15 September 2010

My last post on BioLogos

by Frank Turk

I was going to go on this back-half of the year taking a look at the BioLogos positions on the Bible and especially origins, but they're going to take all the fun out of it.



On 2 Sept 2010, they tipped their hand the rest of the way -- and let me say it plainly: we told you so. Phil and I told you that they could not start down the path they were on hermeneutically and not end up here:
In the final chapter of Evolution Creation: A Christian Approach to Evolution (2008), Denis O. Lamoureux opens, “My central conclusion in this book is clear: Adam never existed, and this fact has no impact whatsoever on the foundational beliefs of Christianity.” This is the first entry in a three-part series, in which Lamoureux answers the question: Was Adam a Real Person?
So all the folks defending BioLogos have to face up to it: it was never about whether or not there were days or ages in Genesis 1; it was never about reconciling Gen 1 and Gen 2 to "science". It was always explicitly about what it means to say, "In the beginning, God created the Heavens and the Earth," and then "the LORD God formed the man of dust from the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living creature" without it meaning that God actually, really, historically did something.

Instead, Biologos says explicitly, "Genesis 1 does not reveal how God actually created life." and then again it says explicitly, "And just like His use of ancient astronomy, when He separates the waters above from the waters below with the firmament in Genesis 1, His forming of Adam from the dust of ground never happened either."

That's really all that needs to be said: they reject the historical Adam. After that, it's only a matter of a few faculty meetings before they have called Jesus a manifestation of first century Jewish imagination and a deconstructing of Greek ethos to suit the likes of Philo and Paul.

Don't think so? You didn't think they'd reject Adam as a historical person, either. There's no sense fighting about it when any milestone that can be set up and then passed by these guys is not seen by their advocates as the bridge too far.







272 comments:

«Oldest   ‹Older   201 – 272 of 272
DJP said...

Ken: I am wondering why it is being so hard for you to focus, seriously.

Still, you have made absolute categorical statements for which you offer no proof, whatever.

By contrast, Christians have proof. We have an infallible book offering sure testimony that one snake spoke one one occasion, along with some suggestion that there may have been a change to that snake immediately after.

So you have absolute certainty, and no evidence -- not even on principle.

We have absolute certainty on the basis of sure evidence.

Which brings us right back to my second comment to you, 8:05 AM, September 15, 2010.

Jugulum said...

I'd just like to take this moment to say that people who post meaningless comments along the lines of "first post" are shameless.

Just shameless.

Halcyon said...

And so, Ken Pulliam emerged from the battle grizzled, bloodied, and smelling of dog.

Warren Lotter:

You, sir, are my kind of commenter.

Frank Turk said...

201

Frank Turk said...

shoot. that was 202. this is 203.

Halcyon said...

Sorry, Frank. 8^D

SandMan said...

I was shooting for 205. FTW!

SandMan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jugulum said...

Bwahaha.

Jugulum said...

P.S. While we're in this temporary lull from real posts: Robert, I wrote a reply to you over at Dan's post, but the combox closed. Email me if you'd like to see it.

Steve Drake said...

Tim (Jugulum),
Been to your website, like what I see, but you gotta break it down for us who don't know what the heck you're talking about. 'First post'? What is that brother? I know I'm somewhat dense, but I can't follow you here.

joel said...

It is strange that Ken is so adamant about the impossibility of a snake ever being able to talk when he himself, being a grown up chimp, talks and writes with such ease. Just because a chimp has vocal cords doesn't make it any more believable, after all vocal cords are just a few million constructive mutations away from no vocal cords.

RealityCheck said...

Frank,

"Speaking of aging, there's an interesting factoid running around which I have heard: apparently, it is common to find C-14 in the center of a diamond."

Yes… this was brought up at the RATE conference in San Diego back in 2005. ICR actually spent the money to buy diamonds and test/destroy them (ouch) revealing “factoids” such as this. There is a DVD and book on the study that is available.

One thing that was mentioned at the conference that may not be in either the book or DVD is that when ICR sent some of the materials (I don’t remember if it was the diamonds or something else) out for testing they didn’t identify themselves (a young earth creationist organization) as the group ordering the testing. After the testing came back showing a young age ICR let the cat out of the bag that they were the ones having the testing done. As ICR proceeded to report the findings of those test, and who had done the actual testing, the company that did the testing requested that their name not be associated with ICR’s reporting. IOW, because the findings supported a young earth, the company felt compelled to disassociate itself from ITS OWN findings!

Jugulum said...

Steve,

Ah, sorry. "First post" is a comment that people sometimes leave on the internet, in any forum where you can add comments to something. Like if you find a news article or blog post that hasn't been commented on yet--some people will race to be the first person to post anything, and just say "First post!" It's generally regarded as a nuisance. A comment like "I got the 200th comment!" (or Frank's "201") is along the same lines. But some of us think it's a little fun, anyway.

So to be ironic/"funny" (dodging the stigma of actually saying "200th comment!"), I posted a comment decrying the general practice. And I camped out, waiting for someone to post the 199th, so that I could be next.

I guess I made it just a biiiit too indirect.

Steve Drake said...

Realitycheck:
Beautiful, baby!

Steve Drake said...

Thanks Jug,
Makes sense now. Go Horns!

Jugulum said...

I went to Texas Tech, not UT. So... Guns up! Go Raiders!

Steve Drake said...

Jug,
We'll just have to see this weekend won't we?

Steve Drake said...

Hi Ken,
You back from dinner? 'Epistemic certainty', you're not sure what I mean.

I won't insult your intelligence, but I think you know what I'm talking about, right? That branch of philosophy, epistemology, that deals with how one comes to knowledge, or how do you 'know' that you 'know'.

The rationalists and empiricists fought this out in an earlier century with no conclusive winner.

So my question to you is, (if I'm assuming correctly), what gives you the epistemic certainty that 'knowledge' is derived only from empirical evidence?

Halcyon said...

I predict that he'll say that his gizzard told him.

donsands said...

".. other ridiculous stories in the Bible." -Ken

You don't mean the writings of Peter, do you? Or Luke, the Doctor? Or John the fisherman buddy of Peter?

Peter loved Jesus, and he wrote some incredible things about his Savior and Lord. So did John.

Do you totally disregard these friends of Jesus Ken?

Steve Drake said...

Dear Halcyon,
You 'assume' that he's eating turkey or chicken, or some other bird for dinner. But your 'assumption' is based on incomplete knowledge because you are not there in Ken's dining room to 'observe' what it is he is actually enjoying for dinner. It could be that he's having steak for dinner and the 'reading' of the cow brains from the cow from which the steak was taken, will lead to an opposite conclusion from what the gizzard is saying.

Barbara said...

Robert:

The reason I ask is that my wife became even more amazed at the work of God upon her studies during nursing school. There is NO WAY that evolution can make sense of how human organisms work. It's impossible.

I remember college Anatomy & Physiology - even as a false convert at the time, mired in liberal theology, I remember that more than anything else from nursing school. Whatever else I may have held in error at the time, the miracle of human anatomy, physiology, and even its pathophysiology just speaks volumes about a generous creator who thought about things ahead of time and even created ways for our bodies to compensate and keep going when by all accounts they shouldn't. Not to mention the miracle of reproduction, respiration, nutrition...all of it. That the earth and its atmosphere provides what the body requires to live and breathe and function is nothing short of miraculous grace.

And it was because of that fact that, 22 years later, as I shook my fist in God's face and wanted with everything in me to stop believing that He existed and just walk away into my own, that I knew that He was there and would have to be dealt with. It is through His Providence that that training, that understanding of creation, that He brought me to Himself, to fall at His feet, instead.

I think that's why it's such a battleground. You lose creation, you lose God. You lose the first Adam, you lose the second Adam. The serpent is still hissing, "Yea, hath God said?" just as surely now as then.

Sir Aaron said...

So should we now start making the odds for when Biologos starts denying Jesus' miracles by explaining them away with "science?"

Barbara said...

Please forgive me for what I'm about to do, but... all this talk just brought this to mind and I

just..

couldn't..

....resist....

Joshua Cookingham said...

Can someone explain to me why God making the Earth look old is deceptive? Isn't that the same as saying God making Adam and Eve FULLY GROWN is deceptive?

Sir Aaron said...

Joshua: I've always had the same question. If somebody was to create a fully functioning universe from nothing in six days, what do they expect it to look like?

Joshua Cookingham said...

Furthermore, wouldn't, oh I don't know, ANY miracle seem to be deceptive to people? Seeing as how that's usually not how things are done?
I really don't get it....

Bobby Grow said...

Wow, this blew up since I've been here last!

Ken said:

. . . Who knows perhaps in ancient times serpents spoke and horses flew, if one accepts a holy book as the final word on the matter.

Actually Christians believe that the Holy Triune God has the final word on the matter of which that holy book bears witness to and coinheres with by the Holy Spirit's work!

I've never heard of you before, Ken. But, sadly, what your plight can help to illustrate is that the God of socially shaped Fundamentalism is really only one small step away from where you've unfortunately stepped! Your life is the reductio of rationalist Fundamentialism. Anyway, I've strayed enough. Your's is a sad case!

Barbara said...

Yeah, I saw that and my mind wen t Ezekiel 14:7-11

Sobering words, there.

Tom Chantry said...

Just sitting here trying to figure out why Dan (and to a lesser degree Frank) spent the day in violation of rule 7.

Halcyon said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Halcyon said...

Steve Drake:

Cow brains are analogous to a gizzard.

Rachael Starke said...

Oh. My. Goodness.

On the one day where I've set aside specific time to do something actually sanctified, like update my own blog, I say to myself "Self, I wonder what's going on at Pyro today. I know nothing can top the commentpalooza of the last post."

Yet here we are.

So now you've had twocommenters who've had their presupposition shot to pieces.

But only one who's man, er, lady enough to admit it. :)

Phil said...

My hat goes off to Frank for his patience. I mean, here he is sitting with his hunting gun patiently waiting for yonder beast to take the bait and spring the trap.
Me, I couldn't resist jumping the gun, and I can hardly bear the suspense as a spectator!

Rob Auld said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
SandraT said...

As a new commenter here, here are my 2 cents worth (or I should say what God's Word says)...
Mark 10: 15 - "Assuredly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will by no means enter it"...

1 Cor 3: 19 - "For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, he catches the wise in their own craftiness"...

Isaiah 55: 8,9 - "For my thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways, says the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts"...

Reading through some of the comments, just thought these verses would be a timely reminder when some get lost in their own "wisdom"!

Chris said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Chris said...

Ken,

So quick with a witty answer to everyone; what a tragic shame it will be on the day you stand before the creator--of a literal six-day creation--without the least degree of wit. The root of your problem, and the countless blasphemies you mockingly declare, is that you have no fear of the Lord. Of course, an apostate like yourself is aware of the Proverb that declares the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; you, sir, haven't an ounce of wisdom because you haven't an ounce of holy fear towards your maker. You are an unbelieving blasphemer; I pray that you will repent of defiling his truth, lest you be cast into the deepest regions of hottest hell by the God whom you mock with every word you write.

Chris said...

Rob Auld,

When you find yourself in hell with Ken, the two of you should not blame God for being unjust or unfair; he affords you both the common grace of living each day in his literal six day creation, with every passing minute being an opportunity to repent and submit to His truth. I hope your life here is as long and productive as possible, because eternity is indeed eternal. For the two of you and everyone else at Biologos unless you repent, that eternity will be in outer darkness and separated from all that is good. You talk about the dark ages? The darkest age will be the one in which you find yourself residing in the life to come--where there will be wailing and gnashing of teeth. I'm quite certain that it will be of little importance to you at that point whether or not you have found another truth to attack from Gods perfect and holy word.

CR said...

I have found Ken's comments interesting and really proving the case of the many problems with Biologos.

Even taking Biologos mission statement at face value which says they are Christians, there are problems. Biologos believes they have to make the Christian faith acceptable and that we must reconcile faith with science. They believe that the Bible doesn't contradict science (ultimately they believe science is the authority and the Bible has got to be fitted into science).

I thank God for what science does show in confirming biblical history, but if we're going to depend on science, then God help us all. How tragic it is for men to put their faith on things like science. We've seen one tragic example: Ken Pullman. We don't need more science. Ken doesn't need more science - what he and all of us need is the power of God.

CR said...

Rob Auld,

Where did Dan say (or imply) that faith is science? Faith is not science and vice versa. The authority of the Bible does not come from science. We believe the Bible fits history and science because we are Christians,regenerated by the Holy Spirit, and we believe the Bible is authorative, and to be believed because it is the Word of God.

Warren Lotter said...

Rob, and for all your intelligence you surely must realize that you're simply a meat sack with fanciful synaptic firings which in the end mean didley squat when staring at oblivion. Why should we assign any weight to what you say since your life is so totally inconsequential. It doesn't even register a blip in your worldview. Yes the universe is dying and will take mankind with it, apparently. Hey happy future.

Also isn't it isimply wonderful how science has provided all the answers to our deepest questions and how it's solutions always usher in utopia.

Steve B said...

prodigalthought said:
"They simply recognise Paul didn't know it all from a more biological and geological studied point."

Or, in other words, Paul was not educated enough to have credibility in his statements? Which points right back to the idea that only the "scientific" can truly understand things?

Or even better yet, the scriptures are correct, insofar as they were correctly translated? Or perhaps, accurate based on the historical perspective of the narrator, but deeply suspect given our modern "enlightenment?"


Which, when boiled down to its essence, says that the Bible is merely a collection of stories written by religious men giving their own personal interpretations of events as they understood them, in their quaint, archaic ways.

Not as divinely-inspiried scripture conveyed by the leading and confirmation of the Holy Spirit.

However, the point often made here is that writers such as Paul were not dealing with SCIENTIFIC issues, but with moral, spiritual, and SUPERNATURAL.

Which is really the left and right of this entire thread. Either the Bible really is God's word, or it's just another religious "text." And if you believe the latter, then 1) You're most likely not a Christian, and 2) Your probably just here to poke at those who are.

Thomas Louw said...

Dan, I see you defended the Castle of truth.
Prophecies and the fulfilment of them. Is maybe the best proof that we did not decide the Bible has authority, but that it is truth if we say it is or not.
I wish I was here for the discussion.

Robert said...

Barbara,

It is wonderful how God can use the studies of the secular world in science to display the wonders of His works. What is amazing to me is how Ken or Rob Auld or any of these other people who supposedly have so much more knowledge than us fundamentalists have not even done research to see how the body works and then try to work out evolution in their minds. Of course, the scientific community (and Biologos) don't want people doing that kind of research because it turns evolution upon its head. I'd honestly like to hear how an evolutionist explains the workings of human bodies (or any organic life) and how that just came about from the chemical blob or whatever.

DJP said...

Rob Auld still hasn't dealt with this, and remains stuck there until he does.

If a student can't manage 2+2=4, no point proceeding.

Mark B. Hanson said...

Ken said: "The folks at BioLogos are trying to save Christianity from becoming a laughingstock."

Funny, there have been people in every age that have taken on that task, and always with the same result: the "saviors" invariably wind up believing less and less, until their belief is indistinguishable from unbelief.

And the Word of God preached continues to do its quiet, constant work of converting people to believe in Christ and the Scriptures that tell of Him.

Steve Gentry said...

Frank. With regard to your comment on C-14 in diamonds, Dr. Kirt Bertsche has reviewed ICR's research and it comes up short. No surprise there.

James Joyce said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
James Joyce said...

"it boils down to this. You guys have by faith decided that the canonical Scriptures (at least the Protestant canon) is of divine origin and therefore it must be true in every detail."

And Ken has faith that either "nothing made everything or that matter is eternal" which are the only two other options. One is shown to be false by observational science and the other is intellectual suicide.

Why is Ken stuck on the impossiblility of talking snake anyway? God spoke THE UNIVERSE into existence. One talking serpent is a piece of cake.

romey32324 said...

Wow, lots of comments here.

I personally don't see Biologos as denying Christ's resurrection or miracles any time soon. Why? If they do, they completely show their hand and lose any ability to stealthily drop their leaven into the church.

Since its goal is to reconcile faith and science - with science being the determinative "fact" that faith must conform - look for Biologos to soon address what has to be their next big topic - homosexuality.

Obviously, Paul was captive to the ideas of his time on these matters, right? Genetics have proven that homosexuality is normal and beneficial to society. MTV says the same thing. The church better keep up with the times, lest it become a laughingstock.

RealityCheck said...

Steve Gentry said;

“With regard to your comment on C-14 in diamonds, Dr. Kirt Bertsche has reviewed ICR's research…”

Oh well... if Kirk Bertsche says there's been contamination... what else do we need to “believe”. Whoever he is I’m sure he is more qualified than any of the other PhD’s working for (or in conjunction) with ICR. I mean after all “Steve Gentry” says so and when “he” says so… it’s not a matter of trusting (having faith in) those who he agrees with… it’s automatically a matter of fact… no faith needed. lol

Jim Pemberton said...

Wow! Hot topic. I can only skim through the comments so forgive me if my comment repeats what has already been said. I usually hear it alluded to, but never fully addressed so I'll address it here.

One can presume that genealogical detail, as a matter of hermeneutical principle, can be construed as fictional. After all, Tolkien developed detailed genealogies for Middle Earth. However, nothing Tolkien writes could be misconstrued as true history. The Bible is inextricable from its history. The writing of the Bible is interactive with the historical account. To some extent Tolkien did this also, but the lands and languages don't match our lands and languages like the Bible does. The Bible makes historical references that are externally verifiable. Besides, Tolkien wrote all his stuff inside of a lifetime ans we have external evidence that he did so as fiction. The Bible was written from the beginning as history.

Aside from claims to speak face-to-face with God, Moses had access to the same Egyptian library that Joseph would have contributed to. Joseph was born years before Abraham died. Abraham was born long before Noah died. Noah was born long before Seth died and Noah's father was born long before Adam died. In Abraham's day there was writing. We know this because excavations of the civilization he came from reveal schools and libraries.

All that to set up this comment: whatever hermeneutic we could develop to deny the existence of a literal Adam and Eve, if applied consistently, would result in a summary denial of the veracity of the rest of the Bible, too much of which we have evidence is true. Add to that the acknowledgment of the Holy Spirit in the lives of those he regenerates as to its truth and life-changing nature and we have no choice but to accept its accounts and teachings as true. Once that happens, it becomes clear to us that there is no hermeneutical tension and even scientific and philosophical machinations tend to harmonize because we allow for the actions of an eternal Creator.

It is presumed by naturalists that evidence gathered by purely physical means can only bear the import of physical conclusions. However, this presumption is logically flawed. We regularly communicate intangibles via tangible representations in language. It's unreasonable to assume that observable physical patterns can't speak of a metaphysical intelligence.

Jim Pemberton said...

Wow! Hot topic. I can only skim through the comments so forgive me if my comment repeats what has already been said. I usually hear it alluded to, but never fully addressed so I'll address it here.

One can presume that genealogical detail, as a matter of hermeneutical principle, can be construed as fictional. After all, Tolkien developed detailed genealogies for Middle Earth. However, nothing Tolkien writes could be misconstrued as true history. The Bible is inextricable from its history. The writing of the Bible is interactive with the historical account. To some extent Tolkien did this also, but the lands and languages don't match our lands and languages like the Bible does. The Bible makes historical references that are externally verifiable. Besides, Tolkien wrote all his stuff inside of a lifetime ans we have external evidence that he did so as fiction. The Bible was written from the beginning as history.

Aside from claims to speak face-to-face with God, Moses had access to the same Egyptian library that Joseph would have contributed to. Joseph was born years before Abraham died. Abraham was born long before Noah died. Noah was born long before Seth died and Noah's father was born long before Adam died. In Abraham's day there was writing. We know this because excavations of the civilization he came from reveal schools and libraries.

All that to set up this comment: whatever hermeneutic we could develop to deny the existence of a literal Adam and Eve, if applied consistently, would result in a summary denial of the veracity of the rest of the Bible, too much of which we have evidence is true. Add to that the acknowledgment of the Holy Spirit in the lives of those he regenerates as to its truth and life-changing nature and we have no choice but to accept its accounts and teachings as true. Once that happens, it becomes clear to us that there is no hermeneutical tension and even scientific and philosophical machinations tend to harmonize because we allow for the actions of an eternal Creator.

Jim Pemberton said...

Wow! Hot topic. I can only skim through the comments so forgive me if my comment repeats what has already been said. I usually hear it alluded to, but never fully addressed so I'll address it here.

One can presume that genealogical detail, as a matter of hermeneutical principle, can be construed as fictional. After all, Tolkien developed detailed genealogies for Middle Earth. However, nothing Tolkien writes could be misconstrued as true history. The Bible is inextricable from its history. The writing of the Bible is interactive with the historical account. To some extent Tolkien did this also, but the lands and languages don't match our lands and languages like the Bible does. The Bible makes historical references that are externally verifiable. Besides, Tolkien wrote all his stuff inside of a lifetime ans we have external evidence that he did so as fiction. The Bible was written from the beginning as history.

Aside from claims to speak face-to-face with God, Moses had access to the same Egyptian library that Joseph would have contributed to. Joseph was born years before Abraham died. Abraham was born long before Noah died. Noah was born long before Seth died and Noah's father was born long before Adam died. In Abraham's day there was writing. We know this because excavations of the civilization he came from reveal schools and libraries.

cont...

Jim Pemberton said...

Cont:

All that to set up this comment: whatever hermeneutic we could develop to deny the existence of a literal Adam and Eve, if applied consistently, would result in a summary denial of the veracity of the rest of the Bible, too much of which we have evidence is true. Add to that the acknowledgment of the Holy Spirit in the lives of those he regenerates as to its truth and life-changing nature and we have no choice but to accept its accounts and teachings as true. Once that happens, it becomes clear to us that there is no hermeneutical tension and even scientific and philosophical machinations tend to harmonize because we allow for the actions of an eternal Creator.

It is presumed by naturalists that evidence gathered by purely physical means can only bear the import of physical conclusions. However, this presumption is logically flawed. We regularly communicate intangibles via tangible representations in language. It's unreasonable to assume that observable physical patterns can't speak of a metaphysical intelligence.

Jugulum said...

RealityCheck,

Careful there. That link wasn't an authority claim, ala "Well, Kirt Bertsche says 'nuh-uh'." (Well... Maybe it was. See [1] at the end.) It was a discussion of the details of ICR's testing, and an argument that the specifics of the data do point to contamination and instrument background. An argument to be evaluated, not an authority claim.

ICR is arguing that "Their own standards for evidence actually point to a young earth." Bertsche is responding, "Ur doin it wrong"--arguing that there are identifiable problems with ICR's testing procedure. He's either plainly correct, or it's arguable, or he's plainly wrong. I don't know.

But we have no basis for waiving away his response, or acting as though "ICR's procedure was flawed" is an unknowable he-said-she-said. Even if we conclude that C14-dating is meaningless, that doesn't mean it's impossible to tell whether someone measured the C14 badly.

As a relative layman, it looks to me like a credible critique. (I've got a physics MS, and worked in a lab for a year. But no directly relevant experience or training.) It's not hand-waving, or flippant, even if he's wrong; he points to specific data features. If I were going to pursue this, my next step would be look for ICR's response, and find out if they address his critique. Or I'd study C14 measurement so that I could evaluate what Bertsche said, myself. Barring that, I'm not going to put weight on C14 being in those diamonds.

The truth of the Word of God and the youth of the earth doesn't tell us that they really did contain C14, or that it just comes down to picking a competing authority.

Automatically preferring ICR on this is no better than an atheist leaping on the flimsiest "debunking" of the Bible.


[1] Actually, if Steve Gentry leapt on Bertsche's review without understanding it, without having good reason to think the critique was valid, then it was pretty much an argument from authority--and your response might work.

Magister Stevenson said...

Jug,
I am no scientist, but I did read the paper on RATE radiocarbon dating by Bertsche, then did a little searching to see what the response would be. There is a great response from a credible scientist (the author of the original research being critiqued) which takes Bertsche to the woodshed. Only one comes back.

http://www.answersingenesis.org/articles/2007/11/30/feedback-rate-contamination

Steve Drake said...

Tim (Jugulum),
That said, however, the C-14 in diamonds was part of an extensive eight year research initiative that included the c-14 in diamonds as only one aspect. The other aspects included radiohalos in granites, helium diffusion in zircons, fission tracts in zircons, assumptions of isochron dating using K-Ar, Rb-Sr, Sm-Nd and Pb-Pb, and isochron discordances of radioisotopes in the earth's mantle and crust.

All of this supporting data leads to severe problems with the current uniformitarian understanding of earth's geology and the belief that the earth is billions of years old.

In contrast, they point to a young earth, (relative to secular geologists proclamation of one that is old).

The research initiative by ICR was quite a scholarly piece of work (Radioisotopes and the Age of the Earth), and I recommend you taking a look at it, before jumping to conclusions that Bertsche has conclusively shown their research to be invalid.

The age old cliche comes to mind here, brother, 'whose bias are you going to be biased with', as all investigators have a bias before starting their studies and all experiments are chosen and conducted within that bias.

RealityCheck said...

Jugulum,

My response to Steve has less to do with the merits of either ICR or Kirt Bertsche (whoever he is) and more to do with the “faith” behind his (and others) comment(s). It never fails to amaze me just how much “faith” an unbeliever (or nominal believer) can demonstrate while at the same time making fun of (or just taking issue with) those that have complete “faith” in Gods word.

I am constantly encountering unbelievers who have themselves convinced that they have chosen the facts vs. faith route without even for a moment noticing just how much faith the “supposed” facts they believe in require.

The only group more ridiculous than this is the professing Christians who are supposedly trying to prevent Christianity from becoming “a laughing stock” by finding someway to reconcile every fallible idea of man with the infallible word of God… i.e. BioLogos.

I cannot look into the hearts of these people to tell what their “true” motivation is but it’s pretty obvious to me that the only real concern they have of something becoming a laughing stock is that it could be them. Poor babies, so worried about what man might think that they are willing to twist and bend Gods word as needed.

My advice to them is simple, assuming their motives are pure; Christianity doesn’t need their help, it will be around long after they’re gone. If their motives are what I think they really are… they need to do themselves a favor and stop trying to serve two masters or at least be honest about what team they’re really on!

Bill R. said...

"It is easy enough to make up stories of how one form gave rise to another, and to find reasons why the stages should be favoured by natural selection. But such stories are not part of science, for there is no way of putting them to the test."

Personal letter (written 10 April 1979) from Dr. Colin Patterson, Senior Palaeontologist at the British Museum of Natural History in London, to Luther D. Sunderland; as quoted in "Darwin’s Enigma" by Luther D. Sunderland, Master Books, San Diego, USA, 1984, p. 89.

"For I am well aware that scarcely a single point is discussed in this volume on which facts cannot be adduced, often apparently leading to conclusions directly opposite to those at which I have arrived. A fair result can be obtained only by fully stating and balancing the facts and arguments on both sides of each question; and this is here impossible."

Charles Darwin, 1859, Introduction to "Origin of Species," p. 2. Also quoted in "John Lofton’s Journal," "The Washington Times," 8 February 1984.

"Facts do not ‘speak for themselves’; they are read in the light of theory. Creative thought, in science as much as in the arts, is the motor of changing opinion. Science is a quintessentially human activity, not a mechanized, robot-like accumulation of objective information, leading by laws of logic to inescapable interpretation."

Stephen Jay Gould (Professor of Geology and Paleontology, Harvard University), "The validation of continental drift" in his book "Ever Since Darwin," Burnett Books, 1978 pp. 161-162.

Just thought I would leave these quotes by evolutionists here re: the 'fact' of evolution...

Robert said...

Bill,

What is sad is that Darwin is wrong about the true definition of science. Science is there to observe facts and gather data and then test the hypotheses that people put forth. If the hypotheses can not be proven, they should not be accepted as fact. Of course, that just kills the whole theory of evolution, though.

ibcarlos said...

Bill R., consider yourself officially, secondarily quoted. IOW: thanks for the quote-gravy; I posted that lil' nugget from Mr. Gould on facebook.

(c:

Garrett League said...

"Don't think so?"

No. I sure wouldn't bet on it. Read Lamoureux's book. They're not going to deny the hisoricity of Jesus, even if you think they ought to for the sake of consistency.

As for "You didn't think they'd reject Adam as a historical person, either" that sort of baffles me, since I've been following them from the beginning and knew all the while where they were coming from. Falk and Giberson are the guys running the deal, and they've always been upfront on that. Denis Alexander, a collaborator, disagrees. So do a smattering of other authors on the site. But the official stance is very similar to Lamoureux's.

What DID take me by surprise was their pointless shotgun on inerrancy.

Jacob said...

A surprising number of "Reformed" folks (the prototypical Calvinistic but amillennial lot) apparently fall for the idea of allowing for (read: trying to shoehorn) evolution in(to) the Genesis creation account.

Perhaps it's a product of their over-emphasis on education and scholasticism inherent in their preferred brand of Christianity that leads them to put more weight on science so-called than is proper. Who knows.

I do know it causes me extreme dislike for them and an extra measure of thankfulness for folks like Phil, Dan, and Frank who have properly synthesized Reformed theology with a faithful rendering of the text and a careful avoidance of the secular pitfalls that seem so common in Reformed circles.

If I ever read another amillennial or evolution-can-fit-in-Genesis blogpost it'll be too soon. Thanks for being a breath of fresh air in this festering world.

Jacob said...

donsands: "I would imagine they also think Noah wasn't a real person, and his ark; the flood, etc.

But they still want the rest of the Bible, and Christ. Odd."


But only until they "evolve" to a point where they feel they no longer need a Savior. ;)

Claiming to be wise they became fools...

Glenn said...

OK, it looks like I'm unlikely to make progress on this one with some of the folk here. We've got Robert replying by telling me that if someone examines the evidence and concludes that early Genesis is not historical then ipso facto he's not conservative, and we've got Christopher telling me that it has to be literal history because it's at the beginning!

Frank, at least, is willing to allow alternative understandings of Genesis 1 and 2.

Frank, do you think there's perhaps some significance in the fact that Adam is a character whose name actually means humanity? If, for example, Adam is so named because in this (non historical) account he represents the human race, would you grant that the theological teaching would remain intact, even if the historical veracity did not?

Jacob said...

How could Adam be named after something when he was the first?
Wouldn't it be more logical that the name Adam, because he was the first of his kind, came to be used as a term to label his kind? i.e., that we are called humans because his name meant that?

(Btw, I thought his name meant reddish or something like that related to the color of his skin.)

Jim Pemberton said...

Jacob - I thought the same thing. Good observation.

Also, a plain reading of Genesis presents the account of Adam as factual rather than allegorical. One must try to develop a non-intuitive hermeneutic to dismiss Adam as an actual person. That's telling. What I never hear is how such a hermeneutic accounts for the genealogies. Since a key genealogy linking Adam with Jesus is in Luke 3, one would have to dismiss the historicity of Christ as well.

Frank Turk said...

Glenn --

Let's be very careful (in spite of the blogginess of this all here) about what I believe, what I would teach and/or advocate, and what I think others of good faith have said and can be at least listened to without our ears being damaged.

I believe in One God, Six Days, One Adam, One Eve, One sin, one judgment, one punishment, and one promise pointing at Christ. I would not teach or advocate for anything else.

In his latest book, no less than D.A. Carson calls the interpretation of Genesis difficult because of the mixed bag of genres. D.A. Carson said this -- and he's one of the stringiest inerrancy guys out there. So if Dr. Carson can have the generosity to say, "Let's at least be honest that the genres are more than one here," I think the rest of us lesser mortals can at least have open ears on the subject.

That said, Glenn, as Jim pointed out, you have the causality of Genesis backwards. Plainly, it is because "Adam" is named "Adam" that mankind is named "Adam". I know, I know: the objection here from the non-traditionalist is that the writer calls "Adam" this because he's supposed to be the metaphorical firstman/everyman who could be any of us. The problem is that the word "Adam" was not invented by the Bible writer: it was used by him. If he had invented the word and then it caught on, I'd have more sympathy for your point.

That said, the problem with saying that Moses meant "everyman" or "Man the Myth" when he wrote Genesis is that this naming convention isn't present in the rest of Genesis. If "Adam" was named as the "first man", why aren't Cain and Abel named "Faithful" and "Unfaithful" or some other such prototypical label to show they represent archetypes rather than historical people? Why the gap in this type of story telling?

I understand the question: I think it is not a great question for people who read the rest of Genesis (and then the Bible) to ask based on the way the rest of Genesis (and the Bible) works as literature.

Frank Turk said...

And with that, thus endeth the thread. Eveyone has had more than their fair say here.

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