Grudem: Old Earth vs. Young Earth

I think this is a healthy approach to the issue of the age of the earth:

How old is the earth then? Where does this discussion leave us? [Davis] Young’s arguments for an old earth based on many kinds of scientific data from different disciplines seem (to the present writer at least) to be very strong.

Although our conclusions are tentative, at this point in our understanding, Scripture seems to be more easily understood to suggest (but not to require) a young earth view, while the observable facts of creation seem increasingly to favor an old earth view. Both views are possible, but neither one is certain.

Given this situation, it would seem best (1) to admit that God may not allow us to find a clear solution to this question before Christ returns, and (2) to encourage evangelical scientists and theologians who fall in both the young earth and old earth camps to begin to work together with much less arrogance, much more humility, and a much greater sense of cooperation in a common purpose.

Progress will certainly be made if old earth and young earth scientists who are Christians will be more willing to talk to each other without hostility, ad hominem attacks, or highly emotional accusations, on the one hand, and without a spirit of condescension or academic pride on the other, for these attitudes are not becoming to the body of Christ, nor are the characteristic of the way of wisdom, which is ‘first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, without uncertainty or insincerity,’ and full of the recognition that ‘the harvest of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace’ (James 3:17-18).

— Wayne Grudem, Systematic Theology, p. 307-8.

(HT: Take Your Vitamin Z)

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