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Seven Days That Divide The World: The Beginning According To Genesis & Science

4.14  ·  Rating details ·  1,237 ratings  ·  132 reviews
What did the writer of Genesis mean by “the first day”? Is it a literal week or a series of time periods? If I believe that the earth is 4.5 billion years old, am I denying the authority of Scripture? In response to the continuing controversy over the interpretation of the creation narrative in Genesis, John Lennox proposes a succinct method of reading and interpreting the ...more
Paperback, 192 pages
Published August 20th 2011 by Zondervan (first published August 9th 2011)
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Jeffrey McKinley
Oct 27, 2012 rated it really liked it
I am an atheist because of the difficulty I found in reconciling the biblical picture of creation with modern science. After ten years of being a young earth creationist who held the bible to be inspired from the Holy Spirit (and several years studying in a seminary who taught those views), I was flattened by reading Stephen Hawking's Brief History of Time. My reading had been so myopic that I was allowed to believe only a small percentage of people accepted the old universe (and evolution). ...more
Frank Peters
Dec 02, 2011 rated it really liked it
This is a very unusual book authored by John Lennox. In the world of controversy regarding origins (of the universe and of life), it has been normal for authors to imply that any other viewpoints is either a sign of lack of intelligence, or a sign of lack of virtue. In this book by Lennox, he seeks to talk in a way that is respectful, and this is greatly appreciated. The book does not seek to push a Christian view of origins against an atheistic view, but rather, as a book written for Christians ...more
John
Feb 24, 2013 rated it really liked it
John Lennox is among the world's leading apologists, in my view, because he combines several admirable qualities: he is a bona fide expert on a relevant discipline (although mathematics is about as far away from most of the things he talks about as an apologist as one would want to be, since math at his level is as much art form as it is a science of discovery); he communicates clearly and at the right level for his audience; he has read widely in sources that matter (including a remarkable ...more
Philip
Mar 29, 2016 rated it did not like it
Lennox seeks to present a "scientifically savvy, theologically astute, and scripturally faithful interpretation of Genesis" (back cover). He does this cautioning us to (i) take care to interpret Biblical passages in their proper context (p21-22), (ii) ensure we neither tie scripture too closely to science nor ignore science entirely (p36), and (iii) to approach the task with humility (p87). He applies this principle to the Galilean fixed-Earth controversy of the early 17th century.

Then things
...more
Kris
Nov 26, 2016 rated it liked it
I was torn between two and three stars for this one. In the end, I decided to go with three stars, just because I love Lennox and there are some good thoughts in here. But man, was this book a mess. Lennox, as always, has great ideas, but the organization and depth of this book is lacking in so many ways.

First, I have to get this initial annoyance out of the way: the heliocentric vs. geocentric analogy he used in the beginning of the book is flawed. Lennox connects this example to the current
...more
Mary
Dec 14, 2011 rated it it was amazing
An insightful, engaging, fascinating read. John Lennox addresses a thorny issue with intelligence and grace. Highly recommended.
Brian Chilton
Nov 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Dr. Lennox did an amazing job examining what is known as "Old Earth Creationism." Old Earth Creationism is the belief that God created the universe in six eras of time as opposed to Young Earth Creationists who believe that the world was created in 6, 24-hour periods. Lennox shows in a thrilling manner that the Genesis account does not necessitate a young earth view. "Here we see that, although Scripture could be understood as teaching that the earth is young, it DOES NOT HAVE to be interpreted ...more
Paul Bruggink
Nov 02, 2012 rated it really liked it
This book primarily makes a biblically based case for an old earth, or at least that the Bible does not preclude an old earth. The book begins with a well-developed analogy between the current young-earth/old earth debate and the 17th century fixed earth/moving earth debate. He concludes this portion of the book with a final lesson from the Galileo affair: "The Galileo incident teaches us that we should be humble enough to distinguish between what the Bible says and our interpretations of it. ...more
Joe
Oct 10, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
By Lennox.

In general a great read. The book makes some interesting points that lead us to more confidence in our Lord and savior. Well worth the time to read.

Not sure this book answers many questions about the days of creation and if they are 24 hrs days or ages but still very good. Most of the books seems to deal more with the relationship of modern science and religion.

On page 100 at the bottom of page says that DNA or the information it contains is not physical. What does he mean by this? Isn
...more
Ryan Manns
Jan 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: science, religion
Probably my favourite author on science and faith. I had been looking forward to reading this book for months. Chapter 3 and Appendix E were excellent reads and the tipping point in my choosing to give the book 5 stars.
Laurie
Feb 17, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: nook
An excellent, accessible and brief treatment of the subject, heavily footnoted and indexed. The author has obviously read widely the varied contemporary views on this subject.
Emily
Apr 05, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
I did not agree with everything John Lennox said but he made some good points, gave some good quotes and asked some very good questions!
David
Mar 10, 2012 rated it really liked it
This is the second book by John Lennox that I have read (first one was “God’s Undertaker”). Overall I have to say that he is quickly becoming my favourite Christian apologist author. Lennox is to-the-point and makes his points very powerfully. And, judging by the amount of quoting he does from other prominent writers, very well read, drawing his conclusions from an array of sources. That being said this book was not what I was expecting. It is small in width and height, some 180 pages or so, ...more
Alan Fuller
"One of the major tensions in the discussion of the early chapters of Genesis is between those who think that the author intended the book to be read as history and those who regard the author’s intention as the conveying of timeless truths through figurative, theological language." Lennox (p. 42).

Lennox sees a real danger in separating theology from history, although when speaking about the message of Genesis 1 he notes that God is the source of light.

"The light that God shines into the human
...more
Barton Jahn
Dec 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
An excellent, clear, and well written book on the Genesis days of creation…their meaning and the scope of interpretation we can place upon the truth of these words in the light of modern science.

For those looking for light to be shined on this centuries old dispute by a scientist having impeccable credentials…this is a brilliant expose that removes much of the confusion and leaves both scriptural integrity and scientific facts in place without compromising either or oversimplifying the issues.
...more
Amanda
Short book on creationism. I was worried it would be a dull read, but it was interesting enough that from time to time I wish the author had expanded on his thoughts a bit more. While I don't agree with all his conclusions, it was a really good book for looking at the different theories people hold.
Amy
Oct 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
This was a helpful book on several points. I don’t agree with all of his perspectives, but it was very interesting to understand how the author thinks through and weighs different arguments.
John Martindale
Nov 16, 2011 rated it really liked it
John Lennox deals with the first chapter of Genesis and unveils the difficulties with the creation story that go back to the time of Augustine, long before science came on the scene. Even before the theory of evolution, Christian have puzzled and scratched their head, trying to understand the Creation story. One thing I like is that Lennox strongly believes in the inspiration of scriptures and he wants to to faithfully interpret the bible, though he does understand there are different ways to ...more
Mike Panton
Sep 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I first read this as a 19 year old physics student seven years ago. This is a great read for a number of reasons.

1. It reconciles science and God. As a Christian kid in high school I remember feeling almost guilty about believing in the Big Bang theory. I can’t trace back to why, but many people like myself ignorantly believe science and God to be in opposition when there is no real reason to believe such. The topic of this book is creation, but it opens the door to rethinking other beliefs and
...more
Alyssa
Apr 10, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: theology
This is a great, short little book, not because of any particular position taken up by Lennox and argued oh so breathtakingly. It's great purely because Lennox does not do that. I felt as I read that Lennox was seeking to learn and understand just like I was, and was working it out with me. And he wasn't pushing his own agenda - though he certainly proposed ideas and possible theories, and revealed which way he leans. No, if he was pushing any agenda at all it was an agenda to think more, and to ...more
Brian Layman
Feb 21, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-2014
Excellent book. I read it because of Dr. Lennox's presentation on SocratesintheCity.com This book covers the very wide gamut of thoughts and theories on the creation of the universe and the world we live in. It is a very good follow up to the Feb 2014 Bill Nye/Ken Ham debate about the validity of the 24 hour creation days. I suspect if Lennox would have been there, it would have been an even more interesting evening for all, debaters and audience alike.

This book is well worth several read
...more
David Haines
Aug 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is a great little introduction to a contemporary debate whoch is written by a top-notch scholar and scientist in easy to understand language and an eminently coherent prose. He proposes his own approach to the debate which is something like a cross between the 6-literal days approach and the day-age gap theory. His arguments are interesting, and take the most recent scientific and theological positions. A must read for anyone interested in the subject.
Rick Sam
Jan 21, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: christian
Great book, I loved his explanation on interpretation.
Melanie
Jul 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The author (John Lennox) did such a good job presenting multiple ideas and theories for various interpretations of Genesis. This book does not argue reasons for or against believing in evolution, but more talks about what the bible tells us and combines it with that we now know from science. He gently starts the book out reminding readers of a time when Christians were determined to prove that the sun moved around a fixed earth because of references in the bible that seemed to suggest that. He ...more
Jeremy
Jun 13, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition


I definitely don’t recommend this as an audiobook. The concepts are too heavy and the prose too dense to concentrate while running or driving, etc. Oh well, here are my notes as best I could take via audio...


Big Ideas:

+ Evolution by natural selection cannot explain the origin of life itself
- "Pre-biological natural selection is a contradiction in terms." Theodosius Dobzhansky (Ukrainian-American geneticist and evolutionary biologist)
- In his book The Greatest Show on Earth, Richard Dawkins
...more
Pgchuis
Dec 18, 2017 rated it it was ok
This was lent me by a friend, but turned out not to address with any clarity the issues I thought it was going to be about. (I had never even heard of "the Cosmic Temple View" and, as I skipped that Appendix, I am still blissfully unaware of that theory). I am confused as to how the author does indeed square his beliefs with scientific discoveries to date: if Adam and Eve were two actual people, made from dust, from whom the whole human race is descended, what are we to make of the existence of ...more
Stan
Feb 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is a book covering some very controversial topics. I began reading it knowing this, and somewhat expecting a very dogmatic approach to Lennox’s view.

However, I was pleasantly surprised by his humble approach. He does not push the reader to believe any specific view based on science; rather, he challenges us to study all of Scripture carefully before forming a theory. In fact, even in the early church, both views existed—solely on the basis of Biblical support. He also points out that both
...more
Ben Clay
May 09, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Not worth the read. Great apologist for every view except a young earth as he would say "literalistic view". Takes great strides and makes large assumption on what it can mean rather than what it does. Compares young earth creationists to geocentric philosophers in a universe that is clearly heliocentric. A great majority of the book is spent stretching the point that we should at least consider it could mean other things and then bending linguistics a thousand different ways to basically say it ...more
Tormod
"PRESUPPOSITIONS ARE POOR GATEWAYS TO THE TRUTH." This saying is attributed to the ancient Chinese' Its wisdom should be the inflexible guide to anyone wishing to expound on a subject. Dr. Lennox expounds in a most erudite manner. However, when the esoteric arguments are stripped down to a base level, Dr. Lennox comes to grief on these shoals of presupposition. He presupposes God. He then presupposes that the Bible is the inspired word of God. These presuppositIons are then used to reinforce ...more
Ken Grant
May 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
Nice presentation of the issue of Genesis and current scientific thought. This is the one area of my theological study where I have yet to find good interpretations that fit into the world of truth; including scientific truth. I appreciated that the author was willing to learn both theologically and scientifically and isn't dug into one approach. Some of the theological work he indicated in Genesis was helpful for me moving forward. While familiar with most of the apologetic ideas, he does a ...more
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John Carson Lennox is Professor of Mathematics in the University of Oxford, Fellow in Mathematics and the Philosophy of Science, and Pastoral Advisor at Green Templeton College, Oxford. He is also an Adjunct Lecturer at Wycliffe Hall, Oxford University and at the Oxford Centre for Christian Apologetics and is a Senior Fellow of the Trinity Forum. In addition, he teaches for the Oxford Strategic ...more
“It would be a pity if, in a desire (rightly) to treat the Bible as more than a book, we ended up treating it as less than a book by not permitting it the range and use of language, order, and figures of speech that are (or ought to be) familiar to us from our ordinary experience of conversation and reading.” 4 likes
“One of Richard Dawkins’s main God Delusion arguments is that, if God created everything, we would have to ask who created God. But the very asking of this question reveals at once that Dawkins has in mind a created God: “Who created God?” Created gods certainly are a delusion.” 2 likes
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