@ Dr.Pitman ” As I’ve tried to explain numerous times before, …

Comment on Debate between Stephen Meyer and Charles Marshall by george.

@ Dr.Pitman

” As I’ve tried to explain numerous times before, there are many claims in the Bible that cannot be directly tested in a falsifiable manner. I mentioned a few of these claims in my last response to you, to include the Virgin Birth, the Resurrection, the literal 6-day creation week, etc. The biblical promise of eternal life is also in this category. Obviously, this claim of the Bible cannot be directly tested. ”

Thank you for the admission

I presume you now acknowledge that I have presented my own argument and am thinking for myself, as opposed to relying on the authority of others.

Let’s move on to your credibility of biblical witnesses argument. Regarding origins, where is the direct evidence of Adam or Eve that they spoke to God and were created from dust? No direct evidence, well where is the author’s name on the Book of Genesis? No author’s name, well who wrote Genesis? Possibly two people after the fact based on biblical interpretation? Where did those two folks get their information? Passed down legends? Redacted stories, influenced by other cultures? Without direct evidence, or accounts sworn under oath and tested by cross examination, these are just ‘ just so’ stories.

Such evidence would be considered the worst form of hearsay in any modern court of law and not accepted as proof of the statements contained therein. When it comes to evidence, law is very exacting as to the credibility of evidence and what is and is not reliable. Hearsay evidence, especially long after the fact, is not reliable and not admissible. Thus, why would you as a man of science and reason, ever accept evidence that would not be accepted in a court of law and is not, as you have admitted, scientific?

Again, as you have stipulated, this is my argument, not one based on the authority of others.

Looking forward to your reply.

george Also Commented

Debate between Stephen Meyer and Charles Marshall
@ Pauluc and Dr. Pitman

Firstly, Pauluc I am not offended by the allusion, by link, to Dr. Pitman as a crackpot. And I know you did not directly call him that but you certainly directed the readership to that link to show that Dr. Pitman is treated by the scientific community with scorn. For what purpose? Gentleman, as I am sure you have gathered, I am not a Christian but I am often appalled by how Christians of different theological stripes treat each other. In my books human respect is paramount and doesn’t have to flow from any belief in god(s) but from inner moral conviction.

As we have been discussing Professor Tour, I posted the further comment from the cited link by Dr. Pitman. Of particular interest is his reference and endorsement of Pascal. Science cannot prove or disprove God. Prof Ford understands this and that is why he does not subscribe to ID to buttress his faith. First Cause – perhaps of a metaverse, of which there is evidence- will likely always remain an unknown. Man will continue to anthropomorphize God to provide a mystical explanation for creation and meaning for ‘human’ life. New forms or iterations of religion will continue to arise to address this issue as few have the stomach to face the potential accidental existence of human life; notwithstanding the weight of the objective scientific evidence supports that notion. And that weight cannot be wieghed by one individual. If Dr Pitman, as a scientist, is going to succed in his quest he is going to have to persuade the scientific community he is right – like Galileo, Newton, Einstein, Hawkings etc. And that does mean that the ‘greats’ were absolutely right as the history of science demonstrates.

Notwithstanding I do not have it, I do not disparage faith. But if the attempt is made to link it to physicsl reality then such faith must be put to the absolute critical tests to ensure it doesn’t supplant objective human inquiry. In this Dr. Pitman, I can assure you I am absolutely not disingenous and I hope to provide a humble counterpoint on your excellent forum. For this ongoing opportunity I gratefully thank you.

“I have been labeled as an Intelligent Design (ID) proponent. I am not. I do not know how to use science to prove intelligent design although some others might. I am sympathetic to the arguments on the matter and I find some of them intriguing, but the scientific proof is not there, in my opinion. So I prefer to be free of that ID label. Blaise Pascal (1623-1662, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blaise_Pascal), one of the finest scientists, mathematicians and inventors that the world has ever enjoyed, and also among the most well-respected and deepest thinking Christian apologists, wrote in his Pensees 463, “It is a remarkable fact that no canonical [biblical] author has ever used nature to prove God. They all try to make people believe in him. David, Solomon, etc., never said: ‘There is no such thing as a vacuum, therefore God exists.’ They must have been cleverer than the cleverest of their successors, all of whom have used proofs from nature. This is very noteworthy.'” As Kreeft (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peter_Kreeft) points out in his commentary on Pascal’s Pensees, “If the Scripture does not use nature to prove God, it can’t be the best strategy. Notice that Pascal does not say that there are no good proofs of God or that none of them begin with data from nature. Elsewhere, he specifies merely that such proofs are psychologically weak, but he does not say they are logically weak. More important, they are salvifically weak, [meaning that] they will not save us. If nature proved God clearly, we would not have to search for him with all our hearts.” Pascal further writes in his Pensees 429 , “This is what I see that troubles me: Nature has nothing to offer me that does not give rise to doubt and anxiety; if there is a God supporting nature, she should unequivocally proclaim him, and that, if the signs in nature are deceptive, they should be completely erased; that nature should say all or nothing so that I could see what course I ought to follow.” Though 350 years since Pascal penned his dilemma, as a modern-day scientist, I do not know how to prove ID using my most sophisticated of analytical tools. I share Pascal’s frustration. Wouldn’t it have been wonderful if, when scientists had obtained the first molecular resolution images of human DNA, it had self-assembled (a thermodynamic process) into the Hebrew script to say, “The God of Heaven and Earth was here.”? But it did not, and I suppose that the wonder would have elicited no love from the skeptic anyway. Therefore, God seems to have set nature as a clue, not a solution, to keep us yearning for him.”

Debate between Stephen Meyer and Charles Marshall
@ Dr. Pitman

“Not according to the clear weight of evidence. Of course, you argue that the weight of evidence is not so clearly supportive of my position, but you’ve presented nothing substantive to counter my position beyond the fact that my position is unpopular. Beyond this, you don’t seem to have an argument about the evidence itself.”

Where is the evidence the world was made in 6 literal days?

Where is the evidence that creation was once perfect?

Where is the scientifc evidence that life on this planet is younger than 10,000 years?

You believe these ‘popular’ Adventist beliefs don’t you? Those that challenge you here are not here because we are popular or do not think for ourselves.

Debate between Stephen Meyer and Charles Marshall
@ Dr. Pitman

” The arguments aren’t persuasive to you, not because of a problem with the arguments themselves, but because you value the majority opinion more than you value the actual arguments presented. You don’t think for yourself outside of what the “experts” believe… regardless of the arguments that might be presented to you.”

I find this totally ironic from someone who is the son of an Adventist pastor and can’ t think outside the fundamental Adventist box notwithstsnding the objective weight of the evidence across many scientific disciplines. You only respect such science that supports your pre conceived biblical beliefs. Where is the evidence that the world was created in 6 literal days? If there is no such evidence then why do you empirically believe it!!!!!!! Oh, I know, I know, because the ‘weight of the biblical evidence’ supports the literal truth of the biblical account.

Come on Dr. Pitman, are you really thinking for yourself, rather than bending the evidence into your YLC box? You seem to think you are the only one thinking for himself, unless others agree with you. That is solipsism my friend. I don’t agree with Pauluc or his religious convictions but I’m pretty sure he thinks for himself. What you are trying to do, ineffectually, is demonstate that your unique version of origins is totally self determined independent of the influence of your acculturated Adventist upbringing. I don’t think anyone is buying it.

Like Pauluc says, if you want to persuade those beyond the gullible you are going to have to do it in the scientific forum. Remember, Eddington proved Einstein right. Who is your Eddington?

Recent Comments by george

Science, Methodological Naturalism, and Faith
@ Dr. Pitman

How did you make the segue from the creation story to Alexander the Great as historical science? What am I missing here – did someone actually witness the creation story and write about it?

Let’s try to stay inside the ball park on analogies shall we?

Science, Methodological Naturalism, and Faith
“Again, why do you believe that Alexander the Great really did the various things that historians claim he did.”

Who said I did?

History is often recorded by the victors who may well gild the lily. Different historians may say different things about him. Some may have been eye witnesses, some may have not relying on hearsay. Some may have had a bias. Take all history with a grain of salt by considering the sources and margin for error I say.

However you’re not just talking about claims of the Bible, you’re talking about the claims of EGW. Do you have some empirical proof that she actually visited those worlds she described? If so where is your corroborating evidence of any sort? In short is your belief about EGW’s vision of extra terrestial based on any science whatsoever?

Science, Methodological Naturalism, and Faith

Have you ever read how much resistance Darwin faced when Origin of Species was first published? Many of the scientific establishment opposed him. In fact I have read that natural selection did not become a centerpiece of modern evolutionary biology until the 1930’s and 1940’s.

Darwin, like Pasteur has stood the test of time, notwithstanding the lack of initial scientific consensus. Who knows, perhaps one day YEC or YLC may ascend to the scientific pantheon? Have to find evidence for 6 day creation and how biodiversity emanated from the Ark though 🙂
Until then, I’m afraid they are just so stories.

Science, Methodological Naturalism, and Faith
Did you notice that you have unilaterally used the analogy of Alexander the Great of which I have never studied or alluded to?

Are you equating EGW’s vision of extra terrestrial life to a battle on earth? Proverbial apples and oranges, but your silence and evasion of the science behind EGW’s vision is deafening.

Science, Methodological Naturalism, and Faith
@ Bob and Sean

Is EGW’s vision scientific? Is it corroborated or falsifiable?

Ask yourselves honestly why you believe in it. If it is because of your faith that is fine, but if it has some scientific, empirical basis, as Dr. Pitman likes to tote, you need to establish that basis. Otherwise it is a ‘just so’ theological story.

Also, I think a couple of my previous comments on this topic never made it out of the cyber editing room. I didn’t think they were offensive so I’m not sure why they were not posted. 🙂