Scientific and Historical Evidence for God
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25-01-2013, 01:26 PM
Scientific and Historical Evidence for God
A couple of days ago I shared this link of my Facebook page. I thought it was a really good and concise expression of how I feel.

Today, one of my good friends posted this comment:

Quote:You have made some generalizations about religion that don't hold up to scrutiny! With respect, I believe you and Mr. Penn are misguided in your views on religion. I can't speak for other religions but I can share what I know and believe about Christianity!
Each group, christians and atheists, has its extremist and misguided individuals. I speak for the beliefs shared by the majority of my brothers and sisters in Christ.

Morality isn't bribes and threats. Neither is Christianity. Lets start with bribery. There will be rewards for our good deeds in heaven but that is not why we do them. We do good deeds because we strive to become like Christ and become servants. For it is He that saves us and not our good deeds! We are charged to try and love everyone as He does. I am but a tarnished, imperfect picture of the Savior that lives in me but if i try to love you as He does then there isn't much i wouldn't do for you. And in telling you about Christ, we aren't bribing you. If I knew someone that was giving away free luxury cars wouldn't I tell you and everyone I could? Then how much more so if I knew someone that was offering eternal bliss and forgiveness of sin that is in us all! It is much more like a free gift to any who want it than a bribe. Christians are no better than atheists because we are all dead in our sins! We have just asked and received the free gift of salvations from sin!

As for the threat part. We are not threatening anybody. We are trying to make everyone aware of the situation they are in. If we were both skydiving and halfway down I tell you that if you don't open your parachute you will die. Am I threatening you by saying this? No. I am simply making you aware of your choices and the consequences of those choices! You have every right to think that you are taking a safe stroll on the sidewalk when actually your plummeting at thirty two feet per second per second to your death and your only salvation is to open your chute. (Accept Jesus into your heart!) It will take all but a couple seconds for us to realize who was right in their beliefs when we die!
Mr. Penn goes on to say that faith is belief without evidence and that faith is a feeling. Both of those are true but he is missing the other, and in my opinion, more important definition of faith! Faith is complete trust!! I have complete trust in God!!
Plus there is evidence to back up my complete trust/faith in God! Here are some brief examples:
1. Anthropic fine tuning: there are more than 30 physical or cosmological parameters that require very very precise calibration in order to produce and sustain life! For example: gravity is fine tuned to one part in a hundred million billion billion billion billion billion. If you were to change it in one part in either direction, life would not be possible. Also the cosmological constant, which represents the energy density of space, is as precise as throwing a dart from space and hitting a bulls-eye just a trillionth of a trillionth of an inch in diameter on Earth! All of this points to design! Points to God!
2. Darwin said,"If it could be demonstrated that any complex organ existed which could not possibly have been formed by numerous, successive, slight modifications, my theory would absolutely break down." Biochemist today have demonstrated exactly that through the discovery of "irreducibly complex" molecular machines such as cilia, bacterial flagella, the system of transporting proteins within cells, and the system if blood clotting. These molecular machines point to design! Point to God!
3. DNA itself screams design. Where did all that information come from. The naturalistic view would be like putting a bunch of random machine parts in a bag, shaking it up, and out pops a computer. A fully programmed computer at that! This point to design! Points to God!
4. The presence of consciousness! The laws of chemistry and physics cannot explain out experience of consciousness! You can't dissect my brain and say, this is the brain cell that makes Nick like the browns over the steelers! The origin of our mind is from God! Our souls are from God!
5. There is zero fossil record to support Darwin's claim! The fossil records actually points to God through the Cambrian explosion. This is when the majority or all of the world's 40 phyla virtually sprang forth with unique body plans. That sounds like creation instead of evolution to me! How about you?
6. Compared to other ancient documents, there is an unprecedented number of New Testament manuscripts and they can be dated extremely close to the original writings. The modern New Testament is 99.5 percent free of textual discrepancies, with no major Christian doctrine in doubt.
7. Archaeology confirms the historicity of the New Testament.
8. Jesus matched all of the prophecies for Messiah. Against astronomical odds - one chance in a trillion, trillion, trillion, trillion, trillion, trillion, trillion, trillion, trillion, trillion, trillion, trillion, trillion - could one person fulfill all of the prophecies and Jesus Christ did! All of Gods prophecies that have passed have been true! What makes you think the rest of them won't come true either?
9. If Jesus didn't rise from the grave then how does history explain the sudden conversions of James and Paul, the willingness of the apostles to die for their cause if they were in a unique position to know whether the resurrection happened, and the miraculous emergence of the church in the face of brutal Roman persecution!

These and many many more! If you would like to investigate further, please read the series by Lee Strobel, the Big Book of Bible Difficulties, and of course the Holy word of God in the Bible!

God bless you all!!

Now, like I said, he's a good friend of mine, and so I told him I would reply and address every point he raised, but that it would take a while for me to do it in my free time. Some of his points (such as the fine tuned argument and DNA confirms God) I have heard of and looked into somewhat, and others (like #6-9) I am less familiar with.

I want to be as thoughtful and thorough in my response as I can, so can anyone help me out? What are some good resources I can look at to research these claims better? How would you address them?
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25-01-2013, 01:30 PM
RE: Scientific and Historical Evidence for God
Why bother? Consider

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25-01-2013, 01:34 PM
RE: Scientific and Historical Evidence for God
(25-01-2013 01:30 PM)Vosur Wrote:  Why bother? Consider
Because this is the first that he and I have ever discussed religion like this, really. We have no hatred toward each other or anything, so I feel he deserves a response.
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25-01-2013, 02:53 PM (This post was last modified: 25-01-2013 02:56 PM by kingschosen.)
RE: Scientific and Historical Evidence for God
*DISCLAIMER - I am a Christian. However, most of what he is saying is intellectual dishonesty.*

#1 - I agree... except I believe God designed evolution.
#2 - IC is pseudoscience babble that has been dismissed by the scientific community - both by the irreligious and the religious alike. Moreover, refuting Darwin doesn't disprove evolution. It's a smoke and mirrors tactic that is used to divert attention from the topic at hand.
#3 - I agree and disagree. DNA shows irrefutable signs of evolution; however, the complexity of the evolution shows signs of guidance.
#4 - God of the Gaps theory which is a complete intellectual fallacy. Just because we can't explain scientifically now, doesn't mean that we won't be able to in the future. Likewise, many animals have consciousness. The very fact that we share this same trait with other animals is evidence of a common ancestor.
#5 - He obviously isn't as smart in science as he thinks he is. He displays a very loose grasp of the understanding of evolution.
#6 - This is false information. There are no original documents to be compared to. The NT shows significantly more discrepancies than .5%. The NIV Bible removed 40+ verses from the Bible based on the Dead Sea Scrolls.
#7 - Intellectual dishonesty again. Just because there are historical places and events that are documented, it doesn't provide empirical proof of its accurate historicity. It's like saying that a just because a modern work of fiction details New York City and its happenings that it is a historically correct story. If this is the case, then the Iliad and the Oddessey are as accurate as the Bible.
#8 - Intellectual dishonesty at its finest. Fulfilling prophecies that were already written about thousands of years before isn't hard to do. It's even easier if you are expected to do it, and the people writing about know about these prophecies as well. There is no empirical way to prove that the prophesies were actually fulfilled. You also can't base future prophecies being fulfilled on something unprovable.
#9 - There are several scholars that believe Paul was motivated by his own selfish desires and that he actually shaped Christianity based on what he wanted it to be - not Christ. And, it's silly to say that people wouldn't die for an untrue cause. Delusions can be powerful and can drive people to die by them. David Koresh... Charlie Manson... Jim Jones... Heaven's Gate... and these are just modern examples. As I stated before, complete intellectual dishonesty.

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25-01-2013, 03:02 PM
RE: Scientific and Historical Evidence for God
Wow, thanks kingschosen! You've definitely given me a lot to look into.
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25-01-2013, 04:19 PM
RE: Scientific and Historical Evidence for God
(25-01-2013 02:53 PM)kingschosen Wrote:  #3 - ... however, the complexity of the evolution shows signs of guidance.

No, it doesn't. Drinking Beverage

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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25-01-2013, 06:50 PM (This post was last modified: 25-01-2013 06:54 PM by Free Thought.)
RE: Scientific and Historical Evidence for God
(25-01-2013 01:26 PM)tm258 Wrote:  A couple of days ago I shared this link of my Facebook page. I thought it was a really good and concise expression of how I feel.

Today, one of my good friends posted this comment:

Quote:You have made some generalizations about religion that don't hold up to scrutiny! With respect, I believe you and Mr. Penn are misguided in your views on religion. I can't speak for other religions but I can share what I know and believe about Christianity!
Each group, christians and atheists, has its extremist and misguided individuals. I speak for the beliefs shared by the majority of my brothers and sisters in Christ.

Morality isn't bribes and threats. Neither is Christianity. Lets start with bribery. There will be rewards for our good deeds in heaven but that is not why we do them. We do good deeds because we strive to become like Christ and become servants. For it is He that saves us and not our good deeds! We are charged to try and love everyone as He does. I am but a tarnished, imperfect picture of the Savior that lives in me but if i try to love you as He does then there isn't much i wouldn't do for you. And in telling you about Christ, we aren't bribing you. If I knew someone that was giving away free luxury cars wouldn't I tell you and everyone I could? Then how much more so if I knew someone that was offering eternal bliss and forgiveness of sin that is in us all! It is much more like a free gift to any who want it than a bribe. Christians are no better than atheists because we are all dead in our sins! We have just asked and received the free gift of salvations from sin!

As for the threat part. We are not threatening anybody. We are trying to make everyone aware of the situation they are in. If we were both skydiving and halfway down I tell you that if you don't open your parachute you will die. Am I threatening you by saying this? No. I am simply making you aware of your choices and the consequences of those choices! You have every right to think that you are taking a safe stroll on the sidewalk when actually your plummeting at thirty two feet per second per second to your death and your only salvation is to open your chute. (Accept Jesus into your heart!) It will take all but a couple seconds for us to realize who was right in their beliefs when we die!
Mr. Penn goes on to say that faith is belief without evidence and that faith is a feeling. Both of those are true but he is missing the other, and in my opinion, more important definition of faith! Faith is complete trust!! I have complete trust in God!!
Plus there is evidence to back up my complete trust/faith in God! Here are some brief examples:
1. Anthropic fine tuning: there are more than 30 physical or cosmological parameters that require very very precise calibration in order to produce and sustain life! For example: gravity is fine tuned to one part in a hundred million billion billion billion billion billion. If you were to change it in one part in either direction, life would not be possible. Also the cosmological constant, which represents the energy density of space, is as precise as throwing a dart from space and hitting a bulls-eye just a trillionth of a trillionth of an inch in diameter on Earth! All of this points to design! Points to God!
2. Darwin said,"If it could be demonstrated that any complex organ existed which could not possibly have been formed by numerous, successive, slight modifications, my theory would absolutely break down." Biochemist today have demonstrated exactly that through the discovery of "irreducibly complex" molecular machines such as cilia, bacterial flagella, the system of transporting proteins within cells, and the system if blood clotting. These molecular machines point to design! Point to God!
3. DNA itself screams design. Where did all that information come from. The naturalistic view would be like putting a bunch of random machine parts in a bag, shaking it up, and out pops a computer. A fully programmed computer at that! This point to design! Points to God!
4. The presence of consciousness! The laws of chemistry and physics cannot explain out experience of consciousness! You can't dissect my brain and say, this is the brain cell that makes Nick like the browns over the steelers! The origin of our mind is from God! Our souls are from God!
5. There is zero fossil record to support Darwin's claim! The fossil records actually points to God through the Cambrian explosion. This is when the majority or all of the world's 40 phyla virtually sprang forth with unique body plans. That sounds like creation instead of evolution to me! How about you?
6. Compared to other ancient documents, there is an unprecedented number of New Testament manuscripts and they can be dated extremely close to the original writings. The modern New Testament is 99.5 percent free of textual discrepancies, with no major Christian doctrine in doubt.
7. Archaeology confirms the historicity of the New Testament.
8. Jesus matched all of the prophecies for Messiah. Against astronomical odds - one chance in a trillion, trillion, trillion, trillion, trillion, trillion, trillion, trillion, trillion, trillion, trillion, trillion, trillion - could one person fulfill all of the prophecies and Jesus Christ did! All of Gods prophecies that have passed have been true! What makes you think the rest of them won't come true either?
9. If Jesus didn't rise from the grave then how does history explain the sudden conversions of James and Paul, the willingness of the apostles to die for their cause if they were in a unique position to know whether the resurrection happened, and the miraculous emergence of the church in the face of brutal Roman persecution!

These and many many more! If you would like to investigate further, please read the series by Lee Strobel, the Big Book of Bible Difficulties, and of course the Holy word of God in the Bible!

God bless you all!!

Now, like I said, he's a good friend of mine, and so I told him I would reply and address every point he raised, but that it would take a while for me to do it in my free time. Some of his points (such as the fine tuned argument and DNA confirms God) I have heard of and looked into somewhat, and others (like #6-9) I am less familiar with.

I want to be as thoughtful and thorough in my response as I can, so can anyone help me out? What are some good resources I can look at to research these claims better? How would you address them?
1. That is a severe misrepresentation. First of all, Gravity is the weakest force, if I remember correctly. Your friend has one thing right.. kinda; if it weren't for gravity, we would not be able to exist. We need stars to form, to create light and heavy elements which eventually become planets and such, not exactly requiring a god.

Ironically, if it were not for gravity forming the stars, Abiogenesis could never have taken place!

2. Actually, no. What Darwin, who as much as I hate to say it, had an almost ignorant understanding of evolution (in comparison to what we now know), has no baring on evolutionary theory today. It is one of the most supported theories in scientific history, probably more so than gravity itself, for a reason. Irreducible Complexity is essentially just a mask for Personal Incredulity; "I cannot understand how X could be without Y, so it must be Y -> X instead!"


3. That is a gross over simplification. If you ask your friend to specify "information", I doubt he will, or he'll end up blathering incoherently. I suggest reading up on Abiogenesis hypotheses for this one, Here is an interesting site . Should be a good starting point for an effective counter.

4. The presence of consciousness is as much evidence of god as it is evidence of a turtle named Sam who rides a motorbike made entirely out of Hydrogen. As far as anybody can tell, consciousness (or a mind if you prefer), arises from a sufficiently complex neurological system, which can read and interpret patterns from external stimuli. Our ability of self-awareness is entirely a by-product of our brains, which we have a fair decent understanding of how it works.

5. Ah, the "There aint no fossil record" claim. Taxonomy would beg to differ with your friend, its an entire discipline based on classification of species into taxa, including the thousands in the fossil record.
As a side-note Using Phylogenetics we are able to look at the evolutionary relationships between organisms though morphological and molecular sequencing, which of course helps in classification of species within the fossil record.


6. I have no comment here, bibal-shit is not within my area of knowledge, sorry, somebody else can give a better answer, I'm sure.

7. Archaeological records, to my knowledge, do not support either Bibal iteration to any major degree, there are no historians from that period ever recording things in the bibal as they supposedly happened either, to my knowledge those that did were forged.
But again, not an area of great knowledge for me.

8. The NT was, by all evidence and opinion, written as a follow up to the OT, of course Jeebus would bit the OT's bill. But even then, he is a self-contradictory character, by NT accounts.

9. People often sacrifice, or are prepared to sacrifice themselves for a cause, that does not mean the cause is true or not. All that says is that the person in question might have questionable mental stability.


Lee Strobel is a bit infamous, I have not read any of his books myself, but I have heard that his books tend to be full of inaccuracies, fallacies and falsehoods. Like pretty much every book by his ilk. I would recommend you obtain and read A Universe from Nothing or The Blind Watchmaker by Lawrence Krauss and Richard Dawkins respectively.

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25-01-2013, 07:43 PM
RE: Scientific and Historical Evidence for God
#6 I'm not sure how they figure the NT is 99.5% accurate. I'm no expert, but these books were chosen a few hundred years after Jesus supposedly existed. Even with the choice, there are contradictions and inaccuracies aplenty. The independent nonbiblical proof just isn't there. So the 99.5 thing sounds to me like a combination of reverse engineering and argument from authority. Kinda spills into #7. #8 definitely smacks of reverse engineering.

#9, others have answered that one. We see that not just in Christianity, but the suicide bombers who take out marketplaces in anticipation of their 72 virgins. Fanaticism doesn't make the beliefs true.

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25-01-2013, 09:30 PM (This post was last modified: 26-01-2013 02:06 AM by Bucky Ball.)
RE: Scientific and Historical Evidence for God
All the design shit has been thoroughly debunked.
http://www.thethinkingatheist.com/forum/...m+debunked
Scroll down.
So has the rest. But like Vosur says, why bother ?

See above for the "fine tuning". The many universe theory also destroys that nonsense. Highly improbable things happen, with no designer, all the time. You can make one happen by throwing 100 pair of dice on your desk, and the pattern will be higher than a Goggleplex. It's just ignorance of Probability theory, and math. It's also basically a "god of the gaps" argument. And it certainly doesn't point to Yahweh, as the god. So what god is he talking about ? I bet it just happens to be his god, and not Allah or Baal, or any of the other gods humans have cooked up over the thousands of years to explain the gaps in their knowledge.
See Dr Jack Szotack's stuff https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PqPGOhXoprU for the origins of life requiring no gods. It does not point to a god. Neither does DNA "scream" god. It is full of junk, (unnecessary genes, and unused molecules that are never expressed), and "screams" the opposite in fact, and the fact that it all goes wrong, (cancer) PROVES it was not cooked up by a god. and in fact proves Evolution is true. Actually your friend believes in Evolution and DNA, as if he were in prison, and could get out by use of DNA, (which proves Evolution is true), he would use it. So he's a hypocrite. Consciousness is an emergent property from/of chemistry, memory, and genetics. It says nothing about the gods. If he thinks there are no fossils, he never took Geology or Evolutionary Biology. Tell him to read Dawkins or anyone. He has no clue what he is talking about in terms of the New Testament. Tell him to read Bert Ehrman, or take a class at a major university. That's just a line from Creationism bunk. There WAS no concept of "prophesy" in Hebrew culture, in terms of "telling the future. "Soothsaying" was forbidden. The role of a prophet was to speak to the people of their own day, not tell the future. The "fortune-telling" thing is totally Hollywood. That is not what prophets did, or were all about. It's simply ignorance of the Bible, and the culture. For every prophesy that happened, there were ten that didn't, and they were ALL non-specific, and could have referred to anyone, or anything. It's just confirmation bias gone nuts. If James thought Jebus rose from the grave, why didn't he even mention it in his epistle ? If YOUR brother rose from the dead, would you forget to mention it ? In fact your friend doesn't really know what they thought about that belief, and in fact the NT is very complex with respect to it. It meant different things to different people, and in fact there is a good case to be made it was not meant "physically". http://www.thethinkingatheist.com/forum/...surrection Scholars debate it, even Christian scholars. As far a dying for their religion, so did the 9/11 bombers.
Lee Stroebel, Gary Habermas, WL Craig, and all those third rate academics who among them have no degree from a reputable Biblical Studies dept, (Stroebel is a journalist who has written a few VERY crappy books), are into money-making, and each are refuted all over YouTube, and are intellectual fly-weights.

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein Certified Ancient Astronaut Theorist and Levitating yogi, CAAT-LY.
Yeah, for verily I say unto thee, and this we know : Jebus no likey that which doth tickle thee unto thy nether regions.

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26-01-2013, 12:37 AM
RE: Scientific and Historical Evidence for God
Thanks everyone. You've all given me a bunch of points to counter with and investigate further. I have a feeling I'm going to be doing a bunch of learning over the weekend! Smile
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