What is Life?
Then God commanded, “Let the water be filled with many kinds of living beings, and let the air be filled with birds.”(Genesis 1:20) Good News Translation
The biological definition of life and what the Bible describes as living aren’t the same thing. This is important to know as we see how the process of creation unfolded.
Here’s a quotable: “Biology is the foundation of secular humanism.” Why does this matter? It’s the answer to a question which came up on Twitter:
- IF, according to the Bible,
- Then how could there be life on the first day,
- which died and was deposited as Ediacaran fossils
- in the Precambrian on the second day?
We all have the same evidence. Our choice of paradigm determines what we think it’s evidence of.– Matty’s Razor
Today’s featured passage is taken from the description of the fifth day when the fish and birds were created. They’re described as many kinds of living beings. This is the first time that the word life occurs even though the dry ground was covered with vegetation on the third day. Apparently, Botanical “life” isn’t Biblically “alive.”
Later in Genesis we read that God told Adam that if he ate the forbidden fruit then “dying you shall die.” We know what happened next: Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit, the process of senescence began, and they lived long lives of gradual aging until they died. Death is the punishment for sin. Sin entered the world, and death by sin, that’s why we need a savior. The Bible is consistent in how it describes the plan of redemption and why it’s necessary.
Whoever teaches a different doctrine and does not agree with the true words of our Lord Jesus Christ and with the teaching of our religion is swollen with pride and knows nothing. He has an unhealthy desire to argue and quarrel about words, and this brings on jealousy, disputes, insults, evil suspicions, and constant arguments from people whose minds do not function and who no longer have the truth. They think that religion is a way to become rich.(1 Timothy 6:3-5) Good News Translation
So, how can we say that God created biological life on the first day and then killed some of it on the second day if there was no death before sin? It’s only an issue if we apply the biological definition of life to the Bible. However, the Bible has its own definition of life and it’s very different. We have to discern the difference, the nuance, between what Biology calls life and what the Bible describes as living. We have to define terms.
- Call upon the name of Jesus Christ,
- believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead,
- confess your sin.
The Biological Definition of Life
They say they are wise, but they are fools; instead of worshiping the immortal God, they worship images made to look like mortals or birds or animals or reptiles.(Romans 1:22-23) Good News Translation
According to Biology, life is everything that’s not dead, but it includes a wide variety things which are, technically, dead.
The definition of life is controversial. The current definition is that organisms maintain homeostasis, are composed of cells, undergo metabolism, can grow, adapt to their environment, respond to stimuli, and reproduce. However, many other biological definitions have been proposed, and there are some borderline cases of life, such as viruses.– Wikipedia
The Biblical Definition of Life
Then the second angel poured out his bowl on the sea. The water became like the blood of a dead person, and every living creature in the sea died.(Revelation 16:3) Good News Translation
In the Bible there was lush vegetation on the third day, but we don’t see the word life occur until the fish and birds were created on the fifth day. Could it be that the Biblical definition of life doesn’t include plants? What may we deduce from this?
The Bible speaks of life, living creatures, as things which have breath, spirit, and a soul. According to the prophecy from Revelation above this includes fish even though they have a system of gaseous exchange designed for being submerged in water. The breath of life is synonymous with the spirit, which is one of the three parts of Biblical life. The three parts are body, spirit and soul.
Trinity: Body, Spirit, Soul
- Body: a visible host, or tabernacle.
- includes blood, an interface between body and spirit;
- a plasma which allows metabolism.
- Spirit: invisible breath or wind.
- Soul: heart and mind;
- a gravity node with a frequency unique to each individual;
- the mind, the seat of our consciousness and personality;
- the heart, the emotions and passion which drive and motivate us;
- it makes us sentient.
The definition of Biblical life only includes sentient beings. This means that fish, birds and all living creatures which have the breath of life in them, are sentient. Yes, your dog has a soul and is sentient.
The purpose of creation is to bring about the permanent physical separation of light from darkness, day from night, good from evil.– The Purpose of Creation
You men are so wise, so clever;(Job 34:1-4) Good News Translation
listen now to what I am saying.
You know good food when you taste it,
but not wise words when you hear them.
It is up to us to decide the case.
We (that’s me and the Holy spirit) bring all this up because the process of creation that the Bible describes isn’t well understood. Throughout history we’ve (all of us) attempted to impose onto it the human wisdom of mainstream science (SciPop) and so it doesn’t seem to make sense.
Here we tackle head-on the errors in SciPop which have become part of the collective consciousness of our generation. The Bible considers life to be “sentient organisms which breathe, move around, and have lives that involve making decisions.” Plants don’t do that.
However, another source of dogmatic inertia comes from Christianity. Whether they’re aware of it or not, Christians who believe the Bible to any degree also believe a lot of SciPop. Some Christians want to argue that there can’t have been any death on the second day. This is because, even though they’re trying to be faithful to scripture, they’ve accepted the definition of life from Biology instead of allowing the Bible to define it for them.
If we’re going to depend on a process of deduction to parse together the Bible with physical evidence and empirical observations, then we have to be willing to let go of things that we didn’t realize that we were holding on to. One of these is the Biological definition of life. Ironically, once you step back from it and realize that it’s not divine but of human origin, you can see within it the foundation of secular humanism.
What is Life? – Navigation
|1||What is Life?||Genesis 1:20|
|Dying You Shall Die||Genesis 2:17|
|2||All Life is One||Job 34:14-15|
|Life is Derived from Water||Matthew 14:25-26|
|Life is sustained by Energy from Hydrogen||Hebrews 1:3|
|3||Soul and Spirit aren’t the Same Thing||Proverbs 12:24|
|Dividing Between Soul and Spirit||Hebrews 4:12|
|Soul and Spirit||1 Thessalonians 5:23|
Read through the Bible in a year
|Reading plan||February 28|
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