RE: [asa] Predestination, free-will, and 10+ dimensions

From: James Patterson <>
Date: Fri Oct 24 2008 - 20:44:27 EDT

-------------- Original message from "Dick Fischer"
<>: --------------
> James, obviously you have no allergic reaction to smoke and mirrors.


I will consistently call people on personal attacks. If you can't discuss or
debate without personal attacks, then this says something about you as well
as your knowledge base. If you're not familiar with the various forms of the
argumentum ad hominem, I suggest you look them up. To imply that I or RTB or
anyone is using "smoke and mirrors" is to imply purposeful misdirection and
fraud. This is not the case. I quote your own website: "It is our purpose to
ease perceived tensions and resolve apparent conflicts." I suggest to you
sir that stating that I "have no allergic reaction to smoke and mirrors" is
not consistent with easing perceived tensions, nor helps to resolve apparent


>The following is lifted from their web site.



Note the title: this is a SUMMARY. One of the biggest difficulties in this
field is trying to answer a question in short/succinct answers. The best
answer to all of your questions is to not read the summary, but rather to
read at least two different books: "Creation as Science", and "Who was


> (What about sharks, alligators, whales?)


OK, what about them? But see below, I think this statement is better
addressed there.


> I missed that chapter in Genesis on repeated animal extinction. Can
anybody cite it?


That would be the creation events of Genesis 1. Once again, the summary does
not do the books that discuss this topic justice, and is (I admit)
misleading. Especially the part about: "Genesis offers this explanation for
the survival of large animals: God repeatedly replaced extinct species with
new ones." It is also restrictive to try and have the model completely tied
to Genesis - which is another misconception.this just isn't the case. In
fact, Hugh Ross has a book titled "The Genesis Question", which he admits
now was perhaps not the best title, as it engendered others to believe that
he was focused only on Genesis. The best understanding of Genesis however,
comes from studying it in the light of God's entire special revelation.the
rest of the Bible.


> (Note that YECs declare the lack of transitional fossils as proof of
creation. Here we see that

> "many transitional forms" prove creation. It is obvious that to a
creationist anything proves

> creation.)


This is distorting and misleading. This is also inconsistent with the
statement from your website "It is our purpose to ease perceived tensions
and resolve apparent conflicts", as this appears to be an attempt to cause
them. If you were familiar with "Creation as Science", you would likely
understand this. In "Creation as Science" Ch 7, page 143 (you may be able to
pull that up on Amazon, is why I am specific), the discussion of
"transitional forms" addresses this in detail, and the apparent
contradiction is covered. FIRST, note the placement of the quotation marks
around "transitional" - that's your first clue. But this section relates to
a relative difference in frequency of these apparent transitional forms:
there should be more transitional forms in organisms that evolve more
rapidly, and fewer in those that evolve more slowly. There aren't. As a
matter of fact, the exact opposite is true. And so the *relatively* many
transitional forms for whales and horses, etc don't add up, and are not
consistent with the natural selection model.


> This argument has more holes in it than a Swiss cheese!


Once again, simply an inflammatory statement. With all due respect, I
believe it's better that what you've got, and I'm willing to engage in a
gentlemanly debate in the holey-ness (pun intended) of our respective


> Ross seems to think that mutations infect the entire population. Some
can, most do not.


Once again, the summary is just that: a summary. It does not adequately
describe the model for the average biologist reading it. I doubt that the
concept of "infection" will get you far, nor do I think that Ross or RTB has
any such thoughts about deleterious mutations. However at the population
level, when you look at the generation rate and offspring quantity in the
context of the mutation rate, it is fairly evident that what is observed in
nature and what is expected from the math don't correlate very well.without
God's intervention, that is.


> Plus, what he calls a "creation model" is no such thing.


Saying that it's not a model doesn't change the fact that it is. You may not
like it or agree with it. I believe it is a better model than abiogenesis,
random mutations, and natural selection as a putative mechanism for God's
action, which I guess is what you as a TE thinks? It is also far reaching in
scope, and so to try and summarize it, as this (dated) summary does, is
difficult. Nevertheless, the model is clear. I will try and make it concise
and coherent:

. God created the heavens and the earth, and he created man in his
own image.

. He wrote about this in the Bible.

. What we discover in His world is consistent with what is written
in His Word.

. God plays an active and personal role in our existence.

. If the above is true, we should be able to see the handiwork of
God in what he has created.

Even though that summary is 8 years old, the predictions that you see there
still hold, and are more numerous now.


In addition, your bias is equally clear. From your website: "We shun the
idea, however, that the Creator must impose upon nature, and continually
tweak the process to bring about desired results. Invoking sporadic acts of
divine intervention to enable speciation, or to bring about novel, adaptive
features in organisms is without foundation."


I liked the intro to your website, until I got to this statement. I must
disagree, I think the foundation and model for God's constant intervention
is clear. This seems to be a matter of viewpoint, and emotion on your part.
WHY do you shun the idea of God's involvement?


Let me ask you another question: What is perfection?


> What happened between man and ape, for example? Specifically, how did God
create man with

> many of the same genetic markers found in our brachiating cousins? What's
the model?


This is an excellent point. The question of common descent is one that I am
especially interested in, because it is one of the most problematic. This
has been discussed in depth in the RTB listserve, and I believe one current
ASA member left RTB because the evidence for CD is so compelling, and RTB
sticks to their guns on the lack of evidence for evolution, in spite of
this. The CD question is one of the reasons I joined ASA - I wanted a
broader input of viewpoints and information. I am going to have to leave
this for a longer and larger discussion, because it deserves it.I am
strongly considering writing at least an article if not a book on it.


> Then after positing no model at all he "tests" it? <snip> What kind of
tests are these?

> Take any of them. How does his "model," which is based upon Genesis,
predict the "frequency

> and extent of mass extinctions," or "molecular clock rates"? What's the
chapter and verse on

> those items?

> Dick Fischer, GPA president
> Genesis Proclaimed Association
> "Finding Harmony in Bible, Science and History"
> <>\

 Based upon Genesis, but not derived completely from it. You have done an
excellent job of propagandizing a short piece of information when the truth
is found in longer discourses in the books mentioned above. Just because it
doesn't say specifically in Genesis or the Bible many of the things in this
list, doesn't mean that they aren't consistent with and agree with God's
word. You seem to think they don't, and this also appears to be in
contradiction to your own website.


I will happily buy these books and send them to you, so that you would have
a more in depth understanding of what specifically it is that you don't
agree with. Just let me know. I will be equally happy to continue discussing
this with you, but please do refrain from further personal attacks. It does
not glorify God or the importance of these questions that we ask.


James Patterson

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Received on Fri Oct 24 20:44:47 2008

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