How Would A TE/EC Respond To The Arguments In This Article?

(James Hiddle) #1

Interesting article -

How would a TE/EC respond to the points made in that article?

I’m asking as a learner/knowledge seeker not as a YEC/OEC/TE,EC.

(Patrick ) #2

This paper has no valid content. It just seems like rambling nonsense.

(Mazrocon) #3

Hey James.

Their are lots and lots of claims in this article so it’s difficult for me to respond to most of them … but I will get to some.

"In addition, carbon dating methods have rated a snail shell at 2,300 years old, yet it was known to have died only days before the examination (Huse 1983: 29). "

This discrepancy regarding the radio carbon dating of aquatic animal life has been explained.

…carbon dioxide in the water can partially come from Paleozoic limestone, which lacks carbon-14. As a result, the carbon dioxide in the water is deficient in carbon-14 relative to the atmosphere, and mollusks living in the water build shells that give apparent dates older than they really are. This is a type of “reservoir effect.”<<<

“Most Bible scholars (hereafter called creationists) believe in a literal six days of creation…”

Is the above a fact or a claim? I could be mistaken but I got the impression that Bible scholars were divided on the issue.

“Besides that, it is generally believed that the earth and moon were formed at the same time. If this happened four to five billion years ago like the evolutionists say, then dust particles that come from space would have made the moon’s ground 182 feet thick in dust alone (this was the reason for equipping the lunar shuttle with such huge landing pads), and this is not the case.”

Was the huge land pads around 200 hundred feet tall? Maybe I’m misunderstanding. While watching the tapes of Neil Armstrong there doesn’t seem to be any surprise by the Astronaut that he’s not sinking through 200 feet of dust. Looking online I find a very different story…

The earliest use of the cosmic dust argument that Van Till (Van Till et al, 1988) could find was in an article by Harold Slusher, which was published in the June 1971 issue of Creation Research Society Quarterly. Slusher made several blunders which are handed down in the scientific creationist literature to this very day. In 1974 the cosmic dust argument received its big kick-off from Henry Morris’ book, Scientific Creationism. Morris quoted an article by Hans Pettersson in the February 1960 issue of Scientific American. Pettersson’s upper estimate for the influx of cosmic dust, a figure he considered risky, was based on particles he collected from two filtration units in the Hawaiian Islands. One was located near the summit of Mauna Loa, Hawaii, and the other near the observatory on Haleakala, Maui. He came up with 39,150 tons/day. Pettersson actually favored a figure about two-thirds less, and he warned his readers that the true figure could be much lower still. Further work was planned in Switzerland.

This caution seems to have been lost on Henry Morris, who may have been relying on Slusher’s work, and he ignored Pettersson’s preferred value in favor of his highest estimate. By the time the Impact insert #110 of Acts & Facts (August 1982) came out, sporting as it did a collection of young-earth claims, the reader was being told that just prior to the manned, moon landing scientists were worried about a thick layer of dust. (Again, we have echoes of Slusher’s article.) Of course, the sea of cosmic dust did not materialize, and the Impact article claimed a victory for creation science which supports a young moon without much cosmic dust. Steven Shore shows that this entire scenario is wrongheaded. Let’s get a proper perspective on history:

In a conference held in late 1963, on the Lunar Surface Layer, McCracken and Dublin state that

“The lunar surface layer thus formed would, therefore, consist of a mixture of lunar material and interplanetary material (primarily of cometary origin) from 10 cm to 1 m thick. The low value for the accretion rate for the small particles is not adequate to produce large scale dust erosion or to form deep layers of dust on the moon, for the flux has probably remained fairly constant during the past several billion years.” (p. 204)<<<

This statement of dust being 10 cm to 1 m thick was made 6 years before the launch actually took place. So the 200 hundred foot argument of cosmic dust seems outdated.

"In The Scientific Case for Creation, Henry Morris uses the following methods to date the earth.

Decay of the earth’s magnetic field…10,000 years
Influx of radiocarbon into earth system…10,000 years
Influx of uranium into the oceans via rivers…50,000 years
Influx of carbonate into the oceans…100,000 years
Efflux of helium-4 into the atmosphere…175,000 years
Accumulation of dust on the moon…200,000 years
Leaching of chlorine from the continents…1,000,000 years
Erosion of sediment from continents…10,000,000 years

Morris uses a total of sixty five methods to date the earth. They range from 5,000 to ten million years, not billions of years like the evolutionists postulate (Morris 1977: 55-59)."

I can’t go into each of these specific claims, but let’s just speculate for a moment that Morris’ dating methods for the earth are 100% accurate. It contradicts Evolutionary Theory just as much as it does a 6,000 year old earth.

“Henry Morris suggests that a world-wide flood (recorded in Genesis) could do as well to explain why the smaller simpler life forms are found at the lower levels of the earth’s crust. It was because they were less mobile, and may not have been able to move to higher elevations when the world was flooded (Morris 1977: 36-38).”

This doesn’t explain why fossils can be categorized into different levels. Prokaryotes - Eukaryotes - shelled animals - dinosaurs - mammals etc., — I wouldn’t expect (personally) to find any sort of coherency to the fossil record were they randomly distributed in a global flood. As Glenn Morton has once stated: “A 36,500 foot pile of sediment (which is not exceptional) means that 100 feet per day of sediment must have been deposited ON AVERAGE during a one year flood. That means 4 feet per hour. Most burrowers can’t burrow that quickly and would quickly be buried.”

I hope you don’t interpret my words as being antagonistic, and that you are trying to give each side (YEC - OEC - EC) all a fair shot. I understand.

A couple other general things stood out to me though — is the articles distinct dividing line between micro-evolution and macro-evolution — in principle the same mechanisms guide both. The definitions of species is blurred in the scientific world — and it’s also blurred in the Biblical world.

The article strictly defines “creationists” as being of a single stripe — that of the young-earth variety. I would simply define it as saying, “We believe that God created the Universe and everything that’s in it.” That’s creationism.

The above is a good article that analyzes the three Hebrew “create” words, “asah - made”, “yatsar - formed” and “bara - create” and how they are used through out the Bible to give a more coherent picture.

That’s all I have for now — continue to seek out knowledge, my friend.


(Christy Hemphill) #4

@jahiddle I would respond by pointing out that the scientific references in that paper are no more recent than 1985. Doesn’t that trouble you? A lot has happened since 1985, most relevantly, the mapping of genomes. When the scientists cited there were in school, they didn’t even know about the double helix structure of DNA, let alone have access to the wealth of specific information we have now about genetics. We have half a century of research using particle accelerators and electron microscopes. Morris was a civil engineer who studied hydraulics and got his PhD in 1950. Do you think he is really the most knowledgeable scientist around on issues that relate to biology and astrophysics?

The arguments mentioned are the same ones used when I was a child studying young earth creationism thirty years ago.

The bigger issue is who cares what most Bible scholars think about genetics, molecular biology, geology, and astrophysics? They are experts in biblical languages, textual criticism, historical exegesis, theology, and possibly ANE culture. The question we should be asking is what do Christian geneticists, biologists, geologists, and astrophysicists think. The overwhelming majority are not coming to the conclusions that YEC is pushing.

You can try to research this issue by looking at all the things creationists claim are defeaters for old earth or macroevolution and why Christian scientists reject them, but I think it might be more helpful to start by getting an idea of why an ancient earth and macroevolution are assumed by most Christian scientists. A book that was helpful to me was Darryl Falk’s Coming to Peace with Science. It was written for a general audience, so it isn’t super technical and it gives you an idea what scientists are seeing that makes the YEC view sound so improbable and untenable.

Also, it bothered me that many YEC arguments were so easily understood by someone with no scientific background. Honestly, if a third grader can grasp it, but almost all PhDs in relevant fields reject it, how accurate do you think the science behind it is?

(Mazrocon) #5

You have a point there Christy. Non-scientific Bible Scholars will most likely have very different opinions than Scientific Bible Scholars — I still think what they have to say is important (not the final word on things, obviously). John Walton, to my knowledge, isn’t a scientist … and he comes to very different conclusions than say, YECs.

There are some “on the fringe” cases, however. Both Jason Lisle and Hugh Ross had a debate with each other, both of whom are astrophysicists. They do have different backgrounds, however … Lisle’s interest in the stars came later in life, while Ross was fascinated by astronomy at age 8, and then later came to studying the different religions out there (by deductive reasoning he chose Christianity as the most reasonable).

Not sure how one reconciles the millions of craters on the moon, though. Squeezing that into a 6,000 year timeline seems pretty difficult.


(Christy Hemphill) #6

I think John Walton pretty carefully avoids coming to scientific conclusions and makes very diplomatic statements about the range of scientific interpretations the biblical text allows room for. He never says what he personally thinks about evolution, he just says that his exegesis doesn’t rule it out as a possibility.

(Patrick ) #7

Are you talking about the Jason Lisle who can’t figure out that red shifted light from a star means that the star is millions of light years away. He keeps trying to make the speed of light faster so that the light gets here faster but doesn’t realize that this will cause a blue shift of wavelength so that isn’t observed. Lisle is not a scientist that anyone takes seriously.

(Mazrocon) #8

It’s an element about him that confused me. How can you be an astrophysicist, someone personally involved in the data, while argue for “sped up light”…?

Glenn Morton, a former young earth creationist, worked for 30 in an oil company, getting personally involved in things like geology and geophysics — yet he could no longer hold two contradicting views in his mind, and left YEC.


(system) #9

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