Creation is a greatly debated topic. However, essentially there are only two possibilities. Either a supreme being created the universe and all that is in it or the universe evolved due to time, matter and chance.
It is not the intention here to argue for creation. There are so many books, websites and videos that do that. In this very brief overview we present just two opposing viewpoints. Read and think about these things and re-examine what you believe about the beginning of life.
The Bible starts with the words: “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” (Genesis 1:1). The biblical worldview starts with God, who exists outside of creation. God is not limited by time, space or matter. Before the universe existed, God was. The Apostle Paul put it this way:
For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. (Colossians 1:16)
Now, there are all sorts of opinions regarding the creation. How did it happen? How long did it take? The Bible does not give clear answers to these questions. Consequently there are strong differing opinions within the church. The main purpose of the Bible is for you to get to know God through the history, prophecy and writings that have been preserved, and to have faith in God (Mark 11:22). Therefore the account of creation is written so you may believe in the One who made creation (John 11:25-26). It does not explain the empirical details of how it happened. The Bible is not an encyclopaedia. It presents how creation fits into the worldview of those who believe God.
Our culture indoctrinates us to believe only experience and observation matter. There are philosophical, psychological and humanistic arguments that lead people to believe the naturalistic worldview. Let’s briefly consider Naturalism.
Naturalism is a worldview that depends on factual and realistic representation. Natural causes, processes and laws of nature explain all things. In their view the universe evolved due to time, matter and chance.
From an early age we are taught to seek factual evidence. In order for something to be true the facts have to agree with the reality. Simplistically 1 + 1 = 2 is a true statement. But a statement such as “humans developed from earlier forms during the history of the universe” defy empirical proof, so can not be defined as true. Naturalism has no point of reference for defining truth.
Naturalism argues that the biblical worldview is illogical, cannot be verified and it irrelevant to our culture and society. But as a naturalist what can you put in its place? Everything happens by chance? Survival of the fittest?
If that is the case where did morality come from. If I steal your money you want justice or retribution. You want me to pay for my crime. But why? If survival of the fittest is the way of life then the toughest, most self-centred wins. We would all fight for our selfish needs. But something inside us questions that. Our conscience, our awareness of morality. What would you think of a judge who decided a verdict by tossing a coin? Morality is not based on chance.
Interestingly, as leading scientists study our world they discover so much intricate, detailed design, that some of them conclude there must be a designer. Biologists studying the human eye are astounded by its complexity. Even sceptics’ admit personal incredulity when faced with the complexity of explaining how the eye evolved.
How do you understand yourself in relation to the world and the universe? Your answer to this question is your worldview. Why do you exist? For what reason? What is wrong with the word? How can we fix it? These are important philosophical and spiritual questions that we try and answer to form our worldview. Your view of the world will determine how you think speak and behave. To develop a coherent worldview you need to know the truth.
What is the Truth
Truth is important. To form a coherent worldview it needs to correspond with reality. You want to understand your origin, the meaning of life, the importance of morality and your destiny. The biblical worldview is based on what the Bible states. Jesus made the remarkable claim that he is the Truth (John 14:6). The biblical worldview take its source of truth to be the Bible. The naturalistic worldview encourages people to use logical rationalism to decide what is truth. Here are examples of both views:
- The bible claims God created the universe and all that is in it (Genesis 1:1). John, one of the closest disciples of Jesus, claimed the Word of God (another title for Jesus) originated life (John 1:1-51).
- Humanism suggests life always existed and rejects involvement of supernatural power.
- The bible teaches that humanities primary need is a relationship with God (Psalm 27:8; Isaiah 55:6; Hebrews 7:25).
- Humanism sees the meaning of life as survival of the fittest and propagation of the species.
- The bible teaches God is the source of morality and justice (Psalm 37:28; 103:6). God gave laws for man to obey. Moses received the ten commandments (Exodus 20:1-17) which established a substantial code of ethics and morality.
- Relativistic philosophy allows every individual to decide what is truth, and correct behaviour.
- Bible give two destinies for human beings Eternity with God and eternity without God. (Romans 2:4-10)
- Humanism does not support life after death. When you die you cease to exist.
You see, from this extremely brief outline, the diametrical opposition of these two views. In one you trust in someone unseen who declares His love for you (John 3:16). In the other you trust your self and your logic.
The Biblical view encourages you to trust your Creator (Mark 11:22). The humanistic view is to trust your rational ability. My experience leads me to put my trust in God, to have faith in Jesus? Why? Because my spirit agrees with the Holy Spirit that the word of God is true. God has proved himself to be faithful to me over and over again and I know I can trust him. I don’t trust myself because I have endlessly let myself down. If God created the heavens and the earth (and I believe he did) then I would be foolish not to trust him.
Another reason I do not trust my rationality is I am a sinner, a self-centred person by nature. In the next post the effect of sin being in the world will be considered.