The Church of England - - LETTERS -

Sir, I do hope your reg­u­lar con­trib­u­tor Dr J Matthews is not sug­gest­ing that the Flood was univer­sal and that the world was cre­ated in the prover­bial six days! Sir Leonard Wool­ley in the last cen­tury proved that there was a flood as ev­i­denced by his ar­chae­o­log­i­cal work at the site of Ur of the Chaldees and later work in that part of the Mid­dle East con­firmed a lo­calised “Noachian” flood.

Again if it is be­ing sug­gested that the earth is about 4,000 years old then the main univer­sity ge­o­log­i­cal de­part­ments might as well pack up and go home.

Cur­rent ev­i­dence points to the Earth be­ing 4.5 bil­lion years old, which gives plenty of time for the clas­si­cal ge­o­log­i­cal group­ings. The sci­en­tific lit­er­a­ture cer­tainly does not have ev­i­dence of “the youth­ful­ness of the Earth” un­less it is com­par­a­tively speak­ing in line with the dat­ing of the big bang.

Dr Matthews has men­tioned be­fore the JEDP the­ory and the work of Wel­hausen in your col­umns. A sim­ple re­view of cur­rent the­o­log­i­cal stud­ies show mod­ern schol­ar­ship to be very crit­i­cal of Wel­hausen’s con­clu­sions.

Cos­mo­log­i­cal work is sug­gest­ing that cre­ation as an oc­ca­sion might not have ex­isted… but the essence of the hu­man spirit is nev­er­the­less with us. Chris­tian­ity does need to take into ac­count our grow­ing knowl­edge. It is surely the only de­fence against the growth of a sec­u­lar so­ci­ety. As Polk­inghorne, Fey­man and oth­ers have shown at the quan­tum state be­haviourism is largely a ques­tion of prob­a­bil­ity.

We all live in state of un­cer­tainty and too much re­liance on un­sub­stan­ti­ated faith but the main cer­tainty is death and taxes.

Prof R David Lang­man,


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