by Rev. Walter Lang · www.creationism.org/lang/
This is a 1982 revision of material published in the January-February 1973 issue of "Five Minutes with the Bible and Science." The original material was divided into a series consisting of 60 devotions, based on the relationship of Bible/Science as covered in the first 11 chapters of Genesis. Some additions are made in this study.
© 1982 by Bible-Science Association. FREE to copy for your educational purposes. Mass photo-copying for local classes or church use (not-for-profit) is also okay. But do not repost, publish or add to any compilation or otherwise edit or sell or publish for profit in any way without written permission. Thank you.
Our objective is to demonstrate that the scientific statements contained in the first chapters of Genesis may be accepted as literal fact. There is no need, in the name of science, to contend that statements in these chapters must be regarded as allegory. Supporters of the historical-critical interpretation of these early chapters of Genesis allege the writers used four sources: Jehovah, Elohim, Deuteronomy, and Priestly. Followers of this JEDP theory contend that most of the information contained in these chapters was written much later than is indicated by a literal interpretation. Generally this historical-critical method is followed because it attempts to fit these chapters into a framework which is compatible with an evolutionary model of science. In this study we take the position that true scientific data agree with a literal interpretation of these chapters. Only when the data found in nature are interpreted according to the evolution model does a literal interpretation seem to be in error. When these chapters are accepted as literal fact, a considerable body of science emerges. They serve as an incentive for an in-depth study of science. As this study progresses, it is our hope that readers will recognize the value of this portion of Scripture for scientific study in addition to strengthening Christian faith.
A Science Commission
In Gen. 1:28 we read that God commanded Adam and Eve to "replenish the earth, and subdue it; and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth." This commission was issued prior to the entrance of sin into the world, but it extended to the period after sin had contaminated both mankind and nature, and it still applies today.
We suggest this is a Science Commission. Science is defined in various ways, but today it is generally restricted to something which is experimental, which is repeatable, which can be predicted, and which is falsifiable. What all this amounts to is "subduing the earth." Science permits mankind to use the treasures which God has placed into the earth and in space for its benefit. A proper management of science results from following Scripture.
In a 1967 issue of Science magazine Lynn White, Jr. wrote an article titled "The Historical Roots of our Ecological Crisis" in which he contended that the commission given in Gen. 1:28 is responsible for our present ecological crisis. He claims that in their "subduing," Christians have created ecological problems. Dr. John Klotz, writing in The Ecology Crisis, admits that man has abused nature. However, it does not follow that man ought not to make use of nature, for this would be rejecting all science.
In his book Pollution and the Death of Man, Dr. Francis Schaeffer quotes not only Lynn White but also Richard Means, writing in Saturday Review at approximately the same date. Schaeffer notes that these authors interpret the words "dominion" and "subdue" in Gen. 1:26.28 as giving man license to exploit nature. He refers to the many instructions given to the Israelites regarding living in harmony with nature. Examples include the Sabbatical year—every seventh year the Israelites were to let the land lie idle for rest. Every 49th year was a Year of Jubilee, for the same purpose. Klotz says that White and his followers have not read beyond the first chapter of Genesis. We are not to misuse nature, but we are to use it; that is what science is all about.
Many people in scientific disciplines believe that Scripture is harmful to science. This was emphasized already 80 years ago when Andrew K. White wrote The Warfare Between Science and Religion. We know a professor of biology at a university who wrote the words "God" and "Science" on the blackboard. He claimed that when God was introduced into science, its objectivity was removed. He felt, in the name of science, that he had to keep God, the author of science, out of science. On the other hand, many theologians (and Christian lay people) believe that science has no place in the church. A favorite statement is "The Bible is not a book of science." Both positions have been so firmly entrenched that Christians are shocked to learn that Gen. 1:28 is a science commission.
Writing in Time's Arrow and Evolution, Harold Blum acknowledges that the Second Law of Thermodynamics (also known as the Law of Entropy) is a basic law in the universe. It is contrary to the model presented by evolutionists—that given enough time, everything will automatically improve. But then Blum goes on and says "Time is the hero of the plot." Given enough time the improbable becomes probable, and even virtually certain. This is ascribing to time powers which belong to God alone. Romans 1:25 says that the essence of a pagan religion is worshipping the creature rather than the Creator.
Evolutionists are forced to accept the position proposed by Blum. Since the Second Law cannot be ignored, time is introduced—eons of time. Time is therefore stretched. In 1959 ape-men, said to be man's "missing link" ancestors, were dated at one-half million years. Now, only 11 years later, these "missing link" ancestors are dated at 14 million years. This was reported in an article in a 1980 issue of Time. Within the past 100 years the age of the earth has doubled every 15 years. This is an abuse of time and is idolatry.
But time is valuable. Time was God's first creation. It is wrong to translate the first verse of Genesis as "when the beginning was, God created." The original Hebrew contains no article, for it is such a unique statement that an article is unnecessary. Time is not eternal but was created by God at the beginning.
Time appears to possess two qualities. One quality is that it serves as a flow system — going from one point to another. On the basis of other portions of Scripture it seems that in the next life this aspect of time will cease to exist, for we read in Rev. 10:6 that in heaven "there should be time no longer." Yet, in Isaiah 30:8 we read that the prophet was commanded to write in a book "that it may be for the time to come for ever and ever." Some aspect of time will continue into the next life. An answer to our question may be found in Eccl. 3:1-9. Here we have seven couplet statements: there is a time to kill and a time to heal; a time to weep and a time to laugh, etc. These statements describe the ordering system of time. Time appears to be a basic ordering system throughout the universe. Can you imagine a disorderly God in heaven? Therefore, time as an ordering system will perhaps continue into eternity. Often the proper concept of time is linked with responsibility. Those who believe millions of years have elapsed and millions of years more are still to come and that past, present and future are all alike are apt to lose a sense of responsibility.
Time is a valuable material possession, both as a flow system and as an ordering system. The Psalmist (Ps. 90:12) admonishes us to "number our days that we may apply our hearts to wisdom." The apostle, writing in Eph. 5:16, encourages us to "redeem the time." We are not to waste time for it is more valuable than gold. The science disciplines in general, including those which deal with time, will be improved when we operate with the proper concepts of time.
Trinity in Genesis
We find three references to the Trinity in Genesis 1. The plural word for God (Elohim) is used with a singular verb (bara—create) in the first verse. It would be erroneous grammar to have a plural subject with a singular verb; however, God is three-in-one (I John 5:7.8). This is why we have a plural subject with a singular verb.
The Father is mentioned in the first verse: "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth." In verse two the Holy Spirit is alluded to in the statement "And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters." The Son is referred to in the expression "And God said," for the evangelist writing in John 1:1 identifies the Word of God as being Jesus Christ, the second Person in the Trinity. Another reference to the Trinity is found in Gen. 1:26 where we read "Let us make man."
In the book The Serpent was Wiser, Richard Hanson maintains that the plural use of God as the subject with a singular verb in Gen. 1:1 and in "Let us make man" is merely indication of a majestic God. Or, it indicates that the Hebrews developed their idea of God from the many gods of their heathen neighbors. It is necessary, however, to interpret these plurals in connection with John 5:29. Christ makes the statement that the Scriptures (in Christ's day the Scriptures would be the Old Testament) testify of Him. To discover Christ in the Old Testament requires that we also discover the Trinity.
Some scholars find something akin to the Trinity in the world of nature. In Biblical Cosmology and Modern Science, Henry Morris finds a reference to the Trinity in "space," "mass-energy" and "time." Space is measured in terms of one dimension, seen in two dimensions and experienced in three dimensions. He also finds a threesome in time: past, present, and future. These are interesting exercises, but they do not explain how God can be completely three and completely one at the same time. This is beyond anything in nature and has to be specifically revealed in the Bible.
The expression "The Bible is not a book of science" can be construed correctly. As the Trinity is beyond nature or science, so is Scripture which reveals the Trinity. There is instruction in the Bible which nature cannot reveal and which we cannot learn from what is generally called science. A useful expression is "Give science a little more time and it will catch up with the Bible."
Robert L. Reymond, Professor of Old Testament Studies at Bob Jones University in Greenville, S.C., is author of A Christian View of Modern Science. He says that the word "create" (bara in Hebrew) means not only to make something out of nothing, but it also means to make something the first time. When God created Adam (Gen. 1:27) He formed his body from the dust of the ground, meaning He used preexisting material.
Dr. Raymond Surburg, a retired Professor of Old Testament Studies at Concordia Seminary in Fort Wayne, Ind., emphasizes that bara means to make something out of nothing. This is stated in Darwin, Evolution and Creation and in Evidences for Creation. He quotes Ps. 33:6.9 where we read that the heavens were made by the Word of the Lord (out of nothing) and from Rom. 4:17 where we learn that God called things into being as though they were not. In Heb. 11:3 we read that it is by faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the Word of God (again, out of nothing). Bara has other meanings, e.g., to make something for the first time. The statement in Acts 17:28 that "in Him we live and move and have our being" means that all existence depends on God's thought. It was God's thought, communicated through His Word, which made everything out of nothing, the first time.
Essential to the theory of evolution is the premise that everything has come into being by itself. This is a deliberate attempt to dispose of God. Gen. 2:1 reads: "Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them." This implies that the creation processes were concluded and at that time God instituted preservation processes which we can observe and study. The latter need not be identical to the former.
In Eccl. 1:9 we read "There is no new thing under the sun." This implies that when we read in Gen. 2:1 that at the end of six days the creation was "finished" nothing new has been created since. What about development, or adaptations to the environment? The discipline of genetics reveals the tremendous potential which resides in a single life cell. All the coding for all people who have ever lived or will ever live resided within the sperm of Adam and the ova of Eve. The sperm of all males in the world could be put into one-half a thimble, according to some of the world's leading geneticists, e.g., Theodosius Dobzhan-sky. With our knowledge of modern-day genetics, we realize that it was possible for God to place the potential for all people throughout history into the genes of Adam and Eve when He created them. This includes potential for all races. Thus, Solomon could rightly say in Eccl. 1:9 that there is no new thing under the sun.
From Col. 1:16 we learn that God created also the angels. The Gnostics, against whom St. Paul was writing in the letter to the Colossians, claimed that Christ was not God but only an angel stage, not even the highest of the angel stages. Paul maintained that Christ created the angels. The Greek word for create, which is ktisis, is the equivalent for the Hebrew word for "create" (bara). St. Paul continues in the next verse that Christ holds everything together, or "in Him all things consist." Here we note a distinction between creation and preservation, with Christ in control of both processes.
A similar distinction is made in Heb. 1:2 and 1:3. We read that the Son made the worlds and that He upholds all things by the Word of His power. This again shows that there is a difference between creation and preservation. God's Word does both, but what we operate with today in our sciences is only preservation.
At first reading Ps. 104 seems to be a Creation Psalm. Events of the first five days of Creation Week appear in their respective order except that events taking place on the sixth day (creation of animals and man) are mentioned already in connection with the third and fourth days. As we study the tenses, we find they can be construed as present tense, meaning the Psalm is a Preservation Psalm based on creation.
A problem arises with Ps. 104:30 where we read that God sends forth His spirit and they are created, implying an on-going creation. In Is. 48:7 we read that "They are created now, and not from the beginning." Perhaps this can be interpreted to mean that as each person is conceived, he or she is a soul created new. The physical body is a continuation of Adam's genes, but the soul is a new creation.
In April of 1979 Dr. Robert Cochran, a Catholic priest, testified at hearings on a Creation Bill before the Minnesota state legislature. He stated his belief in a progressive creation, meaning that he believed God is creating through evolution processes. Others say it is immaterial whether creation was an act or a process. But, when Scripture makes a clear distinction between the act of creation and the process of preservation, we cannot accept the idea of a progressive creation process.
Essentially, evolutionists are proving a distinction between creation and preservation. They postulate a world which arrived through processes presently observable—through chance, time, and the environment. None of these forces has creative power. The evolutionist must then retreat and depend on immense periods of time—a time when no one existed to prove or disprove. With today's sophisticated computers these immense periods of time can be simulated, but no power to produce anything new has been discovered in them.
According to the gap theory, the statement in Gen. 1:2 that the earth was "without form and void" indicates a pre-world which was destroyed. In Is. 45:18 we read that God created the world 'not in vain" which leads people to believe that "without form and void" in Gen. 1:2 is a reference to a restoration of a pre-world. A champion of the gap theory is Dr. Arthur Custance who sets forth his theory in Without Form and Void. He reports that people have accepted a form of gap theory since shortly after the time of Christ. It is found in Hayden's Creation and in Milton's Paradise Lost and Dante's Inferno. In modern times it was popularized by Chalmers in 1830 and placed into notes in the Scofield Bible. The theory involves the idea that the pre-world was inhabited by angels and, when some angels sinned and became devils (Jude 6), this pre-world was destroyed. Then, some 6000 years ago God created this present world. Some proponents of the gap theory place prehistoric monsters, such as dinosaurs, and so-called cavemen into this gap period.
The gap theory encounters problems with the Biblical doctrine of perfection. We read in Gen. 1:31 that when God had finished the creation, He beheld everything He had made and it was "very good." God could not have made this statement if a wicked pre-world had previously been destroyed.
The gap theory demands a translation of Gen. 1:2 which goes like this: "And the earth became without form and void" rather than "the earth was without form and void." Custance attempts to prove his translation correct in a very scholarly fashion, but it will not work. The verb is perfect and cannot be made imperfect. He claims that because it is followed by a waw (Hebrew word for "and"), it becomes the imperfect form. However, Frederick Ross demonstrates that a perfect tense remains a perfect tense even when followed by a waw. Dr. Bernard Northrup (Old Testament scholar) also notes that the perfect tense must be translated as perfect tense and that waw does not change this rule. The gap theory has also been refuted by Drs. Henry Morris, John Whitcomb, and Weston Fields. In their books The Genesis Flood, The Early Earth, Biblical Cosmology and Modern Science, and Unformed and Unfilled, they demonstrate that scientifically the gap theory is unnecessary and that exegetically and theologically it is untenable. So-called prehistoric monsters can be explained within a framework of thousands of years.
The gap theory has been accepted by people who accept a fundamentalist position—accepting the Bible as being inerrant, the deity of Christ/miracles, the Noahic flood, and prophecy. Through the excellent teaching of leading creationists, many of these people are now discarding the gap theory.
Some people do not accept Genesis, chapters 1-11, as being literal simply because they cannot believe that God was able to create the universe within a period of six days. Some claim that each creation day was a long period of time while others say that God revealed in six days what He had accomplished over a long period of time. Psalm 90:4 and II Peter 3:8 are often quoted because of the statement that a day is with the Lord as a thousand years. Still others suggest the seventh day (because evening and morning are not mentioned) is still in progress. If this is the case, they say, each of the other creation days might also have been a long period of time. Some argue that because the heavenly bodies were not created until the fourth day, the first three days may have covered long periods of time. They say this because they believe the creation days were regulated by the heavenly bodies.
Here are the arguments for a six-day creation, each day being approximately 24 hours and total timespan between creation and present being only thousands of years back:
(1) Normal meaning of the word "day" is a 24-hour period, the time required for sunrise to sunset to sunrise. This is not to deny that the word "day" is used with various other meanings, even in the first two chapters of Genesis. In Gen. 1:5 when God called the light "day" and the darkness "night," the day portion would be less than 24 hours, perhaps 12 hours. Also, when in Gen. 2:4 we read "in the day that the Lord God made the earth and the heavens," a period longer than 24 hours is meant. Comparing Gen. 2:4 with Num. 7:84, we can say that "day" most likely refers to the six-day creation period. In Numbers, chapter 7, we read that the leaders of the 12 tribes of Israel offered sacrifices on each of 12 successive days. The whole sacrifice period is referred to (at the end of the chapter) as "in the day" the sacrifices were made. This is similar to the sequence in Gen. 1 and Gen. 2:4. Moses is the author of both Genesis and Numbers.
(2) We also have the expression "evening and morning" which is the Hebrews' way of referring to a 24-hour period. Their day was reckoned from evening to evening, thus it was natural to use the expression "evening and morning." This restricts "day" to a 24-hour period when used in connection with the creation days.
(3) Notice the words "first," "second," and "third," etc. According to Dr. Raymond Surburg, writing in Darwin, Creation and Evolution, the word "day" is used 1480 times in the Old Testament. Whenever it is used with a number, it designates a 24-hour period.
(4) In Gen. 1:4 we read that the sun, moon and stars were created to designate days, seasons and years. Certainly this means that a day is less time than a season, and less than a year.
(5) Perhaps the strongest argument for "day" meaning a 24-hour period is found in Ex. 20:11. The Israelites were commanded to work for six days and to rest on the seventh day. The writer continues to explain that as God created the universe in six days and rested on the seventh, so Israel was to rest on the seventh day. An argument used by those who reject 24-hour creation days is that in the Ex. 20:11 passage the word used is that for "made" rather than for "create." However, in Scripture "create" and "made" are often used synonymously. An example is Gen. 2:4, "when they were created, in the day that the Lord God made the earth and the heavens." To claim that use of the word "made" means only "appointed" in Ex. 20:11 is invalid. The creation days must be accepted as literal days because this concept agrees with the thought expressed in Gen. 2:1 that in six days God completed His creation which was mature and perfect.
There are also scientific problems with the concept that each of the creation days was a long period of time. Plants were created on the third day and the heavenly bodies on the fourth day. How could plants have survived for 1000 years, or even longer as some contend, without light and energy from the sun which did not come on the scene until the fourth day? In Biblical Cosmology and Modern Science, Dr. Henry Morris furnishes a list of scientific reasons why the creation days could not have been long periods of time.
Creationists are sometimes asked why could not God have made use of millions of years in His creation. Writing in The Bible, Natural Science, and Evolution, Russell Maatman maintains that the universe must be billions of years old because some stars are billions of light-years distant from earth; thus, billions of years are required for their light to reach earth. The prophet Jeremiah states that man will never measure the end of space (Jer. 31:37), apparently giving validity to this position. Some even go further. In a discussion with a geologist teaching at Grand Canyon University in Phoenix (a Southern Baptist school), we were told that not only were millions of years needed for the formation of rocks at Grand Canyon, but that this position actually ascribes greater power to God than a fiat creation!
Perhaps we should recall the temptation of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. The devil appeared in the form of a talking serpent and Eve was promised that eating of the forbidden fruit would bestow wisdom on her. Eve knew well what God had said for she repeated it. The Father of Lies suggested that God could have given Adam and Eve still more blessings by creating them like Himself. To learn that this was true, said the devil, all that was needed was to eat of the forbidden fruit. They did learn the truth and they and all of nature were cursed. We need to beware of arguments that God "could have." God has stated in clear and concise language how He created the universe and we ought not to doubt His Word.
Third Day Catastrophe
Bible-Science sponsored groups have hiked to the bottom of Grand Canyon more than two dozen times. Though the bottom rocks of the canyon are among the oldest known, they are not two billion years old as evolution geologists claim. They were formed on the third day of creation week when God separated the land mass from the water through a process of mountains rising and valleys dropping (Ps. 104:8). These rocks contain no fossils because no living forms had yet been created.
During the Noahic flood, 1656 years later, we read in Gen. 7:11 "were all the fountains of the great deep broken up." These basement rocks of the Grand Canyon show signs of extreme violence. During the beginning stage of the Flood these rocks were violently compressed, with some of the sedimentary rocks becoming what geologists term Vishnu schists. Some of the lava coming out of the earth that cooled after it erupted was also restructured by the violence. Some of the lava that cooled before it reached the surface became Zoroaster granite. This is now red or pinkish in color. All three types were shifted violently and now we find these rocks standing on edge.
Water Canopy/No Rain
In The Genesis Flood authors Morris and Whitcomb propose a theory which has gained wide acceptance among creationists. The theory was known long before publication of this book. It is suggested that prior to the Flood, a water vapor canopy surrounded the earth and that during the Flood this canopy collapsed. Water contained in this canopy is now stored in the oceans which, according to these authors, are much larger in size than they were in the pre-Flood world. They also say that the earth's atmosphere today does not contain sufficient water to produce a global flood. If the moisture in the atmosphere were evenly distributed, they say, there would be enough to produce only two inches of water worldwide.
In support of a water vapor canopy the expression "above the firmament" in Gen. 1:7 is quoted. In verse 6 we read that the firmament was to divide the waters. In verse 7 the waters above the firmament are mentioned, but scientists know of no waters above the firmament. Scientifically, there is no way of demonstrating that water existed anywhere except on earth.
The present atmosphere at the stratosphere level is cold, but above the stratosphere temperatures are warm, well above the boiling point of water. According to Morris and Whitcomb, it would be possible to sustain a tremendous quantity of water in the region above the stratosphere if it were in vapor form. Temperatures in the upper atmosphere remain at a high level both day and night, precluding any possibility of vapor condensation during night periods.
There are, however, critics of this theory, even among creation scientists. Dr. Robert Kofahl, addressing a Bible-Science Association sponsored convention in 1976, suggested a problem with light transmission. With that amount of water above the atmosphere, the nitrogen in the air would have a narcotic effect on people, he says. He also believes that living tissue cannot tolerate the effects of oxygen at greater than 0.65 atmosphere partial pressure. The additional pressure of 30 atmospheres, he says, would compress our present atmosphere into a layer of only 1000 feet in thickness. To keep water vapor from condensing into liquid form at this pressure, the temperature would need to be no less than 234 degrees C. or 453 degrees F.
Others who object to this model include Robert Whitelaw and Glen Morton.
A recent defense of this model has been made by Joseph Dillow in his book
Waters Above. He quotes from a classic work done in German by R. Emden
and revised by Goody, Paltridge and Platt. Their study indicates temperatures
would not need to be that high. Also, in the pre-Flood arrangement there
could have been clouds above the atmosphere. According to Morton, clouds
could not form under a thick canopy. Dillow claims that Morton calculated
only base temperatures and not vertical temperature structures. It is Dillow's
opinion that the vapor water cloud reduced solar input by 35 percent. He
answers the objections of Drs. R.H. Brown and Robert Whitelaw who also
claim that earth temperatures would be too high:
"The answer to this concern is that due to the presence of the cloud layer near the canopy base, the characteristics of the radiation field would have been entirely changed, and massive temperature inversion would have resulted."
Dillow suggests three layers underneath the canopy cloud layer and he says there were fewer mountain ranges. According to him, the lowest edge of the canopy would be about 30,000 feet, avoiding danger that mountain ranges would intersect it. Fewer mountain ranges mean fewer winds and less eddy diffusion. Dillow says the only way a vapor canopy could have been maintained above the ancient atmosphere would have been to eliminate convective turbulence and to reduce eddy diffusion. Such turbulence would have caused the canopy to diffuse quickly.
Another objection to the water vapor canopy theory is that the pressure would cause the water to condense into rain. According to Dillow's calculations, there is sufficient temperature inversion to provide heat to maintain the vapor state. The main element of Dillow's model is that there was no turbulence, very few storms, and no strong winds. He believes such conditions were possible. Such a water vapor canopy would explain why people lived to immensely old ages and why reptiles grew to dinosaur size and even why pternadons and pterodactyls could fly. We live in a different world today, for as Peter writes in II Peter 3:6 "the world that then was perished."
For centuries people have attempted to find the location of the Garden of Eden, placing it in such divergent places as Florida and Babylonia. Do the four rivers mentioned in Gen. 2:11-14 have meaning today? Did the Noahic flood change river courses to the extent that they cannot be identified today? The river Hiddekel (v. 14) is generally identified as the present Tigris and the Euphrates still bears the same name. These rivers are now flowing on top of sedimentary soil. This soil may have been deposited on the third day of creation week, but many believe it was laid down during the Noahic flood. Therefore, they say, although the rivers bear the same names, they are not identical to those mentioned in Genesis, chapter two.
Bear in mind that Moses wrote for the people of his day and although we accept the tablet theory (which will be described later), according to which Adam wrote the tablet which mentions the four rivers, Moses was responsible for the inspired book. In many tablets we find that Moses changed names of cities, or put them in brackets, because their names had changed since the time when perhaps Adam wrote his tablet. Yet Moses wanted to identify these rivers for the people of his day, about 1500 B.C., approximately 2500 years after creation. If he mentioned Tigris and Euphrates, undoubtedly he was trying to make a connection with the Tigris and Euphrates of his day.
One filmstrip in the series titled "Evolution and the Bible" by Dr. Harold Clark is "In the Beginning." In it Dr. Clark suggests the four rivers provided a system by which water was kept in circulation without rainfall. It is his opinion that this river circulatory system was a most effective way to maintain moderate temperatures over the whole globe. Could these four rivers have circled the globe at a time when there was only one land mass and one ocean?
In light of Moses' definite location of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers in their general present locations, we may identify the first river of Eden as either the Indus in India or the Phases which is east of Syria. The Gihon is generally identified as the Nile River. Accordingly, the original Garden of Eden may have been located either where the Red Sea is now, or perhaps just south of Babylonia. Names of the rivers are significant. "Pison" means "full flowing" and it circled, perhaps in lazy fashion, through the land in which there was gold, bedellium and colored gems. The second river, Gihon, means "bursting" or "deep flowing." Hiddekel means "swift" or "daring" and Euphrates means "sweet." These names describe the various types of rivers we know today.
We are reminded of Rev. 22:1 where we read of "pure rivers of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb." We are reminded of Christ as the "water of life" (John 4:14).
Purpose of the Space Program
When our astronauts first landed on the Moon in July of 1969, Walter Kronkite interviewed the head of NASA in Houston, Texas. In answer to the question of the purpose of the Moon landing, the NASA spokesman said it was to discover life on the Moon and to determine its age. Were these objectives achieved? The answer given was "No." Kronkite then asked whether the billions of dollars spent on the project had been wasted. Not only is there no life on the Moon, but we now know that Mars cannot support life. Its many craters indicate little atmosphere; meteorites crash through the thin atmosphere to strike the planet. The Viking landers, launched in the early 1970s, proved that not even bacterial life exists on Mars. The Moon and Mars were the two most likely candidates for life in the solar system; what exists beyond our solar system is mere guesswork.
According to Gen. 1:14-16, the heavenly bodies were created on the fourth day of creation week (after creation of planet earth) and their purpose is to serve as signs, to direct time, and to be light-holders. All three benefit planet earth. Thus, according to the Bible, the foremost purpose of our space program ought to be to benefit the inhabitants of earth.
Leaders of the space program are now advertising its benefits to us. Weather and communications satellites are one result. In the mid-1960s Texas Instruments developed the chips which are necessary in the operation of recorders, calculators and computers in order to miniaturize space instruments. They have revolutionized our lifestyle.
If leaders in the space program had at its beginning in the 1940s, pointed out the benefits to people on earth rather than emphasizing the search for proof of evolution in space, the program would have saved $100 billion in tax money and achieved greater results. Even in our space program we need the direction of Scripture and we will never reach beyond its wisdom.
Commission for Space Research
In 1969 a Christian living in Pennsylvania wrote to object to our mention of the space program in the "Bible-Science Newsletter." He quoted Ps. 115:16 which refers to the heaven of the heavens belonging to the Lord while earth was made for the children of men. This man believed it is sinful for man to probe space. He also objected to then President Nixon's statement that the moon landing was the greatest achievement in history. Christ's crucifixion and resurrection should have that distinction, he said.
We agree that man was not created to survive in space. For his adventures into space he must take along his earth environment—spacesuit, food, water, and even air. Neither does man have gills for living in a water environment; yet it is not sinful to explore the depths of the oceans in search of food or other blessings. Adam was given the science commission to subdue the earth and have dominion over it (Gen. 1:28) and this includes space exploration. The statement in Ps. 115:16 that the "heaven above the heavens" belongs to the Lord is a reference to God's spiritual throne which is beyond space.
There is a difference between sun time and star time. Writing in Witness in the Sky, Dr. Thoburn Lyon claims that as the earth revolves around the sun, the sun seems to be in motion relative to the stars. Because of this apparent motion, one rotation of the earth in relation to the sun requires nearly four additional minutes, or one rotation in relation to the stars. Thus a "day" of star time is shorter by nearly four minutes than a "day" of sun time. Because stars are more distant, astronomers regard star time as being the more accurate. This is in agreement with Gen. 1:4 which states that one purpose of the elements in space is to distinguish between days, seasons, and years—in other words, to direct time.
Time zones are dependent on the elements in space. As the sun moves westward, it passes through a number of time zones which have been spaced about 15 degrees, or about 1000 miles apart. The United States time zones are known as Atlantic, Eastern, Central, Mountain, and Pacific. Farther out in the Pacific Ocean, to compensate, there is a dateline. Traveling west you gain a day while traveling east you lose a day. Standard time closely follows the sun while daylight time allows an extra hour of sunlight in the summer evenings. The standard for determining time is at Greenwich, England; this is known as the mean solar time.
When we read in Scripture that Adam lived for 930 years and that Methuselah lived to age 969, we confidently believe these years were reckoned to our time. We know of no changes in time occurring in connection with the Noahic flood.
The third purpose for the elements in space, according to Gen. 1:15, is to serve as light-holders. Light had already been created when on the fourth day these heavenly bodies were made. The Psalmist writes in Ps. 19:6 that nothing is hid from the heat of the sun, indicating that all energy, including light, is derived from the sun. Light cleanses, purifies, heals and transforms, according to Thoburn Lyon in Witness in the Sky.
There is controversy over how light could have existed before creation of the heavenly bodies. According to Rev. 22:5, in the heavenly Jerusalem there will be no need for the sun because God will be its light. Scripture suggests that the elements in space were created for the benefit of earth, while evolution suggests that earth is an insignificant speck in vast space.
Signs of the Zodiac
Many claims for astrology are made by Joseph Goodavage, author of Astrology—the Space Age Science. These include claims that identical twins undergo the same experiences and that people born at the same moment, though at different locations, will have the same experiences. Goodavage accepts evolution's claim for vast time, immense ages for fossil men, and that life exists on Mars. He defends astrology from a science viewpoint although most prominent scientists renounce all forms of astrology.
The first purpose for which the elements in space were created is for "signs." Stars are used by travelers. There are also spiritual signs. The morning star is a picture of Christ in Rev. 22:16 and II Peter 1:19. The Star of Jacob is mentioned by Baalim in Num. 24:15-19, a reference to Christ. The Wise Men were led to Bethlehem by a star (Matt. 2:2). Signs of the Zodiac are mentioned in Job 38:32 where the word is translated "Mazzaroth" in the King James version.
Does this mean that stars can predict or influence our lives as claimed by astrologers? Scripture denounces all forms of so-called arts of foretelling the future by the stars. Jeremiah admonishes his people not to learn the ways of the heathen and not to be dismayed at the signs in the heavens (Jer. 10:2). Isaiah mocked the astrologers who tried to help Israel in her difficulties (Is. 47:13). Daniel was able to interpret the king's dream when the astrologers failed to do so (Dan. 1:20 and 4:7). Israel was warned not to worship the host of heaven (Deut. 4:19).
However, a number of authors explain how the signs of the Zodiac depict our salvation. Joseph Seiss is author of The Gospel in the Stars, E. W. Bullinger of The Witness of the Stars, and Howard Rand has written a guide for a Christian use of the signs of the Zodiac titled The Stars Declare God's Handiwork. An excellent new book is titled God's Voice in the Stars and the author is Kenneth Fleming. He refers to Frances Rolleston who in 1863 published Mazzaroth, giving the Christian meaning of stars.
According to these authors, Virgo refers to Christ being born of a virgin and the Bull refers to His sacrifice for mankind. Scales refers to Christ's final judgment while the Lion is indication that Christ rules as a lion. The serpent or dragon is a reference to the devil. Orion means "coming as light." Orion is one of several heavenly bodies which picture a mighty Person coming to earth to triumph over the enemy of mankind and bringing blessings. Job 38:31.32 speaks of Mazzaroth (signs of the Zodiac), also being created by God. The Psalmist writes that God ordained the stars and set them in their places (Ps. 8:3). They did not accidentally fall into their places. God named the stars, also the signs of the Zodiac (Ps. 147:4). In the creation account Adam named the animals, but God named the stars.
According to Fleming, when we read in Ps. 19:1 that the heavens declare the glory of God, this is a reference to the glory of Christ also in the signs of the Zodiac. He does not mention Ps. 50:6 and 97:6 where we read that the heavens declare the "righteousness of God." Comparing this expression with Rom. 1:17 where the apostle says that the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith, we realize this righteousness is not the keeping of the Ten Commandments, but that it is accepting by faith the righteousness of Christ who kept the Ten Commandments for us. Although we maintain that the Gospel is found only in the Bible (John 6:63), we can say that the heavens declare the Gospel through the signs of the Zodiac to strengthen our faith in the same manner as Christian music and Christian art. Because the forces of evil misuse the signs of the Zodiac through astrology does not mean that Christians cannot use them properly to strengthen their faith. Through them we are led to a better understanding of God's purpose for creating them.
In a previous section we have discussed the gap theory. Those who believe that destruction of a pre-world is implied in the words "without form and void" (Gen. 1:2), also believe that angels lived in this pre-world, prior to creation of our present world. Writing in Genesis and Evolution, Dr. M.R. DeHaan argues against evolution but accepts the gap theory and destruction of a pre-world at the time some angels sinned and thereafter were devils (Jude 6). Even some people who reject the gap theory accept the position that angels existed prior to creation of the world.
A passage often used in defense of the position that angels existed prior to creation of the world is Job 38:6.7 where we read that the sons of God were present at the laying of the foundation of the world and that the morning stars sang for joy. Some believe that both "sons of God" and "stars" in this passage refer to angels. Others believe that stars only are meant. Our preference is to regard the "sons of God" as angels and that stars are meant when the word "star" is used. From this it would seem that angels were created before creation of the world was begun and this would then be true also of the stars. Writing in Has God Spoken? A.O. Schnabel notes that the Hebrew word for stars singing (ranan) means to make a shrill noise. Listening to star noises on radio telescopes, this is how they sound—a shrill noise.
It all depends on what is meant by "foundations." When God separated the land mass from the water on the third day of creation week, this would appear to be establishing foundations. Also, when God created the sun, moon and stars on the fourth day, that would be establishing foundations, for planet earth would then be positioned in relation to the other elements in space. In Ps. 104:4 we read "Who maketh his angels spirits; his ministers a flaming fire," apparently on the second day. If this is true, then angels could indeed shout for joy when the foundations were laid on the third day. If the foundations were further laid on the fourth day when the heavenly bodies were placed in relationship to planet earth, the stars also could sing for joy.
Creation of Angels—When?
From Col. 1:16 we learn that angels were created by Christ; thus they are created beings. According to Ex. 20:11, everything that was created was created within the six-day creation period. Ps. 104:4 seems to imply that angels were created on the second day. Therefore, they are created beings.
When did an angel fall into sin to become the devil? When did other angels sin and become devils? In Gen. 1:31 we read that when God had finished His creation, it was "very good." This would include the angels and would rule out existence of devils. In the second chapter of Genesis no reference is made to sin. It seems that some angels sinned during the period between chapters two and three of Genesis and immediately the devil tempted Adam and Eve.
Angels possess greater powers than do human beings. Peter pictures the devil as a roaring lion (I Peter 5:8) and the Psalmist writes that angels excel in strength (Ps. 103:20). According to Ps. 91:11.12, angels take us into their hands to protect us. However, angels appear to have less value than human beings. The picture we get from the creation account, both chapters 1 and 2 of Genesis, is that God created the most important creatures (man and woman) last. Psalm 91 demonstrates that angels serve mankind.
Giants in Genesis 6:4
This leads to a discussion of "giants" referred to in Gen. 6:4. We read that the sons of God married the daughters of men. There are many, particularly those who believe in a 1000-year kingdom of God on earth prior to destruction of the world, who maintain that "sons of God" here refers to devils who married human women. Their offspring were giant in size. This position is held in spite of the statement in Matt. 22:30 that angels neither marry nor are given in marriage. A better interpretation is that "sons of God" were righteous men who married unrighteous "daughters of men." It is also permissible to translate the word nephilim as "violent people" rather than as "giants." It is likely that when righteous people intermarried with unrighteous, that violence took over in the world. Dictators arose who oppressed the people, e.g., Nimrod who lived after the Flood (Gen. 10:8). David gave thanks for being delivered from the violent man (Ps. 18:48). It is a mark of righteousness to be kind and merciful and to seek to achieve results by persuasion. Contrary, it is a mark of evil to rely on violence and force, oppression and murder. This seems to be the state of the world prior to the Noahic flood, incurring God's anger and prompting Him to unleash the flood which resulted in the world "that then was" to perish (II Pet. 3:6). It is our personal opinion that people who lived to an age of 900 years before the Flood also may have been much larger in size. The word "giant" need not then be a reference to huge size, but rather to violent men. The concept of violence is continued when we read in Gen. 6:4 that after the sons of God married the daughters of men, there arose "mighty" men (geborah in Hebrew).
Meaning of "Kind"
There is much confusion as to the meaning of the Genesis "kind." This word is used ten times in Gen. 1:188.8.131.52.25. Modern day classifications do not fit the word "kind." Scientists use the term "phyla," "genera," and species, but none of these equates with the Genesis "kind." Dr. Frank Marsh, a biologist, has devoted considerable research to this and shares his findings in Evolution, Creation and Science, in Studies in Creationism, and in Life, Man, and Time, and also in Variation and Fixity in Nature. John Mackay of Australia has an interesting tape on this topic.
It is Marsh's opinion that our modern method of classifying plants, animals, insects, humans, etc. is based too much upon evolutionary concepts. The great original classifier, Carolus Linnaeus, was a creationist. His classifications have been altered to presume an evolution, says Marsh.
With regard to species, everyone has a different definition. A creationist can embarrass an evolutionist by asking for a definition of species. On the other hand, because it is difficult to explain scientifically what "kind" is, evolutionists embarrass creationists by asking for an explanation in modern scientific terms of what a "kind" is. In Evolution and the Christian Faith Dr. Bolton Davidheiser refers to splitters and lumpers. Splitters want many species and classify as species things which are not. Lumpers will lump varieties together in what they call a polytypic species. Marsh says the Biblical "kind" fits better into this type of classification.
Marsh has coined a word Baramin which refers to the "created kind" or the "Genesis kind." He goes no further than that. If we accept that the creation processes differed from preservation processes, what we observe in science today is not identical with what took place during creation week. Because modern science is altogether dependent on preservation processes, there is no way we can define the word "kind" which is associated with creation. Furthermore, if we believe that when God created, He endowed all creatures with potential for development, we realize that it is difficult in a science which is limited to observing what is taking place now, to define the Genesis "kind." God placed into His creation the potential for everything to come; thus, we can literally say that "there is no new thing under the sun."
John Mackay says that scientists classify by structure, appearance, differences and similarities, and by genetics. He says the Biblical "kind" was classified by purpose. He may have a point. It seems we will continue to have problems with this classification and it may be because it comes under the heading of creation rather than preservation.
Adaptation to Environment
It is well to emphasize the importance of use of the word "seed" in Gen. 1:11.12. This is the hereditary portion of the plant, making it possible for it to pass on information so that the next generation will be similar. Animals, fish, birds and humans also have this unique quality. This is vastly different from the evolutionist explanation that variety in nature is due to the environment. Changes occur because of mutations and natural selection, they say. This leads to one major kind developing into another, is claimed. Variation within kinds is observed as are adaptations to nature, but it has never been observed that the environment can produce anything of itself.
Following the creation concept that creation processes differed from preservation processes, it is suggested that God endowed each created kind, at the time of its creation, with potential for vast variety. What is required of God now is for Him to pull out of this reserve what is needed for adaptation to the environment.
We have already made reference to the historial-critical method in which it is suggested that the first five books of the Bible were written from four different sources, developing through a sort of evolutionary process, and that they were completed by the last reviser in about 900 B.C. Jesus made the clear statement that Moses wrote what He quoted, and Moses lived 1500 B.C. The historial-critial method is widely taught and accepted and an inordinate amount of time is devoted to it in most seminaries. This is a scheme to apply evolution to the writings of Moses rather than to accept that they were divinely inspired. Those who believe this also contend that whatever science these books contain is out-of-date, and especially the first 11 chapters of Genesis are to be discarded. Rather than accepting the concept of the Trinity, they claim the majestic plural was retained because pagan neighbors worshipped multi-gods. It is not difficult to regard Gen. 1-11 as poetic, and as such, it is claimed to be neither factual nor scientific. This is a convenient method of harmonizing Scripture with the pagan theory of evolution.
There are two ways to approach the problem of the JEDP, or historical-critical interpretation of the first five books of the Bible. One can point out the errors of the JEDP position and then demonstrate scientifically that the Bible is factual. Another method is to present an equally scholarly position, also dependent on sources, which holds these chapters are divinely inspired and that Moses is the final author. This is the Tablet theory.
In the mid-1930s P.J. Wiseman was engaged in archaeological work in Babylonia. He noted that many of the tablets unearthed closed with the phrase "toledoth," followed by a signature seal. Since few people at the time of inscribing the tablets were able to write, they affixed signatures either with a seal or ring. This is why Pharaoh gave Joseph his signature ring (Gen. 41:42). Wiseman prepared the following list in Genesis in which the word toledoth or "generation" appeared:
2:4 "These are the generations of the heavens and the earth."
5:1 "This is the book of the generations of Adam."
6:9 "These are the generations of Noah."
10:1 "These are the generations of the sons of Noah: Shem, Ham, and Japheth."
11:10 "These are the generations of Shem."
11:27 "These are the generations of Terah."
25:12 "These are the generations of Ishmael."
25:19 "These are the generations of Isaac."
36:1 "These are the generations of Esau."
Wiseman was amazed to find similarities between possible tablets in Genesis and tablets found in ancient Babylon. Nearly everything mentioned in a given tablet occurred within the lifetime of what appeared to be its author. The first tablet (the heavens and the earth) was written directly by God because only God had first-hand knowledge of the creation. The second tablet (2:4-5:1) was written by Adam, according to this theory. Included in this tablet is a record of Seth's son and, figuring the age tables in Genesis 5, we can determine that this tablet was written about 320 years after creation. In Noah's tablet (5:1-6:9) we find a listing of the pre-Flood patriarchs, written to preserve their names and ages by someone who had personal knowledge of or acquaintance with them (though Adam had died before Noah was born). The sons of Noah wrote their tablets from firsthand knowledge (6:9-10:1). Shem had personal knowledge of events in 10:1 to 11:10, having lived for 500 years following the Flood.
Some difficulty is encountered in suggesting that Terah is author of the short tablet (11:10-11:27). First, Terah is somewhat classed as a wicked person. In Josh. 24:2 it is implied he is an idolater, and why would an idolater be used as a source for material by Moses? Also, some of the patriarchs mentioned in this tablet died long after Terah. According to birth dates given in this tablet, Terah was born 221 years after the Flood. If he died at age 205, he died 426 years after the Flood. But Shem, who is mentioned in this tablet, is stated to have lived 500 years after the Flood, long after Terah's death. Arphaxad died 440 years after the Flood, again after Terah's death. Also, Salah would have died 470 years after the Flood and Eber at 531 years after the Flood. Nor is it logical to assume that Terah wrote his tablet in the year before his death.
A solution is found in Moses' use of these tablets as sources for his account, the inspired record. As author of these books, he had the privilege of adapting material from his sources. For instance, in Gen. 14 which lists the kings from Babylonia who banded together to destroy Sodom and Gomorrah, and which lists the cities destroyed, we find some names of cities are in brackets. Bela is bracketed as Zoar (Gen. 14:2). The name had changed and Moses used both the original name which was on the tablet and the name used in his time. In like manner Moses may have added a refrain to Terah's tablet, the refrain being as in Gen. 11:11 "And Shem lived after he begat Arphaxad five hundred years, and begat sons and daughters." Why are not the years of Shem totaled? Perhaps because Moses made no more changes than necessary, regarding the tablet as inspired at its writing. All the patriarchs had died at Moses' time and he was able to give their ages at time of death.
Tablets of Ishmael and Isaac
The next tablet (11:19-25:12) is designated as Ishmael's tablet. According to Gal. 4:22, Ishmael represents the law, or flesh, while Isaac represents promise and acceptance of the spirit. Again, Ishmael seems to be a poor choice to write about the life of Abraham. However, Isaac is represented in Scripture as a rather weak character, although in Gal. 4 he is the representative of salvation through the Gospel. He lived to an age of 180 years, and he may have been weak or inefficient during the later years of his life. Ishmael is presented as a stronger person. It is possible, as Wiseman suggests, that the half-brothers were responsible for the tablet giving the history of Abraham. It seems the tablets were written at the death of Abraham to ensure that the genealogies would be consecutive and handed down. Rather than writing about himself, Isaac suggested that Ishmael write about him and then, in a brief tablet (Gen. 25:12-19), Isaac updated the genealogies to the death of Abraham. We find no problem with Ishmael writing a tablet which was no doubt an inspired tablet even prior to Moses' time.
Esau and Jacob
The next tablets are even stranger. The main portion of Jacob's life, according to the tablet theory, was written by Jacob's brother Esau. In Heb. 12:16 Esau is regarded as a fornicator and in Rom. 9:13 as hated by God. How could such a person write a portion of the inspired Bible, even a long portion (Gen. 25:19-36:1)? Esau also is assigned another short tablet, from Gen. 36:1 to 36:9. According to this theory, Jacob wrote the section from Gen. 36:9 to 37:2 in which he lists the genealogies of Esau. Again, it seems the two brothers wrote their tablets at the death of their father. And, again, the main concern was to list the genealogies. It was natural that Jacob would prefer that Esau write about him while he wrote about Esau. They had been reconciled upon Jacob's return from Haran. No writer of a portion of the Bible was perfect. It was the direct and miraculous operation of the Holy Spirit that what they wrote is without mistake.
Another problem arising with the suggestion that the word for "generations" be at the close of a tablet is that in Ruth 4:18 the word is definitely at the head of a listing rather than at the end. The book of Ruth was perhaps written by Samuel, at least 1500 years later. In that time-span customs may have changed radically, and the Bible mirrors the time in which it was written.
Proof for Tablets
Wiseman offers what he regards as proof that these tablets were authentic and that Moses compiled them into his Biblical books. The Babylonians had catch phrases to join the tablets, something like our page numbers. Generally what was written at the end of a tablet was repeated at the beginning of the next. We find this in all the tablets.
Wiseman also notes that there are many Babylonian words in the first 11 chapters of Genesis and many Egyptian words in the last 14 chapters. He also mentions that Moses changed names of cities, indicating that the tablets were in existence prior to his writing. The narratives reveal such familiarity with the circumstances and details of events recorded as to indicate they were written by persons concerned with those events.
We read in Gen. 10:19 that the border of the Canaanites was from Zidon "as thou goest toward Gerar unto Gaza as thou goest towards Sodom and Gomorrah," indicating these cities were still standing in the early part of Abraham's life. Shem must have written this tablet before their destruction, meaning also before Moses' time. Primitive geographical expressions were known only in the time of Abraham and later they had well known names such as "south country" (Gen. 20:1 and Gen. 24:62) and "east country" (Gen. 35:6). Again, this indicates an ancient source.
The logical conclusion is that these tablets were inspired and were the written Bible before the time of Moses. People of those eras also needed a written Word. Moses made some changes for he was responsible for their transmission to future generations. He made no more changes than necessary, and repeated old names when he added their new names. The genealogies of Shem are found in both Gen. 10:22-29 and Gen. 11:10-18 because these are two separate tablets; they were left intact. The corrupt state of the earth and declarations regarding its destruction are found both in Gen. 6:5-8 and 6:9-13. This is not unnecessary repetition by Moses, but he left two separate tablets intact.
Wiseman has a lengthy section in his book on the historical-critical method. We need not only to demonstrate its weaknesses, but ought to provide a positive antidote. This we have in the tablet theory, a scholarly presentation which allows for sources and which agrees with an inerrant Bible.
The Image of God
Richard Hanson, author of The Serpent Was Wiser, claims the expression "in the image of God" (Gen. 1:26) refers to God giving man dominion over the earth in Gen. 1:28. Others say the image of God is that man walks upright. Still others say it refers to man's soul. We offer two New Testament passages which explain this (Eph. 4:24 and Col. 3:10). The first indicates that man was made after God in righteousness and true holiness and the second that man is like God in knowledge. This indicates that the image of God consisted of holiness and intuitive knowledge.
The more important aspect of this image was man's holiness. When he ate of the forbidden fruit, he lost this image, and death entered the universe (Rom. 5:12). Not only must all mankind die, but all of nature is subject to degeneration, death, and decay as we learn from Ps. 102:2. Although God cannot be satisfied with anything less than perfection, He did not immediately destroy the tainted universe. He waited so that He could implement His plan for restoring the original perfection, a plan which involved sending His own Son to earth to die and rise again as payment for the penalty of sin. In Christ the original image of God is restored, by faith in this world and by sight in the world to come.
Intuitive Knowledge and Speech
The other aspect of the image of God was perfect knowledge. In Cor. 13:12 we read that now we know in part but then we shall know even as we are known. Adam named all the animals on the day he was created (Gen. 2:20). He did not gradually learn speech, first making guttural sounds like an animal, as evolutionists claim. This was part of the perfect knowledge he had prior to sinning. He did not lose knowledge altogether, neither did he lose speech entirely, but he no longer had the knowledge and powers of speech which he possessed before sinning.
Being made in the image of God, man was the crown of creation. We can unreservedly claim that God made the best and most valuable creatures last. This means that all of nature was made primarily for the benefit of man and that he was to exercise dominion over it. It means further that when man sinned, his sin affected all of nature. Immediately thorns and thistles infested the ground (Gen. 3:18). Eve bore her children in pain and her desire was to her husband (Gen. 3:16). Adam worked in the sweat of his brow (Gen. 3:19). From Rom. 8:20 we learn that the creature (nature) was made subject to vanity because of human evil. The writer of Eccl. 1:2 and 12:8 says without reservation that everything is vanity because the heart of man is desperately evil (Eccl. 9:3). Because of sin everything wears out as a garment (Ps. 102:26). Even the heavenly bodies are not pure (Job 15:15 and 25:5).
A medical doctor in New Guinea received some literature from Bible-Science which suggested that because there are craters on the moon, human sin has tainted even the elements in space. It was also noted that there is more destruction and collapse in space than we can even dream of on earth. This doctor, a Christian, was upset by these statements, but we must acknowledge the effects of human sin on the world of nature. There are two laws in nature—order and design and the curse of death and destruction.
From II Cor. 5:7 we learn that in this world we live by faith, not by sight. If we knew exactly what animal life was like before the fall into sin and knew what nature was like before the law of entropy invaded it, we would already be living in heaven. In this world we live by faith. According to the modern definition of science, it is limited to sight; it cannot describe the perfection of the physical world before sin entered it.
Genes and Salvation
Dr. Arthur Custance, writing in The Virgin Birth and Incarnation (p. 203), suggests a reason for God forming Eve from Adam's rib rather than making her a separate creation. Through this process Eve was endowed with the same genes which Adam had and, consequently, the whole human race is derived from one set of genes. In modern genetics this would be similar to "cloning." This is the process of using skin cells from one creature to develop an exact carbon copy of that creature. In frogs this has been partially done, but never in a human. Something similar is done in the grafting of plants. Perhaps God did something like this when He fashioned Eve from the rib of Adam.
Custance stresses that because Eve was formed from Adam's rib, she possessed the same genes as he. This means that all people in the world (past, present and future) have descended from the same genes. It means also that when Jesus Christ was born, He too possessed genes from the same pool. Thus, He was able to be our substitute, not only in the spirit, but also in the flesh.
Some people believe that Christ's forgiveness is spiritual only and does not apply to the body. They are misunderstanding the first two chapters of I Corinthians and Romans 6:8. It is not true that everything pertaining to the body is sinful, for the body was made to glorify God.
Phoebe Courtney, the conservative managing editor of Independent American and author of Beware of Sensitivity Training and The Sex Education Racket, is concerned about sex education in public schools. Sensitivity training, she says, is mass psychology. Essentially the idea is good, for some people's emotional problems can be treated more effectively through group therapy than on an individual basis. But the way sensitivity training is practiced, an effort is made to rid people of sex problems by talking about them. And they talk about them so much they finally destroy God's moral code as it applies to marriage and sex. When confidence in God's moral code (Ten Commandments) has been undermined, these people are ready for indoctrination in evolution, socialism, and communism.
While living in the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve were unashamed of their nakedness. Immediately after sinning, they sought covering for their bodies and God made clothing of skin for them. Sex is not sinful, but sin has perverted it.
According to Matt. 22:30 there will be no marriage in heaven. Therefore, sins of sex are punished in this life to a greater degree than some other sins. David took another man's wife and arranged for his death. He repented, but he suffered from family problems the rest of his life, particularly with his son Absalom. The act which in marriage bestows blessings, when committed outside marriage, leads to problems and to debilitating disease. The apostle Paul writes that it is a shame to speak of those things which are done in secret (Eph. 5:12). Properly handled, sex education is a blessing, but the dangers of sex education in schools is that generally the authority of God's standards of right and wrong are denied. Because parents fail to give adequate sex education, it does not follow that schools must do so. The issue is that parents are not teaching what educators want taught. In many cases the aim is to destroy the Judeo-Christian standards of right and wrong.
Promise Before Curse
Some people turn from God because they cannot understand how a good God can permit evil in the world. Long ago Martin Luther, in his commentary on Genesis, stated there is a reason why God first gave Adam and Eve the promise of a Savior, before pronouncing a curse upon them. Notice that Adam blamed Eve and Eve blamed the serpent. Along with His punishment of the serpent, God promised a Savior who would crush the head of the serpent. Only after this promise of the Gospel, this Seed of the Woman, did God pronounce punishment on Adam and Eve for their sin. If Adam and Eve had received the curse first, they might have despaired and immediately committed suicide. It is difficult to understand the need for evil in this world, but without the Gospel, it would be impossible to understand. In the Gospel we know that while God has permitted evil in this world, we know that God means well and that He has done the far greater thing in providing a solution. This solution may not appeal to our human pride, but the problem is that our human pride in itself is sinful.
From the Bible
Essentially this promise before curse, this superiority of God's love in Christ, must come from the Bible. Nature will reveal the glory of God as Ps. 19:1 says of the heavens, but it will not reveal the Gospel. This must come from the Bible. Nature, with its glory, finally can only lead to pessimism. Everything wears out and runs down. We need more hope than we can find in nature or a study of nature in science. We need the assurance of the promise before the curse, the promise above the curse. Having this promise, we should not separate it from nature, but use it in our daily lives and in all our studies of nature and the sciences.
Origin of the Races
Dr. Henry Morris in The Bible Has the Answer, claims that evolutionists must be racists. Because they believe they have ascended from lower forms of life, they must believe that some people are more advanced than others and, therefore, superior. Any concept of one person being superior to another can lead to racism. Evolutionists who were racists include Darwin, Karl Marx, Nietzsche, Sir Arthur Keith, Adolf Hitler and Cecil Rhodes. But it is also true that some Christians (and creationists) are racists, and they attempt to find Biblical support for their racism. This includes a misunderstanding of the curse of Canaan which some refer to as the curse of Ham (Gen. 9:25). It is claimed that Ham was cursed and, therefore, the entire black race is cursed with inferiority. Canaan, the fourth son of Ham, was the one who was cursed and this curse was fulfilled when the Canaanites became slaves of the Jews. As far as is known, the Canaanites have been totally exterminated. They continued in sexual immorality, being referred to in history as the most sexually sinful people, even combining religion with their immorality where priestesses lived in adultery and fornication in the groves surrounding their holy places. Though the philosophy of evolution tends toward racism, many extreme racists have been people who accept an inerrant Bible.
With this background, it is understandable that a leading question asked Bible-Science speakers is "How did the races originate?" The evolutionist explanation that the environment has produced races does not stand the test.
One answer is found in Ps. 104:24 where we read of the manifold wisdom of God. God has established inflexible "kinds" in Gen. 1, but He is also a God of variety who has created what seems to us to be limitless variety within each kind. This is true also of the races of people. Because of our position that the creation process was separate from that of preservation, we believe that God endowed Adam and Eve, at creation, with potential for all races. As God provides for adaptation to the environment in animals and plants, so He provides for adaptations in humans, including variations such as races. In the Tower of Babel incident we find one reason for races and differences in language among people. Perhaps differences between languages are more important than differences in color. Language expresses people's thinking and it was by a Word that God created the world and preserves it (Heb. 1:2.3).
Each human fertilized cell contains 46 chromosomes, each of which has 2000 genes, for a total of 100,000 genes. This in itself presents a potential for coding for all races and individuals living in the world today. But that is not all. Now we know there is coding also in the body portion of the life cell, the cytoplasm, and we do not even understand that. We know that we need to consider coding in three dimensions, not merely in two. The shape of the chromosomes and the type of niches have a bearing on the coding. The more we learn, the better we can understand that it was possible for God to endow potential for all races, along with all other characteristics, into the original life cell. Since then He draws on this potential. Thus, races arose from an original coding which God pulled out as needed for adaptation to the environment. Accordingly, one race is neither superior nor inferior to another.
A question frequently asked creationist speakers is "when and where did the dinosaurs live?" Also, "how did Noah get dinosaurs aboard the Ark?" If we accept the canopy model for the pre-Flood world, and if we accept that in the pre-Flood world people lived to ages of about 900 years, dinosaurs are easily explained. Dinosaurs are primarily reptiles, and reptiles continue to grow throughout their lifetimes. Some Galapagos Island tortoises are 150 years old and weigh 600 pounds because they have been growing throughout their lifetime. Age of a crocodile can sometimes be determined by its size, and some snakes are reported as being 150 feet long because they have continued growth. Sometimes reptiles live as long as people do. If pre-Flood people lived to an average age of 900 years, reptiles in that period also had a long lifetime. A reptile that grew physically for 900 years would be enormous in size.
At Dinosaur National Monument along the Utah-Colorado border, more dinosaur fossils have been found than anywhere else—nearly one million pounds of them. They are found in the Morrison formation. Some creation geologists believe that the Paleozoic rocks are Flood deposits and that all rocks above them in the geologic column are post-Flood. The Morrison formation, according to them, is post-Flood. Thus, they must explain dinosaurs as living after the Flood as well as before the Flood.
Bible scholars note that in the Flood account (Gen. 6-8), all life not preserved on the Ark, perished. We read that everything on land that had breath perished, but sea life is not mentioned. It is very likely that some sea life survived the Flood, and the large dinosaurs were capable of floating through the Flood period. Cold-blooded reptiles are able to survive without food for a year or more. This model allows dinosaurs to be the dominant form of life on earth immediately following the Noahic flood.
Dinosaurs in the Bible
We believe that dinosaurs are mentioned in the Bible. The description of a behemoth in Job 40:15-24 fits that of a plant-eating dinosaur while the description of a leviathan in Job, chapter 41, matches that of a meat-eating dinosaur. Motivated by evolutionist ideas of dinosaurs living millions of years before man arrived on the scene, some Bible commentators have equated the behemoth with an hippopotamus and the leviathan with a Nile River crocodile. It has been assumed that dinosaurs could not have lived during Bible times, and certainly not during the time of Job which may have been about 300 years following the Flood.
One model proposed is that God first separated the people on earth through a language division which is described in the Tower of Babel incident (Gen. 11:1-9). God may have enforced this separation through a continental division in the time of Peleg, e.g., canal dividing land masses. During the time required for animal life released from the Ark to multiply and scatter, dinosaurs may have crawled onto land everywhere and, for a time, they were the dominant form of life on earth. This would demonstrate God's providence and it would account for Job's acquaintance with dinosaurs.
Writing in Journey Away from God, Robert Benedict explains why scientists continue to hold onto evolution theories in spite of their being disproved. Sir Arthur Keith, famed British paleontologist, admits that evolution is unproved and unprovable, but he accepts it because the only alternative is creation, and to accept creation is unthinkable. But why is it unthinkable?
Benedict quotes H.G. Wells who stated that if animals and man evolved, there were no first parents and, therefore, no Eden and no fall into sin. If there was no fall, the historic fabric of Christianity—sin and atonement—collapses like a house of cards. Because Neo-Darwinism with its mutations and gradual development is unprovable, some evolutionists now propose a punctuated evolution which is what Gold-schmidt proposed in his "Hopeful Monster" theory. What it means is that once upon a time a reptile laid an egg and, without warning, a mature bird hatched, possessing in its genes potential for all the bird varieties. It is hard to explain what mamma reptile thought of this offspring. This is close to a creation concept, but still it is unthinkable to accept the creation account. Dr. A.E. Wilder-Smith says it is because these people can't think, but the true reason is their refusal to accept God. It demonstrates that man is by nature an enemy of God (Rom. 8:7) and is born in sin (Ps. 51:5). This unwillingness to admit guilt is traced back to the Garden of Eden. Adam blamed Eve and she blamed the serpent. It is an ingrained trait because of sin.
An unnecessary question which continues to crop up is "Where did Cain find a wife?" Adam and Eve had many children, both sons and daughters, and it is obvious that brothers and sisters intermarried. In the beginning of the human race there was no genetic load which would cause undesirable traits such as appear in offspring of marriages between relatives today. The law of Moses in Leviticus, chapter 20, forbidding the marriage of close relatives, did not apply to members of the early human family. Also, if there existed a water vapor canopy in the pre-Flood world, earth received much less harmful radiation than it does today and there would be fewer mutations.
In The Bible Has the Answer, Dr. Morris offers mathematical calculations which suggest that if people lived to an average age of 900 years, and if couples had many children, at the time of Cain's death there would have been a world population of many millions. Scripture does not indicate when Cain married, but finding a wife was not a problem.
Cain was a tiller of the soil and his name means "possession." Abel's name means "vanity," and he was a shepherd. Eve saw in Cain the same inclination to sin which she and Adam had and knew that he was not the promised Savior. Being wiser, she named the second son "vanity," and it may be that he was not given the preference which Cain received. Human emotions, sinful pride and discrimination were involved in the lives of Cain (tiller of fields) and Abel (keeper of sheep). These occupations may be classed as branches of science and we note the same emotions and attitudes today.
In the exercise of their religion both Cain and Abel brought offerings to the Lord, perhaps even at the gate of the Garden of Eden with its cherubim and flaming sword (Gen. 3:24). God had respect unto the sacrifice of Abel but rejected the offering of Cain. Perhaps Cain, being the elder, considered himself superior and perhaps he also believed that his grain offering was of more value than a sheep. Throughout the Old Testament a lamb was the picture of the coming Savior (Is. 53:7 and John 1:29) and no doubt God had requested an offering of lamb to encourage trust in the coming Messiah. This angered Cain who felt that eating meat was wrong because there had been no eating of meat in the Garden of Eden. A lamb was a "sin offering" and a grain sacrifice was a "thank offering." Cain was too proud and angry to listen to God and in his jealousy he killed Abel, thus becoming the first murderer in history.
Many artists have pictured these sacrifices with the smoke of Abel's offering curling heavenward, while that of Cain's went downward. Perhaps there was no smoke at all with Cain's field offering. We do not know how God made it known that He was pleased with the sacrifice of Abel and displeased with Cain's, but we do know that a sin offering and forgiveness were as needed then as now.
In the book Creation: Accident or Design? Dr. Harold Coffin suggests that deserts are the result of man's sin. The environment was changed, and along with this change, the built-in powers of variation and adaptability of plants, animals, and humans were brought into play. Dr. Harold Clark expresses a similar opinion in Genesis and Science. This raises the question whether deserts existed in the original creation or whether they are entirely the result of man's sin and his destruction of the balance of nature.
As part of Cain's curse following his murder of Abel, the ground was to withhold its bounty. Farming had been Cain's whole life and now the earth would no longer yield its fruit in abundance. Abel's sacrifice had been a lamb which was a picture of the promised Savior, but Cain offered fruit of the ground, perhaps because of pride. Henceforth Cain was to be a fugitive and a vagabond. Was this the beginning of the Mid-East desert and the Arab way of life, nomads living in tents?
Cain feared that he might be slain for the murder he had committed, for as yet there was no government to deal with criminals, and individuals could assume this responsibility. To prevent this, God set a mark upon Cain. What that mark was we are not told. Some commentators believe it was a fierce countenance which frightened people.
Bible and Science
There is always a pressure to separate the Bible from science and to separate the Christian religion from things material. In the curse of Cain we see a close connection between morality and nature. Because of Cain's sin, the ground would no longer yield to him (Gen. 4:12). We need to overcome this artificial separation. In Col. 1:20 we read that the blood of Christ reconciles "all things" unto Himself by reconciling people.
Matthew Establishes Creation
Dr. John Whitcomb, writing in The Early Earth, notes that Jesus establishes creation when He speaks of marriage and condemns liberal divorce laws (Matt. 19:4-9). We read specifically that God created Adam and Eve as male and female. If they had evolved from an animal ancestry, they would already have been male and female. The implication is that Adam and Eve did not evolve, but when God formed them from the dust of the ground as male and female, they were a new creation.
Adam and Eve carried within their genes the potential for development of all races. There had been no development from one major kind to another, particularly no development from animal to human. God created the human race by a special act of creation, apart from that of His creation of animals.
In Gen. 2:7 we read that Adam was formed from the dust of the ground. Some evolutionists claim this means the animal kingdom, for animals were also created from the ground (Gen. 2:19). Dr. Whitcomb shows the fallacy of such a position for we read that Adam was cursed after he sinned, also in that the dust of the ground would bring forth thorns and thistles, and eventually Adam would return to dust. How could Adam revert to an animal? The "dust of the ground" (Gen. 2:7) does not refer to animals from which Adam and Eve are said to have evolved. Here is another example of what people will resort to in an attempt to fit Scripture with the theory of evolution. The Scripture texts Matt. 19:4-9 and Gen. 2:7 do not permit such an interpretation.
There was a sudden creation of animal life and another creation of the human race. Man is unique and possesses characteristics which no animal has, as we learn from I Cor. 15:39.
In the essay "A Critical Evaluation of the Chronology of Ussher" appearing in the book Rock Strata and the Bible Record, Dr. Fred Kramer makes a case for possible gaps in the genealogies of chapters 5 and 11 of Genesis. He points to the insertion of the name Cainan in Luke 3:36 taken from the Septuagint text. While this name is omitted from the Massoretic text, it belongs in the Bible because it is in the inspired Luke text. Kramer also notes that in Matthew, 14 generations are listed between Abraham and David, and also 14 generations from David to the Babylonian captivity, and 14 generations from the captivity to the birth of Christ. In this chronology Matthew omits Ahaziah, Joash and Amaziah in one area and Jehoiakim in another. Ten generations are listed in Genesis 5, 10 and 11, and again this seems to be a "rounded" figure. In Heb. 7:9-10 we read that when Melchizedec met Abraham, Levi was in the loins of his father Abraham. Yet we know that Levi was the son of Joseph, who was the son of Jacob, who was the son of Isaac, the son of Abraham. This is an example where a descendant is considered as a son and, therefore, gaps in the genealogies should be allowed, says Dr. Kramer.
Yet Dr. Kramer does not agree with Drs. Whitcomb and Morris who also allow gaps in the genealogies listed in their book The Genesis Flood. Kramer does not admit large gaps, not even 5000 years. He quotes I Chron. 23:15 and 26:24 where Gershom and Eliezer are listed in the genealogy of Moses. Shebuel was an officer of King David and the period between Moses and David covers more than 400 years. To Kramer it is illogical that there were only three generations during this 400-year period. He believes that many generations have been omitted in the genealogies and that this was a customary practice in the Old Testament.
Others note problems with the years of Abraham. According to Stephen's speech (Acts 7:4), Abraham left for Canaan after his father Terah had died. In Gen. 11:26 we read that Abraham, Nahor and Haran were born when Terah was 70 years old and in Gen. 11:23 we read that Terah was 205 years old when he died. Therefore, if Abraham was born when Terah was 70, and if he left after Terah's death, then Abraham was 135 when he left for Canaan. Yet we read in Gen. 12:4 that he was 70 years of age. To many this is proof that we cannot demand consecutive genealogies in Genesis, chapters 5, 10 and 11. One explanation is that offered by P.J. Wiseman who claims that Terah wrote this tablet when he was 70. Perhaps a better answer is that in Terah's tablet there is stated the year in which the first son (Nahor) was born, but all three sons are mentioned. The most prominent son (Abraham), not the firstborn, is mentioned. This occurs again in 6:10 where at first reading it appears that Shem, Ham and Japheth were all born (as triplets) in one year. But we notice that in Gen. 9:24 Ham is called the younger and in Gen. 10:21 we read that Japheth is the elder. Also, we read that Arphaxad was born two years after the Flood when Shem was 100 years old. Therefore, Shem could not have been born the same year that Ham and Japheth were born. Obviously, Japheth was born first, then Shem, and then Ham, the latter 100 years before the Flood.
What we are saying is that there are ways of explaining what appear to be gaps. C.G. Ozanne, writing in The First 7000 Years, explains them well, indicating that Matthew had a reason for his exact 14 genealogies. The names he omitted were of people who, for moral reasons, did not belong in the genealogical list. Matthew had the privilege of listing the genealogies in that manner. In Genesis there is no motive for excluding certain people. Three generations living in Egypt are possible, for their generation spans were longer than ours and they sojourned in Egypt for a period of from 210 to 300 years. In Gen. 15:16 we learn that the Israelites were to return in the fourth generation.
Ozanne also discusses the matter of 8600 descendants of Kohath at the time of the Exodus. Kohath, the son of Levi who moved to Egypt, was father of four sons: Amram, Izhar, Hebron, and Uzziel. If Amram were 55 years of age at the time of the move to Egypt, and if 40 years constitute a generation, and if there were seven males per family, there would be many more descendants than the 2150 needed for Amram's share of the 8600. Recall that women bore children at a late age, that polygamy was practiced, and that the Israelites were astonishingly fertile (Ex. 1:7).
Another person who has pointed up the reliability of consecutive genealogies in Genesis is Eugene Faulstich. A former electronics engineer, the Lord led him to sell his thriving manufacturing business to devote full time to a study of numbers and dates in the Bible. He has fed dates found in Scripture into a computer and adjusted them according to the Hebrew lunar calendar, with the result that he has arrived at unusually exact dates for events mentioned in Scripture. Consecutive genealogies fit with all his studies and comparisons, and he has found nothing so exact as Bible dates. He has not yet published much material, but one item is titled "A Computer Looks at the Bible."
This also answers the question regarding the long lives of patriarchs listed in Genesis, chapter 5. Adam lived to age 930 and Methuselah to age 969. Nine patriarchs are mentioned in this chapter, including Noah but excluding Enoch who was taken to heaven without experiencing death. Average age of these patriarchs is 912.2/9th years. These years were measured the same as ours because they were measured by the elements in space and we know of no variance of significance. In fact, Eugene Faulstich sent an inquiry to a well known astronomer to determine the position of the planets on the fourth day of creation week. Faulstich furnished the date which he had determined from his computer study of Bible dates and the astronomer found that on that particular date (which, according to Faulstich, was the fourth creation day) the planets were in perfect alignment. It was the first and only time in history when this occurred. Although it seems impossible according to our experience, we need to accept the years of Genesis Five as accurate.
If there was a water vapor canopy surrounding earth in the pre-Flood world, it would account for longer life-spans because there was less radiation and with a no-rain situation, minerals would not be washed out of the soil. Biblical dates are more accurate than dates arrived at through history, radioactive decay, or other scientific means.
In attempts to fix the age of the earth and the date of the Noahic flood, Richard Teachout, author of "Noah's Flood — 3398 B.C." and A.M. Rehwinkel, author of The Age of the Earth, follow the Septuagint text. This is a Greek translation of the Hebrew Old Testament produced in about 25 B.C. In it the name of Cainan is inserted between Arphaxad and Salah and his age span is given as 460 years. Luke also includes this name in the genealogy of Jesus in Luke 3:36. In the Septuagint text 100 years are added to the ages of Arphaxad, Peleg, Reu and Serug; 156 years are added to the age of Nahor and 27 years to the age of Salah. Eber's age is shortened by 60 years. Altogether, about 1000 years are added compared with other Bible texts. This text dates the earth as being about 7000 years old and dates the Noahic flood at 3398 B.C. The Massoretic text dates the Flood at 2350 B.C. It is Teachout's opinion that the Septuagint text is more accurate because it is an earlier text than the Massoretic. The earliest record of the Massoretic text is approximately 100 A.D. He also follows the Septuagint because Luke and other New Testament writers apparently quote from it.
On the other hand, British scholar C.G. Ozanne takes an opposite view in his excellent book The First 7000 Years. According to Peter Ruckmman in Which Bible is the Word of God? the Septuagint is a forgery from Alexandrian times in the New Testament. It is Eugene Faulstich's opinion that when the Septuagint was translated (70 scholars working in about 250 B.C.), each civilization was contending for the distinction of being the oldest. He believes that Egyptian historians doubled the king lists in attempts to date their civilization as the oldest. Babylonians contended their civilization was the oldest. In the Septuagint the Jews added 1000 years to the Massoretic text to date theirs as oldest. These students contend that the Septuagint is rationalistic and is not as reliable as the Massoretic text. Many people do not believe that Abraham could have lived within 350 years of the Flood. However, the Ebla Tablets discovered not long ago, reveal that there existed a complete civilization within 200 years of the Flood. Thus, this argument is disappearing.
It is Ozanne's opinion that translators of the Septuagint tried to harmonize the problem in the Massoretic text that Eber lived to age 464 while his son, Peleg, lived only 239 years. This was harmonized by giving Eber's age as 404 years and Peleg's as 339 years. This is altogether unnecessary if a continental split in the time of Peleg is accepted. A split of a single land mass into the present continents would so alter the climate of the world that life-spans would be greatly reduced, accounting for the 200-year difference in life-spans between Eber and Peleg.
The problem of "Cainan" in Luke 3:36 is a sticky one. Luke, by divine inspiration, included this name which in the Septuagint is placed between Salah and Eber. If an extra name is allowed, then Eber is not really the son of Salah, but is his grandson. Then we must allow for other grandsons and the genealogies are not consecutive. This would prohibit exact dating. Some say that the name "Cainan" is a copy insertion in Luke 3:36, but textual criticism does not allow this. One explanation is that Cainan and Eber were twins and one, being handicapped, was not mentioned in the Massoretic text. However, we read in Luke that Eber was the son of Cainan and that Cainan was the son of Salah; this does not permit the explanation of twins. According to the Massoretic text, Salah was 35 years old when Eber was born, and one might reason that Salah was 17 years old when Cainan was born and that Cainan was 18 when Eber was born. But this explanation still leaves Eber as the grandson of Salah and, according to the Massoretic text, Eber was the son of Salah. There must be an explanation, but we have not yet found one. Our experience has been that when there is an apparent error in Scripture, it is just that—apparent. In our opinion the Massoretic text is the more reliable one, but we believe that Luke 3:36 is inspired; we are still awaiting a satisfactory explanation.
Many people claim that Noah's ark was not large enough to house all the creatures needed to repopulate the earth after the Flood, plus furnishing a food supply for Noah and his family. These objections are listed by Whitcomb and Morris in The Genesis Flood. Jan Lever, Professor of Zoology at the Free University in Amsterdam, is quoted as claiming the expression "by sevens" in Gen. 7:2.3 really means 14 pair. He says at present there are 15,000 species of birds; this means 210,000 birds would need to be housed on the Ark. Morris and Whitcomb point out there may have been only 8600 species of birds; also "seven" refers only to birds classified as clean, and there were many unclean birds aboard.
Writing in The Flood, Local or Global? Dr. Arthur Custance claims there would be a problem in providing drinking water for Noah's family and the animals. Morris and Whitcomb say that rain would have provided sufficient drinking water. Custance also says that air in the regions above the mountains would have been too rarified for some of the animals, to which Morris and Whitcomb reply that atmospheric pressure is dependent on sea level, and the Ark was at sea level.
Dr. Ernst Mayr, leading American classifier, lists a total of one million kinds of animals. Morris and Whitcomb eliminate all sea forms of life and group the others into 35,000 kinds of vertebrate animals, recognizing ability to diversify within the major kinds. Calculating average size of the animals to be that of a sheep, they figure that 240 animals could be housed within the space of two decks of a railroad boxcar. The Ark was large enough to shelter the contents of 522 such boxcars. Only 146 cars of this kind would be needed to house the 35,000 varieties of animals, leaving two-thirds of Ark space available for food, water, etc. Another problem was caring for the animals on board. Perhaps the Lord induced hibernation in some species, thus reducing the care they needed.
The question is often asked "How were dinosaurs preserved on the Ark?" Dinosaurs are a sea form of life and perhaps did not need to be preserved on the Ark. Or, perhaps young dinosaurs of small size were taken, or some of the smaller varieties. Extinction of the dinosaurs was not due to lack of preservation on the Ark so much as it was their inability to cope with environmental conditions following the Flood.
In 1883 a group of Turkish men discovered the Ark on Mount Ararat. There had been an unusually warm summer and great avalanches of snow buried many villages, and on the mountain, receding snow and ice exposed portions of the Ark. Within the Ark were found cages 15 feet high, large enough for huge animals.
Entering the Ark
We have stated that only 35,000 kinds or varieties of creature life would have needed preservation on the Ark. But 35,000 varieties are quite a number, and the question is asked how Noah managed to assemble them. How could a kangaroo from Australia manage to cross the Pacific Ocean to get to the Ark? Perhaps there was only one continent prior to the Flood and animals did not need to cross large expanses of water.
We must also recognize that much about Noah's Ark was supernatural. God brought the animals to the Ark as Gen. 6:20 and 7:9.15 teach. They came of themselves; Noah did not have a round-up. Even today, birds possess migration instincts, traveling across vast oceans without becoming lost. God could have used an instinct such as this to direct the animals to the Ark. This is supernatural and superscien-tific. We cannot even understand much of what we observe in our day; why should we expect to understand everything that took place in the Flood? We must make allowance for miracles. Even so, there is a fine line between what we call natural and what we term miraculous.
Waters Prevailed 150 Days
During the Flood it rained for 40 days and 40 nights (Gen. 7:12) and the waters prevailed upon the earth 150 days (Gen. 7:24). The waters increased after the rain ceased (Gen. 7:17); the waters continued to increase and prevail for 110 days after the rain stopped. Finally, all the high hills under the whole heaven were covered and water reached a depth of 15 cubits, enough for the Ark to float over the highest mountain (7:20).
In his book The Biblical Flood and the Ice Epoch Donald Patten suggests this is a reference to tidal waves. Tides come and go, increase and decrease. In Gen. 8:3 we read that the waters returned from off the earth continually during the drying process, and it is Patten's opinion that the Ark was not picked up until the huge tidal waves came into play. He also suggests that the Ark was driven to the high mountain region of Ararat rather than floating downstream to the ocean.
Patten's critics accuse him of denying a real flood and of substituting tides. Another idea is provided by Charles Morse in "Source of the Water and Driving Energy in the Genesis Flood," an essay appearing in the July-August, 1971 Bible-Science Newsletter. He believes that God caused a fission underneath the ocean to lift the water to a height of two miles or more, thus covering all land masses with water. He continues with the suggestion that six months later God introduced fission underneath the land masses to raise them, thus draining off the water.
Dr. Walter Brown has another idea which he presents in his manual for creation seminars titled "In the Beginning." He believes the land mass broke up into continents during the Flood and its recessional period rather than at a later time, due to an ice age which some say took place during the time of Peleg (Gen. 10:25).
Whichever position one takes regarding the breaking up of the fountains of the deep, it is apparent that drastic geologic changes took place abruptly. As one studies the inner gorge of the Grand Canyon in Arizona, one can see how God allowed earth's crust to be mangled and ruptured at the time the fountains of the deep were broken open (Gen. 7:11). Dr. Clifford Burdick, a geologist, believes that before the Flood there was a perfect balance in the continental plates of the earth. When the fountains of the deep broke open, thousands of volcanoes erupted all over the earth and continental plates began breaking up on what today is called the ring of fire in the oceans, or the rift lines. Burdick also believes that before the Flood there were no earthquakes or volcanic eruptions. He thinks earthquakes formed islands such as the Hawaiian Islands and the Galapagos Islands.
Dr. Bernard Northrup describes the sand dunes of western United States in his booklet "What You Should Know About Dinosaurs." There are huge deposits of sand in Zion National Park in southern Utah and also near Vernal, Utah, where large numbers of dinosaur skeletons have been found. These sand deposits extend through Colorado and Utah into California. It is calculated that there is enough sand in the Franciscan Range of California, a coastal range, to cover the whole continental United States with 600 feet of sand, and there is much more sand than that all through western United States. Where did this sand originate?
Dr. Northrup refers to Bible verses where we read that God caused a wind to pass over the earth and the waters assuaged and the waters returned from off the earth continually. Dr. Northrup, who teaches Old Testament Studies, suggests that this ought to be translated as "going and coming." These verses describe jet winds of terrific intensity, sweeping sand from one part of the earth to another. The windswept patterns in the rock formations of Zion National Park, and also the Coconino formation of Grand Canyon seem to be good evidence of the existence and force of these winds. Most dinosaur fossils discovered are in these windswept formations. This means that dinosaurs could have been destroyed rapidly and long periods of time are not needed.
In the first chapter of Noah's Ark: Fact or Fable? (1953), Violet Cummings discusses the controversy over the location of Mount Ararat. Is the present Mount Ararat the same as the Mount Ararat of Scripture on which Noah's Ark landed? This information is summarized in The Witness of Mount Ararat by Walter Lang in the "Five Minute" magazine for July-August, 1974. Also, there is an excellent summary in the 16 mm motion picture titled "The Flood and the Ark of Noah" by Dabney.
James Bryce of England reported to the Royal Geographical Society of London that in 1876 he had found tooled wood on Mount Ararat which he believed was part of Noah's Ark. Sir Henry Rawlinson maintained that the mountain on which the Ark had landed was farther south, and others agreed that a mountain south of Lake Van, named Judi Dagh (Jebal Judi), located on the border between Turkey and Iraq, was the real Mount Ararat. According to the Babylonian Flood Epic, the Ark landed on Nizer, east of the Zab River, far south of the present Mount Ararat. In 1970 an archaeologist named Albrecht claimed the Mount Ararat of Scripture was located in the center of Turkey.
Mrs. Cummings answers these objections in several ways, but mainly by noting that the many people who claim to have seen the Ark, have placed it on the present Mount Ararat (called Agri Dagh by the Turks) which means "painful mountain."
In 1856 three British scientists and two Armenian guides found the Ark. In 1883 a group of Turks went inside the Ark. In 1887 Prince Nouri found it on his third attempt. An Armenian now living in Chicago claims that as a boy he saw the Ark on several occasions. In 1915-1916 a group of 100 Russians explored some of the Ark's rooms. Jacob Radtke of Alberta, Canada claims he saw the Ark when he was 18 years old and serving as a German-Russian soldier in the Russian army, fighting the Turks. He says there was a primitive railroad going through the saddle on the mountain and that he and 500 other soldiers saw the Ark as they were riding on flatcars on their way to capture Doughabayazit and again on the return trip. There is no evidence of this railroad today, but history books describe it, and some of the tooled wood on the mountain may have been railroad ties. In 1932 Carveth Wells found hand-tooled timbers and in 1936 Sir Hard-wicke Knight claimed he found hand-tooled timbers on the mountain. In 1943 a party of American fliers reportedly got a glimpse of the Ark. A Kurdish farmer named Reshit saw it in 1948, and in 1954 George Greene took pictures of the Ark from a helicopter. On his 1955 and 1969 expeditions, Fernand Navarra of France claims he saw the Ark underneath the ice, and he returned with a piece of hand-tooled timber. All these witnesses place the Ark on the present Mount Ararat.
Dr. Clifford Burdick, a consulting geologist, studied the mountain in 1966, 1969 and in 1971. He found evidences of vast geologic changes. The original mountain shows a deep gash. This has been blown out out since the time of the Flood. From the gash, studying the nature of the rocks, one can determine the height of the original mountain. Dr. Burdick believes he has evidence that at one time the mountain extended to a height of 20,000 feet. At present it is nearly 17,000 feet. There is also evidence on top of the mountain that it was once covered with water. There are lava flows in circular form, indicating that lava had been formed under water. Also, breccia is found at the ice cap, beginning at about 13,500 feet, which was formed by flowing lava combined with rushing water. This mountain, more than most, is changing and offers evidence of vast changes in the past. It is not "very good" as everything was when God finished creating it. It is evidence of the effect on nature of human sin and points to the necessity of the most important Ark of all, Jesus Christ. Only through the substituted atonement of Jesus Christ can the perfection of creation be restored.
1. Walter Lang, "Five Minutes with the Bible and Science," January-February,
1977, Bible-Science Newsletter, Bible-Science Assn., Minneapolis,
2. Lynn White, Jr., "The Historical Roots of our Ecological Crisis" in Science, March 1967, Vol. 155, pp. 1203-1207.
3. John Klotz, The Ecology Crisis, Concordia Publishing House, St. Louis, Mo., 1970.
4. Francis Schaeffer, Pollution and the Death of Man, Tyndale House, Wheaton, Il., 1970.
5. Richard L. Means, "Why Worry About Nature?" in Saturday Review, Dec. 2, 1967.
6. Andrew K. White, The Warfare Between Science and Religion, out of print.
7. Harold Blum, "Time's Arrow and Evolution," Princeton University, 1951.
8. Richard Hanson, The Serpent Was Wiser, Augsburg Publishing House, Minneapolis, Mn., 1972.
9. Henry Morris, Biblical Cosmology and Modern Science, Baker Book House, Grand Rapids, Mi., 1970.
10. Robert L. Reymond, A Christian View of Modern Science, Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Co., Phillipsburg, N.J., 1964.
11. Raymond Surburg, "In the Beginning God Created" in Darwin, Evolution and Creation, edited by Paul Zimmerman, Concordia Publishing House, St. Louis, Mo., 1959.
12. Raymond Surburg, "Mythical Interpretation of the Early Chapters of Genesis" in Evidences of Creation, edited by Walter Lang, Bible-Science Association, Minneapolis, Mn., 1969.
13. Hearings before Education Committee of Minnesota Legislature, April 1979.
14. Arthur Custance, Without Form and Void, published by author, Brockwill, Ont., 1970.
15. Fredrick Ross, "Without Form and Void" in Bible-Science Newsletter, April 1972, Bible-Science Association, Minneapolis, Mn.
16. Bernard Northrup, "Without Form and Void" in Bible-Science Newsletter, March 1971, Minneapolis, Mn.
17. Henry Morris and John Whitcomb, The Genesis Flood, Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Co., Phillipsburg, N.J., 1961-1981.
18. John Whitcomb, The Early Earth, Baker Book House, Grand Rapids, Mi., 1972.
19. Weston Fields, Unformed and Unfilled, Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Co., Phillipsburg, N.J., 1976.
20. Russell Maatman, The Bible, Natural Science, and Evolution, Baker, Grand Rapids, Mi., 1970.
21. Robert E. Kofahl, "By Faith We Understand Creation and the Gospel, Physics, and the Canopy Models" in Third Creation Convention Book, edited by William Overn, Minneapolis, Mn., 1976.
22. Joseph Dillow, The Waters Above, Moody Press, Chicago, II., 1981.
23. Harold Clark, "Evolution and the Bible," a series of eight filmstrips. Review and Herald Publishing Co., Tacoma Park, Md., 1964.
24. Russell Akridge, "A Recent Creation Interpretation of the Big Bang and the Expanding Universe" in Bible-Science Newsletter, Bible-Science Association, Minneapolis, Mn., Feb. 1972.
25. Thoburn Lyon, Witness in the Sky, Moody Press, Chicago, IL, 1961.
26. Joseph Goodavage, Astrology—the Space Age Science, Parker, West Nyack, N.Y., 1966.
27. Joseph Seiss, The Gospel in the Stars, Kregel, Grand Rapids, Mi., 1882. 1975.
28. E.W. Bullinger, The Witness of the Stars, Kregel, Grand Rapids, Mi., 1893. 1976.
29. Howard Rand, The Stars Declare God's Handiwork, Destiny, Merri-mac, Ma., 1944.
30. Kenneth C. Flemming, God's Voice in the Stars, Louizeaux, Neptune, N.Y., 1981.
31. M.R. DeHaan, Genesis and Evolution, Zondervan, Grand Rapids, Mi., 1962. 1969.
32. A.O. Schnabel, Has God Spoken? published by author, Tampa, Fl. 1967. 1974. 1980.
33. Frank Marsh, Evolution, Creation and Science, Review and Herald Publishing Co., Tacoma Park, N.Y., 1944. 1947.
34. Frank Marsh, Evolution or Special Creation? Review and Herald, Tacoma Park, N.Y., 1963.
35. Frank Marsh, Life, Man, and Time, Outdoor Pictures, Anacortes, Wa., 1967.
36. Frank Marsh, Variation and Fixity in Nature, Pacific Press, Mountain View, Ca., 1976.
37. Bolton Davidheiser, Evolution and the Christian Faith, Presbyterian and Reformed, Phillipsburg, N.J., 1969, 1971.
38. John Mackay, "Biblical Biology" on two tapes, Creation Science Association of Australia, Brisbane, Queensland, 1980.
39. P. J. Wiseman, New Discoveries in Babylonia about Genesis, Marshall, Morgan and Scott, London, 1936. 1958.
40. Arthur Custance, The Virgin Birth and Incarnation, Zondervan,
Grand Rapids, ML, 1966. 1976.
41. Phoebe Courtney, Beware of Sensitivity Training, Free Men Speak, Inc., New Orleans, La., 1969.
42. Phoebe Courtney, Sex Education Racket, Free Men Speak Inc., New Orleans, La., 1969.
43. Henry Morris, The Bible Has the Answer, Creation-Life Publishers, San Diego, Ca., 1971.
44. Robert Benedict, Journey Away from God, Fleming-Revell, Tappan, N.J., 1972.
45. Harold Coffin, Creation—Accident or Design? Review and Herald, Tacoma Park, Md., 1969.
46. Harold Clark, Genesis and Science, Southern Publishing Co., Nashville, Tn., 1967.
47. Fred Kramer, "A Critical Evaluation of the Chronology of Ussher" in Rock Strata and the Bible Record, edited by Paul Zimmerman, Concordia, St. Louis, Mo., 1970.
48. C.G. Ozanne, The First 7000 Years, Exposition Press, N.Y., 1970.
49. Eugene Faulstich, "A Computer Looks at the Bible," published by author at Ruthven, Iowa, 1981.
50. Richard Teachout, "Noah's Flood—3398 B.C.," Bible-Science Association, Minneapolis, Mn., 1971.
51. A.M. Rehwinkel, The Age of the Earth and Chronology of the Bible, Lutheran Publishing House, Adelaide, Australia, 1967.
52. Peter.S. Ruckman, A Christian Handbook of Manuscript Evidence, Pensacola Bible Institute, Pensacola, Fl., 1970. 1976.
53. Arthur Custance, The Flood—Local or Global? Zondervan, Grand Rapids, Mi., 1959. 1973. 1979.
54. Donald Patten, The Biblical Flood and the Ice Epoch, Pacific Meridian, Seattle, 1966, 1971.
55. Charles Morse, "Source of Water and Driving Energy in the Genesis Flood," Bible-Science Newsletter, July-August, 1971, Minneapolis, Mn.
56. Walter Brown, "In the Beginning" Seminar Manual, Midwest Institute of Creation Research, Chicago, IL, 1981.
57. Bernard Northrup, "What You Should Know about Dinosaurs." Out of print.
58. Violet Cummings, Noah's Ark—Fact or Fable? Creation Science Research Center, San Diego, Ca., 1972.
59. Walter Lang, "The Witness of Mount Ararat" in "Five Minutes with the Bible and Science," July-August, 1974, Minneapolis, Mn.
60. Dabney, "The Flood and the Ark of Noah," Ken Anderson Films, Winona Lake, In., 1975. 16mm sound and color film.
Section for Rev. Walter Lang www.creationism.org