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Messages - Tom Eckstein

#1
Quote from: SomeoneWrites on June 10, 2024, 01:30:14 PM
Quote from: Tom Eckstein on June 10, 2024, 12:32:10 PM
Quote from: SomeoneWrites on June 09, 2024, 02:51:32 AM
Quote from: Tom Eckstein on June 08, 2024, 10:07:06 PMSomewrites, I have a sincere and honest question for you that I will clarify below (and others are welcome to comment as well):

First and foremost, and I gotta get this out.  THANK YOU for asking how I feel/think, and not telling me how I feel/think.  May seem like I'm making a big deal out of it, but it's important to me - and I want to be clear that I appreciate it.  side story - went to a dentist and got a tooth pulled and he didn't wait for the shot to kick in and started going at it and said "you may feel some pressure."  It hurt like hell, and i said "that's PAIN."  He corrected me and said "no, it's just pressure."  Now imagine two or three nurses telling you that the word "pain" isn't the right word.  I hope you understand what I'm getting at.
Been here for years with great discourses even in disagreement, and I hope to continue that with you and others.  Again, thank you.   

Quote from: Tom Eckstein on June 08, 2024, 10:07:06 PMSomewrites, I have a sincere and honest question for you that I will clarify below (and others are welcome to comment as well):
Someonewrites, if I understand your postion correctly,  even though you are open to consider evidence for "God" (that is, a personal being or mind separate from space/time/matter), at this point your default position is atheism and that means, if I understand you correctly, you assume "materialism" (that reality is made up of impersonal space/time/matter with no separate Mind) is your view of reality until convinced otherwise.  Correct?
Close, and we're probably gonna have to work to clarify positions further on this.  I would say I'm willing to be convinced of "God." I'm open to it.  I am not convinced there are any Gods.  I'm not convinced that there is any supernatural anything.  I would say I EXPERIENCE materialism, and if I've experienced anything supernatural, I've not recognized it as such.  I used to think I was connected to the supernatural, but I never witnessed anything I'd call miraculous.  That wasn't lynch pin.  I wrote it off as a samuel thing (ie "in those days there were not many signs", etc).   But in my material experience, I understand the mind to be part of matter.  I don't really separate the two. It's still a part of chemistry and physics.  An analogy would be like the 0's and 1's on a computer memory.  The key difference is that I don't think minds were designed.  they're an emergent property. 



Quote from: Tom Eckstein on June 08, 2024, 10:07:06 PMIf my above understading of your position is correct, then my question for you is this:  If your default position is athiesm and, therefore, materialism, then do you agree that any experience you have whereby you are reflecting on the nature of reality is actually a meaningless illusion and nothing more than the meaningless result of the random interactions of a myriad of mindless molecules?  Therefore, if your default position is materialism, then we are waisting our time believing we are having meaninful discussions on this forum since any thoughts or assertions we may have are the meaningless result of the random interactions of a myriad of mindless molecules, correct?
I don't think meaningless or illusion are the correct words, and I'll work to find words that better express what I think it is.  I don't think everything is relative - but I think some things are relative and some things can be described as objective.  I don't think I have an objective meaning in this world, but there is relative meaning.  In the same way we can invent currency and attribute it value.  It's meaningful to me.  I value it.  And, for me, that's sufficient.  We could posit a deist clockmaker God that started us and wandered off, leaving us on our own - of no value to this God.  Things would still be meaningful to me.  This God is just as possible as any other. 
At the end of the day, I still have thoughts, feelings, meanings and memories.  I can share them.  I can hear the mind of others and grow from that.  I'm still HAVING those experiences and such - in an objective reality.   


Quote from: Tom Eckstein on June 08, 2024, 10:07:06 PMHowever, if you want to assert that our discussions have objective meaning, then for that assertion to be meaningful you must assume a personal and rational and meaningful "God" or "Mind" outside of space/time/matter as the source of our meaningful assertions about reality, correct?

In other words, in order for you to have any kind of meaningful discussion with us, you must deny your atheism and, at least, assert the existense of a personal "Mind" who is separate from and the cause of space/time/matter.  Correct?
I don't think there needs to be a source.  The only minds could be yours and mine and we could still have a discussion.  We could still have things we value and care about. We would still have experiences, thoughts, feelings, emotions, physical pain, etc.  Even if it was illusory, I would still have the sense data.  You could tell me something is illusory, but I'd still have the experience - which is why I make a big deal about people telling me what I'm experiencing.  Call it an illusion all you want, but don't tell me I'm not experiencing it. 


Quote from: Tom Eckstein on June 08, 2024, 10:07:06 PMSomeone, what are your thoughts on this?  If I understand your position correctly, I've always wondered how atheists who assert the objective reality of materialism due to the supposed lack of evidence for theism (irony?) can justify that their assertion has any meaning or purpose.
I'm experiencing the material world.  Or at least, I'm recognizing my interactions with a material world.  I'm convinced God would know what it would take to convince me about anything else - and if He's there, he's either not willing or able to do it.  Both of those are possibilities.
I don't want to get in a presupposition discussion, but we can presuppose any deity and any of those deities can be a source of an outside meaning or purpose.  Until it's clear for everyone, it's not really much help to me.  I would be just taking one group's assertions of that meaning over another one. 

I'm NOT here to shift or persuade anyone to be atheist.  I'm not here to plant distrust in God, Jesus, Scripture etc.  Any of the things I've brought forth are things other Christians believe and accept and still adore everything I just mentioned a sentence ago. 

Maybe I've misunderstood your point - about meaning and such...
I don't think I've asserted an overall meaning about anything.  I wouldn't make such an assertion, and none of the atheists I've read/watched/viewed have made such an assertion.   That wouldn't stop us to have experiences that are meaningful to us, and still existing in a material reality. 

I'm down to clarify or discuss.
Thank you again.  Immensely. 





Someonewrites, thanks so much for your response - and I'm sorry I did not respond sooner.  Simply put, between my congregation and two other vacant congregations I've been serving, I've been crazy busy.  In fact, I don't have time to respond to your comments now - but I will try to do so in a few days.  I just didn't want you to think I was ignoring you.

I appreciate that.  All good, zero rush.  Take care of yourself and your congregations.  I'll be around  :)

Allow me to give a brief response.  My main reason for starting this new thread was to give you a chance to explain to me FROM YOUR PERSPECTIVE how you derive any sense of meaning for life when your default position, at this point, is mindless materialism.  Your response was helpful, although I'm not sure I completely understand some points you make.  In any case, thanks for your response.

I guess I'm just trying to get into the atheist's "mind" (ironically), and try to understand how they can believe in an objective "self" when the core of reality, in their view, is the random interaction of a myriad of mindless molecules.  If I understand materialism correctly, there is no supernatural MIND outside of and the cause of space/time/matter and that means any experience of objective self by humans is, by definition, an illusion.  Of course, as a Christian Theist I DO believe there is an ultimate MIND or SELF that is outside of and is the cause of space/time/matter, and as humans created in His image we also have real and objective "minds" and "selves" and so our personal experiences are REAL and actually have meaning.  Again, maybe I just don't understand how atheists can view their experiences as "real" when reality, in their view, is nothing more than the random interaction of a myriad of mindless molecules.
#2
Someone, even though you asserted (without evidence!) that Dr. James tour "is not a respected chemist," here's a excerpt from a linked article showing him as one of the 50 most respected scientists IN THE WORLD!

41. James M. Tour

James M. Tour is a synthetic organic chemist, specializing in nanotechnology and serves as the T. T. and W. F. Chao Professor of Chemistry, Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science, and Professor of Computer Science at Rice University.

Tour earned his Ph.D. in synthetic organic and organometallic chemistry from Purdue University, and conducted his postdoctoral training in synthetic organic chemistry at the University of Wisconsin and Stanford University.

Tour was ranked one of the top 10 chemists in the world over the past decade by Thomson Reuters in 2009. He is best known for his work in molecular electronics and molecular switching molecules. Tour holds more than 60 United States patents, plus many non-US patents.

Tour's most important contributions have been in molecular electronics, which involves nanoscale electronic devices utilizing molecular switiching molecules. His team at Rice has constructed many different kinds of nanoscale elecro-mechanical systems. One of the best know of these is the "nonocar," a nanoscale "automobile."

In 2001, Tour signed the Discovery Institute's statement, "A Scientific Dissent From Darwinism."

Tour has won the ACS Nano Lectureship Award from the American Chemical Society in 2012, the Arthur C. Cope Scholar Award from the American Chemical Society in 2007, and in 2005, Tour's journal article, "Directional Control in Thermally Driven Single-Molecule Nanocars," was ranked the Most Accessed Journal Article by the American Chemical Society.

Tour has over 500 research publications and is active in consulting on several national defense-related topics, in addition to numerous other professional committees and panels. The Houston Chronicle reports that Tour wakes up at 3:30am every morning to study the Bible for two hours.


Here's the link to the full article:  https://robertmarks.org/InTheNews/2020Media/101101-MostInfluentialTheBestSchools.html

#3
Someone, one other thing I should add is that scientists like Stephen Gould (hardly a fan of creation or ID!) admit that gradualism doesn't fit the fossil record and so he and others argued for punctuated equilibrium - simply put, a species splits into two distinct species, rather than one species gradually transforming into another.  Even though Gould and others couldn't explain how such drastic change could happen in such a short amount of time, they admitted that their theory better explained the fossil record.

I would argue, from the assumption that Genesis is true history, that BOTH gradualism and punctuated equilibrium are wrong.  Obviously, I can't "prove" the miracle of creation via empirical investigation.  But those who assert gradualism or punctuated equilibrium can't "prove" what they assert either!  The data can be interpreted in such a way to support special creation or gradualism or punctuated equilibrium - with a great many unanswered questions in every camp.  But the sad fact is that most scientists today refuse to interpret the data outside of their materialist paradigm.
#4
HOW WOULD WE INTERPRET THE DATA IF WE ASSUMED THAT GOD CREATED ALL LIFE FORMS OVER SIX DAYS?

    As an LCMS pastor I believe Genesis 1 (big picture) and Genesis 2 (specifics of day 6) describe God's creation of space/time/matter and life as an historical event within 6 normal days.  He is the Eyewitness to this event, and I believe His testimony (Hebrews 11:1-3).  So, if we assume God's testimony about creation is true, how would we interpret the data that many others observe and yet come to different conclusions about the origin of species?

First of all, since creation as described is Genesis is a miraculous supernatural act, I would not assume that we humans could ever comprehend this miracle through our empirical observations and experiments.  What would be our point of reference?  It's not that God lies to us.  It's that our science - especially concerning past events we can't observe - is extremely limited and there are many things about the universe and life we simply do not comprehend or understand.

Secondly, one prediction I could make based on taking Genesis chapters 1-3 seriously is that there should be MORE variety of life forms in the past and then LESS variety over time based on God's testimony that the Fall cursed this world and resulted in death.  Therefore, even though we can't answer all the questions about the fossil record, what we DO seem to find in the fossil record, based on the truth of Genesis, is a record of EXTINCTION OF VARIOUS SPECIES rather than a record of EVOLUTION FROM A COMMON ANCESTOR.  Obviously, if one is going to rule out the truth of Genesis because one a priori assumes materialism - then one's ONLY option is to assume 1) matter is eternal (for which there is no evidence) and 2) "descent from a common ancestor" even though we don't know how life came from non-life in the first place.  But if one looks at the fossil record with the understanding that Genesis 1-3 is factual history, then what we see in the fossil record fits with what we would expect:  There were MORE variety of life forms in the past and the fossil record can be understood as a record of many EXTINCTIONS.

Now, can we interpret ALL the data (physics; chemistry; biology; sub-atomic theory) in such a way as to "prove" Genesis 1 & 2?  No.  How does one prove a miracle?  How does one "date" a world that was created instantly ex nihilo?  But the fact is that those who assume materialism can't answer all the questions, either, and are forced to interpret the data within their assumed paradigm because they won't allow for any other paradigm!
#5
Quote from: SomeoneWrites on June 10, 2024, 04:48:49 PM
Quote from: Tom Eckstein on June 10, 2024, 04:39:16 PMBelow is a excerpt from a longer article (linked below) by Dr. James Tour (a highly respected and world renowned chemist!) who, along with other scientists, acknowledge that there are huge problems with evolution of life forms understood as "descent from a common ancestor" which is the unquestioned status quo among most scientists today.  His entire article is well worth the read:

    "As a chemist, and one that builds functional molecular nano-systems, I can give some informed input. For several decades I have been building molecular cars with functional motors, wheels, axles and chassis, and molecular nanosubmarines with light-activated motors and fluorescent pontoons, where many parts have to work in unison, and be planned to work in unison during redesign of major features. Even small changes in desired function can send the synthesis all the way back to step 1. In biology, the mechanisms for such transformations are complete mysteries. I posit that the gross chemical changes needed for macroevolution (defined here as origin of the major organismal groups, i.e., of the body plans, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Body_plan) are not understood and presently we cannot even suggest the mechanisms, let alone observe them. Any massive functional change of a body part would require multiple concerted lines of variations. Sure, one can suggest multiple small changes ad infinitum, but the concerted requirement of multiple changes all in the same place and at the same time, is impossible to chemically fathom. One day the requisite chemical basis might become apparent so that the questions can be answered. But present-day biology is far from providing even a chemical proposal for body plan changes, let alone a data-substantiated chemical mechanism.

    Humans alone have the capacity for art, music, advanced communication, advanced mathematics and religious practice, which constitute the broader organization of symbolism. Therefore, if one is intent upon a common descent model, there was a massive and presently unexplainable infusion (intrinsic and/or extrinsic) along the proposed very short descent pathway between australopithecines and modern humans. If it were an intrinsic infusion, then the requisite anatomical or chemical differences between the modern human brain and other hominid brains are presently indiscernible and unfathomable. And the chemical basis of the evolutionary mechanisms for such changes is both unknown and presently immeasurable. If the infusion were extrinsic, then the materialistic evolutionist and the design proponent share common ground.

    Therefore, I do not understand the mechanisms needed to change body plans or the mechanisms along the descent pathway between the australopithecine brain and modern human brains if we were indeed commonly descended as predicted by the theory of universal common descent. Nobody else understands the mechanisms either. Nobody. But I am saying it publicly, hence the arousal of some toward my open comments of skepticism. Recall, evolution is both about the mechanism by which change occurs over time, and the theory of universal common descent. But the mechanisms are unknown and the theory of universal common descent is confronted by issues of uncommonness through ENCODE and orphan gene research. And each year the evidence for uncommonness is escalating."


Here's a link to the full article: https://www.jmtour.com/personal-topics/evolution-creation/

Unfortunately Dr. Tour is not a respected chemist.  He has repeatedly demonstrated (and publicly said) "I don't understand evolution." (his own words)
His overall objections center around abiogenesis, which distinctly NOT evolution.  He has been rebuffed many times over, and there's several strongly worded videos on the internet which supports this.  I'll be happy to provide all this evidence to demonstrate that none of  is what I'm saying is ad hom. 


Someone, actually, my research has shown the opposite of what you assert about Dr. Tour.  Here's just one example from a fellow scientist who DISAGRESS with him and yet admits his work is highly impressive:  https://peacefulscience.org/articles/tour-friendship-across-disagreements/

As for Dr. Tour "not understanding" evolution, he understands its chemical limitations all too well!  Most of the responses to his criticisms of common descent are "just so" stories that have no concrete evidence or explanations - and he explains that well in the short article I linked.  The status quo of "common descent" among most scientists is so strong that they are not even willing to acknowledge the many questions they can't even begin to answer about abiogenesis or the massive amount of information needed in a short time for "Body Plan" change to take place.

Also, to mention another respected scientist in his field, Dr. Behe responds to his critics in this book:  https://www.amazon.com/Mousetrap-Darwin-Michael-Answers-Critics/dp/1936599910/ref=sr_1_1?crid=2UQQ5BSHRY70S&dib=eyJ2IjoiMSJ9.VQsWj47Wq7NiM0CdCVq5TpBQy3Af1EtcrNqQJENuFekNNmBWjswLzDI_5MdZVVgc.LfdjGD3RbHCE63t-qXFebfG5RmelRUjzMilp2cVd060&dib_tag=se&keywords=A+mousetrap+for+darwin&qid=1718053158&sprefix=a+mousetrap+for+darwin%2Caps%2C122&sr=8-1  Sadly, we tend to only hear about the condemnations of work of men like Behe without hearing about their reasoned responses.

In any case, Someone, would you care to respond to the actual points Dr. Tour makes in his article without simply saying:  "Well, Dr. Tour is not a respected chemist" - which is clearly NOT the case!

#6
Below is a excerpt from a longer article (linked below) by Dr. James Tour (a highly respected and world renowned chemist!) who, along with other scientists, acknowledge that there are huge problems with evolution of life forms understood as "descent from a common ancestor" which is the unquestioned status quo among most scientists today.  His entire article is well worth the read:

     "As a chemist, and one that builds functional molecular nano-systems, I can give some informed input. For several decades I have been building molecular cars with functional motors, wheels, axles and chassis, and molecular nanosubmarines with light-activated motors and fluorescent pontoons, where many parts have to work in unison, and be planned to work in unison during redesign of major features. Even small changes in desired function can send the synthesis all the way back to step 1. In biology, the mechanisms for such transformations are complete mysteries. I posit that the gross chemical changes needed for macroevolution (defined here as origin of the major organismal groups, i.e., of the body plans, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Body_plan) are not understood and presently we cannot even suggest the mechanisms, let alone observe them. Any massive functional change of a body part would require multiple concerted lines of variations. Sure, one can suggest multiple small changes ad infinitum, but the concerted requirement of multiple changes all in the same place and at the same time, is impossible to chemically fathom. One day the requisite chemical basis might become apparent so that the questions can be answered. But present-day biology is far from providing even a chemical proposal for body plan changes, let alone a data-substantiated chemical mechanism.

     Humans alone have the capacity for art, music, advanced communication, advanced mathematics and religious practice, which constitute the broader organization of symbolism. Therefore, if one is intent upon a common descent model, there was a massive and presently unexplainable infusion (intrinsic and/or extrinsic) along the proposed very short descent pathway between australopithecines and modern humans. If it were an intrinsic infusion, then the requisite anatomical or chemical differences between the modern human brain and other hominid brains are presently indiscernible and unfathomable. And the chemical basis of the evolutionary mechanisms for such changes is both unknown and presently immeasurable. If the infusion were extrinsic, then the materialistic evolutionist and the design proponent share common ground.

     Therefore, I do not understand the mechanisms needed to change body plans or the mechanisms along the descent pathway between the australopithecine brain and modern human brains if we were indeed commonly descended as predicted by the theory of universal common descent. Nobody else understands the mechanisms either. Nobody. But I am saying it publicly, hence the arousal of some toward my open comments of skepticism. Recall, evolution is both about the mechanism by which change occurs over time, and the theory of universal common descent. But the mechanisms are unknown and the theory of universal common descent is confronted by issues of uncommonness through ENCODE and orphan gene research. And each year the evidence for uncommonness is escalating."


Here's a link to the full article: https://www.jmtour.com/personal-topics/evolution-creation/

P.S.  This article is NOT from a Christian apologetics web page.  Dr. Tour has numerous peer-reviewed papers and is highly respected even among those who are alarmed by his skepticism of universal common descent.
#7
Quote from: SomeoneWrites on June 09, 2024, 02:51:32 AM
Quote from: Tom Eckstein on June 08, 2024, 10:07:06 PMSomewrites, I have a sincere and honest question for you that I will clarify below (and others are welcome to comment as well):

First and foremost, and I gotta get this out.  THANK YOU for asking how I feel/think, and not telling me how I feel/think.  May seem like I'm making a big deal out of it, but it's important to me - and I want to be clear that I appreciate it.  side story - went to a dentist and got a tooth pulled and he didn't wait for the shot to kick in and started going at it and said "you may feel some pressure."  It hurt like hell, and i said "that's PAIN."  He corrected me and said "no, it's just pressure."  Now imagine two or three nurses telling you that the word "pain" isn't the right word.  I hope you understand what I'm getting at.
Been here for years with great discourses even in disagreement, and I hope to continue that with you and others.  Again, thank you.   

Quote from: Tom Eckstein on June 08, 2024, 10:07:06 PMSomewrites, I have a sincere and honest question for you that I will clarify below (and others are welcome to comment as well):
Someonewrites, if I understand your postion correctly,  even though you are open to consider evidence for "God" (that is, a personal being or mind separate from space/time/matter), at this point your default position is atheism and that means, if I understand you correctly, you assume "materialism" (that reality is made up of impersonal space/time/matter with no separate Mind) is your view of reality until convinced otherwise.  Correct?
Close, and we're probably gonna have to work to clarify positions further on this.  I would say I'm willing to be convinced of "God." I'm open to it.  I am not convinced there are any Gods.  I'm not convinced that there is any supernatural anything.  I would say I EXPERIENCE materialism, and if I've experienced anything supernatural, I've not recognized it as such.  I used to think I was connected to the supernatural, but I never witnessed anything I'd call miraculous.  That wasn't lynch pin.  I wrote it off as a samuel thing (ie "in those days there were not many signs", etc).   But in my material experience, I understand the mind to be part of matter.  I don't really separate the two. It's still a part of chemistry and physics.  An analogy would be like the 0's and 1's on a computer memory.  The key difference is that I don't think minds were designed.  they're an emergent property. 



Quote from: Tom Eckstein on June 08, 2024, 10:07:06 PMIf my above understading of your position is correct, then my question for you is this:  If your default position is athiesm and, therefore, materialism, then do you agree that any experience you have whereby you are reflecting on the nature of reality is actually a meaningless illusion and nothing more than the meaningless result of the random interactions of a myriad of mindless molecules?  Therefore, if your default position is materialism, then we are waisting our time believing we are having meaninful discussions on this forum since any thoughts or assertions we may have are the meaningless result of the random interactions of a myriad of mindless molecules, correct?
I don't think meaningless or illusion are the correct words, and I'll work to find words that better express what I think it is.  I don't think everything is relative - but I think some things are relative and some things can be described as objective.  I don't think I have an objective meaning in this world, but there is relative meaning.  In the same way we can invent currency and attribute it value.  It's meaningful to me.  I value it.  And, for me, that's sufficient.  We could posit a deist clockmaker God that started us and wandered off, leaving us on our own - of no value to this God.  Things would still be meaningful to me.  This God is just as possible as any other. 
At the end of the day, I still have thoughts, feelings, meanings and memories.  I can share them.  I can hear the mind of others and grow from that.  I'm still HAVING those experiences and such - in an objective reality.   


Quote from: Tom Eckstein on June 08, 2024, 10:07:06 PMHowever, if you want to assert that our discussions have objective meaning, then for that assertion to be meaningful you must assume a personal and rational and meaningful "God" or "Mind" outside of space/time/matter as the source of our meaningful assertions about reality, correct?

In other words, in order for you to have any kind of meaningful discussion with us, you must deny your atheism and, at least, assert the existense of a personal "Mind" who is separate from and the cause of space/time/matter.  Correct?
I don't think there needs to be a source.  The only minds could be yours and mine and we could still have a discussion.  We could still have things we value and care about. We would still have experiences, thoughts, feelings, emotions, physical pain, etc.  Even if it was illusory, I would still have the sense data.  You could tell me something is illusory, but I'd still have the experience - which is why I make a big deal about people telling me what I'm experiencing.  Call it an illusion all you want, but don't tell me I'm not experiencing it. 


Quote from: Tom Eckstein on June 08, 2024, 10:07:06 PMSomeone, what are your thoughts on this?  If I understand your position correctly, I've always wondered how atheists who assert the objective reality of materialism due to the supposed lack of evidence for theism (irony?) can justify that their assertion has any meaning or purpose.
I'm experiencing the material world.  Or at least, I'm recognizing my interactions with a material world.  I'm convinced God would know what it would take to convince me about anything else - and if He's there, he's either not willing or able to do it.  Both of those are possibilities.
I don't want to get in a presupposition discussion, but we can presuppose any deity and any of those deities can be a source of an outside meaning or purpose.  Until it's clear for everyone, it's not really much help to me.  I would be just taking one group's assertions of that meaning over another one. 

I'm NOT here to shift or persuade anyone to be atheist.  I'm not here to plant distrust in God, Jesus, Scripture etc.  Any of the things I've brought forth are things other Christians believe and accept and still adore everything I just mentioned a sentence ago. 

Maybe I've misunderstood your point - about meaning and such...
I don't think I've asserted an overall meaning about anything.  I wouldn't make such an assertion, and none of the atheists I've read/watched/viewed have made such an assertion.   That wouldn't stop us to have experiences that are meaningful to us, and still existing in a material reality. 

I'm down to clarify or discuss.
Thank you again.  Immensely. 





Someonewrites, thanks so much for your response - and I'm sorry I did not respond sooner.  Simply put, between my congregation and two other vacant congregations I've been serving, I've been crazy busy.  In fact, I don't have time to respond to your comments now - but I will try to do so in a few days.  I just didn't want you to think I was ignoring you.
#8
Somewrites, I have a sincere and honest question for you that I will clarify below (and others are welcome to comment as well):

Someonewrites, if I understand your postion correctly,  even though you are open to consider evidence for "God" (that is, a personal being or mind separate from space/time/matter), at this point your default position is atheism and that means, if I understand you correctly, you assume "materialism" (that reality is made up of impersonal space/time/matter with no separate Mind) is your view of reality until convinced otherwise.  Correct?

If my above understading of your position is correct, then my question for you is this:  If your default position is athiesm and, therefore, materialism, then do you agree that any experience you have whereby you are reflecting on the nature of reality is actually a meaningless illusion and nothing more than the meaningless result of the random interactions of a myriad of mindless molecules?  Therefore, if your default position is materialism, then we are waisting our time believing we are having meaninful discussions on this forum since any thoughts or assertions we may have are the meaningless result of the random interactions of a myriad of mindless molecules, correct?

However, if you want to assert that our discussios have objective meaning, then for that assertion to be meaningful you must assume a personal and rational and meaningful "God" or "Mind" outside of space/time/matter as the source of our meaningful assertions about reality, correct?

In other words, in order for you to have any kind of meaningful discussion with us, you must deny your atheism and, at least, assert the existense of a personal "Mind" who is separate from and the cause of space/time/matter.  Correct?

Someone, what are your thoughts on this?  If I understand your position correctly, I've always wondered how atheists who assert the objective reality of materialism due to the supposed lack of evidence for theism (irony?) can justify that their assertion has any meaning or purpose.



#9
Quote from: Mbecker on June 04, 2024, 12:53:10 AM
Quote from: Tom Eckstein on May 31, 2024, 12:15:46 PMOn pg. 65 of The Word Becoming Flesh Horace Hummel writes:  "There is no compelling reason why Gen. 1 and 2 need be read as two disparate creation accounts, as the critical dogma goes.  One of its major supporting arguments is that Gen. 1 ends and climaxes with man (male and female) while chap. 2 begins with man (male only).  But the two dovetail perfectly if we understand Gen. 1 as a 'wide-angle' introduction to all of creation, while Gen. 2 zooms in for a 'close-up' of the Bible's primary interest."  Also see Commentary on the Old Testament: The Pentateuch by Keil-Delitzsch, 67-91. (corrected)


I was blessed to have taken several exegetical courses with Dr. Hummel at Concordia, St. Louis. We also spent a week together in the same room in a St. Louis hospital (separate beds). We were being treated by the sem's physician at the time, who put us in the same room for his convenience. While Dr. Hummel was a bit troubled when he saw me climb into the bed next to his, he quickly accepted the situation. I learned a great deal from him during our hospital stay. What he shared with me in more detail there complemented what he taught me in his classroom during my seminary years.

I can verify that Dr. Hummel accepted the basic outlines of the JEDP theory of pentateuchal formation, albeit with one very important caveat: in Hummel's view, most all of the sources used to form the "five books" were pre-Mosaic (with the exception of some later updating/editing, esp. by priestly redactors and traditionists who anachronistically updated ancient place names and customs to fit later names and contexts). His bottom-line position was grounded in Jesus' traditional view that Moses was the principal author of the Pentateuch. Moses made use of individual traditions he received from ancient sources when he edited and composed the five books. (With a wry smile on his face, Dr. Hummel acknowledged to our class that he did not think Moses composed the chapter in Deut. [34:1ff.] that reports the death of Moses!) Some might argue that Dr. Hummel's acceptance of the JEDP theory died the death of a thousand qualifications, as he set them forth, but there's no question in my mind today that he had accepted this basic position he had learned at Johns Hopkins and then taught for many years in the 1950s and 60s. After 1974 he likely accentuated the qualifications he made about that theory, but he never rejected it outright, as far as I can tell. He gave it his own spin.

Dr. Hummel also acknowledged that the category of "myth," properly understood, is the best genre for describing the four basic narratives in Gen. 1-11. At the time he and I were in the hospital, one of the exegetical issues I was wrestling with had to do with how best to understand those pre-Abrahamic narratives. Dr. Hummel told me point-blank that it was a mistake to interpret them as being the same type of literature as the material that comes after Gen. 12:1. The Gen 1-11 narratives are not "history" as we understand that genre, but neither are they "fiction," as we understand that genre. "Poetry" doesn't fit either (aside from perhaps Gen 1.1-2.4a, but even that might be a stretch), and certainly "science" is even more unfitting. That's all straight from Dr. Hummel's mouth.

It was only later that I came across his earlier essays that he had co-authored with Dr. Scharlemann, on hermeneutics and the legitimate use of the historical-critical method (in light of basic gospel presuppositions). The reading of those essays was very helpful to me at a certain stage of my own reflection on Gen. 1-3 (and onward to Gen. 12.1), although I suppose they also assisted in preparing the way for my eventual removal from the LCMS.

Instructive, too, was studying Norman Habel's essay, "The Form and Meaning of the Fall Narrative: A Detailed Analysis of Gen. 3," and then later coming across Martin Franzmann's 39-page response to that essay. (Attached to my personal copy of Franzmann's essay is a handwritten note that he sent to a pastor on Oct. 20, 1965, explaining that his essay addressed Habel's unrevised version of his essay, not the published version that appeared in CTM.) It is clear to me that Franzmann wanted to affirm Habel's wrestling with the issue of the genre of Gen. 3, while taking issue with several conclusions that Habel had made, e.g., that "man was created mortal."

After nearly 40 years of careful study of the Hebrew texts of Gen. 1-11, I continue to conclude that Gen. 1.1-2.4a is a different (but theologically complementary) account of creation--one that complements all the other creation accounts in the Scriptures (esp. Psalms 8, 103, passim; Job 38, Jn. 1, Col. 1, Rev.; but also Sirach 18.1 etc.). The two accounts in Gen 1-2 do differ significantly in terms of their details at the straight-forward "literal" level of interpretation: Was Adam created after the creation of plants (1:26-31), or was he created prior to the creation of plants (2:4bff)? Were animals created prior to the creation of Adam (male and female; 1:20-25), or were animals created after Adam (male) but before the creation of Eve (female; 2:18-23)? Were birds created a day earlier than all land animals (1:20-25), or were land animals created before the birds and on the same day as the birds were created (2:19-20)? Such trivial questions help the interpreter to avoid taking false roads with respect to the issues of genre and theological understanding.

FWIW (and unsurprising to most of you), I agree with John M's central thesis in this long thread: the basic scientific consensus about the age of the universe and the origin of species need not necessarily conflict with an orthodox, catholic, evangelical theological interpretation of the creation accounts in the Scriptures. For a recent defense of this thesis, see my book, Fundamental Theology, 2d edn. (London: Bloomsbury/T&T Clark, 2024), 554-600.

Matt Becker



Matt, allow me to clarify my recollection of classes with Hummel - acknowledging that both you and I are giving anecdotal information.

When Hummel mentioned JEDP in class he did, indeed, reject it in the sense that he rejected 1) the notion that Moses was not the author of the Pentateuch, and 2) that what Moses wrote was filled with contradictory information (e.g., he rejected that Genesis 1 & 2 have contradictory details about creation).

Having said that, Hummel noted that it is certainly possible that Moses used other written or oral information when He wrote Genesis (maybe handed down from Adam, Noah, Abraham, and others before him).

Finally, back in the late 80s when I had Hummel for classes, already then he said that the JEDP theory was becoming defunct even among critical scholarship - and that is certainly the case now over 30+ years later!
#10
Quote from: Charles Austin on June 01, 2024, 04:53:58 PMTerry W. culler writes:
I'm getting the feeling you think Dr. Hummel was dishonest. I hope I'm wrong.

I comment:
I have no basis to make a "he's dishonest" claim.
But my rather solid memories and class notes suggested he was not treating the documentary hypothesis as a "theory" or even a wrong theory.
He was ALC when he taught at my LCA seminary.
I do not know when he joined the LCMS, but it does seem he would have to teach Old Testament courses differently there. And, as part of the Concordia-St. Louis "faculty minority" in 1975, apparently he did.

I don't know all the details about Hummel's life as an OT scholar.  What I DO know is that if he at one time affirmed the JEDP theory, then he eventually rejected it because when I had him for classes at the seminary from 1987-1991 he clearly REJECTED the JEDP position!
#11
Quote from: SomeoneWrites on June 01, 2024, 04:30:05 PM
Quote from: Tom Eckstein on June 01, 2024, 04:16:28 PMSomeone writes:  "Most scholarship I'm coming across have it as two creation stories." This is simply NOT the case if you consider how Genesis 1 & 2 were viewed by the early Church Fathers and by most bible scholars over the centuries.  Only in the past couple centuries do you find the "Two Creation Story" view among more critical scholars - again, without any manuscript evidence and based on other evidence that doesn't hold much water, for example, some different vocabulary, as though one author can use different vocabulary for various reasons.  The fact is that the once popular JEDPetc theory is now dismissed even by many critical scholars as lacking much evidence.
I've seen mistakes by the early church.  I've seen Walther say the same.  Took quite some time for people to realize that the earth goes around the Sun too, so the recentness of the scholarship just looks like you're heading towards fallacy waters.  We've had more recent discoveries that point towards both narratives being mythic in nature.  I also note that their conclusions aren't theologically dependent. 

Quote from: Tom Eckstein on June 01, 2024, 04:16:28 PMSomeone also writes:  "A simple reading of it looks like 2 stories." This is not the case at all!  Many throughout history did not see a "simple reading" of Genesis 1 & 2 being two different and contradictory creation stories because they read them in light of the entire narrative of Scripture and they also had Jesus own take on it in Matthew 19:1ff.
It was the case for myself and others reading at an early age and looking at the orders.  When your elders give the youth "the interpretation," then you sit with it until you examine it again when older.  it reads like 2 versions. 
IT reminds me of the Stalin Hotel in moscow that had two different blueprints.  Stalin signed his signature across both, rather than question him, half the building looks one way, and half the building looks others.  makes complete sense. 

Quote from: Tom Eckstein on June 01, 2024, 04:16:28 PMFinally, Someone writes:  "...the presuppositions of either camp appear equally valid." The presuppositions are "equally valid" only if you embrace relativism whereas those who affirm that God inspired Moses to write the Pentateuch view the higher-critical presuppositions to be not valid at all!  Lastly, the manuscript evidence shows Genesis 1 & 2 as part of a larger canonical narrative revelation rather than different contradictory "stories" written by various authors with various conflicting agendas.  Jesus and the Apostles certainly didn't view the Old Testament Scriptures the way modern critical scholars do.


So, in other words, just as valid. 

First, I'm not saying the early Church was infallible.  But they WERE closer to the time of the Apostles in order to be influenced by their take on the Old Testament which they received from Jesus Himself.  So, I'll take their view of the OT over modern critical scholars who deny core teachings of God's Word any day!

I also read Genesis 1 & 2 from an early age and did NOT seem them as "different and contradictory" stories because I believed Jesus who said Moses wrote Genesis - and I interpreted Genesis 1 & 2 accordingly and found no problems harmonizing them, as was the case for most Christians throughout history until recent times when some sadly think they know better than Jesus.

Finally, those who believe what Jesus taught about the OT versus modern critical scholars certainly do NOT have equally valid presuppositions - unless by "valid" you mean that every person is entitled to their opinion.  But the fact is that Jesus' view of the OT and the view of modern critical scholars can't BOTH be true.  One is right and one is wrong - and from God's point of view, the critical presuppositions are WRONG and, therefore, not VALID!
#12
Quote from: SomeoneWrites on June 01, 2024, 03:22:19 PMMost scholarship I'm coming across have it as two creation stories.  A simple reading of it looks like 2 stories. 

I don't mean it with snark, but the presuppositions of either camp appear equally valid. 

Someone writes:  "Most scholarship I'm coming across have it as two creation stories." This is simply NOT the case if you consider how Genesis 1 & 2 were viewed by the early Church Fathers and by most bible scholars over the centuries.  Only in the past couple centuries do you find the "Two Creation Story" view among more critical scholars - again, without any manuscript evidence and based on other evidence that doesn't hold much water, for example, some different vocabulary, as though one author can use different vocabulary for various reasons.  The fact is that the once popular JEDPetc theory is now dismissed even by many critical scholars as lacking much evidence.

Someone also writes:  "A simple reading of it looks like 2 stories." This is not the case at all!  Many throughout history did not see a "simple reading" of Genesis 1 & 2 being two different and contradictory creation stories because they read them in light of the entire narrative of Scripture and they also had Jesus own take on it in Matthew 19:1ff.

Finally, Someone writes:  "...the presuppositions of either camp appear equally valid." The presuppositions are "equally valid" only if you embrace relativism whereas those who affirm that God inspired Moses to write the Pentateuch view the higher-critical presuppositions to be not valid at all!  Lastly, the manuscript evidence shows Genesis 1 & 2 as part of a larger canonical narrative revelation rather than different contradictory "stories" written by various authors with various conflicting agendas.  Jesus and the Apostles certainly didn't view the Old Testament Scriptures the way modern critical scholars do.

#13
Quote from: Brian Stoffregen on June 01, 2024, 02:06:08 PM
Quote from: Tom Eckstein on June 01, 2024, 01:21:04 PMBrian, for Genesis 2:19 the following English translations render the Hebrew as saying that God HAD FORMED the animals (referring to Genesis 1) and then brought them to Adam (Gensis 2:19):  The NIV; The ESV; The LSB; God's Word to the Nations; The Douah-Rheims; Catholic Public Domain Version.

    Having noted this,  it's true that other English translations render the Hebrew as saying that God FORMED the animals and then brought them to Adam, but even in this case the English word FORMED is best understood as PAST TENSE, that is, referring to what God had already done in Genesis 1.  So, in either case – HAD FORMED or FORMED – it is referring to the creation of the animals as described in Genesis 1 which took place before God created Adam (Genesis 2:7) and brought them to Adam to name them (Genesis 2:19).

That's possible, but I think unlikely. "Formed" is also used in 2:7. The past tense is in reference to the narrator of the story; not in reference to other acts within the story. All the verbs in the sentence are past tense: then the LORD God formed man from the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and the man became living being.

All three of these actions took place at the same time within the narration - at a time prior to the time of the narrator.

This verb is also used in v. 8: "And the LORD God planted a garden in Eden, in the east; and there he put the man whom he had formed.

Here the translator indicates that the formation of the man took place within the narration before God planted the garden and put the man there.

There is an additional problem in that Hebrew doesn't have the same kind of tenses as English. As I remember it, there is specific completed actions and non-specific or not-yet-completed actions. The completed action (or perfect) verbs can be translated with present, past, or perfect, e.g., I love, I loved, I have loved. The not-yet-specific/completed actions (or imperfect) is often translated with a future tense, I will love; but it can also indicate ongoing or habitual behaviors: I am loving her. It can also denote the possibility of the actions: I may love her. I might love her. I should love her.


QuoteFinally, the early Fathers didn't view Genesis 1 & 2 as different creation stories with conflicting data, but read them as a united revelation of Creation, as Jesus does in Matthew 19:1ff.

I see Jesus only referencing the second account in his quote. If he wanted to combine them, he could have added that the humans were commanded to be fruitful and multiply.


Brian, you simply assume - without manuscript or other evidence! - that there were TWO authors and TWO creation stories.  But immediate context and wider context of Scripture suggests otherwise.  Keil-Delitzsch knew Hebrew better than you and I do, and they see no conflict between Genesis 1 & 2 but show that the context clearly teaches that the animals were formed BEFORE Adam, and Genesis 2:7 does NOT contradict this!

As for Jesus in Matthew 19:1ff, He says "God made them male and female" (Genesis 1:27) and He also said "the two will become one flesh" (Genesis 2:24).  Jesus sees this as ONE creation revelation, with Genesis 1:27 giving us the general details and Genesis 2:24 giving us the specifics.
#14
Quote from: Brian Stoffregen on May 31, 2024, 05:13:49 PM
Quote from: Tom Eckstein on May 31, 2024, 04:29:53 PM
Quote from: Brian Stoffregen on May 31, 2024, 03:19:01 PM
Quote from: peter_speckhard on May 31, 2024, 01:34:24 PM
Quote from: Brian Stoffregen on May 31, 2024, 01:16:29 PM
Quote from: Tom Eckstein on May 31, 2024, 12:15:46 PM
Quote from: peter_speckhard on May 31, 2024, 11:47:49 AM
Quote from: Brian Stoffregen on May 31, 2024, 11:38:25 AM
Quote from: Steven W Bohler on May 31, 2024, 10:20:59 AM
Quote from: John Mundinger on May 31, 2024, 10:09:15 AM
Quote from: Steven W Bohler on May 31, 2024, 10:03:32 AM
Quote from: John Mundinger on May 31, 2024, 09:44:52 AM
Quote from: Steven W Bohler on May 31, 2024, 09:10:11 AM2. You are also assuming that rivers do not change course.  Which they do.

False assumption on your part.

Quote from: Steven W Bohler on May 31, 2024, 09:18:12 AMHave you ever heard of Piltdown Man or the Cardiff Giant?

Yes.  Science proved both to be hoaxes. So, please explain why those have any relevance to this conversation.

I'm sorry.  I thought the question asked for evolutionary claims that had been rescinded.  Not for false evolutionary claims that science had not (yet) disproven.  Perhaps science will yet show some/many/all of today's evolutionary claims to be incorrect.

Science may yet show some claims to be incorrect.  In fact, I'd be surprised if science did not show some prior conclusions to be incorrect or, at least, modify prior conclusions based on future results.  That is how the scientific method works.  That is not the same as disproving hoaxes.

Wow!  You must have pretty low view of the reliability of Scripture if you are willing to prefer that which you acknowledge to probably contain errors over the accounts which the Bible gives.
So which is it? Did God create birds, fish, land animals, and humans out of nothing by speaking the Word; or did God form all the animals, including "the Human," out of the ground?

Which is it? Did God create the birds, fish, land animals, and vegetation first; and finally, the humans; or did God form "the Earthling," from the earth, first, then planted a garden, then formed animals from the ground; and finally, formed a woman from a rib?
That is not an either/or presented by the text. Only by reading into the texts to make them contradictory do you find a contradiction.

Peter and Brian, below is some information about Genesis 1 & 2 from Dr. Horrace Hummel:

On pg. 65 of The Word Becoming Flesh Horace Hummel writes:  "There is no compelling reason why Gen. 1 and 2 need be read as two disparate creation accounts, as the critical dogma goes.  One of its major supporting arguments is that Gen. 1 ends and climaxes with man (male and female) while chap. 2 begins with man (male only).  But the two dovetail perfectly if we understand Gen. 1 as a 'wide-angel' introduction to all of creation, while Gen. 2 zooms in for a 'close-up' of the Bible's primary interest."  Also see Commentary on the Old Testament: The Pentateuch by Keil-Delitzsch, 67-91.
The problem with that interpretation is that it doesn't take into account the vocabulary differences, the difference in style of writing, the different type of portrayals of God, the difference in the mode of creating, (Genesis 2 never uses the word "create"). Such a conclusion comes without much examination of what's really in the texts. It's sort of like the saying, "My faith is made up. Don't confuse me with the Bible."
Why would a wide angle view use the same style, vocabulary, etc. as a close-up? When you read, "A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away..." and then dialog between characters on a starship, do you conclude different authors must have written the overview and action scene?
They would if written by the same author and were about the same event. My phone camera has a range of settings from .5x to 12x. The details in the close up picture should also be seen in the wide-angle picture. I have taken wide-angle pictures and then a close-up of something particular. The particular is still seen in the wide-angle, but without the details in the closeup. If Gen 1 is the wide angle; animals were created before the humans and both humans were created at the same time. It is clear in the the close-up that there was a period of time that the man lived alone - before there were any animals. That is a different picture than we are given in Genesis 1. It cannot be a close up of day 6.

Peter and Brian, below is my response to those who, like Brian, find two contradictory creation stories in Genesis 1 & 2 even though there is an easy answer to such error showing that there is only ONE historical revelation of creation with a general and particular focus (as Dr. Hummel noted in his book The Word Becoming Flesh):

    Those who assume (without manuscript evidence!) that Genesis chapters 1 & 2 are two different and contradictory creation stories will often sum up their view like this:  "According to Genesis 1, God first created water, followed by land, vegetation, fish, birds, animals, etc., and then humankind – both men and women.  According to Genesis 2, however, God is said to have created land, followed by water, Adam, and vegetation.  The creation of vegetation was then followed by the creation of animals, birds, and a woman – Eve."  Sadly, such people who doubt God's Word find contradictions where they do not exist!

    First, such people claim that Genesis 1 teaches God that created water and then land whereas Genesis 2 teaches that God created land and then water.  But they fail to understand that when Genesis 2:4b reads "When the Lord God made the earth and the heavens" this is a brief summary of the entire six days of creation found in Genesis chapter 1.  The water referred to in Genesis 2:5-6 does NOT mean that no water existed until AFTER God had created the land.  Instead, Genesis 2:5-6 simply mentions that there was no rain at that time because water came up from the earth and watered the plants that had not yet sprouted. 
   
    Second, such people claim that Genesis 1 teaches that God created "men and women" whereas Genesis 2 teaches that God created only 1 man and then, later, only 1 woman.  But they fail to see that Genesis 1:27 does NOT teach that God created multiple men and women.  Instead, when Genesis 1:27 refers to "them" it means the 1 man and 1 woman – not multiple men and women (and Jesus' own interpretation of this text in Matthew chapter 19 confirms this!).

    In addition, such people claim that Genesis 2 teaches that plant life was created AFTER Adam whereas Genesis 1 teaches that it was created BEFORE Adam.  What they fail to realize is that Genesis 2 is not speaking about the creation of ALL plant life. Instead, Genesis 2 is pointing to the fact that certain types of plants had not yet begun to grow in the particular area of the Garden.  Obviously, many other types of plant life had already been created BEFORE Adam or God would not have been able to tell Adam to eat from them AFTER God had created him!

    Such people also wrongly claim that Genesis 2 teaches that animals were created AFTER Adam whereas Genesis 1 teaches that animals were created BEFORE Adam.  What they do not understand is that the Hebrew text of Genesis 2 refers to the fact that God had already created the animals BEFORE he brought them to Adam.  (See Commentary on the Old Testament: The Pentateuch by Keil-Delitzsch, 87-88.)  Genesis 2:19 reads:  "Now the Lord God had formed out of the ground all the beasts of the field and all the birds of the air.  He brought them to the man..."

    Finally, such people think there is a contradiction between Genesis 1:27 (where we're told that God created humans as male and female) and Genesis 2 where Adam is created first and then, later, Eve.  But this is no contradiction at all if we note that Genesis 1:27 simply gives us the general information about God's creation of the first humans whereas Genesis 2 gives us the particular details of HOW God actually did that – by creating Adam first and then, later, Eve.

    When we read Genesis chapters 1 and 2 within the context of the entire witness of Scripture (especially Jesus' quotations from Genesis chapters 1 and 2 in Matthew chapter 19) we see that there are not two conflicting creation accounts but ONE creation account – the general overview of all six days of creation given in Genesis 1, and the specific details of God's creation of Adam and Eve given in Genesis 2.

First if all, he's making many assumptions that aren't found in the text.

Secondly, had formed in 2:19 is a translator's choice. The NRSV has formed just like in 2:7 when the LORD God formed man. Most of the translations on Bible Gateway have formed, such as KJV, LEB, NABRE, NET, NRSV. That's also what the Jewish Publication translation has. It is not seen as a previous event, but happened at that time after the man was formed. The ESV, LSB, and NIV had had formed.

Thirdly, believing that there are two separate stories does not mean that they contradict each other. The purposes and the major points of each story are different. Our God is too big for just one story.

Brian, for Genesis 2:19 the following English translations render the Hebrew as saying that God HAD FORMED the animals (referring to Genesis 1) and then brought them to Adam (Gensis 2:19):  The NIV; The ESV; The LSB; God's Word to the Nations; The Douah-Rheims; Catholic Public Domain Version.

     Having noted this,  it's true that other English translations render the Hebrew as saying that God FORMED the animals and then brought them to Adam, but even in this case the English word FORMED is best understood as PAST TENSE, that is, referring to what God had already done in Genesis 1.  So, in either case – HAD FORMED or FORMED – it is referring to the creation of the animals as described in Genesis 1 which took place before God created Adam (Genesis 2:7) and brought them to Adam to name them (Genesis 2:19).   

     Regarding this very Issue, in Volume I of Keil-Delitzsch on pg. 87 it reads:  "The circumstance that in ver. 19 the formation of the beasts and birds is connected with the creation of Adam ... constitutes no objection to the plan of creation given in chap. i.  The arrangement may be explained on the supposition, that the writer, who was about to describe the relation of man to the beasts, went back to their creation, in the simple method of the early Semitic historians, and placed this first instead of making it subordinate; so that our modern style of expressing the same thought would be simply this:  'God brought to Adam the beasts which He had formed.'"  In other words, the context shows that Genesis 2 is NOT a "different" creation story but a focused description of God's creation of Adam and Eve on the 6th Day which was described in general terms in Genesis 1!

Finally, the early Fathers didn't view Genesis 1 & 2 as different creation stories with conflicting data, but read them as a united revelation of Creation, as Jesus does in Matthew 19:1ff.
#15
Quote from: Brian Stoffregen on May 31, 2024, 03:19:01 PM
Quote from: peter_speckhard on May 31, 2024, 01:34:24 PM
Quote from: Brian Stoffregen on May 31, 2024, 01:16:29 PM
Quote from: Tom Eckstein on May 31, 2024, 12:15:46 PM
Quote from: peter_speckhard on May 31, 2024, 11:47:49 AM
Quote from: Brian Stoffregen on May 31, 2024, 11:38:25 AM
Quote from: Steven W Bohler on May 31, 2024, 10:20:59 AM
Quote from: John Mundinger on May 31, 2024, 10:09:15 AM
Quote from: Steven W Bohler on May 31, 2024, 10:03:32 AM
Quote from: John Mundinger on May 31, 2024, 09:44:52 AM
Quote from: Steven W Bohler on May 31, 2024, 09:10:11 AM2. You are also assuming that rivers do not change course.  Which they do.

False assumption on your part.

Quote from: Steven W Bohler on May 31, 2024, 09:18:12 AMHave you ever heard of Piltdown Man or the Cardiff Giant?

Yes.  Science proved both to be hoaxes. So, please explain why those have any relevance to this conversation.

I'm sorry.  I thought the question asked for evolutionary claims that had been rescinded.  Not for false evolutionary claims that science had not (yet) disproven.  Perhaps science will yet show some/many/all of today's evolutionary claims to be incorrect.

Science may yet show some claims to be incorrect.  In fact, I'd be surprised if science did not show some prior conclusions to be incorrect or, at least, modify prior conclusions based on future results.  That is how the scientific method works.  That is not the same as disproving hoaxes.

Wow!  You must have pretty low view of the reliability of Scripture if you are willing to prefer that which you acknowledge to probably contain errors over the accounts which the Bible gives.
So which is it? Did God create birds, fish, land animals, and humans out of nothing by speaking the Word; or did God form all the animals, including "the Human," out of the ground?

Which is it? Did God create the birds, fish, land animals, and vegetation first; and finally, the humans; or did God form "the Earthling," from the earth, first, then planted a garden, then formed animals from the ground; and finally, formed a woman from a rib?
That is not an either/or presented by the text. Only by reading into the texts to make them contradictory do you find a contradiction.

Peter and Brian, below is some information about Genesis 1 & 2 from Dr. Horrace Hummel:

On pg. 65 of The Word Becoming Flesh Horace Hummel writes:  "There is no compelling reason why Gen. 1 and 2 need be read as two disparate creation accounts, as the critical dogma goes.  One of its major supporting arguments is that Gen. 1 ends and climaxes with man (male and female) while chap. 2 begins with man (male only).  But the two dovetail perfectly if we understand Gen. 1 as a 'wide-angel' introduction to all of creation, while Gen. 2 zooms in for a 'close-up' of the Bible's primary interest."  Also see Commentary on the Old Testament: The Pentateuch by Keil-Delitzsch, 67-91.
The problem with that interpretation is that it doesn't take into account the vocabulary differences, the difference in style of writing, the different type of portrayals of God, the difference in the mode of creating, (Genesis 2 never uses the word "create"). Such a conclusion comes without much examination of what's really in the texts. It's sort of like the saying, "My faith is made up. Don't confuse me with the Bible."
Why would a wide angle view use the same style, vocabulary, etc. as a close-up? When you read, "A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away..." and then dialog between characters on a starship, do you conclude different authors must have written the overview and action scene?
They would if written by the same author and were about the same event. My phone camera has a range of settings from .5x to 12x. The details in the close up picture should also be seen in the wide-angle picture. I have taken wide-angle pictures and then a close-up of something particular. The particular is still seen in the wide-angle, but without the details in the closeup. If Gen 1 is the wide angle; animals were created before the humans and both humans were created at the same time. It is clear in the the close-up that there was a period of time that the man lived alone - before there were any animals. That is a different picture than we are given in Genesis 1. It cannot be a close up of day 6.

Peter and Brian, below is my response to those who, like Brian, find two contradictory creation stories in Genesis 1 & 2 even though there is an easy answer to such error showing that there is only ONE historical revelation of creation with a general and particular focus (as Dr. Hummel noted in his book The Word Becoming Flesh):

    Those who assume (without manuscript evidence!) that Genesis chapters 1 & 2 are two different and contradictory creation stories will often sum up their view like this:  "According to Genesis 1, God first created water, followed by land, vegetation, fish, birds, animals, etc., and then humankind – both men and women.  According to Genesis 2, however, God is said to have created land, followed by water, Adam, and vegetation.  The creation of vegetation was then followed by the creation of animals, birds, and a woman – Eve."  Sadly, such people who doubt God's Word find contradictions where they do not exist!

    First, such people claim that Genesis 1 teaches God that created water and then land whereas Genesis 2 teaches that God created land and then water.  But they fail to understand that when Genesis 2:4b reads "When the Lord God made the earth and the heavens" this is a brief summary of the entire six days of creation found in Genesis chapter 1.  The water referred to in Genesis 2:5-6 does NOT mean that no water existed until AFTER God had created the land.  Instead, Genesis 2:5-6 simply mentions that there was no rain at that time because water came up from the earth and watered the plants that had not yet sprouted. 
   
    Second, such people claim that Genesis 1 teaches that God created "men and women" whereas Genesis 2 teaches that God created only 1 man and then, later, only 1 woman.  But they fail to see that Genesis 1:27 does NOT teach that God created multiple men and women.  Instead, when Genesis 1:27 refers to "them" it means the 1 man and 1 woman – not multiple men and women (and Jesus' own interpretation of this text in Matthew chapter 19 confirms this!).

    In addition, such people claim that Genesis 2 teaches that plant life was created AFTER Adam whereas Genesis 1 teaches that it was created BEFORE Adam.  What they fail to realize is that Genesis 2 is not speaking about the creation of ALL plant life. Instead, Genesis 2 is pointing to the fact that certain types of plants had not yet begun to grow in the particular area of the Garden.  Obviously, many other types of plant life had already been created BEFORE Adam or God would not have been able to tell Adam to eat from them AFTER God had created him!

    Such people also wrongly claim that Genesis 2 teaches that animals were created AFTER Adam whereas Genesis 1 teaches that animals were created BEFORE Adam.  What they do not understand is that the Hebrew text of Genesis 2 refers to the fact that God had already created the animals BEFORE he brought them to Adam.  (See Commentary on the Old Testament: The Pentateuch by Keil-Delitzsch, 87-88.)  Genesis 2:19 reads:  "Now the Lord God had formed out of the ground all the beasts of the field and all the birds of the air.  He brought them to the man..."

    Finally, such people think there is a contradiction between Genesis 1:27 (where we're told that God created humans as male and female) and Genesis 2 where Adam is created first and then, later, Eve.  But this is no contradiction at all if we note that Genesis 1:27 simply gives us the general information about God's creation of the first humans whereas Genesis 2 gives us the particular details of HOW God actually did that – by creating Adam first and then, later, Eve.

    When we read Genesis chapters 1 and 2 within the context of the entire witness of Scripture (especially Jesus' quotations from Genesis chapters 1 and 2 in Matthew chapter 19) we see that there are not two conflicting creation accounts but ONE creation account – the general overview of all six days of creation given in Genesis 1, and the specific details of God's creation of Adam and Eve given in Genesis 2.


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