Item description for In The Beginnings by Steven E. Dill...
In the Beginnings is a defense of the biblical Gap Theory of Creation. This theory, once popular in the late 19th and early to mid 20th centuries, has been rejected by many modern-day creationists as being without biblical or scientific support. This book takes an in-depth look at both science and the Bible. Its purpose is to show how the Gap Theory better fits the scientific and biblical facts. More importantly, its main purpose is to reach out to unbelievers who think the Bible teaches things contrary to science. True scientific facts and true Biblical truths do not contradict. The basic assumption of the author is that God is smart enough and powerful enough and sovereign enough to make His Works and His Words agree. Because God reveals His invisible attributes in His handiwork, the author uses both God's Word and His work to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Dr. Steven Dill, once a staunch evolutionist, began investigating creationism after becoming aware of some scientific facts that seemed incompatible with his own beliefs. Taking the position that truth will stand the test, he began challenging even his own ideas about the origin of the universe. His conclusion was that true scientific facts and true Biblical truths do not contradict, and in this book he presents a new look at an old theory that preserves the integrity of both science and the Bible. He earned his Bachelor's Degree in Biology in 1979 and his Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine in 1985 at the University of Missouri-Columbia. He is currently a practicing veterinarian in Jeffersontown, Kentucky where he lives with his wife, Linda, and two dogs, Samwise Gamgee and Rosie Cotton. His two sons, Tom and James, have grown into fine young Christian men who make their parents proud.
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Studio: Xulon Press
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 8" Width: 5" Height: 0.82" Weight: 0.88 lbs.
Release Date Nov 30, 2007
Publisher Xulon Press
ISBN 160477374X ISBN13 9781604773743
Reviews - What do customers think about In The Beginnings?
a compelling defense of a neglected theory Jun 10, 2008
(In a spirit of full disclosure, Steve Dill and I belong to the same church, and several years ago he taught a Sunday school series that serves as a prelude to the book. This review, however, is entirely my idea.)
Gap theory takes its name from the hypothesis that there is an unspecified "gap" of time between Genesis 1:1 ("In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.") and 1:2 ("Now the earth was formless and empty ..."). Genesis 1:3 and on describes God's recent restoration of the planet. The universe really is billions of years old, all those fossils really are millions of years old, but life as we know it now is about ten thousand years old at most. What happened between 1:1 and 1:2 was the Luciferian rebellion, which destroyed all life on this planet (as a result of fallen angels "trashing" the earth, or God's judgment, or both).
You may object to that. You may have doubts, counter-arguments or questions. I know I did as I read the book, but every time that happened, within a few pages Dill would address the issue with a satisfactory (or at least plausible) explanation. While I can't accept Darwinian evolution for reasons both scientific and theological, I have never been fully at peace with young-earth creationism's "explaining away" of so much scientific evidence. For many years I lived with, and tried to ignore, a queasy, unresolved conflict between my Christian faith and my scientific bent, but that's done now. Gap theory can look at both the plain sense of the Biblical texts and the physical world around us and not blink at either one.
The book's weaknesses are more a matter of tone than content -- conversational in some places, heavy info-dump in others -- but I suspect that's because it began as a series of lectures. The conversational tone actually helps avoid the heavy-handed "doubt me at your soul's peril" manner that sinks so many books on origins and other controversial subjects. While he "pounds the lectern" at times, he does not do so to clinch his arguments; Dill is passionate about scriptural truth and scientific truth, and scorns those who find it necessary to muddle one in order to defend their interpretation of the other.
The author drops the ball in only two places. First, there's a passage where he cites Scofield, Thieme, Darby and Dake for scholarly support. While that quartet may be right about gap theory, and the particular translation of certain OT passages that lends support to gap theory, they were glaringly wrong about a number of other things. (To Dill's credit, as the passage continues he cites a number of other scholars who are more reputable and less controversial. He could have left out the first four, or at least acknowledged that they weren't right about everything.) The second fumble is small but irksome: he cites Ephesians 2:8 and comments, "Faith is a gift." Actually, if you look at the Greek of that verse, and the gender of the nouns and articles, faith is the one thing that can't be "the gift of God" -- "this not of yourselves" refers to grace and/or salvation, but not faith.
What's good about this book, most of all, is its honesty. Dill arrived at gap theory only after trying and rejecting evolution and young-earth creationism. He holds both Scripture and scientific evidence in high regard, he admits that only God knows everything, and I get the feeling that if further discoveries undermine gap theory he will abandon it without hesitation.
This is the sort of science and theology you can sink your teeth into, and each brings out greater depth in the other. In one of the closing chapters, Dill draws out the beautiful parallels between God's restoration of the earth and His redemption of people through Jesus Christ.
In the Beginnings is good in itself, but better as a starting point for further reading, especially the books he recommends in the text.