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SEVEN TIMES SEVEN
(1) The First and Last Bang
In the beginning God created the heavens. . . .By the word of the LORD the heavens were made, and all the host of them by the breath of His mouth (Gen.1:1a, Psalm 33:6, NKJV).
The latest scientific theory on the origin of the universe is the Big Bang theory. There are big problems with a big bang if you leave God out of the process. The “bang” would only give us a big cloud of expanding gas which could never form our present universe by purely natural laws, even though God created those laws. Of course God could have created matter compressed to a pin point, blew it up, and then put it back together by supernatural intervention. He created the laws of physics, and He can suspend them at any time. This is the number one problem atheists have. They have left God out of the equation.
Another possible scenario of how it all started, and what went wrong, is: God may have spoken the universe into existence in a moment of time, and it was perfect—with form and stability. No darkness or decay. Then God created the “anointed cherub,” and he was also “perfect,” until “iniquity” was found in him (Ezek. 28:14-15).
Lucifer himself may have caused a big bang.
The first universe was very different than today. Like Revelation 22:5, God Himself may have been the source of light, and the stars reflected that light. I believe the “morning stars” were created for the “sons of God,” and these stars may not have been burning at that time. Regardless, now “the stars are not pure in his sight” (see Job 25:5; 38:4-7).
Since God allowed Satan to crucify His perfect Christ on a cross, He may have allowed a similar violence with His perfect universe. But out of catastrophe has come beauty. In the new heaven and earth everything will be perfected again; in fact, it will be even better than it was in the distant pass. “Violence shall be no more,” and God will be “an everlasting light” (Isaiah 60:19-20).
Many intelligent design proponents overlook the intelligence and power of demons and angels in the scheme of things. They can only do what God allows, but God allows many things. If we can split the atom and manipulate the cell, imagine what they can do.
Whether the universe we now see started with a big bang is open to question, but the new universe will be preceded by one on the “last day.” Second Peter 3:9 tells us, “But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall met with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.”
God has fine tuned our present universe for frail man, especially our solar system. The precision is incredible. Some atheist are now admitting that our universe seems to be made for man so there might be trillions upon trillions more and we just happen to be the lucky one. Many now believe the universe had a beginning and was somehow amazingly created out of nothing with no intelligence behind it. But nothing can’t create anything; there had to be someone to create something out of nothing. And that Someone is God.
The odds are mathematically impossible for the universe to have happened by chance. It had to be created by an intelligent Creator. It is also impossible for God to have had a beginning, which is impossible to explain.
(2) The Big Bang Dilemma for Atheists
When Albert Einstein discovered the law of General Relativity he didn’t like that his calculations were leading him away from the Steady State theory. If his new theory was true, it indicated that the universe was not eternal. It had a beginning and was expanding. So he introduced into his calculations a “cosmological constant,” which has been called a “fudge factor.”
In 1919, British cosmologist Sir Arthur Eddington confirmed that General Relativity was indeed true. Like Einstein, Eddington wasn’t happy with the implications. “Philosophically,” he said, “the notion of a beginning of the present order of nature is repugnant to me.” In his book The Expanding Universe, Eddington says, “The beginning seems to present insuperable difficulties unless we agree to look on it as frankly supernatural.”1
In 1927, the astronomer Edwin Hubble looked through the new 100-inch telescope at California’s Mount Wilson Observatory, and he observed that the universe was expanding. In 1929, Einstein looked through that same telescope and “could no longer support his wish for an eternal universe.” He later described his cosmological constant as “the greatest blunder of my life.”
The eternal Steady State theory of the universe was just about laid to rest in 1965 when two Bell Lab scientists discovered, by accident, the afterglow of a gigantic thermonuclear explosion that must have taken place in the distant pass. The scientists, Arno Penzia and Robert Wison, won Nobel Prizes for their discovery. They converted from the Steady State theory to the Big Bang theory. Penzias admits, “The Steady State theory turned out to be so ugly that people dismissed it. The easiest way to fit the observations with the least number of parameters was one in which the universe was created out of nothing, in an instant, and continues to expand.”2
More evidence for a beginning came in 1992 from the Cosmic Bakground satellite, aptly called COBE. The project leader, astronomer George Smoot, announced, “If you’re religious, it’s like looking at God.”3 Even more evidence came from NASA’s WMAP satellite in 2003.
It has been said, “The Law of Causality is the foundation of all science.” But atheists don’t like their own law when it conflicts with their faith in No God. If the universe had a beginning, it had to have an intelligent Beginner with a cause. In the book I Don’t Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist, the authors write, “Until about the time of Einstein, atheists could comfort themselves with the belief that the universe is eternal, and thus did not need a cause. But since then, five lines of scientific evidence have been discovered that prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the universe did indeed have a beginning.”4
Now that many scientists believe the universe had a beginning, just like the Bible says, all kinds of weird and meaningless theories have been devised to try and explain how something came from nothing. Even the agnostic Robert Jastrow says, “Theologians generally are delighted with the proof that the Universe had a beginning, but astronomers are curiously upset. . . .We become irritated, we pretend the conflict does not exist, or we paper it over with meaningless phrases.”5
(3) The Theory of Evolution
The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God (Psalms 14:1).
There are only two possible explanations for why we are here: Design or Chance. I believe if you were to give all atheists a lie detector test many would fail. They must know it is impossible for all this to have happened by some “glorious cosmic accident.” Regardless of the age of the universe, atheistic macro evolution is one of the most absurd theories the human mind has ever conceived. Believers in God cannot explain His existence, but we have an explanation of how everything else came to exist. All the evidence indicates there is a Creator and something has gone wrong with His creation. Time is not on the side of evolution, it’s against it. Things are in a process of deterioration rather than evolving into a higher state.
Some Christians feel threatened by time, thinking this gives credibility to evolution. Macro evolution is impossible, no matter how much time is involved. It’s bad science. No rational person would believe that if you put all the parts of a wind up watch into a bag and shook it you would eventually get a working watch. If you shook it long enough, all you would get is a busted bag or a pile of dust. Never mind where all the parts came from to start the shaking process. The universe and a living cell, the basic structure of all life, are incredibly more complex than a watch. Yet many believe everything just happened by random chance, plus time.
To say that a simple cell evolved from some primordial soup and it eventually evolved into a man by time and luck is nonsense. A cell is not simple! For just one cell (not counting zillions more) to happen by chance would be like saying given enough time a hurricane could create a complex factory complete with computers. Even the famed astronomer Fred Hoyle, to the dismay of many of his fellow scientists, said, “The current scenario of the origin of life is about as likely as the assemblage of a 747 by a tornado whirling through a junkyard.”6 In his book Evolution and the High School Student, Kenneth Taylor says:
A “simple” cell, the basic structure of all life, is far from simple. One of its machines is the DNA molecule; each DNA molecule contains 4 billion items of information! . . . Millions of protein molecules would have had to “spontaneously generate” simultaneously, not here and there around the world but in the same pond and at the same time. And then by strict accident and chance they would begin to “count off” and form themselves into various parts of the protozoa or other complex single-celled units. . . . Does all this seem incredible? Yes, it does! But given enough eons of time, might not the impossible become possible? T. H. Huxley, a friend of Charles Darwin and grandfather of today’s famous evolutionist Sir Julian Huxley, puts in stark belief the claim that anything can eventually happen by chance, a proposition the evolutionist can scarcely do without. He declared that if a band of monkeys sat at typewriters and were given enough time—millions of years—it would be inevitable that at some time during this long period of time they would type the Encyclopedia Britannica word for word and in exact order. Much of evolution requires this same degree of faith.7
The cell is many times more complex than a factory with complicated machines run by a powerful computer with a massive coded information program. The cell had to have been created by an intelligent designer. There is no other logical explanation.
It is also impossible for random chance, natural selection and mutations to reprogram the information in a cell to produce a higher form of life. The cell and its program allows for micro evolution but not macro evolution. Mutations are rare and generally produce deformities. I still think what I though when I first heard about the theory of evolution in the 50s. It’s ridiculous!
A number of scientists now admit that chemical evolution on earth is impossible, so they remove the problem to another planet in the distant universe, saying life was somehow transported to earth by alien intelligence. This just moves their dilemma somewhere else, and these people still deny the existence of a supernatural God. Scientists who say life started here or somewhere else by chance are not rational. And to say that life evolved into intelligent life by time and chance is even more irrational.
Darwinist Richard Lewontin of Harvard University says, “Our willingness to accept scientific claims that are against common sense is the key to an understanding of the real struggle between science and the supernatural.” He goes on to add, “. . . materialism is absolute for we cannot allow a divine foot in the door.”8
Though disagreeing on the age of the universe, many competent scientists in various fields believe: “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth,” and man was the crowning act of His creation. The closer we look, the clearer we see, there is a Creator.
To address the time problem, some 6000 year young-universe advocates say, “The relevance to the biblical starlight problem is that variable time allows the possibility that time on earth could have run at a slower rate than time in the outer galaxies. Thus, ‘billions of years’ could have passed in the outer galaxies while only days passed on earth.”9
I believe the universe was created more than some 6000 years ago. Not because of modern science, but because of the totality of the Scriptures, which is backed by solid science. I believe sin began with the angels, long before Adam and Eve arrived on the scene.
Satan through the serpent told Eve a half truth, saying: “Ye shall not surely die. For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil” (Gen. 3:4-5). After Adam and Eve sinned, God said: “Behold the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil” (Gen. 3:22). First Peter 1:19-20 says that God had a plan to take care of sin, “before the foundation of the world.” Job 38:4-7 tells us the “morning stars” and the “sons of God” were created before God “laid the foundations of the earth.”
We could paraphrase Genesis 1:1 to read: In the beginning God created the stars of heaven and the sons of God, and then He created the earth.
Again quoting from I Don’t Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist: “We can debate how long the days in Genesis were, or whether the assumptions that are made in dating techniques are valid. But when we do, we must be sure not to obscure the larger point that this creation requires a Creator.” 10
(4) The Gap Theory
In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters (Gen.1:1-2).
First John 1:5 tells us, “God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.” Darkness is associated with sin and water with judgment and cleansing. It is as though the earth was baptized in water and raised out of it by the Holy Spirit.
Hebrews 11:3 says, “By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.” The earth is called the world. The stars of heaven, which were created before the earth, are the other worlds. The whole universe was created out of nothing.
There are a number of views among those who believe the creation story of Genesis. Some believe that God created everything, including the angels, in six 24 hour days. And nothing is older than about 6000 years (plus six days). Another view is that the days of Genesis 1:3-31 might be millions of years. Still another view is that God created the heavenly bodies and the earth, but the earth became “without form, and void” as the result of the rebellion of Satan and his angles. Then the Holy Spirit began His role in reconstructing the earth.
There are a number of verses in the Bible with great gaps of time between them, and even words in a verse may have gaps. The very first verse in the Bible has a gap. According to Job 38:4-7, the “morning stars” and the “sons of God” were created before the earth. Isaiah 61:2 is another good example. Many believe there is also a gap of time between verses 1 and 2 of Genesis 1. In verse 2 we have the Hebrew words “tohu-wa-bohu” translated “without form and void.” Hal Lindsey says, “This expression doesn’t just mean ‘undeveloped,’ but rather something that is the result of a catastrophe.”11
Some Hebrew scholars say the verb “hayetha,” translated “was” in Genesis 1:2, can just as well be translated “became” thus indicating a change in the earth’s condition. There are six places in the Pentateuch alone where the verb “hayetha” is translated “became.” In his book In the Beginning God, Dr. Clifford Wilson says:
The Hebrew verb “to be” (hayah) can be translated “was,” but it is easy to check hundreds of places in the Old Testament where the requisite form in English of the verb “to be” is placed in italics. This indicates it is not actually there in the original, and is added to make sense in the English. When hayah is used in the Hebrew, it is not simply the copulative (the verb “to be”) but it actually involves a change situation. . . . The well-known Strong’s Concordance lists sixty-eight times when hayah is translated “became.” This explains how it is valid to suggest that Genesis 1:2 should read that the earth became waste and void, after the great acts of creation referred to in the first verse.12
In his book The End of This Present World, Lehman Strauss says, “That something had gone wrong in the created earth before Adam and Eve is evident from a careful reading of Genesis 1:2. There are competent Hebrew scholars who render the opening words of this verse, ‘And the earth became a desolation and ruin.’. . . God did not create a chaos, or a desolation (Isaiah 45:18). Chaos is the result of divine judgment because of the failure of [Lucifer] earth’s first custodian.”10
In his book Creation or Evolution, David Riegle says, “It is possible that the first verse of Genesis refers to a creation which took place long before the events of the six days. . . . After Lucifer’s rebellion, he was thrown down from the place he occupied. The earth, which was the place of his rebellion, was made a vast wastland.”13
After the flood, God told Noah to “replenish” the earth.a Adam was also told to “replenish” the earth,b which implies a prior destruction of the earth and its inhabitants—the rebellious angels led by Lucifer. Most translations use the word “fill” instead of “replenish,” but replenish fits Noah’s day after the flood. I believe it also fits Adam’s day.
Ezekiel 28:12-15 speaks of the “anointed cherub” as being in “Eden, the garden of God.” He is not depicted as a serpent at this time. It also speaks of the first Eden being filled with precious stones, diamonds and gold, and they belonged to Lucifer, not Adam. Riegle says, “This is a picture of an Eden of minerals, while the second Eden was filled with plant life. Other references are often used to show that this person could not have been a human, such as Adam.”15
Isaiah 14:12-14 gives us a picture of the rebellion. “How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God. . . . I will ascend above the heights of the clouds: I will be like the most High.”
God knew Adam and the human race would eventually make a mess of the earth. He also knew Lucifer would do the same when he was given a “throne” upon it in the distant past.
Some believe there were no plants or animals in the gap. Others say there may have been and dinosaurs may in this time. The prophet Jeremiah might give us a clue that there were living creatures and even cities ruled by Lucifer before the earth became “without form, and void.” Most all of Jeremiah 4 speaks of the coming “judgment” and “destruction” of Judah because of their “rebellion.” In verse 23, however, the Lord directs him to write about the distant past. Verses 24-26 may also be speaking of that time:
I beheld the earth, and indeed it was without form, and void; and the heavens, they had no light. I beheld the mountains, and indeed they trembled, and all the hills moved back and forth. I beheld, and indeed there was no man, and all the birds of the heavens had fled. I beheld, and indeed the fruitful land was a wilderness, and all its cities were broken down at the presence of the LORD, by His fierce anger (Jer.4:23-26, NKJV).
There is no record of the mountains trembling and the hills being moved during the invasion of Babylon. The land was not turned into a “wilderness” without men.
Some believe Jeremiah 4:23-26 is referring to the tribulation. Regardless of whether Jeremiah is speaking of the distant pass, the tribulation, or both, the phrase "without form, and void" is speaking of catastrophe because of rebellion. Judah was restored after Babylon, the world will be restored after the tribulation, and it seems the earth was restored in the distant pass. The expression tohu and bohu is also found in Isaiah 34:11 and speaks of divine judgment for sin. Isaiah 45:18 tells us God “created the heavens” and “formed” the earth, but He did not create it tohu.
Second Peter 2:5 speaks of Noah's flood, which God used to judge the earth. Many believe the flood of Chapter 3 is speaking of Genesis 1:2, the world’s first judgment. Peter says, “The world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished” (See 2 Peter 3:5-6). Note also that Chapter 3 deals with the last judgment, which will be by fire.
The floods of Genesis, massive volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, asteroids, meteorites, comets, etc, offer a better explanation of our geology than attributing it all to a slow gradual process over eons of time. Slow processes have done much, but not all.
The Gap Theory became popular in 1909 with the publication of the Scofield Study Bible. One opponent of the Gap Theory says, “Regardless of the reason, the gap theory has gained considerable support from several modern theologians. These theologians, such as Arthur C. Custance, author of Without Form and Void (1970), and well known preachers Billy Graham and John Hagee, have adopted the gap theory in one form or another.” 16
Some argue the Gap Theory came about to combat the theory of evolution put forth by Charles Darwin. But it was taught before Darwin, and many through the ages have suggested that Satan did his thing long before Adam arrived on the scene. About 650 AD the English poet Caedmon wrote about creation and presented the view that angels had ruled the earth before man. He said the fallen angels were responsible for the catastrophe. My first recollection of Genesis 1:1-2 is: it sounded like God created a muddy mess. In humor, Gaines Johnson says, “Young Earthers believe that God first created the Earth as a flooded mud ball in the dark, and then proceeded to decorate it.”17
Another argument against the gap between verses 1 and 2 in Genesis One is that it is not clear. The meaning and gap in Genesis 3:15 were not clear either. Israel to this very day can’t see what it means. The Messiah would be born to a virgin, die for sins, be resurrected, and crush Satan on the last day. Many are still quoting verses saying the Messiah will live forever. And He will, now that He has been raised on the first day (see John 12:34; 20:1).
(5) The First Day
And God said, Let there be light: and there was light. And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness. And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day (Gen. 1:3-5).
The Bible says, “God is light.” I don’t believe God was in the dark before Genesis 1:3. Apparently the light of Genesis 1:3 is from the sun, and the light from the “morning stars” of Job 38:4-7 already existed at this point in time.
Concerning the days of Genesis 1:3-31, some in the early church did not take them to be liberal 24 hour days. Augustine believed the entire universe was created in an instant.
Many believe the days in Genesis might be long periods of time, stating the fact that we are still in the “seventh day” and one day is as a “thousand” years.c Others believe they are literal 24 hour days. If they are 24 hour days then the process is all supernatural. If they are longer, the process involves the supernatural and natural elements. Like the virgin birth, Jesus had a supernatural conception and a natural birth.
Because of the rebellion, God may have darkened the sun for a time. A sudden darkness may have tapped all the frozen tropical plants and animals we have found around the Arctic Ocean. Many of these animals were suddenly frozen and are remarkably preserved. This is a mystery to this very day. During the tribulation the sun, the moon, and the stars will be “darkened,”d so it would have been no problem for God to have done this in the distant pass. He may have done this by supernatural means or natural causes, like eruptions and impacts from space forcing dust and debris into the atmosphere blocking the light of the sun.
Concerning the “evening and the morning,” the New Scofield Reference Bible says, “The use of ‘evening’ and ‘morning’ may be held to limit ‘day’ to the solar day; but the frequent parabolic use of natural phenomena may warrant the conclusion that it simply means that each creative day was a period of time marked off by a beginning and ending (cp. Ps. 90:6). In any event the sun did not become a measure of time before the fourth day, as seen in vv. 14-18.” 18
(6) The Second Day
And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters. . . . And the evening and the morning were the second day (Gen. 1:6,8).
If the light mentioned in verses 3-5 is the sun, this may explain how the waters became divided. The sun evaporated the water during the first day, and during the second day it could have produced a “firmament” or space between the water on the earth and above it.
(7) The Third Day
And God said, Let the waters under the heaven be gathered together unto one place, and let the dry land appear: and it was so. . . . And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind: and God saw that it was good. And the evening and the morning were the third day (Gen. 1:9,12-13).
With the sun continuing to dry the waters from the earth, this let “dry land appear.” The light of the first day must have been from the sun, for plant life would need it to grow. God could have made instant grass and trees, but it seems they grew from the soil of the earth, which involved more than 24 hours.
(8) The Fourth Day
And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years. . . . And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also. . . And the evening and the morning were the fourth day (Gen. 1:14,16, 19).
The sun pulling the waters off the earth may have produced massive dark clouds that blocked the sunlight from the earth’s surface. As the water vapor continued to rise higher, it could have become transparent, letting the light from the sun, moon, and stars shine on the earth.
Job 38:4-7 indicates that the stars, or at least some of them, were created before the earth. Stars can represent angels, and mountains can represent kings. Isaiah 44:23 speaks of the mountains singing. So did the stars of Job 38:7. The incredible distance of the stars and the speed of light tell us the stars are very old.
The New Scofield Reference Bible, commenting on the “light” in Genesis 1:3 and verses 14-18, says, “Neither here [Gen. 1:3] nor in vv. 14-18 is an original creative act implied. A different word is used. The sense is made to appear, made visible. The sun and moon were created ‘in the beginning.’ The light came from the sun, of course, but the vapor diffused the light. Later the sun appeared in an unclouded sky.”19
(9) The Fifth Day
And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven. . . . And the evening and the morning were the fifth day (Gen. 1:20,23).
All living creatures must have oxygen to live, including sea life. It may have taken many years for the vegetation of the third and fourth day to grow and give off enough oxygen to support the fish of the sea and the birds of the air. Each day may have been a natural and supernatural process involving many years, and each process led up to the creating of man. God knew what man would need, and He reconstructed everything with the foreknowledge that man would fall.
(10) The Sixth Day
And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so (Gen. 1:24).
During the sixth day God created the animals of the earth. He may have begun the sixth day with two of each kind and they in turn produced their kind. By the end of the sixth day the animal population had reached their appointed number, and then we have the crowning act—the creation of man and woman. “And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth. . . . So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. . . . And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day” (Gen. 1:26-27,31).
(11) The Seventh Day
Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them. And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made. . . . And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul (Gen. 2:1-3,7).
It’s interesting to note that God made man from weathered rock and decayed life—soil, to which we shall return. We know from science that we are just a good grade of dusty dirt, just like Genesis says.
God ended His work at the end of the sixth day with the creation of man. The seventh day began with Adam and will end at the new heaven and new earth spoken of in Revelation 21. Ellicott’s Commentary says, “By the common consent of commentators, the seventh day, or day of God’s rest, is that age in which we are now living, and which will continue until the consummation of all things.”20
From God’s point of view the seventh day is already finished, but from our standpoint we are still in the seventh day, God’s day of rest. Hebrews 3:17-19 tells us Israel of Moses’ day could not enter into God’s “rest” because of “unbelief.” Hebrews 4:2-4 also brings out that the seventh day is still present and we enter this day of rest by faith in Christ.
If we are still in the seventh day, this indicates that the first six may not be 24 hours each. Second Peter 3:8 says, “Be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.” Genesis 2:4 also indicates the word “day” can mean more than 24 hours.
In the days of Joshua God stopped the rotation of the earth for about a day. Even up to the 1700s some still believed that the earth was stationary and the sun moved around the earth. They quoted Scripture to prove their point: “The sun stood still. . .” (Joshua 10:13). Many in Jesus’ day misquoted and misunderstood the Scriptures. After Jesus was raised the Pharisees raved about how Christians were compromising the Word of God.
The primary verses young-universe advocates quote to say the universe is only about 6000 years old are found in Exodus 20:8-11 and 31:17, saying we could hardly work millions of years. Yes, but we could hardly rest on the seventh for thousands either, which we are still in. And besides, even if the days are 24 hours, which I don’t rule out, Moses is quoting from Genesis 1:3-31, using the word “made” instead of “created,” which can have different shades of meaning. I can make a chair out of a tree, but I can’t create a tree.
Some believe God made everything in the six days and sin began with Adam. Yet Job 38:4-7 tells us that the morning stars and the sons of God were created before “the foundations of the earth.” First Peter 1:19-20 speaks of the plan of salvation, which was “foreodained before the foundation of the world.” Sin did not begin with Adam. It began before the world began. Some were predestined and promised eternal life, before the world began (see Jer. 1:5, Rom. 8:28-30, Eph. 1:1-7, Titus 1:1-2).
The scientist Nigel Brush, who is also a Christian, says, “The past is littered not only with failed scientific theories but also with failed theological interpretations. God’s Word is perfect and complete—but we are not. . . . Therefore, Christians should exercise humility in their handling of the Word of God. Just because scientists are sometimes wrong does not mean that Christians are always right.”21
Down through the years young-universe advocates have been proved wrong on many scientific issues, especially time. Some now accept the fact that the universe appears to be very old and have come up with a deceptive “appearance of age” theory. God does not always reveal His hand, but I don’t think He stacked the deck by manipulating light or loading rocks with lead to fool scientists. Many don’t have any problem fooling themselves without any help from God. Adam was created as a person, perhaps appearing about 30 years old. But there was no need to make the atomic clocks in rocks to appear to have been ticking for many years before Adam arrived on the scene.
Dating methods are not infallible and can be subject to ones’ bias, but the techniques we use today seem to indicate that the universe is very old. Evolutionists tend to ignore and discredit anything that upsets their “god” of time and chance. Young-universe advocates ignore anything that goes against their interpretation of the Bible. Dr. Roger C. Wiens, whose specialty is dating techniques, believes the earth is very old. He writes, and I agree, “A disagreement over the age of the Earth is relatively minor in the whole scope of Christianity; it is more important to agree on the Rock of Ages than on the age of rocks. But because God has called us to wisdom, this issue is worthy of study.”22
God could have created everything about 6000 years ago, or, if He wanted to, He could have worked through theistic evolution using eons of time. I doubt He did either one. I do, however, believe that God spent much time observing “the folly”e of His angels before He created man, and this is how He knew everyone of them would sin in the flesh. “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God” (Rom. 3:23).
(12) How Old Is Man?
The best dating method used for dating organic material is radiocarbon, which is formed by the activity of cosmic rays from the sun. This method determines the amount of radiocarbon (C-14) left in bones, wood, or some other once-living object.
The vast majority of specimens connected with man have come well within the 6000 years allowed in the Bible, but there are some so-called human bones tested that seem to make man older than 6000 years.
You may ask: Doesn’t this prove the Bible is wrong? No, for there is a question of whether or not the remains are of man, animal, or something else that walked the earth before Adam. Also, the C-14 dating method is based on several assumptions. Science magazine says, “One of the main assumptions of C-14 dating is that the atmospheric radiocarbon level has held steady over the age-range to which the method applies.”23
If the radiocarbon level in the atmosphere has not remained steady, Science Digest says, “It most certainly would ruin some of our carefully developed methods of dating things from the past. . . . If the level of carbon-14 was less in the past, due to a great magnetic shielding from cosmic rays, then our estimates of time that has elapsed since the life of the organism will be too long.”24
What is often ignored in the C-14 dating method is there may have been a greater shielding of the atmosphere from the cosmic rays about 4300 years ago because of a water canopy. This canopy would have shielded the atmosphere from cosmic rays to a greater extent than today, which would make objects dated before the flood appear older than they really are. In Evolution or Creation, Professor Enoch says, “If creation scientists are right in maintaining that the water vapor envelope which existed at the time of Noah fell on the earth during the Biblical flood, then cosmic radiation as we know it would only begin at this time.”
There are other dating methods. Scientific America says, “There is no way to date bone more than 50,000 years old, so they analyze samples of rock immediately above and below the level where the bones were found.”25
The methods for dating rocks can at times give erroneous results. A recent article in the Science & Technology section of the Pensacola News Journal said, “Twelve Java man skulls, thought to be from H. Erectus, were originally dated as being hundred of thousands of years old. But a newer technique, based on the rate of decay of uranium, yielded an age of between just 27,000 and 53,000 years.”26
A human skull was found at Keilor, a suburb of Melbourne, Australia, which was believed to be over 100,000 years old. Dr. Clifford Wilson says, “It was first thought that the remains would show that the skull of ‘Keilor Man’ would date to about l50,000 years, but carbon tests suggested that it should be dated to about 11,500 years ago, with a correction of plus or minus 5 percent. . . . There is another well attested case of a skull found in Mesopotamia being redated from fifty thousand down to five thousand years because a flat-bottomed boat was found in strata beneath the skeleton!”27
The fact that man’s history goes back no further than what the Bible allows, about 6000 years, is repeatedly acknowledged. The Encyclopedia Americana says, “Social evolution in man . . . . has occupied not more than 10,000 years. Most of it happened in the last 6000 years.” Review Text in Biology says, “The invention of writing, about 6000 years ago, ushered in the historic period of man. The time prior to 6000 years ago is known as the prehistoric period.”28 In Man: His First Million Years, A. Motagu says, “Recorded history is no more than six thousand years old.”29 In Biology in Human Progress, L. Eisman and C. Tanzer tell us, “In the last six thousand years, man has advanced far more rapidly than he did in the million or more years of his prehistoric existence.” 30
Someone said, “It is well to note why the last 6000 years is called the ‘historic’ period of man; science has the facts, the records, documents, cities, monuments, writings, and other artifacts to verify it. But before that period man did not leave such evidence, simply because man was not here before 6000 years ago.”
The Bible says man is not that old, and he was created for rapid development. In his book New Discoveries in Babylonia About Genesis, P. J. Wiseman says, “No more surprising fact has been discovered by recent excavation, than the suddenness with which civilization appeared in the world. This discovery is the very opposite to that anticipated. It was expected that the more ancient the period, the more primitive would excavators find it to be, until traces of civilization ceased altogether and aboriginal man appeared. Neither in Babylonia nor Egypt, the lands of the oldest known habitation of man, has this been the case.” 31
(13) The Number Seven
From Genesis through Revelation the number seven is used time and time again in a very special way. It is the number for perfection and completion. Genesis tells us God worked six days and rested on the seventh, which we are still in.
In Leviticus 25:1-4, God told the children of Israel when they entered the Promised Land, they were to farm the land for six years and let it rest the seventh.
In Exodus 21:2, God said if one Hebrew bought another, the servant was to serve six years and be set free the seventh.
In Deuteronomy 15:1-3, God said, “At the end of every seven years thou shalt make a release.” All debts against another Israelite were to be canceled. This release date fell during the “feast of tabernacles”
In Leviticus 23:9-22, we have the Feast of Weeks. This feast pointed to Pentecost, which came seven Sabbaths after the resurrection of Christ.
In Leviticus 25:8-10, we have a period of “seven times seven,” equaling 49 years. This chapter tells us that after every 49 years Israel was to set the 50th year apart and proclaim liberty throughout all the land. This fiftieth year was called a “jubilee.” This also pointed to Pentecost. Forty-nine days after the resurrection of Christ came the day of Pentecost, which means fiftieth. It was on that day that the spiritual body of Christ was formed and man was liberated by the new birth.
The walls of Jericho fell after seven priests with seven trumpets marched around its walls for seven days and blew their trumpets seven times on the seventh day (see Joshua 6).
Before the children of Israel entered Palestine, God told them He would punish them if they broke His commandments. If they continued to break them after this, He would punish them an additional seven times. “And if ye will not yet for all this hearken unto me, then I will punish you seven times more for your sins. And I will break the pride of your power” (Lev. 26:18-19).
Naaman was cleansed of his leprosy after he dipped in the Jordan River seven times. Israel may be cleansed after a period of “seven times.”
No doubt Peter had some of these verses in mind when he asked, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? Till seven times?” Jesus replied, “I say not unto thee, Until seven times: but, until seventy times seven.”f The point is we should always be willing to forgive, but I believe the Lord had in mind Daniel 9:24 when He said this. The angel Gabriel told Daniel, “Seventy sevens are decreed for your people and your holy city to finish transgression, to put an end to sin, to atone for wickedness, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal up the vision and prophecy and to anoint the most holy” (NIV).
In Revelation 2 and 3, Christ sent a message to seven churches. Many believe these seven churches represent seven stages of the church age, and we are now about to complete the seventh and final one. In Revelation 6 through 19, God’s wrath comes upon the world in seven seals, seven trumpets, and seven bowls. Many believe this time of judgment will be seven years, ending in the return of Christ. The seven years is commonly called “The Tribulation” or “Daniel’s 70th Week.”
The number six stands for man and sin. The number seven conveys not only completeness and perfection, but an end of sin and the beginning of a new era. The number eight stands for a new beginning.
(14) Satan’s Lease Cut Short?
And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand. And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years, and cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled: and after that he must be loosed a little season (Rev. 20:1-3).
You might ask: Why would God let Satan loose? One reason is to show that spending time in hell itself will not change his spirit.
Many believe when Lucifer rebelled his power and authority over the earth were taken away. Then the earth was given to Adam for a certain amount of time. But when Adam sinned the title deed to the earth along with the authority of Adam went back into the hands of God’s enemy.
When Satan came to Jesus during His time of temptation, he made a bold statement: “And the devil said unto him, All this power will I give thee, and the glory of them: for that is delivered unto me; and to whomsoever I will I give it. If thou, therefore wilt worship me, all shall be thine” (Luke 4:6-7).
E. W. Kenyon says, “Adam evidently had a legal right to transfer this dominion and authority into the hands of the enemy. God has been obliged through the long period of human history to recognize Satan’s legal standing, and legal right and authority. . .”32
In his book There’s A New World Coming, Hal Lindsey says, “Satan won a temporary legal right to rule the kingdoms of the world when Adam foolishly relinquished his God-given authority in the Garden of Eden. When Satan took Christ to a high mountain, showed Him the kingdoms of the world, and offered them to Jesus in return for worship, Christ didn’t dispute Satan’s temporary claims to these kingdoms.”33
Satan’s place of activity is the earth, but God allows him in heaven to accuse the “brethren.”g He will be expelled from heaven during the tribulation and will devote all his attention to the earth. “Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. [But] woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time” (Rev. 12:12).
When Christ returns, it will be during the greatest time of trouble the world has ever experienced. He said, “For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be. And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened” (Matt. 24:21-22).
God may have given man a 6000 year lease on earth, which is now in the hands of Satan, “the god of this world.”h This lease could be cut short by Christ’s return and Satan will have his final days at the end of the last 1000 years (Rev. 20).
Christ returning to earth about the 6000 year mark and ushering in 1000 years of peace is not a new theory. Halley’s Bible Handbook says: “The Epistle of Barnabas, in the beginning of the Christian Era, mentioned a belief then held that, even as there had been 2000 years from Adam to Abraham, and 2000 years from Abraham to Christ, so there would be 2000 years for the Christian Era, and then would come the Millennium even as the 6 days of creation were followed by the Day of Rest.”34
Bible chronology has never been put in order to give a precise 7000 years for man. Later, we will outline a new chronology which seems to support this 7000 year theory some of the early Christians had. We may not have reached the 6000 year mark yet. Grant Jeffery says, “Writings could be produced in great numbers . . . to illustrate the early Church’s belief that the Millennium would commence upon the completion of six thousand years from Adam. . . . It is unfortunate, but perhaps providential, that changes in the calendar make it impossible to calculate with precision when the two-thousand-year period [from the birth of Christ] will end . . .”35
(15) Forty-Nine Thousand Years?
If the seventh day of Genesis is 7000 years long, then each of the first six might be the same length as the seventh. The way God uses the number seven, it is possible.
In our study of the number seven, we brought out how men were to be set free and property returned to its rightful owner after a period of seven times seven. If each of the days mentioned in Genesis 1 and 2 are 7000 years in length, this will give us 49,000 years between the beginning of the first day and the end of the seventh, when the earth will be completely free from the results of Lucifer’s rebellion.
We could compare the rebellion and the earth becoming “without form, and void” to Satan leading Israel to crucify her Lord. We could compare the Spirit of God moving on the waters of the earth at the beginning of the first day, to Him raising Christ early Sunday morning, the first day of the week. And we could compare the perfect liberty that came 49 days after His resurrection to the new heaven and new earth, which may come 49,000 years from the first day. It will be a time of eternal rejoicing, no more tears and death—a jubilee.
The idea of a lease expiring and a new beginning after a period of seven times seven is found in Leviticus 25:8-10. The Lord said, “Thou shalt number seven sabbaths of years . . . Then shalt thou cause the trumpet of the jubilee to sound on the tenth day of the seventh month, in the day of atonement shall ye make the trumpet sound throughout all your land. And ye shall hallow the fiftieth year, and proclaim liberty throughout all the land . . .”
Regardless of how long the days in Genesis are, including the seventh, there will be a new heaven and earth after the seventh day. The number eight stand for a new beginning; and the eighth day will be forever.
Before everything in God’s plan is completed, Satan will have had an interesting travel to his eternal destiny. He may have blown up the universe but still was given the earth to rule, which became “without form, and void.” He may have been sent to hell but let out to deceive Eve. Now the earth is back under his control again, and we see the results. He will again be sent to hell at the return of Christ. He will be let out again for a short time and deceive man for the final time. Then he will be cast into the eternal lake of fire and send on an endless journey to nowhere. Then God will be rid of him for good.
(15) Then Cometh The End
The Lord will also have had an interesting itinerary. He created and lived in the heavens. He was conceived in a virgin and born in Bethlehem. He came out of Egypt and lived in Nazareth. He was crucified in Jerusalem but raised the third day. He returned to heaven, where He is awaiting His return to earth for the “second time.” He will rule the earth for 1000 years. Then He will do as God commanded the children of Israel in Leviticus 25. He will return the earth back into the hands of God the Father:
Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom of God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power. For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet. The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death (I Cor. 15:24-26).
Creation.............The Six Days.........The Seventh Day
|<-----42,000 yrs?---->|<--------7000 yrs?---->|
Scripture References [a] Gen. 9:1, [b] Gen.1:28, [c] 2 Peter 3:8, [d] Joel 3:15, Mark 13:24, [e] Job 4:18, [f] Matt. 18:21-22, [g] See Job 1,2, [h] 2 Cor. 4:4.
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