One reason Christians should accept evolution: It happened

If evolution didn't work, this is what your dog would be like. (photo by Flickr user Metassus, via a Creative Commons license)

The first of many reasons that Christians should accept evolution as the scientific explanation for how life developed and why it looks the way it does today is simple: It happened.

That’s right. Evolution happened, and it’s continuing to happen all around us. You get a flu shot every year because the virus evolves. Farmers have to change their pesticides periodically, because the pests evolve. Your pet dog is not a wolf that murders you in your sleep because of domestication, which — you guessed it! — relies on the exact same principles as evolution.

Scientifically, the theory of evolution has undergone more rigorous experiments than virtually any other. We understand it better than we understand gravity, for example. Ken Miller, a cellular and molecular biologist who’s well-known in the evolution-creationism debate, says it has been tested hundreds of times in the lab and the field.

“I can’t think of a single scientific theory that has been more controversial than evolution, and when theories are controversial, people devise tests to see if they’re right,” Miller told PBS’ “Nova” in 2007. “Evolution has been tested continuously for almost 150 years and not a single observation, not a single experimental result, has ever emerged in 150 years that contradicts the general outlines of the theory of evolution.”

Yes, scientists are people, and they can make mistakes. But their process — with its layers of peer review and testable, repeatable methods — is a self-correcting one. If the evidence truly didn’t support the theory of evolution, it would have been debunked long ago by an ambitious insider eager to be the next Nicolaus Copernicus (he’s the guy who proved the earth revolves around the sun).

I’m a newspaperman. I generally hold skepticism in high regard. But we’re talking about a process (the scientific method) that has a pretty darn good track record (and you are required to throw away your computer and cellphone immediately if you disagree). Let’s let the scientists do their jobs.

There are many, many reasons we faithful, Bible-believing Christians should accept the theory of evolution, and I think we’re going to have some fun exploring them in the months to come. But I wanted to start this way, because really, the case has been closed for decades. The evidence is out there, and it’s overwhelming; it’s what convinced me when I first started looking at this issue, and that was years ago.

The problem is that Christians often approach evolution exactly the wrong way. They come with all these theological questions as if it’s up to people like me whether evolution happened or not. I freely admit that accepting the theory of evolution brought challenges to my understanding of scripture. At first, it challenged my faith, as did the Newtown school shooting and the Rwandan genocide and a million other atrocities. But that doesn’t mean I could just put my fingers in my ears and pretend like any of them didn’t happen.

We are each entitled to our opinions, but not our own facts. We Christians can’t reach the world for Christ if we’re living in a different world than everyone else. And for far too long now, that’s how many of us have tried to live. Let’s try a different way. Evolution happened, and everyone else knows it. I say it’s about time we got with the program.

Tyler Francke

  • Neale Adams

    I look forward to reading your description of the challenges to your beliefs that evolution brings. At the very least a literal reading of the bible is tough to reconcile.

  • Dareme

    Selective breeding is not proof of evolution. Re: wolf photo.

    • Proof of evolution? No. Evidence for evolution? Absolutely. If evolution and natural selection were not possible, then selective breeding and artificial selection wouldn’t be possible either.

  • Eyðfinn Bjarnastein

    1.First the writer calls it evolution THEORY.
    2.Then he states the fact that it happened. So which one is it? Theory or fact? And based on what fact other than “let the scientists do their job” and “everyone knows it to be true”?
    3.How is the Evolution Theory not contradictory to the Bible? You either put your faith in the evolution scientists or in Jesus. You can’t have it both ways.
    4.So we Christians can’t reach the world if we’re not of it? Is that correctly understood? (John 15:19 KJV) If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you. Sound familiar?
    5.Catholics committing genocide in Rwanda is heartbreaking and terrible, but what does that have to do with making us waver in our walk with Jesus Christ? Nothing. It could make people waver in their Catholicism, but not in their relationship with Christ.

    • 1-2. Evolution is both a theory and a fact. It is a fact that life does change over time and that life has changed over time. The theory is the attempt to explain how and why life changes and has changed over time, using the available evidence. This is much like gravity. It is a fact that gravity exists, but how and why it works is something scientists are still working on.

      3. If you really believed this absolutely ridiculous false dichotomy, then you and I wouldn’t be talking, because you would refuse to touch a computer or use the Internet, as both are rather sophisticated modern technologies developed through the scientific method.

      4. Nope, that’s not what I said. I said we can’t reach the world for Christ if we’re not living “in the world.” “For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does.” (2 Corinthians 10:3) “I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people— 10 not at all meaning the sexually immoral of this world, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters, since then you would need to go out of the world.” (1 Corinthians 5:9-10) Sound familiar?

      5. Umm, occasionally, the fact that horrific things, like the torture of innocent people or the slaughter of children, causes people to questions, doubt, and otherwise reflect on the existence of a benevolent and all-powerful God. It’s called the “problem of evil” and has sort of been Christian theology’s most significant philosophical quandry of the past 1,000 years.

      • Eyðfinn Bjarnastein

        1. So the fact lies in that we can observe evolution happen. Right? That’s what science is. Observing the things we are studying. But then how can it be a theory? Either is has been observed to be a fact, and then it shouldn’t be a theory, or it has not been observed to be a fact, but then it is indeed just a theory. Are you following me? And where is the hard evidence and proof of evolution? One species evolving to another species? Is one kind of dog and another kind of dog the same species? Well, yes. And is one kind of bacteria and another kind of bacteria the same species? Of course. So where is the observed evidence of the evolution from one specied, not kind, to another species? It doesn’t exist because the theory of evolution is false. Please study the subject from both the evolutionistic and the creationistic perspectives and find out.

        And yes, it is hardly debateable that life changes over time. I am not the same as when I was born. I am bigger, stronger, faster, more clever and wiser. I indeed have changed. But that is not evolution, it’s my journey towards the decay of my body ending with my death.

        And yes, we absolutely have had technology evolved over the last 100 years let alone the last 1000 years. But that’s technology. Things we have made. That has nothing to do with the evolution of species. Something I often ask myself: If a person today was raised in a cave to be a cave man, would his first invention be a computer? More likely a stone ax. But he is a homo sapiens sapiens and has evolved from the cave man of ancient times, right?

        Gravity and the Evolution Theory? One is clearly observable and the other is not. We don’t call it the Theory of Gravity because every time I try to fly I fall flat down on my face. It’s a fact, all right!

        Yes, I am familiar with 1. and 2. Corinthians. And I get your point. But leaving this world as opposed to embracing the godless Evolution Theory will not exalt Christ and will not work in preaching the Gospel.
        How do you entwine the Bible’s 6000 years history of Creation with the several thousand billion years of Evolution? Please enlight me on this, because I can not se the resemblance.
        And if you as a Christian can embrace the theory of evolution, than surely the evolutionist can embrace Christianity. They complement each other, right?

        I truly understand the argument of doubting in God when presented with the evil of this world. And perhaps I have experienced to little evil myself. But the evil and atrocities committed in the world every day should rather affirm the Bible and the love of God in a fallen world where Satan is god, and draw us nearer to God. Of course bad and horrible things happen. It’s the result of The Fall. What’s incredible is that anything good happens at all.

        I’m not trying to be offensive here, and if I offend anyone, I apologize. I stand for the truth and that’s what I’m trying to get out and reveal the lies of Satan. And first and foremost: Preach Christ and him crusified.

        • So the fact lies in that we can observe evolution happen. Right? That’s what science is. Observing the things we are studying. But then how can it be a theory? Either is has been observed to be a fact, and then it shouldn’t be a theory, or it has not been observed to be a fact, but then it is indeed just a theory. Are you following me?

          No, I’m not “following you” because you are way off track. In science, a fact is not the opposite of a theory. A fact is a piece of data, which can be explained by a theory. Fact: You stop holding a ball and it falls to the ground. Theory: The ball falls to the ground because the earth exerts gravity over it. They are not opposite; they work together in concert.

          And where is the hard evidence and proof of evolution?

          http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/comdesc/
          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evidence_of_common_descent

          One species evolving to another species?

          http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/speciation.html
          http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/faq-speciation.html
          http://evolution.berkeley.edu/evolibrary/news/100201_speciation

          And yes, it is hardly debateable that life changes over time. I am not the same as when I was born.

          Swing and a miss, pal.

          And yes, we absolutely have had technology evolved over the last 100 years let alone the last 1000 years.

          Strike two.

          We don’t call it the Theory of Gravity because every time I try to fly I fall flat down on my face.

          Explain why and how gravity works. When you fail to do so, perhaps you will understand the difference between a fact and a theory. (By the way, a number of theories about why and how gravity work have been proposed, but the fact is, that we still don’t fully understand this mysterious force.)

          How do you entwine the Bible’s 6000 years history of Creation with the several thousand billion years of Evolution?

          I’d like to answer your question, but it makes no sense, so I can’t.

          And if you as a Christian can embrace the theory of evolution, than surely the evolutionist can embrace Christianity.

          Um…yes?

          I’m not trying to be offensive here, and if I offend anyone, I apologize. I stand for the truth and that’s what I’m trying to get out and reveal the lies of Satan. And first and foremost: Preach Christ and him crusified.

          For someone who claims to be preaching Christ and him crucified, you seem to be spending a lot of time talking about evolution with someone who already believes in Christ.

          • Eyðfinn Bjarnastein

            I’m trying my best to be as clear as possible. Please bear with me if my English is poor.

            All right, got it. One can explain a fact with a theory. Yes.

            Gravity can be observed. It is a fact and influences us all. I’m not that much in to studying gravity, but if you say there are several theories on how it works, I expect that.

            Evolution however we can not observe. (No one has ever seen an ape turn in to a human, for example). We can conclude from numerous socalled evidences based on the principle of evolution, that this is what happened: An ape turned in to a human (one species evolving into another species). Thereby stating it as a fact, and explaining it by a theory. All right.

            One of those phenomenons is arguable, the other is not. Based on the hard, undeniable facts. One can be stated as fact, the other one concluded to be fact. In essence, they are not equally legitimate.

            I am not a scientists, so I’ll stop pretending to be one. I do not understand all the arguments for and against Evolution well enough, (all thought I understand the essence of it). I will look at the material in the links you posted. And more.

            So I will be studying Evolution more, if there should be any doubt whether I’ll just conveniently discard it as false because I feel like it. I wont.

            But my biggest problem with Evolution is that it contradicts the Bible.

            I’ll try to explain what I mean by 6000 years and billions of years. In Genesis God creates the world and universe in 6 days and rested on the seventh . After that there pas about 6000 years up until today calculating from the ages of people, the reigns of kings etc. mostly through the Old Testament. Can also be compared with historical data.
            Evolution claims the world and universe to be billions of years old.
            God looked at his creation and it was good. No need for improvement or evolution. And he let all the animals go by Adam so he could name them. So Adam, a human being, must have seen all animal species.
            Evolution claims that all beings came from one common ancestor, and evolved to the variety of creatures living in the past and today.

            Based only on those few statements, they cannot both be true.

            That is, if you believe the Bible to be the infallible word of God. I do. And I am studying it to see if these things are so. Not blindly believing.
            As are you I expect.

            I am clearly not studying Evolution nearly enough. You seem to know more about it than I, so by all means lecture me. And I’m not being sarcastic. If I am to defend my faith against contradicting beliefs, I am very well to at least have a basic knowledge in the belief I am defending against.

            I cannot understand how you can except both the Evolution Theory and Jesus Christ as your personal savior. That’s the main issue here.

            And why is it then, that evolutionists generally tend to be atheists, if you as a believer in Christ can agree with their explanation of creation? It should work both ways.

          • Gravity can be observed. It is a fact and influences us all. I’m not that much in to studying gravity, but if you say there are several theories on how it works, I expect that. Evolution however we can not observe.

            It is just as much a fact that life changes. Humans have used selective breeding for thousands of years to develop crops and livestock and even pets that better meet our needs. The mechanisms that drive evolution are no different from those that have allowed breeders to develop the great Dane or chihuahua. We have also observed the entirely natural development of new species and new traits within species within the lab and in the environment. I provided several links to some of this evidence in my earlier post.

            One of those phenomenons is arguable, the other is not. Based on the hard, undeniable facts. One can be stated as fact, the other one concluded to be fact. In essence, they are not equally legitimate.

            Let me put it this way: To say that all life on earth shares common ancestry and developed through the process of evolution is as much a fact as saying that the earth orbits the sun because of a force called gravity. Actually, we have far, far more direct and supporting evidence for the former statement than for the latter.

            Based only on those few statements, they cannot both be true.

            That is, if you believe the Bible to be the infallible word of God. I do.

            It’s not a question of whether the Bible is the infallible word of God. I absolutely agree that it is. The question is how the creation accounts in Genesis were meant to be interpreted. I believe that reading them literally, like some kind of history textbook, is the wrong way to interpret them, and that the correct way is that they are theological truths couched in symbolism and metaphor, much like the parables of Jesus, Psalms, Proverbs, Revelation and the other books of the prophets (in other words, most of the Bible).

            I cannot understand how you can except both the Evolution Theory and Jesus Christ as your personal savior. That’s the main issue here.

            This statement is so laughable and ridiculous that I can’t think of the right words to describe it. Your view of evolution or the age of the earth has absolutely nothing to do with accepting Christ as savior.

          • Eyðfinn Bjarnastein

            1. How does one come to the conclusion, that God created the heavens and the earth and everything in them in more than six days, when it says six days?
            Then how long were all the other days mentioned in the Old Testament?
            And how does one decide the length of days mentioned?
            Note that God is very precise in time measurements when he explains past events. And he is overwhelmingly precise, when he makes his will with the Israelites known to Moses.

            2. God let all creatures pas by Adam, so he could name them. Adam saw all the creatures God had made.
            So how could he have evolved from any of them?

            3. Death came into the world through the fall of Adam. So nothing had died before the fall of man.
            How can there be fossils from dead animals long before Adam sinned?

            4. What kind of being was Jesus when walking the earth, if not a human being and direct descendant of Adam?

            5. If we humans just evolved from some creature, then what distincts us from the animals? And for whom did Jesus then die?
            Is Jesus then also descended from the same creature as we are?

            6. God saw, that what he created was good. Then sin corrupted all of creation.
            How can things then have been evolving to the better since the fall, if sin corrupted the whole world? Shouldn’t it be the other way around?

            7. Now I’m going to rest.

          • 1. I’m going to try using all caps. Perhaps then it will get through. IT IS METAPHOR, MAN. POETRY. The words mean something other than their literal meaning. You are confused because you are trying to interpret historically a text that was never meant to be interpreted historically. Your questions here are basically the equivalent of arguing that the parable of the good Samaritan must be history, because it mentions a donkey, which is a real animal. “How does one come to the conclusion that this donkey did not exist, when it says there was a donkey and the good Samaritan placed the wounded man on it? How can a metaphorical donkey carry a man? Does this mean all the other times the Bible mentions a donkey are metaphor, too?” Sounds pretty silly, doesn’t it?

            2. You’re reading the story wrong. See above.

            3. You are alluding to Romans 5:12: “Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned.”

            I believe Romans 5:12 describes spiritual death, not physical death. Even the verse itself implies this. Read it closely: “…death spread to all men, because all sinned.” If it’s referring to physical death, then it would be saying physical mortality spread to all people because they sinned. In other words, we are not capable of physically dying until after we sin. Which is, of course, ridiculous. That would mean that those who are not yet capable of sin, like babies for example, would be unable to die.

            We know that many times that Paul talks about “death,” he is not referring to physical death. For example, in the same book and the exact same context (a discussion of the consequences of sin), Paul writes, “Once I was alive apart from the law, but when the commandment came, sin sprang to life and I died.” (Romans 7:9). The apostle was not dead when he wrote this passage, so clearly, he is talking about a different kind of death here. I believe he was also talking about a different kind of death in Romans 5.

            At any rate, even if Romans 5 is talking about physical death, its context is clearly and inarguably limited to mankind, not a single one of the millions of animal species that inhabit the world. So the conflict between this passage and the theory of evolution is quite minimal.

            4. Stupid question. He was a human. In your own head, “being a direct descendant of Adam” may be a prerequisite for being human, but that has no basis in science or scripture. I can declare that one must be able to speak in tongues to be a Christian, but that doesn’t make it so.

            5. More stupid questions. Answers: We are made in the image of God. Sinful mankind. Yes, and no; his physical form was of the same species as us, but he was also the eternally begotten Son of God, who existed before creation, and through him, creation came to be.

            6. Please provide a single Bible verse (yes, just one!) that clearly says what you just declared to be true: That human sin “corrupted all of creation.” Sounds like a pretty serious, weighty theological matter, so there must be dozens of scriptural passages that discuss this truth. I’m just looking for one. It’s not Genesis 3, because the consequences of the curse referred to there are quite specific, and do not at all refer to “all of creation” being corrupted. It’s not Romans 5, as we’ve discussed, because that refers only to mankind. And it’s not Romans 8, either, because that passage says nothing about sin or Adam or Eve or the fall. But anyway, I’m sure you’ve got tons of scripture to support your assertion, so I guess I’ll just wait to see it.

          • Eyðfinn Bjarnastein

            1. Nope. Didn’t come through. And no, I’m not confused. I’m trying to understand how and why you interpret the Bible this way.

            And you’re not answering my questions. Don’t try to cleverly avoid them. Although how stupid you might find them, the answers should be obvious. I believe you’re actually making a pretty simple message very complicated.

            You’re comparing the beginning of time with a parable. Or a poem.
            (Genesis 1:5 KJV) And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.
            How is that not one normal 24 hour day, for example? And why should Genesis be taken as poetry and not litteral?

            Hey, I actually learned two new words today. Let’s see, if I can spell them right. One is eisegesis and the other is exegesis. Which one do you use the most?

            “4. Stupid question. He was a human. In your own head, “being a direct descendant of Adam” may be a prerequisite for being human, but that has no basis in science or scripture. I can declare that one must be able to speak in tongues to be a Christian, but that doesn’t make it so.”
            I’m sorry, but your making the most bizarre comparisons. I can not see the resemblance between believing to be a human being just like Adam and claiming it obligatory to speak in tongues if a Christian. God made man. I am a man. What’s the problem. Scripture backs that up.

            “5. More stupid questions. Answers: We are made in the image of God. Sinful mankind. Yes, and no; his physical form was of the same species as us, but he was also the eternally begotten Son of God, who existed before creation, and through him, creation came to be.”
            We were not made sinful. I hope you see that.

            6. Here are two for you. Please read this in its context:
            (Romans 8:21 KJV) Because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God.
            (Romans 8:22 KJV) For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now.
            What does this refer to, if not sin? All creatures were herbivores in the beginning. Why did they start feeding on each other if not as a consequence of the fall? And look at all the natural disasters. Was that a part of God’s plan for the world, or a consequence of the fall? Tell me: When you look at all creation, do you find it perfect? Because God saw that it was good when he made it.

            By the way, who decides, and how, what is to be taken litteraly and what is not?
            Do you consider the Gospels to be poetry? Why or why not?

            3. Are you saying God created physical death before Adam sinned? Why did he say that they should surely die if they ate of the tree? He made them perfect, and physical death is hardly perfect. Is that somehow metaphorical also?

            Jesus in the flesh is the direct descendant of Adam. What are you trying to say?

            We’re all born in sin, so a baby is also under the curse of Adam’s fall. And God knows (litteraly) when a human being is to be held accountable.

            Jesus had to die, because of Adam’s fall. And because we all inherit his first sin. We’re all partakers of that. That’s why we are not inherently perfect but inherently wicked. And our bodies are degenerating until we die (and then the body decomposes of course).

            Either God meant what he said and is to be trusted 100 %, or he gave us everything in riddles, parables and poems and is maby or maby not to be fully trusted. Depending on how you interpret his words, right? But then, who’s interpretation is the correct one?

            That makes no room for absolute truth. Your understanding of Scripture makes everything relative. Either it’s all absolute or it’s a lie. The Bible itself claims to be God’s absolute truth. Jesus is The Truth by his own admittance. Can that claim really be trusted according to your understanding of God’s word? If so, how?

          • For someone who proudly claims to preach nothing but “Christ and him crucified first and foremost,” you sure seem to be awfully preoccupied with the views of science and Genesis of someone who has already accepted Christ as savior. Whatever makes you happy, I guess.

            And you’re not answering my questions. Don’t try to cleverly avoid them. Although how stupid you might find them, the answers should be obvious. I believe you’re actually making a pretty simple message very complicated.

            I’m not answering your questions because they’re irrelevant. I have explained to you, repeatedly, that I interpret the creation accounts in Genesis as theological truth couched in symbolism and metaphor, and yet, you insist on continuing to ask me about the length of days in Genesis 1. It’s basically the equivalent of asking someone how long they believe Santa’s beard is after they’ve repeatedly stated that they believe Santa Claus to be a myth.

            If you really are interested in learning about the thinking behind my interpretation of Genesis, I suggest you start with the following articles, which detail just a few of the reasons:

            http://www.godofevolution.com/as-different-as-morning-and-evening-genesis-1-and-2-contradictions/

            http://www.godofevolution.com/the-strongest-biblical-evidence-for-young-earth-creationism-refuted/

            http://www.godofevolution.com/when-biblical-literalists-arent-really-biblical-literalists/

            http://www.godofevolution.com/did-jesus-believe-in-a-six-day-creation-and-a-literal-adam/

            http://www.godofevolution.com/a-meme-about-the-tree-of-life/

            If you, as I suspect to be the case, couldn’t actually care less about my beliefs and the reasoning behind them, then, by all means, continue asking irrelevant questions, and I will continue ignoring them.

            You’re comparing the beginning of time with a parable. Or a poem.

            And you’re comparing a parable with the beginning of time.

            (Genesis 1:5 KJV) And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.

            How is that not one normal 24 hour day, for example? And why should Genesis be taken as poetry and not litteral?

            (Genesis 15:1 KJV) “After these things the word of the LORD came unto Abram in a vision, saying, Fear not, Abram: I am thy shield, and thy exceeding great reward.”

            Clearly, this verse teaches that God is a broad piece of metal, secured to a warrior’s arm with straps and used for protection against blows and missiles. How is that not one normal shield, for example? Why should Genesis be taken as poetry and not literal?

            Hey, I actually learned two new words today. Let’s see, if I can spell them right. One is eisegesis and the other is exegesis. Which one do you use the most?

            Congratulations on managing to spell the terms correctly (too bad you are not having similar success with the word “literally”). Based on just some of your assertions here, such as that all animals were vegetarians before the fall and began eating meat only after Adam’s sin or that the sin of one man corrupted the entire universe, which have very little or no basis in scripture, I would argue that you force your presuppositions upon the Genesis text far more than I do.

            I’m sorry, but your making the most bizarre comparisons. I can not see the resemblance between believing to be a human being just like Adam and claiming it obligatory to speak in tongues if a Christian. God made man. I am a man. What’s the problem. Scripture backs that up.

            I pointed out that your original comment committed the fallacy of equivocation, by equating being human with being “a direct descendant of Adam,” a prerequisite that has no scientific or biblical basis. You have simply declared it to be so. To make this point, I compared what you did, to a hypothetical situation in which I declared speaking in tongues to be a prerequisite for being a Christian. As is your usual modus operandi, you are misunderstanding perfectly clear arguments, then proceeding to muck up the discussion with a bunch of irrelevant crap.

            Here are two for you. Please read this in its context:

            (Romans 8:21 KJV) Because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God.

            (Romans 8:22 KJV) For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now.

            What does this refer to, if not sin?

            I’d be happy to read and discuss this passage in context, especially since you conveniently omitted a crucial verse. Romans 8:20: “For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected the same in hope,”

            So who was the “him who subjected” the creation to vanity? God, obviously, unless you believe Adam possessed some sort of omnipotent power over all creation that is mentioned nowhere else in scripture. And why did God subject creation to vanity? Not as a punishment, and not as a consequences of sin. The passage is quite clear: God did what he did “in hope” that something greater would be revealed, through our bondage to a temporal existence.

            The first death is not a punishment; it is simply an inherent part of the current created order. As Hebrews 9:27 says, it was “appointed” by God that mankind should die once, and after that comes judgment.

            All creatures were herbivores in the beginning.

            More assertion without biblical basis. Genesis 1:29-30 does not say all creatures ate plants. It says that God gave us green plants for food as his “gift.” It does not say we only ate plants. This would be like me saying, “Here’s the salt,” and you interpreting that as meaning you can’t use pepper.

            And look at all the natural disasters. Was that a part of God’s plan for the world, or a consequence of the fall?

            Yes, natural disasters are part of God’s plan. Nothing in creation happens except that God allows it. If you don’t believe the Bible teaches that God is in control of and intimately involved with creation, I would suggest re-reading Job 38-40.

            Tell me: When you look at all creation, do you find it perfect?

            As if my opinion of creation matters?

            Because God saw that it was good when he made it.

            Right. “Good.” Not “perfect.” They are different words, with very different meanings.

            By the way, who decides, and how, what is to be taken litteraly and what is not?

            Like everyone else, including yourself, I interpret the Bible based on what I believe makes the most sense.

            Do you consider the Gospels to be poetry? Why or why not?

            I interpret the gospels to be historical, eyewitness accounts because that is how they are explicitly self-described in Luke 1:1-4. Genesis contains no such disclaimer, ergo, it is and should be open to reasonable interpretation.

            I realize your previous comment continues ad nauseum, but I have more pressing things to do, and I think my responses above are quite enough for now. I believe what I’ve said above addresses most of your remaining questions anyway.

          • Eyðfinn Bjarnastein

            “We Christians can’t reach the world for Christ if we’re living in a different world than everyone else.” – Tyler Francke

            – For someone who proudly claims to preach nothing but “Christ and him
            crucified first and foremost,” you sure seem to be awfully preoccupied
            with the views of science and Genesis of someone who has already
            accepted Christ as savior. Whatever makes you happy, I guess. –

            You’ve already said that, and I haven’t proudly claimed anything. You say you want to reach the world for Christ, and seem to be way more preoccupied on science than I have ever been. And I acknowledge that you have accepted Christ as your savior. Everyone trusting in Christ will be saved. That’s not the real issue here. Which brings me to my second point.

            Now, I said first and foremost. But second to that would be to uphold the authority of God’s word. Without the full authority of it, it’s pretty easy to conclude: “Did God really say”. “Maby he meant this, or maby he meant that”. It’s a wobbling fundation. In no way rocksteady. And science makes mistakes. And diverse interpretations are fallible. But God is perfect. And he was there, when it happened. The perfect eyewitness. And I’m confident he didn’t studder when he had the Bible written.

            How about: “Thus saith the LORD!”

            – I’m not answering your questions because they’re irrelevant. I have
            explained to you, repeatedly, that I interpret the creation accounts in
            Genesis as theological truth couched in symbolism and metaphor, and yet,
            you insist on continuing to ask me about the length of days in Genesis
            1. It’s basically the equivalent of asking someone how long they believe
            Santa’s beard is after they’ve repeatedly stated that they believe
            Santa Claus to be a myth.

            If you really are interested in learning
            about the thinking behind my interpretation of Genesis, I suggest you
            start with the following articles, which detail just a few of the
            reasons:

            http://www.godofevolution.com/

            http://www.godofevolution.com/

            http://www.godofevolution.com/

            http://www.godofevolution.com/

            http://www.godofevolution.com/

            If you, as I suspect to be the case, couldn’t actually care less about my
            beliefs and the reasoning behind them, then, by all means, continue
            asking irrelevant questions, and I will continue ignoring them. –

            I see from the links, that you know far more about Scripture, than I first thought. I’m now even more astound by the way you choose to interpret everything. Supported by science, naturally.

            But I can not see the irrelevance in asking the simple question “how many days were the days from the first day to the sixth day?” – if they indeed were not, as written, six days.
            But I can see why you would deem it to be irrelevant. It would ruin the flexibility to put whatever quantity of time in those six days as “science” so fits at any given time. Be it millions, billions og even trillions of years. Depending on how they choose to interpret the evidence.

            You suspect wrong. I wouldn’t be putting all this effort in my questioning you about why you interpret the Bible this way, if I didn’t care. I’d like to know the reason behind it, because it is so fundamentally different from my understanding of Scriptures from just reading them. And I have learned, that many Christians share your beliefs regarding the Creation. I actually just recently learned that. As in two weeks ago. So I’m curious.

            “You’re comparing the beginning of time with a parable. Or a poem.”

            – And you’re comparing a parable with the beginning of time. –

            I’m not sure I understand what you mean by that. Genesis 1:1 clearly is referring to the beginning by its first three words “In the beginning”. And God is outside time as “one day is like a thousand years and thousand years are like a day” to him. And he made everything by his word. So there wouldn’t have been time before that. Hence the “beginning of time”.

            This is referring to the “parable” of Genesis:

            KJV Isaiah chapter 48:
            1. Hear ye this, O house of Jacob, which are called by the name of Israel, and
            are come forth out of the waters of Judah, which swear by the name of
            the LORD, and make mention of the God of Israel, but not in truth, nor in righteousness.
            2. For they call themselves of the holy city, and stay themselves upon the God of Israel; The LORD of hosts is his name.
            3. I have declared the former things from the beginning; and they went forth out of my mouth, and I shewed them; I did them suddenly, and they came to pass.
            4. Because I knew that thou art obstinate, and thy neck is an iron sinew, and thy brow brass;
            5. I have even from the beginning declared it to thee; before it came to pass I shewed it thee: lest thou shouldest say, Mine idol hath done them, and my graven image, and my molten image, hath commanded them.
            6. Thou hast heard, see all this; and will not ye declare it? I have shewed thee new things from this time, even hidden things, and thou didst not know them.
            7. They are created now, and not from the beginning; even before the day when
            thou heardest them not; lest thou shouldest say, Behold, I knew them.
            8. Yea, thou heardest not; yea, thou knewest not; yea, from that time that thine ear was not opened: for I knew that thou wouldest deal very treacherously, and wast called a transgressor from the womb.
            9. For my name’s sake will I defer mine anger, and for my praise will I refrain for thee, that I cut thee not off.
            10. Behold, I have refined thee, but not with silver; I have chosen thee in the furnace of affliction.
            11. For mine own sake, even for mine own sake, will I do it: for how should my name be polluted? and I will not give my glory unto another.
            12. Hearken unto me, O Jacob and Israel, my called; I am he; I am the first, I also am the last.
            13. Mine hand also hath laid the foundation of the earth, and my right hand hath spanned the heavens: when I call unto them, they stand up together.
            14. All ye, assemble yourselves, and hear; which among them hath declared these things? The LORD hath loved him: he will do his pleasure on Babylon, and his arm shall be on the Chaldeans.
            15. I, even I, have spoken; yea, I have called him: I have brought him, and he shall make his way prosperous.
            16. Come ye near unto me, hear ye this; I have not spoken in secret from the beginning; from the time that it was, there am I: and now the Lord GOD, and his Spirit, hath sent me.

            “(Genesis
            1:5 KJV) And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called
            Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.

            How is that not one normal 24 hour day, for example? And why should Genesis be taken as poetry and not “literal”?”

            – (Genesis
            15:1 KJV) “After these things the word of the LORD came unto Abram in a
            vision, saying, Fear not, Abram: I am thy shield, and thy exceeding
            great reward.”

            Clearly, this verse teaches that God is a broad
            piece of metal, secured to a warrior’s arm with straps and used for
            protection against blows and missiles. How is that not one normal
            shield, for example? Why should Genesis be taken as poetry and not
            “literally”? –

            http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/shield

            Full Definition of SHIELD

            1: a broad piece of defensive armor carried on the arm
            2: one that protects or defends : defense
            3: dress shield
            4: a device or part that serves as a protective cover or barrier b : a protective structure (as a carapace, scale, or plate) of some animals
            5: escutcheon; especially : one that is wide at the top and rounds to a point at the bottom
            6: the Precambrian nuclear mass of a continent that is surrounded and sometimes covered by sedimentary rocks
            7: something resembling a shield: as a : apothecium b : a police officer’s badge c : a decorative or identifying emblem

            This could be both figuratively a shield and literally a shield – even at the same time. Either way, there is no misunderstanding what God is saying to Abram.

            http://www.gotquestions.org/Genesis-days.html

            – Congratulations on managing to spell the terms correctly (too bad you
            are not having similar success with the word “literally”). Based on just
            some of your assertions here, such as that all animals were vegetarians
            before the fall and began eating meat only after Adam’s sin or that the
            sin of one man corrupted the entire universe, which have very little or
            no basis in scripture, I would argue that you force your
            presuppositions upon the Genesis text far more than I do. –

            Thanks.
            Maby I’ll have more luck on my spelling next time.

            KJV Genesis chapter 1:
            29. And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat.
            30. And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat: and it was so.

            KJV Genesis chapter 9:
            1. And God blessed Noah and his sons, and said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth.
            2. And the fear of you and the dread of you shall be upon every beast of the
            earth, and upon every fowl of the air, upon all that moveth upon the earth, and upon all the fishes of the sea; into your hand are they delivered.
            3. Every moving thing that liveth shall be meat for you; even as the green herb have I given you all things.
            4. But flesh with the life thereof, which is the blood thereof, shall ye not eat.

            – I pointed out that your original comment committed the fallacy of
            equivocation, by equating being human with being “a direct descendant of
            Adam,” a prerequisite that has no scientific or biblical basis. You
            have simply declared it to be so. To make this point, I compared what
            you did, to a hypothetical situation in which I declared speaking in
            tongues to be a prerequisite for being a Christian. As is your usual
            modus operandi, you are misunderstanding perfectly clear arguments, then
            proceeding to muck up the discussion with a bunch of irrelevant crap. –

            I really can’t make any sense of this right now, I’m sorry. It’s not your fault. I probably just need to learn more sophisticated English.

            – I’d be happy to read and discuss this passage in context, especially
            since you conveniently omitted a crucial verse. Romans 8:20: “For the
            creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him
            who hath subjected the same in hope,”

            So who was the “him who
            subjected” the creation to vanity? God, obviously, unless you believe
            Adam possessed some sort of omnipotent power over all creation that is
            mentioned nowhere else in scripture. And why did God subject creation to
            vanity? Not as a punishment, and not as a consequences of sin. The
            passage is quite clear: God did what he did “in hope” that something
            greater would be revealed, through our bondage to a temporal existence. –

            Romans chapter 20 – 23 is referring to:

            KJV Genesis chapter 3:
            17. And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy
            wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying,
            Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life;
            18. Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field;
            19. In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.

            – The first death is not a punishment; it is simply an inherent part of the
            current created order. As Hebrews 9:27 says, it was “appointed” by God
            that mankind should die once, and after that comes judgment. –

            KJV Romans chapter 5:
            10. For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his
            Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.
            11. And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement.
            12. Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so
            death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:
            13. (For until the law sin was in the world: but sin is not imputed when there is no law.
            14. Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned
            after the similitude of Adam’s transgression, who is the figure of him
            that was to come.
            15. But not as the offence, so also is the free gift. For if through the offence of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many.
            16. And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgment was by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offences unto justification.
            17. For if by one man’s offence death reigned by one; much more they which
            receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign
            in life by one, Jesus Christ.)
            18. Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.
            19. For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.
            20. Moreover the law entered, that the offence might abound. But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound:
            21. That as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord.

            – More assertion without biblical basis. Genesis 1:29-30 does not say all
            creatures ate plants. It says that God gave us green plants for food as
            his “gift.” It does not say we only ate plants. This would be like me
            saying, “Here’s the salt,” and you interpreting that as meaning you
            can’t use pepper. –

            KJV Genesis chapter 1:
            29. And God said, Behold, I have given you
            every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and
            every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it
            shall be for meat.
            30. And to every beast of the earth, and to
            every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth,
            wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat: and it
            was so.

            KJV Genesis chapter 9:
            1. And God blessed Noah and his sons, and said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth.
            2. And the fear of you and the dread of you shall be upon every beast of the
            earth, and upon every fowl of the air, upon all that moveth upon the earth,
            and upon all the fishes of the sea; into your hand are they delivered.
            3. Every moving thing that liveth shall be meat for you; even as the green herb have I given you all things.
            4. But flesh with the life thereof, which is the blood thereof, shall ye not eat.

            – Yes, natural disasters are part of God’s plan. Nothing in creation happens
            except that God allows it. If you don’t believe the Bible teaches that
            God is in control of and intimately involved with creation, I would
            suggest re-reading Job 38-40. –

            Job 38-40 is great reading. Job 42, 1-6 is also great.

            I agree that nothing happens without God’s consent.

            But surely, many things happen that are not his will. Multitudes of people going to hell for eternity, for example. Or the more than 54 millions of babies legally murdered in their mother’s womb in the US alone since 1973. Or people worshipping false gods. Or adultery. And so on. He allows it all to happen, but it is not his will nor his fault. It’s the will of Satan and ultimately it’s our fault.

            KJV Luke chapter 4:
            5. And the devil, taking him up into an high mountain, shewed unto him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time.
            6. And the devil said unto him, All this power will I give thee, and the glory
            of them: for that is delivered unto me; and to whomsoever I will I give it.
            7. If thou therefore wilt worship me, all shall be thine.
            8. And Jesus answered and said unto him, Get thee behind me, Satan: for it is
            written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou
            serve.

            KJV 2. Corinthians chapter 4
            3. But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost:
            4. In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe
            not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image
            of God, should shine unto them.

            KJV John chapter 8: (Jesus speaking to the Pharasees)
            44. Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a
            murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there
            is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for
            he is a liar, and the father of it.

            KJV John chapter 10:
            10. The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am
            come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.

            God is not to blame. We are.
            KJV Jeremiah chapter 17:
            9. The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?

            KJV Genesis chapter 6:
            5. And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.

            “Tell me: When you look at all creation, do you find it perfect?”

            – As if my opinion of creation matters? –

            Your opinion of science matters to you. So why not what you can see all around you every day?

            “Because God saw that it was good when he made it.”

            – Right. “Good.” Not “perfect.” They are different words, with very different meanings. –

            Agreed. But:

            KJV Genesis chapter 1:
            31. And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.

            Our infinitely perfect God finding everything “very good” would at the least make things pretty unimaginably good in just our standard; if not perfect.
            You’re saying that God looked at death, hunger, decease, killing, sickness, disaster and misery and found it “very good” in his own perfect opinion. But then, why create it anew?

            KJV:
            Isaiah 65:17
            For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind.

            Isaiah 66:22
            For as the new heavens and the new earth, which I will make, shall remain before me, saith the LORD, so shall your seed and your name remain.

            2 Peter 3:13
            Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.

            Revelation 21:1
            And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea.

            – Like everyone else, including yourself, I interpret the Bible based on what I believe makes the most sense. –

            That’s an assumption.
            You’re suggesting that what makes the most sense to me, is to me the most right, and what makes the most sense to you, is to you the most right. No absolutes. It doesn’t work in real life.

            KJV:
            Proverbs 3:5
            Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.

            Deuteronomy 12:8
            Ye shall not do after all the things that we do here this day, every man whatsoever is right in his own eyes.

            Judges 17:6
            In those days there was no king in Israel, but every man did that which was right in his own eyes.

            Judges 21:25
            In those days there was no king in Israel: every man did that which was right in his own eyes.

            Job 32:1
            So these three men ceased to answer Job, because he was righteous in his own eyes.

            Psalms 36:2
            For he flattereth himself in his own eyes, until his iniquity be found to be hateful.

            Proverbs 12:15
            The way of a fool is right in his own eyes: but he that hearkeneth unto counsel is wise.

            Proverbs 16:2
            All the ways of a man are clean in his own eyes; but the LORD weigheth the spirits.

            Proverbs 21:2
            Every way of a man is right in his own eyes: but the LORD pondereth the hearts.

            – I interpret the gospels to be historical, eyewitness accounts because
            that is how they are explicitly self-described in Luke 1:1-4. Genesis
            contains no such disclaimer, ergo, it is and should be open to
            reasonable interpretation. –

            God was at the scene in the beginning, so he was an eyewitness, and he told Moses to write it down in Genesis.

            KJV chapter 2:
            4. These are the generations of the heavens and of the earth when they were created,
            in the day that the LORD God made the earth and the heavens,

            http://www.biblestudytools.com/dictionary/generation/

            Dictionaries – Easton’s Bible Dictionary – Generation

            Generation [S] Genesis 2:4 , “These are the generations,” means the “history.” 5:1

            – I realize your previous comment continues ad nauseum, but I have more
            pressing things to do, and I think my responses above are quite enough
            for now. I believe what I’ve said above addresses most of your remaining
            questions anyway. –

            I’m thankful for the time and energy you have sacrificed so far on answering many of my questions.