ProgRossing Toward an Old Universe

Continued from “Retreating to My YEComfort Zone
Those old universe arguments continued to haunt me, even in my YEComfort Zone. During one of my overseas deployments, I engaged in some friendly email conversation with an irenic atheist, who desired to prove to me the strength of evolutionary theory, both biological and cosmological. Many of his arguments for an old universe were compelling, despite my best attempts to hide behind the Institute for Creation Research(ICR).

It was about this same time that my father sent me several books written by progressive creationist Hugh Ross, one of which was Creation and Time. Although Ross’ approach to Genesis 1 was intriguing, I felt uncomfortable with his concordism, which seemed forced in many places, e.g., the “creation” of the sun and moon on Day 4 as actually a “revealing” of these two astronomical bodies as the earth’s thick cloud cover began to disperse. The real nail in the coffin, however, was Van Bebber and Taylor’s Creation and Time: A Report on the Progressive Creationist Book by Hugh Ross, which made very clear to me that progressive creationism’s requirement for animal death prior to the Fall of Adam directly contradicted Scripture (cf. Romans 5:12).

About the same time, ICR began promoting Dr. Russell Humphreys’ white hole cosmology, which attempted to reconcile an apparently old universe with a young earth using the theory of gravitational time dilation. The opportunity to accept scientific findings pointing to a universe billions of years old was freeing, especially considering it allowed me to maintain a literal reading of Genesis. However, Humphreys sometimes revealed a tendency toward forced concordism, with which I was not terribly comfortable. Still, it appeared to be the best of both worlds for many years ..



Filed under old-earth creationism, young-earth creationism

4 Responses to ProgRossing Toward an Old Universe

  1. Ditto on Humphreys. He delayed my rejection of YEC, while simultaneously making me gag at what he thought was a honest reading of Genesis.

    Check out Iain’s comment in the facebook group, topic “Age of the Earth”, post number 76.

  2. Thanks for the link! If I recall correctly, has posted some interchanges between Humphreys and his detractors. I might just have to dig up a few of those links and post them here.

  3. Mike,

    There are many parallels in our journeys from YEC to Evolutionary Creationism. For me, too, it was Hugh Ross who helped to expand my thinking out of the ICR YEC framework, though even then I found his Progressive Creationism a bit forced. And like you, I found a temporary “stopping off” point in Humphreys’ book. At least here was a scholar within the YEC movement who took the problem of star light seriously. It was about 4 or 5 years ago that I first opened my mind to the possibility of Darwinistic evolution. That freed me to look seriously at the views of Francis Collins, which I found compelling. And like you, one of my recent reads was Fairbanks’ Relics of Eden which leaves little doubt about the power of DNA evidence.

    Thank you for sharing your journey. I recently sat with other leaders of the network of churches to which I belong. For five hours they listened as I shared mostly on the history of the changes in my views over the last 10 or so years. Though discussions of my views have been hot and heavy in my circle for the last 6 or 8 months, nothing has been more helpful to my brothers and sisters than hearing me relate my story, and the steps involved in my personal transition from YEC to EC.

    Thank you for this series of posts!

  4. Cliff,

    Thanks for your post! Alas, I am not alone. 😉

    I think it’s important that we be able to communicate the steps of our journey intelligently and intelligibly. Without the benefit of being able to retrace your steps from one paradigm to another, evolution would be a difficult pill for your audience to swallow.

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