Divine Command. An Alternative to Conventional Evolutionist Doctrine.
"Mysteries of the Creation," by Rabbi David Brown, Targum Press, Israel, 1997, with Approbation from Rabbi Moses Feinstein.
This work was given to us by our friend, Israel Veil.
This is a Creationist-type book but relying heavily on Talmudic-type sources, supplemented with scientific observations. This may not be the preferred cup of tea for all of us but it could have insights worth pursuing.
The book itself may (or may not) at present be out of print. It contains long quotations from the sources which in my opinion could have been shortened. It also gives much detail of subsidiary matters which may give the feeling of being superfluous.
Apart from that the style is readable.
Books that try to reconcile Biblical and Rabbinical (BAR) sources with Evolution tend to see what Evolution says and then show how (in their opinion) the BAR corresponds with it, see Evolution and Bible.
Rabbi Brown in this work puts Evolution altogether to one side at the first and shows what the picture would be (in his opinion) if we relied on BAR without referring to anything else.
He says that the Theory of Evolution is often plagued with hoaxes.
The Midrash says that the world was created and destroyed and then re-created 974 times before the present one came into existence. The last creation took place ca. 5,700 years ago.
Creation however is an ongoing process and is continuing constantly. Changes are to be expected.
The Flood was caused by waters from the depth coming to the surface.
Genesis (ESV) 1:
1 In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. 2 The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.
The expression translated here as "without form and void" in Hebrew is "Tohu u-Bohu" i.e. Tohu, Underground Water that had come to the surface, and Bohu, meaning rock suffused with water. This was all that remained from the previous worlds that had existed before then.
The fossil record shows a series of sudden changes not gradual ones.
Coal is formed by a rapid process not a gradual one. Coal results from violent incursions of the sea.
"Whole trees - even forests of trees - are often found buried upright and intact within coal seams. "
In the beginning the solar year was less than 12 months.The atmosphere was up to 5 times as dense as it is now.
If the earth waas closer to the sun the degree of radiation would have been greater. This means more energy. It also entails a greater danger.
Today the earth is protected by the atmosphere from radiation. Then the atmosphere is even more thicker.
Seven "Worlds" (i.e. Ages or Stages of Creation) were created as far as man is concerned.
The First World existed after the sin of the First Man (Adam). This ended shortly afterwards.
The Second World.
One-third of the earth was flooded by the Sea. Mountains sprang up where previously the land had been flat.
Ape-like creatures formed from degenerated men roamed the land.
In the time of Enosh people began to worship idols. The physical height of human beings was lowered.
The Continents split apart.
This is known as Pangaea. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pangaea
This resulted in more mountain masses emerging.
The tectonic plates float over water within the thickness of the earth according to the Midrash.
The Red Sea and the Mediterranean repeatedly dried up.
In the future the saltiness of the Sea will be removed (Isaiah 47:8).
The Land of Israel was elevated and then subsided. The area of what became Israel was not covered by the Flood.
The Third World. The Deluge.
People were very healthy, extremely strong, grew up naturally, and lived from 700 to 900 years. They reached maturity only when they were 100!
At present the axis of the earth is on a 23 degree incline. This gives us the seasons of the year.
Before the Flood the earth was not at a 23 degree incline. It had however been at an incline in the time of Adam. A change had taken place that was later reversed.
The lack of seasons resulted in the Ice Ages since where it was hot it stayed that way and vice versa.
The Fourth World.
People lived to a great age but their longevity was gradually diminishing.
The Tower of Babel caused the division of languages and the scattering of humanity.
The Fifth World.
In the time of Jacob, Old Age began to afflict mankind. Before then a person would live their allotted span with little diminishing of life forces until the end.
Prior to that time there had been no, or little, illness. This changed. These biological changes were accompanied by astronomical phenomena.
The Sixth World.
Rabbi Brown does not seem to give a chronological sequence for this stage but by implication it would have begun shortly after the Children fo Israel came out of Egypt.
There were changes in the relationship of the earth to the sun. This would have affected cosmic radiation.
Today the moon is relatively lifeless and reflects energy from the sun. In the past the moon had a life-force of its own. This will return in the future.
The individual potential of human beings degenerated.
The Seventh World.
This is in the future.
Nature will change. People will live longer. The earth will be more productive. Tectonic changes will take place, the land will be levelled.
When the Ten Tribes were exiled it was compared to the destruction of Sedom and Gomorrha. Geographical and ecological changes took place. These will be rectified (Ezekiel 16:53,55).
Ezekiel (NASB) 16:
53 Nevertheless, I will restore their fortunes, the fortunes of Sodom and her daughters, the fortunes of Samaria and her daughters, and along with them your own fortunes, 54 so that you will bear your disgrace and feel ashamed for all that you have done when you become a consolation to them. 55 Your sisters, Sodom with her daughters and Samaria with her daughters, [af]will return to their former state, and you with your daughters will also return to your former state.
The author goes on and speaks in some detail concerning predicted changes in the Messianic Era.
In another chapter he criticizes the Theory of Evolution and shows that it is propagated for ideological reasons more than scientific ones. Evolution has never been proven.
He brings sources showing that the degeneration of Nature around us is an outcome of the immorality of humans. Evolution does not take place.
Marsupials are classified as a separate animal family.
Even though many marsupials look similar to other mammals, e.g. marsupial mouse, marsupial wolf, etc, they are considered part of the separate Marsupial Family and not related to those whom they resemble. The common features are considered to be due to parallel evolution.
Marsupials give birth to relatively undeveloped young that often reside in a pouch located on their mothers' abdomen for a certain amount of time. Close to 70% of the 334 extant species occur on the Australian continent (the mainland, Tasmania, New Guinea and nearby islands). The remaining 30% are found in the Americas, primarily in South America, thirteen in Central America, and one in North America, north of Mexico. Well-known marsupials include kangaroos, wallabies, koalas, opossums, wombats, Tasmanian devils, and the extinct thylacine (Tasmanian wolf)..
Rabbi Brown disagrees with this. He opines that Marsupials are not a separate species but rather an adaptation of individual types within an existing family of animals. The marsupial mouse, for instance, is a variety of mouse.
He quotes a source:
J. HITCHING, "The Neck of the Giraffe," 149-150:
# Skeletons of Canadian and Tasmanian [marsuopial] wolves are almost identical.... Wolves, cats, squirrels, ground hogs, anteaters, moles, and mice all have their look-alike counterparts [among marsupials]. #
[An example of changes within a species may be found with snakes: Some snakes have live births very similar to mammals. Other snakes give birth via eggs that are hatched inside the body of the mother. Still other snakes give birth via eggs hatched outside the body of the mothers. We thus find three types of breeding. Certain breeds are known to switch from one mode to another according to the environment!]
Survivors are not necessarily the strongest, on the contrary.