In the beginning, God created the Heavens and the Earth…
Then God created man, and man argued about how and when everything was created.
For some conservative Christians circles, Creation is regarded as a point of contention. You believe that God created everything in a literal, maybe even figurative, seven days, and the first man and women were created, and they got kicked out of the garden, and if you get crazy, maybe dinosaurs existed but were wiped out by the flood. If you believe in another god creating the universe, then you are simply misguided, but you have the right idea: The universe was magically created through a supernatural force. But, should you believe in the scientific Big-Bang theory, then you are obviously blinded by the devil himself, and unable to see what God has clearly placed in front of you. The evidence for Creationism is all around us! or so I hear.
Yes, I realize that my description is short-changing the typical Christian view of Creationism. That is because, in atypical fashion, I am giving the alternate point of view.
In the beginning, God spoke and everything exploded into existence. It was an explosion of God’s creative and infinite nature, so powerful that it kept going. All of creation itself was set in motion to move, and to keep moving, to the point where the very edge of what exists keeps expanding by the second. The Universe is constantly expanding, right? Or so we’ve heard.
In this expanse of time and space, there are living beings, each watched over and molded by God. God’s hand hovers over the waters where the single-cell organisms lay squirming, and as He waves his hand billions of years passes in an instant. After all, what is time to an infinite God? In those years, he crafts the form and nature of all of creation, creating plants and animals. But he wants a creation piece in his own image and likeness, so he takes the tiniest of creatures and sculpts it for billions of years. He gives it feet to walk out of the waters, and appendages from which it may grab objects. He forms its inner workings to think, and question, and love. Finally, out of the very dust of the earth, he has formed his image and likeness, and he called it man.
I constantly hear the term “13 Billion years” get tossed around. 13 Billion! Its no National debt, but for all intents and purposes, that’s a number that is basically made up. Unless you are selling Facebook or counting blood cells, you should never even have to use that number. If you want to say, “How great is our God?”, I don’t understand why you wouldn’t rush to say, “At least 13 Billion”.
Louis Giglio had a famous message title How Great is Our God, and in it he describes the size of planet Earth next to all of the planets and stars we know about, and the comparison is astounding. He showed on just a size level, measuring the mass of planetary bodies and the light-year distances between them, God has created an expanse that is awe-inspiring, and that most of it will never even be seen by man, because it wasn’t made for man, but for God’s glory. And what was the number for the estimated diameter of the universe? 46 Billion light-years. Dear God, that’s a lot. And you know what’s even crazier? Its still being actively created at a speed we will never catch up with. On top of that, He is still changing the plants and animals today in an ever on-going creation process. You could call it evolution and abandon it as secular science trying to make an excuse for God’s creation, or you could just call it God being deeply involved with the development of his creation.
So, regardless of whether God created the universe billions of years ago, or thousands of years ago, or even in the last 5 seconds, is God not the same, amazing God? And if man evolved from lesser creatures, or was made fully-formed, was God still not the one who watched over him and molded him in His image and likeness? So why does my place in the Church depend on the details of my creation? It shouldn’t.
I was always an unsettled, 6,000 year old earth Believer, so let’s just suppose that Genesis is to be taken literally. What is up with the varying Creation accounts in Genesis 1-2? The time line seems a bit off between the two, and feel as if two different people wrote them. If you even think about who supposedly wrote Genesis and why, it seems a little weird. (Answer: It’s assumed to be Moses, and it was written because the Hebrew people who just left Egypt really didn’t have a culture of their own. They were pretty much just second-class Egyptians, so they needed an origin, a history, a set of laws, their own land, etc.)
Or When Cain kills Abel, God marks him so that he will not be harmed by anyone else. Who is Cain afraid of? Who is he afraid would harm him for killing his brother? The go-to answer is usually his own family, But what if it was people other than his immediate family? If you had a society that had laws regarding the punishment for homicide, then maybe you should be afraid to go around other people after having just killed someone.
On top of everything else, Cain has a wife, which we assume is his sister, if no one else is around. The defense for this is simply: incest was acceptable back then because blood lines were purer and times were different. That sounds like the same excuse the Austrian royals and the backwoods, crazy, cult-like families would probably have used when they were inbreeding.
Once again, I’m not even saying I agree with it, but it sure as hell made me rethink what I blindly denied.
If you’d like to get a taste of what started this, listen to The Deconstructionist Podcast: Ep. 38 with Richard Rohr, and Ep. 11 with Science Mike. I assure you, they are an interesting listen if nothing else.