Friday, April 18, 2008

Ken Miller's Bible

In my debates, I have come across Dr Ken Miller's writings. It seriously disturbs me the depths to which he'll sink for evolution.

"Putting it bluntly, the creationists have sought God in darkness. What we have not found and do not yet understand becomes their best - indeed their only - evidence for the divine. As a Christian, I find the flow of this logic particularly depressing. Not only does it teach us to fear the acquisition of knowledge (which might at any time disprove belief), but it suggests that God dwells only in the shadows of our understanding. I suggest that, if God is real, we should be able to find him somewhere else - in the bright light of human knowledge, spiritual and scientific." [Dr Miller in an article based on "Finding Darwin's God"]



Sought God in darkness? Does anyone hear what he's saying about the bible? Where do you find out about Christ? In darkness? He denies the bible flat out. You may want to defend Dr Miller at this point saying, "He's not calling the bible darkness, just the reasoning (or science) of the creationists." Fine, but where do the reasons for creationist scientific arguments come from? You cannot say that creationists are not being biblical, the question that is being asked is: "Is the bible reliable?" Did anyone hear the snake in the garden?

Fear the acquisition of knowledge? I'm not afraid of learning. I was told by Jesus to "fear Him who can cast into hell" [Jesus in Luke] You see, Dr Miller thinks that by diminishing belief he makes a better Christian, I say, with Jesus, no. "Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed."[Jesus in John] I am not promoting a blind faith, but faith and Christianity cannot be divorced in any manner. Faith is a requirement.

If we are to find God in "in the bright light of human knowledge" he clearly missed the bible completely. Does "do not lean your own understanding" ring a bell? How about "the way of a fool is right in his own eyes"? As for me, I will serve the Lord. I will not look for Him "somewhere else."

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Evolving Arguments: Expelled the movie again

In my first post about the movie "Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed," I looked at the beginning of the Ad Hominems surrounding this movie.

Now plagiarism is disgusting, and anyone who commits such an act, evolutionist or creationist, ought to be expelled for breaking moral and academic rules. By I'm getting ahead of myself.

The Harvard Scientific Animation company, XVIVO made a cell animation video and have accused Expelled producers for copyright infringements. The original can be seen here [XVIVO video]

Now I wonder how much you can copyright cell descriptions. Now we have only seen one side of the story. At P.Z. Meyers' blog, he compares two screenshots P.Z. Meyers. He makes an interesting statement:

"Another curious coincidence: you've heard of the concept of plagiarized errors, the idea that the real tell-tale of a copy is when it's the mistakes that are duplicated, in addition to the accuracies." [P.Z. Meyers]


I agree. But there still exists the possibility that both made the same error, having the same source. But lets be closed minded.

As I mentioned in another argument:

"Are you proving evolution by proving this movie to be fallible? There is a fundamental fallacy here." [SOURCE]


The movie itself is not the argument. Just because an evolutionist plagiarizes doesn't mean evolution is bad.

Thank goodness there are still some people who aren't lowering themselves like P.Z. Meyers and the rest of these evangelical evolutionists:

"Is it really that unexpected that someone would show kinesin as making a stately march down the microtubule?

I don't doubt that they did their best to copy the harvard videos, but that bit about kinesin makely a stately march is hardly a smoking gun." [SOURCE]
...
"I should amend that: I do have some nagging doubts, it is afterall(sic) entirely possible based on the little information presented that they did in fact produce this video from scratch. If I were producing these videos, based on my knowledge of cell biology, I would have done something very similar. We really need more examples to determine whether this is really an attempt at exact copying of the Harvard material." [SOURCE]



More can be found at WorldNetDaily: [ARTICLE]

Chuck Norris

Guess what people? He's a creationist!

What's more important is that he is a Christian. What is great is he is not afraid to teach Christ crucified. He takes the bible and the great commission seriously. It is awesome to see that God puts some in those very visible places that are His own:

"...here's what I really think about the theory of evolution: It's not real. It is not the way we got here. In fact, the life you see on this planet is really just a list of creatures God has allowed to live. We are not creations of random chance. We are not accidents. There is a God, a Creator, who made you and me. We were made in His image, which separates us from all other creatures." [Chuck Norris]



Please note I do realize that Chuck is not a scientist - that doesn't mean his beliefs are any less valid than yours or mine. I know that he probably doesn't study genetics or geology. What I am speaking about is the fact that he is a Christian who trusts in God, who is willing to stand up and be counted. Praise the Lord!

State of the nations

Dr Ravi Zacharias' radio podcasts have been playing in my household for a while. I love listening to what he has to say on philosophy and God. He made a quote by G.K. Chesterton that really makes you think. This quote is the substance of my blog today:

"But the new rebel is a skeptic, and will not entirely trust anything. He has no loyalty; therefore he can never be really a revolutionist. And the fact that he doubts everything really gets in his way when he wants to denounce anything. For all denunciation implies a moral doctrine of some kind; and the modern revolutionist doubts not only the institution he denounces, but the doctrine by which he denounces it. Thus he writes one book complaining that imperial oppression insults the purity of women, and then he writes another book in which he insults it himself. He curses the Sultan because Christian girls lose their virginity, and then curses Mrs. Grundy because they keep it. As a politician, he will cry out that war is a waste of life, and then, as a philosopher, that all life is waste of time. A Russian pessimist will denounce a policeman for killing a peasant, and then prove by the highest philosophical principles that the peasant ought to have killed himself. A man denounces marriage as a lie, and then denounces aristocratic profligates for treating it as a lie. He calls a flag a bauble, and then blames the oppressors of Poland or Ireland because they take away that bauble. The man of this school goes first to a political meeting, where he complains that savages are treated as if they were beasts; then he takes his hat and umbrella and goes on to a scientific meeting, where he proves that they practically are beasts. In short, the modern revolutionist, being an infinite skeptic, is always engaged in undermining his own mines. In his book on politics he attacks men for trampling on morality; in his book on ethics he attacks morality for trampling on men. Therefore the modern man in revolt has become practically useless for all purposes of revolt. By rebelling against everything he has lost his right to rebel against anything." [SOURCE]



We all know how to argue our point by poking holes in the other person's arguments, but do we really know how to argue the truth? We can break down an opponent's argument, but that does not necessarily mean that our argument is correct? We must be careful not to deal out doubts, but rather certainties.

Bible Quiz

You know the Bible 100%!
 

Wow! You are awesome! You are a true Biblical scholar, not just a hearer but a personal reader! The books, the characters, the events, the verses - you know it all! You are fantastic!

Ultimate Bible Quiz
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I don't know my bible that well. If I was truly 100% I wouldn't be on earth still. It's an easy quiz, I recommend it. No cheating!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Errata 2

Sorry - I made another mistake:

"I can tell you something about the practicalities of ‘Evolution’: there are none." [SOURCE]



Here I make a classic atheist mistake - I posit a negative statement. I should not do that. If I were to correct myself, I would say: You would be hard pressed to find one, when you do, please tell me.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Errata

I have made some mistakes and I would like to address them. I have only thought of two but I assume the list will grow.

Firstly, in my starlight post (here) I actually came up with a biblical version of the cosmic inflation principle that evolutionists use. While the cosmic inflation principle is valid, it might have happened, it is not good science (It is good origins science, but not good operational science). There are better explanations of distant light, which I will discuss at a later stage.

Secondly, I undermined Einstein's theory of relativity (here). I did not understand the theory and was answering a fool in his folly. What is amusing is that the theory of relativity proves the existence of absolute truth. It says that two objects, traveling at different speeds (speed being a relative measurement), if they were to measure the speed of a third object traveling at a different speed, would come out at the same answer. That, is absolute truth. While it is still theory, it is a good theory and certainly cannot be used to prove that truth is relative. [wiki] I think that the theory of relativity is good science.

More evolution

At this blog they will not publish a comment I made. While I respect their right to exclude me, I will at least hear myself out.

“…Evolution is a theory that has paractical(sic) application in medicine, agriculture, research, economics, conputer(sic) science, many other fields…”

I would challenge you to give one practical example. One kind to another kind.

I also understand that we must not let ourselves get tied up in a word debate. The word ‘evolution’ can have several meanings. I am not attacking ‘evolution’ if it involves minor changes within a bound set of constructs (accurately known as Natural Selection). What we claim is that there is no evidence of one kind of animal producing another kind of animal. This claim is valid: no evidence has surfaced.

As a ‘conputer’ scientist, I can tell you something about the practicalities of ‘Evolution’: there are none[Errata 2]. Minor changes in genes NEVER result in an artificially intelligent construct to be more complex than the parent. Even computer “evolutionary” algorithms don’t (and can’t) work like that.

The process of Natural selection used in computer science is often mistakenly called evolution. NS does not lead to the formation of new kinds. Check it out here.

“We do not have a predefined expectation of what the answer should be and we do not ignore or twist the evidence to fit the model.”

You know what amuses me the most? The fact that we are all humans deep down. Probably the most common feature which permeates to our core is the dogmatic assumption that we are right in ourselves. Christianity says no to that.

Everyone makes assumptions. You think you are so smart? Where were you when it all began? Who are you to tell the universe how it came into being? If you think I should turn these questions on myself, you can rest assured I do. Every single day.

Dr Smarty Pants Dawkins is obligated in his worldview to assume that no God exists. We all work with the same evidence, it is our perspectives that warp our conclusions on that evidence. Since Dawkins believes there is no God, then his interpretation cannot, because he has a foundational ‘truth’ to uphold, veer away from that belief. He is not as ‘open-minded’ as you think.

I’m not saying we should sit back and say “well God did it, it doesn’t matter how.” That is blatant ignorance. Since we are capable of discovery, we should do all we can to figure out how this world works.

We all have beliefs, to ignore that truth is to be blind and ignorant. To claim that “us scientists” are so much smarter because “we are beyond all that God stuff” is foolishness. The God you worship is found in where you determine truth.

--------------------------------------------
I have been researching my creationism and evolutionism to this point and feel a little bit more eager to dive into the waters. One thing though - I'm not searching out evolutionists in order to argue with them, like I used to. I am an evangelist first. So while I am convinced in my beliefs, I will not search out debates on purpose. But I am open to debate.

Here is a great quote by Sir Isaac Newton, who is rapidly becoming my favourite historical figure:

"Did blind chance know that there was light and what was its refraction, and fit the eyes of all creatures after the most curious manner to make use of it? These and other suchlike considerations, always have, and always will prevail with mankind, to believe that there is a Being who made all things, who has all things in his power, and who is therefore to be feared." - Sir Isaac Newton

Veggies in the fruit salad of life

I am attempting to eat healthier. In my exploits, I have given up sugar and today I started bring a salad to munch on instead of having lunch. My mother usually makes a salad for herself so I asked if she wouldn't mind just making a little extra for me. Now what goes into the salad is another thing. I asked her not to put radishes in, because I really don't like them. But I specifically didn't ask her not to put carrots in.

I hate carrots. I really do. They are part of God's creation but I would rather enjoy them from a far distance than ever have them in my mouth. As I was eating them this morning (I hate wasting food more than I hate carrots), I thought to myself: "I'll eat them today, but tomorrow, they are so gone!" But then something struck me. Something I determined blog-worthy and profound: The main goal of my salad is not for enjoyment. If the main goal was to enjoy the salad, then I could easily say that it is right to throw out the carrots. But the goal is a healthy lifestyle. So why throw something away that I know is good for me, to spite what it feels like.

There is a gospel lesson there, I feel that we miss out so much on the real blessings of Christianity. It's really nice when things go the way we want them to go, but when they don't, we need to be prepared to accept those things as good things from God. We can't just ignore the bad things and take all of the (perceived) good things.

God chastens those He loves. If you don't ever feel chastened, you've really got to wonder if He loves you.

When God gives you carrots, what do you do with them? More to myself, what will I do if I ever get a radish?

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

It's happening again.... the e-mails are back....

Emails. This time I don't even have to put my name on it. All that is required of me is to forward it. Sin lies at the door.



I am trying to get away from "fake" imagery (movies, tv, etc.). When I see suffering, I want to make sure that I am sensitive enough to truly weep in despair. This kind of e-mail does not help. (I couldn't even put the whole thing up because it is too painful.) It stirs the emotions, but at the end of it, all I have to do is take 10 seconds out of my life and I will be "helping" child abused children.

How? I am forwarding a story I can't prove is true, making other people do the same, with some false sense of "I did something right today." This microwave oven 'solution' does nothing. Is this a Christian manner of behaviour?

I've been noticing how sensitivity effects evangelism. When you see someone in need, does your heart truly go out to them? Or do we harden or hearts because of all the trash we let in when we watch the news and hear stories? I'm nearly there... I'm nearly at a point where I see someone and I want to speak to them. I don't feel like I have to speak to them. Or do something nice for them. Evangelism is a lifestyle, not a trip to the shopping center.

This e-mail does not help anyone, it gives a false sense of 'right-doing.' There is also a flaw in the logic: by forwarding this e-mail, how will abused children know I care? You want to help kids? Donate some money. Spend a weekend helping an orphanage. Get your hands dirty, feel some loss.

Friday, April 4, 2008

My favourite sayings, and a little philosophy

I was thinking of some statements I actually use (or could use) in evangelism:
  • You have to believe in free will
  • I am absolutely sure everything is relative
  • Say no to just saying no
  • It can only be both "EITHER OR" and "AND ONLY"
  • Nothing makes sense
  • Nothing can be known
  • No statements are true unless they can be proven scientifically


I was interested in the first cause on Wikipedia:

"First-cause arguments are described as self-refuting. For example, the philosopher Theodore Schick suggests that an argument by Thomas Aquinas can be formulated in the following terms:

1. Everything is caused by something other than itself
2. Therefore the universe was caused by something other than itself.
3. The string of causes cannot be infinitely long.
4. If the string of causes cannot be infinitely long, there must be a first cause.
5. Therefore, there must be a first cause, namely a divine entity.

– and suggests that this is self-refuting because "if everything has a cause other than itself, then god must have a cause other than himself. But if god has a cause other than himself, he cannot be the first cause. So if the first premise is true, the conclusion must be false."[SOURCE]



There are so many flaws in the argument. Firstly - it denies (or at least fails to include) the concept of infinity. Does there exists a number n such that n + 1 does not exist (n being an element of Integers)? Of course infinity exists!

This a naturalistic argument for God. It assumes things must exist within the 5 senses in order to be. This is clearly false, since consciousness exists, right? What about reason? You cannot have an argument for God that denies infinity.

Nor can we define God in naturalistic terms. He is Spirit, which enables Him to be infinite and therefore the first cause in a string of (7) limited causes. We must work FROM God and not TO God in such arguments. The last cause (where we are) cannot be the foundation for God's existence, rather God is the foundation for OUR existence.

Something to look forward to

Creationists, young and old alike (excuse the pun), have something to really look forward to: An upcoming movie which explores the Darwinian movement as it is today: Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed is a controversial examination of the theories and people involved in the evolutionist movement today.

To be honest I can't wait to spend my money on this one. I have been reading articles on it and even the evolutionists are fighting for sneak previews:

"When confronted at the screening by Myers' friend Richard Dawkins, a prominent atheist who is himself featured in the film, as to why Myers was 'expelled' from the screening, producer Mark Mathis replied that the producers were eager for Myers to screen the film but only after he had paid $10 to watch it with the rest of America after it releases on April 18th."[SOURCE]



I'm starting to like Ben Stein, we have the same birthday.... Oh and I like the idea of this movie.

But, of course there is always the Wikipedia view of things:

"One of the pro-evolution scientists interviewed for Expelled claims that he was interviewed under false pretenses and assumes the quotes are edited in a way that misrepresents his original statements" ... "This claim has been further corroborated by an incident where the same scientist, who was acknowledged in the credits, was ejected from a private screening on March 20th, 2008, and not allowed to view the movie."[SOURCE]



I have been looking for this 'corroboration' but have been unable to see it. If P.Z. Meyers has been misrepresented, then it doesn't matter when he sees the movie. Plus not even old Richie Dawkins claims that they were misrepresented. He had more problems with the crowd, apparently. I suppose he's fortunate for him that evolutionism teaches survival, rather than sacrifice.

"They singled me out and evicted me, but they didn't notice my guest. They let him go in escorted by my wife and daughter. I guess they didn't recognize him. My guest was …

Richard Dawkins." [SOURCE]


And Richard had a lot to say [HERE]. It's amazing how people will react when they are treated the way they treat others. If you are goning to be exclusivistic, then be prepared to be excluded. Of course they would know that if they had read their bibles.

"The whole tone of the film is whiny, paranoid -- pathetic really. The narrator is somebody called Ben Stein. I had not heard of him, but apparently he is well known to Americans, for it is hard to see why else he would have been chosen to front the film. He certainly can't have been chosen for his knowledge of science, nor his powers of logical reasoning, nor his box office appeal (heavens, no), and his speaking voice is an irritating, nasal drawl, innocent of charm and of consonants. I suppose that makes it a good voice for conveying the whingeing paranoia that I referred to, so maybe that was qualification enough." [SOURCE]



Can anyone smell the ad hominem? As to the eviction, well there's speculation. Apparently, the speculation that Meyers had no ticket and was disturbing the crowd is unfounded - more reliable sources state that Mark Mathis, producer, had this to say:

"Yes, I turned Mr. Myers away. He was not an invited guest of Premise Media. This was a private screening of an unfinished film. I could have let him in, just as I invited Michael Shermer to a screening in Nashville. Shermer is in the film as well. But, in light of Myers’ untruthful blogging about ‘Expelled’ I decided it was better to have him wait until April 18 and pay to see the film. Others, notable others, were permitted to see the film. At a private screening it’s my call."[SOURCE]



So there you have it. You could have registered on the net, or you could have been invited. Since some where explicitly excluded, some were not. It's amazing how post modern Richard Dawkins is. He looks at his own understanding and assumes it's truth. There's a lesson for our kids: "It doesn't matter what you believe, as long as you are louder than the other guy."

All in all, we weren't there. I believe that the side on which you fall will depend on how much you trust either of the parties, not on the evidence of what happened - since we will only ever have the parties testimonies. And you know what? If Mark wants to be a kid in the playground and say "it's my call!" - then so what? If it is his call - then let him make his call. It's childish, yes, but what can we do? Any response to it is becoming the other kid in the playground. Grow up.

This is probably going to do a lot. It has a lot of potential, my prayer is that it comes through with a gospel message. If not, then let's hope it opens the door for one. I'm excited and optimistic.

8 April Update: I found this, a creationist review:
[AiG on Expelled]

Thursday, April 3, 2008

It tolls for thee!

I am watching Hells Bells 2 again, and I think it is a great apologetic for Christians. At least twice I have been questioned on music and the evil behind it. What is great about the DVD is that it does not condemn rock and roll, it merely points you to the beliefs behind the music that so often go unheard.

Yesterday, while at varsity, I was listening to some of the music (that I own) that I had put on my computer. I was so shocked to hear these words by Ok Go:

"If evil were a lesser breed then justice after all these years the righteous would have freed the world of sin.
The house wins.
Oh the house always wins." [SOURCE]


Just give up on goodness, because the 'house' always wins. What a statement. Now I'm not going nuts over this song, but if you have heard it, you've probably never actually listened to those lines. I actually put away the CD for other reasons (they blaspheme in one song - and yes that's enough for me to put away the CD - my computer is on random and the songs on there are quite old), but isn't it amazing that we can hear that and be 'unimpressed.'

The question is - can music influence you? The answer, no matter what you think, is yes. Has a song ever made you feel better? Has a song every related with you on your level, making life easier? We've all experienced the power of music. For some reason we seem to think that music can only have a positive affect on us. To think like that is plain naïve.

Well, there's a lot I could say on this topic, but I won't dive too deep. I would like to leave you with some more words from Ok Go:

"You don't have to be alone to be lonely
You might as well give in.
You don't have to be sick to be dying
You might as well give in.
You don't have to have lost to be lost.
Oh give in.
You don't have to be alone to be lonely
You might as well give in." [SOURCE]