What happens when a Christian goes to college and is taught something that contradicts Scripture? As Christians we should base our worldview on the Bible, right? Well, it seems that more often than not, Christians who are taught something as fact, even if it contradicts the bible, will take that teaching as truth and begin to either question the Bible or attempt to force the teaching into the Scripture.
To push back against something that is taught as fact (science) because it contradicts God’s word gets you labeled as ignorant or one who does not believe in science. Many of us do not know how to respond to that. We have this information that we are told is a scientific fact on one hand and the Bible on the other, and they seem to contradict. If the “science” seems to contradict the Scripture people tend to accept the “science” as fact instead of questioning it. After all, the scientific method of hypothesis, experiment, observation, repeat is a pretty solid approach to discovery.
This creates a dilemma for the Christian. They believe the Bible is true but are also told some information as scientific truth. Where do they go from here? They don’t want to look like they are uneducated or weird so they attempt to reconcile this “science” with the Bible. Since the two typically cannot be reconciled, the Christian oftentimes, maybe without realizing it, proceeds to conform/interpret Scripture based on the so-called scientific facts. In other words, they begin to conform their worldview to the information they are taught. If the Bible is the inerrant infallible word of the Creator of the Universe, why would we think the ideas of man trumps it?
The problem is, not all things that are called scientific are based on scientific research. Sure there is research, but the conclusions drawn may be based on bad research or incorrect interpretations. Even worse assumptions and giant leaps are made to land on conclusions that have absolutely no basis in true science.
As an example, a friend and I had a conversation with a young man who said he was a Christian and was a self-proclaimed theistic evolutionist (the belief that God used evolution in the creative process). Some of his objections to a literal 6 day Creation were as follows.
- The Hebrew word for “day” can mean a span of time so the Bible does mean a literal 24 hour day, in Genesis Chapter 1.
- When Cain was banished, after murdering his brother, he found a city full of people that had to have existed before Adam and Eve.
- Carbon dating has proven the Earth is millions of years old, not just thousands.
Each of these objections are unnecessary attempts at forcing evolution into the Creation narrative in Genesis.
The Hebrew word for “day” is “yom”, which can mean either a single 24 hour day, or a longer period of time. When yom is referring to a longer period of time, that longer period of time will be defined. Let’s look at an example.
Genesis 1:3 Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. 4 And God saw the light, that it was good; and God divided the light from the darkness. 5 God called the light Day, and the darkness He called Night.So the evening and the morning were the first day.
If “yom” was stated without defining the period of time it was referring to, we could assume the meaning sas One 24 hour day. However, in the example above, we see it is actually defined as the “evening and the morning were the first day(yom).” There is clear gramatical evidence that Genesis is speaking on one 24 hour day. We see this pattern continue throughout the Creation narrative.
“…the evening and the morning were the second day.” Gen. 1:8
“…the evening and the morning were the third day.” Gen. 1:13
“…the evening and the morning were the fourth day.” Gen. 1:19
“…the evening and the morning were the fifth day.” Gen. 1:23
“…the evening and the morning were the sixth day.” Gen. 1:31
As confirmation, as if any was needed, we can look at Exodus 20 10-11, when God gave the Ten Commandments to Moses.
- Exodus 20:8-11
- “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates. For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it.”
“Yom” is the word that was translated into “day” here as well. If we force the word in Genesis 1 to mean a long period of time, maybe we should do it here as well. If so, it would read, “Six millions of years you shall labor” or “Six very long periods of time”, but this isn’t the most interesting point to see here. In this text God is actually speaking about the creation process and here He calls those days in Genesis, Days, as in one 24 hour day. Even if a case could be made that “yom” in Genesis could mean millions of years, it would be very difficult to reconcile that with Exodus 20.
This objection is based on a false statement. The Bible does NOT say Cain went out and found a city full of people. Let’s read it. We will pick up where God confronted Cain about the presence of his brother and Cain claimed not to know. Be sure to pay close attention beginning at verse 16.
And He said, “What have you done? The voice of your brother’s blood cries out to Me from the ground. 11 So now you are cursed from the earth, which has opened its mouth to receive your brother’s blood from your hand. 12 When you till the ground, it shall no longer yield its strength to you. A fugitive and a vagabond you shall be on the earth.” 13 And Cain said to the Lord, “My punishment is greater than I can bear! 14 Surely You have driven me out this day from the face of the ground; I shall be hidden from Your face; I shall be a fugitive and a vagabond on the earth, and it will happen that anyone who finds me will kill me.” 15 And the Lord said to him, “Therefore, whoever kills Cain, vengeance shall be taken on him sevenfold.” And the Lord set a mark on Cain, lest anyone finding him should kill him. 16 Then Cain went out from the presence of the Lord and dwelt in the land of Nod on the east of Eden. 17 And Cain knew his wife, and she conceived and bore Enoch. And he built a city, and called the name of the city after the name of his son—Enoch. 18 To Enoch was born Irad; and Irad begot Mehujael, and Mehujael begot Methushael, and Methushael begot Lamech. 19 Then Lamech took for himself two wives: the name of one was Adah, and the name of the second was Zillah. 20 And Adah bore Jabal. He was the father of those who dwell in tents and have livestock. 21 His brother’s name was Jubal. He was the father of all those who play the harp and flute. 22 And as for Zillah, she also bore Tubal-Cain, an instructor of every craftsman in bronze and iron. And the sister of Tubal-Cain was Naamah.
You will notice that the narrative says nothing about Cain finding an inhabited city. What it says is that Can dwelt in the land of Nod and he “knew” his wife, NOT that he found a wife. The Bible continues and says that he “built” a city, not found a city.
Conclusion: Cain took his wife with him to nod and he built a city where there was no other city.
There is another objection that will sometimes arise. If Genesis is true, then Cain married his sister which contradicts the prohibition of incest. God did not give the command to not marry close relations until later. See Leviticus 18:7-18. In the beginning, Cain marrying his sister would not have been a violation of God’s command. In fact, God commanded them to fill the earth when there were only 2 humans, so it was God’s plan for sisters and brothers to marry, for a time. It sounds gross to us now but it was perfectly normal in the beginning.
I am not a scientist but it doesn’t take a PhD to see that there are some basic problems with this, as far as being evidence to refute the six days of creation.
- It is assumed that carbon 14 has always deteriorated at the same rate
- It isn’t accurate beyond around 50,000 years, not millions and yet there has been Carbon 14 found on fossils that are supposed to be millions of years old.
Check out this video for some expert comments.
Let us all be thinkers and not simply robots regurgitating what the world tells us to believe. There is absolutely no need to force the secular view of evolution into the Bible. Molecules to man evolution has no scientific basis and the Bible does not contradict true science.
Until All Hear!