Common Thoughts 18

 

Environment
Day 1 Heavens Day 4 Sun, moon and stars
Day 2 Water and sky Day 5 Fish and birds
Day 3 Land and plants Day 6 Land animals and man

The above chart is one way to look at Genesis 1.

There is a lot of controversy over Genesis 1 both inside the Judeo/Christian world and the not-God world. Let’s look at three terms bandied about:

Creationism. If you ask Wikipedia for a definition it goes like this: “Creationism is the religious belief that the universe and life originated “from specific acts of divine creation”, as opposed to the scientific conclusion that they came about through natural processes.”

Intelligent Design. Again, if you ask Wikipedia for a definition it goes like this: “Intelligent design is a religious argument for the existence of God, presented by its proponents as “an evidence-based scientific theory about life’s origins”, though it has been found to be pseudoscience.”

Pseudoscience. Merriam-Webster gives us this definition: “a system of theories, assumptions, and methods erroneously regarded as scientific.” Wikipedia gives us this definition: “Pseudoscience consists of statements, beliefs, or practices that are claimed to be scientific and factual, in the absence of evidence gathered and constrained by appropriate scientific methods.”

“As opposed” . . . “Pseudoscience” . . . “Erroneously” . . .

Boy, do I feel spanked because I believe in God, the ground of being, the author of everything as stated in Genesis 1:1: “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth,” and what Paul wrote in his letter to the Colossians: “For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him.  And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist.” (Colossians 1: 16-17 NKJV.)

Science and religion locked horns November 24, 1859 when Charles Darwin published The Origin of Species. It was taken by the secular world to be the evidence not-God scientists were looking for to disprove that God was involved in our world. Instead of God creating man, natural selection over millions of years did what we pseudoscience subscribers harked was accomplished by God. But no, I’m not going to argue for or against evolution, something scientists, Christian and non-Christian, have argued amongst themselves for me.

Here’s what I’m thinking: Creationism as a science is an attempt by some Christians and scientists who are Christian to counter the modern humanists’ argument that God doesn’t exist and that the cosmos has nothing to do with God. They want science to conform to Genesis 1, its day by day historical order of creation (typically a literal 24-hour day) rather than see Genesis 1-3 as a poetic explanation of God and his work. This doesn’t take away from truths given us; like God created the heavens and the earth, that species were created separately, and that man was created in God’s image. And actually evolutionary science fails at disproving this, though ardent subscribers of evolutionally science will fight you to the death believing they are right. The problem is, it’s become more a philosophy than a science and many have let their philosophy dictate their science. Objectivity takes a backseat to ideology. On both sides, actually.

Lucas Mix writes in Thinking Fair:

“Francis Bacon, in particular, saw science as our process of regaining dominion over the world, which we had lost in the Fall. . . . Science starts with hope for the future, hope that we will find knowledge and make good use of it. Though that optimism has been tempered by the increasing strangeness of science and a history of abuses, we still see science as a way forward. We think that science will continue to provide real, useful answers. We must be careful to recognize, though, that this progressivism is a fundamental axiom of science – a hope we bring to the process – rather than a product of science – something we can defend with data. We are not perfect observers and we are not perfect in our application of the power science gives us. Worse yet, some aspects of the world – like the properties of fundamental particles – might prove beyond our grasp.”

So, is the Bible a lie as modern progressive science wants us to accept? A hoax propagated on innocent man? This is the position of men like Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens and Peter Singer. Read these words from Dawkins.

  • God stands out in the universe as the most glaring of all superfluous sore thumbs. Richard Dawkins
  • Religion is capable of driving people to such dangerous folly that faith seems to me to qualify as a kind of mental illness. Richard Dawkins
  • We cannot, of course, disprove God, just as we can’t disprove Thor, fairies, leprechauns and the Flying Spaghetti Monster. Richard Dawkins

These “Common Thoughts” are a reflection of my mind and represent my conclusions stemming from my research into the Real. I reject fundamentalism in Christianity and in science. I find both to be extremes so biased they are nothing more than political correctness and misrepresent truth, that objectivity losing out to ideology. It isn’t that both are without truth, they certainly do have truths we need to consider. It’s just that we have to work hard to get through their bias to find that truth, meanwhile both attempt to enslave us to their misshapen ideology.

Let me be clear about the what some want us to accept as a war between science and religion we are witnessing today: it’s about not-God versus God. It is not about discovering truth, reasoned and reasonable competing ideas. Progressivism at its core is secular humanism denying all things God, whatever God you want to posit. Again quoting from Mix in Thinking Fair: Rules for Reason in Science and Religion (p. 124). Kindle Edition:

“[W]e need multiple clear perspectives if we want to make a three dimensional image. One perspective will never give us all the information we need. Until such a time as we have perfect knowledge – something science and the major religions place in the distant future – we will benefit from having multiple worldviews, as long as each of them provides useful insights. Eliminating all of our religious worldviews would not provide us with the clearest picture of reality yet. It would virtually blind us. The scientific worldview fails to give us even the most basic models of human interaction, value formation, and abstract reasoning. When taken dogmatically (without question) and exclusively (without peer), it becomes just as tyrannical as the religious doctrines it has helped to displace – e.g., the belief that the Sun travels around the Earth.”

I Googled “religion” and found some interesting variations defining the term. I’m going to use the one I found from the BBC, the only definition without negatives: “Religion can be explained as a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe, especially when considered as the creation of a superhuman agency or agencies, usually involving devotional and ritual observances, and often containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs.” Every civilization had at its core religious beliefs about the “cause, nature, and purpose of the universe.” From Mix we read that in 2010, estimates found that Christians are about 33.4% of the world’s population, Islam holds 22.7%, Hinduism 13.8%, and Buddhism 6.8%. As Mix writes: “Judaism (0.22%), Christianity, and Islam all invoke a single “theistic” god who has a personality—relating to and interested in creation. This God has elected a particular people as chosen representatives on Earth. Belief in this God includes claims about reality but also about our relationships: to God, the chosen community, and the world. More than half the people alive today consider themselves part of one of these traditions.”

There are those who, like Dr. Andrew Newberg using “single photon emission computed tomography” that collects the information transmitted by the rays and constructs from it an image of the brain depicting blood flow to the various regions, believe that evolution created part of the brain to construct a “god experience”. This is a coping function and has nothing to do outside the brain, like a real God.

The Judeo/Christian belief is that God, who is before all things and created all thing, created all humans in his image for purposes of ruling with him, whatever that means. Every person has in them the real image of God however much sin has caused them to pervert that image. Something we’ll come back to later. The religious side of life became just as corrupt as the secular side of life, even the Judeo/Christian faith which I believe is the one true faith. And our greatest critic is God.

I find it seriously interesting that only the first eight verses in the first chapter of the Bible speaks about the cosmos. There are verses dotted throughout the Bible of God as creator of all things, but nothing new is added as they reference the first chapter of Genesis. Beginning in verse 9 the focus shifts to the earth. In those first eight verses what is it saying:

  1. Waters are separated and dry land appears
  2. Grass is created, and herbs that yield seeds, and fruit trees that yield fruit (according to its kind)
  3. Lights ion the firmament of the heavens are divided so there is a day and a night (also reference the sun and the moon)
  4. Then creatures of the sea, birds in the air are created
  5. Then on land are created living creatures (according to their kind)
  6. And finally man to live on the earth

What isn’t said?

“A very rough estimate suggests that there are 10 trillion galaxies in the universe. Multiplying that by the Milky Way’s estimated 100 billion stars results in a large number indeed: 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 stars, or a “1″ with 24 zeros after it.” 

I don’t know about you but this is too much to get my mind around that. Why? Why so much? What purpose does it serve? I know, by asking a “what purpose” question I’m assuming an intelligence behind it. Secular (and I use the term “secular” simply to mean looking just at a material universe leaving all questions of an intelligent design or designer out, as well as an atheist driven science looking to definitely deny any God in it all) science asks the “how” question instead of the “why” question. How is the why. All this universe that is filled with absolute fascination is ignored in the Bible. Continuing on what we aren’t told:

  • “Our solar system consists of an average star we call the Sun, the planets Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto. It includes: the satellites of the planets; numerous comets, asteroids, and meteoroids; and the interplanetary medium.”
  • Mercury, the first planet from the sun going out, “the day side of the planet reaches temperatures of up to 800 degrees Fahrenheit (427 degrees Celsius). In contrast, the chilly night side can get as cold as minus 290 F (minus 180 C). The planet has an average temperature of 332 F (167 C).
  • The temperature on Venus is 864 degrees Fahrenheit (462 degrees Celsius). Temperature changes slightly traveling through the atmosphere, growing cooler farther away from the surface. Lead would melt on the surface of the planet, where the temperature is around 872 F (467 C).
  • The average temperature on Earth is about 61 degrees F (16 COn average.
  • The temperature on Mars is about minus 80 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 60 degrees Celsius). In winter, near the poles temperatures can get down to minus 195 degrees F (minus 125 degrees C). A summer day on Mars may get up to 70 degrees F (20 degrees C) near the equator, but at night the temperature can plummet to about minus 100 degrees F (minus 73 C).
  •  The surface of Pluto, in comparison, can range from a low temperature of 33 Kelvin (-240 degrees Celsius or -400 degrees Fahrenheit) and 55 Kelvin (-218 degrees Celsius or -360 degrees Fahrenheit). The average surface temperature on Pluto is 44 Kelvin (-229 Celsius or -380 Fahrenheit).

Are you getting the picture here? The first two planets from the sun average over 800 degrees Fahrenheit, the third planet (earth) averages in the 60s, the fourth planet averages -80 to -195, the farthest planet, Pluto, averages -400 degrees Fahrenheit. Holy smokes, the third planet in our solar system could not be more different from the others, significantly different.

It could be said that gravity is the most fundamental force in the universe. Gravity is a natural phenomenon by which all things with mass are brought toward (or gravitate toward) one another, including objects ranging from atoms and photons, to planets and stars. Since energy and mass are equivalent, all forms of energy (including light) cause gravitation and are under the influence of it.” Take Mercury and Venus away and the sun would pull earth to the position Mercury had which would change everything.

All this the Bible ignores. Except here, I guess, in Job 38: 31-33:

“Can you bind the cluster of the Pleiades,
“Or loose the belt of Orion?
 “Can you bring out Mazzarot in its season?
“Or can you guide the Great Bear with its cubs?
Do you know the ordinances of the heavens?
“Can you set their dominion over the earth?”

This comes after earlier God chastened Job:

“Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth?
“Tell Me, if you have understanding.
“Who determined its measurements?
“Surely you know!
“Or who stretched the line upon it?
“To what were its foundations fastened?
“Or who laid its cornerstone,
“When the morning stars sang together,
“And all the sons of God shouted for joy?” 
(Job 38: 4-7.)