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Question: Do you believe that the acount of genesis in the Old testament should be taken literally?
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Author Topic: Creationism, Evolution, and Orthodoxy  (Read 326919 times) Average Rating: 0
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jckstraw72
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« Reply #3915 on: December 11, 2011, 07:09:18 PM »

What does it mean to read the Bible literally? A few points to consider:

....

Should we care if a secular court finds evolution compatible with creation?
 
The point in mentioning the 1925 Scopes' trial was not to discuss the trial itself, or the results from the trial, but to point out that the Creationist Young-Earth position of six, 24-hour, day creation is a result of the adoption of the visions of Ellen G. White.

maybe so, but Ellen G. White was reading St. Ephraim of Syria:

Commentary on Genesis 1, pg. 282
.....

I don't believe St. Ephraim said anything about Noah's Flood causing geological strata and fossils (falsely appearing to be millions of years old) to be formed.

Quote
During the first two thirds of the twentieth century, during which most Christian fundamentalists accepted the existence of long geological ages, the leading voice arguing for the recent creation of life on earth in six literal days was George McCready Price (1870-1963), a scientifically self-taught creationist and teacher. Born and reared in the Maritime Provinces of Canada, Price as a youth joined the Seventh-day Adventists, a small religious group founded and still led by a prophetess named Ellen G. White, whom Adventists regarded as being divinely inspired.
....
Shortly after the turn of the century Price dedicated his life to a scientific defense of White’s version of earth history: the creation of all life on earth no more than about 6,000 years ago and a global deluge over 2,000 years before the birth of Christ that had deposited most of the fossil-bearing rocks.
....
For a decade and a half Price’s writings circulated mainly among his coreligionists, but by the late 1910s he was increasingly reaching non-Adventist audiences. In 1926, at the height of the antievolution crusade, the journal Science described Price as "the principal scientific authority of the Fundamentalists. That he was, but with a twist. Although virtually all of the leading antievolutionists of the day, including William Jennings Bryan at the Scopes trial, lauded Price’s critique of evolution, none of them saw any biblical reason to abandon belief in the antiquity of life on earth for what Price called "flood geology." Not until the 1970s did Price’s views, rechristened "creation science," become fundamentalist orthodoxy.

i dont really think she was reading St. Ephraim. I was simply pointing out that YEC didnt begin with her.
Somehow I don't think St. Ephraim thought of himself as a young-earth creationist and would probably bristle at the thought of being associated with them.

whats the difference between YECs and what St. Ephraim said in those quotes?
Did St. Ephraim assert that the Flood caused the geological strata and organized the fossil record into what we see today?

not that i know of, but who knows, perhaps he would have had he been asked about it. but the quotes i provided had nothing to do with the flood, but rather that the days of creation were 24 hour days - the same position as the YECs.
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« Reply #3916 on: December 11, 2011, 07:51:25 PM »

What does it mean to read the Bible literally? A few points to consider:

....

Should we care if a secular court finds evolution compatible with creation?
 
The point in mentioning the 1925 Scopes' trial was not to discuss the trial itself, or the results from the trial, but to point out that the Creationist Young-Earth position of six, 24-hour, day creation is a result of the adoption of the visions of Ellen G. White.

maybe so, but Ellen G. White was reading St. Ephraim of Syria:

Commentary on Genesis 1, pg. 282
.....

I don't believe St. Ephraim said anything about Noah's Flood causing geological strata and fossils (falsely appearing to be millions of years old) to be formed.

Quote
During the first two thirds of the twentieth century, during which most Christian fundamentalists accepted the existence of long geological ages, the leading voice arguing for the recent creation of life on earth in six literal days was George McCready Price (1870-1963), a scientifically self-taught creationist and teacher. Born and reared in the Maritime Provinces of Canada, Price as a youth joined the Seventh-day Adventists, a small religious group founded and still led by a prophetess named Ellen G. White, whom Adventists regarded as being divinely inspired.
....
Shortly after the turn of the century Price dedicated his life to a scientific defense of White’s version of earth history: the creation of all life on earth no more than about 6,000 years ago and a global deluge over 2,000 years before the birth of Christ that had deposited most of the fossil-bearing rocks.
....
For a decade and a half Price’s writings circulated mainly among his coreligionists, but by the late 1910s he was increasingly reaching non-Adventist audiences. In 1926, at the height of the antievolution crusade, the journal Science described Price as "the principal scientific authority of the Fundamentalists. That he was, but with a twist. Although virtually all of the leading antievolutionists of the day, including William Jennings Bryan at the Scopes trial, lauded Price’s critique of evolution, none of them saw any biblical reason to abandon belief in the antiquity of life on earth for what Price called "flood geology." Not until the 1970s did Price’s views, rechristened "creation science," become fundamentalist orthodoxy.

i dont really think she was reading St. Ephraim. I was simply pointing out that YEC didnt begin with her.
Somehow I don't think St. Ephraim thought of himself as a young-earth creationist and would probably bristle at the thought of being associated with them.

whats the difference between YECs and what St. Ephraim said in those quotes?
Did St. Ephraim assert that the Flood caused the geological strata and organized the fossil record into what we see today?

not that i know of, but who knows, perhaps he would have had he been asked about it.
WCSS (Woulda Coulda Shoulda Syndrome) is based on pure speculation, nothing more.

but the quotes i provided had nothing to do with the flood, but rather that the days of creation were 24 hour days - the same position as the YECs.
But that's not all YEC'ism teaches, so you really can't say that St. Ephraim was a YEC'ist.
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jckstraw72
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« Reply #3917 on: December 11, 2011, 07:54:21 PM »

i suppose, but i was really only responding to the idea that the specific position of literal days originated with Ellen G. White.
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« Reply #3918 on: December 11, 2011, 08:05:55 PM »

i suppose, but i was really only responding to the idea that the specific position of literal days originated with Ellen G. White.
But no one asserted that. The assertion is that within Fundamentalist Protestant circles, who most likely had and continue to have no knowledge of St. Ephraim of Syria, belief in a literal six 24-hour days of creation originated with Ellen G. White.
« Last Edit: December 11, 2011, 08:06:45 PM by PeterTheAleut » Logged
jckstraw72
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« Reply #3919 on: December 11, 2011, 08:09:42 PM »

i was responding to this: "The point in mentioning the 1925 Scopes' trial was not to discuss the trial itself, or the results from the trial, but to point out that the Creationist Young-Earth position of six, 24-hour, day creation is a result of the adoption of the visions of Ellen G. White."

if i missed the context of Fundamentalism then forgive me.
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« Reply #3920 on: December 11, 2011, 08:10:47 PM »

double post
« Last Edit: December 11, 2011, 08:12:46 PM by jckstraw72 » Logged
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« Reply #3921 on: December 11, 2011, 08:12:21 PM »

i was responding to this: "The point in mentioning the 1925 Scopes' trial was not to discuss the trial itself, or the results from the trial, but to point out that the Creationist Young-Earth position of six, 24-hour, day creation is a result of the adoption of the visions of Ellen G. White."

if i missed the context of Fundamentalism then forgive me.
What's there to forgive? You're only hurting your own position with your inattention.
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« Reply #3922 on: December 11, 2011, 08:31:29 PM »

i suppose, but i was really only responding to the idea that the specific position of literal days originated with Ellen G. White.
I don't doubt that one can believe in a six, 24-hour day creation without the help of Ellen G. White, but within modern, post-1960s, Protestant American fundamentalism, the prevalence of that particular literal interpretation is due to the visionary experiences of Ellen G. White.
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« Reply #3923 on: December 11, 2011, 08:42:54 PM »

i suppose, but i was really only responding to the idea that the specific position of literal days originated with Ellen G. White.
I don't doubt that one can believe in a six, 24-hour day creation without the help of Ellen G. White, bu within modern, post-1960s, Protestant American fundamentalism, the prevalence of that particular literal interpretation is due to the visionary experiences of Ellen G. White.

yah, as I said to Peter I missed that context. Forgive me for the unnecessary rabbit trail.
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« Reply #3924 on: December 12, 2011, 12:39:12 AM »

What does it mean to read the Bible literally? A few points to consider:

....

Should we care if a secular court finds evolution compatible with creation?
 
The point in mentioning the 1925 Scopes' trial was not to discuss the trial itself, or the results from the trial, but to point out that the Creationist Young-Earth position of six, 24-hour, day creation is a result of the adoption of the visions of Ellen G. White.

maybe so, but Ellen G. White was reading St. Ephraim of Syria:

Commentary on Genesis 1, pg. 282
.....

I don't believe St. Ephraim said anything about Noah's Flood causing geological strata and fossils (falsely appearing to be millions of years old) to be formed.

Quote
During the first two thirds of the twentieth century, during which most Christian fundamentalists accepted the existence of long geological ages, the leading voice arguing for the recent creation of life on earth in six literal days was George McCready Price (1870-1963), a scientifically self-taught creationist and teacher. Born and reared in the Maritime Provinces of Canada, Price as a youth joined the Seventh-day Adventists, a small religious group founded and still led by a prophetess named Ellen G. White, whom Adventists regarded as being divinely inspired.
....
Shortly after the turn of the century Price dedicated his life to a scientific defense of White’s version of earth history: the creation of all life on earth no more than about 6,000 years ago and a global deluge over 2,000 years before the birth of Christ that had deposited most of the fossil-bearing rocks.
....
For a decade and a half Price’s writings circulated mainly among his coreligionists, but by the late 1910s he was increasingly reaching non-Adventist audiences. In 1926, at the height of the antievolution crusade, the journal Science described Price as "the principal scientific authority of the Fundamentalists. That he was, but with a twist. Although virtually all of the leading antievolutionists of the day, including William Jennings Bryan at the Scopes trial, lauded Price’s critique of evolution, none of them saw any biblical reason to abandon belief in the antiquity of life on earth for what Price called "flood geology." Not until the 1970s did Price’s views, rechristened "creation science," become fundamentalist orthodoxy.

i dont really think she was reading St. Ephraim. I was simply pointing out that YEC didnt begin with her.
Somehow I don't think St. Ephraim thought of himself as a young-earth creationist and would probably bristle at the thought of being associated with them.
Perhaps but how would he react to being associated to evolution / creation compatibility, unless this is not what your suggesting in which case I apologize.

Ellen White was not the first of the mainstream churches in America to suggest YEC at all, google Calvin or Luther and creation.

I would like some reading of Early Church Fathers suggesting anything close to evolution.  I have read the 2nd Homily of Saint John Chrysostom page 32 which appears to warn strongly against such things as merging evolution with creation.   Please point out where I misunderstand this.

St Ephrem the Syrian suggests that the time frame of creation in six days should not suggest an instantanious creation. This again does not suggest evolution and seems vague on his meaning, it certainly has many possible explainations.   Again point me to further reading that would further explain his position. He certainly seems clear about not advocating an allegorical explanation of creation.


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« Reply #3925 on: December 12, 2011, 01:07:45 AM »

What does it mean to read the Bible literally? A few points to consider:

....

Should we care if a secular court finds evolution compatible with creation?
 
The point in mentioning the 1925 Scopes' trial was not to discuss the trial itself, or the results from the trial, but to point out that the Creationist Young-Earth position of six, 24-hour, day creation is a result of the adoption of the visions of Ellen G. White.

maybe so, but Ellen G. White was reading St. Ephraim of Syria:

Commentary on Genesis 1, pg. 282
.....

I don't believe St. Ephraim said anything about Noah's Flood causing geological strata and fossils (falsely appearing to be millions of years old) to be formed.

Quote
During the first two thirds of the twentieth century, during which most Christian fundamentalists accepted the existence of long geological ages, the leading voice arguing for the recent creation of life on earth in six literal days was George McCready Price (1870-1963), a scientifically self-taught creationist and teacher. Born and reared in the Maritime Provinces of Canada, Price as a youth joined the Seventh-day Adventists, a small religious group founded and still led by a prophetess named Ellen G. White, whom Adventists regarded as being divinely inspired.
....
Shortly after the turn of the century Price dedicated his life to a scientific defense of White’s version of earth history: the creation of all life on earth no more than about 6,000 years ago and a global deluge over 2,000 years before the birth of Christ that had deposited most of the fossil-bearing rocks.
....
For a decade and a half Price’s writings circulated mainly among his coreligionists, but by the late 1910s he was increasingly reaching non-Adventist audiences. In 1926, at the height of the antievolution crusade, the journal Science described Price as "the principal scientific authority of the Fundamentalists. That he was, but with a twist. Although virtually all of the leading antievolutionists of the day, including William Jennings Bryan at the Scopes trial, lauded Price’s critique of evolution, none of them saw any biblical reason to abandon belief in the antiquity of life on earth for what Price called "flood geology." Not until the 1970s did Price’s views, rechristened "creation science," become fundamentalist orthodoxy.

i dont really think she was reading St. Ephraim. I was simply pointing out that YEC didnt begin with her.
Somehow I don't think St. Ephraim thought of himself as a young-earth creationist and would probably bristle at the thought of being associated with them.
Perhaps but how would he react to being associated to evolution / creation compatibility, unless this is not what your suggesting in which case I apologize.
I'm suggesting no such thing. Whatever his views may be, I suspect there's likely much in modern-day YEC to which St. Ephraim would object, most importantly the heretical doctrines of the Fundamentalist Protestant tradition that gives YEC its foundation.

Ellen White was not the first of the mainstream churches in America to suggest YEC at all, google Calvin or Luther and creation.
I'm not going to Google them to verify what you're saying. Jetavan posted some evidence of E. G. White's claims. Can you do the same for Luther and Calvin? After all, the burden of proof is on you to prove your case, not on me to prove you wrong.

I would like some reading of Early Church Fathers suggesting anything close to evolution.
You do realize that Darwin didn't posit his theory of evolution until more than 1600-1700 years had passed from the end of the era of the Early Church fathers? Why would they have anything to say about evolution? Your suggestion that they might have sounds very anachronistic to me.

I have read the 2nd Homily of Saint John Chrysostom page 32 which appears to warn strongly against such things as merging evolution with creation.   Please point out where I misunderstand this.
See above. St. John Chrysostom preceded Charles Darwin by a good 1400 years.

St Ephrem the Syrian suggests that the time frame of creation in six days should not suggest an instantanious creation. This again does not suggest evolution and seems vague on his meaning, it certainly has many possible explainations.   Again point me to further reading that would further explain his position. He certainly seems clear about not advocating an allegorical explanation of creation.
Not my area of expertise, so I'm not qualified to offer anything in response to this snippet.
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« Reply #3926 on: December 12, 2011, 02:56:51 AM »

I submit that PtA is just as guilty of WCSS as jckstraw when he asserts that St Ephraim would have "bristled" at being associated with today's YECs. Is he claiming this on the grounds of the YECs' Protestantism? If so, I agree that St Ephraim would no doubt bristle at the association, but I don't see specifically Protestant doctrines coming into play in this debate. The only Protestant doctrine that could remotely be implicated is sola Scriptura, but, as jckstraw notes, many Fathers argued that Scripture needed to be interpreted literally in some cases, and that includes the interpretation of Genesis. It seems rather that PtA is asserting this on the unfounded belief that St Ephraim would have rejected the literal reading of Genesis that the Protestant YEC's enjoin, which I think jckstraw's quote thoroughly disproves.

In any case, who here cares whether YECism is a feature of early or late 20th century Protestant fundamentalism? This thread is about Creationism, Evolution, and Orthodoxy, so jckstraw's reminder that some aspects of YECism have Patristic authority, namely the 24-hour days of Creation, is completely within the scope of the discussion.
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« Reply #3927 on: December 12, 2011, 03:04:42 AM »

I submit that PtA is just as guilty of WCSS as jckstraw when he asserts that St Ephraim would have "bristled" at being associated with today's YECs. Is he claiming this on the grounds of the YECs' Protestantism? If so, I agree that St Ephraim would no doubt bristle at the association, but I don't see specifically Protestant doctrines coming into play in this debate. The only Protestant doctrine that could remotely be implicated is sola Scriptura, but, as jckstraw notes, many Fathers argued that Scripture needed to be interpreted literally in some cases, and that includes the interpretation of Genesis. It seems rather that PtA is asserting this on the unfounded belief that St Ephraim would have rejected the literal reading of Genesis that the Protestant YEC's enjoin, which I think jckstraw's quote thoroughly disproves.

In any case, who here cares whether YECism is a feature of early or late 20th century Protestant fundamentalism? This thread is about Creationism, Evolution, and Orthodoxy, so jckstraw's reminder that some aspects of YECism have Patristic authority, namely the 24-hour days of Creation, is completely within the scope of the discussion.
You would have made a good argument had you not insisted on reading into my words things I never said in order to make me fit your straw man image of me. But what's new?
« Last Edit: December 12, 2011, 03:09:18 AM by PeterTheAleut » Logged
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« Reply #3928 on: December 12, 2011, 10:55:27 AM »

I submit that PtA is just as guilty of WCSS as jckstraw when he asserts that St Ephraim would have "bristled" at being associated with today's YECs. Is he claiming this on the grounds of the YECs' Protestantism? If so, I agree that St Ephraim would no doubt bristle at the association, but I don't see specifically Protestant doctrines coming into play in this debate. The only Protestant doctrine that could remotely be implicated is sola Scriptura, but, as jckstraw notes, many Fathers argued that Scripture needed to be interpreted literally in some cases, and that includes the interpretation of Genesis. It seems rather that PtA is asserting this on the unfounded belief that St Ephraim would have rejected the literal reading of Genesis that the Protestant YEC's enjoin, which I think jckstraw's quote thoroughly disproves.

In any case, who here cares whether YECism is a feature of early or late 20th century Protestant fundamentalism? This thread is about Creationism, Evolution, and Orthodoxy, so jckstraw's reminder that some aspects of YECism have Patristic authority, namely the 24-hour days of Creation, is completely within the scope of the discussion.
You would have made a good argument had you not insisted on reading into my words things I never said in order to make me fit your straw man image of me. But what's new?

why do you frequently respond so uncharitably? not everyone is out to attack you or to get you. i think it would be nice to give each other the benefit of the doubt - that everyone is concerned with discerning the truth and not personally attacking you.
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« Reply #3929 on: December 12, 2011, 12:34:44 PM »

I submit that PtA is just as guilty of WCSS as jckstraw when he asserts that St Ephraim would have "bristled" at being associated with today's YECs. Is he claiming this on the grounds of the YECs' Protestantism? If so, I agree that St Ephraim would no doubt bristle at the association, but I don't see specifically Protestant doctrines coming into play in this debate. The only Protestant doctrine that could remotely be implicated is sola Scriptura, but, as jckstraw notes, many Fathers argued that Scripture needed to be interpreted literally in some cases, and that includes the interpretation of Genesis. It seems rather that PtA is asserting this on the unfounded belief that St Ephraim would have rejected the literal reading of Genesis that the Protestant YEC's enjoin, which I think jckstraw's quote thoroughly disproves.

In any case, who here cares whether YECism is a feature of early or late 20th century Protestant fundamentalism? This thread is about Creationism, Evolution, and Orthodoxy, so jckstraw's reminder that some aspects of YECism have Patristic authority, namely the 24-hour days of Creation, is completely within the scope of the discussion.
You would have made a good argument had you not insisted on reading into my words things I never said in order to make me fit your straw man image of me. But what's new?

why do you frequently respond so uncharitably? not everyone is out to attack you or to get you. i think it would be nice to give each other the benefit of the doubt - that everyone is concerned with discerning the truth and not personally attacking you.
It's a dynamic between Jonathan and me I doubt you'll understand as long as you see me the way you do. I know what I mean by what I say, and I can see when somebody else reads into my words things I don't say. I don't think anyone is really "out to get me", as you like to say of me, nor am I the only person Jonathan has misrepresented as you have so seen. This is a tactic he employs frequently. The truth be told, I think I'm acting charitably to tell him forcefully that he's not listening to me.
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« Reply #3930 on: December 12, 2011, 02:18:32 PM »

im not referring only to your interactions with Jonathan. You do it with many people, and I'm not the only one to notice this. I asked forgiveness for misunderstanding and you used that as an opportunity to insult me. you really should re-consider how you interact with people on this forum.
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« Reply #3931 on: December 12, 2011, 02:41:59 PM »

im not referring only to your interactions with Jonathan. You do it with many people, and I'm not the only one to notice this. I asked forgiveness for misunderstanding and you used that as an opportunity to insult me. you really should re-consider how you interact with people on this forum.
Please tell me how it's an insult to say you're hurting your position by your inattention (i.e., not paying attention to context).
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« Reply #3932 on: December 12, 2011, 02:50:49 PM »

im not referring only to your interactions with Jonathan. You do it with many people, and I'm not the only one to notice this. I asked forgiveness for misunderstanding and you used that as an opportunity to insult me. you really should re-consider how you interact with people on this forum.
Please tell me how it's an insult to say you're hurting your position by your inattention (i.e., not paying attention to context).

no. there's no point in doing this with you. let's move on.
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« Reply #3933 on: December 12, 2011, 07:30:24 PM »

How about this, PtA? You say St Ephraim would have not wanted to be associated with these YECs. How is that not WCSS? Has St Ephraim given you some private revelation about what he would have said about modern YECism?
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« Reply #3934 on: December 12, 2011, 08:38:59 PM »

How about this, PtA? You say St Ephraim would have not wanted to be associated with these YECs. How is that not WCSS? Has St Ephraim given you some private revelation about what he would have said about modern YECism?

i think its more likely that St. Ephraim would rejoice that, despite their many problems, the Evangelicals have retained an important bit of truth.
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« Reply #3935 on: December 12, 2011, 08:42:01 PM »

How about this, PtA? You say St Ephraim would have not wanted to be associated with these YECs. How is that not WCSS? Has St Ephraim given you some private revelation about what he would have said about modern YECism?
Go back and read again what I posted, for you missed a very important word: "probably". The word "probably" is not a word one uses when he wants to assert that something is definitely true. Therefore I asserted nothing.
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« Reply #3936 on: December 12, 2011, 08:43:22 PM »

How about this, PtA? You say St Ephraim would have not wanted to be associated with these YECs. How is that not WCSS? Has St Ephraim given you some private revelation about what he would have said about modern YECism?

i think its more likely that St. Ephraim would rejoice that, despite their many problems, the Evangelicals have retained an important bit of truth.
How can you say they retained something they didn't develop until the 20th century?
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« Reply #3937 on: December 12, 2011, 09:41:15 PM »

How about this, PtA? You say St Ephraim would have not wanted to be associated with these YECs. How is that not WCSS? Has St Ephraim given you some private revelation about what he would have said about modern YECism?
Go back and read again what I posted, for you missed a very important word: "probably". The word "probably" is not a word one uses when he wants to assert that something is definitely true. Therefore I asserted nothing.

No, you asserted that St Ephraim probably would have thought such and such, rather than definitely without a doubt have thought such and such. It's still an assertion for which you need to provide supporting evidence.
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« Reply #3938 on: December 12, 2011, 09:55:38 PM »

How about this, PtA? You say St Ephraim would have not wanted to be associated with these YECs. How is that not WCSS? Has St Ephraim given you some private revelation about what he would have said about modern YECism?
Go back and read again what I posted, for you missed a very important word: "probably". The word "probably" is not a word one uses when he wants to assert that something is definitely true. Therefore I asserted nothing.

No, you asserted that St Ephraim probably would have thought such and such, rather than definitely without a doubt have thought such and such. It's still an assertion for which you need to provide supporting evidence.

and i used the word "perhaps" and yet i was accused by him of WCSS. these are just distractions from any meaningful conversation. i suggest letting it go.
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« Reply #3939 on: December 12, 2011, 10:02:08 PM »

This thread is giving me a serious case of migraine.

Can we go back to basics for a second?

Can we all conclude that evolution occured or are there issues to be had with it?
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« Reply #3940 on: December 12, 2011, 10:12:16 PM »

This thread is giving me a serious case of migraine.

Can we go back to basics for a second?

Can we all conclude that evolution occured or are there issues to be had with it?
Define "evolution". Roll Eyes
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« Reply #3941 on: December 12, 2011, 10:26:40 PM »

This thread is giving me a serious case of migraine.

Can we go back to basics for a second?

Can we all conclude that evolution occured or are there issues to be had with it?

i cannot conclude that evolution occurred because I believe the Church to be a higher authority than science when it comes to understanding the creative acts of God and the Holy Scriptures. The Church teaches that death is a consequence of sin, so I reject any theory that makes death an inherent part of creation, intended by God. I believe, as the Wisdom of Solomon teaches, that God desires life for His creation, not death.
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« Reply #3942 on: December 12, 2011, 11:50:08 PM »

I cannot conclude evolution occurred either.  I see no evidence either scripturally or traditionally of accepting such secular explanations of the world, or it's beginning, and many warnings against it.   We are warned to be very aware that our battle is not against "flesh and blood" and yet modern scientific method is to denounce the unobservable and claim truth is in the observable alone (even if the supposed observable is completely imaginary and theoretical). This appears to directly contradict our warning.  I much more find believable that which was written by God as an explanation of His creation, than something arrived at through the "reasonable" assessments of man, sick in his sins.

I am also unconvinced scientifically, as you may have guessed, though this is not my greatest concern. The poorly gathered and demonstrated empirical evidence does not neccessarily equal the THEORY of evolution. 
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« Reply #3943 on: December 13, 2011, 12:29:07 AM »

One last bit. What about extinct species?
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« Reply #3944 on: December 13, 2011, 12:29:30 AM »

This thread is giving me a serious case of migraine.

Can we go back to basics for a second?

Can we all conclude that evolution occured or are there issues to be had with it?

i cannot conclude that evolution occurred because I believe the Church to be a higher authority than science when it comes to understanding the creative acts of God and the Holy Scriptures. The Church teaches that death is a consequence of sin, so I reject any theory that makes death an inherent part of creation, intended by God. I believe, as the Wisdom of Solomon teaches, that God desires life for His creation, not death.
But what if science empirically proves that death did occur before Adam and Eve? What then?

You're not wrong about this issue. You trust the Church's authority rather than that of fallen man's observation and hypotheticals on how the life came to be. Fair enough, I'm not going to argue on that point, regardless if I believe the opposite. For that I have nothing but praise for your position because you actually trust the Church. How many Orthodox Christians can say the same?
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« Reply #3945 on: December 13, 2011, 12:45:34 AM »

This thread is giving me a serious case of migraine.

Can we go back to basics for a second?

Can we all conclude that evolution occured or are there issues to be had with it?

i cannot conclude that evolution occurred because I believe the Church to be a higher authority than science when it comes to understanding the creative acts of God and the Holy Scriptures. The Church teaches that death is a consequence of sin, so I reject any theory that makes death an inherent part of creation, intended by God. I believe, as the Wisdom of Solomon teaches, that God desires life for His creation, not death.
Quote
But what if science empirically proves that death did occur before Adam and Eve? What then?

well, honestly, i dont think its possible for science to prove such a thing. the best it can do is make assumptions of the past based on what it observes of the present, but there's no certainty in that.

even if the fossil record has lots of dead animals before dead men, that doesnt contradict the Biblical account. the first thing to die were those animals that God took skins from to clothe Adam and Eve, and then Adam lived another 930 years. Who knows how many animals died before you had a significant amount of humans die to the point where we would expect to find  human fossils. Scriptures show us that animals died before man died, but it doesn't mean they died before man sinned.

however, purely hypothetically speaking, if it were undeniably proved that death existed before Adam and Eve sinned then I would have to give up Orthodoxy. But I experientially know Orthodoxy is true so I also know that death cannot and will not be empirically proven to have existed before man's sin.

Quote
You're not wrong about this issue. You trust the Church's authority rather than that of fallen man's observation and hypotheticals on how the life came to be. Fair enough, I'm not going to argue on that point, regardless if I believe the opposite. For that I have nothing but praise for your position because you actually trust the Church. How many Orthodox Christians can say the same?

thank you for your kind words. God bless you!
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« Reply #3946 on: December 13, 2011, 01:38:25 AM »

How about this, PtA? You say St Ephraim would have not wanted to be associated with these YECs. How is that not WCSS? Has St Ephraim given you some private revelation about what he would have said about modern YECism?
Go back and read again what I posted, for you missed a very important word: "probably". The word "probably" is not a word one uses when he wants to assert that something is definitely true. Therefore I asserted nothing.

No, you asserted that St Ephraim probably would have thought such and such, rather than definitely without a doubt have thought such and such. It's still an assertion for which you need to provide supporting evidence.

and i used the word "perhaps" and yet i was accused by him of WCSS.
And I'm not defending any innocence of engaging in some WCSS speculation myself.

these are just distractions from any meaningful conversation. i suggest letting it go.
You're right, though, WCSS is not the issue. Jonathan jumped on that tangent as evidence of an apparent hypocrisy on my part, but it never really was the issue.
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« Reply #3947 on: December 13, 2011, 01:53:18 AM »


Quote
But what if science empirically proves that death did occur before Adam and Eve? What then?

well, honestly, i dont think its possible for science to prove such a thing. the best it can do is make assumptions of the past based on what it observes of the present, but there's no certainty in that.

even if the fossil record has lots of dead animals before dead men, that doesnt contradict the Biblical account. the first thing to die were those animals that God took skins from to clothe Adam and Eve, and then Adam lived another 930 years. Who knows how many animals died before you had a significant amount of humans die to the point where we would expect to find  human fossils. Scriptures show us that animals died before man died, but it doesn't mean they died before man sinned.

however, purely hypothetically speaking, if it were undeniably proved that death existed before Adam and Eve sinned then I would have to give up Orthodoxy. But I experientially know Orthodoxy is true so I also know that death cannot and will not be empirically proven to have existed before man's sin.

Quote
You're not wrong about this issue. You trust the Church's authority rather than that of fallen man's observation and hypotheticals on how the life came to be. Fair enough, I'm not going to argue on that point, regardless if I believe the opposite. For that I have nothing but praise for your position because you actually trust the Church. How many Orthodox Christians can say the same?

thank you for your kind words. God bless you!
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« Reply #3948 on: December 13, 2011, 02:01:56 AM »

How about this, PtA? You say St Ephraim would have not wanted to be associated with these YECs. How is that not WCSS? Has St Ephraim given you some private revelation about what he would have said about modern YECism?
Go back and read again what I posted, for you missed a very important word: "probably". The word "probably" is not a word one uses when he wants to assert that something is definitely true. Therefore I asserted nothing.

No, you asserted that St Ephraim probably would have thought such and such, rather than definitely without a doubt have thought such and such. It's still an assertion for which you need to provide supporting evidence.

and i used the word "perhaps" and yet i was accused by him of WCSS.
And I'm not defending any innocence of engaging in some WCSS speculation myself.

these are just distractions from any meaningful conversation. i suggest letting it go.
You're right, though, WCSS is not the issue. Jonathan jumped on that tangent as evidence of an apparent hypocrisy on my part, but it never really was the issue.

Evidence of actual hypocrisy. But otherwise I agree.
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« Reply #3949 on: December 13, 2011, 03:08:04 AM »

well, honestly, i dont think its possible for science to prove such a thing. the best it can do is make assumptions of the past based on what it observes of the present, but there's no certainty in that.

even if the fossil record has lots of dead animals before dead men, that doesnt contradict the Biblical account. the first thing to die were those animals that God took skins from to clothe Adam and Eve, and then Adam lived another 930 years. Who knows how many animals died before you had a significant amount of humans die to the point where we would expect to find  human fossils. Scriptures show us that animals died before man died, but it doesn't mean they died before man sinned.

however, purely hypothetically speaking, if it were undeniably proved that death existed before Adam and Eve sinned then I would have to give up Orthodoxy. But I experientially know Orthodoxy is true so I also know that death cannot and will not be empirically proven to have existed before man's sin.
Just an FYI even if death was some how conclusively proved to be true before the Fall there would be no reason for you to give up Orthodoxy. You would just have to interpret the events in Genesis differently or see things in a different theological framework.

But then again it comes down to who's interpretation is correct? Thank God we have the Church right?

Anyway back to the matter at hand. I am with you that science cannot prove it, in fact I don't believe it is really in science's nature to really turn back to the past so far before it becomes into a realm of hypothesis. The problem I have with many modern scientists comes down to conflating both assumptions and truth into one. Basically because it may sound logically reasonable for evolution to occur therfore it must be true. That really doesn't follow and it for sure doesn't fall into the lap of science. Archaelogy? Maybe. But even then we have quite numerous missing links and alot of question begging.

I'm pretty confident just saying God put forth the world as He did it. How that process occured does not one bit affect any part of my own faith. Evolution or Creationism, it doesn't matter. I will say it is raither naivete to take evolution merely on face value. In fact I think it opens more of a can of worms then answers the question. Once you confirm that evolution is true, then what value is that of man? This question is posed with a non-religious background, so therefore we are only an intelligent ape. Morally speaking, are we even obligated at that point to treat one another with compassion, kindness, etc if they are not made in the image of God?

Once you see how evolution unravels itself, we see how much more important it is that man must be made in the image of God. But this discussion can turn very hubristically, so I'm going to opt out of it.

I think you are with my on this one jckstrw72. And again if you are fighting a battle against those that take a social dawinism stance, then much power to you. But that's more of a political and sociological issue at that point.

Now one area in your post that I am confused about is you say animals died before man did but before man sinned. Are you saying here that there were all the species and with man alive, then once man sinned caused the rest of the animal kingdom to die? It seems muddled how you worded that. Maybe you can expand on that a bit for me.
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« Reply #3950 on: December 13, 2011, 11:13:47 AM »

This thread is giving me a serious case of migraine.

Can we go back to basics for a second?

Can we all conclude that evolution occured or are there issues to be had with it?

i cannot conclude that evolution occurred because I believe the Church to be a higher authority than science when it comes to understanding the creative acts of God and the Holy Scriptures. The Church teaches that death is a consequence of sin, so I reject any theory that makes death an inherent part of creation, intended by God. I believe, as the Wisdom of Solomon teaches, that God desires life for His creation, not death.
Quote
But what if science empirically proves that death did occur before Adam and Eve? What then?

well, honestly, i dont think its possible for science to prove such a thing. the best it can do is make assumptions of the past based on what it observes of the present, but there's no certainty in that.

even if the fossil record has lots of dead animals before dead men, that doesnt contradict the Biblical account. the first thing to die were those animals that God took skins from to clothe Adam and Eve, and then Adam lived another 930 years. Who knows how many animals died before you had a significant amount of humans die to the point where we would expect to find  human fossils. Scriptures show us that animals died before man died, but it doesn't mean they died before man sinned.

however, purely hypothetically speaking, if it were undeniably proved that death existed before Adam and Eve sinned then I would have to give up Orthodoxy. But I experientially know Orthodoxy is true so I also know that death cannot and will not be empirically proven to have existed before man's sin.

Quote
You're not wrong about this issue. You trust the Church's authority rather than that of fallen man's observation and hypotheticals on how the life came to be. Fair enough, I'm not going to argue on that point, regardless if I believe the opposite. For that I have nothing but praise for your position because you actually trust the Church. How many Orthodox Christians can say the same?

thank you for your kind words. God bless you!
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« Reply #3951 on: December 13, 2011, 04:28:48 PM »

well, honestly, i dont think its possible for science to prove such a thing. the best it can do is make assumptions of the past based on what it observes of the present, but there's no certainty in that.

even if the fossil record has lots of dead animals before dead men, that doesnt contradict the Biblical account. the first thing to die were those animals that God took skins from to clothe Adam and Eve, and then Adam lived another 930 years. Who knows how many animals died before you had a significant amount of humans die to the point where we would expect to find  human fossils. Scriptures show us that animals died before man died, but it doesn't mean they died before man sinned.

however, purely hypothetically speaking, if it were undeniably proved that death existed before Adam and Eve sinned then I would have to give up Orthodoxy. But I experientially know Orthodoxy is true so I also know that death cannot and will not be empirically proven to have existed before man's sin.
Just an FYI even if death was some how conclusively proved to be true before the Fall there would be no reason for you to give up Orthodoxy. You would just have to interpret the events in Genesis differently or see things in a different theological framework.


reinterpreting anthropology and the origins of death, etc and seeing things in a different framework is the same as abandoning Orthodoxy. it may still be some brand of Christianity, but it wont be Orthodoxy.


Quote
Now one area in your post that I am confused about is you say animals died before man did but before man sinned. Are you saying here that there were all the species and with man alive, then once man sinned caused the rest of the animal kingdom to die? It seems muddled how you worded that. Maybe you can expand on that a bit for me.

lemme see if i can explain it more clearly. people say the fossil record proves that animals died before man sinned, but this is not necessarily so. it could simply be showing that animals died before man died. i dont mean that the Fall suddenly caused mass death in animals (although I cant rule that out as a possibility - the Fall was a huuuuuuuuge event).

so lets say nothing died until Adam and Eve sinned. Then they sinned, and the first thing that we see dying in the Scriptures is animals - God clothes Adam and Eve in animal skins. Adam lived to be 930 years old -- imagine how many animals could have died during his lifetime. Given the Biblical account, we could reasonably expect the fossil record to show us a massive amount of animal fossils before we could expect to find Adam's fossil. Abel is the first human to die, but we know that even that must have been a significant period of time after the Fall, because when Cain is cast out he goes to an already-established city. It would have taken time for there to be enough people to form a city. I read in some Jewish apocryphal work that Adam and Eve had 38 children (I'm not stating that definitively since its apocryphal, but its also not necessarily baseless, and this number is certainly possible for someone who lived to be 930). Now imagine that their 38 children had 38 children each - Adam and Eve would have well over 1,000 grandchildren. So it would take some significant time for there to be enough people to populate a city, but its certainly plausible within the Biblical framework. Ok, so we know even the first human death, that of Abel, came a significant period of time after the Fall. So before there was even one human death, we could reasonably expect to see quite a lot of animal death. So just looking at the layering of fossils does not in any way contradict the Biblical account.

again, im not positing this as definitive, but simply showing that the ordering of the fossil record can easily coincide with the Biblical account. there is still the question of the dating of those fossils, but the layering is not contradictory to the Biblical account.
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« Reply #3952 on: December 13, 2011, 09:00:33 PM »

This thread is giving me a serious case of migraine.

Can we go back to basics for a second?

Can we all conclude that evolution occured or are there issues to be had with it?

i cannot conclude that evolution occurred because I believe the Church to be a higher authority than science when it comes to understanding the creative acts of God and the Holy Scriptures. The Church teaches that death is a consequence of sin, so I reject any theory that makes death an inherent part of creation, intended by God. I believe, as the Wisdom of Solomon teaches, that God desires life for His creation, not death.
But what if science empirically proves that death did occur before Adam and Eve? What then?

You're not wrong about this issue. You trust the Church's authority rather than that of fallen man's observation and hypotheticals on how the life came to be. Fair enough, I'm not going to argue on that point, regardless if I believe the opposite. For that I have nothing but praise for your position because you actually trust the Church. How many Orthodox Christians can say the same?
I have long respected YECs for that same reason.
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« Reply #3953 on: December 13, 2011, 09:07:03 PM »

This thread is giving me a serious case of migraine.

Can we go back to basics for a second?

Can we all conclude that evolution occured or are there issues to be had with it?

i cannot conclude that evolution occurred because I believe the Church to be a higher authority than science when it comes to understanding the creative acts of God and the Holy Scriptures. The Church teaches that death is a consequence of sin, so I reject any theory that makes death an inherent part of creation, intended by God. I believe, as the Wisdom of Solomon teaches, that God desires life for His creation, not death.
But what if science empirically proves that death did occur before Adam and Eve? What then?

You're not wrong about this issue. You trust the Church's authority rather than that of fallen man's observation and hypotheticals on how the life came to be. Fair enough, I'm not going to argue on that point, regardless if I believe the opposite. For that I have nothing but praise for your position because you actually trust the Church. How many Orthodox Christians can say the same?
I have long respected YECs for that same reason.
That they trust the Church?
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« Reply #3954 on: December 13, 2011, 09:12:23 PM »

This thread is giving me a serious case of migraine.

Can we go back to basics for a second?

Can we all conclude that evolution occured or are there issues to be had with it?

i cannot conclude that evolution occurred because I believe the Church to be a higher authority than science when it comes to understanding the creative acts of God and the Holy Scriptures. The Church teaches that death is a consequence of sin, so I reject any theory that makes death an inherent part of creation, intended by God. I believe, as the Wisdom of Solomon teaches, that God desires life for His creation, not death.
But what if science empirically proves that death did occur before Adam and Eve? What then?

You're not wrong about this issue. You trust the Church's authority rather than that of fallen man's observation and hypotheticals on how the life came to be. Fair enough, I'm not going to argue on that point, regardless if I believe the opposite. For that I have nothing but praise for your position because you actually trust the Church. How many Orthodox Christians can say the same?
I have long respected YECs for that same reason.
That they trust the Church?
In the case of Orthodox YECs, yes.
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« Reply #3955 on: December 13, 2011, 10:13:04 PM »

I wasn't aware that the Orthodox Church insisted on a Young-Earth dogma  Huh
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« Reply #3956 on: December 14, 2011, 12:15:25 AM »

well, honestly, i dont think its possible for science to prove such a thing. the best it can do is make assumptions of the past based on what it observes of the present, but there's no certainty in that.

even if the fossil record has lots of dead animals before dead men, that doesnt contradict the Biblical account. the first thing to die were those animals that God took skins from to clothe Adam and Eve, and then Adam lived another 930 years. Who knows how many animals died before you had a significant amount of humans die to the point where we would expect to find  human fossils. Scriptures show us that animals died before man died, but it doesn't mean they died before man sinned.

however, purely hypothetically speaking, if it were undeniably proved that death existed before Adam and Eve sinned then I would have to give up Orthodoxy. But I experientially know Orthodoxy is true so I also know that death cannot and will not be empirically proven to have existed before man's sin.
Just an FYI even if death was some how conclusively proved to be true before the Fall there would be no reason for you to give up Orthodoxy. You would just have to interpret the events in Genesis differently or see things in a different theological framework.


reinterpreting anthropology and the origins of death, etc and seeing things in a different framework is the same as abandoning Orthodoxy. it may still be some brand of Christianity, but it wont be Orthodoxy.


Quote
Now one area in your post that I am confused about is you say animals died before man did but before man sinned. Are you saying here that there were all the species and with man alive, then once man sinned caused the rest of the animal kingdom to die? It seems muddled how you worded that. Maybe you can expand on that a bit for me.

lemme see if i can explain it more clearly. people say the fossil record proves that animals died before man sinned, but this is not necessarily so. it could simply be showing that animals died before man died. i dont mean that the Fall suddenly caused mass death in animals (although I cant rule that out as a possibility - the Fall was a huuuuuuuuge event).

so lets say nothing died until Adam and Eve sinned. Then they sinned, and the first thing that we see dying in the Scriptures is animals - God clothes Adam and Eve in animal skins. Adam lived to be 930 years old -- imagine how many animals could have died during his lifetime. Given the Biblical account, we could reasonably expect the fossil record to show us a massive amount of animal fossils before we could expect to find Adam's fossil. Abel is the first human to die, but we know that even that must have been a significant period of time after the Fall, because when Cain is cast out he goes to an already-established city. It would have taken time for there to be enough people to form a city. I read in some Jewish apocryphal work that Adam and Eve had 38 children (I'm not stating that definitively since its apocryphal, but its also not necessarily baseless, and this number is certainly possible for someone who lived to be 930). Now imagine that their 38 children had 38 children each - Adam and Eve would have well over 1,000 grandchildren. So it would take some significant time for there to be enough people to populate a city, but its certainly plausible within the Biblical framework. Ok, so we know even the first human death, that of Abel, came a significant period of time after the Fall. So before there was even one human death, we could reasonably expect to see quite a lot of animal death. So just looking at the layering of fossils does not in any way contradict the Biblical account.

again, im not positing this as definitive, but simply showing that the ordering of the fossil record can easily coincide with the Biblical account. there is still the question of the dating of those fossils, but the layering is not contradictory to the Biblical account.

I think this is a pretty good post. It is thoughtful, which is a relief, even though we differ in this issue.
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« Reply #3957 on: December 14, 2011, 01:17:29 AM »

I think I've repeated this before, but yes, that seems to be the crux the issue with Orthodox Christians.  It's not like the Protestant situation, where the Bible is taken literally.  But rather, those of the Orthodox that do reject evolution do so because they feel it is a dogmatic necessity to believe that death of animals only occurred after man's sin and fall.  If there was a scientific theory that agreed with that, there wouldn't be this discussion.

In the past, I mentioned St. Athanasius as a possible source of the belief that animal death did exist.  The response was that even if St. Athanasius believed it, "patristic consensus" showed otherwise.  To which I showed an example of how patristic consensus is not always helpful in this argument, based on the interpretation of the Nephilim.  Nevertheless, the rebuttal is that since this is a very recent controversy, even though the tides might be turning among respectable Orthodox theologians today, there are still those contemporary theologians who reject it, among whom are even canonized saints.

And that's the essential summary of the most important debate on evolution that pertains to the Orthodox Church in my opinion.
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« Reply #3958 on: December 14, 2011, 10:34:24 AM »

well, honestly, i dont think its possible for science to prove such a thing. the best it can do is make assumptions of the past based on what it observes of the present, but there's no certainty in that.

even if the fossil record has lots of dead animals before dead men, that doesnt contradict the Biblical account. the first thing to die were those animals that God took skins from to clothe Adam and Eve, and then Adam lived another 930 years. Who knows how many animals died before you had a significant amount of humans die to the point where we would expect to find  human fossils. Scriptures show us that animals died before man died, but it doesn't mean they died before man sinned.

however, purely hypothetically speaking, if it were undeniably proved that death existed before Adam and Eve sinned then I would have to give up Orthodoxy. But I experientially know Orthodoxy is true so I also know that death cannot and will not be empirically proven to have existed before man's sin.
Just an FYI even if death was some how conclusively proved to be true before the Fall there would be no reason for you to give up Orthodoxy. You would just have to interpret the events in Genesis differently or see things in a different theological framework.


reinterpreting anthropology and the origins of death, etc and seeing things in a different framework is the same as abandoning Orthodoxy. it may still be some brand of Christianity, but it wont be Orthodoxy.


Quote
Now one area in your post that I am confused about is you say animals died before man did but before man sinned. Are you saying here that there were all the species and with man alive, then once man sinned caused the rest of the animal kingdom to die? It seems muddled how you worded that. Maybe you can expand on that a bit for me.

lemme see if i can explain it more clearly. people say the fossil record proves that animals died before man sinned, but this is not necessarily so. it could simply be showing that animals died before man died. i dont mean that the Fall suddenly caused mass death in animals (although I cant rule that out as a possibility - the Fall was a huuuuuuuuge event).

so lets say nothing died until Adam and Eve sinned. Then they sinned, and the first thing that we see dying in the Scriptures is animals - God clothes Adam and Eve in animal skins. Adam lived to be 930 years old -- imagine how many animals could have died during his lifetime. Given the Biblical account, we could reasonably expect the fossil record to show us a massive amount of animal fossils before we could expect to find Adam's fossil. Abel is the first human to die, but we know that even that must have been a significant period of time after the Fall, because when Cain is cast out he goes to an already-established city. It would have taken time for there to be enough people to form a city. I read in some Jewish apocryphal work that Adam and Eve had 38 children (I'm not stating that definitively since its apocryphal, but its also not necessarily baseless, and this number is certainly possible for someone who lived to be 930). Now imagine that their 38 children had 38 children each - Adam and Eve would have well over 1,000 grandchildren. So it would take some significant time for there to be enough people to populate a city, but its certainly plausible within the Biblical framework. Ok, so we know even the first human death, that of Abel, came a significant period of time after the Fall. So before there was even one human death, we could reasonably expect to see quite a lot of animal death. So just looking at the layering of fossils does not in any way contradict the Biblical account.

again, im not positing this as definitive, but simply showing that the ordering of the fossil record can easily coincide with the Biblical account. there is still the question of the dating of those fossils, but the layering is not contradictory to the Biblical account.

I think this is a pretty good post. It is thoughtful, which is a relief, even though we differ in this issue.

thanks!
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« Reply #3959 on: December 14, 2011, 10:41:55 PM »

New book: Alvin Platinga, Where the Conflict Really Lies: Science, Religion, and Naturalism:

"My overall claim in this book: there is superficial conflict but deep concord between science and theistic religion, but superficial concord and deep conflict between science and naturalism."

Thus, there is a science/religion conflict, but the "religion" in this conflict is not "theism" but rather "naturalism".
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