“You fell victim to one of the classic blunders! The most famous is: Never get involved in a land war in Asia! And only slightly less well known is this: Never go in against a Sicilian when death is on the line! HA HA HA HA HA—”
In arguing with my Catholic-evolutionist-engineer major roommate, I was Vizzini.
“Never go in against a Young-Earth Creationist when biblical literalism is on the line! HA HA HA HA HA—”
I’ve never asked him, but I think that my roommate had very little exposure to YEC apologetics. More often than not, he acted quizzical every time I waxed apologetic on a “literal” interpretation of Genesis. His much more scientific mind would bring up some interesting counter-arguments:
ME: The Second Law of Thermodynamics!
ROOMMATE: You keep using that phrase. I do not think it means what you think it means.
And how about this one:
ME: I mean, what are the three terrors of an Old Universe? One, the Big Bang—no problem. There’s a popping sound preceding it; we can avoid that. Two, the Geologic Column, which I was clever enough to discover what it doesn’t really look like, so in the future we can avoid that too.
ROOMMATE: Mike, what about the S.B.S.T.L.Y.D.T.G.S’s?
ME: Stars Beyond Six Thousand Light Years’ Distant That Go Supernova? I don’t think they exist.
Seriously, I fell somewhere in between the first two of Gordon J. Glover’s three options for understanding passages of Scripture that reflect ancient Near Eastern cosmogony (more on ANE cosmogony later):
(1) take these verses as literal scientific truth and vigorously defend this model of the universe against all rival theories based on extra-Biblical knowledge; or (2) take these verses as non-literal and reinterpret them in conformity with modern astronomy . . . (Glover, p. 87)
I was probably much closer to #1. Thank God my roommate wasn’t as “biblically literate” as I was, or else I could have been pushed into geocentrism! Of course neither of us was familiar with the third option:
(3) understand these verses as giving us a literal, but non-scientific, view of the universe based on the popular cosmology of the age that committed them to writing. (Glover, p. 87)
Confronted with some quite valid arguments against a YEC interpretation of Genesis, I felt more inclined to defend my interpretation of Scripture rather than admit to something in direct contradiction to it. If it took me out of the mainstream, so be it. Into my YEComfort zone I went. Thus, for the remainder of my college days and into my post-college Navy career, I maintained a solid YEC position.
CYPHER: You know, I know this steak doesn’t exist. I know that when I put it in my mouth, the Matrix is telling my brain that it is juicy and delicious. After nine years, you know what I realize? [Takes a bite of steak] Ignorance is bliss.