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Brother Rando

Does Science Disprove the Bible or Back it up?

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Scientists are among the most intelligible people on earth, or at least, they would like us to think they are.  One must consider the source, that a significant number of scientists are atheists, denying the possibility of a higher intelligence.  Imagine this scenario, youÂ’re a scientist who studied our universe for countless years.  Then a Bible Student comes to your House and shows you one simple scripture.  “He stretches out the northern sky over empty space, Suspending the earth upon nothing;” (Job 26:7)  That one simple scripture proves a higher intelligence does it not?  If you think that Scientists will suddenly acknowledge that the Bible is a Book of truths and knowledge, then think again.  There is a huge monetary motive for rejecting the Bible.  If these things are already explained, then there is not such a huge call to fund Billions of dollars for Educational Programs, and what about their position?  Job security is a huge motivation in itself.

Here’s another: “He wraps up the waters in his clouds, So that the clouds do not burst under their weight;” (Job 26:8)  Simple isn’t it? The findings in Science is actually backing up the Bible. 

At one time, our earth in its infancy didn’t rotate.  How do I know this?  Deductive Reasoning from Scripture.  “After that God saw that the light was good, and God began to divide the light from the darkness. ?God called the light Day, but the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, a first day.” (Genesis 1:4-5)  This is when the earth first began to rotate on its axis to cause a division of Day and Night.  Really good Science!   

Fractal Patterns, Golden Angles, and the Fibonacci numbers are Repeated Intelligent Patterns/Designs that are expressions of a Highly Intelligent Designer, Jehovah God.

 

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Brother Rando wrote:

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Scientists are among the most intelligible people on earth,

I think you mean "intelligent", no?

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or at least, they would like us to think they are.  One must consider the source, that a significant number of scientists are atheists,

Well actually, an awful lot of these atheistic scientists started off with a firm belief in a higher intelligence, having been taught to believe in such from infancy. Later in life, after various experiences, they gave up such belief and said, "Show me the evidence, and I'll believe in a god."

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denying the possibility of a higher intelligence.

A common misperception. Most atheists don't deny that some kind of "higher intelligence" exists, but merely that they have not seen any evidence for one. Big difference between saying "I deny ..." and "I don't see evidence for ..."

And what of the many scientists who are theists? Why do you ignore their views?

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Imagine this scenario, you’re a scientist who studied our universe for countless years.

Most scientists live for about 80 years.

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Then a Bible Student comes to your House and shows you one simple scripture.  “He stretches out the northern sky over empty space, Suspending the earth upon nothing;” (Job 26:7)  That one simple scripture proves a higher intelligence does it not?

Nope. It merely sounds like it does to those who don't know the facts.

Job 26:11 says, "The very pillars of heaven shake". Does that mean heaven is suspended by literal pillars?

Job 9:6 says, "He shakes the earth out of its place, So that its pillars tremble." Is the earth supported by literal pillars?

Psalm 75:3 says, "When the earth and all its inhabitants were dissolved, It was I who kept its pillars firm." 1 Samuel 2:8 says, "For the pillars of the earth are Jehovah’s, And he hath set the world upon them." (ASV) Does the earth rest on literal pillars?

If you agree that the earth and the heavens do not rest on literal pillars, then how can you and the Watch Tower Society argue or even imply that Job 26:7 refers literally to "outer space"?

The fact is that the concepts mentioned in the original Hebrew of Job 26:7 are extremely poorly understood, and so making any conclusions at all about what the passage meant to its author or its Hebrew readers is probably wrong. We don't know if the referenced concepts are literal or figurative, or the product of ancient mythologies.

A careful analysis of Job 26:7 is instructive.

The reference to "the northern sky" probably means "the heavens", but what are "the heavens"? Does it mean the literal blue sky we perceive above us? Does it include what we see in the sky, such as the sun, moon, stars and various transient phenomena? Does it really mean "outer space" in the modern sense, which would include the physical bodies of the sun, moon, stars, etc.? The most one can justifiably say is that it means "whatever we see in the sky", and that it has nothing to do with "outer space".

The Cambridge Bible Commentary on the New English Bible, on The Book of Job (P. R. Ackroyd, et al, commentary by Norman C. Habel, Cambridge University Press, 1975, p. 135-137) quotes Job 26:7 as:

<< God spreads the canopy of the sky over chaos and suspends earth in the void. >>

It states:

<< 7. canopy of the sky translates a Hebrew term meaning 'North' in its cosmic sense. The 'spreading' out of the 'North' is equivalent to pitching the heavens as a cosmic tent in which God reigns and appears in celestial splendour (cp. on 9:8; Pss. 104:2; 144:5; Isa. 40:22). . . The cosmic tent or canopy of heaven is pitched over the primordial chaos upon which the earth is founded. The pitching of heaven and the founding of earth are recurring traditions which are coupled to express the establishment of the basic structures of the universe (Isa. 42:5; 45:11-12; 48:12-13; 51:13, 16). The earth is usually portrayed as having its foundations fixed in the chaos water. This verse describes that act as 'suspending earth' in a formless void (cp. Gen. 1:2). There is no reason to believe that the author of Job espoused a modern cosmology which viewed the earth as floating in space (cp. verse 11 and 38:4-7). >>

The next phrase in Job 26:7 is extremely problematic. While the recent NWT uses the phrase "empty space", the original NWT used "the empty place". Why the switch? I'd guess that the reason is that "empty space" is more in line with the Watch Tower's traditional claim that Job 26:7 is describing the physical configuration of the earth and outer space. But that is translating Bible words to fit a preconceived tradition -- which is not exactly honest.

Again we find that the original Hebrew concept here translated as "the empty place" is not well understood. Exactly the same Hebrew word, "tehom", is used in many places in the OT, such as in Genesis 1:2 where the NWT translates it as "the watery deep". What tehom ought to be translated as is therefore a very subjective opinion of the translators.

The NWT translates tehom into the phrases "the empty place" or "empty space", which to the naive sounds an awful lot like a reference to the modern notion of "outer space", but it has nothing to do with "outer space". Rather, as the NWT's translation of Genesis 1:2 indicates, it means something like "the watery deep". Other translations and various Bible commentaries variously use "chaos", "deep", "deep water", "deep [primeval ocean that covered the unformed earth]", "watery depths", "deep sea", "ocean", "roaring ocean", "ocean depths", "abyss", etc. In other words, tehom basically denotes "the primeval waters in the creation accounts of the ancient Near East" (Theological Dictionary of the Old Testament, Vol. XV, Botterweck, Ringgren, Fabry, Eerdmans, 2006, p. 575). This reference states that the significance of these primeval waters "indicates a mythological dimension. Behind all the various cosmogonies stands the shared notion that the world was created from water and that the earth from its first beginnings was surrounded on all sides by water." This reference further states (p. 577):

<< Meaning. The religio-historical evidence makes it unlikely that in the OT tehom denotes primarily a "natural phenomenon." Despite all the differences between the ancient Near Eastern cosmogonies and the ideas of the OT, tehom represents both the cosmic waters surrounding the earth and the primeval waters. Tromp has summarized its meaning quite accurately: "Hebrew tehom is a vigorous and often grim word, which never entirely renounced its mythical past. A primordial strength pervades tehom throughout. It stands for: a) the primeval ocean; b) the waters round the earth after creation, which continually threaten the cosmos; c) these waters as a source of blessing for the earth. >>

TDOT further states (p. 578):

<< Creation. The various meanings of tehom in the OT are still best explained through their place and function in the texts having to do with creation. According to Ps. 104, in the beginning the tehom covered the earth "like a garment," and its waters stood "above the mountains" (v. 6). . . Gen. 1:2 is the passage most often discussed in connection with tehom. Here tehom is among the elements that characterize the state of the world before creation, a state defined initially (v. 2aa) as tohu wabohu. That P, like Ps. 104, is drawing on traditional ideas is indisputable. The analogous association of "darkness," "deep," "wind," and "water" in various ancient Near Eastern cosmogonies suggests the same conclusion. Here tehom is the primeval deep covered with darkness . . . For P the mythical dimension resides only in the use of tehom for the unrestrained, chaotic waters prior to creation, which then appear as mayim and, by virtue of God's command, are assigned their appropriate place in the world (vv. 6,9). >>

And further (pp. 578-579):

<< The need to restrain the primeval waters in the context of creation is also mentioned in Ps. 33:7 and Prov. 8:27-29. According to Prov. 8:22, wisdom was the first of God's works of creation. This statement is amplified in v. 24 by a clause saying that wisdom was brought forth "when there were as yet no depths" . . . Wisdom was present when Yahweh "established the heavens, ... when he drew a circle on the surface of the deep . . . The passage reflects the notion, influenced by Babylonian cosmogony, that the earth is a disk surrounded and bounded by the primeval ocean, with the dome of the heavens fixed above. >>

For the usage of tehom in Genesis 1:2, the NWT With References (1984, p. 15, ftn. 2) states:

<< “Watery deep.” Or, “surging waters; water canopy.” Heb., tehohm´; LXX, “the abyss”; Vg, “the great abyss.” See 1:2 ftn, “Deep.” According to 1:7 these must have been “the waters that should be above the expanse.” Compare 6:17 ftn, “Deluge.” >>

Interestingly, the NWT With References has several cross references on tehom for Gen. 1:2, but none for Job 26:7. And Watch Tower literature contains many discussions of the phrase "hanging on nothing", but none of "stretches out the north over the empty place." Obviously the Watch Tower Society is unwilling to commit itself to any explanation of the latter.

For tehom in Job 26:7, other Bible translations use "empty place", "empty space", "emptiness", "chaos", "void", "desolation", etc.

So at this point, given the above information, we can validly translate the first part of Job 26:7 in various ways, since the meaning of the original Hebrew words is so poorly known. Several possibilities are:

He stretches out the sky over the void.
He stretches out the sky over the watery deep.
He stretches out the heavens over chaos.
He stretches out the sky over the deep primeval ocean that covered the unformed earth.
He stretches out the heavens over the ocean.
He stretches out the sky over the abyss.
He stretches out the heavens over the empty place.
He stretches out the heavens over empty space.
He spreads the canopy of the sky over chaos.

Clearly, then, none of these expressions describe literal reality, but are metaphors that vaguely refer to some Hebrew conception of reality that we have no clear descriptions of.

However, we do have some indications of what the Hebrew Bible writers viewed as reality, in various Bible passages that strongly hint at their view of the shape of the earth and its place in creation. As mentioned above by TDOT, the Hebrew conception was essentially the Babylonian one, "that the earth is a disk surrounded and bounded by the primeval ocean, with the dome of the heavens fixed above." This is clearly stated in Isaiah 40:22:

<< There is One who dwells above the circle of the earth, And its inhabitants are like grasshoppers. He is stretching out the heavens like a fine gauze, And he spreads them out like a tent to dwell in. >>

Here, "the circle of the earth" describes something like a pizza pie, and the heavens are stretched over it like a tent. This earth sits in the middle of the primeval waters 'below' and 'above' the earth, as described in Genesis 1 and in 2 Peter 3:5: "long ago there were heavens and an earth standing firmly out of water and in the midst of water by the word of God." Here are two pictures of the concept:

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    Hello guest!

Consistent with that picture, we have Daniel 4:10-22, which describes Nebuchadnezzar's God-given dream vision of a great tree growing in the center of the earth "whose top reached the heavens and was visible to all the earth." Such a tree could be visible from the whole earth only if the earth were shaped like a pizza pie -- not a globe. Obviously, Daniel's Hebrew readers would have no trouble picturing Daniel's description if it were consistent with their existing mental picture of the earth.

Then we have the picture in Matthew 4:8, where the Devil took Jesus "along to an unusually high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world." The picture is obviously that from the top of a sufficiently high mountain (and presumably with telescopic vision) one could see everything in the world.

Now of course, one might argue that these word pictures do not represent reality, and they surely do not. But the fact that various Bible writers used such pictures to say something to their readers means that those readers had a pretty good picture of the earth's shape in their minds, consistent with the word pictures the writers painted. Why else would the writers paint those pictures?

Getting back to Job 26:7: in view of the above information, it's easy to see that the phrase "He stretches out the northern sky over empty space" is at best a metaphor, and no more represents a picture of reality than does the phrase "pillars of the earth".


The final phrase of Job 26:7 is:

<< Suspending the earth upon nothing. >>

Once again, to a naive person who knows nothing of the overall Hebrew cultural and linguistic contexts, as described above, this sounds extremely suggestive of a remarkably modern and accurate picture of the earth floating in the vacuum of outer space. But as stated above by The Cambridge Bible Commentary:

<< The earth is usually portrayed as having its foundations fixed in the chaos water. This verse describes that act as 'suspending earth' in a formless void (cp. Gen. 1:2). There is no reason to believe that the author of Job espoused a modern cosmology which viewed the earth as floating in space (cp. verse 11 and 38:4-7). >>

Most Bible translations translate the Hebrew word beliymah (Strong's 1099; literally "not any thing", "nothing whatsoever") as "nothing". A good description of this word (and the only one I can find in Watch Tower literature) is from What Is the Purpose of Life? How Can You Find It? (1993), pp. 11-12:

<< 9 How the earth is held in space. In ancient times when the Bible was being written, there was much speculation about how the earth was held in space. Some believed that the earth was supported by four elephants standing on a big sea turtle. Aristotle, a Greek philosopher and scientist of the fourth century B.C.E., taught that the earth could never hang in empty space. Instead, he taught that the heavenly bodies were fixed to the surface of solid, transparent spheres, with each sphere nested within another sphere. Supposedly the earth was on the innermost sphere, and the outermost sphere held the stars.

10 Yet, rather than reflect the fanciful, unscientific views existing at the time of its writing, the Bible simply stated (in about the year 1473 B.C.E.): “[God is] hanging the earth upon nothing.” (Job 26:7) In the original Hebrew, the word for “nothing” used here means “not any thing,” and this is the only time it occurs in the Bible. The picture it presents of an earth surrounded by empty space is recognized by scholars as a remarkable vision for its time. The Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament says: “Job 26:7 strikingly pictures the then-known world as suspended in space, thereby anticipating future scientific discovery.” >>

Of course, the last two sentences ignore most of the above considerations, and are merely the opinions of the writers.

The Interpreter's Bible (Vol. 3, Abingdon Press, New York, 1956, p. 1094) gives another take on this, in line with the information quoted above:

<< he stretcheth out the north over the void.... and hangeth the earth upon nothing (cf. the parallelism between void and nothingness in Isa. 40:17, 23). This amounts to a poetic description of creatio ex nihilo. The northern regions of the earth are connected in a special way with the sojourn of the gods.... Possibly the north designates here the Stella Polaris on which the constellations appear to circumambulate. Although the poet's cosmogony is geocentric, he fully understands that the earth rests upon nothing and receives its stability only from the will of the almighty Creator. >>

So this reference describes Job 26:7 as saying that God's power -- not any thing -- is what 'suspends' the earth (whatever shape one thinks of it as having) in the nothingness, or void, of the "primeval waters" that that still surround the earth, per 2 Peter 3:5.

Once again, nothing whatsoever justifies the claim that Job 26:7 describes a spherical earth suspended somehow in outer space. That claim is a product of bias-confirmation -- eisegesis -- reading far more into a Bible passage than the text or context justifies, based mainly on prejudices.


 

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If you think that Scientists will suddenly acknowledge that the Bible is a Book of truths and knowledge, then think again.

Well you have a serious problem here, because you have in no way shown that.

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There is a huge monetary motive for rejecting the Bible.

Nonsense.

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If these things are already explained, then there is not such a huge call to fund Billions of dollars for Educational Programs, and what about their position?  Job security is a huge motivation in itself.

Already explained by dubious claims such as you've made about Job 26:7? Hardly. You obviously know little of how science is practiced, or of science itself.

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Here’s another: “He wraps up the waters in his clouds, So that the clouds do not burst under their weight;” (Job 26:8)  Simple isn’t it? The findings in Science is actually backing up the Bible.

LOL! The fact that clouds don't burst under their weight is a scientific statement, eh? Hardly. You can look at the sky and see that for yourself. You can see for yourself that clouds contain water, merely by looking at a downpour in the distance, where rain is obviously dropping from a cloud to the ground. The Bible writer shows no knowledge that clouds are made of water -- they're not like waterskins containing water, that can burst.

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At one time, our earth in its infancy didn’t rotate.

Science shows that the earth gradually accumulated from dust and rocks and such circling the infant sun in the early solar system, so it almost certainly rotated from its earliest beginnings as a planetesimal.

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How do I know this?  Deductive Reasoning from Scripture.

Very dangerous.

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“After that God saw that the light was good, and God began to divide the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, but the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, a first day.” (Genesis 1:4-5)  This is when the earth first began to rotate on its axis to cause a division of Day and Night.  Really good Science!

How do you know that God didn't just magically make the light turn on and off? Kind of like how he magically made the heavenly vapor canopy -- the "waters above the expanse" -- defy gravity and stay in place for thousands of years.

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Fractal Patterns, Golden Angles, and the Fibonacci numbers are Repeated Intelligent Patterns/Designs that are expressions of a Highly Intelligent Designer, Jehovah God.

Not really. Those things are just the natural workings of a universe where very simple basic patterns and actions, repeatedly applied, result in complex patterns. Kind of like how the Mandelbrot set works.

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More articles about Science and the Bible.

All of these articles show gross ignorance of science and contain really bad arguments.

As for the "science" in Genesis, there really isn't much. The various events that supposedly happened during the creative days are hopelessly out of order compared to the geological record. Noah's Flood is pure myth and there is no actual evidence that it happened. Etc. etc. etc.

AlanF

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Intelligible is the word I chose for several reasons.  Without going into an in depth explanation, feel free to look up its'

    Hello guest!
.  You may have a deeper appreciation for the context of my Biblical Explanations. Thank you.

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5 minutes ago, Brother Rando said:

Intelligible is the word I chose for several reasons.  Without going into an in depth explanation, feel free to look up its'

    Hello guest!
.  You may have a deeper appreciation for the context of my Biblical Explanations. Thank you.

Your reply says virtually nothing. I get the impression that you're not a native English speaker. No competent English speaker would use "intelligible" the way you have. How about giving your reasons for using it?

Your source gives this definition:

"capable of being understood or comprehended"

That "scientists are among the most intelligible people on earth" in that sense is so obvious that it does not need to be said. What was your point?

AlanF

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It certainly puts things into perspective.  Intelligent Design requires and an Intelligent Designer.  "The heavens are declaring the glory of God; The skies above proclaim the work of his hands." (Psalm 19:1)   Jehovah's fingerprints are all over the Universe and the Universe continues to expand even today.  

 

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Brother Rando said:

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It certainly puts things into perspective.

What? That pretty things in the sky prove God?

More convincing is that supremely dangerous things in the sky disprove God -- supernovae, gamma ray bursters, CMEs (coronal mass ejections) from the sun, etc. All of these, and many more dangerous creations, can wipe out life on earth.

What about things on earth such as earthquakes, tsunamis, volcanoes, hurricanes, tornados, floods, droughts, landslides, etc.? Do these things prove or disprove God?

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Intelligent Design requires and an Intelligent Designer.

That depends on what one means by "Intelligent Design". If one could prove that there exists an Intelligent Creator, then he would be an Intelligent Designer, and whatever he made could be called the product of Intelligent Design. But much of science shows that there is no need to postulate such a Designer, because science has shown how a great many things have come to be through the operation of basic, universal physical laws. Of course, science has much to learn. Nevertheless, much of what theists have traditionally claimed to be designed merely displays the illusion of design. See, for example, the article "Adaptation" (Scientific American, Richard Lewontin, September 1978, p. 213;

    Hello guest!
) which discusses why evolution by natural selection is sufficient to explain "the design of life".

We no longer claim that lightning and thunder prove there is a God. We know how the solar system formed from a primordial cloud of gas and dust. We know that, however life arose on the earth, it has existed for at least 3.5 billion years and that life has undergone more or less continuous evolution since its beginning. The Theory of Evolution, the fossil record, and genetics have shown this. Many theists believe that a Supreme Creator used evolution, or something very like evolution, to create all life. But evolution does not require a Creator.

You posted a video that shows pretty patterns in nature -- hardly evidence of a God. What these patterns show, rather, is that logarithmic growth is common in nature. In the case of the nautilus, after the critter adds a new chamber, it grows a bit, and then adds another new chamber bigger than the earlier one by the same percentage that it grew. The process repeats. Nothing magic or supernatural about that.

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Jehovah's fingerprints are all over the Universe

Like the asteroid strike and massive volcanism that wiped out the dinosaurs and 70% of life on earth 65 million years ago?

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and the Universe continues to expand even today.

And?

AlanF

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1 hour ago, AlanF said:

More convincing is that supremely dangerous things in the sky disprove God -- supernovae, gamma ray bursters, CMEs (coronal mass ejections) from the sun, etc. All of these, and many more dangerous creations, can wipe out life on earth.

"The righteous will possess the earth, And they will live forever on it." (Psalm 37:29)

"Hope in Jehovah and follow his way, And he will exalt you to take possession of the earth. When the wicked are done away with, you will see it." (Psalm 37:34)

"The God of gods, Jehovah, has spoken; He summons the earth From the rising of the sun until its setting." (Psalm 50:1)

"May his name endure forever, And may it prosper as long as the sun. May people obtain a blessing for themselves by means of him; May all nations pronounce him happy.  May Jehovah God be praised, Israel’s God,  Who alone does wonderful things.  May his glorious name be praised forever, And may his glory fill the whole earth. Amen and Amen." (Psalm 72:17-1)

"He made his sanctuary as enduring as the heavens, Like the earth that he has established forever." (Psalm 78:69)

"He has established the earth on its foundations; It will not be moved from its place forever and ever." (Psalm 104:5)

Yes, there is a time when the wicked perceive the end of the earth, but actually they are perceiving the end of wickedness. "Also, there will be signs in the sun and moon and stars, and on the earth anguish of nations not knowing the way out because of the roaring of the sea and its agitation.  People will become faint out of fear and expectation of the things coming upon the inhabited earth, for the powers of the heavens will be shaken." (Luke 21:25-26)  

"After this I saw, and look! a great crowd, which no man was able to number, out of all nations and tribes and peoples and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, dressed in white robes; and there were palm branches in their hands." (Rev 7:9)

"In response one of the elders said to me: “These who are dressed in the white robes, who are they and where did they come from?” (Rev 7:13)

"So right away I said to him: “My lord, you are the one who knows.” And he said to me: “These are the ones who come out of the great tribulation, and they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb." (Rev 7:14) But do you really understand what you are reading?   

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Brother Rando again avoided addressing any specifics in my posts. Rather, he merely quoted some scriptures that make specific or vague prophecies about the earth lasting forever.

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:: More convincing is that supremely dangerous things in the sky disprove God -- supernovae, gamma ray bursters, CMEs (coronal mass ejections) from the sun, etc. All of these, and many more dangerous creations, can wipe out life on earth.

"The righteous will possess the earth, And they will live forever on it." (Psalm 37:29)

. . .

 

The problem with such prophecies is that the Bible records a number of very specific prophecies that were never fulfilled -- false prophicies. Such specific false prophecies are sound evidence that the vague prophecies Brother Rando quoted are just feel-good speculations by various Bible writers.

What false prophecies are recorded in the Bible? There are quite a few. Two of my favorites are:

(1) False Prophecies by Ezekiel about the Fall of Tyre

Tyre was founded early in the 3rd millennium BCE, and apparently was an island city early on. Eventually it incorporated the city that was onshore close to it, and it became a dual city. From about 586-573 BCE, Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, beseiged the city but failed to take it (historical records are unclear about the fate of the mainland part of the city). In 332 BCE, Alexander the Great conquered the island city and killed most of its inhabitants. It has been inhabited more or less continuously ever since, and was a major supplier of purple dye in Roman times, including the 1st century CE. Today it's a city in Syria and, at least until the present turmoil, had well over 100,000 inhabitants. See the following websites for historical details:

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Ezekiel prophesied the complete destruction of Tyre, to happen soon after Jerusalem's destruction, followed by its everlasting desolation. Ezekiel chapters 26 through 28 contain the complete text, of which we'll look at a few passages:

<< Ezekiel 26:1-14, 19-21; NIV

A Prophecy Against Tyre

1 In the eleventh year, on the first day of the month, the word of the LORD came to me: 2 "Son of man, because Tyre has said of Jerusalem, 'Aha! The gate to the nations is broken, and its doors have swung open to me; now that she lies in ruins I will prosper,' 3 therefore this is what the Sovereign LORD says: I am against you, O Tyre, and I will bring many nations against you, like the sea casting up its waves. 4 They will destroy the walls of Tyre and pull down her towers; I will scrape away her rubble and make her a bare rock. 5 Out in the sea she will become a place to spread fishnets, for I have spoken, declares the Sovereign LORD. She will become plunder for the nations, 6 and her settlements on the mainland will be ravaged by the sword. Then they will know that I am the LORD.

7 "For this is what the Sovereign LORD says: From the north I am going to bring against Tyre Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, king of kings, with horses and chariots, with horsemen and a great army. 8 He will ravage your settlements on the mainland with the sword; he will set up siege works against you, build a ramp up to your walls and raise his shields against you. 9 He will direct the blows of his battering rams against your walls and demolish your towers with his weapons. 10 His horses will be so many that they will cover you with dust. Your walls will tremble at the noise of the war horses, wagons and chariots when he enters your gates as men enter a city whose walls have been broken through. 11 The hoofs of his horses will trample all your streets; he will kill your people with the sword, and your strong pillars will fall to the ground. 12 They will plunder your wealth and loot your merchandise; they will break down your walls and demolish your fine houses and throw your stones, timber and rubble into the sea. 13 I will put an end to your noisy songs, and the music of your harps will be heard no more. 14 I will make you a bare rock, and you will become a place to spread fishnets. You will never be rebuilt, for I the LORD have spoken, declares the Sovereign LORD.

19 "This is what the Sovereign LORD says: When I make you a desolate city, like cities no longer inhabited, and when I bring the ocean depths over you and its vast waters cover you, 20 then I will bring you down with those who go down to the pit, to the people of long ago. I will make you dwell in the earth below, as in ancient ruins, with those who go down to the pit, and you will not return or take your place in the land of the living. 21 I will bring you to a horrible end and you will be no more. You will be sought, but you will never again be found, declares the Sovereign LORD." >>

The first bolded passage above (vs. 2) indicates that Ezekiel wrote shortly after the destruction of Jerusalem by the Babylonians in 587 BCE. Clearly, he expected that Nebuchadnezzar would visit the same fate upon nearby Tyre. This is not exactly a difficult prediction. The second bolded passage (vs. 3) indicates Ezekiel's intent that Tyre would soon be beseiged.

The third and fourth bolded passages (vss. 5, 7) clearly state that Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, would ravage Tyre -- in particular, the island part of the city: "Out in the sea she will become a place to spread fishnets."

The third bolded passage is where the prophecy begins to break down. Indeed, shortly after Nebuchadnezzar took Jerusalem in 587 BCE, he beseiged Tyre, and obviously attacked both the mainland and island parts of the city, but failed to take the island city. Ezekiel actually admits later that the prophecy was wrong, in Ezekiel 29:17-18:

<< 17 In the twenty-seventh year, in the first month on the first day, the word of the LORD came to me: 18 "Son of man, Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon drove his army in a hard campaign against Tyre; every head was rubbed bare and every shoulder made raw. Yet he and his army got no reward from the campaign he led against Tyre. >>

Hence, we see a false prophecy from Ezekiel. It matters not that Alexander the Great took the island city some 240 years later; Ezekiel's prophecy clearly stated that Nebuchadnezzar would take the island city.

Ezekiel continues with the false prophecies in verses 14, 19, 21: "you will never be rebuilt; when I make you a desolate city, like cities no longer inhabited; you will be no more." Yet the Bible states that Jesus preached in Tyre: Matthew 11:21, 22; 15:21; Mark 7:24, 31; that Jesus' disciples preached in Tyre: Acts 21:3, 7; and that it was certainly inhabited: Mark 3:8; Luke 6:17, 10:13, 14; Acts 12:20. And of course, Tyre has been a bustling city for most of the past 2,500 years.

Isaiah 23 also contains the false prophecy that Tyre would be destroyed and then be desolate for 70 years, and then be rebuilt. Not only is this inconsistent with Ezekiel's prophecy, but nothing remotely like that occurred until Tyre was temporarily destroyed by Alexander the Great around 332 BCE. And it was rebuilt far sooner than 70 years later.

 

(2) False prophecy by Ezekiel that Egypt would be in a state of complete desolation for 40 years

In the 10th year of Ezekiel's captivity to Babylon (587 BCE) he prophesied that Egypt would soon be conquered by Babylon and depopulated and made desolate for 40 years. Again let's take a look at some relevant Bible passages:

<< Ezekiel 29:1-20; NIV

A Prophecy Against Egypt

1 In the tenth year, in the tenth month on the twelfth day, the word of the LORD came to me: 2 "Son of man, set your face against Pharaoh king of Egypt and prophesy against him and against all Egypt. 3 Speak to him and say: 'This is what the Sovereign LORD says: " 'I am against you, Pharaoh king of Egypt, you great monster lying among your streams. You say, "The Nile is mine; I made it for myself." 4 But I will put hooks in your jaws and make the fish of your streams stick to your scales. I will pull you out from among your streams, with all the fish sticking to your scales.

5 I will leave you in the desert, you and all the fish of your streams. You will fall on the open field and not be gathered or picked up. I will give you as food to the beasts of the earth and the birds of the air.

6 Then all who live in Egypt will know that I am the LORD. " 'You have been a staff of reed for the house of Israel. 7 When they grasped you with their hands, you splintered and you tore open their shoulders; when they leaned on you, you broke and their backs were wrenched.

8 " 'Therefore this is what the Sovereign LORD says: I will bring a sword against you and kill your men and their animals. 9  Egypt will become a desolate wasteland. Then they will know that I am the LORD. " 'Because you said, "The Nile is mine; I made it," 10 therefore I am against you and against your streams, and I will make the land of Egypt a ruin and a desolate waste from Migdol to Aswan, as far as the border of Cush. 11 No foot of man or animal will pass through it; no one will live there for forty years. 12 I will make the land of Egypt desolate among devastated lands, and her cities will lie desolate forty years among ruined cities. And I will disperse the Egyptians among the nations and scatter them through the countries.

13 " 'Yet this is what the Sovereign LORD says: At the end of forty years I will gather the Egyptians from the nations where they were scattered. 14 I will bring them back from captivity and return them to Upper Egypt, the land of their ancestry. There they will be a lowly kingdom. 15 It will be the lowliest of kingdoms and will never again exalt itself above the other nations. I will make it so weak that it will never again rule over the nations. 16 Egypt will no longer be a source of confidence for the people of Israel but will be a reminder of their sin in turning to her for help. Then they will know that I am the Sovereign LORD.' " >>

Next, Ezekiel admits that his prophecy against Tyre was unfulfilled, and makes a new prophecy that Nebuchadnezzar would sack Egypt rather than Tyre as a reward:

17 In the twenty-seventh year, in the first month on the first day, the word of the LORD came to me: 18 "Son of man, Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon drove his army in a hard campaign against Tyre; every head was rubbed bare and every shoulder made raw. Yet he and his army got no reward from the campaign he led against Tyre. 19 Therefore this is what the Sovereign LORD says: I am going to give Egypt to Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and he will carry off its wealth. He will loot and plunder the land as pay for his army. 20 I have given him Egypt as a reward for his efforts because he and his army did it for me, declares the Sovereign LORD. >>

While there is good historical evidence that Nebuchadnezzar did attack and plunder Egypt under its king Amasis in 567 BCE, there is also good historical evidence that Egypt remained inhabited and fully functioning for some time under Amasis (ca. 570-526 BCE), because in about 548 BCE he formed an alliance with the Babylonians, Croesus of Lydia, and Sparta against the Persians under Cyrus the Great. Thus, Egypt was never desolate and uninhabited for 40 years, and we have another failed prophecy from Ezekiel.

There are lots of links one can find with Google on the above historical information. Various books on Egyptian history (Breasted, Grimal, Oxford History, etc.) contain plenty of evidence about the reign of Amasis and various events in it.


For a more comprehensive list of failed Bible prophecies, see:

    Hello guest!


Obviously, even one failed prophecy shows that the Bible is unreliable when predicting the future. So quoting the Bible along the lines of "the earth will last forever" is tilting after windmills.

And of course, the fact that the Bible has so much wrong in its description of the history of life -- Genesis 1 and 2, Noah's Flood, etc. -- is further proof that it is unreliable.


 

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But do you really understand what you are reading?   Is there a Creator?

This video is basically a rehash of William Paley's "blind watchmaker" argument (aka "the teleological argument"), which in turn rehashes the arguments of earlier apologists. But this argument was debunked by philosopher David Hume as early as 1740, later by Charles Darwin, and more recently by Richard Dawkins in "The Blind Watchmaker". Paley's argument falls flat for several reasons, not least of which it makes a false comparison between human-constructed, inanimate objects like watches, and animate, self-reproducing objects like cats. We immediately recognize manufactured objects because we've seen many examples, but we have no experience with manufactured, self-reproducing animate objects.

For an extended discussion, see here:

    Hello guest!

AlanF

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What's interesting is your expression of 'faith' in theorists such as Mr. Dawkins. Blind Faith indeed. Common descent and the survivorship of the fittest are still theories and not facts.  Adolf Hitler applied Dawkins theory to his regime by murdering off what he perceived as weak. For a theory to become a fact, successful and provable experiments would need to be provided. For instance, the Big Bang Theory would need to repeated and proved to be a fact.  Not just stating it has a fact in schools in order to brainwash young minds.  Not one single successful experiment as ever been presensented. Same with Evolution, it still remains a theory.  Yet it would take Blind Faith to believe in something that can never be duplicated.  You made a statement about Laws in space. Do you think Laws just come about or did someone govern them? 

Before you spew off about the earth being created in six days, it wasn't.  Christendom is plagued with false propaganda spewing lies and half truths to mislead the many. (Rev 16:13-14)   The earth already existed BEFORE the six creative days even began has Christendom blindly points too. The truth of the matter is that, "Now the earth was formless and desolate, and there was darkness upon the surface of the watery deep, and God’s active force was moving about over the surface of the waters." (Genesis 1:2) Scientist think they can marvel at finding water in space or on other planets?  Of course there's water!  

Scientist do agree on one thing though, whether they are atheist or have various faiths. They all agree that the Universe didn't always exist but at one time 'came about'.  That's right... they all are in agreement that the universe had a Beginning.  "Geologists estimate that the earth is 4 billion years old, and astronomers calculate that

    Hello guest!
."

"Your eyes even saw me as an embryo;

    Hello guest!
 Regarding the days when they were formed, Before any of them existed." (Psalm 139:16) 

Brother Rando

PS... Claiming the dinosaurs were destroyed by an asteroid is a false flag that the earth was also destroyed. The earth is still here isn't it?  

 

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Brother Rando wrote:

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What's interesting is your expression of 'faith' in theorists such as Mr. Dawkins. Blind Faith indeed. Common descent and the survivorship of the fittest are still theories and not facts.  Adolf Hitler applied Dawkins theory to his regime by murdering off what he perceived as weak. For a theory to become a fact, successful and provable experiments would need to be provided. For instance, the Big Bang Theory would need to repeated and proved to be a fact.  Not just stating it has a fact in schools in order to brainwash young minds.  Not one single successful experiment as ever been presensented. Same with Evolution, it still remains a theory.  Yet it would take Blind Faith to believe in something that can never be duplicated.  You made a statement about Laws in space. Do you think Laws just come about or did someone govern them?

Wow. I've never seen such an excellent compendium of popular misconceptions and stereotypical nonsense all in one paragraph before. It's a perfect illustration of one of my favorite quotes, from a 1969 book by ex-JW Alan Rogerson ("Millions Now Living Will Never Die: A Study of Jehovah's Witnesses," p. 116, Constable, London):

<< A long acquaintance with the literature of the Witnesses leads one to the conclusion that they live in the intellectual 'twilight zone.' That is, most of their members, even their leaders, are not well educated and not very intelligent. Whenever their literature strays onto the fields of philosophy, academic theology, science or any severe mental discipline their ideas at best mirror popular misconceptions, at worst they are completely nonsensical. >>

I expressed no "faith" in anyone, and certainly not in Richard Dawkins. Having done much research on my own in science literature, I merely cite scientists like him to support what I've learned is good, solid science.

You have no idea what a scientific "theory" is, obviously. A scientific theory, like the Theory of Gravity, Atomic Theory, Germ Theory, the Theory of Evolution, and so forth, are not merely hypotheses and guesses -- which is what "theory" means in popular parlance -- but a comprehensive series of tested explanations that organize a large set of data into a coherent whole.

Hitler, far from applying "Dawkins theory to his regime" (presumbably you mean Darwin's theory), actually rejected Darwin's theory of evolution by natural selection. What Hitler did was use the concept of eugenics as a justification for killing millions of people, but eugenics is something that Darwin never mentioned. Rather, others misapplied Darwin's ideas and later used that misapplication to justify their ideas of eugenics, which had been around long before Darwin. You're simply borrowing false claims from popular creationist and other Christian apologist literature.

Historical facts are about happened in the past, and can never be demonstrated by repeated experiments -- another popular creationist false argument. Historical facts are determined by the weight of historical material, including written material, archaeological findings, etc. Historical theories are falsified or supported by posing hypotheses, making predictions about what will be found in other historical material, and comparing those predictions with new material.

The Big Bang theory is such a historical model, since it cannot be repeated. There is a great deal of physical and historical evidence in favor of it, but it's still a model, although the best model anyone has yet come up with. And of course, most new scientific discoveries tend to confirm it, rather than disconfirm it.

Evolution remains one of the best-tested Theories of all time. A gigantic amount of evidence exists in favor of it, and there is no demonstrated scientific evidence against it. Sure, creationists throw many stones at the Theory, but their attacks are always based on religious considerations or what Dawkins calls "The Argument from Personal Incredulity" -- "I can't believe it's true, so it isn't." The fossil record and genetics together provide extremely strong evidence that life evolved over the last 3.5 billion years or so. Of course, that evolution might have been caused in some way by some super or supernatural intelligence, but however that intelligence acted is indistinguishable from evolution by natural selection.

You say that "it would take Blind Faith to believe in something that can never be duplicated." Apply that to your belief in your God.

You also continue to ignore the fact that no historical events can be duplicated, so by your reasoning, historical narratives are all false -- including the Bible. Of course, all you can manage to say about this problem amounts to special pleading.

You asked, "Do you think Laws just come about or did someone govern them?" Again this reflects a popular misunderstanding of science, and shows that you're unfamiliar with the fact that what we call natural laws are merely descriptions of how things behave. The argument that the laws of the universe imply a lawgiver seems reasonable on the surface, but ultimately stems from a misunderstanding of what "natural law" really means. Mathematician and philosopher Bertrand Russell discussed problems with this argument some years ago ("Why I Am Not a Christian," pp. 7-8, Simon and Schuster, New York, 1957).

<< . . . there is a very common argument from natural law. That was a favorite argument all through the eighteenth century, especially under the influence of Sir Isaac Newton and his cosmogony. People observed the planets going around the sun according to the law of gravitation, and they thought that God had given a behest to these planets to move in that particular fashion, and that was why they did so. That was, of course, a convenient and simple explanation that saved them the trouble of looking any further for explanations of the law of gravitation. Nowadays we explain the law of gravitation in a somewhat complicated fashion that Einstein has introduced. I do not propose to give you a lecture on the law of gravitation, as interpreted by Einstein, because that again would take some time; at any rate, you no longer have the sort of natural law that you had in the Newtonian system, where, for some reason that nobody could understand, nature behaved in a uniform fashion. We now find that a great many things we thought were natural laws are really human conventions. You know that even in the remotest depths of stellar space there are still three feet to a yard. That is, no doubt, a very remarkable fact, but you would hardly call it a law of nature. And a great many things that have been regarded as laws of nature are of that kind. On the other hand, where you can get down to any knowledge of what atoms actually do [in quantum mechanics], you will find they are much less subject to law than people thought, and that the laws at which you arrive are statistical averages of just the sort that would emerge from chance. There is, as we all know, a law that if you throw dice you will get double sixes only about once in thirty-six times, and we do not regard that as evidence that the fall of the dice is regulated by design; on the contrary, if the double sixes came every time we should think that there was design. The laws of nature are of that sort as regards a great many of them. They are statistical averages such as would emerge from the laws of chance; and that makes this whole business of natural law much less impressive than it formerly was. Quite apart from that, which represents the momentary state of science that may change tomorrow, the whole idea that natural laws imply a lawgiver is due to a confusion between natural and human laws. Human laws are behests commanding you to behave a certain way, in which way you may choose to behave, or you may choose not to behave; but natural laws are a description of how things do in fact behave, and being a mere description of how things do in fact behave, and being a mere description of what they in fact do, you cannot argue that there must be somebody who told them to do that. . . >>

So in view of the above facts, your "ideas at best mirror popular misconceptions, at worst they are completely nonsensical."

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Before you spew off about the earth being created in six days, it wasn't.

I'm perfectly well aware of JW teaching on this. The latest official teaching is that plant life was created beginning about 34,000 years ago, sea life and all flying creatures beginning about 20,000 years ago, all land creatures beginning about 13,000 years ago, and man about 6,000 years ago. This latest teaching on the length of the creative days is stated in the January 1, 1987 Watchtower (p. 30):

<< A study of the fulfillment of Bible prophecy and of our location in the stream of time strongly indicate that each of the creative days (Genesis, chapter 1) is 7,000 years long. It is understood that Christ’s reign of a thousand years will bring to a close God’s 7,000-year ‘rest day,’ the last ‘day’ of the creative week. (Revelation 20:6; Genesis 2:2, 3) Based on this reasoning, the entire creative week would be 49,000 years long. >>

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Christendom is plagued with false propaganda spewing lies and half truths to mislead the many. (Rev 16:13-14)   The earth already existed BEFORE the six creative days even began has Christendom blindly points too. The truth of the matter is that, "Now the earth was formless and desolate, and there was darkness upon the surface of the watery deep, and God’s active force was moving about over the surface of the waters." (Genesis 1:2)

The creation of the heavens and the earth occurred on Day One, according to Exodus:

<< For in six days Jehovah made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and he began to rest on the seventh day. >> -- Exodus 20:11

<< . . . for in six days Jehovah made the heavens and the earth and on the seventh day he rested. >> -- Exodus 31:17

Obviously, in view of Exodus 20 and 31, "the beginning" of Genesis 1 is to be understood as part of the first creative day. Therefore, Genesis 1:1 and 1:2 both describe what happened on Day One, beginning 48,000 years ago according to the above-quoted 1987 Watchtower.

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Scientist think they can marvel at finding water in space or on other planets?  Of course there's water!

Another misconception: no scientist "marvels" at that -- it has been known for well over a hundred years. And it was not a surprise.

Where do you get all these nutty ideas?

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Scientist do agree on one thing though, whether they are atheist or have various faiths. They all agree that the Universe didn't always exist but at one time 'came about'.  That's right... they all are in agreement that the universe had a Beginning.  "Geologists estimate that the earth is 4 billion years old, and astronomers calculate that the universe may be as much as 15 billion years old."

So?

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"Your eyes even saw me as an embryo; All its parts were written in your book Regarding the days when they were formed, Before any of them existed." (Psalm 139:16)

That scripture applies to mankind, not the universe. Are you just babbling now?

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PS... Claiming the dinosaurs were destroyed by an asteroid is a false flag that the earth was also destroyed. The earth is still here isn't it?   

I have no clue what you're trying to say. Did I say the earth was destroyed? No. Did I say the earth will be destroyed? No. I said that the universe is extremely dangerous for life.

AlanF

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I have no clue what you're trying to say. Did I say the earth was destroyed? No. Did I say the earth will be destroyed? No. I said that the universe is extremely dangerous for life.

You were being deceptive to lead the reader that the earth will be destroyed and that your faith is in man-made theories fall short of the glory of Jehovah. Atheistism is a man-made religion that teaches theories and lies as facts and truth.  Gravity didn't come about from an explosion nor can you provide one successful conclusion.  Gravity is a law that was set in motion. When added to our system of things, the earth began to rotate. "After that God saw that the light was good, and God began to divide the light from the darkness. 5 God called the light Day, but the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, a first day." (Genesis 1:4-5)

If you can't comprehend the simplest of things, how can I even share the deep things of God with you?  It would be like turning on a light for a blind person, one who is dying. 

    Hello guest!

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Brother Rando wrote:

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:: I have no clue what you're trying to say. Did I say the earth was destroyed? No. Did I say the earth will be destroyed? No. I said that the universe is extremely dangerous for life.

You were being deceptive to lead the reader that the earth will be destroyed

 

I said nothing of the sort. If you continue to claim that I did, quote my words where you claim I did.

Perhaps you think that the culprit is where I asked you if "the asteroid strike and massive volcanism that wiped out the dinosaurs and 70% of life on earth 65 million years ago" is part of "Jehovah's fingerprints" that "are all over the Universe".

Your comprehension of the English language is obviously so poor that you can't understand simple sentences. Apparently you learned English in school, and have only a grade-school comprehension.

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and that your faith is in man-made theories fall short of the glory of Jehovah.

This is basically gobble-de-goop. Let's parse your sentence by putting this last part with the first part:

'You were being deceptive to lead the reader that . . . your faith is in man-made theories fall short of the glory of Jehovah.'

Even this simplified sentence is gobble-de-goop.

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Atheistism is a man-made religion

"Atheistism"? Try using a dictionary.

Atheism is NOT a religion; it is merely lack of belief in and gods. Atheism is no more a religion than not believing in the Tooth Fairy is a religion.

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that teaches theories and lies as facts and truth.

There are no "teachings of atheism" since it is not a belief system. All that atheists believe is that there is no believable evidence for any gods.

Having been misled by Watch Tower writers, you're confusing the fact that the Theory of Evolution eliminates the need for belief in the Christian God with atheism. The two are philosophically related, but not dependent on one another. Atheism existed long before Darwin's explanation of Evolution, and there are plenty of people who accept evolution who also believe in some sort of gods.

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Gravity didn't come about from an explosion nor can you provide one successful conclusion.

No one knows precisely how most physical "laws" operate, much less how they came to be. "God did it" is NOT an explanation.

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Gravity is a law that was set in motion.

Gravity is not a law -- see my above quote of Bertrand Russell.

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When added to our system of things, the earth began to rotate. "After that God saw that the light was good, and God began to divide the light from the darkness. 5 God called the light Day, but the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, a first day." (Genesis 1:4-5)

Are you trying to say, "When gravity was added to our system of things, the earth began to rotate."? How did you manage to get that from Genesis?

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If you can't comprehend the simplest of things, how can I even share the deep things of God with you?  It would be like turning on a light for a blind person, one who is dying.

LOL! That's quite funny, coming from someone who can't understand simple English, who doesn't understand the tiniest bit of science, and who can't respond to 95% of the challenges put to him.

AlanF

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There's a huge difference between science and theology that theorists who pretend only to practice science.  You worship what you don't know, Nature.  In other words, there is no difference from those whom claim a gigantic explosion created the universe and the druids who worship trees.  The very same theorists who proclaim the Big Bang theory and the theory of evolution as science,  No, they hide behind the name SCIENCE.  

Atheism is the biggest cult of them all, teaching and following man made doctrines and trying to dress their theories as Science.  The Big Bang is not science but a theory and will always be just that.  If a scientist had just one single success at building something from an explosion, I'm all ears...  and it be NEWS...  but not one single hypothesis has been achieved.  Not One. 

Listen, if you don't want to believe in a higher intelligent source, then don't, it won't change my life.  There's one reason you Personally responded.  You simply got your Pride hurt from the quote below:

On 2/19/2018 at 2:03 PM, Brother Rando said:

Scientists are among the most intelligible people on earth, or at least, they would like us to think they are.  One must consider the source, that a significant number of scientists are atheists, denying the possibility of a higher intelligence.

 And just so you know, when teaching an explosion caused the universe and the earth nestled in the perfect position, elements to cause that explosion would have to exist PRIOR to the sudden release of energy.  Things that make you go ummmmmmmmm...  "Lift up your eyes to heaven and see. Who has created these things? It is the One who brings out their army by number; He calls them all by name. Because of his vast dynamic energy and his awe-inspiring power, Not one of them is missing." (Isaiah 40:26)

    Hello guest!
 After decades of research in virtually all branches of science, the fact remains that life comes only from preexisting life. Now that's science. :D

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Brother Rando referenced the jw.org article "Is It Unscientific to Believe in God?". Unfortunately, this article and those following it are rife with misconceptions and misrepresentations. I won't discuss most of them here, but will concentrate on one misrepresentation.

Paragraph 5 starts off by mentioning the potential or actual belief in God of "some educated people" and "many scientists". It leads into paragraph 6, which together with paragraph 5 asks, "Can scientists who believe in a Creator and who are convinced that the design evident in nature requires an intelligent Designer be dismissed as naive?" Paragraph 6 then cites a New York Times book review that reports "on scientists who believe that intelligent design is responsible for our cosmos and life in it" as follows: "They have Ph.D.’s and occupy positions at some of the better universities. The case they make against Darwinism does not rest on the authority of Scripture; rather, it proceeds from premises that are scientific."

The naive reader will have gotten the impression that many reputable scientists reject Darwinism and the natural evolution of the universe based not on religious precepts but on scientific premises. But that is not what the New York Times book review actually says. Paragraph 7 goes on to say that what proponents of intelligent design deny "is that the standard Darwinian theory, or any other ‘naturalistic’ theory that confines itself to mindless, mechanical causes operating gradually over time, suffices to explain the whole of life." The footnote for paragraph 7 states:

<< Prominent academics and scientists who have gone on record as subscribing to the idea of “an Intelligent Designer” include Phillip E. Johnson, who teaches law at the University of California, Berkeley; biochemist Michael J. Behe, author of the book Darwin’s Black Box—The Biochemical Challenge to Evolution; mathematician William A. Dembski; philosopher of logic Alvin Plantinga; physicists John Polkinghorne and Freeman Dyson; astronomer Allan Sandage; and others too numerous to list. >>

The 2002 book review is of Intelligent Design Creationism and Its Critics: Philosophical, Theological, and Scientific Perspectives, Edited by Robert T. Pennock, MIT Press, 2002) which is a compendium of articles by scientists and supporters of Intelligent Design. The complete book review can be found here:

    Hello guest!

The review begins with the following, which contains the quote from jw.org:

<< In the last decade or so, creationism has grown sophisticated. Oh, the old-fashioned creationists are still around, especially in the Bible Belt. They're the ones who believe that the earth is only a few thousand years old, that God created it and all its inhabitants in six days and that fossils are a product of Noah's flood. In the early 1990's, however, a new breed of creationists appeared. These "neo-creos," as they have been called, are no Dogpatch hayseeds. They have Ph.D.'s and occupy positions at some of the better universities. The case they make against Darwinism does not rest on the authority of Scripture; rather, it proceeds from premises that are scientific and philosophical, invoking esoteric ideas in molecular biology, information theory and the logic of hypothesis testing. >>

Obviously, this "new breed of creationists" who claim to base their premises on scientific criteria are first and foremost creationists -- "neo-creos" who merely pretend to base their "intelligent design" ideas on science, but are just using science to rationalize their religious beliefs. The New York Times book review makes all this extremely clear.

The first three people mentioned in the footnote for paragraph 7 are members of the Discovery Institute (

    Hello guest!
), a politically conservative creationist think tank that promotes conservative Christian values and Intelligent Design. In 1999 an internal document that has come to be known as the Wedge Document was published (unauthorized) on the Internet. It lays out the Discovery Institute's long term strategy, "whose ultimate goal is to defeat materialism, naturalism, evolution, and 'reverse the stifling dominance of the materialist worldview, and to replace it with a science consonant with Christian and theistic convictions.' " (
    Hello guest!
). In other words, the DI's goal is to replace science with religion in American culture.

As for the supposed scientists listed in the footnote:

Phillip Johnson is not a scientist, but a lawyer with no scientific training, who converted to Evangelical Christianity in the late 1980s. He is a co-founder of the Intelligent Design movement. In an internal DI magazine he wrote:

<< The movement we now call the wedge made its public debut at a conference of scientists and philosophers held at Southern Methodist University in March 1992, following the publication of my book Darwin on Trial. The conference brought together key wedge and intelligent design figures, particularly Michael Behe, Stephen Meyer, William Dembski, and myself. >> (ibid.)

So Johnson lists the three leading "scientists" listed in the paragraph 7 footnote as key Intelligent Design figures, i.e., they all have essentially religious motivations for their claims.

Michael Behe is a biochemist, but accepts evolution in its theistic form, i.e., that evolution has been guided by God.

William Dembski is not a scientist, but a mathematician, philosopher and theologian. Until 2016 he was a prominent member of the Discovery Institute. He is an old-earth creationist, and accepts a form of evolution but does not accept universal common descent (

    Hello guest!
).

Alvin Plantinga is not a scientist but primarily a philosopher of Christianity. He accepts theistic evolution.

John Polkinghorne is a physicist, theologian and Anglican priest. He apparently accepts theistic evolution.

Freeman Dyson is a physicist and mathematician, and non-denominational Christian. He fully accepts evolution but wrote, "I am a practicing Christian but not a believing Christian. To me, to worship God means to recognize that mind and intelligence are woven into the fabric of our universe in a way that altogether surpasses our comprehension." (

    Hello guest!
)

Allan Sandage was an astronomer and born-again Christian. His views on evolution are unclear, but he seems to have accepted a vague form of theistic evolution.

From the above information, it is quite clear that some of the "scientists and academics" cited by the jw.org article reject Evolution for religious reasons, while others accept Evolution but, again for religious reasons, believe it is guided by their God.

In conclusion, the jw.org article attempts to use the "argument from authority" to convince readers that they should accept a Creator because some academics and scientists do. It presents no actual evidence. It actually misrepresents some of the academics and scientists, because some reject Evolution ONLY because of their religious beliefs, and others accept Evolution -- but not the sort of evolution caricatured by the Watch Tower Society. In fact, the WTS explicitly rejects the theistic evolution that most believing scientists accept.

AlanF

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Brother Rando continues to ignore all arguments put to him, and to write mostly gibberish.

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There's a huge difference between science and theology that theorists who pretend only to practice science.

Pure gibberish. What are you really trying to say?

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You worship what you don't know, Nature.

I worship nothing. Worship involves according great reverence to something, which I accord to nothing.

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In other words, there is no difference from those whom claim a gigantic explosion created the universe and the druids who worship trees.

Your logic escapes me. See if you can write something coherent.

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The very same theorists who proclaim the Big Bang theory and the theory of evolution as science,  No, they hide behind the name SCIENCE.

Again, largely gibberish.

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Atheism

Good! You managed to spell it right this time.

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is the biggest cult of them all, teaching and following man made doctrines and trying to dress their theories as Science.

I already explained this to you: atheism is NOT a belief system; it is LACK OF BELIEF IN ANY GODS, due to lack of evidence for any gods.

Is lack of belief in Thor or Zeus or Brahma a belief system? Of course not. Do you believe in them? No. Does that make you and atheist? Yes!

So you, Brother Rando, are an atheist. The only difference between you and me is that I believe in one less god.

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The Big Bang is not science but a theory and will always be just that.

I already explained this to you: a scientific theory is -- well, just Google it and try to learn something.

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If a scientist had just one single success at building something from an explosion, I'm all ears...  and it be NEWS...  but not one single hypothesis has been achieved.  Not One.

You're wrong, of course. But because you've completely ignored almost all that I've said, I'll let you do your own research.

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Listen, if you don't want to believe in a higher intelligent source, then don't, it won't change my life.

Show me some good, solid evidence, and I'll believe. Of course, you'll have to deal with all the contrary evidence I've set forth in my posts here.

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There's one reason you Personally responded.  You simply got your Pride hurt from the quote below:

::: Scientists are among the most intelligible people on earth, or at least, they would like us to think they are.  One must consider the source, that a significant number of scientists are atheists, denying the possibility of a higher intelligence.

 

LOL! I got my pride hurt by your posting a false, nearly nonsensical claim?

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And just so you know, when teaching an explosion caused the universe and the earth nestled in the perfect position, elements to cause that explosion would have to exist PRIOR to the sudden release of energy.  Things that make you go ummmmmmmmm...  "Lift up your eyes to heaven and see. Who has created these things? It is the One who brings out their army by number; He calls them all by name. Because of his vast dynamic energy and his awe-inspiring power, Not one of them is missing." (Isaiah 40:26)

In a simple-minded way, you're right. While details are far from being worked out yet, scientists are actively working on the mechanisms that "caused" the Big Bang. Of course, having learned everything you know from Watch Tower literature, you're almost completely ignorant of such.

AlanF

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The truth is simple.  Take a look for yourself.  Take Care.

 

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Professor Rajesh Kalaria talks about his work and faith. What stimulated his interest in science? What caused him to question the origin of life?

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Her work with leg prosthetics moved her to question her belief in evolution.

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She questioned whether birth was a miracle or if it had a designer. What conclusion did she draw from her experience as a physician?

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Professor Yan-Der Hsuuw believed in evolution, but changed his view after becoming a research scientist.

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For many years, Dr. Guillermo Perez believed in evolution, but now he is convinced that our body was designed by God. What made him change his mind?

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Why did a doctor and former atheist start thinking about God and the meaning of life? What caused her to change her view of these things?

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When Dr. Fan Yu began his career as a research mathematician he believed in evolution. Now he believes that life was designed and was created by God. Why?

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His high regard for science led him to question his belief in evolution.

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Two key facts from nature convinced Wenlong He that there is a Creator.

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Frédéric Dumoulin was disgusted with religion and so became an atheist. How has studying both the Bible and the design of living things convinced him that there is a Creator?

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Dr. Hans Kristian Kotlar’s study of the immune system caused him to question the origin of life. How did studying the Bible answer his questions?

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The unexpected complexity of cell chemistry caused Feng-Ling Yang, a scientist in Taiwan, to change her view of evolution. Why?

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Learn the scientific facts she considered and why she has faith in GodÂ’s Word.

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What made this researcher reconsider the origin of life, and what convinced him that the Bible is from God?

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Why does Professor Gene Hwang find that his religious beliefs do not conflict with his secular studies?

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Music itself convinced this former atheist to believe in a Creator. What led him to believe that the Bible is from God?

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He was born under a Communist regime. The idea of a Creator was considered to be nonsense. Notice what changed his mind.

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Read why one scientist changed his view of the Bible, evolution, and the origin of life.

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Brother Rando posted a number of personal faith testimonies by JWs, and wrote:

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The truth is simple.  Take a look for yourself.  

So let's take a look at the testimonies. But first, let's nail down a couple of important definitions and other considerations.

The "Argument From Design" (aka the Teleological Argument; see

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) is the argument that God's existence is demonstrable from the perceived evidence of design in the universe. But the argument, in the form that results in the claim that the Christian God is the Supreme Designer, amounts to a string of special pleadings: that a perception of design implies actual design; that such perceived 'design' implies a designer; that such a 'designer' is supernatural; that this supernatural designer is the Christian God. The argument also begs the question of the origin of this 'designer'. It implies that this 'designer' is more complex and difficult to explain than anything it supposedly designed. In the end, The Argument From Design is self-defeating.

The "Argument From Personal Incredulity" takes the form "I can't believe P, therefore not-P." It is a specific form of "the argument from ignorance" and is a form of the fallacy called non sequitur (

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). This reference explains things nicely:

<< The divine fallacy is an informal fallacy that often happens when people say something must be the result of superior, divine, alien or supernatural cause because it is unimaginable for it not to be so. A similar fallacy, known as argument from incredulity, appeal to common sense, or personal incredulity, asserts that because something is so incredible or difficult to imagine it is wrong. Arguments from incredulity are called non sequiturs. Arguments from incredulity can take the form:

1. I cannot imagine how P could be true; therefore P must be false.
2. I cannot imagine how P could be false; therefore P must be true.

Arguments from incredulity happen when people make their inability to comprehend or make sense of a concept their argument. >>

This argument is also a form of the fallacious "argument from ignorance" (

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)

The Argument From Design and The Argument From Personal Incredulity, with respect to evolution, abiogenesis, the existence of gods or God, etc., are closely related. "I can't imagine how the eye was not designed" invokes both Arguments. Whether such skepticism is justified is a completely separate question. We will see that each of Brother Rando's example testimonies invoke these fallacies as if they are conclusive.

Theistic Evolution
(cf.

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)

The Watch Tower Society is adamant that "theistic evolution" is anti-biblical. In some forms it certainly is, but in other forms it is not. The JWs specifically ignore the latter.

The September, 2006 Awake! contains the Watch Tower Society's only discussion of theistic evolution, in an article on the question "Did God Use Evolution to Create Life?" It is a classic example of the way the Society misrepresents a subject by creating a caricature of it, and then knocks down that caricature. The caricature is that all theistic evolutionists deny the Genesis story of the creation of mankind, and so theistic evolution must be wrong. The fallacy here is that many theistic evolutionists believe that God did something magical with the two people called Adam and Eve, such that they were something new in the line of humans that stretches back several million years. Nothing in that magic contradicts Genesis, so the Society's argumentation is blatantly fallacious.

Of course, the above says nothing about whether the supposed "magic" involved in God's creating Adam and Eve represents reality. But then, much in Genesis and the Bible generally demonstrably does not represent reality.

 

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Rajesh Kalaria
A Brain Pathologist Explains His Faith

Kalaria studied the pathology of the human brain in college and beyond. He does not seem to have studied evolution at a college level, although it was likely touched on in his biology and pathology courses.

Awake! pulls the old bait-and-switcheroo on its readers. First it asks Kalaria, "Why did you accept the teaching of evolution?" He answers that he accepted evolution because others around him, including teachers and professors, did so. Awake! then switches the topic to a different one: "In time you reconsidered the question of the origin of life. Why?" Kalaria answers that some JWs explained some Bible teachings to him. He gives no specific answer to the question asked. Awake! then mixes up evolution and the origin of life (termed abiogenesis) with this question: "Did your medical knowledge hinder your belief in creation?" Kalaria responds that living things are well-designed and complex, and that it makes no sense to him that such complex things are the product of an "unguided process".

Two take-away points from this: Awake! deliberately mixes up evolution and abiogenesis -- two independent areas of science that have completely different lines of evidence; Kalaria accepts creation over Awake!'s caricature of evolution because of the "Argument from Design" -- an argument put forth for thousands of years and philosophically debunked 250 years ago by philosopher David Hume.

Awake! then asks Kalaria: "Why did you become one of Jehovah’s Witnesses?". He says that there is evidence that the Bible is God's Word, such as its accuracy on scientific matters, its accuracy of prophecy, etc. But those two claims are demonstrably wrong.

The book of Genesis lists the order of creation of life as plants, then all sea life and all flying creatures, then all land animals. But the fossil record and genetics show a very different story. First came plants and then animals in the sea, then plants on land, then animals including insects on land, then some flying insects, then more animals on land, then the extinction of 96% of sea life and 80% of land life, then more of all kinds of life for the next 250 million years, with major extinctions in between. So Genesis' order of creation is wrong.

Furthermore, Kalaria became a JW in the early 1970s, when the Watch Tower Society was teaching that each of the six creative days of Genesis were 7,000 years long. That means that plant life is less than 34,000 years old, sea life and flying creatures less than 20,000 years, and land creatures less than 13,000 years. So when Kalaria accepted JWs' version of the history of life, and then concluded that when the Bible touches on scientific matters it is consistently correct, he is speaking nonsense, because science has extremely solid evidence that macroscopic life has existed for at least 600 million years.

As for accuracy of prophecy, the Bible contains many unfulfilled prophecies, 'prophecies' and 'fulfillments' that were obviously written after-the-fact, and prophecies that were simply wrong. For example, as I showed in my first post above, Ezekiel falsely prophesied that Tyre would soon be destroyed by the Babylonians and never be rebuilt. But some 250 years passed before it was destroyed by the Greeks, and it was soon rebuilt. It was a thriving city in Jesus' day and today has a population over 100,000. Ezekiel even admits that his prophecy was wrong, and that in compensation for Tyre, God would allow Babylon to sack Egypt and make it desolate for 40 years. While Babylon did attack Egypt, Egypt was never desolate for 40 years during Babylon's rule. In fact, in 548 BCE Egypt's king Amasis formed an alliance with the Babylonians, Croesus of Lydia, and Sparta against the Persians under Cyrus the Great.

Isaiah 23 also contains the false prophecy that Tyre would be destroyed and then be desolate for 70 years, and then be rebuilt. Not only is this inconsistent with Ezekiel's prophecy, but nothing remotely like that occurred until Tyre was temporarily destroyed by Alexander the Great around 332 BCE. And it was rebuilt far sooner than 70 years later.

Jeremiah prophesied that Babylon would be destroyed and never rebuilt. While it was conquered by Persia in 539 BCE, it was never destroyed. Indeed, it was inhabited by many people, including a Jewish community, through at least 700 CE.

Clearly, Kalaria's conversion to the JWs is built on a foundation of sand.


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Irène Hof Laurenceau
An Orthopedic Surgeon Explains Her Faith

Laurenceau says:

"If we see someone skating or dancing, we have to believe that there's a designer who is superior to us. . . It's difficult to imagine that it could be the result of evolution."

Another example of The Argument From Personal Incredulity.


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Monica Richardson
A Physician Explains Her Faith

The article starts off talking about abiogenesis: "Monica Richardson changed her view on the origin of life based not only on her education but also on her experience as a physician." But the video ignores abiogenesis and speaks only about evolution -- another instance of bait-and-switch.

Richardson studied genetics and chemistry in college, but judging by her appearance of age, that was likely in the 1960s when genetics was barely known and evolution was much less well developed in its details than today. Today, the fossil record of evolution is astonishingly consistent with genetics -- which Richardson appears to know nothing about.

Once again we see The Argument From Personal Incredulity from a JW: "I can't believe there is a design without a designer."


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Yan-Der Hsuuw
An Embryologist Explains His Faith

Hsuuw is another JW with relatively little education in evolution. Born in 1966, his college years studying veterinary medicine and embryology taught him things about evolution that are often outmoded today, especially where genetics combines with fossil-based evolutionary ideas.

Hsuuw had always believed in gods of some sort, so it was a small step to home in on the Christian God. Awake! asked him, "Why did you start reading the Bible?" He had two reasons: "of the many gods that people worship, one must be greater than the others. But which one? Second, I knew that the Bible is a highly respected book." Somehow he concluded that praying would be good, and so he prayed for help to learn about the God he had somehow concluded exists. Then he met the JWs, who "showed" him that the Bible is in harmony with science. He gives a typical example from the JW book of stereotypes -- that the Psalmist speaks of all the embryo's parts as being down in writing. While this point is arguable as to its efficacy in "proving God", even any number of such examples do not negate the many places where the Bible is completely at odds with science and with reality, as discussed above. The Koran correctly states many things, but it is the incorrect things that it states that prove it is a man-made book. So it is with the Bible.

In answer to Awake!'s question, "What convinced you that God created life?" Hsuuw states that the complexity of embryo development led him to conclude that life was created. Awake!'s question is a good example of the fallacy known as the False Dilemma -- where only two alternatives are presented, but more than two exist. In Awake!'s imaginary world, there are only two alternatives: evolution/abiogenesis and direct creation by God. But many people of the Christian faith subscribe to various forms of "theistic evolution", where some variety of god creates parts of the universe and life. In an extreme view, a deistic god would have created the universe with the capacity for life to arise by chemical means, and then for evolution by natural selection to produce the life we see today. In another view, a god would have directly created a few life forms and then let evolution by natural selection run its course. In another view, a more hands-on god would have created each "kind" of life separately. Whether that god is the Christian God is a separate issue. In all these cases, one's favorite god would have been responsible for 'creation', and so he would be "The Creator".

But the JWs are far too narrow-minded and doctrinaire to consider such possibilities. They're so closed-minded that Watch Tower publications only once address the question of theistic evolution -- and then they merely say, "it's wrong".

Hsuuw says that his basic reason for believing in the JW version of creation is that when he considers embryological development, "when I consider the beauty of it all, I’m convinced that life was designed by God." Yet another instance of The Argument From Personal Incredulity.


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Dr. Guillermo Perez
A Consultant Surgeon Explains His Faith

Awake! says that Perez, probably in his 60s judging by his picture, once believed in evolution, but now is convinced that the human body was designed by God. He was raised as a Catholic, and accepted the Catholic view that evolution was directed by God. Once again it should be noted that evolution directed by God IS creation.

After some discussion with JWs, Perez liked the "simple logic" of the Bible, which says "every house is constructed by someone, but the one who constructed all things is God." Perez apparently does not understand that that is exactly what theistic evolution is all about.

Awake! continues its pursuit of fallacies with this question: "Did your study of the human body help you to accept creation?" which again implicitly assumes that theistic evolution is not creation and did not happen.

Awake! and Perez go back and forth on the amazing ability of the human body to repair damage. This is yet another implied Argument From Personal Incredulity.

Finally Perez says that he became a JW because they're friendly, they always answered his Bible questions, and he admired their courage in proselytizing. He likes telling people about "our Creator’s promise to end sickness and suffering".

Perez clearly does not have much of substance to say about his JW faith.


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Dr. Céline Granolleras
A Kidney Specialist Explains Her Faith

Awake! says that "Granolleras is a medical doctor in France who specializes in kidney disease. More than 20 years after becoming a doctor, she came to the conclusion that there is a Creator who cares for us." When younger, she did not believe in a God, but thought that eventually scientists will explain how life began without any gods.

Her husband and family became JWs, and many years later she began reading the Bible for herself. Before that, she had a suspicion that the human body was designed, and one day decided that the Bible God had to be the designer of the human blood system and the whole body. Once again we see The Argument From Design and The Argument From Personal Incredulity.

Granolleras claims that she researched all of her questions without reference to JW publications in concluding that the Bible is a book of True Prophecy. In particular she claims that "it shows exactly how much time would elapse between the 20th year of the reign of the Persian ruler Artaxerxes and the year Jesus would present himself as the Messiah." This is the famous "69 weeks" prophecy of Daniel 9:25, which some claim to be 69 "weeks of years" (483 years) from the 20th year of Artaxerxes I (455 BCE) to 29 CE when Jesus was supposedly anointed as the Messiah. The problem with her claim is that very few modern Bible scholars go along with this claim. The claim was common until the late 19th century, but when a variety of ancient cuneiform texts were found in the 1860s through the 1930s, which solidly established the chronology of Persian kings of the 5th century BCE, it became firmly established that the 20th year of Artaxerxes was not 455 BCE but 445 BCE. Many Bible commentators have tried, sometimes seemingly successfully and sometimes not, to reconcile the problem. The point here is that no modern Bible scholars who accept solidly established Persian chronology accept the 455 BCE date. Only the Watch Tower Society and a tiny handful of others continue with the 19th century claim of 455 BCE rather than 445 BCE. Therefore, Granolleras most assuredly used JW literature to "research" this question. Indeed, Granolleras almost certainly found the question in JW literature in the first place.

Having done her research in JW literature, Granolleras concludes: "Finally, I concluded that this Bible prophecy had come true on time and that it must have been inspired by God." Of course, she failed to account for any of the failures of "Bible prophecy" as described above.


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Fan Yu
A Software Designer Explains His Faith

Raised in China during the Cultural Revolution, Yu accepted evolution and was an atheist. Eventually he moved to the U.S. and later learned the JWs' views on the idea of a Creator in the Bible. He apparently learned enough false ideas from the JWs that he performed the usual bogus creationist probability calculations that result in the conclusion that spontaneous formation of proteins is essentially impossible and therefore that abiogenesis is impossible. Of course, this has only to do with abiogenesis, not evolution, and so it is clear that Yu blindly accepted JW teachings rather than learning actual science and only then coming to conclusions. Yet again we see a JW having bought into The Argument From Personal Incredulity.

Yu was also convinced to become a JW because of Bible prophecies that supposedly came true, but of course was never informed of the many that failed.


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Massimo Tistarelli
A Roboticist Explains His Faith

Tistarelli basically accepts The Argument From Design, and obviously never looked into the details of evolution apart from Watch Tower literature. Yet another Argument From Personal Incredulity.


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Wenlong He
An Experimental Physicist Explains His Faith

Raised in China, He was an atheist and accepted evolution until he came in contact with the JWs. He says that he considered the 2nd law of thermodynamics to conclude that there must be an external agent, a Creator outside the universe, and in some unspecified manner this Creator must be the biblical God.

Unfortunately, He's application of the 2nd law of thermodynamics is completely wrong, and a bit of online research will show why. No one reading this post would understand the necessarily simplified explanation that I could give, so I'm not goint to bother.

He's other big point for accepting the Bible was "that the universe and the earth seem to be specifically designed to support life." But this is yet another claim that science has pretty well debunked. Again online searches for the topic will turn up reams of discussion that show why such thinking is wrong.

To show how shallow He's thinking on these things is, consider his comments on the fact that earth's atmosphere "blocks much harmful radiation while allowing other needed radiation to reach the earth’s surface":

<< Why did that fact impress you?

I was intrigued by the introduction to the Bible’s creation account and its reference to light. It states: “God said: ‘Let there be light.’ Then there was light.” Only a very narrow band of the vast spectrum of solar radiation is visible light, but light is vital for life. Plants need it to produce food, and we need light to see. The atmosphere’s special transparency to light cannot be a coincidence. >>

Implicit in He's comments is the idea that life was designed first, and afterwards the earth's environment was designed to fit it. But that's putting the cart before the horse big time! Obviously, since the earth came to exist long before any life did, whatever life came to exist had to fit the earth's environment. Thus, eyes see "visible light" and plants use it to produce food because it's almost the only useful radiation from the sun that gets through the atmosphere to the surface. The rest of He's comments show that he accepted bogus, ass-backwards JW arguments like this without giving them any real thought.

Yet again we see virtually blind acceptance of The Argument From Design.


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Frédéric Dumoulin
“I Am Convinced That There Is a Creator”

Dumoulin, now a pharmaceutical researcher, accepted evolution while growing up an atheist. After he came in contact with the JWs he began thinking about the origin of life -- abiogenesis, not evolution. But there are no scientific theories on abiogenesis, because there is too little information for a scientific theory to be formed. There are various hypotheses and speculations, but these are far from scientific theories. The fact that Dumoulin and Awake! speak in these terms proves that they have no knowledge of what real science says about these things, but only knowledge of what creationists and popularizers of misconceptions say.

Dumoulin says, "I found that whenever the Bible comments on scientific matters, it is accurate." Of course, much of what I've written in this thread proves that, while the Bible is accurate in some things, it is completely wrong in other things, such as the order of creation in Genesis, Noah's Flood, etc.

Dumoulin also cites The Argument From Design as another reason he believes in a Creator and rejects evolution. Of course, neither he nor Awake! mention theistic evolution, which is also creation.


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Dr. Hans Kristian Kotlar
A Biotechnologist Explains His Faith

With Catholic/Protestant parents, Kotlar always believed in God, and practiced prayer. Apparently without really thinking much about them, he accepted evolution and abiogenesis, but confused the two. He was especially interested in "the meaning of life". After meeting two JWs, he asked them if the Bible is in harmony with science. They read Isaiah 40:26 to him:

<< Lift up your eyes to heaven and see. Who has created these things? It is the One who brings out their army by number; He calls them all by name. Because of his vast dynamic energy and his awe-inspiring power, Not one of them is missing. >>

The scripture intrigued him, but all it really says is that God is really powerful, and he created and can count the stars. The New World Translation's rendering of "dynamic energy" is extremely misleading, because it uses the modern scientific term "energy" to translate a Hebrew word meaning "power". A large bull has much power, but that power simply refers to the fact that it is quite strong. That strength has nothing to do with the modern scientific concept of "energy". So Kotlar was deceived by a deliberately misleading scripture translation.

Kotlar says that "it also seemed reasonable that only an intelligent Source of energy could account for the order in the universe." Obviously he bought the misleading translation and applied it to the modern scientific concept of energy, and went much further by adding the idea of "order" to it.

Awake! asks, "Did your view of evolution change?" Kotlar answers with a classic creationist trope:

<< I gradually realized that the various theories of evolution lacked rigorous scientific proof. In fact, they are basically stories invented to explain how the remarkable designs found within living things, such as the immune system, could originate in a mindless manner. >>

Kotlar continues to confuse evolution and abiogenesis. Nor does he understand how science works. Scientific theories rarely contain "rigorous proof". Rather, they are collections of statements that organize basic facts into comprehensible generalizations of how things behave. After someone proposes some organizing ideas, a hypothesis is set forth. This is tested against new data. If all new data is consistent with the hypothesis, the hypothesis is given more weight in the science community. If the hypothesis is inconsistent with new data, it is rejected, and a new hypothesis might be proposed. Hypotheses must also make correct predictions about what new data will be found. Incorrect predictions result in dropping the hypothesis. After a good deal of time has passed, and the hypothesis has passed all tests, it is given the label "theory of whatever". Thus we have the "theory of gravity", "theory of atoms", "theory of evolution". No such theories are "rigorously proved", but are accepted because they have a great weight of evidence behind them. Thus we have "the theory of evolution" but no "theory of abiogenesis".

Kotlar again shows a gross lack of knowledge of scientific practice by labeling "the various theories of evolution" as mere "stories invented to explain how the remarkable designs found within living things . . . could originate in a mindless manner." Having been tested over and over, the explanations that historically led to the Theory of Evolution are not mere stories, any more than the explanations behind the great weight of evidence for Atomic Theory or Gravitational Theory or the Germ Theory of disease are mere stories.

With such gross incompetence in science as his background, it is no wonder that he finally concluded "that life is a product of an intelligent Creator." But this is again The Argument From Design and The Argument From Personal Incredulity.

We should also note that Kotlar apparently became a JW in the late 1970s, when the Watch Tower Society was teaching that life has existed on the earth for no more than 34,000 years. Since this was a prominent JW teaching at that time, Kotlar was surely aware of it, which speaks volumes about his scientific knowledge and competence as a scientist.


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Feng-Ling Yang
A Microbiologist Explains Her Faith

Yang grew up as a Taoist, and accepted evolution as a matter of course. She had the usual repertoire of questions for which JWs claim to have the only real answers (why is there suffering, selfishness, etc.) but could find no answers until she came into contact with the JWs. She "liked mathematics and was fascinated by the way physical and chemical laws govern the structure of things." She believed "the theory of evolution to be a fact" because she "was taught nothing to the contrary." The JWs gave her the Bible's answers to her questions, including "the purpose of life". She "was impressed by the accuracy of its prophecies" and gradually "became convinced that the Bible is from God." Of course, the JWs gave her no hint of the Bible's many scientific inaccuracies or failed prophecies.

In the late 1990s, Yang read the book Darwin's Black Box by Intelligent Design promoter Michael Behe (Awake! does not inform the reader of these details) and became convinced "that the molecular machines in living cells are so complex that they could not have originated randomly" and so she "felt that life must have been created." Of course, other scientists have thoroughly debunked Behe's claims, showing that his concept of "irreducible complexity" in biology is wrong. In the famous 2005 Dover, Pennsylvania "intelligent design" court case, Behe's claims were thoroughly trashed by expert witnesses who showed that he actually lied in court about various aspects of his claims. The judge concluded that Intelligent Design is not a proper scientific idea but a purely religious one, which has resulted in the gradual decline of the Intelligent Design movement.

Behe, by the way, accepts theistic evolution, and that knowledge is likely why Watch Tower publications have not mentioned him since 2008. Those publications have carefully concealed Behe's acceptance of evolution.


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Dr. Paola Chiozzi
A Biochemist Explains Her Faith

In early childhood Chiozzi felt that life was the product of superhuman wisdom, but later doubted God because of her question, "Why would the Creator of so much beauty allow suffering and death?" As a molecular biologist she studied programmed cell death, which somehow convinced her that "this marvelous process was clearly designed by someone who wants us to be healthy." Yet she still was left with the question, "Why do people suffer and die?" When contacted by the JWs, she learned their ideas about "original sin" and concluded that these harmonized with her research: "Since nearly all our cells are regularly replaced, living forever is certainly feasible."

The main problem with this thinking is that it ignores the fact that if programmed cell death due to original sin is what makes people die after 80-some years, and God designed programmed cell death, then God is personally responsible for the fact that mankind dies rather than lives forever. But JWs refuse to think about this, because it means that with one hand God gives life and with the other takes it away, all the while pretending that this is due to some kind of justice. No one besides those indoctrinated in Christianity accepts such blatant nonsense.

Chiozzi accepted that nonsense and became a JW.


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Dr. Davey Loos
A Biochemist Explains His Faith

Here we find an explicit example of where Watch Tower writers deliberately conflate evolution and abiogenesis. Awake! states about Loos:

<< At one time, he doubted the existence of a Creator, believing instead in evolution. Later, he changed his mind. What caused a researcher to reconsider his beliefs about the origin of life? >>

Loos grew up believing in God, but what he learned in college about the origin of living things (natural processes) made it difficult for him "to accept the existence of God." In 1999 a JW gave him a copy of the book Is There a Creator Who Cares About You? which he read. Of it he says, "I was impressed by the quality of the research that it presented. I began to wonder if evolution really did explain the designs seen in nature." That speaks volumes about Loos' competence as a scientist, since the book is largely a recap of material from Intelligent Design publications, which are entirely based on The Argument From Design and The Argument From Personal Incredulity, and entirely motivated by Christian religious convictions.

Loos studied photosynthesis in sea-living cyanobacteria, and due to its "marvelous mechanisms" eventually concluded "that life must have been designed by God." Later, the supposed detailed fulfillment of Bible prophecies convinced him that the Bible is from God, and so, by unspecified reasoning processes, he became a JW. He claims that "our faith is not blind faith that ignores the facts of science". But as shown above, that is simply not true.


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Dr. Gene Hwang
A Mathematician Explains His Faith

Right off the bat, Hwang confuses evolution and abiogenesis: "My school taught the theory of evolution, but no one explained how life itself began." In 1978 he began learning JW teachings. Of the Bible, he says, "I was impressed by its account of how the earth was prepared for human life. The six creative periods described in Genesis, albeit in simple language, seemed to fit the facts." Really "fit the facts"? At that time JWs taught that the creative days of Genesis were 7,000 years long, and that life had existed for no more than 34,000 years. So what "facts" is Hwang talking about? He says, "Still, for many years I did not commit to belief in a Creator."

Eventually Hwang accepted The Argument From Design and became a JW.


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Eldar Nebolsin
A Classical Pianist Explains His Faith

Nebolsin's story is essentially that, for emotional reasons, he accepted JW teachings. Apparently, The Argument From Design played a big part.


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Petr Muzny
A Law Professor Explains His Faith

Before becoming a JW, Muzny went along with mainstream thinking in accepting evolution. Eventually he decided that The Argument From Design was sufficient to accept the existence of a Creator, which in some unspecified manner led him to become a JW.


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Brett Schenck
“I Am Convinced That Life Was Designed by God”

"A retired environmental consultant in the United States", Schenck studied ecology in college, and later, "the interdependency of plants, animals, and the environment." He always accepted the existence of God and respected the Bible. He also accepted evolution, and so was a theistic evolutionist. He did not think that the Bible came from God, but after some JWs convinced him that the Bible is scientifically accurate, he gradually "became convinced that the Bible is the Word of God." Unfortunately, his example of "scientifically accurate" is Isaiah 40:22 and Job 26:7, ('circle of the earth' and 'hanging the earth upon nothing') which was thoroughly debunked above. So Schenck obviously did little by way of careful research in this field.

Among other things, Schenck was convinced that the Bible is the Word of God by its "prophecies that had come true", which overall claim was thoroughly debunked above and has been by many commentators. Eventually, he became convinced that evolution is wrong by The Argument From Design and The Argument From Personal Incredulity.


Note that all of the above testimonies are not based on solid facts, but on the emotional appeal of The Argument From Design and/or the refusal to think about solid facts related to The Argument From Personal Incredulity. Watch Tower literature on abiogenesis and evolution is based on similar considerations.

It's interesting that these testimonies come from people who became JWs after getting their technical educations or after becoming famous. This is apparently an example of the Watch Tower Society trying to argue by weight of authority -- always a dangerous game to play.

Apparently Brother Rando thinks that such personal testimonies based largely on false reasonings support his contention that the Bible is the Word of God. Why he does so in the context of the JW religion is a mystery, though, because he rejects certain teachings clearly set out in the Bible and in Watch Tower literature, as shown in the thread https://www.theworldnewsmedia.org/topic/42501-1914-problematic-not-at-all/?page=2 . Clearly, Brother Rando is an apostate according to Watch Tower standards, because he rejects certain teachings of the Governing Body and of the Bible.

AlanF

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If I was to call your mother 'a monkey' and your father 'an ape' you would have no objection.  You certainly act in an animalistic manner.  You try to impress with smooth words which are nothing more than a grunt and a shrug.  Yet you claim  (Job 26:7) as a mere fallacy.  I think God's Word is highly intelligent and that offends you.

On 2/19/2018 at 2:03 PM, Brother Rando said:

 “He stretches out the northern sky over empty space, Suspending the earth upon nothing;” (Job 26:7)  

 

 

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