Was there Death Before the Fall? Interview with Krista Bontrager

When teaching on the age of the universe I usually take a neutral approach. The fact that God created is more important than when God created. And when I start presenting evidence for an ancient universe, I almost always receive the exact same questions.

If the earth is old then wouldn’t that mean there was death before the fall? How does this idea reconcile with Genesis 1:31 which says, “And God saw everything that he had made, and behold, it was very good.” How can millions of years of animal death be called very good? It also seems to contradict with Romans 8:12 where Paul writes, “Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned.”

These are great questions that warrant a response from anyone holding to an old earth. Helping us to think about the topic this week is Krista Bontrager. This is her second week on the show. Last week she discussed whether the biblical flood was local or global. Krista is a theologian, the Director of the Scholar Community at Reasons to Believe, and an instructor at the Reasons Institute. Krista is also the author of the small-group study The Bigger Picture on Creation and coauthor of the booklet Psalm 104: In Wisdom You Made Them All.

Do you still have questions? Comment below!

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Ryan Pauly graduated in 2010 with a B.A. of Religion and an emphasis in Youth Leadership from Vanguard University of Southern California. After graduating he became a missionary in the Dominican Republic. During his four years of living in the Dominican Republic; he taught English, Worldview, Apologetics, and Leadership to junior high and high school students. Ryan moved back to Southern California in 2015 and started teaching Historical Christian Doctrine, Apologetics, Comparative Religions and Worldviews, and Philosophy of Ethics at a Southern California Christian high school. In 2017, Ryan joined MAVEN as a field guide for their worldview missions experiences and became a trained volunteer apologist for the Reasons to Believe apologetics community. Ryan received his Master’s degree in Christian apologetics from Talbot School of Theology. He also holds a certificate in Science Apologetics from the Reasons Institute. His writing has been featured at crossexamined.org, seanmcdowell.org, thepoachedegg.net, apologetics.com, josh.org, and he is also a contributor for the updated version of the popular Apologetics Study Bible for Students which released in 2017. Along with his writing, Ryan has appeared as a guest on Truth Matters TV.


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