Sunday 15 March 2015

YECs and Tohu & Bohu

Miller Jones has a new post up where he comments on the nonsense of Young Earth Creationism in light of a course he's recently completed on dinosaur paleobiology. I sat back and silently applauded.

Then, as one does, I poured a coffee and thought about it some more. In the church circles Miller and I once bounced around in, the standard YEC position was definitely not the version of creationism we promoted. We were keen on "the gap theory". In fact we used tohu and bohu as if the use of those Hebrew words in Genesis (1:2, "without form and void") took care of all the objections to a literal reading of the creation stories - once we'd applied the appropriate spin. The dinosaurs were, according to this understanding, pre-Adamic, part of an earlier, failed creation which culminated in Satan's rebellion and fall. Problem solved! This made us feel smugly superior to the old school creationists.

The reality is that the Gap Theory is just as addle-headed as the YEC interpretation. It's addle-headed on both exegetical and scientific grounds. Yet it's still played as a "get out of jail card" in certain fundamentalist circles. If we're going to whack the YECs over the head, it's only fair that we also direct a well-placed slap in a direction that's closer to home.


  1. Pardon my ignorance, but I am not sure if I understand any of these theories! The course on "dinosaur paleobiology," whatever that is, was obviously constructed on the sands of conjecture, supposition and speculation, as it is impossible to prove from the fossil records that anything is absolutely true! All the dovotees of this nonsense tend to do, is draw conclusions from the fossil records, that support a pre-determined hypothesis!

    I therfore believe that Miller Jones was robbed of his money, unless the course was free!

  2. Gavin, I agree. As part of the WCOG, I accepted their "addle-headed" explanation too - shame on me for being so gullible. I've said many times over the last few years: It is now clear to me that God never intended the Bible to be a history or science textbook. In my considered opinion, there is simply no way to reconcile a literal reading of the first chapter of Genesis with what we now know about the world around us (e.g. the sun is created after night and day). These days, I read the first chapter of Genesis as an emphatic statement that God is ultimately responsible for everything - including us; but I do not read it as a scientific account of the mechanics of how that happened/was accomplished (I accept the evidence presented to us by science). You are correct - the God of the gaps theory doesn't work either (what do we do when we run out of gaps).

  3. It will be interesting to watch "Jurassic World" coming June 12th.

    It's a personal choice, but I will watch it in 3D....

    And be so very grateful it's just a fictional drama.

    It is, isn't it? No one could be that stupid could they?

    Oh. I forgot.

    The young earth creationists. And the Gap Theory proponents.


    As Carl Sagan said, extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence and, unfortunately, there have been too much evidence that disproves said theories. After all that's said and done, and no matter how hard magical thinking paranormal persons try, no one can trump science.

  4. Ignornace pardoned Tom and you are correct to note you do not understand any of it. . Try "Evolution : What the Fossil tell us and Why It is Important". All devotees to Biblical nonesense draw conclusions from the Biblical record that support a pre-determined hypothesis , as far as I can tell .