Dr. Ed Young - Creation
It's amazing how a lot of us can go to church, some Bible study classes for a long time, periodically all of our life, but still be basically biblically illiterate. Matthew chapter 22, a lawyer asked Jesus, "What is the most important commandment"? In other words, "What is that thing that is the number one thing you must do"? Jesus says, "Love the Lord thy God with all your heart," that's a passionate love of God, "with all your soul, and love him with all your mind".
Now, a lot of us have loved him passionately, different times, different degrees, with all of our heart. A lot of us have loved him with our life, with our lifestyle, with our soul. But you know, it's amazing how few of us have ever loved the Lord our God with all of our mind. Coming back from Israel this past week, a 10-hour flight, I was in the galley and met a man, an Englishman named Peter, and I began to ask him political questions, about life. And you know, a 10-hour flight, you can learn a lot of things about somebody. And before long, as he began to tell his view of life, and what he believed about this, and the Middle East, and et cetera, et cetera, I realized every single thing he believed, I believed the exact opposite. I mean, every single thing.
I believe this... I didn't tell him that. I just asked him questions and nodded, and asked another question. It went on for a period of time until finally he got to the point he said, "I guess you realize I'm a humanist and I'm an atheist". That explained it. I hear people all the time. It just drives me crazy. "You know, America is divided. We're going to have to come together". Ladies and gentlemen, when people see the world through these eyes, the eyes of secular humanism, godlessness, they see the world entirely different, and on every question they will answer it in a different way than those of us who see the world with biblical eyes.
So, there's not gonna be some great healing and coming together here when you've got two entirely different views of the world. Different views of God. My atheist, who believed that there was nothing, I said, "Well, when you die, what happens"? He said, "Well, the energy in my body just goes back in the universe". I said, "How do you know that"? He says, "That's just what I believe". Okay, and then after I listened to him a long, long time, I asked him, I said, "Is there evil in the world"? He said, "Yes". I said, "Is there good in the world"? He said, "Hmmm, yes". I said, "Is there moral law in the world"? "Yes". Okay, good, evil, moral law.
Then I kind of flipped a little bit and I said, "Do you believe you can have an effect without a cause"? If something happens, is there always a cause? He said, "Oh yes, I believe you can't have an effect without a cause". I said, "All right, we have moral law. That is an effect. What is the cause of the moral law"? "Whoa," he said. Different world, shifted gears. He said, "Well, I guess, it's culture". I said, "You know, you can call it what you want to. I'm just gonna call it, you know, just for fun, God". God. Now, let's cut to the chase. In the beginning, God, Elohim, Trinity. Bereshit, in the beginning, God, Trinity, Elohim. And by the way, the word "Elohim" is mentioned 25 times in the first chapter of Genesis.
So, let's talk about this God. The Bible reveals to us that God is real. God is alive. God is personal. God is one who loves you and loves me totally and completely regardless of past or present. And he is pursuing you and pursuing me because he wants to enter into relationship with you and a relationship with me that he has arranged through the giving of his Son Jesus Christ. And he is a pursuing God, a loving God. And you say, "Well, you know, I kind of know that".
Let me tell you, that is absolutely, factually, historically true. We know that Jesus was born, died, buried, God raised him from the dead. That happens to be historical fact. Let me give you another fact. In 55 B.C., Britain was dominated by the Romans under Julius Caesar. That is a historical fact. And that's just a fact that can be proven, but there is more evidence that Jesus was born, died, was raised from the dead, than there's evidence that the Romans dominated Britain in 55 B.C. So, you can take that historical fact about Britain and domination of Romans and you can put it into a file, but you cannot take the fact that God came in human flesh in Jesus Christ and died for you, and God raised him from the dead.
That is a historical fact, but you can't file it away because it keeps on coming, keeps on speaking. And this God calls for a decision from you and me. He calls for a decision, a response. In the Bible, he gives us a call and a responsibility right here in Genesis chapter number 1. In the beginning, God, Elohim, Father, Son, Holy Spirit. Right up front we're introduced to God. Also, we're not only introduced to God, we're introduced to something else. We're introduced to the universe, to the Cosmos. He created the heavens and the earth. Tremendous thing. And then we know the six days of creation.
Look on your screen, and you see something. You see form and you seem filling. Here's the form. Remember the world was without form? Here's the form. Day one, there's light. Day four, there is a filling of that light. Look, sun, moon, stars. Look at the next one. You see the sky and the water. See, in day five you see the birds and the fish. You see day three, you see the land. You see fulfilling, animals, and man, and plants. You see, there is a form and then there is a filling. This is God talking to us in creation.
Now, here is the question. How long did it take God to create the earth? The old earth, the new earth. This debate has been going on. Is geology right, that it took billions of years? Or is the Bible right, it was done in six days? By the way, I wish everybody would relax over this if you've been in some kind of theological debate. Usually when there's a conflict between the Bible and science, it usually means that somebody has misinterpreted the Bible and somebody else is not understanding science, and I think this is true in this case. And you have some wild kind of thing that we've heard as Christians. We have the idea that God created the world in six days. And even if you find Bishop Unger there in Ireland, and some of this you'll find in your Bible.
By the way, I'd throw that Bible away and get another one, or put it away because it says that the earth is 4,000 years old. And then a few years later, Lightfoot comes along, who was the president of Cambridge University. He said, "Well, the earth is exactly 4,004 years old," and he said creation was between October the 18th and October the 27th. And he said, Actually, Adam was created on the morning of October the 26th, about 9 o'clock. Now, ladies and gentlemen, when we begin to speak about that which the Bible does not speak, there's a lot of problems here, but one is... A mighty, giant problem is that we don't even have a solar universe until the fourth verse. There's no sun, there's no moon. How do you deal with Eve at that time? And no date is mentioned in the Bible until you get to the fifth chapter of Genesis.
So you say, "Well, who's right"? Oh, 6 days, 24 hour days, and there's all kind of theories here. There's the gap theory, verse 1 between verse 2, catastrophic things happen. There's the idea of "Yom," the word for day, it can mean decade or era. And we go through all kinds of gymnastics tryin' to say it was six 24-hour days or it was eons, billions and billions of years, as if there is some kind of conflict. You say, Well, either the scientists are right or God is right. No, that's not right. I think they're both right. Let me tell you why. There's different kinds of truth. Where is the center of Metropolitan Houston? Well it's Downtown, right? Nobody can argue with that. Well, not really.
If you look at population, it's somewhere out the other side of Katy. Well, you look at, you know, the geographical center, it will be somewhere else. So, if I say it's the other side of Katy, or the geographical center is there, or it's Downtown, all three of us are right because we have different understanding of truth. Who is bigger, Goliath or David? Well, Goliath is bigger, obviously. No, David in one sense of truth is bigger in character, and understanding, and military skills. So, Goliath is bigger over here. There are different kinds of truth. That's what we have to understand. And I look at these verses and I say this is God's work day. Six days is God's work day.
Could God have done it in six days? Absolutely. We have a new heaven, and new earth, and our resurrection bodies. It says we will be changed, how quick? In 1,000 years, 100 years, 50 years, 1 year, 5 minutes? No, in the twinkling of an eye, because God's almighty. He can do what he wants to do. And those who go through all the gymnastics that say because the great flood, and you have that engineer who talked to Morris and said therefore it rearranged all the constellation of the rocks on the earth. All of this, I think, is basically nonsense because this is God's created order.
And I think science is true and we are true, and there's different kinds of truth involved because God did it. Could he have done it in any time period? Absolutely. Does anybody know dogmatically? Because nobody was there but God. But when he creates a new heaven and a new earth, we're gonna be there in our resurrected bodies, and we'll be a part and part of all of that. So, don't get lost in that. Treat the old earth, new earth people like we do eschatology, 'cause they can come to Jesus Christ. They're pre-, there's post-, there's a-, and then there's the pan-millennialist, who believe it's all going to pan out.
So I think we have to approach this kind of thing in that way. Created. And then we have the idea, What about this world? Did it come together as an accident? You know, a lot of people believe that all this evolved over a period of years, but all of a sudden there's that Big Bang. Bang, and now, oh, scientists virtually believe there was a moment of creation. Sounds like what the Bible talks about it, doesn't it? Because they see the universe is still expanding. And now we come, and look, and see that the universe has an order to it. In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. What a majestic thing. What a marvelous thing that that is.
Abraham Lincoln said you could go to outer space and look at the world, the shape it's in, and you might be an atheist, but Abraham Lincoln said if you stand on this earth and look at the starry skies, it's impossible to be an atheist. And so, we come to the created order. This world is not chaotic. It is a cosmos. This world has symmetry. It has unity. It has consistency in it.
In the 17th century, there was a mathematician, Sir Isaac Newton. And Newton had built into his library a model of the sun and all the planets around it the right distance, perfect orientation. And he had wheels, and pulleys, and belts, and he could turn that little universe, that solar system right there as a model. An atheistic friend came in to see him and saw that model. He saw it operating and he looked at Newton and said, "Who made it"? And Newton answered, "Nobody, it just happened".
A lot of people ignorantly think that. This world is intricately, beautifully, rhythmically made and has a consistency that every scientist counts on. If I had in my pocket ten pennies, and I number those pennies 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, okay? And I'd reach in my pocket, shuffle the pennies around, and reach in and pull out one penny that had the 1 on it. What are the odds of that? One in ten, right? Put it back in my pocket, shuffle all those pennies around. I'd reach in without looking, pull out a penny had a 1 on it. Pull out another penny had the 2 on it in that order. What are the odds in that? That's one in a hundred, right?
I put it back in my pocket, I shuffle 'em around, and I reach in and I pull out a penny with a 1 on it, a penny with a 2 on it, a penny with a 3 on it. What's the odds in that? One of the Las Vegas guys said one in a thousand. That's right. Lots of luck. But what if I put those ten pennies my pocket, and I pull one penny out, has a 1 on it, and a 2, and a 3, and a 4, and all the way through to 10, what are the odds of that happening? One in ten billion.
God created bra this world magnificently. The world is tilted. The earth at least is tilted 23 degrees. If it were tilted 24 degrees, you know what would happen? The mist from the north and south would come together and we'd be all frozen. The whole earth would be frozen. If it were tilted down to, say, 22 degrees, the other thing would happen. The tides would come and cover all of us. Do you see this world? Not only are you and I fearfully and wonderfully made, but so is this universe. So, in the beginning, God introduces us to God, to himself. And then he also introduces us to the universe in which we live. And also he introduces us to man, mankind.
The psalmist asks the question, Psalm 24, "What is man"? Big question, isn't it? You know the secular answer? Man came from slime and worked his way up through evolutionary process and became human, fully a man. From slime to manhood, that's secular belief in evolution. You know what we believe as Christians? We believe man started off in the garden of Eden. Man started up high, but man slipped down low and became slime through our sin. We believe we started high, we ended low. They believe we started low and ended high. Which view of man is accurate? Slime to fullness, or from fullness due to sin back down to slime? And can anybody debate with whether or not man can recede all the way into slime? What is man? Well, secularly, how much are you worth?
Well, if you weigh 176 pounds, you're worth about $160 if they ground up all the chemistry in your body. Everything you have in your body and my body is found in the crust of the Earth. According to the Bible, we were formed from dust. "From dust we are, from dust we will return," the Bible said. Little boy asked his mother about that and said, "What does that mean, 'Dust we were, dust we will return'"? And the mother said, "I don't know". And little boy said, "Well, I know one thing. Somebody's coming or going under our bed".
But anyway. We know how this operates. It's amazing, our body worth, if you weigh, what, 176 pounds, worth about $160. That's about a dollar a pound. That's when you pay bananas, isn't it? About dollar a pound. That's what you're worth. That's what I'm worth, in a secular sense. But what are we really worth? What is our value? What is your value? We have slipped all the way down to slime in our own sin, our own selfishness. How do we make our way back to full manhood, into maturity, in the life of God? What does the Bible tell us? It tells us that everything else was made. The animals were made. The plants, the universe, all this was made, made, made, but man was created. Huh, interesting, isn't it?
Berah. We were created and the Bible says... look at these verses. They are powerful, powerful verses indeed. Look at chapter number 2. First of all, chapter 1:26, Then God said, "Let us make man in our image, according to our likeness; and let them rule over the fish of the sea, the birds the air, et cetera". He said, "Let us make man in our image". "Let us". God said, "Let us". God, plural God, God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit entered into a conversation. The Trinity had conversation. The Godhead had conversation with each other and said, "Let us make man like us". We're made in the image of God. Everything else was made according to their kind, according to their kind.
Now we were made in the image of God. We, you, every human is a reproduction of God. Now, animals, my dog Winston is a soul. He is alive, but he has not had into him the breath of God. Winston sees me pray every night. He looks at me and what I'm doing on my knees. I'm gettin' down with him. He doesn't know. He doesn't have the capacity to pray. No animal has the capacity to pray. They have no understanding. You and I, because we're made in God's image and we in one sense are a reproduction of God. He created us after his kind, and we're after his kind so we can know him and he can know us. He can talk to us and we can talk to him. That is uniqueness of man, and it is a beautiful gift that we have.
And the understanding of the soul has been so distorted by the Greeks and it sneaked its way into the church. The Greeks taught that the body was like a glass, and soul was like water, and when the body, the glass, was broken, the water was spilled out and it was spilled back into the universe. And that would be, the water would be our soul. The Bible knows nothing of that. The body and soul belong together. And when this body deteriorates, remember we have a resurrection body that our soul will inhabit forever and forever. And therefore, our soul is the essence of you and me, and it's built for eternity. It is within us. And we're made in the image of God in this life so we can hear him and he can hear us. Beautiful, beautiful concept.
There was a surgeon who dissected a body down to every little thing. Cut a body up every way a body can be cut up. And the surgeon announced, "I have looked everywhere in the human body and the human body has no soul". Hmm, well, we have a... ...a piano over here. I'm going to take all that piano apart, all the keys, take it all out, look everywhere in there, and I've torn that piano up, and I've got it down to the smallest possible thing, and you know, I've found no music in that piano. I looked everywhere. That's what that scientist just didn't understand. Psuche, the soul. And therefore, we can communicate with God, he can communicate with us, and that is uniqueness of mankind.
And Genesis tells us about it. Like that little girl from Wisconsin, tragically kidnapped for months, 13 years old. She escaped, what, a couple of days ago. She went to a woman and she said, "Help me, I'm lost". A lot of us are there. Need to cry out to Almighty God, "Lord, help me. I'm lost. I'm empty. I'm broken. I'm addicted. I'm down. I'm out. I'm lonely. I'm pessimistic. I'm not thinking clearly. Lord, help me. I'm lost".
And God comes and says, "Because you're made in my image, I can help you, and restore you, and rebuild you inside and out, and you will be found, saved, salvaged". Book of Genesis introduces us to God, Elohim, three in one. The book of Genesis introduces us to this magnificent universe in which we live. And the book of Genesis tells us what man is, what mankind is, and how we are made in the image of God. And therefore, we can be redeemed, we can be remade, and we are built to live forever.