“How Old Is the Earth?” series (post #4)
There is no passage in which Jesus provides the exact age of the earth. There are, however, multiple passages in which He verifies the Genesis account of history by referencing various stories from Genesis. Interestingly, He seems to go out of His way to reference the ones that people find the most incredible and hardest to believe (i.e. Creation, Adam and Eve, Satan’s fall, Noah’s ark, and Sodom and Gomorrah). Here’s the list:
- God created creation. (Mark 13:19)
- Adam and Eve were a real couple who were around at the “beginning” of creation. (Matthew 19:3-6, Mark 10:6-9)
- Satan’s fall occurred sometime around the “beginning” of creation. (John 8:44)
- Cain and Abel were real brothers who were around at “the foundation of the world,” and Cain really did murder Abel. (Luke 11:49-51, Matthew 23:34-35)
- Noah was a real man who built a real ark to escape a real worldwide flood. (Matthew 24:37-39, Luke 17:26-27)
- Abraham was a real man who was the father of the Jewish race. (John 8:37-58, Matthew 8:11, Matthew 22:32, Luke 13:16, Luke 13:28, Luke 19:9, Luke 20:37)
- Sodom and Gomorrah were real cities who were destroyed in judgment. (Matthew 10:15, Matthew 11:23-24)
- Lot was a real man who fled from real fire and brimstone that rained down upon Sodom and Gomorrah, and his wife was a real person who really did look back toward Sodom and in so doing had her body turned into a real pillar of salt (Luke 17:28-32).
- Isaac was a real man who was Abraham’s real son. (Matthew 8:11, Matthew 22:32, Mark 12:26, Luke 13:28, Luke 20:37)
- Jacob was a real man who was Isaac’s real son. (Matthew 8:11, Matthew 22:32, Mark 12:26, Luke 13:28, Luke 20:37)
By the way, in case you are interested, Jesus also referenced (thus verifying) the stories:
- Moses and the burning bush (Luke 20:37)
- Moses lifting up the bronze serpent on the pole in the wilderness (John 3:14)
- God sending the Israelites manna to eat (John 6:30-33)
- The queen of Sheba’s visit to king Solomon (Matthew 12:42)
- Elijah predicting a three-and-a-half-year drought upon Israel and being sent to the home of the widow of Zarephath (Luke 4:25-26)
- Elisha healing the leprosy of Naaman (Luke 4:27)
- Jonah being swallowed by a great fish (Matthew 12:38-41)
You see, before we start dismissing the stories of the Old Testament as myths, legends, allegories, or fairy tales, we’d do well to realize that Jesus took them seriously and literally. He used them as examples to teach others about: sin, judgment, salvation, God’s omnipotence, God’s plan for mankind, God’s program of prophecy, obeying God, and living for God. Therefore, anytime we start drawing lines of distinction between Christ’s teaching and all that “Old Testament stuff” we get into serious trouble theologically and doctrinally.
And so what does all of this show us concerning what Jesus taught about the age of the earth? The answer is simple:
- He taught that God created creation (Mark 13:19), the obvious implication being that God did it just as Genesis chapters 1 and 2 describe, which equates to a literal week of 24-hour days.
- He taught that Adam and Eve were there for the “beginning” of creation (Matthew 19:3-6, Mark 10:6-9), which only makes sense if they were created on day six of the creation week.
- He taught that Satan’s fall occurred sometime around the “beginning” of creation (John 8:44), which makes perfect sense in regards to the Genesis storyline because Satan shows up in Genesis 3:1, inside the serpent, to tempt Eve.
- He taught that Abel’s blood was shed from “the foundation of the world” (Luke 11:49-51), which only makes sense if Abel’s death was relatively close to the creation week.
Lastly, here’s one more line of thought for you to consider. I’ll close with this:
- God spoke directly to Moses and used the seven days of the creation week as His example for why He was commanding the Jewish people to observe a weekly Sabbath day (Exodus 20:1,8-11).
- Jesus said, “I and My Father are one.” (John 10:30)
- Jesus was the Word from the beginning, and was not only with God, but was God. (John 1:1-2)
- Jesus is the image of the invisible God. (Colossians 1:15)
- All things were made through Jesus, and without Him nothing was made that was made. (John 1:3, Hebrews 1:1)
- By Jesus all things were created that are in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, and all things were created through Him and for Him. (Colossians 1:16)
- Therefore, in light of all these facts, it follows then that God’s example to Moses concerning the creation week was at the very least agreed with by Jesus or, perhaps even more, actually voiced by Jesus.