RE: [asa] Advice for conversing with YECs (and now the flood)

From: John Walley <>
Date: Fri Oct 31 2008 - 07:56:31 EDT

James said:
>Yes, I believe there is use in making a doctrine out of them, in my >opinion. One, the TCM agrees with the extant data better, and is more >predictive (read the end of "Creation as Science"), and two; the Bible >tells us that we have a personal God involved in our life. See above >statement comparing TE to Deism.

Philosophically, I agree that the Creation as Science deductions are rational and logical. I agree that there is sufficient evidence in nature that aligns with the teachings of scripture to conclude that the God of the Bible is the Creator of the universe and life.

However I stop short of calling this "science" because it isn't. The above depends on subjective assumptions that cannot be proven as we define science. We have to draw the line on what science is and isn't somewhere and MN is as good a place as any in my opinion. Otherwise we would have our kids subjected to the YEC equivalent fundamentalist teachings of the Muslims in our schools about the miracles of the Koran.

I agree with RTB and ID on general principles if they wouldn't deny and spin CD and they wouldn't try to overplay their hand and call faith science.



P.S. Hi Bob!

--- On Fri, 10/31/08, James Patterson <> wrote:

> From: James Patterson <>
> Subject: RE: [asa] Advice for conversing with YECs (and now the flood)
> To:
> Cc:
> Date: Friday, October 31, 2008, 7:36 AM
> > John said to Schwarzwald:
> > I believe that all the species were guided to some
> point. If some
> > choose to say that CD excludes any guidance then that
> is their
> > arbitrary choice but there is no reason why it should,
> other than they
> > are seeking support to discredit theism, but I
> wouldn't agree to give
> > them that. I don't accept that CD implies
> unguided.
> I have to agree - I think it is guided too. I believe the
> TE viewpoint would
> be that guided means from the beginning of life; that the
> guidance mechanism
> was built in to the original bacteria, and that from there
> to man, no
> further guidance was needed, that God's creative
> handiwork was such that
> there was no need for any further intervention...and He
> just watched what
> happened. Correct? And this differs from Deism in that
> Deism states that
> God's (and not necessarily the God of the Christian
> Bible, either) handiwork
> was such that the original creative act (Big Bang) required
> no further
> intervention by God, and He just watched what happened.
> Now, that parallel troubles me, and I hope it troubles you.
> I think that TE
> is too close to Deism. That is one of the major
> philosophical differences
> between PC and TE. So, I agree with John that CD was
> guided; it is only the
> degree of guidance that we differ on. I think God is
> involved quite a bit
> more. I think God is continually involved in his creative
> work, as well as
> our lives - a personal God. You will hear the TE point of
> view say that he
> is too: but only providentially. However what I believe
> they mean by
> providentially is that any mechanisms discovered for
> life's change over time
> must agree with the neoDarwinian evolutionary model, or it
> is simply called
> erroneous, or gets the label "we don't understand
> it yet", or "we don't have
> all the data yet". Now that last point is true (not
> all the data), but that
> excuse will continue to be used long past it's natural
> life.
> The reason (the only reason) that the neoDarwinian model is
> accepted is
> because there is no other (strictly natural) model in
> existence. It also
> explains superficially much of what we see, it seems to
> fit. And so because
> it's the only model, it is kept. The only other model
> that works is
> theistic. TE is a compromise (in my opinion) and simply
> adds that God
> started life up, just as he started the universe up, and
> guides things - but
> this guidance is discoverable. I agree it's *mostly*
> discoverable. I don't
> agree that it fits with neoDarwinism, and I don't agree
> that it's always
> natural or providential; sometimes it may simply not be
> discoverable because
> of God's intervention. And by saying that God did not
> (cannot?) intervene in
> the natural processes that have occurred since the
> beginning of life is a
> restrictive barrier that is artificial.
> > In my opinion CD is only relevant in that it puts the
> lie to the fiat
> > creation mechanism that most of us grew up believing.
> It doesn't take
> > anything else away from humanity or our faith or God
> creating us in
> > His image. It just means He did it gradually and
> "dust of the earth"
> > is figurative.
> I agree that "dust of the earth" can be
> considered in other terms that
> directly. I have to agree with this above statement, but
> truly most mature
> descriptions or explanations of the beginning of the
> universe and life will
> be discordant with what we grew up believing. I was taught
> that God created
> everything in 6 days!
> > I do believe there was "intelligent intervention
> with humanity" but it
> > wasn't necessarily from the outside nor was it
> necessarily during
> > humanity's development. It could have all been
> embedded originally
> > in the creation of life. I don't rule either of
> the above out, only
> > that they are not necessary and we can't know
> anyway so no use in
> > making a doctrine out of them.
> Yes, I believe there is use in making a doctrine out of
> them, in my opinion.
> One, the TCM agrees with the extant data better, and is
> more predictive
> (read the end of "Creation as Science"), and two;
> the Bible tells us that we
> have a personal God involved in our life. See above
> statement comparing TE
> to Deism.
> ===
> Dave said:
> > If I remember correctly, the other genes needed for
> production of Vit C
> > are still in the human genome in functional form. Just
> one gene in the
> > sequence is nonfunctional. So the situation is messier
> than has been
> > discussed here.
> > Dave (ASA)
> Only if you think it's messier. Truly, I don't know
> if my hypothesis about
> the VitC gene is correct. However if it *is* the way God
> wanted it and
> guided it to be that way, then I could envision him saying
> "Hey! All I have
> to do is this one thing in this one gene and the whole
> thing stops working -
> no more intervention required. So what if the rest of it
> keeps working,
> helps generate heat". Or something like that. I think
> the point is that this
> gene's deactivation *can* be consistent with a God who
> is active and
> involved in our lives. To state that it isn't, and that
> God isn't involved,
> is pushing the interpretation too far. God may very well
> let evolutionary
> processes move some of the changes that we see - it
> certainly appears to be
> so in plants and small organisms. However it does not
> explain many of the
> things that we see in the record of nature, and it
> doesn't matter whether
> you look at the archaeological record, the genetic record,
> the chemistry,
> cosmology, etc.
> ===
> > Would science, being what it is, even be able to pick
> up on this
> > guided verses unguided evolution. How would you know?
> There are no
> > tests.
> > Steve
> I don't believe methodological naturalism would, no. It
> arbitrarily
> pre-excludes anything that is not natural, and so God is
> excluded from the
> beginning, and the naturalist cannot think outside this
> artificially
> restrictive box. However, should one choose to consider
> God, one can test
> the evidence that way. 1 Thes 5:21. "Test everything,
> hold on to the good".
> ===
> James said:
> >> If God had custom designed the DNA of man (or any
> organism for that
> >> matter) to be "perfect" then it would
> have been like putting a
> >> signpost there stating "God was here"
> > Bernie said:
> > Does that mean that God also hid all the evidence from
> a worldwide
> > flood, because if we saw the marks on the Earth from a
> world wide
> > flood (which we don't) it would scream "God
> was here?"
> I don't think the flood was world-wide, I am not a YEC.
> This thread has
> changed much since its creation. :)
> > James makes it sound like God is playing a very
> serious game of hide
> > and seek. However, if God created via evolution,
> there's nothing to
> > hide, and the marks we observe just reveal reality.
> > ...Bernie
> I don't think he's hiding anything. I don't
> think he's announcing anything.
> I think that if God wanted to switch off Vitamin C
> production, he could have
> done it in just the way that it was done. To say that God
> would not have
> done it that way is quite presumptive, and is countered
> easily with: why
> would he have done it any other way?
> James Patterson said:
> > "No enzyme to create vitamin C means a healthier
> diet is needed."
> > What is "healthy?" It is defined as giving
> your body what it needs to
> > thrive. If our copy of genes were correct, we could
> make our own
> > vitamin c, and wouldn't need an external source.
> If we made our own,
> > then there would be nothing "healthier"
> about a diet with vitamin c if
> > our body made all it needed. It is only healthy to
> eat oranges now
> > because our copy of the gene for the vitamin c enzyme
> doesn't work.
> > Maybe someday we'll fix the gene with gene
> therapy?
> > ,,,Bernie
> Perhaps so. And in so doing, discover that we need to eat
> fruit and Vit C
> containing vegetables for all the other benefits that they
> contain, and that
> without the need to do so, our health is actually worse. If
> for no other
> reason than the fiber...nature's broom.
> > Dave, in reply to Coope:
> > Your suggestion makes God about as bright as the
> automotive engineers
> > who designed the dubiously functional cars. We have
> genes for every
> > step in the synthesis of ascorbate, with a mutation in
> one that
> > renders it nonfunctional for the one step. Why? I see
> two
> > possibilities that fit this view. God is as stupid as
> the human
> > engineers that just added more mechanisms to old
> technology. God left
> > the old stuff in the genome to mislead honest
> investigators (see the
> > appearance of age in YEC views). I prefer to junk such
> speculations
> > and recognize that the Almighty, under his
> providential care, had all
> > creatures evolve according to "natural law."
> Did he control the
> > process? Of course, but in ways that are not
> discoverable through
> > empirical methods.
> > Dave (ASA)
> Presuming that God just left it there to mislead you is
> just that: a
> presumption. If God did this, then that's the way he
> wanted it done. Does
> leaving the system there, working but non-functional, do us
> any harm? Does
> it help us in any way? Much of the inefficiencies of human
> cellular
> chemistry only appear inefficient because we *think* they
> should work better
> or more efficiently. However when we look at how much that
> energy loss
> contributes to our body temperature and makes us warm
> blooded, light begins
> to dawn. Now I don't know how much our body temp would
> drop if the rest of
> the Vit C metabolizing system were to stop - can anyone
> answer that
> question? Seriously I'd like to know. But even if
> it's zero - it is a
> presumption of man to say that God did it wrong.
> And if all creatures evolved according to "natural
> law" then why doesn't the
> record of nature agree with neoDarwinian evolution? I have
> not seen one
> answer to this in any replies - maybe I just haven't
> gotten there yet - I am
> moving fairly slow. I see many more replies ahead, but I
> can only move so
> fast - too many pots on the stove.
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Received on Fri Oct 31 07:56:44 2008

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