Does God Expect Man to be able to Tell Time?
I think among many Christians the Age of the Earth could not be more of a non-issue. For others there is a huge division of those who passionately defend an Old Earth vs. those who support a young earth. On face value, it would seem not that relevant. But I firmly believe upon further examination of the Scriptures there are not options open to us who are commanded to "contend for the faith once and for all delivered to the saints" (Jude: 3). I also believe that if the age of the earth question were rephrased to ask "Does God expect man to be able to tell time?" and we can Biblically support the answer to this question, there then would remain no longer any doubt about man’s response to the question and the question of the age of the earth would no longer be open to private interpretation. I further maintain, that if the Bible is absolutely clear on this subject, it does not matter what science says. And my defense below does not depend on science, though it does answer some of the questions that science raises.
I think that one of the biggest arguments used by both Evolutionist and old earth Biblical Creationists which causes confusion in Christians, and buckles the knees of even many young earth Biblical Creationists, is the distance of the stars question. If the stars are so far away, then how could the earth be young? This is a very good question. Even many young earth Creationists, including astronomers, physicists, and geologists have varying and intriguing models to defend a young earth. But these models are, in great part, very dependent on science alone. And I believe that the Bible does not contradict science (when, in fact, the science is truth), or if it does, as in the case of miracles, then we are informed in the passage. But science explains only the physical and natural world and it often fails miserably at that.
But there are some very important Scriptures which are left out in these formulas for explaining the age of the earth. Both Old Earth and Young Earth scientific models are flawed in this respect. They leave out the invisible. Hugh Ross’s Universe (an old earth advocate) is solely governed by Physical laws. But the Bible has both physical (visible) and invisible laws and governing principalities. It is not even a matter of natural vs. supernatural, as even the natural world and universe is governed by the invisible. Here are the Scriptures that must be addressed:
Romans 1:20: "For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse."
This Scripture is amazing in two respects. First, it has man seeing and understanding from the beginning of Creation. So there is no billions or even millions of years that the earth was here before man appears. He is here from the beginning. But this passage is significant in a second respect that "invisible" qualities are used to govern the Universe, but they are qualities that continued PAST Creation week to this day.
Colossians 1:16: "For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and INVISIBLE, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together."
Once again the main principle of the Universe here is NOT visible. Christ the Invisible God holds everything together, not Newton’s or Einstein’s Laws or anyone else’s laws who ever lived.
Hebrews 11:3: "By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen (the physical universe of earth, sun, moon, and stars) is NOT MADE OUT OF WHAT WAS VISIBLE." It was made of what is INVISIBLE.
Matthew 24:33: "So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors."