Posts Tagged ‘evolution’
- Denis O. Lamoureux
- John H. Walton | BioLogos Forum
- C. John Collins | Did Adam and Eve Really Exist?
- William D. Barrick | The Masters Seminary
- Greg A. Boyd | ReKnew
- Philip G. Ryken | Sermon Audio
Pages: 289 (e-book)
[I was provided with a free e-copy of this book in exchange for my unbiased and fair review. On another note, the government spends too much time worrying about what books I read and get for free. Thank you.]
I have provided plenty of links for you, the reader, to do your own research into this book because I have a particular point of view on this sort of work that may or may not be particularly helpful. To be sure, I read an 'uncorrected proof for review purposes' which is a bit frustrating because page numbers in references appear as (ooo) which is kind of annoying.
The book is laid out in a fairly manageable format. There is a lengthy introduction by the series editors (Barrett and Caneday) which explains the format and lays out some preliminary observations such as historical background, history of debates, and the various points of view that the authors will subsequently take up in the bulk of the text. Next comes the presentation of the four authors' points of view. Each author presents his view which is followed by responses from the other three authors and, finally, a rejoinder from the original author. I'm not sure if there was a reason for the order in which the various views are presented but they seem to follow from the most 'liberal' (Lamoureux) to the most 'conservative' (Barrick) with the two 'fence straddlers' (Walton & Collins; it's probably unfair to call them 'straddlers'; their positions are as robust as the others) resting in the middle of the sandwich. Finally, pastoral reflections are offered (Boyd & Ryken) representing a broad spectrum of opinion of how these various points of view might affect the church. Surprisingly, this is a debate left entire to the male point of view–that is, no women have left their mark on these pages. Not surprisingly, Boyd takes the more 'liberal' post and Ryken the more 'conservative.'
I should start off right away by noting that Lamoureux's point of view holds no sway with me whatsoever. When an author has to continually defend himself against the charge, imagined or otherwise, that he is saying 'God lied' or that 'Scripture cannot be trusted' then there is a serious problem. On the other hand, Lamoureux, out of all the authors, probably holds to the most literal reading of the book of Genesis even though he doesn't believe a word of Genesis 1-11 to represent anything close to a historical record. This is strange. I never cease to be amazed at those who hold to evolution as a means antithetical to pure ex nihilo creation. They always remind us that they find the evidence 'for evolution is overwhelming' (40). What is amazing is that so many equally trained theologians and scientists find the evidence underwhelming. Frankly, I decided a while ago that I will no longer live in fear of evolution or those who teach it. In my opinion God is a big God and doesn't need me to get all worked up about defending him or what he has done. I'm fairly certain Lamoureux is the only author who felt the need to talk about his academic credentials and, to be sure, much of his article is autobiographical–another defense mechanism.
I think the problem, for me, is that Lamoureux believes that Genesis 1-11 is merely indicative of the way God talks to humans. His evidence is that this is how Jesus talked to his disciples: "The Lord himself accommodated in His teaching ministry by using parables" (54). Honestly I think this is a rather poor understanding of why Jesus spoke using parables; furthermore, the parables were not merely "earthly stories [meant] to deliver inerrant heavenly messages" (54). This is a shallow and rather naive way of understanding parables and, to be sure, has nothing to do with the way God talked to people through Genesis. What I find amazing is the utter lack of faith Lamoureux has in Scripture. This is evident in that he really doesn't seem to get that the Holy Spirit had quite a lot to do with the actual final composition of the original autographs and, I would venture to assume, their translation and transmission to future generations. I'm not sure he gets this or if he does if he just rejects it as more unreliable biblical rhetoric. It is hard to tell at times.
At the end of each author's presentation there is a hefty response from the other writers of the book. It's all fairly typical, as one might expect, with this type of book. Of course every author has a point of view, of course he defends it, of course others tear apart his arguments, and of course there's all sorts of moving 'what-a-great-guy-he-is' kind of comments. There is much mutual respect, in other words, except that there is some obvious tension between Lamoureux and Barrick. This is how it goes page after page. Honestly, the four points of view are not terribly difficult to understand and the responses are largely predictable. And even though the book is about four views of the historical Adam when it's all said and done there's really only two: you either believe he was a real, historical figure; or you don't. The book really revolves around the points of view concerning creation mechanisms (and various theories about the 'days' in Genesis) and how these points of view impact readings of later Scripture.
I enjoyed reading the responses from the pastors at the end of the book the most and I enjoyed Greg Boyd's best of the two if for nothing else because I think it captured the spirit of his assignment ('pastoral reflections') the best. Ryken wrote a fine reflection, but I thought he focused less on the pastoral implications and more on the theological implications of whatever view one chooses to adopt.
Every author has something to contribute to the discussion (even though Lamoureux's view, in my opinion, lacks teeth). No one has it perfectly right and no one is absolutely wrong–which is evident by the responses. Frankly, there is a lot of agreement among the authors and this is healthy. It shows that the debate isn't as scary as one might think. It demonstrates that there can be a variety of orthodoxy amongst Christians and that satisfying and healthy debates are indeed possible. It seems to me that any of these men would stand up for one of the others if the debate were to include a die-hard, dyed in the wool atheistic evolutionist. Of this I have no doubt.
The evolution/creation debate is interesting and, sadly, ongoing. There will never be resolution to this discussion this side of the new heavens and new earth. The main question of this book is: does there need to be a real historical Adam in order for the Bible (Lamoureux believes 'real' biblical history starts in Genesis 12) to be true with respect to redemptive history? According to the book, yes and no. Whatever side of the debate the reader happens to side with, this much is true: all of the authors point us to Jesus. We may not necessarily agree with the path they take through Scripture to arrive at Jesus, but they all get there. For this I am glad. At times, however, I do wonder if perhaps we have carried on this debate long enough. It could be that it is time to move on to weightier matters and perhaps see how it is that we can take care of the earth we have been given whether by a Creator or through evolution. That is a different paper altogether.
This is a helpful volume. I don't think it adds anything new to the debate (as far as evidence, one way or the other, is concerned) and those who are well versed in the history and literature of the creation/evolution debate will find the book rather redundant and tired at points. Newcomers to the debate will find this a worthy volume that will help them sort through some of their early questions (about the debate) and develop some clear thinking on certain issues (such as the theological implications of there not being a historical person named Adam). They might even be persuaded to change their minds at certain points. Seasoned readers probably won't find much challenging and will probably only find their a priori arguments bolstered by fresh looks at Scripture (esp. Genesis; I think all four authors contributed some stunning ideas about Genesis even if, again, I didn't happen to agree with all the conclusions they arrived at from the evidence) and repetition of old arguments.
I give this book 3.5/5 Stars and recommend it for readers who are newer to the conversation.
*My page numbers may not align exactly. I read an draft version (.pdf) on my Nook and sometimes the pages and numbering are adjusted later.
What is strange about this post is NOT the content per se, but the seriousness of the quotations attributed to certain people, the seriousness with which people are approaching this issue, the pride people are taking in the decision of the Spanish parliament.
I can only hope that this is a joke, but it appears not so. Evidently, there really is a Great Apes Project! This is from their home page:
The idea is founded upon undeniable scientific proof that non-human great apes share more than genetically similar DNA with their human counterparts. They enjoy a rich emotional and cultural existence in which they experience emotions such as fear, anxiety and happiness. They share the intellectual capacity to create and use tools, learn and teach other languages. They remember their past and plan for their future. It is in recognition of these and other morally significant qualities that the Great Ape Project was founded. The Great Ape Project seeks to end the unconscionable treatment of our nearest living relatives by obtaining for non-human great apes the fundamental moral and legal protections of the right to life, the freedom from arbitrary deprivation of liberty, and protection from torture.
Also, there’s this:
The organization is an international group founded to work for the global removal of non-human great apes from the category of mere property, and for their immediate protection through the implementation of basic legal principles designed to provide these amazing creatures with the right to life, the freedom of liberty and protection from torture.
Well, this is all fine and good. It is important that apes are afforded rights that many, many humans on the face of the earth are not afforded. But they are apes; so, why not? Evidently, their motto is ‘Equality Beyond Humanity.’
So, this article by Reuters. Here’s the first bit:
MADRID (Reuters) – Spain’s parliament voiced its support on Wednesday for the rights of great apes to life and freedom in what will apparently be the first time any national legislature has called for such rights for non-humans.
Parliament’s environmental committee approved resolutions urging Spain to comply with the Great Apes Project, devised by scientists and philosophers who say our closest genetic relatives deserve rights hitherto limited to humans.
“This is a historic day in the struggle for animal rights and in defense of our evolutionary comrades, which will doubtless go down in the history of humanity,” said Pedro Pozas, Spanish director of the Great Apes Project.
Here’s the last bit:
Philosophers Peter Singer and Paola Cavalieri founded the Great Ape Project in 1993, arguing that “non-human hominids” like chimpanzees, gorillas, orang-utans and bonobos should enjoy the right to life, freedom and not to be tortured.
The irony is that animals should enjoy ‘the right to life.’ Animals will not argue with such a sentiment. Animals do not ask to be put in the zoo, or the circus, or in films; animals do not even ask to be studied by humans. In fact, animals ask for nothing but to be left quite alone to hunt, eat, sleep, and reproduce at their leisure. Humans should be stewards, not tyrants. But that fact (animal ‘rights’) has nothing to do whatsoever with evolution; nothing to do whatsoever with genetic stuff; nothing to do whatsoever with science; nothing to do whatsoever with ‘scientific proof’ (since there is none whatsoever). But because a scientist says it, a philosopher ‘confirms’ it, and a politician makes it happen, it is something that should be done.
If this story were not so laughable I might actually think that apes were on the verge of constructing a great city or developing a microchip or planting crops instead of hunting and gathering. I was almost persuaded that the great apes were on the verge of writing novels to share with one another.
You know, there is a great irony in all this. Here’s what I think. I don’t recall reading anywhere, in the vast annals of scientific literature, that the Great Ape ‘societies’ and ‘cultures’ have developed medical facilities where female apes can go to get clean, sometimes free, discreet, safe abortions on demand, up to and including partial-birth abortions as late as 5 months into the pregnancy. I have read nowhere in any of these books about the Great Apes debating before a supreme court over whether or not it should be legal to kill another ape just because it is unborn. I haven’t read anywhere, in any scientific journal, that the great apes had developed a systematic, legal, mechanized manner by which they might efficiently and effectively destroy the lives of other apes just because they were unborn. And yet the same humans who have developed and done such things are now going to extend the courtesy of the ‘right to life’ to apes?!? Forgive me if I don’t put too much stock in the survival of the great apes.
If the great apes populations are in decline and need saving it is because humans have killed them too. Now we must protect them via legislation. I suppose before long the great apes will be asking us for freaking welfare too! Then they will want food-stamps. Then they will want tax-breaks. Then they will want free medical care. Then they will want social security. Damn, what has Spain gotten themselves into? If these apes ever figure out the way government really works, then we are up the proverbial creek without a paddle!
I know another endangered species that needs protection: Unborn human beings. Yes, that’s right. I believe that human beings, especially helpless, defenseless, voiceless, unborn human beings should have a Right to Life. This right to life should be as protected as that of the Great Apes–after all, we are much more closely related to unborn humans than we are to great apes.
You can learn more about the plight of humans by clicking the National Right to Life link I am providing. If you really, truly care about species survival, then write to your congressman and let him or her know that you think the United States should follow Spain’s lead and give unborn humans the same right to life as the Great Apes. I think this would be a good thing for evolution’s progress.
God have mercy on us! Lord we are so far from reality it is beyond imagination. Lord God, save us from ourselves and our own stupidity. Lord, don’t wait. And yet, give us the moral courage, fortitude, strength of conviction, and devotion to prayer to see an end to abortion and the destruction of unborn, innocent human life. And, have mercy on the great apes. Seriously. Because if the government is getting involved in their lives, the apes would be better off in zoos, circuses, and films.
PS–Good Job Spain!!
Just a couple of quick-hits tonight.
First, I have a short post at Advance Signs tonight concerning the Church in China.
Second, thank you, today is my birthday. I am now officially 38.
Third, please boycott Slice of Laodicea as now John Tesh is the latest heretic to fall victim to the Sword of Laodicea.
Fourth, why is Barack Obama so afraid of associating with American Muslims? Last week he asked some Muslim women wearing their head-coverings not to appear in a photo. Now, he is distancing himself from another:
As Senator Barack Obama courted voters in Iowa last December, Representative Keith Ellison, the country’s first Muslim congressman, stepped forward eagerly to help.
“This is the ‘hope campaign,’ this is the ‘change campaign,’ ” said Ellison, Democrat of Minnesota. Muslims are frustrated, he added, that “they have not been fully engaged in it.”
“The community feels betrayed,” said Safiya Ghori, the government relations director in the Washington office of the Muslim Public Affairs Council.
And you know what happened? The good senator, presidential candidate, rejected his help. I just don’t get that at all. I am confused. According to the article, the Senator has visited churches and synagogues, but he has not visited a mosque. I think this should change. The Senator will (if elected) represent ALL Americans, not just the Christians ones or Jewish ones. He will also represent the Hindu ones, the Atheist ones, the Buddhist ones, etc. I think the Senator should visit a Mosque and deliver a sermon speech.
Fifth, and finally, James Dobson is apparently involved in a war of words with Senator Obama:
As Barack Obama broadens his outreach to evangelical voters, one of the movement’s biggest names, James Dobson, accuses the likely Democratic presidential nominee of distorting the Bible and pushing a “fruitcake interpretation” of the Constitution.
Well, that seems about right. I have reviewed some of the Senator’s citations of Scripture and I agree that he has a tendency to distort absolutely obliterate the Scripture with his usage. I don’t know too much about his interpretation of the Constitution; although, I have heard that he is quite liberal. I don’t know if liberals can interpret the Constitution properly or not.
“Folks haven’t been reading their Bibles,” Obama said.
Well, this is the first thing the Senator has said since the joke of a presidential race (on both sides) started the day after George W Bush’s second term began.
Dobson and Minnery accused Obama of wrongly equating Old Testament texts and dietary codes that no longer apply to Jesus’ teachings in the New Testament.
“I think he’s deliberately distorting the traditional understanding of the Bible to fit his own worldview, his own confused theology,” Dobson said.
“… He is dragging biblical understanding through the gutter.”
Dragging he may be, but I’ll say this: He is evidently reading it. Ironically, there are many preachers who stand up on Sunday mornings and do little else but ‘drag biblical understanding through the gutter.’ The Senator is a politician so we cannot expect him to be fully verse in all such matters of theology. But at least he, or at least a speech writer, is reading it.
“Even if we did have only Christians in our midst, if we expelled every non-Christian from the United States of America, whose Christianity would we teach in the schools?” Obama said. “Would we go with James Dobson’s or Al Sharpton’s?” referring to the civil rights leader.
I vote for neither. I think we should go with the Christianity of Jesus.
It amazes me that in this culture, so in tune with unrighteousness and and ungodliness as it is, presidential candidates are still judged by Christians by the amount of Scripture they quote in stump speeches, and by how well they do or do not understand it.
I love irony.
Oh, one last thing. I read this today: “Charles Darwin even said that any truly other-directed trait would negate the theory of evolution. Natural selection cannot produce it.” If you happen to be one of my Atheist, Darwinist, Evolutionary, God of the gaps, or Theistic Evolution friends, could you please tell me if this is true or not? I do not have time to peruse Mr Darwin’s work and I am curious. Is this why some Darwinists are always so quick to jump on the altruism bandwagon? I am asking a serious question here; I’m not being sarcastic or mocking at all.
I have at times jumped, head first, into conversations with people concerning certain ‘scientific’ discoveries here at this blog. Well, a new discovery has just come to light: Fishing Monkeys Discovered in Indonesia. I am intrigued. So I read. And I saw:
Now, researchers say they have discovered groups of the silver-haired monkeys in Indonesia that fish.
Groups of long-tailed macaques were observed four times over the past eight years scooping up small fish with their hands and eating them along rivers in East Kalimantan and North Sumatra provinces, according to researchers from The Nature Conservancy and the Great Ape Trust.
The species had been known to eat fruit and forage for crabs and insects, but never before fish from rivers.
So what happens is these monkeys get hungry and cannot find a frightened tourist to steal a banana from so they go to the river and catch a fish or two or three and eat. I’m justing willing to bet that if these scientists hung around long enough, and sat in the right spots, at the right times of day, they might actually catch these monkeys taking these fish back to their ‘houses’, filleting them, throwing them on the grill with some lime and beer batter, inviting over a few friends and having a nice evening of badminton and home movies and singing, “Here’s to Good Friends.”
You know, what amazes me is that this is a) scientific and b) a ‘discovery.’ Is there anyone on the planet who sits around wondering, “Hmmm…I wonder if monkeys in Indonesia ever go fishing?” Or, “I wonder what pound test line they use?” Or, “I wonder a monkey ever says, ‘Let me tell you the story of the one that got away.'” Seriously.
Well, I will believe this is actually ‘fishing’ when I hear tales of these monkeys breaking out with the bait and tackle and small bass boats, tooling around Lake Toba wearing funny hats stuck with lures, drinking beer at 5 AM, and swapping stories about the war. Until then, these are hungry monkeys looking for food wherever they can get it. I don’t think what they are doing can reasonably be called ‘fishing.’
On a related note, I seriously need to rethink my life. At some point I decided, “Yes, preaching is for me.” But now I find out that people actually consider it ‘work’ to discover that four times in eight years monkeys in Indonesia go ‘fishing,’ and then write ‘scientific’ papers about their discoveries?!? And what’s worse, if they have discovered this four times in eight years, why are we just hearing about it now? Damn! Someone should have informed the public a long, long time ago because maybe, just maybe, this has something to do with global warming. I think I chose the wrong line of work. Just to clarify, here’s what a couple of the ‘scientists’ have said about this ‘discovery:’
“It’s exciting that after such a long time you see new behavior,” said Erik Meijaard, one of the authors of a study on fishing macaques that appeared in last month’s International Journal of Primatology. “It’s an indication of how little we know about the species.”
* * *
“They are a survivor species, which has the knowledge to cope with difficult conditions,” Meijaard said Tuesday. “This behavior potentially symbolizes that ecological flexibility.”
* * *
Agustin Fuentes, a University of Notre Dameanthropology professor who studies long-tailed macaques, or macaca fascicularis, on the Indonesian island of Bali and in Singapore, said he was “heartened” to see the finding published because such details can offer insight into the “complexity of these animals.”
“It was not surprising to me because they are very adaptive,” he said. “If you provide them with an opportunity to get something tasty, they will do their best to get it.”
* * *
Rocket scientists these are not. And yet, these people are getting paid to say this stuff. I never cease to be amazed at the meaningless things people do for a living. I hope that this discovery of ‘fishing monkeys’ will help cure AIDS, feed hungry children Darfur, end Islamic terrorism, end the Iraq war, end child abuse in America, end televangelism in the US, etc. I mean, if the discovery of ‘fishing monkeys’ does non of these things, then of what possible good or help could this information, this knowledge, this fount of wisdom be?
I hope one of the authors of the study publishes a second paper titled: Fishing Monkeys: Their Contribution to the Progress of the Human Race, Their Value in Bringing about Global Peace, and Their Place in Global Politics with Special Emphasis on Their Place in Current Anthropological Studies Concerning Why Human Beings are So Bent on Destroying One Another with Bombs, Disease, Abuse, Drugs, War, and Televangelists: A Response to Detractors.
Now that’s a paper I would read. And one that a monkey could write (of course given enough time, and enough typewriters, paper, and enough friends also working on the same project).
Amazingly, this story originated in, where else, Darwin, Australia! I guess we can safely say that…well…I guess I don’t know what to say. Still, it’s a funny story:
Australian scientists are trying to crack the mystery of how a tiny lizard found its way inside a chicken’s egg.
“The lizard could not have entered the egg after it was cracked open because it was embedded between the interior of the shell and the egg’s membrane, he said.”
Actually, the story has nothing to do with evolution, but it is somewhat ironic that scientists have to ‘crack’ the case. Probably, this will cost some university a million or so dollars. Good luck!
I subscribed to three or four new magazines and journals this year. Two of them are my concern with this post.
The first is Salvo. I thought it might be fun and some challenging, critical reading. The first issue I received, issue 4, Winter 2008: ID (as in, Intelligent Design).
The second is The Christian Century. This was a trial four-week subscription. The first issue I received, volume 125, no 3. The cover: Faith after Darwin and A Visit to the Creation Museum. (I have already cancelled my trial subscription.)
The problem with both of these journals is that they purport, in some way or another to have some ties to the Christian community. Salvo is from the ‘Fellowship of St James.’ Christian Century…well…Christian sort of gives it away doesn’t it?
In The Christian Century Jason Byassee wrote, “Reconciling Christian claims about God, creation and humanity with the findings of Darwin and his successors is an important and daunting task, one that mainline theology has still not satisfactorily accomplished. AiG [Answers in Genesis; he is review the Creation Museum] can hardly be faulted for attempting the task, though its effort is a spectacular failure.” (26)
The problem here is that Mr Byassee thinks that Christianity needs to reconcile with the world and that the Scripture must be wrong. He builds on the assumption that Scripture is not accurate and that its claims are not truth. He also seems to disregard entirely the notion of the God-breathedness of Scripture. The Scripture does not need to be reconciled with the ‘findings of Darwin’ (which are the spurious rantings of an apostate). Rather, Darwin needs to be reconciled with Scripture. If the finding is not in accord with Scripture, the ‘finding’ must be flawed.
In Salvo, (pages 10-11) there is a list of words that must be defined in order to understand the issue. One of those words is ‘Creationism’ (which is just as pejorative as Darwinism): “A literal belief in the account of creation provided by the Bible. Creationists insist that each of the various animals present today on earth was created separately by God. They are thus opposed to the theory that humans and other species descended from common ancestors. Creationism, which also assumes a young earth, should not be confused with the theory of intelligent design.” [!]
The problem is not with the definition as such, but with the portrayal of those who believe in Genesis 1ff as mere Creationists. The problem is with the idea that those who believe in the literal account of the creation must be somehow not quite as caught up as those who believe in the grand theory of ID or Darwin. If I understand this, ID is little more than an attempt to mingle the two, God and Darwin, so that the best of both worlds can be had.
It’s not just Genesis that speaks of God as Creator: It is the entire Bible! Will those who write off Genesis 1-3 also write off Job? How about Colossians? How about John’s Gospel? How about Hebrews? How about the Psalter? How about Isaiah? How about Romans? How about the Revelation? How about statements made by Jesus himself where he specifically references Genesis as history? Are we to write those off as well? You see it is a slippery slope because once Christians write off the most fundamental statement of faith, ‘In the beginning God created…’, then it becomes easy to write off the rest of the Scripture too; which is exactly what Darwinists do.
The problem here is not with ID or with Darwinism as such. The problem here is with Christians who simply will not accept the testimony of Scripture. I think ID is a wonder mechanism for showing the distortions and flaws of Darwinian evolution, but to the extent that it refuses to accept Biblical testimony it is no better than Darwinism. If we cannot accept that it was God who made the earth, the sky, the seas, and everything in them, then how can we ever expect God to be powerful enough to recreate this world when Christ returns? If God is not powerful enough to Creation, then how can God be powerful enough to Redeem? For that matter, if God did not Create, then why would he Redeem?
This simply cannot be both ways: One cannot have Darwin and God. God either Created or He did not. Atheists and Darwinists are convinced he did not. So why would Christians reject Scripture and align themselves with those who do not believe? This is, at its very core, a battle over whether or not Scripture is Truth. This is a problem for Christians right now who feel the need to abandon Scripture and compromise and fornicate with the world’s gods. (I’d like to use stronger language here, but I’ll be respectful for now.) This is about Christians, not Darwinists or atheists, who have abandoned the Word of God. Byassee may mock those of AiG, but they are right. Salvo may have no use for those who believe in the mere literal understanding, but if Genesis is not literal then how can anything else be literal in Scripture?
I should have more to say about this later, but for now I’ll leave you with this thought. The compromise Christians are making in this area is terribly damaging. Christianity is really one short step away from abandoning its entire belief system because we have rejected our Creator. Is this not what the apostle said Romans?
For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles.
Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.
Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural relations for unnatural ones. In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed indecent acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their perversion.
Furthermore, since they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, he gave them over to a depraved mind, to do what ought not to be done. They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; they are senseless, faithless, heartless, ruthless. Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.
It does matter what Christians believe about the Scripture. So mock away, I will take Christians who believe in Scripture over those who don’t any day of the week. And in the end, I suspect the Lord will too.
Soli Deo Gloria!
ps–clearly the issue here is that neither the Salvo issue on ID (Intelligent Design) nor essay in The Christian Century deal adequately with Scripture. I know ID is not trying to and I know that is not the point of ID. Still both issues Salvo and TCC at best mock those who do contend with Scripture. AiG may not have everything right, but being right on all counts is not the issue. The issue is, rather, what point of view does one have of Scripture? AiG takes a high view of Scripture which means, at worst, they take God at His Word so that all that follows Genesis 1:1 is also taken at face value and as Truth. I don’t see such a high view of Scripture coming from either of the other two examples I have referenced.
pss–this post is not about evolution, ID, or Creation as such. It is about the point of view Christians have of Scripture. So please spare me all the atheistic rants about evolution’s proof, and Darwin’s godlike status, and the sanctity of the Natural History Museums in the world.
I haven’t done an evolution post for a while, but some of my older posts are still generating responses. For example, here’s a recent reply made by one person who is clearly a product of the non-thinking version evolution. Note the overall genius of this person’s response, the eloquence, the mastery of the language:
It is frightening to intelligent people to see this swell of middle ages style ignorance starting to take hold. Do you drive a car? Ride in airplanes? Use electricity? All of these things, like evolution, came to our understanding through actual science. The various illiterate claims that “God created everything” are not equal to research and study. I know that my words will have no impact on the religious zealots who want to kill all the non-believers and then end the world for Jesus, but I hope if there are people out there who might think this trash is worth teaching, they will think twice about what the mind of man has created. God was created by ancient sheep herders who feared everything because they knew nothing. Apparently, Ben Stein prefers their fear to the light of knowledge. It is pitiful. [Emphasis added.]
I have to say, if Tommy Ray (the author of this clearly intelligent rant) is what evolution has to offer then this world is in worse shape than any of us thought. Actually, the ancients believed in God because they knew God and feared God. After reading the above paragraph, who do you think is a zealot? Responses like the above paragraph are certain to aid the religion of Darwinism.
Thanks Tommy for stopping by. You made the front page of my blog, now you are living the dream!
Here’s what evolution has us looking forward to: Domo Arigato: Hooker Roboto:
If you’re younger than 35, you’ll probably live long enough to put David Levy’s prediction to the test. Levy says that by 2050 we’ll be creating robots so lifelike, so imbued with human-seeming intelligence and emotions, as to be nearly indistinguishable from real people. And we’ll have sex with these robots. Some of us will even marry them. And it will all be good.
Levy lays out his vision of a Brave New Carnal World in Love and Sex With Robots: The Evolution of Human-Robot Relationships, which, despite its extended riffs on sex toys through the ages, is a snigger-free book. Levy’s no Al Goldstein. Rather he’s a 62-year-old British chess master turned artificial-intelligence expert persuaded that robot sex can brighten the lives of many, many unhappy people. “Great sex on tap for everyone, 24/7,” he writes on the final page of the book. What’s not to like?
Even though I found it on Amazon, I still think this might be a joke. I guess the upside to it is that probably only Darwinists will be curious enough to try it, and if they do, the theory will prove true as their line of the human species will soon become extinct. (Oh, I’m just joking fellas. Don’t go and get your DNA in an uproar. PS–the comments at the article are priceless!)
PS-here’s what Amazon.com says about the author David Levy:
“David Levy is an internationally recognized expert on artificial intelligence. He is president of the International Com-puter Games Association and in 1997 led the team that won the Loebner Prize—the world championship for conversational computer software. In 2006 he became the first person ever to present papers on intimate relationships with robotic partners at an international conference. He is also the author of Robots Unlimited. Levy lives in London with his wife, Christine, and their cat.”
This is someone who really knows how to put his intelligence to good use. Does it say he was the first to ‘present papers on intimate relationships with robotic partners at an international conference’?? What a distinction! Let’s hope to God he is the LAST to do so! That is a scholars convention that must have been a real doozy! How lonely must a person be to even desire sex with a robot? How degenerate is a culture where such ideas are even considered, let alone published? Seriously, this must be some sort of joke. We might have to change Scripture a bit from ‘lust of the eyes, the lust of the flesh and the pride of life’ to something like the ‘lust of circuit boards, the lust of metal, and the pride of life’ (some things will never change.) This has to be a joke.
I have posted many thoughts about evolution and its impact on the general population of the world. I’d like to share someone else’s thoughts tonight. These thoughts concern how replacing the Creator with evolution has destroyed our understanding of sin. Consider:
The basic reason why our modern Western culture has lost the concept of sin is that the reality of the true Creator-God has been abandoned. The basic reason why all nonbiblical philosophies and religions lack a true concept of sin is that none includes the concept of a Creator-God whose will is law. The doctrine of ex nihilo creation and the doctrine of sin are thus inseparable; sin is a meaningful concept only in the light of the fact of creation. (Jack Cottrell, The Faith Once For All, 168)
. . .
Why is the denial of personal guilt such a widespread phenomenon today? As we have noted, the very idea of sin presupposes the existence of law, which presupposes the existence of a transcendent Creator-God; it also presupposes the reality of human free will. But these are among the very things that are most frequently attacked and denied in our modern world. The Creator-God is replaced by chance evolution, and various forms of secular determinism are constantly used to cancel man’s responsibility for his antisocial behavior. For example, son say that such behavior is due to childhood trauma and other forms of negative environmental conditioning. People are not sinners; they are victims. Others attribute it all to quirks in one’s genes or chromosomes or brain structure; thus we have ‘natural-born’ killers, alcoholics, homosexuals, and adulterers. (Jack Cottrell, The Faith Once for All, 193)
What’s worse is that this is how we train children from day one. Then we act shocked when they live out the realities of a life of no accountability to anyone other than themselves. But we should probably continue teaching children that they are nothing more than the chance configuration of randomly mutated selfish genes (uh, sarcasm alert.)
What I wonder is, how can children be taught accountability (to something higher than the pathetic standards of mere humanity) when they are deliberately not taught about God and are deliberately taught atheism (either by omission or commission.)
One wonders. Or not.
Evidently, the Discovery Institute is fighting back. According to the Christian Post:
The Discovery Institute plans to post a slide show presentation critiquing the online materials from PBS-NOVA’s “Judgment Day: Intelligent Design on Trial” documentary on www.judgingpbs.com.
According to the site:
PBS asserts that the evidence “unequivocally supports [Darwin’s] theory of evolution by natural selection.” Do all scientists who approach biology with an open mind believe that the data “unequivocally” supports Darwin’s view? The following slides show that scientists are increasingly skeptical that natural selection is the primary agent of evolutionary change. Moreover, key postulates of Darwin’s theory – universal common descent, the continuity of life, and transitions in the fossil record – have come under intense scientific scrutiny from a diverse array of fields, including molecular biology, developmental biology, genetics, biochemistry, and paleontology. Some of Darwin’s failed predictions include:
- The failure of evolutionary biology to provide detailed evolutionary explanations for the origin of complex biochemical features;
- The failure of the fossil record to provide support for Darwinian evolution;
- The failure of molecular biology to provide evidence for universal common descent;
- The failure of genetics and chemistry to explain the origin of the genetic code;
- The failure of developmental biology to explain why vertebrate embryos diverge from the beginning of development.
Well, have fun. What is sad is that in this age of enlightenment and erudition and scientific progress there are people still clinging to such antiquated ideas as Darwinian Evolution. I guess we can only hope and pray for those tired souls who grasp at the illogical straw that is Darwinism. Here’s hoping…
Those of you who are interested might trying visiting the new blog Design of Life. Lead blogger is Denyse O’Leary who also blogs at PostDarwinist and Uncommon Descent. I have added this blog to my blogroll as well. Here’s a sampling from one of her first posts. It concerns several myths that are currently propagated by the materialist culture:
– Humans and chimps are 99% genetically identical?
– Christian Europe believed and promoted the idea that the Earth is flat? Debunked here. In reality, the old cosmology pictured Earth as a sphere.
– The US government denies the age of the Grand Canyon? Believe it or not, someone at TIME Magazine was promoting that one. Remember that when you get the subscription renewal notice.
– Oh, and here’s a good one: Religious folk opposed anesthesia in childbirth?
– Isaac Newton was the soul of materialism? Wait till you hear what he had to say about the end of the world …
– And lastly, Charles Darwin invented the idea of evolution? What he invented was unguided materialist evolution. We explain that clearly in The Design of Life. (Prediction: You will soon be awash in nonsense because of the bicentenary of Darwin’s birth.)
If you enjoy The Design of Life, we are sure you will enjoy the blog too. And, if you enjoy the blog, the book will help you get up to speed on the reasons we have started this blog. Here you will read the news about evolution that does NOT support the propaganda that is – increasingly – legislated as the only information you or your kids or grandkids are allowed to learn in tax-supported schools. Why do we call it propaganda? Well, let’s start with the fact that the history of life has – so far – proceeded entirely differently from what Darwin’s theory of evolution would reasonably suggest.
Now, to be sure, I don’t buy the notion that the earth or universe is as old as O’Leary believes (millions upon millions) because I believe in a literal reading of Genesis (without the constraints of misinterpreted genealogies to set dates), but I do think there is something to be said about her careful observations concerning the logical inconsistencies and materialist underpinnings of Darwinian evolution. I think this new blog deserves a chance to get going assuming it will be something substantially different from the (at least) two other blogs she contributes to.
On another note, I read this short article about 10 days ago and forgot about it. Turns out that evolution in humans has been advancing rather more rapidly than scientists had previously thought:
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Human evolution has been moving at breakneck speed in the past several thousand years, far from plodding along as some scientists had thought, researchers said on Monday.
Then there is this:
For example, Africans have new genes providing resistance to malaria. In Europeans, there is a gene that makes them better able to digest milk as adults. In Asians, there is a gene that makes ear wax more dry.
The changes have been driven by the colossal growth in the human population — from a few million to 6.5 billion in the past 10,000 years — with people moving into new environments to which they needed to adapt, added Henry Harpending, a University of Utah anthropologist.
“The central finding is that human evolution is happening very fast — faster than any of us thought,” Harpending said in a telephone interview.
“Most of the acceleration is in the last 10,000 years, basically corresponding to population growth after agriculture is invented,” Hawks said in a telephone interview.
Kind of makes you wonder what else scientists have been wrong about, doesn’t it? Oh, yes, I know. All this shows is that science is self-correcting. And I am glad they are. It is amazing to me that science, as it continues to improve and correct, keeps coming closer and closer to the Scriptural revelation. I wonder how many years it will take for science to evolve out of the silly idea of Materialist Darwinian evolution?
Isn’t it amazing how much we have changed in the past 10,000 years since God created us?
PS–BTW, I accidentally watched this last night. I thought you might like to see one of the proponents of Darwinism:
Perhaps we can all learn a little wisdom from Phoebe in these scenes. But it is funny how she puts Ross in his place. (I can’t believe I’m putting a Friends video on my blog.)
I have blogged here a bit concerning the stupidity and inanity of Darwinism (not to mention its utter unbelievability and un-provability and, well, you get the point). Well, I came across an interesting post at Uncommon Descent this evening by Denyse O’Leary that poses the question: What would happen to science if Darwin ceased to be God? If you have visited here before and debated with me about Darwinism or agreed with me that Darwinism is bunk, no matter which side of the proverbial aisle you are on, you should visit this link and follow this blog post. Here’s a taste:
2. If the hold of the materialist atheists is broken, we will see evidence restored to its rightful place as the hallmark of science. Instead of hearing empty rhetoric like “Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution”, we will hear “Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evidence.” How will this affect research? Well, for one thing, people will be able to follow the evidence without fear of losing their positions. That will – necessarily – lead to the discovery that many materialist truisms are poorly supported. Honest discussions will be possible again. I reasonably believe that advances in knowledge will result.
If you wish to follow at O’Leary’s blog you can link here. I’m very interested to see how all this pans out in the course of the post and replies. I hope she has more to say on this question. What if the ends and the means of scientists were no longer Darwinian evolution, but rather something useful and hopeful? What if Darwinists escaped from the circular reasoning they so often accuse Christians of? What if there was truly room in this world for dialogue on the issues of what the ‘evidence’ really means? I dare say it might actually be a fun place to live.
Some want humanity to be captured in their web and under their control whether it is the strident Global Warming activist or the ardent Darwinist. This is not good for thinking people. However, there is hope:
Darwinism is in its evidential, mathematical, intellectual, philosophical, and ethical death throes — thus all the hysteria on the part of its adamant proponents, whose meaning in life (or lack thereof) is inextricably linked to it.
Sad it is for the Darwinist whose only link to life is a lie. Sad that their only life is in something already dead.
“But as for me, I know that my Redeemer lives, and that in the end He will stand upon the earth.” (Job 19:25)
You may not visit there often, so I’ll provide a link back. You really should read this post at Uncommon Descent: The Science Rule the Christian Darwinist Forgot by Denyse O’Leary. She concludes:
Here is one project he doesn’t want: We just look at the accumulated evidence for the history of life on this planet and ask a simple question: If Darwin’s theory did not exist and was not now the subject of a huge academic industry, would anyone suppose that it explained the Cambrian explosion? The subsequent punctuated history of life? The rise of consciousness?
Darwin’s theory is supported in order to prop up materialism, and otherwise has very little use.
She is writing to Scientists who happen to be Christians and try to shuffle God and Science into separate corners and allow them to have no contact with one another. I’m not sure I get all that she is saying, but I agree with the conclusion. Darwinism exists to serve the purposes of those who serve it and not because it is absolutely, empirically demonstrable or viable. It is a belief of convenience.
I don’t say it enough, but I really appreciate the work being done at Uncommon Descent. I’m not always in-step with the whole ID theory because I am what some would call, sometimes pejoratively, a Creationist. But, the work they do to show the logical inconsistencies and the historical absurdities and the biological impossibilities of Darwinism is greatly needed in this world. Give them a visit if you get an extra minute or two or three. The site is updated frequently by many different contributors.
PS–If Darwinism didn’t exist, would we have to invent it?
I think you will appreciate this: Is Belief in Divine Creation Rational? This is a lecture by David Anderson. I’m piggybacking on a post by William Dembski at Uncommon Descent. I listened to about the first 15 minutes online then downloaded it to my mp3. So far, I’m impressed. I think you will be too.
You may also want to read this: Evolutionary Hymn by CS Lewis.
And I know you will find this intriguing: If Neo-Darwinism Fails, then What? I too hope they put this online as mp3 or transcript. Good Luck!
For some evolutionary humor, check out this Playground Slide Recall.
How about an interview with Anthony Flew?
Finally, Can Public Schools Be “Neutral”?
Have fun with all this. Hmm. Perhaps the atheist and the Darwinist do not have a monopoly on knowledge after all.