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The Young Versus the Old December 24, 2010

Posted by jetson in Personal.
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I’m talking about our planet earth, and it’s age. How old is the earth anyway? According to science, our planet is approximately 4.5 billion years old. Within the scientific community, there really is no debate worth considering over this, as the facts and evidence to support this estimate are well documented and tested.

On the other hand, there are many people, especially in the United States, who believe that our planet is somewhere between six to ten thousand years old. The scale of difference between 4.5 billon and 6 thousand is not even worth writing down (.0000013). Sorry, I couldn’t help myself.

So why do people believe this young and very absurd age? Because they were told that the biblical story of Genesis pinpoints the beginning of the earth, God’s creation, at about 6,000 years ago. That’s it. God did it, they believe it, end of story. Science be damned, they say. Although, to be fair, I think that most of these people just don’t want to challenge religious doctrine, or biblical stories.

But this also poses what I consider a serious problem for Christians who hold either the young earth or old earth position. Yes, there are Christians who reject the young earth idea, and adopt an old earth version of creation, which they somehow have decided matches very well with science. Go figure. The problem is that only one of these positions can be true, and Christians do not agree with each other.

So, what if Genesis is just a metaphor for how God created the earth, and science has it about right? Well, Christians still get to believe that God did all of this work, and they can rest easy knowing that science is finally catching up to the truth of God’s creation. But if they believe the rigid accounting from The Bible as accurate, then they must hold that the earth is much younger than science thinks it is. This of course creates all sorts of problems for scientists if it is true, but whatever.

One thing I would like to add to this is the fact that I personally know Christians on both sides of this issue. And when I challenged them to this obvious difference, I was astounded to hear them both agree that this difference in no way affects their salvation! What? Seriously? Apparently I am supposed to sit back in awe of Christian knowledge of scripture and science catching up to scripture, and just ignore this magnanimous, blunderingly sad excuse for an explanation?

Christianity holds that accepting Jesus is the way to eternal life and salvation after we die, as well as the horrific fiery torture and burning in hell for not believing. So when people like myself want to find out why we should accept Jesus as our savior, we are expected to suspend all critical thinking and only be concerned with salvation? Is that it, really? And if this is true, then I ask this simple question:

Why do Christians care about anything in scripture that does not speak directly to the faith-based acceptance of Jesus for one’s salvation? And please don’t try to tell me that every word in scripture matters, if you can’t agree on how old the earth is based on scripture.

Why Did God Create the Universe? May 7, 2010

Posted by jetson in Personal.
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If you have never given much serious thought to the size of the known universe, you really should. It is staggering, almost beyond belief. It is difficult to imagine the sub-microscopic planet we live in when it comes to how it compares to the rest of the known universe. I don’t know how to even begint to explain it, really. I’m not sure I could really do it justice.

Some of the greatest minds of modern time have pondered the question “why are we here?”. For many humans, this question seems to invoke some level of “spiritual” consideration. There must be a reason why humans are here. But is that reason any different than why giraffes are here? Do people really think that humans are so much more important than giraffes, in some grand scheme? I think they do believe this. And I think they feel justified, simply because they asked the question, and the giraffe, apparently, has not.

If God (character from The Bible) created the entire universe, and everything in it, including the planet we live on, there must have been a reason. God must have wanted this universe. Did God have a purpose, or a mission, or something in mind when he decided to create this universe, and subsequently, this earth – with us humans asking why? If everything happens for a reason, then there must be a reason that God created the universe and everything in it. Does anyone know what the reason is?

Many claim that we humans cannot know the mind of God (ignoring the fact that those same humans seem to actually know the mind of God). If we cannot know, then isn’t it true that we can only guess? Is it even important to know Gods reason for creating the universe and everything in it? Let’s see…

  • God created the universe because he wanted to?
  • God needed humans to worship him?
  • God was lonely?
  • God created humans because humans need God?
  • I’ll stop there because I think this question is best answered by those who believe God created the universe, and understand exactly why. Let’s get some feedback!

    Is Earth a Perfect World? January 16, 2010

    Posted by jetson in Personal.
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    I think that most people would answer no, earth is not a perfect world. But I also know that there are those who believe that earth was created intentionally, by God, for humans to dominate and call their home until they die and go to heaven. Those people would have a difficult time claiming that earth is not perfect, because it would be admitting that God did not create it perfectly. They tend to blame the bad things on humans. For example, someone tried to tell me that the world was perfect, until God flooded the entire planet in order to kill all of the sinning humans and start fresh. That flood is what triggered things like earthquakes, hurricanes, tornadoes, and mudslides. You know, the tragic events of nature that sometimes manage to kill thousands of humans and animals in their wake. Thank God for that.

    The recent earthquake in Haiti is an example of what humans see as natural events that we cannot control. Those events are sometimes very tragic, as we can see by the death toll in Haiti, so far. But again, many humans believe that God made a perfect world for us, so they need to have an answer to the question about why God would create such a world where humans, Gods children, are put in harms way on a fairly regular basis. There are even some who believe that those killed in such tragedies were taken by God to a better world. And not to be left out, there are also those who think that God chose to wipe out a certain batch of humans because they are not worshiping him properly, or they are somehow displeasing to God. Despite these various explanations of Gods perfect earth, I can say that earth is amazing.

    But I say that without knowing much about the possible planets out there that could be even more amazing. So far, we can only guess that planets that can sustain life such as ours are extremely rare. But we don’t really know what lies beyond our guesses. We are just now discovering things at the deepest levels of earths oceans! Humans are usually in awe of natures beauty here on earth. Even more beautiful, at least to some, are the vast reaches of space with nebulae, galaxies, stars and darkness beyond imagination. And here, among the vastness of the universe, we live on this amazing little planet.

    To be sure, I believe we are guests, and lucky ones at that. We are each lucky to have been born at all. How many human eggs are dispatched without being fertilized? And yet, over 6 billion of them managed to be fertilized and be alive at this point in human history. Still, humans are a biological rarity. And we are guests on this amazing planet because we don’t really live that long.

    No, the earth is not perfect, but we all know that. If God created the earth, as humans we would never be able to comprehend his definition of perfection on such a scale. We cannot reconcile our beliefs in an almighty god with what we must live through on this planet. It is impossible for humans to enter the mind of God and completely understand its intentions when it comes to the planet we live on. In fact, we can drop God altogether, and notice that the earth we live on is evolving and changing exactly as it would if there were no god behind its design.

    Earth is not perfect. Earth is our one and only home, and it has amazing beauty, and devastating natural disasters. After all, it’s just a rock, circling a sun, invisible to everything in the universe but us.