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01-10-2011, 09:30 PM
RE: Was banned for asking...
Okay, sorry about that.

(01-10-2011 04:15 PM)cufflink Wrote:  On salvation: What exactly am I supposed to be saved from?


Now, this is an odd question from one who I am assuming feels he has a decent grasp on scipture.


(01-10-2011 04:15 PM)cufflink Wrote:  If it’s hell, well . . . heaven and hell (that nasty innovation of the New Testament) are mythology—they don’t exist.

At least you hope so...right?

Look at it this way: when we educate our children that if they choose a certain course of action, such as murder or theft or drug dealing, the likley consequence will be addiction, prison, and even death...what are we "saving them from?"

It is a combination of consequences, the worst of which we would consider to be death, right? For the parent, their death will have consequences for them as well, which is good motivation for us to teach our children not to embrace lifestyles, habits, or characteristics that will bring about one consequence, death, which means that the child would then be separated from their parent.

This separation will in reality begin long before their child is either imprisoned or dies from their action, because the lifestyle, habit, or chacteristic will actually separate them from their parents long before the legal system or medical reasons do. Would you agree?

Even so when we talk about salvation as taught in scripture, we do not limit salvation to aone specific aspect or application. In the Old Testament, physical salvation is highlighted. Over and over we see men saved from physical death. In the New Testament, revelation concerning salvation is broadened to spiritual salvation. It is not non-existant in the Old Testament, but, we can, due to the revelation given in the New, understand the Old Testament better.

Jesus expounded upon the Old and illustrated that the understanding that the Law was to give man went beyond a ritual fulfillment of the letter of the Law, such as Christ saying, "You have heard it said..."

He gave the understanding that should have come from the commandment by saying, "But I say unto you..." in which hating one's brother (without cause) violated what God would have man to have in his heart itself. Couple that with the teaching that sin, no matter the sin, begins in the heart. There is a big clue to this in the Ten Commandments: "Thou shalt not covet."

What is in the hearts of men is far more important than their ability to ritually perform their own interpretation of God's will for man.

Going back to the quote (sorry about that), in answer to this particular question, yes: it can be said that those who are saved are saved from Hell. However, it is not limited to that.


(01-10-2011 04:15 PM)cufflink Wrote:  Am I being saved from death itself?

If you mean physical death, no, unless of course the Rapture takes place before you physically die. Though we are saved, we are still subject to unredeemed flesh. There are those of particular faiths that believe that those who are saved can live sinless lives, but I do not see this as a sound doctrine derived from scripture. The flip-side of that coin are those who believe that scripture teaches removal of consequences for sin in their lives, or, in other words...license to sin. Both are extremes and both are, I believe, false doctrine.

What scripture does teach is that those who turn to Christ in faith are moved to a "legal standing" of which the terms sanctified, justified, and made complete speak. While of the three, sanctified has two general meanings and describes both the standing of the believer, as well as the progressive process of being made holy, none of them teach a "let go let God" or license to sin or the possibility that sinlessness is expected or even possible. It is actually impossible due to the fact that we are in unredeemed flesh. Now don't get me wrong, because I would like to make perfectly clear that Christian doctrine does teach that believers have a responsibility to live holy before God. It has to be admitted though, no-one does so perfectly, and I believe holiness is directly leaked to discernment that is gained through study of God's word combined with the obedience of the believer.

So for the original question, it can be said, "I am saved (I have been forgiven, deemed righteous by imputation of Christ's righteousness), I am being saved (daily transformed and conformed to the image of God's Son), and I will be saved (I will be delivered from this body which is as of yet unredeemed).

Those who die before the Rapture now go to be with the Lord. At the time of the catching away (for those who have a problem with this modern term), those who have died will be reunited with their physical bodies (which will be resurrected even as Christ's was), and they which remain (those of the Church who are still alive) will be instantaneously transformed, resurrected really (though some insist that death must take place), and both groups (the dead in Christ as well as the living Church) will have at this time been saved (redeemed) and receive their glorified bodies.

Hope that is not too much.


(01-10-2011 04:15 PM)cufflink Wrote:  I don’t believe in life after death:

You are not alone. Are you aware that the Sadducees did not either? That is why they were so sad, you see? (I never get tired of that joke...lol).

I would look at the words of Christ to them. I know you reject the notion that the words of Christ carried significant truth, but I would just suggest looking at His view concerning this one belief.


(01-10-2011 04:15 PM)cufflink Wrote:  although the atoms and molecules of my body will go on, there’s no valid reason to think I’m going to survive my death with any preservation of my identity.


There are those who claim to be Christians that believe similarly, that at death, they will partake in soul-sleep.

But, scripture teaches that there is indeed life after death. This is one of the things that many, I feel, do not like to think about. Think about it. The way that scripture is taught in most Churches, and even the religions of the world present to man an impossible task. A poor delivery of biblical teaching is just as bad as the works-based religions of the world. Christianity has since the first century battled against false doctrine and those who would pervert the word of God. While you might scoff at the existence of demons, I can see their handiwork in many religious teachings, as well as their infiltration of the Church.

This is one of the reasons that Israel, when given the Law (and God knew they were religious and would worship something...its kind of like some kids needing more explicit instruction and something to keep them busy), was given such strict guidelines: they were to not tolerate evil amongst them, but were to be a people holy unto the Lord.

Their failure to put away sin among them and their toleration of sin can be seen in modern Christendom (which I distinguish from the true Church) in its slothfulness in both doctrine and application. Why is it that most children will turn away from God when they reach the age when they are making decisions for themselves? Complacency in the leadership, particularly in the home.

(01-10-2011 04:15 PM)cufflink Wrote:  Am I being saved from a life without God?

You say that like it is so ridiculous. As you said in the last post, "Who wouldn't be thrilled to find out there is a God that loves them, and has their best interest at heart?"

But yes, you will be saved from a life without God. THE God, not the God presented by those who do not know Him.

(01-10-2011 04:15 PM)cufflink Wrote:  I don’t believe a benevolent God exists

Well, I don't know about a "benevolent god," but I am fully convinced that the God that gave us the Bible is in fact real, and I fully believe.

However, I have to learn of Him from the scripture that He has given us. If I seek to learn of Him secondhand, I will be learning of "Joe's God," or Frank's God," not God as He reveals Himself to me.

Are you the same person to everyone you know? Do you treat every person equally? Can you recognize of yourself that you, Cufflink, present yourself to everyone just a little bit differently? So it is with God, I believe. Now don't confuse that with the thought that I think it is God Who "changes," what I mean to say is that as we get to know Him better, the better we understand Him. Just like when you meet new people, you may be reserved at first, and, as you get to know them better...they actually get to know you better.

And ever heard of the old saying, "Familiarity breeds contempt?" How true this is, but in our relationship with God, the reverse is true. The better we get to know Him, the more we love Him. And when we hear people make derisive statements about Him, we are grieved. Not for God, but for the person. It is sad to me to read the caricature of the God of Heaven that is repeatedly expressed here, but, I will let you in on a little secret: I would have been right there with you not so terribly long ago. So I do not look down on those who mock God, but have a genuine concern and sympathy.

I hope that doesn't sound condescending...it is not meant to be.


(01-10-2011 04:15 PM)cufflink Wrote:  —in fact, I can make a lot more sense out of life knowing there’s no such being.

You mean that the wickedness and vileness that we see in humanity makes more sense if there is no God?

That man hasn't got a clue as to what peace is because...there is no God?


(01-10-2011 04:15 PM)cufflink Wrote:  (If God existed, he’d have a ****load of splainin’ to do.


To who? You? Me? David? In the 44th Psalm?

There is One God, and One God only. Man would have to not only be "a" god, but would have to exceed God in power, for God to have to answer to him.


(01-10-2011 04:15 PM)cufflink Wrote:  But the unanswerable question about why bad things happen to good people goes away if good and bad happen at random.)


Why would it need to "go away?" There is nothing in scripture that states the saved are good, and will therefore have no problem. Quite the opposite: we can expect tribulation. Let me share this with you Cufflink, and take it with a grain of salt and keep in mind my personal beliefs, just for a minute: I know how to make things easier on myself, all I have to do is...nothing. Sometimes when I go to the effort of seeking to either talk, teach, and even preach the Gospel of Jesus, things are not smooth sailing. I don't mean from those I speak to, but just various, strange things. This is not the case if I am inactive in my studies, and doing what I might enjoy more. I know that may seem a little stranmge, but I can tell you, this principle too is usually true.

But thats okay...I'll be alright.


(01-10-2011 04:15 PM)cufflink Wrote:  More importantly, I don’t need the notion of God to appreciate the wonder of being alive in an incredible universe and to feel a sense of self-worth.

Where did you get the idea that a sense of self worth is desirable? Or let me put it this way, how are you doing concerning the self worth of others? How well do you treat your enemies? Do you have a concern for them? I myself feel there is a lot of room for improvement in my own life.

As far as the universe goes, I agree: it is an incredible universe. One indication to me that there is a God.


(01-10-2011 04:15 PM)cufflink Wrote:  So the Christian notion of salvation is something I don’t relate to and that frankly creeps me out.

I do not see why...lol. Sorry, this just seemed somewhat humorous. I do not see how a person that is applying scriptural teaching in their life can...creep you out.

(01-10-2011 04:15 PM)cufflink Wrote:  The religious people I respect the most are the ones who don’t try to “save” non-believers but rather take the inspiration they get from their beliefs and use it to do genuine good in the world—to feed the hungry, clothe the poor, plead for the widow and the orphan, protect the planet.

First, no Christian saves anyone. Christians have but one command concerning salvation of others, and that is sowing the seed, the word of God. There are those who may come behind the sower, and "water" the seed sown, but it is God that makes it grow.

Second, if you have ever been a part of a doctrinally sound congregation, you will not have failed to meet those you picture here. It is true there will be tares among the wheat, but, there is always a remnant, those who are in fact the children of God. I believe that is true of most doctrinally sound fellowships, and that you will meet people like this even in fellowships that have doctrine that is in error.

(01-10-2011 04:15 PM)cufflink Wrote:  Anyway, I enjoy talking to intelligent, articulate, reasonable people about important things, regardless of whether I agree with them.

And I hope you get to talk to someone like that some day...lol.

(01-10-2011 04:15 PM)cufflink Wrote:  So I’ve enjoyed our conversation, and I hope you have too.

No worries, I have enjoyed it tremendously. And I also hope that you might direct those you feel could teach the bible my way. I am trying to be non-intrusive, I do not want to wear out my welcome, well, you know...lol.

(01-10-2011 04:15 PM)cufflink Wrote:  I also appreciated what you said about the value of listening. What I hope is that the listening you talked about isn’t just for the purpose of understanding the atheist/agnostic position so you can witness to us more effectively. Smile

Look, I do not force people to talk to me. Some do simply because they do not like Christians, I understand that. Some, though, because they feel their doctrine is correct (and you can call it what you want, but atheism is doctrine), and they want to "shut me up," so to speak. Some though, talk to me just for the sake of conversation. There is no reason those of differing beliefs, even when the beliefs are so contrasted and opposed to each other, cannot have civil conversations.

I hope that is the case with you.

(01-10-2011 04:15 PM)cufflink Wrote:  Be well.

Whew...glad you didn't say "be good." But, I will be as well as God allows, right?

Thanks for the response, Cufflink,

S.T.
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02-10-2011, 08:49 AM
RE: Was banned for asking...
S.T.,

Thanks for the very full responses. I appreciate your commitment, not to mention your energy! But since I'm feeling a sense of diminishing returns, I hope you won't think I'm wimping out if I bow out of the conversation at this point. You've made your position clear; I hope mine is as well. I doubt either of our minds has been changed in any way--our world views are too far apart. But I found the conversation civil, and I hope you did too.

Just one last thing--not an argument but a reference. You asked about my ideas on Job. They come mainly from one source: Jack Miles's God: A Biography. I find this book awesome, in the original sense of the word; it's not for nothing it won the Pulitzer Prize. Miles's chapters on Job were a revelation to me, never more so than in his eye-opening analysis of the crucial 42:6. (Hint: The usual translations are wrong.) Miles is a Christian, by the way. Highly recommended.

Religious disputes are like arguments in a madhouse over which inmate really is Napoleon.
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02-10-2011, 11:33 AM
RE: Was banned for asking...
(02-10-2011 08:49 AM)cufflink Wrote:  S.T.,

Thanks for the very full responses. I appreciate your commitment, not to mention your energy! But since I'm feeling a sense of diminishing returns, I hope you won't think I'm wimping out if I bow out of the conversation at this point. You've made your position clear; I hope mine is as well. I doubt either of our minds has been changed in any way--our world views are too far apart. But I found the conversation civil, and I hope you did too.

Just one last thing--not an argument but a reference. You asked about my ideas on Job. They come mainly from one source: Jack Miles's God: A Biography. I find this book awesome, in the original sense of the word; it's not for nothing it won the Pulitzer Prize. Miles's chapters on Job were a revelation to me, never more so than in his eye-opening analysis of the crucial 42:6. (Hint: The usual translations are wrong.) Miles is a Christian, by the way. Highly recommended.

Fair enough. And, yes, it has been very civil as well as enjoyable on my part.

Concerning Job, I appreciate the the info about Jack Mile's though what I do use my time for reading rarely entails complete books by men that I have not first understood their doctrine. Not because I am afraid that their doctrine will corrupt mine (which is a position that some cults take and teach to their adherents), but because honestly, it would be, in my opinion, a waste of time. Now, If I had opportunity to talk to Jack Mile's himself, I would probably be very motivated to read his books (though I would probably start with the second one [if I read things right] because knowledge, position, and application is usually progressive), that I might understand him better, and beyond that, to know exactly the basis of his belief and teachings.

I am intrigued by this "eye-opening" analysis of Job 42:6, but more so as it impacts you directly, rather than what he teaches about it. This is obviously significant to you, and I get the impression that this is somehow, perhaps not a turning point, but a "landmark" in the life of Cufflink, and the person Cufflink has become.

But, I respect your decision, and will just say I very much appreciate the graceful manner in which you have dealt with me. You have been gracious, and for that I tip my hat to you.

S.T.
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02-10-2011, 03:33 PM
RE: Was banned for asking...
S.T.
I am glad you have enjoyed the conversation, but

"What I can say is this: that no evidence for a global flood ever be found, that does not detract from my belief that the written record of scripture gives an account of an event which is far less spectacular than creation itself, and I do not need evidences from either side to believe in a global flood. I am to take on faith that the very word that I am trusting my eternal well-being to is true, and having trusted that word, I am to have an understanding that increases concerning God's will for my life.

It might interest you (or maybe not) that I believe that scripture is given in such a way that man can, if he so chooses, eisegete the text that he can create doctrine as he sees fit. I also believe that the global record is the same. If God were interested in "proving to man" with empirical evidence that He is God, we would have long ago discovered the Ark, or something of that nature, that some would have the "proof" they require before placing their trust in Him and His word.

But that is just my opinion."

statements like these do in fact tell me that while I may present information that contradicts and or outright refutes YEC claims, you will continue to deny them based on a single text. I suppose I will have to end for now because I really have to little time to devote to lengthy replies. In short, there is no direct or indirect evidence I have ever seen in literature or in the field to justify Noah's Flood and a 10,000 - 6,000 year old Earth. In another statement you ask if I really expected you to stop believing in God solely based on my arguments. No. I would never ask someone to stop believing in whatever their religion was based on my views. Instead what I was hoping for was one of 2 things. 1) More realistically, provide evidence and reason for why a "young Earth" or "creationist/intelligent" design argument does not make scientific sense or 2) Less realistically, look at the information and say "What would I expect in a universe with god and without god?" and then look at the evidence through each set of eyes. As I said, the most realistic option I had hoped to invoke was that of at least realizing that the reason that the scientific community does not take young Earth creationism or intelligent design seriously is because there exists no physical, direct, or indirect evidence to suggest so. Coming up with justifications in one's mind for these discrepancies proves nothing. These justifications are untestable, unfalsifiable, unverifiable and are generally unscientific in their disregard for basic scientific principles.

Oh, and I also noticed in one of your earlier posts that you have been visiting your mother in the hospital. I hope everything is okay and that she is getting better. While I disagree and grow frustrated with our conversations at times, I sincerely hope that everything is okay.

Cheers
Andrew

Evolve
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03-10-2011, 08:08 AM
RE: Was banned for asking...
(02-10-2011 03:33 PM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  S.T.
I am glad you have enjoyed the conversation, but

"What I can say is this: that no evidence for a global flood ever be found, that does not detract from my belief that the written record of scripture gives an account of an event which is far less spectacular than creation itself, and I do not need evidences from either side to believe in a global flood. I am to take on faith that the very word that I am trusting my eternal well-being to is true, and having trusted that word, I am to have an understanding that increases concerning God's will for my life.

It might interest you (or maybe not) that I believe that scripture is given in such a way that man can, if he so chooses, eisegete the text that he can create doctrine as he sees fit. I also believe that the global record is the same. If God were interested in "proving to man" with empirical evidence that He is God, we would have long ago discovered the Ark, or something of that nature, that some would have the "proof" they require before placing their trust in Him and His word.

But that is just my opinion."

statements like these do in fact tell me that while I may present information that contradicts and or outright refutes YEC claims, you will continue to deny them based on a single text. I suppose I will have to end for now because I really have to little time to devote to lengthy replies. In short, there is no direct or indirect evidence I have ever seen in literature or in the field to justify Noah's Flood and a 10,000 - 6,000 year old Earth. In another statement you ask if I really expected you to stop believing in God solely based on my arguments. No. I would never ask someone to stop believing in whatever their religion was based on my views. Instead what I was hoping for was one of 2 things. 1) More realistically, provide evidence and reason for why a "young Earth" or "creationist/intelligent" design argument does not make scientific sense or 2) Less realistically, look at the information and say "What would I expect in a universe with god and without god?" and then look at the evidence through each set of eyes. As I said, the most realistic option I had hoped to invoke was that of at least realizing that the reason that the scientific community does not take young Earth creationism or intelligent design seriously is because there exists no physical, direct, or indirect evidence to suggest so. Coming up with justifications in one's mind for these discrepancies proves nothing. These justifications are untestable, unfalsifiable, unverifiable and are generally unscientific in their disregard for basic scientific principles.

Oh, and I also noticed in one of your earlier posts that you have been visiting your mother in the hospital. I hope everything is okay and that she is getting better. While I disagree and grow frustrated with our conversations at times, I sincerely hope that everything is okay.

Cheers
Andrew

Hello Andrew (that is much better than "beardeddude...lol), thanks for the reply. Sorry my lack of scientific knowledge in your field leads you to end discussion with me, though I do think at least a few questions were asked which I would greatly see answered.

Just a few:

1-Can we:

A-look at the fossils and determine their bodily capabilities to the point where we might affirm or deny their capabilities concerning osmoregulation?

B-look at current conditions of today and say, "These conditions will result in fossilization...and it will take X amount of time for them to be fossils?

C-say that if those conditions did exist today that it would be different from the record we now investigate (and how that would apply to the existing fossil record).

d-say we can pinpoint events which started and lasted one year (remaining results undetermined) within the scope of a timeframe of billions of years?


2-deny or affirm that earth conditions were once globally regulated by a canopy of water? (which leads to the question of earth conditions under the caps...I would be curious to know the research done in that area)


I'll stop there, need to get going. Look, I don't ask but for the reason that it is a fascinating discussion. As I said, there are believers (some I have great respect for) that believe in an old earth (in the millions and billions) so I have embraced this conversation in an attempt to see what leads them to this belief. Not trying to try your patience, Andrew.

Lastly, I appreciate the inquiry and well-wishing concerning my Mom. She went in for hernia surgery, and due to existing medical conditions this is always a little scary. You might think that I would have no worries due to my faith, but that is a two-fold blade: first, God never guarantees freedom from physical problems, and secondly...have you ever been in a hospital (lol)? I hate to say it, but I do not care for hospitals very much. There are some great staff, but there are some that are not so great. While visiting once, I saw a woman, must have been about 90, set in a chair only to then fall full force on her face on a concrete floor. I will never forget that, and when my mother is in there (especially for procedures that involve pain meds) I stay in a constant state of paranoia.

But she is doing surprisingly well. Thanks for asking. She is home now, and is even getting around well.

Okay, Andrew, do not feel obliged to answer the questions above, they are just a curiosity to me. There are many more, but again, it is out of curiosity, because, as I said, though I am a young earther, I am also human, which means that I can be mistaken...lol.

Talk to you later,

S.T.
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07-10-2011, 11:25 AM
RE: Was banned for asking...
"Just a few:

1-Can we:

A-look at the fossils and determine their bodily capabilities to the point where we might affirm or deny their capabilities concerning osmoregulation?

B-look at current conditions of today and say, "These conditions will result in fossilization...and it will take X amount of time for them to be fossils?

C-say that if those conditions did exist today that it would be different from the record we now investigate (and how that would apply to the existing fossil record).

d-say we can pinpoint events which started and lasted one year (remaining results undetermined) within the scope of a timeframe of billions of years?


2-deny or affirm that earth conditions were once globally regulated by a canopy of water? (which leads to the question of earth conditions under the caps...I would be curious to know the research done in that area)"

A) Osmoregulation is a characteristic that would be determined based on their closest relatives. Very few organisms are capable of surviving in both fresh and saltwater.

B) Fossilization is a process that is not associated with a finite amount of time. I have collected fossils >65 million years old that are still composed of the original aragonite (including the pearly luster of the nacreous layer). Other fossils are the result of processes that require death, deposition, dissolution and replacement that can take millions of years to complete (based on crystal growth rates and the time it takes for groundwater to penetrate the shell material). An anoxic lake would be a great place to get fossilization. These areas would allow for the death of organisms and then deposition in a largely oxygen-free bottom so there is no decomposition. But, in short, fossils come in several types with varying degrees of time needed. 1) Original remains (the fossils I study are still the original calcite and is >285 million years old) 2) recrystallization (A process where the original crystal structure is replaced by a different mineral or a different crystal structure; like that of the petrified forest where the organic material has been replaced by silica. This would require rapid burial by volcanic ash, little decomposition and then millions of years of silica-rich fluid permeating through it) 3) Casts and molds (complete dissolution of the fossil that leaves either a cast and/or mold of the original organism. This would require thousands-millions of years to solidify the sediment and then thousands-millions of years to completely dissolve away the original material with weak natural acids).

C) I do not understand what you are asking here, but these conditions do exist on Earth today and they reaffirm the conditions needed for fossilization. There are plenty of incidents of partially preserved remains in sediments (like mammoths in permafrost or bones buried in your back yard) and anoxic lakes with organic-rich muds at the bottom.

D) Preservation of daily cycles is highly unlikely in the fossil or rock record. I can reproduce seasonal signals within my bivalves and reconstruct temperature changes. The events we typically pinpoint in the rock record (like the meteor that killed off the dinosaurs) was an instantaneous event that caused conditions to be very inhospitable for several years and/or thousands of years. These can be seen in the amount of sediment accumulation and age dating of the materials above and below these events. And by modeling aspects of this event, such as the amount of material ejected into the atmosphere and how long it would have persisted in the atmosphere and what impact this would have on global climates and for how long.

2) There is no evidence for a "global canopy of water." That is a completely unsubstantiated claim based on no physical evidence.

Evolve
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07-10-2011, 03:41 PM
RE: Was banned for asking...
I'm sorry for not keeping up with the entire 11 pages of text, but I do try to convince those around me that I actually exist without a computer at the end of my fingers. And I apologize for the brevity here but...
I have noticed in further posts S.T. seems quite inquisitive and sincerely eager for basic knowledge. It's wonderful to see such enthusiastic interest and differing view take shape in discussion!
However, I have also noticed when addressing the issues of "evidence" and "opinion"... S.T. advises that he's only seen "opinion" and not been given "evidence" to support an atheist belief system.
Hmm.
Interpretation is the culmination of meaningful language based on vocabulary which incorporates historical and cultural regulations and established precedents = a fancy way of saying, "literal translation mixed with a bit of scholarly opinion to express meaning of a statement or phrase".
"Evidence" would be a consistent, repeatable, substantial measurement of empirical detail, continually adding weight to that which we might eventually call"fact".
S.T. has interpreted scripture, using previously written scripture to provide "evidence" of a faith based system. When a line of text is interpreted by, and solely supported by another previous line of possibly further interpreted text from the same document; I do not see substantiated "evidence" but rather, "opinion". (Actually, I would call it conjecture, but I'm being polite.)
Having said that, I find the whole of this discussion interesting but certainly, the provision of "evidence" or burden of proof, must rest squarely on the faith based system, and not on the system which does not require faith.
One other thing... rather than "atheist belief system", I suppose I would favor the phrase: "non-theist system of reason"... if one needs a "label".... Dodgy

Good to hear your Mom is doing better S.T. - hospitals are terribly understaffed -it's great she can further convalesce at home.
Have a wonderful weekend all you crazy theists and non-theists!! Big Grin
Idea Atheist belief: great oxymoron!! Tongue

I think in the end, I just feel like I'm a secular person who has a skeptical eye toward any extraordinary claim, carefully examining any extraordinary evidence before jumping to conclusions. ~ Eric ~ My friend ... who figured it out.
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07-10-2011, 05:15 PM
RE: Was banned for asking...
(07-10-2011 11:25 AM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  "Just a few:

1-Can we:

A-look at the fossils and determine their bodily capabilities to the point where we might affirm or deny their capabilities concerning osmoregulation?

B-look at current conditions of today and say, "These conditions will result in fossilization...and it will take X amount of time for them to be fossils?

C-say that if those conditions did exist today that it would be different from the record we now investigate (and how that would apply to the existing fossil record).

d-say we can pinpoint events which started and lasted one year (remaining results undetermined) within the scope of a timeframe of billions of years?


2-deny or affirm that earth conditions were once globally regulated by a canopy of water? (which leads to the question of earth conditions under the caps...I would be curious to know the research done in that area)"

Hello Andrew, and thanks for the response. My time is limited this evening, but, a few responses:

(07-10-2011 11:25 AM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  A) Osmoregulation is a characteristic that would be determined based on their closest relatives. Very few organisms are capable of surviving in both fresh and saltwater.

Not sure why this characteristic would be based on their closest relative, unless you mean those following, such as we have a fossil and we can place it in a particular family.

However, the question was,

1-Can we:

A-look at the fossils and determine their bodily capabilities to the point where we might affirm or deny their capabilities concerning osmoregulation?

To clarify a little, what I am looking for is whether by looking at the fossils themselves, can we determine if they were osmoregulators or not? Not their existing "cousins," but the very specimens themselves.



(07-10-2011 11:25 AM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  B) Fossilization is a process that is not associated with a finite amount of time. I have collected fossils >65 million years old that are still composed of the original aragonite (including the pearly luster of the nacreous layer). Other fossils are the result of processes that require death, deposition, dissolution and replacement that can take millions of years to complete (based on crystal growth rates and the time it takes for groundwater to penetrate the shell material). An anoxic lake would be a great place to get fossilization. These areas would allow for the death of organisms and then deposition in a largely oxygen-free bottom so there is no decomposition. But, in short, fossils come in several types with varying degrees of time needed. 1) Original remains (the fossils I study are still the original calcite and is >285 million years old) 2) recrystallization (A process where the original crystal structure is replaced by a different mineral or a different crystal structure; like that of the petrified forest where the organic material has been replaced by silica. This would require rapid burial by volcanic ash, little decomposition and then millions of years of silica-rich fluid permeating through it) 3) Casts and molds (complete dissolution of the fossil that leaves either a cast and/or mold of the original organism. This would require thousands-millions of years to solidify the sediment and then thousands-millions of years to completely dissolve away the original material with weak natural acids).

So it is an impossibility for fossils to be created in a relatively short time? What comes to mind are man-made diamonds. If conditions can me made which replicate a process we believe takes much time, are we certain that conditions cannot arise in nature that might also speed up a lengthy process?

(07-10-2011 11:25 AM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  C) I do not understand what you are asking here, but these conditions do exist on Earth today and they reaffirm the conditions needed for fossilization. There are plenty of incidents of partially preserved remains in sediments (like mammoths in permafrost or bones buried in your back yard) and anoxic lakes with organic-rich muds at the bottom.

The question was more to the point of "if those conditions exist today, would the results be the same? You bring up mammoths and bones in the back yard, how different are they from other fossils? And what kind of time frame is placed on them?


(07-10-2011 11:25 AM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  D) Preservation of daily cycles is highly unlikely in the fossil or rock record. I can reproduce seasonal signals within my bivalves and reconstruct temperature changes. The events we typically pinpoint in the rock record (like the meteor that killed off the dinosaurs) was an instantaneous event that caused conditions to be very inhospitable for several years and/or thousands of years. These can be seen in the amount of sediment accumulation and age dating of the materials above and below these events. And by modeling aspects of this event, such as the amount of material ejected into the atmosphere and how long it would have persisted in the atmosphere and what impact this would have on global climates and for how long.

While I agree with the first part of this, it is curious that a definite timeframe cannot be more closely estimated. Was it "several," or thousands? It would seem the same type of dating procedure that leads to a conclusion of the age of fossils would also be able to say with less of a window how long the inhospitable conditions were present.

But, since I am new to this conversation, perhaps you could help me something that immediately jumps out: there seems to be a parallel in the event of the meteor, where a global event wiped out so many animals, yet...not all life. Not trying to be facetious, just curious on your thoughts about that, as I am sure you have thought on this before.


(07-10-2011 11:25 AM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  2) There is no evidence for a "global canopy of water." That is a completely unsubstantiated claim based on no physical evidence.

Apart from the biblcal record, I agree. As I said, that is a personal belief, not something I am dogmatic about.

Thanks for the replies, sorry to be short in response, but there are other threads I hope to respond in which I have a little more to work with, and this is something that is new to me (fossils, I mean).

If you have decided that perhaps from time to time you might reply to a post, I would actually like to go back over our previous conversation, as there are a few questions that I do not think were answered yet, probably due to the length of the posts themselves.

S.T.
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07-10-2011, 05:43 PM
RE: Was banned for asking...
(07-10-2011 03:41 PM)kim Wrote:  Idea Atheist belief: great oxymoron!! Tongue

kim, your post was brilliant. Welcome to the forum. I look forward to hearing more from you. ST debates well... most of the time, at least considering what he has to work with.

Who can turn skies back and begin again?
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07-10-2011, 06:06 PM
RE: Was banned for asking...
Hello Kim and thanks for the response.


(07-10-2011 03:41 PM)kim Wrote:  I'm sorry for not keeping up with the entire 11 pages of text,

You should go back and read it, it really is quite interesting. I get the impression that you may have only read a few of

the latter pages.

(07-10-2011 03:41 PM)kim Wrote:  but I do try to convince those around me that I actually exist without

a computer at the end of my fingers.

No need, I believe you.


(07-10-2011 03:41 PM)kim Wrote:  And I apologize for the brevity here but...

Actually, it's okay. I hoped to get to a couple other threads, but always glad to get to...all of them. Just might not be

tonight...lol.


(07-10-2011 03:41 PM)kim Wrote:  I have noticed in further posts S.T. seems quite inquisitive and

sincerely eager for basic knowledge.

Concerning the debate about evolution and the input of one in the field...you bet!

However, I prefer to stick with topics that can be resolved.


(07-10-2011 03:41 PM)kim Wrote:  It's wonderful to see such enthusiastic interest and differing view take

shape in discussion!

It really is.

(07-10-2011 03:41 PM)kim Wrote:  However, I have also noticed when addressing the issues of "evidence" and "opinion"... S.T. advises that he's only

seen "opinion" and not been given "evidence" to support an atheist belief system.

Actually, I am not looking for "evidence" to support an atheist belief system, and as a matter of fact, could not only name

many of the "evidences," but could throw in quite a few more that atheists may not have considered.

You seem to scoff at the thought that atheism is a belief system. You do believe that there is no God (and I am assuming

you are an atheist, forgive me if I am wrong, though I think the response implies this), right? You do look to much the

same "evidence" and proof that other atheists look to, right?

Again, perhaps a closer read of the thread may bring a little better understanding as to what I have actually been

discussing.

My discussion with BeardedDude has been a departure from the primary content of this thread, and those conversations

are the only ones that even come close to a reasonable basis for a belief in atheism. He is convinced by the material he

daily works with that there has never been a global flood, therefore, the bible is fictional. I can understand that, really.

But how many here do not have to have faith that all that science presents as fact is after all, fact?

So now we have two elements found in religion (and I want to clarify that Christianity is to be distinguished from

religion): belief and faith, both of which is as various and diverse as those found in religion, and modern Christendom (to

be distinguished from Christianity which is made up of born agagin believers).

(07-10-2011 03:41 PM)kim Wrote:  Hmm.

Mm-hmm...lol.

(07-10-2011 03:41 PM)kim Wrote:  Interpretation is the culmination of meaningful language based on vocabulary which incorporates historical and cultural

regulations and established precedents


Now look up exegesis. Anyone can "interpret." But among those who do, some will exegete, some will eisegete.

(07-10-2011 03:41 PM)kim Wrote:  = a fancy way of saying, "literal translation mixed with a bit of

scholarly opinion to express meaning of a statement or phrase".

So why do the results differ so much?

Independant of an interpretation, scripture contains information that either is one thing, or another. When properly

approached, we can find what is in scripture, rather than putting into it our persoanl opinion.

(07-10-2011 03:41 PM)kim Wrote:  "Evidence" would be a consistent, repeatable, substantial measurement of empirical detail, continually adding weight to

that which we might eventually call"fact".

And it is a good thing that the Lord said not to add or take away from the word. Most of the refutations that I have seen

can be easily explained by simply seeing the context of the passage a word or phrase or verse. When the context of the

verse is known, that is kept within the context of the passage, which is kept in the context of the book, which is kept

within the context of the entire bible.

Meaning, if the bible teaches as a general rule that drunkenness is not to be desired, we do not take a verse that teaches

that those who mourn shoud take a little wine is a proof-text to justify drunkenness.


(07-10-2011 03:41 PM)kim Wrote:  S.T. has interpreted scripture, using previously written scripture to provide "evidence" of a faith based system.

Actually, no, I haven't.

What I have attempted to do is this: show that the hatred and contempt for God, the bible, and Christians really has no

valid basis.

First, the verses used to "refute" scripture can be seen to be so grossly out of context (and this is purposeful, because it

is doubtful that most here will bother to look into the matter to see if they are being given authentic information, which is

a mistake for anybody, despite their beliefs) it is both humorous as well as sad.

I try not to do that. And usually, I do not have to have simplistic errors pointed out to me.


(07-10-2011 03:41 PM)kim Wrote:  When a line of text is interpreted by, and solely supported by another

previous line of possibly further interpreted text from the same document; I do not see substantiated "evidence" but

rather, "opinion". (Actually, I would call it conjecture, but I'm being polite.)

How you have derived this from the conversations found in this post is truly beyond me.

There is not only conjecture in this very statement, it illustrates that very little in this thread has been read.

While I admit that conversation surrounding what is actually in scripture, in contrast to the many opinions expressed

here, when particular scripture comes up, it is addressed. I hope you might actually contribute to the thread with your

favorite "evidences" refuting scripture and proving that faith in God is illogical, as well as why certain things just "don't add up."

I might ask if you are in agreement that atheists should "go on the offensive" against the threat of religion, as suggested by one here. Should they all be rounded up and secluded in the bible belt?

But you see, there is absolutely no reason for me to ask that. I will not place you into my opinion of what an atheist is like, but rather, will seek to understand why you believe the way you do.

So far, I have only enough to assume that you are an atheist, and that you consider bible interpretation, all of it, as statement of opinion only. That is enough for a start for great conversation.

(07-10-2011 03:41 PM)kim Wrote:  Having said that, I find the whole of this discussion interesting but certainly, the provision of "evidence" or burden of

proof, must rest squarely on the faith based system, and not on the system which does not require faith

.

Atheism does not require faith? Surely you do not believe that (oops, there's that word again).

Okay, if you don;t mind, what exactly gives you the absolute conviction that there is no God?

(07-10-2011 03:41 PM)kim Wrote:  One other thing... rather than "atheist belief system", I suppose I would favor the phrase: "non-theist system of

reason"... if one needs a "label".... Dodgy

You have the right to call it whatever you like (ain't America great!). However, to say you do not believe there is no God would be dodgy, if you ask me.

I do not believe in aliens...I believe they do not exist. It is part of my belief system.

(07-10-2011 03:41 PM)kim Wrote:  Good to hear your Mom is doing better S.T. - hospitals are terribly understaffed -it's great she can further convalesce at

home.

Hey, I appreciate that, really. She is doing well, and for the first time in quite a while, she has no pain.

Again, thanks.

(07-10-2011 03:41 PM)kim Wrote:  Have a wonderful weekend all you crazy theists and non-theists!! Big Grin

Will do.

(07-10-2011 03:41 PM)kim Wrote:  Idea Atheist belief: great oxymoron!! Tongue

Why is this so hard to admit? But, running out of time, so, hope to have good discussion with you in the future, thanks for the post.

S.T.
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