Gap Theory & Two Floods, Fact or Fiction?
Many years ago while sorting out for myself what the truth of the matter was regarding evolution (what was taught to me in school), Creation (what was taught to me in church), how the dinosaurs fit into the Holy Scriptures, how all of the animals could have fit in Noah’s ark, what could explain things like the Grand Canyon and plate tectonic movements, I can across the Answers in Genesis (AIG) ministry.
The purpose of this article is not to address my beliefs on whether or not I completely agree with AIG’s ministry or not (I do not), but their books, particularly the ones written by Ken Ham, offer reasonable explanations to all of the above questions. I learned what likely happened to the dinosaurs, how they were all able to fit on Noah’s ark, how the Grand Canyon was formed and then finally the Holy Scriptures explained plate tectonics to me. My questions were answered, my faith was satisfied.
“Let it not be! Indeed, let God be true but every man a liar.” Romans 3:4a
In doing all of this research I had decided during those days to pick up an evolution book, so that I would also understand their ‘side’. The truth is, I had always believed in Creation, ever since such thoughts came to mind, but during school I had begun to wonder quite a bit about how dinosaurs fit into the bible. I had even asked a pastor who, though he tried the best he could, was unable to provide a satisfactory answer. As I began to try to understand the evolutionist arguments (I did not pay attention to such things in science class) I ran across a few sentences in the book I had purchased.
These sentences went from talking about millions/billions of years to suddenly mentioning Jesus Christ, my Lord and Savior. Out of nowhere and seemingly not fitting in the context of the book, the author suddenly lashed out against our Lord with very blasphemous statements and eventually ending the few sentence rant with a statement on the line of ‘whoever believes in Jesus Christ is an idiot’. The book thereafter went into the trash, after all I just simply wanted to know what exactly was their basis for theory, apparently I was not going to get an honest non-compromised viewpoint. Right there I learned that there is a war between science and God.
I continued my study into creationism as I wanted to be able to defend the faith.
“Preach the Word. Be ready in season and out of season. Convict, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching.” 2nd Timothy 4:2
Working with a bunch of other young people at a restaurant, we often got into some pretty exciting talks about God, Christianity, etc. While there was no agreement amongst us, I used it as an opportunity to witness to those whom I worked with. They were certainly willing to listen and with each and every discussion I also learned much more, as I made sure to be able to refute them from the Holy Scriptures. One of the key things that I had to go up against, especially with those who profess no faith in Christ, was that the bible was made up, fiction. Science had warped the minds of these monkeys and they were unwilling to believe God, despite the fact that they, like myself, knew little or nothing of the actual science or theories behind evolution. They simply knew that things were millions/billions of years old and man supposedly evolved from monkeys/apes/whatever. I believe it can actually be traced back to slime from some sort of pool of water, if we desire to be technical of the evolutionist thoughts. Regardless, it is a wrong theory, in fact it is a lie!
However, I began to also learn of how the church was trying to compromise with science, though it is my understanding that science NEVER compromised with the church. Even though there may be many so-called Christians or churches who are willing to take and try to prove through the Holy Scriptures that BOTH science and the bible is correct, science has NEVER taken that bait. They (science) do not want to believe in a God that they will be held accountable to. Yes, all men will be held accountable.
…”for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God…” Romans 3:23
“And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God. And books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, out of the things which were written in the books. 13 And the sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one, according to their works.
14 And Death and Hades were cast into the Lake of Fire. This is the second death. 15 And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the Lake of Fire. ” Revelation of Jesus Christ 20:12-15
In doing so I came across something called the ‘Gap Theory’. Between Genesis 1:1 and 1:2 there is thought to be by some a ‘gap’ of time that could amount to millions/billions of years. For some, this opens the doors to theistic evolution. This is the belief held by millions of religious people, including the Roman Catholic church, that things evolved, then God put a soul into man. Some simply say that things evolved and then God created man. Is it a perfect union between science and religion? No, both these religious ideas or compromise and science DO NOT correlate with the God’s Word. Neither are correct.
What about a ‘Gap Theory’ that does not allow for evolution, but allows for a prior creation and a prior flood that wiped out that creation?
Here we get to a different error to correct. This is a much more difficult one, one that on the surface seems to agree with both God’s Word AND science, without allowing for evolution. What this theory, which is called the Ruin-Reconstruction theory does, is allow for supposedly both. Right off the back I will tell you that science DOES NOT accept this…remember they still don’t want to believe in the Most High God.
“The fool has said in his heart, There is no God!” Psalms 14:1a
However, what does this do for the Christian’s faith. Apparently the creation movement is split into two beliefs systems (probably more), one being the Young Earth Creationist and the other those who believe in both a young and old creation. What entails this belief and where does it come from?
Thomas Chalmers was the first to make this ‘Gap Theory’ view widespread. While I know little or nothing about Mr. Chalmers life (who lived around the same time as Darwin, in the early through later 1800’s), I do know that his supporters like to point out that his theory was prior to Darwin’s, but was it?
Certainly Darwin’s theory of evolution, which has been proven wrong again and again, just study RNA/DNA briefly, of which Darwin knew nothing about, was mass publicized in 1859 by the publication of his book, On The Origin of Species. For a bit of brief education let me make known the FULL TITLE of Darwin’s book: On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life…heard of eugenics? Nonetheless, it is stated that Chalmer’s theory was first, Chalmer’s having died in 1847.
What is not told is that Darwin had already published articles and books in the 1830’s and on, the debate in the scientific/religious communities was already ongoing. Therefore, to say that Chalmer’s came up with the idea before people were questioning the validity of God’s Word would be incorrect. These theories were already floating amongst the intellectuals and scientific communities in those days. So let’s take a look at this ‘Gap Theory’ in relation to how Christians who claim to faithfully believe and declare God’s Word fit into this debate.
The ‘Gap Theory’ that supposedly supports the faithful believing of the Word of God, Creation, etc., also allows for belief in a SECOND Flood, a SECOND prior judgment, a SECOND Creation, essentially a second earth. With this the theories of what happened during the FIRST Creation can abound!
Perhaps, as some would find evidence to suggest, there could have been some sort of war in the heavens with Satan and his dominion (the sons of God) having lived on earth doing whatever it was they were doing. During this time, it could be that is when Satan fell from Heaven. These are some of the theories that purport themselves. Yet, where does such things come from?
All of this starts with the belief of a gap of time between Genesis 1:1 and 1:2, with then extra verses to supposedly support this idea…perhaps the theory actually begins with Genesis 1:28. The word in question is ‘replenish’, which is found in the King James Version (KJV). In the VW Edition, that I usually use, and many other more modern English versions (of which I still believe the KJV is by far the best out of all that is readily available for the masses) the word is ‘fill’ (this also includes Genesis 9:1). Big difference, which is right?
I don’t think an argument on wording in Hebrew verses modern English is going to work on most who believe in this ‘Gap Theory’. Why?
Simply put, this is often something that is proclaimed by KJV-Only. I want to establish that I firmly believe that the KJV version is the ONLY mass produced English bible that I recommend, nothing else. If someone wants the Word of God, this is where they can find it. However, where I differ with some is that I do not think it is without error. I do not think it is riddled with errors, but the above translation issue of replenish vs. fill and even heavens vs. heaven (Gen. 1:1) would certainly be a couple of things that I would point out as proof of the KJV not being without error. After all, did not the original KJV include the Apocrypha? Enough said, this is not about KJV and it’s supposed infallibility or not, but about the ‘Gap Theory’.
Many Creationist, professing Christians and denominations go back and forth on this topic of the ‘Gap Theory’. Remember we are simply focusing on the ‘Gap Theory’ in terms of that which proclaims to accept Creation AND allows for millions/billions of years. The one that gives an explanation for the supposed problem with the geologic and fossil records. The one that suggests that the dinosaurs were killed in the FIRST Flood, not the second. In doing so, they claim to still fully believe God’s Word AND allow for science’s explanation of million/billions of years. The proponents of such things use many support verses to support their theory.
So how does one go about arguing or debating the ‘Gap Theory’. If an argument about what the Hebrew/Greek really says will not work (due to the fact that they believe the KJV to be infallible) then what will convince them? Perhaps nothing, but I’m going to take a shot at it, using basic common sense and God’s word.
Common sense, this is a funny thing considering those who believe in the ‘Gap Theory’ accuse the Young Creationist Crowd of not having any and being militant toward their beliefs, in fact doing a disservice towards the Most High God. Where does the actual evidence of the theory of an extra judgment and an extra flood come from?
Sure, someone could knit together a very loose theory, but just because the earth was supposedly floating in a ocean of water in the firmaments like a fishing bobber, doesn’t mean that it was sitting void due to God’s judgment, a FIRST Flood. Maybe there was a big solar storm that caused a bunch of electronics (those believing in the ‘Gap Theory’ do not believe that man (at least with a soul) was created until the SECOND Creation) that the angels were using. All of their IPods, Laptops, etc., overheated and caused many fires to spread. Then, who knows, at the same time perhaps a big windstorm hit many parts of the earth and the fire spread, causing God to drop the earth into an ocean of water to cool it down, because it had been on fire.
Ridiculous, I know so, but I also think it is ridiculous for Christians to teach such things to other Believers of which WE KNOW NOTHING ABOUT!
“But refuse profane and old wives’ fables, and exercise yourself toward godliness.” 1st Timothy 4:7
Shall we explain Melchizedek?
“For this Melchizedek, king of Salem, priest of the Most High God, who met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings and blessed him, 2 to whom also Abraham gave a tenth part of all, first being translated king of righteousness, and then also king of Salem, meaning king of peace, 3 without father, without mother, without genealogy, having neither beginning of days nor end of life, but made like the Son of God, remains a priest continually.” Hebrews 7:1-3
Essentially in a nutshell, the space between Genesis 1:1 and 1:2 accounts for an earth that had been ‘up and running’ at least for the angelic beings and then for whatever reason was destroyed, flooded and recreated with man put on it. Why not just believe what God says? That is not what men want to do.
When I was younger my wife and I went to a very remote spot in northwest Oklahoma, the panhandle. There is hardly anything there, no radio stations, no cell phone service (this about ten or so years ago) and a beautiful dark night where one can enjoy all of the stars. We were looking for dinosaur footprints that could be found in a dried up riverbed, just sitting there, a testimony to the biblical Flood, that is Noah’s Flood. In this rural community we had to look for any signs of life and found a post office inside of trailer. Here, an older woman told us where we could find these footprints, as there was NO sign, no park, nothing to indicate that these were there. Sure enough, off the side of the road we found these footprints, apparently ignored by the scientific community.
Is it so hard to believe the Word of God, to take into account the literal words? Do we not believe Him or should we start with Genesis 1:2 on and proclaim that we believe the literal Word of God, but then excuse ourselves for the supposed gap that is found between verse 1 and 2? There are theological problems with the belief of the ‘Gap Theory.’ The theory is not biblical and, despite the attempts of many of those who proclaim to be Christians, it is not accepted by science either.
So just what is the problem with the ‘Gap Theory’? The ‘Gap Theory’ not only undermines God’s ability and our faith in His Word, but also undermines the entire Gospel message, it undermines Salvation through Jesus Christ. How you say?
“But test all things; hold fast what is good.” 1st Thessalonians 5:21
“For in six days Jehovah made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore Jehovah has blessed the Sabbath day and consecrated it.” Exodus 20:11
“It is a perpetual sign between Me and the children of Israel; for in six days Jehovah made the heavens and the earth, and on the seventh day He rested and was refreshed.” Exodus 31:17
Clearly, as it should be readily seen, the argument that God did NOT create ‘water’ as found in Genesis 1:2, a part of the ‘Gap Theory’ argument, is invalid. They (‘Gap Theory’ believers) say the water was already there, well, then how is it ‘the sea’ was created?
“To Eber were born two sons: the name of one was Peleg, for in his days the earth was divided; and his brother’s name was Joktan.” Genesis 10:25
One of the things often overlooked by people is the facts of the fossil records which show similarities between fossils on one continent. Have they ever looked through the Holy Scriptures and noted the above verse? Talk about plate tectonics!
Looking into the ‘Gap Theory’ I saw a large problem with the biblical doctrine of Salvation, how sin and death entered into the world, etc.
“And God saw everything that He had made, and indeed it was extremely good. Thus, the evening and the morning: Day Six.” Genesis 1:31
If everything was ‘extremely good’ then what would be the explanation to the following question:
1.) Is an earth that has been judged, in the process of being redone (complete with the supposed fossil record of God’s judgment and destruction upon the inhabitants of the earth) extremely good?
When one takes and remodels a colonial style home, a historic home, trying to keep all of the characteristics of the original era/etc., is it as good as the original? Though the house is recreated or remodeled, does it match or exceed the original?
“To them it was revealed that, not to themselves, but to us they were ministering the things which now have been reported to you through those who have preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from Heaven; things which angels desire to look into.” 1st Peter 1:12
Most ‘Gap Theory’ adherents presume that Satan and his minions lived on the earth, many with the assumption that there was man, though without a soul, who lived here on the original created earth. These same adherents assume that the ‘sons of God’ or angels were given the chance to repent and be saved, however, how is that even possible when we have the account given above that shows the Gospel is something ‘which angels desire to look into’? They also believe in another judgment on the earth, one which was also done by a flood. Even Jesus only mentions Noah’s flood and make NO mention of any other judgment upon the earth. They have added to the Holy Scriptures a doctrine that is not found, a SECOND judgment, a SECOND flood. There will be another judgment, but it will be of fire, not of water.
What is the origin of sin and death in this world and how is this contrary to those who proclaim the ‘Gap Theory’ as doctrinal?
“And he said, I heard the sound of You in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; and I hid myself. 11 And He said, Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree of which I commanded you not to eat? 12 And the man said, The woman whom You gave to be with me, she has given to me of the tree, and I ate. 13 And Jehovah God said to the woman, What is this you have done? And the woman said, The serpent deceived me, and I ate. 14 So Jehovah God said to the serpent: Because you have done this, you are cursed more than all beasts, and more than every living thing of the field; on your belly you shall go, and you shall eat dust all the days of your life. 15 And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her Seed; He shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise His heel. 16 To the woman He said: I will greatly multiply your sorrow and your conception; in pain you shall bring forth children; your desire shall be for your husband, and he shall rule over you. 17 And to Adam He said, Because you have heeded the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree of which I commanded you, saying, You shall not eat of it: Cursed is the ground for your sake; in toil you shall eat of it all the days of your life. 18 Both thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you, and you shall eat the plants of the field. 19 In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread till you return to the ground, for out of it you have been taken; for dust you are, and to dust you shall return.” Genesis 3:10-19
“Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to every person, because everyone sinned.” Romans 5:12
“For as through one man’s disobedience many were declared sinners, so also through one Man’s obedience many will be declared righteous.” Romans 5:19
“For we know that the whole creation groans and travails together until now.” Romans 8:22
Clearly in Genesis Chapter 3 we see that the Curse was given as sin had entered the world and with that also death. Christ put away sin for those who will accept Him. The ‘Gap Theory’ undermines Salvation and the holy character of God. The ‘Gap Theory’ claims of a prior time where death and sin were already in the world. Yet the Holy Scriptures declares that sin came through man.
“For since through man came death, through Man also came the resurrection of the dead. 22 For as in Adam everyone dies, even so in Christ everyone shall be made alive.” 1st Corinthians 15:21-22
How can this be? Which is correct, God’s Word or those who try to twist it to allow for millions/billions of years?
“For God is not of confusion but of peace, as in all the churches of the saints.” 1st Corinthians 14:33
I am not ashamed to believe what the bible teaches. How shall I answer about the ‘flaming sword’ that guarded the Tree of Life or about how Jesus fed thousands with but a little bit of fish and bread? How shall I answer about Samson, Joseph, Abraham, let alone Jesus and all of the miracles He did. By faith, by believing what God has told us is how I shall answer.
“You alone are Jehovah; You have made the heavens, the Heaven of the heavens, with all their host, the earth and everything on it, the seas and all that is in them, and You preserve them all alive. The host of the Heavens bow down before You.” Nehemiah 9:6