LOGICAL PROBLEMS WITH THE THESIS OF APPARENT AGE
Lloyd G. Multhauf
Department of Physics
Pennsylvania State University
University Park, Pennsylvania 16802
Leith applies the word
"impossible" to any assertion that cannot be subjected to a scientific
evidence to prove what actually did happen. This implies uniformitarianism as it allows no change n any of the fundamental processes of physics and chemistry on which the geological processes are based. If any one of these processes changed, it would be impossible (as Dr. Leith uses the word) to determine which had changed; any one could be chosen as standard.
The second implication of
Dr. Leith's application of the word "impossible" is that every
assertion about the supernatural is impossible. Such assertions as "God
exists" and "God is Love" are impossible because they cannot be
subjected to scientific proofs. Dr. Leith says, though, ". . . surely we
can grant that logical possibility as we have defined it does not exhaust
meaning." The two assertions above, then, are meaningful, though
impossible. With a proper definition of terms this is, of course, acceptable,
but I feel that Dr. Leith's definition tends to confuse rather than to provide a
I do not wish to take a position on either the Morris and Whitcomb view of non-uniformity or the uniformitarian view, but I do see the implications of the Morris and Whitcomb view differently than does Dr. Leith. If Morris and Whitcomb are correct in asserting that the Bible tells us of a non-uniformity in our fundamental laws and/or that it does not allow for millions or billions of years as the age of the earth, then God is not fooling man, rather man is going on a vain search in spite of what God has said. The same should be considered in other areas of science, such as our attempt to create life.
Biblical revelation as well as science is a means of gaining knowledge for the Christian. Since much of what is revealed cannot be subjected to a scientific proof, it seems best to define the term "possible" such that Biblical truths are also possible truths.