Genesis 1 - Open Bible

Science and the Biblical Order of Creation

How humans came to be is a fairly ‘settled science’ in most people’s minds. It just depends on who you talking to with what that story actually is.

Every major belief system throughout time, science included, has had their own ideas about how the Universe, Earth, humanity, and everything else we see today, came to be. Some of those ideas are downright crazy:

Bill Nye vs Ken Ham cartoon match up
Image from Agents of Geek
  • The Norse believed the world was created from a dead god’s dismembered body.
  • Various native American stories thought the stars were created by long dead ancestors.
  • Some of the people in Africa believe everything in the universe is the result of a god throwing it up.
  • Chinese, Indian, Mali, and Aboriginal stories everything we see today, including life, hatching from an egg.

They just go downhill from there in terms of strangeness and impossibility.

Today, secular folks, and even a majority of religious folks that adhere to Hinduism, Islam, or Christianity, all believe in evolution. Most people today think that the creation stories found in their own religious texts are outlandish.

‘The fossil record doesn’t support the views my religion teaches,’ they say, and, for the most part, they are right.

If we are honest…

The Biblical order of creation falls in line with established scientific observations about how life had to risen.

Out of all the religious stories of creation out there, the Bible has the most accurate depiction of how life had to have come about. No other religious text comes close to the scientifically proven dependencies that we see in nature and their required order of appearance. How would an egg exist before the world, after all?

Only the Bible gets the order right: You need water before life, plants before animals, etc. The account echoes what we see throughout the natural world.

That single truth destroys the idea that ‘all religions are created equal,’ leaving only science and Christianity as potentially being true. After all, if you claim that all religions are either true or equal, they all have to match what we see in reality without having any inaccuracies. The moment a religion deviates from reality, it loses all credibility as being true.

Even then, science and Christianity aren’t necessarily at odds. They aren’t mutually exclusive and can both point to the same answer.

The Bible isn’t anti-science, and the scientific process itself isn’t ‘anti-God.’

People use the scientific process to learn about our world through testable, repeatable processes. How people use those results and how they interpret them is where the anti-Christian sentiments commonly found in the scientific world come from.

Pesky Human Bias

The fossil record is a good example of how human bias can come into play and warp how we interpret evidence, for better or worse.

Lots of people look at the fossil layer as proof of evolution. It is true that the fossil layer is a good record of what was going on at different times throughout history. In some of the lower levels we see tons of species represented. However, human records are conspicuously absent.

Fossil Bed layers - Canyon view

To a large part of the world this shows that humans just didn’t exist at that point in time, which is why there is no record of human civilization, culture, or even bones. In their minds, this is a sure proof for evolution, and, by extension, the Biblical order of creation is wrong.

However, the Bible paints a completely different picture. Placing aside the obvious sediment layers from the flood (which would have destroyed pretty much any record of human society, and would match what we see today in the record), let’s look a different story. The Tower of Babel.

After the flood, people didn’t spread out across the world for quite some time. The text says people stayed on the plains of Shinar for a few decades after the flood. Animals migrated around the world, though, and vegetation had to regrow in order for that to happen. So, we have a record, in this order:

  1. Dry land to live on
  2. Water availability in the form of lakes
  3. Vegetation growth
  4. Animal migration
  5. People migration

People wouldn’t have even been present for a long period of time. If the flood was as massive as the Bible makes it out to be, there would still be very large scale geological changes going on for years afterwards. Of course people wouldn’t show up in some fossil layers.

What Does the Text Say?

According to Genesis, the Biblical order of creation occurred on a schedule:

  • Day 1: The heavens and the Earth. Light is divided from darkness.
  • Day 2: The sky is divided from the seas. An atmosphere is created.
  • Day 3: Dry land is lifted out of the oceans. (NOTE: The text reads as though God created all dry land in one mass, not seven continents). Plant life is created.
  • Day 4: Stars and heavenly bodies, including the sun and the moon.
  • Day 5: All water life and flying creatures.
  • Day 6: All creatures that exist solely on the ground.

Contradictions?

Looking at that order of creation, at first glance you might be struck at how much it seemingly contradicts what we think we know about where we came from. How can plants exist before sunlight or flying creatures before land creatures? Is this another contradiction?

I don’t believe so.

Tons of plants exist far below the surface of the ocean, for example. Some algae has even been found to live almost 1000 feet below the surface, where there is little to no sunlight. Even then, day one of the creation account has a mention of light being divided from the darkness. Plants today need a full spectrum of light to grow, which in our time come from the sun. If light were to exist without being from a star, any full spectrum light source would still be sufficient in the same way we can use grow lights to ‘replace’ the sun today.

As far as flying creatures go, this takes more than just birds into consideration. Bees and other flying insects would be included here. They are smaller creatures, that even in the evolutionary time frame, had to have come before bigger land creatures could.

Evolutionary timescale of when life 'appeared'
Image from BBC

A closer look shows that the order of creation is incredibly fitting for the world’s ecosystem. Where other creation stories fail (eggs existing before the world, animals roaming the world without any plants to eat or water to drink, etc), the Bible is accurate.

Genesis describes a perfect picture of how life HAD to occur:

Water to drink > Plants to produce oxygen and habitats > Sea life > Land life

Where Science and the Bible Agree

Contrary to what atheists and other non-Christians will claim as fact, there are quite a few similarities between the Biblical account of creation and what modern science describes happening in Earths early history. Secular scientists like to avoid mentioning:

  • The ‘Big Bang’ is basically a secular ‘Let there be light’ – Both claim that there was a ‘time’ when there was nothing that burst into everything.
  • There was light before there were stars.
  • Science and Biblical Creation both point to an original super continent – This continent has subsequently broken up into multiple landmasses.
  • Plant life came before all other life.
  • Ocean life came before land life.
  • Ground life was the last thing to come about on the Earth.
Big Bang illustration

Where They Differ

The Genesis account of the order of creation is remarkably close to the modern scientific version of how life appeared. There are, however, differences. If there weren’t, creationists wouldn’t be ridiculed. The major difference is the theory of evolution, but there are others. Most of them fall apart with just a bit of critical questioning, and quickly, too:

There really is NO proof that mankind evolved.

There are strange skeletons and fossils of extinct species that reportedly point to evolution. Under a creationist point of view, those same skeletons can also be attributed to the Nephilim in Genesis. In some cases, those same remains have been proven to be genetic disorders.

Lucy Fossil
Image from abc.net.au

Most of what we ‘know’ about our human ‘ancestors’ have been built off of one or two bones or bone fragments which scientists extrapolate from. Sometimes, those same scientists have mistakenly (openly) used fragments from multiple species when conjuring up these creatures. Even before the consistent use of DNA and genetic makeup to recreate them, scientists put forward entire skeletons and supposed drawings of what these creatures looked like in their minds.

Secular folks likes to say we evolved from a distant ancestor that we share with apes, citing genetic similarities we have with them. They don’t like to admit that we a ton of ‘shared’ DNA with chickens as well.

We ‘look’ like primates, and have a similar genetic makeup, so we must be related, right? That is about as deep as that logic.

Evolution Does Exist, Though…

This is not to say that evolution (adaptation) does not occur at the micro level (deviation within kinds: Boxers, Shepherds, Labradors, wolves, foxes, etc. all being ‘canines’). In fact, micro evolution would come into play when we look at how Noah was able to fit 2 of every kind on the Ark. There are far too many species known about to have fit in a boat the size listed in Genesis, after all.

Organism Classification Chart
Image from Lugezi

Micro adaptation explains how Adam was able to name each creature on Day 6. Trillions of species would have been impossible to name in one 12-15 hour period, barring a miracle, of course. It would have been much easier, however, if there were a few hundred kinds (families:canines, felines, bovines, etc.).

It also explains the differences between people groups. We have clearly adapted to our environments, with genetic pools favoring certain traits over others, over periods of time. Dark skin vs light, higher bodily temperatures (Tibetans) than normal, differing facial features, and other obvious differences found in different groups. The same idea can easily be extended out to now extinct groups, such as Neanderthals and Denisovans who were clearly just as intelligent as us. They just looked different.

NOTE: It would also be interesting if he named ocean animals that day. This would explain why we have found fossils of some ocean species with ‘evolving’ hip bones, for example. Of course, this isn’t explicitly laid out in the text. Just an interesting observation.

Light Itself Reinforces the Creation Account

Quantum mechanics have shown that light, at its core, acts as a force (electromagnetic wave) when interacting with other electromagnetic waves, and a material when interacting with particles. That is the wave theory of light in a nutshell. How does this reinforce the Biblical account. though?

Electromagnetism is one of the forces that binds the universe together. Protons and neutrons (atomic nuceli) and electrons form atoms. Electrons are bound to the nucleus through an ‘electric force’ while protons and neutrons are held together by a ‘strong force.’ (Nuclear) Those atoms in turn make up all physical matter that we observe throughout the universe. Electrons bind to other electrons in various ways, bringing different atoms together and forming everything we see in the universe.

This implies that light is, at least in part (to be super conservative), responsible for holding everything in the universe together. This idea is exactly in line with what the Biblical says. In Genesis, light existed prior to the stars. It also is strengthened by Jesus continued expressions that he is the ‘light of the world,’ as well as the numerous mentions that God/Jesus is simultaneously both, light and the force that holds the universe together.

If we extrapolate this concept out, it also implies the since God is light, and light makes up everything we see in some degree, that God is present in every atom, making him omnipresent.

Crazy, isn’t it?

Go Seek Out The Answers…

Does this definitively point to creation as the origin of life? Not necessarily, but add in the hundreds (thousands) of other examples of how the Bible is accurate, and how clear does it become? The Bible has a supernatural influence. How else would ‘bronze aged goat herders’ know such intricate details about things that wouldn’t be discovered for thousands of years, such as the order of creation?

To be quite honest, this is a very high level overview. I left out quite of other examples of how the Bible is an accurate depiction of creation for the sake of time and complexity.

I purposely chose to stay away from other evidence such as DNA, Irreducible complexity, and some of those other topics to avoid going down an enormous rabbit hole, even though those topics destroy the concept of macro evolution and secular big bangs.

As I always say, check the scriptures yourself and see if what you read here is true.

Until next time….