Re: interpreting history, from An interesting atheist book

From: Michael Roberts (
Date: Mon Jun 09 2003 - 18:00:00 EDT

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    JCRyle was a highly conservative Anglcian - Bishop of Liverpool who died in
    1901 and I was ordained 20 yds from his tomb.
    This is an ambiguous qoute but in an address to the clergy of Liverpool in
    the 1880s he was explicit that he accepted the geological timespan and
    eulogised such geologists as Sedgwick.

    Thanks to Lord Kelvin geological time was restricted to about 20 my and also
    there was a division of opinion on how long humans had been around . Lyell
    and followers reckoned c100,000years, but others including the geologist J W
    Dawson reckoned only 20,000 years. Ryle who was then in his late 60s still
    held to 6000 years hence the comment. Even then many conservatives still
    held to a 6000 yerar existence of humans with a geological timescale of

    Looking at commentaries on Genesis is more productive as everyone I have
    read accept geological times. These vary from liberal to conservative
    anglo-catholiic to evangelical.

    Anyway though Ryle was an ultra-conservative fundamentalist of his day today
    in the C of E he would be fairly liberal as far as Genesis is concerned.

    ----- Original Message -----
    From: "bivalve" <>
    To: <>
    Sent: Monday, June 09, 2003 8:23 PM
    Subject: interpreting history, from An interesting atheist book

    > I suspect that evidence may often be tangential and as such, difficult to
    interpret with confidence. For example, I have a copy of a chapter from J.
    C. Ryle, 1887, The Upper Room. He admits that parenting, the topic of the
    chapter, is not novel, though he thinks the topic and application is
    neglected. He writes: "The world is old, and we have the experience of
    nearly six thousand years to help us." This suggests that he thought that
    Adam and Eve were only about 4000 BC, but seems ambiguous as to the time of
    creation. As I recall, fossil hominids were not too well documented as of
    1887, though what we now recognize as good evidence of ancient humans had
    been found. Also, a scenario that makes Adam and Eve not to be physical
    ancestors of all physical humans would make their date irrelevant to the
    dating of the oldest human artifacts. Thus, what might seem at first like a
    YEC statement in fact appears more ambiguous. Perhaps looking for
    commentaries on Genesis would be !
    > more productive.
    > Dr. David Campbell
    > Old Seashells
    > University of Alabama
    > Biodiversity & Systematics
    > Dept. Biological Sciences
    > Box 870345
    > Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0345 USA
    > That is Uncle Joe, taken in the masonic regalia of a Grand Exalted
    Periwinkle of the Mystic Order of Whelks-P.G. Wodehouse, Romance at
    Droitgate Spa

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