The recent debate by Ken Ham, founder of the Creation Museum in northern Kentucky, and Bill Nye, the TV “science guy,” concerning the origins of earth and its inhabitants provoked at least two Lexington Herald--Leader columns. Both writers used or implied the definition of creationism as a spontaneous making of the world by God in six 24-hour days. One columnist termed the debate as “evolution vs. creationism.”
The definition of creationism: “a doctrine or theory holding that matter, the various forms of life, and the world were created by God out of nothing and usually in the way described in Genesis.” This includes nothing concerning time or any sort of evolution of anything before or after the fact.
One columnist referred to the “Big Bang Theory” as a given, defined as “a theory in astronomy: the universe originated billions of years ago in an explosion from a single point of nearly infinite energy density.” This is probably the theory (not fact) held by most academicians, who believe the explosion is ongoing and that earth is still being propelled from somewhere to actually nowhere since it's inconceivable that the energy can be neutralized, or at least neutralized by any imagined force (a stronger “Big Bang?”). No one has defined or located the “single point” or how detonated.
It's pointless to debate creationism, whether involving 6,000 years or thousands/billions of years, vis-a-vis naturalism (evolutionary science) since both require faith to accept, the former in God and the latter in man. No one has any idea of the world's makeup 6,000 years ago. The creationist can believe the Genesis account as involving six 24-hour days, but a creationist can also see the Genesis process covering a long period, in light of II Peter 3:8, “...With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day.”
Scientific consensus is that the world is 4.5 – 5 billion years old. The consensus of astronomers is accounted as the universe being 12 – 14 billion years old, beginning with the Big Bang. It seems reasonable that the age of the earth and universe would be the same if they originated with the Big Bang but the academicians think otherwise, as if anyone can comprehend those numbers concerning anything but the national debt.
I'm a creationist with the long view regarding the physical earth and inhabitants but insist that humankind was a spontaneous construct by God, whether 6,000 years ago or six million, and not any part of a chain involving evolution from “lower” forms and transitioning into “higher” forms (like maybe the UFO greenies). The young-earth creationist can believe the Grand Canyon was made in a twinkling while I, also a creationist, can believe it was carved out by water-induced erosion over millions of years. No one can say for sure that he's right because no inhabitant of that era/area or successive ones has ever produced a real-time record.
The believer conceives of the human as a soul, while the naturalist conceives of him as just another organism. Believing the latter is to apply only physical attributes to man, putting him on animal-level, with instincts rather than reason motivating his behavior. Communist atheists Stalin and Mao-tse-tung, acting instinctively to gain worldwide dominance, considered people not as souls but as things and therefore expendable by the manifold millions.
One columnist quoted a poll indicating that only 43% of republicans believe in evolution, while 67% of democrats do. Does this mean that republicans (conservatives) are not “know-it-alls” and that democrats (progressives) are? In four years, President Obama progressively evolved (his term, so no pun intended) from insisting marriage to be only a man-woman thing to man-man now. Non-evolving Senator McConnell says “nay.”
The other columnist wrote that he couldn't conceive of a human and dinosaur sharing the earth concomitantly, though he has no idea when either one originated or about the makeup of the world more than a few thousand years ago, based only on speculation informed by very short-term scientific research—in other words, the notions of wildly disagreeing “experts.”
Even many ministers (Ph.d crowd) consider at least the first 11 chapters of Genesis as myth. I take it as truth, with the long view— thousands, millions, billions of years. Who knows? God spoke...period!
And so it goes.