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Author Topic: Creationism, Evolution, and Orthodoxy  (Read 332974 times) Average Rating: 0
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« Reply #405 on: February 07, 2008, 09:59:41 PM »

Maybe you can relate with this.  Metropolitan John Zizioulas write:

  We need to insert a large parenthesis at this point, because one cannot speak of the dogma on the Creation of the world and Man, without referring to modern Biology and especially to the Evolution Theory – Darwin’s theory   (*) – which, whether we like it or not, is the one that currently prevails in Biology.  When the Evolution Theory made its appearance, Darwin caused panic in prevalent Theology. Darwin’s theory    (*) created this panic, because up until that time – and even to this day for many people –  the characteristic that discerned Man from the animals was considered to be the logical element, thought, conscience, and self-awareness most of all, and Darwin in his “Origin of the Species”    (*)   demonstrated very convincingly that all these characteristics are also found in animals, except that animals possess them to a lesser degree and consequently, the difference between man and the animal –with regard to these characteristics- is not, as he stated, a difference in kind, but a degree of difference.  He demonstrated that animals can also think, have a conscience, create a civilization, possess technology; furthermore, many things of which Man boasts are not lacking in animals; they too organize their lives etc., and, just like that, in a moment of time, we found ourselves in a dilemma as to whether or not to accept that Man is also an animal, or to review the entire issue of how Man differs from the animals.

Contemporary anthropology has now located the difference elsewhere. I repeat, that many people still persist on the idea that the difference is found in the characteristics that we mentioned and that they naturally consider Man to be an advanced animal species. To locate a radical difference that will be a difference in kind –as Darwin said- and not a difference in degree, we must not resort to logic or conscience; not even to self-awareness, science and technology, perhaps not even to something that is very popular nowadays –especially in Britain– i.e. communication, because things are not quite clear there either, as to whether animals have languages – not languages in the sense of uttering cries to communicate, but in the sense of structured sentences, of composing meanings etc..  All of these are characteristics of Man; however, not everyone is convinced of this.  Thus, the single characteristic that anthropology today is inclined to accept as a difference, I believe now renders Darwin’s (*) theory  entirely innocuous for Theology, provided Theology takes the appropriate stance. This characteristic is, as we mentioned earlier, freedom.  An animal, any animal, even the more advanced kind, possesses the ability to adapt to the environment, to the existing world, to Creation; however, it will never consider denying its environment, annihilating it and then creating its own world.  An animal cannot create a world of its own; only Man has this tendency.  You notice a tree. The same tree that you are beholding is also beheld by a cat. As a scientist, you can analyse that tree, you can become a perfect botanist, create an entire science and will, in this manner, be one step above that animal, but you will not be of a different kind. During the course of evolution, you may have once possessed less knowledge as a biological being and acquired more knowledge with the passing of Time; this is understandable and it creates no problem. Consequently, as regards the knowledge of that tree, you do not differ as a species from the animal. But when you say “I will draw this tree; I will make my own tree, I will make a world with trees which are not these, but my own trees”, from that moment on, you have proved you do not belong to the animal category.  An animal can never consider making its own world. It adjusts itself to the present world, but does not create its own.  Therefore the animal cannot develop artistically. One could say that to a certain elementary degree, it can create science. Quite often however, it is more than an elementary degree; quite often, we discover things that have already been discovered by animals. Science therefore is possible for an animal or for Man (as a superior kind of animal), but it cannot create art.  The fact that it cannot draw is not simply a matter of not being able to pick up a paintbrush and draw. It can be taught to do this. But to reject the existing world and create a world of its own, which will bear its personal stamp, is a characteristic of Man, and this characteristic is observed –as modern psychology has indicated- from Man’s very first steps.

Psychology today –especially with Freud- has observed that when a child, an infant, takes any raw material into its hands, it will shape it, thus imposing its own personal stamp on it. This reflects man’s tendency to create his own world; it is his way of showing he is unwilling to admit that the world that was provided for him is something that he has to adjust to, whether he likes it or not. He wants his own world.  Art, therefore, as a creation of a new world, is an exercising of Man’s freedom, which however conflicts with its created status.  Why?  Because Man cannot create anything from nil. No matter what he does, he is forced to rely on given images, given materials, in order to create it.  How can he create? That is where he stumbles.  That is why genuinely “creative” Art – like the Art of our time, which developed under the influence of  one’s conscience, in a climate that basically existentialism and the modern philosophies in general have nurtured –  why modern Art has this tendency (which many find annoying) to fragment given forms.  Michaelangelo constantly complained that the greatest impediment in his art was the marble, and the need to be rid of the marble in order to create something. Picasso and many other contemporary artists also fragmented their forms.  Why?  Because they too felt that given forms hindered their freedom.  When this table here has a given form, it is not a work of creative Art to represent it the way it is. This was the olden concept of Art, which was more reminiscent of photography. You take this object, and produce an exact replica of it.  Art is not about copying the given world. Nor is it what the Romantic Era held it to be: i.e., “Art” means to extract from the given creation – from Nature – its spirit, its meaning, its beauty, etc.  But these do not have any freedom, nor any creativity.  Art bears inside it that restlessness regarding freedom, hence its desire to fragment the given forms and freely create whatever the artist desires. However, you can see that what the artist wants is something so arbitrarily personal, that no-one else can recognize it.  He creates something and calls it a table, but it doesn’t have the appearance of a table, so that I too can recognize it as a table. This is why this kind of art form is so difficult to comprehend and why it is rejected by us; why we call it weird, surrealistic, etc.  Or, let’s take a poem for example: even in poetry today, words are also fragmented; i.e., traditional words, with their traditional meaning, are now an impediment in expression, in creation.

I mentioned all the above, so that you might see how much Dogmatics is linked to Man’s existential quests, and how –consequently - the dogma on the creation of Man as a free being points in this direction.  It points towards a being, which, inside God’s given world, does not desire to accept it and preserve it the way it was delivered to him; instead, he desires to place his own personal stamp on it, and this commences from a denial, through to a stance. In other words, he can either destroy it in order to prove his freedom, or, he can accept it and then vouchsafe it again, of his own free will. Of course there are various in-between stages; however, the being that we call “Man” moves within that region. From the moment that we ask Man to forsake his freedom, we demote him to the status of an animal.
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« Reply #406 on: February 07, 2008, 10:21:50 PM »

Also try this.

http://www.fatheralexander.org/booklets/english/creation_man_a_mileant_e.htm
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Excellence of character, then, is a state concerned with choice, lying in a mean relative to us, this being determined by reason and in the way in which the man of practical wisdom would determine it. Now it is a mean between two vices, that which depends on excess and that which depends on defect.
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« Reply #407 on: February 07, 2008, 11:23:53 PM »

Here's my creation question of the day.

6-day creationists point to the salt in the oceans as evidence of a young earth.  They say that oceans take in more salt than they give off and if the earth were billions of years old the oceans would have far more salt to the point that they would be almost all salt.  I'm completely ignorant to the science of this, so I have no opinion on it, but it is an interesting point.

If someone who understands geology could comment on the science of this.  I.e., if this is totally made up science, explain it to me, I would appreciate it.

thanks!!

Beside the above notes, it should be stated that the retention rates, absorption, and runoff of minerals in the ocean is affected by global and ocean temperatures, melting/freezing of polar ice, etc - i.e. there are many variables that in our lifetime seem to be constants but over 100's of millions of years are important factors to take into account.
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« Reply #408 on: February 07, 2008, 11:58:23 PM »

So from reading the above, the conclusion of the sources you quoted is that you can't determine the age of the ocean based on accumulation rates of metals and minerals. 

I understand what you listed indirectly answers my question, but I would still be interested in something that specifically addressed what I asked which was, does in fact more salt enter the ocean each than leaves it each year, and to add to this question 1) under what circumstances could more salt leave the ocean than enter, and 2) how likely is this to happen.
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« Reply #409 on: February 08, 2008, 12:04:27 AM »

So from reading the above, the conclusion of the sources you quoted is that you can't determine the age of the ocean based on accumulation rates of metals and minerals. 

I understand what you listed indirectly answers my question, but I would still be interested in something that specifically addressed what I asked which was, does in fact more salt enter the ocean each than leaves it each year, and to add to this question 1) under what circumstances could more salt leave the ocean than enter, and 2) how likely is this to happen.

Define salt.
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« Reply #410 on: February 08, 2008, 12:11:39 AM »

Does sodium chloride work for you? Seriously, I'm just interested in how the process of accumulation works.  The article alludes to it, but I'd like to hear more on how salt is added to the ocean or sodium chloride if you like, and how it is taken away.  And if the process is always additive, and if not, what factors make it subtractive.


Define salt.
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« Reply #411 on: February 08, 2008, 12:17:46 AM »

So from reading the above, the conclusion of the sources you quoted is that you can't determine the age of the ocean based on accumulation rates of metals and minerals. 

I understand what you listed indirectly answers my question, but I would still be interested in something that specifically addressed what I asked which was, does in fact more salt enter the ocean each than leaves it each year, and to add to this question 1) under what circumstances could more salt leave the ocean than enter, and 2) how likely is this to happen.

No, because salt is removed from the oceans as quickly as it is added and therefore, ocean-age can't be calculated. One could only calculate a minimum age based upon a guess of initial salt ratios.

Creationist, Melvin Cook acknowledges:

The validity of the application of total salt in the ocean in the determination of age turned out to have a very simple answer in the fact shown by Goldschmidt (1954) that it is in steady state and therefore useless as a means of determining the age of the oceans. [Cook, 1966, p.73]

It really is worth reading http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/hovind/howgood-yea2.html.

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« Reply #412 on: February 08, 2008, 12:18:54 AM »

FYI Riddikulus, I'm no 6-day creationist.  But I do have questions about evolution and if the creationist makes an argument that makes sense but sounds fishy to me, I'd like to think I could ask a question here.  I would say that is an intellectually honest approach.

Press that banner high and march on! And that's exactly what a new generation of creationists are doing with this intellectually dishonest argument.

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« Reply #413 on: February 08, 2008, 12:27:22 AM »

FYI Riddikulus, I'm no 6-day creationist.  But I do have questions about evolution and if the creationist makes an argument that makes sense but sounds fishy to me, I'd like to think I could ask a question here.  I would say that is an intellectually honest approach.

TalkOrigins is a great site for sorting out the dishonest claims of Creationists. I don't mean to be deliberately exclusive, because I'm sure there are other equally worthy sites. I did have quite a selection of evolution/creation data on my computer before it crashed Cry, but TalkOrigins is the only one I have managed to find my way back to.
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« Reply #414 on: February 08, 2008, 12:29:16 AM »

Found my answer via a US Geological Survey paper.  Actually, It implies that what accounts for equilibrium is not salt being removed from the ocean, but salt settling to the ocean floor. But I guess technically that would mean it was removed as its sitting on the ocean floor. Which then raise the question, how long has salt been falling to the ocean floor and how thick would this sediment be if the oceans were millions of years old?  And can we even tell. Questions and more questions!!!!

"In the beginning the primeval seas must have been only slightly salty. But ever since the first rains descended upon the young Earth hundreds of millions of years ago and ran over the land breaking up rocks and transporting their minerals to the seas, the ocean has become saltier. It is estimated that the rivers and streams flowing from the United States alone discharge 225 million tons of dissolved solids and 513 million tons of suspended sediment annually to the sea. Recent calculations show yields of dissolved solids from other land masses that range from about 6 tons per square mile for Australia to about 120 tons per square mile for Europe. Throughout the world, rivers carry an estimated 4 billion tons of dissolved salts to the ocean annually. About the same tonnage of salt from the ocean water probably is deposited as sediment on the ocean bottom, and thus, yearly gains may offset yearly losses. In other words, the oceans today probably have a balanced salt input and outgo."


No, because salt is removed from the oceans as quickly as it is added and therefore, ocean-age can't be calculated. One could only calculate a minimum age based upon a guess of initial salt ratios.

Creationist, Melvin Cook acknowledges:

The validity of the application of total salt in the ocean in the determination of age turned out to have a very simple answer in the fact shown by Goldschmidt (1954) that it is in steady state and therefore useless as a means of determining the age of the oceans. [Cook, 1966, p.73]

It really is worth reading http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/hovind/howgood-yea2.html.


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« Reply #415 on: February 08, 2008, 12:39:18 AM »

Found my answer via a US Geological Survey paper.  Actually, It implies that what accounts for equilibrium is not salt being removed from the ocean, but salt settling to the ocean floor. But I guess technically that would mean it was removed as its sitting on the ocean floor. Which then raise the question, how long has salt been falling to the ocean floor and how thick would this sediment be if the oceans were millions of years old?  And can we even tell. Questions and more questions!!!!

Of course, I have no idea, and I just nipped over to TalkOrigins and can't find an easy answer to that question. I'll keep looking and let you know if I find anything. Isn't this fun!! Grin

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« Reply #416 on: February 08, 2008, 12:44:17 AM »

An even more interesting question?  If the US Geological Survey is correct and equilibrium is mainly due to salt falling to the ocean floor, wouldn't it stand to reason after say, a billion years or so, the ocean depressions would fill in.  A billion times 700 million tons of sediment from the US alone each year must equal a lot of sediment falling to the floor.  Or even a few hundred million years times that and the other billions of tons from around the world.

Of course, I have no idea, and I just nipped over to TalkOrigins and can't find an easy answer to that question. I'll keep looking and let you know if I find anything. Isn't this fun!! Grin


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« Reply #417 on: February 08, 2008, 12:50:04 AM »

Shall we have more fun? Grin

IF, and that's a big IF I know, there had been a world wide flood at the time of Noah, what would be the geological consequences?  And I would like sources from anywhere BUT from creationists.  I know what they say.  I would be much more interested if any non-creationist geologists have ever speculated on what the geological consequences would be of a world wide flood.

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« Reply #418 on: February 08, 2008, 01:12:28 AM »

Shall we have more fun? Grin

IF, and that's a big IF I know, there had been a world wide flood at the time of Noah, what would be the geological consequences?  And I would like sources from anywhere BUT from creationists.  I know what they say.  I would be much more interested if any non-creationist geologists have ever speculated on what the geological consequences would be of a world wide flood.


From the little I have read, I understand that there are some serious problems with a Global Flood and again, I can only suggest a web page - http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/faq-noahs-ark.html#flood
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« Reply #419 on: February 08, 2008, 01:18:15 AM »

I hate to keep repeating myself, but I'M NOT defending 6-day creation.  I don't care if the earth was a billion years old at the time of Noah or a couple thousand.  It might very well be impossible that there was enough water for God to use to flood the earth.  But is anything impossible for God? Wink I just think it would interesting if any "intellectually honest" geologists for fun or amusement or curiosity ever speculated what the geological implications of a world wide flood would be.  Whether they think God was able to do it or not.

From the little I have read, I understand that there are some serious problems with a Global Flood and again, I can only suggest a web page - http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/faq-noahs-ark.html#flood
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« Reply #420 on: February 08, 2008, 01:21:27 AM »

I just think it would interesting if any "intellectually honest" geologists for fun or amusement or curiosity ever speculated what geological implications of a world wide flood would be.

Yes, they have. If you take a look at the TalkOrigins site I have posted you will find opinions there and, no doubt, bibliographies for further interest.
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« Reply #421 on: February 08, 2008, 01:28:37 AM »

I will check it out! thanks

Yes, they have. If you take a look at the TalkOrigins site I have posted you will find opinions there and, no doubt, bibliographies for further interest.
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« Reply #422 on: February 08, 2008, 01:41:25 AM »

Now, if science proves that things as central to the bible such as Adam and Eve and the flood aren't true, just fables.  How can one think any of the biblical miracles are true, and how can one believe Jesus rose from the dead?  Other than by ignoring science.  Which while different from a creationist "ignoring" science in order to believe a 6-day creation, practically speaking it doesn't seem much different.  One is just willing to swallow less miraculous stuff than the other.  If there is a God, I imagine he could dump water on earth and take it away disobeying some scientific laws along the way, just as he can "raise" Jesus from the dead disobeying some scientific laws along the way.

I'd be interested to know how people reconcile this.

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« Reply #423 on: February 08, 2008, 01:55:26 AM »

I'd be interested to know how people reconcile this.

Miracles make for nice stories.
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« Reply #424 on: February 08, 2008, 02:08:11 AM »

So do you think all the miracles in the bible are just stories?  If not, which ones have you been able to ignore scientific principles and believe?

Miracles make for nice stories.
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« Reply #425 on: February 08, 2008, 03:09:50 AM »

So do you think all the miracles in the bible are just stories?  If not, which ones have you been able to ignore scientific principles and believe?

For the most part, though I'm willing to entertain, to a degree, possible abnormalities in the events of the incarnation and resurrection; to say that there is a singularity resulting from a brief interaction of divinity and humanity is one thing and it's primarially a metaphysical claim, one outside the realm of the physical. To claim that there is some regular undermining of the laws of the universe by a deity, that is something entirely different. When we start seeing amputees spontaneously regenerating their limbs after a prayer or being touched with holy water we can start talking seriously about those claims.
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« Reply #426 on: February 08, 2008, 04:14:17 AM »

Now, if science proves that things as central to the bible such as Adam and Eve and the flood aren't true, just fables.  How can one think any of the biblical miracles are true, and how can one believe Jesus rose from the dead?

To begin with, there are no eye-witness accounts to Creation nor a Global flood. The reporting of those biblical miracles relating to Christ as least comes down to us from eye-witnesses. Also the writing is a completely different genre. One is mythopoeic, the establishing of an oral tradition; the other is, it is purported, an historical account by eye-witnesses. The question we ask ourselves is do we believe the eye-witnesses, even though they could be lying or delusional? Each of us deals with those questions on an individual level. 

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Other than by ignoring science.

I don't see the connection. Nor do I see any reason to ignore science over ancient myths. Perhaps I'm completely off my rocker, but I just don't see the problem with seeing Genesis as allegorical of man's sinful (not perfect) condition and his need for a way from under the enslavement of death. I would imagine that the theological arguments that have been built on that are to serve mankind, and surely would be the intention of the Creator?

Quote
If there is a God, I imagine he could dump water on earth and take it away disobeying some scientific laws along the way, just as he can "raise" Jesus from the dead disobeying some scientific laws along the way.

I have no problem with God dumping enough water on earth to cover the highest mountain for over a year, but I do have problems that He might have done such a clean up job afterwards that there is no evidence of it. What game would God be playing if he were to do so? Isn't the lack of evidence purposefully putting a stumbling block in front of the very creatures He insists He wants to worship Him; those He wants to save from death and sin? Wouldn't that be somewhat perverse? Would you or I deceive our own children in such a way and still expect them to love and trust us?

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« Reply #427 on: February 08, 2008, 10:58:59 AM »

Raising someone from the dead would seem to undermine the laws of the universe.  So I guess your straightforward answer should be, "I don't believe in miracles but so it sounds like I have some "faith" in the Christianity taught by the Church I'll come up with some explanation that sounds like I entertain the possibility of a couple of miraculous events."  Is that accurate or off the mark?

Do you have your "generating limbs" line copied somewhere so all you have to do is paste when you need it? Wink

For the most part, though I'm willing to entertain, to a degree, possible abnormalities in the events of the incarnation and resurrection; to say that there is a singularity resulting from a brief interaction of divinity and humanity is one thing and it's primarially a metaphysical claim, one outside the realm of the physical. To claim that there is some regular undermining of the laws of the universe by a deity, that is something entirely different. When we start seeing amputees spontaneously regenerating their limbs after a prayer or being touched with holy water we can start talking seriously about those claims.
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« Reply #428 on: February 08, 2008, 11:05:14 AM »

I did say the creation accounts and whether you believe in them is a different animal than the new testament accounts like Christ being raised from the dead.  But still, I think science would say raising someone from the dead is impossible, especially three days after they've been dead.  We all deal with all questions on an individual level, granted some we have more evidence to make a conclusion than others.  And it's just interesting to me that to a hard core atheist evolutionist someone believing in the resurrection of Christ is just as intellectually dishonest as someone believing in Adam and Eve.

Wouldn't Noah and his family count as eyewitnesses.  Especially, and we haven't talked about it much yet, the flood wasn't a global flood but a local flood the eyewitnesses mistook for a global flood.  And if this is the case, why wouldn't their accounts be as reliable as the biblical accounts of Jesus rising from the dead?  My understanding is that outside of scripture, their are no written eyewitness accounts of Christ rising from the dead.  So why believe Noah or Christ is any more believable than the other?

Personally, while I disagree with them, I've always thought the hard core atheistic evolutionist was the most intellectually honest in taking their conclusions and being willing to follow them to their logical end.

To begin with, there are no eye-witness accounts to Creation nor a Global flood. The reporting of those biblical miracles relating to Christ as least comes down to us from eye-witnesses. Also the writing is a completely different genre. One is mythopoeic, the establishing of an oral tradition; the other is, it is purported, an historical account by eye-witnesses. The question we ask ourselves is do we believe the eye-witnesses, even though they could be lying or delusional? Each of us deals with those questions on an individual level. 

I don't see the connection. Nor do I see any reason to ignore science over ancient myths. Perhaps I'm completely off my rocker, but I just don't see the problem with seeing Genesis as allegorical of man's sinful (not perfect) condition and his need for a way from under the enslavement of death. I would imagine that the theological arguments that have been built on that are to serve mankind, and surely would be the intention of the Creator?

I have no problem with God dumping enough water on earth to cover the highest mountain for over a year, but I do have problems that He might have done such a clean up job afterwards that there is no evidence of it. What game would God be playing if he were to do so? Isn't the lack of evidence purposefully putting a stumbling block in front of the very creatures He insists He wants to worship Him; those He wants to save from death and sin? Wouldn't that be somewhat perverse? Would you or I deceive our own children in such a way and still expect them to love and trust us?


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« Reply #429 on: February 08, 2008, 06:09:35 PM »

Wouldn't Noah and his family count as eyewitnesses.  Especially, and we haven't talked about it much yet, the flood wasn't a global flood but a local flood the eyewitnesses mistook for a global flood.  And if this is the case, why wouldn't their accounts be as reliable as the biblical accounts of Jesus rising from the dead?  My understanding is that outside of scripture, their are no written eyewitness accounts of Christ rising from the dead.  So why believe Noah or Christ is any more believable than the other?
Show me the account Noah wrote of the flood.

On the other hand, I can show you four historical accounts of Jesus rising from the dead.
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« Reply #430 on: February 08, 2008, 06:23:00 PM »

Is that a rhetorical question?  Of course, there is no account he wrote lying around that we know of.  So someone is only an eyewitness if they are the ones writing about themselves being an eyewitness?  So people who were witness to Jesus's resurrection were only eye witnesses if they themselves wrote about their witness and we have that writing to look at today? So the only people we can consider eyewitness's to Christ were the ones who wrote scripture about it?

The flood account might be completely made up, but if its not, I imagine Noah or one of his family wrote about it and passed it down.  Based upon all the evidence people have been presenting, it's probably just a legend though.  Who knows.

If you have four historical accounts of Jesus rising from the dead outside of scripture, which my post was asking, I really would be interested in seeing them if you could post them or show them to me.

thanks!

Show me the account Noah wrote of the flood.

On the other hand, I can show you four historical accounts of Jesus rising from the dead.
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« Reply #431 on: February 08, 2008, 06:31:41 PM »

Yes, it is rhetorical. An eyewitness is someone who saw an event (eye) and reported it (witness). The Gospels were written by four men who saw the risen Christ and wrote about His resurrection.

The Flood, on the other hand, has no eyewitness testimony. It was reported in mythopoeic form by Moses who lived thousands of years after the supposed event. Genesis is not an eyewitness account, not by a long shot.
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« Reply #432 on: February 08, 2008, 06:40:31 PM »

Can't a  "witness" be written or oral or any kind of first hand description.  While obviously Noah's witness, if in fact he had a written or oral one scriptures drew from, would be less reliable than Luke who wrote his and we have a copy of it.  They could both very well be eyewitnesses's.  And they both could have very well made it up.

Yes, it is rhetorical. An eyewitness is someone who saw an event (eye) and reported it (witness). The Gospels were written by four men who saw the risen Christ and wrote about His resurrection.

The Flood, on the other hand, has no eyewitness testimony. It was reported in mythopoeic form by Moses who lived thousands of years after the supposed event. Genesis is not an eyewitness account, not by a long shot.
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« Reply #433 on: February 08, 2008, 09:54:54 PM »

But still, I think science would say raising someone from the dead is impossible, especially three days after they've been dead.

I'm not sure that science would say that it is impossible; but that there is no known means at present. And afterall, there are many things that have been considered impossible in the past; they aren't today.

Quote
We all deal with all questions on an individual level, granted some we have more evidence to make a conclusion than others.  And it's just interesting to me that to a hard core atheist evolutionist someone believing in the resurrection of Christ is just as intellectually dishonest as someone believing in Adam and Eve.

The hard-core atheist would probably say that to believe in either is irrational.

Quote
Wouldn't Noah and his family count as eyewitnesses.  Especially, and we haven't talked about it much yet, the flood wasn't a global flood but a local flood the eyewitnesses mistook for a global flood. And if this is the case, why wouldn't their accounts be as reliable as the biblical accounts of Jesus rising from the dead?  My understanding is that outside of scripture, their are no written eyewitness accounts of Christ rising from the dead.  So why believe Noah or Christ is any more believable than the other?

As far as I'm aware Noah didn't write any account of the flood and it is known from an oral tradition recorded, according to Church Tradition, by Moses, perhaps millenia post the event. So no, we don't have an eye-witness account of the flood. Certainly, if there was a flood, it could have been a local flood mistaken as global. And I'm not sure that I would expect to see written eye-witness accounts of Christ's Resurrection outside Holy Tradition; after all when those accounts were written they weren't exactly "scripture" in the sense that we understand them; they were written as eye-witness accounts.

Quote
Personally, while I disagree with them, I've always thought the hard core atheistic evolutionist was the most intellectually honest in taking their conclusions and being willing to follow them to their logical end.

I don't see that they are any more intellectually honest (perhaps more rational, I'm not sure). If the atheist has honestly looked at the written evidence for God and chosen to reject it as a fairytale; that is their right. The believer of God (any believer, not just Christian) has looked at the evidence at their disposal and acknowledged it with an affirmative. There isn't anything intellectually dishonest in that, I don't believe. Perhaps it's naive and gullible to believe the words of men long dead, but not dishonest. But faith is based on rational investigation and acceptance of evidence; it's not empircal to be sure, but as revealed to us by eye-witnesses.

It's the same basic principle as our "belief" in Julius Caesar. We accept, without question, the accounts of eye-witnesses that Julius Caesar did exist and perhaps did in fact do some of the things he claims to have done in his History of Gallic Wars.

I find it rather interesting that Julius Caesar is simply accepted and taught as a historical fact; you don't hear anyone say that it's silly to believe in him without the same standard of evidence they would seem to expect for Christ. No one today has seen Julius Caesar, we rely on historical sources. We have some busts that are claimed to be of him, but who's to say that they aren't in fact part of an ancient conspiracy; or simply mistakenly labelled?

But somehow, the eye-witness accounts of Christ as a historical fact are put under quite a different microscope - and I'm sure that considering the claims of Christ and His followers we can understand why this is so. Really, to me it becomes a question of do I believe from the written accounts that Christ existed historically. I see no reason to believe He didn't. The next question becomes, do I believe the things that His followers claim? For some reason, my answer, perhaps naive and gullible, is yes. 



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« Reply #434 on: February 08, 2008, 10:38:49 PM »

I'm not sure that science would say that it is impossible; but that there is no known means at present. And afterall, there are many things that have been considered impossible in the past; they aren't today.

And I guess my point in all of this is that people are going to believe whatever they are going to believe.  At the end of the day, we all put our "faith" in something.  As Christians, no matter how much we might wish logic or science can prove our faith, at some point it comes down to suspending disbelief in the impossible and believing in something that to any scientific sceptic is a myth.  I'm still not sure about GIC though! Wink  I can't decide if somewhere an irrational belief lurks and he spends so much time here to try and find more "faith", or if he is a complete rationalist/naturalist whose only God is logic and his goal is to convert as many to his side as possible, by whatever means necessary! Wink

Personally, I think faith will always be based on things unseen.  Evolution will never disprove God, or prove him for that matter.  6-day creationist's will never find the "proof" that they are correct and disbelief in God is completely irrational because his creation proves it.  I believe God intended to always be a little mysterious in order to ensure free will is always at work.  Each day we have a choice, to move towards or away from God.  I've seen God in work so I have no problem believing in miracles, so I'm happy to follow the rule of the Church and take what it says at face fellow.  If I die and find out later something was hoax, oh well.  Logic and scientific truth didn't save me.  Prayer, repentence, Christ, etc. did.

Thanks everyone on this board.  I'm neither an "evolutionist" or a "6-day creationist" per the loaded meanings of those terms.  I believe God created us.  And that's enough for me.  My feeling is that a lot people who are hard core evolutionists or hardcore YE creationists both seem to have some inner desire to find a "proof" for or against God.  And it seems to my reasoning that sometimes each infers far too much from their conclusions.  Although I would say that by far YE creationists are more guilty of this.  But in my opinion, evolutionists take good science and infer far too much from it also.  But if I'm wrong and one of the two are right, I don't mind.

I have kids and wanted to ask a few questions to get a feel from both sides from real people, and especially Orthodox people.  As I know as my kids get older they will be asking the same questions.  Thank you all very much.  If this ever becomes a topic of interest to me again I'll be very thankful that I can come here and get such a good range of passionate, heart felt answers.

Thanks!
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« Reply #435 on: February 09, 2008, 12:31:04 AM »

Can't a  "witness" be written or oral or any kind of first hand description.  While obviously Noah's witness, if in fact he had a written or oral one scriptures drew from, would be less reliable than Luke who wrote his and we have a copy of it.  They could both very well be eyewitnesses's.  And they both could have very well made it up.
Are we talking about witnesses or eyewitnesses? They are two different things. A witness is someone who testifies to the truth as best as they can with the information they have; the person does not have to have been present or really have any knowledge of the actual event to be a witness (a character witness is a good example of this). An eyewitness, however, must be present and must actually have seen the event take place. Neither is totally reliable, of course, but the point stands.
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« Reply #436 on: February 09, 2008, 02:24:28 PM »

And I guess my point in all of this is that people are going to believe whatever they are going to believe.  At the end of the day, we all put our "faith" in something.  As Christians, no matter how much we might wish logic or science can prove our faith, at some point it comes down to suspending disbelief in the impossible and believing in something that to any scientific sceptic is a myth.  I'm still not sure about GIC though! Wink  I can't decide if somewhere an irrational belief lurks and he spends so much time here to try and find more "faith", or if he is a complete rationalist/naturalist whose only God is logic and his goal is to convert as many to his side as possible, by whatever means necessary! Wink

Yes, I am a rationalist/naturalist, but my goal isn't so much to convert people...I just want people to objectively consider a different perspective, to be able to view an issue from several sides, even if they don't embrace my approach.
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« Reply #437 on: February 09, 2008, 02:29:43 PM »

...a sort of modern "Holy Fool", in other words.
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« Reply #438 on: February 09, 2008, 02:32:32 PM »

...a sort of modern "Holy Fool", in other words.

Oh, there's nothing holy about me. Grin
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« Reply #439 on: February 09, 2008, 02:47:15 PM »

...a sort of modern "Holy Fool", in other words.
Oh, there's nothing holy about me. Grin
Ergo... Wink
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« Reply #440 on: February 09, 2008, 03:16:11 PM »

Are we talking about witnesses or eyewitnesses? They are two different things. A witness is someone who testifies to the truth as best as they can with the information they have; the person does not have to have been present or really have any knowledge of the actual event to be a witness (a character witness is a good example of this). An eyewitness, however, must be present and must actually have seen the event take place. Neither is totally reliable, of course, but the point stands.

WRONG!!!

A witness always has to have knowledge of what they're talking about.  Character witnesses have to have knowledge of the person's reputation for a specific character trait or have formed an opinion of that specific character trait based on their knowledge.  You're drawing a false distinction there.  All witnesses must have knowledge of what they report.
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« Reply #441 on: February 09, 2008, 06:32:55 PM »

That wasn't what I was saying. Suppose a person is accused of having robbed a bank. It is possible for a character witness to be called who was not even in the same state as the robbery to give testimony for the accused. Such a person would have no knowledge of the event, i.e. the robbery and certainly could not be called an eyewitness to the robbery, but would be a witness nonetheless.
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« Reply #442 on: March 31, 2008, 10:12:14 AM »

I simply cannot understand, just what this so-called "creationism" is about. One might as well establish a movement called "anti-electromagnetism." Biological evolution is a FACT, just like the existence of electricity is a fact. That life on the planet Earth is being diversified because of the biological evolution is a valid scientific theory, just like that the potential in an electric circuit is determined by the electromagnetic field is a valid scientific theory. There is no "crteationism," it's just silly, stupid, ignorant.


wrong,


Micro-evolution is a fact. Macro-evolution is sci-fi. A myth




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« Reply #443 on: March 31, 2008, 10:42:45 AM »

Micro-evolution is a fact. Macro-evolution is sci-fi. A myth

Where do you get this jibberish? There is no micro or macro evolution, there are simply random changes in  nucleotide sequences that are kept or eliminated depending on how the associated phenotypes contribute to survivability. Roll Eyes
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« Reply #444 on: March 31, 2008, 10:45:06 AM »

Micro-evolution is a fact. Macro-evolution is sci-fi. A myth

I hope you realize you're telling a biologist he's wrong.

In any case, by saying this, you're giving some of us here more a reason not to take you seriously, since you seem to already made up your mind on what "evolution" is.

I hope you read the explanation of the so-called "differences" in micro and macro evolution in the other thread.
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« Reply #445 on: March 31, 2008, 11:10:37 AM »

Where do you get this jibberish? There is no micro or macro evolution, there are simply random changes in  nucleotide sequences that are kept or eliminated depending on how the associated phenotypes contribute to survivability. Roll Eyes

"Adaptive variation" = Micro-evolution. This is what we see in the labs and in Creation/Nature.

When a population of insects are killed by a fertilizer, the ones that are most resistant to the fertilizer will survive to breed and leave a more resistant offspring. After a while the new population of fertilizer resistant insects will be immune to such a fertilizer. But even in this....there is no guarantee that such a population won't revert back to a previous state. So such a mutation can be temporary.



This is what we see and this is done on the Micro scale. The idea that this adaptive variation over a long period of time will turn land lizards into feathered birds is far fetched. It is pure imagination.

We don't observe that in labs. We don't observe that in Creation/nature. This is an assumption. A leap of faith based on the FACT of Adaptive variation.


Thus


The Fact is:

 "ADAPTIVE Variation".


The Myth is:


Over a long period of time "adaptive variation" turns land lizards into feathered birds.






I believe in facts not myths. If you want me to believein Macro-evolution then I will have to see it (observe it) in nature and in the lab. Until then it's a no go.



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« Reply #446 on: March 31, 2008, 11:16:43 AM »

I hope you realize you're telling a biologist he's wrong.

In any case, by saying this, you're giving some of us here more a reason not to take you seriously, since you seem to already made up your mind on what "evolution" is.

I hope you read the explanation of the so-called "differences" in micro and macro evolution in the other thread.

He's not the first. I said the same to my aggressive Atheistic highschool bio teacher. In college when I took an elective bio course (intro to human bio), and the Prof I had was a Christian who didn't force Marco-evolution on us in the same way Atheistic prof's do. Did we learn it? Yes, but just because it was tought to us doesn't mean I have to swallow everything "uncritically".


You can know what the teaching is without agreeing with all of it.  Especially if you know where the "speculation" is. I don't understand why I must accept a speculation in the same way one must accept facts.


The facts I will agree with.


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« Reply #447 on: March 31, 2008, 11:28:05 AM »

He's not the first. I said the same to my aggressive Atheistic highschool bio teacher. In college when I took an elective in bio I took intro to human bio and the Prof was a christian who didn't force Marco-evolution on us in the same way Atheistic prof's do. Did we learn it? Yes, but just because it was tought to us doesn't me I have to swallow everything "uncritically".


You can know what the teaching is whithout agreeing with it.


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Absolutely, you shouldn't take anything uncritically.  That's the mark of a true scientist.  But just an intro to Bio course hardly gets you qualified to even understand fully the processes of evolution, let alone question.  If you must challenge, you need to know more than just basics.  That's like saying I know much more than my 60-year old bishop out of reading one theology book.  Don't you think you need to study the subject more in order to make you qualified as "critical?"

Sometimes, I see in these debates a lack of humility.  People think they know so much, and yet don't realize there's a field of genetics that takes a WHOLE DEGREE to fully understand the processes.

And just to let you know, we also don't "observe" sub-atomic particles, but deduction in research made it possible to understand the atom the way we do today, not just some "simple" observation like you make it out to be.  This is another reason why people won't take you seriously if you're going to engage in such discussions.

God bless.
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« Reply #448 on: March 31, 2008, 11:39:18 AM »

Absolutely, you shouldn't take anything uncritically.  That's the mark of a true scientist.  But just an intro to Bio course hardly gets you qualified to even understand fully the processes of evolution, let alone question.  If you must challenge, you need to know more than just basics.  That's like saying I know much more than my 60-year old bishop out of reading one theology book.  Don't you think you need to study the subject more in order to make you qualified as "critical?"

Sometimes, I see in these debates a lack of humility.  People think they know so much, and yet don't realize there's a field of genetics that takes a WHOLE DEGREE to fully understand the processes.

And just to let you know, we also don't "observe" sub-atomic particles, but deduction in research made it possible to understand the atom the way we do today, not just some "simple" observation like you make it out to be.  This is another reason why people won't take you seriously if you're going to engage in such discussions.

God bless.


You can pretty much derive alot with just the basics. If you know the scientific method and if you know Darwinian evolution, a little bit of bio, chem, physics, and alot of history....but if you know the basics then you can derive alot.


I'm not disagreeing with him on the issue of mutations. I disagree with the idea that over millions of years such a thing must turn a lizard into a feathered bird.


This is pure speculation. If it wasn't I would believe it.



I personally believe.....and I could be wrong, but I personally believe that I'm a mutant. You are a mutant....I think all black people and all white people are mutants. I believe we mutated from "brown" people.

I hope I didn't sound racist by saying that. If I offended anyone I am sorry. I included myself in the mutant category.........if that helps.

But this isn't a fact. And if it is I never knew of it as being a fact. ....this is something I speculated based on the basics.


Also one can read books by people who have degrees in bio. I do read books by christians with degrees in bio, physics, arch.......ect.

Everyone in bio with Ph.D's are not in agreement on every issue. I have a friend who is a veterinarian. He had 8 years of bio. And he doesn't believe in "Macro-evolution".

Dr. David Menton disagrees with it. Should I ignore his credentials?

I shouldn't have to believe people in bio who support the speculation of Macro-evolution.


Quote
And just to let you know, we also don't "observe" sub-atomic particles, but deduction in research made it possible to understand the atom the way we do today, not just some "simple" observation like you make it out to be.  This is another reason why people won't take you seriously if you're going to engage in such discussions


Then they will have to prove to me that their "belief" in "marco-evolution" is the same as ""observing sub-atomic particles".

I don't think it is the same. Our observing of sub-atomic particles is not a "reconstruction of history". The Myths of Macro-evolution is a "reconstruction of history".

So it is not the same comparison.











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« Reply #449 on: March 31, 2008, 12:04:15 PM »

I have alot on my plate, so I will chopp it up with you all in regards to this topic in the fall or next spring.


Until then....take care and be ready.





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