The creation of the earth is a stumbling block for many Christians and non-Christians.[ref]”Every thoughtful person is contronted with the question as to the origin of the human race. As he looks back into history, he observes that the men now existing seem to have sprung from other men by the process of natural generation for thousands of years. In analyzing the origin of man, the biblicist is confronted with the basic issue: Did God create man immediately or mediately, was man formed directly by the hand of God or did he evolved through natural processes? The Christian must acknowledge God’s involvement, but was it direct or indirect? (Henry Thiessen, Lectures in Systematic Theology, p. 151[/ref] My mother has been a dedicated Christian for her entire life, but admits the creation of the earth has been a stumbling block for her in her faith because many of the things taught in Scripture seem to be contrary to what science teaches. Or perhaps a better way to look at it is to see science teaching something that is contrary to what the Bible teaches.
Photo Credit: Allegory of the Creation of the Cosmos by Domenicus van Wijnen (1661-1690)
Regardless of what point you start from (whether Scripture or science), it is clear that science teaches the world is extremely old (according to Google, the earth is 4.543 billion years old).[ref]A part of me has always struggled with science placing such specific dates when it comes to “millions of years” and “billions of years.” For example, often scientists will say, “These mountains in this region of California were formed 468 million years ago.” For me personally, I am supposed to log our baby’s sleep/awake/eating patterns. I can barely keep track of how long ago he woke up, how much he ate, and when he went to sleep. If I can barely track those things that happen hour to hour, how are we supposed to have exact dates placed for events that happened hundreds of millions and billions of years ago. I don’t mean to be super negative or knock on scientists. I am just sharing my personal struggle with the exact dates placed by scientists in the same way that they struggle with accepting the biblical creation account.[/ref] Meanwhile, a literal understanding of Genesis states that the earth is about 6,500 years old.