RE: Response to Why YEC posting

From: Vandergraaf, Chuck (
Date: Sun Aug 26 2001 - 14:50:27 EDT

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     I don't think that anybody intended to attribute one view or another to
    lack of intelligence. Tim Ikeda mentioned, in connection with the satirical
    "The Onion" that he thought that the "Funniest phrase" was "I don't accept
    fundamental tenets of science and I vote." This prompted my comment about
    "the revenge of the D student" as we, in a democracy, "get the government we
    deserve" meaning that voters often base their choice of candidate on the
    basis of very little knowledge. Joel then pointed out that "academics" may
    also vote in such a way that the outcome may be "equally frightful."
    Having said this, generally I agree with your comments.

    -----Original Message-----
    From: []
    Sent: Sunday August 26, 2001 11:14 AM
    Subject: Re: Response to Why YEC posting

    Joel Bandstra wrote:

    Given the voting tendencies of most academics, I suppose that the "Revenge
    of the A student" may be equally frightful.

    Actually, the one confirmed creationist I knew in
    my days as a graduate student in physics was a very
    good student. Indeed, he did very good work in
    the area of study he chose (of course that was not
    evolutionary theory). I tried to reason with him
    that it didn't matter HOW God did it, rather the
    important issue was to acknowledge THAT God did it.
    He was at least reasonable enough to recognize that
    I believe in God, and that I have chosen to follow

    In any case, such frustrating matters as banning
    the second law sound quite silly, but I suspect
    that such folly would have little to do with the
    intelligence or the grades that such people
    obtained as students. All the creationists
    I know all are very competent in their particular
    area of expertise, and I'm sure I would be able
    to count on them (in that regard).

    Let me put it this way. It is not even a question
    about being rational or irrational. It is a question
    about the way of thinking.

    In essence, the thinking in YEC starts from the
    angle that the "H. Morris view of the scriptural
    interpretation is the only correct view". (I
    realize that there may be plenty of variation on
    who is considered the great prophet of YEC thought,
    but that is irrelevant to the discussion.) If
    a scientist proposes a theory that doesn't
    agree with the "H. Morris view of scriptural
    interpretation" it MUST be wrong. Indeed,
    it is even in a sense "rational" to assume
    the opposing theory MUST be wrong because it
    began from the premise that the "H. Morris
    view of scriptural interpretation is the
    only correct view".

    Hence, I hedge that the fundamental problem is
    the issue of how one defines "authority" in
    scripture and *how* one shows respect to
    that "authority". What does it mean to say
    that "the Bible is God's Word"? What does it
    mean to be "obedient" to the "Word of God"? In
    what way does questioning the "Word of God" cross
    into rebellion, and it what way does it illuminate
    this "Word"? Questioning is _not_ evil, if the
    heart of the disciple is to seek a deeper
    understanding of his/her relationship with the Lord.
    However, I also don't see any simple answers to
    these questions, and there seem to be problems
    with any position one assumes.

    The Bible is a very important
    resource for teaching and correcting me in my
    Christian life, but God gave me a brain and
    a mind to reason with, so that does not absolve
    me from the _duty_ of thinking independently.
    At some point, that includes examining my own

    by Grace alone we proceed,

    "A thought that is not independent is a thought
    only half understood." Ludwig Wittgenstein.

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