Msg #: 5211 of 5260 Area: ORIGINS Subboard To: All Rcvd: NO Re: (r)creation Similar To Ev

Master Index Current Directory Index Go to SkepticTank Go to Human Rights activist Keith Henson Go to Scientology cult

Skeptic Tank!

Msg #: 5211 of 5260 Area: ORIGINS Subboard From: James G. Acker Sent: 04-28-94 15:46 To: All Rcvd: -NO- Re: (r)creation Similar To Ev Status: Public ------------------------------------------------------------------------ I had to jump in here at some point and indicate that the above "reconciliation" is similar to what Boice called progressive creationism in his book "Genesis: An Expositional Commentary", and to which he gives guarded support. Here's an excerpt (hopefully the right one): Mention of the plants, particularly "seed-bearing plants with trees", creates some problems with the science of paleobotany. So far as we know, only very simple plants existed early -- namely, seaweed, algae and bacteria (ED. NOTE: Yes, he's not a scientist) -- and these are associated with the oceans rather than the land. More complex plants appeared later. The seed-bearing plants mentioned in Genesis are found first in the Devonian period (about 400 million years ago). The first trees appear in the Pennsylvania period (i.e. about 320 million years ago). Again, the Genesis account seems to say that plants appeared before animals, but the fossil record shows that these appeared simultaneously. What can be done with these difficulties? It may be impossible at this stage to give a definitive answer, but two things may be noted. First, the creative acts compressed in Genesis 1:11 did not necessarily take place all at one time. They could have taken place over a fairly long period in which grasses could have come first, followed by fruit trees. Second, most of the geological record is derived from marine rocks. Therefore, it does not necessarily give an accurate picture of what may or may not have existed on land. One does not really expect to find fossils of large land plants in such beds. As time goes on there may well be additional light on this particular period of earth's development. _The fourth day_. Light had been reaching earth since the first day of creation; it was through its influence that the vegetation created on day three was enabled to appear and prosper. But now the skies cleared sufficiently for the heavenly bodies to become visible. It is not said that these were created on the fourth day; they were created in the initial creative work of God referred to in Genesis 1:1. But now they began to function as regulators of the day an night, "as signs to mark seasons and days and years" (Genesis 1:14). _The fifth day_. On the fifth day God began to create living creatures. The word "create" (bara) is used here for the first time since verse 1, probably indicating a _de novo_ act of God, unrelated to what had been done previously. Earlier, God is said to have "separated", "made", and "formed" various things. The land itself is said to have "produced" vegetation. Not so with the birds and sea creatures! These were created by God and now began to fill the earth that had been prepared to receive them. On this day too we have problems with the fossil record, as Young and others recognize. But these are not overwhelming. Young writes, "The fact that many marine invertebrate animals such as corals and trilobites appear in the fossil record prior to land plants implies a contradiction between Genesis and geology. We must, however, keep in mind the incompleteness of the plant record and our lack of knowledge as to the exact limits of the categories described in verses 20-22. It is important to point out that the major groups in view here, that is, birds, most fish, swimming reptiles, such as crocodiles or the extinct mosasaurs, flying reptiles like pterodactyls, seals and whales, do appear later in the fossil record than most land plants. As a generality such is the case. Birds first appear in the Jurassic period (ED. NOTE: I forgot where Archaeopteryx first occurred -- I assume that's what he's referring to here), fish are well-developed from the Ordovician onwards but proliferate in the Tertiary, complex marine and aerial reptiles are Mesozoic, and large swimming mammals are Tertiary." (2) (2) "Creation and the Flood", p. 130. Young, as most other progressive creationists, allows for some overlap of the creative days. [And I just wanted to point out that if you don't try to interpret Genesis 1 literally, you don't have to attempt any of this! You can just let the story confirm God's creative power.] _The sixth day_. One of the best arguments for the days of Genesis 1 being periods of long duration is the amount of creative activity recorded as having taken place on day six. God created land animals, divided into three general categories: livestock (that is, animals capable of being domesticated), creatures that move along the ground (the reference is to animals such as squirrels, chipmunks and woodchucks, and may include reptiles) and wild animals (that is, those that could not be domesticated). Many categories are involved because each is said to reproduce according to "their kinds" (plural).


E-Mail Fredric L. Rice / The Skeptic Tank