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


#3065

That is your misunderstanding of what a transitional species is. If you want to convince us, then please explain why Archaeopteryx is not a transitional species:

                    Feathers Flight   Bony Tail  Teeth
                    -------- ------   ---------  ------
Dinosaurs              No       No      Yes        Yes  :  Stegosaurus
Feathered Dinos       Yes       No      Yes        Yes  :  Jinfengopteryx
Archaeopteryx         Yes      Yes      Yes        Yes  :  Archaeopteryx
Early Birds           Yes      Yes       No        Yes  :  Ichthyornis
Modern Birds          Yes      Yes       No         No  :  Corvidae

Archaeopteryx is part dinosaur: feathers, teeth and a bony tail, and part bird: flight. Why does it not meet your criterion?

rossum


#3066

But huge doses of wishful thinking can overcome such lousy odds.


#3067

I am aware of the frequent use of symbolic numbers like 7, 12 and 40 in the Bible. But the Flood account contains several, seemingly meaningless numbers, such as the following:
“In the SIX HUNDREDTH year of the life of Noe …
in the SECOND MONTH …
in the SEVENTEETH DAY OF THE MONTH …
for A HUNDRED AND FIFTY DAYS … the SEVEN AND TWENTIETH DAY OF THE MONTH …
until the TENTH MONTH …
the FIRST DAY OF THE MONTH …
in the SIX HUNDRETH AND FIRST YEAR …
In the SECOND MONTH, the SEVEN AND TWENTIETH DAY OF THE MONTH”

You have not explained the symbolic significance of these numbers, which doesn’t surprise me, as I believe they are not symbolic at all, but are part of a description of literal history. Why did the author include these seemingly meaningless and needless chronological details? There seems to be only one logical explanation - to convey to the reader that this is an account of real, literal history.

If anyone understands the significance of numbers in the OT, it’s the Jews, but I’m not aware of any Jewish attempt to explain the Flood numbers symbolically.


#3068

The Martyrology of the Catholic Church states Christ was born 5199 years after the creation of Adam and 2957 years after the Flood. So this implies mankind is about 7217 years old. I think it’s fair to assume that the Catholic scholars who calculated these dates were well versed in the Bible’s genealogies and any ambiguities contained therein. The Church’s modernists, deceived by the atheist/demonic fable of evolution, laugh at such dates of course, concluding that the Bible’s genealogies and history aren’t literal, but “symbolic” . What are they “symbolic” of? Ha, no one knows! In other words, they would have us believe that vast tracts of the Holy Word of God are a meaningless drivel.


#3069

More evolutionist word games - bacteria speciate like crazy but remain bacteria … and in a billion years time these continuously-speciating bacteria will still be bacteria! God said He created organisms “according to their kind” - which is a mighty strange thing to say if kinds evolve into different kinds. (I might have stated in a previous post that I don’t have a theological objection to the evolution of non-human creatures, but then I remembered this Genesis verse!)

I agree with you on this one - it seems to me that belief in a global flood is the result of a misreading of Scripture … which then presents a whole host of scenarios that are difficult to defend scientifically. Although having said that, a regional flood also requires some miracle-working going on - such as confining the flood to a finite area of the earth.


#3070

Not word games, merely biology. Mammals speciate like crazy but remain mammals. Are you telling us you have no problem with humans descending from a chimp-like ancestor because both that ancestor and ourselves were mammals?

You need to understand just how wide a classification “bacteria” is. There are more species of bacteria than there are of insects, and there are a lot of different species of insect around.

rossum


#3071

Well, many of the numbers I described do, in fact, show up in the narrative you’re describing. But let’s switch to a different way of looking at it.

Assuming evolution isn’t true, and the flood was a literal world-wide catastrophe, Noah would have had to round up every animal on the face of the planet (including the kangaroos of Australia, Buffalo from North America, elephants of Africa, etc.) from vastly varying geographical regions, and hold them for 40 days in what amounts to a relatively small space with limited resources (a cubit is the length from your wrist to your elbow). On top of the logistical nightmare that that would be in today’s day and age (not even taking into account the infeasibility of the time), there isn’t enough water on the world to flood over every bit of land so suddenly and retreat so suddenly. Perhaps this would be possible with a great regional flood, as I would suggest is the case? But not a global one, as the text would literally suggest. Again, consider – there are two accounts of the narrative, which actually happened? One pair of ever animal, or 7 pairs, clean and unclean? The two accounts appear to contradict each other, and if they are read literally, which one is to be taken as truth?


#3072

Another thing to keep in mind is that “the world” != “the world.” In ancient times, “the world” was more used to mean “the known world” which varies from place to place. (Consider the story of Joseph when it mentions people from all over the world came to buy grain from Egypt. That doesn’t mean there were some Mayans canoeing across the Atlantic on a bunch to buy grain. It means the region around Egypt bought grain.)


#3073

The Hebrew is eretz, which can be translated a number of ways. It certainly did not always mean the whole planet, otherwise Abraham would have been an extra-terrestrial! See Genesis 2:1

The Lord had said to Abram, “Go from your eretz, your people and your father’s household to the eretz I will show you.

Of course, that would explain why there is no evidence for the flood on earth; it happened on a different planet! :smile:

rossum


#3074

You can believe that if you want to, but the Church does not insist that we take the dimensions of the ark as literal truth.


#3075

We do not laugh, because we understand the limitations of the people who wrote these accounts. But we do believe the science that shows that mankind is much older. The Church does not disagree.


#3076

And one may admire the quality of their scholarship, and the scholarship of other divines who studied these matters. Remember Stephen Jay Gould’s defence of the scholarship of Bishop Ussher:

http://www.stephenjaygould.org/library/gould_house-ussher.html


#3077

Precisely. Another interesting detail - the genealogy that descends from Noah is 70 names long (exactly 70, or symbolic of something? Let’s find out). The names of his descendants aren’t translated, as is much of the Bible. Instead, with these names, they are transliterated, meaning that how the word sounds in its native language is just mimicked in a new alphabet. If the words/names are actually translated, they are geographical regions, which is super interesting. Just like numbers used to mean a lot more than they do today, names were the same way; they had meanings that are lost on us today, but certainly weren’t at the time. So some of the descendants of Noah are named “Egypt” and “Cannan” and “Greece,” and there are 70 such names after Noah. So one might then deduce that, by the nature of the number “7,” and the translations of the names, that what is being conveyed is that the descendants of Noah are actually everybody, throughout the entire world, from Europe to Africa to Asia. Reading it to mean that there were exactly 70 generations would be a little dubious.


#3078

Symbolic. Symbolic. They need something to hang their hat on.


#3079

I’m on lunch, so I thought I should write something profound for the sake of clarifying my prior confession of fundamentalism (which I realize may have come as a shock to my Atheist, Buddhist, warlock and Unarian friends). I will offer this clarification:

I believe the Bible is true and actually means what it says (and as to that burning question you all have–no, I’m not a Teetotaler).


#3080

Or, as my sainted friend Aquinas says: “Hence, it is plain that nothing false can ever underlie the literal sense of Holy Writ” (SUMMA THEOLOGICA-PART I, QUESTION I, ARTICLE 10).

Well, I’m out again–but I may check in over the weekend.


#3081

They were not inspired? The Holy Spirit was not involved?


#3082

The Holy Spirit did inspire them, but that does not guarantee that the grammar was correct or that every irrelevant detail is correct. Only Protestants profess sola scriptura.


#3083

God made the world. Why do you deny the evidence shown to you by God in the world He made? And the Holy Spirit was involved in God’s work.

rossum


#3084

p.p.p.p.p.s. For those who might question what our friend Aquinas (or the rest of our “fundamentalist” forefathers) meant when he made radical statements about God’s Word not being a pack of lies–I give you just one example from Aquinas on the necessity of affirming the woodenly literal truth of God’s Word even when it is providing seemingly insignificant historical data:
“A thing is of faith, indirectly, if the denial of it involves a consequence something against faith; as for instance if anyone said that Samuel was not the son of Elcana, for it follows that divine Scripture would be false” (Summa Theologica, p.1, q. 32, art. 4).

Of course, he was an unenlightened YEC guy…so what can you expect. I’m really out of here this time…


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