The GeoChristian

The Earth. Christianity. They go together.

Another Christian leader who believes the Bible does not require a young Earth — Justin Taylor

Justin Taylor is senior vice president of Crossway Books, a theologically conservative Christian publishing company. Crossway is best known as the publisher of the English Standard Version (ESV) Bible, along with the ESV Study Bible, perhaps the most comprehensive theologically conservative study Bible ever produced for a general Christian audience.

Justin Taylor believes the Bible. And Justin Taylor does not believe the Bible requires us to believe Earth is only roughly 6000 years old. He has outlined his reasons for believing that the Bible is silent on the issue of the age of the Earth on his blog Between Two Worlds, which is part of The Gospel Coalition‘s web site:

Biblical Reasons to Doubt the Creation Days Were 24-Hour Periods

The arguments Taylor gives for accepting an old Earth have nothing to do with the geological column, radiometric dating, or the big bang theory. Instead, Taylor lays out a completely Biblical case for an ancient universe, mostly following the analogical days interpretation. Here are a few quotes from Taylor:

Contrary to what is often implied or claimed by young-earth creationists, the Bible nowhere directly teaches the age of the earth.

—————

I want to suggest there are some good, textual reasons—in the creation account itself—for questioning the exegesis that insists on the days as strict 24 hour periods. Am I as certain of this as I am of the resurrection of Christ? Definitely not. But in some segments of the church, I fear that we’ve built an exegetical “fence around the Torah,” fearful that if we question any aspect of young-earth dogmatics we have opened the gate to liberalism.

—————

God is portrayed as a workman going through his workweek, working during the day and resting for the night. Then on his Sabbath, he enjoys a full and refreshing rest. Our days are like God’s workdays, but not identical to them.

How long were God’s workdays? The Bible doesn’t say. But I see no reason to insist that they were only 24 hours long.

How old is the Earth? The Bible does not say, so Christians should not dogmatically insist that it is only 6000 years old.

An important conclusion is that the age of the Earth should not act as a stumbling block to someone who is considering whether or not Christianity is true.

Grace and Peace

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Notes:

To be “theologically conservative” means that one holds to the inerrancy of the Holy Bible, and the core historical teachings of Christianity, as summarized by the ancient creeds of the church, such as the Trinity, deity of Christ, virgin birth, crucifixion of Christ, his resurrection and ascension, and the necessity of spiritual rebirth through Christ.

The opposite of theologically conservative is theologically liberal. Liberals usually start by denying the reliability and authority of the Bible, and end up denying many of the core doctrines of Christianity.

January 29, 2015 - Posted by | Age of the Earth, Apologetics, Christianity, Creation in the Bible, Creationism, Old-Earth creationism, Theistic evolution, Young-Earth creationism | , , ,

3 Comments »

  1. You appear to be committing the logical fallacy of argument from authority and/or majority.

    It is meaningless what this guy thinks/believes/etc. Just as it is meaningless what I believe or think. Or John MacArthur (for example). Or Ken Ham. Or Jonathan Sarfati, Carl Wieland, Henry Morris, Don Batten, RC Sproul, Bernard Ramm, and I could go on and on.

    All that matters is what the Bible teaches. What the Holy Spirit wants us to know. What the word of God (both the Bible and the Son of God) say. What the Father is trying to teach.

    And that’s what I try to seek.

    Sola scriptura.

    And I pray that we may all be lead to all the truth, and especially the Truth.

    And I’ve especially tried not to show my hand and what I believe. What I have said is completely independent of what I believe about origins. (Well, not completely, at least in my mind, but I hope I’ve spoken objectively and uncondemningly)

    Like

    Comment by Grahame Gould | January 29, 2015

  2. Grahame — Did you read the article? Taylor does not appeal to the authority of men, but to the words of God. The “analogical days” interpretation is not an imposition of the text of Genesis, but an exposition of the text of Genesis.

    However, it is legitimate to point out to my readers–believers and non-Christians–that there are credible Christian leaders who do not hold to YEC dogma. In fact, I think it is extremely important to do so. The average YEC in the pew won’t listen to a nobody like me, but they might listen to me once they find out that someone like Charles Spurgeon or J.I. Packer holds (held) to old-Earth views.

    Like

    Comment by geochristian | January 29, 2015

  3. Thank you for clarifying. You appear to have missed my point but then addressed it tangentially.

    I was addressing you not Taylor. The danger of posting the comments you did without the additional comments you have now made is that people may think that you are appealing to authority. You have clarified your purpose.

    It is good indeed to know there is a variety of views. It’s good for OECs to know that there are great scholars who disagree with them, current and past. And you’ve pointed out the opposite.

    So I hope my response answers your question. I certainly did. And I hope my comment now makes more sense to you.

    Like

    Comment by Grahame Gould | January 29, 2015


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