Would Creationism exist, without Protestantism?

Just wondering, it seems like every Protestant I know thinks the world is 6,000 years old, so I am curious, if Martin Luther didn’t start Protestantism, and every Christian remained Catholic, would some Christians still claim that the world is 6,000 years old?

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probably. I know some Catholics who believe that the world is only 6000 years old.


I have a strong hunch that some would still have such theories.

Some Catholics would, but creationists would probably not be nearly as numerous, nor as militant, nor as literalist. Many fundamentalist Christians are unyielding in their insistence that each and every word of the Bible is to be taken absolutely literally, and many of them say yes, that means everything that exists, was created within exactly 144 hours, some 6000 years ago.

Note, too, that we must all be “creationists”, in that we must believe God created all things out of nothing (ex nihilo), and He existed for all eternity, before anything that was made. How we got from nothingness, to where we are today, is the debatable part. It will be discussed back and forth from now until the end of time.

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A better way to word it would be would Young Earth Creationism still be thing. As for my self, I am an old earth Creationist, i believe God created all things but don’t believe the earth is 6000 years old but in fact agree with science on the age


I think some people, no matter their faith, tend to be literalists. I know some Jews that are, too. However, I think it would be far fewer in number than today in the US. There are far fewer literalists in Europe than here as well.

Some branches of Protestantism became very anti science and proclaimed the Fundamentals of the Bible leading to Fundamentalism which became quite popular and persistent. Without this event, I think much larger portions of believers would be more accepting of science and have no problem incorporating their faith with science as many Catholics and other religious do.


I completely agree. Unfortunately in the US, fundamental people tend to label those who agree with science and find the unity in science and faith as giving in to the other side. They view it as a loss to the other side, while most Catholics view it as a win.

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Interesting point. Those who depart from the fullness of revealed truth and interpret without guoidance or authority inevitably run off the road and into the ditch.

As an aside, I do know that, without God, there could be no athiests.

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Yes. Protestants didn’t invent this idea. It was around in St. Augustine’s time because he wrote about it. And I’m sure out of the billions of Catholics out there, some of them would continue to make the claim.


You don’t know me, but I’m a Protestant and I’m not sure how old the earth is. If I had to bet right now, I guess I’d say it’s a bunch more than 6,000 years old.

This does bring up a curious question though - at what point in the Bible do you start believing what it says actually happened?

Tower of Babel? Was there a flood and an ark? Sodom and Gomorrah? Were Abraham and Sarah really that old? Did Jacob really wrestle with God? Red Sea parted? David and Goliath? On and on - and then…a child born of a Virgin? Crucified dead and buried, and on the third day, rose again.

Come to think of it, if we believe a guy died and 3 days later rose again, and is the son of the Living God, and the Savior of the world - I’m pretty sure that believing the earth was made 6,000 years ago isn’t the biggest hole in the doughnut we’ve got…


You’re claiming that every Protestant believes the world is 6,000 years old - based upon your experiences in what … asking every Protestant you know - what they believe?

In my life I’ve only run across one person - who believes that.

That said, to the Catholic Church, there’s no demand that one can not choose to believe that.

In the schema of Salvation. that yes/no is of little to zero import



Something for thought. The bible says there were 10 generations from Adam to Noah and 10 more generations from Noah to Abraham. A little research will show how it all breaks down. Interestingly enough their names all mean something and tell a story. Methuselah’s name means when he is dead the end will come. And in the year he died the world was judged.

The OT and NT always affirm a literal interpretation and understanding of Genesis. So did God make a mistake in all this? Science is only as good as its latest new theory and they are always changing their minds for a new one while God declares the end from the beginning.

Except science definitively disproves a 6,000 year old earth.
Frankly, it boggles my mind that some people can actually believe the young earth.


It would still exist to some degree but since there are protestant churches which preach Young Earth Creationism directly from the pulpit or through media, it has allowed it to spread.

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That’s where Tradition and the Magisterium come in. Scripture is open to many often conflicting interpretations. Different denominations and individuals interpret Scripture in very different ways.
The Magisterium (teaching authority of the Catholic Church) originally determined the canon of scripture…it also guides the correct interpretation of Scripture. Scripture can’t be divorced from the tradition that formed it.

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I wouldn’t blame fundamentalism on poor old Luther. Fundamentalism is principally an American Evangelical phenomena. Like others, I assume there would be a few about if not for the evangelical movement, but I suspect there would be a lot fewer.


If you are defining creationism as following a literal interpretation of Genesis, I would answer no. Oh, there would be a few Catholics who would follow such a translation, but they would be few.
There really is a long history if not treating the Genesis stories as literal in the Catholic Church.

I think it is mainly in the US that this is even an issue, and that is due to the Protestants’ influence on many Catholics. We live in a country which had a historically Protestants culture, it has an impact on us Catholics even when we don’t realize it.


I could be wrong (and often am), but I’m pretty sure science definitively disproves being raised from the dead too (zombie apocalypse excepted of course).

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Good point. What does the Magisterium say about the age of the earth?

Here’s paragraph 390 from the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

The account of the fall in Genesis 3 uses figurative language, but affirms a primeval event, a deed that took place at the beginning of the history of man . Revelation gives us the certainty of faith that the whole of human history is marked by the original fault freely committed by our first parents.

It leaves it fairly open…but affirms both a real event (God’s creation, Adam and Eve’s rebellion, etc.) while acknowledging that “figurative” (symbolic) language is used to express those events.

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