RE: [asa] promise trumps biology

From: John Walley <john_walley@yahoo.com>
Date: Fri Dec 12 2008 - 15:15:05 EST

What about the numbers? From what I hear that is by far the largest obstacle in reconciling Genesis with any historical interpretation and also any doctrine of inerrancy.

Thanks

John

--- On Fri, 12/12/08, Dick Fischer <dickfischer@verizon.net> wrote:

> From: Dick Fischer <dickfischer@verizon.net>
> Subject: RE: [asa] promise trumps biology
> To: john_walley@yahoo.com
> Cc: "ASA" <asa@calvin.edu>
> Date: Friday, December 12, 2008, 9:25 AM
> Hi John:
>
> I'm not smart enough or knowledgeable enough that I
> could possibly
> reconcile every problematic word, phrase, clause, verse or
> chapter. I
> think I have made a contribution to understanding Genesis
> in the context
> of the ancient Near East, and if this line of reasoning is
> correct it
> could ease Bible/science tensions to some degree. Maybe if
> enough
> concordists got together and tackled the entire Bible more
> difficulties
> would be resolved but then we couldn't all agree
> I'm sure.
>
> Just one word can make a difference. We all know it's
> easier for a
> camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich
> man to get to
> heaven. But the Greek word for "camel" is only
> slightly different from
> the word for "rope." Plus, the Aramaic
> expression using the latter word
> is still in use. So it is likely that a word was changed
> by a scribe
> who misread a worn scroll. Canain was deleted from the
> Masoretic text
> when in all likelihood a careless scribe omitted an entire
> line of text.
> In Genesis 11:1 the Hebrew word saphah for "lip"
> was translated as
> "language" which changes the entire meaning.
>
> I remember my first class in Hebrew where the professor
> explained that
> the Jews used word pictures, the language is rather
> primitive and terms
> of expressions have changed over time. Add in scribal
> errors and errors
> in translation and it is a wonder any of it makes sense.
> Look at
> Proverbs 6:16, "These six things doth the Lord hate:
> yea seven are an
> abomination unto him ..." Then the proverb lists
> seven. Anyone
> thinking in Greek or English might ask, "Well, which
> is it, six or
> seven?" This seeming contradiction was not a problem
> to one thinking
> and writing in Hebrew. Seven encompasses six. Yet, could
> we imagine
> Paul making such a statement?
>
> Here's what I think. The rules for interpreting Hebrew
> are different
> from Greek, yet reading it all in English we don't
> appreciate or see the
> differences. The inexacting Hebrew and Aramaic languages
> served to veil
> prophecy in the Old Testament to protect it from the enemy.
> But when
> God wanted to spell out the road to salvation in no
> uncertain terms, a
> precision language was employed - New Testament (Koinonia)
> Greek.
> Reading it all in English, we forget this distinction, and
> expect the
> Old Testament to adhere to the same standards of
> comprehensibility as
> the New Testament. It will not work. The languages are
> different, the
> purpose is different, and the ground rules are different.
>
> I have no doubt the writers were inspired by God and
> empowered by the
> Holy Spirit. I have no doubt they gave us a true history
> of their
> people starting at around 7,000 years ago in Mesopotamia.
> Are a few
> minor details at variance with the actual facts as they
> really occurred?
> Maybe.
>
> Dick Fischer, GPA president
> Genesis Proclaimed Association
> "Finding Harmony in Bible, Science and History"
> www.genesisproclaimed.org
> <http://www.genesisproclaimed.org/>
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: John Walley [mailto:john_walley@yahoo.com]
> Sent: Friday, December 12, 2008 5:48 AM
> To: Dick Fischer
> Cc: AmericanScientificAffiliation
> Subject: RE: [asa] promise trumps biology
>
> Dick,
>
> I guess I will concede that yes from the perspective of
> those on the ark
> then the text could be taken literally and would withstand
> more
> scrutiny. I have heard that before and RTB uses it as well.
> The problem
> though then is setting this precendent of concordant
> literalism because
> I don't believe we can explain it away in every
> instance. Maybe in this
> case but not across the board.
>
> I think the safer view is that the Bible we have today is
> ancient wisdom
> inspired by God and it contains eternal truth, but we have
> to proceed
> with caution with it as it was delivered through men and
> their mental
> faculties and understanding at the time and it is unclear
> and subjective
> where the boundaries are between this accomodationism and
> eternal truth.
>
>
> Also my issue is more with what the church teaches than
> technically what
> the Bible says. I appreciate your efforts to defend the
> literalness of
> the Bible but again since I don't think we can do this
> conclusively, I
> am not sure of the ultimate value of this pursuit.
>
> Thanks
>
> John
>
> --- On Thu, 12/11/08, Dick Fischer
> <dickfischer@verizon.net> wrote:
>
> > From: Dick Fischer <dickfischer@verizon.net>
> > Subject: RE: [asa] promise trumps biology
> > To: john_walley@yahoo.com
> > Date: Thursday, December 11, 2008, 11:52 PM
> > Hi John:
> >
> > Your comments written down are reflective of what many
> > others on this
> > list seem to think. By answering you I am also
> answering
> > them. Which
> > is fine.
> >
> > The original Hebrew is not so globally oriented as the
> > English
> > translations. This is what I wrote in The Origins
> > Solution:
> >
> > "As to the language used to describe the flood,
> it
> > would make no
> > difference whether the flood, in fact, was global or
> local.
> > From the
> > standpoint of the passengers on the ark, the
> description is
> > entirely
> > true and accurate in either case. These verses do not
> > oblige us to
> > ponder whether the Rockies, or the Andes, or the
> Urals, or
> > the Himalayas
> > were under water.
> >
> > Considering that mountains were not inundated by the
> flood,
> > as the
> > evidence indicates, in no way should that impugn the
> > accuracy or
> > inerrancy of Scripture. From Noah's and
> Shem's
> > viewpoint, the text
> > describes their situation and surroundings in terms we
> > might have used
> > had we been passengers on the ark ourselves.
> >
> > For example, say we heard an emotional outpouring from
> > someone who had
> > just fled from a burning building. If that person
> > exclaimed, "There was
> > fire and smoke everywhere," would anyone rebuke
> him
> > for speaking
> > inaccurately? Who would chide a shaken survivor with,
> > "Now, you don't
> > mean `everywhere,' do you? You meant only inside
> the
> > building." In
> > this hypothetical situation, who would not know
> instantly
> > what was
> > intended by the word, "everywhere"? We make
> > interpretations from
> > context every day. Are we to be any less sensible
> when
> > Scripture is the
> > case in point?
> >
> > Why should Scripture, yes "inspired"
> Scripture,
> > be interpreted
> > differently? Humbly, obediently, reverently,
> judiciously,
> > and
> > studiously - yes, but we need not abandon our common
> sense.
> > A regional
> > flood confined to the Mesopotamian valley fits all the
> > requirements of
> > accuracy and inerrancy that anyone should
> expect."
> >
> > As I told Bernie, none of the parallel flood
> narratives
> > even hint at a
> > global flood even though it was universal destruction
> for
> > all of Noah's
> > kinfolk. Where I will allow for the possiblity of
> error is
> > on the
> > year-long duration of the flood and the size of the
> boat.
> > The parallel
> > accounts are all week-long events and 450 feet would
> have
> > been the
> > largest wooden boat ever constructed, and without the
> > benefit of modern
> > tools. Of course it might have been possible to raft
> > together smaller
> > compartments to make the overall dimensions. Can you
> > imagine those
> > wives spending a year floating around with a bunch of
> > smelly animals.
> > No wonder Noah was driven to drink.
> >
> > Dick Fischer, GPA president
> > Genesis Proclaimed Association
> > "Finding Harmony in Bible, Science and
> History"
> > www.genesisproclaimed.org
> >
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: John Walley [mailto:john_walley@yahoo.com]
> > Sent: Thursday, December 11, 2008 2:19 PM
> > To: Dick Fischer
> > Cc: AmericanScientificAffiliation
> > Subject: RE: [asa] promise trumps biology
> >
> > Dick,
> >
> > Please don't misunderstand me. My comments below
> were
> > not directed
> > toward any of your premises directly. In fact I tend
> to
> > agree with you
> > that in totality all of your historical coincidences
> do add
> > up to a
> > compelling argument for an historical Adam. I
> haven't
> > gotten around to
> > reading your book yet but maybe now is a good time to
> look
> > into it.
> >
> > My comments of exasperation below were directed toward
> > those that teach
> > the literal historicity of Genesis i.e. the flood in
> the
> > face of science
> > like Bernie points out. For instance RTB teaches a
> local
> > flood but they
> > still hold that the Bible is inerrant.
> >
> > The problem is the Bible clearly teaches a global
> flood. It
> > is dishonest
> > to spin it otherwise. And the Bible writers likely
> believed
> > that as well
> > and intended the Bible to say that. So the only
> conclusion
> > is that the
> > Bible is wrong on at least that point. That
> doesn't
> > undermine my faith
> > nor should it anyone's but we have to accept this.
>
> >
> > Thanks
> >
> > john
> >
> >
> > --- On Thu, 12/11/08, Dick Fischer
> > <dickfischer@verizon.net> wrote:
> >
> > > From: Dick Fischer
> <dickfischer@verizon.net>
> > > Subject: RE: [asa] promise trumps biology
> > > To: john_walley@yahoo.com
> > > Cc: "ASA" <asa@calvin.edu>
> > > Date: Thursday, December 11, 2008, 1:31 AM
> > > Hi John:
> > >
> > > I wouldn't be so quick to throw in the towel.
>
> > The
> > > past 28 years I have
> > > spent researching Genesis have strengthened my
> faith
> > in the
> > > integrity of
> > > Genesis enormously. I have seen numerous
> connections
> > both
> > > small and
> > > large that have convinced me Genesis 2-11 was
> intended
> > as a
> > > true
> > > historical account of the Israelite nation. You
> do
> > have to
> > > make
> > > allowances for scribal mistakes, errors in
> > translation,
> > > Hebrew
> > > expressions and manners of speech, and their
> > egocentricity
> > > though.
> > >
> > > The region of the Near East has been excavated
> and
> > analyzed
> > > quite
> > > thoroughly over the years. We believe animal
> > sacrifice
> > > began with Adam
> > > and spread to his people. Even the Sumerians
> picked
> > it up.
> > > I read a
> > > book in the Library of Congress that was nothing
> more
> > than
> > > a list of
> > > cattle receipts from the market at Drehem. One
> entry
> > > caught my
> > > attention. It was a receipt for
> "unblemished
> > cattle
> > > for sacrifice."
> > >
> > > No cities that existed earlier than Eridu show
> signs
> > of
> > > animal
> > > sacrifice. Eridu is the first city to bear the
> signs
> > of
> > > animal
> > > sacrifice. Eridu was dated at 4800 BC and
> according
> > to
> > > Babylonian
> > > tradition was near the Garden of Eden. Even edin
> > means
> > > "plain;"
> > > "prairie," or "desert" in
> Akkadian
> > and
> > > Sumerian.
> > >
> > > The name "Adamu" perpetuated for
> centuries
> > among
> > > the Akkadians. Even
> > > two Egyptian pyramids were inscribed with the
> name of
> > the
> > > first
> > > "created" being as "Atum,"
> and one
> > of
> > > his sons was named "Seth." Who
> > > else could it be?
> > >
> > > Eve was taken from Adam's rib and she was the
> > > "mother of all living."
> > > Because the word for rib and life was the same in
> > Sumerian,
> > > a play on
> > > words was "the lady of the rib is the lady
> of
> > > life."
> > >
> > > Cain named his city Enoch and the Sumerians
> called
> > that
> > > city unug in the
> > > Sumerian king list. Following the entry for
> Ziusudra,
> > the
> > > Sumerian
> > > version of Noah, it says: "Then the flood
> swept
> > > thereover."
> > >
> > > The "fountains of the deep" broke up in
> the
> > flood
> > > according to Genesis
> > > and the exact same expression in Atrahasis shows
> > clearly it
> > > pertained to
> > > their irrigation apparatus.
> > >
> > > The Akkadians worshipped a trinity or at least a
> triad
> > of
> > > gods. The
> > > Sumerians readily adopted them and they are
> always
> > depicted
> > > in Akkadian
> > > dress.
> > >
> > > The Tower of Babel was one of over 30 ziggurats
> that
> > were
> > > built in the
> > > region initially as a means to survive frequent
> > floods. It
> > > was
> > > destroyed by Sennacherib, rebuilt by
> Nebuchadnezzar,
> > and
> > > visited by the
> > > first historian, Herodotus.
> > >
> > > Nimrod ruled in Babylon and a statue of him was
> > unearthed
> > > at the city of
> > > Birs Nimrud.
> > >
> > > I could go on and relate dozens of connections
> that in
> > > totality are
> > > entirely convincing to me that Genesis 2-11 is
> valid
> > > history, but you
> > > know how to access the information, John. Go to
> any
> > > library and request
> > > the book on interlibrary loan. It costs you
> nothing.
> > >
> > > Dick Fischer, GPA president
> > > Genesis Proclaimed Association
> > > "Finding Harmony in Bible, Science and
> > History"
> > > www.genesisproclaimed.org
> > > <http://www.genesisproclaimed.org/>
> > >
> > >
> > > -----Original Message-----
> > > From: asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu
> > > [mailto:asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu] On
> > > Behalf Of John Walley
> > > Sent: Wednesday, December 10, 2008 8:52 PM
> > > To: asa@calvin.edu; Dehler, Bernie
> > > Subject: RE: [asa] promise trumps biology
> > >
> > > > I think honesty requires us to read it
> > > > as intended, and then deal with it according
> to
> > the
> > > > truth/light that we have. It is
> unreasonable to
> > think
> > > that
> > > > the text is trying to describe a local
> flood, or
> > that
> > > a
> > > > local flood could fulfill the passage.
> > >
> > >
> > > I agree with this analysis. It is unpleasant to
> us and
> > puts
> > > the lie to
> > > the Bibliolatrous Inerrancy doctrine but as
> Bernie
> > says,
> > > intellectual
> > > honesty and integrity demands it.
> > >
> > > Sorry but we have to grow up and face this. Its
> the
> > dirty
> > > little secret
> > > of the church that the Bible isn't really
> what we
> > were
> > > all raised to
> > > think it was. That doesn't mean it still
> isn't
> > > inspired and contains
> > > truth about all the important doctrines of
> > Christianity,
> > > but just that
> > > it is not a silver bullet to answer all of
> life's
> > > questions and with
> > > magic powers.
> > >
> > > I wished someone would have explained it to me
> this
> > way
> > > when I was a
> > > young Christian.
> > >
> > > Thanks
> > >
> > > John
> > >
> > >
> > > --- On Wed, 12/10/08, Dehler, Bernie
> > > <bernie.dehler@intel.com> wrote:
> > >
> > > > From: Dehler, Bernie
> > <bernie.dehler@intel.com>
> > > > Subject: RE: [asa] promise trumps biology
> > > > To: "asa@calvin.edu"
> > <asa@calvin.edu>
> > > > Date: Wednesday, December 10, 2008, 11:44 AM
> > > > If the writer wanted to make the reader
> clear
> > that it
> > > really
> > > > was the whole world, he might put in extra
> words
> > to be
> > > very
> > > > clear about that. And that's what he
> did by
> > > saying how
> > > > long the flood was (1 year, which is
> impossible
> > from
> > > > experience for a local flood) and how it
> covered
> > the
> > > highest
> > > > mountain and then some.
> > > >
> > > > A local flood requires a bowl shape to keep
> in
> > water.
> > > If
> > > > the water goes over the roof of the bowl, it
> > can't
> > > be
> > > > contained. Scripture clearly says the water
> went
> > over
> > > the
> > > > mountains. It follows that it went over, it
> > > wasn't just
> > > > spilling, but also filling up, so the whole
> Earth
> > was
> > > > covered in water-- it spilled over until the
> > water was
> > > the
> > > > same level everywhere until it couldn't
> spill
> > over
> > > any
> > > > more and the water level simply covered the
> > tallest
> > > mountain
> > > > and then some, as scripture says.
> > > >
> > > > Why not just believe it, literaly? Because
> of
> > science.
> > > The
> > > > writers of the Bible didn't have this
> > scientific
> > > > knowledge. We do. I think honesty requires
> us
> > to
> > > read it
> > > > as intended, and then deal with it according
> to
> > the
> > > > truth/light that we have. It is
> unreasonable to
> > think
> > > that
> > > > the text is trying to describe a local
> flood, or
> > that
> > > a
> > > > local flood could fulfill the passage.
> > > >
> > > > ...Bernie
> > > >
> > > > -----Original Message-----
> > > > From: asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu
> > > > [mailto:asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu] On
> Behalf Of
> > > George
> > > > Cooper
> > > > Sent: Wednesday, December 10, 2008 6:50 AM
> > > > To: asa@calvin.edu
> > > > Subject: RE: [asa] promise trumps biology
> > > >
> > > > Bernie,
> > > >
> > > > 2 Peter 3 does not say "whole
> world",
> > > regardless
> > > > of which Bible version
> > > > selected. This phrase, however, is used a
> number
> > of
> > > times
> > > > in the NT. But
> > > > even these do not necessarily refer to the
> entire
> > > globe,
> > > > but rather the
> > > > whole known world, apparently.
> > > >
> > > > Consider...
> > > >
> > > > Rm 1:8 "First, I thank my God through
> Jesus
> > > Christ for
> > > > you all, that your
> > > > faith is spoken of throughout the whole
> > world."
> > > >
> > > > That makes sense if it is in the context of
> those
> > in
> > > the
> > > > known world, and
> > > > not every human on the planet.
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > The use of "world" in the 16th
> century
> > was
> > > often
> > > > used to refer to the cosmos
> > > > or universe. Copernicus used it many times
> in
> > his de
> > > > Revolutionibus.
> > > >
> > > > Coope
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > -----Original Message-----
> > > > From: asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu
> > > > [mailto:asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu] On
> > > > Behalf Of Dehler, Bernie
> > > > Sent: Tuesday, December 09, 2008 5:52 PM
> > > > To: asa@calvin.edu
> > > > Subject: RE: [asa] promise trumps biology
> > > >
> > > > Gordon Brown said:
> > > > " There are problems with proof texting
> when
> > one
> > > uses
> > > > an English
> > > > translation. The English may be more
> clear-cut
> > than
> > > the
> > > > original. In the
> > > > Biblical languages the same word is used for
> land
> > and
> > > > earth."
> > > >
> > > > RE:
> > > > 2 Peter 3:
> > > > 6By these waters also the world of that time
> was
> > > deluged
> > > > and destroyed.
> > > >
> > > > Here it says the whole "world."
> > > >
> > > > Strong's says this:
> > > >
> > >
> >
> http://www.blueletterbible.org/lang/lexicon/lexicon.cfm?Strongs=G2889&t=
> > > KJV
> > > >
> > > > None of those options (in the definition by
> > Strongs)
> > > > involve a partial
> > > > covering of the Earth.
> > > >
> > > > Literally, I think it is clear Peter meant
> the
> > whole
> > > world.
> > > > I think he was
> > > > wrong, because he didn't have the luxury
> of
> > > science as
> > > > we do now, to know
> > > > that the whole Earth was never flooded.
> > > >
> > > > I don't see the relevance of your
> mentioning
> > Deut.
> > > > 2;25- you'll need to
> > > > explain more fully. I think they meant the
> world
> > as
> > > they
> > > > knew it, in that
> > > > passage.
> > > >
> > > > My point wasn't to argue the flood. My
> point
> > was
> > > that
> > > > Dick said that George
> > > > didn't believe Moses, so it appeared to
> me
> > the
> > > same
> > > > charge could be leveled
> > > > at Dick himself. I'm sure Moses thought
> the
> > flood
> > > was
> > > > worldwide, and wrote
> > > > as such. If Moses (and Peter) thought the
> flood
> > was
> > > local,
> > > > he sure was a
> > > > super lousy communicator!
> > > >
> > > > ...Bernie

      

To unsubscribe, send a message to majordomo@calvin.edu with
"unsubscribe asa" (no quotes) as the body of the message.
Received on Fri Dec 12 15:15:25 2008

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.8 : Fri Dec 12 2008 - 15:15:25 EST