Evolution vs. Creation

Discussion in 'Religion Archives' started by Boris, May 30, 1999.

  1. Vanden Registered Member

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    14
    Boris,

    I would not agree with you that objectivity is "superior" to faith. They exist, at least for me, as completely different and incomparable things. I tend to agree with whatever science has discovered over the years through objective means, but that does not mean that I have any less faith. If people do not believe what has been objectively shown to be true, they are drawing their opinions from the wrong places, probably misinterpretting something that they were told or that they heard. To those who would say that God has been proven to be non-existent, I can only say that I believe God to be all powerful and all knowing, and this is the one area where I don't think the controversy can be resolved through objective means. You'll understand why I say that if you read my first post in this thread.
     
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  3. Lori Registered Senior Member

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    Yea, the meaning of life is to know WHO we are. Who are you? You need the right perspective to know. Who are you to God? To KNOW Jesus is the meaning of life. To understand that EVERYTHING is done for God's will, whether you or I "cooperate" or not. To KNOW Jesus PERSONALLY and to find God's will in your life. Tiassa, you can KNOW Jesus too. You just have to realize that you can, and want to. You would then understand what I mean. He's real, He's there, right in front of your face. You just WON'T look AT Him. "NO, I'll look ANYWHERE but there, cause I just don't want to know." God is a scary concept until you get to know Him. He's totally cool. Totally loving. A straight shooter with the truth, but isn't that what we want? Yeeeeeeeeees, it is. You can't get this out of a book. I mean the Bible can tell you "You can have a personal relationship with Christ". But you can't have it unless you ALLOW it. It's TOTALLY up to you; you have to make the effort to let Him in. Like I said, He's always there, you just have to realize it, and look at Him, and talk to Him, and then LISTEN. And He will tell you the truth. The meaning of life.

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  5. Lori Registered Senior Member

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    Boris and others,

    Please read these articles, and let me know what you think.....
    http://www.creationism.org/articles/index.htm

    Thanks.

    I particularly like the one called "Could life just happen", BORIS?

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    You may think I'm a nut, but I'm fastened to the strongest bolt in the universe.

    [This message has been edited by Lori (edited March 07, 2000).]

    [This message has been edited by Lori (edited March 07, 2000).]
     
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  7. Boris Senior Member Registered Senior Member

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    Lori,

    When it comes to my view of the universe, "just cause" doesn't come in until we consider the very beginning of the Big Bang. Everything that followed since, as far as I perceive it, did not occur "just 'cause", but as a direct consequence of two things: the original configuration of the universe, and the physical laws that govern it. In my picture, <u>there is indeed a reason WHY for everything</u> except the very existence of the universe.

    Your religion provides you no answer as to that ultimate riddle. It simply says 'just cause God did it'. When asked, "wherefore God?", your answer is 'just cause'. So you tell me how come you claim to know the answer to the question "WHY?"

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    I am; therefore I think.
     
  8. Boris Senior Member Registered Senior Member

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    Rambler,

    Of course I looked at that perspective. And I made a point of intentionally reversing it in my sig. Sure, your very own stream of consciousness is proof enough to you that you, at least in some form, exist. However, if you didn't exist your stream of consciousness wouldn't be there either. Really, the proposition is of the "if and only if" variety, and for some reason everyone else seems to focus their attention on only one direction of the implication.

    (Another reason I reversed it, is because I wanted to make fun of Descartes, whose feeble attempts at rationalizing God and souls, given his genius in other respects, turn my stomach to this day.)

    (Yet another reason my sig is such that it is, is because it helps convey a major point as to my view of the purpose of life: if you "are", and you are able to think, but you neglect that gift -- then you are wasting your life.)

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    I am; therefore I think.
     
  9. Rambler Senior Member Registered Senior Member

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    509
    Lori,
    I believe I tried what you are suggesting. I spoke to god, I got answers...as a consequence of my comms with the almighty I felt evil, inadequete, flawed......so you see not everyone has a positive experience. I haven't given up on the notion of a god in my life but I don't believe that what works for you will work for everyone. Christianity (in all honesty) is an utter let down for me, I can't put it any other way....I wonder if I'll ever find a comfort zone in my beliefs????

    P.S. I am expecting your reply to say that I didn't really find god....but Lori if I didn't find him he didn't want to be found because believe me I looked for a long time....


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    work to LIVE...don't live to WORK.
     
  10. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    37,888
    Lori--

    I already know Jesus. We've got a pretty good understanding: I don't embarrass him with all that kowtowing and hallowed-be-His-naming, and I don't have to argue with the Big Guy. You see, back at the time when I had more hallucinations-cum-religious-visions, just about everybody in the supernatural universe wanted to get hold of me. Those powers that didn't simply knew that the correct aspects of their system would eventually become clear, and that campaigning directly or indirectly--through human beings--reduced faith to a political contest.

    That said, I'm wondering if your post is one of those answers you allege I miss whenever I say you've failed to answer a question. Unfortunately, two-bit grandstanding and sound-biting doesn't cut it as an answer.

    You're sounding just a bit like Langland, as such ... that people shouldn't wonder about God. After all, any legitimate question, and the only answer seems to be an impassioned, sweating, "You, too can know the power of Jee-zuhs!" It reminds me of televangelism, which I think we've agreed is more a hypocritical show of faith than the character of faith itself.

    So punch and preaching aside ... you're sounding just a bit like a snake-oil salesman, or even something darker. "Come inside," you say. Why? "Come inside and find out."

    Wanna cookie, little girl?

    The Jesus reflected by the conditions of your 3/7, 7:07 post (Yea, the meaning of life ....) reminds me more of a guy wearing a dark, hooded sweatshirt, mirrored sunglasses and ratty jeans, driving around the block in a primer-gray Ford van, just waiting for innocence to spill from the schoolyards.

    And that ain't Jesus, insofar as I remember.

    thanx,
    Tiassa

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  11. Boris Senior Member Registered Senior Member

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    1,052
    Tiassa,

    Well, for one the universe and everything in it (including us), <u>is</u> the echo of the Big Bang.

    However, this lends no credence to a suggestion that folk wisdom should contain any information about that proto-event. For example, orbital dynamics of the Solar system you mention affect life on Earth much more directly; yet no folklore ever even began to get them right (beyond mere calendrical tabulation, that is.)

    In general, all knowledge arises either inductively from the environment, or deductively from bits of knowledge obtained inductively. Hence, in a certain sense every sinle culture that ever existed would incorporate references to real phenomena and entities in their folklore -- but such references can only be made to objects that could have been directly observed during that culture's inception, or constructed from such objects. Obviously, no large-scale cosmic phenomenon (especially not one that occurs over geological time or did not leave any readily observable evidence behind) can enter pre-scientific folklore.

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    I am; therefore I think.
     
  12. Boris Senior Member Registered Senior Member

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    1,052
    Vanden,

    When I say that objectivity is superior to faith, I speak of all claims that propose to explain anything about the actual reality you and I inhabit. The statement "God created the universe" really does not have any empirical teeth, and as such does not enter the picture. But what does enter the picture are any statements that claim empirical relevance. Unfortunately, faith never isolates itself to just the stipulaton that God exists; it also inevitably attempts tagging attributes onto God. Such attempts often lead to deeply internalized, yet deeply inconsistent beliefs. See the <A HREF="http://www.exosci.com/ubb/Forum8/HTML/000175.html">Contradictions</A> thread for a discussion of that particular downside of faith. Additionally, faith systems inevitably attempt to provide metaphysical explanations for various phenomena <u>within</u> the universe -- be it the human mind, formation of life, or evolution of knowledge and culture, etc. Such explanations are repugnant to objectivism for two reasons: 1) they never deal with cause-and-effect, and therefore are a) untestable, and b) always inferior to actual causal (scientific) explanations; 2) they, at least for the faithful, are the end of the road -- once you know the answer, you no longer seek to find it (and in fact you actively resist alternatives); as such they are an epistemological dead end and a direct nemesis to science.

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    I am; therefore I think.

    [This message has been edited by Boris (edited March 07, 2000).]
     
  13. Boris Senior Member Registered Senior Member

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    1,052
    Lori,

    If you actually read through my posts on this thread (including replies to other people), you would realize that I had already countered with considerable force every single objection raised in that article. Ah, if only you read my posts with the same enthusiasm you wade through that creationist mental diarrhea... Hey, I can dream, can't I?

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    I am; therefore I think.
     
  14. Pookums Registered Senior Member

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    48
    Hey folks,

    Don't realy have anything to add to the discussion at the moment. I just thought I'd stop by and say 'hi' after a prolonged hiatus that finds me again on the other side of the ocean (this time, the American side). It's nice to see that some of the same hearty debates are taking place.

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    Get your facts first, and then you can distort them as much as you please.
    -Mark Twain



    [This message has been edited by Pookums (edited March 07, 2000).]
     
  15. FyreStar Faithless since 1980 Registered Senior Member

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    229
    I apologize for the off-topic post.

    Boris -
    Your sig. recently came up in this thread, and it sparked my curiosity.. did you read/absorb ideas from the book 'Atlas Shrugged' by Ayn Rand?

    "Whoever you are - you who are alone with my words in this moment, with nothing but your honesty to help you understand - the choice is still open to be a human being, but the price is to start from scratch, to stand naked in the face of reality and, reversing a costly historical error, to declare: 'I am, therefore I'll think.'"
    - John Galt, in his Speech - Part III, Chapter VII (page 973 in my copy)

    Inquisitively,
    FyreStar
     
  16. Boris Senior Member Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    1,052
    Fyrestar,

    Actually, I've never read that book (too much hype...) I happen to have arrived at that particular sig all on my own. Though it's always fascinating to discover someone else who happens to think along exactly the same lines. (Thanks for that bit of info.

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    )

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  17. Lori Registered Senior Member

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    1,065
    Rambler,

    Fooled ya, that WAS Jesus you were talking to. But I think that it's easy to dwell, especially in the beginning, on how "flawed" you feel in His presence. You're forgetting about half of the faith itself in doing that. He knows all about you, every thought, every intent, every dream, every thing. AND HE LOVES YOU MORE THAN ANYTHING. Still. You know, every time I talk to Him I discover another thing about myself that I'm not doing right or thinking straight about, or not really being honest about. Sometimes there are things that I avoid addressing with Him on purpose?????? Does that sound familiar? Why would I do that? Cause deep down you KNOW that no matter how hard it may be to swallow the truth, the truth is what it is. And I'm soooooooooo thankful for that. In a lot of ways, getting saved is difficult. It's hard doing the "right" thing in this world, hard to live for God. People think you're a weirdo! But it's those people that you see Jesus in, and those stories of faith that just bring you to your knees, those are the weirdos you know? That one good, heart-warming story on the news or whatever, in the midst of 6 year old shootings and corrupt politicians and sex and greed, that is weird. All you're really doing is realizing that you're a sinner, which is exactly why Jesus ever even came. It's an ego-thumper, but that's a good thing. It's also a real sense of security and peace to know that given all of that, you are saved by His grace and love alone, and that He walks with you, and that no matter what happens in this life, you have Him to lean on, to have faith in, so you won't "cave", cop-out, so you can fight the good fight. If you can get past your ego, He is an inspiration in the highest capacity ever even imaginable, and He is the greatest and most loving being in the universe. It's trippy!!!!! I do not understand how you can know Him, and then turn your back on Him. I mean, it's not about the religion, it's about HIM.

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    You may think I'm a nut, but I'm fastened to the strongest bolt in the universe.
     
  18. Lori Registered Senior Member

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    1,065
    Tiassa,

    You are totally BENT, man. Don't throw your subjectivity on me. If what you described was the extent of your relationship with Jesus, then I would say that you copped out big time. What's the matter did Satan scare you? Well, I'm surprised you're not scared all the time then. And yea, I'm saying that until you have a relationship with Him, there is no way I could possibly describe it to you to where you would either understand it or believe it. So, what's stopping you from finding out then? Some guy in a van? Are you saying that you're some innocent little victimous child that He will "ensnare"? What? Don't make me call you a wimp.

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  19. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Valued Senior Member

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    Lori--

    Awwww.... whatsamatta?

    Are you incapable of perceiving a relationship with Jesus that doesn't imply the narrow liberties and broad submissions which only reflect our human desires, lacks, and machinations?

    Don't throw my subjectivity .... Get off it. If your interpretations of Jesus are not subjective, which is a normal state for that relationship, then you're simply arbitrary. In that case, watch where you sling it, or else don't wonder why people get fussy when you spatter them arbitrarily.

    It could be that you're just jealous, Lori. Thanks, though, for the assertion that Jesus and I copped out on our potential. I'm sure he just loves that sentiment.

    I can't believe you would insult Jesus just because you don't like how I relate to him.

    Especially you.

    thanx,
    Tiassa

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  20. Lori Registered Senior Member

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    1,065
    Tiassa!

    My relationship with Jesus is NOT subjective. What is subjective is that I can either CHOSE to be closer to Him, or CHOSE not to be. HE is always there. Just like He is for you. Why don't you educate me a little about said relationship. What specifically did this consist of? What do you mean when you said that you got a lot of resistance? Not that I'm surprised, but I'd like to know the details of circumstance. Jesus is THE ONLY THING in the universe that is not subjective. He is the ONE truth, the ONE way, and the ONE light. He is the ONE Saviour, and the fact that you may "disagree" with GOD about some things (irreconcilable differences?) only means that He is a lot smarter than you, and you don't understand everything, nor do I think you really want to. Not from His perspective anyway. Actually, if I were to read between the lines of your post, you are the one who seems "jealous" of Him. Jesus didn't cop out, YOU DID. And you know it. Don't make excuses, this is the meaning of your life we're talking about. Don't you owe it to yourself to try a little harder?

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    You may think I'm a nut, but I'm fastened to the strongest bolt in the universe.
     
  21. Vanden Registered Member

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    14
    I would tend to agree with your argument, exept that you are still holding that creationist views are to be held in the same realm as scientific inquiries. I personally look at the two as entirely different realms. You mention that creationist claims do not deal with cause and effect, but why should they? I don't feel any need to test my faith in God. It is not something that I arrived at through logic, nor do I claim that my faith is logically sound. It is something that I feel within me, not a hypothesis to be tested.

    Oh ya, and the "no longer seek to find it part" is just plain wrong, at least in my case. I think that God created the universe, etc., but that does not mean that I no longer want to try to find out how things work. I do agree that those who do act in the manner you described are nemeses to science, though

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    [This message has been edited by Vanden (edited March 08, 2000).]
     
  22. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Valued Senior Member

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    37,888
    Lori--

    Your narrowmindedness calls a new test of faith: It is easier for a rich man to enter heaven than it is for a new idea to enter Lori's skull.

    Your insistence that you know the answers is borderline heretical. Some of your alleged answers cross that line entirely.

    Stop insisting that the Jesus you subject yourself to is the same everyone else experiences. Such limited thinking only insults the sheer magnitude and detail of the Plan.

    I mean, you seem to think that your opinions are not subjective.

    That's part of what subjective means; it's subject to certain inconsistent considerations.

    So unless you know the answer for every single creature in the Universe, I would advise that you rethink the arrogant assumptions by which you limit your own interactions with the mysteries of the Universe. (A mystery, given a name, is still a mystery. You find a puppy, and name it "Gonzo." Okay, do you know Gonzo? Does it even matter to you what starved him, bruised him, or damaged that ear? Or is he just a mean, bad puppy when he cowers in front of your hand? Bottom line is, you might think you know Gonzo because you can predict his behavior patterns; but you have no idea why he behaves that way. His past, despite his name, is still a mystery.)

    So, you find a God, and call it Jesus ... do you know Jesus? Do you even care how the conditions governing your relationship with Jesus even came to be? Or are you just a mean, bad person when you wonder if that hand is there to hold you close or to crucify you?

    I've said it before: The smarter one is, the less they know about God. See ... that's the fun part; the more you learn, the bigger the mystery gets. Don't be afraid of big questions ... they can only compel you to seek large answers.

    thanx,
    Tiassa

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    The whole business with the fossilized dinosaur eggs was a joke the paleontologists haven't seen yet. (Good Omens, Gaiman & Pratchett)
     
  23. Unicron Registered Member

    Messages:
    27
    Creation and the Candidates!

    Discover where the U.S. presidential candidates stand on Creation/Evolution

    Late last month (27 February), Republican presidential candidate Alan Keyes spoke at the University of Virginia and declared his support for teaching creation in public schools. On the same day, at a Northern Virginia high school, he also stated that evolution "masquerades as science," and is taught in a "dogmatic fashion" (from a C-SPAN audio clip).

    Although AiG is not necessarily in favor of mandating that teachers must teach both creation and evolution (we believe they already have the academic freedom to do so), other presidential candidates have been speaking out on creation/evolution in public schools. (By the way, Dr. Gary Parker of Answers in Genesis was interviewed by Mr. Keyes on his national talk-show program more than a year ago, where Mr. Keyes revealed his creationist beliefs.)

    George W. Bush on November 3 (according to Reuters news) said that he thinks schools should teach "different forms of how the world was formed," with evolution taught alongside creation. This echoes the same sentiments he expressed in late August after the state school board of Kansas came under fire for mildly de-emphasizing the teaching of evolution in its state schools. Bush said then: "I believe children ought to be exposed to different theories about how the world started." A Bush spokeswoman, Mendy Tucker, was quoted by Reuters as saying Bush "believes both creationism and evolution ought to be taught. He believes it is a question for states and local school boards to decide, but he believes both ought to be taught."

    We are attempting to research any firm opinion that may have been expressed by the other major Republican candidate, Senator John McCain. Back in August (according to Reuters), he took no particular position on creation versus evolution, but said that the decision of what to teach in schools should be left to local authorities.

    On the Democratic side of the presidential race, Vice-president Al Gore -- who has actually written in favor of evolutionary ideas (see his book "Earth in the Balance") -- at one time said that local authorities have the right to teach creation, according to spokesman Alejandro Cabrera (Reuters, August 26). Cabrera continued: "Localities should be free to decide to teach creationism as well." Mr. Gore later in the week shifted his position to say that creationism could be taught in the context of religion classes, not science classes (according to "Education Week," September 8, 1999). Then a spokesperson said that Mr. Gore believed that the Kansas decision was "a mistake, and he opposes it" (according to a humanist Web site).

    We are still researching the views of Senator Bill Bradley, the other major Democratic contender, but it appears that he is a very strong supporter of teaching evolution in schools.

    On the Reform ticket, Pat Buchanan is reported to support the idea that children should be taught that the universe was created by God, but he left the door open to "theistic evolution" when he told Reuters in a telephone interview: "What I do object to is to teach Darwin's theory of evolution of human beings from animals without divine intervention." Apparently, Mr. Buchanan believes that students should be taught a third view of origins: that God could have used evolution to bring about the higher forms of life (i.e., the so-called "compromise view" of theistic evolution).

    ---


    Over the years, many people have challenged me with a question like:

    ‘I’ve been trying to witness to my friends. They say they don’t believe the Bible and aren’t interested in the stuff in it. They want real proof that there’s a God who created, and then they’ll listen to my claims about Christianity. What proof can I give them without mentioning the Bible so they’ll start to listen to me?’

    Briefly, my response is as follows.

    Evidence

    Creationists and evolutionists, Christians and non-Christians all have the same evidence — the same facts. Think about it: we all have the same earth, the same fossil layers, the same animals and plants, the same stars — the facts are all the same.

    The difference is in the way we all interpret the facts. And why do we interpret facts differently? Because we start with different presuppositions. These are things that are assumed to be true, without being able to prove them. These then become the basis for other conclusions. All reasoning is based on presuppositions (also called axioms). This becomes especially relevant when dealing with past events.

    Past and present

    We all exist in the present — and the facts all exist in the present. When one is trying to understand how the evidence came about (Where did the animals come from? How did the fossil layers form? etc.), what we are actually trying to do is to connect the past to the present.

    However, if we weren’t there in the past to observe events, how can we know what happened so we can explain the present? It would be great to have a time machine so we could know for sure about past events.

    Christians of course claim they do, in a sense, have a ‘time machine’. They have a book called the Bible which claims to be the Word of God who has always been there, and has revealed to us the major events of the past about which we need to know.


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    On the basis of these events (Creation, Fall, Flood, Babel, etc.), we have a set of presuppositions to build a way of thinking which enables us to interpret the evidence of the present.

    Evolutionists have certain beliefs about the past/present that they presuppose, e.g. no God (or at least none who performed acts of special creation), so they build a different way of thinking to interpret the evidence of the present.

    Thus, when Christians and non-Christians argue about the evidence, in reality they are arguing about their interpretations based on their presuppositions.

    That’s why the argument often turns into something like:

    ‘Can’t you see what I’m talking about?’

    ‘No, I can’t. Don’t you see how wrong you are?’

    ‘No, I’m not wrong. It’s obvious that I’m right.’

    ‘No, it’s not obvious.’ And so on.

    These two people are arguing about the same evidence, but they are looking at the evidence through different glasses.


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    It’s not until these two people recognize the argument is really about the presuppositions they have to start with, that they will begin to deal with the foundational reasons for their different beliefs. A person will not interpret the evidence differently until they put on a different set of glasses — which means to change one’s presuppositions.

    I’ve found that a Christian who understands these things can actually put on the evolutionist’s glasses (without accepting the presuppositions as true) and understand how they look at evidence. However, for a number of reasons, including spiritual ones, a non-Christian usually can’t put on the Christian’s glasses — unless they recognize the presuppositional nature of the battle and are thus beginning to question their own presuppositions.

    It is of course sometimes possible that just by presenting ‘evidence’, you can convince a person that a particular scientific argument for creation makes sense ‘on the facts’. But usually, if that person then hears a different interpretation of the same evidence that seems better than yours, that person will swing away from your argument, thinking they have found ‘stronger facts’.

    However, if you had helped the person to understand this issue of presuppositions, then they will be better able to recognize this for what it is — a different interpretation based on differing presuppositions — i.e. starting beliefs.

    As a teacher, I found that whenever I taught the students what I thought were the ‘facts’ for creation, then their other teacher would just re-interpret the facts. The students would then come back to me saying, ‘Well sir, you need to try again.’

    However, when I learned to teach my students how we interpret facts, and how interpretations are based on our presuppositions, then when the other teacher tried to reinterpret the facts, the students would challenge the teacher’s basic assumptions. Then it wasn’t the students who came back to me, but the other teacher! This teacher was upset with me because the students wouldn’t accept her interpretation of the evidence and challenged the very basis of her thinking.

    What was happening was that I had learned to teach the students how to think rather than just what to think. What a difference that made to my class! I have been overjoyed to find, sometimes decades later, some of those students telling me how they became active, solid Christians as a result.

    Debate terms

    If one agrees to a discussion without using the Bible as some people insist, then they have set the terms of the debate. In essence these terms are:


    ‘Facts’ are neutral. However, there are no such things as ‘brute facts’; all facts are interpreted. Once the Bible is eliminated in the argument, then the Christians’ presuppositions are gone, leaving them unable to effectively give an alternate interpretation of the facts. Their opponents then have the upper hand as they still have their presuppositions — see box below.


    Truth can/should be determined independent of God. However, the Bible states: The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom (Psalm 111:10); The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge (Proverbs 1:7). But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned (1 Corinthians 2:14).

    A Christian cannot divorce the spiritual nature of the battle from the battle itself. A non-Christian is not neutral. The Bible makes this very clear: The one who is not with Me is against Me, and the one who does not gather with Me scatters (Matthew 12:30); And this is the condemnation, that the Light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than the Light, because their deeds were evil (John 3:19).

    Agreeing to such terms of debate also implicitly accepts their proposition that the Bible’s account of the universe’s history is irrelevant to understanding that history!

    Ultimately, God’s Word convicts

    1 Peter 3:15 and other passages make it clear we are to use every argument we can to convince people of the truth, and 2 Cor. 10:4-5 says we are to refute error (like Paul did in his ministry to the Gentiles). Nonetheless, we must never forget Hebrews 4:12: For the word of God is living and powerful and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing apart of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

    Also, Isaiah 55:11: So shall My word be, which goes out of My mouth; it shall not return to Me void, but it shall accomplish what I please, and it shall certainly do what I sent it to do.

    Even though our human arguments may be powerful, ultimately it is God’s Word that convicts and opens people to the truth. In all of our arguments, we must not divorce what we are saying from the Word that convicts.

    Practical application

    When someone tells me they want ‘proof’ or ‘evidence’, not the Bible, my response is as follows:

    ‘You might not believe the Bible but I do. And I believe it gives me the right basis to understand this universe and correctly interpret the facts around me. I’m going to give you some examples of how building my thinking on the Bible explains the world and is not contradicted by science. For instance, the Bible states that God made distinct kinds of animals and plants. Let me show you what happens when I build my thinking on this presupposition. I will illustrate how processes such as natural selection, genetic drift, etc. can be explained and interpreted. You will see how the science of genetics makes sense based upon the Bible.’


    One can of course do this with numerous scientific examples, showing how the issue of sin and judgment, for example, is relevant to geology and fossil evidence. And how the Fall of man, with the subsequent Curse on creation, makes sense of the evidence of harmful mutations, violence and death.

    Once I’ve explained some of this in detail, I then continue:

    ‘Now let me ask you to defend your position concerning these matters. Please show me how your way of thinking, based on your beliefs, makes sense of the same evidence. And I want you to point out where my science and logic are wrong.’

    In arguing this way, a Christian is:

    Using biblical presuppositions to build a way of thinking to interpret the evidence.


    Showing that the Bible and science go hand in hand.1


    Challenging the presuppositions of the other person (many are unaware they have these).


    Forcing the debater to logically defend his position consistent with science and his own presuppositions (many will find that they cannot do this).


    Honouring the Word of God that convicts the soul.

    Remember, it’s no good convincing people to believe in creation, without also leading them to believe and trust in the Creator/Redeemer, Jesus Christ. God honours those who honour His Word. We need to use God-honouring ways of reaching people with the truth of what life is all about.

    Naturalism, Logic and Reality

    Those arguing against creation may not even be conscious of their most basic presupposition, one which excludes God a priori, namely naturalism/materialism (everything came from matter, there is no supernatural, no prior creative intelligence).2 The following two real-life examples highlight some problems with that assumption:

    1) A young man approached me at a seminar and stated, ‘Well, I still believe in the "big bang", and that we arrived here by chance random processes. I don’t believe in God.’ I answered him, ‘Well, then obviously your brain, and your thought processes, are also the product of randomness. So you don’t know whether it evolved the right way, or even what right would mean in that context. Young man, you don’t know if you’re making correct statements or even whether you’re asking me the right questions.’

    The young man looked at me and blurted out, ‘What was that book you recommended?’ He finally realized that his belief undercut its own foundations —such ‘reasoning’ destroys the very basis for reason.

    2) On another occasion, a man came to me after a seminar and said, ‘Actually, I’m an atheist. Because I don’t believe in God, I don’t believe in absolutes, so I recognize that I can’t even be sure of reality.’ I responded, ‘Then how do you know you’re really here making this statement?’ ‘Good point,’ he replied. ‘What point?’ I asked. The man looked at me, smiled, and said, ‘Maybe I should go home.’ I stated, ‘Maybe it won’t be there.’ ‘Good point,’ the man said. ‘What point?’ I replied.

    This young man certainly got the message. If there is no God, ultimately, philosophically, how can one talk about reality? How can one even rationally believe that there is such a thing as truth, let alone decide what it is?

    Ed. Note: for more information on formal logic and the Christian faith, see Loving God With All Your Mind: Logic and Creation.

    Notes


    In fact, science could avoid becoming still-born only in a Christian framework. Even secular philosophers of science are virtually unanimous on this. It required biblical presuppositions such as a real, objective universe, created by one Divine Lawgiver, who was neither fickle nor deceptive — and who also created the mind of man in a way that was in principle capable of understanding the universe. [Ed. note: Refuting Evolution, Ch. 1, discusses this in more detail] Return to text.


    This assumption is even defended, as a ‘practical necessity’ in discussing scientific things including origins, by some professing Christians who are evolutionists. Return to text.




    [This message has been edited by Unicron (edited March 08, 2000).]
     

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