Circle of the Earth
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28-05-2016, 03:53 PM
Isaiah 40:22
Does the context of Isaiah 40:22 really mean a spherical earth? I keep pointing out to Christians that the word means Circle in Hebrew, and they keep saying, "but it could also mean sphere!" I really don't know what to say. Can you guys help me out?
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28-05-2016, 04:09 PM
Circle of the Earth
Does Isaiah 40:22 state that the Earth is a sphere?

Quote: "According to Morris this verse describes a spherical earth. The Hebrew word is hwg. I believe that this refers to the circular horizon that vaults itself over the earth to form a dome" (Meyers 1989, 63-9).

Christians really are using this one and really annoys me!
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28-05-2016, 04:27 PM
RE: Circle of the Earth
Threads merged
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28-05-2016, 04:36 PM
RE: Circle of the Earth
Of course the fundies are going to try to explain it away, and frankly I don't think you're going to get very far with this sort of esoteric argument quibbling over whether the word meant "circle" or "sphere". But to consider it a sphere, you must ignore verses that talk about the "pillars of the earth" and other such references.

The Hebrew idea came from the neighboring Babylonian and Sumerian cultures, both of which believed the earth was a flat surface, resting upon pillars amid "the waters", with a bowl-shaped firmament stretched out above it. You might get some traction with fundamentalist literalists by pointing out how the modern Jews interpret their own scriptures on the subject:

In summary, since we have clearly seen that Chazal subscribed to the ancient Babylonian cosmology of the earth as a flat or near-flat disc with the rest of the universe as a dome above it, it is ludicrous to talk about Chazal being ahead of their time with regard to understanding the nature of the world and the universe.

Now, I happen to have inside info that this sidebar in Kolmus was not part of the original article, but was later added following instructions from the editor, who was concerned that the article was too maskilic and that they needed to show their True Charedi credentials. Since that is the case, and since Mishpachah is doing a very valuable job, I can't criticize them for doing their job.

But I have to do my job, too. And claiming that Chazal were ahead of their time with regard to understanding the nature of the world and the universe is not only false, but also dangerous. Creating such a false image can lead to severe disillusionment and bitterness when people discover the truth. We should be respecting Chazal as great Torah scholars who produced an astounding compendium of debate, laws and ethics - not as modern scientists.



http://www.rationalistjudaism.com/2010/1...verse.html

"Theology made no provision for evolution. The biblical authors had missed the most important revelation of all! Could it be that they were not really privy to the thoughts of God?" - E. O. Wilson
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28-05-2016, 04:49 PM
RE: Circle of the Earth
(28-05-2016 04:36 PM)RocketSurgeon76 Wrote:  Of course the fundies are going to try to explain it away, and frankly I don't think you're going to get very far with this sort of esoteric argument quibbling over whether the word meant "circle" or "sphere". But to consider it a sphere, you must ignore verses that talk about the "pillars of the earth" and other such references.

The Hebrew idea came from the neighboring Babylonian and Sumerian cultures, both of which believed the earth was a flat surface, resting upon pillars amid "the waters", with a bowl-shaped firmament stretched out above it. You might get some traction with fundamentalist literalists by pointing out how the modern Jews interpret their own scriptures on the subject:

In summary, since we have clearly seen that Chazal subscribed to the ancient Babylonian cosmology of the earth as a flat or near-flat disc with the rest of the universe as a dome above it, it is ludicrous to talk about Chazal being ahead of their time with regard to understanding the nature of the world and the universe.

Now, I happen to have inside info that this sidebar in Kolmus was not part of the original article, but was later added following instructions from the editor, who was concerned that the article was too maskilic and that they needed to show their True Charedi credentials. Since that is the case, and since Mishpachah is doing a very valuable job, I can't criticize them for doing their job.

But I have to do my job, too. And claiming that Chazal were ahead of their time with regard to understanding the nature of the world and the universe is not only false, but also dangerous. Creating such a false image can lead to severe disillusionment and bitterness when people discover the truth. We should be respecting Chazal as great Torah scholars who produced an astounding compendium of debate, laws and ethics - not as modern scientists.



http://www.rationalistjudaism.com/2010/1...verse.html

That's why I've basically given up on debating with Christians, there's no point. I guess it's just an OCD thing I have. I've posted a topic like this before on ex-Christian.com's forum Page, and they all said I should just let it go!
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28-05-2016, 05:38 PM
RE: Circle of the Earth
(28-05-2016 03:53 PM)SkepticalDaniel Wrote:  Does the context of Isaiah 40:22 really mean a spherical earth? I keep pointing out to Christians that the word means Circle in Hebrew, and they keep saying, "but it could also mean sphere!" I really don't know what to say. Can you guys help me out?

The earth is not spherical. It is ellipsoidal.

#sigh
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28-05-2016, 07:48 PM
RE: Circle of the Earth
(28-05-2016 05:38 PM)GirlyMan Wrote:  
(28-05-2016 03:53 PM)SkepticalDaniel Wrote:  Does the context of Isaiah 40:22 really mean a spherical earth? I keep pointing out to Christians that the word means Circle in Hebrew, and they keep saying, "but it could also mean sphere!" I really don't know what to say. Can you guys help me out?

The earth is not spherical. It is ellipsoidal.

I believe it's actually an oblate spheroid. Consider

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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28-05-2016, 08:19 PM
RE: Circle of the Earth
(28-05-2016 07:48 PM)Chas Wrote:  
(28-05-2016 05:38 PM)GirlyMan Wrote:  The earth is not spherical. It is ellipsoidal.

I believe it's actually an oblate spheroid. Consider

That's not what they taught me in cartography class.

#sigh
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28-05-2016, 08:23 PM
RE: Circle of the Earth
(28-05-2016 08:19 PM)GirlyMan Wrote:  
(28-05-2016 07:48 PM)Chas Wrote:  I believe it's actually an oblate spheroid. Consider

That's not what they taught me in cartography class.

I thought it just bulged in the middle a little bit. Tongue
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28-05-2016, 08:26 PM
RE: Circle of the Earth
(28-05-2016 08:19 PM)GirlyMan Wrote:  
(28-05-2016 07:48 PM)Chas Wrote:  I believe it's actually an oblate spheroid. Consider

That's not what they taught me in cartography class.

That's because cartography deals with surfaces.

An oblate spheroid is a surface of revolution obtained by rotating an ellipse about its minor axis.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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