In the wake of the completely ridiculous non-controversy surrounding Marco Rubio’s answer to “How old is the Earth?”, I felt it was a good time to tackle this topic. It is something that has always bothered me.
I am not a fan of the “Creation vs. Evolution” debate. It makes no sense to debate it, largely because both sides taking the absolute views are wrong.
To the Creationists who believe that the Earth is only slightly more than 6,000 years old because that’s what someone has deduced from the Bible: Sorry, but dinosaurs really did exist. We’ve found them. We’ve been using them to power our automobiles for over a century now. That’s a fact that has to be accepted.
To those who support a God-less theory of evolution: I’m not a Bible-thumper by any means, but I am a believer in math. Think about the construction of the human body, with all of its different systems, how the brain works, how we create new life, and so on. It’s a series of miracles. Look at the eco-system: Every animal has natural allies and enemies. When animals die, nature provides its own waste disposal system in the form of scavengers and bacteria. No matter what environmentalists claim humans may be doing to it – not to mention what nature does on its own – the Earth is an amazing place, both in its balance and its resilience. What is the probability that all of these things occurred purely by chance? It’s impossible. This simply did not happen on its own.
So if neither option is completely correct on its own, why are we arguing about one side or the other when it makes more sense to try to reconcile the two theories? If a scientist does an experiment to try to prove a theory and it fails, he can’t ignore the data; he has to change the hypothesis to incorporate the facts obtained that disagreed with the original theory.
Let’s go with two examples of how creation and evolution could be reconciled. Obviously, there will never be any way to truly prove that either is correct, but either is more plausible than arguing either extreme.
“The First Three Days” theory. This idea comes from a movie called “Inherit the Wind”, a movie about the Scopes Monkey Trail. In it, the defense attorney made the following observation from the Bible: The sun was not created until the fourth day. As a result, we have no point of reference for how long those first three days were. Could they have been 25 hours long? 30 hours long? 10 million years long? There’s no way to know. A lot could have happened in those first three “days”. I believe this idea is somewhat flawed, but it leads to another more workable theory…
This is not God’s first try. This goes hand-in-hand with another theory that I hold that many Christians might find somewhat heretical, but I feel it explains a lot: While God is a very powerful being, He is not perfect. We know the story of Noah and the flood: apparently God felt that he had the idea mostly right, but He decided to wipe it all out save for Noah and his family and two of each animal. Afterward, He decided that this was also a mistake. So even God doesn’t always look back on everything and think it’s perfect. So who’s to say that He hasn’t done that sort of thing before? Perhaps millions of years ago, God tried to create a similar system with dinosaurs and cavemen and other “prehistoric” variants of other animals and such that we have today. It’s quite plausible that he saw it in action and decided He didn’t quite have it right. The dinosaurs may have been too large and too dominant, so they had to be wiped out. The cavemen weren’t quite intelligent enough to evolve the way He intended, so He had to start over there, too. So He did a complete reset of the Earth and tried again about 6,000 years ago. Of course, no one was around to explain what happened before then, and God may not have been particularly eager to tell anyone about it, so the Bible has nothing to say on the topic. This theory would reconcile both the Bible and current science quite well.
You can come up with your own theories, too. I have one other, but I’ll leave it for now. The point is that this is a topic where there should be more thinking and less pointless arguing.