Creationism, Evolution, and Orthodoxy

Do you believe that the acount of genesis in the Old testament should be taken literally?

  • Yes

    Votes: 73 16.8%
  • No

    Votes: 163 37.6%
  • both metaphorically and literally

    Votes: 198 45.6%

  • Total voters
    434

Gebre Menfes Kidus

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PeterTheAleut said:
Right now, the theory of evolution is the scientific theory that best explains what we can see in the fossil record, and it has not yet been disproved.

This is a subjective statement based upon a presuppositional philosophy rather than empirical evidence. It may be your opinion, but do not try to pass off your opinion as fact. And regardless of how many people may agree with your opinion, it does not make it verifiable scientific truth.


Selam
 

Gebre Menfes Kidus

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PeterTheAleut said:
Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
Evolutionary theory is not scientific law; it is a theory, and a theory that is based primarily upon a presuppositional philosophy rather than empirical evidence.
How do you know this for certain?

Because the theory has yet to be empirically verified. In fact, evolutionary theory is actually neither verifiable nor falsifiable by the rigid criteria of the scientific method. The theory hinges upon certain assumed presuppositions, such as an antiquated age of the earth and a uniformitarian rate of change. Too much speculation involved to assert it as fact.


Selam
 

PeterTheAleut

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Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
PeterTheAleut said:
Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
Evolutionary theory is not scientific law; it is a theory, and a theory that is based primarily upon a presuppositional philosophy rather than empirical evidence.
How do you know this for certain?

Because the theory has yet to be empirically verified. In fact, evolutionary theory is actually neither verifiable nor falsifiable by the rigid criteria of the scientific method. The theory hinges upon certain assumed presuppositions, such as an antiquated age of the earth
As I understand it, the theory of evolution is not based on a belief that the earth is 4.5 billion years old; rather, the theory that the earth is 4.5 billion years old is based on the theory of evolution, the amount of time necessary for evolution to produce the speciation of life that we see today. I know your church teaches that the earth is only 6000-7000 years old, or so you say, but I don't believe that's universal Orthodox dogma, unless you wish to argue that the EO are outside the Church.

Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
and a uniformitarian rate of change.
Which is a sounder assumption than the assumption that a catastrophic event threw everything out of whack. With no evidence in the data to verify the supposition of a catastrophic event, I don't see how assertion of a catastrophic event can even be admissible in the debate over evolution.
 

Gebre Menfes Kidus

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PeterTheAleut said:
Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
PeterTheAleut said:
Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
Evolutionary theory is not scientific law; it is a theory, and a theory that is based primarily upon a presuppositional philosophy rather than empirical evidence.
How do you know this for certain?

Because the theory has yet to be empirically verified. In fact, evolutionary theory is actually neither verifiable nor falsifiable by the rigid criteria of the scientific method. The theory hinges upon certain assumed presuppositions, such as an antiquated age of the earth
As I understand it, the theory of evolution is not based on a belief that the earth is 4.5 billion years old; rather, the theory that the earth is 4.5 billion years old is based on the theory of evolution, the amount of time necessary for evolution to produce the speciation of life that we see today. I know your church teaches that the earth is only 6000-7000 years old, or so you say, but I don't believe that's universal Orthodox dogma, unless you wish to argue that the EO are outside the Church.

Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
and a uniformitarian rate of change.
Which is a sounder assumption than the assumption that a catastrophic event threw everything out of whack. With no evidence in the data to verify the supposition of a catastrophic event, I don't see how assertion of a catastrophic event can even be admissible in the debate over evolution.

You are making my point. The age of the earth cannot be empirically proven, so we have to make certain presuppositions. Uniformitarianism may be quite logical, and I have no problem with it from a scientific standpoint as long as the scientists operating from that presupposition maintain that it is exactly that- a presuppostional starting point. Evolutionary theory tries to prove itself factual by claiming that it is factual. It's like saying, "The best color is blue, because blue is the best color." Say it early and often enough, and people will come to believe it. 1st graders read and hear about the earth being billions of years old, so naturally they never learn to question it. So by the time they get to middle school, they have had a presupposition instilled in their minds as a fact. Evolution thus becomes very palatable, and anyone who questions it is looked upon as an idiot.


Selam
 
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Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
akimori makoto said:
Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
PeterTheAleut said:
Then why are you so afraid of the legitimate science of evolutionary theory? Because it undermines your false images of what true faith really is?
I am not at all afraid of legitimate science. I'm just very careful not to confuse philosophical dogma with scientific evidence.

Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
As Orthodox Christians, we cannot ignore the philosophical implications of science. And regarding evoltuionary theory, I will continue to point out that it is a scientific philosophy, not an empirically verified scientific law.
PeterTheAleut said:
Actually, Gebre, evolutionary theory is neither a scientific philosophy nor an empirically verified scientific law.
I beg to differ. Evolutionary theory (i.e. macro evolution) is a scientific philosophy, not empirical fact.

Selam
I have a lot of sympathy with your position, Gebre, but I think your use of terms is both confused and confusing to others.

In science, all "empirical facts" are "theories" which could be disproven by a single instance of a theory-shattering phenomenon. For example, if I dropped an apple tomorrow in ordinary conditions (ceteris paribus) and, instead of falling to the ground, it simply hovered in the air, the "theory" of gravity (which we pretty much all treat as an "empirical fact" these days) would suffer a massive blow, if not be outright disproven. I mean, tomorrow, the earth could start to rotate in the other direction, throwing all sorts of other "empirical facts" into profound doubt.

I think what you are getting at is that the empirical evidence for macro-evolution is comparatively scant in comparison to other, more well-established scientific theories such as gravity and the basic laws of physics (I think you also have another, better-put-separately point about the near-religious quality evolutionism exhibits in this society -- is that correct?).

I think a lot of good points coming from your side of this debate are lost when the terms are not put right.

Yes, I agree. Empirical evidence is not the same thing as scientific law. Thank you for clarifying this, and I should have been more precise with my wording.

Evolutionary theory is not scientific law; it is a theory, and a theory that is based primarily upon a presuppositional philosophy rather than empirical evidence. The empirical data put forth in support of evolutionary theory can be interpreted in a variety of ways, depending upon the philosophical framework of those who are doing the interpreting.


Selam
Thank you for answering this.

I think you need to be a bit more careful about your use of the phrase "empirically proved", because all this phrase really means in science is "there is some evidence backing up the theory in question and we will stick with it until better evidence going the other way turns up".

Ultimately, the interpretation of all empircal evidence depends upon the philosophical framework of the interpreter: for instance, the evidence in support of the theory of gravity being true depends upon the presupposition that the laws of the universe are at least relatively stable and that phenomena are predictable as a result of this. A true pre-Socratic might not even accept such commonly-assumed presuppositions.
 

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Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
I don't have to explain away something that you cannot explain to begin with.
What do you mean I can not explain it? I'm an evolutionary biology major, so if you have a question about the mechanics of evolution feel free to ask.

You tend to just blow me off when you don't know what you're talking about. You claim I cannot explain evolution, but you've never asked me to.
 

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celticfan1888 said:
Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
I don't have to explain away something that you cannot explain to begin with.
What do you mean I can not explain it? I'm an evolutionary biology major, so if you have a question about the mechanics of evolution feel free to ask.

You tend to just blow me off when you don't know what you're talking about. You claim I cannot explain evolution, but you've never asked me to.

I would love for you to explain it to me. But let's start another thread for that. My main concern here is to stick with the two issues I have repeatedly raised.


Selam
 

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Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
PeterTheAleut said:
Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
PeterTheAleut said:
Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
Evolutionary theory is not scientific law; it is a theory, and a theory that is based primarily upon a presuppositional philosophy rather than empirical evidence.
How do you know this for certain?

Because the theory has yet to be empirically verified. In fact, evolutionary theory is actually neither verifiable nor falsifiable by the rigid criteria of the scientific method. The theory hinges upon certain assumed presuppositions, such as an antiquated age of the earth
As I understand it, the theory of evolution is not based on a belief that the earth is 4.5 billion years old; rather, the theory that the earth is 4.5 billion years old is based on the theory of evolution, the amount of time necessary for evolution to produce the speciation of life that we see today. I know your church teaches that the earth is only 6000-7000 years old, or so you say, but I don't believe that's universal Orthodox dogma, unless you wish to argue that the EO are outside the Church.

Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
and a uniformitarian rate of change.
Which is a sounder assumption than the assumption that a catastrophic event threw everything out of whack. With no evidence in the data to verify the supposition of a catastrophic event, I don't see how assertion of a catastrophic event can even be admissible in the debate over evolution.

You are making my point. The age of the earth cannot be empirically proven, so we have to make certain presuppositions. Uniformitarianism may be quite logical, and I have no problem with it from a scientific standpoint as long as the scientists operating from that presupposition maintain that it is exactly that- a presuppostional starting point. Evolutionary theory tries to prove itself factual by claiming that it is factual. It's like saying, "The best color is blue, because blue is the best color." Say it early and often enough, and people will come to believe it. 1st graders read and hear about the earth being billions of years old, so naturally they never learn to question it. So by the time they get to middle school, they have had a presupposition instilled in their minds as a fact. Evolution thus becomes very palatable, and anyone who questions it is looked upon as an idiot.


Selam
Kind of like what you think of people that believe in evolution?

For the record, if you don't think that evolutionary theory follows empirical evidence then you are a fool, all the evidence points to evolution, you just ignore it.

Gabre are you a troll?
 

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Philosophers could hold up this thread as a rather banal exhibit of eternal recurrence.
 

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actually lots of educated people believe that evolution as taught in most institutions is not necessarily accurate.
gebre menfes kidus is not a troll, he is entitled to his opinion.
:)
 

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and asking if he is a troll and saying he surely can't be serious is only proving his point. i, for one, completely agree with him. and yes, im completely serious.
 
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Over 3,000 posts, I would hope he's more than a troll by now!

Gabre, what about the dating of the world do you reject? Or, let's make it easier, something we can observe, such as light from distant galaxies. We know that light can only travel so fast, and that the light from these galaxies could not make it to us in 6,000 years. Wouldn't this give us some evidence that at least the cosmos is billions of years old?
 

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im not Gebre, buuut, the light from those stars could have been reaching earth from their moment of their creation. Adam and Eve were created as adults, although they were literally as young as infants, the trees and other plants were created fully grown although they were literally seconds old, etc, and so the light of the stars could have created already reaching earth, although the stars were only seconds old.
 
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jckstraw72 said:
im not Gebre, buuut, the light from those stars could have been reaching earth from their moment of their creation. Adam and Eve were created as adults, although they were literally as young as infants, the trees and other plants were created fully grown although they were literally seconds old, etc, and so the light of the stars could have created already reaching earth, although the stars were only seconds old.
I respect this argument because it does follow a good line of reasoning, but it also seems a bit like special pleading. "Why does everything look old?" Well, because that's just how God created it. End of the debate.

Likewise, when it comes to Jesus turning water into aged wine or Adam and Eve being created as adults, there's also an adjacent natural process that comes along with those things. We also know of the process for children to grow into adulthood. We know of the process of fermenting wine. But with the issue of the cosmos, there is no adjacent natural process, thus the appearance of age seems completely superfluous. There would be no reason to create the universe with the appearance of age unless there were a natural process in place, but this would be contradictory as there is only one universe (that we know of).

Secondly, the answer begs the question. Ultimately, the conclusion that everything simply appeared as is literally described in Genesis is what's being questioned. Thus, you're using the conclusion to support the premises, which is begging the question - there's no way to truly argue against your stance.

 

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celticfan1888 said:
I think Gabre is trolling, he really can't be serious...
A bit close to ad hominem. I understand that you two do not agree but "trolling" has a connotation of saying something just to stir things up. I have been following Gebre for a while now and one thing that one cannot accuse him of is "trolling." I call on you, unofficially, to apologize to Gebre and retract your accusations. Thanks, Second Chance
 

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I apologize for using such harsh language I suppose.

But he accuses me of not being able to answer questions he hasnt asked me, in my opinion that's a man just trying to stir up trouble. He's been tip toeing around the argument for sometime now.
 

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theo philosopher said:
Over 3,000 posts, I would hope he's more than a troll by now!

Gabre, what about the dating of the world do you reject? Or, let's make it easier, something we can observe, such as light from distant galaxies. We know that light can only travel so fast, and that the light from these galaxies could not make it to us in 6,000 years. Wouldn't this give us some evidence that at least the cosmos is billions of years old?
I agree, it also explains why we can only see a "portion" of the current universe, because parts of it are too far away and the light has yet to reach us.

I'll stop with Gabre when he brings a decent argument to the table.  8) All he currently says is "You are all wrong because you contradict my interpretation of Genesis". We have empirical evidence for our scientific beliefs...Gabre does not.
 

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celticfan1888 said:
theo philosopher said:
Over 3,000 posts, I would hope he's more than a troll by now!

Gabre, what about the dating of the world do you reject? Or, let's make it easier, something we can observe, such as light from distant galaxies. We know that light can only travel so fast, and that the light from these galaxies could not make it to us in 6,000 years. Wouldn't this give us some evidence that at least the cosmos is billions of years old?
I agree, it also explains why we can only see a "portion" of the current universe, because parts of it are too far away and the light has yet to reach us.

I'll stop with Gabre when he brings a decent argument to the table.  8) All he currently says is "You are all wrong because you contradict my interpretation of Genesis". We have empirical evidence for our scientific beliefs...Gabre does not.

I've been very clear that Genesis is not a scientific textbook. What I have said is that there are two fundamental issues that make it difficult to reconcile Orthodoxy with theistic evolution. I continue to stick with these two issues without being sidetracked. We can discuss the age of the earth and the empirical evidence for evolution on a separate thread if you wish.


[BTW, I don't know what a "troll" is, but I figure it's not complimentary. Thanks to those of you who defended me against that label.  :)]


Selam
 

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celticfan1888 said:
I apologize for using such harsh language I suppose.

But he accuses me of not being able to answer questions he hasnt asked me, in my opinion that's a man just trying to stir up trouble. He's been tip toeing around the argument for sometime now.
I wouldn't accept that as an apology, for a true apology seeks not to justify the offensive action as you just did.
 

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celticfan1888 said:
I agree, it also explains why we can only see a "portion" of the current universe, because parts of it are too far away and the light has yet to reach us.

I'll stop with Gabre when he brings a decent argument to the table.  8) All he currently says is "You are all wrong because you contradict my interpretation of Genesis". We have empirical evidence for our scientific beliefs...Gabre does not.
His name is Gebre Menfes Kidus ;)

Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
We can discuss the age of the earth and the empirical evidence for evolution on a separate thread if you wish.
The age of the earth is one thing, but wouldn't a new thread on "the empirical evidence for evolution" simply be merged back into this thread?
 

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Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
celticfan1888 said:
theo philosopher said:
Over 3,000 posts, I would hope he's more than a troll by now!

Gabre, what about the dating of the world do you reject? Or, let's make it easier, something we can observe, such as light from distant galaxies. We know that light can only travel so fast, and that the light from these galaxies could not make it to us in 6,000 years. Wouldn't this give us some evidence that at least the cosmos is billions of years old?
I agree, it also explains why we can only see a "portion" of the current universe, because parts of it are too far away and the light has yet to reach us.

I'll stop with Gabre when he brings a decent argument to the table.  8) All he currently says is "You are all wrong because you contradict my interpretation of Genesis". We have empirical evidence for our scientific beliefs...Gabre does not.

I've been very clear that Genesis is not a scientific textbook. What I have said is that there are two fundamental issues that make it difficult to reconcile Orthodoxy with theistic evolution. I continue to stick with these two issues without being sidetracked. We can discuss the age of the earth and the empirical evidence for evolution on a separate thread if you wish.
What's wrong with discussing them on this thread?
 

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theo philosopher said:
jckstraw72 said:
im not Gebre, buuut, the light from those stars could have been reaching earth from their moment of their creation. Adam and Eve were created as adults, although they were literally as young as infants, the trees and other plants were created fully grown although they were literally seconds old, etc, and so the light of the stars could have created already reaching earth, although the stars were only seconds old.
I respect this argument because it does follow a good line of reasoning, but it also seems a bit like special pleading. "Why does everything look old?" Well, because that's just how God created it. End of the debate.

Likewise, when it comes to Jesus turning water into aged wine or Adam and Eve being created as adults, there's also an adjacent natural process that comes along with those things. We also know of the process for children to grow into adulthood. We know of the process of fermenting wine. But with the issue of the cosmos, there is no adjacent natural process, thus the appearance of age seems completely superfluous. There would be no reason to create the universe with the appearance of age unless there were a natural process in place, but this would be contradictory as there is only one universe (that we know of).

Secondly, the answer begs the question. Ultimately, the conclusion that everything simply appeared as is literally described in Genesis is what's being questioned. Thus, you're using the conclusion to support the premises, which is begging the question - there's no way to truly argue against your stance.

^ This is one of the main points I wish to make. Evolutionism and Creationism both hinge upon certain presuppositions. I don't have any problem with the presuppositional starting point of evolutionists, as long as they admit there is no way to prove their presuppositions. It makes perfect sense to assume that the rate of change we observe now is the same rate of change that has always occurred. Fine. No problem, just as long as evolutionists concede that there is an alternative possibility.

Selam

 

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PeterTheAleut said:
Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
celticfan1888 said:
theo philosopher said:
Over 3,000 posts, I would hope he's more than a troll by now!

Gabre, what about the dating of the world do you reject? Or, let's make it easier, something we can observe, such as light from distant galaxies. We know that light can only travel so fast, and that the light from these galaxies could not make it to us in 6,000 years. Wouldn't this give us some evidence that at least the cosmos is billions of years old?
I agree, it also explains why we can only see a "portion" of the current universe, because parts of it are too far away and the light has yet to reach us.

I'll stop with Gabre when he brings a decent argument to the table.  8) All he currently says is "You are all wrong because you contradict my interpretation of Genesis". We have empirical evidence for our scientific beliefs...Gabre does not.

I've been very clear that Genesis is not a scientific textbook. What I have said is that there are two fundamental issues that make it difficult to reconcile Orthodoxy with theistic evolution. I continue to stick with these two issues without being sidetracked. We can discuss the age of the earth and the empirical evidence for evolution on a separate thread if you wish.
What's wrong with discussing them on this thread?

Nothing wrong with it. This is certainly the thread for it. But before the most recent merger, I was raising two specific issues that I wanted theisitic evolutionists to address. So, for now, I won't allow myself to be sidetracked from those two issues. I'm going to stay on point.


Selam
 

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Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
theo philosopher said:
jckstraw72 said:
im not Gebre, buuut, the light from those stars could have been reaching earth from their moment of their creation. Adam and Eve were created as adults, although they were literally as young as infants, the trees and other plants were created fully grown although they were literally seconds old, etc, and so the light of the stars could have created already reaching earth, although the stars were only seconds old.
I respect this argument because it does follow a good line of reasoning, but it also seems a bit like special pleading. "Why does everything look old?" Well, because that's just how God created it. End of the debate.

Likewise, when it comes to Jesus turning water into aged wine or Adam and Eve being created as adults, there's also an adjacent natural process that comes along with those things. We also know of the process for children to grow into adulthood. We know of the process of fermenting wine. But with the issue of the cosmos, there is no adjacent natural process, thus the appearance of age seems completely superfluous. There would be no reason to create the universe with the appearance of age unless there were a natural process in place, but this would be contradictory as there is only one universe (that we know of).

Secondly, the answer begs the question. Ultimately, the conclusion that everything simply appeared as is literally described in Genesis is what's being questioned. Thus, you're using the conclusion to support the premises, which is begging the question - there's no way to truly argue against your stance.

^ This is one of the main points I wish to make. Evolutionism and Creationism both hinge upon certain presuppositions. I don't have any problem with the presuppositional starting point of evolutionists, as long as they admit there is no way to prove their presuppositions. It makes perfect sense to assume that the rate of change we observe now is the same rate of change that has always occurred. Fine. No problem, just as long as evolutionists concede that there is an alternative possibility.
What alternative possibility do you propose?

One of the fundamental guiding principles of science is that theories must be falsifiable. How do you falsify the alternative possibility of a one-time catastrophic event for which we have no evidence?
 

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Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
I don't have any problem with the presuppositional starting point of evolutionists, as long as they admit there is no way to prove their presuppositions.
And by "prove" do you mean, say, "directly observe Homo hablis evolving into Homo erectus"?
 
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Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
theo philosopher said:
jckstraw72 said:
im not Gebre, buuut, the light from those stars could have been reaching earth from their moment of their creation. Adam and Eve were created as adults, although they were literally as young as infants, the trees and other plants were created fully grown although they were literally seconds old, etc, and so the light of the stars could have created already reaching earth, although the stars were only seconds old.
I respect this argument because it does follow a good line of reasoning, but it also seems a bit like special pleading. "Why does everything look old?" Well, because that's just how God created it. End of the debate.

Likewise, when it comes to Jesus turning water into aged wine or Adam and Eve being created as adults, there's also an adjacent natural process that comes along with those things. We also know of the process for children to grow into adulthood. We know of the process of fermenting wine. But with the issue of the cosmos, there is no adjacent natural process, thus the appearance of age seems completely superfluous. There would be no reason to create the universe with the appearance of age unless there were a natural process in place, but this would be contradictory as there is only one universe (that we know of).

Secondly, the answer begs the question. Ultimately, the conclusion that everything simply appeared as is literally described in Genesis is what's being questioned. Thus, you're using the conclusion to support the premises, which is begging the question - there's no way to truly argue against your stance.

^ This is one of the main points I wish to make. Evolutionism and Creationism both hinge upon certain presuppositions. I don't have any problem with the presuppositional starting point of evolutionists, as long as they admit there is no way to prove their presuppositions. It makes perfect sense to assume that the rate of change we observe now is the same rate of change that has always occurred. Fine. No problem, just as long as evolutionists concede that there is an alternative possibility.

Selam
Well of course there is an alternative possibility. Of course the earth could have been created in 6 days and we should take Genesis literally on that account. But the evidence we currently have simply doesn't match up.

Anyway, I'm standing by my previous question and I won't start a new thread because:

1) Not to sound rude, but you don't own this thread. It's a sticky at the top so as to not flood the board with creation vs. evolution topics

2) The questions I asked align perfectly with the current thread, so there's no reason to branch off

But you said earlier that Genesis isn't a scientific textbook. I agree, but wouldn't this mean that under such an assumption we're not longer obligated to take Genesis literally? Certainly we take the Resurrection literally due to the literary style and the importance of it being literal. But the Genesis story - with exception to Adam and Eve - isn't written in the same style nor does its literal nature have the same importance. So long as we believe in a literal Adam and Eve, what theological problems exist in believing in evolution?
 

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theo philosopher said:
Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
theo philosopher said:
jckstraw72 said:
im not Gebre, buuut, the light from those stars could have been reaching earth from their moment of their creation. Adam and Eve were created as adults, although they were literally as young as infants, the trees and other plants were created fully grown although they were literally seconds old, etc, and so the light of the stars could have created already reaching earth, although the stars were only seconds old.
I respect this argument because it does follow a good line of reasoning, but it also seems a bit like special pleading. "Why does everything look old?" Well, because that's just how God created it. End of the debate.

Likewise, when it comes to Jesus turning water into aged wine or Adam and Eve being created as adults, there's also an adjacent natural process that comes along with those things. We also know of the process for children to grow into adulthood. We know of the process of fermenting wine. But with the issue of the cosmos, there is no adjacent natural process, thus the appearance of age seems completely superfluous. There would be no reason to create the universe with the appearance of age unless there were a natural process in place, but this would be contradictory as there is only one universe (that we know of).

Secondly, the answer begs the question. Ultimately, the conclusion that everything simply appeared as is literally described in Genesis is what's being questioned. Thus, you're using the conclusion to support the premises, which is begging the question - there's no way to truly argue against your stance.

^ This is one of the main points I wish to make. Evolutionism and Creationism both hinge upon certain presuppositions. I don't have any problem with the presuppositional starting point of evolutionists, as long as they admit there is no way to prove their presuppositions. It makes perfect sense to assume that the rate of change we observe now is the same rate of change that has always occurred. Fine. No problem, just as long as evolutionists concede that there is an alternative possibility.

Selam
Well of course there is an alternative possibility. Of course the earth could have been created in 6 days and we should take Genesis literally on that account. But the evidence we currently have simply doesn't match up.
the evidence of evolutionary scientists of course doesn't match up with a literal Genesis, but when trying to understand Genesis its the teaching of the Church that matters. Scripture, of course, does not belong to scientists, but rather to the Church. Thus, the evidence for a literal reading of Genesis is overwhelmingly strong.
 

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jckstraw72 said:
im not Gebre, buuut, the light from those stars could have been reaching earth from their moment of their creation. Adam and Eve were created as adults, although they were literally as young as infants, the trees and other plants were created fully grown although they were literally seconds old, etc, and so the light of the stars could have created already reaching earth, although the stars were only seconds old.
I respect this argument because it does follow a good line of reasoning, but it also seems a bit like special pleading. "Why does everything look old?" Well, because that's just how God created it. End of the debate.
well, everything only looks old if you accept evolutionary presuppositions. I dont accept them, and thus everything does not look old to me. I accept the Scriptures as interpreted by the Saints as the first and highest authority, and thus I do not feel deceived in any way.

Likewise, when it comes to Jesus turning water into aged wine or Adam and Eve being created as adults, there's also an adjacent natural process that comes along with those things. We also know of the process for children to grow into adulthood. We know of the process of fermenting wine. But with the issue of the cosmos, there is no adjacent natural process, thus the appearance of age seems completely superfluous. There would be no reason to create the universe with the appearance of age unless there were a natural process in place, but this would be contradictory as there is only one universe (that we know of).
im not sure i really understand what point you are making here, but again, there is only an appearance of age if you lend credence first to modern day scientists and only second to the Fathers.

Secondly, the answer begs the question. Ultimately, the conclusion that everything simply appeared as is literally described in Genesis is what's being questioned. Thus, you're using the conclusion to support the premises, which is begging the question - there's no way to truly argue against your stance.
i've come to the conclusion based on what is there in the Church. the Scriptures, Fathers, icons, canons, hymnography, etc all paint a literal picture of Genesis (of course with deeper spiritual meanings too, but never to the exclusion of the literal level). so thats the framework i would approach your question about stars from. i realize its not a scientific approach, but i dont really have any desire for it to be so. the Fathers also continuously warn us that the pre-fallen world is inaccessible to us by any human efforts and that in these matters we shouldn't try to go beyond what has been given to us in the Church. I believe they are completely right on this, so I do not look to science to give me the answers about creation and the world before the fall, but only to the Church.
 

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Why do evolutionists seem to discount the flood? If there was a world wide flood (which I believe there was) then wouldn't that have major geological effects? Can canyons and valleys be explained in 40 days rather than 2 million years? We know the world was at first watered by underwater wells, not rain, and those busted open. It seems there is a lot in Genesis that can account for physical, geological change that is just glossed over. You can't look only at science because 99.999% of science starts with the presupposition that God isn't real (and we know thats wrong.) You have to try and synthesize the two.
 

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CBGardner said:
Why do evolutionists seem to discount the flood? If there was a world wide flood (which I believe there was) then wouldn't that have major geological effects? Can canyons and valleys be explained in 40 days rather than 2 million years? We know the world was at first watered by underwater wells, not rain, and those busted open. It seems there is a lot in Genesis that can account for physical, geological change that is just glossed over. You can't look only at science because 99.999% of science starts with the presupposition that God isn't real (and we know thats wrong.) You have to try and synthesize the two.
I suppose it's the dating thing again. Assuming all of the eroded geological features and fossils could have been put down with the flood, why is it that there is a broad correlation between apparent age of geological strata and of the fossils? Of course, there are details that are uncertain, but in general you do have fossils that look hundreds of millions of years old preserved in rocks that look hundreds of millions of years old, and thousand year old remains in thousand year old strata.

I can understand the argument that nature changed after the Fall, so that we can't project back onto Creation what we know about the world now. It's not a falsifiable position, but at least it's internally logical. Since the Flood happened after the Fall, however, it doesn't get off so easy. Whatever the Flood caused should have obeyed the laws of physics as we know them now, so it's much harder to argue that extremely ancient fossils were deposited by an event that occurred only a few thousand years ago.
 

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CBGardner said:
Why do evolutionists seem to discount the flood? If there was a world wide flood (which I believe there was) then wouldn't that have major geological effects? Can canyons and valleys be explained in 40 days rather than 2 million years? We know the world was at first watered by underwater wells, not rain, and those busted open. It seems there is a lot in Genesis that can account for physical, geological change that is just glossed over. You can't look only at science because 99.999% of science starts with the presupposition that God isn't real (and we know thats wrong.) You have to try and synthesize the two.
Considering that I'm pretty sure Noah's Ark was not a literal account...  ::)
 

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Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
I've been very clear that Genesis is not a scientific textbook. What I have said is that there are two fundamental issues that make it difficult to reconcile Orthodoxy with theistic evolution. I continue to stick with these two issues without being sidetracked. We can discuss the age of the earth and the empirical evidence for evolution on a separate thread if you wish.
Those two "fundamental" issues that you brought up, one of them is only fundamental in your opinion, the other isn't about evolution in the first place.
 

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Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
This is one of the main points I wish to make. Evolutionism and Creationism both hinge upon certain presuppositions. I don't have any problem with the presuppositional starting point of evolutionists, as long as they admit there is no way to prove their presuppositions. It makes perfect sense to assume that the rate of change we observe now is the same rate of change that has always occurred. Fine. No problem, just as long as evolutionists concede that there is an alternative possibility.
If there was ANY proof of another possibility we would look into it. Science is based on facts, not opinions.
 
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jckstraw72 said:
theo philosopher said:
Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
theo philosopher said:
jckstraw72 said:
im not Gebre, buuut, the light from those stars could have been reaching earth from their moment of their creation. Adam and Eve were created as adults, although they were literally as young as infants, the trees and other plants were created fully grown although they were literally seconds old, etc, and so the light of the stars could have created already reaching earth, although the stars were only seconds old.
I respect this argument because it does follow a good line of reasoning, but it also seems a bit like special pleading. "Why does everything look old?" Well, because that's just how God created it. End of the debate.

Likewise, when it comes to Jesus turning water into aged wine or Adam and Eve being created as adults, there's also an adjacent natural process that comes along with those things. We also know of the process for children to grow into adulthood. We know of the process of fermenting wine. But with the issue of the cosmos, there is no adjacent natural process, thus the appearance of age seems completely superfluous. There would be no reason to create the universe with the appearance of age unless there were a natural process in place, but this would be contradictory as there is only one universe (that we know of).

Secondly, the answer begs the question. Ultimately, the conclusion that everything simply appeared as is literally described in Genesis is what's being questioned. Thus, you're using the conclusion to support the premises, which is begging the question - there's no way to truly argue against your stance.

^ This is one of the main points I wish to make. Evolutionism and Creationism both hinge upon certain presuppositions. I don't have any problem with the presuppositional starting point of evolutionists, as long as they admit there is no way to prove their presuppositions. It makes perfect sense to assume that the rate of change we observe now is the same rate of change that has always occurred. Fine. No problem, just as long as evolutionists concede that there is an alternative possibility.

Selam
Well of course there is an alternative possibility. Of course the earth could have been created in 6 days and we should take Genesis literally on that account. But the evidence we currently have simply doesn't match up.
the evidence of evolutionary scientists of course doesn't match up with a literal Genesis, but when trying to understand Genesis its the teaching of the Church that matters. Scripture, of course, does not belong to scientists, but rather to the Church. Thus, the evidence for a literal reading of Genesis is overwhelmingly strong.
It's my understanding that the Church has no official teaching on the matter, so I think it's faulty to appeal to the Church's authority on this matter. Rather, it's an area open to disagreement, so certainly looking to science helps.

If you toss out science, however, then what are we left with? You've essentially ended the debate by establishing your own rules without offering a valid reason as to why we shouldn't look to science (again, sans official Church teachings, an appeal to Church authority is quite empty).
 

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CBGardner said:
You can't look only at science because 99.999% of science starts with the presupposition that God isn't real (and we know thats wrong.)
That's a gross misrepresentation of science. Science starts with the presupposition that we must look first for natural explanations of natural events. It doesn't require any presupposing belief that God is or is not real.
 
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