La Sierra Academy students weigh in on creation/evolution debate

In June of 2009, a couple of students from La Sierra Academy made a video to open a presentation on why “evolution is so attractive” for their religion class. Evolution is depicted as the good looking, hip Apple-ish character, while Creation is depicted as a bored, unenthusiastic character holding a Bible limply in his hands.

Due to complaints of objectionable content being advertised at the conclusion of this video, the embedded video has been replaced with a link.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1gHSLrVkoUY&feature=player_embedded

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45 thoughts on “La Sierra Academy students weigh in on creation/evolution debate

  1. Pretty funny spoof video (on us) – if it weren’t so reflective of many people’s perception of reality.

    Many people really do think that religion is for the brainless and that it has no relationship to real science nor is it entertained by logical intelligent minds whatsoever – or that mainstream scientists aren’t religious in their own thinking. Nothing could be farther from the truth. True religion is true science. There is no separate path to truth. Science and religion must be consistent with each other – one in the same. If your science is fundamentally at odds with your religion, you need a new religion that is more in sinc with your science.

    As far as I’m concerned, I’ve been convinced by extensive investigation of the available data over the course of many years, to include many discussions and debates with mainstream scientists and evolutionists, that the the biblical claims, specifically regarding a literal creation week and Noachian Flood, are supported by the significant weight of scientific evidence available today…

    I recommend that all do their own personal investigation into the available facts and argument from both sides of this issue. Don’t simply take the conclusions of this or that “expert” or even groups of experts at face value. It is tempting to blindly accept the authoritative statements of those who seem to be in the know, but this isn’t always a safe course to take – especially when it comes to a topic as important as this one…

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com




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  2. Interesting to note that these young people took the Mac vs PC ads: http://ww/getamac/ads/w.apple.com , to style their ad in support of evolution, very “innovative”.

    It is a sad day if creation is truly being portrayed in such an unattractive style to our youth in our Seventh-Day Adventist Schools!

    I, for one, stand in awe and wonder at the majesty, greatness, intelligence, and power of God the Father, His Son, Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit, Who created this world – all things as we see them, even after this earth has gone through thousands of years of sin, by His SPOKEN WORD! Because of this single fact, I rest assured that He will and is taking care of every facet of my life! Therefore, I choose to ever remain in His secret place and thus abide under His shadow, for there I am safe!

    The suppositions of man regarding the origin of life, no matter how attractive or popular they are portrayed, are falsehoods to keep us from abiding in the secret place of the Most High! Satan and the many angels with him know their destiny and will do everything in their power to beguile men and women, created in the image of God, to partake of their fate as well! They have studied humanity thousands of years and there is a delusion tailor made for each individual! If we are not abiding in the secret place of God, our Father, we shall not recognize these for what they are, LIES!

    May the Lord our Saviour help us today! We are truly nearing the end of the controversy that this world has been in the midst of for thousands of years! God’s people need to avail themselves of this opportunity to make their calling and election sure! Pray and study God’s Word to us as never before!




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  3. The following is an advertisement put out by La Sierra University entitled:

    “Faith is Formed at La Sierra University”

    http://www.lasierra.edu/welcome/

    While there is no doubt that LSU is doing good work for the community and world at large, with many humanitarian efforts and opportunities for community service, it is misleading for LSU to present the suggestion to future parents and students that an education obtained at LSU will promote faith in all of the fundamental values of the SDA Church as an organization.

    Sure, the SDA Church does stand for service-oriented activities toward the local community and toward the world community at large. Hopefully all Christians of all denominations stand for at least this much of the basic Christ-like attitude toward those in short supply of the most basic of human needs. However, the SDA Church, as an organization, also has a Gospel Message of hope in a bright literal future which is based on very real physical evidence. These unique beliefs have been given the label of “fundamental doctrines”. Often those who have tried to uphold these Gospel doctrines have been derogatively referred to as “fundamentalists” and have been labelled as “extremists”. This perspective is held by many at LSU – especially within LSU’s science departments.

    The problem with LSU’s PR advertisements is that LSU fails to mention the fact that its science department is decidedly in support of the mainstream evolutionary view of origins. LSU science professors actively promote the idea that life has existed and evolved from a common ancestor on this planet over the course of hundreds of millions of years of time. Beyond this, they belittle and scoff at those who publicly admit to beliving in a literal creation week and a worldwide Noachian Flood in recent history – call those who hold such antiquated views the “lunatic fringe” in their classrooms and even in public press (http://www.educatetruth.com/letters/open-letter-to-general-conference/).

    So, while “faith” may indeed be formed at LSU, what kind of faith is it? – certainly not a faith in some of the most basic and most cherished of all SDA ideals. Rather, it is a faith in the truth and validity of Darwinian thinking. Is that what the SDA Church really wants for its own church schools and paid representatives? – paid with the tithe monies and steep tuition feels from parents and constituents who think they are obtaining the best that “SDA” education has to offer? I would hope not.

    It is about time LSU comes clean and at least admits what its own faculty actually stand for and teach as the gospel truth in their own classrooms. Why the need for more slick PR compaigns that give a false impression about what LSU is all about? – when it comes to all that it clearly stands for? For me this very sort of false advertising is far more upsetting than the fact that LSU professors are promoting mainstream evolutionary thinking in the classroom. Personally, I would far rather see LSU come clean about what it is in fact doing rather than to see these continued efforts to cover up or evade direct questions about what is truly going on…

    Sean Pitman, M.D.
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com




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  4. As much as LSU is the loudest “home” for evolutionist evangelists inside the SDA church today — it certainly is not the only place they can be found and it also is not doggedly requiring devotion to evolutionism in all of its activities nor of all of its faculty and staff.

    Therefore it is a “mixed bag” and marketing efforts can certainly leverage that fact by promoting many of the non-evolution oriented aspects of the university to unsuspecting parents and students. I have no doubt that there are a number of actual bible-believing faculty and staff at LSU – that have not traded in the Bible doctrine on origins for the more atheist evolutionist version of origins so popular today.

    What is facinating about the video – is that the students did this to “impress” someone(Probably a group of “someones”) that they hoped would watch the clip and get back to them with high-five “way-cool-man” pats on the back. In other words — it is not like play-acting the torture and burning of heretics in the dark ages – with the hope that their audience would think that torture ideas are “wayyyy coooool mannn”. They are choosing a subject and POV that they know will be well received among their peers and more than likely among specific faculty members at the academy (whose POV is known to these 3 students).

    Very often the student’s choice to attend a certain SDA school is driven more by “where are my friends going” for many students – rather than “I want to be a servant of Christ — where can I get the best training for that goal”.

    And the parent’s choice is often driven by “where does my student want to go” along with “where are other parents in our church sending their young adults”. The idea there is that SDA education is the best hope for a parent wanting their children to remain Adventists in their adult life.

    Add to that – the fact that in the LSU and PUC area there can be found a negative connotation for the “conservative schools back east” like SAU – and it is easy to see how these students could be as “far down that road” as the video shows them to be. It is consistent with other factors in that area over all and should not be taken as some avant guard – giant leap into the dark side by the 3 students in the video.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  5. Sean Pitman M.D.:
    Many people really do think that religion is for the brainless and that it has no relationship to real science

    Aren’t most religions making people brainless? Where is the evidence that Seventh-day Adventist scientists define science in a way that distinguishes them from the world?

    Sean Pitman M.D.:
    As far as I’m concerned, I’ve been convinced by extensive investigation of the available data over the course of many years, …, that the biblical claims, specifically regarding a literal creation week and Noachian Flood, are supported by the significant weight of scientific evidence available today.

    I believe that there is scientific evidence for the Noachian Flood but none for a special creation lasting exactly six days and God resting on the seventh day. Where is the evidence that even a respectable minority of Adventist scientists believe that there is scientific evidence for the creation week?




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  6. There is a lot of evidence for special young earth creation – but nothing for exactly 7 days except the Bible evidence.

    Given that it was a seven day creation week AND that God told mankind about it – what “other evidence” did we expect?

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  7. BobRyan:
    There is a lot of evidence for special young earth creation – but nothing for exactly 7 days except the Bible evidence.

    Presently, there is no absolutely compelling evidence for a special young earth creation. There is certainly no known scientific evidence demonstrating that creation took seven days. Therefore, anyone who claims to be able to test the difference between a 1-day creation theory versus a 6-day creation theory doesn’t even understand the definition of science.




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  8. “I believe that there is scientific evidence for the Noachian Flood but none for a special creation lasting exactly six days and God resting on the seventh day. Where is the evidence that even a respectable minority of Adventist scientists believe that there is scientific evidence for the creation week”
    I am sadden by your mental orientation my friend, dear one do not turn the argument up side down, do not commit a tricky error called logical fallacy. Aren’t we after all Seventh-Day Adventist christian, a Bible believing organisation, we believe in the veracity, and historical authenticity and authority of the Scripture as penned by the great men of old through the guidance and inspiration of Jesus Christ (by the way everybody called it special revelation). keeping that in the very outset, God had spoken of “that He had created so and so” therefore we just have to take Him at His word. Thus the burden of prof relies on the evolutionist. it is illogical for us to ask from God “please give us scientific evidence to prove that you have really created the natural world and further more that you have done so in the literal six 24 hour-days period. it doesn’t make sense at all. The burden of proof lies on those who who say that the the causes of the universe is itself the universe and it done so in millions of millions of years.

    It is acceptable and totally at norm if we don’t provide evidence of the six day creation week here is why. One cannot say that i have a glorious theory and suddenly called it fact and he then ask you if you have a problem with his facts you go find and present some kind of evidence showing he was wrong with his so called facts.

    History is deferent from science and the creation account is history indeed. This is the also the point of CS Lewes you cannot ask George W. Bush to rebattle the same Iraq war so one could peak his curiosity weather the war really existed or it might be won in shorter period of time.

    Most of the great scientist of old and even of today, they never could have been motivated to explore and and find about the truth if they started from the very outset of nothingness disorder chances and chaos. God Said there is order and design out there so the scientist set out to discover those beauty that God has been telling us about. Why do you want to look for order when what you are really looking for is chances and chaos? Why would you use the principles of science “something that can be repeated many times or all the time, and something that can be observed, when the fact is evolution itself cannot be observed? i mean no one has seen a monkey bears banana and a banana bears a monkey or a mother gives birth to a monkey and vice versa.

    Studying the Creation account of Genesis Chapter 1 and 2 alone gives enough if not infinite source of scientific information/evidence. literal days evidence- the word use as first day second days and so on is literal 24 hour day period and was kept consistent by the Lord in dealing with the later dating and the sabbath which is in the ten commandments and by the way was kept promptly by Jesus in the New Testament. Assuming that our readers is familiar with the first book of the Bible-Genesis . In the third day God caused the land to appear from the water and then he caused the vegetation to appear, take note that if in the next 24 hours God didn’t cause the sun to appear the vegetation could not have survived (this is scientific evidence by the way), like what the evolutionist has said it take multiple years for the creation to be finished this second evidence is insurmountable obstacle for them. many more could be presented here, but i believed i have demonstrated my point clearly.

    Therefore in conclusion, instead of shedding doubt on the greatness of God and accusing Him of not showing more evidence, as a result those who doubt had caused some of our brethren particularly the young ones to stumble, why don’t we open our eyes to the abundant scientific evidence and see and let everyone see the wonders of God’s creative power and creations. Furthermore encouraged our leaders to take action and get rid our universities of this dismal teaching. It is time that everyone sees the two rogues are weaving nothing.




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  9. Eugene Shubert: I believe that there is scientific evidence for the Noachian Flood but none for a special creation lasting exactly six days and God resting on the seventh day. Where is the evidence that even a respectable minority of Adventist scientists believe that there is scientific evidence for the creation week?

    There is very good evidence for a recent creation of all life on this planet. There is also extensive evidence in support of the Divine origin of the Scriptures. Taken together, this data/evidence is strongly supportive of the validity of the literal creation week described in the first chapters of Genesis. One need not rely on blind faith in this regard. The science of interpretting all available evidence weighs heavily on the side of the SDA interpretation of origins.

    Sean Pitman, M.D.
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com




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  10. Well, the video is clever and the acting is good! Academy age kids can be very talented. They seem to have gotten the satire form down very well too!

    I’d just like to encourage the students to at least consider the possibility that their opinion might be incorrect.

    So young people at LaSierra Academy–Explore the other side! Read the books of some intelligent scientists who don’t agree with your opinion. (I’ll post some titles and websites a little later, so check back.) I think that you will at least see that creationists are not cowering silently, trying not to be noticed!

    I’m glad you’re getting into the debate! Welcome!

    (Oh–and all of you creationists reading this, jump in with some resources for the young people to read!)




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  11. Eugene Shubert: Sean,

    It’s good that you believe the Bible but what evidence demonstrates that most believing Seventh-day Adventist scientists agree with your definition of a scientific theory?

    A scientific theory is, by most definitions anyway, a process of inductive and/or deductive reasoning whereby a limited set of data is used to predict the future or the past with a measurable degree of predictive value in a potentially falsifiable manner.

    Determining the reliability or dependability of a witness (which includes written texts) falls into the realm of science. Such a determination can be shown to carry a useful degree of predictive value and is therefore a form of science.

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com




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  12. Sean Pitman, M.D.:
    Determining the reliability or dependability of a witness (which includes written texts) falls into the realm of science. Such a determination can be shown to carry a useful degree of predictive value and is therefore a form of science.
    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com  

    Sean,

    I believe that only a few believing Seventh-day Adventist scientists would agree with you. Richard P. Feynman said, “The fundamental principle of science, the definition almost, is this: the sole test of the validity of any idea is experiment.” David Hilbert, the mathematician who taught Einstein how to derive the equations of general relativity, believed that all science should be reduced to mathematics. I see the merit of their scientific philosophies and reject your ultra-fundamentalism. Instead of defining science with the certainty of irrefutable and unambiguous ideas, you want to reduce scientific creationism to what the Bible says. I simply can’t imagine well-informed Adventist scientists accepting your point of view.




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  13. Eugene Shubert: I see the merit of their scientific philosophies and reject your ultra-fundamentalism. Instead of defining science with the certainty of irrefutable and unambiguous ideas, you want to reduce scientific creationism to what the Bible says. I simply can’t imagine well-informed Adventist scientists accepting your point of view.

    Nothing in science is absolutely certain or irrefutable. The same is true of useful religious ideas. If anything were “irrefutable”, you wouldn’t need science to support it. Science is only needed when the data set that is available is limited and the prediction deduced from the limited data set less than certain. This is why a leap of faith is needed when it comes to arriving at conclusions in both science and religion. This is the reason why both science and useful forms of religion are in fact one in the same.

    If you actually read the information on my website and knew me just a bit better, you’d know that I do not reduce creationism simply to “what the Bible says”. Creationism is based on empirical evidence that supports what the Bible says. This is the scientific basis for believing in the reliability of the biblical texts – testable empirical evidence that is potentially falsifiable.

    Let me ask you, upon what basis do you believe in the existence of God? – or the reliability of the Bible as a Divinely inspired source of information? – warm fuzzy feelings? or empirical evidence of some sort? What is your “reason” for the “hope that is in you”? – upon what basis do you believe the dreams of your “prophet” are anything more than wild fantasy? – that they are in fact derived from God himself? Hopefully you have something more than warm fuzzy feelings – some actual scientific empirical testable potentially falsifiable evidence…

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com




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  14. By the way, Eugene, I must say that I do agree with you when it comes to your views and many of your comments regarding A. Graham Maxwell’s Moral Influence Theory of Christ’s Atonement. Good work there on a very subtle and difficult problem for the SDA Church today…

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com




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  15. @Sean Pitman, M.D.:

    There is very good evidence for a recent creation of all life on this planet. There is also extensive evidence in support of the Divine origin of the Scriptures. Taken together, this data/evidence is strongly supportive of the validity of the literal creation week described in the first chapters of Genesis.

    That is true when you consider that there is no science today that defines or describes a way for planets to form and life to appear through strictly natural means in a short time frame such as the YEC model of the Bible describes.

    Also you make a good point that trust in the Bible as the Word of God – had to have been mastered long before we came to the subject of evolutionism. The objective exercise of selecting the Bible as a trustworthy reliable document had to have been established to even Believe in the Christian God vs atheism, to pick the Bible over the Koran or to select the Bible over the Bhagavad Gita.

    Sean said: “One need not rely on blind faith in this regard”

    That is certainly a true statement.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  16. This post is back up. I had pulled it originally because a couple of people told me that objectionable videos were being advertised at the conclusion of the video. However, after play it several times I was never able to get the results I was being told about. So to be safe I just pulled the embedded video and replaced it with a link.




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  17. Ladies and gentlemen,
    I am one of the students who made this video at LSA. The assignment was for a religion class (the teacher will remain unnamed) to describe to fellow students why evolution is so attractive to the general audience. The video played before our presentation to the class and was a satire of the classic Mac Vs. Pc videos popular on TV. The video was showing the easy to which people choose evolution over creation. Meaning that just like the Mac Vs. Pc commercial there is no thought process in the choice so to speak but a presentation of the facts to which someone picks either side. LSA is a creation believing school and was taught to students, reflecting the beliefs and viewpoints of the SDA church. After attending LSA, I am now attending LSU, which shares the same set of beliefs that LSA does. The only difference is that creation and evolution is presented equally throughout the school.




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  18. @Shane Hilde: these guys dont believe in evolution they were simply showing why a majority of the world believes in evolution. ive been through the lasierra academy school system and the teachers there have always shown the utmost faith in a 7 day creation, but also realize that it is not only fair but a must to portray evolution as a possible option. it seems to me that this website is almost disregarding evolution’s existence as a possible view of earth’s origin. i firmly believe in a 7 day creation but i dont disrespect more than two thirds of the worlds view. i stand by la sierra university and plan to attend there despite what this website does to falsely damage there image. i hold nothing against you though if you are just trying to portray your view on the situation




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  19. After attending LSA, I am now attending LSU, which shares the same set of beliefs that LSA does. The only difference is that creation and evolution is presented equally throughout the school.

    Unless you can show proof to the contrary, I strongly disagree that LSU presents creation and evolution equally. There is not one known science class at LSU that endorses a recent creation.




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  20. Unless you can show proof to the contrary, I strongly disagree that LSU presents creation and evolution equally. There is not one known science class at LSU that endorses a recent creation.  

    Look at exactly what I said in my statement, I said quote “the only difference is that creation and evolution is presented equally throughout the school.” Meaning I did not say that I was talking only about the science department, but as a school as a whole. There are classes within the science department that do teach evolution, and then there is the religion department which teaches a recent creation. So it can be said that there is an equal balance of creation and evolution ideas. If one does not like the views shared in the science department, and cannot accept some of the facts presented, than the department is not for you and there are plenty other classes that you can take at LSU.




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  21. Unless you can show proof to the contrary, I strongly disagree that LSU presents creation and evolution equally. There is not one known science class at LSU that endorses a recent creation.  (Quote)

    just this exchange right here shows that some people are fine with how la sierra presents the facts, while others see it as ruining our Adventist youth. Everyone has different opinion regarding this issue, but the majority of people i have met from la sierra have been wonderful people who love doing God’s work and believe in a 6 day creation.
    oh and by the way every single teacher i have studied with at la sierra academy has not demonstrated a single leaning toward evolution or theistic evolution, as you suggested above.




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  22. Look at exactly what I said in my statement, I said quote “the only difference is that creation and evolution is presented equally throughout the school.” Meaning I did not say that I was talking only about the science department, but as a school as a whole. There are classes within the science department that do teach evolution, and then there is the religion department which teaches a recent creation. So it can be said that there is an equal balance of creation and evolution ideas. If one does not like the views shared in the science department, and cannot accept some of the facts presented, than the department is not for you and there are plenty other classes that you can take at LSU.  (Quote)

    i think jordan has hit the nail on the head and those who wish to cause controversy and dissension within the church should just go elsewhere




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  23. @Shane Hilde:

    Wouldn’t surprise me if this was the the attitude of some LSA staff. I wonder what makes them think evolution is attractive.  

    Hey Shane,
    My name is Pastor Cynthia Clark and I am the Chaplain and one of the Religion teachers at LSA. I gave the assignment to the senior students last year to take a serious look at evolution and creation as I knew they would have their beliefs challenged in the coming years.

    LSA takes a stand on a solid 6 day creation and wants our students to be prepared to give an answer for what they believe just as we are instructed in IPeter 3:15 “Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect.” I emphasize to my students that the last part of this verse is not to be overlooked. We must know what we believe, why we believe it and be prepared to explain it with gentleness and respect.

    The assignment is part of the curriculum looking at the SDA beliefs. We used a number of supplemental sources including the book “Darwin’s Demise.”

    I believe seniors are capable of looking at both sides of an issue and making their own conclusions. It is my job to present the SDA position and to offer the students the tools with which to establish their own personal foundational faith experience. It is not my job to force my beliefs (nor to force the SDA beliefs) on the students. Rather I must create an environment that is safe to explore opinions and seek the truth through Biblically based guidance.

    You should have seen the rest of the presentation if you wanted to see balance. They understood that the “world” sees creation in a different context from those of us who call ourselves Christians. The assignment was not to show thier own opinion but to present one of the chapters of one of the sources we were using. They were encouraged to decide how they would respond. This video was just a portion of their overall presentation – which if memory serves was quite good!

    On a different note – I ask my students not to post their presentations on line because they are done in a certain context as well as most of my high school seniors are still under 18.

    That being said, I am proud of these young people as I am proud of all my students for not hiding from this issue. Rather they are facing it with Biblical foundation and “gentleness and respect” for all parties involved in this conversation.

    Finally, LSA believes in and teaches the SDA fundamental belief of a 6 day creation with a special day of communion with our Creator on the 7th. All of my students are very clear on this point by the time they graduate from my classes. Again from IPeter 4:7,8 “The end of all things is near. Therefore be clear minded and self-controlled so that you can pray. Above all, love each other deeply.”




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  24. True religion is true science. There is no separate path to truth. Science and religion must be consistent with each other – one in the same.

    Sean,
    Finally, something we can agree on.




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  25. @Pastor Cynthia Clark:

    Pastor Clark – it is not clear from your response whether the students that made the video actually believed that the Bible position was as weak and inneffective as they showed in the video or if in fact they were simply mocking the shallow world view of the Bible vs evolutionism.

    If in fact they – or other students in the class were inclined to think of God’s statement on origins in that way – was there an effort in the class or in some class to address the concerns that the students had? Something along the lines of – “well since it appears that there is some concern among a few of our class members that the Bible position on origins may be lacking when it comes to actual science – we have come up with a helpful “science and the Bible” program that we will focus on to help address those concerns” – ?

    For example 2 areas of helpful focus might be
    1. Demonstrate that the Bible text cannot be bent to support evolutionism and still maintain strict adherence to Bible exegesis – letting the text speak for itself.

    2. Demonstrate the need for “critical thinking” and provide proven junk-science efforts by evolutionists in the past to hoodwink the general population with what is now confirmed and proven fraud and misdirection.

    3. Demonstrate the difference between what atheist evolutionists like Collin Patterson claimed are “stories easy enough to make up … about how one thing came from another” to prop up evolutionism – based on the fossil record – vs “actual science”.

    4. Help students focus on the salient goals of evolutionism in both the areas of abiogenesis and also the macro results where “birds come from reptiles” — fiction on the part of evolutionists never seen in nature, never observed in the lab.

    in Christ,

    Bob

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  26. was there an effort in the class or in some class to address the concerns that the students had?

    @BobRyan:

    Bob,
    Of course we address the issues and concerns from all angles. My lesson plans are very thorough and complete, filled with opportunity for “critical thinking” and self reflection. These boys were not reflecting their own opinions, they were demonstrating how they thought the non-Creationist community views our beliefs. The whole unit addressed these issues.

    As I stated in my response to Shane, the video was not the complete project. In fact the video was not the assignment. These boys took it upon themselves to demonstrate how they believe the world looks at creation. I think they did a good job. As Creationists and as Christians we need to live the love of Christ on this earth and be the joy that is Christ or the “world” will view us as hypocritical and silly.

    As Christians we have a responsibility to understand what we believe and why. I teach this implicitly to my students. E.G. White says in D.A. p22 that “Force has no place in God’s plan.” I teach this to my students. God does not force us in to the kingdom or into the SDA fundamental beliefs. We have a responsibility to live in reflection of the kingdom that is to come, and in so doing we offer each other encouragement. My students leave my classroom knowing that Jesus is their Savior and that the SDA church welcomes them into its membership if they choose.

    I want them to know why we believe in Creation and I want them to understand how the Sabbath and Jesus our Savior, are all intertwined in that fundamental aspect of our beliefs.

    No worries Bob, I prayerfully offer hope and truth to my students within the SDA required curriculum for Academy students. This Creation/beliefs unit falls in the Senior year as they prepare to “face the world” outside our protective classrooms. It is my prayer that they all find a personal faith in Jesus and let the Holy Spirit guide every aspect and belief in their lives. God has trusted me with this awesome responsibility and He guides me every day to fulfill His calling.

    Cynthia




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  27. Look at exactly what I said in my statement, I said quote “the only difference is that creation and evolution is presented equally throughout the school.” Meaning I did not say that I was talking only about the science department, but as a school as a whole. There are classes within the science department that do teach evolution, and then there is the religion department which teaches a recent creation. So it can be said that there is an equal balance of creation and evolution ideas. If one does not like the views shared in the science department, and cannot accept some of the facts presented, than the department is not for you and there are plenty other classes that you can take at LSU. 

    @Jordan Blackwelder: No, when creationism is relegated to only religion classes, while being negated both in science and religion classes, then it is not an equal or balanced presentation.

    I for a fact that not all the religion professors at LSU endorse a literal six day creation in the recent past. The dean of the school of religion doesn’t even believe the biblical account of creation. I’m sure he believes in a creator God, but not one who did it recently and in six days.

    The university claims to endorse the church’s position, but yet employs professors who do not. Thus someone wanting and Adventist world view taught in the science classes cannot get what they’re paying for. You’re right though they should go somewhere else. But if LSU can’t maintain support of the church, than it should go its separate way.




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  28. @Eric: Yes, we can agree here. We believe the professors who are at odds with the church should find another organization that is more closely aligned with their beliefs instead of causing so much division by proselytizing Adventist youth with their beliefs.




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  29. “There are classes within the science department that do teach evolution, and then there is the religion department which teaches a recent creation. So it can be said that there is an equal balance of creation and evolution ideas. If one does not like the views shared in the science department, and cannot accept some of the facts presented, than the department is not for you and there are plenty other classes that you can take at LSU.”

    @Jordan Blackwelder: If LSU is an SDA institution, then all classes taught and all department should be in harmony with each other and with the beliefs of the church. The student’s choice should not have to be between department within an institution, but rather the student’s choice should be between institutions. Once a student chooses to attend an SDA institution, it is only logical to believe that all class offering should be in harmony with the churches doctrines. If a student wants to study evolution there are plenty of secular schools they can attend.




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  30. The funny thing about it is just be a impressionable mind for a second:

    I science teacher tells you, “These are the facts: life evolved through time, and it involved a process of survival of the fittest group or individual and the more sickly or weak were culled out or simply eliminated due to genetic weakness thanks to what science likes to call natural selection. Now, we know this happened a very long time ago and because I work here at LSU, I believe God was behind it and He loves you and you should love everyone too. Please?!”

    And then the student goes to the religion department and the impressionable student has a teacher that says, “I believe that God made the world through creation cause he said it and I am a believer and I have not done any research on the subject (Really, they don’t say this. A lot of them say the other and some say they believe in creation and God with good reason but I’m just trying to keep it simple.). Just follow Jesus cause it is a belief thing.”

    Now if this student is a logical and impressionable young mind, he or she will realize that natural selection states that someone will have to win in the end and that selfish means are not always bad–the world was built on them and love is not the governing principal after all. Somehow–an Adventist Evolutionist if they realize this problem will always have a dichotomy as the Bible clearly states to love but the basis of evolution is domination of the group or individual or even the gene.

    These teachers make a big impression and for scientific minded students it is huge. . . especially if it is one sided. Luckily, I am sure there are not just the one sided debate that I have envisioned but neither are the science teachers of little influence. They are neat people that have a huge influence–mine did and thank God that they were good people with high goals and values as well as the way they taught because they did have a big impact of my life.

    It is just not a 50/50 input science and religion–for some students, it is a science teacher that will help them come closer to Christ and for others a religion teacher. We need all the tools at our schools working for our young people–why don’t we get it. Are we willing to sacrifice any, just for the sake of looking like we are more like a public school?




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  31. @Jordan Blackwelder: No, when creationism is relegated to only religion classes, while being negated both in science and religion classes, then it is not an equal or balanced presentation.I for a fact that not all the religion professors at LSU endorse a literal six day creation in the recent past. The dean of the school of religion doesn’t even believe the biblical account of creation. I’m sure he believes in a creator God, but not one who did it recently and in six days.The university claims to endorse the church’s position, but yet employs professors who do not. Thus someone wanting and Adventist world view taught in the science classes cannot get what they’re paying for. You’re right though they should go somewhere else. But if LSU can’t maintain support of the church, than it should go its separate way.  

    @Shane Hilde:
    I still don’t believe you understand what I’m trying to say about equal representation within the school.
    In a sense I am glad that not all of the religion teachers (or any teacher at LSU for that matter) believe in the same exact things. How would that get students to go and find the truth for themselves if they are force fed what the SDA church believes. This is the college level where students should be allowed to question and be challenged by new thoughts and ideas while still being protected within the realm of christian morals and ethics. By not allowing students to ask questions and search for truth themselves how does one gain knowledge and grow as an individual? The process of hearing something that doesn’t match up with what you believe drives you as a student to see what the differences are, thus making the student wiser. The science professors never say in their class that, “this is what you should believe and creationist ideas are completely wrong” instead they present the material (which students need to know if they wish to do anything within the field of science) and say “this may not be what you believe but you must make your own opinion on it.” If you cannot see that the diversity within LSU is a good thing than you have completely lost sense of true religion, and it is the unity within the diversity thats separates this college from any other. True religion is an acceptance of everyones thoughts and ideas, however wrong they may be. The minute you can accept that, the discontent you have with LSU will fall away.




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  32. Jordan Blackwelder wrote:

    By not allowing students to ask questions and search for truth themselves how does one gain knowledge and grow as an individual?

    Who is suggesting that students shouldn’t be allowed to ask questions and search for truth? Certainly not Shane. Where did you get such a notion?

    Of course students should be allowed to ask questions and search for truth as best as they can. However, the whole point of having a Church school is so that the Church’s perspective can be provided in answer to any and all sincere questions. If we as Church members consider that the Church’s perspective is important to share with the world, then why should we hire those persons to teach our children who do not subscribe to this perspective? – who go about actively undermining that which we consider to be so important?

    Your argument is like someone suggesting that medical students should be exposed to those who subscribe to all sorts of ideas on the practice of medicine, even to those persons who hold ideas about medical practice that are known to be harmful to patients. In other words, our medical schools should hire witch doctors, New Agers, and snake-oil peddlers to teach in the medical school classroom just so that students can better make up their own minds as to how best to practice medicine? Please…

    If you really believe in something enough to develop a school to teach your children, you want the beneficial bias of your belief to be presented in your school. This isn’t a matter of suppressing questions. This is a matter of providing thoughtful and well-reasoned SDA-based answers to those questions. The student can still be taught how to think for his or herself at the same time, but bias cannot be avoided and is not necessarily bad. Presenting the student with a bias in a good direction is a very beneficial thing.

    I for one believe that the bias that the SDA perspective has to offer, even in science, is an excellent bias for our young people – a bias to which they should be consistently exposed if it is to be effective in influencing their lives for the good…

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com




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  33. @Jordan Blackwelder:

    There are classes within the science department that do teach evolution, and then there is the religion department which teaches a recent creation. So it can be said that there is an equal balance of creation and evolution ideas. If one does not like the views shared in the science department, and cannot accept some of the facts presented, than the department is not for you and there are plenty other classes that you can take at LSU.

    In that fiction – the “balance at LSU” consists of the science department being fully opposed to the religion department – (meaning the religion department should have started “educatetruth.com” a long time ago). But as the religion department’s own Fritz Guy has pointed out in published statements – there is no such thing as the LSU religion department not embracing evolutionism as the right answer for origins.

    And in the chaos proposed above – the solution is that students “should not go into the field of science” if they agree with the Bible instead of with the atheist-centric doctrines on origins being preached by evolutionist evangelists employed by the LSU biology deparment.

    Even more “instructive” is that the model above exposes one of the unique distinctives of having evolutionist evangelists operating from inside the biology department of an Adventist educational institution. You can model for your Adventist students the example of being a fully compromised yet respected and affirmed Seventh-day Adventist thought leader, when it comes to the doctrine on origins – just in case those students imagined that Seventh-day Adventists cannot also embrace evolutionism.

    Hmm .. how “instructive” for the unbiased objective reader.

    @Shane Hilde:

    I (know) for a fact that not all the religion professors at LSU endorse a literal six day creation in the recent past. The dean of the school of religion doesn’t even believe the biblical account of creation. I’m sure he believes in a creator God, but not one who did it recently and in six days.

    The university claims to endorse the church’s position, but yet employs professors who do not. Thus someone wanting and Adventist world view taught in the science classes cannot get what they’re paying for. You’re right though they should go somewhere else.

    Indeed – as we also saw when Walla Walla encountered this same problem in years past – both departments typically get on the same page when evolutionists gain enough of a foothold to come out in public in their promotion of evolutionism at one of our universities.

    Here is a quote from LSU web site says this about the school of religion. Look for the part where the religion department claims to support the mission and doctrines of the Seventh-day Adventist church.

    The School of Religion is committed to providing general religious studies for all students in every part of the University. Based upon the central Christian belief in one God, Creator of the world and Redeemer of mankind, these studies explore the Bible as the inspired Word of God, provide instruction in Christian faith, examine the history and mission of the church, and offer guidance for the Christian life.

    Email the Dean of the School of Religion John Webster or the administrative assistant, Suzy Kaspereen.
    http://www.lasierra.edu/index.php?id=246

    Now curiously enough, when Jordan’s definition of “balance” consisting of a religion department fully opposed to the biology department’s doctrines on origins at LSU does not turn out to be factually correct, we are treated to the explanation of why “that too” is a good thing.

    @Jordan Blackwelder:

    In a sense I am glad that not all of the religion teachers (or any teacher at LSU for that matter) believe in the same exact things. How would that get students to go and find the truth for themselves if they are force fed what the SDA church believes. This is the college level where students should be allowed to question and be challenged by new thoughts and ideas while still being protected within the realm of christian morals and ethics. By not allowing students to ask questions and search for truth themselves how does one gain knowledge and grow as an individual?

    If you cannot see that the diversity within LSU is a good thing than you have completely lost sense of true religion, and it is the unity within the diversity thats separates this college from any other. True religion is an acceptance of everyones thoughts and ideas, however wrong they may be. The minute you can accept that, the discontent you have with LSU will fall away.

    Jordan has helped the reader see the direction this is going. The self-conflicted Universalist Unitarian concepts of “every idea is ok and is promoted” is being offerred up on the one hand – while “bible is totally wrong” is to be accepted as an absolute mandate in the LSU biology deparment.

    It is truly facinating to watch just how far this evolutionist program is taking the argument!

    Now comes the approval of the goal of LSU being “the best public university that Adventist tuition, tithe and offering dollars can buy”

    This is the part NOT at all unique to LSU among it’s sisterhood of public universities.

    @Jordan Blackwelder:

    The process of hearing something that doesn’t match up with what you believe drives you as a student to see what the differences are, thus making the student wiser.

    The science professors never say in their class that, “this is what you should believe and creationist ideas are completely wrong” instead they present the material (which students need to know if they wish to do anything within the field of science) and say “this may not be what you believe but you must make your own opinion on it.”

    As already noted – that “benefit” can be gained at every vanilla public university in the land for half the cost.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  34. @BobRyan:

    If in fact they – or other students in the class were inclined to think of God’s statement on origins in that way – was there an effort in the class or in some class to address the concerns that the students had? Something along the lines of – “well since it appears that there is some concern among a few of our class members that the Bible position on origins may be lacking when it comes to actual science – we have come up with a helpful “science and the Bible” program that we will focus on to help address those concerns” – ?

    For example 2 areas of helpful focus might be
    1. Demonstrate that the Bible text cannot be bent to support evolutionism and still maintain strict adherence to Bible exegesis – letting the text speak for itself.

    2. Demonstrate the need for “critical thinking” and provide proven junk-science efforts by evolutionists in the past to hoodwink the general population with what is now confirmed and proven fraud and misdirection.

    3. Demonstrate the difference between what atheist evolutionists like Collin Patterson claimed are “stories easy enough to make up … about how one thing came from another” to prop up evolutionism – based on the fossil record – vs “actual science”.

    4. Help students focus on the salient goals of evolutionism in both the areas of abiogenesis and also the macro results where “birds come from reptiles” — fiction on the part of evolutionists never seen in nature, never observed in the lab.

    @Pastor Cynthia Clark:

    Of course we address the issues and concerns from all angles. My lesson plans are very thorough and complete, filled with opportunity for “critical thinking” and self reflection. These boys were not reflecting their own opinions, they were demonstrating how they thought the non-Creationist community views our beliefs. The whole unit addressed these issues.

    As I stated in my response to Shane, the video was not the complete project. In fact the video was not the assignment. These boys took it upon themselves to demonstrate how they believe the world looks at creation. I think they did a good job. As Creationists and as Christians we need to live the love of Christ on this earth and be the joy that is Christ or the “world” will view us as hypocritical and silly.

    As Christians we have a responsibility to understand what we believe and why.

    Then it must be frustrating to see your creationist-believing students going off to LSU only to get evolutionism force-fed as if “you cannot go into the field of science” if you do not “believe in” evolutionism.

    (Getting back to Jordan’s point).

    Have you had time to reflect on that – to explain the athiest-centric components to the doctrine of origins promoted in evolutionism and to warn them that they will face this not only in public universities but also in a few of our own Adventist universities?

    In public universities Adventist students may simply choose to excuse professors for their ignorance about God’s view of origins, but what about those students who might face that problem at LSU – how did you prepare them for that?

    Did the lessons, the tools, the skills, the exercises that you gave them anticipate the more difficult problem of fully compromised ADventist professors demanding that the students accept that the Bible is wrong?

    E.G. White says in D.A. p22 that “Force has no place in God’s plan.” I teach this to my students. God does not force us in to the kingdom or into the SDA fundamental beliefs. We have a responsibility to live in reflection of the kingdom that is to come, and in so doing we offer each other encouragement. My students leave my classroom knowing that Jesus is their Savior and that the SDA church welcomes them into its membership if they choose.

    Indeed – we can all choose to be born-again Christians and follow the truth instead of embracing rebellion against God’s Word – against the One who says He “IS the way the TRUTH and the Life”. No question about that.

    No worries Bob, I prayerfully offer hope and truth to my students within the SDA required curriculum for Academy students. This Creation/beliefs unit falls in the Senior year as they prepare to “face the world” outside our protective classrooms.

    Glad to hear that !

    My concern is that parents and students that leave our Academy settings considering them to be “our protective classrooms” just “might” think of Seventh-day Adventist LSU biology classrooms as a continuation of “our protective classrooms” only to find that they are getting full-on public university indoctrination into believing in the atheist-centric views on origins promoted as the right answer for origins with Adventist professors pronouncing that the Bible is wrong “as if that was a good thing”.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  35. True religion is an acceptance of everyones thoughts and ideas, however wrong they may be. The minute you can accept that, the discontent you have with LSU will fall away.

    Jordan,
    The Christian churches in North America are losing their youth at a rapid rate. A Barna study on ‘Twenty Somethings’ put it this way.

    “In fact, the most potent data regarding disengagement is that a majority of twentysomethings – 61% of today’s young adults – had been churched at one point during their teen years but they are now spiritually disengaged (i.e., not actively attending church, reading the Bible, or praying). Only one-fifth of twentysomethings (20%) have maintained a level of spiritual activity consistent with their high school experiences.”

    Entire Creationist ministries, such as Answers in Genesis, are built upon the fundamental premise that exposure to evolutionary theory in secular universities is a major contributing factor to this exodus from Christianity into the world – and that the promotion of a Biblical Creationism in churches and Christian schools is the best way to safeguard youth from the dangerous influence of this ‘scientific’ dogma.

    The fact is that more people have abandoned Christianity because of Darwinistic evolutionary dogma than any other devilish lie (accepting perhaps the lie of eternal torment which may have actually been a catalyst for the development of Darwinism).

    Exposure to evolutionary theory in the context of Creationist apologetics and Creation Science, is a sound enterprise. Exposure to evolutionary theory in the context of a supposedly Creationist university (LSU) where theistic evolution is instead promoted, and special creationism undermined – is a very dangerous enterprise. A lie of the Devil, prefaced by prayer, and proclaimed to be God based – is definitely ‘the worst form of infidelity.’ Would you have our students protected within the realm of ‘christian morals and ethics’ – while at the same time exposed to the ‘worst form of infidelity?’

    Christians are not called to ‘accept everyone’s thoughts and ideas.’

    “Error is never harmless. It never sanctifies, but always brings confusion and dissension. It is always dangerous. The enemy has great power over minds that are not thoroughly fortified by prayer and established in Bible truth.” {CW 46.2}

    I minister to the widest variety of religious professions in a state prison setting. From Satanist to Adventist and everything in between. My job is to model the love of Christ to them. To advocate for their God given religious freedom. Not to ‘accept their beliefs.’ If I did that, I would be a universalist madman.

    The second angels message has been abandoned by many so-called Adventists. The call to come out of Babylon is a call to abandon the wine of its errors and embrace Bible truth instead. It is not a call to ‘accept everyone’s beliefs’ – to embrace a thoroughly interfaith universalism. Our universities are not meant to be a marketplace of errors for our children to become more ‘open minded’ and less Adventist.

    Perhaps you have not read all of the evidence on this site; but evolution has indeed been presented at LSU as something that should be believed, and special creationism as something that is unscientific. Numerous persons on this site have stated that they would much prefer to send their children to a secular university where science professors boldly state their beliefs about Darwinism – than an ‘Adventist’ University where science professors practice the worst form of duplicity, compromise and infidelity – subtly, and not so subtly undermining the most fundamental of our beliefs.

    If our universities ‘accept’ theistic evolution, then they should in all good conscience remove the expression ‘Seventh-day’ from their title.




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  36. I still don’t believe you understand what I’m trying to say about equal representation within the school.

    I think I do understand. You see, you didn’t even defend you statement of “equal representation” in your last post. You went off on a completely different tangent. So like I said before, LSU does not present creation and evolution equally.




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  37. Sean,I believe that only a few believing Seventh-day Adventist scientists would agree with you. Richard P. Feynman said, “The fundamental principle of science, the definition almost, is this: the sole test of the validity of any idea is experiment.” David Hilbert, the mathematician who taught Einstein how to derive the equations of general relativity, believed that all science should be reduced to mathematics. I see the merit of their scientific philosophies and reject your ultra-fundamentalism. Instead of defining science with the certainty of irrefutable and unambiguous ideas, you want to reduce scientific creationism to what the Bible says. I simply can’t imagine well-informed Adventist scientists accepting your point of view.  

    1. Only “a few” will enter the kingdon of heaven. What difference do the relative numbers of believers make? Is THAT why you want to accept evolutionary theory – because it is POPULAR? Because it is RESPECTABLE in the eyes of the ungodly? Science is not about how many people believe, but about what can be demonstrated. Why are so many who are so dogmatic about what science has to say, also so ignorant of what science is?

    Here’s a handy rule of thumb: whenever anyone begins to talk about the “consensus of scientific opinion” they have ceased talking about science and have begun to discuss politics instead. Consensus (i.e. popularity) has nothing to do with science, or else Galileo was wrong.

    Do you think Galileo was wrong because few agreed with him?

    2. Where is the test of abiogenesis? Since the idea cannot be tested, then it cannot be scientific, right? Can it be falsified? No. Then it cannot be scientific, by definition.

    3. Nothing in science is irrefutable – as another has already observed – BECAUSE science BY DEFINITION demands that a theorem be refutable. If it cannot be falsified – i.e. refuted, by experiment – then it is not scientific.

    Again, why are so many who are so dogmatic on the subject of what science supposedly has to say, so ignorant of what science IS?

    4. You reject not the “ultra-fundamentalism” of Shane, but of God. You accept the ultra-fundamentalism of those who deny the very existence of God, and have thus perverted the study of His creation into a philosophy that denies His existence, i.e. that “science, so called” which cannot ever entertain anything but naturalistic explanations. But matter does not explain itself, nor does it produce life. Nor does evolution produce new genetic information necessary to produce new life forms. All cited cases of evolution are in fact losses of information.

    Evolutionary philosophy is thus the worship of death as creator.

    This is the total opposite of the God worshipped by Seventh Day Adventists, the God who proclaims “I AM … The LIFE!”

    Finally, on the subject of “what science has to say” I will tell you for free, science has NOTHING to say. It is a simple methodology, that is all. A disciplined way of examining our surroundings. It says NOTHING.

    Scientists, and those who call themselves scientists, have a great deal to say, some of which comports with the disciplines of their profession, and some of which does not.

    For example, anyone claiming to be both an atheist and a scientist is merely confused at best, since the positive statement “There is no God” is not scientific, as there is no possible experiment the outcome of which would falsify it.

    The only honest answer possible for those who are presently unconvinced as to the existence or non-existence of God is “I dont know”.

    Regards
    Denver




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  38. @Eric: Yes, we can agree here. We believe the professors who are at odds with the church should find another organization that is more closely aligned with their beliefs instead of causing so much division by proselytizing Adventist youth with their beliefs.  (Quote)

    thats not what i was talking about. I was refering to people like you who make a big deal out of something like this and conservative people who are scared of facing the evidence against creation. Right now there is no evidence for a literal 6-day creation, even you know that. It is our faith in the Bible, which will all be worth it in heaven, that is our only reason to believe. You know full well that if there was evidence for a 6 day creation those professors would be teaching it.




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  39. @Sean Pitman, M.D.: Who is suggesting that students shouldn’t be allowed to ask questions and search for truth? Certainly not Shane. Where did you get such a notion?

    correct me if im wrong but it actually does seem like shane is saying we should not be taught any evolutionary views whatsoever?




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  40. @Eric:

    It is our faith in the Bible, which will all be worth it in heaven, that is our only reason to believe. You know full well that if there was evidence for a 6 day creation those professors would be teaching

    1. There is no evidence at all that “birds come from reptiles”

    2. There is no evidence at all of abiogenesis – anywhere in any site on planet earth.

    3. There is no evidence that higher life forms come from lower ones.

    The alchemy of spontaneous generation making its big come-back via neo-darwinian guesswork is the same fiction today that it was the first time around.

    Yet a few faculty members at LSU are head over heels – trying to evangelize for that junk-science religion every chance they get.

    There is a public university missing a professor or two –

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  41. it actually does seem like shane is saying we should not be taught any evolutionary views whatsoever

    I don’t recall saying evolution should not be taught. It should be taught. It shouldn’t be taught as truth or the preferred world view in an Adventist university though. Of course if the church changes its mind, then by all means it should embrace and welcome with open arms the theory and promote it. Since the church, based on the Bible, believes the biblical creation to be a historical event that happened in the recent past, it wouldn’t make sense for it to be teaching that alternative as truth.

    A world view based on the theory of evolution leads to irrationality and inconsistency. This is why we must base our world view on the Bible, because it comes from a rational and consistent mind.




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