Re: [asa] Wells and traditional Christianity

From: Iain Strachan <>
Date: Fri Sep 01 2006 - 19:20:09 EDT

On 9/1/06, D. F. Siemens, Jr. <> wrote:
> On Fri, 1 Sep 2006 12:55:45 +0100 "Iain Strachan" <>
> writes:
> >I guess it does. I'm just working through these ideas myself.
> >I find the "literal" interpretation to be something that is way too hard
> to stomach; namely that everything was perfect and there was no death and
> suffering. Then Adam & Eve go and eat a piece of fruit that they were told
> not to. As a result God puts the most appalling curse on the whole of
> creation, not just Adam and his progeny, and animals start eating each other
> and inflicting suffering on each other. I have sympathy with Darwin, who
> said:
> >I cannot persuade myself that a beneficent and omnipotent God would have
> designedly created the Ichneumonidae with the express intention of their
> feeding within the living bodies of caterpillars
> >
> Iain (and Merv),
> This strikes me as an "I'm smarter than God" approach based on "what I
> don't like is bad and should never be." It also involves an illegitimate
> transference, assuming that the caterpillar has the same feeling as humans
> do.

But equally, you can't assume that they don't suffer. I take it you
wouldn't think it was right to suck the insides out of a paralysed
caterpillar, or slowly pull the legs off a spider, or to toy with a mouse as
a cat does ( something Darwin also mentioned in the letter the above quote
was taken from) ? I'm not arguing that I'm smarter than God - more pointing
out the absurdity of treating this as a literal historical account - God
causing _everything_ to suffer just because Adam disobeyed him over a piece
of fruit. The account clearly means much more than a literal historical
account would imply.

A little thought, rather than emotional reaction, should quickly demonstrate
> that a world with life but without death is an impossibility, unless it is
> strictly static.
> On the other hand, I might argue in a form parallel to Darwin's that I
> find offal offensive, so there should not be any. But it is a
> necessary consequence of the nutrition of mammals, so a good God would not
> have allowed any in his creation. So our existence has just disproved the
> goodness of God, if not his very existence.

Sorry, but I can't see the parallel here. You don't like offal ... but it
doesn't do anything that you'd consider morally bad. You might just as well
say that because I don't particularly like the colour yellow that God is

But what the YECs would have you believe is that these wasps flew around
innocently living off flowers and never touching caterpillars & then just
because of Adam's disobedience, that God turned them into savage predators.
It seems to me this is a whole different situation - animals doing to each
other what the vast majority of us would consider morally repugnant.


It's easy to "fix" something if everything else can be ignored, a human
> specialty wonderfully practiced by Vernon and other YECs.
> Dave

After the game, the King and the pawn go back in the same box.
- Italian Proverb
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Received on Fri Sep 1 19:20:43 2006

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