Mass extincitons and God's goodness


#1

Greetings,

I was recently discussing over at IIDB message board and someone asked me the following…


**"If God guides evolution does that mean he was responsible for the comet that incinerated the world and all the baby creatures 60 million years ago?

Please explain how incinerating an entire continent of its baby creatures and freezing and starving to death almost 90% of the world’s animals is compatible with a loving god."**

How would you answer this question and solve the apparent contradiciton between God’s goodness and mass exitinctions like this one?

Any input is apreciated,

Valz


#2

What about the babies of abortion, does this person weep for them? God allowed them to die a horrendous death of intentional mutilation.
God is everywhere and gives power to everything, Omnipotent, Omnipresent, All Powerful and ever loving God. It is in the catechism check it out. 268-278

 Peace,

David


#3

I try to stay away from the Infidels, their creation-evolution stuff is interesting. But their views on the Bible can be rather skeptical. The majority of them will tell you Jesus didn’t exist, Mary didn’t exist, for that matter, no Peter, no apostles, Paul is a maybe, and perhaps the first real Christian in existence was St. Augustine. :eek: A little hard arguing with that kind of skepticism since there is no “common ground.”

There is a chapter in Perspectives on an Evolving Creation on God and randomness and evolution, maybe I’ll type some of that up. It is by Loren Haarsma, physicist from Calvin College.

BTW, if you want to hear Loren (haven’t heard him myself), there was a conference of the American Scientific Affilliation (Christian evangelical scientists mainly) on “Is Intelligent Design Scientific?”

See the front page on the right

asa3.org/

Phil P


#4

Since God created all life, then all life belongs to Him. Since God is perfectly just, then no loss of life at His hands can be unjust.

– Mark L. Chance.


#5

[quote=mlchance]Since God created all life, then all life belongs to Him. Since God is perfectly just, then no loss of life at His hands can be unjust.

– Mark L. Chance.
[/quote]

Ditto, Mark.
I think it’s funny, by the way, that the person refers to “baby creatures”, presumably because a reference to baby animals is thought more likely to evoke the desired emotions. I wonder what this person thinks of man—not God—taking baby humans apart in the womb?


#6

[quote=Valz] “If God guides evolution does that mean he was responsible for the comet that incinerated the world and all the baby creatures 60 million years ago?
Please explain how incinerating an entire continent of its baby creatures and freezing and starving to death almost 90% of the world’s animals is compatible with a loving god.”
[/quote]

From Holy Scripture, God tells us that this earthly life is NOT what is important, but everlasting life. Someone who cherishes human life over eternal life would have a difficult time comprehending what they feel is unjust.

[quote=DRBO.org] Mt 10, 28 And fear ye not them that kill the body, and are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him that can destroy both soul and body in hell.
[/quote]

A Christian understands that the end of our earthly life is just the beginning of our eternal life. It’s not a bad thing, but a glorious thing, hard for those who cherish human existence to grasp.

[quote=DRBO.org] Mt 6, 19 Lay not up to yourselves treasures on earth: where the rust, and moth consume, and where thieves break through and steal. 20 But lay up to yourselves treasures in heaven: where neither the rust nor moth doth consume, and where thieves do not break through, nor steal. 21 For where thy treasure is, there is thy heart also.
[/quote]


#7

[quote=DRBO.org] Mt 10,39 He that findeth his life, shall lose it: and he that shall lose his life for me, shall find it.
Mt 16,25 For he that will save his life, shall lose it: and he that shall lose his life for my sake, shall find it.
[/quote]

[quote=DRBO.org] Mark 8, 35 For whosoever will save his life, shall lose it: and whosoever shall lose his life for my sake and the gospel, shall save it.
[/quote]

[quote=DRBO.org] Luke 9, 24 For whosoever will save his life, shall lose it; for he that shall lose his life for my sake, shall save it.
Luke 14, 26 If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple.
Luke 17,33 Whosoever shall seek to save his life, shall lose it: and whosoever shall lose it, shall preserve it.
[/quote]

[quote=DRBO.org] John 3,15 That whosoever believeth in him, may not perish; but may have life everlasting.
John 3,16 For God so loved the world, as to give his only begotten Son; that whosoever believeth in him, may not perish, but may have life everlasting.
John 6,47 Amen, amen I say unto you: He that believeth in me, hath everlasting life.
John 6,64 It is the spirit that quickeneth: the flesh profiteth nothing. The words that I have spoken to you, are spirit and life.
John 12
25 Itself remaineth alone. But if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit. He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world, keepeth it unto life eternal.
John 12,25 Itself remaineth alone. But if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit. He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world, keepeth it unto life eternal.
[/quote]


#8

[quote=Tom]From Holy Scripture, God tells us that this earthly life is NOT what is important, but everlasting life.
[/quote]

That’s not quite accurate. Earthly life is very important. It is only in comparison to life in Heaven that it pales.

– Mark L. Chance.


#9

[quote=mlchance]That’s not quite accurate. Earthly life is very important. It is only in comparison to life in Heaven that it pales.

– Mark L. Chance.
[/quote]

Which was my intent (comparison, Someone who cherishes human life over eternal life). thanks


#10

Why would mass extinctions millions of years ago be any different than regular, plain old, every-day death?

Death is a natural part of life. After all, an entire kingdom of organisms exists by eating other things.

Explaining life and death and the meaning of suffering is a big part of what religion is all about and has occupied the thoughts of mankind for millennia

If the person from the IIDB message board wants an answer ask them how much time they have…it might take a while. :wink:


#11

Isn’t it just as sad when one insect eats another, or one microbe eats another? Do the numbers or manner really matter?

Death has entered the world because sin has entered the world. The good (great!) news is that Christ has overcome death.


#12

The problem with this event is that…

1-It happened before the fall or before humans even existed.
2-It was not just part of the natural process of life, it was something coming from outside that destroyed all life and the animals had no way of preventing.
3- Animals have no sense of morality so we cannot say that it was some “judgement” upon dinosaurs or something like that.
4-It was an event which allowed our ancesors to evolve once the dinosaurs who dominated were wiped out.

So, I don’t think that any answer from the consequences of the fall is useful in this case. Why would God allow so many creatures to evolve thru a time frame of billions of years just to wipe out 90% of the species in this single event?

Valz


#13

[quote=Valz]The problem with this event is that…

1-It happened before the fall or before humans even existed.
[/quote]

Yes, suffering and death existed before humans existed. This is definitely a mystery. Some have speculated that the entire unverse was created, or created anew, after the fall, and that Eden was found in some other place or existence.

2-It was not just part of the natural process of life, it was something coming from outside that destroyed all life and the animals had no way of preventing.

You mean like floods and fires and disease? The fact is that earth was hit by countless meteors during its formation. I have seen it argued that the larger planets act like meteor vacuums, slowly cleaning up the debris from the formation of the solar system, and thus show evidence of God’s design.

3- Animals have no sense of morality so we cannot say that it was some “judgement” upon dinosaurs or something like that.

Definitely, the animals did not “deserve” to be destroyed, just as no animal today “deserves” to suffer or die, but they do. The fall corrupted all of creation, not just mankind.

4-It was an event which allowed our ancesors to evolve once the dinosaurs who dominated were wiped out.

Yes. And by leaving evidence of this past world, we have evidence of a God who works in much more wonderous ways than just creating once and for all all the creatures we see today.

So, I don’t think that any answer from the consequences of the fall is useful in this case. Why would God allow so many creatures to evolve thru a time frame of billions of years just to wipe out 90% of the species in this single event?

Valz

Really, your question is just another variation of the age-old question, “why does a loving God allow suffering and death?” Whether it’s 90% of the species on the planet, or whether it’s a single baby who dies a horrible death, the question is the same. How can God allow this?

Personally, I think He allows it because without suffering there can be no compassion. Without need there can be no giving. Without death there can be no contemplation of the meaning of our lives, or self-inspection of the true quality of our lives. Imagine how self-centered humans would be if nothing we did could ever either help somebody or hurt somebody. Only with the existence of need and suffering and death do we learn to care about others, and shed our self-love.


#14

[quote=Valz]Greetings,
I was recently discussing over at IIDB message board and someone asked me the following…

"If God guides evolution does that mean he was responsible for the comet that incinerated the world and all the baby creatures 60 million years ago?

Please explain how incinerating an entire continent of its baby creatures and freezing and starving to death almost 90% of the world’s animals is compatible with a loving god."

How would you answer this question and solve the apparent contradiciton between God’s goodness and mass exitinctions like this one?
Any input is apreciated,
Valz
[/quote]

First - there is no proof that such an event happened.


Second - there is not proof of evolution either, God guided or otherwise.


Third - IF either the first or second were true, God certainly knows more about what He’s doing than we do. Also the human race has done at least as much damage - yet most humans are loving people.


Fourth - Who’s to say? Maybe He only killed off the ones the He felt would endanger the human life to be created? Even mosquitos can be deadly - who knows about the creatures of that time?


#15

[quote=Rob’s Wife]First - there is no proof that such an event happened.

[/quote]

No proof what happened? There was definitely a mass extinction event about 62 million years ago and there is some very compelling evidence that an impact was at least partly responsible.
**

Second - there is not proof of evolution either, God guided or otherwise.

**Correct. There is no proof. There is, however, a huge mass of evidence for evolution.
**

Third - IF either the first or second were true, God certainly knows more about what He’s doing than we do. Also the human race has done at least as much damage - yet most humans are loving people.

**I agree with the first point and don’t quite understand the second point. Are you suggesting that humans have caused the same number of extinctions as what occurred at the end of the Cretaceous? If so, you would be wrong.
**

Fourth - Who’s to say? Maybe He only killed off the ones the He felt would endanger the human life to be created? Even mosquitos can be deadly - who knows about the creatures of that time?

**
Yes, but mosquitos are still around.

Peace

Tim


#16

[someone]“If God guides evolution does that mean he was responsible for the comet that incinerated the world and all the baby creatures 60 million years ago?”

Meaning of “evolution”?
groups.google.com/groups?selm=dford3-386md9F5lsv5cU1%40individual.net


#17

There was definitely a mass extinction event about 62 million years ago and there is some very compelling evidence that an impact was at least partly responsible.Correct. There is no proof. There is, however, a huge mass of evidence for evolution.

ALL of that is very debatable, even in the scientific community. There’s lots of questions, but very few proven answers. Science is based on the solving with facts of questions. Scientist have lots of information and questions. Scientists have many theories and idea possiblities on how the information they have could lead to possible answers. What they do not have, and may never have, is actual proven answers. Until then, it is all up for debate.

**
******I don’t quite understand the second point. Are you suggesting that humans have caused the same number of extinctions as what occurred at the end of the Cretaceous? If so, you would be wrong.

My point was simple. Humans have done lots of damage also, yet for the most part is a loving race. In other words, one perspective of percieved cruelity doesn’t not neccessarily equal an unloving entity. If the dating you use of 64 million years is correct, they have certainly had ample time to catch up.

Yes, but mosquitos are still around.

Yes, indeed they are, but they haven’t led to the extinction of the human race either. However, thousands of dinosaurs eating dozens of humans a week/day or mosquitos the size of hands might have. There’s a difference between a possible human threat and certain death.

As a parent, I hazard danger for my children all the time. There are some great pets a person can have for example, but most parents would put down an animal they knew was dangerous to their child’s life. They wouldn’t put down all the animals a kid might be hurt by, but certainly a grave threat a child can’t avoid or learn to protect themselves from would not be given much chance to live in the backyard. Yet, most wouldn’t consider such a parent cruel to animals. Most would consider such a parent very vigilent and loving.


#18

I agree with what some other poster’s have said: why is a mass extinction so much worse than everyday death?

The mass extinction wiped out, according to the question, 90% of the animals alive at the time. Well, 100% of the animals that were alive a year before the comet hit are dead. Barring the second coming of Christ or another Elijah, 100% of people and animals who are alive now will eventually be dead. Does it really make much difference if the end comes sooner rather than later, especially given that the animals were not moral agents and therefore could not have grown holier or closer to God with more time on Earth?


#19

From Robs Wife**:**
**

ALL of that is very debatable, even in the scientific community.

**
The existence of a mass extinction event is not challenged by any scientest that I know of. Can you please give me some references for any scientist that claims that a mass extiction event did not occur at the end of the Cretaceous?

There’s lots of questions, but very few proven answers.

There are no proven answers in science. Why do you keep claiming that there are? Science does not “prove” anything.

My point was simple. Humans have done lots of damage also, yet for the most part is a loving race. In other words, one perspective of percieved cruelity doesn’t not neccessarily equal an unloving entity. If the dating you use of 64 million years is correct, they have certainly had ample time to catch up.

I don’t think that extinctions = unloving God. By the way, who is “they”?

Yes, indeed they are, but they haven’t led to the extinction of the human race either. However, thousands of dinosaurs eating dozens of humans a week/day or mosquitos the size of hands might have. There’s a difference between a possible human threat and certain death.

There have been predators present since the beginning of human history. Why do you think dinosaurs would have been more effective at causing human extinctions?

Peace

Tim


#20

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