Genesis and Geology


#1

Divide Earth’s History of 4,600,000,000 years into 6 equal parts, the 6 Days of Creation.

1 In the beginning God created heaven, and earth.
2 And the earth was void and empty, and darkness was upon the face of the deep;
and the spirit of God moved over the waters.
…and there was evening and morning one day.

*Earth was formed, starting 4,600,000,000 years ago.
Or, during the First Day of……766,666,666 years.


#2

6 And God said: Let there be a firmament made amidst the waters:
and let it divide the waters from the waters.

…and the evening and morning were the second day.

We are now at …………3,833,333,334 years ago.
The start of the Second Day, the next 766,666,666 years.

*Earths Atmosphere was formed on the Second Day.

Stromatolites, putative fossilized cyanobacteria, have been found from 3.8 billion years ago. The ability of cyanobacteria to perform oxygenic photosynthesis is thought to have converted the early reducing atmosphere into an oxidizing one, which dramatically changed the life forms on Earth and provoked an explosion of biodiversity.


#3

God also said; Let the waters that are under the heaven, be gathered together into one place:
and let the dry land appear…
11 And he said:
let the earth bring forth green herb, and such as may seed,

…13 And the evening and the morning were the third day.

We are now at – 3,066,666,668 years ago
The start of the Third Day, the next 766,666,666 years.

*The formation of land and the creation of reproducing green plants.

During this time [3 billion yrs] saw the beginning of photosynthesis by blue-green algae which releases oxygen molecules into the atmosphere and steadily works to strengthen the ozone layer and change the Earth’s chemically reducing atmosphere into a chemically oxidizing one.
Geologically - during this time, the Earth’s crust cooled enough that rocks and continental plates began to form.


#4

14 And God said:
Let there be lights made in the firmament of heaven, to divide the day and the night,
and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days and years:

…19 And the evening and morning were the fourth day.

We are now at 2,300,000,002 years ago.
The start of the Fourth Day, the next 766,666,666 years.

*The rotation of the Earth, or seasons of the earth, are stabilized or finalized- for want of a better word - so that life may go on.

The Moon may have dramatically affected the development of life by moderating the planet’s climate. Paleontological evidence and computer simulations show that Earth’s axial tilt is stabilized by tidal interactions with the Moon.[90] Some theorists believe that without this stabilization against the torques applied by the Sun and planets to the Earth’s equatorial bulge, the rotational axis might be chaotically unstable, as it appears to be for Mars. If Earth’s axis of rotation were to approach the plane of the ecliptic, extremely severe weather could result from the resulting extreme seasonal differences. One pole would be pointed directly toward the Sun during summer and directly away during winter. Planetary scientists who have studied the effect claim that this might kill all large animal and higher plant life.[91] However, this is a controversial subject, and further studies of Mars—which has a similar rotation period and axial tilt as Earth, but not its large Moon or liquid core—may settle the matter.


#5

20 God also said:
let the waters bring forth the creeping creature having life,
and the fowl that may fly over the earth under the firmament of heaven.

…23 And the evening and morning were the fifth day.

We are now at 1,533,333,336 years ago.
The start of the Fifth Day, the next 766,666,666 years.

*The first creatures move onto land.

Researchers have discovered what appears to be evidence of worm-like animals in rocks that are over 1 billion years old, about twice as old as any other evidence for multicellular life yet discovered. These findings add a new perspective to the origination of multicellular animals, typically thought to have begun during the early Cambrian period, about 600 million years ago. The worm-like animal is “triploblastic” which refers to animals whose body parts are organized into layers that are derived from three tissue layers in the embryo.
Significantly, the team did not find fossils of the worms themselves, but rather “trace fossils” which are tunnels in rock that may have been burrows that were formed when the worms wriggled through the sand. The burrow structures were preserved when the sand solidified into rock 1.1 billion years ago.


#6

And God said:
Let the earth bring forth the living creature in its kind, cattle and creeping things, and beasts of the earth, according to their kinds.
And it was so done.
…and every thing that creepeth on the earth after its kind.

…31 And God saw all the things that he had made, and they were very good. And the evening and morning were the sixth day.

We are now at 766,666,670 years ago.
The start of the Sixth Day, the next 766,666,666 years.

*During this time God brought forth all the living creatures from-the-Land, and finally, brings forth Man…

The Cambrian Explosion:

“For most of the nearly 4 billion years that life has existed on Earth, evolution produced little beyond bacteria, plankton, and multi-celled algae. But beginning about 600 million years ago in the Precambrian, the fossil record speaks of more rapid change.
Then, between about 570 and 530 million years ago, another burst of diversification occurred, with the eventual appearance of the lineages of almost all animals living today. This stunning and unique evolutionary flowering is termed the “Cambrian explosion,” taking the name of the geological age in whose early part it occurred. But it was not as rapid as an explosion: the changes seems to have happened in a range of about 30 million years, and some stages took 5 to 10 million years. “

1 So the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the furniture of them.
2 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 done.
3 And he blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it:
because in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made.


#7

As this is a discussion forum do you actually have a question or a point??


#8

Hi. I’ll try and think of a question, - even if one came from a scientific, evolutionist view of creation and looked for parallels in Genesis - technically you could find them. The question - am I imagining it?


#9

Hello Thing:

Who knows; it could be the right approach.

We could use the scriptures to identify a 4.5 billion years old earth…would it be a correct interpretation is another question. In Genesis, there are two different definitions for a Day.
God saw that the light was good, and He separated the light from the darkness. 5 God called the light “day,” and the darkness he called “night.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the first day.
The first definition is the time when light hits upon a place on the earth (God called the light “day,” ). This is the time when God
is actively creating, so we’ll call it a Lord’s Day. However a Genesis Day is twice as long as it involves the night time as well (And there was evening, and there was morning—the first day.)

Now,if we take the words of Peter: A Day for the Lord (Lord’s Day) is as a thousand years.

The Jews take this also litterally, and so, I “personally” accept it…

chabad.org/library/article.asp?AID=108400

“However, the Talmud states that there is a predestined time when Mashiach
will come. If we are meritorious he may come even before that predestined
time. This “end of time” remains a mystery, yet the Talmud states that it
will be before the Hebrew year 6000. (The Hebrew year at the date of this
publication is 5763.)”

And so 2 Peter 3:8-9 reads:

“But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like
a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. The Lord is not slow
in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness…”

He is speaking to the chrisitans who are impatiently waiting for the coming
of Christ,having been told that they were living in the last Days…Here,
Peter seems to be claiming, the last Days, as meaning the next couple of
thousands of years, being in accordance with the Jewish Talmud. Therefore,
if 1 Day litterally can be 1,000 years, then if we continue his statement
"and a thousand years are like a day". Either he is speaking of
timelessness, which is possible, or, if he takes a Day to be 1,000 years in
the litteral sense, then, 1,000 years equalling a Day could also be meant to
be taken litterally. If so, he
must be speaking of 2 separate and disntinct type of Days. The first mention
of Day is symbolically equal to 1,000 years. Now, he maybe saying that 1,000
years “of such a Day” is equal to the 2nd definition of Day, and let "this"
be a "Lord’s Day.
So, 1,000 years of a Day equalling 1,000 years =
364,000,000 years; and this would be equal to a Lord’s Day; and 364 million
years x 7 = 2.5 billion years.Now, if the Genesis Day speaks of
a Lord’s Day plus “morning till evening”, then, the 2.5
billion is to be doubled into 5 billion years.That’s close to the 4.6
billions years you mentioned.Even closer would be the belief that we are still within the 7th Day, reducing 5 billion by 364 million years (from evening till morning),for Genesis does not mention the evening to morning period in the 7th Day, which is equal to 4.636 billion years.

Certainly, I am speculating; however, it
matches one interpretation of scriptures with scientific data…

Andre


#10

You might be interested in the book The Science of God by Gerald L. Schroeder.

Schroeder looks at it not in terms of 6 equal days, but in terms of a spiral where each “day” is half as long as the one before it. And his starting point is the beginning of the universe, not just the beginning of the earth. This is how he breaks it down:

Day 1
Start - 15,750,000,000 years ago
End - 7,750,000,000 years ago
Duration - 8 billion years
Biblical description - creation of the universe; light separates from dark (Gen 1:1-5)
Scientific description - The big bang marks the creation of the universe, light escapes, galaxies form

Day 2
Start - 7,750,000,000 years ago
End - 3,750,000,000 years ago
Duration - 4 billion years
Biblical description - heavenly firmament forms (Gen 1:6-8)
Scientific description - Disk of Milky Way forms; our sun forms

Day 3
Start - 3,750,000,000 years ago
End - 1,750,000,000 years ago
Duration - 2 billion years
Biblical description - oceans & dry land, plants appear (Gen 1:9-13)
Scientific description - earth cools, liquid water appears 3.8 billion years ago, followed very quickly by photosynthetic algae and bacteria

Day 4
Start - 1,750,000,000 years ago
End - 750,000,000 years ago
Duration - 1 billion years
Biblical description - Sun, moon, stars become visible in the heavens (Gen 1:14-19)
Scientific description - Earth’s atmosphere becomes transparent, photosynthesis produces oxygen atmosphere

Day 5
Start - 750,000,000 years ago
End - 250,000,000 years ago
Duration - 0.5 billion years
Biblical description - Life in the waters, then reptiles and winged animals (1:20-23)
Scientific description - First multi-cellular animals, aquatic life has basic body plan for all future animals

Day 6
Start - 250,000,000 years ago
End - approx. 6,000 years ago
Duration - 0.25 billion years
Biblical description - Land animals, mammals, man (1:24-31)
Scientific description - Massive extinction kills 90% of all life; land can be repopulated by hominids, then humans

I haven’t read the book myself, but someone passed this info on to me. I’m not sure if I believe it, but it is definitely interesting to consider!


#11

With respect, I think it is ultimately a mistake to try and reconcile the first Genesis Creation account with the actual current scientific theories. There are several reasons for this.

  1. Scientific Theories are always by nature tentative. We have good reason to believe that we have a much better understanding of the age of the Earth than we did 150 years ago, but we could be wrong. Ultimately trying to continually adapt the Genesis account to the Scientific narrative of creation to me seems futile as you continually have to re-adapt to meet the latest updates in science. Ultimately, this can cause confusion as we are now trying to link our theology with potentially transient understandings of the world.

  2. Trying to continually find ways that the Biblical account can be read as an historical account also leads others to think that we are essentially being intellectually dishonest.

  3. The earliest chapters in Genesis are not here to answer how but rather why. Why are we here? Why must we suffer and die? As we focus on the how we loose sight of those more essential questions.


Bill


#12

There’s nothing in the story to suggest that a day is anything but a day.


#13
  1. The earliest chapters in Genesis are not here to answer how but rather why. Why are we here? Why must we suffer and die? As we focus on the how we loose sight of those more essential questions.

I fully appreciate and understand that Genesis is not a scientific account. But having said that, I could make facetious remarks about why, in the overall scheme of things, we needed to know when the first crawling creatures crawled out of the sea. But we do know in Genesis, and the funny thing is that its almost right, technically.
Or, why was the account of the creation of the world so specifically broken up into very interestingly equal parts.
Why not, and I feel like a child now - asking whys, why not just say “He created the world and everything in it”, why go to the trouble of expanding that idea.

The thing that interested me in this, I think, was the periods of creation.
Six equal periods, to be exact - called days in the account because as everyone and their cat knows all days are equal measures.
Now, Geology dates by fossils - no fossils anywhere = difficult to date.
It does not matter really if the earth formed 4,600,000,000 years ago or 12,000 years ago. - And science may change its mind about time and all of that kind of thing in the future, and thats fine.
But it cannot change the physical fact that one process or fossil left a mark in the rocks before another. And that there is a certain physical ammount of matter between those marks. And certain major marks are equally spaced, or so they seem.
And that the punctuation points of big changes in the earth and its composition and form and its flora and fauna have this funny knack of aligning themselves with the 6 punctuations in our account in Genesis.
So, as I said the age of the earth is not so much important as the established equal spacing in both accounts.

Thats hard to follow. Six major events in earths geologic history line up, more or less, with the account of earths history in Genesis.
And thanks for all the different ideas and responses.


#14

With respect, its only at the most cursory glance that Genesis 1 appears to match up with the fossil record. For one thing, I am not sure about the specific translation you are using of the Genesis, but the ones I have read generally have sea creatures and birds created on the 5th day, and land creatures on the 6th. Birds actually were the last major order of life to develop. Mammals and dinosaurs had co-existed for millions of years prior to development of birds from dinosaurs.

Further, each day presents the creation of complete on that day. But we know that though mammals developed over a hundred million years ago, very few mammals around today even remotely resemble those early mammals. The development of life is an ongoing process.

Over all, I still maintain that trying to reconcile Genesis with modern science is likely to cause confusion than enlightenment.


Bill


Bill


#15

I know. But I decided to take this evolutionary thing to the bitter end… …and force it onto Genesis. To see what happens.
It meant that mammals, dinosaurs, birds, etc. would need to be created over the course of one day - that is, during the last 766,666,666 years.

…but the ones I have read generally have sea creatures and birds created on the 5th day, and land creatures on the 6th. Birds actually were the last major order of life to develop.

Yes. I would somehow need to show that dinosaurs were related to birds, then, that dinosaurs, as avian type reptiles?, were more directly related to some worm that crawled out of the sea 1.5 billion years ago, to allow the genetics to start down the road that would eventually lead to birds.
Perhaps the genetics of birds had to be started earlier than the start of the genetics of mammals. And even if no birds actually flew 1.5 billion years ago they were esentially created back then.
Maybe thats why Genesis said; “**that may fly **” :o , as if the actual flying part would be a future event, but that it had to have its beginnings back then.
"…God also said: Let the waters bring forth the creeping creature having life, and the fowl **that may fly **over the earth under the firmament of heaven. "

According to evolution there was at least 4 or 5 times the number of ‘types’ of life which sprung into being in the early stage of that last ‘day’.
If you consider all plants to be one ‘type’ of life-form, all animal another type, all insects another, and fungi another type. These are all the types of life currently on earth. But in the beginning of this ‘Day’ there were an additional 4 or 5 times that amount of types of life-forms created. But only the four we are familliar with survived, all the rest died off rather suddenly.
However, in Genesis I try and force that same idea on it and see what happens.
"…which the waters brought forth, according to their kinds, and every winged fowl according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. 22 And he blessed them, saying: Increase and multiply, and fill the waters of the sea: and let the birds be multiplied upon the earth. "

Where animals are brought forth ‘according to their Kind’ or ‘type’ or Family, during that Day.
And where the birds which are ‘…multiplied upon the earth.’ is not simply a reference to increasing the size of every flock of every species of bird, but perhaps is a reference to multiplying ‘types’ and species of birds ‘upon the earth’, the archetypal bird having already been created on the Fifth Day as one of the surviving ‘types’ of creature created when He said to “…bring forth the creeping creature having life”.


#16

It seems that what Thing is doing is simply experimental in essence; that is, trying to correlate Genesis with science. I personally do think Genesis seems close in identifying a form of evolutionary process

**In the beginning, when God created the heavens and the earth. **The mentioning of heavens cannot be the atmosphere as this comes only later, on the second Day.Therefore, It must be speaking of the heavenly bodies such as the sun
and stars. Also,since the earth is the focal point, to identify the heavens “before” the earth could at least suggests that they were created before the earth.

**Let there be light **I speculate it to mean not the visual spectrum of light, but the high energy (frequency) part of the
spectrum,responsible for the begetting of life. If we continue "And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. And God said, Let there be light: and there was light."
Water, the Spirit of God and light are all associated with
life in scriptures.

And God said, “Let there be an expanse between the waters to separate water from water.” The earth in the beginning was saturated with water vapors, the reason being
as to why the visible spectrum of sunlight is unable to reach the earth. As the earth started to cool down, the water condensed, and, as scriptures said, **“Let the waters under the heaven was gathered together unto one place, and the dry land appearred”. **So,now we have a separation of liquid water from the vapor water(clouds).

Now, while the evolution theory identifies plant life as having been observed to exist around 475 million years ago, about the same time period as the fishes, being not in accordance with scriptures, new information has forced paleonthologist to change such a point of view.
science.psu.edu/alert/Hedges8-2001.htm
The researchers found that land plants had evolved on Earth by about 700 million years ago and land fungi by about 1,300 million years ago–much earlier than previous estimates of around 480 million years ago, which were based on the earliest fossils of those organisms.

14 And God said, “Let there be lights in the expanse of the sky to separate the day from the night, and let them serve as signs to mark seasons and days and years, 15 and let them be lights in the expanse of the sky to give light on the earth.” **And it was so. “**In the expanse of the sky”, which is the newly formed atmosphere, visible light begins to emerge from the sun and the stars as signs for timekeeping. I personally would enquire
for who’s purpose?

**20 And God said, “Let the water teem with living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the expanse of the sky.” 21 So God created the great creatures of the sea and every living and moving thing with which the water teems, according to their kinds, and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. **
Here, again, the evolution theory disagrees with the birds evolving from the the sea. They are believed to have evolved from dinosaures (land animal), therefore, disagreeing with scriptures. However, again, new evidence may show differently.

icb.oxfordjournals.org/cgi/content/full/40/4/687
The oldest known feathers are modern even to the level of microscopic detail, and all the basic features of feathers must have been in place before a basic dichotomy into Sauriurae and the Ornithurae occured. This division must be older than Archaeopteryx (late Jurassic) and may be much earlier. The basal Ornithurae radiated into aquatic habitats beginning on the shoreline and extending into swimming and diving.

Birds may one day be seen to be much more closely related to sea life than land dinosaures.

Andre.


#17

I am not going to address the rest of the post. Ultimately I will just end up repeating myself. That being said, I am going to point out that it is unlikely that birds would be related to sea life than dinosaurs for the simple reason that birds most probably evolved from Therapod Dinosaurs.


Bill


#18

I am not going to address the rest of the post. Ultimately I will just end up repeating myself. That being said, I am going to point out that it is unlikely that birds would be related to sea life than dinosaurs for the simple reason that birds most probably evolved from Therapod Dinosaurs.

And the earliest feathers we know of were on theropod dinosaurs (or just possibly on thecodonts, if Longisquama really had primitive feathers, and was a thecodont)

Moreover, the transitionals like Archaeopteryx look very much like dinosaurs (Archaeopteryx was first classified as a dinosaur, until one with feather impressions was found)


#19

Are dinosaurs related to any sea-life? Could some crawling thing from the sea have eventually become a dinosaur?

Could birds only have derived from dinosaurs and dinosaurs themselves from a particular sea-life form?

Mammals took a different route to dinosaurs, could birds have evolved from mammals? Would that have been physically possible?

Did mammals derive from dinosaurs, or did they diverge at some very early point when things started to crawl out of the sea?..:shrug:


#20

Let me see if I can answer the questions. The answers must be tentative, because in science, the answers are always tentative, subject to revision should new evidence emerge. That being said, we appear to have a good solid picture of the order in which life evolved, and in general from what earlier life it evolved.

All land vertabrates essentially are descended from fish that figured out how to live on land hundreds of millions of years ago. The ancestors of the mammals, the synapsids diverged from the ancestors of the dinosaurs over 300 million years ago. Indeed the synapsids, particularly the order Therapsidsa were the dominant life forms up until approximately 250 million years ago. At that point the archosaurs, the ancestors the dinosaurs (as well as Crocodiles and lizards (IIRC)) emerged as the dominant life form. They would remain dominant until 65 million years ago. During that time however, the synapsids did not disappear and over time became more and more mammal like. Certainly well before the extinction of the non-avian dinosaurs 65 million years ago, there were mammals. Meanwhile archosaurs diverged into many different forms. Some like the crocodiles and alligators are virtually unchanged over the last 200 million years; others however continued to evolve and generally there is a strong consensus that birds came from therapod dinosaurs.

In other words, the best evidence shows that no, birds did not come from mammals. They are far more like dinosaurs than mammals.


Bill


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