(Cpied from custance.org - 08-18-00))
ORIGIN MODELS CATEGORIZED
Dr. Gary Chiang
Redeemer University College Ancaster, ON
The following 5 main groups represent the basic categories into which origin models can be divided over a broad spectrum from atheistic evolutionism to young earth, recent creationism.
1: Atheistic evolutionism (naturalistic evolutionism):
The universe and all the physical laws of nature were created by chance during the Big Bang about 15 to 20 billion years ago. We exist through a combination of random processes known as "evolution". There is no purpose or intelligent force which has directed our evolution. We are here only by chance, religion is a natural development in our evolutionary 'progress", and when we die, we no longer exist.
Examples: Isaac Asimov, Carl Sagan, Stephen Jay Gould, John Gribbin, Stephen Hawking, Richard Dawkins,
Arthur N. Strahler.
2: Deistic evolutionism:
A supernatural force created the Big Bang, and set down all the physical laws. This force is no longer involved in the day-to-day operation of the universe. We exist via "evolution", and although a supernatural force may have initiated the process, we are here by chance.
3: Theistic evolutionism:
God is the supenatural force who created the Big Bang and set down all the physical laws in order for evolution to occur. He used evolution to "create" the right environment and the right vehicle in which to place a living soul. When the time was right for Adam to appear, God took an evolved pre-man, and gave him a spirit and/or soul to create man in the image of God. This theory gives evolution a purpose, and in
this way, it differs from Deistic evolutionism.
Examples: B.B. Warfield, James Orr, C.I. Scofield, Derick Kidner, Howard Van Till.
4. Old Earth Creationism:
This category describes theories that accomrnodate the belief in an ancient earth with the belief that God created more-or-less as described in Genesis 1. In all these theories, Genesis is interpreted to provide the millions of years needed for fossil formulations. There are two subcategories under Old Earth Creationism which vary depending on how literal Genesis 1 is interpreted. They are: 4a. The Gap Theory and 4b. The Day/Age Theory.
4a: The Gap Theory:
The belief that there is a considerable amount of time between Genesis 1:1 and Genesis1:2. and that the cosmos, which was originally created long before the creation week in Genesis, became without form and void. In the creation week in Genesis, God "re-created" the earth and told mankind to replenish it. Some proponents of the Gap Theory believe that geological strata were created during the time before the re-creation of the world, and do not believe that Noah's flood was world wide. This theory has its origin with the founders of modern geology (e.g. T. Chalmers, H. Miller), and is referred to by some as
the "ruin-reconstruction" view. This view is found in the Scofield Reference Bible, Dake's Annotated
Reference Bible, and the Newberry Reference Bible.
Examples: Thomas Chalmers; Hugh Miller; G.H. Pember (Earth's Earliest Ages, 1884); Arthur Custance
(Without Form and Void, 1970).
4b: The Day/Age Theory:
The creation days in Genesis describe creative periods of time, not six literal days. During each creative period, God increased the complexity of life by creating new life forms while also changing the earth to accommodate these new forms. There are variations on the Day/Age theory, and they differ according to how much the appearance of new organisms in the fossil record is attributed to God's direct intervention, or due to the process of God-directed evolution. Some proponents of the Day/Age Theory believe that we are currently in the seventh day (D.A. Young, G. Schroeder). Progressive creationism (H. Ross) is based on the Day/Age Theory.
Examples: Bernard Ramm, Kenneth Taylor, Millard J. Erickson, James Montgomery Boice, Gleason Archer,
Hugh Ross (Reasons to Believe), Christianity Today, Davis A. Young, Robert C. Newman, Pattle T. Pun.
5: Young Earth, Recent creationism (Scientific creationism):
God created all matter in 6, 24 hour days, sometime about 10,000 years ago. God created everything with the appearance of age. It is in total disagreement with modern scientific dating methods for ages beyond 10,000 years, but is in total harmony with the literal translation of the creation week.
Examples: Henry H. Morris, Duane T. Gish and those associated with the Institute for Creation Research and the Creation Research Society; Ken Ham (Answers in Genesis); John Mackay (Creation Research, Australia), Gary Chiang (if anyone cares).
*The following is a famous quotation attributed to Robert Jastrow (1978):
For the scientist who has lived by his faith in the power of reason, the story ends like a bad dream. He has scaled the mountains of ignorance; he is about to conquer the highest peak; as he pulls himself over the final rock, he is greeted by a band of theologians who have been sitting there for centuries.