The universe’s birth certificate
Once you let go of the Bible as history, all Christian doctrine begins to disintegrate. Dr Nigel Leaves, the Warden and Dean of Studies at John Wollaston Anglican Theological College in Perth (Australia), provides a typical example in The God Problem: Alternatives to Fundamentalism.1 He says ‘the major factor in the waning of the Christian faith is its continuing insistence on a supernatural God—the Almighty, the lawgiver and judge.’ He considers four alternatives to ‘fundamentalism’ (i.e. believing in the God of the Bible), saying, ‘Traditional beliefs about God cannot be sustained in the light of the latest scientific and critical thinking.’ And of course the ‘latest scientific thinking’ rests on the foundation of discounting the time scale of Genesis creation.
But the Bible gives us a measured time scale, an eye-witness record, of history, a foundation far more secure than any modern scientific estimate. A measurement wins over an estimate any day!
The earth’s ‘birth certificate’
My birth certificate gives me a measured time scale for my age. It is an eye-witnessed statement that I was born on 28 January 1946, and other eye-witnesses have maintained a record of the earth having circled the sun 61 times since then. Likewise, the Bible gives us a ‘birth certificate’ for the universe—an eye-witness statement that God created it in six ordinary-length days in the time of Adam. The family histories and patriarchal ages in Genesis continue this record. God then confirmed it to Moses and wrote it down with His own finger in stone in the Sabbath Commandment (Exodus 20:11; 31:18; 32:16).
Jesus then confirmed the authenticity of the OT scriptures—in detail and in its entirety2—by correctly predicting his own death and resurrection on their foundation. That is, death entered the world only as the penalty for Adam’s sin at the Fall, and Jesus, the last Adam (1 Corinthians 15 and Romans 5:6–21) took our place and paid that penalty for us, thus restoring us to eternal life. Once the penalty was paid, death no longer had any hold on Him and He rose from the dead. Jesus’ Resurrection authenticates Genesis as real history. The Resurrection of Jesus, an attested fact of history (Acts 17:31)3, is thus our guarantee of the measured biblical time scale for the universe (Luke 24:27,44).
Scientists must assume and infer
No scientist has any alternative or better ‘birth certificate’ for the earth or the universe. All scientific estimates of earth and universe age require a whole lot of assumptions. The key assumption is uniformitarianism, which is atheism disguised as science, because it assumes no miraculous interventions in history.4 Christians have no reason to accept, and every reason to reject, atheistic assumptions about the universe.
Jesus’ Resurrection validates the accuracy of the Bible, especially its history of Creation and Fall. No Bible scholar since Jesus has risen from the dead to validate any alternative point of view. Don’t let anyone steal from you this precious gift that God has given us in the Bible.
References and notes
- Polebridge Press, California, USA, 2006, quoted in Keith MacDonald, Defining God in the 21st century, The West Australian, 18 November, 2006. Dr Leaves was challenged by church authorities, who claim the newspaper article was ‘deliberately mischievous’. Leaves says he supports ‘inclusive Anglicanism and the theological diversity of the Diocese of Perth’. See: A response to the misleading review by Keith MacDonald (West Australian) of Nigel Leaves’ book, <www.perthanglicans.com.au/PDFs/Leaves281106.pdf>. Return to text.
- Livingston, D., Jesus on the infallibility of the Scripture, <www.creation.com/jesus_bible>. Return to text.
- Q&A on Jesus Christ, His Resurrection, <creation.com/res>. Return to text.
- See: Amazing admission, Creation 20(3):24, 1998, <creation.com/lewontin>. Return to text.
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This was a good short article that gets one thinking about presuppositions. However, I think CMI needs to hit harder with the ‘age of the earth’ question itself. By this I mean the foolishness of even asking the question! Philosophically, it is a category mistake. There is absolutely no way that man, beginning with himself as referent, can know when he has got the true and final correct answer. When confronted with this the ‘billions of years type’ will quickly admit that it’s only a close approximation. I always then ask ‘well how close is it’? At this point the person usually realizes their problem. The answer to the question of age can only come from a transcendent source; the Creator God of the bible via the genealogies. Science can never answer this question & for science to pose it is completely out of order. Romans 1:22 says it all; ‘believing themselves wise they became fools’.
Just asking the question proves the ‘billions of years minded’ to be a complete fool.
OK, you did it again... like I don't have enough Bible studies I want to do in my lifetime..It may have been intended or not.. I do not know.. however your comment on Jesus going to the Cross and being resurrected stated or implied an exact date , hour and minute that was indeed precise.. and that leads me to KNOW that God is indeed precise even in that detail..
Point is.. even the resurrection of Christ in an exact time in history is not only precise, but therefore is so important that I missed it..
That said, I will write that on my things to do list..All of a sudden I need to know exactly why that exact second in all of history is significant.. and why not one minute more or less... God does everything with a definite reason , in an exact location that has real meaning.. and at an exact time.. Hmmmmm, hope this one doesn't keep me awake again.
Thanks so much for a wonderful article, as all those I have read to date.
That said, WE would also be in an exact time and place in history.. food for thought.