Comment on PUC responds by BobRyan.
My humble apologies! You are absolutely right. As much as my ego would like to find an excuse and say I was misled, I canâ€™t. This was a case of me not reading the PUC response and just assuming Dr. Ness made his comments in biology class.
I do note that he was asked by PUC to comment in the context of guest speaker. However I still think it is dangerous to mix faith or non faith with science. For example, if Dr. Ness was an outside guest speaker whose faith or non faith was not known, would he still be facing this criticism?
As I understand it the real issue for Educate Truth is that scientists from their sponsored institutions must support agreed upon SDA doctrinal statements. I actually have no problem with that as long as the SDA can understand that their scientists and hence their science are faith biased and not objective.
Thanks for your patience and gentle correction, my friend.
Ken – thank you for that kind response.
You are right to observe that a non-SDA theistic evolutionist envited to an SDA campus to explain that he firmly “believes” that science demonstrates evolutionism to be true and then shows some ways that he has tried to get the Bible to fit a “birds come from reptiles” doctrine — would not be criticized at all.
But he also would not be hired as a science professor at PUC either.
And in fact this is true even if he were an SDA theistic evolutionist in the case of many of our Universities today. They would not hire him. Clearly LSU has demonstrated that they are an exception to that rule.
My hope and prayer is that PUC would also not hire someone who applied and informed them that he/she believed in evolutionism. I doubt that Ness is the only person on the entire PUC campus that holds to his specific POV on origins and the flood – but I also don’t think this is a department-wide problem in biology and religion departments at PUC.
However I will let those at PUC speak to that point.
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BobRyan Also Commented
If the impression that PUC left with the two evolutionists that were invited there to debate in favor of belief in evolutionism is any clue for the objective unbiased reader – then clearly they must conclude that someone was asleep at the switch at PUC in 2006.
While the watchmen slept the enemy stole a march.
Susie said –
This double speak is being noticed in larger circles than the Educate Truth bloggers. In fact, the â€œReports of the National Center for Science Educationâ€”Defending the Teaching of Evolution in the Public Schoolsâ€ took note of LSUâ€™s support of its biology teachers. From the May-June, 2010 issue, quote:
First of all – cudoos to Susie on that one. The question asked above is what kind of reputation, what kind of witness does PUC have? What are they telling people about Seventh-day Adventists?
Is their witness something that Adventism needs to “counter” with a pro-creationist witness to the contrary of the PUC witness to non-SDAs? It leads us to a search to find out what non-SDA friends of PUC are saying.
Now for the bad news. Here is the “witness” that PUC has gave to evolutionist purist Wes Elsberry in 2006.
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 â€“ 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, â€œHere are the hard facts. If this evidence has been hidden from you before now by your teachers and professors, you should ask yourself why.â€ It was pretty much a go-in-with-blazing-guns strategy.
However, as the discussion ensued, the students, and some of the professors, had some news for me. â€œYouâ€™ve got us all wrong,â€ they said. â€œWeâ€™re not all old-fashioned young-earth creationists and anti-evolutionists here, thatâ€™s an old stereotype about Adventists.â€ (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.
I said at one time that PUC is not at the same crisis point as LSU – I would still “like” to believe that is true – but even if it is true that they are not at the fullblown LSU-crisis stage – it appears they are much further down the “road to LSU” than we may have hoped.
It seems that there have been a lot of tossing dust in the air and harrumphing lately – I think we can do better.
Go back to the top of the thread and look at the opening article “PUC affirms Creation”. If anyone has followed LSU’s history to this point then they also know that
It is possible given the statement below that “LSU affirms Creation” as well.
During their meeting on February 11, 2010, the La Sierra University’s Board of Trustees reaffirmed their previous action from November 2009 upholding the Adventist Church’s doctrine of creation. Larry Becker, Executive Director, LSU University Relations, reported that the specific action which was moved and voted was as follows:
“To reaffirm the â€˜Statement of Support for the Adventist View of Creation’ [that was previously voted at the Board of Trustees Meeting on November 11, 2009]. In recognition of the serious and complex nature of this issue, the Board of trustees instructs the continued implementation of the statement. We request the administration to provide progress reports identifying specific actions taken.”
At the very least all are clear that – “LSU FACULTY SENATE AFFIRM ACADEMIC FREEDOM & BIOLOGY COLLEAGUES”
GC President Ted Wilson reported the action of the Adventist church at the GC session in Atlanta this way.
. As just this week we have once again affirmed in an overwhelming manner, the Seventh-day Adventist Church both teaches and believes in the biblical record of creation which took place recently; in six literal, consecutive, contiguous 24 hour days. The Seventh-day Adventist Church will never change its stand or belief in that foundational doctrine. If God did not create this world in six literal days and then blessed the Sabbath day, why are we worshipping Him today on this seventh-day Sabbath as SEVENTH-DAY Adventists? To misunderstand or to misinterpret this doctrine is to deny Godâ€™s Word and to deny the very purpose of the Seventh-day Adventist movement as the remnant church of God called to proclaim the three angelsâ€™ messages with Holy Spirit power
I firmly believe that there are many faculty at PUC that agree with Elder Wilson and the SDA church’s voted position above.
I am not at all sure that LSU’s affirmation would go that far in terms of their present Biology and Religion department – but even in that context they can find a way to say that they affirm creation.
It seems to me that the language that Elder Wilson is using is unambiguous.
Recent Comments by BobRyan
Academic Freedom Strikes Again!
By definition, I don’t believe in miracles or apocryphal, anthropomorphic stories about same.Why aren’t scientists observing them today if they occur?
Circular argument. If they were naturally occurring we would expect scientists to see that they are still occurring today. If they are singular events caused by an intelligent being – that being would be under no obligation to “keep causing world wide floods” as if “to do it once you must continually do it”. Armstrong went to the moon.. shall we argue that unless he keeps going to the moon so each new generation can see it … then it did not happen?
Your argument is of the form “all eye witness evidence to some event in the past is no evidence at all unless that event keeps repeating itself so we too can witness it”. Seems less than compelling.
“Could it be that science is better able to detect hoaxes and false claims?” As a rule for dismissing every eye witness account in the past – it is less than compelling. (even when that event cannot be repeated)
Evolutionists “claim” that dust, rocks and gas (in sufficient quantity and over sufficient time and a lot of luck) self organized into rabbits via prokaryote-then-eukaryote-then-more-complexity. But such self-organization cannot be “observed” today.
(What is worse – such a sequence cannot even be intelligently manipulated to occur in the lab)
By your own argument then you should not believe in evolution.
Academic Freedom Strikes Again!
Suppose you were at a crime scene … there is a tree limb on the ground and a bullet hole in the victim — “all natural causes”? or is one ‘not natural’? Those who say that nothing can be detected as “not naturally occurring in nature” – because all results, all observations make it appear that every result “naturally occurred without intelligent design” seem to be missing a very big part of “the obvious”.
Academic Freedom Strikes Again!
What just God would allow an innocent child to be born guilty for the sins of a distant ancestor? …What if there was only One Commandment? Do Good. ‘Kant’ see a problem with that.
An atheist point of view is not often found here – but this is interesting.
1. God does not punish babies for what someone else did – but I suppose that is a reductionist option that is not so uncommon among atheists. The “details” of the subject you are commenting on – yet according to you “not reading” – is that humans are born with sinful natures. A “bent” toward evil. That is the first gap right out of the gate between atheism and God’s Word..
2. But still God supernaturally enables “free will” even in that bent scenario, the one that mankind lives in – ever since the free-will choice of the first humans on planet earth – was to cast their lot in with Satan and rebellion..(apparently they wanted to see what a wonderful result that poor choice would create). John 16 “the Holy Spirit convicts the world of sin and righteousness and judgment”. And of course “I will draw ALL mankind unto Me” John 12:32. (not “just Christians”). Thus supernatural agency promotes free will in a world that would otherwise be unrestrained in its bent to evil.
3.God says “The wages of sin is death” — so then your “complaint” is essentially “that you exist”. A just and loving God created planet Earth – no death or disease or suffering – a perfect paradise where mankind could live forever … and only one tiny restriction… yet Adam and Eve allowed themselves to be duped by Satan… tossing it all away. The “Just God” scenario could easily just have let them suffer the death sentence they chose. He did not do that… hence “you exist” – to then “complain about it”.
4. Of course you might also complain that Satan exists – and Satan might complain that “you exist”. There is no shortage on planet earth of avenues for complaint. But God steps in – offers salvation to mankind at infinite cost to himself – – and the “Few” of Matthew 7 eventually end up accepting that offer of eternal life. The rest seem to prefer the lake of fire option… sort of like Adam and Eve choosing disease and death over eternal life (without fully appreciating the massive fail in that short-sighted choice).
In any case – this thread is about the logic/reason that should be taken into account when a Christian owned and operated institution chooses to stay faithful to its Christian mission — rather then getting blown about by every wind of doctrine. Why let the alchemy of “wild guessing” be the ‘source of truth’ when we have the Bible?? We really have no excuse for that. As for science – we can be thankful that it has come as far along as it has – but no matter how far back you rewind the clock of our science history – we should always have chosen the Bible over wild guessing.
Newly Discovered Human Footprints Undermine Evolutionary Assumptions
Perhaps Dr. Pitman would enlighten his readers what on earth “the neo-Darwinian story of origins” might be. Darwin did not address origins.
Origins of what?? the first eukaryote??
Or “origins of mankind”??
Darwin himself claimed that his own false doctrine on origins was totally incompatible with Genesis and that because of this – Genesis must be tossed under a bus.
hint: Genesis is an account of “Origins” as we all know — even though “bacteria” and “amoeba” are terms that don’t show up in the text.
The point remains – Darwin was promoting his own religion on origins totally counter to the Bible doctrine on origins. He himself addresses this point of the two views.
Newly Discovered Human Footprints Undermine Evolutionary Assumptions
Here we go again.If the footprints upon close examination, are determined not to be from a hominim/hominid, I wonder if Educate Truth (sic) will announce that determination.Or if the date of the surface is determined to be much younger, will there be a notice placed on fundamentalist web-sites.If you believe the answer to these questions are yes, I have a big bridge that I would like to sell you for pennies on the dollar.
Here we go again … hope piled upon hope…no matter the “observations in nature” that disconfirm the classic evolutionary hypothesis
Reminds me of “What we still don’t know” by Martin Reese and Leonard Suskind