4.1 Flawed radioisotope-dating process?
If one thinks the radioisotope age dating processes are flawed, all of science would jealously cheer evidence of their flaws. Jealously- because they all wish they had found them! The rewards would be immense. Fame and fortune would follow along with Nobel, Templeton, and other prizes. The flaw finder would re-write much of science. Those who feel sure those processes are flawed should devote sufficient time to understanding the science involved, and then they can make their case. Those who claim the age dating processes are flawed simply because they dislike their results will continue to appear simple minded to the intelligent world. If they go on to give spiritual advice, many will not listen!
Unlike the religious community, the scientific community rewards such endeavors into the truth. The religious community often labels the same scrutiny as sacrilege. Might God have created everything pre-aged?
4.2 Pre-aged or accelerated aging?
For the universe and for the planet Earth, pre-aging should eliminate all time related problems for the religious reader.
If all was created pre-aged, then everything is as old as science claims it to be. For instance, if God were to make a full-grown oak tree in an instant, should one expect it to have growth rings? Would it be well rooted in? If it had no growth rings and if it were not rooted in, it would not be a normal tree and would not survive to continue growing.
Now, if the instantaneously created tree were examined and found to have growth rings and it was in-fact well rooted in, then clearly its age had been distorted in every way; it had been created pre-aged. By any proper measure, its true age the moment after its creation would be the sum of its growth rings. After all, it was created pre-aged. It would be irreverent to claim it was only moments old since God had clearly pre-aged it. Likewise, if God created everything pre-aged during creation, everything would still be the age specified by science today. Science is still correct in its assertion of the ages of Earth and of the universe. Clearly, it is not irreverent for science to assert true ages. It would be impossible for science to prove that the tree, or the universe, was only moments old since it had been pre-aged!
Given that, God is God, it is in fact conceivable that everything was created pre-aged, or that everything experienced age acceleration during creation. This would certainly explain the discrepancies between science’s timing and the Bible’s timing. However, it is also true that God could have created everything a few minutes ago. People could have been preloaded with memories and ancestries, and graves in cemeteries could have been loaded with bones as a part of a legitimate past. Similarly, dinosaurs could have been created dead, rotted, petrified, and buried in stone (Thanks Elizabeth!). These things would certainly be in the realm of possibilities for God. A true god is in control of time. A true god can do anything.
At any rate, God clearly chose to spend some time on creation. Creation was not instantaneous. The real point of contention is, how much time. One might suppose that the use of a week was, for some reason, symbolic. Yet unnecessary symbolism is not very consistent with a true creation story! Couldn’t we as readers of the Bible have been given exact times? Is there ever a good reason for symbolism? Is symbolism sometimes expedient? If the timing is in fact mere symbolism, what does it symbolize?
The best explanation for the time discrepancy will become convincingly clear after a detailed look at the Bible’s chronological creation story. Presented next, it is a much more reasonable explanation than is pre-aging. Yet this explanation shows neither flawed reasoning or an inaccurate creation story. In fact, it makes perfect sense and ends the centuries old dilemma.
4.3 A reasonable view of the creation story’s timing.
Consider that Moses observed creation during six days followed by a day of rest. What he observed was clearly a replay of the creation events. Moses had already lived on the completed Earth well into his adulthood. Doesn’t it make sense that the story’s timing, which is so rigidly embraced by religion, is actually the timing of the story’s display to Moses? Perhaps God really only spent a few hours in total on creation!
How does one know the story was displayed to Moses?
The biblical creation story has an introduction that explains what Moses saw as light became visible at Earth’s surface. God did not describe that scene in his narrative, yet Moses wrote a description. In addition, each creation “day” had one or two scenes for a total of eight scenes in the chronological story. First, Moses wrote each scene’s narrative as spoken by God. Next, he wrote a description of each scene- his own description. His scene descriptions were a bit more elaborate than were God’s narratives. In some cases, his elaboration bordered on inaccuracy- Moses was attempting to add his ancient understanding. He could have elaborated only if he had viewed each “days’ ” scenes.
Aren’t there many things created that are not covered by the story? Couldn’t the story have had thousands of scenes and subsequently, thousands of “days”?
The scenes shown to Moses covered only the most important points of completed creation- only those most essential to the final completion- humans. Sunlight through an eventually clear atmosphere- the air we breathe, water, the land we stand on, food from seed, fish, birds, and mammals, and finally humans are all that is covered.
Where life is mentioned, the timing of each creation scene represents the after extinction life that was let or allowed to remain (let there be). It will become clear that as creation was ongoing, everything unwanted was culled from existence in a timely manner. That which was culled was not allowed “to be.”
Consider this simple analogy. If the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of a large company decides his company shall produce a new product, he normally instructs his staff to handle it. The CEO, by commanding the work be done, has spoken the new product into its eventual existence. The CEO produces his new product by use of his power and authority. Then, he often waits for a time and checks and approves (or disapproves) the various milestones of his products progress. The CEO’s actual invested time is often minimal. Although the CEO has delegated work to others, he is completely responsible for producing the new product.
Now, consider that God is the CEO of everything. Consider the similarities throughout the creation story between God and a CEO. There is even a high-ranking dissenter within God’s “executive staff.”
One does not have to read very far into the Bible to see that God delegates to other heavenly beings- and why would he not? There is direct evidence of God delegating authority to other heavenly beings in the book of Exodus. It would appear that God often leaves his proxies in charge.
What does the Bible say about God’s time?
Biblically, time is at least somewhat irrelevant to God. Note that the time of the actual creation was clearly uniquely God’s time since no human lived during the actual creation. However, the creation story is Moses’ time. To Moses, creation occurred in six days. Now, as per II Peter 3:8; But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. This statement is not an equation. This expression is saying that time, to God, is not relevant. With that said, why would any Bible believer, or at least any New Testament believer, be concerned about the time as listed in the creation story? Yet a simple biblical saying need not be an excuse for what many see as a blatant time discrepancy.
It does not appear that that time is significant to God and in fact, one is said to be ignorant if one thinks it matters. Should those who are content with the accuracy of the radioisotope dating methods be insulted in church? Are those same church leaders who are ignorant of science and of science’s timing equally ignorant of God?
There are eight completion scenes in the creation story. Why was creation displayed to Moses in six days instead of eight? What was the setting for the creation story? What was the creation story author’s perspective? This discussion shall continue to explain the time differences.