Believing the Scriptures from Genesis to Revelation

It’s good to see BioLogos still burning down straw men. For someone to say AIG is fanning the flames of the culture war is precious. As we look at the culture falling into a place where every man’s thought is evil, where is BilLogo on the culture war? Are you for LGBTQXYZ? Is that limited to 1:1 relationships or is 1:many ok or many:many? You guys are scientists, numbers matter. Are you for abortion? Do you preach against pre-marital sex? This is going to be fun and I appreciate the opportunity. These straw men about young earthers being hayseeds that never took science is a hoot. I had to suffer through that monkeys to man diatribe from the sixth grade to post graduate, 50+ years! Over those years, we have unpacked the 3 assumptions required for radiometric dating which causes wild swings in dates from lab to lab, recorded catastrophic sediment layering on video, found soft tissue in dinosaurs, debunked every transitional human remain, shown rock deposits globally that could only occur in a global flood, demonstrated that “scientists” reconstructed entire skeletons from a single toe and told us what they had for their last dinner. You guys are good. I love the way the monkeys are posed in the museums too. The movie Planet of the Apes is a real future for earth in your worldview.

I am so glad I can pick up the Bible and read truth for what it is. I don’t struggle with why animals suffer or worse what is my purpose, because it is well spelled out by the creator of the universe and authenticated by Christ Himself.

You guys do make me wonder strange things. Was the first monkey to speak a man or woman? Did God plant the soul in the monkey man first? Or maybe the monkey woman got souled first. I mean, we cannot really know and we certainly can throw out Genesis as authority to anything other than a bedtime story. Are some human races more evolved than others? Darwin thought so, I wonder?

Science has proven women cannot have children as virgins. Was Mary really a virgin? People don’t come back from the dead, so Lazarus, well umm, and oh that Jesus, back from the dead, right. Have you not learned anything in biology.

Your position is not just squishy, it will prevent sanctification in the lives of so many. You will find your positions in total align more with atheists. That really should cause pause. And, only Bible believers can explain this to you, since you don’t believe the real gospel in the Bible and therefore cannot use if for much of a measuring stick. So how can you be expected to honestly evaluate your similarity with the secular world when you are tied so closely to it and and reject the one resource in large measure that separates and identifies the differences? Those 10 commandments, is that for real? God wrote it into stone?

Anyway, eternity is going to be the best place to discuss this. Now here are the odds that I am right and you are wrong. I believe the holy Scripture from Genesis to Revelation both from a revealed and scientific point of view. I don’t have to pack anything into it for meaning. The meaning lifts off the page. On the other hand, many pack in things that are miracles on any scale in order to fit this or that “science” into it, knowing the science will change and therefore change to a different miracle at some point. So, we will be able to assemble for this great debate in heaven as we have all eternity, so its not like you cannot move your calendar around. I will be turning to the creator of the universe and asking, “so, you say you created in 6 days, is that true?” I don’t expect the answer to be, “well you should have believed on that biology book because each day in Genesis was 10 million years. Now I know that word day means day in every other context of that specific word usage but com’om, haven’t you read Bill Nye? Don’t you trust him?” My brothers and sisters, this debate will be over before it starts. The good news is, I don’t think there will be crying in heaven, so don’t worry about bringing handkerchiefs.

Okay, but do you really believe that the earth doesn’t move?

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Hi, Robert, welcome to the forum.
Please review our gracious dialogue expectations pinned at the top of the page.

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Hi Robert,
Welcome to the forum. I’m sorry you’ve brought so many misconceptions about evolution, deep time, and about what BioLogos stands for. I hope you’ll take the time to read some articles and other threads to get an idea of what kinds of things we like to discuss here before making any more uncharitable assumptions.

I can assure you that I and the other Christians on this forum believe the gospel, and it has nothing to do with how old the universe is and everything to do with Jesus. We may have some lively disagreements here from time to time, but the goal on this forum is really not to try and score points for ourselves and prove who is right and who is wrong, but to understand each other better and discuss ideas in a way that results in us seeking truth together. None of us are perfect at that, but that’s what we aim for.

Pleas read our forum guidelines so you’ll have an idea of what we expect of participants, and here are some “Common Questions” articles so you can get a more accurate idea of the “big tent” that many of our beliefs fall under:

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Hi Robert,

There’s something important that you need to understand here. The issue at stake is that anything you claim about science must consist of honest reporting and honest interpretation of accurate information. Nothing more, nothing less.

If, as you say, you have 50+ years of experience in science, from sixth grade through to postgraduate, that gives you an extra responsibility to make sure that you are getting your facts straight. “Hayseeds that never took science” can be excused on the grounds of ignorance if they make untrue or misleading claims in support of their position. You do not have the luxury of that excuse.

I suggest that before attempting to wade into debates about evolution with all guns blazing, you make sure you understand how to challenge a scientific theory properly. Start here:

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“We can tell when there is likely to be significant contamination”, “atoms exist”, and “physical constants do not wildly vary” are sufficient.

When one of them has a problem, like contamination, or trying to tell the difference between 99.9972% of the parent isotope left and 99.9999972% left.

Which still can’t deposit intact pteropods, or highly unsorted deposits with fragile shells preserved.

Mineralized collagen, and impressions of softer tissue, not unaltered tissue with sequencable DNA.

And ignored the far more common rock deposits globally that absolutely could not have been, like multilayers, partially indurated marine deposits with index fossils.

Most cases I am aware of (there are certainly exceptions, where the reconstruction was unwarranted) are “we found a small part of this, which is very similar, but not quite the same as this other thing that we have almost all of”.

Neither do any other the other people (myself included) who accept the bible as theologically authoritative, but not overly concerned with being a science textbook. Leviticus 11:4-6 is an obvious example: camels, hares, and hyraxes do not actually chew the cud, the way cows do, they have some similar behaviors, but do not truly chew the cud.

No, it has not. It has demonstrated that that is highly atypical, and hence it is neccessary to have some knowledge of science (which is not specified in the bible, but is easily observable) to know that miracles are atypical (which is what defines a miracle: an action outside of the natural laws that God set up). Science tells us nothing about whether miracles can happen, just that they aren’t normal. And, from studying the bible, we can see that miracles are always to communicate something to people, not to fool people into thinking that reality is different from how it is.

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You mentioned that anything goes since we cast out gensis as being anything other than a bedtime story. What leads you to that conclusion? Maybe some quotes where people say genesis is nothing? That’s ridiculous. It’s taken as a great part of scripture.

Yo @Hercnav. What has any of that got to do with being incarnational?

Thought I would pick out one for my own enjoyment. I would be interested to hear which of these fossils has been debunked.

More to the point, what features would a fossil need to have in order for you, @Hercnav, to accept it as being a transitional fossil between humans and an ancestor shared with chimps?

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Uhhh, 'scuse me. Monkeys have never, ever spoken. They signed, and made accompanying noise, e.g. screeches, grunts, whines, and such. I refer you to William C. Stoke’s paper, an abstract of which you can find at Sign Language versus Spoken Language.
By sheer coincidence, Stokoe’s paper was unknown to me and I was unknown to him, when I first shared my theory that sign language preceded spoken language with my sister who needed a subject for a paper required in her linguistics class.

The thing is, there has never–to my knowledge–been evidence that a monkey would invent or initiate sign language communication. They’re just adept in learning and using it. Which raises the question: Did God teach Adam and Eve sign language first, or ever?

Like, “Have you seen the following argument for the antiquity of the earth?” It in itself should be compelling, not to mention the myriads of other real evidence.
 

Love that pic. Can I ask where you got it?

The transitional hominid pic is found at Talkorigins as part of their 29+ Evidences for Macroevolution:

The caption below the pic is also worth mentioning:

The fossils are arranged in chronological order based on radiometric dating. Creationists would also need to explain why we see increasingly human-like features in fossils that correlate with radiometric dates taken from the rocks above and below these fossils. If evolution and radiometric dating don’t work, then why do we see this correlation?

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You absolutely DO ‘pack’ meaning into scripture actively or passively even if you’re not aware of it for several reasons:

#1 - The bible you’re reading has been translated; translation ALWAYS requires interpretation because there’s no such thing as a perfect 1-to-1 correspondence between languages. Translators have to choose as best they can when translating; but that necessarily is influenced by what they know and what they believe. They are ‘packing meaning’ by the very fact of translating. That’s a major reason we have so many English translations.

#2 - No one comes to the scripture with a purely objective POV. You are reading and interpreting from within the historical and cultural framework you grew up in. For Americans like myself, it is almost guaranteed to be a Western/Greek perspective and not an Ancient Near Eastern one. Their culture is not ours; the way they communicated thoughts and ideas is not the same as we do. Their worldview was in line in many ways with the other cultures around them because it was typical for the are and the time.

#3 - Following from #1 and #2, our knowledge of the ancient world has grown immensely in the last 150 years. The discoveries that have been made have been a boon for scholars to better understand the real meaning behind a lot of what is in scripture, and many of the newest commentaries and translations have used this knowledge to make more accurate information for the layman. If you’re still depending on commentaries from Matthew Henry, Luther, Wesley, or anyone else from before 1900, you’re going to be presented with a fair amount interpretive error and opinion.

#4 - Meaning must be understood in light of intent - both cultural (as mentioned above), but also literary. And literary in the context of the ANE, and not our modern western/Greek context. Literary intent helps frame and shape the meaning of the text. If you don’t know that, you’re going assume and ‘pack’ meaning into the text without even knowing it.

#5 - The Bible doesn’t teach science, and using it like a barometer to judge whether modern theories and beliefs are valid is a worthless exercise and doesn’t reflect at on the veracity or fundamental claims of scripture. The scripture does reflect the scientific beliefs of the Ancient Near East as comparative studies have shown. Believing that God would have used the writers to hide secret knowledge about the ‘real’ world is ridiculous and completely undercuts the point of the communication. What sense does it make to reveal knowledge to ancient people who wouldn’t understand it or have any use for it?

#6 - The way we read and study scripture should mature with our faith. We need to put childish things behind us - which includes believing you can just pick up a translation of an ancient book with no forethought or understanding and think you know what it means because you’ve been blessed with insight.

Bible study (like science) is hard work. Approaching it with childish assumptions and ignorance is going to result in childish conclusions (e.g. AIG). The true blessing is that ANYONE can understand the main themes of scripture without any need for additional knowledge or work - that is evidence of the grace of God. BUT, if you want to move past milk and get on to meat, you’re going to have to work harder.

“Unthinking faith is a curious offering to be made to the creator of the human mind.” —John A. Hutchinson

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Nice. But you cannot convince resolute YECs that they are not thinking well.

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Nice. Thanks. Believe it or not, I recognized almost all of them. The pic and caption are from 2000. I wondered because I was a little surprised by the date on heidelbergensis. A quick check turned up a recent paper that dated that skull pretty firmly around 300 kya. Still remarkable, because it means sapiens, heidelbergensis and naledi co-existed in Africa, while in Eurasia Neanderthal, Denisovan, floresiensis, luzonensis, and maybe heidelbergensis co-existed. We’re the sole survivors.

Edit: forgot the paper
https://www.nature.com/articles/s41586-020-2165-4

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Amazing! I kind of heard it before about various races of humans co existing and I was wondering why it’s only us that’s left…
Would we even call them human? And are there any theological implications of the fact that there may have been different “types of people”?
Sorry for going off the topic so much but it’s just something I always wondered about and clearly that was my cue :joy:

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The Common Descent Podcast goes over the multiple species / subspecies of the human ( homo )’genus I believe. It’s been maybe a year or two since I listened to them.

The Leakey Foundation also does podcasts on human evolution.

It’s pretty school. I think they are still hashing out the exact taxonomic breakdowns though surrounding which ones are separate species versus which ones are subspecies or if their was a hybridized species that ended up becoming the dominate species of a certain clade and that clade was classified as a species without realizing it’s a hybrid and ect…. But nonetheless it’s all very interesting.

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Cue taken. haha. As for sapiens being the sole survivors, it’s a truism that big-brained mammals tend to go extinct. For their size, brains require a lot of calories. The larger the brain, the more food a creature requires to live. Primates and hominins are especially prone to go extinct.

The theological implications of “human” and different “types” of people? Whew. Diving into the deep end of the pool. Haha. Science defines all members of the genus Homo as “human.” Personally, by analogy with ha’adam naming the animals, I would draw a line at the first speakers of words as the first “theological” humans, which would be H. erectus around a million years ago. But of course that line is fuzzy. God might consider habilis or heidelbergensis as the first humans. I’m making an educated guess with pretty big error bars.

The main question is how to understand earlier hominins in a theological framework. The easiest way for me to wrap my mind around it is the metaphor of childhood development and maturity. Wherever the line is drawn, early human species were immature. Like children, their brain, language, and social skills were “human,” but still developing. In short, the theological implication is to place all these different “types” of early people into the same category as the Bible places children. My longer explanation:
Edit: I forgot to tag @marta !!

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You sure about that?
They may not be too-too common, but I wouldn’t say they’re rare, much less “prone to go extinct”.
200 Common Homonyms List

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“Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” -Colossians 4:6

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