O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?

New Gary DeMar Show - "Eschatology and the Age of the Earth"

This is a followup show. Any thoughts?

I suspect Gary got a LOT of feedback from his article. It appears that Gary has re-affirmed his position in the face of direct correspondence from Ken Ham. He once again argues that the same hermeneutical principles must be applied to the "beginning" and the "end." A most interesting development...

Tim Martin

Views: 338

Comment by Tami on June 24, 2009 at 9:46pm
"It's the comprehensive nature of the Biblical message that is at stake here: from creation to Revelation."

--Gary DeMar
Comment by Tim Martin on June 25, 2009 at 10:54am

File that one.

Tim Martin
Comment by Norm on June 25, 2009 at 4:08pm
Michael Bennett posted Gary’s video on the SGP web site and it has been recognized that Gary posited that one should be consistent in their usage of their hermeneutic concerning eschatology and origins. Gary contrast and uses an example of Henry Morris to illustrate the inconsistencies of Henry’s hermeneutic approach to Matt 24 which all of us Preterist whether Old earth or Young earth would agree with him. Gary then compares that to the Old Earth hermeneutic application of reading a non literal understanding of Day in Genesis 1. What we have here is Gary playing fast and loose with his hermeneutic applications and it’s easy to spot his problem. First Gary is using language principles to illustrate that Morris exploits “this for that” in Matthew 24 but then he turns around and uses “day” as a possible similar abuse of hermeneutic principles. Although he doesn’t overtly state such he implies such.

Do you see the problem that Gary presents? He is comparing apples to oranges to keep the heat off of himself by throwing the YEC crowd a bone to chew on. Now Gary would be one of the first to admit that his hermeneutic allows him to apply non literal definitions to terms and phrases in the OT and NT when it comes to understanding eschatology. So why is the exploration of the usage of “Day” in the scriptures not permissible under Gary’s eschatological hermeneutic approach? Gary doesn’t say does he, instead he leaves it hanging there for us to draw our own conclusions. Gary is probably hoping that this will placate the YEC crowd but it was an extremely poor scholarly analogy for Gary to utilize. He is comparing literally apples to oranges by comparing the misuse of language application by Morris to the understanding and exploration of “day” by Old earth adherents. Now Gary may be partially correct because there are most likely some OEC who use “Day” improperly and do not define it in a true Hebraic approach.

So do the Hebrew use “day” metaphorically or not? Check out these two scriptures and an extra biblical writing.

2Pe 3:8 And this one thing let not be unobserved by you, beloved, that one day with the Lord is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day;

Psa 90:4 For a thousand years in Thine eyes are as yesterday, For it passeth on, yea, a watch by night.

Jubilees 4: … Adam died, ... 30. And he lacked seventy years of one thousand years; for one thousand years are as one day in the testimony of the heavens and therefore was it written concerning the tree of knowledge: "On the day that ye eat thereof ye will die." For this reason he did not complete the years of this day; for he died during it.

So we have undisputed evidence that the Hebrews viewed the day as a thousand years metaphorically and actually applied it to their theology. I don’t think we would be remiss in pursuing an understanding of the Hebrew usage of their idioms and phrases; in fact we would be negligent to not do so. What would be improper is if we carried Morris’s abuse of language into Genesis and said that “this means that” for a future generation. Not even close and thus no banana for application that our YEC friends were thinking had arrived.

Comment by Tim Martin on June 25, 2009 at 8:16pm

Let me let you in on something. Gary is trying to turn YECs into preterists. He knows we'll take it from there...

If SGP only knew all of the details...

Tim Martin
Comment by JL Vaughn on June 26, 2009 at 2:09pm
Yeah Norm,

Our critics are all over the place.

They insist that the H&E of Genesis 1 is physical, yet teach that the H&E is covenantal in Matthew and Revelation. They claim we are necessarily wrong for seeing the same H&E in Genesis 1, that we see in the rest of Scripture.

When they discuss the meaning of "day," they suddenly force their own physical H&E view on us and call us inconsistent.

The meaning of day only matters if Genesis 1 is referring to the creation of the physical universe. Since we've stated quite plainly that the Old Covenant was created in Genesis 1, a physical universe billions of years old has no problem being squared with any meaning of the word day.

What is inconsistent is their own view (which is easy because they haven't bothered to write it out in detail) and their continuously cycling misrepresentations.

I suspect they are going to make a lot of claims, commenting against what I've just written. So be it. They are attacking a view that is about 2 years old now. It is still being developed. We asked them if they would like to help. They declined.

They won't even touch the local flood issue that Tim first wrote about nearly 8 years ago. That came first. It is the part that is best developed, but they will neither concede nor pretend to answer it. Their silence on the flood is deafening.

Before Tim and I started writing on the curse, the widespread view was "physical death." Sometimes, an undefined "spiritual death" was given lip service, but physical death nearly 1000 years later was always the focus.

Back in 2006, the only other preterist to deny Adam's death in Genesis 3 was physical death was Sam Frost. He even defined that "spiritual death." So close to what we said and so useful, but Sam's only words for our work
I would usually use the word "crap" or "garbage"....ummmm....misinformed. That's the polite, academic word. "Misleading" is another word commonly used in the academic, theological journals.

For all Sam's careful, scholarly efforts, it's our "crap" that has actually gotten people to explore and understand the issues in Genesis 3 and apply them to their preterist understanding of the resurrection.

Michael's arguments were answered a couple years ago when first posed by another person. I can't vouch for the quality of those responses. They haven't been tested. Michael ignored those responses. Sam has used that same method of argumentation for over 7 years now. Make an argument, ignore the response, make the argument again. I've answered once, more than once actually, but responding to those who ignore you is wasted effort.

We're not consistent. Just ask our critics. They'll tell you. They won't offer a solution. If you fix it, they complain again that you are changing things. If you explain why you think you are correct, they'll ignore your response and repeat their charge.

When we try to do theology, we are reading words from a foreign language that were written to a people in a culture more foreign to us than any culture we see today. Translate that culture into ours. Whether you believe Genesis 1 was written by those people who participated in the event or was written by others thousands of years later, the author was from a foreign culture, a culture that we do not understand. Those who insist on reading "literally" are those who are literally reading our culture into Scripture.

Comment by Norm on June 26, 2009 at 3:25pm
My friend Michael Bennett has answered in kind to my response here concerning the “day” discussion.

Michael believes that now I am postulating the idiom “the day as a 1000 years” is somehow interpreted literally by the Jews and early Christians although I stated that it was viewed metaphorically. It seems that he doesn’t read with clarity what I am proposing and leaves out some important information in his response. Let’s look again at the Jubilees excerpt that is under question.

Jubilees 4: … Adam died, ... 30. And he lacked seventy years of one thousand years; for one thousand years are as one day in the testimony of the heavens and therefore was it written concerning the tree of knowledge: "On the day that ye eat thereof ye will die." For this reason he did not complete the years of this day; for he died during it.

Notice that it is clear to my point that this particular Jewish writing interprets the “day” as not a 24 hour measurement of time. Instead they are positioning the “day” and the “1000” years both in a metaphorical rendition. The “day” was often in Jewish theology understood to represent an important event and or era of God’s creative intervention. That is what the Jubilee author is stating in relation to Adam’s fall "On the day that ye eat thereof ye will die". Notice he says “he did not complete the years of this day; for he died during it” So it is without question that we have a metaphorical understanding of “day” for early Genesis. The Jubilees writer notates that Adam only lived to be 970 years out of the figurative 1000 thus not completing the day. So the idea that Adam lived literally 970 years is a misconception of a metaphorical theological application. This idea is in contrast to the believers of Revelation who lived and served the full 1000 years as it also was not a full 1000 years but effectively just a “generation”.

Rev 20:6 Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: over these the second death hath no power; but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years.

Now many full Preterist have recognized the 1000 year reign was not actually a full 1000 years so it seems that John is utilizing this old Hebrew understanding of 1000 years to speak of eternal spiritual completion for a period of time. In fact many propose that the 1000 years was actually the 40 years from Pentecost to the Parousia event. This would correlate nicely then with Peter’s usage of that term in (2Pe 3:8) “one day is with the Lord as a thousand years” into what was transpiring during that generation. We also have Paul picking up on the day metaphor in Romans 13:12 where the Genesis understanding of night precedes the completion of the “day”.

Gen 1:19 And there was evening and there was morning, a fourth day.

Rom 13:12 The night is far gone; the day is at hand. So then let us cast off the works of darkness and put on the armor of light.

This idea of entering and being immersed in the coming “night” is also a major theme that John embraces in his Gospel.

Joh 9:4-5 We must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work. (5) When I am in the world, I am the light of the world.

Joh 13:26-30 … So when he had dipped the morsel, he gave it to Judas, … Then after he had taken the morsel, Satan entered into him. … So, after receiving the morsel of bread, he immediately went out. And it was night.

It’s clear that Jesus while in the world before his betrayal by Judas and death on the cross was still in a period considered to be daytime in which Jesus was the Light. Night came upon the world at that point that Satan entered Judas and thus the first half of the next day ensued which was the darkness period which Paul says in Rom 13:12 was coming to an end. This would be a period of everlasting light and a new “day” would dawn the “everlasting Sabbath Rest” when God would enter His Temple after ceasing from his works of creation for faithful man who would now be fully created in God’s Image as had been so long ago prophesied for the sixth Day of Creation. The organization of the night then Day is laid out in Genesis 1 and is foundational and functional to the ongoing creation story.

So when one understands the Hebrew purpose of “day” and “1000” years “light” and “darkness” we are able to comprehend more fully the Creation story’s intent found in Genesis 1. It is the prophetic outline of the six days of naming and filling that would encompass the totality of the Covenant Creation process ending with God enthroned in His Temple on the last and final Day.

There is also this recognition by some of the early church fathers such as Augustine and especially Barnabas in his commentary to help the disciples understand the language and times.

Quote from Augustine.

“And we know that the law extends from the time of which we have record, that is, from the beginning of the world: "In the beginning God made the heaven and the earth.' Thence down to the time in which we are now living are six ages, this being the sixth, as you have often heard and know. The first age is reckoned from Adam to Noah; the second, from Noah to Abraham; and, as Matthew the evangelist duly follows and distinguishes, the third, from Abraham to David; the fourth, from David to the carrying away into Babylon; the fifth, from the carrying away into Babylon to John the Baptist; the sixth, from John the Baptist to the end of the world.”

“Moreover, GOD MADE MAN AFTER HIS OWN IMAGE ON THE SIXTH DAY, because IN THIS SIXTH AGE IS MANIFESTED the renewing of our mind through the gospel, after the image of Him who created us; Colossians 3:10

Augustine, TRACTATE IX, p. 65

Barnabas is even more explicit except for those who are still reading it in a literal mindset. Notice how Barnabas frames the Covenant Creation account.

Barnabas 15: 3 He speaks of the Sabbath at the beginning of the Creation, "And God made in six days the works of his hands and on the seventh day he made an end, and rested in it and sanctified it."
4 Notice, children, what is the meaning of "He made an end in six days"? He means this: that the Lord will make an end of everything in six thousand years, for a day with him means a thousand years. And he himself is my witness when he says, "Lo, the day of the Lord shall be as a thousand years." So then, children, in six days, that is in six thousand years, everything will be completed.
5 "And he rested on the seventh day." This means, when his Son comes he will destroy the time of the wicked one, and will judge the godless, and will change the sun and the moon and the stars, and then he will truly rest on the seventh day.

Now Michael will want to interpret Baranabas’ usage of 1000 years as literally thinking the 6000 years proves his point but we notice that Barnabas draws on the same metaphorical wording that the Book of Jubilees and 2Pe 3:8 does. If you read this entire piece of work which was most likely written before the destruction of the Temple in 70AD you will see that Barnabas is exhorting his readers to hold fast for the Parousia. Now a literal reader will just completely muddle up Barnabas like they do Revelation because they will not have a clue on Jewish idioms and their symbolical meanings. But Preterist who are cognizant of the language and the numerical metaphors associated with them will understand Barnabas without problems if they pursue such knowledge. Writings such as Barnabas are very likely where Augustine and others drew their understanding of the six metaphorical Days of creation from.

John Waltons new book “The Lost World of Genesis One” in effect confirms the ancient Barnabas understanding of Genesis 1 as a Creation process that had its fulfillment in the Last Days of the Covenant Creation story. The Sabbath Rest was the fulfillment of the works of God and could only have been entered into at the conclusion when God entered His Temple making His enemies his footstool and cannot be applied before the total Creation process was completed. The idea that God did this all in six literal days would have been preposterous to the ancient spirit lead Jews who understood this type of accepted knowledge and language.

Comment by Tami on June 26, 2009 at 3:52pm
What JL describes is largely consistent with my observations and experience since I became engaged (as mostly an observer, but an occasional contributor via a couople of articles) in this debate in early 2007.

I specifically have observed the following, in the words of JL:

When they discuss the meaning of "day," they suddenly force their own physical H&E view on us and call us inconsistent.

their continuously cycling misrepresentations

Michael [ignores] responses (and I would add, pretends he is responding when he is completely changing the topic)

[Several prominant voices] make an argument, ignore the response, make the [same] argument again. (And I agree that responding to those who ignore you is a wasted effort.)

JL, I would take issue with this statement, though. You may wish to revise it:

"Back in 2006, the only other preterist to deny Adam's death in Genesis 3 was physical death was Sam Frost."

There were in fact others. And furthermore, there was a speaker at Sam's 2004 conference who emphatically stated, "The Bible is not about cosmological history; the Bible is about redemptive history." And his context for that statement was the Garden Scene in Genesis 1-3. (I remember the exact words because at the time, as a new preterist, and not familiar wtih where various people were on the spectrum, I sensed it would be viewed as controversial, and would eventially lead to some radical implications.)

And at the 2006 conference that NCMI hosted and sponsored, Mike Sullivan presented a rough framework for covenant creation, albeit not with that terminology. But he was definitely going there.
Comment by JL Vaughn on June 26, 2009 at 6:05pm
Sorry Tami,

I certainly need to clarify. Let me do that, then please advise.

My recollection of July of 2006 is Tim and I were almost CC in Genesis 3 but had never thought of applying it to Genesis 1. Ward and Mike were almost CC in Genesis 1 but had not yet explored the ramifications in Genesis 3. At the time, Tim thought Mike was totally whacked with his early covenant creation model for Genesis 1. Ward's model still seemed to be a mix of physical and covenantal.

I believe both Ward and Mike had abandoned physical death in Gen. 3, but I've not seen where they had defined "spiritual death." This is what I was referring to in my post above.

Of course, Sam acted dead-set against all of it in July, yet a month later, wrote a useful definition of "the death" in his commentary article on Gen. 3. He surprised all of us. At that time, Sam's definition was stronger than what we had, but Tim and I realized that neither Sam's nor ours were strong enough. It wasn't until we got Snoke's OEC book in hand (4 months later?), which essentially gave Sam's view of Genesis 3, but paired it with futurism, that Tim and I could finally see the problem clearly and could push the covenant into Genesis 1.

On the specific topic of Gen. 3, to the best of my knowledge, what I said above is correct. I probably should have left some wiggle room in my statement because their are a lot of preterists and I've not heard mor read every word they've written on Genesis. I haven't heard the 2004 conference talk mentioned above for example.

On the more general topic, or on other specific related topics, Genesis 1 specifically, Ward and Mike were certainly well down the right path while Tim and I were still arguing if that path even existed.

In fact, to this day, Tim and I are not certain if I coined the term Covenant Creation at the end of December 2006 or if we heard the term at that conference in July 2006. Ward's and Mike's work on a covenant understanding of Genesis 1 certainly started me thinking along those lines. I can't overestimate the significance of that.

If there are papers or conference talks that would help me to fill in that history or help my understanding, please direct me to them. It was not my intent to slight Ward or Mike, but to point out how ludicrous this whole problem has become.

If Mike or Ward defined "spiritual death" early on, I'd like to see it and give them appropriate credit. If either of them coined the term Covenant Creation and used it in July 2006, I also need to know. And I guess I need to share notes with those to guys now that I'm ready to understand what they said on Genesis 1 back in July 2006.

Comment by Tami on June 26, 2009 at 7:01pm
Hey, JL thanks for framing that all up.

Actually, I am not concerned about anyone being "slighted," nor did I think you were doing that. I was just surprised by that one statement about "spiritual death" because when I first came to see fulfilled eschatology in 2004, I heard a lot of people explaining that Adam was not created physically immortal (he would have died physically anyway), and the "death" he died "in the day" he ate to of the tree was not physical death, but rather "spiritual death," which basically is defined as "separation from God." As I recall, even David Curtis explained that in one of the first "preterist" messages I listened to (and he is YEC).

As I stated regarding Mike's treatment of the imagery in the garden at our 2006 conference, he was using different terminology. I don't recall hearing anyone use the term "covenant creation" until you guys (but I wasn't in on your informal discussions in July 2006, I only heard the formal presentations.) And now, I usually put the term in quotes when I use it, as I am not sure it has been systematized to the point where people are all using it the same way (ie, different people *may* be defining it differently).

I will see if I can post the mp3 of that 2004 message (I have the file somewhere), I think you would find it significant. (I'll add the link here when I get it set up.) As for the term "spiritual death": I do know there are a lot of forum discussions on the topic. And the sermon by David Curtis I mentioned. If I come across a specific article I will send it to you. No doubt, others here will have some references to contribute.

Comment by Tim Martin on June 26, 2009 at 7:20pm

I have those recordings from the conference in 2004. That was the one where Jim Jordan showed up to "debate" Don Preston, right?

I do remember Ward making that statement at that conference.

I also remember Sam explaining Romans 1 as written to Jews within a covenant context. Kind of interesting, given Romans 1:20. Sam, in another recorded commentary on Romans claims this "the creation" is the same as Romans 8:18-23. This should be interesting to watch. Can't wait for Sam's commentary on Romans to come out so I can see how does the gymnastics on that one!!

You are certainly right about one thing. Mike Sullivan was much further down this road than we were in 2006. However, he took a detour (for awhile) down the "local" approach that I think is a dead-end. Not sure if he is standing on that approach or has "seen the light" on a true Covenant Creation approach. Of course, our critics have difficulty seeing that "local" creation is an entirely different view than "covenant" creation, but that is another problem entirely.

Roderick couldn't see it, either, with his old review. Remember how he argued against "local" creation over and over? Remarkable to see other critics following in Roderick's footsteps on that one...

What a funny situation. I suspect the environment will continue to develop and even accelerate at the 2009 Covenant Creation Conference recordings go into use in the next few days. Lots of people are going to see silly arguments for what they are...

Tim Martin


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