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Poll
Question: What would best describe your beliefs about how the universe and man came to be?
Young Earth Creationism (e.g., earth is less than 10,000 years old) - 16 (13.1%)
Other Creationism (e.g., the "days" in Genesis could each signify very long periods) - 22 (18%)
Theistic Intelligent Design (e.g., we were created by a God, and I *know* which God) - 17 (13.9%)
Deistic Intelligent Design (e.g., the universe was created by God, though I'm not sure which version of God most accurately describes Him) - 1 (0.8%)
Vanilla Intelligent Design (e.g., there was some type of designer, though I don't know if it was a supernatural entity) - 1 (0.8%)
Neo-Darwinian Gradualistic Evolution - 10 (8.2%)
Other Evolutionary Theories - 0 (0%)
None of These - 2 (1.6%)
A Mixture of These - 10 (8.2%)
Theistic Evolution - 33 (27%)
Not Sure - 10 (8.2%)
Total Voters: 122

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Author Topic: Evolutionist, ID, or Creationist? Cast Your Vote!  (Read 23088 times) Average Rating: 0
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« Reply #45 on: April 11, 2006, 11:14:55 AM »

Which means that you can question all of the Fathers based on the possibility that one day science might prove them 'wrong'.

I'm saying that the Fathers themselves will question their own scientific writings if science gives us a different observation and conclusion.  I'm saying that the Fathers used the science and philosophy of their times in harmony to the spirituality and theology.  I would also contend that these same Fathers would use the science and philosophy of this age to harmonize spirituality and theology as well, not contradict it.

Evolution never contradicted the Bible (to an extent, there are allegorical areas, such as the rib taking, that shouldn't be taken literally).  We are still from the "dust" (or so to speak, from the ape which is eventually from the "dust") and we were the pinnacle of creation.  What science cannot prove, although evidence of intellect remains, is the spirituality we have, the Image of God in us that all other creatures lacked, and what is eventually the fulfillment of what Adam and Eve had and better, that is our present impermanency with the world to be incorruption in the Judgment Day.  The fact that we will be "better" than Adam and Eve's nature shows that we also will evolve Christocentricly.

God bless.

Mina
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« Reply #46 on: April 11, 2006, 12:06:18 PM »

Here's some interesting research done on St. Augustine's approach in interpreting Genesis:

http://www.asa3.org/ASA/topics/Bible-Science/PSCF3-88Young.html

God bless.

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« Reply #47 on: April 11, 2006, 02:37:22 PM »

The Holy Fathers never rejected observational and scientific research at the time it was given them.

The Fathers did reject the materialistic cosmogonies of their time with the words of Scripture. St. John Crysostom stated that while St. John the Evangelist was the prophet of the end of time, Moses prophesied the beginning of time. Both spheres of knowledge natural science would not be able to touch.
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« Reply #48 on: April 11, 2006, 02:41:30 PM »

Well, I like to think of myself as a scientist, and studying science, especially medicine, I tend to think and believe that God leaves us experimental and observational means to learn from the world, and to use this knowledge for the praise and glory of God.

Is the resurrection of Christ scientifically explicable? If not, why the creation of man?

Peace.
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« Reply #49 on: April 11, 2006, 02:48:27 PM »

Evolution never contradicted the Bible (to an extent, there are allegorical areas, such as the rib taking, that shouldn't be taken literally).

Who dictates what should and should not be taken literally?

The fact that we will be "better" than Adam and Eve's nature shows that we also will evolve Christocentricly.

What need is there to mix evolution with theology? Is Teilhardism the new Orthodoxy? From time to time, I have attempted to reinterpret patristic theology through the lense of Darwinian evolution. But ultimately, there is no point to this in that it no better helps the individual to understand God nor His creative work.

Peace.
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« Reply #50 on: April 11, 2006, 03:19:31 PM »

Ummm...

Yes...He did create everything good.  What is good and natural for animals is not necessarily good and natural for human beings.  You missed the part where St. Athanasius says that man was "essentially impermanent."  And St. Athanasius also said that after they disobeyed God and did what was prohibited, they went subject to the "natural law of death" and died "outside of Paradise."  In other words, the world was not Paradise.  What happened in the Garden of Eden did not happen to the rest of the world.  And the fact that St. Athanasius calls the law of death "natural" means that it was natural for the world outside the Paradise, the Garden of Eden to live under the laws of death and "corruption."

I don't know how more clear can this get.  Please read the articles provided by Bishop Alexander Mileant, who is a very conservative Orthodox (would also call me a heretic), which provides clarification of proper Scriptural interpretation.

God bless.

Mina

The problem is you are equating Eden and paradise here. Athanasius is referring to paradise as the state of mind. Further, you say that what happened in Eden was different than what happened outside. That would mean God had to different creation, one natural and one not, and that all the animals, and Adam and Eve, we not part of the natural creation, therefore contradicting more Fathers and verses than I can reasonably count. Finally, the law of death was natural in the sense that it was the natural course of sin, a position which is supported by the scriptures.
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« Reply #51 on: April 11, 2006, 03:25:53 PM »

Like several church fathers, I do not believe that the days of Genesis represent literal 24-hour periods of time. While Eden may have been a perfect Paradise, that does not mean that the world outside of Eden was so. Animal death existed for millions of years before the creation of man.
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« Reply #52 on: April 11, 2006, 03:36:40 PM »

Now, I don't have Fr. Seraphim's book at hand, but, as I recall, there are plenty of patristic quotations there that proove his points.
Death is by no means natural. The Holy Scriptures call it "the last ennemy" to be destroyed by Christ; St. Paul, in Romans, shows clearly, how the fate of the Earth is linked to the fate of mankind.

IMO, Fr. Seraphim Rose represents a tendency that is common to a lot of traditions of dogmatic theology, his ROCOR tradition being one of these.  This tendency is to take one thread of the Patristic Tradition on a particular subject, see this to be the consensus of Patristic Tradition, and proclaim this thread as official Orthodox dogma on the subject.  Such teachers will even quote those Fathers who support their own point of view and use this as proof for their assertions.

The problem with this approach is that those who follow this tendency focus only on this thread, isolating it from and ignoring the rest of the Patristic Tradition that contradicts their own limited understanding.  For instance, I know of no Patristic consensus that Adam and Eve did not enjoy sexual relations in Paradise and that sexual relations are purely a concession to human weakness after the Fall.  St. Ireneaus of Lyons seems to disagree: "and thus 'they were not ashamed', kissing and embracing each other in holiness as children."  (On the Apostolic Preaching)

Now let's not get off the track of this thread by pursuing my assertion on human sexuality.  That subject is better left to another thread.
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« Reply #53 on: April 11, 2006, 03:37:40 PM »

Quote
Animal death existed for millions of years before the creation of man.
St Paul shows that nature was subjected to corruption because of Man's fall.
From St. John Chrysostom's "Homilies on Romans":
Ver. 19, 20. "For the earnest expectation of the creation waiteth," he says, "for the revelation of the sons of God. For the creation was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected the same in hope."

And the meaning is something of this kind. The creation itself is in the midst of its pangs, waiting for and expecting these good things whereof we have just now spoken. For "earnest expectation" apokaradokia, looking out) implies expecting intensely. And so his discourse becomes more emphatic, and he personifies this whole world as the prophets also do, when they introduce the floods clapping their hands, and little hills leaping, and mountains skipping, not that we are to fancy them alive, or ascribe any reasoning power to them, but that we may learn The greatness of the blessings, so great as to reach even to things without sense also. The very same thing they do many times also in the case of afflicting things, since they bring in the vine lamenting, and the wine too, and the mountains, and the boardings of the Temple howling, and in this case too it is that we may understand the extremity of the evils. It is then in imitation of these that the Apostle makes a living person of the creature here, and says that it groaneth and travaileth: not that he heard any groan conveyed from the earth and heaven to him, but that he might show the exceeding greatness of the good things to come; and the desire of freedom from the ills which now pervaded them. "For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected the same." What is the meaning of, "the creation was made subject to vanity?" Why that it became corruptible. For what cause, and on what account? On account of thee, O man. For since thou hast taken a body mortal and liable to suffering, the earth too hath received a curse, and brought forth thorns and thistles. But that the heaven, when it is waxen old along with the earth, is to change afterwards to a better portion lhxin v. p. 384) hear from the Prophet in his words; "Thou, O Lord, from the beginning hast founded the earth, and the heavens are the work of Thy hands. They shall perish, but thou shalt endure; and they all shall wax old as doth a garment, and as a cloak shall Thou fold them up, and they shall be changed." (Ps. cii. 25, 26.) Isaiah too declares the same, when he says, "Look to the heaven above, and upon the earth beneath, for the heavens are as a firmament of smoke, and the earth shall wax old like a garment, and they that dwell therein shall perish in like manner. (Is. li. 6.). Now you see in what sense the creation is "in bondage to vanity" and how it is to be freed from the ruined state. For the one says, "Thou shalt fold them up as a garment, and they shall be changed;" and Isaiah says, "and they that dwell therein shall perish in like manner," not of course meaning an utter perishing. For neither do they that dwell therein, mankind, that is, undergo such an one, but a temporary one, and through it they are changed into an incorruptible (1 Cor. xv. 53) state, and so therefore will the creature be. And all this he showed by the way, by his saying "in like manner" (2 Pet. iii. 13), which Paul also says farther on. At present, however, he speaks about the bondage itself, and shows for what reason it became such, and gives ourselves as the cause of it. What then? Was it harshly treated on another's account? By no means, for it was on my account that it was made. What wrong then is done it, which was made for my sake, when it suffereth these things for my correction? Or, indeed, one has no need to moot the question of right and wrong at all in the case of things void of soul and feeling. But Paul, since he had made it a living person, makes use of none of these topics I have mentioned, but another kind of language, as desiring to comfort the hearer with the utmost advantage. And of what kind is this? What have you to say? he means. It was evil intreated for thy sake, and became corruptible; yet it has had no wrong done it. For incorruptible will it he for thy sake again. This then is the meaning of "in hope." But when he says, it was "not willingly" that it was made subject, it is not to show that it is possessed of judgment that he says so, but that you may learn that the whole is brought about by Christ's care. and this is no achievement of its own. And now say in what hope?

Ver. 21. "That the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption."

Now what is this creation? Not thyself alone, but that also which is thy inferior, and partaketh not of reason or sense, this too shall be a sharer in thy blessings. For "it shall be freed," he says, "from the bondage of corruption," that is, it shall no longer be corruptible, but shall go along with the beauty given to thy body; just as when this became corruptible, that became corruptible also; so now it is made incorruptible, that also shall follow it too. And to show this he proceeds. eis "Into the glorious liberty of the children of God." That is, because of their liberty. For as a nurse who is bringing up a king's child, when he has come to his father's power, does herself enjoy the good things along with him, thus also is the creation, he means. You see how in all respects man takes the lead, and that it is for his sake that all things are made. See how he solaces the struggler, and shows the unspeakable love of God toward man. For why, lie would say, dost thou fret at thy temptations? thou art suffering for thyself, the creation for thee. Nor does he solace only, but also shows what he says to be trustworthy. For if the creation which was made entirely for thee is "in hope," much more oughtest thou to be, through whom the creation is to come to the enjoyment of those good things. Thus men (3 Mss. fathers) also when a son is to appear at his coining to a dignity, clothe even the servants with a brighter garment, to the glory of the son; so will God also clothe the Creature with incorruption for the glorious liberty of the children.
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« Reply #54 on: April 11, 2006, 03:41:24 PM »

This tendency is to take one thread of the Patristic Tradition on a particular subject, see this to be the consensus of Patristic Tradition, and proclaim this thread as official Orthodox dogma on the subject.

While the church fathers may have disagreed on the slight details, such as the length of the creation days, did they not agree on the creation of man?
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« Reply #55 on: April 11, 2006, 03:55:44 PM »

While the church fathers may have disagreed on the slight details, such as the length of the creation days, did they not agree on the creation of man?

The direct creation, yes. As St. Basil says when responding to those who say God was "indirectly involved":

" "In the beginning," he says "God created."  He does not say "God worked," "God formed," but" God created." "

He also says:

"Thus then, if it is said, "In the beginning God created," it is to teach us that at the will of God the world arose in less than an instant, and it is to convey this meaning more clearly that other interpreters have said"

(From Homily I, Hexaemeron)
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« Reply #56 on: April 11, 2006, 09:38:58 PM »

I'm saying that the Fathers themselves will question their own scientific writings if science gives us a different observation and conclusion.

How do you know? What science writings by what Father are you talking about?

I'm saying that the Fathers used the science and philosophy of their times in harmony to the spirituality and theology.  I would also contend that these same Fathers would use the science and philosophy of this age to harmonize spirituality and theology as well, not contradict it.

Over-all we believe that the Church is infalible, not going by any one writer. I'm not aware of an 'over-all' opinion by Fathers OTHER THAN to accept creation.


Evolution never contradicted the Bible (to an extent, there are allegorical areas, such as the rib taking, that shouldn't be taken literally).  We are still from the "dust" (or so to speak, from the ape which is eventually from the "dust") and we were the pinnacle of creation.

Let's get one thing clear. Evolution is a naturalistic approach. Naturalism is by its nature anti-supernatural. Scientists believe that we evolved 'naturally', we came into being 'naturally' etc. God has no room in this scheme. The evolution that most people are taught is one that removes God.



They don't deny God per se, but have pushed God's role back.
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« Reply #57 on: April 11, 2006, 09:40:49 PM »

IMO, Fr. Seraphim Rose represents a tendency that is common to a lot of traditions of dogmatic theology, his ROCOR tradition being one of these.  This tendency is to take one thread of the Patristic Tradition on a particular subject, see this to be the consensus of Patristic Tradition, and proclaim this thread as official Orthodox dogma on the subject.  Such teachers will even quote those Fathers who support their own point of view and use this as proof for their assertions.
Plenty of people have cited a list of Fathers who agree with Creation.

We say this in the Nicene Creed too, in case you weren't aware
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« Reply #58 on: April 11, 2006, 09:47:01 PM »

IMO, Fr. Seraphim Rose represents a tendency that is common to a lot of traditions of dogmatic theology, his ROCOR tradition being one of these.  This tendency is to take one thread of the Patristic Tradition on a particular subject, see this to be the consensus of Patristic Tradition, and proclaim this thread as official Orthodox dogma on the subject.  Such teachers will even quote those Fathers who support their own point of view and use this as proof for their assertions.
So what you're saying is Fr. Seraphim Rose's problem is that he quotes those that support his position.

How very strange of him!  Grin
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« Reply #59 on: April 11, 2006, 10:08:20 PM »

Mont,

I was just curious if you knew who you were quoting... apparently you didn't realise that you quoted the same guy twice in one post but used two different names. Wink Maybe if you read more and cut and pasted less... just a thought.

CCEL
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« Reply #60 on: April 11, 2006, 10:15:44 PM »

Quote
I was just curious if you knew who you were quoting... apparently you didn't realise that you quoted the same guy twice in one post but used two different names.

May the prayers of St. Kyrillos I and St. Cyril I, prevent this from ever happening again. Their prayers are unstoppable, especially combined.
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« Reply #61 on: April 11, 2006, 10:21:29 PM »

The point was that he just quotes things randomly, as long as they seem to support his position. He really has no clue who he is posting, nor what the context is behind the quote he is pasting. This is not honest discussion.
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« Reply #62 on: April 11, 2006, 10:30:02 PM »

I have not yet concluded upon any position on this issue. It is something I have started looking into however. The Argument of Intelligent Design is one that has been discussed in my Philosophy of Religion class, and one that I have chosen to study as the basis of my primary essay. My study of the issue so far has required me to also delve into evolution, since I have to evaluate whether or not the Argument is a truly abductive one i.e. whether or not the notion of a supreme intelligent designer is truly the most probable (according to the "suprise principle") explanation, and hence whether or not it is more probable than competing theories explaining the functional complexity of organisms, of which Darwinian Evolution seems to be the most prominent and cogent. ÂÂ

I am approaching this issue fairly openly (nonetheless from an Orthodox Christian perspective) i.e. i have no presuppositions or biases towards one view over and above another, as long as all options are consistent with the Orthodox understanding of the nature of man and the Fall. Assuming that they all are, then I will simply adopt whichever position is more plausible scientifically (it shouldn't stretch the limits of Biblical interpretation into the realm of absurdity either...though allegorical interpretation per se does not bother me).
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« Reply #63 on: April 11, 2006, 10:31:46 PM »

Asteriktos,

I got your point, believe me. Give him some time; he's still learning.
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« Reply #64 on: April 11, 2006, 11:11:35 PM »

Mont,

I was just curious if you knew who you were quoting... apparently you didn't realise that you quoted the same guy twice in one post but used two different names. Wink Maybe if you read more and cut and pasted less... just a thought.

CCEL

So you don't have a point then. Note one name "St Valsillius" is in a quote, so the site I cited uses that name as that's part of the quote. But then not having a point's not stopped you posting now has it. But let's not let this fact get in the way of an otherwise interesting debate, even if you're now content on speculating about honesty etc.

It's even hillarious that you criticise the fact that I use quotes to support my case. How dare I use evidence that actually agrees with me!  Grin
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« Reply #65 on: April 11, 2006, 11:14:55 PM »

May the prayers of St. Kyrillos I and St. Cyril I, prevent this from ever happening again. Their prayers are unstoppable, especially combined.
Yes, I see you entering into this debate in an attempt to point score too.

If I quote something used "St. Kyrillos" and actually cite it with quotation marks then this might well confuse you.
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« Reply #66 on: April 11, 2006, 11:20:38 PM »

Like several church fathers, I do not believe that the days of Genesis represent literal 24-hour periods of time. While Eden may have been a perfect Paradise, that does not mean that the world outside of Eden was so. Animal death existed for millions of years before the creation of man.

I too agree with the 24-hour period for 'day' in Genesis. I think Augustine might have speculated that creation happened 'all at once'; in an instantaneous action. I'm not sure if he ever retracted this (as he did retract some of his statements)
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« Reply #67 on: April 11, 2006, 11:29:52 PM »

Here's some interesting research done on St. Augustine's approach in interpreting Genesis:

http://www.asa3.org/ASA/topics/Bible-Science/PSCF3-88Young.html

God bless.

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I think Augustine may have changed his mind on the simultaneous creation of everything. I can't find any of his retractions though.
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« Reply #68 on: April 11, 2006, 11:33:53 PM »

One thing I found on Augustine is...
"Though creation has been widely discussed, the length of the six days of creation, as held throughout the ages of church history, was generally agreed: they were ordinary or sidereal days. There were few exceptions to this: Clement, Origin and Augustine being the main ones. Clement and Origin, of course, followed an allegorical method of interpretation and denied the historicity of much of the Bible. Augustine's statements, on the other hand, are unclear but it seems that he believed that God actually created the world all at once (i.e., in an instant of time, the six days being repetitions of the one day of creation) but related the story of a six-day creation to us to accommodate our limited understanding. To be sure, there is much in the Bible that is difficult (if not impossible) for our finite minds to grasp, but in this case one must wonder how a six-day account would be any easier to comprehend than an instantaneous creation. In any case, the non-literal views of the days of creation were uncommon and not highly regarded"
http://stjohnsrcus.inetnebr.com/page23.htm
Whilst it talks about the 'difficulty' of understanding, I think Augustine meant we should still believe it when he said...
 "Where, however, the ambiguity cannot be cleared up, either by the rule of faith or by the context, there is nothing to hinder us to point the sentence according to any method we choose of those that suggest themselves."
http://ccat.sas.upenn.edu/jod/augustine/ddc3.html
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« Reply #69 on: April 11, 2006, 11:43:22 PM »

Dear Matthew,

Quote
The Fathers did reject the materialistic cosmogonies of their time with the words of Scripture. St. John Crysostom stated that while St. John the Evangelist was the prophet of the end of time, Moses prophesied the beginning of time. Both spheres of knowledge natural science would not be able to touch.

I don't know what that proves.  Besides, young age creationism was perhaps widely acceptable in the early days of Fathers as a science, but not necessarily as a dogma.

Quote
Is the resurrection of Christ scientifically explicable? If not, why the creation of man?

No!  It is something I have faith in, and it cannot be explained.  Only what I see, the proofs and evidence before me provided to me by the creation of God is what I use to make my case.

Quote
Who dictates what should and should not be taken literally?

The Alexandrian approach to Scripture (started by Philo of Alexandria) was always to look at Scripture as spiritual and allegorical, a way to understand man's relationship with God, where we should not place emphasis on scientific or historical accuracy.  Some of the things the prophets may have written may be wrong.  And if some Fathers have not taken the 7 days literally, then why should one take anything else written literally?  Does God have a right hand?  Does God have a body or eyes?

Therefore, we should try our best to look at everything in a spiritual manner, and perhaps prophetic.  For example, the situation with Adam's rib being Eve may not be true scientifically, but spiritually and prophetically, it has a beautiful significance, for that also symbolizes that the Church was made and purchased by the water and blood coming out of the side of Christ.  The fact that Moses wrote that, whether or not it is literally correct, shows us the profound spiritual and prophetic significance of this verse.

If one reads the beginning of St. Athanasius' "On the Incarnation," he rejects three creationist theories, atheism, Platonic pre-existent matter beliefs, and some Gnosticism (two God theory).  Evolution is not any one of these.  Only some may put evolution into these categories, but I can safely be a theistic evolutionist.

Quote
What need is there to mix evolution with theology?

There is no need.  It is simply an interest, a theologomenoun.

Dear Mont,

Quote
The problem is you are equating Eden and paradise here. Athanasius is referring to paradise as the state of mind.

Yes, I am equating them, and there is no problem.  In fact, St. Athanasius did not believe "Paradise" to be just a state of mind, but also a place.  Again, read St. Athanasius' part 3 that I've provided:

Quote
But since the will of man could turn either way, God secured this grace that He had given by making it conditional from the first upon two things—namely, a law and a place. He set them in His own paradise, and laid upon them a single prohibition. If they guarded the grace and retained the loveliness of their original innocence, then the life of paradise should be theirs, without sorrow, pain or care, and after it the assurance of immortality in heaven. But if they went astray and became vile, throwing away their birthright of beauty, then they would come under the natural law of death and live no longer in paradise, but, dying outside of it, continue in death and in corruption.

You can't get any clearer than that.  A law and a place, the law being the prohibition, the place he calls "Paradise."  God "SET" them there, and not just gave it to them.  They would no longer live in it after their disobedience, and dye outside of it.  I think though that the fact that he calls Paradise a "place" is irrefutable.

Quote
That would mean God had to different creation, one natural and one not, and that all the animals, and Adam and Eve, we not part of the natural creation, therefore contradicting more Fathers and verses than I can reasonably count. Finally, the law of death was natural in the sense that it was the natural course of sin, a position which is supported by the scriptures.

Both are natural, one with death natural, and one with immortality as natural.  I don't know how much more clearer St. Athanasius can get.  That says it all my friend.  The fact that we enter into the laws of the world means that St. Athanasius believed, unlike other Fathers, that animals did die before corruption.  The type of corruption that enter the world was sin, and sin is not with anaimals but in the human world.

Quote
How do you know? What science writings by what Father are you talking about?

According to Bishop Alexander Mileant, the scientific information available to the Fathers were not as advanced as today, so many would use some logic to whether one could believe in one scientific theory over another.  For example, the idea of a flat earth was accepted by many fathers, like Augustine, Ambrose, Diodore of Tarsus, Basil, and perhaps Cyril of Jerusalem.  St. John Chrysostom even held very strongly that the view of the earth being round would contradict Scripture.  One wonders then why the Roman Church was so hard on Galileo, and we as Orthodox do not wonder if we would have probably done the same (except perhaps Egypt, since in Alexandria for centuries it was believed that the world was round).

Sooo, if some of these Fathers were given proof that the world was round, they would believe it and change their writings.  St. Augustine have written that if he has written any mistakes, may God and the Christians forgive him.  And St. Basil even gave his dislikes on St. Dionysius of Alexandria's writings.  You can't blindly quote the Holy Fathers, but you yourself have to find yourself in agreement with the Orthodox faith and with them.  Many people have denounced St. Augustine for many possible heretical issues.  If something scientifically wrong was written by the Fathers, why should one choose the Fathers' wrong observations over correct research?

Quote
Over-all we believe that the Church is infalible, not going by any one writer. I'm not aware of an 'over-all' opinion by Fathers OTHER THAN to accept creation.

Yes, evolution IS creation.  The Church is infallible over spirituality and doctrines, not science.

Quote
Let's get one thing clear. Evolution is a naturalistic approach. Naturalism is by its nature anti-supernatural. Scientists believe that we evolved 'naturally', we came into being 'naturally' etc. God has no room in this scheme. The evolution that most people are taught is one that removes God.

Any science only talks about what is indeed natural, and there is nothing wrong with that.  Science cannot prove God's existence, and spirituality has no room in science.  To mix both, one must harmonize both, not putting science as a part of spirituality.  And the evolution that most people are taught does not remove God, it simply does not include Him.  I have no problem in including Him, and evolution has no way of disproving Him or His existence.

Quote
They don't deny God per se, but have pushed God's role back.

Actually, to me, this makes His role all the more greater.  Evolution and the laws of science affirms a diversity found only with God's existence.  Without God, as St. Athanasius believed, the world would perhaps be not diverse and complicated, but very simple, or in his terms, the whole body would be "hand, foot, or eye" or there would be only sun, or moon, and not both.  The diversity of laws and the complicated laws of evolution all the more praises God's amazingness.

For the third time, please read the articles provided by the late Bishop Alexander Mileant, who was also ROCOR.  They contain all the arguments used by Orthodox Christian theistic evolutionists.

God bless you.

Mina
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« Reply #70 on: April 12, 2006, 12:18:50 AM »

Yes, evolution IS creation.  The Church is infallible over spirituality and doctrines, not science.

God bless you.

Mina
Why an Orthodox Christian cannot be an evolutionist"
http://www.creatio.orthodoxy.ru/sbornik/sbufeev_whynot_english.html
 
"Thirdly, some of the major hypotheses of science, such as the evolution of man from the apes, are no less empirically unverifiable statements of faith than the Chrlstian dogmas--with the important difference that, unlike the Christian dogmas, they have no basis in Divine Revelation."
http://www.roca.org/OA/137/137g.htm
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« Reply #71 on: April 12, 2006, 12:22:12 AM »

Why an Orthodox Christian cannot be an evolutionist"
http://www.creatio.orthodoxy.ru/sbornik/sbufeev_whynot_english.html
 
"Thirdly, some of the major hypotheses of science, such as the evolution of man from the apes, are no less empirically unverifiable statements of faith than the Chrlstian dogmas--with the important difference that, unlike the Christian dogmas, they have no basis in Divine Revelation."
http://www.roca.org/OA/137/137g.htm


http://www.fatheralexander.org/booklets/english/evolution_kuraev.htm
http://www.fatheralexander.org/booklets/english/creation_man_a_mileant_e.htm
http://www.fatheralexander.org/booklets/english/bible2_creation_e.htm

God bless.

Mina
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« Reply #72 on: April 12, 2006, 12:42:40 AM »

God bless.

Mina
You don't have any particular points there you wanted to highlight? Oh well. I didn't want this to seem like a 'web-site citations' war, but I just point out that as well as your Russian Orthodox site, I've my own. That plus the Holy Fathers beats your one site; even if you find three different pages on it that say something for your side  Grin
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« Reply #73 on: April 12, 2006, 12:45:32 AM »

From your own site...
""Evolutionists" believe that the origin of life and its development on earth — from simple microbes to modern man — can be explained completely by physical processes. The Creator’s work is ignored, if not directly denied."
http://www.fatheralexander.org/booklets/english/creation_man_a_mileant_e.htm

thus 'evolution' as it is understood by many denies God's place (or pushes it out of the way)

Anyway, as St. Basil said we can't base our faith on science as science is always changing
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« Reply #74 on: April 12, 2006, 12:53:17 AM »

Returning to the biblical description of the world, we see that in its general form it confirms what current scientific theory has to say on this issue.
http://www.fatheralexander.org/booklets/english/bible2_creation_e.htm

That's actually false. The Genesis account has things happening out of a rational order (somethign Fr. Seraphim Rose recognised), because in Genesis 1:11-13 God creates the plants, and after, in Genesis 1:14-19 he created the light in the firmament (i.e. the sun), so plants are older than the sun. In science we're taught that it's the other way around
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« Reply #75 on: April 12, 2006, 01:12:29 AM »

Dear Montalban,

When Bishop Alexander began with that fact, he only wanted to show two pov's, the other being those who take the extreme of young earth creationism against atheistic evolutionists.  Bishop Alexander continues:

Quote
Clearly, the truth lies somewhere between the above-mentioned extreme concepts. However, attempts to reconcile scientific data with religious views often suffer from bias and a lack of real knowledge, and sometimes do more to confuse us than to resolve seeming contradictions.

In this work we will attempt to shed some light on fundamental issues concerning faith and reason, religion and science, creation and evolution, in order to help the reader understand the argument between extreme concepts about the beginning and development of life on earth. We will show that there is no true conflict between the Bible and pure science. In fact, the two sources of truth complement one another.

Therefore, his primary purpose is to refute both extremes and to show that both evolution and Orthodoxy as harmonious.

Quote
Returning to the biblical description of the world, we see that in its general form it confirms what current scientific theory has to say on this issue.
http://www.fatheralexander.org/booklets/english/bible2_creation_e.htm

That's actually false. The Genesis account has things happening out of a rational order (somethign Fr. Seraphim Rose recognised), because in Genesis 1:11-13 God creates the plants, and after, in Genesis 1:14-19 he created the light in the firmament (i.e. the sun), so plants are older than the sun. In science we're taught that it's the other way around

Actually, some Bibliologists will tell us that the Hebrew word used for "made" there (bara) is different from the other words of the other days used (asah).  However, whether or not it is true that Moses believed that the sun was actually made after plants, I would personally affirm what is clearly observationally true, and would look at the passage for something spiritually edifying.

God bless.

Mina
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« Reply #76 on: April 12, 2006, 01:39:50 AM »

Dear Montalban,

When Bishop Alexander began with that fact, he only wanted to show two pov's, the other being those who take the extreme of young earth creationism against atheistic evolutionists. ÂÂ
I understand that is what he is trying to do, hence I couched the words in terms of what most people understand. And that's an approach that's devoid of God.
Bishop Alexander continues:

Therefore, his primary purpose is to refute both extremes and to show that both evolution and Orthodoxy as harmonious.
I don't deny that one can have a 'theory of evolution' that involves God - that's what ID-theorists try to make. However 'the' theory of evolution is a naturalistic explanation; devoid of God. Talkorigins is quite happy, for instance in you believing in God as well as their godless theory. Just don't include God in any of the processes.

It probably would help then if we define what 'the' theory of evolution means
Actually, some Bibliologists will tell us that the Hebrew word used for "made" there (bara) is different from the other words of the other days used (asah).  However, whether or not it is true that Moses believed that the sun was actually made after plants, I would personally affirm what is clearly observationally true, and would look at the passage for something spiritually edifying.

God bless.

Mina
I have no problem with understanding Moses' meaning. As Fr. Seraphim Rose points out, the reason it doesn't follow a 'logical' order is because the whole process is a mystery; but we believe it to be. Science says it's not a mystery/miracle.
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« Reply #77 on: April 12, 2006, 02:39:39 AM »

I don't know what that proves.  Besides, young age creationism was perhaps widely acceptable in the early days of Fathers as a science, but not necessarily as a dogma.

Never in this thread have I endorsed young earth creationism. Instead, I've pointed to church fathers who understood the Hexaemeron to represent "non-literal" days.

"Perhaps one who loves to speak from his own wisdom here also will not allow that the rivers are actually rivers, nor that the waters are precisely waters, but will instill in those who allow themselves to listen to them, that they (under the names of rivers and waters) represented something else. But I entreat you, let us not pay heed to these people, let us stop up our hearing against them, and let us believe the Divine Scripture, and following what is written in it, let us strive to preserve in our souls sound dogmas." (St. John Chrysostom, Homilies on Genesis, XIII, 4)
http://www.orthodoxinfo.com/phronema/evolution_frseraphim_kalomiros.aspx

It seems that the church fathers considered God's creative work to be a theological concept, not a scientific one.
 
Only what I see, the proofs and evidence before me provided to me by the creation of God is what I use to make my case.

In the present, are you able to observe anything like the transition from fish to amphibian? Does the fossil record substantiate the transitions that we'd expect if Darwinian evolution were true? Do oscillations in finch beak size and drug resistant bacteria demonstrate enough plasticity in living things as to make grandscale evolution possible?
I'd consider the belief that God created the species in a "sequential" order over a period of millions of years to be more plausible than naturalistic evolution. What I observe in the natural world is purpose, complexity and order. What I observe in humanity is our inherent uniqueness compared to other species.

The Alexandrian approach to Scripture (started by Philo of Alexandria) was always to look at Scripture as spiritual and allegorical, a way to understand man's relationship with God, where we should not place emphasis on scientific or historical accuracy.

Is the resurrection of Christ a historical event? If not, for what purpose is our faith? If we cannot trust Genesis, neither can we trust the genealogy of Christ.

There is a difference between recognizing the various meanings of the Hebrew "Yom" and discarding Genesis as a historical account.

Please consider the following...

Justin Martyr
"For as Adam was told that in the day he ate of the tree he would die, we know that he did not complete a thousand years [Gen. 5:5]. We have perceived, moreover, that the expression ‘The day of the Lord is a thousand years’ [Ps. 90:4] is connected with this subject" (Dialogue with Trypho the Jew 81 [A.D. 155]).

Irenaeus
"And there are some, again, who relegate the death of Adam to the thousandth year; for since ‘a day of the Lord is a thousand years,’ he did not overstep the thousand years, but died within them, thus bearing out the sentence of his sin" (Against Heresies 5:23:2 [A.D. 189]).

Clement of Alexandria
"And how could creation take place in time, seeing time was born along with things which exist? . . . That, then, we may be taught that the world was originated and not suppose that God made it in time, prophecy adds: ‘This is the book of the generation, also of the things in them, when they were created in the day that God made heaven and earth’ [Gen. 2:4]. For the expression ‘when they were created’ intimates an indefinite and dateless production. But the expression ‘in the day that God made them,’ that is, in and by which God made ‘all things,’ and ‘without which not even one thing was made,’ points out the activity exerted by the Son" (Miscellanies 6:16 [A.D. 208]).

Origen
"For who that has understanding will suppose that the first and second and third day existed without a sun and moon and stars and that the first day was, as it were, also without a sky? . . . I do not suppose that anyone doubts that these things figuratively indicate certain mysteries, the history having taken place in appearance and not literally" (The Fundamental Doctrines 4:1:16 [A.D. 225]).

"The text said that ‘there was evening and there was morning’; it did not say ‘the first day,’ but said ‘one day.’ It is because there was not yet time before the world existed. But time begins to exist with the following days" (Homilies on Genesis [A.D. 234]).

"And since he [the pagan Celsus] makes the statements about the ‘days of creation’ ground of accusation—as if he understood them clearly and correctly, some of which elapsed before the creation of light and heaven, the sun and moon and stars, and some of them after the creation of these we shall only make this observation, that Moses must have forgotten that he had said a little before ‘that in six days the creation of the world had been finished’ and that in consequence of this act of forgetfulness he subjoins to these words the following: ‘This is the book of the creation of man in the day when God made the heaven and the earth [Gen. 2:4]’" (Against Celsus 6:51 [A.D. 248]).

"And with regard to the creation of the light upon the first day . . . and of the [great] lights and stars upon the fourth . . . we have treated to the best of our ability in our notes upon Genesis, as well as in the foregoing pages, when we found fault with those who, taking the words in their apparent signification, said that the time of six days was occupied in the creation of the world" (ibid., 6:60).

"For he [the pagan Celsus] knows nothing of the day of the Sabbath and rest of God, which follows the completion of the world’s creation, and which lasts during the duration of the world, and in which all those will keep the festival with God who have done all their work in their six days" (ibid., 6:61).

Cyprian
"The first seven days in the divine arrangement contain seven thousand years" (Treatises 11:11 [A.D. 250])

Augustine
"It not infrequently happens that something about the earth, about the sky, about other elements of this world, about the motion and rotation or even the magnitude and distances of the stars, about definite eclipses of the sun and moon, about the passage of years and seasons, about the nature of animals, of fruits, of stones, and of other such things, may be known with the greatest certainty by reasoning or by experience, even by one who is not a Christian. It is too disgraceful and ruinous, though, and greatly to be avoided, that he [the non-Christian] should hear a Christian speaking so idiotically on these matters, and as if in accord with Christian writings, that he might say that he could scarcely keep from laughing when he saw how totally in error they are. In view of this and in keeping it in mind constantly while dealing with the book of Genesis, I have, insofar as I was able, explained in detail and set forth for consideration the meanings of obscure passages, taking care not to affirm rashly some one meaning to the prejudice of another and perhaps better explanation" (The Literal Interpretation of Genesis 1:19—20 [A.D. 408]).

"With the scriptures it is a matter of treating about the faith. For that reason, as I have noted repeatedly, if anyone, not understanding the mode of divine eloquence, should find something about these matters [about the physical universe] in our books, or hear of the same from those books, of such a kind that it seems to be at variance with the perceptions of his own rational faculties, let him believe that these other things are in no way necessary to the admonitions or accounts or predictions of the scriptures. In short, it must be said that our authors knew the truth about the nature of the skies, but it was not the intention of the Spirit of God, who spoke through them, to teach men anything that would not be of use to them for their salvation" (ibid., 2:9).

"Seven days by our reckoning, after the model of the days of creation, make up a week. By the passage of such weeks time rolls on, and in these weeks one day is constituted by the course of the sun from its rising to its setting; but we must bear in mind that these days indeed recall the days of creation, but without in any way being really similar to them" (ibid., 4:27).

"[A]t least we know that it [the Genesis creation day] is different from the ordinary day with which we are familiar" (ibid., 5:2).

"For in these days [of creation] the morning and evening are counted until, on the sixth day, all things which God then made were finished, and on the seventh the rest of God was mysteriously and sublimely signalized. What kind of days these were is extremely difficult or perhaps impossible for us to conceive, and how much more to say!" (The City of God 11:6 [A.D. 419]).

"We see that our ordinary days have no evening but by the setting [of the sun] and no morning but by the rising of the sun, but the first three days of all were passed without sun, since it is reported to have been made on the fourth day. And first of all, indeed, light was made by the word of God, and God, we read, separated it from the darkness and called the light ‘day’ and the darkness ‘night’; but what kind of light that was, and by what periodic movement it made evening and morning, is beyond the reach of our senses; neither can we understand how it was and yet must unhesitatingly believe it" (ibid., 11:7).

Of these church fathers, how many would deny that Eve was created from Adam's rib and mothered all humanity? If they lived today, how can you be certain that they'd find the evidences for Darwinian evolution compelling? I doubt that they'd find the scientific evidences for a self-created universe compelling either.

Peace.
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« Reply #78 on: April 12, 2006, 02:55:50 AM »

Further to what Mathew777 said...

“The sin committed by our progenitors in paradise, with all its consequences, passed and passes from them to all their posterity. What the first people became after the Fall, such also till now are their descendants in the world. “Adam begat a son in his own likeness, after his image” (Genesis 5:3, KJV). Estrangement from God, the loss of grace, the distortion of God's image, the perversion and weakening of the bodily organism, which ends with death - here is Adam's sad legacy, received by each of us at our very appearance in the world. “As from an infected source there naturally flows an infected stream,” teaches the Orthodox catechism, “so from an ancestor infected with sin, and hence mortal, there naturally proceeds a posterity infected with sin, and hence mortal.” http://www.stjohndc.org/Homilies/9609a.htm




“Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men (Romans 5:12 ).” By refusing communion with God, Adam cut himself off from the Source of Life. Having separated himself from God, Adam, in a sense, starved his nature from the gifts of God. Because man was given dominion over all creation, St. Paul insists that all of creation has fallen as well.(Original Sin, p 2 as quoted on http://www.akins.org/matthew/paul.html#tthFtNtACH

 

“Undoubtedly, one of the most important causes of heresy is the failure to understand the exact nature of the human situation described by the Old and New Testaments, to which the historical events of the birth, teachings, death, resurrection and second coming of Christ are the only remedy. The failure to understand this automatically implies a perverted understanding of what it is that Christ did and continues to do for us, and what our subsequent relation is to Christ and neighbour within the realm of salvation. The importance of a correct definition of original sin and its consequences can never be exaggerated. Any attempt to minimize its importance or alter its significance automatically entails either a weakening or even a complete misunderstanding of the nature of the Church, sacraments and human destiny.” http://www.orthodoxinfo.com/inquirers/frjr_sin.htm

. Thus, it is meaningless, or worse still utterly wrong to downplay the relationships established in Genesis. It is the beginning of the story of Man, and the story of Man's sin. Without it, why would Jesus come to us?


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« Reply #79 on: April 12, 2006, 03:01:06 AM »

I wouldn't say that the sin of Adam caused the death of animals. Neither do I see why God would punish other species for our sins. What we observe in the fossil record is other species living and dying for millions of years before the appearance of man.

Peace.
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« Reply #80 on: April 12, 2006, 03:10:53 AM »

I wouldn't say that the sin of Adam caused the death of animals. Neither do I see why God would punish other species for our sins. What we observe in the fossil record is other species living and dying for millions of years before the appearance of man.

Peace.

If man had dominion over creation and sinned and let sin into creation would this not affect animals too?

Personally I have no opinion on this matter.
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« Reply #81 on: April 12, 2006, 11:00:39 AM »

Dear Montalban,

Does that mean you have no problem with theistic evolutionists, but with atheistic evolutionists?

Dear Matthew,

Do you deny there were still a few fathers who held to the Young Earth, Day-Age Creationism:

Quote
"And the evening and the morning were the first day." Evening is then the boundary common to day and night; and in the same way morning constitutes the approach of night to day. It was to give day the privileges of seniority that Scripture put the end of the first day before that of the first night, because night follows day: for, before the creation of light, the world was not in night, but in darkness. It is the opposite of day which was called night, and it did not receive its name until after day. Thus were created the evening and the morning. Scripture means the space of a day and a night, and afterwards no more says day and night, but calls them both under the name of the more important: a custom which you will find throughout Scripture. Everywhere the measure of time is counted by days, without mention of nights. "The days of our years," says the Psalmist. "Few and evil have the days of the years of my life been," said Jacob, and elsewhere "all the days of my life." Thus under the form of history the law is laid down for what is to follow.And the evening and the morning were one day. Why does Scripture say "one day the first day"? Before speaking to us of the second, the third, and the fourth days, would it not have been more natural to call that one the first which began the series? If it therefore says "one day," it is from a wish to determine the measure of day and night, and to combine the time that they contain. Now twenty-four hours fill up the space of one day-we mean of a day and of a night; and if, at the time of the solstices, they have not both an equal length, the time marked byScripture does not the less circumscribe their duration. It is as though it said: twenty-four hours measure the space of a day, or that, in reality a day is the time that the heavens starting from one point take to return there. Thus, every time that, in the revolution of the sun, evening and morning occupy the world, their periodical succession never exceeds the space of one day. (Homily 2:8 )

St. Basil believes in 24-hour days and he also believes that the day requires that the sun revolves.  It is clear here that St. Basil's geocentric view is scientifically rejected.  If St. Basil believed in the geocentric view, am I obliged to believe it?

It is also known that the Jew Josephus the Historian believed in 24-hour days.

Quote
Is the resurrection of Christ a historical event? If not, for what purpose is our faith? If we cannot trust Genesis, neither can we trust the genealogy of Christ.

There is a difference between recognizing the various meanings of the Hebrew "Yom" and discarding Genesis as a historical account.

...

Of these church fathers, how many would deny that Eve was created from Adam's rib and mothered all humanity? If they lived today, how can you be certain that they'd find the evidences for Darwinian evolution compelling? I doubt that they'd find the scientific evidences for a self-created universe compelling either.

Let's also look at Genesis 1:

"So the evening and morning were the ... day" (5, 8, 13, 19, 23, 31).  Now, it seems to me that some fathers took this literally, as St. Basil shows, and some fathers like St. Augustine had to take this spiritually, refusing to see this as a literal "evening" and "morning."  It also makes sense for the Jews that the creation is seven days, for the seventh since God rested, so does the people of God on the Sabbath.  Now, if it wasn't seven literal days the world was created, then what is the point of the Sabbath day being holy?  

If you think that it has to be necessary to believe that Eve was literally made from Adam's rib in order for Christ's bleeding and watering side to make the Church, then it must also be necessary that there be seven literal days so that the seventh day may be a weekly remembrance of the day of Godly rest.

However, I believe that merely writing it with its spiritual significance is quite enough, although some element of historical truth is contained.  Now does that mean that Adam or Noah may have never existed?  No, I don't believe that.  I believe that such persons did exist, that the geneology of Christ was indeed true to prove not only the full humanity of Christ, but the Judaic and Davidic succession of Christ.

In addition, the first two chapters of Genesis contradict one another.  We already know a father (Origen) who did not deny contradictions within the gospels, but looked at contradictions not as weaknesses, but different stressings of spirituality.  Likewise, we may look at Genesis the same way as well.  We see that both chapters also were written differently, which means that perhaps they were written by different authors.  Textual criticism as well as comparative criticism leads me to believe in a spiritual interpretation.

Do I believe all fathers could have easily changed their beliefs?  I don't believe so.  I do have a certainty that people like Origen, Clement, or Augustine could have changed their beliefs, since they were very open to interpretations and symbolisms, with special significance on Augustine, since he was clear that we shouldn't make a fool of ourselves for trying to make a big deal in contradicting scientific facts.

God bless.

Mina
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« Reply #82 on: April 12, 2006, 11:09:13 AM »

By the way, I do believe in the salvific death and resurrection of Christ, literally.

I also find nothing wrong in believing in a "pro-creating" universe.

God bless.

Mina
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« Reply #83 on: April 12, 2006, 01:58:00 PM »

IMO, Fr. Seraphim Rose represents a tendency that is common to a lot of traditions of dogmatic theology, his ROCOR tradition being one of these.  This tendency is to take one thread of the Patristic Tradition on a particular subject, see this to be the consensus of Patristic Tradition, and proclaim this thread as official Orthodox dogma on the subject.  Such teachers will even quote those Fathers who support their own point of view and use this as proof for their assertions.

Plenty of people have cited a list of Fathers who agree with Creation.

We say this in the Nicene Creed too, in case you weren't aware

Did you even read my post in the context I provided and in the context of this whole thread?  Where do you see anything about the doctrine of Creation in my post?  What I did was make a statement that is so general that it clearly cannot apply to ALL specific scenarios.

I do recognize that there is very clear Patristic consensus on some issues such as the Holy Trinity, the Incarnation, the Virgin birth of Christ, Creation ex nihilo, etc.  There are many other issues, though, on which the Fathers did not speak with a unanimous voice.  It is on these issues where I see the tendency to dogmatize particularly specific threads of the larger Patristic Tradition.  

I don't see this as a flaw in Fr. Seraphim's scholarship, since he never really intended to provide a purely scholarly interpretation of the Fathers.  He sought to deliberately profess the Russian dogmatic tradition that he was taught, believing this to be the whole of the Orthodox Patristic Tradition.  Judging from what the Hieromonk Damascene wrote about him, Fr. Seraphim actually sought to enter fully into the Russian tradition by accepting without question what the "living links" to this tradition taught him.  Therefore, I don't see any fault in him being thoroughly indoctrinated in its tendency to ignore contradictory threads of the larger Tradition.  He probably wasn't even aware of this deficiency in the Russian dogmatic tradition.
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« Reply #84 on: April 12, 2006, 02:57:47 PM »

If man had dominion over creation and sinned and let sin into creation would this not affect animals too?

Perhaps, perhaps. But it does not follow that human sin caused animal death if animals were dying for millions of years before our appearance.

Peace.
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« Reply #85 on: April 12, 2006, 02:59:06 PM »

Do you deny there were still a few fathers who held to the Young Earth, Day-Age Creationism:

My point is that there was never a consensus among the church fathers on the length of the creation days. But when it came to how humankind came into being, they did agree.

Peace.
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« Reply #86 on: April 12, 2006, 03:07:11 PM »

If you think that it has to be necessary to believe that Eve was literally made from Adam's rib in order for Christ's bleeding and watering side to make the Church, then it must also be necessary that there be seven literal days so that the seventh day may be a weekly remembrance of the day of Godly rest.

[Refering to God's Sabbath analogy in Exodus 20:10-11:]

By no means does this demonstrate that 24-hour intervals were involved in the first six 'days,' any more than the eight-day celebration of the Feast of Tabernacles proves that the wilderness wanderings under Moses occupied only eight days.
Source: Book - Archer G., "A Response to the Trustworthiness of Scripture in Areas Relating to Natural Science,", in Radmacher E.D., & Preus R.D., "Hermeneutics, Inerrancy, and the Bible", Academic Books, Grand Rapids MI, 1986, p329
http://www.geocities.com/vr_junkie/NotableOldEarthCreatinists.htm

In addition, the first two chapters of Genesis contradict one another. ÂÂ

"There is no contradiction between Genesis 1 and 2.  Genesis 1 is a detailed explanation of the six days of creation, day by day.  Genesis two is a recap and a more detailed explanation of the sixth day, the day that Adam and Eve were made.  The recap is stated in Gen. 2:4, "This is the account of the heavens and the earth when they were created, in the day that the Lord God made earth and heaven." Then, Moses goes on to detail the creation of Adam and Eve as is seen in verses 7 thru 24 of Gen. 2.  Proof that it is not a creative account is found in the fact that animals aren't even mentioned until after the creation of Adam.  Why?  Probably because their purpose was designated by Adam.  They didn't need to be mentioned until after Adam was created."
http://www.carm.org/diff/Gen_1.htm

As for the authorship of the Scriptures, I'd trust the church fathers over modern secular scholars.
 ÃƒÆ’‚  ÃƒÆ’‚  ÃƒÆ’‚Â
I do have a certainty that people like Origen, Clement, or Augustine could have changed their beliefs, since they were very open to interpretations and symbolisms, with special significance on Augustine, since he was clear that we shouldn't make a fool of ourselves for trying to make a big deal in contradicting scientific facts.

How can you be certain if they rejected the secular cosmogonies of their own time? Furthermore, how has Darwinian evolution been established as a scientific fact?

Remember that if Adam never existed, the genealogy of Christ is a fraud. Furthermore, from what I've read, the Hebrew words that translate as "evening" and "morning" can also mean "beginning" and "ending."

Peace.
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« Reply #87 on: April 12, 2006, 03:09:09 PM »

I also find nothing wrong in believing in a "pro-creating" universe.

Do you believe that the universe is eternal and self-existent? If so, then who is God? Do you believe that the universe arose on its own? If so, what need is there for a Creator?

Peace.
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« Reply #88 on: April 12, 2006, 04:39:31 PM »

Fossil connects human evolution dots

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The latest fossil unearthed from a human ancestral hot spot in Africa allows scientists to link together the most complete chain of human evolution so far.

The 4.2 million-year-old fossil discovered in northeastern Ethiopia helps scientists fill in the gaps of how human ancestors made the giant leap from one species to another.

That's because the newest fossil, the species Australopithecus anamensis, was found in the region of the Middle Awash -- where seven other human-like species spanning nearly 6 million years and three major phases of human development were previously discovered.

"We just found the chain of evolution, the continuity through time," study co-author and Ethiopian anthropologist Berhane Asfaw said in a phone interview from Addis Ababa. "One form evolved to another. This is evidence of evolution in one place through time."

The findings were reported Thursday in the scientific journal Nature.

The species anamensis is not new, but its location is what helps explain the shift from one early phase of human-like development to the next, scientists say. All eight species were within an easy day's walk of each other.

Until now, what scientists had were snapshots of human evolution scattered around the world. Finding everything all in one general area makes those snapshots more of a mini home movie of evolution.

"It's like 12 frames of a home movie, but a home movie covering 6 million years," said study lead author Tim White, co-director of Human Evolution Research Center at University of California at Berkeley.

"The key here is the sequences," White said. "It's about a mile thickness of rocks in the Middle Awash and in it we can see all three phases of human evolution."

Modern man belongs to the genus Homo, which is a subgroup in the family of hominids. What evolved into Homo was likely the genus Australopithecus (once called "man-ape"), which includes the famed 3.2 million-year-old "Lucy" fossil found three decades ago.

A key candidate for the genus that evolved into Australopithecus is called Ardipithecus. And Thursday's finding is important in bridging -- but not completely -- the gap between Australopithecus and Ardipithecus.

In 1994, a 4.4 million-year-old partial skeleton of the species Ardipithecus ramidus -- the most recent Ardipithecus species -- was found about six miles from the latest discovery.

"This appears to be the link between Australopithecus and Ardipithecus as two different species," White said. The major noticeable difference between the phases of man can be seen in Australopithecus' bigger chewing teeth to eat harder food, he said.

While it's looking more likely, it is not a sure thing that Ardipithecus evolved into Australopithecus, he said. The finding does not completely rule out Ardipithecus dying off as a genus and Australopithecus developing independently.

The connections between Ardipithecus and Australopithecus have been theorized since an anamensis fossil was first found in Kenya 11 years ago. This draws the lines better, said Alan Walker of Penn State University, who found the first anamensis and is not part of White's team.

Rick Potts, director of the Smithsonian's Human Origins Program, agreed: "For those people who are tied up in doing the whole human family tree, being able to connect the branches is a very important thing to do."

Copyright 2006 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
   
Find this article at:
http://www.cnn.com/2006/TECH/science/04/12/fossil.evolution.ap/index.html  
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« Reply #89 on: April 12, 2006, 06:29:53 PM »

Dear Matthew,

Quote
My point is that there was never a consensus among the church fathers on the length of the creation days. But when it came to how humankind came into being, they did agree.

If that is your point, then one shouldn't exclude evolution either from acceptance.

Quote
[Refering to God's Sabbath analogy in Exodus 20:10-11:]

By no means does this demonstrate that 24-hour intervals were involved in the first six 'days,' any more than the eight-day celebration of the Feast of Tabernacles proves that the wilderness wanderings under Moses occupied only eight days.
Source: Book - Archer G., "A Response to the Trustworthiness of Scripture in Areas Relating to Natural Science,", in Radmacher E.D., & Preus R.D., "Hermeneutics, Inerrancy, and the Bible", Academic Books, Grand Rapids MI, 1986, p329
http://www.geocities.com/vr_junkie/NotableOldEarthCreatinists.htm

My point is that if you expect LITERAL consistency between ribs and Christ's side, then you must also expect literal consistency between a seventh literal day and a Sabbath day.  But if it's seven "stages" then the "ribs" may not be literal after all.  The word "yom" means "day."  You can't escape the word "yom."  We may say that to God a "yom" to Him is a thousand to us, but you can't expect that's what Moses or any other believed.  The possibility stood that people believed in 24-hour days.  Therefore, we can't expect to force to take many other things literal either (and it's interesting that St. Basil took it in Greek as "evening" and "morning").

Quote
"There is no contradiction between Genesis 1 and 2. � Genesis 1 is a detailed explanation of the six days of creation, day by day. � Genesis two is a recap and a more detailed explanation of the sixth day, the day that Adam and Eve were made. � The recap is stated in Gen. 2:4, "This is the account of the heavens and the earth when they were created, in the day that the Lord God made earth and heaven." Then, Moses goes on to detail the creation of Adam and Eve as is seen in verses 7 thru 24 of Gen. 2. � Proof that it is not a creative account is found in the fact that animals aren't even mentioned until after the creation of Adam. � Why? � Probably because their purpose was designated by Adam. � They didn't need to be mentioned until after Adam was created."
http://www.carm.org/diff/Gen_1.htm

In Genesis chapter 1, both man and woman were created after the rest of the animals.  In Genesis 2, Adam was created before animals, and after the animals were created, Eve was created.  The contradiction is very clear.  This is one reason why both parts cannot be written by the same author.  

St. Athanasius by the way makes it very clear that Adam was placed in God's "Paradise," and that he calls it a "place."  We already see therefore the fruits of allegory, even though the Bible said this was a garden somewhere in Assyria in the middle of four rivers.

Quote
As for the authorship of the Scriptures, I'd trust the church fathers over modern secular scholars.

As one Greek priest told me, you wouldn't make it through seminary, especially the ones you lately showed interest in.

Quote
How can you be certain if they rejected the secular cosmogonies of their own time?

The cosmogonies they rejected had something to do with several heresies that either disassociated God from created or decreased the greatness of God's role tremendously.  Evolution need not be associated with such cosmogonies.  Therefore, I'm certain that if one uses evolution in the praise and glory of God, making Him all the more greater, I don't see how it is impossible that some fathers may have accepted it.

But suppose they don't.  Are you telling me therefore that if one told St. Basil that the sun doesn't revolve around the earth, and that St. Basil rejected it, should I accept St. Basil's beliefs?

Quote
Furthermore, how has Darwinian evolution been established as a scientific fact?

If you want to debate on whether evolution is a fact or not, we can, but I believe the center of the debate is whether it's plausible to accept evolution while still being Christian.  I do however believe that you can never really escape evolution as a fact.  It indeed has survived the test of animosity and the more growing molecular evidence all the more affirms Darwin's essential conclusions.

Quote
Do you believe that the universe is eternal and self-existent? If so, then who is God? Do you believe that the universe arose on its own? If so, what need is there for a Creator?

If God gave man and woman the power to pro-create children, does that mean man and woman are eternal and self-existent?  Do you think I believe that man and woman arose on its own?  Is God's role decreased by doing so, or is there any need for a Creator if the Creator gave man and woman this power?

I never believed in whatever you asked.  The way you confront and misconstrue what I said actually frustrates me.

God bless you.

Mina
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