Scientists talk about things taking billions of years in space, and then in the next sentence they talk about how time is affected by what's going on in space. A year is based on how long it takes the planet Earth to get around the Sun. Other planets and stars move at different speeds, and the speed of light and great distances seem to affect time and space. When people say "billions of years" in the context of outer space, what are they talking about? I don't think anybody really knows.
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
As I've been reading about how big the universe is, as one does, I had a thought:
First read Genesis 1
In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters. And God said, "Let there be light," and there was light. And God saw that the light was good. And God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day. And God said, "Let there be an expanse in the midst of the waters, and let it separate the waters from the waters." And God made the expanse and separated the waters that were under the expanse from the waters that were above the expanse. And it was so. And God called the expanse Heaven. And there was evening and there was morning, the second day. And God said, "Let the waters under the heavens be gathered together into one place, and let the dry land appear." And it was so. God called the dry land Earth, and the waters that were gathered together he called Seas. And God saw that it was good. And God said, "Let the earth sprout vegetation, plants yielding seed, and fruit trees bearing fruit in which is their seed, each according to its kind, on the earth." And it was so. The earth brought forth vegetation, plants yielding seed according to their own kinds, and trees bearing fruit in which is their seed, each according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. And there was evening and there was morning, the third day. And God said, "Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night. And let them be for signs and for seasons, and for days and years, and let them be lights in the expanse of the heavens to give light upon the earth." And it was so. And God made the two great lights—the greater light to rule the day and the lesser light to rule the night—and the stars. And God set them in the expanse of the heavens to give light on the earth, to rule over the day and over the night, and to separate the light from the darkness. And God saw that it was good. And there was evening and there was morning, the fourth day. And God said, "Let the waters swarm with swarms of living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the expanse of the heavens." So God created the great sea creatures and every living creature that moves, with which the waters swarm, according to their kinds, and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. And God blessed them, saying, "Be fruitful and multiply and fill the waters in the seas, and let birds multiply on the earth." And there was evening and there was morning, the fifth day. And God said, "Let the earth bring forth living creatures according to their kinds—livestock and creeping things and beasts of the earth according to their kinds." And it was so. And God made the beasts of the earth according to their kinds and the livestock according to their kinds, and everything that creeps on the ground according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. Then God said, "Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth." So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. And God blessed them. And God said to them, "Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth." And God said, "Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the face of all the earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit. You shall have them for food. And to every beast of the earth and to every bird of the heavens and to everything that creeps on the earth, everything that has the breath of life, I have given every green plant for food." And it was so. And God saw everything that he had made, and behold, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day. ESV
What is written in Scripture, if taken literally, seems to suggest a young Earth. Looking at all the evidence found on Earth, I have no trouble believing that the planet Earth is less than 10,000 years old.
I believe that the Bible is the final authority and should be interpreted literally unless it is obviously figurative. I do wonder about the Universe, though. The Universe is so big that even with light traveling at 186,000 miles per second, it may take over 1 million years for the light from some stars to reach us because they are so far away.
God created the Universe, God is eternal, and there is no limit to what God can do. Here is my thought:
Maybe Genesis 1 is not about the Universe being created, but just the Earth, or maybe this Solar System. It says the Sun, Moon, and Stars were created on the 4th day. Maybe this means:
- God created all the stars in the universe on the 4th day and sped up the light so we could see them--in other words he created the universe with age, and that would account for supernovas and black holes, etc. (This is what I thought until recently.) OR
- God created the universe millions of years ago and created our solar system within it more recently. "Stars" in Genesis 1:16 might even be referring to the planets.
I believe the Bible and I believe science, but I believe the Bible first if there is a contradiction. The one thing that is clear is that God created life, and the most important thing is that our eternal salvation is through Christ alone!
Sunday, July 19, 2009
Sometimes I look back on the past few years and wonder how we got to where we are today. I know that it is all from God because we are in a great place and it is clear that this is where God wants us to be and we are doing what he wants us to be doing right now. But several years ago while I was in Bible college I thought I was so sure of where I was supposed to be headed, but I wasn't really. A public library didn't sound like something you train for in Bible college, although I always liked going to the library and I even worked in the college library. It's clear to see that everything I did was preparing me for where I am right now, and everything I'm doing right now is preparing me for whatever God has for me next.
So how was my time at Bible college preparing me to be a librarian? The motto at Appalachian Bible College is "... because life is for service." A librarian is a service position! Think about it: just about everything you get at the library is free--that's service! If I find a book for someone in Jesus' name, I have found a book for Jesus.
Saturday, July 18, 2009
I'm taking an online class this month called Libraries, Literature, & Young Adults, and I'm learning some valuable stuff! Actually, the only online part of the class is that our syllabus and assignment sheet were posted online, and we have to post our thoughts on a discussion board to share with the class. Other than that we just have our textbook to read from and some assignments, which include a 4-page critical response to a book of our choice from a list, two 2-page reviews of articles from VOYA magazine, and annotations of 24 YA books that we have read. Aside from actually going to class, this seems like a normal amount of work for a 3-credit-hour course, but instead of it being spread out over 3 months, we have 1 month to do it! All this reading seems like a lot, but I'm finding that I'm able to do it. It's amazing how much reading you can get done when you cut down on the TV viewing. I feel a lot better as a person after reading a book than after watching TV, too!
Don't get me wrong, I still like watching TV sometimes, but it's good to take note of how you spend your time each day so that it is not wasted. (That applies to time spent on the internet, too...)
I rode my bike approximately 11 miles today, and it felt good to do that! I had to walk it up a steep hill in a couple places, but other than that I was able to keep a good pace. I've had this bike--a Cannondale--for a couple months, but this was the first time I rode it any good distance, and I'm glad to have it. The Raleigh bike I had in the summer of 2005 was a good bike, too, but it is no more...
Before today I hadn't ridden this far in about 7 years! I want to get back into it, but I still don't like riding up steep hills.