Re: AIG says it like it is

From: Janice Matchett <>
Date: Mon Feb 06 2006 - 22:11:48 EST

At 08:49 PM 2/6/2006, David Opderbeck wrote:

>I don't think the "Great Green Slug" question is all that
>difficult. First, your hypothetical begs the question by assuming
>that the sacred text of the Great Great Slug clearly and
>unequivocally teaches that the Slug is the physical source of all
>life. One of the key questions when we confront YEC, of course, is
>whether scripture really does teach six literal days and such. So,
>your hypothetical isn't analogous to any questions surrounding the
>Bible's origins narratives. There are many exegetical reasons to
>think the YEC position is a wrong understanding of the text, even
>apart from the evidence of general revelation.
>Second, your hypothetical says nothing about the tradition in which
>the Great Green Slug myth is embedded. Is there a 4000-year history
>of interpreting and applying the Great Green Slug scripture? Is
>there a messianic event in which the Great Green Slug allegedly
>became incarnate as a man, and around which the tradition further
>developed? Were there fathers of the Great Green Slug church 1500
>or more years ago beginning to understand the Great Green Slug myth
>in light of the whole tradition, the incarnation event, and the
>understanding of "reason" in the classical tradition? Are there
>varying understandings and interpretations of the Great Green Slug
>myth going way back into the beginnings of the tradition?
>Third, your hypothetical says nothing about the broader theology of
>the Great Green Slug religion. What is the theology of inspiration
>within the Great Green Slug tradition? What does it mean within the
>Great Green Slug tradition for something to constitute
>"scripture?" What is the theology of nature? How have prominent
>Great Green Slug theologians and philosphers understood the
>relationship of their written sacred texts to human reason? Is
>there a theology of "general revelation" or "common grace?"
>In short, the Great Green Slug hypothetical bears no relationship at
>all to the Biblical texts, the millenia-old traditions in which the
>texts have been received and interpreted, and the theology in which
>the creation myths in those texts are contextualized. It's a silly
>little hypothetical designed to knock down a straw man.
>On 2/6/06, <>
><<>> wrote:
>"....I know I am usually odd man out here on this issue, but the
>reason the ASA-type of response has such a small following in the
>pews in the US is simply because making it allegorical/metaphorical
>is viewed by most as equivalent ot making it not true.
>On another list, I asked a guy who believes in
>accommodation/allegory/metaphor this question:
>"A primitive tribesman who was taught that the innerds of a great
>green slug formed the earth. He goes to school and learns the
>scientific view. ..." [snip]

## " ...It's a silly little hypothetical designed to knock down a straw man."

I agree.

Such efforts are exposed here, also:

The Impossible Faith Or, How Not to Start an Ancient Religion

[huge snip]

"...Christianity, as we can see, had every possible disadvantage as a
faith. As I have recently noted, some religions thrive by being vague
(Rastafarianism) or by having only philosophical demands, or demands
beyond verification (Buddhism, Hinduism). Others staked a claim to
survival by isolation (Mormonism) or by the sword (Islam).
Christianity did none of these things and had none of these benefits,
other than a late flirtation with the sword when it was already a
secure faith and it was being used for political purposes, as indeed
any religion could be -- not as a means of spreading the Gospel.
Every disadvantage, and none of the advantages.

We have seen that ignorance and apathy will not serve as adequate
explanations. The claims of Christianity were not that difficult to
figure intellectually, and anyway, what Christianity had to offer
would not appeal to the ignorant -- or else would be balanced out by
the many things that would have made the ignorant suspicious and
mistrustful. Apathy where social matters were concerned is a product
of our times, not the ancient world. Skeptics cannot smugly appeal to
these as explanations.

I have been told that one critic has made the desperate suggestion
that one or more of these factors may not have applied to all people
at all times in this context. This is an absurd response -- the
factors are centered on values and judgments inherent to the period,
social mores that don't just turn on and off like a light switch. The
critic would have to prove that there was a temporary lull in a
sufficient number of factors (for even one of two of these are more
than enough to have put people off the new faith) for Christianity to
catch converts -- and then document and explain the lull, and why it
apparently reversed itself yet again. Bottom line is that such an
explanation is a counsel of despair.

Finally, the critic is confounded by the fact that ..... " [snip]

For a comparison and contrast with other religions, see these:
    * <>Mithraism
    * <>Mormonism
    * <>Islam

~ Janice
Received on Mon Feb 6 22:12:31 2006

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