Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Parenting: Do your children believe God created the earth?

                                    By Ada Brownell

The following is an excerpt from my book, Imagine the Future You, a motivational Bible study for youth.
Belief in God is essential to having contentment and success in our tomorrows, so along with other success tips and training in my latest book, I included evidence for faith in our Creator and the Heavenly Father who loves us.
This is a section from Chapter Eight: Imagine God Changing Your Future.

Dating methods are being challenged by some of today’s Christian scientists.

 The potassium-argon dating method, which dates the Earth’s age in billions of years, is said by scientists to be valid because of the amount of time needed to make evolution seem reasonable, say textbook authors Emmett L. Williams, a former metallurgical engineering professor at Virginia Polytechnic Institute, and George Mulfinger Jr., a physics specialist (authors of Physical Science for Christian Schools). [1] The dating method, however, assumes no argon was present when the rocks were formed. Yet, when volcanic rocks known to have been formed in 1800 to 1801 were tested, their age was said to range between 160 million and three billion years!

The radiocarbon dating method also is challenged by Williams and Mulfingers, who say it is unreliable because the calibration curve cuts off at about five thousand years ago and because the amount of carbon-14 in the atmosphere does not remain constant and appears to be continually increasing.

But suppose scientific dating is correct. It does nothing to undermine faith in God. Many Bible-believing Christians accept a very old Earth.

Often people try to make the Bible say something it doesn’t. The Bible doesn’t say the Earth was created in six twenty-four-hour days, although some people believe it was. Neither does the Bible say when “the beginning” was.

Here are some Christian ideas about the days of creation:
 Twenty-four Days of Re-creation: The belief there was a creation before Adam that was somehow destroyed. (This idea leaves a gap of time between Genesis 1:1 and Genesis 1:2.)
Age-Long Days of Creation: The belief that creation occurred over six different ages that could have been thousands of years in length.
 Revelatory Days of Creation: The idea that the days had nothing to do with creation but with the amount of time God took giving Moses, the writer of the Book of Genesis, information about creation.
Twenty-four-hour days of creation: The belief that God literally created the Earth and all that is in it in six twenty-four-hour days, as we know days.

So when Genesis says, “So the evening and the morning were the first day,” “The evening and the morning were the second day,” and so forth until God rested on the seventh day, the length of time can be interpreted several ways.

One thing that makes me believe in a young Earth is population. Scientists use the “population J curve” to show exponential growth of the number of humans. The “J curve” is any system that grows by doubling—one, two, four, eight, sixteen, thirty-two, etc., or geometric growth.

Experts estimate the world’s population was two hundred million in 1 AD and population continued to double and double until 1850—the curve of the J— when eight hundred million people lived on the Earth. Estimates and censuses showed two billion by 1930, three billion in 1960, four billion in 1976, five billion in 1990, six billion in 2002, and an estimated seven billion in 2011.

It took nearly two thousand years to quadruple the number of people from the time Jesus walked the earth but only eighty years for the population to grow from one to two billion between 1850 and 1930 and twelve years to grow a billion between 1990 and 2002. The US Census Bureau estimated the world population to be 7.073 billion in 2012.

 This increase is despite diebacks because of disease and epidemics, natural catastrophes, and wars. In my mind, there is no way man could have been here millions of years. Again, science uses millions of years to make evolution seem plausible because we can’t see any evidence for it in a lifetime of one hundred years.
 But the length of time that it took to create the Earth is not exceedingly important. What is important is that we know and believe Genesis 1:1, that “in the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.”
The whole world’s scientific thought constantly changes and often contradicts what scientists thought was solid evidence. On the other hand, the Creator and his witness never change and will never be outdated.

[1] Bob Jones University Press, Greenville, SC, 1974, 271.