Re: Seely's Views 2

From: Sheila Wilson <>
Date: Fri Sep 03 2004 - 16:30:15 EDT

Lovely question. I am guessing He would say something like "in the beginning I created the heavens and the earth." Seriously - while I want more specifics because I am a geologist, I believe that would be and is enough for at least 90% of the people in the world.

Jim Armstrong <> wrote:
Just to sort of capsulize ...what should God use in the way of vocabulary to describe phenomena and mechanisms for which we have no present understanding, perhaps not even a philosophical framework for same? JimA

D. F. Siemens, Jr. wrote:

On Thu, 2 Sep 2004 21:00:34 -0500 "Glenn Morton"<> writes:


-----Original Message-----From: D. F. Siemens, Jr. [] Sent: Wednesday, September 01, 2004 3:19 PMTo:

Glenn,In response to your first question, we don't know. We're finite.

But God isn't finite. Why can't he simply tell a true history. Why doeshe have to tell something that we can't count on as being true? Howlittle power a god like that has.Even with the kind of proof in math and logic,

"truth" is at best conditional.

I understand Godel's theorem.We recognize truth as an

absolute standard which we hope to approach. But truth is a requirement for knowledge. So knowledge can only be to the best of our ability (and hope). The only way out of this that I have found is the declaration, "I'm right [which implies holding only the truth]! And if you don't believe I'm right, ask me, and I'll tell you how right I am." Of course, most people holding such a view do not state itpublicly: it's a tacit commitment.

That isn't truth in my opinion. What you have described is subjectivism.Truth is when you and I look at the grass and agree that it is green.And then other people come and look at the grass and agree with us.Truth is when the vast majority of historians agree that there was aRoman empire. But God can't seem to tell a true story about historythat all would agree with. I am always amazed at how little thatdifference bothers some people.

As to what part of revelation is imperfect, all of it with the exception of Jesus Christ,

Seems highly ad hoc to me. There simple is no cogent and coherent viewthat explains why that part is perfect but all the rest isn't.

God is perfect, so he fully understands the history of creation and thenature of the universe. Therefore, according to you, he not only can butmust communicate that exact knowledge to man. In what language will thatbe? How will the limited mind of a human being take that all in andremain human? Even our Lord had to empty himself to become human.On the other hand, why cannot the Almighty use what his creatures thinkthey know at a given time to communicate his message that he is thecreator and that the deities of the nations are bogus? I don't knowenough about Babylonian math to know how large a number they comprehended2.6 or more millennia ago, but they probably would have found itimpossible to understand 13.7x10^9 years, let alone the physics ofnuclear synthesis during the first period after the Big Bang and its needto be supplemented by later synthesis of heavier nuclei in stars.Next point, I was not talking about Goedel's Theorem, which proved thatone cannot prove the consi
 of the logic needed to prove numbertheory, or its extension by Church to the lower functional calculus. I'mtalking about such things as the Pythagorean Theorem or 4+4=8, the simplelevels of geometry and number theory. The lowest level is conditional,not absolute.Finally, as to grass, some of our brethren, especially, are colorblind.Others have more subtly modified visual pigments. Additionally, the useof reflectance spectrometers has shown that very different combinationsof spectra can produce indistinguishable sensations. Vision is inherentlysubjective. How do you know that what you have learned to label 'green'is the same sensation that I have learned to label by the same noise? Thebest we can do it measure visual pigments and determine that they are thesame or different among persons. Then we assume that the sensationsproduced are identical if the pigments are indistinguishable. This ispart of the faith underlying all claims to knowledge, as you note.By the way, how is yo
 standard of agreement different than that ofBabylonians, Egyptians and Greeks who agreed that the sun is a chariotdriven across the sky by the deity they name? They might differ on thename of the deity, but within each group they were certain. Across groupsthey probably held that it was just that they called the god by adifferent name. Does the fact that Jahweh did not straighten out thepagans along with Israel prove him incompetent, "of little power"?Dave

Sheila McGinty Wilson
Received on Fri Sep 3 16:52:51 2004

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.8 : Fri Sep 03 2004 - 16:52:51 EDT