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New video (8 min) that explains the problem with using homology as evidence for evolution

https://youtu.be/lk1gDk1wGhQ
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Propaganda.

If actual scientists say that it's not good, then it's not good. I have no expertise in this area. It's not Appeal to Authority if they are actual authorities. The scientific method sorts this stuff out. Not a video from "Discovery Science" that isn't really science since they are starting from their conclusion and working backwards.

Fringe groups with an agenda trying to attack science do not impress. Where's their publication in a proper journal? They were too busy drawing their cartoon video.

I'm much more interested in why you believe what you do. I don't want to say "oh, it's because he doesn't see the logical fallacies", but that's the impression I left with last time. Even if that is the case, why is that the case? So we still haven't drilled-down far enough. I don't want to convert you (life's too short), but I would like to understand you better. If I can understand one christian that would be an accomplishment (IMO). A few years ago I ventured to the christian fools board, but most people didn't want to help me understand (I think they thought I was trolling them, so they put me on ignore).
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A few years ago I ventured to the christian fools board, but most people didn't want to help me understand (I think they thought I was trolling them, so they put me on ignore).
It was more than a few years ago. We got into a discussion about something Jerry Coyne said that not one iota of scientific progress ever came from a creationist scientific work, or something to that effect. I brought up the work John Baumgardener did and gave the link to a website. Yes, his work stemmed from his desire to research whether the flood of the Bible could be verified. Yes, his work verified that the flood could have happened, yes his work was the most useful program developed by his department at Los Alamos and was useful to scientists all over the world.
My recollection is that your final reflection on this was “how sad”, or something to that effect, that Baumgardener had the scientific talent to achieve what he did yet held to yec views.
The website I referred to gave Baumgardener’s testimony. Earlier in his career his life was in a downward spiral. He was partying, drinking to excess, and destroying his life. His life turned around. His testimony tells about it. Without his transformation, it is unlikely that he would accomplish much.
Perhaps you didn’t read his testimony and your way of thinking led you to see this as a competent scientist who fell and accepted yec creationism. Perhaps you read his testimony and yet, though God turned his life around, you disbelieved it and , though he made a significant contribution to science, you discounted it because of a disdain for yec and you maintain a view of sadness on this scientist.
When you said “how sad” I did not think you were trolling and put you on ignore. Sure, I know that I have no chance to change your thinking. No Christian can because your philosophy of science makes that impossible. Christians believe God created the universe, and since your philosophy discounts anyone who has such a belief of the origin of the universe from doing science, you bring this to a conclusion before any Christian can discuss it with you.
Your philosophy of science is closed off to the possibility that the universe was created and the constraints you impose on science presuppose no supernatural cause, therefore drawing a materialistic conclusion. So I am perplexed how, when your philosophy of science draws a conclusion excluding any Christian from making an argument in their favor, that you look on this board for a Christian to help you understand anything, unless you are open to a supernatural cause, which you decidedly aren’t. You can’t even begin to accept a scientist who’s life turned around as in his testimony and made a significant contribution. I came on this board years ago to discuss the topic and got answers. Don’t look to me or any other Christian to change your thinking. I do believe there is one who can give you the answers you need, if you genuinely want them.
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Paul!! Long time no hear!

I do not recall that now (i.e. what Baumgardener said). There are numerous problems with the Flood story if you want to go into that. Even Bryan only maintains that it was a local flood (evidently conceding a global flood is impossible, I assume?).

But you can change my mind with evidence. Proper vetted scientific evidence. Even a supernatural cause would have to affect the natural world. And that we can measure.

I do believe there is one who can give you the answers you need, if you genuinely want them.

Well, if you are correct, then he knows what it would take to change my mind. So he either doesn't exist, or doesn't care. But if he ever does, I'll be sure to post it.
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BTW, as I recall there was one poster that actually treated me seriously on XF. He was from Kansas (Overland Park, where I spent a few years when I was in junior high). Don't remember his handle now. He was nice to me, tried to explain where he was coming from. I honestly still didn't get it, and rather than wearing out my welcome with him also I just conceded that I don't get it. I wasn't looking to him to change my thinking. I just wanted to understand his thinking. I failed.
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Yes, it has been a long time.
I don’t expect to change your thinking. Treating each other seriously and with respect, of course, makes the discourse worthwhile.
We did come to agreement that Baumgardener did make a significant contribution to science. I didn’t understand when you said “how sad”. His testimonial, quite clear from the website that was in the link I gave, would only be a positive. There was no way I could understand how you could possibly give such a reaction.
I can humor you with evidence that is known, perhaps not publicized much. Soft tissue in fossils, the genome of humans and apes at least %15 different (not %2 or less as was thought), irregularities in radiometric rating making them unreliable, etc. You can find all this easily as I. The disparity between ape and human genomes is publicly available and is a problem for evolution. I still see the <%2 figure used, but %15 or more doesn’t fit the model. And that nagging soft tissue, collagen and cells intact in fossils supposedly tens of millions of years old. The explanation of iron and cross linking doesn’t solve the problem when the evidence of cross linking is absent and ground radiation isn’t explained. Either there is no soft tissue and it’s old, or there’s soft tissue and less than a million years old, not tens of millions. As science is understood, that soft tissue, and the fossils they are in, show dinosaurs lived less than a million years ago.
Science has come a long way since I have had discussions here, and I like what I am seeing more and more.
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There is evidence for a global flood. The “beyond is Genesis history” videos make the case, and they show evidence. Bryan may not see a global flood as I do. I see that biblically, the flood was global, and there is evidence for that. In fact, the fossil record makes sense with a global flood. I can’t explain it to you. The movie, is genesis history, and later videos do that very well. There’s formations seen at the Grand Canyon. When you go some tens of miles away, a layer, layer down like a pancake, supposedly millions of years in the making, seen there, but not at the Grand Canyon, and the next layer on top in both places, but where the one layer is missing the evidence of millions of years from the missing layer doesn’t exist. And the angles of sediment in areas are at angles we find in submerged strata/sandbars, not the angles found in dunes above water.
This evidence is only discounted because it doesn’t fit the old age paradigm and doesn’t consider a global flood. Such thinking is poisonous to the accepted paradigm and only a paradigm shift, not actual evidence from a small minority of scientists, Will change things. The strength of the paradigm holds the truth of evidence in check. Decades and decades of evolution being taught, displayed in museums, written in textbooks, etc, etc, etc. scientists now know that the Grand Canyon was not formed from millions of years of the Colorado River carving it out, yet that explanation is still to be found. Scientists are coming to the realization that Neo-Darwinism is no longer a good model for the evolution of microbial life to Man, yet it’s still being taught as such. The Big Bang theory is the the most commonly accepted one for the origin of the universe, yet it requires that at one time the universe expanded faster than the speed of light, which violates Einstein’s theory ( a made up make believe force is the explanation of this). The Big Bang theory wins out over steady state theory because of radiation that is detected from the outer reaches of the universe which is assumed that came from the Big Bang at the beginning of the universe.

I just can’t get over the soft tissue conundrum where science says soft tissue is is not old. If there are no presuppositions of age, and science says soft tissue can’t be a million years old, why do scientists have any problem saying dinosaur bones have been shown to be less than tens of millions of years old, and less than one million years old except that they destroy the prevailing paradigm?
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You will have to support all those statements. A quick check says that, yes, the GC formed over millions of years. Rock-solid (no pun intended) geology. Yes, chimpanzees differ from us by about 4% (journal articles with over 300 citations). Etc. Actual journal articles presenting actual data.

However, like you, I have better things to do than try to change your mind. Life is too short. I'm happy to discuss various things, but at the end of the day it is not (and would not be) my goal to change your mind. You have to do that yourself.

On the theist dialog board (of which Bryan was my only victim...errr...discussion partner) I am now asking "what do you believe and why do you believe it". That is much more interesting than debunking scientific errors and misrepresentations. I am happy to do that also, but why you believe as you believe is more interesting and may help me understand theists better.

I seek understanding in all things, just because I like to know. Probably a result of spending so many years in college and grad school.


P.S. It would make no difference in how I live my life if it could be demonstrated there was a deity. And especially the Abrahamic deity I would not worship under pain of death. He couldn't even get slavery right, so why should I respect him? But I would like to know if he/she/it existed. Just to know.
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I’m well aware that you don’t accept an argument unless it’s supported by a scientific publication. The thing about the human and chimp genomes is that earlier studies didn’t have the more complete genome studies that we have now. The older ones had assumptions where the genome was incomplete, and there was a contamination problem. I have an article to cite for the %15 difference, https://www.icr.org/article/separate-studies-converge-human-...
The more complete, more recent genomes are publicly available. Anyone who knows how to do the comparison can do it and find that the difference is at least %15.
The majority of scientists do see millions of years in the Grand Canyon as rock solid, but what isn’t rock solid is the soft tissue found in fossils thought to be tens of millions of years old. This is published in scientific journals. It’s well understood by scientists that soft tissue, like what’s found in locations around the world and in different strata, should not exist for a million years.
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There was one legit link in that article. The Science link apparently contradicts the stated conclusion. I quote: "Mean autosomal divergence is 1.27 ± 0.20% (human-chimpanzee), 1.61 ± 0.21% (human-gorilla), and 3.12 ± 0.33% (human-orangutan)."

I'm not a geneticist, and I hope Anthony or btresist (formerly centromere) chimes in. Autosomal divergence increases with increasing genetic distance. Is the 4% number still correct or do we now have to say 1.3%?

As for soft tissue, I remembered that was accounted for many years ago. The bigger question is whether proteins were in the samples (no one has been able to replicate the original research, from my quick look). One hypothesis is that the chemical situation is similar to immersing the tissue in formaldehyde. I'm not a bio-chemist, so I cannot say that they are wrong. There is a large community of bio-chemists that can, and if they see fit they will. Scientists love blasting their colleagues if they are being stupid. It can get pretty ruthless. That's why scientists hedge, and are very cautious. You gotta bring your data, and it has to stand up to scrutiny.

https://www.livescience.com/41537-t-rex-soft-tissue.html

Or a little more recent:
https://www.earthmagazine.org/article/dinosaur-soft-tissues-...

Still somewhat controversial.
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"Is the 4% number still correct or do we now have to say 1.3%?"

Both are incorrect simply comparing the difference in the total numbers of base pairs:

https://genesisapologetics.com/faqs/human-and-chimp-dna-is-i...

The chimp genome is much longer than the human genome. Humans have forty-six chromosomes, while chimps have forty-eight. According to the latest data, there are 3,096,649,726 base pairs in the human genome and 3,309,577,922 base pairs in the chimpanzee genome. This amounts to a 6.4% difference.[vii] The 98% similarity claim fails on this basis alone.

So the difference must be larger than 6%. Two scientists, one evolutionist in London and a creationist scientist have come up with numbers of approximately 15% difference.

"There is a large community of bio-chemists that can, and if they see fit they will. Scientists love blasting their colleagues if they are being stupid. It can get pretty ruthless. That's why scientists hedge, and are very cautious."
That helps to make the point that secular scientists are hesitant to publish something like this. As you said, the geological ages are rock solid (to most scientists). So are evolutionary timeframes. Publishing something and publicizing this information causes real trouble for evolutionists. The biological rates don't support the timeframes required to evolve humans with such differences in base pairs.
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So the difference must be larger than 6%.

It depends on what you are measuring. Prior to about 2006 it was believed that most mutations were changes in single nucleotides (called SNPs). Measuring the frequency of SNPs with available sequences showed about a 0.1% difference between human individuals and about a 1-4% difference between humans and chimps.

It was then found that about 10% of the human genome can vary in copy number (CNV). These are sequences, sometimes genes, that are present in multiple and variable numbers of copies. CNV differences occur at a much higher frequency than SNPs, about 10-fold higher. There are other forms of variation as well involving structural rearrangements of the chromosome. If we take these all into account the genetic difference between any two randomly selected humans will be about 2%. The creationist arguments take all these variations into account and find differences between human and chimps at about 15%.

So there you have it. If one looks only at SNPs, a chimp is about 10-fold different from you than another unrelated human. If you look at SNPs plus CNVs, a chimp is still about 10-fold different from you than another unrelated human.

Much ado about nothing.
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So what about the autosomal differences in the Science publication what I quoted? Where does that fit into the mix? I presume there are negligible autosomal differences between any two humans?
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That helps to make the point that secular scientists are hesitant to publish something like this.

There are scientists and not-scientists. Some may be secular. In grad school the project I worked on was headed by an Irish Catholic. But what distinguishes scientists from non-scientists is that they go where the data leads. So, no, if they have the data they will not be hesitant to publish anything. If they are confident the data stands up, and others can replicate their results, they won't hesitate at all. And if it overturns "established" science then they will become famous.

You don't get how science works. (Most people don't, it seems.) Newton is famous for coming up with his three laws of motion (among other things). Someone today verifying the three laws of motion won't become famous, and likely wouldn't even merit a mention in the science literature. It's been done. We already know it. It's not noteworthy. Einstein became famous for, among other things, generalizing the laws of motion to great speeds (special relativity).

Proving that we are not related to other primates would be noteworthy. That scientist would be famous overnight. You'll notice that isn't happening. Evolution is as close to a fact as a scientific theory can be. It's now about how it occurs (gradual, punctuated, etc**) than if it occurs. Because we know it does.

The biological rates don't support the timeframes required to evolve humans with such differences in base pairs.

And a scientist who demonstrated that would be an instant rock star. But that is not forthcoming, apparently.



**And likely details of which I am unaware. I'm not a biologist, so I do not keep up on the literature and go to the conferences.
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I’m well aware that you don’t accept an argument unless it’s supported by a scientific publication.

By the way, to be pedantic...

I do not accept a scientific argument unless it's supported by evidence/data (e.g. peer-reviewed publications). The expository power of the scientific method relies on peer review and reproducibility. Hand-waving and opinion are not evidence nor data, and I would not accept it as such. Someone's opinion is not equivalent to facts, and there are no alternative facts (despite what some people want to believe).

I can accept arguments about non-scientific matters if they are based in logic. Lots of things aren't covered by science, and therefore scientific publications. Then we have to resort to logic and reason because those are the only tools we have.
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So what about the autosomal differences in the Science publication what I quoted? Where does that fit into the mix? I presume there are negligible autosomal differences between any two humans?

I am assuming you are referring to this statement "...Mean autosomal divergence is 1.27 ± 0.20% (human-chimpanzee), 1.61 ± 0.21% (human-gorilla), and 3.12 ± 0.33% (human-orangutan)."

These frequencies refer to SNP frequencies (the Science article refers to these as SNVs, same thing). I said SNP difference between humans and chimps was between 1-4% (I was going by memory). Pretty close.

The autosomal SNP difference between two unrelated humans is about 0.1%.

Again, higher levels of variation are observed with copy number variants, both between humans as well as between humans and other species. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/11/061123115741.h...
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“Much ado about nothing.”
I’m not sure that I go along with that.
For one thing, back in 2005 when the first genome comparison was done between humans and apes, the cost to get the full chimp genome was what, a billion or several billion. Much more than what the project would allow. So only a partial chimp genome was done and the assumption was that the Human /chimp genome were very similar, so the fragments of the chimp genome that were known were put on a framework that came from the human genome and that yielded a 98% to 99% similarity between the genomes.
Fast forward a number of years and technology makes it possible to more fully map out the genomes and new comparisons give far different similarities, going from a percent or two difference to 15 to 20 percent difference. The difference is hundreds of millions of base pairs. That sounds quite significant. As an engineer, one thousandth of error is generally acceptable. This is an error of a magnitude of 10. The difference to the genome is staggering. We’re not just playing with a bunch of junk DNA. There are changes to extremely complex coded DNA. There are significant changes to DNA that has extremely complex controls. The DNA that provides the scaffolding to put DNA sequences in 3dimensional space must compensate for this magnitude of change.
I’ve read lengthy discussions about this and the expert evolution scientist opines on the side that this is not a problem for common descent and evolution. I don’t see it that way.
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I don’t see it that way.

I mean no offense. Truly. But so what? You're not a biologist/geneticist. What difference does your lay-opinion make? Your lay-opinion is not as good as facts. And your lay-opinion is not as good as that of an expert in the field. Not just yours. My opinion isn't either.

A person (not just you) looks foolish saying "I'm not an expert in your field but I don't agree with you about this fact within your field", which is basically what you're saying.

It's not Appeal to Authority if you're reference actual experts in the field.
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I am assuming you are referring to this statement "...Mean autosomal divergence is 1.27 ± 0.20% (human-chimpanzee),...

Yes. That is what I was referring to. Keep in mind I didn't take biology in college, so I sort of get the gist of stuff like this but I don't presume to "know" what it says. A staggering amount has been learned since I had high school biology. My daughter when taking high school biology was studying stuff light years beyond what I had. I couldn't help her at all.

So the implication is chimps are less than 1.5% different from us (including error bars).
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It's not Appeal to Authority if you're reference actual experts in the field.

You've said this several times recently, but its pretty much the definition of the appeal to authority fallacy.
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Sort of...but...

https://yourlogicalfallacyis.com/appeal-to-authority

...nor is it reasonable to disregard the claims of experts who have a demonstrated depth of knowledge unless one has a similar level of understanding and/or access to empirical evidence.

The key is that it does not have intrinsic bearing on the truth. That is correct. But when the authority is in the pertinent field, has the scientific method backing them up, etc, then it is not reasonable to disregard the claim unless you have vetted evidence that they are wrong.

I don't claim "Behe says it is so, so it is so". I claim Behe is wrong because he has the full weight of the biology community, with the scientific method (i.e. peer review, etc) opposing him. I do not have the knowledge or expertise to judge what statements in biology are true. I have experts backed with the scientific method who tell me.

A more blatant appeal to authority would be (made up example follows): Einstein said evolution was punctuated. Einstein may have been an authority on general relativity, but he was not on evolution. So not only does it not have intrinsic bearing on the truth, but Einstein wasn't an expert in the relevant field.

That's why (IMO) appeal to authority is tricky. We can't be experts in everything. We have to place our trust in actual experts. How we choose these experts can be a source of problems. The scientific method is the most rigorous and reliable way to choose.
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Fast forward a number of years and technology makes it possible to more fully map out the genomes and new comparisons give far different similarities, going from a percent or two difference to 15 to 20 percent difference.

Fine. But using exactly the same technology on humans show that two human beings differ by an average of 1-2%. And if you understand the concept of "average", this means that two individuals could differ by substantially more than 2% and with both still considered human.

Think about that for a bit. If you are going to measure genetic variation in such a way that two human beings differ on average by 2%, how much more different would you expect a chimp to be using the same measure? That is the fundamental question isn't it?

Multiple studies show that Single Nucleotide Polymorphism (SNPs) variation between human-human is 0.1% and between human-chimp is 2%. If we want to now include Sequence Number Variants (SNVs) human-human variation averages 1.6% and human-chimp variation 20%. In both cases human-chimp variation is 10-20X higher than human-human variation. That's the important point.

Did you know that 8% of the human genome is made up of virus sequence? That's where much of the difference between humans and chimps occur. Did you know that 45% of the human genome is made up of transposable elements, bits of DNA capable of replicating itself and moving to different locations on chromosomes? That is also where much of the genetic variation within and between species occurs.

But for the genes that encode for proteins, the human and chimp DNAs are 99% similar. That's the comparison that most people consider important.

There are changes to extremely complex coded DNA. There are significant changes to DNA that has extremely complex controls. The DNA that provides the scaffolding to put DNA sequences in 3dimensional space must compensate for this magnitude of change.

Not sure what you are trying to get at here. We all agree there must be significant differences between the genomes of apes and humans since these are different species.
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This is all very interesting and I am glad we are discussing it. I have gone back to videos on this subject I got a few years ago.
One lecture by Todd Wood discusses the thousand genome project. There are 2500 human genomes from around the world. It found that 99.9% ov the variants are SNPs. There was .1% to.2% differences from the reference genome, so 99.8% of the genome is exactly the same. 90% of the variants are specific people groups, so those variants are recent. Do not long ago, the human genome was 99.99% similarity between humans.
The interesting thing about genes that encode for proteins is that the number of proteins encoded is 10 times the number of genes.
One interesting thing is that the chimpanzee Y chromosome is half the size of the human chromosome and only half of those DNA match the human Y chromosome.
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All this is very interesting an all, but the key question is: do the DNA facts support the theory that humans and chimpanzees share a common ancestor.

Whatever percent you come up with, the differences between humans and chimps suggests that there has not been enough time since the supposed split 6 million years ago for all the differences seen to have developed by Darwinian processes.
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Whatever percent you come up with, the differences between humans and chimps suggests that there has not been enough time since the supposed split 6 million years ago for all the differences seen to have developed by Darwinian processes.

What do you base that on? It's in direct opposition to current scientific thought. How much change do you need to create a new species? How long would it take a chordate (we've observed it in the lab with single-cell organisms, but we're talking more complex organisms here) to branch to a new species? I certainly don't know. Do you? (Genuine question.)
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“How much change do you need to create a new species?“
That’s the billion dollar question, and I think at least that much has been spent on it.
You can get computer programs to take data and get computationally correct results for a common ancestor. Whether it is theoretically correct is a different thing.
Single cell organisms are much easier to work with since they’re not so complex as humans and you get generations of study done in one day. Long ages are needed for humans, for it can take 20,000 years to see some things happen.
What also makes this so interesting is that we have a long way to go to fully understand it.
“ It's in direct opposition to current scientific thought.”
I see statements like that and it shuts things down. It begs a conclusion and there’s No point to further discussion. Why bother with any of this when the current paradigm draws a conclusion?
I think there is a paradigm shift in the works. I think there’s a lot to gain from discussing it. The last 10 or 15 years have seen a huge increase in what we know about this stuff. Maybe the paradigm shift supports yec. Maybe it goes for new stuff for evolution. There’s a lot more secular scientists than creationism scientists, but it’s really amazing that the small number of creationists have been able to do what they have. Many are excellent scientists and it is disingenuous to ignore their work in favor of a paradigm because they are making contributions. Truth to be told, their work is more valued now. They are more encouraged now than in the past. That’s what I’m hearing from their discussions.
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1poorguy, going back to this subject: “As for soft tissue, I remembered that was accounted for many years ago. The bigger question is whether proteins were in the samples (no one has been able to replicate the original research, from my quick look). One hypothesis is that the chemical situation is similar to immersing the tissue in formaldehyde. I'm not a bio-chemist, so I cannot say that they are wrong. There is a large community of bio-chemists that can, and if they see fit they will. Scientists love blasting their colleagues if they are being stupid. It can get pretty ruthless. That's why scientists hedge, and are very cautious. You gotta bring your data, and it has to stand up to scrutiny.“

Ok, a scientist, Dr Schweitzer, published in the science journal about her work finding soft tissue in fossil tens of millions of years old. This got a lot of attention in 2005. Some thought that the cells were bacteria, but to her credit she did further research to show that this was real soft tissue. I think it was she who did the laboratory experiment to see if Fenton reaction, iron from hemoglobin could cause a cross-linking of the tissue to protect it and preserve it. Samples were tested and tissue in iron solutions lasted well in a lab for 2 years where samples in just water quickly degraded.
This is likened to keeping tissue in formaldehyde.
One thing is two years in a lab has to extrapolate to tens of millions of years in a places like Hell Creek Montana buried on foot and subject to temperature variations and water. Another thing is ground radiation, not present in the lab experiment. Another thing is that the proteins from Hell creek Montana collagen, didn’t show cross linking. Kevin Anderson and Mark Armitage did the Hell Creek Montana research of a dinosaur horn. The research was published in ARS Technica and another journal. You can find this in “Beyond is Genesis History Volume 2”. Based on this research there is strong evidence that the dinosaur fossils are more likely to be thousands, not tens of millions of years old. You can see the stretchy soft tissue taken from the fossils. This says that the fossils cannot be that old.
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It begs a conclusion and there’s No point to further discussion.

If you have additional data, then yes there is.

If you're just expressing your opinion in opposition to folks with data, well then there really isn't. Data is king.

There’s a lot more secular scientists than creationism scientists...

There's a reason for that. The "secular scientists" know that there is no validity to the creation myth (as told in "holy" books).

...but it’s really amazing that the small number of creationists have been able to do what they have.

Like what? What discoveries have they made? What of their hypotheses have they been able to demonstrate?

Every time biblical claims come up against science, the biblical claims lose.

The one thing I can agree with in your statement is that the last 15 years have seen enormous increases in knowledge about biology and genetics. When our daughter was in high school biology (just a few years ago) I couldn't help her with her homework. My high school biology wasn't up to the task. You would do well to look up Dr Francis Collins. Head of the human genome project. And a devout evangelical xian. He is an expert on genetics, and asserts that you only need to look at genetics for proof of evolution. I mention him only because he is a theist (obviously), so you can't really claim he is biased against religion. He is "one of you". And an expert on genetics.
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Bring me a proper article in an unbiased (i.e. real) journal that says the fossils can't be that old, and I will have to accept that possibility. But something entitled "Beyond Genesis" is creationist propaganda. You know how I know? Because if it wasn't it would be published in a proper journal.

I strongly object to starting with the conclusion and working backwards. That's what creationists do. You have your conclusion and massage/cherry-pick data (really, you torture it) to reach that conclusion. Actual scientists collect data, and let them -the data- lead them where they will.

Show me the "strong evidence" that fossils are thousands of years old and not millions of years old. It should be easy. Something like that would be burning up the journals of archaeology, and the researchers would be famous. I certainly missed it in my science news reading (my news feed on my phone is mostly science stuff...I've blocked almost all politics). Could be my news feed missed it. It's been dominated by the Taal Volcano eruption (which is of interest to me because I've been there a few times).

And, yes, Dr Schweitzer evidently is a solid researcher that has more than one sample of interest. She's not a crank, or doesn't appear to have an agenda other than doing science to the best of her ability. I mentioned a process that acted like formaldehyde, if you'll recall. She asserts it preserves tissue over geologic time (i.e. not thousands of years, but millions. She has something of a problem in that no one else can replicate her research (last I knew; though they could be more recent work I'm unaware of).
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And that nagging soft tissue, collagen and cells intact in fossils supposedly tens of millions of years old.


If you ask a fossil scientist, as I have, it's not really a big deal.

https://www.livescience.com/41537-t-rex-soft-tissue.html
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The Big Bang theory is the the most commonly accepted one for the origin of the universe, yet it requires that at one time the universe expanded faster than the speed of light, which violates Einstein’s theory


Einstein's theory does not prohibit space itself from expanding fast than light.
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There are numerous factual problems and inconsistencies in your posts. I’ll lay these out for you.

You make the claim in post 27042) for 15% genetic difference between humans and chimps based on this link: https://www.icr.org/article/separate-studies-converge-human-... , which claims to be confirmed by work by a geneticist, Richard Buggs. Here is a link describing Richard Buggs' work from his own website. http://richardbuggs.com/index.php/2018/07/14/how-similar-are...

What Buggs reports is that 1% of human-chimp variation was due to SNPs, 5% due to Sequence number variants, and most of the rest due to incomplete sequence data.

Here’s the point, that 15% you cite is based on all types of mutations (and also includes regions yet to be studied). Yet creationist arguments that this level of variation is too high to be explained by evolution is based on frequencies derived solely from SNPs. That’s not kosher.

It would be like concluding most people in Los Angeles do not own cars based solely on the number of purple cars registered in LA.

You now argue: ”One lecture by Todd Wood discusses the thousand genome project. There are 2500 human genomes from around the world. It found that 99.9% ov the variants are SNPs. There was .1% to.2% differences from the reference genome, so 99.8% of the genome is exactly the same.”

You seem to be suggesting that this project found SNPs to be the major source of variation between humans. Not true.

A description of the “Thousand genome project” is here: https://www.pnas.org/content/113/42/11901

The authors note that the technique used was not suitable for accurate Copy Number variant detection. ”Overall, these results indicate that the identification of structural and copy-number variation using this short-read technology is unsatisfactory for clinical use if not supported by orthogonal technologies.”

The study was designed to identify SNPs, not copy number variants or many other types of structural variations. Not surprising that it found mostly SNPs.

Do not long ago, the human genome was 99.99% similarity between humans.

Consistent with the evolutionary concept of “common ancestry” for humans.

The interesting thing about genes that encode for proteins is that the number of proteins encoded is 10 times the number of genes.

And that is relevant how? Not sure what you are getting at here but you can read how a process like alternative splicing can cause multiple proteins to be made from a single gene. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alternative_splicing

One interesting thing is that the chimpanzee Y chromosome is half the size of the human chromosome and only half of those DNA match the human Y chromosome.

Makes my point. As I noted previously a lot of variation is due to repetitive sequences like transposable elements, which are present at high frequency on the Y-chromosome. Very few genes on the Y (note that females lack a Y altogether and still seem to do okay). The prediction by evolutionary geneticists then would be that the Y chromosome would be subject to much higher mutation rates (and therefore variation) than average. As you point out, this seems to be the case.
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The work Kevin Anderson and Mark Armitage did was published in a peer reviewed scientific journal.
The process that works like formaldehyde is refuted as well as other issues:
https://creation.com/dinosaur-blood-fuz-rana
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"If you ask a fossil scientist, as I have, it's not really a big deal."

If not, why did Mark Armitage get fired?

https://world.wng.org/content/after_settlement_academia_stil...
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I checked Google Scholar for MH Armitage. He presented papers for the likes of the Fifth International Conference on Creationism, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, August
4–9, 2003. Published in: Proceedings of the Fifth International Conference on Creationism, R. L. Ivey
(Ed.), pp. 243–267, 2003.


For example. That is not a a proper scientific journal or conference. Also the link you provided does not qualify as a refereed journal.

I'm not saying he couldn't have one somewhere, but the first few hits on Google Scholar didn't show what you claim. But if you can find one, I'm all eyes.

(And he is not to be confused with MP Armitage or MA Armitage.)

I did find one, but it doesn't appear to discuss the age nor refutes the preservation process, but I'm not willing to pay $36 for the entire article. All they do is describe the tissue in the abstract.

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S006512811...

Digging a bit more:

The age of the bones was determined by the age of the rock it was in.
[Dalrymple, G. Brent. 2000. Radiometeric dating does work! Reports of the National Center for Science Education 20(3): 14-19.]

The tissues were not originally soft, but were rehydrated as part of the removal of mineral components of the bone.
[Schweitzer, M. H., J. L. Wittmeyer, J. R. Horner, and J. K. Toporski. 2005. Soft-tissue vessels and cellular preservation in Tyrannosaurus rex. Science 307: 1952-1955.]

Also, it is not known whether the tissues are the original material.
[Stokstad, Erik. 2005. Tyrannosaurus rex soft tissue raises tantalizing prospects. Science 307: 1852.]

If YEC claims were true it would be a simple matter to recover DNA. But none has ever been recovered from a dinosaur fossil. We have recovered DNA samples over 300K years old. No dinosaurs, though.
[Stokstad, Erik. 2003. Ancient DNA pulled from soil. Science 300: 407.]

Note that I claim no expertise here. This is just what I was able to dig up relatively quickly with citations from a legit journal. If you really want to know about this stuff, look at legitimate journals and/or take some college courses. If you rely on ICR and Discovery, you will be misled.

Ditto what btresist is telling you. There is a big difference between reading ICR and actually understanding the data. btresist has been trained and understands the data. He's telling you that what you are reading is at best making bad assumptions/characterizations, and at worst lying to you. The advantage of having an actual geneticist on the board.
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If not, why did Mark Armitage get fired?

Because his position was temporary, and when they ran out of funds the temps get cut first. The court never ruled in his favor, the university just reasoned it was cheaper to pay him off than to fight (which is a common occurrence in lawsuits these days -they settle rather than rack-up huge legal bills).

Reading more about this, I vaguely remember that guy. And the abstract I mentioned in his paper is, in fact, representative of the paper. It was just a report of findings. To his credit, he didn't mention his creationism once. He just reported the findings.

He never made his beliefs secret, and he was hired in spite of them. Nothing nefarious. Just a question of funding. It's one of the reasons I didn't want to live a life in academia. Your funding can dry up overnight, and then you can't afford your lab space (and the university is then motivated to give it to someone else).
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The work Kevin Anderson and Mark Armitage did was published in a peer reviewed scientific journal.
The process that works like formaldehyde is refuted as well as other issues


I don't understand how Anderson and Armitage work is support for YEC. Even in the young creationist scenario, dinosaur fossils still have to be thousands of years old.

Finding soft tissue is evidence that something was around last week, not a thousand years ago. So even if the YECs are correct, there still had to have been some unknown preservation process occurring that kept that tissue around for the thousands of years since Noah's flood. Seems to me that once you accept the premise of an unknown preservation process, the Armitage argument falls apart.

If something is going to last 10,000 years why not 10 million?
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“If something is going to last 10,000 years why not 10 million?“
It’s a question of 4300 years or 1500 times that age. There’s a lot more to explain with 65000000 years than 4500 years. Temperature fluctuations, moisture, and ground radiation present with the subject find gradually deteriorate soft tissue.
Formaldehyde preserves biological specimens, but not permanently into deep time, as you know, because it only slows the process of decay.
The Fenton reaction, cross linking of protein molecules, like formaldehyde, slows deterioration of decay.
The experiment performed by Schweitzer does indicate that the Fenton reaction can preserve tissue, but it’s relevance to the tissue Armitage and Anderson found in the dinosaur horn is quite dubious. The iron rich solution Schweitzer made was made by a process using an anticoagulant and processing the blood in a way not possible that blood in the dinosaur horn would anywhere near approximate. The control sample, tissue placed in water, water being perfect for deterioration of tissue, also made for an artificial result to the experiment. Two years in an artificial solution in a temperature controlled lab with no ground radiation gives not the slightest relevance to a dinosaur horn with blood pooling in lower parts and quickly clotting and not spun to concentrate the iron in a solution, and lasting tens of millions of years with ground radiation. What’s more, the collagen showed no cross linking. The idea that sandstone wicked away moisture fails in this case with moisture and mud present and plant roots, now dead, growing into the fractured part of the horn.
Protein half life, other studies showing cell and protein survival in bone, make discovery of soft tissue after 4000 some years the better explanation than deep time of 65000000 years.
As a scientific conundrum, does science accept deterioration at a rate approximately 4000 times less than currently understood better than a rate 1500 times less than that rate. Clearly the 4000 times less should win the day.
Present day science gives this at a win for YEC. But the present day paradigm cannot accept a win against deep ages. Enter Armitage with his evidence and a reasonable question about the age of the dinosaur horn.
He is accused of religion and promptly fired. He sues and receives a very impressive 399,000 settlement. YEC won the day.
I find it incredulous that an expert makes light of a magnitude of 15000 times an already impressive 4300 preservation of soft tissue. The only explanation can be a strong bias towards an old Earth paradigm.
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I find it incredulous that an expert makes light of a magnitude of 15000 times an already impressive 4300 preservation of soft tissue. The only explanation can be a strong bias towards an old Earth paradigm.

Because all the evidence says we have an old Earth? You might ask him his reasoning rather than assume he is twisting facts to suit himself.
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Because all the evidence says we have an old Earth? You might ask him his reasoning rather than assume he is twisting facts to suit himself.<\i>
He made trivial the difference between an impressive 4300 years of decay ant 1500 times that amount of decay. I called him out for it. I think that says something significant about the status quo. You can’t dispute me with more of the status quo. I need to hear something else.
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It’s a question of 4300 years or 1500 times that age. There’s a lot more to explain with 65000000 years than 4500 years. Temperature fluctuations, moisture, and ground radiation present with the subject find gradually deteriorate soft tissue.

My point is that according to your YEC belief, dinosaurs were drowned in a global flood. This means that you have to come up with an explanation for how soft tissue immersed in highly corrosive water can survive for thousands of years. As any mortician or butcher knows, soft tissue begins to decay as soon as death occurs and under normal conditions proceeds rapidly. This means for soft tissue to last a century, preservation must occur rapidly and be pretty resistant to decay. For it to last a thousand years, the preservation must be extremely resistant to decay. At that point, it doesn't seem implausible for the preservation to be essentially permanent. Once you get past the first the decade, the hard part is pretty much over.

The experiment performed by Schweitzer does indicate that the Fenton reaction can preserve tissue, but it’s relevance to the tissue Armitage and Anderson found in the dinosaur horn is quite dubious.

The finding of dinosaur soft tissue is a rare event. That means that the conditions that allow it to happen are unusual and unexpected.

What’s more, the collagen showed no cross linking.

So you claim, but in other examples of dinosaur soft tissue preservation collagen was indeed cross-linked. In fact, a recent (2019) paper showed that the dinosaur collagen cross-linking was structurally very similar to that observed in the cross-linking of chicken collagen using the Fenton reaction. That's called an experiment, something YECers rarely do. https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-019-51680-1#Sec10

Protein half life, other studies showing cell and protein survival in bone, make discovery of soft tissue after 4000 some years the better explanation than deep time of 65000000 years.

Again, so you claim. On the other hand, here is a 2018 paper describing how proteins can be permanently fossilized, capable of lasting for millions of year. https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-018-07013-3

Paper nicely explains why soft tissue is only occasionally preserved from the Mesozoic era (age of dinosaurs). Here is a blog explaining the work from the lead author, a grad student at Yale. https://natureecoevocommunity.nature.com/users/174965-jasmin...
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I am not a biochemist. However, I interpreted what he said that the preservative compound would work as well for 1000 years as 1000000 years. As long as the chemistry was stable (my assumption).

If I misinterpret him I'm sure he'll chime in again.

However, "status quo" is the best that modern science can do at present. It is a product of accumulated knowledge, plus peer review to poke holes in ideas, etc. What you appear to "need" is to hear the bible is inerrant. Even if it isn't. Even if we can prove it isn't.

I mean no offense, but you remind me of Ken Ham when he debated Bill Nye. When asked "what could change your mind", Ham replied "nothing". (Nye replied "evidence", FWIW.)

I have little interest to try to convert you. Only to correct obvious errors (though btresist and Anthony are better equipped to do that given the current topic). You would have to be open to actual evidence, and then -in essence- convert yourself. I cannot do it for you. So understand that I don't want to change your mind. Trying to change another person's mind is a waste of time (not just you, but anyone).

If I can understand how just one xian thinks, that's all I could ask.
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My point is that according to your YEC belief, dinosaurs were drowned in a global flood. This means that you have to come up with an explanation for how soft tissue immersed in highly corrosive water can survive for thousands of years.

The YEC thinking is that the flow of water in the flood caused a rapid burial of the dinosaurs. The rapid burial provided conditions that preserved them.

The finding of dinosaur soft tissue is a rare event. That means that the conditions that allow it to happen are unusual and unexpected.

The finding of soft tissue is more common than what is thought:
Sergio Bertazzo et al., “Fibres and Cellular Structures Preserved in 75-Million-Year-Old Dinosaur Specimens,” Nature Communications 6 (2015)

I said: Protein half life, other studies showing cell and protein survival in bone, make discovery of soft tissue after 4000 some years the better explanation than deep time of 65000000 years.

You replied: Again, so you claim. On the other hand, here is a 2018 paper describing how proteins can be permanently fossilized, capable of lasting for millions of year.

experimental decay studies actually give an upper survival limit for bone collagen at about one million years even under ideal conditions:
Mike Buckley et al., “Comment on ‘Protein Sequences from Mastodon and Tyrannosaurus rex Revealed by Mass Spectrometry,’” Science 319, no. 5859 (2008); and Mike Buckley and Matthew James Collins, “Collagen Survival and Its Use for Species Identification in Holocene-Lower Pleistocene Bone Fragments from British Archaeological and Paleontological Sites,” Antiqua 1, no. 1 (2011)

The Collagen sample found by Armitage and Anderson had not been fossilized. In fact, some of the tissue was not treated at all and just peeled from the horn. It could be stretched to twice its size.

Furthermore, no preservation condition would protect the tissue from the devastating effect of millions of years of exposure to ground radiation.
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I need to preview before I post, sorry.

My point is that according to your YEC belief, dinosaurs were drowned in a global flood. This means that you have to come up with an explanation for how soft tissue immersed in highly corrosive water can survive for thousands of years.

The YEC thinking is that the flow of water in the flood caused a rapid burial of the dinosaurs. The rapid burial provided conditions that preserved them.

The finding of dinosaur soft tissue is a rare event. That means that the conditions that allow it to happen are unusual and unexpected.

The finding of soft tissue is more common than what is thought:
Sergio Bertazzo et al., “Fibres and Cellular Structures Preserved in 75-Million-Year-Old Dinosaur Specimens,” Nature Communications 6 (2015)

I said: Protein half life, other studies showing cell and protein survival in bone, make discovery of soft tissue after 4000 some years the better explanation than deep time of 65000000 years.

You replied: Again, so you claim. On the other hand, here is a 2018 paper describing how proteins can be permanently fossilized, capable of lasting for millions of year.

experimental decay studies actually give an upper survival limit for bone collagen at about one million years even under ideal conditions:
Mike Buckley et al., “Comment on ‘Protein Sequences from Mastodon and Tyrannosaurus rex Revealed by Mass Spectrometry,’” Science 319, no. 5859 (2008); and Mike Buckley and Matthew James Collins, “Collagen Survival and Its Use for Species Identification in Holocene-Lower Pleistocene Bone Fragments from British Archaeological and Paleontological Sites,” Antiqua 1, no. 1 (2011)

The Collagen sample found by Armitage and Anderson had not been fossilized. In fact, some of the tissue was not treated at all and just peeled from the horn. It could be stretched to twice its size.

Furthermore, no preservation condition would protect the tissue from the devastating effect of millions of years of exposure to ground radiation.
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I'm not sure there is a point to this since I suspect no amount of scientific evidence will change your mind, but what the heck. Because you are limiting your reading to YEC sites, I don't think you fully understand the context of this issue of dinosaur soft tissue.

First off, the question of whether dinosaur proteins have been preserved is very controversial. Many, if not most, of the claims of dinosaur proteins have been found to be contamination from modern sources as noted by Mike Buckley.
https://phys.org/news/2017-06-collagen-tyrannosaurus-rex-bon...

I believe at this point, Mary Schweitzer (person who came up with the cross-linking preservation hypothesis) is the only one with a credible claim to having found dinosaur collagen. However, others are skeptical as her results have so far been difficult to replicate by other groups.

Here is an interesting side-note. Mary Schweitzer was a fundamentalist Christian and YEC. She then decided to go back to school after having children and took a paleontology course. She had an epiphany.

"...opened Schweitzer's eyes to the overwhelming evidence supporting evolution and Earth's antiquity...She rejected many fundamentalist views, a painful conversion. "It cost me a lot: my friends, my church, my husband." But it didn't destroy her faith. She felt that she saw God's handiwork in setting evolution in motion. "It made God bigger," she says." https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2017/09/i-don-t-care-what-th...

I am not an expert on proteomics by any means, but my opinion is that Schweitzer has done some really impressive science and is probably right. In any case, this exemplifies how science works. Schweitzer makes an extraordinary claim that goes against the status quo in her 2007 paper on soft tissue in T. rex. Buckley and others critique the work and perform experiments demonstrating potential problems. Schweitzer replies with additional experiments supporting her original findings in a 2019 paper. And so it goes. The theory of evolution advances and improves.

A view of the issue from a more open-minded Christian perspective. "The reality is that we don’t know, with any precision, how fast proteins degrade under the conditions found in dinosaur fossil bones. Thus, it is incorrect to claim that we know that it is impossible for soft tissue to survive in any form for 80 million years." https://biologos.org/articles/soft-tissue-in-dinosaur-bones-...

The Collagen sample found by Armitage and Anderson had not been fossilized. In fact, some of the tissue was not treated at all and just peeled from the horn. It could be stretched to twice its size.

So what is the YEC explanation for how an unfossilized and stretchable bit of collagen could have survived 5,000 years? If you are going to claim the collagen was not fossilized then you need to explain how it can be thousands of years old.
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I'm not sure there is a point to this since I suspect no amount of scientific evidence will change your mind

I for one appreciate your thoughtful responses, I find them informing and helpful.
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I for one appreciate your thoughtful responses, I find them informing and helpful.

But you're not a YEC. So you would (presumably) have fewer problems with the science he is explaining.

I also find the discussions useful since I am not a biologist/geneticist, and the explanations presented here tend to be accessible for a non-professional in the field.
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But you're not a YEC

No, but if they turn out to be right, I have no problem with it ;-)
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I don't think I would have a problem with it either. I would be shocked. But if it can be demonstrated to be correct, then I have to accept it.

I wouldn't change another thing about how I lived my life, and I would NOT worship Yahweh even though he could crush me like a bug. If descriptions in the bible are accurate, he would not rate worshiping (IMO). But I would have to acknowledge it if it were demonstrated conclusively.

What that would entail, I have no idea. But a god who knows all things knowable would. :-)

1poorguy
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No, but if they turn out to be right, I have no problem with it ;-)

Is that really true? If the YECs are right then the bible has to be taken literally, and this includes all the horrific events done by God or in his name. There is the genocide of Noah's flood, the mass murder of Sodom&Gomorrah and the first-born of Egypt, the mauling by bears of 42 children who made fun of Elisha, and the torture of Job.

If the YECs are wrong, then the bible can be seen as metaphorical and one can hand wave away the moral concerns as being hypothetical. But if these events actually occurred as written then I think any ethical human being would have to question whether the Creator of the young earth is good.

My concern with the religious is exemplified by the story of Abraham and Isaac. If God ordered you to kill your son or my son, would you do it? If your faith is so strong and unquestioned that the answer is yes, why in the world would I want you for a neighbor?

In this age of religion-based terrorism, this is a very relevant question.
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I agree with everything you wrote, btresist.

I **do** think that in response to

There is the genocide of Noah's flood, the mass murder of Sodom&Gomorrah and the first-born of Egypt, the mauling by bears of 42 children who made fun of Elisha, and the torture of Job.

...the 'literalists' would say that everyone who was destroyed or tested deserved it and/or use the old "d-g works in mysterious ways" trope.

Pete
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If the YECs are right then the bible has to be taken literally, and this includes all the horrific events done by God or in his name.

Not addressing me, but when I said I wouldn't have a problem with it that isn't what I intended. I would have to accept the facts as facts. There aren't alternative facts, there are just facts. I said that I would NOT worship Yahweh, and it was because of the horror, bigotry, and evil that Yahweh represents.

One of my favorites is slavery. It is blatantly obvious that slavery (i.e. owning another human as property) is evil. Yahweh was able to proscribe murder, adultery, and even cooking a baby goat in its mother's milk, but he couldn't figure out "thou shalt not own another person as property"? Instead he gave rules for slavery (different rules for Hebrew slaves and non-Hebrew slaves) like you can beat your slave if they don't die in a couple of days??!! (EX 21, I believe) What sort of [expletive deleted] is that?! And for the remaining 64 books of the bible that is never rescinded. There is only one mention in the NT, and it's "slaves obey your masters as you would obey Christ".

I will never be lectured on morality by a believer. They have no credibility to speak about morality if they accept this.
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My concern with the religious is exemplified by the story of Abraham and Isaac. If God ordered you to kill your son or my son, would you do it? If your faith is so strong and unquestioned that the answer is yes, why in the world would I want you for a neighbor?

In this age of religion-based terrorism, this is a very relevant question.


You’re taking this out of context. Your neighbors now aren’t like the neighbors Abraham had. People then had (false) gods who they sacrificed children to. Difference was that the God of Abraham loved he and Isaac and showed it to them, and that the Lord will provide.
God gave his Son, Jesus, for us. We honor heroes who gave their lives so we can be free. Knowing what Jesus did to set me free I have no problem honoring and worshiping he and his Father.
As for the Old Testament actions, I do not have the same cynicism, because I do Give God his due considering what I know about him. I don’t know everything about the people of those times, right down to how many hairs they have on their heads, and what was in their hearts. God knew it all, knew the alpha and omega of it all, and has the wisdom to do what’s best. Letting people continue their evil devices, we don’t have to imagine it because we’ve seen what wicked people will do if left unchecked. It’s not that God didn’t love them, he showed he did by what he did after the flood. He lets the rain fall on the just and the unjust.
I cannot Judge God and find him guilty without due process and not knowing but what is written in one book whereas knowing enough to convict requires a trial with all the evidence and cross examination of everyone. You haven’t begun to give God a chance to make a defense.
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I cannot Judge God and find him guilty without due process and not knowing but what is written in one book whereas knowing enough to convict requires a trial with all the evidence and cross examination of everyone. You haven’t begun to give God a chance to make a defense.

I am not judging God as much as asking you why you believe the God depicted in the Old Testament is good. Seems to me that your assumption of goodness is not based on evidence as presented in a trial. It is simply based on faith. Why do you demand evidence from me but not for your own beliefs?

You have also avoided answering my question. I am asking about the limits of what you would do for God. The question is pretty simple: "If God ordered you to kill your son or my son, would you do it?"

We all have a sense of morality. The issue is whether we define that morality for ourselves or do we leave it to someone (or something) else. For me, the case would have to be made for why killing my son or your son is justified (and it would have to be an incredible reason). But I would have to be convinced and in the end it would be my decision.

How about you? Would you question God, or would you simply obey (as Abraham did) based on the faith that it must be the right thing to do? And if the latter, how are you different from the suicide bomber we hear about so often in the Middle East?

Since you take the bible literally, the Isaac-Abraham event actually happened. It could happen again. Perhaps it is happening in the Afghanistan and Iraq. Would you have behaved as Abraham?
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There would be no reason good enough. Presuming there is a deity, he can do his own dirty work. There is no reason he needs me to do it. That's just lazy. He can squish me like a bug, but I'll tell him to f-off.
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Why do you demand evidence from me but not for your own beliefs?

You stated: But if these events actually occurred as written then I think any ethical human being would have to question whether the Creator of the young earth is good.
You argue that if Genesis 1 is to be taken literally, so must all of the Bible. If not, certain passages, untoward on their face, can be taken metaphorically. I understand that, on its face, the request God made for Abraham to kill his only son who he loves in Genesis 22 is unusual and disturbing to 21st century ethics. I note that in your argument you say: In this age of religion-based terrorism, this is a very relevant question. So you begin to show that there is significance to the difference in context between Abraham's day and this age. Context is a critical element of this issue.

The first evidence for my belief is the genre of the composition of Genesis. When reading any form of composition you must determine the genre of the composition. The author of Genesis wrote it as a true historical narrative, not poetry (metaphor).
There is qualitative evidence that Genesis is narrative and not poetry, but that gets lengthy. I will share that the evidence, when taken scientifically (statistically) proves that the text is narrative. With 99.5% confidence, the probability that Genesis is narrative, based upon verb distribution. Is between 99.9942 and 99.9987 percent. This was done by real statisticians. This means that it is statistically indefensible to argue this text is poetry (metaphor). Its clear that the authors, God and Moses, believed they were writing about real events.

Knowing this is narrative, to prove that it is historical there are 15 proofs.
1. God's people are defined in terms of their past.
2. God's people are commanded to keep the memory of the past alive.
3. God's people engage in retrospection on their past.
4. Remembrance of past devolves on the present and determines the future.
5. Customs are elucidated.
6. Ancient names and current sayings are traced back to their origins.
7. Monuments and announcements are assigned a concrete reason as well as a slot in history.
8. Historical footnotes are sprinkled throughout the text.
9. Written records used as sources are cited.
10. Precise chronological reference points are supplied.
11. Genealogies are given.
12. Observations of cultic days and seasons are called acts of commemoration.
13. Prophetic utterances are recalled and related to events in the narrative.
14. “Time” words challenge ancient readers to validate historical claims made in the text.
15. Historical “Trajectories” link different portions of the text and widely separate historical periods.
These 15 proofs are overwhelming and do not require statistical analysis.
So Genesis is a literary portrayal of historical events which communicates a theological message. This is not as clear to us in this day and age, but to the intended readers, ancient Israel, it was very clear.

There are several verses that indicate that Moses wrote the Pentateuch. Also, in Deuteronomy 7:4, it states that God provided the Israelites a God-Centered worldview, in order to enable them to thrive among the godless peoples of Canaan. This worldview was Genesis. This is mostly why Genesis 22 happened, was written, and was given to Joshua/Israel before they moved into Canaan. They were the intended readers. In their culture, they understood and saw sacrifice as a part of life. The test God gave to Abraham, the sacrifice of Isaac, was unusual; sacrifice was usually an animal. In the eyes of the intended readers, Isaac was the seed from Abraham that they came from as part of the Abrahamic covenant, the covenant repeated to Abraham after Abraham showed obedience to God. The intended readers of Genesis 22 likely saw it as Abraham being the father of faith, and thus being blessed as the father of the nation, and giving them strength in that the progenitor of their nation was highly faithful and blessed by God for his faith, and they too, while in Canaan among the peoples of Canaan, would be blessed if they showed the same measure of faith.
We have to understand this text the way the intended readers understood it, not as the way we see it in modern day context. We have to understand the historical narrative and how this fits the Biblical narrative, not how we see the narrative with today's societal norms. Also, this being early in the historical narrative of the Bible, we need to understand that, knowing there is a time and a place for everything under the Heaven, this was the time and place God reveals to this people his reward for faith. God is progressively revealed by his word as we continue to read the narrative of the Bible from Genesis through Revelations. If we earnestly seek to know the revelation God presents of himself in the full narrative of the Bible we will see, in this day and age, that he is, and always was a good God. The verse in John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only born Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have eternal life.” Gives us a revelation of how much God loves us and that he is a good God.

My view and some of the reason that I see the Bible the way I do can be summed up as below:

The Chicago statement of biblical inerrancy states “We affirm that inspiration, though not conferring omniscience, guaranteed true and trustworthy utterance on all matters of which the biblical authors were moved to speak or write.
We deny that the finitude or fallenness of these writers, by necessity or otherwise, introduced distortion or falsehood into God's word. (CSBI Article IX)”
“... We further deny that scientific hypothesis about Earth history may properly be used to overturn the teaching of scripture on creation and the flood (CSBI Article XII)”
M. Sternberg wrote:
“Were the narrative written or read as fiction, then God would turn from the lord of history into the creature of the imagination, with the most disastrous results. The shape of time, the rationale of monotheism, the foundations of conduct, the national sense of identity, the very right to the land of Israel and the hope of deliverance to come, all hang in the generic balance. Hence the Bibles determination to sanctify and compel literal belief in the past. It claims not just the status of history but .. of THE history, the one and only truth that , like God himself, brooks no rival.
“If as seekers of the truth, professional or amateur, we can take or leave the truth claim of inspiration, then as readers we must simply take it - just like any other biblical premise or convention, from the existence of God to the sense borne by specific words – or else invent our own text.

Some important points about Genesis 22 need to be stated
1. Before this happened, God had already promised Isaac would be the father of many people. Abraham already had God's word that he could trust.
2. Before going up to do what God asked, Abraham told his servants they (he and Isaac) would return, indicating that he believed that this was not going to be the death of Isaac.
3. God intended this only as a test of Abraham, and had an alternative sacrifice he would provide so that Isaac was spared.
4. People in that time and in that area did perform child sacrifices, but God really only allowed an animal sacrifice and values our life, compared to the false gods of the time who required human sacrifice.

So now we come to it; the question "If God ordered you to kill your son or my son, would you do it?"
There are many things God would order me to do, and many thing in his book I know that I am to do. Whatever I have in my strength and my faith I will do. I have failed in some ways and other ways I haven't. I trust God is good and I believe that his ways are best. Peter denied Jesus 3 times and I can't say I wouldn't deny Jesus/God. From Ecclesiastes 3:1-3
“For everything there is a season, and a time for every purpose under heaven:
2 a time to be born,
and a time to die;
a time to plant,
and a time to pluck up that which is planted;
3 a time to kill
and a time to heal;
a time to break down,
and a time to build up;”

I am certain that in this day an age, it is not a time to test ME by asking ME to kill MY ONLY SON whom I LOVE. I am certain God would agree with me on that. In God's wisdom he knows that I would be likened to a terrorist in this age, unlike Abraham's day. He knows it would be all over social media that I moved to kill my son. He knows that being faithful to that test would cause me irreparable harm and shame. Be thrown in jail (there were none in Abraham's day, nor any police) There is no place in the narrative for me to have the savior of humanity as my offspring. That already happened. God's character values life and in this place and time God would not be seen in that light if he asked me to do what he asked of Abraham. I feel the point made by asking this question lacks context and is moot. It asks me to consider that God would do something unwise in this day and age because he did it in a different day and age, but in that day things were different and you cannot equate an action in that time with the same action to be taken at this time because of all the factors of the difference in time.

God tested Abraham because it was the season, and the time and purpose for it under heaven.

This is what I believe, and I do not judge anyone for seeing things differently. The powerful play goes on and we all have a verse to contribute.
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The author of Genesis wrote it as a true historical narrative, not poetry (metaphor).

Jeepers. Lots of off-topic stuff here. Narrative can be metaphorical and poetry can be historic so I don't believe the rather unusual statistical analysis proves much.

I am certain that in this day an age, it is not a time to test ME by asking ME to kill MY ONLY SON whom I LOVE.

This seems pretty presumptuous to me, like you claiming to be able to speak for God. Looks to me like your "certainty" is based on your own judgement, your moral code. It appears that you decide whether something is moral or not, which you then rationalize by assuming God is in agreement ("I believe killing my son is bad so obviously God agrees").

God tested Abraham because it was the season, and the time and purpose for it under heaven.

So put yourself in Abraham's season and time. Would you have tried to plunge the dagger into your son's chest? I think you are avoiding the question, which I don't blame you for since it is a very difficult question for a Christian to address. But I think it is a question that every Christian should address. How far would you go to obey what you believe is God's will? Would you be willing to do something you innately feel is immoral? Would you force the conversion of the Jew, throw the stone at the witch, or torture the confession from the blasphemer, all of which have been done in the name of God?

There are lots of people killing lots of other people in the name of God. How do you know they are wrong? Perhaps they just have more faith than you.
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This is what I believe, and I do not judge anyone for seeing things differently. The powerful play goes on and we all have a verse to contribute.

I understand that you believe in a literal interpretation of the bible. My question to you that you have not answered is why do you believe the God depicted in the Old Testament is good?

The OT Divinity is certainly powerful. Is that the criterium, power = good?

And to add on to my previous post, the problem with those who take the bible both literally and as the Word of God is that the bible says stuff like "Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live." Exodus 22:18.

In the United States, a person has the right to be a witch. Do you believe you have a religious obligation to exterminate that person? Or is Exodus 22:18 not really supposed to be taken literally? These aren't rhetorical questions. If you were my neighbor or my kids teacher I would want to know stuff like this to know how much of a potential danger you pose to me and my family.
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EX 21 is another good one. In the 21st century we can see the utter irredeemable wickedness of that, but it for centuries was regarded as a part of a guide for perfect morality.

Did a god approve of EX 21? That would be unacceptable today.
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So put yourself in Abraham's season and time. Would you have tried to plunge the dagger into your son's chest? I think you are avoiding the question,

I'm being asked if God ordered me to do this, would I do it. It would be relevant to know who God really is and what his nature is. The Bible reveals God's nature, so we need to know whether the Bible is written as accurate historical narrative or as metaphor. There is much analysis in the videos where I got the information that I presented. It was very lengthy so I tried to pick out the most salient points, but the full explanation really needs to be known. Suffice it to say that what I have found is compelling to show that Genesis is written as true historical narrative and cannot be viewed as metaphor.
Based on Genesis as a true historical narrative, or as a literal account, your thinking, and others on this thread, is that God cannot be seen as good, but as a bloodthirsty, horrible deity with detestable ethics/morals.
Based on a reading of the whole Bible, my view is that God's real nature is really loving and a God of life.
I find that because this question is submitted with the false pretense that God is not good and is likened to an evil monster; to say that I would be his partner in his request to kill my son would make me a co-conspirator to an evil test. If I say I wouldn't obey God I am insubordinate to a God I hold as good and worthy of such faith, and that would make me a hypocrite. As such I do not wish to dignify this question with a response. No Christian should be asked to.
God had a plan to rescue the world from Sin. He needed to bring up a nation that would provide a savior, who is Christ the Lord. Genesis 22 is one link in the chain of events God had to do to make it happen. He knew Abraham before he was born and so he put him on Earth at such a time to fulfil the part of the plan he needed him to accomplish. He knew he would have to ask Abraham to do this and he knew Abraham would be faithful and he knew that he would then provide the animal sacrifice. God knew this was required so that his plan would work.
This was for Abraham, not me. God has a different purpose for me. I know what God's plans are for me because he, in some way, has revealed them to me. He has revealed to me in my heart that such a test would not be for me. He imparts wisdom, and wisdom reveals this.
I am not a theologian and explanations of difficult passages are not my forte. I understand things in my heart and I know what is revealed to me.
The flood happened because of the reasons given. The people living on Earth at that time had only evil thoughts all the time. We know what evil thoughts can manifest; The holocaust, the Genocide in Rwanda in the 90s where 800,000 people were brutally murdered, tens of thousands raped, 300,000 children orphaned. Millions displaced from their homes, and the structures and infrastructure and utilities in the Rwanda decimated. This would be daily life before the flood and God had to see all this suffering and feel the pain of all the evil that was going on before the flood. The only salvation for the Earth was to destroy the evildoers with the flood and salvage a remnant of life on the Ark.
Sodom and Gomorrah is a very similar narrative.
I know God is very, very loving. I know he is good. This revelation has been made to me by him.
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The Bible reveals God's nature...

In other words, EVIL.

The god of the Old Testament is capricious and evil. If you lived by biblical teachings you would be in prison.
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I find that because this question is submitted with the false pretense that God is not good and is likened to an evil monster; to say that I would be his partner in his request to kill my son would make me a co-conspirator to an evil test.

This isn't true and I think you know this. I make no characterization of the God of the Old Testament other than point out a few instances and verses the I find morally troubling. You are using a lot of words to avoid answering a very simple question. I ask again. If God ordered you to kill your child (or 1poorguy's child, or my child) would you do it? Would you be like Abraham?

If you believe God defines what is "good" then I would think your answer would be obvious.
If you believe "good" exists independent of God and killing your child is not good, then the answer would also be obvious, but different.

This was for Abraham, not me. God has a different purpose for me. I know what God's plans are for me because he, in some way, has revealed them to me.

I find it interesting the lengths you will go to avoid the question. I find that disappointing, as I do the silence of bdhinton who I am pretty sure is following this thread. An enormous number of atrocities have been done by people who truly believed they were doing God's will. I suspect most suicide bombers also could have said as you "I know what God's plans are for me because he, in some way, has revealed them to me."

That makes folks like you very dangerous to those who don't believe the same way you do.

There are many who believe that Abraham actually failed the test: "Perhaps the real test was for Abraham to confront God as he did at Sodom, thus teaching his children “righteousness and justice,” and ultimately to say “no” to God. Perhaps, on some level in this narrative, Abraham failed the test." https://www.stltoday.com/lifestyles/faith-and-values/civil-r...
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I find that disappointing, as I do the silence of bdhinton who I am pretty sure is following this thread.

-----

Yeah, I'm following it. Dont care to rehash old topics. Paul is doing a great job
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Paul is doing a great job

Interesting. I would have said he was flailing like a drowning man. Truly fascinating how two people can have polar opposite views of the same situation. Genuinely, it is interesting. If I could figure that out maybe I would understand Christians better (maybe even all theists). Yes, I know you've heard me say that before: "if only I could figure that detail out". :-)

Seemed to me btresist was utterly destroying Paul. In a nice way, but destroying nonetheless.
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That makes folks like you very dangerous to those who don't believe the same way you do.
Your question is a hypothetical that has nothing to do with reality. With Abraham there was NO bloodshed. It was only a test. Nobody died and that’s the reality.
I shall say no more on this.
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With Abraham there was NO bloodshed. It was only a test. Nobody died...

Nobody died because an "angel" intervened. Abraham was going to do it until forcibly stopped. The story tells of an Abraham who was a monster.

I would not do that. If the entity convinced me absolutely that they were The God, I still wouldn't do it. It could kill me, but I would die knowing that I was a better and more honorable person than the entity commanding me. Obedience was the point of the story, and that was a value in bronze-age Palestine (apparently). I think personal behavior and responsibility is more of a value today.

The story is totally messed up. Abraham should have refused. That would at least attest to his humanity, to his virtuousness.

And I think it a valid question of a believer, or really anyone. If some entity convinced you (if you weren't already convinced) it was GOD, would you obey blindly and kill your child? Hypothetical, yes. But revealing, nonetheless.
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Abraham was going to do it until forcibly stopped. The story tells of an Abraham who was a monster.

Religious education taught to children present him as a hero to be admired. Suborning your own desires to God's is worthy of admiration. I remember this from my own Catholic education. Julia Sweeney, in Letting go of God:

"This Old Testament God makes the grisliest tests to peoples’ loyalty, like when he asks Abraham to murder his son Isaac. As a kid we were taught to admire it. I caught my breath reading it. We were taught to admire it! What kind of sadistic test of loyalty is that, to ask someone to kill his or her own child?"
https://www.pbs.org/wnet/religionandethics/2007/01/05/januar...

(At this point in the story, she was going to a Catholic bible study as an adult since she was feeling guilty about not being active enough in her faith.)
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Your question is a hypothetical that has nothing to do with reality.

How can you possibly believe this? If a Moslem were to say that he would be willing to kill his children or your children if ordered by god, would that not trouble you? Is that sentiment not relevant to current events? Why shouldn't the same question be asked of a Christian?

And this isn't limited to the binding of Isaac. Leviticus 20:27 states pretty clearly that "A man or woman who is a medium or spiritist among you must be put to death. You are to stone them; their blood will be on their own heads."

You believe the Bible is the word of god and that it should be interpreted literally. Leviticus 20:27 is therefore a Divine edict to kill mediums and spiritists. If I were to tell you that I can communicate with the dead, would my life be in danger?

There are a lot of New Age spiritualists who would probably find that a relevant question.
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This isn't CvE, but I agree that we have a right to be concerned about someone who would kill if they thought a god said so. On the human level, we could have the same concerns about people willing to follow orders. Frankly I don't know if I would have had the courage to shoot my kommandant rather than shoot an innocent person. I would like to think so, but I can't really know until put in that situation. My kid? That's easy. I would refuse it.

Same for a god that commands me to kill my child (presumably under threat of death). Wouldn't do it. And again, I would like to think I would refuse for someone I didn't know too.

I don't remember who said this about the Amalakites, but at least some regard that directive (i.e. to exterminate all of them) to be in effect. So if I were found to have Amalakite DNA, presumably that person would feeling obliged to try to kill me.

This is not trivial stuff.
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You believe the Bible is the word of god and that it should be interpreted literally. Leviticus 20:27 is therefore a Divine edict to kill mediums and spiritists. If I were to tell you that I can communicate with the dead, would my life be in danger?
Different time, new covenant.
The temple in Jerusalem is gone. The altar is gone. No more sacrifices at the altar. Things are made new. What was literally written in Hebrew as law was for Hebrews. What was literally written in Hebrew as true history was true history.
The Mosaic
covenant written as a kinship covenant with Moses and God was literally the law, the covenant between God and Israel at that time . Moses died and as was the custom ov covenants a new covenant, a vassal covenant, was made With Joshua and God.
So under the New Covenant we have a new situation. Covenants and laws are for the period and people they apply. Historical events, like 6 day creation apply to creation or the historical event. You have to keep everything in the perspective for which it’s written. Take something out of its perspective and you have false pretenses. That’s what happens when you twist scripture and play with it to make false arguments.
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You have to keep everything in the perspective for which it’s written. Take something out of its perspective and you have false pretenses. That’s what happens when you twist scripture and play with it to make false arguments.

Correct me if I am wrong, but it seems that your argument is that there is nothing inherently immoral about murdering a "witch" or spiritualist, attempting to sacrifice your son, or slavery. You assert it all depends on context, in this case the will of God and whatever "covenant" happens to be in place at the moment.

So now we can return to the original question but reworded. If the will of God is that you should kill your son or someone else's child, would you do it? From your posts so far I gather the answer is yes. We are still all in danger of your next interpretation of "God's will".

Throughout this thread, you have tried to make morality legalistic and abstract. It is all about God's law as written in the bible. Rather than consider the actual act of plunging a knife toward your son's chest, you spend hundreds of words discussing statistical arguments that the bible is a narrative, a book of laws that should be obeyed. However, the subversiveness of Jesus is that he upends the whole notion of blind obedience to moral laws or god's will as exemplified by Abraham/Isaac. For Jesus, morality is personal. It is ultimately about empathy, not laws, as exemplified by "Do unto others...". If it feels wrong it probably is wrong, which is why IMO Abraham was wrong.

What makes the bible so fascinating is not that it is a historical text accurately describing who, what, where, and when (it is most certainly and demonstrably not historically accurate). The impact of the bible comes from its description of how concepts of morality, ethics, and religion evolved by following the oral history and myths of the Jews. It is culturally revealing, which provides a different kind of truth than simple history.

No offense, but I often think that bible literalists miss the point of what the bible is really about.
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Historical events, like 6 day creation apply to creation or the historical event. You have to keep everything in the perspective for which it’s written.

And this is why we need priests, pastors, and theologians to help us interpret what is new, what is old, which of the old we should still hang on to, what is an historical event, what new "perspective" we should be seeing, and overall how and what we should believe;)

It gets awfully complicated to actually read and think about either the OT or the NT and decide what applies now unless you 'just have faith' and believe the perspective of your current faith leader. I suppose that's also why we have dozens of splinter protestant and catholic sects - they all disagree on exactly what this "perspective" is.

Pete
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Correct me if I am wrong, but it seems that your argument is that there is nothing inherently immoral about murdering a "witch" or spiritualist, attempting to sacrifice your son, or slavery. You assert it all depends on context, in this case the will of God and whatever "covenant" happens to be in place at the moment.

You are wrong!

There is something inherently wrong with murder.

Neither I nor you really know ourself. Insight into the human condition can be found if you study Auschwitz. The “final solution” was, as stated in the book “Auschwitz” by Laurence Rees was a “ collective enterprise owned by thousands of people, who each made the decision not just to take part but to contribute initiatives in order to solve the problem of how to kill human beings on a scale never attempted before.” They were not coerced bu crude threats to do this. Those people at another time under different circumstances would tell you that murder is inherently wrong. But once Anti-semitism was common in Nazi Germany and these people accepted that the “final solution” was a good solution, the human condition, the same condition we all have as humans, led to their actions.

You and I, know murder is morally wrong, but our human condition can lead us, or anyone else, to cause us to do things we normally wouldn’t do. That is what the study on Auschwitz proves. What it also proves is that the time, place, philosophy
Culture and politics are significant in leading to the actions taken.

In fact I would say that you are more a danger to me than I am a danger. Just because I don’t answer a hypothetical that has nothing to do with reality (different law, different covenant, different time, different philosophy politics and culture), you extrapolate that I am a danger. I am predisposed to think that God would not ask me to take the action of the hypothetical (I flatly stayed that he would not) and I’m not a radical person, but your conclusion leads you to believe that because I believe Genesis is true history, I am radicalized and therefore a danger. That’s ludicrous. A hypothetical not founded in reality cannot, in reality, lead to any reasonable conclusion.

The fact that this leads you to falsely conclude that I am a danger can lead you, as proven about the human condition, to make decisions of how you will react to it and what decisions you will make. You have influenced the board to make determinations about me. Everything I say will be taken in this light. I could easily be discriminated against because I am a “danger”.

I really don’t want to continue this discussion because I don’t think you have the right perspective on this and regardless of what I say, you have made up your mind.
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...and regardless of what I say, you have made up your mind.

And you haven't??

To me discussions like this are windows into how other people think. I can prove you are wrong about any of a number of things, and so can btresist (since he's an actual geneticist). Bryan, a fellow believer, knows you are wrong about many things also (e.g. age of the Earth). I have no illusion it will make a dent with you. But that doesn't mean it's not worth discussing to gain insights in how theists (or atheists, from you perspective) think.

I know my bible well enough (I was once loosely a Xian) to know that Jesus himself said that he was not changing the law. If he existed (and I think he did, though not in a divine way) he believed in the OT. I paraphrase (since all the translations differ slightly anyway): till heaven and earth pass away not one bit of the law will become invalid. It says the same thing in both Luke and Matthew (not surprising since they are mostly retelling the same thing). So he would have regarded the OT as the truth, and mostly likely he would have approved of what Abraham is said to have done. He never spoke against it. He did speak of obedience to god and "the law". Whether this, or slavery (which Jesus also never spoke against; and actually praised a centurion who owned slaves without admonishing him to release them), or really anything horrible in the OT, Jesus said "not one iota is rendered invalid".

Can't be much plainer than that.

So when there is an edict in the bible to commit some action, we non-believers have the right to be concerned how a believer will act upon that. And not just the bible. We have recent experience with the willingness of believers to act upon passages (surahs) in the quran.

For the record, my YEC coworker actually did answer btresist's question when I asked him. He did a similar preamble of "he wouldn't ask me to do that", etc. But then he said "if he is who he is I would do it".

And that's what btresist (and most non-believers) is concerned about with respect to "true believers".

1poorguy
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I’m not a radical person, but your conclusion leads you to believe that because I believe Genesis is true history, I am radicalized and therefore a danger.

Not quite. I'll explain via analogy. I like the book Huckleberry Finn. If someone were to believe that everything in Huckleberry Finn is historically true, I might consider them a bit goofy but not bad. However, if they believe the slavery and racial prejudice described in the book was morally justifiable, it would bring into question their character.

And that is where you are. The issue is not so much that you believe in the historicity of Genesis, but that you don't seem to have a problem with Old Testament statements like "Don't suffer a witch to live" or that advocate stoning spiritualists. You think they were appropriate for the times because that is what god wanted. This means they could become appropriate again.

You have influenced the board to make determinations about me. Everything I say will be taken in this light. I could easily be discriminated against because I am a “danger”.

I think you overestimate my influence on this board. Far more influential are your answers. When asked if one would kill innocent children if ordered by gods or mortals, anything other than a definitive "No" makes people suspicious. What is most likely influencing this board is your unwillingness to answer the question.

...I am predisposed to think that God would not ask me to take the action of the hypothetical (I flatly stayed that he would not),...

I think this statement indicates that even you believe that a deity who demands someone take the life of their child as a test of faith may not be worthy of worship.
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Look, it's very simple.

Morality is objective - God provides an unchanging moral standard.
If someone worked on the sabbath, it was right to kill them in 50 BCE.
If someone works on the sabbath today, it would be murder and wrong to kill them today.

Simple. Just don't think about it much.
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I think you overestimate my influence on this board.
You put me in a very poor light. Anyone who really knows me knows the kind of person I am. It’s so opposite my character to say I am a danger in the way you claim that this can very easily become gossip. Gossip spreads like wildfire and it has happened to me in the past where a discussion I was in on this board led to something negative said about me on another board.
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You put me in a very poor light.

Whatever light you happen to be in is of your own choosing. Be accountable. Your morality is based on the Bible and the Bible says stuff like kill witches. You need to explain to folks why we should assume you won't do some of the bad stuff the Bible tells you to do. This is especially the case since you believe the Bible is literally true, no metaphors.

Fact is, we live in times where some people kill others because they believe it is God's will. Given that, I think it is reasonable to ask if there are any limits to what you would be willing to do for what you believe is "God's will".

Your "poor light" comes from the fact that you won't answer the question. This makes the rest of us wonder what you are trying to hide.
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1poorguy wrote I know my bible well enough (I was once loosely a Xian) to know that Jesus himself said that he was not changing the law. If he existed (and I think he did, though not in a divine way) he believed in the OT. I paraphrase (since all the translations differ slightly anyway): till heaven and earth pass away not one bit of the law will become invalid. It says the same thing in both Luke and Matthew (not surprising since they are mostly retelling the same thing). So he would have regarded the OT as the truth, and mostly likely he would have approved of what Abraham is said to have done. He never spoke against it. He did speak of obedience to god and "the law". Whether this, or slavery (which Jesus also never spoke against; and actually praised a centurion who owned slaves without admonishing him to release them), or really anything horrible in the OT, Jesus said "not one iota is rendered invalid".

MATT. 5:18 For most certainly, I tell you, until heaven and earth pass away, not even one smallest letter or one tiny pen stroke shall in any way pass away from the law, until all things are accomplished.

When Jesus said ”until heaven and earth pass away”, he wasn't talking about Earth and the Universe. He was talking about the temple in Jerusalem which would be destroyed in 70AD. Once the temple was destroyed there was nowhere to do animal sacrifices, no Levite priests (they were all dead), and many more requirements of the law that no longer could be done. This is explained at the following link: http://www.reenactingtheway.com/blog/when-heaven-and-earth-p...

Another biblical passage supporting that the New Covenant superseded the Mosaic/Vassal covenant in its entirety is Heb. 8:6-9. We are no longer under the law.
In Galatians 3:23-29 Paul wrote:
23But before faith came, we were kept in custody under the law, confined for the faith which should afterwards be revealed. 24So that the law has become our tutor to bring us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith. 25But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor. 26For you are all children of God, through faith in Christ Jesus. 27For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. 28There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 If you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s offspring and heirs according to promise.

The view that God was OK with slavery is wrong. Jesus didn't have slaves. He loved people and healed them. The Centurion who had the slave Jesus healed would not change his heart if Jesus scolded him.

The one commandment we have to keep now is John 13:34-35 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you Jesus loves all people the same, flawlessly, and without condition. for having a slave or for any of the other terrible things the Romans did. The best way to change someone's heart is to show them love, like healing someone. Scolding a Roman centurion would only get Jesus, a Jew, arrested for harassing the centurion, and his punishment would likely be severe. The NT commandment Jesus gave to the world covers every ill of mankind, including slavery. From https://www.equip.org/article/Christianity-black-slavery/ “Christ is not reported to have said anything specific about slavery, but His behavior and His teaching that every human is beloved by God had strong implications.” Also, 1 Timothy 1:10 was against the slave trade. Also see https://www.equip.org/bible_answers/does-the-bible-promote-s...
Christians have come against slavery more than anyone else, especially in the past couple of centuries.

The proofs I have seen for an old Earth don't impress me. Evidence for a young Earth has grown stronger. The popularity of the evolutionary/old Earth paradigm is what is keeping it in place, not the evidence. Soft tissue in fossils where it shouldn't be, DNA now known to be mostly functional with very little junk DNA, the complexity of DNA and that it is 4-dimensional, and much more evidence make a young earth the better explanation.

The consequences of a young Earth making a literal interpretation of the Bible vs a metaphorical interpretation more acceptable results in a strong bias against a young Earth, as evidenced in discussions here. I really doubt evidence proving a young Earth could be accepted by unbelievers seeing how much the idea of it is unpopular (and unpopular is a big understatement) here.
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The view that God was OK with slavery is wrong.

No it's not. He is actually very explicit about how you treat slaves (and that depended on whether they were Hebrew or "heathen"). It would have been trivial -he's god, after all- for him to say "thou shalt not own another person as property". It even fits in commandment-form. How hard would it have been to add that phrase, and thereby improve the "morality" of the bible by at least 10000%? But he didn't. Lots of stuff about ox-goring in there, and cooking lambs in their mother's milk. But not a peep against slavery. Per the law in the bible, it would be perfectly permissible to own slaves today. There is no proscription against it. I could easily justify it were I a preacher. Exodus 21 is pretty clear, and if I felt motivated I could find passages in -I believe- Deuteronomy and Leviticus.

Except secular morality intrudes, and corrects (as usual!!) religious "morality".

So if you violate "the law", by what justification do you do it? btresist's question I could see is extremely uncomfortable for a religious fundamentalist, but it is a valid question. And not just for Xians, though you present yourself to us and so are convenient to inquire of.
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The proofs I have seen for an old Earth don't impress me.

I think you have to be honest about statements like this. Can you think of any type of scientific evidence that would sway you from your belief in a young earth? If not, then you can't claim to be objective and so your statement is meaningless. Obviously scientific evidence doesn't impress you because your belief is not based on science.

But I'm not challenging your belief in a young earth. My question is about morality and can be rephrased in this way:

"Why do you believe the god of the Old Testament is good and deserving of your unquestioned obedience in all things as exemplified by Abraham's attempted killing of his son?"

I think this is an extremely relevant and important question because it goes to the heart of morality and ethics. It goes to the issue of whether there is a limit to what you would do for what you believe is god's will. Those who believe what Abraham did to Isaac was right scare me, because if they are willing to kill their own child then there is no limit to what they would do in the name of religion. They are the one's setting off suicide bombs. They were the one's torturing heretics during the Inquisition. They were the one's who murdered abortionists or who forcibly attempt to "cure" homosexuals.

You are unwilling to say that a man attempting kill his innocent son was wrong. I think that alone is a pretty good reason to at least question your moral character.
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"The proofs I have seen for an old Earth don't impress me."

That is because no evidence would ever convince you. Your mind is already made up.
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You are unwilling to say that a man attempting kill his innocent son was wrong. I think that alone is a pretty good reason to at least question your moral character.

There’s a lot more involved than this. If you ignore the significance faith plays here you miss the whole point of this event. Our salvation depends upon faith, and the part this plays in God’s plan for our salvation loses its significance. Either you accept the significance of fait, or you ignore it and Christianity makes no sense. Nevertheless, Abraham told the men who came out with them tat he and Isaac would return. God had shown him how faithful he was to him and had faith that God would keep his promise to him. He knew somehow God would intervene, and that’s what happened. Abraham and Isaac did return.
I know God better than you think and that his love for us eclipses any love we otherwise know. Love is at the root of morality. The one commandment I have is to love one another as Jesus loves us. I’m not of the minority who do the terrible things that you mention. They are radical and I am not.
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I would question the "love" of a loyalty test. That is not my idea of love. Those pesky secular morals interfering again with a horrific bible fable held up to us as a "virtue".

That alone negates any worthiness of worship even if the being existed. I would extend my middle finger if it were to a) prove it is "god" and then b) demand such a loyalty test. It may be the windshield meeting the bug, but I would die knowing I was more moral and ethical than something that arranged loyalty tests and demanded worship.

Plus slavery (the low-hanging fruit which your writings forever yoke your deity with).**

However, I think you answered the question. So even if I vehemently disagree with your answer, I give you credit for being honest. That is the basis of any conversation.

1poorguy


**I heard an interesting story from an atheist. He ended up in a conversation with a theist (not unlike here!), and the theist flatly denied that slavery was supported in the bible. He was completely unaware, relying on his preacher to highlight the important bits. He was provided with the references and advised to look them up. As told by the atheist, the theist came back a couple of weeks later declaring himself an atheist because he could not, and would not, support anything so ghastly and immoral. Apparently he read further, and was just as horrified by other things in this "moral" tome.
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**I heard an interesting story from an atheist. He ended up in a conversation with a theist (not unlike here!), and the theist flatly denied that slavery was supported in the bible. He was completely unaware, relying on his preacher to highlight the important bits. He was provided with the references and advised to look them up. As told by the atheist, the theist came back a couple of weeks later declaring himself an atheist because he could not, and would not, support anything so ghastly and immoral. Apparently he read further, and was just as horrified by other things in this "moral" tome.

Jeez, people are irrational idiots. God seems to have different moral opinions than I thought he did, therefore...he doesn't exist?

Should I have started doubting my grandfather's existence when he said 'damn Jews, never satisfied'?
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Yes, people are irrational. In this case I interpreted it that the young theist could believe in -and worship- a "kind and loving god". When confronted with the descriptions of the bible he could no longer believe such a being existed, much less that it was worthy of worship. That it must have been made-up.

To be fair, a lot of people that read from GEN 1 to REV, straight through, end the experience as ardent atheists. I don't know the nuances of the young theist as the story was related to me (I didn't know the guy). There could have been much more involved.

As I recall my questioning began when I pondered "how the heck could he even get two of every beetle in the Ark, much less the larger mammals?". Tug that thread and you end up with koala bears that shouldn't exist (they'd never make the trek from the middle-east back to Australia), how salt water would have killed most plants on Earth, etc. Now I have expanded my critique to slavery and morality, among other things. But it was that first thread that I tugged that began everything.
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Yes, people are irrational.

Yes, indeed they are. The board name, Creation vs. Evolution equates to Faith vs. Evidence. All arguments for the Creation/Faith position ultimately go back to a personal experience not a universally shared one. I'm reminded of the Maude and Eugene cartoon:

https://images.app.goo.gl/hyV5yAdqwLQbsvE4A

Pete
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Plus slavery (the low-hanging fruit which your writings forever yoke your deity with).**
This is a favorite target of atheists. Slavery that this generation understands is one borne out of greed, discrimination, a disgusting treatment of a certain class of people, and a trade of humans as if they were no more valuable than farm implements. This is the connotation attached to the word “slave”.
I respect your knowledge of the Bible. I know you have read through it at least twice and you Were once the equivalent of a Xian.
I have done a complete reading and study of the whole Bible as well as reading through it another time, and am reading again, now in Jeremiah. Many other readings, studies, decades of study. I also have a resource with my Wife who knows scripture as well as anyone I have ever known.
The Bible is the most amazing book I know. I’m watching a do-wop program on PBS and right now, a song based on Ecclesiastes came on. And I imagine that most anyone reading this of my generation would know exactly what song that is.
Ok, back on topic. One thing I would testify to is that the topic of slavery in the Ancient scriptures is something a specialist who has expertise in ancient Hebrew dialect of the time as well as knowledge of cultures of that ancient time, such as a hebraist well accomplished in his specialty, can opine on. I have watched videos of a top hebraist explain biblical text and there is no question that to understand OT slavery you need that expertise.
Either that or special revelation of the type an atheist would reject is possible.
Bottom line is this, atheists are taking advantage of the current connotation of slavery to put God in a negative light. I’m certain that what you call “low hanging fruit” is really the fruit of a false interpretation of the truth. Atheists despise God’s authority, so its counterintuitive for an atheist to speculate that God just apply his authority and say “no slavery period”. God didn’t do that because he is a God that gives us free will, but loves us so much that he is willing to work with us where we are and turn our hearts towards a better way. Take small steps one at a time. Work in the direction of love. First, slavery of that day was borne out of poverty, debt, and was voluntary. It was a economic consequence of the day, in an ancient time, which that civilization used as a solution for debt. So God gave a way to respect the people in this form of servitude chosen out of free will given to that civilization by limiting that servitude by 6 years and instructing respect, much unlike slavery horrors we know in this generation, making the best of an imperfect reality.
We have slavery today in the form of 30 year mortgages for houses we need but cannot pay cash for. Modern day economic solutions give us such a wonderful and perfect solution which puts burdens over a hundred thousand, or several hundred thousand dollars putting us in servitude of employers we “slave” for to pay our debt. What difference is there really between current day servitude employment to pay debt and voluntary servitude of ancient civilization God also put limits on to make moral, to cover debt.
Sorry I got lengthy. Lots to chew on here. Context matters and I think the discussion needs full context. You don’t get that with an attack on God because you see something about slavery in the Bible that atheists use as “low hanging fruit” and leave out the context.
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If you ignore the significance faith plays here you miss the whole point of this event. Our salvation depends upon faith, and the part this plays in God’s plan for our salvation loses its significance. Either you accept the significance of fait, or you ignore it and Christianity makes no sense. Nevertheless, Abraham told the men who came out with them tat he and Isaac would return. God had shown him how faithful he was to him and had faith that God would keep his promise to him. He knew somehow God would intervene, and that’s what happened. Abraham and Isaac did return.

You see this as a story about faith, which I can accept if this were a fable designed to teach a lesson. In that case, all one needs to be concerned about are the interactions between God and Abraham. But you believe this was a historical event. It really happened. This means we need to take others into consideration, in particular the true victims of this story, the son Isaac and his mother Sarah.

Let's go through the story. Abraham gets the directive to sacrifice Isaac. They embark on a three day journey. In a heartbreaking scene near the end poor Isaac asks his father "where is the lamb for a burnt offering"? Isaac clearly has no idea what is about to happen. Abraham then ties up Isaac and places him on the altar.

Think about that for a bit from Isaac's point of view. Your father whom you trust ties you up, places on an altar, and takes a knife. Not surprising that the bible records no further interaction between Abraham and his son. Now imagine they returning home and Isaac telling his mom what his father did. Not surprising that the bible records no further interaction between Sarah and Abraham. Was Isaac ever the same again? Clear case of child cruelty.

There are a number of troubling biblical events that pose a significant moral dilemma if one believes the bible stories are historical rather than allegorical. Take the story of Job for example, another test of faith. In this event, Job's family is killed as part of the test (Job 1:18-19). We can ignore the horror of this if the story is allegory or a fable. But if it is historical then you need to explain the morality of killing Job's family to simply test one man's faith.
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We have slavery today in the form of 30 year mortgages for houses we need but cannot pay cash for. Modern day economic solutions give us such a wonderful and perfect solution which puts burdens over a hundred thousand, or several hundred thousand dollars putting us in servitude of employers we “slave” for to pay our debt. What difference is there really between current day servitude employment to pay debt and voluntary servitude of ancient civilization God also put limits on to make moral, to cover debt.

I wasn't going to reply to this but I found this statement equating a home mortgage to slavery particularly obnoxious. Here are a couple of differences.

Exodus 21: 20-21, "When a man strikes his slave, male or female, with a rod and the slave dies under his hand, he shall be avenged. 21 But if the slave survives a day or two, he is not to be avenged, for the slave is his money."
Does your mortgage banker beat you up every so often just to keep you in line?

Deuteronomy 21:10-14 "11 if you notice among the captives a beautiful woman and are attracted to her, you may take her as your wife. 12 Bring her into your home and have her shave her head, trim her nails 13 and put aside the clothes she was wearing when captured. After she has lived in your house and mourned her father and mother for a full month, then you may go to her and be her husband and she shall be your wife. 14 If you are not pleased with her, let her go wherever she wishes. You must not sell her or treat her as a slave, since you have dishonored her.
Do you let your mortgage banker have his way with your wife?
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Does your mortgage banker beat you up every so often just to keep you in line?

https://www.businessinsider.com/foreclosure-horror-stories-2...
And some people work for abusive bosses so they can pay the mortgage and not get evicted.

What God imposed here is that slave’s lives were to be valued. Other societies of that time allowed slaves to be beaten to death.

Do you let your mortgage banker have his way with your wife?

You misinterpret this passage. Check the commentaries. To answer your question though, I have seen bosses have their way with other men’s wives who are working to help pay the mortgage.
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I wrote The proofs I have seen for an old Earth don't impress me.

Btresist wroteI think you have to be honest about statements like this. Can you think of any type of scientific evidence that would sway you from your belief in a young earth? If not, then you can't claim to be objective and so your statement is meaningless. Obviously scientific evidence doesn't impress you because your belief is not based on science

Years ago on this discussion board I challenged the statement Jerry Coyne made that not one iota of scientific advancement was ever made from YEC. I gave one example refuting that. A comment was made of how sad, and I felt like your statement in an earlier post like why bother wit h this any more. If my side seems to be ignored then why have dialogue. I got discouraged because I gave a link that included a testimony that was ignored and the “how sad” comment left me with a strong feeling that it was hopeless to find any ground to continue the discussion.

So here’s the thing. You cannot deny that soft tissue has been found in paleontological remains unless you claim, a-priori, that laboratory results of proteins are questionable due to contamination. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/337933330_Proteomes...
That link gives a lot of good information on soft tissue in fossils, and is not YEC. Scientifically, that paper shows that I have a claim for YEC. Otherwise I would not be back here debating this. I have a claim for this.
I have a BSEE from Purdue. I was raised by a Father who was Chief Engineer of a department at Argonne National Laboratory. Science is my First, middle, and last name. I have worked scientific design in my field for decades, and my field, as an engineer is in design. I Recently led a team of engineers and technicians To qualify large, complex, technologically advanced electronic systems on the largest and most advanced asset delivered in history. I have a career spanning decades in that field. I have seen the evolution of these marvels over this time.
I know design and how it works. I know the part intelligence plays in complexity and can attest to the truth that complexity cannot arise without an intelligence. I know how complex systems evolve because as an engineer I have done it for decades. Intelligent designers know intelligent design. Scientifically, I absolutely, unequivocally, truthfully know that life as we know it on Earth, with all the complexity on so many levels, had to be from an intelligence.
All of the engineered systems I’ve worked. All of the failures and fixes and all with teams of intelligent minds, and weekly meetings. The more complex the more intelligence, with more teams of technical people, more failures, more testing.
Where is any of this in the fossil record. Where does the added intelligence come from for increasing complexity. I know it has to come from somewhere because I’m an engineer and Have seen the part intelligence plays in developing complexity. Complexity doesn’t happen without intelligence. when we try to make the next generation of highly sophisticated complex ship and don’t match it with the intelligence to design it, the result is a Hellen Keller ship. That was actually true, I thought it was a joke until I fount out that the people who operated the ship called it that.
I have seen the complexity of biological systems. I see the intelligence in it.
If I try to compromise and imagine a fossil record that somehow got “geological” timeframes to evolve random DNA changes that added complexity, we don’t see the intermediates. There should also be all sorts of ”Hellen Keller” mutant life forms that went wrong, but we don’t see that. So evolutionists have nothing other than faith for their religion, because as an engineer working for decades where I have been, science proves that only an intelligent God working to create this world can satisfy the intelligence that goes into the complexity we see.
Coding DNA is very complex with overlaps and 3 dimensional features. Hox genes are configuration managers and make up part of dna once thought as junk dna. Other dna is scaffolding to make 3d configuration work.
It’s so complex that we really don’t understand it.
My contribution to this board is that, as an accomplished design engineer, the complexity of molecular and higher levels of biological systems has to be from an intelligence, and one that does better than we, who design a Hellen Keller Ship on the first try.
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And some people work for abusive bosses so they can pay the mortgage...I have seen bosses have their way with other men’s wives who are working to help pay the mortgage.

You continuing to equate slavery with having a mortgage is really bizarre and not helping your case. It is making me think that you might really be ethically impaired. In any case, you make my point. I would consider the boss or banker who does violence and rape on those holding mortgages to be morally wrong. That's why I have a problem with passages in the Old Testament that say it is okay to do stuff like that to slaves. I gather you disagree. If so, what does that say about your sense of morality?

To put it more directly, you seem to be saying it is morally acceptable for a master to beat a slave or rape a captive woman simply because the bible says so. To be honest, the more you post, the less I would want you for a neighbor. I don't trust your morality.
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There is so much wrong with your commentary that I don't know where to start. Try to remember that I am attacking the comments, not you personally.

Yes, slavery is a "favorite target" of atheists because it is so obviously wrong to own another person as property, and yet the alleged creator of everything couldn't even figure out that much. I will ignore your diversions about why atheists believe as they do. First, they're wrong. Second, they're not relevant to the topic. I will not attribute motives to your beliefs, and don't attribute any to mine. If you wish to tell me your "why", that's great. Don't tell me mine.

I suppose starting with the fatuous comment that mortgages are slavery is as good a place as any. Other than in a colloquial sense, these bear no resemblance to each other. "I slave away at work". "I have to work to pay the bills". "I'm a slave to my house." Various other incarnations of that meme still bear no resemblance to actual slavery. Your mortgage is a mutual agreement between you and the bank. You were free to enter that agreement, or not as you chose. You can refinance (in most arrangements) any time you want, or pay it off, or sell it and eliminate it. Same with employment. You accepted a job offer, are presumably well-paid (I would assume that of a Purdue engineer), and can leave any time you like. You are in no way a "slave". You are free to enter and exit these arrangements as you wish. An actual slave has no choice. They are compelled by physical violence, if necessary, to be present and work for their owner. That was true of the African slave trade, and that described in (among other places) EX 21.

To compare that to slavery is insulting to people who have suffered the legacy of true slavery.

Would you consent to be my slave under the terms of EX 21? Would you be willing to be beaten so long as you don't die in two or three days, and regard that as "not cruel"? There were different rules between Hebrew slaves and non-Hebrew, but I'll own you under the more lenient Hebrew rules, OK? Very few were voluntary (none of the "heathen"; those are to be bought from the nations around you, and you can bequeath them to your children), and even the Hebrew slave could only be released during "Jubilee" (once every 50 years, IIRC), and the owner could still keep any wives and children because only the male was eligible for release. So even if the owner was supposed to release the male slave, he could arrange it such that he could still keep the rest of the family. What man would leave his family in slavery? Nice little loophole. Theists like to claim it wasn't "real" slavery, but indentured servitude. No, it was owning other people as property slavery. Buying people and leaving them to your children as you would your house or ox. The context doesn't save the bible in that regard. It just digs the hole deeper.

No, I am confident no one would agree to be a slave under the conditions of EX 21. And that shouldn't have been an option in any event. God can ban adultery and mixing fabrics, but he can't ban owning other persons as property? Pretty feeble god. Even Jesus who was supposed to fix everything got it wrong. "Slaves obey your masters". Yeah, great moral teaching. Secular society figured it out in spite of the religious.

I probably missed some points. I can catch them up later if necessary.
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So here’s the thing. You cannot deny that soft tissue has been found in paleontological remains...Scientifically, that paper shows that I have a claim for YEC.

Except that the observations have nothing to do with YEC. See, based on current knowledge, the presence of soft tissue is evidence that the stuff is no more than a month old. Go see an episode of "Bones" or NCI. This means even you YEC believers have to explain how dinosaur soft-tissue can be preserved for several thousand years or whenever it is you think Noah's flood occurred. If you assume that tissue can be preserved for several thousand years, then why not several million? In other words, YEC is no more compatible with the existence of soft tissue in dinosaur fossils than evolution. Both require an as yet unproven method of tissue preservation.

My contribution to this board is that, as an accomplished design engineer, the complexity of molecular and higher levels of biological systems has to be from an intelligence,

No offense, but the opinion of an "accomplished design engineer" about issues of biology has as much value as the opinion of a geneticist (me) on issues in nuclear engineering. In other words, not much. Engineering is useful for building a better mouse trap. Not so much for extrapolating the origin of the mouse.

So evolutionists have nothing other than faith for their religion, because as an engineer working for decades where I have been, science proves that only an intelligent God working to create this world can satisfy the intelligence that goes into the complexity we see.

Bullshorts. A geneticist using basic principles of evolution would predict (correctly it turns out) that the genes in a dolphin will be more similar to those in cow than in a shark. I doubt the engineer would come to the same conclusion. I can name you many cases where genetic predictions based on evolutionary theory were demonstrated to be correct. The genetic evidence for evolution is overwhelming.

I have a BSEE from Purdue. I was raised by a Father who was Chief Engineer of a department at Argonne National Laboratory. Science is my First, middle, and last name.

None of that makes you a scientist. Modern science is based on empirical testing of hypotheses. If an issue cannot be empirically tested, it is not a scientific issue. So I asked you the question whether there is any empirical evidence that would make you question the bible or your YEC beliefs. If the answer is no, then your beliefs are not based on science and it seems a bit disingenuous for you to be making claims that science supports your belief.

The same set of physical laws and theories that engineers successfully use to design buildings and airplanes also indicate that the earth and universe are billions of years old. So if you are an accomplished design engineer then you have lots of empirical evidence from your own career indicating that YEC is wrong.
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"We have slavery today in the form of 30 year mortgages for houses we need but cannot pay cash for."

It takes a truly evil person to dishonestly conflate a mutually agreed upon contract designed to help someone own a home, to slavery in an effort to defend their twisted religious views.
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To put it more directly, you seem to be saying it is morally acceptable for a master to beat a slave or rape a captive woman simply because the bible says so. To be honest, the more you post, the less I would want you for a neighbor. I don't trust your morality.

Nothing of the sort. God didn’t want mistreatment of anyone in any way. Read the commentaries.

This whole conversation is moot regardless of how you want to misinterpret ancient text and attack a good God who wrote laws to make conditions better for people who would hear him. The fact is that modern day Christian leaders have been against slavery and have done more to end slavery than anyone else. I have contributed significantly to organizations who help people to stay out of slavery. My ethics are fine.
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Nothing of the sort. God didn’t want mistreatment of anyone in any way.

Then why did he outline how you could mistreat people?

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Exodus+21&v...

20 “Anyone who beats their male or female slave with a rod must be punished if the slave dies as a direct result, 21 but they are not to be punished if the slave recovers after a day or two, since the slave is their property.

Note the "slave is their property". Like your car. Or your vacuum cleaner. And all is good "if the slave recovers after a day or two".

You're gonna lose this one. This is entirely, utterly, indefensible by any modern moral standard. Obviously it was different in bronze-age Palestine, but this isn't bronze-age Palestine. We have far exceeded these as moral teachings.
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Hit "submit" too soon.

One other point:

The fact is that modern day Christian leaders have been against slavery and have done more to end slavery than anyone else.

So you hold these leaders up as examples for their violation of the "law". They are good insofar as they are not obeying EX 21. And Lev, and Deut, etc.

The African slave trade was built on the bible. Sons of Ham, and that rubbish. It is true that an abolitionist movement fought it for more than a century, and some of them were Christians. And some of them were atheist. Again, the Christians were only regarded as "good" insofar as they were advocating against biblical teachings.
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God didn’t want mistreatment of anyone in any way. Read the commentaries.

This is a familiar refrain: don’t read the actual words of the Bible, read someone else’s interpretation, the commentaries. In my youth, I attended not a small number of different denominations and I cannot recall any of them discussing the proper interpretation of the Bible through some official ‘commentary.’ Of course, none of them had readings from the slavery passages in the Bible nor preached sermons about them, either. Similarly, Song of Solomon was seldom read or verses from, for example, Ezekiel such as 23 19-20.

If you have to go outside the Bible to defend it, which interpretive source do you choose? Doesn’t seem like the Bible was written with all that much clarity...

Pete
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The fact is that modern day Christian leaders have been against slavery and have done more to end slavery than anyone else.

Not on this planet. When did the Southern Baptist Convention finally admit slavery was wrong? 1995.

The Bible belt, more Christian then and more Christian now, was the area willing to fight a war to keep slavery going.

Here's a modern day Christian leader using unpaid 'volunteers' as slave labor in his for profit restaurant:

https://www.beaconjournal.com/news/20190101/falling-from-gra...

The US Department of Labor put a stop to it, not other Christian leaders.
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God didn’t want mistreatment of anyone in any way. Read the commentaries. This whole conversation is moot regardless of how you want to misinterpret ancient text and attack a good God who wrote laws to make conditions better for people who would hear him.

I don't think you realize how inconsistent your position is. When talking about science issues you insist on a literal reading of the bible that "proves" to you that the Earth is only a few thousands of years old and was created in a week. Yet when it comes to moral issues suddenly scripture has to be "interpreted" and commentaries are necessary for understanding.

Rather than a literal reading of the Abraham-Isaac story you want us to believe that Abraham really didn't intend to kill his son. Even though scripture literally describes how beating a slave is acceptable you insist that this is not mistreatment.

And I again refer you to the story of Job, a brilliant bit of writing that when taken allegorically explores profound issues. But you believe the story of Job is historically accurate and should be taken literally. That trivializes both the story and god. In the story, God allowed Job's family to be killed just to test Job's faith. How is that form of murder morally justifiable? How is the God in the story not behaving irresponsibly, even reprehensively, by allowing a man to be tortured and innocents killed just to win a dare?

The fact is that modern day Christian leaders have been against slavery and have done more to end slavery than anyone else.

The key adjective is "modern day". This wasn't true of the 17th century of Christian majority, or those who lived during Medieval times. What changed? Certainly not the bible. This indicates that the modern anti-slavery perspective developed from factors independent of the bible. The bible didn't become anti-slavery, our culture did.
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The key adjective is "modern day". This wasn't true of the 17th century of Christian majority, or those who lived during Medieval times. What changed? Certainly not the bible. This indicates that the modern anti-slavery perspective developed from factors independent of the bible.

I'll chip in for a moment. No, the Bible didn't change. You are right there. But what you say next doesn't follow logically, at least there is another explanation. What changed was people's understanding of the what the Bible teaches about slavery. Christians came to see that the Bible did not support the kind of slavery practiced at the time, and were willing to go to war to see that practice ended.

Contrary to what you claim, proper interpretation of the Bible is critical to understanding what it does and doesn't support, and how that applies to modern life. Any relevant historical and cultural information necessary to understand it is essential, thus the need for commentaries. Translations simply cannot pack all the relevant information into the text of the Bible.

-Bryan
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Some would argue this is the most important book in the universe. I assume Paul and you would be among them.

And the author (CREATOR!!) made it so contradictory, and so obtuse, written in a language that would fade and/or die-out in less than 2000 years, that it requires "commentaries"?

Paul and I have one thing in common: we assume the bible means what it says. So when it says you can beat your slave as long as they don't die in a day or two, that's what it says. Where Paul and I differ is that I am not willing to argue "context" or "it was different slavery". If you can beat your slave, then it is no different in 100BC Palestine as it was in 1850 USA.
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What changed was people's understanding of the what the Bible teaches about slavery.

Here is one of the things the bible teaches about slavery and it is pretty straightforward and unambiguous.

Exodus 21: 20-21, "When a man strikes his slave, male or female, with a rod and the slave dies under his hand, he shall be avenged. 21 But if the slave survives a day or two, he is not to be avenged, for the slave is his money."

Clearly states that it is acceptable to beat your slave as long as he/she does not die within a day or two. If you believe that is moral then I question your ethics. If you believe it is immoral then I question your belief in the bible as a moral guide.

You seem to be making the argument that the bible must be interpreted within the context of the time it represents. If the bible is so constrained, why believe it is relevant to today?

This is the problem I have with the morality of conservative and fundamentalist Christians like Paul and perhaps you (we'll see). These claim that the bible is an infallible and literal moral guide but then choose what scripture they take seriously in a way that seems at best arbitrary and at worse self-serving.

For example, we've seen how conservative Christians like Paul are willing to make very broad interpretations to get around uncomfortable scripture concerning stuff like Abraham's attempted murder of Isaac and the acceptability of beating and raping slaves. For these events they claim that we have to consider context and the cultural time period. On the other hand, when it comes to issues like homosexuality and abortion, conservative Christians take a hard and uncompromising position. The scriptural prohibitions on these acts are for some reason culturally independent and timeless.

One can find scripture that condemn adultery/divorce just as strongly as homosexuality. Yet conservative Christians rally around folks like Trump, who has had multiple wives and affairs, even as they condemn homosexuals. It all seems pretty arbitrary and probably has a lot to do with the fact that a lot more Christians want to commit adultery or get divorced than want to engage in homosexuality. The majority dictates what biblical principles should be emphasized.
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The majority dictates what biblical principles should be emphasized.

To be fair, the majority don't know what's in it. They've never read it all. (Not Bryan and Paul, but most people.) I have been to several denominations' services, and they are all structured where a speaker tells people where to "turn" in the bible to passages to make whatever point they are trying to make. These passages are often completely taken out of context and unrelated to each other, but they construct some moral teaching from them.

Needless to say, they skip EX 21. That's why if you tell a person that the bible describes proper ownership of slaves, and rights of inheritance thereof, they think you're lying. They've never seen it, never read it, and likely won't believe you. If you can get them to look it up you may devastate their worldview. Like the young theist I was told about, who upon looking it up could no longer believe.
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Here is one of the things the bible teaches about slavery and it is pretty straightforward and unambiguous.

Exodus 21: 20-21, "When a man strikes his slave, male or female, with a rod and the slave dies under his hand, he shall be avenged. 21 But if the slave survives a day or two, he is not to be avenged, for the slave is his money."

Clearly states that it is acceptable to beat your slave as long as he/she does not die within a day or two. If you believe that is moral then I question your ethics. If you believe it is immoral then I question your belief in the bible as a moral guide.


Clearly you took something out of context. I’ve suggested that you look at commentaries to help you clear up the confusion you have with this.

The following link does a good job of clearing this up:

https://www.revelation.co/2013/06/09/bible-says-its-okay-to-...
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That link is conspicuous in what it leaves out, and is therefore BS. Even with slavery it tries to spin and cherry-pick the best bits. Never mind slavery shouldn't have existed at all. Those "commentaries" make excuses (maybe that's why it's called "apologetics"?), they make up stuff, all to make you feel better that your god couldn't utter one simple sentence: thou shalt not own another person as property. On the contrary...

Again, I only have to quote the verse that says "the slave is his property". Not servant, not concubine, not even indentured servant. PROPERTY. I didn't make that up. Do I really have to quote the passage again to you? Reading the full chapter doesn't make it better.

And if beating a slave to the point of death isn't cruelty, then I need a new dictionary. It doesn't say "don't beat your slave". It says "there is no crime if the slave recovers in a day or two". That's god condoning cruelty. Not the first or the last time he does it (assuming one considers genocide as cruel), but clear in any of the translations you choose to use (NIV, KJ, etc).

I wouldn't accept the argument with respect to Hebrew slaves, but you could almost make the indentured servitude argument with them. EX 21 opens with buying Hebrew slaves for a period of 6 years. Though verse 4 tells you how to trick your Hebrew slave into staying: give him a wife and let him father children. Because the wife and children remain the property of the slave owner, only the man can go free after 6 years. I suspect most men would not abandon their families, so the six years becomes indefinite. Fiendishly underhanded.

But non-Hebrew slaves? Leviticus sets the rules for them, and they aren't limited to six years. You buy them from the nations around you, and there are inheritable just like any other property. So you bequeath them to your children, and to their children.

The only real difference was in the south you could beat your slave to death and it wasn't a crime (that I'm aware of) in the 1800s, but the bible stipulates the slave can't die within a day or two. Way to go bible!!!
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Clearly you took something out of context. I’ve suggested that you look at commentaries to help you clear up the confusion you have with this.

What this and other commentaries say is that one should not take this passage on slavery literally. Instead, it has to be interpreted and understood within the context of the rest of the bible and with respect to the culture and tradition of the people who authored the bible. What applies to Exodus 21: 20-21 should also apply to the rest of the bible as well. I think this represents a strong critique of your YEC belief. The first chapter of genesis describes the tradition and knowledge-base of the ancient Jews, spoken and written in terms and ideas that the people of the time could relate with. It may accurately describe the belief system of this nomadic tribe, but it doesn't mean it is an accurate description of the universe. To use it as the foundation of one's understanding of the physical universe is absurd.

Getting back to the main issue, you claim that I am misrepresenting the concept of "slavery". That it means something different in the Old Testament context, something more like having a mortgage. Okay, let's take a look at Exodus 21: 20-21 again:

"When a man strikes his slave, male or female, with a rod and the slave dies under his hand, he shall be avenged. 21 But if the slave survives a day or two, he is not to be avenged, for the slave is his money."

Replace the word "slave" with anything you want (mortgage-holder, butler, servant, nannie, caregiver, etc.) that in your opinion will make it morally acceptable to you. IMO, that passage is inherently immoral by modern ethical standards. Beating an employee is generally wrong and deserving of punishment even if the employee survives the beating. In fact, beating a human being is generally wrong and deserving of punishment even if the person survives the beating.

I'm sure you can come up with exceptions like self-defense, war, football, boxing, but generally speaking it is not morally right to beat up other people, even if not fatally.
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