Alright. In your link that is titled “God doesn’t guide evolution” you make the fundamental mistake of claiming that “If an omniscient god guided evolution, the enzyme DNA polymerase wouldn’t make mistakes” This is an unwarranted claim and is assuming that God cannot be sovereign over the mutation process in evolutionary adaptation. I would simply ask you why do these “mistakes” ensure that God has no part in it? Even still, mutation accounts for a very small percentage of evolutionary adaptations, the vast majority are due to selection pressures.
I agree; selection does play a greater role in the evolutionary process. However, there is nothing fundamental about the “mistake” I have made. Error is opposed to omniscience. The enzyme DNA polymerase is simply one part of Evolution that reveals a natural process. The fossil record is another:
“Many people were scandalized — some still are — at both ideas, evolution and natural selection. Our ancestors looked at the elegance of life on Earth, at how appropriate the structures of organisms are to their functions, and saw evidence for a Great Designer. The simplest one-celled organism is a far more complex machine than the finest pocket watch. And yet pocket watches do not spontaneously self-assemble, or evolve, in slow stages, on their own, from, say, grandfather clocks. A watch implies a watchmaker. There seemed to be no way in which atoms and molecules could somehow spontaneously fall together to create organisms of such awesome complexity and subtle functioning as grace every region of the Earth. That each living thing was specially designed, that one species did not become another, were notions perfectly consistent with what our ancestors with their limited historical records knew about life. The idea that every organism was meticulously constructed by a Great Designer provided a significance and order to nature and an importance to human beings that we crave still. A Designer is a natural, appealing and altogether human explanation of the biological world. But, as Darwin and Wallace showed, there is another way, equally appealing, equally human and far more compelling: natural selection, which makes the music of life more beautiful as the aeons pass.
The fossil evidence could be consistent with the idea of a Great Designer; perhaps some species are destroyed when the Designer becomes dissatisfied with them, and new experiments are attempted on an improved design. But this notion is a little disconcerting. Each plant and animal is exquisitely made; should not a supremely competent Designer have been able to make the intended variety from the start? The fossil record implies trial and error, an inability to anticipate the future, features inconsistent with an efficient Great Designer (although not with a Designer of a more remote and indirect temperament).”
Carl Sagan (Cosmos, Chapter II, p. 18, 19)
Evolution is, in fact, a trial and error process. Think of this: Christians, perhaps including yourself, have no problem claiming that god answers prayers, works miracles, causes one to speak in tongues or to interpret them; however, a question must be raised: why would god reveal himself in such trivial manners — via unreliable third-party or eyewitness accounts? Why doesn’t he reveal himself more clearly in something like the evolutionary process or in the workings of the cosmos? Such a revelation would be less trivial and more befitting of his goal in 1 Timothy 2:4. Placing a god in the midst of naturalistic processes takes some kind of faith — stubborn faith I might add.
In your link titled “Astronomy” You seem to be interpreting the scripture as if it were a literal text book rather that how actual Biblical scholars interpret it, as a poetic story. Terms like “earth” and “heavens” don’t carry the same meaning as they do now. The simple fact that the earth is described as “formless” should tell us that the term “earth” is being simply to describe the material world and not the planet earth as you interpret it. You simply have a misunderstanding in how to read texts from antiquity.
Correction: some, perhaps most, of your brethren misunderstand the Bible. My response to a literalist view doesn’t mean that I’m a proponent of the view. Though there are examples that are literal, I would not argue that the entire Bible is to be taken literally; for instance, there’s nothing literal about apocalyptic literature. I’ll expound on that below.
With that in mind, your link entitled “The Kuiper and Asteroid Belts” assumes the same thing as the last link. So again I would ask, why does the existence of the remnants of unformed planets have any bearing on whether or not God is responsible for them? You then say “Shouldn’t mankind be protected from possible mass extinction?” To which I would respond, we have been thus far. That’s like saying “why would you have children if they could possibly die?” The existence of dangers in no way serves as evidence of the absence of God.
The remnants of unformed planets serve as evidence for a naturalistic process. Furthermore, planets are forming as we speak. What reason and what purpose does your god have for creating this new planet? Naturalistic, ongoing, recurring processes are inconsistent with a Creator. Perhaps this question would make it clearer: if all that was said to be created can arise from naturalistic processes, how does one distinguish created objects from naturally occurring objects? Again, the notion of a Creator is absurd.
Yes, we have avoided extinction thus far. While I agree that the existence of dangers doesn’t lead to the absence of a god, it does lead to the absence of an intelligent designer. We do not design our children and if we had the power to, we would protect our children from all manners of harm. An omnipotent god would be able to do that. We have enough problems on our own, namely nuclear and biological weapons, natural disasters, etc. Why would an intelligent designer add black holes, rogue planets, asteroids, hypervelocity stars, gamma ray bursts, the Red Giant phase of our Sun, and the inevitable collision with the Andromeda Galaxy? Once again, these variables are better explained naturally; a Creator god fails to address these factors.
Your link entitled “The Evidence for the Big Bang” assumes that the Big Bang is incongruent with the existence of God. I think that is silly, and like most of your scientific evidence assumes that simply because science can explain it that God has no hand in it. It is assuming it’s own consequent and thus begs the question. It is assuming that God simply cannot be sovereign without showing why that is the case.
The notion of god being sovereign without demonstrating why that is the case is a faith based and ultimately weak assertion. The God of the Bible is an egomaniac. Hiding his hand or (in giving you the benefit of the doubt) making it difficult to see his hand is inconsistent with the character we come across in the Bible. In the Bible we get a jealous, glory-seeking, glory-demanding god; in nature, we get a bashful god that is defended by them who believe he exists. In the Bible, we get a god that proved his power; in the modern day, we are fully capable of living as if there is no god whatsoever. For the record, modern day miracle claims, exorcisms, faith healing, etc are fraudulent or relayed via third-party and/or eyewitness accounts — unreliable hearsay. How do you explain the sudden change in god’s attitude — an impossible change given that he is immutable?
Your link entitled “The Star of Revelation 8” makes some pretty bold claims that I think are completely unwarranted. Claims like that term “star” can only mean one of two things, angel or astronomical star. I think you are misunderstanding the point of the Book of Revelation, that being that it is a dream/vision and is not at all literal, it is almost entirely symbolic. With that said, it is quite possible that the start that fell is not at all an astronomical star as you seem to think. It could be taken to be a meteorite that appears as a “shooting star” like most meteorites do. Also, since it is described as landing only on water and not land, it is clearly not a star in the strict black or white sense that you seem to want to interpret it as. Again, it is symbolic, not literal.
I addressed the issue of interpreting the star as a meteorite. The Creator of the universe would know the difference and being that he inspired and/or wrote the Bible, he would make sure to get the details right. Nonetheless, that link serves to refute futurist claims. Futurists are believers who think that the Book of Revelation outlines future events. I agree, the book is symbolic. However, it does not symbolize forthcoming events; it symbolizes past events. With that said, historians generally agree that Wormwood is actually the army of Huns. Others say that the star is Constantine, Origen, or Arius.
Your link entitled “Taxonomy” is (with all due respect) laughable. Simply because the Bible doesn’t mention every species in existence, it cannot be divinely inspired? How does that make sense?
Now you have made my point. As I said previously, you ignore the effectiveness of my argument. I don’t expect the Bible to mention all species; however, I would expect it to mention species unfamiliar to the ancient writers. Unfortunately, that isn’t the case. In the Flood myth, living animals are mentioned in vague detail. There’s no mention of great reptiles or great mammals — animals that existed prior to man. The mention of living animals and animals common in those regions serves as evidence against divine authorship; it clearly shows that the Bible was written by ancient men who knew nothing outside of their available knowledge.
Your “Math of the Flood” link has quite a bit of either ignored information or downright academic dishonesty. The video (which was quite pretentious) claims that the Ark would have had to hold 1 million species and that that number is “generous.” In reality, there are 1,367,555 animal species. 2,175 of which are corals, 85,000 are mollusks, 47,000 are crustaceans, 1,000,000 are insects. 31,000 are fish, 6,433 are amphibians, 9,998 are birds, 68,827 are various invertebrates. Doing the math of the species that would actually need to be in the ark the number of species is (depending upon whether or not we are including insects and arachnids) roughly 14,584 species. Not quite as daunting as the 1 million advertised in the video. The video also assumes it’s own consequent in that it claims that there is no natural way in which the earth could flood, thus it is impossible. Clearly if an omnipotent, sovereign God exists, he could flood the earth.
The Flood is a myth nonetheless. The video does give a generous number. Literalists believe that man existed alongside extinct species such as the dinosaurs. You’re forgetting that today’s species represent .1% of species to ever exist. The other 99.9% of species would have also been on the ark from a literalist perspective. In any case, the myth is perhaps based upon a local flood. That is evidenced by the fact that there are similar flood myths throughout that region (i.e. the Epic of Gilgamesh). The myth was either inspired by a local flood or a byproduct of cultural diffusion. Therefore, it isn’t true and is entirely incompatible with the “word of god”. All of the applications one can now find in the Flood myth were either placed there or reinterpreted by agenda driven zealots (i.e. the dove and the olive branch made to symbolize the holy spirit).
All of your points in the “speaking in tongues” link assumes that tongues is some mystical language when scripture clearly teaches that tongues is merely speaking in a language that the speaker did not previously know. It is a supernatural phenomenon and all of that data was based on cultural happenings that I do not believe to be authentic.
Again, you ignore the effectiveness of the argument. The links clearly demonstrates a non-linguistic phenomena. Glossolalia doesn’t happen in the language regions of the brain, but rather in the emotional regions of the brain. By the way, Paul does mention speaking in the tongues of angels. 1 Corinthians 13:1 draws a distinction between the tongues of men and the tongues of angels. If they are the same tongues, why mention them in disjunction? Therefore, tongues are also a “mystical language” aside from being thought as languages that the speaker did not previously know.
I’ll address your other objections in a following post. In the interest of my followers, I will post it later.