Re: [asa] Re: design and the nature of science

From: dfsiemensjr <>
Date: Tue Jun 16 2009 - 14:42:41 EDT

The word in Matthew 10:29 is Greek, /pipto/, and has meanings of falling
or failing. You are thinking of Strong's comment that the word may be
associated with /petomai/, to fly. I don't see how this would justify an
interpretation of alighting. It is probable that the original statement
by Jesus was Aramaic, but it would be only a guess that Matthew got the
wrong synonym, and a stupid guess at that.
Dave (ASA)

On Tue, 16 Jun 2009 06:39:41 -0500 Merv Bitikofer <>
> Responding just to your first objection shown below: What about
> Matthew 5:45 or 10:29? When God sends the rain on both the just
> and
> the unjust, does that mean that this rain cannot have been caused by
> normal means of adiabatic cooling, condensation, and gravity? You
> would probably agree that this is silly. So does that then mean
> that
> Jesus was wrong to say that God ever sends the rain since these laws
> are
> always in play? I think we also all should see Jesus' point here
> as
> well. God is involved even where we have observed what we think of
> as
> "rigid laws" (even if we can't specify exactly physically how). Our
> theological (not physical) observation is that God is not removed
> from
> the picture. Or in the second verse, we are told that not a sparrow
> alights on the ground apart from the Father's will. Such is the
> intimacy of His involvement that nothing is so insignificant that it
> is
> "beneath" His will. Incidentally, I was told by somebody that
> where
> our English translations say "fall to the ground" potentially giving
> an
> image of a sparrow dying, that the Hebrew phrase was more to the
> effect: Not a sparrow "lands" or "alights" ... which would render
> the
> passage even more meaningful or poignant. Are there Hebrew scholars
> here that can confirm this?
> --Merv
> Cameron Wybrow wrote:
> > David:
> >
> > First, a rigid Laplacian universe *does* remove God from the
> picture,
> > in a very important sense. If God chooses to work *only* through
> laws
> > (which I take it is what you mean by "rigid"), then God is *not*
> > actively involved in the day-to-day events of the universe. You
> can
> > say he is "involved" only in two senses:
> >
> > 1. He is the originator of the laws, and therefore whatever they
> do
> > is ultimately caused by him.
> > 2. He "concurs" with the laws, i.e., sustains them, gives them his
> > blessing to continue.
> >
> > Note that in neither of these meanings does God have a *special
> > involvement* in particular events. He does not appear "on site"
> to do
> > anything that the laws would not do of themselves. (Nothing you
> have
> > said about the Westminister Confession etc. alters this in the
> > slightest. We are speaking here about a rigid Laplacian universe,
> not
> > about the traditional Christian understanding of the universe,
> which
> > in no way requires or demands a rigid Laplacianism. And I hope it
> is
> > clear that I am not endorsing rigid Laplacianism, but merely
> > indicating what role it gives to God in natural events.)
> >
> > In a "rigid Laplacean" view of the universe, you can of course
> have
> > special actions of God as exceptions to the normal rule of law.
> But
> > then you have to speak of God as "breaking" the laws of nature, or
> > "suspending" them, etc. In other words, you supplement the notion
> of
> > "law" with a notion of "miracle" in order to squeeze in certain
> events
> > in the history of Israel, and perhaps even for things like
> miraculous
> > healings now and then. Many traditional Christians for the last
> few
> > hundred years have been content with some such notion of "law plus
> > miracles".
> >
> > In the 20th century, however, many Christian theologians have been
> > dissatisfied with this account of things. They have sought an
> account
> > of nature in which law can be combined with divine special
> > involvement, without the language of "breaking" natural laws.
> Indeed,
> > that is why the quantum indeterminacy argument is so important.
> It is
> > precisely because quantum indeterminacy seems to mean that nature
> is
> > to some extent "open" (I believe that is the word that George
> Murphy
> > used), that one can imagine not just God's *general* action
> > (concurrence, blessing and sustaining the laws), but also God's
> > *special* action (his local influence on particular events in
> human or
> > cosmic history) as part of the explanation for what happens in the
> > world, without subtracting anything from the law-bound character
> of
> > nature.
> >
> > In any case, Darwin knew nothing of quantum indeterminacy. His
> notion
> > of nature was a typical 19th-century one, influenced by Newton,
> > Descartes, Kant, Laplace, etc. He thought that laws more or less
> > accurately described how nature worked, and that science's job was
> to
> > find such laws, and that applied to biology as well.
> >
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Received on Tue Jun 16 16:20:56 2009

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