Re: Bias in Science, Part 3

From: Dick Fischer <>
Date: Fri Jun 17 2005 - 00:49:54 EDT

Vernon wrote:
Hi Dick,

In response to my question, you write:

" The Hebrew word 'op that has been translated "fowl," is a "flying creature," the same basic word for "insect" which probably would have been a better translation. Flying insects date to 300 million years ago in the Carboniferous period, and were useful for pollinating some of the vegetation springing forth at about that time. Also, why would "fowls" be mentioned three times in three consecutive passages (Gen.1:20-22)? If birds had been intended in all three instances it would be a curious redundancy."

I can confirm that the Hebrew word 'oph' is fairly translated 'flying creature' and must therefore - in the absence of any further qualification - include birds, bats and flying insects. Your suggestion that 'insect' alone would have been a better translation is IMO merely wishful thinking, for I find no evidence to support that view.

The fossil record prvides ample evidence, which is my point all along. Science and history give us guidelines by which we can make better Bible translations and interpretations. YECs choose to ignore the evidence God has given in nature to their peril, and this is a prime case in point.

And regarding what you describe as 'a curious redundacy', I fail to see its relevance to the matter in hand

If the translation was "fowls" in the KJV in all three instances it is a redundancy. If insects is the proper word in the first instance Genesis makes better sense even if we didn't know the fossil record.

You will no doubt have observed that the same Hebrew word occurs again in Gen.1:26 and 1:28 - now in the context of the 'flying creatures' being subject to man's dominion. I suggest that there can be little doubt here that 'oph' really must refer to birds, bats and flying insects. Thus, to follow your line of reasoning we have a word which means one thing in day 5, but another in day 6! Such inconsistency hardly makes for a convincing case - and it is little wonder that I, as a Christian, remain highly skeptical of the whole evolutionary enterprise.

Then call it Bible error by an ignorant writer, your choice. What YECs do, and you don't seem to be an exception, is hold their interpretation supreme and attempt to abrogate the entire world and universe to fit it.

By the way, before I close I must briefly comment on a remark with which you concluded your email of 13 June. I quote: " Let them (implacable YECs) wither on the vine, twist in the wind, or prepare to answer their Maker face to face..." I suggest that such imprecations are completely out of place in this forum.

In that case I'll leave the forum! (for ten days while I travel to Colombia) Adios.

Dick Fischer - Genesis Proclaimed Association
Finding Harmony in Bible, Science, and History
Received on Fri Jun 17 00:52:34 2005

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