I woke up very early this morning with thoughts of the Creationist and the Atheist debate that I watched last year and felt I should digress from the sequel to my recent post to reflect on this age long debate about the age of the earth. How old really, is our Planet earth? The Creationist made a passionate and a very compelling argument that God created the earth and argued for a young earth. I was never a huge fan of Apologetics both in College and Graduate schools, because of its emphasis on winning arguments or trying to defend God, even when the arguments are laughable.
The Atheist appealed to scientific findings in a counter argument, stating that the Biblical account of creation and the age of the planet earth proposed by the Church is suspect and cannot be trusted; and argued that the earth is Billions of years old. As I sat and watched the Creationist passionately argue for a young planet earth, I said to myself, you have made a superb argument, almost silencing the Atheist, what difference does it make if the earth is Millions or Billions of years old as the Atheist argues? But this is one of the problems of Christianity, we always hold on to our position, even if those positions cannot be proven by the Bible (especially in the form that those arguments are presented).
What difference does it make really, if the earth is a Trillion years or Ten Thousand years old? My God could have created the earth in a day and populated it with humans with the intellect and function as we have it today. He could have also created the earth Trillions of years ago. We have this fantasy that agreeing with those who don’t subscribe to our beliefs is lack of faith, even though that the Bible has proven over and over that this is not the case. How did the Church come up with the young earth chronology?
In the 17th century, Bishop James Ussher, a seventeenth-century Irish bishop came up with this interesting young earth chronology citing the genealogy account found in Genesis 5 through Rome’s destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem in 70 A.D. The Lord Bishop even went ahead to add precision to the exact date of Creation. In the 1925, the American Fundamentalist discovered and accepted this chronology. Don’t get me wrong, the Lord Bishop was a genius and a scholar per excellence.
He was not deterred by the challenging nature of being a Protestant Bishop in a Roman Catholic turf. History has it that the Lord Bishop lived through momentous times, having been born during the reign of Queen Elizabeth. He was a talented high-speed scholar who entered Trinity College in Dublin at the early age of thirteen, became an ordained Presbyter by the age of twenty, and a professor at Trinity by twenty-seven. In 1625, he became the head of the Anglo-Irish Church in Ireland. But how reliable is his chronology? How old do you think the earth is? Let’s talk about it.