Why you should think that the Natural-Evolution of species is true


#3004

Is it your argument that the more details there are in any given account then the more likely it is to be true?

That’s what you have just proposed but I would like to get confirmation of that. Hopefully in the form of a direct answer.


#3005

I’m actually really glad you brought this up - its a fun topic. Firstly, it has to be understood that some things back then don’t mean the same things they mean today. Its almost like being lost in translation (which much of the Bible is anyway) but just with the passage of time.

For a relative majority, the numbers in the Bible are symbolic. The tracking of such large passages of time by the writers wouldn’t be so accurate back then as to be able to pinpoint exact years and dates. Considering such, what do the numbers symbolize?

Well, we see the number 12 come up quite a bit, in both the new and old testaments. 12 is a number that, in the context in which the books of the Bible are written, symbolizes the wholeness and entirely of the nation of Israel (beginning with the 12 tribes of Jacob, being furthered by the 12 apostles). This number comes up quite a bit in other places of the old testament, such as the 12 judges in the book of Judges. Were there only 12 judges? No, but that exactly 12 are named tells us that these judges encompassed all of Israel.

Another number, 7, is considered the number of perfection and completeness, mirroring the creation stories. After 6 days, creation was complete, but not perfect because the 7th day follows, which God blesses and makes holy. Thus, to this society, 7 is considered a holy number and 6 is considered an incomplete number (also why 666 is the number of the devil in the book of Revelation).

Another example is any multiple of 20, like 20, 40, 60, 80, 200, 400, 600, etc. These numbers don’t mean exactly those numbers of years, again because civilizations then would be hard pressed to tract past events to be exactly and precisely that number of years away, particularly the larger quantities. What these numbers meant to the human writers (although divinely inspired) is the passing of a helluva long time. So 40 days of rain? It rained a really really long time. Jesus in the desert for 40 days? He fasted a heck of a long time. These multiples come up far too often, especially in the old testament but also in the new, to be precise passages of time. Instead, they convey a really long time.

This isn’t an exhaustive list, as many other numbers (3 and its multiples, 10, 5, others) have their own meanings in this context, but this post is long as it is.

Again, its not about how we understand the literal words on the page, its how the human writers expressed the divine inspiration in their own human words, which would of course be influenced by the culture they were in that understood and leaned on the symbolism of ideas and numbers. It would only make sense to, to the best of our ability, understand what their society held and how they expressed ideas to understand what they are trying to convey in the texts.

Admittedly, I don’t know as much about the story of the ark as I do about many other topics and stories, but I have some books that I could consult.


#3006

IWantGod said

[QUOTE]If God created species, then apart from animals that have gone extinct, all the animals that exist today should be no different from when they were first created; there should be no new species. So it should be true that the Platypus has always existed for as long as there have been animals. From the moment animals existed they ought to be identical to the animals that live today. The evidence does not bare out that cl;aim.

So while one might not want to take evolution as fact, i think one can think that it is the most likely origin of species when compared to the biblical 7 day creation explanation…[/QUOTE]

I’m afraid speciation is a complete red herring from the standpoint of those rejecting the fable of macroevolution (a fanciful belief with the scientific merit of a flat earth). Microevolution and speciation are clearly supported by real science and they are key concepts even for those crazy YECers who hold that everything was created after their “kind”.

For instance, those radicals at Answers in Genesis have a long list of articles defending speciation:

BTW: I like these AIG guys–my primary annoyance is their insistence on using Ussher’s 6000 year old Chronology based on the Masoretic text. We all know IMHO that the better numbers are found in the older Hebrew text reflected in the LXX, which provide for a world that is about 7600 years old if there are no gaps in the Biblical genealogy. However, if there are gaps in the genealogies the Masoretic and the older Hebrew texts allow for a somewhat older earth (though a 10,000 year old earth would already be pushing the limits of additional years that could be squeezed into hypothetical genealogical gaps).

Of course, these short timespans flow from the literal interpretation of Genesis held by the Old Covenant Saints and universally by the Church for almost 1800 years (yes, that includes St. Augustine–he was just plain vanilla YEC, except for being too radically YEC by trying to compress the first seven days into one day). In fact, St. Augustine and the other Church Fathers defended young earth creationism against the old earther Platonists, Stoics, Epicurians, etc. of their day.

Anyhow, despite my loathing of the anti-scientific, brainwashing belief system of macroevolution, I think that adherents to this belief are usually really great chaps. In fact, I know many evolutionists are much better human beings than I am–despite their belief that their great great grandfather was a fish, and their great grandmother was a rodent-like creature.

I’ll likely be off of this thread for a while, so happy discussions all. [Confession–I am a Protestant, so I have a tendency to thump bibles every once in a while]


#3007

I wonder if the two may be related.

One would know another is a better human being, knowing oneself, the reality of one’s sinfulness. It is self awareness, the mystery of existence which makes evolutionary theories sound like so much nonsense. The very fact that one does not bring oneself into existence except for in the finite sense that we decide who we will ourselves to be, makes our Creator a reality in our minds, right here and now, as He was in the beginning. We can do wrong; time carves our actions in spiritual concrete; they are unchangeable once done, and require a Redeemer. This knowledge arises with that of the good from which we have deviated; through our conscience, our inner dialogue with God, we come to know Him and we ourselves.

While we can hold the most fanciful concepts of how we got here, they must conform to the truth revealed through the church. The problem, besides that of its not being science but rather an interpretation of the reality which science reveals, is that holding to its basic tenets, will lead its adherents ultimately astray. And, that would be the primary reason why one “should think that the Natural-Evolution of species” is not true. Or, at least be wary, remaining skeptical in good scientific fashion, holding firm to revealed truth, if that is where one wishes to tread.


#3008

The scientific definition of “macroevolution” is “evolution at or above the level of a species.” Hence, evidence for speciation is evidence for macroevolution. One species splitting into two is macroevolution as science defines it.

What definition of ‘macroevolution’ are you using?

You are right about AiG, they require large amounts of super-fact macroevolution to get from the few pairs on the Ark to all the species alive today in the time their dating allows. Just one example of the hoops some forms of creationism have to jump through in order to justify their ludicrously bad hypotheses, based on equally bad interpretations of the Bible.

You should be careful of AiG, they lie to you, and they tell you that they lie by omission:

4:6 By definition, no apparent, perceived or claimed evidence in any field, including history and chronology, can be valid if it contradicts the scriptural record. Of primary importance is the fact that evidence is always subject to interpretation by fallible people who do not possess all information.

AiG Statement of Faith

They deliberately ignore any valid science which contradicts their woodenly literal interpretation of Genesis. They lie by omission, and ignore the fact that of primary importance is the fact that the Biblical text is always subject to interpretation by fallible people who do not possess all information.

rossum


#3009

I’ve addressed the “macroevolution” semantic debate in the other thread–although I’ll provide the link I gave there:
https://socratic.org/questions/what-is-the-key-distinction-between-speciation-and-macroevolution.

There is nothing dishonest about AiG’s statement of faith. The historic Christian faith (for 1800 years) believed that both natural and special revelation are absolute truths given to us by God and that by definition truth will not contradict itself. The one’s deliberately ignoring true science and facts are the evolutionists, who will close their eyes to how real science screams out the glory of the Creator (and real science laughs at their ludicrously bad hypotheses that rocks accidentally evolved feelings).

As I noted on the other thread–my schedule demands my speedy and lengthy departure from this thread–so have a great week


#3010

I’m sure the pope supports evolution and so do I, I believe we evolved and so did everything else but all part of God’s divine plan xx


#3011

Lots of pretty words, but you have not addressed my argument.


#3012

There are no fonts, but all one has to do is read the text with a bit of common sense - oh, and by a mind that has not been terminally brainwashed by the evolution fable.

It’s ironic that you should raise this point - theistic evolutionists claim the first eleven chapters of Genesis are ‘figurative’, despite the fact that there is no stylistic differences between chapters 11 and 12.


#3013

Firstly, the CCC doesn’t mention evolution.
Secondly, Catholics are free to completely reject Darwin’s evolutionary “tree of life” and believe in a literal, non-evolutionary interpretation of Genesis - a literal “six days” of creation. You seem to be implying that this Church teaching contradicts #283 of the CCC.

Furthermore, I’m not aware of any Scripture that precludes the evolution of non-human creatures. However, I believe Genesis 2:7 precludes the evolution of man.

I believe the Church will correct herself eventually and one day declare that Genesis 2:7 precludes human evolution.


#3014

Then you don’t exactly condemn evolution? That is good. As you say, our faith does permit you to believe in a literal 6-day creation. It also permits me to believe in evolution. And we can both be good Catholics in doing so.


#3015

You free to believe that the earth is the center of the universe and that the earth is flat. But that don’t make it reasonable to believe so. And evolution could be wrong, but it’s the best scientific explanation so far.


#3016

Duplicate Post


#3017

Hello again evolutionary frenemy, I thought I should add as a postscript to what I said above, that I have a similar view to yours regarding the impact on honesty and objectivity in science that occurs from a deeply held religious faith in naturalism.

The well known evolutionist Richard Lewontin speaks forthrightly regarding the dogmatic worldview whereby his fellow devout evolutionists (in this case Carl Sagan in particular) must dogmatically force any conclusions drawn from observation, logic, etc. into their woodenly materialistic interpretation of the natural world:

[QUOTE]"Our willingness to accept scientific claims that are against common sense is the key to an understanding of the real struggle between science and the supernatural. We take the side of science in spite of the patent absurdity of some of its constructs, in spite of its failure to fulfill many of its extravagant promises of health and life, in spite of the tolerance of the scientific community for unsubstantiated just-so stories, because we have a prior commitment, a commitment to materialism.

It is not that the methods and institutions of science somehow compel us to accept a material explanation of the phenomenal world, but, on the contrary, that we are forced by our a priori adherence to material causes to create an apparatus of investigation and a set of concepts that produce material explanations, no matter how counter-intuitive, no matter how mystifying to the uninitiated.

Moreover, that materialism is absolute, for we cannot allow a Divine Foot in the door. The eminent Kant scholar Lewis Beck used to say that anyone who could believe in God could believe in anything. To appeal to an omnipotent deity is to allow that at any moment the regularities of nature may be ruptured, that miracles may happen." NY Review of Books on Carl Sagan’s final book, 1/7/1997[/QUOTE]
https://www.nybooks.com/articles/1997/01/09/billions-and-billions-of-demons/

In other words, according to one’s devout faith in a universe that creates itself, “By definition, no apparent, perceived or claimed evidence in any field, including history and chronology, can be valid if it contradicts the [commitment to materialism].”


#3018

Of course, there are many that are not strictly materialistic who wholeheartedly and devoutly submit their thinking (and seek to submit the intellects of all other lesser beings who don’t tow the party line) to naturalism’s current government sponsored/enforced origin myth.*

*[Footnote on Tax-Funded Naturalistic Origin Myth: natural laws that must create themselves and then proceed to govern nature; matter that creates itself from the absence of matter; life that creates itself from a rock and then proceeds to morph via a wonderful mythological journey from ameoba like creature to musician–Talk about an awe-inspiring faith. It’s good to know that our hard earned tax dollars are supporting something that requires so much imagination].

We all have prejudice. I’d rather be prejudiced, though, by the words of the Lord Jesus Christ who said “But from the beginning of the creation, God made them male and female” (Mark 10:6) rather than the brains of a bunch of guys who think that if you wait long enough dirt can engage in critical thinking.


#3019

Your “in other words” is quite a twisted version of what you referenced.


#3020

LeafByNiggle, is that you speaking or is it your a priori commitment to materialism speaking…

Despite our differences, I respect your deeply held religious beliefs in that which contradicts logic and reality.


#3021

LeafByNiggle, what I said before about your evolutionism was really mean (my wife who saw my post told me so). I am now amending my statement to say that I like you even though evolution is really silly.


#3022

That would be the theory of the Big Bang as proposed by cosmologists. How does this relate to evolution? Remember that Darwin’s book was called “On the Origin of Species”, not “On the origin of Species, Life, the Universe and Everything” Biological evolution explains the origin of species; just the origin of species.

Just because some people make the error of reading too much into it does not mean that the rest of us have to.

Lewontin is either talking about cosmology, or he is setting up a strawman version of evolution in order to shoot it down. Either way, what he is saying is not relevant to biological evolution.

rossum


#3023

No, I am speaking strictly from logic. Your summation of the words you quoted was inaccurate.


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