Does the Bible teach us the age of the earth? That's just one of the questions we'll be answering on today's edition of CORE Christianity. Well, hi, I'm Bill Meyer, along with Pastor Adriel Sanchez, and this is the radio program where we answer your questions about the Bible and the Christian life every day. We'd love to hear from you. Here's our phone number. It's 833-THE-CORE. Call us for the next 20-25 minutes or so.
833-843-2673. You can also post your question on one of our social media sites. You can watch Adriel live in the studio right now on our YouTube channel and send him your question through YouTube. And of course, you can always email us your question at questionsatcorechristianity.com. First up today, here's a voicemail we received from one of our listeners. Hey, Pastor Adriel. My question is, what is your process for scripture memorization?
Thank you. Yeah, scripture memorization. I mean, currently, I mean, I've done different things in the past.
I don't have a process that I'm going through right now. You know, it's sort of interesting to me is a lot of the verses that I have memorized, I have memorized from a long time ago, even from when I first started studying the scriptures. I don't know if it's because the Bible was just sort of new to me then, so whatever I read stuck with me. But now, I would say, typically, I think things that I've done over the years, you know, sometimes just going through a book or if you're picking a chapter to memorize, going through that chapter every day. I like writing the chapter out and then going through it like that, little by little. I think you can memorize large portions of scripture in that way.
Also, music. Let's not underestimate the power of song to memorize scripture. And so, one of the things we're doing at our church right now is we have a Psalm of the Month, so we do the same psalm that we sing every week that month. And it's a great way to memorize scripture, to memorize a particular psalm so that you can think back to it singing, you know, God's word.
But I mean, it's definitely something that I think should be encouraged. I mean, we want to be in the Word of God, studying the Word of God, reading it, meditating on it, memorizing it where we're able to. I think of what the psalmist said in Psalm 119, beginning in verse 9. How can a young man keep his way pure? By guarding it according to your word. With my whole heart I seek you. Let me not wander from your commandments. I have stored up your word in my heart that I might not sin against you. And so, that's just a great encouragement for all of us to store the Word of God up in our hearts, whatever that looks like, whether that looks like a process of Bible memorization, you know, writing a chapter out every single day, that kind of a thing, or just reading the scriptures and meditating on them every day, being under the ministry of the Word on Sunday mornings there with the gathered assembly. Let's store the Word of God in our hearts.
Let me just ask you a follow-up question, Adriel. When you are in a situation, let's say a difficult situation where you have to make a decision or in some kind of relational conflict or dealing with something at your church, do certain verses come to mind and you go, oh, this would apply here, this is what God would have me do here? Yeah, absolutely. I mean, I think that's one of the ways that the Holy Spirit works in our lives is we study the scripture. The Holy Spirit oftentimes will bring to mind passages, things that we've read, stories, and then I think that's just providentially one of the ways that the Lord guides us in our lives.
And so, I would say definitely. That's great. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. We'd encourage you to start digging into the Bible on a regular basis if you aren't already.
Make that a daily habit in your life. Well, we do receive emails here at Core Christianity, and here's our email address. It's questionsatcorechristianity.com. Here's one from one of our listeners named Derek, and Adriel Derek says, as a scientist who came to scripture and God rather late in life, it seems to me that nothing has so hurt the gospel over the past century as the doctrine of a young earth. It requires a broad spectrum of denials of physics, geology, cosmology, astrophysics, paleontology, anthropology, molecular biology, and more. Moses himself stated that a day in God's sight can be thousands of times greater than a mere earth day in Psalm 90 verse 4. I'm curious to hear what you think.
Wow, Derek. Well, thank you for that question. You know, there's, there's, and I know we have resources on the Bible and science.
Maybe it would be helpful to get a hold of one of those resources. And there's, sometimes I think people can just sort of assume that faith and science are at odds with each other. We don't, we don't think that here. The Bible is true in everything that it communicates to us. It is the inspired word of God. Now we can misinterpret the Bible or misunderstand what the Bible is communicating to us.
And there have been times in history where that's happened and it's, and it's quite clear. The question is, does the Bible intend to tell us how old the earth is? And of course, there's no, you know, date of birth given to us for, for the earth in, in scripture. It's, it's, you know, here's just a number that we're given in places like Genesis or elsewhere. Some people have calculated, you know, using scripture, they've tried to calculate at least the age of the earth. And so we think it's about six to then 10,000 years old. And they do this a couple of ways. One, by looking at the days in Genesis one, saying, okay, these are six 24 hour days.
And there are, there are questions about that. And two, calculating the length of time that, that passed between the genealogies that we see in places like Genesis chapter five, you have a genealogy from Adam to Noah, and then in Genesis chapter 11, a genealogy from Noah to Abraham. And then you add from, from Abraham to Jesus and so forth, getting, getting a sort of rough calculation for the age of the earth. But others make the case that, that Genesis one can refer to periods of time or ages, and that the genealogies may include gaps. This is actually something that we see elsewhere in, in genealogies and in scripture, that they're selective, that they pick particular individuals to highlight, often for, for a theological reason, they're, they're communicating something. And so it's not uncommon for genealogies to function that way, even, even in the Bible.
And certainly they functioned that way at times in the ancient Near East. Some people have also argued that, that Genesis chapters two through six span a longer period of time than, than we often assume. I mean, just, it's just a few chapters there. So we assume that this is just a short period of time, but there is a case that can be made.
This is, this is, this is a long period of time, actually. The scriptures are focusing on redemptive history, not, not on just everything. They're, they're focusing on God's promises in particular through the patriarchs. And we get that after the flood narrative and the raising up of, of Abraham, but prior to the flood, it's sometimes referred to as the, the, the pre-Diluvian time period.
Some people make the case, look, that was, that was a really long period of time. And what they'll do is they'll point to places like second Peter chapter three, where Peter seems to discuss that as, as, as its own separate world, if you will. Second Peter chapter three beginning in verse four, it's just talking about the coming of the Lord.
So some people will say, where is the promise of his coming? For ever since the fathers fell asleep, all things are continuing as they were from the beginning of creation. They deliberately overlook this fact that the heavens existed long ago and the earth was formed out of water and through water by the word of God. And that by means of these, the world that then existed was deluged with water and perished. And by the same word, the heavens and earth that now exist are stored up for fire being kept until the day of judgment and destruction of the ungodly. And so just viewing the pre-flood time as, as a separate world history in, in one sense, at the flood, you have this, this recreation of the world, this judgment that God brings. But, but that, you know, it could be that the, that, you know, what we have prior to the flood was a much longer period than, than we often assume.
Here's, here's, you know, my view. I mean, the point of the early chapters in Genesis isn't how old is the earth. The point of the early chapters in Genesis is that God is the sovereign king of all. The creator who has no one to come against him.
He doesn't have any, any rivals or any equals. He creates out of freedom, not out of necessity. These are the themes that we're getting in the early chapters of Genesis, especially with the creation. You also have this, this argument, this polemic against the pagan deities that were around Israel at the time. And so that, that's the focus of the early chapters of Genesis.
That doesn't mean that the age of the earth can't be deduced from what we, what we find there, but it's just not the main takeaway. And so, and so we want to make sure that we're focusing on, on the main thing. And, and, and so there's, there's differences on, on this. It's not one of those issues that, you know, if a Christian takes a different view than you do, you need to view them as a non-believer or as not having a high view of God's word, because the question is how to rightly interpret God's word. And so appreciate your question and grateful to hear that you've come to faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. May God bless you and strengthen you in the faith. Derek, thanks so much for your email. And we thank you for your life and the fact that you're really trying to dig into God's word and, and help it coincide with what you're doing there in the science world. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. Our phone lines are open right now.
If you have a question about the Bible or the Christian life, maybe doctrine, theology, perhaps there's a passage of scripture that kind of trips you up and you would like to ask Adriel about that, or maybe you have some doubts about the Christian faith. We're open to your call as well. Here's our phone number. It's 833-THE-CORE that's 1-833-843-2673. We'll be taking calls for the next 10 minutes or so. So hop on your phone right now.
We want to mention about an offer that we have available for you today. It's actually a book by Chris Morphew that will really help you if you have kids or grandkids who are asking that tough question, why does God let bad things happen? Yes, that's the name of the book, Why Does God Let Bad Things Happen?
And it's written for young children entering middle school and high school. And just what an important question for them to be able to answer for themselves and also when they're asked questions by their peers about what they believe, about some of the difficulties sometimes that we run into when we're thinking about the fact that we believe in a good God who created all things and yet we live in a fallen and broken world. We want to equip our children and our grandchildren to be able to talk about these things in a way that's intelligent and gets to the truth of God's word. And so get ahold of this resource over at corechristianity.com for a donation of any amount. Great resource for you and your family or for somebody you know.
Again, it's called Why Does God Let Bad Things Happen? You can find that by going to corechristianity.com forward slash offers. Well, let's go to a voicemail that came in from one of our listeners.
This is from Christy. My question is, as I have, I found out two years ago that my middle grandson is now a transgender female and I have been praying about it. I would like to hear a godly preacher give some type of feedback on this transgender issue.
It has been heartbreaking and no one has approached this subject. I appreciate your insight. Thank you. Bye-bye.
Well, I'm sorry to hear. I mean, it is absolutely heartbreaking and part of the issue is just where we've gone in terms of how we think about, and I was going to say we, I mean as a culture, where the culture has gone in terms of thinking about things like sexuality and gender, we've gone from viewing that as something that's given to us from above, if you will. You're born this way, male or female, that this is something that God is behind truly to viewing gender as just this construct that, you know, well, I feel this way.
I can be sort of more fluid. It's something that we can create for ourselves and there are a lot, you know, sort of deeper reasons behind this, both philosophically in terms of psychology and the way we've developed as a society in terms of thinking about some of these things. We've moved from what one historian says is from having a mimetic understanding of human identity. This is something that is given to you, it's passed on to you, to having a more poetic view of humanity and who we are as individuals. It's something we got to make, something that we have to create for ourselves and if that's the case, it's not a big jump from moving to, you know, I have to make myself what I am. I get to determine things like my sexuality based on my feelings.
It's not so much biological, it's more psychological. And so there are deep issues with the way in which we've begun to think about these things that are contrary to what the Bible teaches us. And so fundamentally there, I think we need to say there is an error, a theological error, an error in terms of our understanding of man, anthropology as well. And we need to go back to the teaching of the scriptures because so many people are deceived and we're seeing the devastation that's taking place as a result of that. I mean, the way in which young children even are sort of being brought up in this, it's absolutely heartbreaking.
And so what can you do? I think you continue to pray for your loved ones who are trapped by this, who have bought into this deception. I mean, there are, I think, serious, at times, psychological issues behind a lot of this. But then there's also just right now, this is the inundation of what culture is giving young adults and how that's shaping them.
And it's in many cases so very negative. And so we pray and cry out to God for his mercy, especially on our loved ones, that they would have eyes to see that we are created in the image of God, that that's the core of our identity, male and female, and called to follow God. Now there is the reality of the fall and the fact that we live in this broken world. And so we have these broken desires at times and feelings, and we have to take all of that to the Lord because it's only in Jesus Christ and by the grace of his Spirit that fallen humanity is restored.
And so pray and seek out your grandson and continue to have conversations and talk about the truth of God's Word and how God made them and pray that the Lord opens their hearts. And so appreciate your question. Again, such a difficult issue right now going on all around us, and also the Church needs to address. So well said.
Thanks for that, Adriel. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. And yes, we do deal with some difficult issues here at the Core, and that's one of the reasons why we encourage all of our listeners to be plugged into a solid Bible-believing church where they can find the truth of God's Word and also find relationships and accountability.
Those things are so critical. Well, our phone lines are open. If you have a question about the Bible or the Christian life, it's 833-THE-CORE. Let's go to Michael. Michael, what's your question for Pastor Adriel? Hello? Hey Michael, are you there? Yes, I am. I'm here.
I can hear you. My question is, in the Bible it condones slavery. It says that, you know, you should treat the master, should treat his slaves very well, and it actually condones slavery. So how do we use that in today's day and age when there's something in the Bible that is condoning something that's obviously very wrong? Michael, thank you for that question. Yeah, how do we make sense of, you know, the passages in Scripture in the Old Testament and in the New Testament that talk about slavery?
Great question. Well, I think you're referring to the discussion that Paul has in Ephesians 6 where he talks about slaves and masters. We have to understand that in the ancient world, I think in the Greco-Roman world, probably one in four people were slaves. And actually in the New Testament church, I mean, when you think about that, right, if you have a church of a hundred people, you imagine 25% of your church were engaged in this. Now, slavery then was different than we often think of slavery.
We think about the American slave trade and the horrors of all of that. And actually what I would say, Michael, is that the Bible, although it talks about these things, this is not the way in which humanity and society is meant to be set up. The only reason you have these kinds of things is because of sin and brokenness. And so from the beginning of time, it wasn't supposed to be like this, sort of like what Jesus says when he's talking about divorce. And the Pharisees ask him questions about this, and he says, look, God has made these accommodations for you because of your own sinfulness.
But this is not how it's supposed to be. And the fact that it's not supposed to be this way according to Scripture is very clear in that in Christ, right, those kinds of distinctions, Jew or Greek slave or free, those kinds of distinctions aren't meant to carry any weight in and through Jesus Christ. And that's why the apostle Paul, who wrote Galatians 6, or Ephesians 6, where he talks about those codes for household conduct, also said in Galatians 3, verse 27, for as many of you as were baptized into Christ Jesus have put on Christ, there is neither Jew nor Greek.
There is neither slave nor free. There is no male and female, for you are one in Christ. And if you are Christ, then you are Abraham's offspring, heirs according to the promise. In fact, it was the influence of Christianity that led to the abolishment of slavery later on in the Roman Empire. And so again, it's not that the Bible is saying, hey, this is great and this is good. It's just giving wisdom in terms of conducting ourselves, this is what you have in the New Testament, conducting ourselves in these broken and sinful societies in a way that honors God and ultimately in and through Jesus Christ. Again, what Paul says is that those things, whether they're whether they're status symbols or even just again with slavery, that doesn't carry weight within the body of Christ.
In fact, here's the amazing thing. You think about the way in which the New Testament speaks or even Jesus spoke to the religious leaders. We have all been redeemed. In fact, the Bible says that each and every one of us were slaves in one sense to sin and to Satan.
We needed redemption. This is what you see over and over again in the New Testament. And so scripture, the way it paints the picture, and this is I think one of the things that helped to undermine slavery in the ancient world, was just this picture of Christ as the one who came to set free those who are enslaved. The new and greater Moses, if you will, is what we see. And that's the thrust of scripture. And this is why, it hasn't always been the case, and it's a shame, but it's why you had so many.
You think about William Wilberforce, for example, Christians who were fighting for the abolishing of slavery, both in the ancient world and in more recent times as well. Michael, thanks for your question. God bless. Thanks so much, Michael.
Appreciate you. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. By the way, we've got a great resource on this topic, on the whole issue of slavery and the Bible. I should mention this. It's called Does the Bible Condone Slavery? And you can find that. It's a free download at corechristianity.com. That's corechristianity.com, and we'd love to have you pick that up. Let's go to Kyle in Franklin, Tennessee. Kyle, we've just got a minute or so left.
What's your question for Adriel? Hey, my question is about the vine, and Christ says that he is the vine and we are the branches, and God is the vine dresser. And the branches in the vine that do not produce fruit are broken off and thrown into the fire. And if we are a branch and we're in the vine, and then we're not producing fruit, say, at one point in our life or, say, like five years, something like that, you know, it's about salvation. And so if there are branches that are in the vine, which is Christ, and they're not producing fruit, do they get broken off?
Yeah. I mean, and then, so then is the question, I mean, and that is the question it sounds like is, if you're not bearing enough fruit, is Jesus going to break you off? And then how much fruit do you need to bear to keep yourself saved? Well, the imagery that you're talking about comes from John chapter 15. I am the true vine and my father is the vine dresser. Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away, and every branch that bears fruit he prunes that it may bear more fruit. Then he goes on to say abide in me.
We can't do anything apart from Jesus. That's what he highlights here. And I think that there's this sort of formal relationship that people can have to Jesus within the life of the church, but it lacks vital faith in Christ. And those people are broken off. And I think the evidence of this is in where you have a similar discussion in Romans chapter 11 where Paul talks about the Jews who were unbelieving that were broken off. Why? Because of unbelief.
In other words, what is it? If we don't believe in Jesus, if we reject Christ, if we don't have faith, well then yeah, we can have this sort of formal relationship, but we're ultimately cut off. You're not going to lose your salvation by struggling or not bearing enough fruit.
Christ is the one who keeps you as the true vine, and that's his promise to his people. Thanks for listening to CORE Christianity. To request your copy of today's special offer, visit us at corechristianity.com and click on offers in the menu bar or call us at 1-833-843-2673. That's 833, the CORE. When you contact us, please let us know how you've been encouraged by this program. And be sure to join us next time as we explore the truth of God's word together.
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