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Allen J Epling

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The Great Debate: Genesis or Science
6/23/2009 7:11:33 AM    [ Flag as Inappropriate ]

Who holds the truth: The Bible or science?

The Great Debate: Genesis or Science

By Allen Epling


gen·e·sis  (j n -s s)

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n. pl. gen·e·ses (-s z )

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1. The coming into being of something; the origin.



 The book of Genesis is aptly named in that it is the description of the creation of all things, not only of the universe, but of Man, his history, his relationship with God. It is also the beginning of man’s journey through history, describing how he got here, and for some, why he is here. But is it accurate?

The debate between believers and non-believers reaches its pinnacle of fervor in the topic of Evolution Versus Creationism. Why is it so important that we know how man got here? To believers it shouldn’t matter so much HOW, as much as WHY. Yet the debate goes on in our schools, the media, and in public, that evolution is the truth about man, while others say “No, the bible is the only truth about how man came to be”. Is this debate about truth or ego, tradition, or divinity?

To this writer it would seem that God would not care if we knew the exact details of how He created man. The only important matter should be man’s relationship to Him. Why then do educated, intelligent not-believers resort to calling anyone who believes in  creationism derrogatory names, while believers think the science community is part of a conspiracy to deny the existence of God and the validity of the Bible.  What is it about this simple debate that inspires such anger from both sides.

Fundamentalist Christians are concerned, justifiably, that our schools are teaching that the Bible is false and that all life and man are the product of an accident of nature. In response, scientists and educators argue that the evidence is clear that evolution is a very real process and that the universe and the Earth itself is much older than 6000 years. Is it possible that there is some common ground, an explanation that would allow both camps to acknowledge the possibility that they have both misinterpreted the data?

The reason fundamentalist Christians fight so bitterly against evolution and those who advocate a very ancient age for the Earth and the universe, is that they believe that if the scientists are correct, it means that the Bible is wrong. If the Bible is wrong, then God is wrong and that is not acceptable.

In the past 300 years we have seen several instances where true science has advocated an opinion that is different from the Church’s, with the result that the Church has adjusted its interpretation of the Word of God to reflect a more modern view. A good example of this is the discovery that the Earth is round, not flat. Even though Revelation 7:1 refers to an “Angel standing of the four corners of the earth”, the Church RE-interpreted this as a metaphor, not something to be taken literally. This allowed the Bible to remain truthful in spite of centuries of tradition in which believers thought the world was flat.

Galileo was threatened with excommunication from the Church if he didn’t recant his statements that the moon was full of craters, even though his telescope clearly showed their existence. Nowhere in the Bible is the statement that the moon was a perfect body, or that the Sun and universe orbited the Earth, yet tradition caused some to be burned at the stake for saying the opposite was true.

          If we accept that the Bible is infallible, even though it was written originally in Hebrew why do we assume that our translations and interpretations are also infallible? The Church, and the Bible, survived that era of transition, and there is no reason to believe that it cannot survive another round of “re-interpretations” to adapt to what are becoming proven facts in the scientific world.

The problem is that the scientific community is equally as stubborn to revise its ideology, that the Bible is about superstition and myths and contains no truth about man’s beginnings. Many scientists firmly advocate a “certainty” that there is no God, in spite of believing ‘religiously’ in the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principal. In the forefront of today’s science is a body of evidence, catagorized as Quantum Mechanics, that makes clear that nothing in the entire universe is certain but is determined by a “probability factor”. Any scientist that is certain about anything is admitting hypocracy to his own field of study.

Given all of the arguments from both camps concerning Evolution Vs Creationism, what is the truth about man and how can it be found? Strict adherence to extreme views from either the Left or the Fundamentalist Right will not solve the problem. It has been proven throughout history that we can re-interpret the Bible differently without threatening God’s existence, while accepting truth as it comes, from any direction. To do so is probably the will of God anyway, as it simply allows us to understand more clearly what an infinitely intelligent being is trying to communicate to a very limited intelligent species.

Am I saying that the truth will come from scientific sources? No, it has already been demonstrated that scientists with an atheistic agenda will interpret data to support that agenda, ignoring any other source of truth. The truth must come from both sides without the barriers that now exist that prevent us from seeing that truth. Einsten said that “Religion without science is blind, and science without religion is lame”. How true.

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More Blogs by Allen J Epling
•  The Great Debate: Genesis or Science - Tuesday, June 23, 2009  
• The Two Creations - Tuesday, June 23, 2009

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