ElShamah - Reason & Science: Defending ID and the Christian Worldview
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ElShamah - Reason & Science: Defending ID and the Christian Worldview

Otangelo Grasso: This is my library, where I collect information and present arguments developed by myself that lead, in my view, to the Christian faith, creationism, and Intelligent Design as the best explanation for the origin of the physical world.

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Was light created before the sun ?

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1Was light created before the sun ?  Empty Was light created before the sun ? Sat Jun 03, 2017 4:29 am



Was light created before the sun ?  18768610

1. The slash ( / ) in "be/come" indicates that the verb rendering there can be either "be" or "become." (You're welcome to check the lexicons yourself on this if you wish.) "Be" sounds fairly passive, but "become" seems to imply something new that wasn't the case before. Both renderings are apparently valid, so I've used the slash to show this. Someone else who is more expert in Hebrew could perhaps say more definitively why one word vs. the other should be preferred here. "Become" seems to fit better with the idea that the developments of Day Four are something new and different compared to how they were before.

2. Re: "serve as signs"—we still call certain star constellations the 'signs of the zodiac' today. And we do know that the ancient Hebrews used a Lunar calendar and that they marked, as their descendants still mark too, the beginning of their day/night-cycle (24-hour) days at sunset—which means they think in terms of a daily night/day-cycle.

3. I take "the expanse of the sky" here as a reference to Earth's atmosphere (e.g., in Gen. 1:20 it's said to be the place where birds fly).

4. Day Four seems to me to be a new development compared to how things were before (previously, Day One = formation of Earth; Day Two = formation of Earth's atmosphere; Day Three = formation of Earth's oceans, continents, and plant life). Likewise, Day Five has to do with ocean-/water-based animal life and birds appearing on Earth. The first three days topically have to do with the formation/furnishing of our planet, as does Day Five, and so it seems likely that the topic of Day Four, which is sandwiched in-between Days 1-3 and 5, would also be 'Earth-furnishment.'

Thus, when God says "Let there be/come…" in Day Four, something new is described which wasn't that way before. My suggestion here is that the Sun, Moon, and stars are not being described in Day Four as being/becoming CREATED, but as being/becoming VISIBLE in the sky for the first time. I do think it's important to remember here in Day Four that humans aren't yet created (until Day Six), so the capability of Sun, Moon, and stars to function as "signs" for seasons, days, and years for humans becomes operative later, unless that function is mentioned here because it was already useful in the same way, for example, to angels (assuming their existence predates humans) or to some animals (e.g., the star-orienting/migrating birds). However, birds can't read Genesis though angels presumably can! Angels do show up on the surface of planet Earth elsewhere in the Old Testament, so an 'Earth's surface' frame of reference in Day Four makes some sense for them too, but it could have been employed merely for its relevance to humans later (i.e., reading Genesis 1, we humans would picture Day Four from the viewpoint of earth's surface where, until very recently, all human life was lived).

5. The "He made the stars also" problem at the end of verse 16—that particular rendering makes it sound as though God created the stars during Day Four—disappears completely if the final phrase is instead rendered "…and the dimmer light to dominate the night and the stars." The text makes better sense that way too because the Moon does indeed (still) dominate both the night (the dark sky at night generally) and the stars (by outshining them). There isn't nearly as much which the Sun obviously dominates in the daytime sky except for the Moon itself (at certain times of the month), Venus (near/at sunset or sunrise), Mercury (same), or the occasional, very bright comet. In contrast with the Sun, the Moon dominates thousands of other nighttime sky objects visible with the naked eye from Earth.

The upshot of Day Four is that, although plant life already existed—and therefore so must have the Sun, which provides its light to plants for photosynthesis (or else plants die in the dark without sunlight)—the Sun, Moon, and stars were not distinguishable through Earth's atmosphere as viewed from the ground (where the plants already are by Day Four, and where humans will be eventually too). So Day Four seems to be a description of the clearing of Earth's (formerly translucent—i.e., light-transmitting-but-scattering) atmosphere so that it becomes transparent (in general, excepting overcast days).

6. The two most compelling reasons I know of for thinking this is what Day Four pictures are: (A) the objects described—Sun, Moon, and stars—don't EXIST in Earth's atmosphere at all; they exist much farther away, in outer space. So the text saying "Let there be/come lights in the expanse of the sky" can't be a creatorial statement because the objects described do not EXIST "in" Earth's atmosphere at all, but only are VISIBLE "in" our sky—and (B) Earth's atmosphere would HAVE to become transparent in order to benefit those birds whose migrations are guided by star patterns.

7. So if Day Four is indeed describing the clearing of Earth's atmosphere, then the Sun, Moon, and stars were not CREATED on Day Four at all, but were merely MADE VISIBLE from a ground- or lower atmosphere-based perspective. And so it follows next that Sun, Moon, and Stars were already in existence BEFORE Day Four, and because Genesis 1 doesn't specify when they were created, I'm personally OK with the idea that God created Sun, Moon, and stars either before, or no later than, what's said in Genesis 1:1. And so too, for the same reason, I'm also OK with the idea that Sun and Earth formed at about the same time (as scientific theorizing about solar system formation also postulates), and that the solar system formed independently of the first- and (other) second-generation stars elsewhere in the universe.



Despite that the average modern atheist thinks Genesis 1 is a bit of ancient superstition akin to a Fairy Tale for children, too many self-described Biblical Creationists see Genesis 1 as less or more of the particular 'Divine' Fairy Tale according to which God 'chose' to create. That is, they see God's acts of creating as metaphysically unrelated to the ways He has established for the natural world ongoingly to function.

Specifically, so many Calendar Day creationists assume the account is little better than the particular, 'Divinely' contrived Fairy Tale according to which God, in His supposedly arbitrary pre-Creation freedom, 'chose' to create.

This kind of 'valuation' of Genesis 1 may be called the Fairy Tale Made Reality hermeneutic, or the FTMR. It normalizes the idea that Genesis 1 uses a grammar of mere logical possibility.

But, according to Psalm 19, genuine cosmology is about the universal self evidence of Divine Design. This means that, according to this psalm, human cosmological inquiry is properly conducted 'from the inside', and this specifically from our native lives on the Earth. Therefore, the claim that Genesis 1 uses some kind of 'outside' cum 'objective' frame of reference is suspect. In fact, the Bible does not even plainly teach as to exactly what that supposed frame of reference is. And the very foundation of the accounts' plainness can be none other than the fact that the we live in, and are native to, a reality that is Divinely Designed.

We may implicitly hypothesize an alternate 'reality' in which, though everything in that 'reality' is designed, these designs are inherently obscure to us by their being for sake only of some inherently obscure set of values. In such an Obscure Reality, we would be precluded finding any of its designs self evident. And in order for us to live in that reality, we could, at best, force its various native features to suit ourselves, and, otherwise, to 'adapt' ourselves to suit those features.

So the nature of Divine Design is not that of design as such. Nor is it the hypothetically 'possible' designs of a Blank Slate version of an all-powerful creator-designer. It is, rather, only the design that is particular to the Creator-Designer according to all three of Nature, Man, and the Bible (Psalm 19).

The modern world is marked by the historically unprecedented increase in skepticism toward Genesis 1. This is ironic, given the universal natural appeal of the account. This is even more ironic given that this skepticism is centered in the long-held Christianized countries.

One of the account's most famous appeals is its repeatedly affirming the central chronological unit of our biology: the life affirming, water-cycle affirming terrestrial day/night cycle (Psalm 19:1-2).

An entire cosmos keyed to Earth's day/night cycle would be a crucial factor for the best possible Cosmic Divine Design. But such a possibility is not a mere speculation. For, none other than our everyday most natural broad sense of things is confirmed by the most modern advanced instrumental modes of empirical inquiry. Specifically, those modes have shown, in their own ways, that the entire cosmos, from humans and the Earth to the 'basic' physics of it all, appears to be very finely tuned for sake specifically of:

(I) water based life,
(II) the Earth's cosmically unique role in the support of that life, and
(III) a Biblically compatible kind of human physical and metaphysical cosmological virtue.

Therefore, what is 'unformed' in Genesis 1:2 corresponds to what undergoes formation in v. 3-10. Specifically, this is the four factors of the water cycle: thermal input (v. 3), rotational distribution (vs. 4-5), global envelope (vs. 6-Cool, and thermally binary surface (vs. 9-10).

Genesis 1 has universal natural appeal. Various psalms, such as 19, 104 and 148, celebrate the universal source of that appeal.

As a bit of language, Genesis 1 is accessible precisely because it reflects the nature of our everyday simple sets of statements on a single natural valuable topic. In these sets, there is lot of ambiguity. But that ambiguity is not there to allow our meaning to be obscure. Much less is that ambiguity an effort, on our parts, to be sure that many in our audience twist our meaning due to many of our terms' equivocal nature. The ambiguity in our language efforts is simply a 'side effect' of our addressing our audience 1) on a universally known topic 2) in a powerfully brief, and natural values-centered, way.

Firstly, our topic is so naturally evident to our audience that we let that be the main guide to our audience in interpreting our natural statements on that topic. Secondly, we know that our audience is not a logically extreme version of Complete Idiots, much less 'dutifully' passive 'recipients' of our words. Our audience, we know, are humans, who have a lot of implicit natural knowledge on that topic.

So these sets of everyday simple statements on a valuable natural topic self evidently shows a simple, and forwardly building, flow of information. And these sets are touched only with whatever emphases that serve that topic, including even sequences of mention.

So, to repeat: Genesis 1 reflects the nature of our everyday simple sets of statements on a single natural valuable topic. To think otherwise is to admit that the account either (a) is a flawed effort at plain communication or (b) is a less or more esoteric body of...whatever. Christ was a case of (a): He actually lived a human life in solidarity with humans, actually died for that same reason, and actually rose from the dead, all to fulfill the historical hinge of history which is the Edenic Promise (Genesis 3:15).

The point is, humans have an everyday most natural broad sense of things, and this sense is solely foundational to all human concerns: It centrally is about the Earth, and about the Sun's relation to it (Genesis 1:28; Psalm 19:4-7; Isaiah 45:18). Indeed, without the universal self evidence of Divine Design, humans would be reduced to irremediably senseless idiots. Even the function of natural language is that for affirming Divine Design, not for expressing the selected mere logical possibilities of computational semantics that we are reduced to by the FTMR.

The FTMR assumes that being loyal and obedient to God requires equating God's power and sovereignty to a merest indifferent freedom to do anything that is logically possible, conceivable, or imaginable. Thus, the FTMR sees at least some of Genesis 1 as record that God did just that, and that He did it, say, as a way of 'thumbing' of His omnipotent 'nose' at pagans and atheists. That is, the FTMR is the belief that Genesis 1 partly or mainly teaches that God, being all powerful, has not just the ability, but the occasional inclination, to do things that, while logically possible, are contrary to His naturally expected character.

So consider what the FTMR requires in order for its advocates to think that the account is record of such 'Divine' polemic 'nose thumbing'. (1) First, one has to effectively disrespect Biblical Hebrew grammar and usage (ex: the use of 'darkness' in Job 3 as implying a common ancient Hebrew usage for dense cloud cover). (2) Next, one has to discount the particular, authoritative narrative assembly comprising Genesis 1. (3) Finally, one has to do this in favor of the idea that the account, despite its being the authoritatively already-assembled narrative, must be reassembled in a particular different way in order to arrive at the full, true, authoritative picture.

Per 2) and 3), the FTMR is the assumption that the account's terms of central interest are grammatically akin to so many items in a recipe for stew (i.e. carrots, potatos, beef), not things to be understood in the context of the forward-moving narrative build-up.


Is Genesis 1 a blueprint cum narrative? Or, instead, is it a phenomenological narrative?

Are we to use our natural knowledge of Nature to understand this account? Or, instead, are we to 'go up thither' and see it from some 'Divinely' omnipresent or extrapresent point of view? Are its terms narratively contextualized? Or, instead, are they to be understood as one would understand the listed items of a recipe?

What we naturally know about a mouse ought to inform how we read a narrative about a mouse. For example, such a narrative's mention of the 'feet' of a mouse ought to cause us to realize that such 'feet' are tiny compared to human feet. That is, they are not generic 'feet'. Rather, they are specific feet. Their mouse-ness qualifies their feet-ness. Too, unless the narrative indicates otherwise, the mouse's running 'fast' is relative to the speed of a mouse, not to the speed of a cheetah or of a bullet fired from a gun.

The universally plain reading of Genesis 1 is logically possible only by our having implicit universal natural everyday knowledge of the things the account addresses. I.E. day, night, light, water, plants, how these relate to one another.  But, in the quote below, the verbatim of Danny Faulkner's rebuttal of Hugh Ross's secularistic Deep Time interpretation of Genesis 1 fails to point this out. This is because Faulkner advocates the admittedly modern-centric, and therefore esoteric, 'cosmic shell', and otherwise 'cosmic physics', substitutionary hermeneutic of the entire first eight verses (see, for example, Faulkner's 2016 article, Thoughts on the raqia, and Mortenson's 2020 article, The Firmament: What did God create on Day 2? (The URL for Mortenson's article is Pending the 7 day newby poster rule of this forum.)

Job 12:7–10
Chapters 12–14 of Job are Job’s response to Zophar’s first discourse. Job 12:7–10 contains the memorable words commanding us to ask the animals and speak to the earth, and that they will tell us that God has made them and that [H]e sustains the life of every living thing. This reveals God as both Creator and Upholder of [C]reation. Some who believe the dual-revelation theory take this passage as license to use what the scientific majority says about the world’s history as a basis for asserting that the universe is billions of years old. [Faulkner's Footnote/Endnote #4: This says that both nature and Scripture are revelations from God and therefore we should use our knowledge of nature to understand Scripture. On this faulty view, see Richard Mayhue, “Is Nature the 67th Book of the Bible,” in Terry Mortenson and H. Thane Ury, eds., Coming to Grips with Genesis (Green Forest, AR: Master Books, 2008), 105–130.] But these verses place constraints on what the creation can tell us—that God has made the world. Anything beyond that likewise goes beyond the explicit statement here. [Faulkner's Footnote/Endnote #5: Although other passages (e.g., Romans 1–2) grant that more information about God—his perfections and holy standard—is discernable from creation, the available information is enough to condemn the sinner, but not enough to save him apart from the work of the Holy Spirit and the substitutionary atonement of Christ.]

The URL for the above quote is Pending the 7 day newby poster rule of this forum.

Context is so important to Faulkner's note #4. Who is the 'we' there, and what is 'knowledge' of nature, and why, EXACTLY, is that 'knowledge' 'faulty'?

So on the one hand we have Hugh Ross, and on the other hand we have the  advocates of the FTMR and the resultant 'cosmic physics' substitutionary hermeneutics.

For Ross's part, he does not particularly care about humans' universal everyday knowledge of Nature when it comes to the task of understanding Scripture. Most all he cares about for that task is modern secularistic 'scientific' assumptions. He therefore sees the universal everyday kind of knowledge of Nature as more of a side issue than as the central framework for rightly understanding things such as distant starlight and time dilation. He happily preaches on the basis of Big Bang cosmology but denies its own necessary time dilation factor.

For the part of the FTMR advocates (such as Faulkner and Mortenson), they do not particularly care for that same universal everyday knowledge of Nature when it comes to the task of understanding Genesis 1. For them, the account is mainly about 'what' God 'plainly' says, and only secondarily, at best, about how that universal everyday knowledge of Nature allows the account to be universally accessible rather than exclusivistically esoteric. The FTMR advocates rightly point out that Ross's view is faulty in that it implies a modern-centric and secularistic esotericism. But they do essentially the same thing, only in the brand of God=logical possibility, and thus the supposed 'plainness' of a Narrative Grammar of Logical Possibility:

First, we have the secular cultural fact, which Biblical creationists rightly oppose, according to which the modern secularized worshipers of 'science' think Genesis 1is really nothing better than an arbitrary Fairy Tale fit only for children's Make Believe Bedtime Stories.

Second, then we have the 'Biblical creationism' fact, which is status quo among Biblical creationists, according to which the account is little more than the particular,'Divinely' arbitrary Fairy Tale according to which God 'freely and wisely' chose to create. This is the FTMR and the God=logical possibility hermeneutic. The 'cosmic physics' hermeneutic is supposed by its advocates to bring a scientifically normalized sense to the claim that the FTMR is the UNIVERSALLY plain interpretation of vs. 14-18. Yet that claim does not stand a moment's scrutiny in face of the fact that many older languages, including even Hebrew, have no pluperfect form of verb. Moreover, if there is one language that we can be sure is founded in the universal everyday kind of knowledge of Nature, it is Biblical Hebrew.

3Was light created before the sun ?  Empty Re: Was light created before the sun ? Wed Dec 15, 2021 7:30 am


At https://www.4thdayalliance.com/articles/refutations-rebuttals-and-critiques/hugh-ross/ , Faulkner asserts,

'The truly important things about God that one must know can be found only in Scripture.' And 'Scripture does not support' the idea that Nature confirms those things. For, if Nature itself taught those things, then 'there would be no need for missionary' work, 'contrary to Rom. 10:13 ff.'

Nature is not deficient. Human Fallenness is what is deficient. It is that Fallenness that rejects the plain evidences of Nature, in favor of a Fallen interpretation of Nature.

God's Torah teaching does not supplant Nature. It merely represents a truly enlightened view of the fact that Nature indeed confirms the Glory of God. Only when human Fallenness is left to itself is that evidence denied (Romans 1:20-32). The Torah is a bit like a crutch for a shattered leg. The ground itself is not the thing that is deficient. Indeed, if 'deficiency' is the mark of Nature, then even the Torah is deficient because the Torah is not foolproof. In other words, the Torah does not guarantee the understanding of all those who simply 'read what it says'.

So Psalm 19 in no sense presents any kind of deficiency of Nature regarding the Torah. As Jesus essentially said, 'If you reject me when I tell you of Earthly things that you ought to know naturally, then you shall even more reject me if I tell you of heavenly things.' In other words, 'You are not blank slates living in a featureless environment. So if you refuse me in favor of what little I have already spelled out for you, you shall even more deeply refuse me if I now spell out some more for you.' In other words, 'if you had no direct natural grounding in Nature, including your own natures as relating to Nature, then you could not, in the first place, correctly understand anything that the Law says to you.'

To be forbidden from 'adding' to the Law does not mean to be forbidden from expounding on the Law. It means to be forbidden from claiming that God surely means things He does not mean. Hypotheticals as to what God meant must be tested, not imposed on others in favor of what the Law merely spells out, and thus AGAINST anything that the Law does NOT spell out.


Ambiguity in Natural Language is not a function of poor communication. It is a function of natural plainness and clarity. Specifically, it is a combination of simplicity of form, or economy, and the receiver's natural knowledge of the topic.

A simple example is the everyday kind of statement that 'I got x amount of hours of sleep last night'. Normally, this is both meant and understood as implying the total amount of sleep that 'I got last night'. Therefore, one would not normally expect for one's audience to miss this implication.

By contrast, we may imagine that Curly, one of the Three Stooges, wanting to nap during work hours, utters the same form of statement, but this about his prior year, and intends a departure from the normal:

He is working next to Larry on an assembly line, with Moe opposite facing them. Suddenly, Curly stops and says, happily, 'Hey, Moe! I just thought of something! I got four hours of sleep past year! So I'm going to go lie down for a while!' Then he steps away from the line.

Moe replies, 'Get back here! You slept all last year!'

Curly says, 'I know! But think about it!'

Moe, sarcastically, replies, 'I'm thinking about it! Now get back to work!'

'Yeah', Larry says, 'I'm thinkin' about it, too, and I don't like it! I got three hours of sleep last year, and you don't see me shirking!'

'Yeah', adds Moe, 'and I got two hours. So you're being unfair to us.'

Civilly conceding the point, Curly rejoins the line.

Last edited by notatinkertoy on Wed Dec 15, 2021 7:32 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : typo absence of key term)

4Was light created before the sun ?  Empty Re: Was light created before the sun ? Mon Jan 17, 2022 3:36 am



Is the Big Bang Biblical?
There was a time not all that long ago where I accepted some Big Bang principles in Genesis. Then the flat earth movement kicked off and I began my war with the FE heresy. It was during this time that I discovered that my understanding of Genesis chapter 1 was flawed. In order to answer FE you must be able to understand the first two days of creation. I decided to learn how the early church understood Genesis and it was there that I seen my error. I knew there was good merit in ancient exegesis due to the church fathers living so close to the Biblical times and languages. So here I will provide a simple and to the point breakdown as to why the big bang theory isn't Biblical.

In order to understand this short lesson one needs only to understand what is happening on Day 1 of Genesis chapter 1. Now Genesis 1:1 is more than an introduction to a book. Genesis is not just a book. Its a Book of action! Hence Gen.1:1 is the opening verse of the Holy Bible and the first act of creation. And while this verse is the hardest to interpret out of the 5 verses that make up Day 1, you will see how it leaves no room for the big bang theory.

▪Gen.1:2 - God follows through with His first act of creation and His Spirit is moving over the watery heap. There is no light yet created. The newly created universe is dark. God moves over the fetal earth which is formless, without shape, and void. God is about to do something to the earth.

This verse leaves off with God hovering over the fetal earth in its earliest stage of development.
Genesis 1:3 is the verse where God creates the light. This is where some people are reading big bang from. However, this light is to be created for the earth as God's attention is focused on His creation of the earth as v.2 clearly indicates. The problem with reading a big bang into this verse is that the earth is already created and God is right next to the earth! So if the big bang goes boom so close to earth then God would have completely and totally destroyed the earth. God's not dumb. To call in a big bang so close to the earth is both meaningless and counter-productive.

Lets look at Gen.1:2 for the sake of clarity:
👉 "And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters."
The universe at this stage of creation was dark. There were no stars yet created. Already we see a big problem with Big Bang philosophy as Gen.1:2 contradicts Big Bang philosophy right from the start. Though perhaps the main problem here is the fact that the universe at this stage is a watery place as even the fetal earth is nothing but a watery blob with more in common with a bubble in a lava lamp than with a spherical planet. In Big Bang philosophy, this bang doesn't have a Singularity whereas Genesis has God as the Singularity in Gen.1:1. The Big Bang is a fiery explosion! At the instant of the Big Bang, the temperature of the explosive boom is believed to have been 1000 trillion degrees °C. Only 100 seconds later, the universe is said to have cooled down to 1 billion degrees °C, 1.8 billion degrees °F. The Big Bang is ridiculously hot and very bright. The temperature is so hot that any chance of water tagging along with the bang is impossible. Water boils at 212°F so the idea of a watery universe is cancelled at the instant of the Big Bang. So where did the water come from? Evolutionists can't answer that. But Genesis gives us a clear and concise answer.

In Big Bang philosophy, stars are the result of the bang. In Genesis, stars were not created until Day 4. So how can we read Big Bang philosophy into Genesis when its not there?
To read Gen.1:3 as the Big Bang does harmonize with vs.4-5.
▪Gen.1:4-5 -- Traditionally, these two verses are understood as the earth's first spin. The day-night cycle begins with the earth's first rotation. But the separation of light and darkness would not see fruition until Day 4 when God finishes the day-night cycle.
If we read Gen.1:3 as the Big Bang then we are ignoring the details of Day 1 and forcing an interpretation that isn't there.
▪Gen.1:2 - Earth is formless, without shape. God's about to do something to the earth.
▪Gen.1:3 - God creates the light.
▪Gen.1:4-5 - The earth's first spin as a planet.
Its very clear that the light God created was for the earth, as a benefit to the earth. I strongly believe the light God created was the earth's core. For God's Purpose here is to create life and He starts by making the earth alive, capable of sustaining life. A planet is considered living that has an active core.
So why didn't God create the sun before the earth? If God created the sun first then the sun would have raped the earth of its water and killed the planet dead. God created the earth's core in v.3 of Day 1. This core gave shape to the earth as clay to the seal (Job 38:14). The core also came complete with a magnetic field. It was only when the earth was ready that God created the sun to complete the day-night cycle that He started in Gen.1:4-5.

Day 2 of creation continues focus on the earth's creation. As anyone can see, there is no room nor need for the Big Bang in the Genesis account.
Anyone who accepts Gen.1:3 as the earth's core will have an easy time explaining the rest of Genesis. The harmonization is so beautiful it must be true.


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