RE: [asa] Question for all the theistic evolutionists

From: Glenn Morton <>
Date: Mon Mar 19 2007 - 22:47:00 EDT

For Merv, Bill Hamilton, Gregory Arago, Terry Gray
Merv wrote:
>>>>Most posts on this thread have been on the offensive against
accommodation and the defensive replies of the accommodationists. Please
allow me to add a different strand in the opposite direction into this
thread: How far are you ("concordists" ) willing to go to defend every
straightforward narrative found in any Scripture? E.g. Forget the small
time floating ax heads & such -- those are child's play. Let's skip to
the big ones -- the sun stationary in the sky. I must admit that I don't
know what to do with the clear Scriptural claim that Joshua told the sun
(and moon) to stand still, and they did for "about a day". I don't
understand how this could literally have happened (it would surely be a
candidate from a physicist's point of view for the grand-daddy of miracles
since creation). But this is a weak objection to a miracle, as they can't
be understood anyway and this one is only different from a floating ax head
in its magnitude of physical effect. Do I not have proper faith that God
can (/will) do anything? This isn't a rhetorical question, but a faith
struggle for me. As much as I hate to agree with Thomas Jefferson about
anything theological, I do identify with his clearly expressed skepticism
towards some claimed miracles. Perhaps I am just a weak-kneed
accommodationist, and Dick and Glenn can bolster my faith by declaring that
the Bible states it -- therefore God did it just as stated and as understood
by modern eyes. But they also take science and modern knowledge into
account, so I am curious how their brand of concordism interacts with some
of these fantastic claims so that I can evaluate if my faith (or possible
lack thereof). I'm not even sure why I rank some miracles as more
"fantastic" than others. But I seem to. Some (like the resurrection) are
just as fantastic, but have a lot more recorded witnesses and significance
of centrality. But either/or type thinking won't allow me to make the
distinction between a "central" miracle and a "peripheral" one that only
merits a couple verses mention. After all, to the concordist it is all
God-breathed and indisputable. Eager for your thoughts.<<<
I apologize, I missed this last night. I think I answered it in the other
thread on empirical knowledge but I probably should add, that I would lean
towards defending the miracles so long as I didn't try to explain them
scientifically. If one wants to have a Mesopotamian flood with its
freestanding wall of water on the southern and western ends of the basin, be
my guest, just call it a miracle and be done with it. Don't invoke
hurricanes where none exist, or alter the laws of physics (as the Hill's did
in their recent article). While I don't particularly think a floating ax
head is a useful miracle, if that is what God wants to spend his time on, I
am not embarassed to say that I would allow him that privilege.
To me some of the objection to things like this are due to embarassement,
and maybe it is a reflection of Collins observation that TE's are not
willing to challenge their secular scientists. I think there is a large
measure of embarassement at the miracles.
I want to add something about your comment on long posts. What am I do to
when I get more than four responses to my posts in a single day, all
attacking my comments? I do make people mad and make them want to write
letters to me telling me how dumb/retarded/fundamentalist I am. :-) The
stupid 4 post rule means that I must answer them over the next few days when
no one gives a rats rear end about the topic any longer so I decided to do
super long posts--it doesn't spare anyone with a dial up band width.
Bill Hamilton wrote:
>Yes, but that's not the issue. It may have done nothing _detectible_ in the
archaeological record.

If the IOG contains either spiritual knowledge/ worship or communication,
those leave traces in the archaeological record.
Gregory Arago wrote:
>>>>Glenn wrote: "a village rather than a man and a woman"

Is this not the generally accepted view in (archaeological) anthropology?
Are you suggesting, Glenn, that a Christian anthropologist (should) profess
'a man and a woman' rather than 'a village'? Most Adam and Eve-believing
Christians would probably agree. <<<<
Well, I don't believe in forcing people to advocate things they don't
believe in. What I do advocate is that people get their facts correct and
that takes lots and lots of digging and years of study.
The problem I see is that Adam is singular, Eve is singular. If there was a
village, then why wasn't the plural men and women used. The women went and
ate the fruit who gave it to their men. The Bible doesn't say that, but we
make it say that when we want to fit the ugly stepsister's of Science foot
into the silver slipper. In other words, we rewrite the Bible and that, to
me, is a bad thing. I know I am not smart enough to rewrite God's word, and
I strongly suspect that George isn't either, but, I am open to being
convinced that George is smart enough to rewrite Holy Writ, but so far I see
no empirical evidence for that.
>>>>The statement/charge that, "You 'correct' the Bible and make it a
village" (made to George M.), seems to be a significant one. Whether or not
the 'reality' of either 'a man and a woman' OR 'a village' can be left open
to doubt, for example, if a person doesn't make the first chapters of
Genesis as the edifice upon which their entire theology is built, remains a
point in George's favour. <<<<
Maybe if one also beleives the Bible needs a grand re-write because God and
the previous authors really screwed up the job, turning out a dog's
breakfast of a book.(note ask a Brit what a dog's breakfast is).
>>>I don't suppose a physicist/theologian would wish to profess on this
issue giving an appearance of certainty unless they were a biblical
literalist, which George is obviously (thankfully) not. <<<
I am interested most in the (thankfully). I keep pointing out that if we
went into our jobs and offered a theory of reality that did not concord to
the observational facts, we, as scientists, could expect to be fired.
Something along the lines of:
"Yeah, boss, I have this great break through. General Relativity isn't
really correct. Gravity is really an electromagnetic phenomenon and if you
twiddle with Maxwell's equations adding this or that term (which only work
when one is speaking of gravity but dont' add them when speaking of
electricity or magnetism), then one gets a different equation from
Einstein's tensor, but it is really the correct equation. The reason this
proffered equation doesn't work is because there is a grand conspiracy on
the part of the graviatational physicists to hide any discrepancies in their
Such a statement would get us fired! Quickly! no, VERY quickly!
But when it comes to theology, we actively work towards a situation where
NOTHING can be concorded. Concordism is like a disease (thankfully George
doesn't have this disease; poor Glenn, the disease has adled his brain to
the point that he doesn't realize how sick he is--maybe we should get him
some professional help--if only he would learn theology then he would know
that nothing is expected to match reality).
>>>>I would ask Glenn 'what empirical evidence' he might use to contradict
the vast majority of (archaeological) anthropologists who accept the
'village theory,' but I do not wish to pander to his use of neo-empiricism.
So I won't ask him. This social scientist combines empirical and
non-empirical indicators, which Glenn claims doesn't do the trick.<<<
Nothing contradicts the anthropological data within the past 5.5 million
years. There has been nothing but villages for that length of time, the
data shows it. But then, unless you want to make the Bible say what it
clearly doesn't say, that there was a village rather than a man and a
woman(singular), one must find some solution. I find the solution by moving
Adam way back in time where data doesn't rule the possibility of a genetic
But if we must re-write the Bible so that it says the appropriate things,
why bother? If it says false things, why not just label the darn book a
neolithic trash novel, throw it away and become a scientologist? If we like
believing things that are contradictory, scientiology should fit the bill
for most on this list.
Terry Gray wrote:
>>Herman Dooyweerd's philosophy has the idea of anticipatory aspects (or
something like that). I'm no expert in Dooyeweerd and actually may have this
all wrong, but I think the idea can be useful in discussing image of God
sorts of things. Animals may display image of God like behaviors which are
anticipatory of the full image bearing. Think of the various "image of God"
attributes that have been cast into doubt because we find them in
animals--tool use and tool making, reasoning, language, etc. I think that
one of the answers to Glenn's claims about Neanderthals is along these
lines: art, music, burial of the dead, etc. are anticipatory of the full
blown image of God. Thus, while these creatures may have aspects of the
image of God they are not full image-bearers.<<<<

Does the building of religious altars fall into the category of anticipatory

H. erectus altars--Bilzingsleben 425,000 years ago

H. erectus venus figurines (such figurines used up until modern times)--Tan
Tan Morocco 400 kyr Berekhat Ram 325 kyr

Neanderthal altars--Bruniquel--47,000 years ago deep in a cave
                               Nahr Ibrahim, Lebanon--Deer arranged by
neanderthals covered with red ochre

Neanderthal figurine--Wildmannlisloch 70kyr
Neanderthal bear cult
"The most famous example of what has been claimed to be Neandertal hunting
magic is the so-called bear cult. It came tolight when a German
archaeologist, Emil Bachler, excavated the cave of Drachenloch between 1917
and 1923. Located 8,000 ft (2,400 m) up in the Swiss Alps, this 'lair of the
dragons' tunnels deep into a mountainside. The front part of the cave,
Bachler's work made clear, served as an occasional dwelling place for
Neandertals. Farther back, Bachler found a cubical chest made of stones and
measuring approximately 3.25 ft (1 m) on a side. The top of the chest was
covered by a massive slab of stone. Inside were seven bear skulls, all
apparently arranged with their muzzles facing the cave entrance. Still
deeper in the cave were six bear skulls, seemingly set in niches along the
walls. The Drachenloch find is not unique. At Regourdou in southern France,
a rectangular pit, covered by a flat stone weighing nearly a ton, held the
bones of more than 20 bears." ~ Bernard G. Campbell and James D. Loy,
Humankind Emerging, (New York: HarperCollins, 1996), p. 441

"The cave of Bruniquel in southern France has just produced fascinating new
evidence. Several hundred metres in from the cave entrance, a stone
structure has been discovered. It is quadrilineal, measures four by five
metres and has been constructed from pieces of stalagmite and stalactite. A
burnt fragment of a bear bone found in it was radiocarbon analysed, yielding
a 'date' of greater than 47 600 years BP. This suggests that the structure
is the work of Neanderthals. It is located in complete darkness, which
proves that the people who ventured so deep into the large cave system had
reliable lighting and had the confidence to explore such depths. Bruniquel
is one of several French caves that became closed subsequent to their
Pleistocene use, but were artifically opened this century." ~ Robert G.
Bednarick, "Neanderthal News," The Artefact 1996, 19:104

They sacrificed a bear, deep in a cave which would require control of
lighting, and communication. The only way we can say that such evidence
doesn't indicate very intelligent people like us, is through sheer bias. The
Geico ads are right.

They're Here: The Pathway Papers
Foundation, Fall, and Flood
Adam, Apes and Anthropology

To unsubscribe, send a message to with
"unsubscribe asa" (no quotes) as the body of the message.
Received on Mon Mar 19 22:47:39 2007

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.8 : Mon Mar 19 2007 - 22:47:39 EDT