The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #149778 Message #3491500
Posted By: Don Firth
17-Mar-13 - 03:06 PM
Thread Name: Test Your Knowledge of the Bible
Subject: RE: Test Your Knowledge of the Bible
Well, on matters of scientifically proven fact, such as the age of the earth, and matters of evolution, there, Pete, I'm afraid we part company—as do all reasonable, thinking Christians who have not been bamboozled by short-sighted, closed minded fundamentalist beliefs.
Here, for example, is a quote from Richard L. Deem. Deem is an evangelical Christian, and no one who has read his works can reasonable doubt his faith. But he is a thinking Christian, not one who simply accepts what he is told, no matter how far-fetched in relation to observable and verifiable data. He also seems to be aware that most of the supposedly historical data in the Bible is built on allegory and metaphor, not on literal historical fact.
As indicated earlier, the Bible does not fix the age of the earth, contrary to the claims of Answers in Genesis. Historically, their claim comes from the work of James Ussher, Bishop in the Church of Ireland, from 1625 to 1656. Archbishop Ussher took the genealogies of Genesis, assuming they were complete, and calculated all the years to arrive at a date for the creation of the earth on Sunday, October 23, 4004 B.C. Of course, even assuming the method was valid, such an exact date is not possible from the genealogies of the Bible (Ussher assumed all the years the patriarchs lived were exactly 365.25 days long and that they all died the day before their next birthday). There are a number of other assumptions implicit in the calculation. The first, and foremost, assumption is that the genealogies of Genesis are complete, from father to son throughout the entire course of human existence. The second assumption is that the Genesis creation "days" were exactly 24-hours in length. It turns out that both assumptions are false.To ignore the wonders of science and the immenseness of the Cosmos, including the fact that the sun, the earth we live on, and all the planets in the solar system came into being some 4.5 billion years ago, not a minuscule 6,000 years ago; and that man was sculpted from mud from a river bank in a place called the Garden of Eden instead of gradually evolving from one-celled creatures to more complicated forms, finally to emerge as thinking, (hopefully) intelligent beings such as humans—is to reduce an omnipotent, omniscient, and eternal Deity, capable of starting such a long-term process, knowing in advance what the results would be, to the puny status of a mere Wizard.
Ask yourself: is it not possible that God is far wiser, more knowledgeable, and more all-powerful than my puny mind is capable of conceiving?
If God created the entire Universe, would He not make use of the very laws of nature that He, Himself, created to make a particular planet and a particular species? Or do you seriously believe that He would simply wave a magic wand?
Learn to question. It's not a sin, it's a virtue.
P. S. I find no contradictions between known science and the Bible--IF one reads the Bible for what it is: an anthology of religious and philosophical writings, containing religious myths, metaphors, allegories, and, yes, folklore, from which much wisdom may be drawn IF read intelligently and thoughtfully.
To call something a "myth" does not mean the it is untrue. It means that it may very well contain a greater truth than the events it purports to describe. To allow oneself to be bogged down with the minor details of the style in which the story is told is to miss the whole point of the story.