Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Creation ex nihilo debated by Young Earth Creationists

Here is a paragraph taken from the Fall 2007 issue of LifeDate: a quarterly journal of life issue news and commentary from National Lutherans for Life. Under an article ironically entitled, "God, the Orderly Atheist," which is itself an excerpt from "PBT Creation " by Cleone H. Weigand, copyright 2000, Northwestern Publishing House, Wauwatosa, Wisconsin. My quote of the article is in the context of a review:
Creation out of nothing
It seems obvious from these verses [Hebrews 11:3 and Genesis 1:1-2] that when God began his creation, there was emptiness, a void, nothing to see. Then, from nothing, He filled this void with what He had planned to construct. This teaching of "creation from nothing" (Latin: ex nihilo) has something been contested by people who embrace other ways of interpreting Genesis chapters 1 and 2. However, it is difficult to take what seems so obvious from the creation account and all the other references to creation in Scripture and twist it into something different.

The problem I have with this assertion is that those who "embrace other ways of interpreting Genesis chapters 1 and 2", ways different from the Young Earth Creationists, are no surprise, the Old Earth Creationists. I cannot think of a contemporary Christian writer who has done more to advance the cause of Old Earth Creationism (OEC) than Hugh Ross. OEC is the idea that Genesis is literal history, if translated properly. It tends to have more in conflict with neoDarwinism than it does astronomy.

I also do not believe that any contemporary Christian writer has done more to advance the idea of creation ex nihilo than Hugh Ross. Why, his organization, even has a FAQ on creation ex nihilo (CEN). The FAQ first affirms CEN as a clear doctrine of scripture, citing eleven passages that affirm it. Then the FAQ says,
Modern scientific cosmology buttresses the doctrine of CEN more pointedly and potently than does any other discipline. According to prevailing scientific theory, the universe had a singular beginning nearly 14 billion years ago. All matter, energy, time, and space exploded (in a carefully crafted event) into existence from nothing.

So who are they debating? I don't know. God could have created a universe only 10 ky ago, but if so it was complete with red-shifted photons "from" distant stars already in transit to Earth. I am not an opponent so much of those who might hold to a young earth in their heart as I am to the chicanery of the YEC think tanks. It's not exactly grounded in reality, even in the reality of what other people are saying as evidenced here. They create disbelief.

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