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Melbourne, VIC, Australia
2nd Grade Teacher at a school in Melbourne, Australia. My job: push kids to think. My passion: helping kids to tackle the life-long skill of searching for meaning, skills, answers and more questions.

Sunday, 19 August 2012

Evolution and Creation Meet - Part 2

God said, Let there be light, and there was light."  

The question my kidlets have asked... repeatedly... is, "Wasn't that just the Big Bang?" 

Many see this relationship as a convenient fit.  Some even see it as a convenient way to totally discredit all religion.  I have 10yr old kids in my class who are looking for 'rational', scientific answers to 'the-whole-shebang'.  One in particular will tell anyone who cares to ask that he still doesn't believe in God... at all.
People's religious beliefs are not actually my business.  I'm in the business of educating the heart and the mind.  The soul is the responsibility of the owner. HOWEVER, my little mate still doesn't believe in "A white, old, man with a magic finger who 'magics' things from the clouds." 

I can't allow my kids to be that misinformed about ANY religion.  I do see it as my duty to meet this kid where he is at and try to open his mind... not his heart or soul.

In a repeat of a few months ago, we began talking about what my mate does believe in... only this time, I figured a visual might help him remember this second attempt.

My goal:  Show that the six 'days' of Creation match with the story of Evolution proposed by our scientific community. 
Why?  So this kid can be informed.  So he doesn't walk around thinking that we all believe in the marshmallow man - quietly pondering to himself how such outwardly rational people could be such idiots.

Let's begin with the length of a God Day.  We've just established that the universe is approximately 13.5 Billion years old.  We've discussed what came before the Big Bang and we've agreed to assume for argument's sake that God put this into place - around 13.5 Billion years ago.  We agree pretty quickly that a God Day is NOT 24hrs.

That - in fact - is another maths lesson altogether.

A God Day, we agree, could be BILLIONS of years.  We can't know for sure. We understand that this doesn't matter at all.  We agree that Genesis puts the story in days so we can fathom the passing of time.  Six major events happen in a particular order.  That's all we need to agree upon for now.

Next we need a scientific understanding of the universe.  My last blog post outlines that pretty clearly.  We discussed all of this in class.  Nobody had the slightest inclination to refute any of the evidence.  We took it as 'Gospel' in a way.

Finally, the overlaying of the text from Genesis to see where certain events fit.  Let the photos begin.

 This seems the easiest step to take.  I can't wait to put the question to my kids, "What was before this?"

 The universe had begun.  The first phase of 'the-whole-shebang' had started.  Step one complete.


 This second day took about 8 Billion years.  God probably deserved a break after this one, but he soldiered on.  Then again, perhaps a God Day doesn't work like that?  Perhaps we're not supposed to take this literally?  Perhaps it was just the end of another phase of Creation?  Hmmmmmmmmmmm.

 Dry ground is the start of the third day.  This day kinda takes its time too.  We're talking from dry ground to plants bearing fruit spanning around 2.5 Billion years.  2,500,000,000 Years.  There are a lot of different plants after all.  Personally, I think God did a stunning job creating our planet.  I'm glad he wasn't in a rush to watch the Sunday football.

 Still third day.  Lot going on.  Plant life is beginning with 10 Billion years already on the clock since the beginning of the universe.  Note that I've crossed out my hastily-written 'The Third Day'.  I hadn't realised at the time what a 'long day' that was for God.

 Trees are bearing fruit.  Sweet!  However, we're at around 1 Billion years to go here.  Again, I was pretty amazed that plant life as we know it is so 'new' to the planet.  

I bet you thought that Dinosaurs had been around for AGES by now too?  Nope.  They show up with around 300 Million left on the clock before us.  The teeth marks you see above are from a ferocious Ragdoll kitten who gets a little too curious about what Dad's working on in the study.

 Here is where I need help.

Why is the moon and the stars in this position?
Somebody (who's read this far) please help me to understand why the celestial bodies are mentioned at this point in the timeline?  We really should be looking at no more than 500 Million years ago.

Science tells us that the Moon was created by an impact event some 4 Billion years earlier.

Did it take this long for the moon to coalesce into its current shape from all that debris?

Was it at this point that the oceans and seasons were being affected?

Somebody - help.

 We're back on track with the fishies of the seas and the birdies of the sky at this point.  Science and Genesis agree that these occurred in this particular order.  Soon after, we have the onset of living creatures on the land.  Check the last post for semi-exact deets (details).  The fifth day took a few hundred million years.  Perhaps the footy was about to start after all....

 Beauty.  We've made it.  Wellllll, Captain Caveman has made it.  See that blue line there under the words. "Present Day"?  That really accounts for all of humanity.  From our earliest, hairiest ancestors to modern day lads and lasses out in town early on a Sunday morning.  All of us are this magnificent fraction of a millimeter in the Big Scheme O Things.

What does our future hold?  If we make it to the paper where the words, "The Sixth Day" begins, humanity will have lasted for a good 100 Million years longer.  Wonder what Our population will be then?

Everything adds up then...  Science tells us one story and the bible very nearly collaborates the whole story.  Perhaps you see it the other way around?  The bible DID come first after all.  Perhaps it is science which is proving the story of Genesis to be 'pretty darned accurate'?  

The only help we need now is to figure out the positioning of day four.  That Moon of ours is causing me some headaches.  Everything else seemed to fit snugly.  I have some theories for this problem, but I'd love to hear yours before pressing on with my own inquiry.

Why does it matter if this adds up?

I asked my little mate if he now understood that being a believer in Evolution DID NOT put him completely at odds with me.  He smiled and said, "OH.  I believe in THAT God."

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