How do we know when our interpretation is wrong?

Maybe, it said he woke up afraid. Like I said, I think Chapter 32 is most likely a theophany.

3 Likes

If the interpretation of the evidence from the creation holds up and is contradictory to your interpretation of the Bible, then what?

2 Likes

The Bible is the final authority, so again if the Bible is clear and the interpretation is solid, no facts are going to contradict that. The only way I would change my interpretation of something in Scripture on that basis would be if the interpretation were ‘iffy’ (questionable) to begin with.

1 Like

What evidence if found would make you think a 6000 year old Earth was “iffy”?

2 Likes

I think I would say something similar, although I wouldn’t use “solid” and “iffy”.

For instance, dead people don’t come back to life, yet I believe the Bible when it says Jesus rose on the 3rd day. That’s a Scripture trumps biology moment for me. However, that is a very specific circumstance, with a very specific purpose. I don’t think it’s very common for that to happen.

However, there is a whole lot of the details of the Bible, especially in the OT, where I don’t have a confident interpretation but instead see a variety of possible interpretations. When that happens I do tend to allow what we know about the world (from science, archeology, linguistics, etc.) to help inform me as to which interpretation is the most plausible. I may defend my preferred interpretation but I’m very reluctant to say that another Christian’s interpretation is flat out wrong on these kinds of issues.

Some things I believe about the Bible are essentially pure speculation. I treat them as my own personal opinion.

6 Likes

2 Peter 3 places a denial of the Creation and the Flood in close association with denial of Christ himself and his 2nd coming.

I don’t personally think that interpretation is the best one, but I can see where you are coming from. That’s one of a few plausible interpretations I can think of (see Josh and my interpretations already given).

3 Likes

And to be clear, I don’t think @jordan or I are denying creation or the flood.

2 Likes

If I take your interpretation of 2 Peter 3, I don’t know of anybody who is denying them, including atheists. That’s the whole problem; reducing Peter’s meaning to narrow local events doesn’t work in the context of what Peter is saying there.

I don’t know many atheists that would affirm:

But they deliberately forget that long ago by God’s word the heavens came into being and the earth was formed out of water and by water.

@Patrick, @T_aquaticus, how about you guys?

2 Likes

What does this refer to?

And when Peter says the “world … was deluged” what was he talking about?

PDPrice, what evidence if found would falsify the claim the earth is only 6000 years old?

I can list lots of things which if found would have falsified evolution. What would falsify your literal young Earth interpretation?

1 Like

Good questions. I have my guesses, but I’m certainly open to other interpretations. At this point I think the point of verses 5-7 is “Remember, God created the world, God can end the world, don’t think you can put a timeline on Him.” I think that point remains even when we do have different interpretations of Genesis.

1 Like

I’d be interested to hear what they are.

Verse 5:

But they deliberately forget that long ago by God’s word the heavens came into being and the earth was formed out of water and by water.

I think this is a general description of Creation, a signpost back to Genesis 1:

  • “heavens came into being” seems to talk about the beginning of the universe. From what I know of chemistry and physics I’m assuming that was 14+ billion years ago in the big bang. I’m not a cosmology expert so I rely on my astrophysicist friend.
  • “the earth was formed out of water and by water” - there are some associations between water and spirit also I believe there are some associations in ancient literature to water being a source of chaos. I might see that as being “out of chaos God’s spirit created the earth”. Again, I don’t have a ton of confidence in that, but it’s a guess

Verse 6:

By these waters also the world of that time was deluged and destroyed.

This seems like a clear signpost back to the Genesis flood. This speaks to God’s judgement. It’s also interesting that waters are referenced in creation and in destruction. It almost like it’s saying “I created you out of chaos [water] and I can return you to chaos [water]”.

Verse 7:

By the same word the present heavens and earth are reserved for fire, being kept for the day of judgment and destruction of the ungodly.

A new Creation waits for us. Tying in with the previous verses where water is used for both creation and destruction, it seems to be that God’s word is involved with both creation and judgement. As a (hopefully not total derailment, etc.) I am partial, with John Stott, to Annihilationism as an interpretation of immortality and judgement. The end of verse 7 would be an example of that.

3 Likes

Why aren’t you considering that when Peter says water he means just simply water? Doesn’t Peter go on to say that “by means of these (waters) the world was deluged”? Doesn’t that indicate he is talking about literal water there?

This seems like a clear signpost back to the Genesis flood. This speaks to God’s judgement. It’s also interesting that waters are referenced in creation and in destruction. It almost like it’s saying “I created you out of chaos [water] and I can return you to chaos [water]”.

When God flooded the world, did he do so with “chaos” or with water? Did Noah build an Ark to escape the rising chaos? Or water?

This seems like a clear signpost back to the Genesis flood.

Without question. And what WAS the Genesis flood? Worldwide, or just a regional/local event? Or did it really happen at all?

1 Like

I am hoping to jostle your thinking. The Bible was interpreted as supporting Geocentrism for quite a while, including by early Church fathers. If we adopted your approach, we would be rejecting interpretations of the scientific method that support Heliocentrism.

2 Likes

This is a clear cut example of how we see things differently. Many of us read the scriptures and we look for the timeless truth. We read the first three chapters of Genesis and say what was the point?

I read it and find that the point was that even given the ability to walk in the presence of God in paradise, man will sin. If that one man will sin, the rest of us will too. So, we’d better begin to look for a Redeemer.

This, again, shows the difference in how we read and digest scripture. God flooded “the world of that time” with water. But water was judgment for sin. It was a sign that we are all destined for death. So, did he build an ark to escape the water or the chaos? For us, both. The ark is a sign of salvation. It is passage through death, a death that was deserved and a chance at new life. This is truly what it means to me.

5 Likes

I ask because the council of Trent was issued by the apostate Roman church specifically for antathematizing people like myself who believe in the true gospel of faith alone.

But, there was literal water involved in this event. It was a worldwide, or a local flood?

1 Like