Re: [asa] Star of Bethlehem presentation?

From: John Walley <>
Date: Sun Nov 22 2009 - 08:43:27 EST

I don't see why conceding to concordism when it is revealed as plausible is any kind of weakness. Nor do I agree that this had to be pre-programmed into the universe either. If God wound up the universe in the Big Bang and let it unwind according the laws of physics, it would be predestined that these events would occur at some point. So if God is omniscient and wants to use this event as a sign, it is as simple as timing the advent of Christ accordingly. Easy peasy!

This goes for all the other prophecies in the OT as well. Do you reject those for the same reason?



----- Original Message ----
From: Merv Bitikofer <>
To: David Clounch <>; asa <>
Sent: Sun, November 22, 2009 8:33:00 AM
Subject: Re: [asa] Star of Bethlehem presentation?

Okay -- you uncover my weakness!  Maybe this (the whole star presentation) is one of my few remaining concessions to concordism.  I guess as long as I don't try to make my faith lean to heavily (or at all) on our modern speculation about process, I'll probably be okay.  But just for the record, theologically speaking, I don't find the notion of a sovereign God orchestrating the events of our universe to be far out.  Indeed I have faith that such is the case even if I can't make complete sense of that scientifically or philosophically.  Where science (if it is legitimately done) may happen to reveal such things, I find it fascinating.  Where science (if its legitimately done) would correct an errant understanding of history, it is the truth-seeker's job (mine and yours) to stand corrected.

David Clounch wrote:
> Merv,
> It has never occurred to me to attribute it to cosmic phenomena period. In spite of the astronomers looking for a cosmic explanation.  I just ignored that. After all, I also don't believe St Nick was Santa Claus, and I don't believe in weeping statues or the shroud of Turin.  (However, I do believe in St Patrick. [see footnote 1])
> But on the other hand, one thing I've never noticed is anybody looking for a non cosmic explanation. 
> I'm not naysaying  Larson.  Never heard of him. But I've been reading these  cosmic theories for decades.  I think they  were  invented in modern times by  folks  looking for a way that God didn't really get involved in the advent. There are philosophical camps that prefer that sort of  explanation, and theologians that follow those camps of thought.  But I am skeptical.  The idea that God pre-programmed the universe to  give just the right solar system is ... far out?    For example,  maybe the universe was also pre-programmed to produce the pyramids without any humans getting involved?  Maybe the  egyptians discovered them?  *cough* *cough* 
> I once went to a church where the pastor taught that the constellations were placed where they are in order to tell the advent story  as a prophecy. And that all ancients knew the story. But the pagans changed the story.  The thing about this is, for a TE type theory, one must believe that God pre-programmed all the galaxy to present the "movie in the sky" so as to support the Christ story.  That to me is on the same level as  the cosmic Star of Bethlehem  hypothesis.  Its too complicated.  Its easier to believe in UFO's.  (where angels have power, or technology, or both).  And the latter doesn't conflict with scripture in any way I know of.
> OK,  I'll look at Larson since  you guys are so impressed with him.  Where was he when I was a kid having heaps of BS poured on me?  ;)
> Thanks,
> Dave C
> [footnote 1]
> ====================================
> I do however, believe in St Patrick (who BTW wasn't a (S)aint with a capital s.
> He was kidnapped in 401AD  at the age of 16 and taken to Ireland as a slave but escaped  6 years later.  I've been reading "How The Irish Saved Civilization"  by Thomas Cahill. Patrick established the first Christian civilization in the world that wasn't a co-blend with  roman  ways.  So, there's a myth that wasn't a myth.  My personal interest is it took these Christians over 100 years  to convert Clan  McCarthy who lived in Munster  (SW Ireland).  I've been tracing my ancestors. So far the earliest  goes  back to 123 AD.  Only the Jews have an older family lineage than the McCarthy clan.  Anyway, along the way I discovered that Irish missionaries to Europe established monastaries all over Europe. This  after Rome was long gone. For example, Salzburg and Vienna  were both  founded  as  monasteries  and later grew into towns then cities.  The important part is these monks took books, including the classics, with them. Thus they
 preserved the pre-dark age  knowledge. I had never heard any of this before looking at Irish history. You see, American education focuses on the British founders, and covers the Irish only at the point of the great immigrations.  Irish culture is COMPLETELY IGNORED  in American education.
> On Sun, Nov 22, 2009 at 5:12 PM, Merv Bitikofer < <>> wrote:
>    Mr. Larson (the here discussed Star of Bethlehem researcher) is
>    way ahead of you David.  You should actually read his stuff before
>    you nay say it.  I guess John posted some excerpts which might
>    summarize some of his points pretty well.  I went in as a skeptic,
>    but came out impressed with his methods of inquiry.  He does
>    approach it unapologetically as a Christian and with the stated
>    assumption that he is going to take the Biblical record of the
>    event seriously.  Far be it from me to hold that against him.  He
>    does come away convinced that it was an astronomical event  ----
>    but nothing so silly as we try to imagine that would hover in the
>    air and stop over a stable, etc.  You must have a lot of trouble
>    understanding apocalyptic literature in Revelation with its stars
>    falling out of the sky!  :->    For that matter, I do too.  But I
>    guess, for all my confusion, it hasn't occurred to me to actually
>    try to take it as literal commentary on cosmic movements according
>    to 20th century definition!
>    --Merv


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Received on Sun Nov 22 08:43:49 2009

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