How Ancient Is the Earth?
Psalms 68:32-33: Sing unto God, ye kingdoms of the earth; O sing praises unto the Lord; Selah: To him that rideth upon the heavens of heavens, which wereof old; lo, he doth send out his voice, and that a mighty voice.
A few months after I was saved, I came across people who did not believe in the theory of evolution. I appreciated their position, and was soon convinced, because I wanted to believe that the whole Bible was true. Nevertheless, not all of these creationists believed that the Creation Week comprised of six literal days. Some pointed to verses in the Bible describing God as the “Ancient of Days”, or referring to “ancient heavens”, as biblical evidence that the world had not necessarily been created to the so-called literal timescale.
I never accepted this “old-earth” position, though, for a while, I did believe that the issue did not matter. The important issue was to oppose evolution.
Today, I believe that opposition to evolution, while important, is not the most important issue. The actual issue is the authority of Scripture. If we are prepared to find permissive interpretations of the first chapter of Genesis, how can we determine when we have made a compromise too far?
Seen from a biblical rather than an evolutionary perspective, the 6,000 years from Scripture does indeed seem ancient. It only becomes less than ancient, when we measure it against timescales produced outside of Scripture. Therefore, a better way forward is to start by submitting to Scriptural authority, and allowing it to be our guide, as we seek to read and understand it.
Prayer: You, O Lord, are the Ancient of Days. In Your presence, we bow before You and worship You, acknowledging You to be the Creator and Sustainer of the Universe. Amen.
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