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Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Darwin versus God in Genesis One verse Two

"When God made the Earth He hung it upon nothing" Job 26-7. 2100-1700 BC

"It is He that sitteth upon the circle of the Earth" Isaiah 40-21. 739-701 BC

So how did Job and Isaiah know that the Earth was round and suspended space? Well, God made it and He spoke the truth to His people, which we can read in passges in the Holy Bible today. We can trust what the Bible says implicitly.

This image and the images in the Thoughts for the Day page are a spectacular example of God's Creation. "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth". Genesis 1.1

Earthrise

Was the the flight of Apollo 8 to the moon over Christmas 1968, resulting in the epic image of Earthrise - the most famous camera shot in history - just a coincidence? No way. It was ordained. The reading of Genesis 1 by Frank Borman, James Lovell and Bill Anders was memorable.The greatest mission!

~

The above is excerpted from Spaceport with thanks to Tim Furniss. On to verse two!!!

Genesis One verse Two: The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.

So in verse one God created matter and time and the entire Universe, including the heavens and the Earth. However now He is going to get more specific and give a narrative about the order of events concerning that most interesting to the inhabitants of the Earth. Genesis isn't going to discuss the rings of Saturn or novas or background radiation or red shift.

Might I make an observation? The Bible may agree with science, but it is not a science book. It is a message from God to man. Much of it, such as Genesis, is an historical narrative. So I am going to present this book as being primarily an historical account rather than a textbook on astrophysics. On the other hand, God made science and understands it so the Bible is not going to contradict the very laws of nature God created.

Our first glance tells us that there is not yet any light but rather darkness. There is water. The Earth was still unformed. We are at the very beginning of the planet Earth and as yet God has apparently created no stars or the Sun. It seems that God's first focus is upon the Earth rather than the Universe as a whole.

This is in direct opposition to the evolutionist/naturalistic point of view that there was a big bang and clouds of dust formed stars and planets and long after this the Earth was a piece of stuff that was caught up in the gravitational pull of the Sun and eventually morphed into our planet.

Word for word in the Hebrew...DBL is the Dictionary of Bible Languages with Semantic Domains:Hebrew. Feel free to skip down to the next paragraph but you may wish to look back at the actual wording.

וְהָאָ֗רֶץ

וְ

הַ

2504












































אֶרֶץ: world; land ... | DBL Hebrew

noun, common, singular, absolute


הָיְתָ֥ה

3560












































היה: be; been ... | DBL Hebrew

verb, qal, perfect, third person, feminine, singular


תֹ֨הוּ֙

20












































תֹּהוּ: formlessness; wasteland ... | DBL Hebrew

noun, common, singular, absolute


NASB Dictionary entry = 8414. תֹּהוּ tohu (1062c); from an unused word; formlessness, confusion, unreality, emptiness:— chaos(1), confusion(1), desolation(1), emptiness(1), empty space(1), formless(2), futile(2), futile things(1), meaningless(2), meaningless arguments(1), nothing(2), waste(3), waste place(2).



וָבֹ֔הוּ

וְ

3












































בֹּהוּ: emptiness | DBL Hebrew

noun, common, singular, absolute

NASB Dictionary entry = 922. בֹּהוּ bohu (96a); from an unused word; emptiness:— emptiness(1), void(2).



וְחֹ֖שֶׁךְ

וְ

80












































חֹשֶׁךְ: darkness; blackness | DBL Hebrew

noun, common, singular, absolute


פְּנֵ֣י

2127












































פָּנֶה: face; mouth ... | DBL Hebrew

noun, common, masculine, plural, construct



תְה֑וֹם

36












































תְּהוֹם: the deep; deep springs | DBL Hebrew

noun, common, singular, absolute


r

וְר֣וּחַ

וְ

378












































רוּחַ: Spirit; spirit ... | DBL Hebrew

noun, common, singular, construct



אֱלֹהִ֔ים

2601












































אֱלֹהִים: God; idol ... | DBL Hebrew

noun, common, masculine, plural, absolute



מְרַחֶ֖פֶת

3












































רחף: tremble; hover | DBL Hebrew

verb, piel, participle, feminine, singular, absolute



פְּנֵ֥י

2127












































פָּנֶה: face; mouth ... | DBL Hebrew

noun, common, masculine, plural, construct


הַמָּֽיִם

הַ

584












































מַיִם: water; rain ... | DBL Hebrew

noun, common, masculine, plural, absolute


Why would I put the Hebrew word-for-word for Genesis 1:2? Because some have taken Tohu and Bohu (written together as tohuwabohu or tohu a bohu) and used those two words to assert that God formed a planet and then destroyed it. They then construct a scenario in which dinosaurs lived during this time, that Satan was thrown down to the earth at this time, and that perhaps millions and billions of years passed in the space between words in this verse! The claim there is a GAP between verse one and verse three somewhere in verse two in which God has hidden billions of years of evolution and suffering and the movement of light and so on. There are many variations to Gap hypotheses and not worth looking into unless one of you wishes to strongly defend it.

Logically, since God has not even created light yet, no way was there life on a planet that was then blown up and started again. Also, if God had rendered a planet formless and void then there would be no fossils and rock layering, etc, correct?

Bohu is only found in conjunction with tohu, thereby constituting a phrase that cannot be divided without losing meaning. Earlier in the blog I excerpted a bit of Spaceport, in which Tim Furniss quotes from Isaiah 26:7. Now here is what the Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament says about it:

תֹּהוּ (tōhû). Confusion, the empty place (Job 26:7; ASV “empty space”; RSV “the void”), nothing, nought, vain, vanity, waste, wilderness, without form. (ASV similar; RSV renders “chaos” in Isa 24:10; 45:18f.). Since the word has no certain cognates in other languages, its meaning must be determined solely from its ot contexts. It refers to a desert wasteland in Deut 32:10; Job 6:18 (see ASV, RSV); 12:24b = Ps 107:40b; to a destroyed city in Isa 24:10 (see also 34:11); to moral and spiritual emptiness or confusion in I Sam 12:21 (twice) and several times in Isa (29:21; 41:29; 44:9; 45:19; 59:4); and to nothingness or unreality in Isa 40:17, 23; 49:4 (see also the Heb. text of Sir 41:10). In most (if not all) of these cases, tōhû has a negative or pejorative sense.

Two passages in particular call for more extended comment. The first is Job 26:7: “(God) stretches out the north over tōhû; he hangs the earth upon nothing.” The context of chap. 26 stresses not only the omnipotence and sovereignty of God in creation and providence but also the ease with which he does whatever he pleases. While it would be improper for us to rigidly impose our own contingent, twentieth-century cosmology on this chapter and insist on interpreting it literally throughout (see, e.g., the obvious metaphor in verse 11), it is nonetheless striking that 26:7 pictures the then-known world as suspended in space. In so doing, it anticipates (at the very least!) future scientific discovery. (emphasis mine)

The other passage requiring discussion is, of course, Gen 1:2a: “The earth was tōhû wābōhû.” The meaning of bōhû itself is uncertain (it appears elsewhere only in Isa 34:11 and Jer 4:23, both times in context with tōhû), although it apparently signifies “emptiness” (cf. the possible Arabic cognate bahiya “was empty”). Therefore, the phrase tōhû wābōhû in Gen 1:2a has been variously understood as a hendiadys meaning “a formless waste” (E. A. Speiser, Genesis, p. 5), “absolutely nothing whatever” (H. Renckens, Israel’s Concept of the Beginning, p. 84), “void and vacancy” (H. E. Ryle, The Book of Genesis, p. 4–though without complete conviction). But the traditional rendering, “without form and void” (or “unformed and unfilled,” to preserve something of the euphony of the Hebrew phrase), is ably defended by W. H. Griffith Thomas in Genesis—A Devotional Commentary, p. 29, where he writes that “the adjectives ‘formless’ and ‘empty’ seem to be the key to the literary structure of the chapter. The record of the first three days refers to the heaven and earth receiving their ‘form,’ and the record of the last three days to the filling-up of their ‘emptiness.’ ” See further R. Youngblood in JETS 16:219–21.

The “gap” or “interval” theory, which posits a millennia-long period of time implied by or in
Gen 1:2 and which usually translates 1:2a by the less likely “but the earth became without form and void,” has come into increasing disfavor in recent years. Its main exegetical support, Isa 45:18, reads “(God) did not create (the earth) tōhû,” and has been interpreted to mean that therefore an original creation (described briefly in Gen 1:1) was destroyed; that the geologic ages ensued (during the “gap”); and that the new creation portrayed in Gen 1:3ff. was built on the wreckage of the old. But Isa 45:18, after the phrase quoted, goes on to say that God “formed (the earth) to be inhabited,” thereby assuring the reader that tōhû was not his ultimate purpose in creation.

(For extended critiques of the “gap” theory, see especially O. T. Allis,
God Spake by Moses, pp. 153–159; B. Ramm, The Christian View of Science and Scripture, pp. 195–210).

The word
tōhû in Gen 1:2, likewise, refers not to the result of a supposed catastrophe (for which there is no clear biblical evidence) but to the formlessness of the earth before God’s creative hand began the majestic acts described in the following verses. As Jer 4:23 indicates, the earth always has the potential of returning to tōhû wābōhû if God decides to judge it.


It is my fond hope that no one takes the Gap Hypothesis seriously anymore, but if they do, they have some serious exegetical hurdles to cross over to get to where they wish to go.

Genesis 1:2 is part of a historical revelation by God, allowing material and temporal beings an opportunity to grasp to some degree the order and manner by which God created. Taken as historical narrative rather than myth, I believe we will see that God's explanation for the Universe makes much more sense than any Big Bang hypothesis. God cannot lie and this is His first hand eyewitness account of the creation of all things.

So at the end of verse two we see that God is poised over the waters preparing for action. What that action is will begin to be expressed in verse three, coming to a blog near you soon!

15 comments:

Anonymous said...

Do you believe in Dragons?

lava

radar said...

BELIEVE in dragons? I know that there were dragons. Depending upon your definition, there still are (Komodo Dragons, that can exceed ten feet in length, have sharklike nasty teeth and are venomous to boot) dragons, have been dragons in the past and they are recorded in the art and history of various peoples around the world. Dragons are mentioned in the Bible. So I would say that to "believe in" dragons is like asking if I "believe in" rats or cats or flying squirrels.

Anonymous said...

Radar, I'm sure you believe me when I say I have an invisible, incorporeal, flying fire-breathing dragon in my garage.

ExPreacherMan said...

Radar,

Great exposition of the genesis of Genesis and God's Creation.

Is it not true that an Anonymous commenter has no courage to boldly stand up for his "beliefs," rather will hide behind the superficial illusion of anonymity?

We love you though, Mr. Anonymous, and would like to see you trust Jesus Christ as your Savior.

In Jesus Christ eternally,

ExP(Jack)

Anonymous said...

ExPreacherMan,

How exactly is the name 'ExPreacherMan' less anonymous than the the name 'Anonymous'? Sure, you have a blog. You even have a photo there.
So what? I could post here under the name...uhm....ExChristianDude. Yes, that's it! And then set up a blog. And then put a photo there which I found with Google Image Search. Would that make me less anonymous and more trustworthy to you?

What I'm trying to say is: by default, the internet IS anonymous. Get over it. Or, if you cannot do that; better stay away from it. You don't know who I am and I don't know who you are. Do you think that, in real life, you would accuse me of cowardice like you just did?

Also, if you have a problem with anonymous comments here, you are actually criticizing Radar, since he allows anonymous commenting on his blog.

And last but not least: instead of diverting attention 'anonimity', you maybe could work up the courage to boldly address the topic.

Oh, and don't tell me you love me just seconds after you accuse me of cowardice. Let me assure you: you wouldn't do that to me in real life. See how you yourself are taking advantage of the anonimity of the internet?

radar said...

"Radar, I'm sure you believe me when I say I have an invisible, incorporeal, flying fire-breathing dragon in my garage."

I am asked if I believe in dragons, give a reasonable response that cannot be refuted, so then we get this comment from never-never land?

Some of us put names in (like lava) so that we give ourselves some measure of identity and some leave no trace whatever. I allow this because I do not believe in restricting free speech as long as it is not pornographic or vile.

But expreacherman links to an identity while you, anonymous, do not. So you are hiding yourself for whatever reason but ex is not. You seem to be very angry and have thus far seemed only to be critical rather than thoughtful. But then that gives us a counterpoint.

Is there anything useful you care to add to the discussion?

Anonymous said...

I ask again: how is putting in a name like 'lava' any less anonymous than just using the name 'anonymous'? Does putting any kind of name under my comments suddenly make my comments more credible?
And once again: how can you be so sure which identity expreacherman links to? Like I said: I can post here with any name, create a blog, and put a picture there I found on the internet. There you go: my comments here are linked to an identity. Again: does that make my comments here any more credible?

You do hold an ambiguous position towards anonymous commenting, to say the least. You claim that you allow it because it allows for free speech, yet when someone uses this feature, you go and accuse him/her of hiding him/herself. That's pretty consistent behaviour.

Do I seem very angry? OK, whatever. I have no problem whatsoever though admitting that it irritates me when people call someone they wouldn't dare to look in the eye in real life a coward, thereby using the same internet anonimity they criticize me for in the first place. Does that piss me off? Hell yeah!

Just for those of you so obsessed with anonymous commenting: I comment anonymous because my comments should stand on their own merit, regardless of any name of identity behind it. Apparently people like ExPreacherMan cannot comprehend that and instead of considering the content of the comment itself they rather go for the easy attack on the straw man.

Which brings us back on topic. You ask whether there is anything useful I can add. Well, I already did in my first comment. You can either keep the discussion useful by explaining why exactly my comment comes from never-never land whereas your whole talk about genesis and hebrew doesn't, or you can keep going off-topic by talking about anonymous posting. What was so useful to the discussion in ExPreacherMan's comment, anyway?

Long story short: back up your statement that my comment comes from never-never land while yours is completely reasonable.

scohen said...

Honestly,
No one here has any right to complain about anonymity...
I know Tim uses this as a crutch, but he posts as highboy, radar isn't
Kimbal Binder's given name and ExPreacherMan can't possibly be anyone's name. Neither are any of these identifiable by a google query.

My take is that this anonymous person hasn't been offensive, posts good points and has been criticized for not putting a fake screen name on his posts. Address the content, not the person. This is the definition of an ad hominem attack.

Seriously, I'm literally the only one here who uses anything close to his real name.

Also, does it irritate anyone else that WomanHonorThyself or ExPreacherMan never post anything but 'attaboys'? Seriously, discuss the issues at hand!!

If any creationist commenters are holding back, please don't. I'd love to engage you in discussion. I know radar says there are legions of you who read but don't post, and if that's true, it's just a shame. Don't be shy.
I'd love to discuss your misconceptions of biology and what you've been incorrectly told about evolution. You are being lied to!

P.S. There was a guy who posted as Dan S. a while ago. Man, I miss that guy.

P.P.S. I also miss creeper and cranky old fart.

p.p.p.s. I also mis taxandrian and iamb.

Anonymous said...

"So how did Job and Isaiah know that the Earth was round and suspended space?".

It says the Earth was a circle, not a sphere. I would think that some kind of circle was the standard guess of most people who believed in a flat Earth, I suppose because if you explore in all directions, it forms a natural circle. Or if you climb up high on a mountain, you see the horizon all around in what appears to be a circle.

"Might I make an observation? The Bible may agree with science, but it is not a science book. It is a message from God to man. Much of it, such as Genesis, is an historical narrative. So I am going to present this book as being primarily an historical account rather than a textbook on astrophysics. On the other hand, God made science and understands it so the Bible is not going to contradict the very laws of nature God created.".

So the Bible is not a science book. Interesting. Maybe you should follow that thought and see where it leads. Hm?

"We are at the very beginning of the planet Earth and as yet God has apparently created no stars or the Sun. It seems that God's first focus is upon the Earth rather than the Universe as a whole.
This is in direct opposition to the evolutionist/naturalistic point of view that there was a big bang and clouds of dust formed stars and planets and long after this the Earth was a piece of stuff that was caught up in the gravitational pull of the Sun and eventually morphed into our planet."
.

Yes, and the latter is supported by observation, while the former isn't. We observe stars that are more than 6,000 light years away, a physical impossibility if the stars were created after Earth and if Earth was created approx. 6,000 years ago.

So that's a strike against the Bible being a historical account of Earth's creation.

Or at least it would be if you're willing to see where the evidence leads instead of desperately trying to cram it into a literal interpretation of a religious text that may have great meaning to one personally but, as Radar pointed out, is neither a science book nor a history book in its entirety.

Wouldn't it be funny if God - who must know all there is to know about science - dropped something interesting in there, something that couldn't have been known by humans at the time? Instead it's stuff that was known by humans or stuff that was made up in an attempt to address the origin of things, much like many other creation myths. Almost like it was written by humans or something.

(scohen, I'm still here. I was traveling for a week or so. And yes, it would be great to have Dan S. and cranky old fart back. The others are still around AFAIK.)

-- creeper

radar said...

First, I never started any commotion about whether people were anonymous or not, that was a fight between commenters. Obviously I allow anonymous comments and if I didn't want them I wouldn't allow them!

I don't care whether you know my name or not. I'm not going to run for Congress or anything. Once I worked for an engineering firm and had to sometimes go down into manholes and install machinery or build dikes in both sanitary and storm sewer lines. I have walked through big old brick sewer lines like you sometimes see in the movies. I've crawled inside of massive asphalt and limestone mixers and chiseled and jackhammered up clouds of nasty dirt and dust and muck. As a teenager I mucked out horse stalls. Politics is dirtier than that, no thanks! I'll vote and comment but not run.

As to whether anyone in here is tough or not, please. None of us ever see each other face to face, so declaring that you are tough and mighy is meaningless in this venue. Let your logic be tough and your eloquence mighty and you will do well.

I am proud of my family name. Binders have fought for their country for several generations and worked to provide for their families and many of them have degrees and certifications in various professional fields.

Radar is a nickname leftover from my basketball days and I like it. It is customary in the blog world to have a nickname (Like IAMB) and blog and comment under that name.

As to this last anonymous guy, I just wish you would give yourself some kind of nickname so we can keep who you are straight. Call yourself "dragongarage" for all I care but if you want to be sure we know who is saying what, just do what lava does and just call yourself something. If not, hey, we might get confused and not know who is whom.

Some of your questions will get addressed as we go forward verse by verse. Verse two does not yet mention light, so I have not yet gotten into the issue. Each verse gets its own post.

As to your fantasy dragon in your garage, how does your imaginary friend have anything to do with Komodo Dragons or Dracorex Hogwartsia or Norway Rats, all of which are or were actual creatures? You need to try to make a coherent point to advance the discussion on that one.

radar said...

Yes, I think I lost some commenters when because of illness I rarely posted for about a year's time. I write for an online sports organization, work with teens and obviously have a nine-to-five job so posting in blogspot is not my first priority. Looks like I am healthy enough to find time and effort to be consistent again and perhaps a few of the old commenters will come back?

Circle of the Earth...Circle is the English translation of the Hebrew word, I will address that in the Genesis 1:3 post. But, as usual, languages do not translate word-for-word, meaning-for-meaning easily.

English is possibly the most frustrating, disorganized and difficult language on the planet. It is also, if you know it well, a wonderful tool for expression of abstract concepts. On the other hand it is lacking in describing many natural occurrences. The Inuit have several words for our one word, "snow", for instance.

Russian uses cyrillic lettering but has many root words in common with "romance" languages such as French. Both have masculine and feminine gender structures in the language and in some ways are more like Hebrew than is English. Koine Greek is very dissimilar in sentence structure from English.

The New Testament is translated from Koine Greek (and a bit of Aramaic) and the Old Testament from Hebrew and Aramaic.

Bible readers can take away the primary meaning of the Bible without being scholars with no problems. It is pretty obvious to the normal Bible reader that God was expressing that the Earth is round rather than flat and is suspended in some way in space.

Bible scholars must compare the original language to the translation to understand full meanings of the verses and to clear up controversies about such things as the nature of the word, "circle". Those controversies are usually raised by those who don't actually care to believe the Bible anyway, but are simply throwing bombs.

ExPreacherMan said...

Attaboy, Radar... Elegant defense of the Word of God.

We Agree...

And WhatzisName took the bait and went to my Blog site, thus he now knows who I am and what I believe.

FYI, so far Radar and I agree on all points in all his posts -- so there is no point in me waxing eloquent.. If we disagree, I'll say so.

In Jesus Christ eternally,

ExP(Jack)
[That signature is almost as identifying as "schoen," right?]

radar said...

Well, Dan S, if you never come back, you did used to sound as if you were on your second beer at a table full of good mates and in full pontification mode. It was always interesting. Here's to Dan S and Cranky and IAMB, not around these days but once a big part of the experience.

I like attaboys, too. It's cool to know you have a few members of your virtual crew coming by now and then.

My Blogspot setup is evidently a problem for a couple of guys. I took my Sarbannes-Oxley clock down to make it available for a couple of guys to be able to comment but somewhere on this blog I still have a widget that causes some ISPs to block comments here. I may have to just do a full audit on this blog to see what is alarming the ISP and remove it.

Anonymous said...

"My Blogspot setup is evidently a problem for a couple of guys. I took my Sarbannes-Oxley clock down to make it available for a couple of guys to be able to comment but somewhere on this blog I still have a widget that causes some ISPs to block comments here.".

You could try getting rid of that Biden Gaffe Clock at the bottom - either Biden hasn't made a gaffe since way before the election or the developers have lost interest.

-- creeper

Anonymous said...

ExPreacherMan said:

And WhatzisName took the bait and went to my Blog site, thus he now knows who I am and what I believe.

Oh,you posted some bait here for me to take on this blog. So actually you admit that you're trolling. How very nice. And yet I get accused of not adding anything useful to the discussion.
And no, I don't know who you are and I don't know what you believe in. I only know your purported identity and beliefs. And that's what I mean when I say the internet is anonymous by default: there is no real-life reference I can use to determine whether you really are that person on that blog. For all I know, you could be an atheist teenager who set up a parody blog.