Why Does the Universe Look Old?


Posted by Matt Postiff January 6, 2011 on Matt Postiff's Blog under Creation 

This question sits in the middle of the debate over the age of the earth. The whole notion of young earth creationism is attacked because of the creation's appearance of age. How do we explain the appearance of age?

  1. God created a mature creation. Trees were bearing fruit. Animals and Adam and Eve were in their adult state, ready to reproduce and fill the earth. Sunlight, moonlight, and starlight were shining on the earth to demarcate day from night and to mark months, seasons, and years.
  2. God cursed sinful mankind after the Fall in Genesis 3. The serpent was cursed; the woman was cursed in childbearing and in her relationship to her husband; and the man was cursed in his working of the ground. Both man and woman began to physically degrade toward their impending death.
  3. God catastrophically flooded the entire earth. The effect was a rearrangement of topography, the death and fossilization of millions of animals, the destruction of massive amounts of organic material, and so forth.

The earth and creation appears old because it has been through a lot. Perhaps an illustration would help. Imagine a young man or woman 25 years old. They are in the height of physical and mental condition. They are handsome and beautiful people. They are not infants, and so appear to be their age. But then the curse of cancer strikes. It takes a massive toll on their bodies. The treatment doesn't help to keep them looking young. And then they get into a massive car accident that leaves them maimed for the rest of their lives. Is it any wonder there is an appearance of great age even if they are still only in their mid twenties?

The Institute for Creation Research has posted a longer answer to this question by Al Mohler. It is here.

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