Updated: Feb 18
Aaron's staff buds
In Numbers 17, each chief from each of the 12 tribes of Israel was required to deposit his staff in the tent of meeting. God would show these men that He had sovereignly chosen Aaron by supernaturally causing his wooden staff to blossom and produce a mature crop of almonds overnight.
Yet almond trees require a long period of immature incubation—upwards of five years—before a viable and economically mature crop of almonds can be produced. The origin of this crop of almonds is, of course, beyond the scope of normal science.
Yet if this small crop of almonds were harvested and sent to a modern laboratory, what kind of predictable, historical conclusions might one expect to find? A scientist would conclude that the almonds had grown using a natural set of processes. In other words, the growth and maturation of the almonds mirrored naturalistic processes.
We are clearly told that the staff, “sprouted and put forth buds and produced blossoms, and it bore ripe almonds” (Numbers 17: 8b ESV). In other words, the almonds didn't just appear, ex nihilo, they grew.
This example has profound implications for young-earth creationism. Did something like this occur on Day 3 of creation week when we are told the plants "sprouted" and "yielded fruit"?
Can these two examples then be applied to the inorganic realm? I believe they can.