Genesis: Fact or Fiction Reloaded

Is the Christian view of Creation utter nonsense?  Does it have any merit at all or do Christians simply need to concede defeat to the scientists and move on to doing some more good things?

Here is a comment someone else made about the original Genesis: Fact or Fiction post:

You could literally write a book about how absurd the story is. It presumes the Earth was created at the same times as the universe or that humans have been around since the beginning of the earth. Absolutely none of this has any evidence to support it. So Genesis, definitely fiction

This is a grossly oversimplified comment and is untrue as well.  Is the story of Genesis absurd?  Only if one first presumes to know what happened at the beginning of all things.  Here are a few simple points:

  • Genesis never says the earth was created at the same time as the universe.  Genesis never even uses the word universe!
  • Genesis never says people have been on the earth since it was created.  They arrived several days later!  *smile*
  • There is evidence to support all of these things!

What I find fascinating is the way in which the process of science has been understood by people.  To state “there is no evidence to support all of these things” simply reveals the interpretation the writer gives to the evidence.  Nature, the universe and observation give up loads and loads of data.  The facts are not scientific theories but the things that are being studied.

For example, let’s say you and I go together to Giant’s Causeway in Northern Ireland.  There we will find huge columns of basaltic rock jutting up in really regular formations.  Each formation will be composed of many columns of rocks with between four and seven sides each.  I have been there before and I can tell you this is an amazing sight to see.  How did these columns get there?  How can their regular geometrical shapes be explained?

Here is the difference between ‘facts’ and interpretations.  The facts are the rocks themselves.  They are there and they can be measured, weighed, tested and analysed.  What happens after all of the examining is the production of theories which answer the question of the origins of the rocks.   The theories are not facts nor are they evidence for the formation of the rocks.  The theories come after the rocks.

If an observer begins with the belief that there is no God and there is nothing outside of this universe then their beginning beliefs will determine how they interpret the facts.  They will be searching for answers about how the rocks got there and looking for clues within the rocks themselves and in the surrounding systems.  This belief gets coupled with a belief in a very old earth and so the rock formation process should take hundreds of millions of years.  This leads to an explanation of the formation of the rocks.

If an observer begins with the belief that God created the earth and then later brought judgement on the earth through a cataclysmic global Flood then this beginning belief will also lead to an explanation of the formation of the rocks.  Specifically, this belief will be looking for how the rocks could have formed in a watery environment during huge upheavals of the earth’s crust caused by the tectonic plate shifts which occurred during the Flood.  This will lead to an explanation of the formation of the rocks.

Finally, if an observer begins with a belief in literal giants and the mythology that goes along with them then this belief will also produce an explanation for the formation of these rocks.  This belief will involve giants visiting and fighting one another across the small stretch of water between Northern Ireland and Scotland.  Finn fought Finn and the Giant’s Causeway was the road to their battles.

All three of these explanations are now on display at the visitor’s centre at the Giant’s Causeway!

Which of these is the true explanation?  I know which one I favour!

The point I am making is that the beliefs which we bring to the facts determine our interpretation of the facts in order to provide ourselves with a story of creation.  To claim the Bible is absurd because there is no evidence is itself absurd.  The evidence is literally staring everyone in the face.

What is more accurate is to claim that the Bible, according to an atheistic and naturalistic perspective, is utter nonsense.  Yet this is going around in a circle.  All one has done is simply made up stories to fit one’s assumptions.

The best question is:

WHICH EXPLANATION BEST ACCOUNTS FOR ALL OF THE FACTS?

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