A Thought Experiment
Hello all! I am hoping some of you may be up for participating in a little creative thought experiment . The question I would like to pose (and if it has already been asked I apologize, for some reason I cannot search for topics on my mobile) is this: What would the evidence show if the Jehovah's Witness' literal reading of Genesis was true?
I realize that is a fairly broad question, but for example a more pointed question could be: If the Vapor Canopy hypothesis is correct (I have confirmed with my Elder father that this is still a currently accepted understanding), what evidence in our genome or that of other creatures or on earth would we expect to see? This idea of trying to prove out the Jehovah's Witness belief system in order to disprove it is something that I have flirted with in the past, but I think it would be interesting to see what the combined minds on this forum can come up with.
what evidence in our genome or that of other creatures or on earth would we expect to see?
Simply put a gene pool of 2 is not sufficient to be the origin of the human race.
We do have a common female ancestor nicknamed mitochondrial Eve who lived in Africa around 150,000 years ago but she was part of a population of a few thousand.
Not sure if your question includes Noah's Ark, but the JW explanation regarding "kinds" of animals is entirely inconsistent with their anti-evolution stance. We could not possibly have the numbers of species we have if the Earth was only a few thousand years old.
What would the evidence show if the Jehovah's Witness' literal reading of Genesis was true?
Leaving genetics to other posters, the fossil record would be much, much sparser - only going back to tens of thousands of years at the most (based on each creative day being either 1,000 or 7,000 years).
Familiar Mesozoic taxa, such as Dinosaurs, Pterosaurs, Plesiosaurs, Ichthyosaurs and the first birds, would be non-existent. As the earliest humans would be only 6,000 years old, there would also be no fossil humans. Say goodbye to Neanderthals, Homo erectus, Homo heidelbergensis and Homo ergaster.
...what evidence in our genome or that of other creatures or on earth would we expect to see?
My first answer does not address your question as it relates to the canopy theory but is rather in line with the question: What if the creation myth was true and evolution was not a real process:
Biological design flaws would not be present e.g. Vas deferens routing
Vestigial pseudo genes for things like tails would not be present in humans.
Probably no animals would posses the combination of canine teeth and claws.
Some things one would expect to find with a factual canopy theory (I could not think of anything specifically related to genetics):
1. A fossil jumble in the Geological layers. Human with T-Rex skeletons and so on. And these jumbled layers would also be found on a grand and global scale.
2. Polar Dinosaurs frozen in relative proximity to mammals like Mammoths in Siberia, with their frozen Dinosaur flesh still attached to the skeletons, in the same way that some Mammoths were found in Siberia.
3. Kangaroo's and Kuala's in the Middle East and not just in Australia.
4. No oil or coal. Instead mega layers of biological decay.
While my personal views are mostly in line with Cofty's, I do know that the "water canopy" idea I was taught as a Witness has no equal in nominal Judeo-Christian theology.
The word is usually translated in academically accepted Bibles as "firmament" or outright as "dome." (For example the NRSV or NABRE.) The ancients did not believe in the vacuum of space. Ancient Jewish cosmology taught that outer space was filled with water. Earth was a flat surface or disc that was built upon pillars, with a physical dome separating the waters above in space from the waters in the sea below on earth.
According to this model the stars, moon, and sun were items attached to this dome which revolved around the flat disc of the earth. Rain or snow or hail came through tiny hatches in the dome that allowed the "outer space" waters to fall upon earth.
The diagram below shows what most Christians and Jews understand that the ancient Hebrews believed in. This is why most of these same religious groups teach evolution, the Big Bang, etc., becuase they know that the Biblical explanations were based on limited perceptions not based in science. It is the Watchtower that makes up explanations to reconcile the Witness belief that the Bible has to be scientifically true.
- No evidence of human activity before 4026BCE, and probably not for long time after that either
- Humanity migration patterns originating in the Middle East instead of Africa
- Global geological evidence for a global flood
- Insanely high rate of new species evolving (yes, otherwise we couldn't have this many species after the flood)
- Different types of species (e.g. marsupials) not just in isolated locations like Australia, but spread out across the globe from the Middle East
- Complete wipeout of civilizations (Chinese, Egyptian) by the flood, to be replaced by completely different civilizations after hundreds of years
I'll leave all the evidence supporting evolution and contradicting creationism for those more readily equipped for that.
Some great points. I was shocked how much sense that diagram made the first time I saw it David_Jay. If you just read what is there in the scripture (without trying to force it to match scientific reality), that diagram is exactly how they saw their world. Certainly one huge point is the lack genetic diversity from Adam and Eve, however I have heard that argued around (not convincingly) by JW's with claims that they were closer to "perfection" with diversity built in. A feeble defense of a really weird premise. I have always wondered what this "perfect" human's genome would look like.
If as the wt believes, the flood covered the entire earth to the height of Mt Everest for example, then every living thing aboard the ark would have died from lack of oxygen and/or pulmonary embolism at close to 25,000 ft.
ctrwtf : don't use that argument please, pushing the atmosphere up everywhere past Everest's summit, would have lowered the atmospheric pressure only as much as climbing to the third floor. There would be heat rather than cold. Enough nonsense in the flood story, no need to combat it by bad physics.