Sep 252007
 

In many discussions across the blogoshere about the existence of God or supernatural entities, the claim is often made that there’s no reason to think that such things exist because there simply is “no evidence”. Those who do think such entities exist are either “delusional” a la Richard Dawkins, or holding such beliefs “without evidence”. In either case, the theist has somehow failed in his or her epistemic duties to retain such beliefs, especially in our modern, scientific world.

But what precisely is the problem? Is it really a case of “no evidence”, meaning that no observation or phenomenon has ever or could ever provide evidence for the existence of God?
If that is what is meant, it would seem to be reasonable to ask for evidence that such a claim is true. But what that evidence would even look like isn’t at all clear. Or maybe what is meant is that there may be some observations that could be seen by some as evidence for the existence of God, but that there are no known principles that can connect that evidence to the conclusion. In its stronger forms, it is added that no one has ever or will ever know of such principles. What evidence there is for such a claim isn’t clear either. Continue reading »

May 192007
 

Isn’t it interesting that 19th century (the great “death of God” era) Darwinian “science” made it possible for Dawkins to become an intellectually fulfilled atheist, but that late 20th century science has made faith and theism more rational and reasonable than ever before in human history (in my opinion)? It’s an interesting turn of events. The “science” in which Dawkins put his atheistic faith turned out to be bogus.

It turns out that the universe did not always exist, and that it began in a flash of light (high-frequency gamma rays, but that’s electromagnetic radiation, just like light, only much more highly energetic). And who would have expected in Darwin’s time that life was not fundamentally based on chemistry, physics, and probability, but on information, information processing, and nano-technology super-machines?

Paul had it all figured out 2,000 years ago when he pointed out in the book of Romans that we are without excuse to disbelieve, because God has made Himself evident in things that are made (i.e., designed), and these things are all around us, especially us, who are fearfully and wonderfully made.

 Posted by at 6:28 pm
Apr 132007
 

Dear Teleological Folks,

I posted the following over at UncommonDescent.com but it is undoubtedly long lost in the comments. I thought it might be of interest here. As some of you may know, I used to be a militant, Dawkins-style atheist. All that changed in 1994 after I bought my five-year-old daughter a cartoon video entitled The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe. Everything went downhill from there as I apostatized from my former religion of atheism. ๐Ÿ™‚ (Yes, it is a religion!)

***

The gap between humans and all other forms of life on the planet — in so many categories that one would have to write many books on the subject — is so profound that it represents the ultimate discontinuity in nature, which is characterized not by seamlessness, but by discontinuities. This is the antithesis of Darwinian philosophy.

As a former atheist, I would suggest that the great divide is not between Catholics and Protestants, but between materialists and those who recognize the uniqueness of humankind (this includes our great capacity for good, and our great capacity for evil). It is only by recognizing our divine origin — which seems increasingly difficult to deny, in my view — that we have any hope of cultivating the good and suppressing the evil. But this requires brutal self-honesty, which is antithetical to the fallen part of our nature referenced above.

These are ultimate issues, and are ultimately the only ones that really matter, because they affect and reflect upon all areas of our lives, which is why the (ID/Darwinism) debate is so heated.

 Posted by at 6:50 pm
Feb 182007
 

Sal’s recent OP about setting up a YC discussion blog got me thinking about the influence and role that philosophical presuppositions play in how one views science and scientific findings, or even in how one defines what science is. As I follow discussion after discussion on various blogsites regarding YEC v OEC v Naturalism, it becomes more and more clear that ones philosophical, theological or metaphysical presuppositions about the world play a very large and defining role is how one arrives at any conclusions about these matters, or even how one views evidence for or against these views. Unfortunately, it also seems to be the case that few will admit to these presuppositions, and try to make the case that they derive their position “purely” from the science itself. However, it doesn’t seem to me that a good case can be made for that position. Continue reading »

Feb 142007
 

In a howling funny ironic letter to the editor of the London Times our favorite foil Richard Dawkins tries to commit humility while accusing theologian Alistari McGrath of hubris and dogamtism. After picking myself up off the floor where I was rolling in laughter, I thought I’d share this little tid-bit with you all here at TB. I don’t know whether to file this under “humor” or “sarcasm”. Either will do. Here’s a little tid-bit from RD’s (humble) letter: Continue reading »

Aug 042006
 

In light of some of our recent discussions, I thought this is interesting.

Alister McGrath
Doubt and the Vain Search for Certainty
2006 –ร…โ€œ Summer

We cannot see God; we cannot touch him; we cannot demand that he give a public demonstration of his existence or character. We know of God only through faith. Yet the human mind wants more. “Give us a sign! Prove it!” It is an age-old problem. Those who heard Jesus’ teaching wanted a sign (Matthew 12:38) — something which would confirm his authority, which would convince them beyond any doubt.
Continue reading »

Jun 242006
 

Mike Gene makes a good argument against Keith Miller’s article Evolutionary Theory And Continuous Creation. However, I think the argument against Miller’s thesis is much simpler than that. But before I get into my rebuttal, am I the only one who is noticing the TE are on the rise to bash ID? You have people like Kenneth Miller, Francis Collins, SC Morris, and now Keith Miller, all advocates God uses Darwinian evolution as a method of creation.

Let’s take a look at Keith Miller’s theological reasoning.

I accept the Bible as authoritative and true in what God intends it to communicate. … The question for the Christian is then – What is the best interpretive framework for any given passage of scripture? I am convinced that the best interpretation of the first chapters of Genesis is a literary one in which neither time nor chronology are part of the intended message.

On what textual basis does he make that determination. Certainly, Genesis contains many literary techniques, including symbolism, metaphors and documentary devices. Although it does not contain specify dates and length of time it does specify the order of creation. There is no indication the creation account is metaphorical. Just as there is no indication to think this paragraph of mine is anything but a straight forward account of my critique of Miller’s quote. The question is why he chose that framework for interpretation. Is it based on his vast knowledge of ancient manuscripts and literary styles and techniques of documents in that period? Or is it base on his commitment to Darwinian evolution and in fear for a crisis in his faith? Continue reading »

Jun 202006
 

Denyse O’Leary just posted on some YEC’s criticism of ID. Well, having had first hand experience with the strident attack from young earth creationists, I can say their criticism toward ID is mild by comparison. I wonder if the strident attack that YEC have toward other Biblical Creationists is not due to an inferiority complex. They have established themselves as the Pope of Biblical Orthodoxy. They will readily acknowledge that many OEC like myself is Biblically sound in many (if not all) other doctrines except the day/age interpretation. For that we are Bible compromisers and adhere to heresy. Although not calling OEC heretics but just promoting heresies, is a distinction without a difference. AiG claims that this is just an inconsistent interpretation of Genesis. Now who is being inconsistent? Doesn’t AiG know (or purposely ignore) that this strident rhetoric will produce a group of young earth followers that makes ‘big bang’โ€š adherence the test of orthodoxy? I know. I’ve been questioned about my salvation due to my acceptance of the big bang theory.

The problem with the YEC charge that OEC are Bible compromisers is arrogant to say the least. They would acknowledge many OEC like John Ankerberg, J.P. Moreland, William Lane Craig, Gleason Archer, and Walter Kaiser is faithful defenders of the Bible other than their inconsistent interpretation of the word YOM in Genesis. YEC can legitimately disagree with these scholars without resorting to name calling. Considering preeminent scholars like Walter Kaiser and Gleason Archer, both knowing eight to ten Old Testament languages.

The creation of the universe is dated in Genesis 1:1 as being “in the beginning.”โ€š Of that we can be as certain as we are of revelation itself. The creation of Adam came six “days”โ€š later, but one must be warned that right there in the first chapters of Genesis the Bible uses the word day with three different meanings: (1) daylight (Gen 1:5), (2) a twenty-four-hour day (Gen 1:14) and (3) an epoch or era, as we use the word in speaking of the “day”โ€š of the horse and buggy or Abraham Lincoln’s “day”โ€š (Gen 2:4; compare the RSV’s “In the day”โ€š with the NIV’s “When”โ€š ). I would opt for the day-age theory, given all that must take place on the sixth “day”โ€š according to the Genesis record. Incidentally, this day-age view has been the majority view of the church since the fourth century, mainly through the influence of Saint Augustine. — Kaiser, W. C. (1997, c1996). Hard sayings of the Bible (Page 103)

You can disagree with it and you can criticize it but to refer to people like this as Bible compromisers? Continue reading »

Jun 192006
 

I will make my comment to Krauze’s post here. I think between the YEC and TE, there is a spectrum of Christian positions on ID. Hugh Ross is a OEC with progressive underpinnings. There are also those who are OEC that does not subscribe to progressive creation. Where we stand in that spectrum is less important than how we view Scripture.

As a fundamentalist I view the Bible as the authoritative and inerrant Word of God. The problem comes from how we interpret that Scripture. Do we interpret it willy-nilly or do we apply certain hermeneutic principles to the perspicuous understanding of that Scripture. In other words, the Scripture was written to be understood and followed by its adherents. In that sense it follows the same construct and literary principles of all other ancient documents. Continue reading »