Greetings. Through my discussions on this forum, I have (in the back of my mind) been compiling a list of questions to ask the next AIG person I run into…honest, non-rhetorical questions coming from a desire to learn…to ultimately learn the truth of the whole creation vs. evolution debate. I thought it would be interesting to see what questions others on this forum have been burning to ask…
A “trick question” that gets some people: “How did God create the animals?”
IThe most important question I could think of is “Do you believe it is possible for a person to be a Bible-believing follower of Christ and still accept evolution?” If someone cannot accept this, then I would quite-likely “shake off my sandals” and not bother continuing any sort of debate.
I am not greatly concerned that a young-earth Christian comes to my viewpoint, but I believe it is terribly damaging for Christians of one persuasion to assume that the other “cannot believe in the Bible” or “cannot be a true Christian” without believing exactly what they believe.
Oops, just realized this morning that I replied to fmiddel and not to @J.E.S.
Curtis Henderson: A noble and peaceful way to approach the AiG folks. Commendable. Here’s two questions I would ask: Provide me any evidence for the existence of a god. And if we ignore that for the moment, what is the evidence for the coexistence of humans and dinosaurs?
Well, that’s just where my question opens the door for that…because many YECs would say that God created the animals (within the 6 days of Creation) because they take it literally. But the text literally says that God commanded the land to produce animals. All of a sudden their framework has a crack.
What I really want to know before I start arguing points of science is whether or not the person I’m arguing with will accept my brotherhood in Jesus. If not, I think it is highly unlikely they will accept any scientific arguments and any discussion would be either neutral in effect or counter-productive.
Oh, okay. In that case, I ask the person about the essence of the Gospel message. Invariably, they do not include “not believing in evolution” or “believing every word in the Bible to be literally true.” Then there’s another starting point.
I would say my best evidence would be what we know about Jesus. A high majority of scholars (Christian and otherwise) agree that Jesus really existed. Further, the evidence for His resurrection is compelling. I see no reason why His followers would risk imprisonment and even their lives to support the resurrection unless they truly believed it.
Personally, I also find our observations of the cosmos to be compelling evidence for God’s existence. From the vast array of space to the incredible complexity of the cell (not to mention subatomic physics, of which I know very little), nature suggests a cause behind it. Others may not find this argument compelling, but I certainly do.
That sound like a very good approach.
What features would a fossil need in order for you to accept it as being transitional between humans and a common ancestor shared with chimps?
What features would a geologic formation need in order to be inconsistent with a young Earth and a recent global flood?
Curtis Henderson: I don’t doubt the existence of a wise and good man named jesus. I question his connection to the supernatural.
The natural world explains the natural world. Astonishing complexity and interconnectedness certainly, but entirely the result of natural forces. Natural forces X deep time = our world.
I can certainly recognize that possibility, but to me, it seems more likely that the natural forces were ordained and established by a God, rather than simply coming into existence on their own.
cwhenderson: You have pinpointed the still point around which the science v faith debate revolves! Its this: “it seems more likely that…”. The concept of “more likely” means we no longer have to waste time on 100% proof, we can accept statements like the “preponderance of evidence leads toward X”. We can construct statements about the likelihood of a claim being true, but are not wedded to complete 100% proof.
For example, did a man rise from the dead? I think not and I can’t prove it 100%, but I can say that, judging by past and current evidence, the resurrection is impossible.
I obviously cannot “prove” the existence of God. I believe that God desires us to come to Him by faith – it is a clear point of emphasis throughout the Bible. So did Jesus rise from the dead? History tells us that hundreds of His followers claimed that He did indeed rise from the dead and staked their lives on it. As fantastic as a resurrection might sound, I still think it is reasonable to accept it as truth.
I forgot to address this earlier:
You may be confusing me with someone else, because I don’t believe there is any credible evidence for the coexistence of humans and dinosaurs.
Indeed…by your timeline, Jesus has (of course) not risen from the dead. Since on the Biblical timescale, a day is actually a really, really, long time, he has to be in the tomb for several hundred, thousand, million, or maybe even billion, years yet.
And as for evidence of him having risen from the dead almost 2,000 years ago now, I think @loraxx makes some good points. In all, there’s probably only as much evidence of Jesus rising from the dead as there is for…the coexistence of humans and dinosaurs.
cwhenderson: My fault for the confusion. I meant that the dinosaur question should find its way into the quiver of questions for AiG folks.
Indeed. Dinosaurs and humans is a little-known and fascinating topic. Well-worth researching further:
I really don’t understand the point you are trying to make here. It is well-established that Jesus lived ~2,000 years ago. My interpretation of the Hebrew word “yom” from the Genesis account has no bearing on this fact. Insisting that “my timeline” refutes the existence of Jesus or His resurrection is purposeless.
How many people do you know that have believed in the Ica stones so strongly that they either risked or gave their lives by horrible, torturous deaths?
As I’ve said before, the Ica stones are not the only evidence. If you step back and look at the world, it actually looks much more mysterious than you had at first realized (a phenomenon which I’m sure you have observed on multiple occasions.
As you may have gathered, I am being facetious with this. It just strikes me that there are a lot of apparent contradictions created by believing in Evolutionary Creationism and Jesus. To be honest, I am a firm believer in the forgiveness Jesus won for us in his sacrificial death and resurrection. And I certainly do not mean to question your faith in the same.
your brother in Christ,
Any transitional fossil between humans and chimps (on the human side of the branches) will simply be classified as a non-human animal. No surprises there.