thinking you have to explain everything in the natural. This is not burying your head in the sand and admitting scientific ignorance. It is just what I said, namely allowing God to be God. Then examine the physical evidence in that light and see how the data is consistent.

A change in tact

This article will now take a different tact. It is no longer about whether the flood occurred, but about the side-effects. I challenge some of the current assumptions not so much to prove them wrong, but to give support to options I have proposed, primarily the day/millennium scaling of creation.

A bland creation

So why donít we picture the flood happening so simply? Just add water. The reason is because we are trying to explain all the non-bland stuff.  You see, the 6 day creation was so blindingly quick that none of the complex geological layers would have had time to settle out, nor could they contain the observed fossil record. Most everyone accepts that God did not plant this fake information, so something real happened to put it there. But there would not have been time for the dust to settle from even one volcanic eruption during the creation days. So at the end of day 6 everything was rather bland. Beautiful, but bland. Hence we have to get everything happening to account for what we see in this complex and intricate world later in the Bible, and the only place is this one year flood. (Now as it happens it does explain a lot, but read on...)

Another model

Perhaps itís time to consider another model that literally takes the pressure off. A thousand year creation day is still young earth, still biblical, given corrections that I propose for a day-8 Adam. It still affirms a global flood and it still needs all the sorts of mechanisms that young earth scientists have established, but without the pressure to explain everything in a single one year flood event. I donít have to recreate the face of the earth beneath the flood waters. The water rose and fell. God did it. Floods, earthquakes and tsunamis in the preceding millennia also contributed. I picture these as after effects of day 3 where dry land appeared, as things settled down. By the time God was ready to create Adam everything was stable, although even today, with some exponential decay rate, we still get the occasional earth movement.

So, is any creation scientist brave enough to go against the creation establishment and consider this model? Iím not excluding the existing model, but offering another one. Importantly, Iím not offering it to solve scientific dilemmas, but because I see the precedent in the Bible and in the nature of God. If it is God, then I would expect it to simplify creation science. I think it does but I would like to see other people confirm it. (See Foreword for gecko confirm.)

Creation bypasses Science

A 6 day creation is so fast that any application of science is denied. Ití so fast that it must have all been supernatural Ė it was all God! You canít argue Ė it certainly leaves room for God! And Iím sure that was part of Godís plan. But if you play with the speed of time, then funny things happen...

So perhaps there is room for science to peek into the creation process. But how can I say that and still call myself a God first, science second, creationist? Well, it is a big step and you have to read the Game Start articles to see all that is involved, but in hindsight, it is way more than a creationist debate. You see, I think Godís highest purposes in the Creation account of Genesis 1 and 2 is represented by ďGodís TimetableĒ in Page-1-God, and the mechanical details of creation are secondary.

So although it seems that I acknowledge some room for science to affirm creation, I actually relegate it to a background issue. This is because God is releasing His Timetable to draw our attention to His purposes for all time and the significance of the times we are in today. The creation debate, boys and girls, just moved out of the science realm and has become an up front and personal revelation from God to man of what everything, all of heaven and earth, is about.

The world wonít listen

The world demands understanding yet even when you give them Biblically consistent science, they still reject the blindingly obvious option that God did it. Biblically consistent science is a great encouragement for those who believe or want to believe. But can we relax a little and simply say that God did it? That there is plentiful evidence that it did happen. I donít want to appear to be picking on those who have a gifting and calling in the scientific realm. But we cannot ask people to trust God because our science has confirmed it. He is a supernatural God. He is to be trusted.

The very fact that there is so much evidence for a recent creation and there is so much that science clearly cannot explain because it goes against what popular science predicts, proves that a supernatural process was in place. That means God is in the equation!

For all the people that are gifted technically that are showing how various phenomena touted as indicators of long ages can be explained in a young-earth time scale Ė keep up the good work! Read my articles and perhaps you will see other mechanisms and side-effects explained (Chapter 20 and B2 in Page-1-God). And guess what Ė I think you have already won, and that the balance of good science clearly supports the Bible. So why hasnít the world turned from its wicked ways? You can give them gospel truth and scientific truth, but itís their choice and even God wonít take away their free choice.

Letís do the maths

Theoretical Physics now-a-days seems to be able to make maths say whatever it wants. Perhaps this maths will reveal something at the heart of the issue.

Equation 1:

In this equation The Curses are definitely an addition to BB though they are pictured as bad things. Death is added. Animals, which were also a little bland in that they only ate grass, now change to carnivores. All sorts of nasties and parasites come into existence in both animal and plant forms. Then along comes Noahís Flood that adds all the geological complexity that we see today, even to throwing up even taller mountains and massive canyons.

But I donít think the BB starting point is correct. I cannot find anything in the Bible that God ever does that is bland. Consider these points...

Now ask yourself this question: Did the world get more beautiful through the curses and the flood? I know some people describe predation as ďbadĒ, but who has not marvelled at wild life programs that zoom in on lions and tigers or bears. Who has not marvelled at high mountain ranges and beautiful canyons and river valleys? Well, ití my opinion that God spared nothing when He prepared this world for Adam. If it were possible to make it more beautiful He would have.

So both in the consideration of beauty and blandness something is wrong. It seems unlikely, and even against the nature of God, that beauty could increase or that increased biological and geological diversity flowed from the bad things (TC and NF). So if the BB starting point is wrong we have to question our assumptions. The key assumption that leads to BB is a blindingly fast 6x24 creation. Further, if BB is wrong, we have to question why we are looking at subsequent events like TC and NF to insert extra diversity.

This is not an attack on creationists but a challenge that goes to the root of the issue. Our technical ability has made it possible to focus on mechanical details and postulate many exciting things that enhance the credibility of Genesis. This is done with a desire to strictly uphold the plain reading of the Bible. But something is wrong when we find ourselves painting a picture and process that seems to go against the nature of God. Here are some of your options...

But wasnít my equation correct? Arenít a lot of people trying to explain WYST from BB with TC and NF? This is not an attempt to disprove the classic view but to challenge assumptions that surround it so that a biblical alternative can be fairly considered. What I ask is that you seriously consider what image of God you are projecting, and perhaps consider a different assumption that I have offered.

My equation

I have a different equation that I have come to see at work. A few years ago I never saw this, but as I developed the last section of the Game Start articles dealing with the Image of God, I have come to see things differently. This equation captures some of the essence...

Equation 2:

First we lost access to God and the Garden as a result of Adamís sin. Sin separated us from God and we lost access to the Garden, the Tree of Life, and the close intimate walk with God our Father. Itís all a loss, so itís a negative in the equation. Similarly we lost biological diversity in the flood. The gene pool was reduced. Many animal species died out after the flood and I suspect many unique environmental conditions were also lost, the Garden of Eden being the prime loss. All this was a consequence of manís rebellion.

The paradox

The paradox is that some people who use the first equation 1, to explain the mechanical details, might also agree theologically and emotively with equation 2. That is why I am eager not to appear to be attacking them. If I had looked into Genesis in the same detail and with same zeal as others have, without a revelation of day-8 man, and without a revelation of the Godís Timetable, and without a revelation of Godís heart in the Garden and the Flood, then I would probably have made the same assumptions.

The other paradox is that it seems that I am criticizing those who I most respect and have held true to the word of God when many others abandoned it. But it is really no paradox Ė my arguments are all about the nature of God and the word of God. Who else would be swayed except those who esteem His word? Also, I am not interested in changing the plain reading as much as modifying its presentation so that we project a better image of God and we donít outright ignore the implications of Godís Timetable.

Some closing maths

WYST + Jesus ó> Heaven

WYST Ė Jesus ó> Hell

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