The point of the author of Genesis, chapter one, as interpreted by Bill
Dembski, was that "God" was "speaking information," viz., "Information-the
information that God speaks to create the world..." That is Dembski's
interpretation, a "modern" interpretation of that chapter of Genesis to try
and make it sound like the author was espousing ideas nearer to those of
modern science rather than nearer to magical ideas of the author's own day.
Students of religion will probably think it more likely that the ancients
(the Egyptians and Babylonians/Sumerians, Hebrews, et al), _all_ of whom
about their gods' "magical/creative speech," probably envisioned "speech"
as a means of magical control. Like a magician's words having magical
For instance, take Adam's "naming" of the animals, proving his "lordship"
over them; or take the fear of "speaking the Lord's name" in vain or
there was an implied magic in the name that must not be toyed with; or take
the ban on making images of God, since there was also magical power in
images that must not be employed in the case of God. (Sociological studies
have also revealled that the ancients considered the act of "coveting" as a
type of magic that could bring supernatural evil down upon the person who
owned the object being coveted.)
Or take the magical practice of sacrificing doves in the Old Testament to
rid a home of mildew, because it appeared like a kind of leporsy, and in
fact the same word was used by the ancient Hebrews for leporsy and mildew
markings. And the same magical sure was suggested, killing a dove. Even in
the New Testament we find examples of equally superstitious and magical
ideas and practices. In one of the Gospels Jesus heals a man after
pronouncing a word in Aramaic, "ephanatha" (sic) and immediately letting
loose "a loud cry," which heals the man. But the spoken word of power
followed by a "loud cry" for added effect were commonly cojoined in ancient
Hellenistic tales of miraculous healings. An even more obvious example was
the common Hellenistic cure of magical _spit_ as utilized by Jesus
according to the Gospel of Mark.
Dembski also wrote, "Predictive prophecies in Scripture are instances of
complexity, and signal information inputted by God as part of his sovereign
activity within creation." However, when it comes to "predictive
prophecies," the Bible is embarrasingly far off, regardless of the
countless claims made to the contrary by true believers seeking "proof" of
their beliefs in the Bible. Someday, maybe, Dembski should study "biblical
prophecy" with as critical and rational an eye as he claims to study the
question of evolution.
Best, Ed Babinski
Quotes taken from - WA Dembski,
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