Re: Jude 14 and the age of the world
Sun, 18 Apr 1999 16:21:58 EDT

<< > The idea of a universe older than c. six or ten thousand years does not
> naturally from Scripture. It has to be read in from science.
> Paul


My point is not that we are bound by the interpretations of the Church, but
that since for 1500 years nearly if not all Christians understood the Bible
to be reflecting if not teaching that the earth was less than 6000 years old,
that is the view which arises naturally from Scripture. Further, this seems
to be the view the Jews held prior to Christ. The fact that no one saw a
really old earth in Scripture until the rise of science tells me that it is
the input of science that led to that view.

The meaning of the word "day" as it is used in the six creation days is a
little more controversial even from early times; but, again, I have never
seen any evidence that anyone until the rise of science thought the days of
the creation week were longer than 24-hour days. This is evidence to me that
seeing the days of the creation week as 24-hour days (or possibly half-days)
is the most natural straight-forward understanding of the biblical text, and
that seeing the "days" of the creation week as long epochs came from
considering scientific data.

The original question was, what is the meaning of Jude 14? Within the
context of the world view of that time, there is no question that Jude was
thinking of a universe less than 6000 years old. At least that is where all
of the available evidence points; and I know of no evidence from the time of
Jude or 200BC to 200AD which even suggests that any Jews or Christians held a
contrary view.