Creation scientist resources

by hooberus 48 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • lovelylil


    I don't want to get into a huge debate over the Bible because our interpretation of it is not really that important. The Christian faith rests upon belief in Christ as our saviour and not whether we can interpret every word in the Bible, and I do have faith in Christ.

    You need to understand that the Bible is a mix of different types of writings. There are historical facts and there are allegories, sometimes mixed together.Geneisis gives an account of man's fall into sin, but does it in a simple way by telling a story. I am not saying at all that man did not somehow fall into sin. But the main point of that Genesis account is not whether or not Adam and Eve ate from a literal tree but that they rejected God's authority over them. And that they wanted to be like God and make decisions about what was right or wrong in their own eyes. So argueing over the details of the story is useless.

    IMO, Just because the bible writers used allegories to teach lessons does not make the bible any less valid. Jesus often used illustrations himself to teach lessons to his followers. Case in point, the story of the prodigal son, which some believe is a story really about Man's seperation from God and how God will someday welcome him back. We know the prodigal son was not a real person, but the lesson the story teaches is valid.

    I'd like to ask you a question since you seem to believe every word of the Bible must be taken as literal. Do you then believe that the dragon and beasts in Revelation are real monsters? Lilly

  • New Worldly Translation
    New Worldly Translation
    The Christian faith rests upon belief in Christ as our saviour and not whether we can interpret every word in the Bible, and I do have faith in Christ

    That's true but it does rely on those scriptures that pertain to Christ and why there was a need for a redeemer.

    I wasn't saying that everything in the bible has to be taken literally and whether the story was real or allegorical it's still seen as an explanation of a tangible aspect of the human condition. Jesus' illustrations were used to explain morals and ethics but the Genesis story, even if allegorical, attempts to explain the first cause of a substantive event. If the story is mythical then what is the real explanation of sin, and how can you be conscious of your spiritual need if you don't have that part of the jigsaw?

    I think I've just realised something from what you said; faith. Faith that Jesus is a redemptive force from a sinful human condition and the details aren't the point. Looking round the world I wouldn't dare argue with that. I think I understand now.
    I think you're right that these type of debates can be a bit pointless but thanks for your explanations and I've learnt a bit more about modern Christian belief from yourself and Narkissos. I think I was a bit harsh in the wording of some of my posts Lovelylil so my apologies, I had a misconception of what you believed.

  • lovelylil


    No need to apologize. I can see why you would have misunderstood my original post. I am in full agreement with you about mankinds current state and his need for redemption. And accept God's plan of redemption thru his Son. But like I said, the theme of the Genesis account of man's fall does not depend on all the details in the story being literal. And I see no reason to discount evolution totally as it does not automatically rule out a Creator. The only thing it may rule out is a literal interpretation of all the details in the Genesis account. Evolution while it explains how life evolved to its current state; does not explain the origin of that life itself. Like you, I believe the originator of life was God. Lilly

  • Narkissos


    The difference between myth or legend on the one hand and history on the other hand has become a critical one in modern times. This doesn't mean it did not exist in Antiquity (both ancient historians and philosophers try hard to distance themselves from myths and legends), only the border was not as clear-cut as it is to us. And perhaps it has become excessively definite to us in a ultimately arbitrary way, as the so-called "postmodernists" suggest.

    Anyway it is difficult, or even impossible, for us to figure out what an ancient author exactly had in mind when referring to what we call a myth, or legend. But I'd bet they would stare incredulous, or perhaps laugh themselves to death, at modern educated people arguing whether tales such as Genesis 2--3 or Jonah, for instance, are to be accepted or rejected as factual history. They knew what a tale was, how to use it and how not to use it. The tradition of haggadic midrash has been alive in Judaism over the centuries. Only the ignorant would take its tales as real history.

    As to the way the NT can use the OT, I find a good example is the treatment of Genesis 14 in Hebrews 7. From the mere absence of a mention of Melchizedek's father, mother and genealogy in Genesis the author of Hebrews concludes that "Melchizedek" actuallyhad no father, mother or genealogy. This is typical ancient reasoning a scriptura (in that case not isolated, because extra-canonical writings also consider Melchizedek as a heavenly being on similar grounds). Of course no modern exegesis of Genesis 14 would draw the same conclusions. We have a different way of dealing (or perhaps more exactly playing)with texts.

    To know exactly how Paul understands Adam, we would have to consider how Adam is viewed in contemporary Hellenistic-Jewish literature. And it happens that Adam, too, is often regarded as more than a particular human individual (be it the first one); it the Jewish version of the transcultural "myth" (our label) of the Cosmic Primeval Man, the heavenly model or archetype of mankind. In 1 Corinthians 15:44f in particular this archetype seems to break into two contrasting ones, the first Adam which stands for "animal (psukhikos) mankind," and the second Adam which is the model for the "spiritual (pneumatikos) one". The same basic idea is developed in Romans 5 in a similar contrast of (the first) Adam and Christ. We are very far from the idea of Christ as the mere "solution" to an Adam "problem". A new creation, a new (spiritual) mankind is what is meant.

    It seems from your explanation liberal theology is more a philosophy than anything else. That there is some mystical truth and deep meaning in old texts and that this is constantly revised based on our current understanding. I guess I just have a hard time understanding why you would keep holding on to an ever shortening piece of rope. Although, if I'm understanding correctly, it could mean that christian thinking is actually going full circle and returning to it's ultimate paganistic roots where nature was the principle informant on theology.

    Interesting thoughts, and I am actually close to your conclusions. I would agree that liberal theology is (as the best of theology always was) a religious philosophy (as your expression "mystical truth" implies). I don't think the "rope" of ancient texts is shortening though, to the contrary -- as modern findings have considerably increased the material basis for exegetical investigation, and religious inspiration (through necessary reinterpretation). And I also agree that we never can wander very far from so-called "paganism," i.e. a connection with nature. In many ways "Christianity" was a resurgence of so-called "paganism" within Jewish monotheism. As far as one of the main tasks of religion is to articulate human culture and its representations of a wider "reality," I can't see how it could avoid a thinking of "nature" very long without becoming autistic. Imo the rearguard debate with obscurantist, fundamentalistic, "creationism" is only wasting time and energy away from the task of theologically (or philosophically) integrating the new cosmological paradigms. Too bad for Christianity?

  • Abaddon


    You know there are some people who believe in God and evolution, and do not believe the earth is only 10,000 years old.

    And they totally repudiate the rubbish spouted by Creation Scientists or the ID lobby.

    Creation verses Evolution has been totally debated to DEATH on this board. With both sides claiming victory over the other. In my opinion it is a draw. We cannot fully prove God exists but also cannot fully prove he does not exist. And the evidence is in the "eye of the beholder".

    lil, creation can only happen if there is a creator. Evolution could happen if there is a creator, or if there isn't. You are confusing the debate about the existence of god with the insistence of a vocal minority to ignore the evidence supporting evolution - the process as evidenced in the fossil record, not the attendent theory.

    I beleive the insistence on literalism that some have is because they feel the need to insist that their interpretation of the Bible from Genesis to Revelation is correct, and others isn't. Insistence on Biblical inerancy (or any other Holy Book) is about an insistence to judge others on a whim of textual analyis. Whilst they are free to insist that, they are obviously intolerent idiots.

    It is good you see the use of allegory and metaphor. I wonder whether that is what a historical Jesus was doing when he said 'son of god'... and whether his last words were not "Father, father, why have you forsaken me?", but rather "For god's sake you moron, don't you understand a metaphor when you hear one?!"

    The wisdom in Jesus' words has NOTHING to do with his divinity, ransom, or lack of it.

    The danger to assume we can KNOW something that is unprovable as fact WAS true, is that we can be wrong.

    You don't have to be a genius to figure out there are loads of people who think they can KNOW something that is unprovable as fact IS true and have totally different opinions and actions to ohers who beleive exactly the same thing?

    In the absense of proof, what do we have to show that persons X's faith is 'better' than person y's? When some kill in the name of theirs (and all faiths have killed in the name of their faith, it's just some are closer to bronze ge goatherds than others)?

    If this is the case, what are we to do?

    Look for wisdom; the label; "Jesus", "Allah", "Vishnu", "The Far Side", "M.A.S.H.", is unimpotant. As long as the wisdom embraces the sacredness of life and freedom, it source is irrelevent.


    Go on then. Please disprove modern evolutionary synthesis. The theory is falsifiable.

    Apostate Kate

    There is disagreement in the scientific community on entropy and the Second Law of Thermodynamics so evolutionists will claim one theory about a closed system and creationsist will claim another.

    There is no disagreement IN the relvent scientific community about what the 2nd law means to evolution. There is disagreement WITH the relevent scientific community by a bunch of what would normally be termed 'quacks' if they were persuing medical practise.


    One thing I have thought before and am thinking again... if Genesis was meant to be allegorical, a story explaining origin, you could so easily come up with something allegorical that wasn't so at odds with modern science. A story about the creator singing a song and weaving the Universe for eons, and cherishing the life that blosomed, and rejoycing when one of the animals gained the ability to think, and guiding them to peace and happiness...

    Many mythic stories put man side by side with the animals as equals, and such a story would be a perfect allegory without any contradiction to the evidence that we observe (apart from the Universe apparently being at least -1 god... and people complain about dark matter... ), one that would make sense to the bronze age goat herd and modern man (who belived in god).

    As the story isn't something elegant and translatable, it seems to me that Genesis is just another creation myth, and thus the book that contain it and all its characters are of a dubious hue from the outset.

    Yeah, sure there was someone like Jesus. There was someone like Hercules. And?

  • New Worldly Translation
    New Worldly Translation

    Narkissos - I thought the definition of myth that I had in mind was too rigid after I had posted and thought about it. You're absolutely right that the ancient writers would laugh at some of the attitudes towards scripture we have today. I was just thinking about that point the other day.
    Very interesting about how the legend of Melchizedek was formulated. I'll have to show my father those points as he seems to have an interest in that character.
    The rope analogy was a bit of a non sequitur as I had two thoughts in mind when I was writing. It was more a point about doctrinal, mainstream christians and their ability to take aspects of the bible literally or use scripture as authoritative dogma in light of contemporary science and morals.

    Cheers Narkissos. Thanks for an edifying debate

  • funkyderek

    Having spent a considerable amount of time studying the subjects of biological evolution and the various lines of evidence for it (molecular genetics, cladistics, paleontology, comparative biology, mathematical modelling, computer simulations, real-world observations) as well as tangentially related subjects such as probability, anthropology and psychology, two things strike me about creationism:

    First, the sheer arrogance of those who have not properly studied the subject pronouncing that there is no evidence for evolution, or that a particular feature could not possibly have evolved (รก la Michael Behe, who declared under oath that there was no evidence for the evolution of the bacterial flagellum, but was forced to admit he hadn't actually read any of the dozens of scientific papers on the subject, as he didn't think such research would be fruitful!) or indeed that evolution violates some immutable law (see Apostate Kate's post in this thread).

    Second, the impoverished worldview of those who believe that the whole world was created by divine fiat only a few thousand years ago. An example: Some studies have suggested that the majestic neck of the giraffe evolved not to enable feeding at higher levels but rather as part of runaway sexual selection, the neck being used by males in sparring. Having been lucky enough to observe this phenomenon at close quarters, I find it fascinating and knowing what I do about sexual selection and displays, it seems at least plausible. But whatever the explanation turns out to be, isn't it infinitely better and more interesting than "God made it that way"? That is what the creationist viewpoint comes down to. Nothing needs a real explanation because they have a one-size-fits-all pseudo-explanation: "God did it." How childish, how blinkered, how dull a view that is.

  • Abaddon

    Don't get me started on sexual selection Derek!

    It is a fave subject of mine (and I do mean in evolutionary biology as well as elsewhere!).

    Not only is it likely the form of the human male's penis is the product of female sexual selection, sexual selection is a good candidate for being a main factor behind the development of intelligence as displayed by humans. The peacock had its tail, the giraffe perhaps its neck, and homo erectus (maybe) had its charm and GSOH - all of course mediated through the progressive development of language. This was a major plus as far as the ladies of the time were concerned, the genes selected were (thank god) not sex specific.

    We cannot have developed intelligence as a result of the environment or environmental change, as we have ample evidence that intelligence is not necessary to survive any environment of environment change.

    Our brains are vastly bigger than our ancestors needed, and require a ridiculous amount of the body's energy. They're simply not efficient as a survival tool.

    However, sexual selection can force gross inefficiency; it's likely the big elk you guys had died out as a result of it all going horribly wrong, but there's good examples of inefficiency in putative sexually selected characteristics like the peacock's tail and maybe giraffe necks (after all, if being tall and all were such a great efficient way to survive, there would be more tall animals, just like if being intelligent like us was such a great efficient way of surviving they'd be other species with intelligence like ours). It's 'okay' to be inefficient at surviving if only the ones with the (inefficient for survival) sexual characteristics the chicks dig get to breed, as efficiency is precisely no good; imagine a peacock trying to persuade a peahen his drab tail was okay as it meant he got eaten less often... she'd be off after the next piece of real tail in a flash...

    See, I told you... I got on one... a spliff and sexual selection... what more could a hippie nerd ask?

  • funkyderek

    Replied to wrong thread, sorry!

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