June 22, 2008

A Fresh New Start

Well, since I am getting kicked out of every atheist blogging site I figured I would start combating them in my own yard. Actually I do have a couple of static posts as hermeneutics instructions for others to read but this will be the first time I have blogged on any level.

I will be testing out features, such as video comments, and explore many subjects. This should be very fun with a new start.



I will do my very best to find time to blog at a consistent level and most of these blog subjects will be my reply's to what I read at other blogs that I have been banned at. A new baby is arriving into the family and time will be divided but I will see how often I can do this.

23 comments:

  1. Since John has banned me forever on his blog debunking Christianity I am forced to put my last comment here to DingoDave. I am disappointed because this really means John is trying to get his book sold. Instead of seeking truth he is seeking Validation for his beliefs. Here is my response:

    DingoDave "He might as well ask "have you ever told the truth? Then what does that make you?"

    You are the one that is not making sense now. Is truth against the "LAW"? He is asking if you ever broke the Law. Time doesn't erase a crime you understand. The Law must be satisfied and there must be punishment for breaking the Law, otherwise its not a Law at all.

    I don't know who to give credit to for this but it is worth saying.

    "If I lie to a child, I'll get away with it.
    If I lie to my wife, I'll be sleeping on the couch.
    If I lie to a police officer, I'm obstructing justice and I'll go to jail.
    If I lie to a judge, it's called perjury, and I'll go to prison.
    If I lie to the government, it's called treason, and the punishment is death.

    So how much more egregious is a lie to God?

    The offense hasn't changed, only the one offended.

    An offense against an infinite God requires an infinite retribution."

    "How many of their papers have been published in reputable science journals, and have been peer reviewed by reputable scientists working in those fields? None that I know of."

    Now you are showing your prejudices and presuppositions. You cannot grasp the fact that they were peer-reviewed in the sense that peers accept them, but you still don't. You are just like the cronies in the movie Expelled.

    "You should be embarrassed about admitting such things."

    Go to the convention you will be amazed.

    "Thanks for the offer Dan, but I think that I'll save my money for something more worthwhile if it's all the same to you. I've read creationist books before, (in fact I already own several) and the last thing I need is another one."

    Presuppositions in tact I see. You are NOT seeking TRUTH you are seeking VALIDATION. There is a huge difference, buddy.

    "Here's a quote from one of the 50 scientists interviewed. I think that it just about says it all."

    Funny, Sir Isaac Newton would of said something on the same lines but you still believe in gravity. Your cracking me up, dude.Yup, presuppositions still in place. You are scared of truth admit it you would never stray from your faith based religion.

    You will continue to believe in millions(billions) of years and evolution for your entire life yet you will never be able to comprehend these basic questions taken from the DVD "4 Power Questions to as an evolutionist"

    1. Where did the universe's original matter come from?

    2. How did life Begin?

    3. Where are all the supposed transitional fossils between the Precambrian and the Cambrian periods?

    4. Where did the dinosaurs come from?

    David thanks for the warm words. I think our families would have a great dinner together. The conversations would be energetic to say the least. Remember that Jesus ate with the sinners (Matthew 9:10-13) and everyone sneered at him for doing so. People ask me why I spend so much time with all of you and I just tell them would you give a great deal time to help get a child out of a burning building? Or as Jesus put it "They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick." We should invite Kurt Wise for the feast, it would be a great night.

    With care for you,
    Dan

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  2. I doubt DingoDave will show up over here, but I'll humor you...

    4 Power Questions to as (sic) an evolutionist

    1. Where did the universe's original matter come from?

    2. How did life Begin?

    3. Where are all the supposed transitional fossils between the Precambrian and the Cambrian periods?

    4. Where did the dinosaurs come from?


    1. The Theory of Evolution says nothing about the origin of the universe. This question pertains rather to Cosmology, so the premise is flawed -- the question is not a "Power Question to [ask] an evolutionist". Indeed, Cosmology has little to say about the origin of matter, but quantum flux is a likely candidate at present.

    In any case, you presuppose a false dichotomy -- either Big Bang cosmology (or something equally scientific and anti-biblical) or the literal creation account. There are plenty of alternatives, populating a spectrum of plausibility, with science's current theories at the more plausible end, and "goddidit" at the less plausible end. In fact, "goddidit" should be removed from the spectrum entirely -- it fails to answer any questions whatsoever, and is valueless in the discussion of origins or mechanisms.

    2. Again, the Theory of Evolution does not include abiogenesis, so again this question does not apply to the evolutionist, per se. Again, current scientific theories have ideas which hold merit, but the question itself is far from answered. As with the previous red herring, "goddidit" is valueless in explaining the beginning of life.

    3. This question is misleading (intentionally so, I would wager), but at least it involves the Theory of Evolution... First, the presence of fossils is not presupposed. Second, the question itself is "begging the question" -- if/when such fossils are located, will that shut you the hell up?

    Contrary to biblical literalists, there was not a global flood, which would have produced ample amounts of sediment, and which would likely have produced entire strata containing the fossils of the millions (billions?) of life forms not aboard the ark. Since such a layer has not been found, the global flood theory is quashed, and the question of "missing" transitional fossils actually hurts the Noah account more than it does the evolutionary account.

    4. Dinosaurs, like all life forms, are explained by the Theory of Evolution as having arisen through descent with modification from a common ancestor.


    Now then, perhaps your DVD (if you had to pay for it, you should demand an apology, if not a full refund) should retitle this list of questions, choosing one of the following options:

    1) 4 Pathetic Questions to ask an evolutionist

    2) 2 Irrelevant, 1 Misleading, and 1 Simple Question to ask an evolutionist

    3) 4 Powerful Questions to ask someone completely ignorant of the mechanisms or principles of evolution

    4) 4 Big Piles of Fail.


    Now then, your turn to answer some questions.

    1. Why did god need a work-light during the days of creation (the disconnected light source created prior to the sun or stars)? Could he not work in the dark? Did this work-light consist only of the visible spectrum, or did it stretch to other wavelengths as well?

    2. Why was the moon created as a light "to govern the night", when it is neither a light, nor does it govern the night (indeed, it can be seen simultaneously from sufficiently distant points on the earth at day and at night)?

    3. How did Noah and his three sons (and their collective wives) manage an isolated, floating zoo for 13 months with untold thousands (millions?) of animals, and where is any direct evidence of the global flood?

    4. How is it that we see starlight from stars/galaxies billions of light-years distant?


    Of course, I could offer many more than just these, but your DVD was kind enough to limit its questions to four, so I figured I would reply in kind.

    --
    Stan

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  3. Stan,

    "1. The Theory of Evolution says nothing about the origin of the universe. This question pertains rather to Cosmology, so the premise is flawed."

    You know what, you're right. I agree.

    "Again, the Theory of Evolution does not include abiogenesis, so again this question does not apply to the evolutionist, per se."

    Not so fast now. The tree of origin isn't Darwinian? Evolution spouts that we evolved from protists and such, without proof of course.

    "if/when such fossils are located, will that shut you the hell up?" Of course it would. I seek truth not some false claim with no evidence to back it up.

    The Bibles claims cannot be debunked either archeologically, historically and scientifically but you can't say the same for evolution. Your religion is flawed. The religion of secular humanism that is.

    "4. Dinosaurs, like all life forms, are explained by the Theory of Evolution as having arisen through descent with modification from a common ancestor."

    Again without one shred of proof, you make such a bold claim.

    There are many presuppositions used by evolutionists that govern how they interpret data in a manner prejudicial toward their theory. Given that all of the discovered so-called "human ancestor fossils" can be placed on a single pool table, and that there are consistent and large gaps in the fossil record between every animal group, it is not difficult to see that those who do not serve the living God, will use whatever evidence they can to promote a theory that denies God's creative work.

    In my defense I haven't yet purchased or watched the DVD. It was sent to me in a news letter the day I posed the questions. So I don't actually know the dynamics or viewpoint of the DVD in question.

    "4 big piles of fail" you crack me up.

    "Now then, your turn to answer some questions."

    1. Why did god need a work-light during the days of creation (the disconnected light source created prior to the sun or stars)?"


    God was 'the light' I thought.

    Genesis 1:3. And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.
    4 And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness.
    5 And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.

    Who said it wasn't the stars or sun? Maybe you can elaborate for me.

    "2. Why was the moon created as a light "to govern the night", when it is neither a light, nor does it govern the night"

    It was to signify the "lesser" light. The darkness (evil, Satan) is not light at all but merely a reflection of God's light. The only way that darkness (night) can light the night is to reflect the light already there.

    "3. How did Noah and his three sons (and their collective wives) manage an isolated, floating zoo for 13 months with untold thousands (millions?) of animals, and where is any direct evidence of the global flood?"

    Thousands of animals "of their kind"

    Genesis 1:25 "And God made the beast of the earth after his kind, and cattle after their kind, and every thing that creepeth upon the earth after his kind: and God saw that it was good."

    We can plainly see that Noah only had to bring certain species on board. That those species would branch off into different forms as the populate the earth. The data in the DNA is so tremendous that it has enough information to branch off a species into many varieties. We can easily see that Tigers, cougars,cheetahs, Bobcats and Mountain lions are all similar and came from the same genetic gene pool of one species on the ark.

    Part two of your question can be answered in many ways from sediment layers that are consistent over extremely large areas or even as recent as Mt. Saint Helens eruption. There is a tremendous amount of data including a book that supports the Genesis flood, you might want to take a look at it if you haven't already. I have heard of various counters of interpretation of the evidence all the way through school even, but the evidence is overwhelming of a world flood.

    "4. How is it that we see starlight from stars/galaxies billions of light-years distant?" I was going to explain at length about how you know when someone is travelling at the speed of light in dependant of the earth, that when they would return to a much older earth then when they left. All the friends would all be dead and hundreds of years would have past in a short few years traveling at that high rate of speed. That there is a tremendous amount of assumptions of time speed and so forth. Then I did a quick search and found a trustworthy friend that answered it better then I could. It's called "Does Distant Starlight Prove the Universe Is Old?"

    You appear to be a smart enough man to grasp common sense Stan (named after my father?), so I hope you can take some of these points with an understanding that just because your religion of secular humanism explains things in a certain way that it doesn't mean its truth. God is truth and God cannot lie. I will put my faith in Him no matter what mankind congers up.

    Peace,
    Dan

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  4. First, your response to the question concerning abiogenesis was wrong. Flat wrong. Evolution does indeed posit descent from a common ancestor -- a single ancestor, therefore -- and that ancestor is classified by biologists as a protist, but to suggest that the Theory of Evolution explains the development of the protist(s) is untrue.

    The "Tree of Life", sure, but not its seed. That part is a different class of theory: abiogenesis, and it is quite young. We don't know, but we're looking into it. Regardless, it is not the Theory of Evolution.

    Now, as to your responses to my questions:

    God was 'the light' I thought.

    ???

    Ummmm.... No. You are free to consider god to be some metaphorical "light" if you like, of course, but if you take the Genesis account on its face, then this is talking about some disembodied light source, quite clearly. Else, what is the meaning of 1:5?

    Who said it wasn't the stars or sun? Maybe you can elaborate for me.

    I would rather guess that at this point you recognize your error... If not, then try a quick re-reading of the Genesis 1 account. Suffice it to say, it's neither stars nor sun because none of them have yet been created (not until Day 4, after plants, even).

    Perhaps the 'work-light' is the attempt of an excommunicated member of the 5th millennium BCE ruling class to form a creation myth which made sense to him?

    What of the wavelength(s) of this light source? Visible spectrum, infrared, radio, ultraviolet...?

    Considering the source and our knowledge of light, the most plausible conclusion is that Moses (assuming he was the author -- sketchy, at best) made it up. Your god would not need any sort of light source in order to begin his creation.

    It was to signify the "lesser" light. The darkness (evil, Satan) is not light at all but merely a reflection of God's light. The only way that darkness (night) can light the night is to reflect the light already there.

    What?! You would here suggest that Day 4 of creation is selectively metaphorical? Clearly, it describes the sun and moon, as well as the stars, and it describes them (the sun and moon) as both being "lights", and describes the the moon as the one which "governs the night".

    Your attempt at creating a Mosesian metaphorical myth is quite good, but unfortunately for you it is just as worthless. The Genesis 1 account of Day 4 is quite specific: Sun, moon, stars. The sun governs the day, the moon governs the night, and both are lights.

    My question was, then, why is the moon so falsely described? It is neither a light, nor does it govern the night. Why not call it the sun's companion, and let it govern the tides?

    Perhaps -- and I'm just throwing this out there -- the author didn't know about tidal forces and their relationship to the moon, and perhaps the author thought the moon emitted its own light, and perhaps the author really thought the moon was not visible during the day... But it's a wonderfully vivid story...

    Thousands of animals "of their kind"

    Okay, so "thousands of animals" -- thousands of species, right? thousands of pairs, and in some cases sevens, of animals, right? Conservatively speaking, then, fifty thousand animals? Assigning an arbitrary number based on a presupposition of truth doesn't answer the question, though, which was how seventeen people (assuming Noah's sons had one wife each, and three children each) could have managed an isolated, floating zoo, wherein many species were carnivores, many species were prohibitively large, many species were prohibitively dangerous to humans, the volume of fresh water required would be prohibitively large, and the amount of waste produced would be prohibitively great.

    How? The creatures weren't asleep, as some contend, else the birds sent out to find land (after the landing) would have needed awakening. In fact, everything about this story is so fairy-talish, so childish, and so ridiculously implausible, that it should be dismissed as just another fable. Add to that the evidence that no such deluge occurred (on a global scale), and belief in this story is wanton ignorance.

    The sediment layers of which you speak are great, indeed, but they are not global, and they do not occur within the same geological timeframe. The sedimentary layer we recognize as resulting from the extinction event which destroyed the dinosaurs is far to thin to have resulted from a three fortnights of rain, and a year of runoff, so while we have evidence of global castrophe, we do not have evidence of one such as this.

    But you said the following, which gave me pause:

    The data in the DNA is so tremendous that it has enough information to branch off a species into many varieties. We can easily see that Tigers, cougars,cheetahs, Bobcats and Mountain lions are all similar and came from the same genetic gene pool of one species...

    Yes, we agree with this statement taken out of context, but why do we? You deny evolution per Darwin, but you would now claim super-evolution in a mere few thousand years? Imagine the kind of evolution your proposition would require! By animals "of their kind", you refer to an apparently arbitrary grouping of animals -- in your example you chose large cats. But how large would these groups need to be?

    Into what group would giraffes have fallen? Camels? Dromedaries? What of the millions of species of beetle? What of such evolutionary oddities as the ways in which specific species of cuckoo lay eggs in another bird species' nest, which eggs resemble to a high degree the host species' eggs? Do you really think there has been time for all of this amazing evolution to have taken place?

    The YEC position is so intractable as to be laughable. Your willingness to render as metaphor one of the days of creation (or did you not realize the moon question referred to Day 4 of the Genesis 1 account?), yet hold fast to the rest, is silly, quite frankly, and your acceptance of only those aspects of science which suit you is dishonest.

    The ultrasounds your wife had -- you realize, of course, that the science behind that technology is precisely the science behind the way the age of the universe is calculated, yes? Denying one is denying the other -- to do otherwise is a lie.

    As far as AiG's response to distant starlight, the entire article is riddled with inaccuracies, misrepresentations, and outright lies (if the people writing the article know anything about physics or cosmology), and they hide the fact that their own counter-argument is based not on science, but on a biased attempt at fitting a theory to the biblical account, which is superficially supported by the data (sort of like your 'god is light, satan is the reflection' metaphor).

    I'm sure you will continue to believe AiG on this matter, but I must refrain from arguing this, for the simple fact that you wouldn't understand it. I am not being condescending -- I noted your attempt at explaining time dilation and special relativity with regard to travelling away from earth and returning, at speeds approaching 'c', but your attempt showed quite clearly that you have no understanding of the concepts. I am a Physics major (upper division undergrad), and I do not yet have a full understanding of all of the mathematical reasons the AiG arguments fail, but I can see where they made most of their mistakes.

    The fact of the matter is that we have measured starlight which is severely redshifted, and we have found within this starlight certain standard candles, which tell us conclusively that they are at such a distance in MLY (millions of light-years) that the biblical notion of a six thousand year-old universe is off by about seven orders of magnitude. Even if some of the AiG responses are assumed remotely valid, the universe would necessarily be far older than that. Couple the cosmological observations with geological and biological observations, and the age of the earth alone is quite clearly well beyond (again, by six or seven orders of magnitude, in the case of the earth itself) the age given by the bible.

    So I ask you this question, then:

    If you are so open to being proven wrong, and if you are truly willing to accept contrarian evidence, then why do you so adamantly deny the facts of the universe as uncovered by science? Why is it so damning to admit that a relative imbecile (smart as he may have been for his own time) was hopelessly uninformed when he wrote the first science fiction novel? What is the shame in acknowledging that the authors you so revere knew nothing of the events they described, even when they witnessed them?

    Your arrogance blinds you, as it did the early church regarding slavery. It blinds you as it did the early church regarding heliocentrism. It blinds you as it did the early church regarding the treatment of women...

    Admission of this blind arrogance is virtuous. You can hold on to your faith, but you must admit that various aspects of the biblical account are untrue. Allegorical, metaphorical, perhaps, but they are literally untrue.

    --
    Stan (named not after your father, but a pseudonym based on my online persona: the combination of Satan and a-hole; a joke, sure, but it suits me)

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  5. Stan,

    First thanks for taking the time to talk about these subjects but I believe you have made some grave errors yourself in various matters.

    " The "Tree of Life", sure, but not its seed" Whether you hold a belief in human life began protist origins or abiogenesis, the question that still exists is where did cells originate from. Cells are very complex structures, as you know. Even Dawkins believes that they came from outer space and implanted by aliens. You and Dawkins cannot accept truth beyond your presuppositions.

    "What of the wavelength(s) of this light source? Visible spectrum, infrared, radio, ultraviolet...?"

    I just don't know. The Bible didn't tell me so. To be serious though the Bible didn't get into specifics and you have to understand that with most of these things, that cannot be directly answered by the Bible, that I was speculating not as you said "selectively metaphorical". I don't like going beyond what the Bible tells us because the waters tend to get murky. God's word is sound, our opinions are not.

    "How? The creatures weren't asleep, as some contend, else the birds sent out to find land (after the landing) would have needed awakening."

    AIG has a great life size model of the ark at the creation museum that explains the Ark and its cargo. It took actual measurements from the Bible and replicated and built and example of the size. Its plausible that every animal fit snuggly and comfortably and the key is the point I made about their own kind. Seven clean animals and pairs of other animals are plenty to reach todays numbers.

    As a logical example lets use mathematics: Let's say the population doubled ever 150 years. And we start at Adam and Eve and after 32 doublings at 4800 years we get around 8.6 billion people but if we take the "Flood" in account at around 4500 years ago we get a number around 6.5 billion people. Assuming the conservative growth rate the current population can be reached well within a 6000 year period.



    Now evolutionists say mankind has been around for hundreds of thousands of years. Let's take that same equation and use just 50,000 years. So we extrapolate that out 50,000 doublings every 150 years (332 doublings) and we get one followed by 100 zero's. That figure is unimaginable, for it is billions of times greater then the number of atoms that are in the entire universe!(paraphrased from AIG)


    "You deny evolution per Darwin, but you would now claim super-evolution in a mere few thousand years?" Yes, microevolution is a reality, we see this in dogs and cats and even humans, within a species there are differences but a frog to human (macroevolution), no way. My mom told a fairy tale about a princess kissing a frog and it turned into a prince. The only difference from that fairy tale and evolution is assumed time.


    "The ultrasounds your wife had -- you realize, of course, that the science behind that technology is precisely the science behind the way the age of the universe is calculated, yes?" No!


    Science is a wonderful and cherished tool, it makes our lives better and more exciting, without operational science and engineering we would be a lost species. What really frustrates me is these origin scientists that push their presuppositions on the world as fact and tries to push God out of ALL equations. It wasn't so difficult for Sir Newton and many others and it shouldn't be that hard for scientist of today.

    "1. Operation science uses the so-called "scientific method" to attempt to discover truth, performing observable, repeatable experiments in a controlled environment to find patterns of recurring behavior in the present physical universe. For example, we can test gravity, study the spread of disease, or observe speciation in the lab or in the wild. Both creationists and evolutionists use this kind of science, which has given rise to computers, space shuttles, and cures for diseases.

    2. Origin science attempts to discover truth by examining reliable eyewitness testimony (if available); and circumstantial evidence, such as pottery, fossils, and canyons. Because the past cannot be observed directly, assumptions greatly affect how these scientists interpret what they see.

    So, for example, how was the Grand Canyon formed? Was it formed gradually over long periods of time by a little bit of water, or was it formed rapidly by a lot of water? The first interpretation is based on secular assumptions of slow change over millions of years, while the second interpretation is based on biblical assumptions about rapid change during Noah's Flood." (AIG)


    There is ample evidence of the Flood. Just one example, to see the Grand Canyon's rapid erosion you only have to look at a very recent event to see that the same thing happen, such as Mount St. Helens.


    If you want to remove your blinders for a bit. Explore these links with many people with more degrees that you and I have, that agree with the creation model. If you are looking for more study on truth beyond your presupposition of no creator, look at some of these websitestrue origins , ICR, ISCID, Discovery, Intelligent Design Network, Access Research Network just to name a few.


    "I am a Physics major (upper division undergrad)" This brings me to my last point. Stan, if we had dinner together I believe I would love our conversations. Pretend with me for a moment. Let's just say that I stump you all with powerful arguments, using archaeological and scientific evidence. I have even intellectually dwarfed you.

    Now all I have to do is convince you that Noah actually built an ark and brought in the animals two by two, that Jonah was swallowed by a whale, that Samson killed a thousand men with the jawbone of an ass, that Daniel was really in the lions' den, that Moses really did divide the Red Sea, and that Adam and Eve ran around naked...and ate from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Do you really think I can prove all of that to you?

    Look at what Paul said about how he persuaded men about God: "And I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God." (1 Corinthians 2:1) Why didn't Paul dazzle his hearers with eloquent speeches and intellectual wisdom? Bible scholars who have studied his letters tell us that he was extremely capable intellectually. First Corinthians 2:5 tells us why he deliberately stayed away from worldly wisdom: "That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God."

    If sinners are converted by the intellect (the wisdom of men), they will fall away by the intellect. If they are merely argued into the faith, they will just as easily be argued out of it whenever a respected scholar reports that 'the bones of Jesus" have been found. However if sinners are converted by "the power of God," they will be kept by the power of God. No intellectual argument will cause them to waver because they will know the life-changing reality of their conversion, and their faith will be secure in the eternally solid and secure Rock of Ages. (taken from WOTM)


    I would love to meet you in heaven someday and I hope that it will come to fruition.

    For Him +†+,
    Dan

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  6. Stan, the more truthful one said: "if/when such fossils are located, will that shut you the hell up?"

    Intermediate fossils located! http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20080625/sc_afp/sciencepaleontologyfishevolution;_ylt=AssXnO25LoEpMqGyry0Gzjus0NUE

    Another gap gets a bit smaller. But now Dan will say that there are TWO gaps.

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  7. My mom told a fairy tale about a princess kissing a frog and it turned into a prince. The only difference from that fairy tale and evolution is assumed time.

    Now that you've so thoroughly and clearly undercut the whole of biology, I'm sure you'll explain the difference between that same fairy tale and Noah's ark?

    While you're at it, please explain the difference between a collection of fairy tales -- most with some perceived positive moral -- and the bible?

    Dawkins believes that they came from outer space and implanted by aliens. You and Dawkins cannot accept truth beyond your presuppositions.

    Hold on there -- we're talking about Darwin, not Dawkins, and Darwin doesn't believe in some mystical alien seeding of earth, if that's what you're suggesting. The "seeds of life" -- the sorts of proteins and amino acids which were required for life to begin -- may have been deposited on earth via impact from space, but there is no sinister (or creative) alien seeding.

    RE: god's worklight, the creation of the sun, moon, and stars as following the creation of the earth, and the explicitly false description of the moon...

    You ignored these implications completely. If the word of god is so sound, then why is it also so false, and so superfluous? Clearly, god had no need of a light source in order to begin creation. As such, the only plausible explanation for its description is as a human invention -- 'Moses', and every other primitive human, could not conceive of creating without being able to see (and the clear implication is that this light source consisted of the visible spectrum), so -Poof!- "Let there be light".

    Moses and every other primitive human viewed the moon as emitting its own light, so -Poof!- it is created as a light source. Since it is only prominently visible at night, it is decreed to "govern the night".

    The stars, of course, being created after the earth (and the plants), would therefore require that our whole concept of the formations of galaxies, solar systems, and planets, from nebulae, clouds of gas, and accretion disks, is worthless, despite its amazing ability to predict precisely what we see in nature.

    Not only that, but if this position is true, and if god has not deceived us by implying a fixed value for 'c', and if he has further not deceived us by allowing us to observe events which never took place, then every evening we should see more and more stars appear in the night sky, as their light finally reaches us. That this is not the case casts a shadow of doubt on your theory regarding the properties of light, and time dilation, as dictatd to you from the wonderfully biased people at AiG.

    As a logical example lets use mathematics

    [best Rosie Perez impression]Oh, no, you di-ent![/impression]

    Let's say the population doubled ever (sic) 150 years. And we start at Adam and Eve and after 32 doublings at 4800 years we get around 8.6 billion people but if we take the "Flood" in account at around 4500 years ago we get a number around 6.5 billion people.

    You think so?

    First, you subtracted 300 years from your initial estimate, which corresponds to a reduction of two doublings, so rather than 6.5B people, we should have just over 2B people. Your math is wrong.

    Second, and most disturbingly for you, the formula you proposed was the following:

    P(y) = (I)*2^(y/C)

    Where P is the population as a function of the year, I is the initial breeding population, C is the "Conservative" estimate for the time (in years) it takes for the population to double, and y is the year.

    In your assumptions, you chose a value of 2 for I, or Adam and Eve. Yet following Noah's flood, the breeding population was no less than 6.

    Keeping your other assumptions intact, this leads to a current population of... wait for it...

    2.2*10^23

    That's roughly one-third of Avagadro's number.

    (In order for your assumed formula to work, for the assumed number of years, the population would have to double every 360 years.)

    But how many people were alive when the earth was flooded? If we assume the age of the earth to be 6000 years, and maintain your assumption of 4500 years from Noah to today, then your formula yields an incredibly high population of...

    1024 people, from Adam to Noah.

    You are left with a dilemma -- if there is enough time to double the population from Noah to present a set number of years (360) to yield today's population, then there is not enough time for the human population to have grown to the size described in the Flood account. Also, since a mere 1500 years would have passed, Adam's son Seth would likely still be alive (but not reproducing) during the flood, and even if he were not, surely Adam's grandchildren would be, given the ~900 year lifespans of early humans...

    (If we take the required post-Noah doubling rate of every 360 years as the pre-Noah rate, then in the 1500 year span, only 18 breeding humans would exist on the entire planet.)

    Of course, population growth does not fit this kind of formula, although it is approximated by an exponential function, and this formula is only useful for extremely short timeframes, and only in the abstract realm of mathematics (or homework problems).

    True population growth is dependent on a large number of factors, and at any rate, I have easily shown that your assumptions are invalid.

    Obviously, for the Theory of Evolution to work, the natural rate of increase for the population of homo sapiens can be incredibly small, which we would expect given the implications of the theory (tribal separation, the process of acquiring foodstuffs, mortality rates, etc.). Only with the advance of technology would we ever expect the population growth rate to increase beyond a marginally low point, and this is precisely what we observe.

    Your math is wrong.

    It doesn't matter, though, because you made assumptions based on the current population and your misunderstanding of the math involved. You chose the figure of 150 years specifically to get 6.5B people in the end result.

    Yes, microevolution is a reality, we see this in dogs and cats and even humans, within a species there are differences but a frog to human (macroevolution), no way.

    If you understand the Theory of Evolution at all, then you know that the "frog to human" statement is pure nonsense. If you understand your own position at all, then you must know that you cannot have it both ways. If Noah needed only animals "according to their kinds", and this included one pair of cats, one pair of dogs, etc., then you still cannot explain the diversity of life in the short span your hypothesis requires. You allow for evolution to occur "within a species", but if you deny this evolution from one species to another, then you must therefore require Noah's ark to hold a boatload more than you, or AiG with you as their parrot, claim.

    Moreover, if your kind of rapid microevolution were possible, we should see it occurring in the wild everywhere, daily. We do not.

    The ultrasounds your wife had -- you realize, of course, that the science behind that technology is precisely the science behind the way the age of the universe is calculated, yes?

    No!


    Yes.

    Both the sonogram and the measurement of the distances to remote stars/galaxies are based in principle on the Doppler effect. The science you deny is the science that was required for your ~40-year-old wife to have the health of your child monitored via the sonogram.

    Dogmatic Christians such as yourself (dogmatic persons in general, as it were), are much too proud to admit that their position may not be the answer. Scientists like Darwin, on the other hand, specifically chose to assume that the dogmatic principles were invalid, and see where the data led. This is the underlying principle of good science: deny the dogmatic approach, and let the data drive the theory.

    (Including ICR as a credible source of anything is a joke, you realize -- I wouldn't trust those fools if they told me it was raining.)

    As to the Grand Canyon v. Mt. St. Helens, I was there when Mt. St. Helens erupted, I wore a mask to avoid inhaling too much ash, and I remember shoveling the crap for days (it makes for some really nasty mud). No one argues that rapid erosion can take place, because it most obviously can. The argument is instead that global rapid erosion did not take place. The Grand Canyon may have been caused by glaciers in an ice age, by gradual erosion from the Colorado river, and, yes, by a massive global flood. Unfortunately for your position, there is no credible evidence whatsoever for the Noachian flood hypothesis. Boring as a few hundred millennia of erosion might be, it fits all of the data -- all of it.

    Your displaced arguments all seem to ignore the fact that biology, geology, and cosmology all agree in their findings of the ages of the earth and the universe. The discovery of the process of nuclear fusion was preempted by Darwin, who nearly denied his own theory due to the belief at the time that the sun burned coal. A coal-burning sun could not possibly have lasted long enough for Darwin's theory to have taken effect, but then we discovered the process of fusion, and then spectroscopy, and then we used the latter to measure the existence of hydrogen and helium required for the former to occur.

    I'll tell you what -- I'll review the materials you suggested (those which I haven't already reviewed), if you'll read some cosmology, geology, and biology texts. Use the library (it's what I do, generally) rather than buying them, if you prefer, but read them until you understand them.

    Hell, read the arguments posted by Dr. William Lane Craig. His articles can be found on his site, and YouTube can be used to find virtually all of his debates. Obviously, I disagree with Craig's overall conclusion(s), but at least he recognizes the futility in arguing for a 6-day creation story, or for other aspects of biblical canon which have been shown to be false.

    Or read the arguments made by Dr. Francis S. Collins, director of the human genome project and professing Christian. He, too, recognizes the futility of denying the Theory of Evolution.

    You live in a tower of cards. Would you argue your case with the likes of these noted Christian apologists?

    --
    Stan

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  8. /me wipes egg off face...

    I realized a moment ago that I had terribly misspoken concerning the math of the post-Noah doubling of the population...

    I was dreadfully wrong.

    This seriously undermines the sarcasm with which I approached the rest of your math lesson, but it does not have any bearing on the facts regarding your assumptions, and it does not have any bearing on the fact that the rate of a population increase is a variable exponential function.

    I recognize that I have egged myself, and I sheepishly acknowledge that, but I maintain that my remaining arguments are no less valid.

    --
    Stan

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  9. In fact, the exposure of my error has worsened your claim -- it highlights the convenient assumption that the population doubles every 150 years.

    The proper equation to use was actually the following:

    P(y) = P0*e^(ry)

    Where P is again population (as a function of time expressed in years), P0 has replaced the 'I' for the initial population (the font is not conducive to an 'I'), e is Euler's number (the base of the natural logarithm), and r is the rate of population increase.

    This function is a little more complicated, but not overly so. Its main complication is determining an appropriate value for 'r', which relates to the doubling time. Your convenient selection of 150 years per doubling results in a value of ~.004 for 'r', and as the formula was designed, it produces a value of ~6.4 billion.

    Of course, this again raises the question of what the rate was before the Flood, and if the assumed post-flood value holds merit, then we shall continue to use the same one, which, now, leaves us with only two thousand humans on the face of the earth at the time of the Flood. Somewhat surprisingly, this lends credence to the biblical account, if we relax the requirement that the flood was global. If the flood was merely a local catastrophe, then Noah's "ark" needed only to be a small (though large enough, for the time) barge, onto which himself, his family, and a small assortment of farm animals could sit, to wait until the floodwaters receded.

    The embellishments to the story could be explained as expected outcomes of an oral tradition passing on a legend.

    Anyway, the crow I just finished tasted delicious, thank you, and unless you plan on defending a rationale for changing the rate of the population increase pre- and post-Noah, then I should consider offering you some ketchup.

    --
    Stan

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  10. Aww you beat me to it, Stan.

    You first said:"Your math is wrong."

    I wanted to say that your math is what's called creative accounting.

    Look Genius thanks for the math lesson but I wanted to simplify the mathematics as a simple example and an echo of an article I read. It (the example) never took in account of variables such as catastrophic situations like black death and other diseases and such because of the simplicity in nature.

    We might as well just have used Malthusian scheme for population growth. Malthus asserted that there was only two things that kept population down: vice and misery, two necessary evils (their agents being war, famine, and disease) Interestingly though, after a certain amount of time the exponential growth is off the charts. 100,000 years, mathematically, just doesn't fit.

    Doubling every 150 years is pretty conservative even in real life. Take the real life numbers, in the1600's we had a population somewhere around 500,000,000 and by 2000 we had roughly 6,000,000,000. That's 400 hundred years later. Start at a low number P(y) and try that rate for 100,000 years as the evolutionist claim. It just doesn't fit without a, hmm lets see, a worldwide flood 4500 some odd years ago. Look at the oldest "living" tree to see how long ago the flood was.

    I believe it's a young earth not an old one because God said it was so. If you take these numbers and extrapolate anything out, even cockroaches, over millions of years it just doesn't fit as the evolutionary model would have us believe. If you take these numbers in the 6000 year time frame it’s a plausible fit. All of the calculations were reset and started over with Noah's flood 4500 years ago.

    Earth's oldest living inhabitant "Methuselah" at 4,767 years, has lived more than a millennium longer than any other tree. Everything was destroyed before that, in the flood, nothing is older because of that reason. You want to know when the flood was, just look at that one Bristlecone Pine in California.

    "The embellishments to the story could be explained as expected outcomes of an oral tradition passing on a legend."

    The Epic of Gilgamesh is, perhaps, one of the oldest things written on Earth. Except maybe, Job in the Bible. It comes to us from Ancient Sumeria. They wrote about the flood a great deal, even an entire table dedicated to it:

    Table 1: “He saw the Secret, discovered the Hidden, the brought information of (the time) before the Flood. He went on a distant journey” and this “raging flood-wave who destroys even walls of stone!” and also “Utanapishtim, the Faraway, who restored the sanctuaries (or: cities) that the Flood had destroyed!

    Table XI (11) The Story of the Flood: “The gods were frightened by the Flood,”

    So even secular writings acknowledged a flood.

    Presuppositions in tact. I get my answers (truth) from The Bible and logic and common sense.

    I am beginning to understand why the Bible's simple message of salvation is being missed by your complicated brain. By the way Stan, you have a black feather in your teeth.

    Have a great night,
    Dan

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  11. Doubling every 150 years is pretty conservative even in real life.

    That's not the point (and it is untrue) -- in fact, doubling every 150 years is, as your engineered formula showed, necessary if we assume the Noachian flood story occurred 4500 years ago.

    The point is that even this "conservative" estimate is unrealistic, given that it fails to explain pre-flood population, which, as I said, would only be two thousand, if we allow 1500 years between creation and the flood.

    The point is also that the growth rate is not constant, and that resources play an important but as-yet unmentioned role. The rate necessarily varies, and is very dependent on food availability, non-food resources, and technology. Evolutionary theory would predict such a rate to remain extremely low for vast stretches of time.

    The point is that the formula was engineered, and even then it doesn't work. As soon as I saw you trying to use math to make a claim, I smelled blood, and in my crazed state I screwed up a simple formula. My error illustrates an extremely poignant fact: that when we expect to see a certain result, we must be all the more diligent in suppressing our natural bias.

    This error is one which, due to my example, has plagued both of us now, and we do one another a disservice if we fail to recognize it. You see a young earth because when you read the bible, you assume its creation story to be a literal account. I saw an error in your math because I knew there should have been one (there was, but I was seeing double...).

    At least I caught my error before you posted...

    Your arguments have said nothing of the geological, biological, and cosmological evidence for an old earth, and you have said nothing to my questions regarding the biblical accounts (of creation and of the flood) and its inherent inconsistencies. I'd really like to hear how you respond to so-called Theistic Evolutionists, as Drs. Craig and Collins evidently are, and why you feel it necessary to insist that the biblical account is literally true. What is lost if it is instead metaphor?

    Your use of the Epic of Gilgamesh says absolutely nothing regarding truth claims of the Noachian flood story. If anything, it casts doubt on the biblical record. The Epic is fiction. Legend. Myth. Unless you wish to argue the validity of other aspects of it, you have no point here.

    Good fiction draws from common experience, and floods are hardly uncommon. It is easy to imagine that if a flood could happen locally, then perhaps a flood could happen globally (nevermind that no concept of the earth as a 'globe' existed), and since most people had experienced local flooding, the concept made for great fiction.

    Disaster films are quite common in Hollywood, because they sell. But in order to be successful, a disaster film has also to be plausible -- at least with an appropriately small dose of suspension of disbelief. The theme permeates history in fictional works of all kinds, and the bible is no exception.

    I take that back -- the bible is an exception in that it is one of the least plausible fictions, yet many of its adherents insist that it is literal fact.

    1) There is no evidence for a global flood.

    2) There is substantial evidence (read: volumes of evidence) that the earth, the solar system, and the universe are far older than a mere six thousand years or so.

    3) Ignoring the first two for the sake of argument, there has not been enough time since the flood is assumed to have occured to explain the diversity of observed life.

    4) Ignoring the time issue, it is not feasible for a man in his sixth century of life (even with the help of his immediate family) to manage a one-of-a-kind zoo-boat with untold thousands of species -- upwards of half a million specimens -- for over a year in isolation.

    5) Ignoring the feasibility of the ark, humans do not live to be 600 years old, much less 950.

    Seriously -- at what point do you step back and say, "No, that's too far-fetched"?

    Given the following (non-exhaustive) list of the Genesis account of the Noachian flood, please identify the most incredible claim:

    1) That a six hundred year old man accurately predicted an unheard of cataclysm over a year in advance?

    2) That animals from across the globe spontaneously trekked to be penned in Noah's ark?

    3) That these animals were unimpeded in their journey (at some point, the two deer representatives must have gotten sufficiently close to the two large cat representatives...)?

    4) That fewer than two dozen people were able to manage well over 100,000 animals in isolation for over a year?

    5) That the flood cataclysm covered the entire planet (despite no conclusive supporting geological evidence -- that is, evidence which cannot be better explained by current geological theory)?

    6) That no one member of any of the myriad of representative pairs died on the boat, causing that family (order? class? genus? species?) to become extinct?

    7) That the representative pairs (and a few representative sevens) were able to mutate with such speed and success so as to produce the vast amount of plant and animal diversity we observe a mere 4500 years later?

    8) That Noah lived to 950 years of age?


    Come on! At some point a rational person would have to question the validity of such a story, and if this story appeared anywhere else, you'd deny it as wholly implausible. If you cannot be honest with yourself, then I suppose it naïve of me to expect you to be honest with anyone else, but I am free to hope, yes?

    --
    Stan

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  12. Hay Stan,

    "I'd really like to hear how you respond to so-called Theistic Evolutionists, as Drs. Craig and Collins evidently are, and why you feel it necessary to insist that the biblical account is literally true. What is lost if it is instead metaphor?"

    They are plainy wrong. There was a great debate that you might be interested in. You get to hear Christians auguring and you will get the gist of the position that I hold to be true. If you are confused I take the position of Ken Ham's lol, but he is debating Jason Lisle, Ph.D. who believes in God but believes as possibly you do about millions of years. His intelect got in the way of his faith. I don't believe he believes in evolution, no christian does really.

    For evolution to be true, the Bible has to be false. That is a very slippery slop that I cannot go down. No true Christian reads the Bible literally, by the way, because it's filled with so many parables and hyperbole's. I like to tell people that I read the Bible plainly. Words have context and meaning and Genesis is clear about the meaning of the words. These men in the debate could explain their positions more fluently then I could, besides I would just be parroting Ken, as you claimed before. A fair amount of science was discussed and was interesting. I loved the debate and would love for someone like you to watch all of them, then we can have a better understanding of each position. Remember though that the two men debating Ken Ham claim Christianity and millions/billions of years.

    Do you know why I know for a fact that Noah lived close to 950 years of age, because God said it was so. If that is not true, then what else is not true in the Bible? Even more hilarious is the claim that the NT is purposely "made up to fit the OT" which is hilarious. It is truly not logical at all for so many reasons. For one if they really believed in God enough don't you think the knowledge of the 9th Commandment would have stopped them at some point?

    Don't you think they could of done a better job then a woman named Mary Magdalen (woman not taken seriously back then) to find the single greatest and most important miracle on this earth, ever? To give it more credibility they would have used a man, possibly a very important trustworthy man, to find the tomb empty but they didn't write that, they didn't because that would have been untrue. Too many other things to mention, [with my hands thrown up in the air] we can agree to disagree. (Insert Pascal's wager here)

    Take care,
    Dan

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  13. Obviously, we recognize that we will have to agree to disagree, and I don't think either of us harbored a real belief that we'd sway the other, so this isn't about convincing, it's about arguing.

    Not red-in-the-face arguing, or any other sort of angry scenario, but measured, civil, intelligent debate.

    Personally, I seek to understand more of your position, given that I once held it, but I did so without an understanding of the overwhelming evidence in support of an extremely old universe (in human terms), from the various sciences. When I gained that understanding, I realized that a literal interpretation of Genesis was intractable, and that relaxing my view of the first few chapters of the bible meant a reevaluation of the rest of it.

    You are right to be concerned with the slippery slope of reinterpretation to fit with the knowledge of the day, but you are wrong if you don't think that biblical interpretations have done exactly that throughout its use as a divinely inspired text. You are wrong, though, if you believe that "[f]or evolution to be true, the Bible has to be false." This is an unnecessary weakening of the Christian's position, for by this statement you admit that in the face of conclusive evidence which runs contrary to the biblical record -- apparently in any area -- the whole bible, and hence the whole theology, becomes suspect.

    This line of reasoning is unnecessary, and if this restriction is lifted, Christian theology can at least argue that it supports science. The bible can retain its spiritual truths even if its historical claims are understood to be marred by the men who wrote them.

    No one can reasonably argue that 'Moses' -- or whatever author(s) wrote the Pentateuch -- had any inkling of the mechanisms of creation. No one can reasonably argue that the author of the Noah legend had any concept of the number of representative species such an undertaking would require. No one can reasonably argue that any human being can live for more than a couple centuries at most, and even then only under optimum conditions (near perfect nutrition, fitness, etc.) -- any creature which lived this long would surely be classified as something other than homo sapiens.

    Yet you would argue all of these things!

    I just want to know why. Not the following glib response:

    Do you know why I know for a fact that Noah lived close to 950 years of age, because God said it was so.

    Did god tell you directly? Or did you read a translation of a thousandth generation copy of two thousand years of oral tradition (numbers assumed accurate within a margin of +/- 100)? Sure, you can claim that you prayed about it, and that your conceptualization of god's response was "yep, it's all true", but that's not exactly what we are led to believe Moses et al experienced when they wrote the books which appear in the bible, now is it?

    Such an assertion (of personal revelation) is invalid anyway, as it can be equally well used by any number of kooks to justify their delusions (indeed, it has been used by a great many kooks to do just that). The truth claim cannot be verified in any such case, and is therefore inadmissable as evidence.

    I just want to know why such importance is placed on the musings of an ancient, primitive culture, which musings may even have some element of spiritual insight, but which clearly have no grounding in modern concepts of natural mechanisms. By far and away, the best explanation for any of it is as I have said: the unintentionally embellished legendary accounts of an ancient civilization, which may have been based on actual events, but whose truth is so buried in the fanciful additions of their storytellers (at least until they were initially transcribed), that said truth cannot possibly be discerned.

    For precisely this reason, we have the plethora of Christian denominations and off-shoots (if you will not consider Jehovah's Witnesses or Mormons as denominations). All share the text, and all claim to share the deity, but all disagree on certain more or less important doctrinal issues. It seems to me that an admission of the bible's ambiguity -- due to age, translation, ignorance (with regard to science), and culture -- is in order by Christianity in general.

    Can you, at least, admit that the Genesis 1 account may not be literal? Can you admit that 'Moses' knew nothing of the creation events he described, except what may or may not have been revealed to him, in obviously limited detail?

    Sure, I have other questions I can ask as well, but these are pretty basic, and go a long way to getting honest answers for the other questions I might pose. Obviously, you are free to turn the tables on me, and ask questions you might have regarding my "religious" position, and I shall endeavor to answer your questions as succinctly and honestly as possible.

    What say you?

    --
    Stan

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  14. Stan,

    "Not red-in-the-face arguing, or any other sort of angry scenario, but measured, civil, intelligent debate."

    Of course, I enjoy good conversations. If I portray emotions of frustration in my writings, I still enjoy good conversation. Like I said a dinner with you would be quite cerebral and entertaining. Even though you would lose the debate. ;-)

    "Or did you read a translation of a thousandth generation copy of two thousand years of oral tradition (numbers assumed accurate within a margin of +/- 100)?"

    I hear this a great deal. You do have it all wrong though if you think mankind had anything to do with the preservation of the Bible. God alone lead men to do His will. It was God's authority that gave us today's Bible intact. There are slight variations from conservative to liberal but God's Word is still intact. The men at the Council of Nicaea were guided by the Holy Spirit to give us the Bible we read today (good tree bears good fruit). I have read most of the Apocrypha and I agree with the Council, they didn't flow like the Bible does and there were obvious contradictions to the Gospel.

    You are wrong, though, if you believe that "[f]or evolution to be true, the Bible has to be false."

    If the Bible is read plainly, there is no other conclusion that we should come up with. Evolution is false and a dogma of the religion of Secular Humanism not Christianity, period. Science is objective but certain scientists is subjective and flaws experiments with presuppositions and such. If it were so clear cut and without doubt then we wouldn't even be discussing this situation. If it were so cut and dry then ALL scientists of the earth could not/ would not disagree.

    1Corinthians 1:27 "but the foolish things of the world did God choose, that the wise He may put to shame; and the weak things of the world did God choose that He may put to shame the strong;"

    "The bible can retain its spiritual truths even if its historical claims are understood to be marred by the men who wrote them." If this claim is truth then the Holy Spirit doesn't exist and renders the entire Bible mute. This is just not the case, the Living Word is still relevant today as in the past.

    "No one can reasonably argue that any human being can live for more than a couple centuries at most, and even then only under optimum conditions (near perfect nutrition, fitness, etc.)..."

    Again you didn't actually read what I wrote HERE You must understand what is being said before we can move on. We are not saved by Man's intellect. There is a great deal of things that I don't understand but I TRUST God and I trust Him that he did the right thing in order to save us. I believe in Him without question. If God said to rest on the 7th day and keep it Holy in His Ten Commandments, because He built the Universe in 6 days then I believe Him.

    It boils down to experience that's all. If you have experienced God then you wouldn't question Him.

    The difference is experience with God (me) vs non experience (atheists).

    A mother tells a child not to touch that hot Iron and the kid listens and believes his Mom. As soon as the Mom leaves the room the child touches the Hot Iron and gets burned. He just went from a belief the Iron 'was' hot to an experience that the Iron 'is' hot with 100% assurance. No one can come and tell him otherwise because his experience tells him different. He is 100% certain the Iron is hot and he has the burn to prove it.

    Well I have felt the Hot Iron of God's hand on me and cannot be persuaded otherwise because I have an experience that removed ALL doubt, I am 100% certain there is a God.

    On the flip an atheist cannot say they have 100% certainty based on a non experience, it is based on a belief still. They have a belief based on lack of said experience, but they remain uncertain (lack of assurance).

    "For precisely this reason, we have the plethora of Christian denominations and off-shoots (if you will not consider Jehovah's Witnesses or Mormons as denominations)."

    Different denominations are man made I agree and no JW and Mormons are not denominations they are religions in themselves.

    We are to judge false teachings also. Understand that there is such a thing as absolute truth. The Bible tells us that there's only one God in all existence, that Jesus Christ is God in flesh, that we are justified by grace through faith, that Jesus died on the cross, that he rose from the dead physically, etc. These are the essential doctrines of the Christian faith. If there were a religion that contradicted these essentials, then that religion would not be true because Jesus gave us the truth and anyone who contradicts what Jesus said, is not true. This is why Jesus said in Matthew 24:24 that in the last days they would be many false Christ's and false prophets who would arise and deceive many. If it did not matter about different religious systems, then why did Jesus warn us about just that?

    We cannot say which groups that this individual was thinking of, but let's take the Mormons and the Jehovah's Witnesses as examples. Both the Mormons and the Jehovah's Witnesses state that they believe in God, the Bible, Jesus, and his sacrifice. Yet, I state that these two groups are not Christian. Why is that? This is because the Mormons teach that God used to be a man on another planet, that he has a goddess wife, that they both have bodies of flesh and bones, and that forgiveness of sins is not by grace through faith alone, but by grace plus obedience to the laws of God. Mormons are also polytheist, where the Bible teaches monotheist. This violates basic Christian teaching.

    The Jehovah's Witnesses, on the other hand, deny that Jesus Christ is God in flesh and they also deny his physical resurrection. Since of the deity of Christ and his physical resurrection are essential doctrines of the Christian faith, the Jehovah's Witnesses are denying those essentials and are therefore not Christians.

    We see that the more we know what the truth of God's Word is, the more we realize that there are counterfeit groups who seek to appear Christian and teach unchristian things. This is why it is necessary for Christians to judge and expose those false groups.(help from carm.org)

    "Can you, at least, admit that the Genesis 1 account may not be literal? Can you admit that 'Moses' knew nothing of the creation events he described, except what may or may not have been revealed to him, in obviously limited detail?
    "


    Absolutely not! It is literal. Just look at the Fourth Commandment and why we keep a Sabbath you will understand that if it were not literal then there would not be a need to keep the Sabbath Holy back then. In the New Covenant we are In Jesus Chrsit's rest and He is our Sabbath rest so there is no need to keep the Sabbath Holy because every day is Holy with Christ. I can back that claim up Biblically if you wish.

    God knew the various audiences that He would reach so it was worded in the perfect way it was to reach everyone of every language and every education level. It was a masterpiece of God, to communicate to His creation the message of salvation in a concrete simplistic manner that is very relevant to this day some 3000 years later. Unlike any other thing on this planet. Remember it was rejected even in the days it was happening so it's nothing new that you reject it also. Salvation after all is for the chosen by God Himself. Not everyone "get's it" and yes that saddens me when people, like you, flat out reject God.

    "Paul's warning showcases the importance of Satan's strategy to ensnare humanity in the same trap. The Devil's tactics change with time and culture, but the strategy remains the same.

    First, Satan always attempts to make us doubt the Word of God (Genesis 3:1). If we question the accuracy, the meaning, the authenticity, the historicity, or any other shade of "all scripture" (2 Timothy 3:16), then we begin edging onto a slippery slope that will only lead to the next stage.

    Second, Satan always confronts the doubter with a denial of the Word of God (Genesis 3:4). When one begins to deny the authority, the capability, or the will of God to carry out His Word, the slide into the final phase is inevitable.

    Third, Satan ultimately heaps denegration on the Person of God Himself (Genesis 3:5). Once one embraces the thought that the Word of God is not trustworthy and that God either will not or cannot do what He says, it absolutely follows that God is either a liar, a hypocrite, or a capricious and whimsical ogre.
    May God protect us from the "wiles of the devil" (Ephesians 6:11)." (ICR)

    Use plain logic of the message and ask God to manifest Himself to you and He will, but you must trust Him (John 14:21)

    Take care,
    Dan

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  15. Dan -- I watched the entire "Great Debate", and although a few discrepancies exist regarding the numbering (episode 1 was identical to episode 4, episodes 9 and 10 came much earlier than their number indicates, and there is at least one missing episode), overall it was highly entertaining and quite interesting. I'm putting together a full response to it, but in the meantime...

    -----------------

    So your "rational" Christian beliefs are based on the following presuppositions:

    1) The bible is the inspired word of god.

    2) The entire text of the bible, when initially written, was literally true (using Ken Ham's definition of literal as "in the sense of a plain reading"), and completely accurate.

    3) Subsequent transcriptions and translations of the bible have been divinely controlled such that the current bible is also literally true and completely accurate.

    4) The groups of extra-biblical scholars, theologians, and clerics who determined which books and epistles should appear in the bible were divinely inspired, and their decisions on this matter are completely accurate.

    5) The bible is complete -- no further divinely inspired canon exists.


    I assume you would agree with all of the above.

    Next, you would also suggest that in order to draw the appropriate conclusions from cosmological, geological, biological, historical, archaeological, logical, philosophical, and metaphysical evidence, one must first maintain each of the five presuppositions, and look at the evidence through a "biblical lens". Would you agree with this statement?

    Assuming that this, too, is an accurate representation of your system, this would mean that one would inevitably draw the "wrong" conclusions for much (if not all) of this evidence, unless one takes for granted the truth of the five presuppositions. Of course, in order to accept the five presuppositions, one would have to read the bible, but reading the bible, too, requires a general acceptance of its truth...

    I guess, then, that what you effectively require, is that unless a person implicitly accepts the bible as wholly true and accurate given a "plain reading of the text", then one will likely be predisposed to disbelieving it, or considering it as myth and/or legend.

    How exactly is this rational? How exactly does this differ from drinking Kool-Aid in Guyana?

    'Accept this book as true, and then read it based on that acceptance.'

    Of course, this says nothing of the specific interpretation(s) you would make, that I would not, and your claim that your interpretation is more accurate than mine, even though nowhere in your book is the correct interpretive method explicitly stated. Indeed, your camp claims that different books of the bible must be interpreted in different ways!

    Also interesting to note is that only religious books claim to be wholly infallible (in one or another context), so any attempt to compare the a priori acceptance of biblical truth to the a priori acceptance of a student's textbook as true is unfounded. A student is free to question the truth of his textbook, and textbooks are regularly revised. Your bible, on the other hand, is merely retranslated, which translations necessarily include a revising and editing process, but you deny the editing and/or revising -- or at the least claim that they are divinely inspired.

    More still than all this, your presuppositions require that after the final chapter accepted by the Council of Nicaea received its stamp of approval, and indeed, many hundreds of years prior to this when those chapters were actually written, god stopped divinely inspiring would-be authors. Despite all its otherwise nonsense, the LDS church at least had the courage to accept a relatively recent addition to the bible, which should theoretically be possible (again ignoring the Book of Mormon's fiction). Good trees bear good fruit, right? Surely, some extra-biblical texts between 500 CE and today have beared good fruits -- why can they not be included in the canon?


    As to your specific arguments, questions, and musings in your most recent reply, here are my responses:

    If I portray emotions of frustration in my writings, I still enjoy good conversation. Like I said a dinner with you would be quite cerebral and entertaining. Even though you would lose the debate. ;-)

    I agree with all but that last sentence, which is clearly a projection based on false premises... Make it a barbeque (I almost mocked Elijah here, but I can do that some other time... perhaps if we ever do have a barbeque together) and I'm there. I'll bring the beer.

    Evolution is false and a dogma of the religion of Secular Humanism not Christianity, period. Science is objective but certain scientists is subjective and flaws experiments with presuppositions and such. If it were so clear cut and without doubt then we wouldn't even be discussing this situation. If it were so cut and dry then ALL scientists of the earth could not/ would not disagree.

    First, the Theory of Evolution is not dogmatically believed -- it is constantly tested and adjusted as needed to fit with the data uncovered by various methods, experimental, observational, and theoretical. Second, whether or not it has been embraced by the "religion of Secular Humanism not Christianity" is immaterial. Christianity dogmatically opposed heliocentrism, a roughly spherical earth, the abolition of slavery, et cetera. Indeed, Charles Darwin was a Christian when he came up with the theory, and was troubled by its implications with respect to Christian dogma to the point that he almost didn't publish until another scientist made a similar discovery.

    Of course, scientists disagree on various details of the theory, but its general precepts are held by an extremely vast majority of scientists -- from all involved fields, whether atheists, theists, deists, or what have you. Dr. William Lane Craig and Dr. Francis Collins, whom I have mentioned, are but two examples of Christians who support the Theory of Evolution.

    Likewise, I can turn your statement against you as follows:

    If it were so cut and dry then ALL Christians of the earth could not/ would not disagree.

    I guess that means Christianity and the Theory of Evolution are both invalid...

    You must understand what is being said before we can move on. We are not saved by Man's intellect.

    I understand what you are saying completely, and I also understand that this non-answer implicitly accepts the fact that a reasonable person cannot argue that a human being could live for more than two centuries under optimal conditions. You admit by implication that your position is unreasonable, or if that cuts too deeply, your position is based on your presuppositions, not on reason.

    [A]n atheist cannot say they have 100% certainty based on a non experience...

    This statement is only partially true. What the atheist can say, and what most say, is that they have 100% certainty that their experience was not god. Clearly, a null hypothesis cannot be proven true, but it can quite easily be proven false.

    From the Christian-turned-atheist perspective, however, our experience was conclusively not god (a conclusion with which you will undoubtedly agree), despite our acceptance and belief in the very presuppositions your system requires. If our efforts were so wasted, and our experiences so conclusively not god, then we are correct to abandon your system -- with 100% certainty -- and remember, you agreed with our conclusion that our experience was not god.

    I personally held precisely your beliefs, and had many "religious" experiences, but when all was said and told, and after all the prayer, touching, anointing, baptizing, singing, studying, preaching... after all this, I recognized that what I had experienced was merely euphoria, but not god. You may or may not claim that my efforts were tainted somehow, that I didn't truly believe, that I didn't have sufficient faith, or whatever, but I will consider any such statement a direct insult. I was true in my submission, but there was no god. If what you say is at all true, then I should have "experienced the hot iron of god". Since I did not, I conclude -- reasonably and rationally -- that that god does not exist. It is my recognition of the similarities amongst religious systems that has led me to Atheism from that epiphany.

    [D]enominations are man made I agree...

    So by what standard do you determine the truth of any particular denominations claims? Oh, wait, you're going to say by a "plain reading of the bible", but you tacitly admit in such a statement that you presuppose a particular denomination -- the one which requires a "plain reading of the bible". Another alternative, no less valid biblically, is one which requires a recognition that the bible speaks via metaphor, and that it should not be taken literally in many cases. You dogmatically hold that the bible must be read in a particular way, but deny anyone else the right to make the same claim, even when their claims are backed up by overwhelming evidence.

    "Believe it, because it's true. It's true because I said it. If it wasn't true, then I'd be a liar. I'm not a liar." -- not exactly sound logic.

    If any doctrine is suspect, despite using the same text (which would include even the Mormons and Jehovah's Witnesses), then all doctrines which use that text are suspect, as is the text itself. Your arbitrary determination of the proper method for reading the bible is every bit as valid as any other arbitrary method, so again, every doctrine which uses such an ambiguous text -- yours included -- is suspect.

    You will now undoubtedly argue that the authors meant it in the way you read it, but this is merely a superimposition of yet another presupposition -- you must assume that the authors knew what the hell they were talking about, when we all know they did not. Therefore, we must speculate what the authors may have said differently if they were more informed. I presume that you maintain that their hands were driven by god, as though through dictation. An equally valid hypothesis would be that god imparted the thoughts to them, but they wrote them in their own words, with their own understanding. Neither is more valid than the other, but the second allows for the text to be understood in the light of the evidence of their scientific ignorance.

    [Can you admit the Genesis 1 account may not be literal?] Absolutely not! It is literal. Just look at the Fourth Commandment and why we keep a Sabbath you will understand that if it were not literal then there would not be a need to keep the Sabbath Holy back then.

    So the fourth commandment couldn't possibly be metaphorical, recognizing six periods of creation followed by a period of rest, and equating them with the commonly experienced period of a day? It's not possible?

    "Just" looking at the fourth commandment is hardly definitive here. "Just" assuming the text to be literal denies an overwhelming amount of scientific evidence, in virtually every field, to the contrary. "Just" assuming that 'Moses' had a clue how god may have created anything is preposterous.

    Remember, your position requires the backward belief that the plants were created before the sun (nevermind the earth). Your position requires that the moon is a light designed to govern the night. Your position requires that the planets were not created in the six days provided. Your position requires that somewhere beyond the sky lies an enormous volume of liquid water.

    All my position requires is that the first chapter of the bible be considered as metaphorical.

    Note that the age restrictions your position holds requires that we make a great deal of assumptions in every area of science, virtually all of which render science potentially impotent every day. In order to explain the vast distances revealed by astronomy (which necessarily indicate ages beyond a mere six thousand years, by six orders of magnitude), you must posit a fluctuating speed of light. In order to explain radiometric dating, you must posit fluctuating rates of decay. In order to explain biological diversity, you must posit hyper-inflated evolution, but in order to distinguish it from the prevailing Theory of Evolution, you must also posit massive restrictions on this hyper-inflated evolution.

    At what point do you stop and say, this is getting a bit complicated, cumbersome, and unnecessary?

    Even Jesus reminded his listeners that the Law had been misunderstood, and we both agree that the ancient Israelites took the Law literally. Do you deny the implication that Jesus knew the Law to have been misinterpreted as literally true? Are you smarter than your Jesus?


    As to the propaganda of ICR...

    If we question the accuracy, the meaning, the authenticity, the historicity, or any other shade of "all scripture", then we begin edging onto a slippery slope that will only lead to the next stage.

    And if we don't question what we read or hear, then we end up drinking Kool-Aid in South America. Reading is questioning the meaning. If we read it, we necessarily question its meaning. If you seek to convert people who question these things, then you must somehow convince them to accept it, despite their convincing arguments to the contrary.

    Since all your arguments boil down to "I believe it because god said it" (very nearly directly quoted from your reason for believing Noah to live to 950 years of age), you cannot satisfy this requirement. You can only "convert" those people who would have just as easily converted to any other religion to which they had been exposed, since they are evidently willing to arbitrarily believe any religious book without questioning its meaning.

    When one begins to deny the authority, the capability, or the will of God to carry out His Word, the slide into the final phase is inevitable.

    We're not here yet, but as I've said, you're right to fear the first step. When you eventually recognize the fact that a literal interpretation is false, you will likely be confronted with questions pertaining to the truth of various other biblical claims, and be forced to make a similar determination.

    Once one embraces the thought that the Word of God is not trustworthy and that God either will not or cannot do what He says, it absolutely follows that God is either a liar, a hypocrite, or a capricious and whimsical ogre.

    This whole statement is a lie. True, the god of the bible is a liar, hypocrite, and a capricious and whimsical ogre, but this is actually only true if we accept the bible as trustworthy. Rather, is is by admitting that the bible is not completely trustworthy (given a literal interpretation) that a Christian can avoid a god who is any of those things.

    What else should we expect, though, from the jackasses at ICR, who actually think there were dinosaurs on Noah's ark. Tell me you don't believe that truckload of B.S., do you?

    Anyway, I'll post my response to the "Great Debate" in the next day or so. You may want to start a new topic on the subject, to encourage any other readers of this blog who haven't seen it to give it a look, and because this particular topic is getting quite lengthy...

    --
    Stan

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  16. Stan,

    Thanks for watching the debate and am thrilled that you enjoyed it. I noticed the problems with the different episodes also. I just chalked it up as human fallibility.

    You have done such a great job in stating my position that I find it hard to comment. I did notice some discrepancies though and will clarify those points.

    Your point number 3 of translations completely accurate was proven when the Dead Sea scrolls were found. They found that the scrolls matched letter for letter with the entire Bible. Very accurate! There were some of the apocryphal writings also but the authorized Bible in its entirety was there in tact. So the accuracy argument is over.

    I would indeed agree that I put on a Biblical lens to review what mankind has concluded, that is a fair statement.

    "one would inevitably draw the "wrong" conclusions for much (if not all) of this evidence, unless one takes for granted the truth of the five presuppositions."

    Have you seen the movie Expelled? The presuppositions of the secular scientists and teachers is shaping the perspective of said evidence.

    "then one will likely be predisposed to disbelieving it, or considering it as myth and/or legend."

    I would consider this fair. Remember without God there is no belief. If we are lead by man's intellect then we will fall away by our intellect. Noah lived for 950 years, no way, it must be untrue. This is where the faith and trust that God is who He is and said what He said to be true. Jonah traveled in the belly of a whale? This has to be fake. To a non -believer this has to be false because he doesn't TRUST God to be the Creator of the Universe and can do ALL things. Worst of all, he doesn't trust Jesus is God and perishes because he has broken God's Law and must be punished without a Savior to take his place.

    Believing Noah lived for 950 years is beyond our comprehension and God wants it that way. It's just a byproduct of our faith in God. He wants us to deny thyself and put our faith and trust in Him. Its His plan of salvation who am I to question the Creator. Test sure, but not question or disbelieve.

    "Of course, this says nothing of the specific interpretation(s) you would make, that I would not, and your claim that your interpretation is more accurate than mine, even though nowhere in your book is the correct interpretive method explicitly stated."

    Well, now that is a great point. The Bible is not telling us which to believe but it does say to test things, I might add to use the law of logic, so here is what I personally concluded. There is a sliding scale so I take all of them into account and not trust any 'one' thing that man has done. I stay close to literal and conservative as possible (close to God). The translations start from very conservative and literal translations like Young's Literal, Darby then to KJV then on up to the top of the more modern and liberal translations like NLT, NASB, and the most liberal New Jerusalem Bible (NJB). The more liberal the translation the farther away from God's actual words and meanings. You might want to read a more conservative translation to understand God's Word, but that is just my advice.

    "Despite all its otherwise nonsense, the LDS church at least had the courage to accept a relatively recent addition to the bible, which should theoretically be possible (again ignoring the Book of Mormon's fiction)."

    And the test is proof, just look at the fruit. They are a false religion no matter how you look at it. Mormons teach that God used to be a man on another planet, that he has a goddess wife, that they both have bodies of flesh and bones, and that forgiveness of sins is not by grace through faith alone, but by grace plus obedience to the laws of God. Mormons are also polytheist, where the Bible teaches monotheist. This violates basic Christian teaching.

    "First, the Theory of Evolution is not dogmatically believed" This is the most egregious statement I have heard all year. Have you seen Expelled? Have you looked at our school systems? I had no idea that a belief in man came from apes was false until I left public school. There is overwhelming proof that this is just not true. You sir are cracking me up.

    "Second, whether or not it has been embraced by the "religion of Secular Humanism not Christianity" is immaterial."

    Don't be so quick to dismiss this point, my friend. A claim opposed to God better have some overwhelming and substantial evidence for proof. These flimsy theories cannot stand up to scrutiny.

    "Christianity dogmatically opposed heliocentrism, a roughly spherical earth, the abolition of slavery, et cetera."

    Again this is an absolutely false statement. First of all Catholicism rejected Galileo's findings

    "Charles Darwin was a Christian" Another completely false statement. He was a believer in Christ, even the devil believes in Jesus, or a better description is a false convert (stony ground hearer). Remember the parable of the sower? Mark 4:2-9

    If you are confused at all about this parable then its fully explained by our Heavenly Lord Jesus Christ completely in Matthew 13:18-23

    "If it were so cut and dry then ALL Christians of the earth could not/ would not disagree."

    Umm we don't. Just the false ones disagree. There is always someone on the wrong side of truth.

    "You dogmatically hold that the bible must be read in a particular way, but deny anyone else the right to make the same claim, even when their claims are backed up by overwhelming evidence." Yes! If God's Word isn't read plainly, as intended, then all sorts of weird things happen, you only have to look as far as Catholicism for that. Your version of overwhelming evidence is quite subjective, agree?

    Someday I will do a post about how it's not easy to see the false converts. Just look at the 12 apostles. When Jesus said "that one of you shall betray me." They all didn't say oh yea that will be Judas. They said "Lord, is it I?"

    "So the fourth commandment couldn't possibly be metaphorical, recognizing six periods of creation followed by a period of rest, and equating them with the commonly experienced period of a day? It's not possible?"

    I answered that here

    "who actually think there were dinosaurs on Noah's ark. Tell me you don't believe that truckload of B.S., do you?"

    Of course I do but it isn't B.S .at all. The word dinosaur wasn't introduced until the 1800's. The word means dino-, "terrible" + -saur, "lizard" Lizards were on the Ark, otherwise they would not exist today.

    I hope you don't believe different words can't describe the same things. For example the Bible talk at length about dinosaurs but they just didn't use the word dinosaur for example, in Job 40:15-24 it talks about a dinosaur, today we call it a brontosaurus but the Bible called it, at the time, a behemoth.

    Now go get saved,
    Dan

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  17. (I'm still working on a response to "The Great Debate" -- a reasonably short response to a five hour program isn't easy, but don't think I've forgotten.)

    So the accuracy argument is over.

    Well... I'll tell you what. I'll concede the constancy of transcription accuracy of the bible if you will concede the constancy of the speed of light and of radioactive decay.

    Would you like to reconsider that statement?

    The presuppositions of the secular scientists and teachers is shaping the perspective of said evidence.

    Tit for tat, again? The presuppositions made by Creationists throughout recorded history (or preserved recorded history, as it were) have been the biggest stumbling blocks to the progression of scientific advances. You may claim until you are blue in the face that the majority of classical scientists were "Christians", but you must also admit that they weren't "plain reading" literalists such as yourself, which would place them into the same category as Charles Darwin.

    In fact, it has been the casting off of the dogmatic Creationist presuppositions that have furthered science so much in the past few centuries.

    I said:

    [U]nless a person implicitly accepts the bible as wholly true and accurate given a "plain reading of the text", then one will likely be predisposed to disbelieving it, or considering it as myth and/or legend.

    To which you replied:

    I would consider this fair.

    But I thought all of nature was a testament to god? If nature, without an implicit acceptance of the bible as wholly true and accurate, appears to deny the creative process described in the bible, then either nature doesn't declare the glory of god, or the interpretation of the creative process as described is incorrect. It's one or the other -- your own bible created this dichotomy.

    Well, now that is a great point.

    Aren't they all? Thank you, I guess, but if the point was so great, why not argue against it if you can? Since your interpretation is no different than any other interpretation whose conclusions were consistent, then there is no way to determine the correct interpretation -- except for personal revelation. The problem with personal revelation, however obvious, is that there are so many cases of competing revelations. Application of the "good tree bears good fruit" principle doesn't significantly help matters.

    So you must admit that your preferred interpretation is arbitrary, and therefore holding to it dogmatically is irrational.

    And the test is proof, just look at the fruit.

    You seem to grasp my arguments and points, but you seem also to refuse to engage them. I explicitly stated that Mormonism was nonsense. The point was clear -- there have been volumes of extrabiblical texts written since the last chapter of the bible received the stamp of approval from the Council of Nicaea, and surely there is a significant percentage which as borne "good fruit". Why do these "good trees" not appear in the canon? Has god stopped inspiring men to write?

    This is the most egregious statement I have heard all year. Have you seen Expelled? Have you looked at our school systems? I had no idea that a belief in man came from apes was false until I left public school. There is overwhelming proof that this is just not true. You sir are cracking me up.

    If you left the school system thinking man came from apes, then the system failed you, or you failed to learn. Humans evolved from ancient primates, yes, and apes also evolved from primates, and our common ancestor may well have closely resembled what we would call an ape -- but so what?

    You "had no idea that a belief in man came from apes was false" (sic). I don't know what that means. You had no idea that the Theory of Evolution was false? You had no idea that competing hypotheses existed?

    The Theory of Evolution is the most well-documented scientific theory, and most well-supported by the data, of any in existence. If you mean to suggest that there is "overwhelming proof that this is just not true", then I'll wait for you to put up this "overwhelming proof".

    I'm sure it will be more compelling than the overwhelming astronomical, geological, and biological evidence that the universe is more than six thousand years old... I'm sure you will let me deny your evidence for its unfounded assumptions...

    If I'm cracking you up, then you are starting to exhibit the characteristics of a kook. I thought we were engaging in meaningful and well-reasoned dialogue.

    Don't be so quick to dismiss this point, my friend. A claim opposed to God better have some overwhelming and substantial evidence for proof. These flimsy theories cannot stand up to scrutiny.

    Really? That's your "argument"? A veiled threat regarding opposition to god (Which god? How do you rationally come to this conclusion?), and an admonition requiring evidence?

    These "flimsy theories" have stood up to scientific scrutiny for upwards of two hundred years (or more, for certain aspects), but you dogmatically all of the supporting evidence (much of which suffices to thwart your biblical claims).

    Your statement above is further proof that you are losing your wit in this discussion.

    Catholicism rejected Galileo's findings

    But I am a Scotsman, I really am!

    [Charles Darwin] was a believer in Christ, even the devil believes in Jesus...

    I'm not a true Scotsman? I never was a true Scotsman?

    Why the decline to reasonless rant? If Darwin was reluctant to publish because of the impact his theory would have on prevailing Christian doctrine, doesn't that make him Christian "enough" for this particular argument, regardless of your asinine "No true Scotsman" fallacy?

    Just the false [Christians] disagree. There is always someone on the wrong side of truth.

    It must be lonely being the only true Scotsman. If the Dan Marvin who started this discussion would return, or at least take his medication, I'd appreciate it.

    Someday I will do a post about how it's not easy to see the false converts.

    Spare me. From your constant assertion of the "No true Scotsman" fallacy, I'd say it's pretty easy to identify false converts: as soon as someone makes a statement which runs counter to your beliefs, that person becomes a false convert. There -- I saved you the effort. You can copy/paste my statement for your post if you like.

    The word dinosaur wasn't introduced until the 1800's. The word means dino-, "terrible" + -saur, "lizard"

    Now you're going to recite fourth grade natural science to me? Damn. You caught me just as I was about to argue that there weren't any dogs on the ark because the English word "dog" didn't yet exist.

    No one is disputing the fact that the bible refers to creatures which could be identified as dinosaurs, but if you want to have that cake, I'll make you eat it.

    In Job, god describes the behemoth, yes. Such strength in his loins, a tail which sways as a cedar. Not the elephant my idiot bible editors suggest, but yes, likely a Sauropod. No where, however, is it suggested that this animal walked with any human, so we are free to speculate how Job may have gained knowledge concerning this creature.

    Also in Job, god describes the leviathan -- not a crocodile, like my idiot bible editors suggest. Leviathan, according to the "plain reading of the text", breathes fire. Do you believe this creature existed, too? How would you attempt to explain the mechanism by which he breathed fire?

    Relatively modern humans weren't the first to discover the bones of dinosaurs, and despite their lack of science, early humans -- even up to the bronze age -- were pretty easily able to identify them as fierce creatures. Where we differ is that you elevate legends to the status of absolute truth, whereas I recognize that legends are legendary.

    If god had asked Job how he silences the Boogie Man, would that mean that a real Boogie Man existed?

    You know what -- don't answer that. You are more than likey to say, "yes", at this point, and I've mocked your unreasoned tone more than enough as it is.

    I hope you don't believe different words can't describe the same things.

    No, Dan, I recognize full well that uninformed primitive humans with no concept of the cosmic timeline might have described an era of a hundred million years as a "day", for lack of a better term, just like Job described a Sauropod as a behemoth, or a fire-breathing sea-dragon as a leviathan.

    I recognize that my description of Ezekiel's vision, had I seen it a moment ago, would better describe the event to people with my knowledge, but prove useless (as a literal description) to people whose knowledge vastly surpassed my own, just as it would to people whose knowledge was exceedingly inferior to my own.

    The only one of us insisting that "different words can't describe the same things" is you.

    I hope you come to your senses and return to semi-reasoned posts. This one has waxed preachy, and has shown a marked decrease in logical progression.

    --
    Stan

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  18. U]nless a person implicitly accepts the bible as wholly true and accurate given a "plain reading of the text", then one will likely be predisposed to disbelieving it, or considering it as myth and/or legend. (emphasis added)

    I would consider this fair because to an unbelieving person (Man's intellect) this is just absurd stories. To someone moved by the Spirit this is simple truth.

    "But I thought all of nature was a testament to god?"

    This is true also. Evidence is all around us (Romans 1:20-25). But to an unrepentant man this all just doesn't make sense. It is like Chinese to some of you. Give someone in the U.S. a book written in Chinese and they don't understand any of it. If you give that same book to a little 4 year old Chinese boy and he can read it no problem. That is why we must be born again to truly understand his word for what it truly means. Once you understand that other language, it is easier to recognize when we hear it. We must be born again into the language of the Lord to understand his book. To the unsaved it is just Chinese. Seek and you will find. Matthew 7:7: John 14:21.

    Well, now that is a great point.

    Aren't they all? Nope. lol

    Thank you, I guess, but if the point was so great, why not argue against it if you can? I did, remember: "I might add to use the law of logic, so here is what I personally concluded. There is a sliding scale so I take all of them into account and not trust any 'one' thing that man has done. I stay close to literal and conservative as possible (close to God)..."

    "You had no idea that competing hypotheses existed?" Nope not in the public school system. I NEVER once heard of any other. It was pushed as fact as it is today please don't insult us both and act naive and say that isn't the case. I forgive you.

    "The Theory of Evolution is the most well-documented scientific theory, and most well-supported by the data, of any in existence." If the data is you claim to exist is zero to a handful of questionable specimens then we agree.

    If I'm cracking you up, then you are starting to exhibit the characteristics of a kook I don't mean to offend you but when does logic and reason take over in an unbelieving person? You are being dogmatically duped to think that everything on this planet came from pond scum or fish. That millions, if not billions, of fish tried to go to the land to find out they didn't have lungs and died until one day one of them magically grew lungs. Then had to wait for a mate to mutate also until they could go on land.

    Evolution cannot answer this simple riddle: Which came first the chicken or the egg.?

    The Bible answered it simply in Genesis 1:21...Answer: Chicken

    Your Scotsman fallacy isn't relevant here. Use the analogy with Chinese. There are certain attributes that Chinese people have. You or I cannot claim to be Chinese now can we? If you want to see what the concrete "attributes of a Christian are" I listed them here.

    If the Dan Marvin who started this discussion would return You're cracking me up again, dude.

    Now you're going to recite fourth grade natural science to me? I just knew you would hate that one. Sorry for that I couldn't think of much else at the time.

    Leviathan, according to the "plain reading of the text", breathes fire. Do you believe this creature existed, too? I don't know. It depends if the Scripture is using it as a hyperbole or parable or literal, but proper hermeneutics will determine that. I will read it later.

    "god describes the behemoth, yes. Such strength in his loins, a tail which sways as a cedar. Not the elephant my idiot bible editors suggest, but yes, likely a Sauropod. No where, however, is it suggested that this animal walked with any human,"

    God describes the behemoth, yes? I am happy then you agree with that. Great then just look at verse 15 to see he made them to walk with us. 15 "Behold now behemoth, which I made with thee; he eateth grass as an ox." (emphasis added)

    Besides you are NOT using logic again my friend. Take your pills and bring Stan back. Look at the entire description of how they ate and walked and lived and you pass it off as "Relatively modern humans weren't the first to discover the bones of dinosaurs" That is just not logical. Just read that passage plainly and he is describing the living patterns of a Sauropod. Be smart, not difficult.

    My point is that man doesn't/hasn't always known the truth, as the Bible. Look Doctors/scientists used to bleed people (bloodletting) just 140 years ago, some even think that is how George Washington died. Over 3000 years ago in Leviticus 17:14 it has always said that blood is life.

    Another? Why was circumcision to be carried out on the eighth day? (Genesis 17:12) Medical science has discovered that the eighth day is the only day in the entire life of the newborn that the blood clotting element prothrombin is at the highest levels. On and on, a handful more things that can be pointed out but you get the point.

    Had enough?
    Dan

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  19. Hi Dan!

    I was excited to see you advertising this new blog of yours. I'm sure I will enjoy reading here. I must have missed the thread where John banned you, I remember Jason being banned though.

    I'm a little confused by the title though. Debunking Atheism? Atheism is not an organized set of beliefs to be debunked like Christianity is. I understand the purpose though and I also understand it's a jab at John's blog.

    Good luck!

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  20. Thanks Mike,

    Understandingly, John got fed up with me.

    On June 20th after almost 100 comments back and forth John said:

    John W. Loftus has left a new comment on the post "Former Assemblies of God Pastor Deconverts":

    "Dan Marvin, you are banned. As our comment policy requires, this is not the place for high school level comments. First graduate from High School, take a few college classes and then come back to us."

    But when I went to link to the post it was gone! The entire thing? I guess he decided to just junk the whole thing. I have kept every comment so I might reenact the conversation someday. Although, that would make a long blog post and hard to understand.

    The strange thing is that John might be getting convicted and feels the shame of it all. One can only hope. I still love him and wish him well, and you as well.

    "I'm a little confused by the title though. Debunking Atheism? Let me clarify something. I am debunking atheists, as in a person, not as a religion or belief structure. I am debunking (debating) each individual's personal viewpoints on this subject. At least that was the original thought process, but I did notice in the description that I said atheism. I have changed it, thanks for keeping me on my toes.

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  21. Thanks for the clarification, Dan. Obviously we have very different world views, but I did enjoy our discussions on Debunking Christianity and look forward to seeing what you have to say here.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Have you been banned from ex-christian.net yet? They're usually pretty good about not banning christians, or any body else for that matter.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Magick Monkey,

    Have you been banned from ex-christian.net yet?

    Yes, years ago and one of the reasons I started this blog. I forgot his name but the webmaster (he called himself that) when it was merely a blog, or blog owner, kept deleting my comments because I said there is no such a thing as an ex-Christian which infuriated him and spawned many discussions about it since. He was basically discredited. My buddy has taken up the torch on that one.

    >>They're usually pretty good about not banning christians, or any body else for that matter.

    Sure, maybe passive, or liberal Christians, but certainly not anyone that will challenge their beliefs and religion in hopes to save them from their impending doom of hell.

    ReplyDelete

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