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Which is more reliable science or the Bible?

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by Plain Old Bill, Sep 28, 2005.

  1. UTEOTW

    UTEOTW New Member

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    " My mechanisms have every bit as much proof as those listed... as does the notion that the tooth fairy delivers dimes in exchange for teeth."

    Well, that may be true for what you have fed us, butthe mechanisms by which evolution operates are observable in the present.

    " The unfortunate thing about common descent is that you are limited to testing to see if it is plausible... which it is by what we observe in the nature of adaptation."

    No, it is so much more than that.

    Common descent consistently is succesfull in explaining the observations that we make about life on earth. Not only do our observations regarding the mechanisms of change show that it is possible, our observations from many different points of view also indicate that it has happened and is the best explanation for the current diversity of life on earth. No other idea can even come close.
     
  2. UTEOTW

    UTEOTW New Member

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    1) I haven't said that no apes or even all apes don't have a common ancestor.

    Because the Bible says that man was a special direct creation I believe it but I have not claimed to know what the original kinds were nor which species that exist today are directly related to one another.

    2) I haven't proposed that the mutations occurred at the same time.

    3) Your supposition that all of these species will accummulate random mutations at the same rate is not based in fact nor evidence. The truth is that mutation rates may be radically different for different species over time. And before you object... my speculation is no less founded than your presupposition of a uniformatarian model of convenience. </font>[/QUOTE]You still have not told us what you would expect to see and why with regards to the differences between the various species of primate with regard to the sequence of the broken vitamin C gene. That did not stop you from saying that it was "untrue" in your previous post when I claimed that you had not done so. You had not and you still have not.

    1) We are not just talking apes here. The mutation is shared by all primates. It is a single nucleotide deletion at a specific place in the genome. What could possibly account for such a specific and widely shared change? Include humans in your answer.

    But since you are not discounting tht all apes (I assume you mean except for us) share a common ancestor that the shared mutation might be a good a piece of evidence in favor of their common ancestry.

    2) Ok. Different times. What has that got to do with it?

    3) It does not matter if the rates of accumulation of mutations varies wildly from species to species.

    It does not matter how long they have been accumulating mutations.

    We are not simply counting how many mutations have happened since the gene was deactivated.

    We are looking at which specific mutations have occurred since the deactivation.

    The study that was provided to you compared both apes and primates including humans. Chimps shared most of the same mutations as humans. The further down the line you go, the longer ago we shared a common ancestor with the species tested, the fewer mutations we shared with them.

    It is the pattern that counts. And you have no means to account for the pattern.
     
  3. Marcia

    Marcia Active Member

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    Well, it seems to me to be narrative like other narrative books such as Exodus, 1 and 2 Sam., 1 and 2 Kings, 1 and 2 Chron. It seems different from them because there were no people around (at first) and not too many for awhile. If some of this is not literal, then what tools do we use to figure out what is literal and what is not, or do we just write the whole thing off as a symbolic rendering or allegory?

    I have no problem seeing the trees as literal, the serpent as literal, and Adam and Eve as literal first man and woman.

    I don't see how 7 days is a parallel to the 7 trumpets and bowls of Rev. Since I see Rev. as future for man, then the meaning is somewhat veiled, as most future prophecy is in the Bible.

    Gen. is not future but past, and it is not difficult to read. Ask anyone and they will tell you how hard it is to understand Rev. In fact, I am just starting a study on Rev. now and am reading Revelation, Four Views ed. by Steve Gregg (this book is not part of the study, it's something extra I'm reading for the info).

    I keep going back to the fact that the Gen. account was given to people in Moses' time and they would have taken it literally. God knew that. I can't get past that.
     
  4. Artimaeus

    Artimaeus Active Member

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    Marcia, you can't post here anymore. You are reasonable and make sense. That's not allowed here is it??? [​IMG]
     
  5. Marcia

    Marcia Active Member

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    Marcia, you can't post here anymore. You are reasonable and make sense. That's not allowed here is it??? [​IMG] </font>[/QUOTE][​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  6. AntennaFarmer

    AntennaFarmer Member

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    John Kraus, who wrote the textbook "Radio Astronomy" was an electrical engineer. The two professional radio astronomers I personally know are both electrical engineers.

    Maybe you assume electrical engineers only study toasters. Actually electrical engineering includes the study of optics and electromagnetics. Both of these are relevant to the subject matter.

    There may be some issues with the author and his work. But his degree field is not a valid issue.

    A.F.
     
  7. AntennaFarmer

    AntennaFarmer Member

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    Those are good observations Marcia.

    A.F.
     
  8. Mercury

    Mercury New Member

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    Of those, I guess the plagues in Exodus would be the closest. Interestingly, that's another account that finds echoes in Revelation. I think the similarities between the seals/trumpets/bowls of Revelation and the days of Genesis 1 go even deeper than that. As for Samuel, Kings and Chronicles, I don't see any significant similarities in form between those books and Genesis 1.

    What tools do you use to determine which parts of Revelation are literal and what is not, or do you just write the whole thing off as a symbolic rendering or allegory? Also, if something is symbolic or allegorical, do you automatically write it off? If so, why -- do you think that that kind of Scripture is unable to teach us?

    I thought that you believed the serpent actually had a connection to Satan. Do you instead think that it was literal and just spoke because it was more subtle than the other beasts, as the account says?

    Do you not see any of the similarities I mentioned? They all have seven items, and the last item is set off from the rest. They all use a repeated refrain to segment the account into seven parts. They all describe God's actions in his dwelling place directly affecting Earth. I can certainly accept that you think there are better parallels, but I'm surprised you don't even see the parallels here. They seem pretty obvious. After all, I can see some parallels with Exodus even though I don't think that's the closest parallel.

    Neither Genesis 1 nor Revelation are difficult to read, though both can be difficult to understand. Both document events with no human eyewitnesses (John saw a vision, not the actual events), which I think is a more important commonality than the difference of when the events took/take place.

    Actually, if you ask some people, they think they have Revelation all figured out, and it's meaning is plain as day to those who are willing to take it literally and not mess around with making it complicated. The same applies to Genesis. However, most of those who have studied either book in more detail would agree that there are depths that are hard to plumb, and the first interpretation that strikes a 21st-century reader isn't necessarily the correct interpretation, or even the meaning that would have first struck the original audience.

    Well, it's hard to argue when you claim that both God and the original audience see things your way. I do think that's a bit presumptuous, though.

    [ October 12, 2005, 03:06 AM: Message edited by: Mercury ]
     
  9. UTEOTW

    UTEOTW New Member

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    John Kraus, who wrote the textbook "Radio Astronomy" was an electrical engineer. The two professional radio astronomers I personally know are both electrical engineers.

    Maybe you assume electrical engineers only study toasters. Actually electrical engineering includes the study of optics and electromagnetics. Both of these are relevant to the subject matter.

    There may be some issues with the author and his work. But his degree field is not a valid issue.

    A.F. </font>[/QUOTE]Why are we going all the way back to that? Surely there has been more interesting material since then than the qualifications of Mr. Deen.

    But you have to read the whole thing. Where is this guys recognized expertice to be used as an authority? I really don't care if some EEs work in astronomy. It is this guy that was entered into the debate. His website offered no new work that he had contributed. It almost exclusively references Arp so there was no new information added to the discussion than what was already in play by previously bringing up Arp. And a quick search did not reveal any publications by Mr. Deen in the field.
     
  10. Petrel

    Petrel New Member

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    Indeed there has.

    Holmlid, L. "Redshifts in Space Caused by Stimulated Raman Scattering in Cold Intergalactic Tydberg Matter with Experimental Verification." Journal of Experimental and Theoretical Physics, 2005, 100, 637-644.

    Basically quantized redshifts are observed for galaxies in the local supercluster. These are explained by the existence of a type of dark matter known as Rydberg matter, which has a life-time consistent with survival from the beginning of the universe. As the light passes through space it interacts with this intergalactic Rydberg matter to gain or lose energy in a quantized manner. This researcher generated Rydberg matter in the lab and studied its effects on light, and found them to be consistent with the observed redshift.

     
  11. Marcia

    Marcia Active Member

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    Of those, I guess the plagues in Exodus would be the closest. Interestingly, that's another account that finds echoes in Revelation. I think the similarities between the seals/trumpets/bowls of Revelation and the days of Genesis 1 go even deeper than that. As for Samuel, Kings and Chronicles, I don't see any significant similarities in form between those books and Genesis 1.
    </font>[/QUOTE]I see no conflict with Rev. having "echoes" of Gen. or Ex. and Gen and Ex still being literal. Naturally, I take the account of the plagues as historical and literal. Do you? I included the other books because they are historical and that is how I see Gen. The writing style may differ, but so what?

    I am dispensing with quote things here as I got confused. ;)

    Posted by Marcia: __What tools do you use to determine which parts of Revelation are literal and what is not, or do you just write the whole thing off as a symbolic rendering or allegory?__

    Mercury said: Also, if something is symbolic or allegorical, do you automatically write it off? If so, why -- do you think that that kind of Scripture is unable to teach us?

    RESPONSE: No, I don't write it off. I am not sure why you asked that. I don't think I implied that anywhere. I think all of scripture teaches us.


    Mercury said: I thought that you believed the serpent actually had a connection to Satan. Do you instead think that it was literal and just spoke because it was more subtle than the other beasts, as the account says?


    RESPONSE: Yes, I do believe there is a connection. I am not sure if Satan spoke through the serpent or took on its form. This is disputed. In fact, I wrote an OT research paper on serpents in the Bible (mainly the OT) and delved into this issue a bit there. The article (modified for my site from the seminary paper) is at http://cana.userworld.com/cana_serpents1.html


    Posted by Marcia: __I don't see how 7 days is a parallel to the 7 trumpets and bowls of Rev.__


    Mercury said: Do you not see any of the similarities I mentioned? They all have seven items, and the last item is set off from the rest. They all use a repeated refrain to segment the account into seven parts. They all describe God's actions in his dwelling place directly affecting Earth. I can certainly accept that you think there are better parallels, but I'm surprised you don't even see the parallels here.


    RESPONSE: I don't think I said there are no parallels between Gen and Rev. (for example, the tree of life and rivers are pretty blatant). I said I did not see it with the 7 bowls and trumpets and I was thinking of the meaning mainly. That is what I was referring to. Seven of something is often used in the Bible. I see Rev. as showing us the restored paradise or Garden of Gen. As I said, I have not fully studied Rev. so have not thought all this through.


    Mercury said: Actually, if you ask some people, they think they have Revelation all figured out, and it's meaning is plain as day to those who are willing to take it literally and not mess around with making it complicated. The same applies to Genesis. However, most of those who have studied either book in more detail would agree that there are depths that are hard to plumb, and the first interpretation that strikes a 21st-century reader isn't necessarily the correct interpretation, or even the meaning that would have first struck the original audience.


    RESPONSE: I know that there are those who think they have Rev. all figured it out, but it's only because they have decided what all those symbols mean. When I read Gen. I don't have to figure out any symbols, except maybe the Tree of Life, which I admit is somewhat of an enigma and there are different views of what it represents, why it was there, did Adam and Eve eat from it, etc. Aside from that, it is pretty straightforward to me.


    Posted by Marcia: __I keep going back to the fact that the Gen. account was given to people in Moses' time and they would have taken it literally. God knew that. I can't get past that.__


    Mercury said: Well, it's hard to argue when you claim that both God and the original audience see things your way. I do think that's a bit presumptuous, though.


    RESPONSE: Well, I think it's a good argument. Maybe the best one, presumptuous or not. To me, it's just common sense, not presumption. ;)
     
  12. AntennaFarmer

    AntennaFarmer Member

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    Brother UTE, you wrote:
    "This guy is an electrical engineer, not an astronomer."

    I read what you said. You were clearly brushing him off (in part) because of his (Deen's) engineering degree. I happen to know that is not a valid point. But, had you actually read MY post I admitted that there may be other reasons for questioning the source. The material, however, can be judged on its own merits.

    Considering your background and the fact that you are here presenting a novel thesis I doubt that you wish to participate in the game of comparative credentials. So please, let's just avoid that altogether and stick to the facts.

    As to "going all the way back" I should think you would be pleased to know that someone is actually trying to read (and re-read) your numerous comments.

    A.F.
     
  13. Mercury

    Mercury New Member

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    Yes. Due to the way the early plagues follow a logical cause-and-effect order (water to blood -&gt; frogs -&gt; gnats -&gt; flies -&gt; death of livestock, etc.), I think God used natural means for some of them.

    It made it an odd answer to a question about which accounts had similar writing styles.

    Again, my question was specifically about form and not content or meaning, and I was focusing on the seven-day account of Genesis 1:1-2:3.

    Well, you've now granted one more symbol than many literalists will tolerate. Once you've acknowledged that the tree of life may be symbolic, why not the tree of the knowledge of good and evil? To strict literalists, both trees are quite straightforward as literal trees, because they haven't raised the questions about the tree of life that have convinced you it may be symbolic. And that just goes to show that seeing something as straightforward is often tied to not looking at it carefully.

    Well, I think it's a good argument. Maybe the best one, presumptuous or not. To me, it's just common sense, not presumption. ;) </font>[/QUOTE]It's common sense that God sees things your way? Maybe you just meant that sarcastically. I hope we're all trying to see things God's way rather than asserting God sees things our way.

    [ October 13, 2005, 12:07 AM: Message edited by: Mercury ]
     
  14. Marcia

    Marcia Active Member

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    Mercury, sorry if I misunderstood your questions. I think I would also have to research the style, including what commentators on the Hebrew have to say, to fully address the question of what style in other books is Gen. similar to. I think I was hasty in trying to answer.

    On the parallels in style of Rev. and Gen., I will have to get back to you after I finish my study of Rev.

    I am not saying necessarily that the Tree of Life is a symbol and not literal. I think it can be literal and symbolic. I do find it enigmatic, maybe because not much is said about it but it clearly is significant. Since Adam and Eve ate from the Tree of the knowledge of good and evil, I take that to be a literal tree because I think the eating was literal.

    Again, I don't think my last statement was presumptuous. It's just good hermeneutics to consider who the book was addressed to originally (Moses and those guys) and how they would have understood it. This is something I've learned, not my own idea. I've seen it used elsewhere as well -- who was Paul writing to? Who was Luke writing to? Who was Matthew writing to? I just applied that to Genesis. That is not presumption.
     
  15. Mercury

    Mercury New Member

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    Hi Marcia,

    No problem about the questions, and I'm sorry if I was unclear. I'm glad we're now on the same page.

    Wouldn't that be an equally strong reason to take the other tree as just being a literal tree? Genesis 3:22 says "...lest he reach out his hand and take also of the tree of life and eat...". That's also referring to eating. Or, do you think there's a significant difference for this issue between Adam and Eve being described as eating and God speaking about them being able to eat?

    On that we agree. We disagree over how they would have understood it, and how sure we can be about that. I don't think they'd read it the same way post-Enlightenment North Americans do, although I don't claim to know definitively how they would have read it (though I do have some ideas from what I've read).

    As a simple example, would you ever have read Deuteronomy 25:4 the way Paul reads it in 1 Corinthians 9:7-10? I don't think we can just assume that what is plain to us was plain to the original audience.

    Another point is that sometimes we know things the original audience didn't know. For instance, it appears that the ancient Hebrews and Egyptians did believe that the brain was not of much use and a person's thinking and feeling was done by other organs in the chest cavity (in part, we know this by mummification techniques: the brain was discarded while other organs were carefully preserved). So, the original audience may have viewed biblical statements about thinking with one's heart or kidneys more literally than we do today. It's anachronistic to refer to these statements as metaphors. I don't think this means we have to follow them in that thinking, but knowing this can help us understand Scripture.
     
  16. shannonL

    shannonL New Member

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    The B I B L E yes thats the book for me!

    I stand alone on the Word of God,

    the B I B L E!

    If you could know everything there is to know scientifically speaking, concerning the universe and never read the Bible you would die and go to hell simply because natural revelation doesn't save one soul.
    Absolute truth begins with God. All the absolute truth we have concerning God comes from the Bible. The Bible is reliable enough to be trusted to lead a man to faith in Jesus Christ which will one day place those who do that in the presence of Almighty God who knows all.
    I can rely on the Bible to take me to heaven for all eternity. I can't say the same about science. So for me the Bible trumps science in the reliability category everytime. The Bible is God speaking to man. Science is man trying to find the answers to his existance apart from God. Unless those who study science begin with the premise that all knowledge on all subjects begins with God.
     
  17. Paul of Eugene

    Paul of Eugene New Member

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    Uh - AntennaFarmer - Ute is not presenting a novel thesis. He is merely representing an intelligent layman's idea of the findings of science. He is not claiming to originate or propose as "new" what scientists have known about for a long time now.
     
  18. Mercury

    Mercury New Member

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    Yes, maybe that impression about a "novel thesis" is because we don't do as much backslapping as others, but I doubt there's many (if any) TEs here who substantially disagree with the science Ute presents.

    I know I've learned a lot from him, and many times he goes into greater detail than what I'd found out from more cursory study. For instance, I knew about the atavistic and embryonic legs in whales before, but the disabled genes for smell were new to me.
     
  19. Marcia

    Marcia Active Member

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    Hi, Mercury! I hate to make excuses but I have been sick for about 2 weeks and have bouts of fatigue that cause me to be hasty and not read things clearly or think clearly. I've also been busy with my work and focused on an upcoming trip. So I may not have read things correctly.

    Wouldn't that be an equally strong reason to take the other tree as just being a literal tree? Genesis 3:22 says "...lest he reach out his hand and take also of the tree of life and eat...". That's also referring to eating. Or, do you think there's a significant difference for this issue between Adam and Eve being described as eating and God speaking about them being able to eat?
    </font>[/QUOTE]See, here's an example of my fuzzy thinking or overlooking things. I agree completely. Since God
    did say that, it indicates a literal tree.

    On that we agree. We disagree over how they would have understood it, and how sure we can be about that. &lt;snipped&gt;

    As a simple example, would you ever have read Deuteronomy 25:4 the way Paul reads it in 1 Corinthians 9:7-10? I don't think we can just assume that what is plain to us was plain to the original audience.
    </font>[/QUOTE]I don't see the analogy between this and how an account of creation to those in Moses' day would be taken. Paul, under the inspiration of the HS, used a verse from the OT as part of a larger lesson to illustrate something to those in the NT days. I don't see this meaning that an account of creation would be literal to Moses but not to us.


    I understand your point about the kidneys. They did not understand the function of the brain as we do today. But this does not change any real meaning in the OT. We understand what they mean when they used these phrases. So even though we know more about science than they did in the OT, it does not change the fact that God gave a very straightforward account of creation that would probably have been taken literally, and I don't see how it can become non-literal for us.

    Man's understanding of the world changes but a creation account is so essential to how we see God that I don't see it being given in such a literal way to Moses in his day and then become non-literal for modern man. I don't think I'm explaining it well but that's the best I can do for now.

    BTW, will be leaving town Sat. and be gone for 6 days at a missions conf. in PA, so I'm not sure when I will be posting here next time (unless I can squeeze in some time tomorrow). [​IMG]
     
  20. AntennaFarmer

    AntennaFarmer Member

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    Paul and Merc.,

    I understand UTE's thesis to be - GOD created the various creatures by way of evolution. And also that both the Scriptures and the witness of nature are true. That is neither traditional creationism nor classical evolution theory.

    Although UTE's ideas aren't completely new they are not main stream. Classical evolution has no need for GOD. UTE says there is a GOD. Traditional creationism requires no evolution. UTE says there was (and is) evolution. His solution to the obvious dilemma is to say that both the Bible and nature are in harmony. But also to say that the conflict is due to our imperfect understanding. Don't you think that is a fair summary?

    I don't think it is fair to UTE to say that he is not advocating his own particular ideas though. That is why I called it his "thesis."

    I would not call UTE "an intelligent layman." His learning and understanding (of his particular subjects) is obviously far beyond that level. I would guess he has spent more time with his studies than a Master's degree would require (at least). Had he not said so I would have believed him to be a professional.

    Having said that I must again point out that I disagree with UTE's (and certain others) conclusion. I believe that the root problem is not to be found in data but in the underlying assumptions and philosophy. I have tried to hint at that in my posts. Brother UTE, however, won't be swayed from his appointed path.

    Maybe we can talk more about assumptions and philosophy in science at a later time.

    A.F.
     
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