Linear time is abundantly described in Scripture. That's why, Nick. And I might add that scientifically, the idea that the universe is linear and not cyclical is also beyond reasonable debate. The matter has essentially been settled since the 1960s, although the evidence for it was actually found earlier. Finally, mathematically, in a chain-of-causes type universe, which is what we live in, a singular starting point is mathematically inevitable, because of the impossibility of an actual infinite regresses of causes.
However many wouldn’t agree and assert that the universe is cyclical. Consider the Buddhist Kalpa
https://www.accessscience.com/content/c ... y/YB090037
Time in Buddhist cosmology is measured in kalpas. Originally, a kalpa was considered to be 4,320,000 years. Buddhist scholars expanded it with a metaphor: rub a one-mile cube of rock once every hundred years with a piece of silk, until the rock is worn away -- and a kalpa still hasn’t passed! During a kalpa, the world comes into being, exists, is destroyed, and a period of emptiness ensues. Then it all starts again.
The cyclic universe theory is a model of cosmic evolution according to which the universe undergoes endless cycles of expansion and cooling, each beginning with a “big bang” and ending in a “big crunch……………
There is a collective called “experts” which is probably the most dangerous collective of all.
Only when the grounds of arbitration were settled could we make any progress, I suspect.
But we could talk about that. For me, the Bible is the determinative factor. What would you accept as a basis of arbitrating such questions, Nick?
Yes, the problem with experts in the domain of Christianity. How to reconcile it?
The greatest obstacle the experts present is to turn the question of Christianity into purely an intellectual one making understanding the Bible impossible. The value of Christianity is its ability to put suffering into higher context. We are normally governed by lower earthly animal and acquired emotions but the essence of Christianity can arouse the experience of the higher sacred impulses of love, faith, and hope. So rather than arguing with experts, the Christian strives to experience these "feelings". This means becoming able to Know Thyself – including to have the emotional experience of oneself.
Jacob Needleman alludes to it in the preface of his book “Lost Christianity”
…………………………………..But in fact, no such assumption of moral authority by secular humanism, has
taken hold or now seems in any way likely or justified. The modern era, the era of science, while witnessing the phenomenal acceleration of scientific discovery and its applications in technological innovation, has brought the
world the inconceivable slaughter and chaos of modern war along with
the despair of ethical dilemmas arising from new technologies that all
at once project humanity’s essence-immorality onto the
entire planet: global injustice, global heartlessness and the global
disintegration of the normal patterns of life
that have guided mankind for millenia. Neither the secular philosophies
of our epoch nor its theories of human nature—pragmatism, positivism,
Marxism, liberalism, humanism, behaviorism, biological determinism,
psychoanalysis–nor the traditional doctrines of the religions, in the way we have understood them, seem able to confront or explain the crimes of humanity in our era, nor offer wise and compassionate guidance through the labyrinth of paralyzingly new ethical problems.
What is needed is a either a new understanding of God or a new understanding
of Man: an understanding of God that does not insult the scientific
mind, while offering bread, not a stone, to the deepest hunger of the
heart; or an understanding of Man that squarely faces the criminal
weakness of our moral will while holding out to us the knowledge of how we can strive within ourselves to become the fully human being we are meant to be– both for ourselves and as instruments of a higher purpose.
But, this is not an either/or. The premise –or, rather, the proposal—of this
book is that at the heart of the Christian religion there exists and
has always existed just such a vision of both God and Man. I call it
“lost Christianity” not because it is a matter of doctrines and concepts
that may have been lost or forgotten; nor even a matter of methods of
spiritual practice that may need to be recovered from ancient sources.
It is all that, to be sure, but what is lost in the whole of our modern
life, including our understanding of religion, is something even more fundamental, without
which religious ideas and practices lose their meaning and all too
easily become the instruments of ignorance, fear and hatred. What
is lost is the experience of oneself, just oneself—myself, the personal
being who is here, now, living, breathing, yearning for meaning, for
goodness; just this person here, now, squarely confronting one’s own
existential weaknesses and pretensions while yet aware, however
tentatively, of a higher current of life and identity calling to us from
within ourselves. This presence to oneself is the missing element in
the whole of the life of Man, the intermediate state of consciousness
between what we are meant to be and what we actually are.
It is, perhaps, the one bridge that can lead us from our inhuman past
toward the human future…………………..
It does seem like the only real hope for our species is what is hated the most by the world that worships the Great Beast and its many collectives.