Panda’s Thumb: ‘SDAs are split over evolution’

By Sean Pitman

On a rather notorious pro-evolution website, “Panda’s Thumb”, there is an interesting blog presented by mainstream professors who were asked to speak at both La Sierra University and Pacific Union College. Here is what they had to say about their experience at our universities:

Seventh-Day Adventists Split Over Evolution?

Regarding La Sierra University:

Last fall I gave several guest lectures on evolution, geology, and magnetic stratigraphy to the LSU campus, and found that the biology faculty were all legitimate biologists who practiced normal science and rejected all vestiges of YEC in their teaching and research. Several were quite successful in getting NSF grants for their research, and had a good track record in legitimate peer-reviewed publications on herpetology, molecular biology, etc.

Dr. Prothero

They would teach classes which were completely in line with conventional evolutionary biology, always forced to introduce their material with nods to Church teaching but demanding that their students understand legitimate evolutionary biology and be able to show their understanding on exams and papers, even if they didn’t agree with it.

It’s scary to see these legitimate scientists now threatened by the Neanderthals in the LSU board who want to drag it back into the Middle Ages–something that none of them thought would happen when I met with them last fall…

Donald Prothero | November 18, 2009 | 9:47 PM

Dr. Prothero is a Professor of Geology at Occidental College and Lecturer in Geobiology at Caltech. He is the author, co-author, editor, or co-editor of 21 books and almost 200 scientific papers, including five leading geology textbooks and three trade books. He has served as an associate or technical editor for Geology, Paleobiology, and Journal of Paleontology. He is a Fellow of the Geological Society of America, the Paleontological Society, and the Linnaean Society of London.

Regarding Pacific Union College:

Nick Matzke

In 2006, Wes Elsberry and I were invited to come to PUC and debate evolution for part of a student-organized speaker series. We were initially hesitant, since we are generally skeptical of debating creationists. However, after some discussion with the organizers, we grudgingly signed up, since it seemed like there was some chance for a reasonable discussion rather than just a Gish-gallop debate. Wes and I drove up to PUC – but, aware of the YECiness of Adventists, we went in as armed to the teeth as academics can be, with huge powerpoint files solely devoted to putting evidence for the age of the earth and common ancestry as bluntly and non-deniably as possible. When I spoke, I popped the slides up one-by-one and used the basic refrain, “Here are the hard facts. If this evidence has been hidden from you before now by your teachers and professors, you should ask yourself why.” It was pretty much a go-in-with-blazing-guns strategy.

Dr. Elsberry

However, as the discussion ensued, the students, and some of the professors, had some news for me. “You’ve got us all wrong,” they said. “We’re not all old-fashioned young-earth creationists and anti-evolutionists here, that’s an old stereotype about Adventists.” (Note: this is not a direct quote, rather it is just the gist of what I remember hearing.) Subsequent discussion indicated that many of the students & profs were reasonably well-informed about evolution and not really skeptical of it. After some interesting chats, Wes and I drove home, shaking our heads and commenting that if Seventh Day Adventists were becoming OK with evolution, we should keep our eyes open for flying pigs and freezing hells.

So, anyway, the point is: watch out Hilde & McPherson! It looks like Pacific Union College isn’t safe, either! Light the torches and sharpen the pitchforks!

Nick Matzke | November 18, 2009 | 2:09 AM

Nickolas Matzke is currently a doctoral student in evolutionary biology at the University of California, Berkeley.  He  is the former Public Information Project Director at the National Center for Science Education (NCSE) and served an instrumental role in NCSE’s preparation for the 2005 Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District trial.

Dr. Wesley Royce Elsberry is a marine biologist with an interdisciplinary background in zoology, computer science, and wildlife and fisheries sciences. He has also become publicly involved in the creation-evolution controversy.

Note: For those who might be interested, I’ve personally debated Nick Matzke regarding his theories on bacterial flagellar evolution (see review).

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380 thoughts on “Panda’s Thumb: ‘SDAs are split over evolution’

  1. Fine, then my question to you is: Is it peer reviewed by just creationists? If so, then it’s reviewed in the same way Answers in Genesis’ “Answers Research Journal” is which only makes the peer review suspicious. –Sorry, but I learned the hard way not to trust …

    Let us put your proposed for objectivity “to the test”. Given your disinclination to peer review by a group that is all on just one side of the debate — is it ALSO true that you reject ALL peer review if the reviewers are ALL of one POV – i.e. all evolutionists? If so just speak up.

    ….

    Hmm that is what I thought.

    Sorry, but I learned the hard way not to trust evolutionists.

    I refer you to the following evolutionist playbook of in many cases decades long fraud and hoaxes some of which heralded as “the BEST example of evolution” seen in nature!

    http://www.educatetruth.com/la-sierra-evidence/pandas-thumb-sdas-are-split-over-evolution/comment-page-2/#comment-23287

    in Christ,

    Bob

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  2. @Professor Kent:

    Like Adam, you could walk with God day after day. But instead of seeking answers directly from him, you seek your answers, and support, from the dirt–as if the fossils say more about God than what he could tell you himself.

    You didn’t answer my question as to why you wouldn’t believe my claim, or a stranger’s claim, to be God. Why not? Why wouldn’t you have “faith” in such claims? Why wouldn’t you take them at face value?

    Also, since when have you walked and talked face to face with God like Adam did? Since when have you personally been an eyewitness to God’s creative power as Adam was?

    Adam had empirical evidence far beyond what you or I will ever have in this life. He didn’t need faith to believe in the existence and creative power of God. He was an eyewitness to these things. For Adam, these were empirical facts. He did not see through a glass darkly like us regarding such things. He was there, one on one, in the physical presence of God.

    Now, what did require a leap of faith was for Adam to trust God, based on the empirical evidence that he had been given. This is where he failed. He had more than enough empirical evidence upon which to base a rational faith in God… more than you and I have. That is why his failure was so bad. He rebelled against God, as did Eve, not for a lack of evidence, but for selfish reasons… for knowingly placing self above God; above the ultimate welfare of others.

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com

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  3. In the following post we find

    http://www.educatetruth.com/la-sierra-evidence/pandas-thumb-sdas-are-split-over-evolution/comment-page-2/#comment-23287

    Patterson said

    It is easy enough to make up stories of how one form gave rise to another, and to find reasons why the stages should be favoured by natural selection. But such stories are not part of science, for there is no way of putting them to the test.

    BobRyan comments

    Patterson has/had a tough job as an atheist evolutionist because the playbook tactics for making arguments for fossil transitional forms are so loaded with examples of proven fraud – it would be difficult to sort out the real from the fiction in some cases until 50 years AFTER the wild claims were first made.

    WoW!

    Let’s look closely at that “playbook”.

    Playbook tactics of evolutionists when trying to promote “a story”.

    1. “New discovery” smoke screen – Osborne – Nebraska man just before Scopes trial – then hide the real truth from the public for sake of influencing belief – as more details hit the light of day.
    Hesperopithecus (Nebraska man). One tooth

    (Here I was simply fishing to see if we had any SDA evolutionsts blindly following atheist and evoutionist playbook dogma to the point of leaping off that cliff with Osborn and TalkOrigins)

    Bingo! Kris takes the bait.

    Kris said –
    Nebraska man was an honest mistake, not an intentional fraud. Even the one that discovered the tooth that eventually turned out to belong to an extinct peccary began having doubts about it. It was never widely accepted in the scientific community, and contrary to popular belief, the drawing of “Nebraska Man” was made by a journalist; not as an actual scientific reconstruction.

    Link: http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/homs/wolfmellett.html

    Next:

    From the TalkOrigins link — we find this “science ethic” of evolutionists STILL being promoted for cases where the data does not support the wild eolutionist storytelling

    TalkOrigins
    What had happened? Quite simply, Hesperopithecus had come to the end of its short life, although most of the world would not learn of the demise for another two-and-one-half years. By mid-July, Osborn had undoubtedly received the first specimens from the renewed collecting at the Hesperopithecus discovery site. This material, as we have noted, probably caused doubts in the minds of Osborn and Gregory over the reality of Hesperopithecus.

    And what if Bryan had found out about the uncertain status of Hesperopithecus? If such doubts had been raised at the Scopes trial, it could have led to disastrous consequences for Scopes’s defense and even for the public image of evolution.

    Clearly, it would have been best for Osborn to back off and stay out of reach in New York. So, having fulfilled his obligation to Scopes’s defense with the July 12 piece in The New York Times, Osborn sat out the Scopes trial, not even submitting written testimony.

    WOW!!

    But talkorigins is not done providing facts for the true objective unbiased reader to see the religious by-faith-alone argument for evolutionism.

    TalkOrigins

    Ironically, the similarity between peccary teeth and those of hominids had been noted 13 years before Osborn published his description of Hesperopithecus. In 1909, W. D. Matthew and Harold Cook had the following to say in describing Prosthennops: [quote]”The anterior molars and premolars of this genus of peccaries show a startling resemblance to the teeth of Anthropoidea, and might well be mistaken for them by anyone not familiar with the dentition of Miocene peccaries.” (p. 390)

    Matthew was Osborn’s younger colleague at the American Museum of Natural History, and there is no way that Osborn could not have known about this 1909 warning.
    http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/homs/wolfmellett.html

    Again – WOW!!

    Here have an evolutionist going against what he knew were his own team’s warnings NOT to make wild claims about the very fossil dental evidence that he is using – and to compound his perfidity in doing so “anyway” he is “applauded” for keeping the “science fact” from the public that
    1. The members of his OWN team had already issued a warning about NOT using such evidence —
    2. When Osborn was convinced of that false nature of the claim he “wisely” chose not to notify the public – after having made all those public claims to the contrary!

    And yet this site and even the link is being recommended to us as a good “defense” for evolutionism??? How “instructive” for the unbiased objective reader!

    As I said – this first example gives a transparent review of the methods and the values of the evolutionist argument and its willingness to abuse science to get there.

    In this “Example 1” we have a perfect illustration of the Playbook tactic for promoting “recent news” that has yet to be validated and even once it is found to be flawed – trying to white-wash over the hole they just stepped in so as not to inform the public of science facts that might inconvenience the storytelling for evolutionism.

    The point remains.

    in Christ,

    Bob

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  4. One more point in the ever-winding ever-twisting efforts of talkorigins to reveal the methods of evolutionism to the critical objective unbiased reader.

    From TalkOrigins

    In May 1925 Osborn again picked up the theme of the earth speaking to Bryan. He then called on Bryan to honor his own dictum that Truth is Truth and must prevail. An element of Truth, Osborn argued, appeared as a diminutive tooth from Nebraska. .

    [quote]Osborn – May 1925
    What shall we do with the Nebraska tooth? Shall we destroy it because it jars our long preconceived notion that [u]the family of manlike apes[/u] never reached the western world . . . ? Or shall we continue our excavations, difficult and baffling as they are, in the confident hope, inspired by the admonition of Job, that if we keep speaking to the earth we shall in time hear a more audible and distinct reply? Certainly we shall not banish this bit of Truth because it does not fit in with our preconceived notions and because at present [u]it constitutes infinitesimal but irrefutable evidence that the man-apes [/u] wandered over from Asia into North America. (Osborn, 1925a, pp. 800-801) [/quote]

    Here we have Osborn himself arguing in the press before God and country that this is a case of “irrefutable evidence that the man-apes wandered over from Asia to North America”.

    This is NOT just a scenario of “some newspaper artist” arguing that case but just in the “Funny papers” to non-science readers!

    TalkOrigins continues to dig itself into a hole

    Almost on the eve of the Scopes trial, Bryan finally answered Osborn on the subject of the Nebraska tooth:
    [quote]
    William Jennings Bryan replies –
    The finder of this priceless tooth, conscious that it could impose upon but a few, even among those who prefer speculation to reason, wisely chose Professor Osborn. He hastily summoned a few congenial spirits, nearly as credulous as himself, and they held a postmortem examination on the extinct animal, which had at one time been the proud possessor of this “infinitesimal” and “insignificant” tooth.

    After due deliberation, they solemnly concluded and announced that the tooth was the long looked-for and eagerly longed-for missing link which the world awaited. The Professor’s logic leaks at every link, but it is no worse than that of his boon companions who, having rejected the authority of the word of God, are like frightened men in the dark, feeling around for something they can lean upon. (Bryan, 1925, pp. 104-105)[/quote]

    Bryan complains about the scanty evidence being used for Osborn’s sweeping claims.

    But in true revisionist fashion – TalkOrigin tries to pin the whole thing on a newspaper artist – as if Osborn is not having this in-the-press debate with Bryan using the tooth for a grand and glorious “ape man” argument, only the newspaper artist is…

    Kris quotes TalkOrigins
    contrary to popular belief, the drawing of “Nebraska Man” was made by a journalist; not as an actual scientific reconstruction.

    Link: http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/homs/wolfmellett.html

    As noted previously – the issue is not “who drew the picture” the issue is Osborn arguing in the press that he has “irrefutable evidence of ape man” in the form of dental evidence that his own team members had concluded to be too dubious for any kind of wild claim.

    How is it that the only one we see raising the hand and calling “foul” is Bryan – where is Matthew!! Where are the so-called scientists among the evolutionists?

    in Christ,

    Bob

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  5. Radiocarbon dating is about as reliable as it gets when it comes to radiometric dating methods. What is uncertain is the assumption that the C-12 / C-14 ratio in the biosphere has always been the same as it is today. If there really was a Noachian Flood within recent history (say, less than 5,000 years ago), this would suggest a significantly greater quantity of C-12 present in the biosphere before the Flood than exists today. This difference in ratio would, of course, produce a significant increase in apparent C-14 age of specimens that were alive before vs. after the Flood.

    It is my understanding that C-14 dating formulae are based on the assumption that C-14 levels have remained constant over time. Is this true? I mean, do mainstream scientists use the current ratio of C-12/C-14 to provide a “starting point” for their dating of fossils, etc.?

    This question is open to anyone on any side of this discussion. I would appreciate as much detail as possible, such as what exactly is the ratio used for dating the fossils?

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  6. @Sean Pitman

    Everyone has an agenda and everyone is biased to one degree or another – even your mainstream “Christian scientists” are biased in that they believe, “a priori” in mainstream evolutionary theories and life evolving on this planet over a billion years of time.

    True, everyone has a bias, but interestingly enough, Christians Scientists who accept the scientific age of the earth and even evolutionary theory have no religious or anti-religous agenda, while the same is not true of Young-Earth Creationist “scientists.”

    I can name several Christian Scientists that have no agenda, either for or against Christianity (For example, Glenn Morton, Francis Collins, Karl Gibberson, to name a few.) …In contrast, how many Young Earth Creationist “scientists” have no such agenda? There isn’t a single one that DOESN’T have a religious motive.

    I’m afraid your own bias is showing quite strongly here when it comes to what “evidence” you are willing to choose and present as a basis for belief…

    No, I chose to believe those who have no agenda to push, and most scientists that do accept evolution do not have an anti-God agenda or an pro-God agenda or that matter. –I say this because the most recent survey rom the Pew Reaserch Center shows that 33% of all scientists believe in God and 18% of then believe in a higher power. Together that makes 51% (a majority of them).

    Pew Research Center: http://people-press.org/report/?pageid=1549

    But you dodged my question: Do only young earth Creationistspeer-review the paper, or not?

    Well, you’d be wrong. Consider the following article from a 2006 issue of National Geographic (one year after Schweitzer’s first discovery of soft tissues in a T. rex bone) entitled, “Many Dino Fossils Could Have Soft Tissue Inside”

    I’m an honest man, so I’ll concede that point. I was wrong. — But since the only thing that is being called into question is the mechanism of fossilation (which I intended to and forgot to put in my comment), and not the age of the earth, a young earth still doesn’t follow. –All Schweitzer says (all so clearly in the video you have on your page) is that this calls into question is the process of fossilzation; if you want to argue that this is definite evidence for a young earth, you need to rule out the former.

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  7. In my last comment, I say “I can name several Christian Scientists that have no agenda, either for or against Christianity.”

    I should clarify. What I mean is that they do not use their results against or for religion. Francis Collins arguably has a “Pro-Christian” agenda.

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  8. One last point on playbook option #1 for evolutionists The “This just in” option and a rush to embrace it.

    BobRyan said
    1. “New discovery” smoke screen – Osborne – Nebraska man just before Scopes trial – then hide the real truth from the public for sake of influencing belief – as more details hit the light of day.
    Hesperopithecus (Nebraska man). One tooth

    Then Kris provides the suggestion that Osborn may have been doing the right thing… the normal everyday evolutionist thing ..

    Kris said –

    Nebraska man was an honest mistake, not an intentional fraud.

    This is important – because it argues that taking a tiny fragment of evidence and conjuring up a whopper of a story to go with it — claiming the whole thing as “irrefutible evidence for ape man” is pretty much the normal for evolutionists and it is only later when they find out that it is confirmed to be the tooth of a pig or something that they would then know enough to have an actual problem with the whopper of a tale the assigned to that fragment of evidence.

    Certainly we all agree that Osborn “could not have known in advance” that the tooth evidence would be so quickly debunked. Evolutionism is not looking for evidence that is ” too quickly debunked” — I think we all agree. They would prefer to argue for the something that is never debunked or at the very least – something that lasts for 40 or 50 years like Earnst Haeckel’s embryo illustration for the idea that ontogeny recapitulates phylogeny.

    This leads us to what should be number 9 on the list – (But I thought it was too too much like #3 at the time)

    9. “Snooker the public for a short while because everyone else is doing it”. This model would ostensibly be hoping that solid evidence for your wild guesswork will be added in later. The excuse used is that it is “standard evolutionist practice”

    Illustrative case in point. –

    In 1866, guided by the bias of evolution and atheism, German embryologist and philosopher Ernst Haeckel, concluded that evolutionary the stages of species from single cells to humans (phylogeny) were repeated in embryological development (ontogeny) of each species. He surmised that, being highest on the evolutionary tree, human embryos should pass through the stages of the lower or more primitive species, namely single cell, to fish, to amphibian, to reptile, to mammal, to human.

    So convinced that he was right, he self-proclaimed the “Biogenetic Law”: Ontogeny Recapitulates Phylogeny. However, it was neither a law nor correct. It was fraud.

    Haeckel supplied drawings as evidence of his “scientific law,” which were then placed in science textbooks to convince students that evolution is a fact.

    “To support his case [Haeckel] began to fake evidence. Charged with fraud by five professors and convicted by a university court at Jena, he agreed that a small percentage of his embryonic drawings were forgeries; he was merely filling in and reconstructing the missing links when the evidence was thin, and he claimed unblushingly that hundreds of the best observers and biologists lie under the same charge
    “Adam and Evolution” (1984), p. 120.

    When put in trial some 40 years later by the university – Haeckel said the following

    Haeckel said
    “I should feel utterly condemned and annihilated by the admission, were it not that hundreds of the best observers and biologists lie under the same charge. The great majority of all morphological, anatomical, histological, and embryological diagrams are not true to nature, but are more or less doctored, schematized and reconstructed” (Bowden, Malcolm (1977), Ape-Men: Fact or Fallacy? (Bromley, England: Sovereign Publications), p. 128).

    The idea that prior to having the ape-man evidence (a single pigs tooth) debunked, and prior to having his embryo illustrations proven to false – these men were simply doing what all evolutionists are doing — is not a new claim. It seems that evolutionists actually go for that idea.

    in Christ,

    Bob

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  9. I ask again: If finding elastic tissue in fossil dinosaurs is the rule rather than the exception, then how many dinosaurs have been found that have been shown to have elastic tissue VERSES those that have been found without them? The truth is that the sample that Mary Higby Schweitzer was ONLY THE SECOND piece of elastic tissue ever discovered

    The truth is “they weren’t looking – because they did not expect to find anything”. They would much prefer to leave their fossil and bone finds in tact than to smash them looking for something that is not supposed to be there!

    The bigger question is NOW will they start cracking open large bones in current museum to “see what is inside”?

    Time will tell.

    in Christ,

    Bob

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  10. @ Johnny Vance

    @Professor Kent: Your response is the reason why students feel like they have to release videos, sound recordings and compiled evidence to show that they’re not wrong, just because they are in the minority going against the popular wave. Most of the “dozens” of PUC students who defended Dr. Ness actually hurt his cause by proving that their postmodern philosophy and/or their lack spirituality informed their defense of him. The nature of deception is that you don’t know you’re being deceived.

    So, YOU claim to be able to judge from the many student comments their philosophy and spirituality? And YOU can decipher, whilst I cannot, that the vast majority were “postmodern” and “lacking in spirituality?” And I can be deceived while YOU cannot?

    When you choose to believe the very few, Johnny, you reveal your obvious and very selective bias. You can cherry-pick as well as anyone here. And you’ve proven your arrogance.

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  11. @ Sean Pitman

    You didn’t answer my question as to why you wouldn’t believe my claim, or a stranger’s claim, to be God. Why not? Why wouldn’t you have “faith” in such claims? Why wouldn’t you take them at face value?

    Okay, Sean. The Bible tells me that I could not survive being in the presence of God, so I would not accept your, or a stranger’s, claim. The Bible tells me all I need to know about God to recognize who he is. I don’t need your fossil evidence, your DNA evidence, your probability statements, your philosophical statements, your http://www.detectingdesign.com, your Turtles All the Way Down book…they all fall short of the Bible. Stop putting your own reason and logic and carefully thought-out-science ahead of God’s Word!

    So what if Satan sat down with you and began to meticulously reveal to you all the secrets of short-term chronology–including the very few secrets that you have yet to figure out. And then he began to perform very impressive miracles demonstrating his supernatural power. And he spoke of nothing whatsoever that contradicted the Bible, or even Ellen White. How would YOU know that he was not an angel sent by God to give you more insights on the evidence you believe trumps God’s simple Word?

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  12. Sean, why would you ever take the position that God’s word alone is insufficient and that He expects us to find overwhelming evidence of His Creative Act in just 6 days; ovewhelming evidence that he parted the Red Sea; overwhelming evidence of The Virgin Birth; overwhelming evidence of The Ascension? And why would you reject God’s word–declare Him to be a fraud–if the science you use to test his word supported long ages?

    Don’t you realize that Jonny Vance, Bob Ryan, Faith, Lisa, PUC Grad, Former PUC Student, Inge Anderson, Colin Maunder, oink, and Wesley Kime all lose respect for you when you continue to villify simple faith and elevate science ahead of it?

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  13. @BobRyan

    The truth is “they weren’t looking – because they did not expect to find anything”. They would much prefer to leave their fossil and bone finds in tact than to smash them looking for something that is not supposed to be there!

    And the truth is, in the comment linked below in response to Mr. Pitman, I have already conceded that point to him when I tell him I was wrong about there only being two examples.

    Unlike Young Earth Creationists, I do not claim to be a mouth-piece for “absolute truth,” and therefore I can admit when I am proven wrong on a certain detail. Young Earth Creationists, however, have no such luxury since they hold their interpretation of the Bible is the only legitimate interpretation, leaving them to embrace dogma.

    http://www.educatetruth.com/la-sierra-evidence/pandas-thumb-sdas-are-split-over-evolution/comment-page-2/#comment-23352

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  14. Regarding Mary Schweitzer’s work, no one truly knows (no, not even Sean Pitman) the limits as to how long soft tissue might persist in fossils. No one truly knows because, at this point, we have insufficient knowledge about the preservation process and the mechanisms and limitations of degradation within the microenvironments of bone.

    Recent evidence from both fossil and extant bone material suggests that microorganisms play an important role in the preservation process. The formation of microbial biofilms can wall off internal surfaces of bones during the early stages of preservation, and preserve primary soft tissues through a microbial “masonry” process involving mineralization. Fragmented bones, for example, are much more likely to be invaded by microorganisms, which degrade all soft material. However, microorganisms can only infiltrate whole bones via natural openings (the microscopic pores or foraminae), which act as microenvironments in which the biofilm becomes established, metabolizes available primary tissues, and then mineralizes to wall off further penetration of the bone. Further studies will undoubtedly shed more light on these processes.

    Before we knew anything about the persistence of soft tissues in ancient material, neither creationists nor evolutionists would have predicted the extent to which such tissues are being found today. Again, to suggest that there is an upper limit to how long the soft tissues can be preserved goes FAR BEYOND the available data. Of course, some will cherry-pick data derived from completely unrelated systems and make grandiose statements about whose “side” the data support. We have seen plenty of this and can expect more of the same.

    A wise man would sit back and say, “let’s see where the accumulating evidence will take us.” And the committed Christian should say, “none of this has ANY bearing on whether the Bible is true and God’s word can be trusted.”

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  15. @Adventist Principal:

    It is my understanding that C-14 dating formulae are based on the assumption that C-14 levels have remained constant over time. Is this true? I mean, do mainstream scientists use the current ratio of C-12/C-14 to provide a “starting point” for their dating of fossils, etc.?

    Yes, this is basically true; although there is a lot of “calibration” of C-14 dates based on C-14 analysis of tree rings and other historical methods of calibration.

    Here’s an essay of mine that may help as an introduction to radiocarbon dating:

    http://www.detectingdesign.com/carbon14.html

    This question is open to anyone on any side of this discussion. I would appreciate as much detail as possible, such as what exactly is the ratio used for dating the fossils?

    C-14 is not used for dating fossils by mainstream scientists since it cannot be used to date anything older than about 100,000 years.

    Another good paper on radiocarbon in fossils, as already noted, is Dr. Giem’s Origins paper:

    http://www.grisda.org/origins/51006.pdf

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com

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  16. @krissmith777:

    I’m an honest man, so I’ll concede that point. I was wrong. — But since the only thing that is being called into question is the mechanism of fossilation (which I intended to and forgot to put in my comment), and not the age of the earth, a young earth still doesn’t follow. –All Schweitzer says (all so clearly in the video you have on your page) is that this calls into question is the process of fossilzation; if you want to argue that this is definite evidence for a young earth, you need to rule out the former.

    You mistake what Schweitzer and the other scientists were saying. They didn’t simply call into question the process of fossilization, but those prior published arguments, based on physics and chemistry, that it was “impossible” for elastic soft tissues, sequencable proteins and DNA, to be preserved beyond 10k years at ambient temperatures (or 100k years max under ideal dry/cold conditions).

    Kinetic chemistry is the problem here. Molecules in protein and DNA move around at ambient temperatures and this movement brakes them apart relatively rapidly over time. This is a big problem for mainstream theories because it strongly argues that such molecules have a maximum lifespan that isn’t remotely close to what mainstream evolutionary theories require…

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com

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  17. @Professor Kent:

    Okay, Sean. The Bible tells me that I could not survive being in the presence of God, so I would not accept your, or a stranger’s, claim. The Bible tells me all I need to know about God to recognize who he is.

    Indeed, but how do you know that the Bible is what it claims to be? That’s the entire question here. I or anyone or anything else can make claims to have access to the Word of God, but how can you judge who is and who isn’t telling the Truth? Upon what basis? Is any empirical evidence involved in your judgment between competing claims?

    Sean, why would you ever take the position that God’s word alone is insufficient and that He expects us to find overwhelming evidence of His Creative Act in just 6 days; ovewhelming evidence that he parted the Red Sea; overwhelming evidence of The Virgin Birth; overwhelming evidence of The Ascension? And why would you reject God’s word–declare Him to be a fraud–if the science you use to test his word supported long ages?

    As already noted, there are many books that claim to be “God’s Word” and many people who claim to personally have direct access to God and that they therefore speak the Word of God. How can one tell who is and who isn’t telling the truth? How can one tell that the Bible, among a host of competing options, is truly the Word of God?

    I’m not asking for overwhelming evidence to support this choice. You’re the one who continually attributes this false argument to me. I simply ask for the weight of overall evidence – not any overwhelmingly definitive argument. A definitive answer is impossible in science. All that is possible is the weight of evidence or the “predictive power” of the hypothesis/theory.

    Don’t you realize that Jonny Vance, Bob Ryan, Faith, Lisa, PUC Grad, Former PUC Student, Inge Anderson, Colin Maunder, oink, and Wesley Kime all lose respect for you when you continue to villify simple faith and elevate science ahead of it?

    You love to use inflammatory words like “vilify” to mischaracterize the position of those with whom you happen to disagree. I do not wish to vilify anyone who holds to the notion of the value of empirically-blind faith. There are many very good, honest and sincere people whose faith is indeed blind to all opposing empirical evidence – to include many of my good LDS friends as well as many of my SDA friends. I just don’t personally hold to that view and I don’t think such a view is remotely valuable for the SDA Church as an organized body. It’s nothing against the actual person who disagrees with me on this issue. I think the topic is important, but don’t try to make this a personal issue when it really isn’t.

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com

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  18. @Professor Kent:

    Regarding Mary Schweitzer’s work, no one truly knows (no, not even Sean Pitman) the limits as to how long soft tissue might persist in fossils. No one truly knows because, at this point, we have insufficient knowledge about the preservation process and the mechanisms and limitations of degradation within the microenvironments of bone.

    That’s simply not true. Before Schweitzer’s accidental discovery of elastic soft tissues and sequencable proteins in a T. rex thigh bone the vast majority of mainstream scientists believed that there was in fact very clear evidence, based on kinetic chemistry, for a very limited maximum lifespan for DNA and proteins under ambient conditions (i.e., less than 10k years) and no more than 100k years under ideal conditions (i.e., dry and cold). Many mainstream scientists went on record noting as much.

    It has been proposed that no original protein and/or DNA fragments can be recovered beyond ca 100 kyr (Lindahl 1993; Bada et al. 1999; Briggs et al. 2000; Hoss 2000; Stankiewicz et al. 2000), although some remnant molecules or fragments that are less phylogenetically informative may persist up to this point under exceptional circumstances (Briggs et al. 2000).

    http://rspb.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/274/1607/183.full.pdf+html

    To now argue that the evidence in hand is really too weak to know much of anything regarding the decay rate of proteins and DNA is, yet again, naive. At least Schweitzer is honest enough to admit that the kinetic chemistry evidence is a huge mystery given her soft tissue findings…

    Recent evidence from both fossil and extant bone material suggests that microorganisms play an important role in the preservation process. The formation of microbial biofilms can wall off internal surfaces of bones during the early stages of preservation, and preserve primary soft tissues through a microbial “masonry” process involving mineralization. Fragmented bones, for example, are much more likely to be invaded by microorganisms, which degrade all soft material. However, microorganisms can only infiltrate whole bones via natural openings (the microscopic pores or foraminae), which act as microenvironments in which the biofilm becomes established, metabolizes available primary tissues, and then mineralizes to wall off further penetration of the bone. Further studies will undoubtedly shed more light on these processes.

    The biofilm hypothesis was originally proposed as a challenge to Schweitzer’s findings – suggesting that the soft tissues and blood vessels and even blood cells she found were really biofilms that took on the original form of the soft tissues that they replaced. This counter hypothesis has since been falsified. The soft tissues discovered by Schweitzer are the original soft tissues of the dinosaur – not biofilms. Also, biofilms are not able to explain the stability of proteins or DNA over time due, yet again, to the problem of kinetic chemistry which works to rapidly destroy protein and DNA structure over time. Note also, from Schweitzer’s own paper (referenced above), that “microbial biofilms would not uniformly coat all vessel channels to leave extensive networks of hollow tubes with uniform wall thickness.” This is inconsistent with Schweitzer’s finding of extensive networks of vessels with uniform wall thickness.

    Before we knew anything about the persistence of soft tissues in ancient material, neither creationists nor evolutionists would have predicted the extent to which such tissues are being found today.

    Come on now. Creationists predictions of a very recent burial of these creatures is the only theory that is entirely consistent with the arguments of kinetic chemistry for protein and DNA decay rates…

    Again, to suggest that there is an upper limit to how long the soft tissues can be preserved goes FAR BEYOND the available data. Of course, some will cherry-pick data derived from completely unrelated systems and make grandiose statements about whose “side” the data support. We have seen plenty of this and can expect more of the same.

    There is no “cherry picking” going on here professor. This was the mainstream position not more than six years ago. There remains no valid counter argument against this position either. No one has come up with any reasonable explanation for the stability of elastic soft tissues, DNA or protein over such vast periods of time as are required by mainstream theories. Schweitzer’s own hypothesis of the formation of stabilizing cross-links via free radicals is admittedly inadequate. As far as her appeal to long-term preservation via mineralization (citing the work of Martill on the near instant fossilization of fish and other creatures in the Santa formation), such mineralization is dependent upon supersaturated watery conditions and extensive permeability of the preserved bone and soft tissues and still doesn’t explain the preservation of long sections of intact, sequencable, antigenic, proteins (and potentially DNA as well).

    A wise man would sit back and say, “let’s see where the accumulating evidence will take us.” And the committed Christian should say, “none of this has ANY bearing on whether the Bible is true and God’s word can be trusted.”

    Of course, because, like our LDS friends, the faith of some in the a priori credibility of their chosen Holy Book, be that book the Bible or the Book of Mormon or the Qur’an, is not subject to even the potential of testing or falsification.

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com

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  19. @krissmith777:

    However, the “contamination” with C-14 is so extensive and so uniform that it is rather hard to imagine how contamination could actually be responsible for all the C-14 in fossil remains. – Sean Pitman

    To answer why the dates seem so uniform: Sulfer bacteria grows in coal, so the carbon dates may often reflect the bacteria rather than the coal itself. Secondary carbonates from groundwater as well can produce the same.

    Some of these coal and oil beds are very deeply buried. The argument for contamination by bacteria that have had access to C-14 from the biosphere seems to be more than problematic. You would have to hypothesize a way for bacteria from the biosphere where C-14 is being produced to get down through thousands of meters of rock before all the C-14 they brought with them decayed (i.e., less than 100k years). Most scientists don’t believe that is possible.

    These factors have been known to give the coal and oil the apparent age of 50,000 years. This is because, even if the coal and oil is old, the maximum that C-14 is good for happens to be a uniform 50,000 years, thus explaining why they seem so uniform.

    Not a valid argument because of AMS methods of detecting very small amounts of C-14 in organic material these days. You need to update your argument using more modern techniques.

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com

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  20. @Sean Pitman,

    Not a valid argument because of AMS methods of detecting very small amounts of C-14 in organic material these days. You need to update your argument using more modern techniques.

    And not a valid response, since I have already told you in a former comment to disreguard the comment you are respondeng to.

    But as O sp painfully learned, any argument that disagrees with you seems to be classified as invalid.–That’s what happens when people claim to be the mouth-piece for absolute truth; they are right, and everyone else is wrong.

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  21. @Sean Pitman,

    You dodged my question again. It’s a simple question not that hard to answer: Yes or no: Is the paper Origins EXCLISIVELY Peer-reviewed by young earth creationists, or isn’t it?

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  22. @krissmith777: Do mean like mainstream papers, written by evolutionists are exclusively peer-reviewed by evolutionists? Yes, I’m aware that there are creationists that write for mainstream journals and get published and perhaps there a small handful that peer-review too, but the percentage, I would guess, is very small. So small in fact that the point would be moot.

    The journal is created by the Seventh-day Adventist Church, so I’d be surprised if it was being peer-reviewed by evolutionists

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  23. @krissmith777: Do mean like mainstream papers, written by evolutionists are exclusively peer-reviewed by evolutionists? Yes, I’m aware that there are creationists that write for mainstream journals and get published and perhaps there a small handful that peer-review too, but the percentage, I would guess, is very small. So small in fact that the point would be moot.The journal is created by the Seventh-day Adventist Church, so I’d be surprised if it was being peer-reviewed by evolutionists  (Quote)

    Thank you for proving my point. My point, while asking the question, is that mainstream scientists are not bound to perception of “absolute truth,” while Young Earth Creationists are. That is exaxctly what make young earth creationists untrustworthy since they cannot afford to admit their mistakes when they do make them, being the representatives of “absolute truth.”

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  24. Carbon-14 Evidence for a Recent Global Flood
    By: John Baumgardner, Ph.D.

    Abstract

    A remarkable discovery made over the past twenty-five years is that organic samples from every level in the Phanerozoic portion of the geological record, when tested by highly sensitive accelerator mass spectrometer (AMS) methods, display significant and reproducible amounts of 14C. Because the lifetime of 14C is so brief, these AMS measurements pose an obvious challenge to the standard geological timescale that assigns millions to hundreds of million of years to this part of the rock record. With a half-life of 5730 years, 14C decays to levels undetectable by any currently available technique after only 100,000 years (17.5 half-lives). After one million years (175 half-lives), the amount of 14C remaining is only 3 × 10-53 of the initial 14C concentration—so vanishingly small as to exclude even a single 14C atom in a beginning mass of 14C equal to the mass of the earth itself. However, in samples with uniformitarian ages between one and 500 million years, the peer-reviewed radiocarbon literature documents scores of examples of 14C/C ratios in the range 0.1–0.5 percent of the modern 14C/C ratio. The lower limit of this range is a factor of ten above the detection threshold of most AMS laboratories in the world. Another noteworthy observation is that the 14C/C ratio of these samples appears to be uncorrelated with their position in the geological record. RATE’s own measurement of 14C levels in ten coal samples using one of the world’s best AMS laboratories strongly confirms both this reported range in 14C/C ratio and the lack of dependence of this ratio on position in the rock record. In terms of 14C age, if one makes the assumption, as is normally done, that the 14C/C ratio in these fossilized organisms when they died was close to that of today’s atmosphere, the range in 14C/C ratio of 0.1–0.5 percent of the modern value corresponds to 14C ages between 44,000 and 57,000 years. A straightforward but startling inference from these AMS data is that all but the very youngest fossil material in the geological record was buried contemporaneously only thousands of years ago in what must have been a major global cataclysm. The simultaneous destruction of so much life implies, however, that dramatically more total carbon (now in the form of coal, oil, and oil shale) had to be present in the earth’s biosphere prior to this cataclysmic event. In this case using today’s atmospheric 14C/C ratio as the initial 14C/C ratio for this fossil material almost certainly would not be a proper assumption. Using a lower, more realistic estimate for the biospheric 14C/C ratio prior to this cataclysm reduces the actual 14C age by roughly a factor of ten from about 50,000 years to a value of about 5000 years. This latter age estimate, of course, is consistent with the Biblical account of a global Flood that destroyed most of the life on the planet, both plants and animals, in a single brief cataclysm some four to five millennia ago.

    http://www.icr.org/article/carbon-14-evidence-for-recent-global/

    Such uniform and widespread “contamination”? Really?

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com

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  25. @ Sean Pitman

    Indeed, but how do you know that the Bible is what it claims to be? That’s the entire question here. I or anyone or anything else can make claims to have access to the Word of God, but how can you judge who is and who isn’t telling the Truth? Upon what basis? Is any empirical evidence involved in your judgment between competing claims?

    Inspired scripture–the Bible itself–was adequate in the Psalmist’s time; it was adequate in Jesus’ time; it was adequate for the early Christian church; it was adequate in Ellen White’s time; and it is adequate today. The same evidence available at those times is more than adequate today. THERE IS NO NEED WHATSOEVER TO VALIDATE THE BIBLE TODAY BASED ON TODAY’S SCIENCE. Your insistence in doing so is anti-scripture and heresy.

    Moreover, you have most certainly vilified Dr. Ben Clausen, for example, by faulting him for accepting the creation account based on faith rather than evidence. When you go online and tell the whole world that the man is stealing from the SDA Church because, as an employee, he is undermining FB #6, that certainly qualifies as “to make vicious and defamatory statements about another person.” Your followers are not so blind to overlook this.

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  26. @Sean Pitman,

    On Shweitzer’s samples, I did more digging and I found that the website “God and Science” has a personal correspondence with her about them.

    The primary author (Shweitzer) indicated that the bones have a distinct odor, characteristic of “embalming fluids.” Therefore, it is possible that the bones landed in some chemical stew that preserved the soft tissue inside from decomposition. For example, peat bogs produce chemicals that have preserved human bodies for thousands of years. It is likely that some similar rare process has preserved the soft tissue inside some T. rex bones.

    That it is shown to be a correspondence is shown in the footnotes at the end on this page:

    http://www.godandscience.org/youngearth/dinoblood.html

    Also see for more: http://ncse.com/rncse/25/5-6/non-mineralized-tissues-fossil-t-rex

    Also, even if the presense of tissue in fossils is a peculiarity, it doesn’t dismantle what we know about the dates of the strata that they do come from. — The T-rex fossils in question have come from the Hell Creek Formation which has been consistently dated between 63.9 to 66 million years by radio metric methods, and the dates have been backed up by amino racemization dating technique(which is not radiometric method). — Considering that the rest of the evidence is consistent on the date, it is rather far featched to simply assume that this one piece of evidence stumpts all the rest of the evidence.

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  27. @ Sean Pitman

    That’s simply not true. Before Schweitzer’s accidental discovery of elastic soft tissues and sequencable proteins in a T. rex thigh bone the vast majority of mainstream scientists believed that there was in fact very clear evidence, based on kinetic chemistry, for a very limited maximum lifespan for DNA and proteins under ambient conditions (i.e., less than 10k years) and no more than 100k years under ideal conditions (i.e., dry and cold).

    I said NO ONE TRULY KNOWS THE LIMITS. And that is a true statement. Obviously, the original estimates for “ideal conditions” cannot be applied to the microenvironment of bones that no one has adequately studied. Unless YOU conducted the critical experiments yourself–and I’m certain you have not.

    To now argue that the evidence in hand is really too weak to know much of anything regarding the decay rate of proteins and DNA is, yet again, naive. At least Schweitzer is honest enough to admit that the kinetic chemistry evidence is a huge mystery given her soft tissue findings…

    I agree with Schweitzer; it’s a mystery. Why would you say I’m naive? Mary Schweitzer thinks the prior claims are wrong, and I agree with her! At one time dogma had it that protein, rather than DNA, was the hereditary material. We know that dogma often changes. If you insist that kinetic chemistry can be applied to ALL CONDITIONS, you’ll soon become as outdated as Schweitzer’s fossils.

    The biofilm hypothesis was originally proposed as a challenge to Schweitzer’s findings – suggesting that the soft tissues and blood vessels and even blood cells she found were really biofilms that took on the original form of the soft tissues that they replaced. This counter hypothesis has since been falsified.

    You completely misunderstood what I wrote. The material indeed represents soft tissue rather than biofilm. What I wrote is that biofilm formation CONTRIBUTES TO THE PRESERVATION PROCESS by superficially penetrating intact bone, decaying the limited soft material it can access, and then dies, mineralizes, and forms a masonry-like wall that ensures no further penetration by microbes to the soft tissue deeper in the bone. You are stuck on Mary Schweitzer’s papers and need to read the more current literature. You’re outdated.

    Predictions of a very recent burial of these creatures is the only theory that is entirely consistent with the arguments of kinetic chemistry for protein and DNA decay rates…

    And this is where you fail miserably as a scientist. Your bias is showing. No one has examined protein and DNA decay rates within the microenvironment of bone latticework effectively sealed off from the exterior. You are making assumptions of space where no one has gone before (my apologies to Star Trek fans).

    There is no “cherry picking” going on here professor. This was the mainstream position not more than six years ago. There remains no valid counter argument against this position either. No one has come up with any reasonable explanation for the stability of elastic soft tissues, DNA or protein over such vast periods of time as are required by mainstream theories.

    Stop the blathering and acquaint yourself with the recent literature. In 1944, Avery and his colleagues published in a landmark paper convincing proof that DNA was the hereditary material. Before their experiments, the dogma was that protein was the genetic material. It took years before the other scientists eventually caught up with them. Dogma changes; you seem to forget that. Your ad hoc inference that creationists would have predicted anything different than the evolutionists regarding the preservation of soft tissues in fossils is a complete sham. Frankly, it’s dishonest and disingenious.

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  28. Sean, out of curiosity, why would you believe Baumgardner’s position ahead of that of all practicioners of radiometric dating? Can you say with a straight face that you don’t cherry-pick what you accept and what you reject?

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  29. Kris said –

    But since the only thing that is being called into question is the mechanism of fossilation (which I intended to and forgot to put in my comment), and not the age of the earth, a young earth still doesn’t follow. –All Schweitzer says (all so clearly in the video you have on your page) is that this calls into question is the process of fossilzation; if you want to argue that this is definite evidence for a young earth, you need to rule out the former.

    Obviously – There is no “rule out the former” law, theory, observed
    science when the former is merely “calling into question the process of fossilization”.

    Kris said –

    I can admit when I am proven wrong on a certain detail. Young Earth Creationists, however, have no such luxury since they hold their interpretation of the Bible is the only legitimate interpretation, leaving them to embrace dogma.

    If being wrong is a virtue then I will agree that the list of playbook blunders and frauds used by evolutionists to prop up evolutionism for decade upon decade at a time — qualifies them as taking the high-ground in claiming such a virtue.

    However I think it is wrong to “ill surmise” that Bible Believing Christians do not learn from science even in cases where it involves learning from mistakes. You seem to enjoy the unproven accusation that Bible believing Christians are evil or at the least they do not pay attention to science no matter how they expose flaws in the evolutionist argument or point to observations in nature that provide more than a pigs-tooth” evidence for young life.

    Your bias is showing in that regard.

    in Christ,

    Bob

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  30. This thread has turned into “Answer every question an evolutionist can dream up” – but if you look at the top of the thread – what it is actually talking about is the fact that a few diehard evolutionists went to PUC prepared to debate against creationism – only to find out that a number of PUC students and professors were quite happy with long-life evolutionism from a common ancestor.

    Where is the PUC response to this incident by someone who actually saw the debate? Why is PUC is silent? Why do they seem to be so happy to have this as a Creation vs evolution thread as if PUC is indeed the evolutionist organization that the Panda’s Thumb guys claimed?

    Inquiring minds want to know.

    in Christ,

    Bob

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  31. @Sean Pitman,

    Such uniform and widespread “contamination”? Really?

    My reasons for rejecting Young-Earth dating methods have little to nothing to do with religious or anti-religious motives, since I cannot emphesize I am no less a Theist now than when I was a Creationist. — My reasons have more to do with the fact that sometimes a close reading of what is actually said itself invalidates some of the some of the claims put forth in “peer reviewed” YEC papers. — My favorite example of this is a paper written by Steven A. Autin entitled “Excess Argon within Mineral Concentrates from the New Dacite Lava Dome at Mount St. Helens Volcano”

    The paper is linked here: http://static.icr.org/i/pdf/technical/Excess-Argon-New-Lava-Dome-at-Mount-St-Helens.pdf

    In this paper, Austin makes the claim that rocks taken from Mt. Saint Helens from the 1986 eruption give dates that are too inflated via K-Ar method. Now, Andrew A. Snelling’s claims that Austin took precautions to take care that there was no contamination, Austin’s paper actually contradicts this view:

    On PFD page 4, he says,

    The “feldspar-glass concentrate” (DOME-1L) was dominated by plagioclase and glass, with only occasional mafic microphenocrysts visible in the plagioclase and glass. Although not a complete separation of non-mafic minerals, this concentrate included plagioclase phenocrysts (andesine composition with a density of about 2.7 g/cc) and the major quantity of glass (density assumed to be about 2.4 g/cc). No attempt was made to separate plagioclase from glass, but further use of heavy liquids should be considered.

    First of all, Austin admits that this sample he dated didn’t have a complete separation of mafic and non-mafic materials.

    Second of all, he clearly says that he made no attept (I repeat: NO ATTEMPT! ) to separate the glass and the plagioclase. This is important because the glass would be young (more representative of the eruption), and the plagioclase would contain somewhat older calcium cores and moderately oldsdium rich rims. Since Austin is a geologist, I do not buy for a moment that he didn’t know this would affect the age of the sample since he is not separating the older materials from the younger.

    Also, on PDF page 8:

    The data of Table 3 seem to argue that very different mineral phases of the dacite each contain significant 40Ar. Although the mineral concentrates are not pure, and all contain some glass, an argument can be made that both mafic and non-mafic minerals of the dacite contain significant 40Ar.

    Notice he says here that the sample separations are not pure.

    Honestly, it’s as if he is fishing for a bad date!

    More complete discussion: http://answersincreation.org/dacite.htm

    –And then as another example, there is the claim that the Hualalai basalt from the 1801 eruption in Hawaii. — The Creationist websites and books differ greatly as the results of the Radiometric Results: Some give the results as 1.6 to 1.41 million years while others give the figure as high as 22 million or even higher.

    Admittedly, I did find this one interesting…. that is, until I found out the title of the original source paper for the claim: “Radiogenic Helium and Argon in Ultramafic Inclusions from Hawaii.”

    Abstract to the original Paper: http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/1968/JB073i014p04601.shtml

    Notice the term “inclusions” in the title of the paper! –For those who don’t know, and “Inclusion” is a material that gets trapped in a newer material that is forming. Huton’s Law of Inclusion says that the materials that get trapped in the newly formed formation are, by definition, older than the new formation.

    With this in mind, since the paper is talking about “inclusions,” it isn’t even dating the lava itself, and hence not the eruption. (They weren’t trying to date the inclusions, but rather they wanted to see if the Potassium/Argon method would work on the inclusions.)

    And to make problems even worse for the Young Earth argument, the same paper says that the lava around the inclusions was dated to the right time of the eruption.

    Any wonder why Scientists do not trust Creationist claims on dating methods?

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  32. @krissmith777

    And even if you were right that Noah’s flood, assuming it was global (I hold the local flood view),

    How to you correlate that with the biblical account?

    Or do you consider the biblical account as pure myth, with no factual data? If so, why consider that the biblical account refers to any kind of literal flood?

    Just wondering …

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  33. @ Sean Pitman

    Just curious what you think of the following study that relates mutation rate to speciation (i.e., macroevolution). I know you are opposed to any such notion, presumably on scientific rather than religious reasoning. But since you claim not to cherry-pick evidence in support of your views, perhaps you are able to find some reason to dismiss this study outright?

    _________________________

    Mutation rate is linked to diversification in birds
    Robert Lanfear, Simon Y. W. Ho, Dominic Love, and Lindell Bromham
    PNAS November 23, 2010 vol. 107 no. 47 20423-20428

    Abstract
    How does genome evolution affect the rate of diversification of biological lineages? Recent studies have suggested that the overall rate of genome evolution is correlated with the rate of diversification. If true, this claim has important consequences for understanding the process of diversification, and implications for the use of DNA sequence data to reconstruct evolutionary history. However, the generality and cause of this relationship have not been established. Here, we test the relationship between the rate of molecular evolution and net diversification with a 19-gene, 17-kb DNA sequence dataset from 64 families of birds. We show that rates of molecular evolution are positively correlated to net diversification in birds. Using a 7.6-kb dataset of protein-coding DNA, we show that the synonymous substitution rate, and therefore the mutation rate, is correlated to net diversification. Further analysis shows that the link between mutation rates and net diversification is unlikely to be the indirect result of correlations with life-history variables that may influence both quantities, suggesting that there might be a causal link between mutation rates and net diversification.

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  34. The evolutionist position as of about 1996 seems to have been that the carbon-14 ratio would not have fluctuated more than about 10% over time.

    http://www.fsteiger.com/carbon14.html

    In 2001, this news article indicated from studies on a stalagmite that C-14 levels had changed dramatically at times, such as being much higher during the last ice age.

    http://uanews.org/node/4815

    According to Wikipedia, “Atmospheric nuclear weapon tests almost doubled the concentration of 14C in the Northern Hemisphere.” Furthermore, “The above-ground nuclear tests that occurred in several countries between 1955 and 1980 (see nuclear test list) dramatically increased the amount of carbon-14 in the atmosphere and subsequently in the biosphere; after the tests ended the atmospheric concentration of the isotope began to decrease.”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carbon-14

    Basically, it seems the evolutionists are trying to have their cake and eat it too. They try to say that C-14 levels have never varied much, while at the same time trying to say that they did vary dramatically at certain times. I guess I’m confused. How do they yet suppose the C-14 testing to be anywhere near accurate?

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  35. Re Johnny’s Quote

    “The nature of deception is that you don’t know you’re being deceived.”

    Dear Johnny

    Precisely.

    Perhaps the biggest act of self deception is to claim God is on the side of the self’s subjective view of same. Even more aggregious is to think that everybody else is being influenced by the devil.

    I think the more rational, less deceptive, manner is to say I don’t really know but I’m going to take a candid look at all possibilities. And to make the humble admission, that even after the most rigourous, objective inquiry one can make, one may well be wrong or be left with many questions.

    Johnny, is that a fair comment or am I self deluding myself?

    Regards
    you agnostic friend
    Ken

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  36. @Professor Kent:

    How do you know that the Bible is what it claims to be? That’s the entire question here. I or anyone or anything else can make claims to have access to the Word of God, but how can you judge who is and who isn’t telling the Truth? Upon what basis? Is any empirical evidence involved in your judgment between competing claims? – Sean Pitman

    Inspired scripture–the Bible itself–was adequate in the Psalmist’s time; it was adequate in Jesus’ time; it was adequate for the early Christian church; it was adequate in Ellen White’s time; and it is adequate today.

    I’m not sure I understand your response? Are you saying that the Bible is true because it claims to be true? Lots of Books claim to be true you know. How do you know that the claims of the Bible are true while the claims of others are not? What is your actual basis to make this determination?

    Sean, out of curiosity, why would you believe Baumgardner’s position ahead of that of all practicioners of radiometric dating? Can you say with a straight face that you don’t cherry-pick what you accept and what you reject?

    None of the mainstream “practitioners of radiometric dating” disagree with Baumgardner’s actual data. It is a fact that significant levels of C-14 are generally found in coal, oil, and non-mineralized remains of fossils. Explaining this facts is a real problem for mainstream evolutionists. As pointed out in Dr. Giem’s paper (referenced above), the usual arguments for contamination don’t make sense given the universal distribution of C-14 regardless of location within the fossil record or the isolated nature of the specimen.

    We test the relationship between the rate of molecular evolution and net diversification with a 19-gene, 17-kb DNA sequence dataset from 64 families of birds. We show that rates of molecular evolution are positively correlated to net diversification in birds. Using a 7.6-kb dataset of protein-coding DNA, we show that the synonymous substitution rate, and therefore the mutation rate, is correlated to net diversification.\

    Why is this a problem? The “evolution” taking pace here was not evaluated on the basis of functionality. It is only expected that functionally neutral genetic diversification will take place at or close to the rate of molecular evolution. No big surprise here…

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com

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  37. @Professor Kent:

    You completely misunderstood what I wrote. The material indeed represents soft tissue rather than biofilm. What I wrote is that biofilm formation CONTRIBUTES TO THE PRESERVATION PROCESS by superficially penetrating intact bone, decaying the limited soft material it can access, and then dies, mineralizes, and forms a masonry-like wall that ensures no further penetration by microbes to the soft tissue deeper in the bone. You are stuck on Mary Schweitzer’s papers and need to read the more current literature. You’re outdated.

    You don’t seem to understand the point of the kinetic chemistry arguments and the reason why Schweitzer and all other mainstream scientists are so shocked by the finding of intact elastic soft tissues and sequencable proteins. Kinetic chemistry has nothing to do with microbial penetration or assisted decay. Kinetic chemistry predicts soft tissue decay in sterile environments over time based on the movement of the molecules and atoms themselves at various temperatures. So, your argument for regions of bone being sealed off from microbes is completely irrelevant to the problem here. Schweitzer recognizes this problem while you, apparently, do not…

    And this is where you fail miserably as a scientist. Your bias is showing. No one has examined protein and DNA decay rates within the microenvironment of bone latticework effectively sealed off from the exterior. You are making assumptions of space where no one has gone before (my apologies to Star Trek fans).

    Not true. Kinetic decay predictions are in fact based on the decay rate of DNA and proteins in a sterile environment – free from the influence of microbial or enzymatic attack. That is why the finding of these soft tissues was such a huge surprise – totally unpredictable from the mainstream perspective while being right in line with the creationist perspective.

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com

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  38. @krissmith777:

    On Shweitzer’s samples, I did more digging and I found that the website “God and Science” has a personal correspondence with her about them.

    The primary author (Shweitzer) indicated that the bones have a distinct odor, characteristic of “embalming fluids.” Therefore, it is possible that the bones landed in some chemical stew that preserved the soft tissue inside from decomposition. For example, peat bogs produce chemicals that have preserved human bodies for thousands of years. It is likely that some similar rare process has preserved the soft tissue inside some T. rex bones.

    Yes, this same suggestion was in her paper as well. The problem, as already noted for you, is that the finding of elastic soft tissues and intact proteins is not a rare phenomenon. It is quite common in fact – the rule rather than the exception for larger bones regardless of where they are found within the fossil record.

    Also, such chemical preservatives do not overcome the predictions of kinetic chemistry which would still predict a maximum lifespan of these soft tissues of less than 100k years. This limitation is acknowledged in Schweitzer’s paper and remains an unexplained mystery from the mainstream perspective… according to Schweitzer herself and all other mainstream scientists along with her.

    Also, even if the presense of tissue in fossils is a peculiarity, it doesn’t dismantle what we know about the dates of the strata that they do come from. — The T-rex fossils in question have come from the Hell Creek Formation which has been consistently dated between 63.9 to 66 million years by radio metric methods, and the dates have been backed up by amino racemization dating technique (which is not radiometric method). — Considering that the rest of the evidence is consistent on the date, it is rather far featched to simply assume that this one piece of evidence stumpts all the rest of the evidence.

    Amino acid racemization dating (AARD), like many forms of radiometric dating, is not an independent dating technique. It must be calibrated against other methods (particularly the radiocarbon dating method) before it can be used.

    Also, AARD is not generally used to date anything over 100k years, even to a relative degree, because of the relatively rapid racemization rate of amino acids. In other words, contrary to your assertion, AARD was not used to corroborate the age of the dinosaur bones.

    http://www.detectingdesign.com/aminoaciddating.html

    Therefore, your notions here are false on two accounts.

    My reasons have more to do with the fact that sometimes a close reading of what is actually said itself invalidates some of the some of the claims put forth in “peer reviewed” YEC papers.

    The very same thing is true of mainstream scientific papers. Not all of them are based on proper procedure or technique. This doesn’t mean that all scientific papers are worthless, just because a few of them are. The same thing is true for those published by creationists. The finding of technical flaws in some of them does not invalidate all creationists arguments, observations or publications.

    Again, everyone is biased. It is good to just remember this and not throw out the baby with the bathwater when you’re reading something from those with a bias that is opposed to your own bias. And yes, you are most certainly biased in favor of the mainstream perspective at this point in time… even though most of what you’ve presented here has been completely mistaken because you don’t evidently understand some of the basic concepts in play and/or because you’re reading materials that are way out of date…

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com

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  39. @Professor Kent,

    Sean, out of curiosity, why would you believe Baumgardner’s position ahead of that of all practicioners of radiometric dating? Can you say with a straight face that you don’t cherry-pick what you accept and what you reject?  (Quote)

    He does cherry pick, and this website has proven that to me now in the comments that got approved, and deleted. I sent a comment in which I give my reasons for not trusting Young Earth Creationist dating methods, and then it got deleted. I re-sent it in asking him why it got deleted.

    If that re-sent comment, as well as this one, gets deleted, then that will only show that Young Earth Creationists “Scientists” as being intellectually dishonest, liars for Jesus. — A lie for Jesus is still a sin. If a person feels he has to lie in order to preserve his truth, then that truth is in fact not true.

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  40. @Inge Anderson

    @krissmith777How to you correlate that with the biblical account?Or do you consider the biblical account as pure myth, with no factual data? If so, why consider that the biblical account refers to any kind of literal flood?Just wondering …  (Quote)

    That’s a good question. I do not consider the flood account as pure myth, or as a myth at all. All I said was I believe that the flood is a local event, likely that happened in Mesopotamia at around 2900 BC (A reasonable date since the Gilgamesh epic is dated to about 2700 BC).

    First, I will deal with the “Proof texts” that are often used to claim that the flood is global. The universal language given in verses like Genesis 6: 17 and also Genesis 7: 4 to modern readers would seem to indicate that it was global, but the fact is that ancient writters didn’t think this way; after all, ancients used similar terms and apply them to a limitted area. For example, the Romans claims that the whole world was Roman territory during its time, and also the Chinese eperors would claim to be the rulers of “all under heaven.” Even the Bible uses universal terms that indicate a limmited region: Acts 2: 5 says, “Now there were staying in Jerusalem God-fearing Jews from every nation under heaven.” — Obviously, “all under heaven” does not mean the entire planet. It most certainly does not include other regions like North America, Japan, as well as China and Korea. These terms were simply a way of expressing one’s self in ancient times, and they didn’t have the same meaning as they do today. Indeed, according to Strongs, the Hebrew word used for “earth” (though it can be used in the way we do), it can denote a local area, soil, district or a country.

    Another “proof text” to claim that the flood was global is Genesis 7: 18: 20 which says: “The waters rose and increased greatly on the earth, and the ark floated on the surface of the water. They rose greatly on the earth, and all the high mountains under the entire heavens were covered. The waters rose and covered the mountains to a depth of more than twenty feet.” — Now, though this would look conclusive since it says it covered the mountains, it isn’t so clear cut. According to Strongs, the Hebrew word “har” which is used for “mountains” also means “Hills,” or even “hill country.” In this case, the passage can simply be understood as saying that the flood waters elevated over the hills by over twenty feet.

    Now, one of the hints I have for a local flood from the Bible is Genesis 1:4 which mentions a race of people known as the Nephilim. Some commentators think that the Nephilim were a reason why the flood was sent, but this cannot be true for what I will explain now. Genesis 1:4 says ”

    The Nephilim were on the earth in those days—and also afterward—when the sons of God went to the daughters of men and had children by them. They were the heroes of old, men of renown. (Genesis 6: 4)

    Please take notice: This is actually the prelude to Noah’s flood, and yet it says that this race of people called the Nephilim were on the earth “in those days–and also afterward.” Also, in Numbers 13: 33 the same race of people are mentioned as living in Canaan in the time of Moses. This indicates that 1) they survived the flood, and 2) the flood did not reach Canaan (modern Isreal). This could only be true if the flood was local.

    Also, another indication from the Bible itself that the flood was local is Genesis 8: 11 when the Biblical writters say that the dove Noah had sent brought out an olive branch. This is significant for a reason: It was nearly a year since the flood had started, and since the Bible clearly says that everything in the flooded area had died, that indicates that the olive tree that it was taken from would have been outside of the range of the flood. Also, olive trees cannot grow so fast. The only way this can be harmonized with reality is if the tree were outside of the flood’s reach.

    Another detail: Genesis 8: 1 says that a wind was used to cause the waters to recede which would have been pointless if the flood were global because the water that got blown away would simply have been replaced my different water that wasn’t there previously.

    Thanks for your question, and I hope this helps.

    Recommended reading:

    http://www.csun.edu/~vcgeo005/Collins2.pdf

    http://www.csun.edu/~vcgeo005/Collins2.pdf

    http://www.angelfire.com/ca/DeafPreterist/noah.html

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  41. @Sean Pitman,

    The very same thing is true of mainstream scientific papers. Not all of them are based on proper procedure or technique. This doesn’t mean that all scientific papers are worthless, just because a few of them are. The same thing is true for those published by creationists. The finding of technical flaws in some of them does not invalidate all creationists arguments, observations or publications.

    I chose the ones I did for a reason: They are two of the most common anti-science arguments Young Earth Creationists make in order to discredit mainstream science. Even you have one them on your page on Radiometric dating. (I know because I checked). You have the Austin paper quoted in the “Interesting Quotes” section of that page.

    Well, here’s your chance to redeem yourself and edit that one out of there and even speak about it.

    Again, everyone is biased. It is good to just remember this and not throw out the baby with the bathwater when you’re reading something from those with a bias that is opposed to your own bias. And yes, you are most certainly biased in favor of the mainstream perspective at this point in time…

    Only biased in the same way that Historians are biased against “Atlantis theories,” and “holocaust denialism,” being a history major.

    … even though most of what you’ve presented here has been completely mistaken because you don’t evidently understand some of the basic concepts in play and/or because you’re reading materials that are way out of date…

    Lol, look who’s talking! You have made your share of outdated claims yourself!! For example, your claim (made earlier in this thread) that there were no feathered theropod dinosaurs before archeoperyx in the fossil record is outdated! You have no right to criticize.

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  42. @ken: I understand your question, Ken. It’s an honest inquiry into our human weaknesses. One characteristic of a true seeker of truth is that he/she will examine his heart daily–especially when having to make a stand for truth, and will even be humble enough to concede when wrong.

    It is true that even extremists like Al-quaida are deluded in believing that they have the truth, and I dare say that most of them have stopped looking for truth in their lives. We can never settle down into a complacency that accepts what others say. You must prove it for yourself, and it must appeal to your reason. Faith is not blind; true faith is “the substance of things hoped for, and the evidence of things not seen.”

    This is why it’s important to have an ultimate authority, and in an Seventh-day Adventist context, the word of God would be it. We all have a filter by which we process information, and no matter how much sense the evidence may make to you, the heart will rationalize away this evidence because of pain, resentment, fear, etc. We can’t fall into the trap of thinking that God has not revealed to us enough truth to know that His word is reliable, because then you fall into post-modernism which says that truth is relative. If this were so then anything would go.

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  43. @Professor Kent:

    @ Johnny VanceSo, YOU claim to be able to judge from the many student comments their philosophy and spirituality? And YOU can decipher, whilst I cannot, that the vast majority were “postmodern” and “lacking in spirituality?” And I can be deceived while YOU cannot?When you choose to believe the very few, Johnny, you reveal your obvious and very selective bias. You can cherry-pick as well as anyone here. And you’ve proven your arrogance.  (Quote)

    I’m not offended by Sean’s assertions about faith and evidence. I’m with Sean to a large extent (as far as I can tell). God gives us evidence to believe and back up His word, although there will be some things we’ll just have to take by faith until it’s made clear to our minds (maybe in Heaven?). But don’t try to use me as a pawn in your dislike of Sean.

    You also neglect to note that in the great controversy between good and evil, the majority does not constitute the right side, unfortunately. Only 8 chose to enter the ark. Only a minority believed in Christ. Only a minority will resist the popular waves of anti-biblical worship. I can say that your judgment of students’ comments and Dr. Ness’s video are wrong, but how dare I say that you are wrong? I don’t believe it’s arrogant to say you are wrong. I’m not insulting you as you are insulting me. If we’re having an honest and open dialogue about the situation, then you should be able to AT LEAST take back what you dish out without threatening to leave the church because some of us dare to say you are wrong, or this and that is wrong. Don’t try to blackmail people for stating their mind.

    I really wonder if you read the same Bible and the same Testimonies to the Church that I read, because I can’t for the life of me figure out how you can come up with such drastically opposed conclusions. I just state the former because you claim to believe in the Bible and Spirit of Prophecy, and I am truly perplexed by your conclusion.

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  44. @ Sean Pitman

    Kinetic chemistry predicts soft tissue decay in sterile environments over time based on the movement of the molecules and atoms themselves at various temperatures. So, your argument for regions of bone being sealed off from microbes is completely irrelevant to the problem here. Schweitzer recognizes this problem while you, apparently, do not…

    Recognizing the problem based on test tube models is one thing, but accepting it is another, particularly when the models do not appear to apply in all real world situations. Using Pitmanese, the models may well lack predictive power because they do not take into account all possible variables that potentially influence soft tissue preservation. Do you not realize that Schweitzer dismisses the “problem” altogether? She continues to date the soft tissue remains at millions of years.

    In her article that appeared just this month, she wrote, “Test-tube studies of organic molecules indicated that proteins should not persist more than a million years or so; DNA had an even shorter life span.” She then went on to describe her finds of ancient organic material–proteins–up to 70 million years or more in age. This sums her position concisely enough: “Mounting evidence from dinosaur bones shows that, contrary to common belief, organic materials can sometimes survive in fossils for millions of years.”

    In her article, she mentioned three factors that may aid the preservation and recovery of these materials. (1) Sandstone sediments in particular seem to protect against complete loss of organic remains, possibly because the porous sands allow the corrosive fluids that form during decomposition to drain away. (2) Especially deep burial may promote soft-tissue preservation because it protects against oxidation, changes in pH and temperature, and exposure to ultraviolet radiation that can occur at the surface. Eventually the animal comes into chemical equilibrium with the underground environment, which may be key to preservation. (3) Minimizing exposure of the fossil to the atmosphere during excavation may help protect fragile organic molecules from contamination and degradation; analyzing the fossil for organics promptly after it has been excavated may boost chances of recovering these materials. And at the time she wrote her article, she was likely unaware of the recent study showing how biofilms could potentially enhance preservation.

    When the protein model for inheritance failed to explain inheritance, scientists dismissed the protein model as inadequate. If the “kinetics” argument fails to explain the actual preservation limits of soft tissue, scientists will conclude their knowledge of organic tissue degradation is incomplete.

    Why would you want to take a stand on a testtube argument that others are obviously dismissing as inadequate? Are you seriously prepared to stake your belief in the Bible on your understanding of kinetics?

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  45. @ Sean Pitman

    That is why the finding of these soft tissues was such a huge surprise – totally unpredictable from the mainstream perspective while being right in line with the creationist perspective.

    Ahem…did you, or some other creationist, actually predict that soft material would be found in fossils before Mary Schweitzer came along?

    Look, I’m a creationist myself and would be THRILLED BEYOND BELIEF if we could find the “smoking gun” evidence that the soft tissue in these dinosaurs was less than 6,000 years in age. However, I think one should contemplate the accumulating data with a little more humility and not make the grandiose claims that are emerging from your computer. You could be setting yourself up–along with your Church–for another Great Disappointment.

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  46. @Professor Kent

    In her article that appeared just this month, she wrote, “Test-tube studies of organic molecules indicated that proteins should not persist more than a million years or so; DNA had an even shorter life span.” She then went on to describe her finds of ancient organic material–proteins–up to 70 million years or more in age. This sums her position concisely enough: “Mounting evidence from dinosaur bones shows that, contrary to common belief, organic materials can sometimes survive in fossils for millions of years.”

    Thank you so much for informing us about the article you are talking about now. I just found it on Scientific American and will read it as soon as possible. 🙂

    I think one should contemplate the accumulating data with a little more humility and not make the grandiose claims that are emerging from your computer. You could be setting yourself up–along with your Church–for another Great Disappointment.

    I completely agree. You said a while ago in this thread (well, I think it was you) that Sean Pitman had said that if his perception of God and Creation were to turn out to be wrong, then he would leave the Church and give up Christianity completely. — That is unfortunate. Just because one’s interpretation of the Bible and personal perception of God may turn out to be wrong, it doesn’t follow that Christianity is wrong and God doesn’t exist. That doesn’t follow at all, except to someone entrenched in hopeless dogmatism.

    “Hard” atheists make similar oversimplifications. I heard one atheist basically say “If God exists, there should be X; since X is not the case, then he must not exist.” Similar arguments go on the lines of “If God exists, there should be no evil; there is evil, so God does not exist.” — Now I think even Sean Pitman could see the fallacy of such arguments, but if you are correct that he said such a thing about giving up faith in Christianity, then he is only using similar logic applied to the atheistic arguments mentioned. Many young Christians have been fed the same fallacious logic by some Young Earth Creation “scientists,” and I pray for their souls because many of them will unfortunately become atheists.

    Christians can hold to the Bible being infallible, but and infallible Bible does not indicate that they will have infallible interpretations of it. They have to be willing to accept that even if the Bible is without error, their interpretations of it are not without error. The view that their interpretation is either right, or Christianity is wrong is a false dilema.

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  47. Kris said –

    The Nephilim were on the earth in those days—and also afterward—when the sons of God went to the daughters of men and had children by them. They were the heroes of old, men of renown. (Genesis 6: 4)

    Please take notice: This is actually the prelude to Noah’s flood, and yet it says that this race of people called the Nephilim were on the earth “in those days–and also afterward.” Also, in Numbers 13: 33 the same race of people are mentioned as living in Canaan in the time of Moses. This indicates that 1) they survived the flood

    Hint – the text does NOT say “because the sons of God went into the daughters of men Nephelim were created” the way many have “imagined.

    Rather the text says that the people of the pre-flood generation were already “Nephelim” even before the “sons of God went into the daughters of men” – which means that Noah was himself Nephelim.

    Turns out all of mankind descend from the family of Noah after the flood because as 1Peter 3 points out – only 8 people were saved from the entire planet and as 2Peter 3 points out – the entire world was destroyed by the flood.

    The point remains.

    in Christ,

    Bob

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  48. Inge asks

    How to you correlate that with the biblical account?Or do you consider the biblical account as pure myth, with no factual data? If so, why consider that the biblical account refers to any kind of literal flood?Just wondering … (Quote)

    Kris responds:

    That’s a good question. I do not consider the flood account as pure myth, or as a myth at all. All I said was I believe that the flood is a local event

    Then you are using an extreme form of eisegesis to bend the text to the usages of evolutionism.

    When I say “God said” I refer to the fact that the Bible is to be accepted by Seventh-day Adventist Christians as the Word of God.

    God said

    Gen 6:6-7
    6 The LORD was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart.
    7 The LORD said, “” I will blot out man whom I have created from the face of the land, from man to animals to creeping things and to birds of the sky; for I am sorry that I have made them.”

    11 Now the earth was corrupt in the sight of God, and the earth was filled with violence.
    12 God looked on the earth, and behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted their way upon the earth.
    13 Then God said to Noah, “” The end of all flesh has come before Me; for the earth is filled with violence because of them; and behold, I am about to destroy them with the earth.

    17 “”Behold, I, even I am bringing the flood of water upon the earth, to destroy all flesh in which is the breath of life, from under heaven; everything that is on the earth shall perish.

    Instead of using local or regional terms like “land of Shinar” or “mesopotamia” or “Caanan” (regional and local terms known to Moses) – the text specifically says this is an event occuring to the EARTH, ALL FLESH on the Earth, The EARTH is filled with violence, ALL FLESH corrupt, the END of all flesh..

    Thus the only limits, the only qualifiers for these terms that can be allowed in actual exegesis are the limits and qualifiers found IN the text itself.

    God said
    Gen 7
    1 Then the LORD said to Noah, “Enter the ark, you and all your household, for you alone I have seen to be righteous before Me in this time.
    2 “You shall take with you of every clean animal by sevens, a male and his female; and of the animals that are not clean two, a male and his female;
    3 also of the birds of the sky, by sevens, male and female, to keep offspring alive on the face of all the earth.

    God said that the scope is “the face of all the earth”.

    Gen 7:4
    4 “For after seven more days, I will send rain on the earth forty days and forty nights; and I will blot out from the face of the land every living thing that I have made.”

    Pretty hard to believe that “from the face of the land every living thing that I have made” refers to God making stuff in Mesopotamia alone. That form of eisegesis just does not work in the text.

    Gen 7:11
    11 In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, on the seventeenth day of the month, on the same day all the fountains of the great deep burst open, and the floodgates of the sky were opened.
    12 The rain fell upon the earth for forty days and forty nights.

    Again – All the fountains of the great deep “but just in mesopotamia” does not work in the text as a valid “insert”.

    In direct contrast to the text above we have this statement

    Kris said
    I believe that the flood is a local event
    , likely that happened in Mesopotamia at around 2900 BC (A reasonable date since the Gilgamesh epic is dated to about 2700 BC).

    Certainly we can all agree that using Gilgamesh as your “Bible” could easily get some of the facts we find in Genesis 6 and 7 tossed out the window.

    The text of scripture “by contrast” points to a world wide event not a “Meopotamia wide event”.

    God said
    Gen 7:19-23
    19 The water prevailed more and more upon the earth, so that all the high mountains everywhere under the heavens were covered.
    20 The water prevailed fifteen cubits higher, and the mountains were covered.
    21 All flesh that moved on the earth perished, birds and cattle and beasts and every swarming thing that swarms upon the earth, and all mankind;
    22 of all that was on the dry land, all in whose nostrils was the breath of the spirit of life, died.
    23 Thus He blotted out every living thing that was upon the face of the land, from man to animals to creeping things and to birds of the sky, and they were blotted out from the earth; and only Noah was left, together with those that were with him in the ark.

    “All the high mountains everywhere … All the flesh that moved on the earth — of all that was on dry land” is not a euphamism for “of all that was on dry land in mesopotamia”.

    God said:

    Gen 8
    4 In the seventh month, on the seventeenth day of the month, the ark rested upon the mountains of Ararat.
    5 The water decreased steadily until the tenth month; in the tenth month, on the first day of the month, the tops of the mountains became visible.
    6 Then it came about at the end of forty days, that Noah opened the window of the ark which he had made;
    7 and he sent out a raven, and it flew here and there until the water was dried up from the earth.
    8 Then he sent out a dove from him, to see if the water was abated from the face of the land;
    9 but the dove found no resting place for the sole of her foot, so she returned to him into the ark, for the water was on the surface of all the earth. Then he put out his hand and took her, and brought her into the ark to himself.

    12 Then he waited yet another seven days, and sent out the dove; but she did not return to him again.
    13 Now it came about in the six hundred and first year, in the first month, on the first of the month, the water was dried up from the earth. Then Noah removed the covering of the ark, and looked, and behold, the surface of the ground was dried up.
    14 In the second month, on the twenty-seventh day of the month, the earth was dry.
    ..
    17 “”Bring out with you every living thing of all flesh that is with you, birds and animals and every creeping thing that creeps on the earth, that they may breed abundantly on the earth, and be fruitful and multiply on the earth.”

    Again we find no qualifiers in the text itself stating that this is “just mesopotamia” or that the boat landing on the mountains is just a concern for people living in mesopotamia.

    Why in the world would birds simply not “fly away from mesopotamia”?? Why take them in the ark as if not doing so would eliminate their species??

    Kris saiid –
    First, I will deal with the “Proof texts” that are often used to claim that the flood is global.

    Very often those who use the term “proof text” in pejorative way fail to take the time to look at what the term means – because they then go on to abandon exegesis altogether and to build their entire doctrine on “a single word” not even a “text”.

    Kris makes this effort to bend Genesis 6 – 8 using Acts 2 (the Greek text, different author, different subject) as the excuse

    Kris said –
    Even the Bible uses universal terms that indicate a limmited region: Acts 2: 5 says, “Now there were staying in Jerusalem God-fearing Jews from every nation under heaven.” — Obviously, “all under heaven” does not mean the entire planet.

    hint: If you have evidence that some nation on planet earth – with Jews in it – did NOT have at least someone from that nation in Jerusalem at that time – please give your evidence.

    In 2Peter 3 – we are told that it is the entire planet that was involved in the destruction of the earth by a flood.

    in 1Peter 3 we are told that only 8 humans survived.

    In Matt 24 we have the same confirmation.

    Impossible to ignore.

    Nobody – in OT or NT limits this to “mesopotamia”

    in Christ,

    Bob

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  49. such chemical preservatives do not overcome the predictions of kinetic chemistry which would still predict a maximum lifespan of these soft tissues of less than 100k years.

    It’s ironic–but not particularly suprising–that Sean confidently accepts the accuracy of the predictions of kinetic chemistry in the maximum amount of time it takes for soft tissues to mineralize, but not in any other method of dating that results in any material being older than 10,000 years.

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  50. @Bob

    How to you correlate that with the biblical account?Or do you consider the biblical account as pure myth, with no factual data? If so, why consider that the biblical account refers to any kind of literal flood?Just wondering … (Quote)
    Kris responds:
    That’s a good question. I do not consider the flood account as pure myth, or as a myth at all. All I said was I believe that the flood is a local event
    Then you are using an extreme form of eisegesis to bend the text to the usages of evolutionism.
    When I say “God said” I refer to the fact that the Bible is to be accepted by Seventh-day Adventist Christians as the Word of God.

    I would hardly call attempting to interpret the meaning of the word “earth” as anything but the “whole earth” “bending the text.” The Hebrew word in question (From Strongs) is:
    H776
    ארץ
    eh’-rets
    From an unused root probably meaning to be firm; the earth (at large, or partitively a land): – X common, country, earth, field, ground, land, X nations, way, + wilderness, world.

    It is a word used for a lot of things from local to probably global (although the ancients’ understanding of “global” is not completely certain, let along precisely what the writers of Genesis might know of the “whole earth.” At any rate, there are quite a number of texts that use the term “whole earth.” Many of these texts could be interpreted either in a local or global sense (and many are ambiguous in context). But below I list, after the couple of texts in Genesis, several texts that clearly are better interpreted in a local sense, as they would have little meaning in a global sense. So, given the broad use of the phrase “whole earth” it hardly seems extreme to suggest that the use of the phrase in Genesis could be a local usage, especially in light of the probable ignorance of those in the Middle East of the literal “whole earth.”

    Of course, interpretation is not really the point to Sean and his supporters here. It has to be literally worldwide or they see themselves losing the one possible explanation of the fossil record that they think shows a recent, literal creation. I don’t think our interpretation of the flood account should be encumbered in this way. A worldwide flood doesn’t explain the fossil record very well anyway, and the fact that young life creationists “need” a worldwide flood should not inform our interpretation of the Biblical record.

    And just for the record, I don’t see interpreting the Genesis Flood as a local event as questioning the sacredness of the Bible or the accuracy of its writers. I am talking about interpretation of the text. Interpreting a text in a manner that may be different than the traditional SDA approach hardly constitutes questioning the authenticity or accuracy of the Bible. I just question a dogmatic interpretational approach to the Bible.

    (Gen 8:9) But the dove found no rest for the sole of her foot, and she returned unto him into the ark, for the waters were on the face of the whole earth: then he put forth his hand, and took her, and pulled her in unto him into the ark.

    (Gen 9:19) These are the three sons of Noah: and of them was the whole earth overspread.

    (Exo 10:15) For they covered the face of the whole earth, so that the land was darkened; and they did eat every herb of the land, and all the fruit of the trees which the hail had left: and there remained not any green thing in the trees, or in the herbs of the field, through all the land of Egypt.

    (Psa 48:2) Beautiful for situation, the joy of the whole earth, is mount Zion, on the sides of the north, the city of the great King.

    (Jer 50:23) How is the hammer of the whole earth cut asunder and broken! how is Babylon become a desolation among the nations!

    (Jer 51:41) How is Sheshach taken! and how is the praise of the whole earth surprised! how is Babylon become an astonishment among the nations!

    (Lam 2:15) All that pass by clap their hands at thee; they hiss and wag their head at the daughter of Jerusalem, saying, Is this the city that men call The perfection of beauty, The joy of the whole earth?

    (Eze 32:4) Then will I leave thee upon the land, I will cast thee forth upon the open field, and will cause all the fowls of the heaven to remain upon thee, and I will fill the beasts of the whole earth with thee.

    (Dan 8:5) And as I was considering, behold, an he goat came from the west on the face of the whole earth, and touched not the ground: and the goat had a notable horn between his eyes.

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  51. Bob “in Christ” Ryan repeatedly mocks evolutionists for perpetuating pet theories by fraudulent hoaxes. I hope most of you reading this would agree that Christians should extend to evolutionists the same degree of courtesy and respect that we expect from them. Many are undeniably honest–despite inherent biases, which we also have–in collecting, analyzing and interpreting data.

    Unfortunately creationists have also been guilty of perpetuating hoaxes or carelessly sampling and interpreting data. A classic example is the “human” footprints found among those of dinosaurs along the Paluxy River in Texas. Some of the very creationists responsible for widely publicizing the tracks as human later admitted they misidentified dinosaur tracks. Some of the human tracks were apparently faked, as demonstrated by a certain SDA biology professor at SWAU who cross-sectioned a “human” track in the museum at Columbia Union College.

    Another SDA scientist once published claims of finding pollen from flowering plants in Cambrian (rocks from the Grand Canyon, only to be later debunked by the same SDA biology professer at SWAU who revealed that the original samples had been contaminated by modern pollen.

    More notoriously, an amateur SDA archaelogist (now deceased) claimed to have found the original Ark of the Covenant and held the original ten commandments, which were held together by gold hinges, in his hands. He claimed to have obtained samples of the blood of Jesus which had dripped onto the Mercy Seat and analyzed it in a lab, which confirmed that the blood of Jesus had 24 chromosomes: 23 from Mary and 1 from the Holy Spirit. I apologize if I have offended anybody who sincerely believes these claims, but I would like to see the empirical scientific evidence supporting his claims before accepting them.

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  52. @Eddie

    Bob “in Christ” Ryan repeatedly mocks evolutionists for perpetuating pet theories by fraudulent hoaxes.

    Which is why I have given up talking to him all together. He likes to wave around the terms “Atheist,” like nothing as if someone being an atheist automatically disqualifies him from being legit. Well, anyway, he will not win any converts with that un-Christian, un-Christ like attitude he keeps showing me.

    And unless I am mistaken, he seems to have called “Gilgamesh” my Bible; laughable, considering that I was making no such statement. I mentioned Gilgamesh only in the context of dating the Flood of Noah for two reasons: 1) it contains a nearly identical flood story to the Biblical flood indicating a common origin, and 2) the epic was written at around 2700 BC making it valid for an estimated date for the flood, probably at 2900 BC.

    Besides, he missapplies almost everything I say constantly committing strawmen fallacies….and in his “response” to the “local flood” hypothesis, he obviously hasn’t read it well since he is bringing up details I already explained away.

    I hope most of you reading this would agree that Christians should extend to evolutionists the same degree of courtesy and respect that we expect from them. Many are undeniably honest–despite inherent biases, which we also have–in collecting, analyzing and interpreting data.

    And I thank you for that, being a Christian myself.

    Unfortunately creationists have also been guilty of perpetuating hoaxes or carelessly sampling and interpreting data. A classic example is the “human” footprints found among those of dinosaurs along the Paluxy River in Texas.

    Very true. Fraud has occured on both sides, and it is not exclusive to the evolution side. Some Creationists, to their credit, have recommended ending the use of Paluxy.

    I’ll still be willing to talk to Sean Pitman since he at least shows some courtesy, though I admit I may get a bit too passionate. (I am extremely opinionated) And I’ll talk to anyone (creationist or evolutionist) who will be courteous to me. But Bob is out…as far as I am concerned…since there is no talking to him.

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  53. @ krissmith777

    You said a while ago in this thread (well, I think it was you) that Sean Pitman had said that if his perception of God and Creation were to turn out to be wrong, then he would leave the Church and give up Christianity completely. — That is unfortunate. Just because one’s interpretation of the Bible and personal perception of God may turn out to be wrong, it doesn’t follow that Christianity is wrong and God doesn’t exist. That doesn’t follow at all, except to someone entrenched in hopeless dogmatism.

    I completely agree with you. Here are a few statements from Dr. Pitman. I’m hopeful that he will one day change his view and consider God’s word–scripture–to be his final authority rather than his own reasoning using science. Until then, he certainly appears to be undermining SDA Fundamental Belief #1.

    “Personally, if I ever became convinced that there really is no scientific merit behind the literal seven-day creation week or the worldwide nature of Noah’s flood, or if Darwinian-style evolution one day made good sense to me, I would leave behind not only the SDA Church but Christianity as well.”

    “I, personally, would have to go with what I saw as the weight of empirical evidence. This is why if I ever honestly became convinced that the weight of empirical evidence was on the side of life existing on this planet for hundreds of millions of years, I would leave not only the SDA Church, but Christianity as well…”

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  54. @ krissmith777
    By the way, you used a very interesting term: “dogmatism.” I’m greatly distressed by the dogmaticism I see in many creationsists and evolutionists alike. You and I need to be careful to avoid this ourselves. Being open-minded to some degree has considerable merit, at least when it comes to the evidence. Although you and I both recognize many of the problems that the “evidence” presents for young life creationism, and for a flood that covered every speck of land, I do not want to be too dismissive. I suggest that you remain open-minded, as I am, to the possibility that things may have been exactly what Ellen White and our Church has argued all along. But I do agree with you, and OTNT_Believer (if I understand you both correctly), that our salvation does not hinge on a correct understanding all events associated with earth history.

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  55. There is sooo much tension here. Time creates change and we can’t stop time.

    Please keep this issue in your prayers, therefore our leaders could find an answer.

    It is scary to think instead of ministering to those who do not know of Jesus Christ, some people are trying to stop a whole University from teaching basic science. Is it really a science class if it does not have basic teachings of evolution. Yes, I know it does not fall under our fundamental beliefs, but everyone should look at this as an opportunity and minister the word of God. We will have no doubt and these teachings will stay theories right?

    I’m currently a student at LLU (finals start tomorrow btw…and I’m totally distracted)and took undergrad classes at La Sierra. Have you ever attended GYC? If not, evangelism is the way to go guys! Instead of stopping evolution teachings, we should focus on teaching about Jesus. A institution that offers higher education should offer all teachings, but above all teach about our savior.

    What would the Pharisees do? What would Jesus do?

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  56. Here is a recent story from Southern Adventist University on their faculty-student quest to extract ancient DNA:

    http://accent.cs.southern.edu/?p=2923

    Apparently, they are trying to isolate DNA from plants dated to 17 million years before present. Dr. Lee Spencer is cited for his mention that this (I’m not sure what exactly) has only been done on one prior occasion. Bob Ryan previously claimed that Dr. Spencer has already found DNA in supposedly 14 million-year-old strata. Of course, the researchers would need to rule out recent contamination–which is an ENORMOUS problem when working with ancient DNA. The problem is so severe that strict guidelines have been established for evaluating authenticity of the DNA.

    According to a recent review, mitochondrial DNA, which has been the focus of most ancient DNA research for assorted reasons, has been completely or nearly-completely sequenced from the following animals: moas (which are birds; dated at 613-1245 years before present), mammoths and mastodons (12,170-~90,000 yr BP), bears (22,417-44,160 yr BP), Tasmanian tiger (~100 yr BP), rhinos (~100 bp), neanderthal (38,310-~65,000 yr BP), and humans (~100-5225 yr BP).

    Note that none of these animal examples have exceeded the 100,000-year mark. So, I’m a wee bit skeptical that anyone is going to find valid DNA from strata dated at millions of years. However, this review paper also cited other papers reporting claims of “geologically ancient” DNA (from microbes and plants), including samples from the Miocene. If someone wants to dig into this further (my “free” time is up) and tell us more, here are the refs (surely I’m not the only one at this site with good library access). Again, the Miocence material sounds most intriguing (if valid).

    Fish, S.A., Shepherd, T.J., McGenity, T.J., Grant, W.D., 2002. Recovery of 16S ribosomal RNA gene fragments from ancient halite. Nature 417, 432–436.

    Kim, S., Soltis, D.E., Soltis, P.S., Suh, Y., 2004. DNA sequences from Miocene fossils: an ndhf sequence of Magnolia latahensis (Magnoliaceae) and an rbcl sequence of Persea pseudocarolinensis (Lauraceae). Am. J. Bot. 91, 615–620.

    Veiga-Crespo, P., Blasco, L., Poza, M., Villa, T.G., 2007. Putative ancient microorganisms from amber nuggets. Int. Microbiol. 10, 117–122.

    Veiga-Crespo, P., Martinez, L.R., Viñas, M., Villa, T.G., 2008. Fragment of the ancient rbcL gene from the Miocene. Schol. Res. Exch. 2008, 417592.

    Veiga-Crespo, P., Poza, M., Prieto-Alcedo, M., Villa, T.G., 2004. Ancient genes of Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Microbiology 150, 2221–2227.

    Vreeland, R.H., Rosenzweig, W.D., Lowenstein, T., Satterfield, C., Ventosa, A., 2006. Fatty acid and DNA analyses of Permian bacteria isolated from ancient salt crystals reveal differences with their modern relatives. Extremophiles 10, 71–78.

    It’d be nice if the SAU folks manage to find something.

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  57. Eddie says:
    December 12, 2010 Bob “in Christ” Ryan repeatedly mocks evolutionists for perpetuating pet theories by fraudulent hoaxes. I hope most of you reading this would agree that Christians should extend to evolutionists the same degree of courtesy and respect that we expect from them. Many are undeniably honest–despite inherent biases, which we also have–in collecting, analyzing and interpreting data.

    The critical thinking that it would take to “Notice the fraud” and then draw lessons from it – does not insist that only creationists are being duped by such fraud. Clearly the 30 year long, 40 year long, 50+ year long examples of fraud that were provided (some of which hailed as the “best evidence in nature for evolutionism” during those DECADES) – duped evolutionists much more than creationist.

    So no doubt that evolutionists are the chief victims of their own fraud.

    Thus the argument is never of the form “All evolutionists are inventing fraudulent arguments for evolutionism” as you wild accusation appears to claim.

    By contrast there is NO “the best evidence for creation is this bit of fraud” argument for creationists.

    However I understand that evolutionists here would “feel the need” to ignore the lessons to be learned from the fraud-rich history of evolutionism.

    Yet they should not consider that their own need to ignore the instructive nature of that history would actually constitute a valid cogent argument for creationists to ignore the degree to which arguments for evolutionism are proven to be based on hoax and fraud.

    in Christ,

    Bob

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  58. The reason for pointing to the way that evolutionists have relied on fraud and hoax arguments (albeit unwittingly doing so – so not often were they the ones knowing of the fraud content propping up their own arguments) – is that the SAME scenarios present themselves STILL today!

    And if one is willing to pick up the tools of critical thinking long enough to go back and consider those 50 year long fraud of the horse series STILL on display at the Smithsonian, the 40 year long fraud of Piltdown, the 30 year long fraud of Neanderthal dating methods totally fabricated etc and ask yourself HOW would the creationist have to respond to such arguments BEFORE they are known to be fraud – you have a good example of the SAME position that creationists are in today.

    If you do not learn the lessons from the past- you are doomed to repeat them.

    As Adventists – we know for example that some reptiles – like the Serpent in Eden – could fly and that this is the STARTING condition.

    Why then are there SDAs out there so freely duped by evolutionism given the lack of substance in its claims (i.e. static Eukaryote genomes in terms of new coding genes and no abiogensis). Even Dawkins responds with his class 11 seconds of flummoxed silence when asked for a real observable example IN nature of new coding genes added to an organism’s genome.

    How “instructive” for the unbiased objective reader.

    No wonder evolutionists prefer NOT to address these points!

    Some would argue that a 100 million years is just “too long” to see a change. Consider a KNOWN science fact rather than evolutionist blunders and science-fiction for a second. Uranium 238 has a half life of 4.47 billion years. No fiction there, no evolutionist story telling, no eveolutionist hopeful monster – just real physics.

    Now if presented with 238 grams of U238 what do you suppose the odds are of having a geiger counter record “activity” given that the half life is 4.47 billion years??? Indeed it would be redlining!

    Hint – even using the evol storytelling we are always 100 million years from some ancestor — so not having “enough time” to see changes happening today is silly because today we are always at every point along that supposed 100 million year timeline “for some species” just not for the same one! Wake up dear evolutionist friends.

    Or – turn a blind eye to the evidence that does not please evolutionism – your choice.

    in Christ,

    Bob

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  59. Kris said
    I believe that the flood is a local event
    , likely that happened in Mesopotamia at around 2900 BC (A reasonable date since the Gilgamesh epic is dated to about 2700 BC).

    To which I responded

    BobRyan said –

    Then you are using an extreme form of eisegesis to bend the text to the usages of evolutionism.

    Instead of using local or regional terms like “land of Shinar” or “mesopotamia” or “Caanan” (regional and local terms known to Moses) – the text specifically says this is an event occuring to the EARTH, ALL FLESH on the Earth, The EARTH is filled with violence, ALL FLESH corrupt, the END of all flesh..

    Thus the only limits, the only qualifiers for these terms that can be allowed in actual exegesis are the limits and qualifiers found IN the text itself.
    God said that the scope is “the face of all the earth”.

    Gen 7:4
    4 “For after seven more days, I will send rain on the earth forty days and forty nights; and I will blot out from the face of the land every living thing that I have made.”

    Pretty hard to believe that “from the face of the land every living thing that I have made” refers to God making stuff in Mesopotamia alone. That form of eisegesis just does not work in the text.

    Gen 7:11
    11 In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, on the seventeenth day of the month, on the same day all the fountains of the great deep burst open, and the floodgates of the sky were opened.
    12 The rain fell upon the earth for forty days and forty nights.

    Again – All the fountains of the great deep “but just in mesopotamia” does not work in the text as a valid “insert”.

    “All the high mountains everywhere … All the flesh that moved on the earth — of all that was on dry land” is not a euphamism for “of all that was on dry land in mesopotamia”.

    Very often those who use the term “proof text” in pejorative way fail to take the time to look at what the term means – because they then go on to abandon exegesis altogether and to build their entire doctrine on “a single word” not even a “text”.

    Kris makes this effort to bend Genesis 6 – 8 using Acts 2 (the Greek text, different author, different subject) as the excuse

    And at that point I show that Kris’ argument seeks to claim that there were nations on the planet some place that Jews living there – but did not have at least one Jew from that nation showing up in Jerusalem — sans the data to support such a claim of course – but apparently willing to make the claim “anyway” presumably because it helps with a “bible details cannot be trusted” line of argument.

    OTNT replies
    I would hardly call attempting to interpret the meaning of the word “earth” as anything but the “whole earth” “bending the text.” The Hebrew word in question (From Strongs) is:
    H776
    ארץ
    eh’-rets
    From an unused root probably meaning to be firm; the earth (at large, or partitively a land): – X common, country, earth, field, ground, land, X nations, way, + wilderness, world.

    It is a word used for a lot of things from local to probably global (although the ancients’ understanding of “global” is not completely certain, let along precisely what the writers of Genesis might know of the “whole earth.” At any rate, there are quite a number of texts that use the term “whole earth.”

    The not-so-subtle point missing in your comment so far is that the “alternate usages” element exists for almost every word in every text of the Bible. HINT – that is WHY we appeal to principle of exegesis such as “context” and things like the Historical-Grammatial hermeneutic for interpreting the text RATHER than an isolated “single bent word snippet” model.

    In exegesis we consider the Author and immediate context FIRST – taking the text as it reads to best undrestand how the first-order primary intended reader of the text (i.e. usually this means the author’s contemporarys) would have read the text given the way the Author writes it. The idea is to get the Author’s own intended meaning RATHER than trying to insert “mesopotamia” in the text every time by-faith-alone belief in evolutionism “needs it”.

    My post gave examples “IN the text” and also gave examples of other Bible authors commenting ON that every text.

    By contrast your own response and Kris’s response shows a certain need to distance itself from the actual local indicators IN the text for the scope of the flood! How “instructive” then for the unbiased objective reader!

    As you point out – in your survey of OTHER texts that make no mention at all of the global flood –

    OTNT said –
    Many of these texts could be interpreted either in a local or global sense (and many are ambiguous in context). But below I list, after the couple of texts in Genesis, several texts that clearly are better interpreted in a local sense, as they would have little meaning in a global sense. So, given the broad use of the phrase “whole earth” it hardly seems extreme to suggest that the use of the phrase in Genesis could be a local usage,

    The first rule of exegesis is “context” – your “Take any text BUT the one we are trying to render accurately” idea is the opposite of context. You are using classic eisegesis so far.

    An example of just how the eisegesis model does not work is seen with Ruwach in Gen 6-8 – is that simply “wind” as it is used in some places in scripture. Are people just made up of “Wind”?

    In the context for 6:3 Ruwach is the Spirit of God

    Gen 6:3 –
    And the LORD said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years.

    In the context for 6:17 it is the life principle in living beings.

    Gen 6:17 –
    And, behold, I, even I, do bring a flood of waters upon the earth, to destroy all flesh, wherein is the breath of life, from under heaven; and every thing that is in the earth shall die.

    Gen 7:15 – [
    And they went in unto Noah into the ark, two and two of all flesh, wherein is the breath of life.

    Gen 7:22 –
    All in whose nostrils was the breath of life, of all that was in the dry land, died.

    In chapter 8 it is the wind of planet earth – drying out the earth.

    Gen 8:1 –
    And God remembered Noah, and every living thing, and all the cattle that was with him in the ark: and God made a wind to pass over the earth, and the waters asswaged;

    Although WIND is a valid translation for the term in Genesis 6 – it does NOT fit the context! Our JW friends often choose the eisgetical method of simply “picking a definition among the ones available” that they prefer regardless of “the context problem”. I would be very sad to find that our SDA evolutionst friends are forced to resort to those same methods.

    The idea of fleeing the context — to find some place in the Bible where one of the alternate translations fits your “need” is classic eisegesis.

    OTNT said
    especially in light of the probable ignorance of those in the Middle East of the literal “whole earth.”

    It is unclear whether you are deliberatly trying to shoot your own argument or not with that statement.

    1. If you are arguing that the Moses and his readers were so stupid that they thought mesopotamia was “the whole earth” THEN the real meaning Moses was giving and that his readers would have gotten is indeed “THE WOLE EARTH” and not “some tiny section of earth” — I do not see how such a dumbed-down-bible argument helps you with the case for context and exegesis.

    2. SDAs view the Bible as the “Word of God” not the “word of ignorant people of the middleast”.

    OTNT said
    A worldwide flood doesn’t explain the fossil record very well anyway

    How so?

    A world wide flood would explain “Whale fossils at 440 feet above sea level, and the “piling” action of the wind would explain “fossil bone yards” where many fossils are all lumped in together.

    OTNT said
    And just for the record, I don’t see interpreting the Genesis Flood as a local event as questioning the sacredness of the Bible or the accuracy of its writers.

    Actually the “accept the text as it reads” model of the Historical-Grammatical model for hermeneutics – does point to the accuracy and trustworthy nature of the Bible “As it reads”.

    OTNT said
    I am talking about interpretation of the text. Interpreting a text in a manner that may be different than the traditional SDA approach hardly constitutes questioning the authenticity or accuracy of the Bible.

    The Bible says “A”, evolutionist says “B” and then innexplicably adds “but that is not questioning the Bible”????

    OTNT
    I just question a dogmatic interpretational approach to the Bible.

    (Gen 8:9) But the dove found no rest for the sole of her foot, and she returned unto him into the ark, for the waters were on the face of the whole earth: then he put forth his hand, and took her, and pulled her in unto him into the ark.

    (Gen 9:19) These are the three sons of Noah: and of them was the whole earth overspread.

    (Exo 10:15) For they covered the face of the whole earth, so that the land was darkened; and they did eat every herb of the land, and all the fruit of the trees which the hail had left: and there remained not any green thing in the trees, or in the herbs of the field, through all the land of Egypt.

    In your example you give a good contrast between texts in genesis that have NO limit (other than the limit of all life on dry land) vs one in Exodus 10 where EGYPT is stated as the limit IN the context of the text you choose to ignore.

    God said:
    Exodus 10:3-8
    3 So Moses and Aaron came in to Pharaoh and said to him, “Thus says the LORD God of the Hebrews: ‘How long will you refuse to humble yourself before Me? Let My people go, that they may serve Me.

    4 Or else, if you refuse to let My people go, behold, tomorrow I will bring locusts into your territory.

    5 And they shall cover the face of the earth, so that no one will be able to see the earth; and they shall eat the residue of what is left, which remains to you from the hail, and they shall eat every tree which grows up for you out of the field. 6 They shall fill your houses, the houses of all your servants, and the houses of all the Egyptians—which neither your fathers nor your fathers’ fathers have seen, since the day that they were on the earth to this day.’” And he turned and went out from Pharaoh.

    “IN the context” of the chapter the limit is given “your territory” and seeing the earth is clearly Egyptians seeing the ground as we see in vs 4 — so carefully avoided in your illustration.

    And the limiting context “IN the text” IN Gen 6-7 is “on dry land” all life “on dry land” in which there is “the breath of life”.

    The very details you are ignoring by of context IN the text itself are the ones that show that your efforts are merely eisgesis and patterned after the same method used by every group on the planet trying to bend the text.

    This brings up another point that I find curiously consistent when it comes to our SDA evolutionist friends. They seldom show any interest in looking at what the Bible says – but in the rare cases where they can be coaxed into doing so – they make the same kind of arguments that every non-SDA on the planet makes on other topics when they debate/object to what we say about the state of the dead, bodily resurrection, virgin birth, 10 commandments, sevent-day SAbbath etc. It is as if our evolutionist SDA friends never actually study the Bible in a context where they must rely on accurate exegesis and “context” to make the case with a non-SDA!!

    But suddenly when it comes to a world wide flood they want to “try their hand at it”.

    I find that whole thing very strange.

    in Christ,

    Bob

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  60. @Professor Kent:

    Recognizing the problem based on test tube models is one thing, but accepting it is another, particularly when the models do not appear to apply in all real world situations. Using Pitmanese, the models may well lack predictive power because they do not take into account all possible variables that potentially influence soft tissue preservation.

    It is impossible, in science, to take into account all possible variables or potentialities. That is why science is always open to the potential for falsification given additional information. Science is risky, by definition, because of this.

    The point is, given what is known right now, there is no good explanation from the mainstream perspective when it comes to explaining how elastic soft tissues and sequencable proteins (and maybe DNA as well) could survive more than a few tens of thousands of years, much less tens of millions of years, given the evidence of kinetic chemistry that was previously thought to be rather definitive in mainstream science.

    Do you not realize that Schweitzer dismisses the “problem” altogether? She continues to date the soft tissue remains at millions of years.

    Of course she does. She is convinced that the weight of evidence still favors the mainstream perspective on origins. She still believes that somehow there is an answer to solve the kinetic chemistry problem. However, at least she admits that she has no good solution to this problem. She just thinks that there must be a solution because she knows that the bones in question really are many tens of millions of years old. Therefore, there has to be a solution… obviously! 😉

    In her article that appeared just this month, she wrote, “Test-tube studies of organic molecules indicated that proteins should not persist more than a million years or so; DNA had an even shorter life span.” She then went on to describe her finds of ancient organic material–proteins–up to 70 million years or more in age. This sums her position concisely enough: “Mounting evidence from dinosaur bones shows that, contrary to common belief, organic materials can sometimes survive in fossils for millions of years.”

    Again, this isn’t based on a solution to the kenetic chemistry problem. This is based on her own belief, along with all of mainstream science, that these bones must be tens of millions of years old, therefore, the kinetic chemistry evidence must be mistaken…

    In her article, she mentioned three factors that may aid the preservation and recovery of these materials. (1) Sandstone sediments in particular seem to protect against complete loss of organic remains, possibly because the porous sands allow the corrosive fluids that form during decomposition to drain away. (2) Especially deep burial may promote soft-tissue preservation because it protects against oxidation, changes in pH and temperature, and exposure to ultraviolet radiation that can occur at the surface. Eventually the animal comes into chemical equilibrium with the underground environment, which may be key to preservation. (3) Minimizing exposure of the fossil to the atmosphere during excavation may help protect fragile organic molecules from contamination and degradation; analyzing the fossil for organics promptly after it has been excavated may boost chances of recovering these materials. And at the time she wrote her article, she was likely unaware of the recent study showing how biofilms could potentially enhance preservation.

    And none of these protective factors address the kinetic chemistry problem – as I’ve already noted.

    When the protein model for inheritance failed to explain inheritance, scientists dismissed the protein model as inadequate. If the “kinetics” argument fails to explain the actual preservation limits of soft tissue, scientists will conclude their knowledge of organic tissue degradation is incomplete.

    Why would you want to take a stand on a testtube argument that others are obviously dismissing as inadequate? Are you seriously prepared to stake your belief in the Bible on your understanding of kinetics?

    I’m just saying, kentic chemistry is just one unexplained problem, among many, for the mainstream perspective that is quite consistent with the creationist perspective. Carbon-14 is another. And, there are many many more. The evidence is adding up and its weight, in my opinion, is strongly in favor of the biblical model of origins…

    I’m sorry, but I believe that the Bible is what it claims to be, not just based on its claims (many books claim to be the “Word of God”), but because it can back up its claims with the weight of real empirical evidence.

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com

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  61. @Professor Kent:

    Ahem…did you, or some other creationist, actually predict that soft material would be found in fossils before Mary Schweitzer came along?

    Before Schweitzer came along, who would have been most surprised by what she found? – evolutionists or creationists? The finding of soft tissues in dinosaur bones is not at all surprising to creationists… nor is the finding of essentially uniform C-14 contamination in the non-fossilized remains of fossils, coal, and oil.

    Look, I’m a creationist myself and would be THRILLED BEYOND BELIEF if we could find the “smoking gun” evidence that the soft tissue in these dinosaurs was less than 6,000 years in age. However, I think one should contemplate the accumulating data with a little more humility and not make the grandiose claims that are emerging from your computer. You could be setting yourself up–along with your Church–for another Great Disappointment.

    What you want is conclusive evidence… something that is not part of science. There will never be conclusive evidence. However, the weight of evidence can be rationally recognized as strongly favoring the creationist position on origins – even now.

    Again, science is risky by definition. If you aren’t willing to set yourself up for even the potential of being in error, of experiencing “Great Disapointment”, what good are your notions of truth?

    If your concepts of truth are based more on desire than on evidence, you can’t be wrong, period. That’s a conversation stopper. There really is no point in having a discussion with you because you are always right, by definition, since your beliefs are based on empirically-blind faith. What’s the point in having a discussion since nothing that could potentially be brought to the table would ever have the power to change your mind?

    You see, it is by taking a risk that ideas of truth gain value beyond yourself…

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com

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  62. The critical thinking that it would take to “Notice the fraud” and then draw lessons from it – does not insist that only creationists are being duped by such fraud. Clearly the 30 year long, 40 year long, 50+ year long examples of fraud that were provided (some of which hailed as the “best evidence in nature for evolutionism” during those DECADES) – duped evolutionists much more than creationist.

    We can count on one individual repeatedly posting the same drivel on fraud every couple of weeks it seems, as if there is a new angle on it. Far more fraud can be found in medical and biomedical research. There’s a ton of it–easily Googled. Investigators steal entire research proposals from others in an effort to seek funding; authors republish entire papers written by others as if they did the work; papers are written on bogus data, or manipulated findings; papers are written by “ghost writers” employed by pharmaceutical companies. Sometimes a single researcher drags down as many as 100 co-investigators through dozens of fraudulently published papers, setting backward the supposed advances in the field by as much as a decade.

    Fraud is hardly unique to or motivated by evolutionism. And evolutionists are not the only ones susceptible to being duped. To suggest otherwise reflects sheer ignorance. Just ask the thousands of anesthesiologists who recently bought into the dozens of papers on multimodal pain control during and following surgery, papers fraudulently produced by a single author who now sits in jail and has numerous collaborators cringing in embarassment. There’s an obvious reason why more fraud occurs in the medical and biomedical disciplines than in other disciplines. Hint: follow the money.

    We can continue to roll our eyes as we see this subject come up again and again and again.

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  63. @ Sean Pitman

    If your concepts of truth are based more on desire than on evidence, you can’t be wrong, period. That’s a conversation stopper. There really is no point in having a discussion with you because you are always right, by definition, since your beliefs are based on empirically-blind faith

    “Your concepts of truth are based more on desire than evidence?” That’s a far-fetched characterization of my opinion! And my “beliefs are based on empirically-blind faith?” More of the same!

    I have no problem with evidence. I’m merely pointing out, consistent with the SDA Church’s long-held position, that sufficient evidence was in hand to judge God and his inspired word in Noah’s day, in King David’s Day, in Jesus’ day, and in Ellen White’s day. If you need more evidence to validate the Bible, you are on shaky ground. You are undermining the authority of Scripture, and the fundamental beliefs of the SDA Church, to suggest that validity of the Bible, or its superiority to other documents, hinges on any evidence science has produced in relation to origins. You need to rethink your position, Dr. Pitman.

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  64. @ Sean Pitman

    There will never be conclusive evidence. However, the weight of evidence can be rationally recognized as strongly favoring the creationist position on origins – even now.

    The official SDA position is that the “weight of evidence” has absolutely NO BEARING on the validity of scripture. You need to stop telling your devotees otherwise. I’m really shocked by how intransigent you are with this position.

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  65. @Sean Pitman,

    As Eddie said in a former comment, “It’s ironic–but not particularly suprising–that Sean confidently accepts the accuracy of the predictions of kinetic chemistry in the maximum amount of time it takes for soft tissues to mineralize, but not in any other method of dating that results in any material being older than 10,000 years.”

    You said earlier in this tread that kinetic rates are a fact. You may be right, but I have news for you: So are the rates of Radiometric Decay as their rates have been ovserved and measured over the last 40 to 100 years (Link: http://www.asa3.org/ASA/resources/wiens.html ) Now nobody said that it is without flaw; no one says it is perfect since abberations occure, and I am okay with that. You may be right that kinetic decay rate is a “fact,” and I am okay with that too. But since Radiometric Dating can (and has been) fooled, why can’t we allow that there may be abberations in kinetic rates as well?

    Eddie is right. It is inconsistent of you to hold on to the “rate” of one detail in conventional science as a fact while at the same time rejecting the other known rate that is known to be based on hard fact as well. One thing that we all learn: There are exceptions to every rule. As there are occasions when radiometric rates can be fooled, why can’t we accept that kinetic rates cannot be fooled as well?

    Well, a paper from Plos One published last October says that “the crystallization of microbial biofilms on decomposing organic matter within vertebrate bone in early taphonomic stages may contribute to the preservation of primary soft tissues deeper in the bone structure.” — It also says:

    The results presented here suggest an important role of microorganisms in taphonomic processes, notably for the preservation of primary soft-tissues within bone, through a microbial masonry process. Although biomolecular studies on soft-tissue extracts from fossil vertebrates have shown that the proposed alternative interpretation of primary soft-tissue as microbial biofilms is unlikely, biofilms may play a critical role in the preservation process.

    Link: http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0013334

    Take note: This is not the “the-tissue-are-bacterial-biofilm” paper that was published by Thomas G. Kay in July 2008. It doesn’t even support the hypothesis.

    Mary Shweitzer’s hypothesis is that the tissue can be preserved for 68 million years deep in the ground because it was “in equilibruim” with the enviorment. The support for her hypothesis is that the degredation of remains began after she had removed the fossils from their enviorment.

    Link: http://www.montana.edu/cpa/news/nwview.php?article=5980

    In another paper that Professor Kent had linked a while ago that was submitted by Ms. Shweitzer, she pointed out that the fossils that contained tissue were from strata comprised of sandstone; the strata of mudstone and fossil marine enviorments are much less likely to produce them.

    Link: http://rspb.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/274/1607/183.full.pdf

    Considering that, her hypothesis may carry some weight since it seems to support the notion that it depends on the enviorments of the fossil.

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  66. Weight of Evidence

    @Professor Kent:

    The official SDA position is that the “weight of evidence” has absolutely NO BEARING on the validity of scripture. You need to stop telling your devotees otherwise. I’m really shocked by how intransigent you are with this position.

    The SDA Church has always based the reason for its faith on the “weight of evidence”. The Church is simply not a proponent of empirically-blind faith.

    Consider the following comments of Mrs. White in this regard:

    [God] appeals to reason and waits for each person to decide on the basis of the weight of evidence and the constraint of love. – Steps to Christ, pp. 43-47; The Desire of Ages, p. 458; Testimonies, vol. 3, p. 255; vol. 4, pp. 583, 584.

    “The human mind is endowed with power to discriminate between right and wrong. God designs that men shall not decide from impulse, but from weight of evidence… Had the Jews laid by their prejudice and compared written prophecy with the facts characterizing the life of Jesus, they would have perceived a beautiful harmony between the prophecies and their fulfillment in the life and ministry of the lowly Galilean. – Ellen G. White, Desire of Ages, p. 458

    “Those who desire to doubt will have plenty of room. God does not propose to remove all occasion for unbelief. He gives evidence, which must be carefully investigated with a humble mind and a teachable spirit, and all should decide from the weight of evidence.”—Ellen G. White, Testimonies for the Church, vol. 3, p. 255.

    “God gives sufficient evidence for the candid mind to believe; but he who turns from the weight of evidence because there are a few things which he cannot make plain to his finite understanding, will be left in the cold, chilling atmosphere of unbelief and questioning doubts, and will make shipwreck of faith.”—Ibid., vol. 4, pp. 232, 233.

    “There are noble women who have had moral courage to decide in favor of the truth from the weight of evidence. They have tact, perception, and good ability, and could make successful Christian workers.” – Ellen White, Daughters of God, p. 16

    Notice that while there remains room for doubt, God has intended that we make our decisions and form our faith in Him and His Word, the Bible, based on the “weight of evidence”.

    After all, what is there besides empirical evidence upon which to base a rational faith in the Bible as the true “Word of God” among many competing options? I’ve asked you this question many many times and you continually avoid answering it with a direct response to the actual question. Why not at least tell me what you would tell a Latter-day Saint or a Hindu or a Muslim as to why the Bible is superior to what they consider to be the true “Word of God”? – something that might have a chance at convincing someone who is sincerely and honestly looking for the truth?…

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com

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  67. @krissmith777:

    You said earlier in this tread that kinetic rates are a fact.

    No I didn’t. Kinetic chemistry extrapolations are based on real observations that are consistently repeatable, but these extrapolations are not absolute facts by any means.

    You may be right, but I have news for you: So are the rates of Radiometric Decay as their rates have been ovserved and measured over the last 40 to 100 years (Link: http://www.asa3.org/ASA/resources/wiens.html )

    The decay rates aren’t the problem with radiometric dating methods. The assumption of particular starting conditions, contamination over time, and various calibration methods are the main problems with radiometric dating methods.

    Now nobody said that it is without flaw; no one says it is perfect since abberations occure, and I am okay with that. You may be right that kinetic decay rate is a “fact,” and I am okay with that too. But since Radiometric Dating can (and has been) fooled, why can’t we allow that there may be abberations in kinetic rates as well?

    There could be. The point is that kinetic rates have long been assumed by mainstream scientists to offer an extremely reliable upper limit cap to protein and DNA viability. So far, no one has come up with a reasonable explaination to counter the implications of kinetic decay. This doesn’t mean that there isn’t a good explanation. It just means that so far it isn’t forthcoming.

    Eddie is right. It is inconsistent of you to hold on to the “rate” of one detail in conventional science as a fact while at the same time rejecting the other known rate that is known to be based on hard fact as well. One thing that we all learn: There are exceptions to every rule. As there are occasions when radiometric rates can be fooled, why can’t we accept that kinetic rates cannot be fooled as well?

    Again, you misquote me. Kinetic decay rate limits are not absolute “facts”. They are simply a currently unexplain observation/theory that strongly favors the creationist position over the mainstream position. Does this evidence qualify as absolute proof? or even offer the weight of evidence, by itself, to the creationist position? Hardly. It is just one piece of evidence, among many, that contributes to the overall weight of evidence. The same is true for the finding of significant quantities of carbon-14 uniformly in coal, oil, and non-fossilized portions of fossils.

    Well, a paper from Plos One published last October says that “the crystallization of microbial biofilms on decomposing organic matter within vertebrate bone in early taphonomic stages may contribute to the preservation of primary soft tissues deeper in the bone structure.” — It also says:

    The results presented here suggest an important role of microorganisms in taphonomic processes, notably for the preservation of primary soft-tissues within bone, through a microbial masonry process. Although biomolecular studies on soft-tissue extracts from fossil vertebrates have shown that the proposed alternative interpretation of primary soft-tissue as microbial biofilms is unlikely, biofilms may play a critical role in the preservation process.

    Link: http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0013334

    Take note: This is not the “the-tissue-are-bacterial-biofilm” paper that was published by Thomas G. Kay in July 2008. It doesn’t even support the hypothesis.

    Mary Shweitzer’s hypothesis is that the tissue can be preserved for 68 million years deep in the ground because it was “in equilibruim” with the enviorment. The support for her hypothesis is that the degredation of remains began after she had removed the fossils from their enviorment.

    Link: http://www.montana.edu/cpa/news/nwview.php?article=5980

    In another paper that Professor Kent had linked a while ago that was submitted by Ms. Shweitzer, she pointed out that the fossils that contained tissue were from strata comprised of sandstone; the strata of mudstone and fossil marine enviorments are much less likely to produce them.

    Link: http://rspb.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/274/1607/183.full.pdf

    Considering that, her hypothesis may carry some weight since it seems to support the notion that it depends on the enviorments of the fossil.

    Nice hypotheses, but these concepts are untested and are largely based on the effort to find something, anything, to explain away the evidence of kinetic chemistry. Note that Schweitzer’s references to the stabilizing effects of microorganisms in taphonomic processes reference the work of David Martill.

    Dr. Martill works with very finely preserved fish and other types of fossils from the Santana formation. These fish were fossilized so rapidly, under supersaturated conditions, that they were turned to stone within one hour of death – dubbed the “Medusa effect” by Dr. Martill. Martill suggests that biofilms perhaps played a role in this fossilization process. Note, however, that the soft tissues were not preserved much less stabilized during this process. They were completely replaced by minerals from the environment.

    In short, as of this time there is still no good evidence that such processes have any long-term stabilizing effect (i.e., tens of millions of years) on actual soft tissue, protein or DNA sequences against the degenerative effects of kinetic chemistry outside of the wishful thinking of mainstream evolutionists who have nothing else to go on but know that there must be some sort of explaination…

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com

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  68. @Sean Pitman,

    No I didn’t. Kinetic chemistry extrapolations are based on real observations that are consistently repeatable, but these extrapolations are not absolute facts by any means.

    You said in a former comment (link: http://www.educatetruth.com/la-sierra-evidence/pandas-thumb-sdas-are-split-over-evolution/comment-page-2/#comment-23417) “Kinetic decay predictions are in fact based on the decay rate of DNA and proteins in a sterile environment – free from the influence of microbial or enzymatic attack.” — Alright, I’ll admit I misread. I apologize.

    But you are still inconsistent in your position. This still begs the question why you are accepting a certain “rate” in one observation while rejecting it when it comes to another. And if you admit that the kinetic rates “are not absolute facts by any means”, then why are you so insistent on it disproving that dinosaur tissue can survive for 68 million years?

    The decay rates aren’t the problem with radiometric dating methods. The assumption of particular starting conditions, contamination over time, and various calibration methods are the main problems with radiometric dating methods.

    I was simply refering to radiometric decay as an analogy. To answer what you say about it, I only will refer you back to the essay, linked again for your convenience, as it talks about possible decay: http://www.asa3.org/ASA/resources/wiens.html

    Nice hypotheses, but these concepts are untested and are largely based on the effort to find something, anything, to explain away the evidence of kinetic chemistry.

    Not that I didn’t expect this reaction from you, but saying this only proves you have not read the paper, as it even says that they tested their hypothesis. In the abstract, under “methodology,” it clearly says “this study experimentally examines the role of microbial biofilms in soft-tissue preservation in vertebrate fossils by quantitatively establishing the growth and morphology of biofilms on extant archosaur bone.”

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  69. @krissmith777:

    But you are still inconsistent in your position. This still begs the question why you are accepting a certain “rate” in one observation while rejecting it when it comes to another. And if you admit that the kinetic rates “are not absolute facts by any means”, then why are you so insistent on it disproving that dinosaur tissue can survive for 68 million years?

    Again, we’re not talking about absolute proof here as such does not exist in science. Kinetic chemistry rates are simply unexplained, as of yet, from the mainstream perspective while being quite consistent with the creationist perspective at the present time. As already noted, this is only one piece of evidence. If this was all there was to go on, it wouldn’t mean a whole lot. It’s just one piece among many however. That’s what’s important here… the collective weight of evidence.

    Not that I didn’t expect this reaction from you, but saying this only proves you have not read the paper, as it even says that they tested their hypothesis. In the abstract, under “methodology,” it clearly says “this study experimentally examines the role of microbial biofilms in soft-tissue preservation in vertebrate fossils by quantitatively establishing the growth and morphology of biofilms on extant archosaur bone.”

    I did read the entire paper. And, I do agree that biofilms likely play a role in tissue preservation in the short term. They simply do not counter the problem of kinetic chemistry over the long term. They do not explain how protein and DNA sequences can be stabilized over tens of millions of years…

    It is fine to make assumptions that such things as biofilms crystalization may be involved, but such assumptions are a far cry from a theory that has useful predictive power that is based on actual testing with the potential for falsification. Let me ask you, for example, what evidence would have the potential to effectively falsify the theory presented in your referenced paper? I don’t see any potential for falsifying evidence.

    In short, it’s a just-so story; a hypothesis that is only verifiable given millions of years of observation, but not falsifiable in real time. In other words, it isn’t really a valid scientific theory when it comes to a mechanism of preservation over “geologic time”.

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com

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  70. @Sean Pitman,

    Dr. Martill works with very finely preserved fish and other types of fossils from the Santana formation. These fish were fossilized so rapidly, under supersaturated conditions, that they were turned to stone within one hour of death – dubbed the “Medusa effect” by Dr. Martill. Martill suggests that biofilms perhaps played a role in this fossilization process. Note, however, that the soft tissues were not preserved much less stabilized during this process. They were completely replaced by minerals from the environment.

    Have you even bothered to read my comment really well? Swheitzer’s hypothesis is that fossils burried in SANDSTONE are more lileky ro preserve tissue, and that the ones in MUDSTONE (water deposite layer) and MARINE ENVOIRMENTS are LESS likely to!!!

    The Santana Formation IS A FORMER LAKE…that is…IT IS THE KIND OF ENVOIRMENT SCHWEITZER SAYS IS LESS LIKELY to preserve the tissue!!

    Link: http://www.microsofttranslator.com/bv.aspx?ref=SERP&br=ro&mkt=en-US&dl=en&lp=DE_EN&a=http%3a%2f%2fencyclopedie-de.snyke.com%2farticles%2fsantana_formation.html

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  71. @Sean Pitman,

    Again, we’re not talking about absolute proof here as such does not exist in science

    And then you say,

    In short, it’s a just-so story; a hypothesis that is only verifiable given millions of years of observation, but not falsifiable in real time. In other words, it isn’t really a valid scientific theory when it comes to a mechanism of preservation over “geologic time”.

    I hope I’m not the only one here that sees the inconsistency here. I know science is not about absolute proof (something I wish you could tell Kent Hovind). But your claim that is a “just so” really sounds like you are saying “Well, you can’t prove it.” This is related to the “were you there?” argument.

    Perhaps biofilms can only help in the “short term” IF that were the ONLY mechanism. But the paper only says that it is a CONTRIBUTION, not the exclusive mechanism. — And actually, the paper seems to agree with Schweitzer on the enviorments for the tissue being preserved:

    The thescelosaur and theropod specimens [the specimans for the experiment] examined were both obtained from fractured in situ bones discovered in fine sandstone facies of the Hell Creek Formation in southeastern Montana, USA. The ceratopsian fragments were from an unfractured bone obtained from a mudstone facies of the same region. The degree of compaction of sediments during lithification could control the rate of post burial diagenetic fracturing and crushing of fossil bone. Mudstone lithification involves more compaction than sandstone lithification, altering fossil bones respectively. As such, one would expect decreased crushing in bones obtained from sandstone facies and thus a higher degree of soft-tissue preservation despite having higher groundwater throughflow.

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  72. @ Sean Pitman

    Notice that while there remains room for doubt, God has intended that we make our decisions and form our faith in Him and His Word, the Bible, based on the “weight of evidence”.

    The “weight of evidence” supporting the Bible’s validity and the “weight of evidence” supporting fiat creation are two very different issues. The “weight of evidence” tells us that parthenogenetic human birth, without participation of human sperm, is impossible. Whether the “weight of evidence” supports fiat creation or the virgin birth of Jesus has NO BEARING WHATSOEVER on validity of the Bible. To presume and teach so is heresy.

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  73. After all, what is there besides empirical evidence upon which to base a rational faith in the Bible as the true “Word of God” among many competing options? I’ve asked you this question many many times and you continually avoid answering it with a direct response to the actual question. Why not at least tell me what you would tell a Latter-day Saint or a Hindu or a Muslim as to why the Bible is superior to what they consider to be the true “Word of God”? – something that might have a chance at convincing someone who is sincerely and honestly looking for the truth?…

    I’ve answered this. Several times. In short, there is ample evidence to support the Bible and Christianity, including fulfilled prophecy, the lives and testimony of the apostles, archeology, the impact of the Bible on personal lives, and so forth. All of this is “empirical evidence” that goes beyond what is needed to establish the validity of scripture. The other religions are confronted with serious shortcomings on these issues, in my opinion, although I really don’t care to publicly besmirch them with specific details.

    Your reliance on naturalism to validate the Bible, using “objective empirical evidence with predictive value” (my quotes) from DNA and fossils, is anti-scripture, anti-Christian, and anti-SDA. The “weight of evidence” validated the Bible long before http://www.detectingdesign.com was conceived. Don’t you recognize this?

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  74. @ Professor Kent:
    Sean asked a fair question:

    Why not at least tell me what you would tell a Latter-day Saint or a Hindu or a Muslim as to why the Bible is superior to what they consider to be the true “Word of God”? – something that might have a chance at convincing someone who is sincerely and honestly looking for the truth?

    I, too, am interested in your reply.

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  75. @krissmith777

    Another “proof text” to claim that the flood was global is Genesis 7: 18: 20 which says: “The waters rose and increased greatly on the earth, and the ark floated on the surface of the water. They rose greatly on the earth, and all the high mountains under the entire heavens were covered. The waters rose and covered the mountains to a depth of more than twenty feet.” — Now, though this would look conclusive since it says it covered the mountains, it isn’t so clear cut. According to Strongs, the Hebrew word “har” which is used for “mountains” also means “Hills,” or even “hill country.” In this case, the passage can simply be understood as saying that the flood waters elevated over the hills by over twenty feet.

    Fair enough. So you really think it was a local flood within some mountain basin? A flood that covered the little hills by a depth of twenty feet?

    So you believe that God told Noah to spend 120 years building a huge boat to save all the animals because he was going to flood a land basin?

    And God flooded this land basin for a year, while the ark floated around, and then he dried up the basin and let Noah out?

    OR … ?

    That there were giant (nephilim) on the earth before the flood and giants on the earth after the flood hardly qualifies as evidence that the flood was only local, IMO, any more than the fact that there were lions on the earth before the flood and lions on the earth after the flood. 😉

    Also, another indication from the Bible itself that the flood was local is Genesis 8: 11 when the Biblical writters say that the dove Noah had sent brought out an olive branch. This is significant for a reason: It was nearly a year since the flood had started, and since the Bible clearly says that everything in the flooded area had died, that indicates that the olive tree that it was taken from would have been outside of the range of the flood. Also, olive trees cannot grow so fast. The only way this can be harmonized with reality is if the tree were outside of the flood’s reach.

    Ah … I see … So the dove could fly outside the flood’s reach, but Noah couldn’t travel outside the flood’s reach in 120 years? Neither could the animals survive without going into the ark? H’mm …

    You know, we once had a neighbor (atheist) who insisted he was smarter than the God of the Bible. Now I wonder … maybe someone told him a story like this?

    Another detail: Genesis 8: 1 says that a wind was used to cause the waters to recede which would have been pointless if the flood were global because the water that got blown away would simply have been replaced my different water that wasn’t there previously.

    Except, of course, if there had been some tectonic activity (as creationists believe) that raised up mountains where water used to be. And maybe the “wind” was of such force that it helped carve the landscape we see today.

    May I assume by what you write above that you believe that Ellen White was just a woman who suffered from a head wound with subsequent delusional thoughts of being a “messenger of the Lord”? And then she wrote stuff that deceived a lot of people …? [I assume you do know that she wrote some stuff about a terrible global flood with hurricane-force winds that no ship could withstand –not even the ark built by God’s direction, except that angels protected it.]

    OR …?

    Just trying to understand …

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  76. @Inge Anderson

    That there were giant (nephilim) on the earth before the flood and giants on the earth after the flood hardly qualifies as evidence that the flood was only local,

    Why wouldn’t it qualify? There were no Nephilim on the ark. How else could they have survived?

    So you believe that God told Noah to spend 120 years building a huge boat to save all the animals because he was going to flood a land basin?

    Look at it this way: He built the ark for mesopotamian animals. And as for the number, look here: http://www.asa3.org/ASA/PSCF/2003/PSCF12-03Hill.pdf

    Ah … I see … So the dove could fly outside the flood’s reach, but Noah couldn’t travel outside the flood’s reach in 120 years? Neither could the animals survive without going into the ark? H’mm …

    You missed the point of what I was trying to say: The point is that we have an olive tree growing a year after the flood started, but considering that the Bible says that everything in the flooded area was killed, 1) the olive tree could not possibly have survived it, so it must have been out of the bounds of the flood. It could not have grown so fast because olive trees do not grow so fast, so the only explanation is that it was out of the flooded area.

    And as for Noah not traveling outside the flood’s reach, there would have been no point to the flood. –Picture this: Noah preaches there will be a flood, then when it starts to rain he goes for a journey out of Mesopotamia…and the people he preached to follow him. There would have been no point if he traveled out of the region.

    Except, of course, if there had been some tectonic activity (as creationists believe) that raised up mountains where water used to be.

    The problem is (and I’ve studies geology) is that plate tectonics doesn’t work that way. There is no mechanism to make mountains grow that fast. Besides, it would have caused massive earthquakes causing tsunamis, and it would have released tremendous amounts of heat…enough heat to actually boil the oceans since the interiours of the earth are extremely hot.

    May I assume by what you write above that you believe that Ellen White was just a woman who suffered from a head wound with subsequent delusional thoughts of being a “messenger of the Lord”?

    No, you may not assume, since I have no such opinion about Ellen White. I cannot make such a judgement of her since I am not a psychiatrist. Whatever Ellen White was is between her and God; I am in no place to say.

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  77. Professor Kent,

    I’ve answered this. Several times. In short, there is ample evidence to support the Bible and Christianity, including fulfilled prophecy, the lives and testimony of the apostles, archeology, the impact of the Bible on personal lives, and so forth.

    My basic basis for God is the contents of the Book of Daniel, as it actually predicted the arrival of Jesus (Daniel 9:24-27). –Even if the Book came from the Macabean period (165 BC) like some skeptics claim, there is no way an un-inspired writter would have known that detail.

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  78. @Professor Kent:

    After all, what is there besides empirical evidence upon which to base a rational faith in the Bible as the true “Word of God” among many competing options? I’ve asked you this question many many times and you continually avoid answering it with a direct response to the actual question. Why not at least tell me what you would tell a Latter-day Saint or a Hindu or a Muslim as to why the Bible is superior to what they consider to be the true “Word of God”? – something that might have a chance at convincing someone who is sincerely and honestly looking for the truth?… – Sean Pitman

    I’ve answered this. Several times. In short, there is ample evidence to support the Bible and Christianity, including fulfilled prophecy, the lives and testimony of the apostles, archeology, the impact of the Bible on personal lives, and so forth. All of this is “empirical evidence” that goes beyond what is needed to establish the validity of scripture. The other religions are confronted with serious shortcomings on these issues, in my opinion, although I really don’t care to publicly besmirch them with specific details.

    You see, you do in fact appeal to empirical evidence to support your own belief in the superiority of the Bible’s claim to be the true Word of God. Without this empirical basis, there would be no rational reason to present the Bible as superior to the claims of anything or anyone else.

    Therefore, why do you argue with me about the need for an empirical basis for faith in the credibility of the Bible? You’re making this very same argument yourself. It is just that you prefer a more limited set of empirical evidences compared to me. That’s really the only difference as far as I can tell. Otherwise, you really have no qualitative difference in the basis of your faith vs. mine. Both are based on and even require empirical evidence.

    Your reliance on naturalism to validate the Bible, using “objective empirical evidence with predictive value” (my quotes) from DNA and fossils, is anti-scripture, anti-Christian, and anti-SDA. The “weight of evidence” validated the Bible long before http://www.detectingdesign.com was conceived. Don’t you recognize this?

    The “weight of evidence” changes, or at least has the potential to change, as the new information comes to light. One cannot simply sit back and say, “What was good enough for my parents is good enough for me.” Such a position puts you out of touch with modern questions and the modern perceived weight of evidence. Prophecy, by itself, may convince you of the Bible’s credibility. However, this is not likely to be the case for many other young people who also value modern scientific evidence which seems to challenge the credibility of the Bible quite heavily.

    Even you do not believe in the SDA position on a global Flood, arguing that it was only “global in effect, not necessarily in extent.” That simply isn’t the SDA position on the global nature of the Flood. You also interpret the writings and inspiration of Mrs. White differently than does the SDA Church. In other words, you yourself doubt the credibility of many of the interpretations of the SDA Church when it comes to what the Bible is actually trying to tell us about certain realities.

    The same thing is true of many other groups of people who interpret the Bible differently than does the SDA Church. The Catholics, for example, while also believing that the Bible has a Divine origin, interpret many aspects of it quite differently than does the SDA Church. This is fine and all, it just isn’t SDA and no one with Catholic views should be expected to promote these contrary views while in the employ of the SDA Church…

    The SDA Church therefore has more than a right, it has a duty to hire only those who are honestly willing to actively promote what the SDA Church believes, as an organization, to be its fundamental ideals. The Church has made its position very clear on its position on origins and what it expects its paid representatives to teach our young people in our own schools – i.e., “We, along with Seventh-day Adventist parents, expect students to receive a thorough, balanced, and scientifically rigorous exposure to and affirmation of our historic belief in a literal, recent six-day creation, even as they are educated to understand and assess competing philosophies of origins that dominate scientific discussion in the contemporary world.”

    http://adventist.org/beliefs/statements/main-stat55.html

    If a professor cannot, in good conscience, provide a “scientifically rigorous” defense of six-day creation, that professor, like a professor who believes in Catholic rather than SDA doctrines, should seek employment elsewhere…

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com

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  79. @krissmith777:

    Why wouldn’t it qualify? There were no Nephilim on the ark. How else could they have survived?

    The term “Nephilim” is a general term like “giant”. Besides the original mention of the existence of Nephilim or “giants” before the Flood in Genesis, the only other mention of the term “Nephilim” is found in Numbers 13:32-33, where the Hebrew spies report that they have seen fearsome “Nephilim” or “giants” in Canaan. It is obviously a descriptive term that the spies were using to put a bit of extra drama into their report by comparing the size of the Canaanites to the famous giants of old that existed before the Flood.

    So you believe that God told Noah to spend 120 years building a huge boat to save all the animals because he was going to flood a land basin?

    Look at it this way: He built the ark for mesopotamian animals. And as for the number, look here: http://www.asa3.org/ASA/PSCF/2003/PSCF12-03Hill.pdf

    Why the need to save the mesopotamian animals in a boat in particular if all he needed to do was move out of the area until the local Flood was over? Also, why the need to preach for 120 and build an Ark if all he needed to do was to tell the people to move out of the local area?

    You see, local Flood arguments make the story internally inconsistent. It would be more rational to simply believe the author intended to tell an allegory than to believe that it had anything to do with historical reality. Clearly though most Hebrew scholars, to include liberal as well as conservative scholars, believe that the author of the Flood account intended to write a true historical narrative of literal historical events… and that the author believe that the Flood was in fact universal in nature and did in fact kill off all land animal life on the entire planet.

    You missed the point of what I was trying to say: The point is that we have an olive tree growing a year after the flood started, but considering that the Bible says that everything in the flooded area was killed, 1) the olive tree could not possibly have survived it, so it must have been out of the bounds of the flood. It could not have grown so fast because olive trees do not grow so fast, so the only explanation is that it was out of the flooded area.

    The bird brought back a leaf, not a tree. Olive shoots can grow very fast and produce leaves in very short order…

    And as for Noah not traveling outside the flood’s reach, there would have been no point to the flood. –Picture this: Noah preaches there will be a flood, then when it starts to rain he goes for a journey out of Mesopotamia…and the people he preached to follow him. There would have been no point if he traveled out of the region.

    Exactly… no point in building a local Flood to save man and beast. All he would have had to do is tell everyone to leave the local area until after the Flood was over…

    The problem is (and I’ve studies geology) is that plate tectonics doesn’t work that way. There is no mechanism to make mountains grow that fast. Besides, it would have caused massive earthquakes causing tsunamis, and it would have released tremendous amounts of heat…enough heat to actually boil the oceans since the interiours of the earth are extremely hot.

    Actually, there is no known mechanism to make the plates move slowly over vast periods of time. Erosion rates and sedimentation rates also support the conclusion that plate tectonics has a catastrophic origin within recent history – i.e., the plates were moving much faster originally than they are currently moving.

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com

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  80. That there were giant (nephilim) on the earth before the flood and giants on the earth after the flood hardly qualifies as evidence that the flood was only local,

    Kris speculates
    Why wouldn’t it qualify? There were no Nephilim on the ark. How else could they have survived?

    There is no Bible text saying that there were no Nephilim on the ark – INSTEAD we find the Bible saying that the preflood race of man was Nephilim AND that those who came from Noah were also Nephilim.

    Adventists have always maintained that Noah and his entire family were Nephilim. – -This has already been pointed out in a previous post for the objective unbiased readers.

    in Christ,

    Bob

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  81. Why the need to save the mesopotamian animals in a boat in particular if all he needed to do was move out of the area until the local Flood was over? Also, why the need to preach for 120 and build an Ark if all he needed to do was to tell the people to move out of the local area?
    You see, local Flood arguments make the story internally inconsistent

    It is pretty hard to argue that you could not walk out of Mesopotamia in 120 years of time.

    Or maybe Mesopotamia is Kris’ Euphamism for “entire planet”, in which case it would be true that walking for 120 years would not get you “off the planet”.

    in Christ,

    Bob

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  82. Apparently, they are trying to isolate DNA from plants dated to 17 million years before present. Dr. Lee Spencer is cited for his mention that this (I’m not sure what exactly) has only been done on one prior occasion. Bob Ryan previously claimed that Dr. Spencer has already found DNA in supposedly 14 million-year-old strata. Of course, the researchers would need to rule out recent contamination–which is an ENORMOUS problem when working with ancient DNA. The problem is so severe that strict guidelines have been established for evaluating authenticity of the DNA.

    http://accent.cs.southern.edu/?p=2923

    Good humans do not conifer plant DNA that is being sequenced in this case.

    By contrast human DNA fragments could be mistaken for animal DNA fragments and there is no “season” when humans are not abundant in the lab.

    The solution of “doubt any science that does not contradict the Bible” model that Kent is so married to – is not as reliable as he seems to imagine.

    in Christ,

    Bob

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  83. Kris said –
    Now, one of the hints I have for a local flood from the Bible is Genesis 1:4 which mentions a race of people known as the Nephilim. Some commentators think that the Nephilim were a reason why the flood was sent, but this cannot be true for what I will explain now. Genesis 1:4 says ”


    There were no Nephilim on the ark

    1. The Bible never says that due to the fact that they were giants (Nephilim) – the earth was destroyed. Rather the Bible says that the Nephilim exists even BEFORE the sons of God (children of Seth) married with the “daughters of men” (descendants of Cain).

    Which is why the world is not “destroyed again” in Noah’s day when of course the Nephilim are on the earth.

    2. Thus Noah was Nephilim. No bible text refutes this obvious point. And of course “Noah was on the Ark”.

    As for the “extent” of the Nephilim after the flood –

    Obviously Noah and all his immediate long-lived descendants were Nephilim. But as life spans dwindle so also does size.

    So while Goliath at the time of David is only 9 feet tall.

    Og at the time of Moses is about 12 feet tall – Deut 3:11.

    The Children of Anak were all still Nephelim at the time of Moses. Numbers 13:33.

    Emim, Rephaim, Nephilim, Anakim are all Nephilim Deut 2:10-11 because in fact the Anakim are the children of Anak Deut 9:2.

    Anak is a Canaanite – Num 13:28 and Canaan is the son of Ham Deut 10:6.

    in Christ,

    Bob

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  84. @Sean Pitman

    The term “Nephilim” is a general term like “giant”. Besides the original mention of the existence of Nephilim or “giants” before the Flood in Genesis, the only other mention of the term “Nephilim” is found in Numbers 13:32-33, where the Hebrew spies report that they have seen fearsome “Nephilim” or “giants” in Canaan

    Genesis 6:4 says they were on the earth AFTER as well!

    The Nephilim were on the earth in those days—and also afterward—when the sons of God went to the daughters of men and had children by them. They were the heroes of old, men of renown. (Genesis 6: 4)

    Note the bold!

    The bird brought back a leaf, not a tree. Olive shoots can grow very fast and produce leaves in very short order…

    Not in a world wide flood. It would have destroyed the the soil envoirments, at least for a while. The ground would have been soaked with salt water (which olive trees cannot survive or grow in).

    Also, why the need to preach for 120 and build an Ark if all he needed to do was to tell the people to move out of the local area?

    You and I know they didn’t believe him about the flood in the first place: They certainly wouldn’t have believed him either if he simply told them to move our ot the region. They thought he was nuts, remember?

    Actually, there is no known mechanism to make the plates move slowly over vast periods of time.

    This is not true. The earth’s lithospear is above asthenospear. The lithospear slide on the asthenospear moving the continents in relative form to eachother. Sea floor spreading (which is a separation of the plates) is caused by convection currents in the earth’s mantle, which is a slow process.

    Erosion rates and sedimentation rates also support the conclusion that plate tectonics has a catastrophic origin within recent history – i.e., the plates were moving much faster originally than they are currently moving.

    Sedimentation rate vary. This is not a constant. Besides, even when sedimentation occures, the earth is constantly producing new materials. The crust recycles itself and the process begins anew.

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  85. @krissmith777

    Thank you for your reply. I believe Sean has answered most of your points as I would have, except maybe better. 😉

    However, there is one left for me to reply to:

    Inge Anderson Wrote:
    “May I assume by what you write above that you believe that Ellen White was just a woman who suffered from a head wound with subsequent delusional thoughts of being a “messenger of the Lord”?

    No, you may not assume, since I have no such opinion about Ellen White. I cannot make such a judgement of her since I am not a psychiatrist. Whatever Ellen White was is between her and God; I am in no place to say.

    I do beg your pardon.

    I made that apparently unwarranted assumption because that is the most common way to explain Ellen White’s visions by those who do not recognize her to be inspired.

    Perhaps you have other ways of explaining her “non-inspired” status (in your eyes), or perhaps you even recognize her to be inspired?

    At any rate, I won’t quote her at length (Bob Ryan has likely done so already), but you probably know that Ellen White explained the Flood and accompanying geological activities in unequivocally global terms.

    If you do accept her writings as inspired, how do you harmonize your beliefs with her writings?

    If you don’t accept her writings as inspired, just saying so is sufficient explanation.

    Thanks much.

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  86. @Inge Anderson,

    I made that apparently unwarranted assumption because that is the most common way to explain Ellen White’s visions by those who do not recognize her to be inspired.

    Again, I cannot make such a judgement of her since she is 1) dead, and 2) I have no knowledge of the even the basics of psycology. I do think, however, that if is possible for someone to have a vision and truly believe that he/she is truly inspired…even without being insane. As an axample, there was the Native American Shawnee leader named Lalawathika who had a vision from the “creator” to reject “all the white man’s ways.” He was most sincere, and he was not insane either.

    If you do accept her writings as inspired, how do you harmonize your beliefs with her writings?

    If you don’t accept her writings as inspired, just saying so is sufficient explanation.

    Truth be told, even when I was more entrenched in the SDA church, I was always skeptical. Even though my mother taught me “She is a prophet of God,” and I was never exposed to Anti-Adventist views until later in my life, there was something about the thought of her works being dienely inspired and her being a “prophetess” that rubbed me the wrong way. Though I know she never used that term for herself, so I excuse her from that. — I just decided, my faith is in Jesus Christ alone, as I figured that was the safest route.

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  87. @Sean Pitman,

    Erosion rates and sedimentation rates also support the conclusion that plate tectonics has a catastrophic origin within recent history – i.e., the plates were moving much faster originally than they are currently moving.

    Out of curiosity, when you say this, are you citing John Baumgardner’s “Runaway Subduction” hypothesis?

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  88. @ Sean Pitman

    The “weight of evidence” changes, or at least has the potential to change, as the new information comes to light. One cannot simply sit back and say, “What was good enough for my parents is good enough for me.” Such a position puts you out of touch with modern questions and the modern perceived weight of evidence.

    Nothing about the Bible or the basis for believing it has changed. If you can’t accept the validity and authority of the Bible on the same terms as Jesus, Martin Luther, or Ellen White, you are undermining the SDA position on the sufficiency of scripture.

    Even you do not believe in the SDA position on a global Flood, arguing that it was only “global in effect, not necessarily in extent.” That simply isn’t the SDA position on the global nature of the Flood. You also interpret the writings and inspiration of Mrs. White differently than does the SDA Church. In other words, you yourself doubt the credibility of many of the interpretations of the SDA Church when it comes to what the Bible is actually trying to tell us about certain realities.

    I certainly believe the flood was global. Whether it covered every square inch of land may be more than is required of the original text; it is certainly possible and I don’t reject it outright, but it is largely irrelevant. It’s sad, really, that some would make this particular issue the litmus test of true Adventism, as if semantics is what our Church is all about. But you have me curious now: What exactly are the many interpretations of the SDA Church you claim I doubt? That’s quite a statement on your part.

    The SDA Church therefore has more than a right, it has a duty to hire only those who are honestly willing to actively promote what the SDA Church believes, as an organization, to be its fundamental ideals.

    Agreed. And you know that I’ve always agreed on this. By the way, your position on the superiority of science to scripture disqualifies you from employment, you know.

    If a professor cannot, in good conscience, provide a “scientifically rigorous” defense of six-day creation, that professor, like a professor who believes in Catholic rather than SDA doctrines, should seek employment elsewhere…

    Once again, you are grossly misrepresenting the SDA Church, which has NO FORMAL POSITION on the “scientific rigor” of a six-day creation, and NO FORMAL REQUIREMENT that professors teach that the “weight of evidence” favors the Church’s position. You continually confuse and conflate your personal opinion with Church doctrine. You need to study up on the Church’s doctrines, particularly as you persist in publicly accusing others of undermining them.

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  89. @Professor Kent

    I certainly believe the flood was global. Whether it covered every square inch of land may be more than is required of the original text; it is certainly possible and I don’t reject it outright, but it is largely irrelevant.

    I think he confused you with me for a moment. I could be wrong though.

    It’s sad, really, that some would make this particular issue the litmus test of true Adventism, as if semantics is what our Church is all about.

    So true. The “Believe such-an-such, or you aren’t one of us” position only works to divide Christians.

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  90. @krissmith777:

    Genesis 6:4 says they were on the earth AFTER as well!

    Indeed. There were giants before and after the Flood. Note also that the author of Genesis explains very clearly that all human and land animal life, save those on the Ark, was destroyed by the Flood. You’re trying to make the author seem inconsistent beyond the fact that you’re distorting the text beyond what it is really saying.

    The bird brought back a leaf, not a tree. Olive shoots can grow very fast and produce leaves in very short order… – Sean Pitman

    Not in a world wide flood. It would have destroyed the the soil envoirments, at least for a while. The ground would have been soaked with salt water (which olive trees cannot survive or grow in).

    Floods can create organically rich soil as well. Also, since there were no great oceans before the Flood, the waters of the Flood were not likely to be very salty. Salinity has increased since the Flood due to water run-off and erosion of the continents…

    You and I know they didn’t believe him about the flood in the first place: They certainly wouldn’t have believed him either if he simply told them to move our ot the region. They thought he was nuts, remember?

    Either way it doesn’t make sense to build an Ark to save people and animals when all you have to do is tell them to move out of the area… especially if you know they aren’t going to listen to you…

    This is not true. The earth’s lithospear is above asthenospear. The lithospear slide on the asthenospear moving the continents in relative form to eachother. Sea floor spreading (which is a separation of the plates) is caused by convection currents in the earth’s mantle, which is a slow process.

    What is causing the sea floor to spread slowly over hundreds of millions of years? Are the convection currents the result of or cause of the drift? They simply aren’t powerful enough to drive it slowly over such long spans of time. There really is no known viable mechanism for such slow drift.

    Sedimentation rate vary. This is not a constant.

    Minimum sedimentation rates do not significantly vary. Around 30 billion metric tons of sediment are deposited in the oceans every year – very consistently…

    Besides, even when sedimentation occures, the earth is constantly producing new materials. The crust recycles itself and the process begins anew.

    Only about 2 billion metric tons of sediment are subducted or “recycled” each year leaving some 28 billion metric tons to build up on the ocean floor each year. This means that the current ocean sediment (~10^17 tons) would have been deposited in just ~15 million years.

    So true. The “Believe such-an-such, or you aren’t one of us” position only works to divide Christians.

    If all who took on the name “Christian” believed exactly the same way, there’d be no “Catholics” or “Methodists” or “Baptists” or “Seventh-day Adventists”. The differences don’t make anyone good or bad, saved or lost. However, the differences are still important and have the power to bring important truths to the table that this or that other group may have missed. We all have a job to do and our differences are not always bad. Differences can be a very good thing! For example, I personally find the differences my wife brings to our marriage very attractive 😉

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com

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  91. @Professor Kent:

    Nothing about the Bible or the basis for believing it has changed. If you can’t accept the validity and authority of the Bible on the same terms as Jesus, Martin Luther, or Ellen White, you are undermining the SDA position on the sufficiency of scripture.

    You don’t seem to grasp the SDA concept of “Present Truth”. Our understanding of truth does in fact change over time as does our understanding of the weight of evidence in support of that “Present Truth”. The SDA Church recognizes the progressive nature of human understanding of truth. What did it for my grandfather may not be enough given the additional information that is known today…

    This is why each new generation has new challenges to face with regard to the basis of faith with which the previous generation did not have to deal…

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com

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  92. Since Kris’ Nephilim point fell through he responds to the following 120 year boat building project – as opposed to the “Exodus” idea for “a local mesopotamian problem”.

    As many have pointed out already

    Also, why the need to preach for 120 and build an Ark if all he needed to do was to tell the people to move out of the local area?

    Kris said –
    You and I know they didn’t believe him about the flood in the first place: They certainly wouldn’t have believed him either if he simply told them to move our ot the region. They thought he was nuts, remember?

    In the case of Sodom and Gomorrah God has Lot “leave” instead of having Lot “build a boat”.

    In the case of the Egypt – the Hebrews “leave” instead of “building a boat”.

    In the case of Abram in Ur of the Chaldees and in Haran – Abraham is told to “leave” instead of “Build a boat”.

    When the issue is local – they are told to “leave”.

    In the case of Genesis 6 and 7 the boat building message is given at the same time as the “I will destroy the world by a flood” message.

    Hint: Noah is not told “preach for 120 years and then I will flood the earth”.

    So it takes 120 years to build the thing – preaching all the while.

    When in fact a few months “of walking” is all that was needed according to the “local flood” failed argument.

    Why is it that the T.E POV is constantly working to refute the text of scripture?

    in Christ,

    Bob

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  93. @Professor Kent The “Believe such-an-such, or you aren’t one of us” position only works to divide Christians.  (Quote)

    So then … you have or have not read the book Questions on Doctrine?? (Pg 44)

    How about the Church Manual – point #1 in the section on church discipline? “Reasons for .. Discipline” The first reason is “Denial of the faith in the fundamentals of the gospel and in the cardinal doctrines of the Church or teaching doctrines contrary to the same”.

    OR are you saying that the church is in error in that regard?

    in Christ,

    Bob
    Bob

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  94. Sean said

    Floods can create organically rich soil as well. Also, since there were no great oceans before the Flood, the waters of the Flood were not likely to be very salty. Salinity has increased since the Flood due to water run-off and erosion of the continents…

    If Moses had asked the Hebrews to start “building a boat” his “exodus” message would have been even MORE unlikely to be received given that he only wanted them to “leave Egypt”.

    The 120 year problem for the wild “local mesopotamian flood” idea – fails at the start.

    in Christ,

    Bob

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  95. Kris — Genesis 6:4 says they were on the earth AFTER as well!

    Sean —
    Indeed. There were giants before and after the Flood. Note also that the author of Genesis explains very clearly that all human and land animal life, save those on the Ark, was destroyed by the Flood. You’re trying to make the author seem inconsistent beyond the fact that you’re distorting the text beyond what it is really saying.
    ===================================================

    As has already been pointed out almost half-a-dozen times – by different posters so far. The text of Gen 6:4 does not say “and AFTER the flood” (though it is certainly true that they existed after the flood – since Noah was in fact pre-flood Nephilim). Rather the Gen 6:4 text says that BEFORE the “sons of God” descendants of Seth – married with the “daughters of men” descendants of Cain, there were Nephilim and also “AFTERward WHEN the sons of God came to the daughters of men” that there were also Nephilim.

    The Nephilim argument for the T.E. POV does not work.

    in Christ,

    Bob

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  96. @Sean Pitman,

    Indeed. There were giants before and after the Flood. Note also that the author of Genesis explains very clearly that all human and land animal life, save those on the Ark, was destroyed by the Flood. You’re trying to make the author seem inconsistent beyond the fact that you’re distorting the text beyond what it is really saying.

    Same thing can be said about you though. There is nothing in the context that even implies that the Nephilim that existed after were different from the ones who existed before. You’re reading that into the text despite it not even being there.

    Even if I were wrong on this detail, there is the matter that Moses (the writter of Genesis) talks about pre-flood peoples and their decendants in the present-tense. Read Carefully:

    Adah gave birth to Jabal; he was the father of those who live in tents and raise livestock. His brother’s name was Jubal; he was the father of all who play stringed instruments and pipes.(Genesis 4: 20-21 NIV)

    To confirm this, I looked up the Hebrew and found that the writter of Genesis in 4:20 used the word for “dwell” which is ישב (pronounced as “yashab”) and used it in the “Active Participle.” The same is true of the Hebrew word for “to play” which is תָּפַשׂ is also used in the same way:

    Link: http://www.blueletterbible.org/Bible.cfm?b=Gen&c=4&v=1&t=KJV#conc/21 (Click on “Tense” where you see the verb for “dwell,” and then from there click on “active participle.”..You sill see the explanations for “active” and “passive” participles.)

    Now, why would Moses (who lived between somewhere between 1500 and 1290 write about pre-flood people’s in the present? It cannot be argued that their decendants were on the Ark for two reasons: 1) The Bible is clear that those people were decendants of Cain (Genesis 4:16), and 2) the Bible is also clear that Noah and his family were decendents of Seth (Genesis 5:3-32).

    Floods can create organically rich soil as well. Also, since there were no great oceans before the Flood, the waters of the Flood were not likely to be very salty. Salinity has increased since the Flood due to water run-off and erosion of the continents…

    It is true that fresh water can deposite organic material, but your claim that the there were no salt water bodies or great ocreans before the flood is contradicted by the Bible itself Genesis 1:10 implies otherwise. And since many Creationistsimply that the land was what we now call pengea, that would imply that like today, there was more water covering most of the earth’s surface from the get-go.

    Your assertion that salt water was a a later affect is not a testable hypothesis, and the Bible doesn’t say there was no salt water before, nor does it contradict it.

    What is causing the sea floor to spread slowly over hundreds of millions of years? Are the convection currents the result of or cause of the drift?

    This is like asking “Is water flow the result of rock erosion?” The molton liquid under the crust (like water) is just that: A liquid. The molton liquid is the remnant of what the earth was made of. The molton liquid is below the curst of the earth, and therefore it was there BEFORE the crust. As water naturally has currents, the molton liquid would also have currents…even before the crust formed. Therefore most liklely the currents are NOT the result of the plates moving, but the other way around.

    There really is no known viable mechanism for such slow drift.

    Considering that Young Earth Creationists (many at least) were the first to insist that Plate Tectonics began at a rapid pace during the flood and slowed since, it’s actually kind of funny that you’re saying this.

    Only about 2 billion metric tons of sediment are subducted or “recycled” each year leaving some 28 billion metric tons to build up on the ocean floor each year. This means that the current ocean sediment (~10^17 tons) would have been deposited in just ~15 million years.

    The present erosion rates are somewhat due to the present rate of mountains forming. The continents are much more dynamic than you give them credit for. And it isn’t just recycled matarial, but ALSO NEW material that gets introduced from the earth’s mantle that continually maintain the continents.

    Saying the rate of erosion is much greater than the rate of recycled materials and the materials from the interior of the earth can replace them would also beg the question: If that is true, then how do volcanic islands (like Hawaii) manage to form and remain above the furface for more than a couple million years. The oldest inhabited Hawaiian Island is 3.3 million years old, and the Island of Maui (the youngest island) is 1.3 milion years old. Assuming that your figure is correct and considering that they are MUCH SMALLER than any continent, it’s unthinkable that they wouldn’t have have already have been submerged. — Lisianski Island is between 19.9 and 20.6 million years old. If the rate of erosion would have caused the continents to have been eroded away the continents in 15 million years, then why can’t it even completely erode a small island (much smaller than a continent) in 20 million years? By all rights, it should be long gone.

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