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RTBLive Volume 2 is a debate at University of California Santa Barbara, February
20, 2008. Hugh Ross argued that there were 816 fine-tuned characteristics of the universe which must exist in order for humans
to exist on earth. The odds, he said, for this are 10 to the minus 1032. Each of these 816 characteristics has been discussed
in scientific journals.
reply, Harry Nelson, an experimental scientist at UCSB admitted that Ross’ predictions have come true at least for particle
parameters – the fine tuning has been increasing. He argued the fine-tuning proves nothing because the odds of him being
at that UCSB debate were 10 to the minus 750 and the odds of him being in that particular spot were 2 x 10 to the minus 15.
Yet both were true.
in reply to Ross, Kevin Plaxco, professor of chemistry and biochemistry at UCSB, describes himself as a practicing scientist.
He argues that life as we know it is the result of coincidences and not divine intervention. While Ross
and Rana credit divine intervention for explosive complex life suddenly appearing rather than gaps, Plaxco blames both our
lack of knowledge about how godless evolution works and also observer bias. Against all the odds, he says, there is 100% chance
that we exist to discuss life. All scientific knowledge increases, so will our knowledge of how the universe
can become complex without a god.
There is something inherently wrong with comparing the odds of 10 to the minus 1050 from Ross with the counter from
Nelson and Plaxco that those odds have been met coincidentally because there is 100% proof that we now exist.
The difference is intelligence. Ross and Rana submit their odds of life occurring as we now know it apart from any
intelligent guidance. One the other hand Nelson’s odds of being at the UCSB debate on specific plot of ground are controlled
by freewill intelligence. Many months before the debate, Nelson agreed to be in that spot at UCSB for that debate. The odds
were almost 100% because he freely chose to attempt to meet 100% of his appointments. Therefore Nelson’s example proves
Ross’ point rather than disproves it.
discovery that “I exist, therefore the odds that all of Ross and Rana’s parameters have been met coincidentally”
is equally absurd. At this he, as modern man and not Neanderthal, normally looks within himself as a sentient
being and asks, “Who am I? Where did I come from” – not knowing the complexity of the parameters but curious
enough to study them. If he experimentally takes away one element at a time and asks “Will man survive
without this element?” he will confront the great question “Am I here by accident or design.”
DIALOG WITH ATHEISTS
Earl Kelly, PHD
Note: My part of this material has been greatly expanded. I will be glad to update
corrections and/or additional comments. The dialog appeared on Bernie Dehler’s Atheism Forum in the summer of 2010.
1. Atheism’s god
2. Isaiah 52-53;
3. Bible Versions, 4-2-10
4. The Servant of
5. Creation and Morality; 4-10-10
Meaning of Life; 4-17-10
7. Morality; 4-18-10
9. Animals Love; 4-20-10B
10. In Whose Image;
11. Happiness; 4-20-10C
12. Morality; 4-20-10D
13. Morality; 4-23-10
14. Can You Feel Jesus; 5-2-10
15. Science and Theology; 5-3-10
16. Disunity Among Christians; 5-3-10
17. Evolution Biology Book; 5-3-10
18. Complexity in Creation; 5-30-10
19. Atheists Explain Morality; 6-1-10
21. The Goal of DNA; 6-2-10
22. DNA Proves Evolution
23. False DNA Proves Evolution; 6-3-10
1. ATHEISM DOES NOT EXIST; IT HAS ITS GOD It is my studied opinion that atheism is a myth; it does not exist.
This is because “atheism” really does have its own “god.” However loudly they might object, atheists
“begin” with a “something” that superheated, exploded in a “big bang” and, presto, creation.
The problem is that atheists do not attribute any intelligence or morality to their “something” which superheated
Therefore, their pre-existing unintelligent amoral “god” is just
as eternal and is just as much a “god” as the Christian view of an equally eternal but intelligent and moral God. Although it had no intelligence and laws to guide it, it must be the same as a “god” because it had always
existed. It was the eternal amoral unintelligent god of those who reject the concept of an eternal intelligent moral God.
The argument is not between “no god” and “a god”; rather it is between their concept of
an unintelligent amoral eternal “god” and an intelligent moral eternal “God.” Therefore
real atheism does not really exist as long as they believe in an eternal unintelligent amoral existence of something.
Eventually, for no reason
or purpose whatsoever, this (for illustration) “BB-god” superheated, exploded, and was changed into helium-gas.
This now-“helium-gas-god” still had no intelligence or laws guiding it.With no laws guiding it,
the helium-gas-god kept superheating and exploding until fusion produced heavier and heavier elements. Somehow this non-intelligence
began obeying the laws of fusion which must have also existed eternally since it had no intelligence. Finally, after less than 20 billion years of following extremely
complex pre-existing laws of fusion which appeared accidentally, the fused elements accidentally joined themselves into extremely
complex proteins, DNA, RNA and intelligent life itself.
Therefore, the eternal unintelligent
amoral god of those who do not believe in an eternal intelligent moral God created life as we know it today.
That is their story and
they seem to be sticking to it. Is that not exactly how atheism explains the origins of life? If not, please correct me. Most of us explain intelligence by believing
in an Intelligent Creator God.
2. ISAIAH 52-53: The topic was Isaiah 52 and 53. Conservative Christians quote these O.T. passages as evidence of a
God who foresees the future. Liberals and atheists claim they only describe either national Israel or a contemporary prophet
and not the Messiah.
There is nothing about scourging or crucifixion in the description of the Suffering Servant, nor any mention of the sins of
the world, only of the sufferings of Israel.
Kelly: You admit too much. Even if it is only a reference to the sins of Israel, the suffering
servant is an innocent sin-offering substitute for Israel. You cannot be a substitute for yourself. Isa 52:14 “His visage was so marred more than any man”.
“Appearance was so marred, beyond human semblance” RSV. Note: I include the RSV because it is
accepted by most liberal churches and is a good, though not my favorite, translation. While the text does
not say HOW the Suffering Servant was marred, scourging fits the description as well as your own speculation of disease. Like
it or not, it is still a good description of what happened to Jesus.
Babinski: If you were to ask several translators what Isa. 52:14 means
in context it implies his face was ugly due to disease.
Kelly: Do you realize what you are saying when you use the word “imply”?
To which “translators” are you referring? None of the major legitimate translations contain the word “disease.”
Look at 53:5 – “wounded, bruised, stripes”; it does not sound like a disease to me. You want to hold me
to an exact literal translation but you want me to accept your loose interpretation.
Babinski: You can compare translations and commentaries. But don't
just read Evangelical ones; try Jewish ones and Cambridge and Oxford and Anchor Bible commentaries as well.
Kelly: The RSV is the standard
translation for Liberals. The Jewish, Cambridge, Oxford and Anchor comments are liberal and PREJUDICED. They do not assume
that an Omniscient God can know the future and they go to great extremes to cover up any prophecy. I see no need for them
to even worship a God who is so feeble. They should disband and spend their money on better things.
Babinski: According to The Bible in Basic
English: "As peoples were surprised at him, And his face was not beautiful, so as to be desired: his face was so changed
by disease as to be unlike that of a man, and his form was no longer that of the sons of men." Kelly: You are basing your argument on a very loose paraphrase
and not on a true translation of the Hebrew. I reject the Basic English just as I reject Evangelical paraphrases. They do
not even pretend to be honest to the Hebrew and Greek.
Babinski: A few verses after that The Amplified Bible, chapter 53:3-4 describes this servant: "3
He was despised and rejected and forsaken by men, a Man of sorrows and pains, and acquainted with grief and sickness
Thanks for reminding me how dishonest the Amplified and paraphrase Bibles are. Read the same text in the NAS, RSV,
NIV and KJV. The Amplified has added the words “and sickness.”
Babinski: 4 Surely He has borne our griefs (sicknesses, weaknesses,
and distresses) and carried our sorrows and pains [of punishment], yet we [ignorantly] considered Him stricken, smitten, and
afflicted by God [as if with leprosy]." The brackets are from the Amplified Bible translation itself.
Kelly: Again the words “sickness”
and “as if by leprosy” are not found in legitimate translations such as the NAS and RSV. The Amplified system
gives every possible interpretation of a word rather than considering context. You resort to questionable versions in
order to argue against God’s ability to know and prophesy the future. Why do you stop at 53:4 and omit 53:5? This kind
of omission is not acceptable.
Babinski: In brief, the servant cannot refer to Jesus because the subject of Isaiah 53, was sick, was buried with
the wicked (plural) and had children and long life.
Kelly: Amazing! You totally ignore and will not comment on 53:5 which disagrees with your assertion. Your conclusions
are reached after only allowing your own chosen loose paraphrases and ignoring the Hebrew and much more reliable liberal texts
such as the RSV. Mt 8:17
says Jesus bare our sickness as he was healing them during his daily ministry. There is no mention that such healing marred
him. (1) It is only your interpretation using a bad translation which says that the servant of Isaiah was sick. Why do you
ignore honest attempts to translate the Bible and instead use admitted paraphrase and attempts to re-word the Bible? (2) Do
you realize that Jesus was buried among the wicked because, for the most part, the rich wicked rulers were the only ones who
could afford expensive above-ground sepulchers?
Babinski: Jesus does not fit any of these. Also read the previous chapters in Isaiah that
refer to The Servant, and notice they are referring to the people of Israel, though a single individual prophet might also
be in view perhaps Jeremiah.
“They are referring to the people of Israel” differs from “though a single individual prophet might also
be in view, perhaps Jeremiah” You have left the door open wide for my argument. Isaiah 52 and 53 cannot possibly refer to the “people of Israel”
because: (1) In 53:3 the general population “despised him.” (2) In 53:4 he bears the sins of the people who considered
him “smitten of God.” (3) In 53:5 he was punished for the people. Isaiah 53 cannot possibly
refer to Jeremiah the prophet because: (1) The “we” of 53:6 included the speaker and (2) The LORD has laid on
him the iniquity of “us” all (also RSV). Isaiah 53:8 cannot refer to either the nation of Israel or the prophet
Jeremiah. Isa 53:8 …
for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken.Isa 53:8
… he was cut off out of the land of the living, stricken for the transgression of my people? RSV When the writer includes himself, he uses “we.” When
speaking of Messiah, he uses “he” here. Isa 53:9 And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither
was any deceit in his mouth. The
Messiah died and was buried among the rich (53:9). And, unlike, Israel or any of its prophets, Messiah was innocent and sinless
(no deceit). Isa 53:10a Yet it
pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin … In 53:10a God Himself made the suffering
servant a sin offering. You cannot possibly say that
this is either the people in general or a prophet. Be honest to the text. Isa 53:10b … he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the
pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand. In 53:10b “prolong his days” follows being “cut off out of the land of the living” in 53:8;
being buried in a “grave” in 53:9 and being “made a sin offering” in 53:10a. None of these terms can
apply to the nation or to a prophet.
Babinski: But it's a human figure, described in human fashion with no divine overtones.
Kelly: You ignore my arguments
completely and pawn them off as “human figures.” How would you appreciate it if I treated your arguments in such
a manner? “No divine
overture”??? Your opinion ignores the text. In 53:1 “the LORD revealed.” In 53:4 “smitten of God.”
In 53:6 “the LORD laid on him the iniquity of us all.” In 53:10 “it pleased the LORD to bruise him.”
The chapter is overflowing with divine overture.
Babinski: … Reading everything as a metaphor for Jesus is just not playing fair with the
Kelly: You have ignored
all the arguments AGAINST interpreting the texts as either Israel itself or a prophet. I am waiting for a verse by verse rebuttal.
3. LIBERAL BBLE VERSIONS4-2-10
Babinski: Hi Russell, Do you believe in all honesty that Oxford,
Cambridge, as well as the incredibly detailed Anchor Bible series (based on the original languages, including parallels of
phrases and ideas from nearby cultures), are all gravely “prejudiced” because they do not attempt to harmonize
and fill in the blanks as you do?
Kelly: They are prejudiced because they begin their research with the pre-supposition that the
Scriptures are not inspired by God and there is no such thing as predictive prophecy. Therefore, their energy is used attempting
to prove their false presupposition rather than looking for the existence of a personal God who reveals Himself in the Bible.
Oxford, Cambridge and Anchor begin with the assumption that God is not capable to preserving his
communication with mankind; they look for ways to explain prophecy; and they look for ways to explain miracles. They look
at the Bible as mythology and treat it as any book. They are like a criminal investigator who is convinced of a persons’
guilt and overlooks clues which might exonerate him. On the other hand, I begin with the assumption that God is omnipotent and omniscient and fully capable of preserving
his communication with mankind with truth. When it comes to your own atheist viewpoint, you conveniently disagree with BOTH liberal and conservative Christian
views (and even liberals and conservative Jewish views) and use their views to counter mine. In reality an atheist does not
agree with either but you pretend to agree with the weaker position if it strengthens your own. Then you plan to devour the
last one standing -- divide and conquer.
Westcott and Hort, the English theologians who used modern criticism determined before they began
that they would destroy the Textus Receptus and nothing would change their minds. Truth and honesty were the first casualties.
Babinski: Do you accept
the prima facia and contextual meaning of words and passages in the OT, or reject them whenever they conflict
with what you already believe concerning conservative Christian doctrines and dogmas?
Kelly: This is a strange question coming from an
atheist who does not accept the prima facia claim of the Bible that God exists and that a personal God had at least
something to do with the writing of the Bible. One of the basic definitions of prima facia is “literal,” or “face value.” I understand
the “we” of Isaiah 53:4 literally as the nation Israel. I understand “wounded, bruised, stripes, for our
iniquities, for our chastisement” of 53:5 literally. I understand the “we” of 53:6 literally to refer to
both the nation and the sinner-prophet, and the “him” to refer to another – the Messiah. I understand “he
was cut off out of the land of the living” in 53:8 and “grave” as a reference to death of “him”
in 53:6. I understand “the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all” in 53:6 and “for the transgression
of my people” in 53:8 as a literal reference to vicarious sacrifice of one other than the nation or the prophet (a sin
offering must be sinless). And I understand literally that “his soul an offering for sin” means a sinless sacrifice
which does not describe either the nation or a prophet. Now, please tell me how YOU explain those verses to refer to either
the nation or a prophet if you dare.
Like any reasonable person, I would reject that which does not make literal sense. On the other
hand, as an atheist, you reject all of it because you do not think that God had a hand in any of the Bible.
I believe in an Omnipotent and Omniscient God. That means that I believe God can preserve anything He chooses to preserve
for His creation in order to clearly communicate with it.
Babinski: Are you an inerrantist?
Kelly: If God exists at
all, then He must be omnipotent and omniscient. I believe that God is not inept and that He can clearly communicate with me.
Do you believe in God? What are your God’s attributes? Do you think that God is capable of communicating truth? If not,
then your approach to the Bible is just as biased as my own.
Babinski: You ignore the lack of precision in the “prophecies” and
fill in the blanks with your own imagination.
Kelly: You do not believe in any kind of prophecy. My demonstration of the facts from Isaiah 53:4-10
is not a “filling in the blanks.” I eagerly await your response to see how you ignore the obvious conclusions.
You ignore the speaker of the texts in Isaiah.
As you suggested, I have just completed a very slow word-by-word reading of Isaiah 48 to 52 and
do not agree with your conclusions. We agree that: (1) Yes, very often “my servant” is the nation. (2) And yes,
often “my servant” is the prophet. However, (3) at the most critical times “my servant” is either
Messiah speaking or can only refer to Messiah. Babinski: Why not simply admit questions, indeterminacy? Kelly: I run from no question. Ask Bernie. I do not deny anybody the right to question. I object
to you pawning my arguments off to the conclusions of others without discussing the context or sincerely trying to rebut my
Babinski: Jews have their own reading and interpretation which is closer to the prima facia meanings and
contexts of their own Scriptures.
Kelly: Yet their own Scriptures portray them as NOT understanding. God had to send prophets because
the Levites and priests refused to obey God. Jesus was a Jew and came to the Jews quoting Jewish Scriptures. The Bible says
that many Pharisees and priests accepted His message. Judaism is very diverse and accommodates both the extreme left and the
extreme right even in Jesus’ day as seen in the Pharisees, Herodians, Sadducees and Qumran community.
Do I assume that the modern
Jews best know how to interpret their own tradition and Scriptures which condemn them for not listening to God? No.
Why should I when every prophet in the Jews’ own Holy Word CONDEMNED them for NOT understanding it and for NOT obeying
God? Yet you expect me to believe that now, today, they finally understand it correctly. What a twist! They are still rejecting
what their own holy prophets have written.
Babinski: For instance, there is no agreement throughout the Hebrew Bible as to the necessity of
a blood sacrifice. Jewish scholars know this.
Kelly: Then WHY did they bother even building first the Sanctuary and then the Temple? These both
carried on blood sacrifices 24 hours a day. Even today they “sacrifice” a chicken at Passover. I am sure you can
find a few liberal Jews who agree with you but your whole argument seems absurd to me in light of the Temple they adore much
and want to see rebuilt.
And why do liberal Christians who wrote the Anchor, Cambridge and
Oxford articles you love even bother to teach a New Testament theology? They seem to deny that the Old Testament spoke of
Babinski: In the OT sometimes a LIVE goat is prescribed, a scape-goat (a LIVE
one, not a dead one) carries away the sins of the people into the desert. Analogous to the scape goat the OT also prescribed
a LIVE bird be sent away to carry away leprosy and mildew (the ancient Babylonians did something similar with birds).
Kelly: This is not new to
me. See my articles on “Exposing Seventhday Adventism.com” about the scapegoat. In both instances a blood sacrifice
preceded the live goat and live bird symbolically carrying the sins away never to be seen again. Your two aberrations do not
change the RULE that a sacrifice was needed.
Babinski: Sometimes in the OT grain is used as a sacrifice instead of bleeding animals.
Kelly: Only for the very
very poorest of the land and it was NOT the general rule (Lev 5:11-13). This only covered minor sins of ignorance and accidental
sins. A blood sacrifice was still required from everybody at Passover. Your crevice search to make a point shows how futile
the argument really is.
Babinski: Sometimes in the OT sacrifices themselves are frowned upon and a repentant heart is what’s required.
Kelly: That was because
of hypocrisy. It’s like the Mafia murdering somebody, confessing the sin, and going out to murder somebody else. The
sacrifice and confession is worthless without a true contrite heart.
Are you attempting to show that the Bible contradicts itself, or are you trying to point out that God
is loving and merciful and provides a means of restoration to fellowship for everybody? Yes, God did from upon all sacrifices
when the ritual replaced what it symbolized. God does not want any sacrifice at all if the heart is not right.
Babinski: Even in the NT
Jesus taught people to pray and expect that God would forgive them as they forgave others. Pretty simple message.
Kelly: What you and most
Christians do not realize is that there never was a sacrifice required for willful deliberate high-handed presumptuous sins
(Heb 10:26). One was at the mercy of God, the judges, and/or the ones offended. The sacrificial system only dealt with sins
of ignorance, omission, and accident. Read the entire book of Leviticus. The synagogues arose when the Jews were in exile
and had no Temple system in place. Passover was the one glaring exception and sins were not confessed over the Passover sacrifice.
Jesus lived and died under
the full jurisdiction of the Law. Jesus would never assume that a Jewish follower would not follow up his/her confession of
minor sins with a trip to the Temple. He even suggested trips to the Temple for sacrifice on many occasions.
Whatever your point is (and
you seem to introduce them indirectly), the sacrificial system was in full effect during Isaiah’s time. This was true
during what liberals call “first Isaiah,” and, if “2nd or 3rd Isaiah” were written
much later (for arguments’ sake) the later writer still believed in the sacrificial system. The idea from Genesis 4,
22 and Exodus 12 that God would supply the substitute sacrifice was still a basic Hebrew doctrine.
ISAIAH 7 AND 9
Babinski: Speaking of Isaiah, why not examine the
"virgin conception" prophecy? It is part of a few “naming of children prophecies” that come right after
chapter 7 in Isa.
Kelly: Go right ahead. Why not examine them? While some argue that
“almah” in Isaiah 7:14 does not limit itself to a physical virgin, the Greek word in Matthew 1:23, parthenos,
does. I am naïve enough to believe that a personal Omnipotent Omniscient God is capable of inspiring the correct Greek
word in the New Testament. Do you think that Hebrew has a word which God could have used in Isaiah 7:14 which only means a
physical virgin? If so, what is it?That can be easily explained by a Greek word “apo-teles-matic.” Many
Old Testament prophecies have a two or three-fold fulfillment. The first was in the context of the people who first heard
it. Even the O.T. prophets often used the name “David” to refer to the Messiah as the son of David. Do not change the subject yet. We are
discussing Isaiah 53 and I would prefer you address all of the arguments I have given in 53:4-10 to prove that the “servant”
there could not possibly be the same as the nation itself.You cannot be a substitute for yourself.
4. THE SERVANT OF ISAIAH
Babinski urged me to go back and read Isaiah chapters 48 to 53 and I did –three times.
It seems that you prefer to read other scholars rather than the texts themselves. We are not discussing other scholars. Rather
we are discussing the Bible.
1. “Servant” is sometimes the prophet. I grant you that.
as a prophet “servant” is actually the mouthpiece for Messiah. This is very common in the Old Testament. You will
not grant me that.
3. “Servant” is often national Israel. I grant you that.
4. “Servant” is MOST OFTEN “righteous Israel” – I will grant you that.
5. However, as “righteous Israel” “servant” is often the Messiah speaking. You will not
6. At very key texts it is clear to me that Messiah cannot possibly be either
Israel or righteous Israel.
Try this experiment. At every controversial text replace the word “servant”
with “Israel” and then with “Isaiah” to see if it fits. Where neither fits, insert the word “Messiah”
and you will see where I am going with this line of argument.
7. You seem unwilling to
discuss these texts which refute your arguments.
For example: In chapter 48 all:
God the Rock and Deliver is speaking to Israel personified.In chapter 49:1 God the Rock and Deliverer
is speaking to Israel personified.Isaiah
49:3 “And said unto me, Thou art my servant,
O Israel, in whom I will be glorified.”
In chapter 49:3 The SERVANT is Righteous Israel
personified. However, this cannot be separated from 49:5-6.
Isa 49:4 Then I said, I have
laboured in vain, I have spent my strength for nought, and in vain: yet surely my judgment is with the LORD, and my work with
Israel personified replies to God. This is not the prophet speaking for himself. He is speaking for another.
49:5 And now, saith the
LORD that formed me from the womb to be his servant, to bring Jacob again to him, Though Israel be not gathered,
yet shall I be glorious in the eyes of the LORD, and my God shall be my strength.
**In chapter 49:5 The SERVANT here cannot be the nation Israel
because the “servant’s” calling is to “bring Jacob [Israel] again to him.”
extremely difficult to imagine the prophet speaking about himself and boasting about his own “glory” even though
his message failed!
“And he said, It is a light thing that thou shouldest be my servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and to restore
the preserved of Israel: I will also give thee for a light to the Gentiles, that thou mayest be my salvation unto the end
of the earth.”
is extremely strong in support of the servant being Messiah. The purpose of the servant is to “to rise up the tribes
of Jacob, and to restore the preserved of Israel.”
The SERVANT is to be a “light to the Gentiles”
and God’s “salvation to the end of the earth.” This cannot possibly refer to either a normal prophet or
to Israel itself.
49:7-26 SERVANT is righteous Israel. However righteous Israel is personified as Jesus in the NT.50 all:
God rebukes SINFUL Israel.
51:1-8 God is speaking to Righteous Israel.
***5l:9-10 The “Arm of the Lord”
is NOT national Israel. It is God, the I Am, who dried up the sea and ransomed sinful national Israel. This is crucial for
understanding 53:l.52:12 God is speaking to national Israel.
52:13 MY SERVANT
is either Righteous Israel or the Messiah.52:14 “Visage-appearance was marred more than any man”
is a far better description of Jesus than it is national Israel or a prophet. Which prophet does this describe?
53:1 The “arm of the Lord” (from 51:9-10) is NOT national Israel.
The “he” and “him” refer to the “arm of the Lord” from 53:1 and not to a prophet or national
Israel. Explain this. 49:9-10
53:3 The “we” is either “all of the prophets”
(which is unlikely) or the “nation Israel” describing one who will die as a sin offering for the sins of the nation
in following verses.
****53:4-8 cannot possibly refer to the nation Israel because the person is suffering as a SUBSTITUE for national
He is the SERVANT 53:11.
****53:5 cannot possibly refer to a sick diseased person because Hebrew Law forbade even such animals
from being sin offerings. And it cannot be national Israel because you cannot substitute for yourself.
He is the
SERVANT in 53:11.
he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and
with his stripes we are healed.”
****53:6 The nation Israel is “we”
and “us all.” It takes a lot of faith to believe that the text is referring to an ordinary but very sick and abused
He is the SERVANT in 53:11.
53:6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned everyone to his own way; and the
LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.
****53:7 There is no OT prophet or person who meets this description. Modern
Hebrews, liberals and atheists have invented an imaginary sick person to explain this prophecy.
He is the SERVANT
He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep
before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth.
***53:8 teaches SUBSTITUTIONARY ATONEMENT. Again there is no historical prophet or person who fits
this description other than Jesus. Again the nation Israel cannot be a substitute for itself.
He is the SURVANT
The most important qualification for a sin offering is spotlessness—sinlessness. This is definitely NOT a description
of the nation Israel or any normal prophet.
He is the SERVANT in 53:11. “Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when
thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD
shall prosper in his hand.”
**** Isa 53:11 MY RIGHTEOUS SERVANT cannot possibly refer to national
Israel because he bears their inquities.
****This text, Isa 53:11, must be speaking
of the same person in the preceding verses and it cannot possibly refer the nation of Israel. 11 He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied:
by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities.
****53:12 No prophet teaches that the nation
Israel will die as a payment for its own sins and that such payment will constitute a sin offering. The prophets were
primarily sent to rebuke Israel if its sins. “Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because
he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made
intercession for the transgressors.”
Can anybody on this forum stop talking about
what others say and discuss the texts themselves in context? I am not impressed with any of your arguments. Explain the servant
of Isaiah 49:5-6; 51:9-10 and 53:4-12. Explain IN CONTEXT how the nation Israel is the suffering servant as Jews teach.
4. CREATION AND MORAILTY
Note: The atheists refused to continue the discussion of Isaiah
50-53 or refute any of my objections. I started a new discussion by asking “What is the meaning of life?:”
Bernie Deshler replied
with a confusing “heavily atheistic.”
Note: Bernie and I have been and still are friends. He was a Christian until a few years ago and
is now an atheist.
Atheistic Creation 1--
Theists began with a “moral God.” Simple to define morality.
1-- A-theists must begin with an a-moral “something” eternal.
eternal a-moral “something” (for no reason) superheated, exploded, and produced hydrogen gas.
A theory literally
based on hot air – sounds funny to me.
At some point your “amoral hydrogen-something” kept on superheating many times resulting in atomic fusion into
heavier elements. There must have been some kind of “law” of fusion in existence which forced or (shall we say”
“caused” this to happen.
4—After eons something “living” by sheer chance emerged from your now “amoral
soup of elements” and eventually mindlessly evolved into what you dare call sentient moral beings. Your presupposition
must be that, given enough time, anything can happen. This worked fine when the universe was said to have infinite age. However,
now even atheists agree that the universe is only 17 to 13 billion years old and that is not a lot of time to explain how
the complexity of life happens. Your explanation is “great leaps forward” of mutation with no apparent reason.
Sorry, but your explanation
of how life began takes more faith to believe than to believe in a preexisting eternal moral God. The “mistakes”
you find in the Bible are nothing compared to the mistakes I find in your theory. Morality What a-moral force keeps you from cheating
on your wife or keeps your wife from cheating on you? Oh, but it is not “cheating” or even “sin” –so
nothing is wrong with it. Your logic can only lead to moral chaos. If you expect to convince me of becoming a moral atheist you must first prove to me where and when
in the evolutionary accident morality originated.
6. THE MEANING OF LIFE
Note: One of my complaints with those who dialog with me is that their replies are long, rambling, and
say very little. Unfortunately, I did not save most of their replies. A lost reply said that Christian missionaries serve
“for the greater hope of gaining heaven.”
This is my reply. First,
Christian missionaries do not serve “for the greater hope of gaining heaven” unless they do not understand that
salvation is not obtained by one’s own good works. The statement does not describe true Christianity.
Second, what is happiness
to an atheist? Is it a chemical reaction caused by eons of evolution? If that is true, then happiness is genetic. How do secular
humanists explain the existence of “happiness” and “love”?
Third, are animals “happy” when they are well-fed,
safe and “contented” with food, safety and shelter?
Fourth, is human “happiness” different from animal “contentment”?
If so, is it proof of the existence of a soul and a Creator God?
Fifth, the example given by one of them of a secular humanist is selfish and
self-serving rather than self-less-ness and the desire to serve others. How does evolution explain the desire to help others
in order to gratify self? Is this found outside of humans? If not, does it prove the existence of a Creator?
7. MORALITY, 4-18-10
Marie said: “Natural
selection is not the most positive way to go about it, but it gets the job done.”
Russ: Natural selection is unguided accidental chance because your
understanding of “nature” has no intelligence behind it. That means that there is nothing either “positive”
or “negative” behind what happens and that murder and rape are just as much part of “nature” as couples
paring up and getting married. Without an intelligent creator, there can be no moral standard. Murder can be neither
right nor wrong, moral nor immoral.
Marie said “Greed is about hoarding resources, which keep you alive long enough to reproduce.”
Russ: Insects, birds and
animals would call this “survival” –not greed. It is not “right” or “wrong” for
them. I suppose you think we should stop calling humans “greedy” for the same reason. You have no basis for calling
anything “right” or “wrong”, “good” or “bad.” Rather than being “immoral,”
you are “a-moral.”
Marie: Paranoia is also about keeping you alive long enough to reproduce …
Russ: Your mindless evolution-creator god has made
some aggressive, others greedy, others, lusty and others paranoid in order to achieve the same purpose of survival. Like I
said before, after eons of trial and error, instead of one of these achieving more success and replacing the others, we still
have all four. One would think that, after eons of survival of the fittest, only the most successful would still survive.
Marie said: Fortunately,
these are counterbalanced by another trait we have passed on.
Russ: I’m sorry, but you are not in a place to use the word “fortunately.”
You must stick with “accidentally.” “Fortune” implies something “good” happening instead
of something “bad” and natural selection has no conscience to do distinguish between and define “good”
and “bad.” Everything must have the same non-value.
Marie said: Groups whose members value morality or practice unselfish
altruism are more likely to survive and thrive, passing on the genetic traits that encourage ethical behavior such
as empathy, fairness and generosity.
Russ: You are destroying your own argument for natural selection. Because I begin with the assumption
of a moral God, I can use words like “morality,” “selflessness (altruism),” “ethical,”
“empathy,” “fairness” and “generosity.” You cannot use those terms without imbuing natural
selection (unintelligent dirt) with a goal of morality to pass along. How can non-intelligence have a goal?
Marie said: Brain scans have shown this genetic
legacy in humans, and it's probably present in other mammals as well.
Russ: That, my friend, does not in any way prove that it got there
because of mindless amoral natural selection. Your arguments are making my convictions stronger. What gives you the authority (right or wrong) to discipline your
children? Could it be that what YOUR amoral evolved mind calls “disobedience” and “wrong actions”
are only natural selection evolving into its next phase into better sentient human beings?
8. MISSING LINKS; 4-20-10
Bernie asked: Do you accept or deny that humans biologically evolved from animals?
Russ: I totally deny it.
I am using your own line of evolutionary logic to dispute your conclusions. I believe that God created each
and every major genus, kind, or species and then allowed them to have very widespread changes within each kind. I call this
speciation. Horses are always
horses or zebras; dogs are dogs; cats are cats; Neanderthal man was an amoral biped and not a homo sapien. Evolution from one major species into another has never been proven
because it is not provable. Do you have any scientific proof that one major species has evolved into another major species?
There is no such thing as a “missing link” – there are tens of thousands of missing links between all major
species and you very well know it.
9. ANIMAL LOVE; 4-20-10
Bernie to Russ: Did you also notice that animals have everything to a lesser degree? They are also
self-aware, show love, altruism, etc.
Russ: Animals do not sit and meditate about who and what they are and why they are here. Animals
do not seek a higher intelligence and have worship rituals. Animals do not have guilty feelings when they do wrong. But YOU,
Bernie Dehler, have been made in the image of God.
Bernie: (but they can't live forever according to Christian theology- that's only for humans).
The difference is we have a more complex brain so we are smarter.
Russ: You are much smarter than your arguments sound. Again the “difference”
is that “homo sapiens” have been created in the image of God. They have a “soul” which yearns to know
if there is more to life than a few years. Unlike animals, humans seek for a meaning in life. Why? Is this where evolution
has brought you? – to seek after something other than self and a few years?
Bernie: We have a choice, be an optimist or pessimist. There is
much to experience in life with a positive attitude
Russ: No you don’t. Using your own doctrine, you are the product of amoral unintelligent
soup and you are only what your genetic makeup has pre-programmed you to be. In your world it is neither right nor wrong to
be an optimist or a pessimist, a murderer or a protector, a loving father or a child-abuser. If your genes allow you to be
positive, you will be positive. If your genes allow you to be negative, you will be negative. That is your genetic world and
you have no control over it.
Bernie: Some people think it is ironic how some Christians cling to every second of life as possible, yet they are
supposed to believe in a coming eternal paradise. I guess it shows they don't really believe it."
Russ: I know the feeling. I am ready to die
and not afraid of dying, but I strive to leave something positive of me behind. The answer for me is that I want to accomplish
more before I go ahead to meet my departed loved ones. On the other hand, for you everything is final. No future, no seeing
your lost loved ones, no hope –just turning back to dirt. It would seem even selfish to shed a tear. My friend, Bernie -- YOU love. You KNOW that you love. You know
deep down inside that it is RIGHT (beyond genetics) to be faithful to your wife. You know deep down inside that it is WRONG
(beyond genetics) to murder, steal and lie. That, my dear friend, is the “image of God” within you screaming for
attention. You are not really an atheist because you love, care for others and are a really GOOD person. You are more than
the sum of your genes and you know I am right.
10. MADE IN WHOSE IMAGE
"Animals do not sit and meditate about who and what they are and why they are here. Animals do not seek a higher intelligence
and have worship rituals. But YOU, Bernie Dehler, have been made in the image of God.
Bernie: We do that because
of the advanced cognitive abilities we have.
Russ: So you admit that it is our “advanced cognitive abilities” which make us different
from animals and make us curious enough to seek a Creator. Therefore the most advanced evolved amoral creature has finally
reached the point in evolution where he/she realizes that there must be more to life than chewing on a bone and playing fetch.
Bernie: We don't chew
on bones like puppies do because we don't have their kind of teeth.
Russ: Is that the only reason? I wondered why I don’t feel
the urge to chew on bones. It is simply because I don’t have the right kind of teeth. Wow! Some logic. A dog can sleep
all day and do absolutely nothing. Most humans cannot. We want to make something out of our lives and contribute to the lives
of others in a non-selfish way. Evolution cannot explain that.
Bernie: The other animals don't contemplate deeply like we do because they
don't have our complex brains.
Russ: Again, according to your own amoral evolution doctrine, the more “complex”
we become, the more we realize that there must be more to the meaning of life. Perhaps the next step in human evolution is
to reject secular humanism. What guided the lower forms to evolve more complex brains? – perhaps they
were bored with chewing on bones and sleeping, or perhaps they wanted to have meaning in life which transcended death itself.
Bernie: But they do have
enough brain power to make social rules, show altruism, show intelligence, and show love. And you must think it is all pointless
for them too.
But they have not reached the peak of evolution which humans have reached; they are not at the place where they reach beyond
life and death as we know it and desire to worship something greater and more awesome than themselves. Therefore
the more evolved one becomes, the more one realizes that there really is a difference between good and bad, right and wrong
(which amoral evolution cannot explain). Complex intelligence suddenly decides that it is time to seek a Creator because life
has no meaning otherwise. God is love.
Bernie: I just recognize that our lot is the same as the animals, even though we have the creativity
to invent god(s).
How sad and depressing. With your genius mind in some areas, you have just lowered yourself to the same level as mere animals.
Why not just move into a doghouse and wait for them to come into heat. Forget about love and marriage. Listen to yourself. “We have the creativity.” Secular
Humanism makes MAN God! And when man fails, man sees himself as a failure and seeks for meaning in a Creator God other than
himself. You are making my argument stronger.
Bernie: … esp. to comfort us in the face of the psychological terror of contemplating non-existence,
because our survival instinct is very strong.
Russ: Personally, as a Christian, I have no “psychological terror of contemplating non-existence.”
God put that seeking into you. You have no cure for psychological terror because MAN is evil and devours his own kind. You
fear contemplating non-existence because you see no logic in existence. Survival makes no sense if you are only the result
of eons of amoral mindless mutations. Therefore you seek sense elsewhere in a Creator God.
It is god who is made in the image of man. Jehovah is the tribal god of the Israelites. The newer manifestation of the Jesus
god is for everyone.
Russ: Really? You have bought into the whole pie of liberal humanism.
The universal god of both Hebrews and Gentiles in the Old Testament was either known as El-o-him(multi-dimensional God)
or El-El-yon (Most High God). God appeared to Israel as its unique covenant Protector as Yah-weh; that is true.
However, in the New Testament God again revealed Himself as El El-yon, Most High God of all nations. I discovered
and revealed that in my book. If
God were a figment of our own imagination, and if man made God in his own image, then I ask you: Why would man invent a God
who has a higher moral standard than himself that he cannot possibly achieve? Would you make a ‘god’ in your own
image who tells you to do something which is far more moral than you desire to be? I would not. I would set moral standards
which are attainable so I could exalt myself when they are reached.
11. HAPPINESS; 4-20-10
To Marie: Yes, much of our disposition is
genetic. I agree. So also is some predisposition to murder, rape, steal, be a homosexual, depression and most other traits
we have. However, since acquired abilities do not become genes, why do we even bother to “correct” the bad traits? My question to you is Whatever happened
to ‘survival of the fittest’? I thought that evolution’s goal is to cull out body parts and characteristics
which are inferior and harmful to the species.Yet, after eons of trial-and-error and rejection of what is not
the “best” we still have murder, rape, lust, greed and paranoia along with happiness. Your evolution-god has failed.
How much more time does your evolution-god need before it gets rid of negative genes?
12. MORALITY; 4-20-10
Russ: What a-moral force keeps you from cheating
on your wife or keeps your wife from cheating on you?
Bernie: How about the principle of 'do
unto others as you would have them do unto you' (the saying from Jesus which Jesus copied from others before him).
Russ: I ask an amoral atheist
a moral question and you come back with a quotation from the most moral person who ever lived. You should
outright reject Jesus’ answer because it was prompted by revelation from a moral God. Why don’t you quote a fellow
amoral atheist for the answer? Why? Why not kill and rob them if you think you can get away with it? If you
are a-moral and nothing in and of itself is right or wrong, then “do unto others BEFORE they do it unto you” should
be preferable. That way you can enjoy the results of your selfish until they caught up with you.
Bernie: In the grand scheme (cosmic scale
over eons of time) of things I do think life is meaningless, because I believe there is no god(s).
Russ: Therefore your answer quoting Jesus
was insincere and mocking. How can society trust you to (1) be a spouse, (2) be an honest banker, (3) be a Boy Scout leader,
(4) guard something or (5) be a politician. You have no moral grounds to be honest.
Bernie: However, since we find ourselves here, we can develop good
rules for society (to enable thriving), and enjoy life."
Russ: “Good”? What is “good” to an atheist? To a vigilante
or comanchero “good” is taking what you want to enable thriving so you can enjoy life to the exclusion of others.
Do you ever look at yourself in the mirror and ask “Who am I? Why am I here? Why am I different
from animals? Why did I evolve to become self-aware?” If things go wrong and your lose your family, house and job, what
is keeping you from suicide?
Theists began with a “moral God.” Simple to find morality.
Bernie: Not simple at all for the theist. Theists also argue over
gay rights, abortion, slavery, women rights, euthanasia, racial issues, etc. Being a theist doesn't really seem to help.
The only theists who think it is simple also think that other theists are wrong and misguided.
Russ: At least we can engage each other from a perspective
of what is morally right and wrong. Amoral atheists merely throw up their hands and say “Who cares? It just happened
On the surface, being a theist helps tremendously. With a little digging, I think we find it doesn't help at all. All
answers are superficial."
Russ: Theists argue about what a moral God would do. Amoral atheists have no motivation to even care who wins or loses
an argument over morality.
13. MORALITY; 4-23-10
Russ: "You love and protect your families but cannot figure out why."
Bernie: I think I know why. But I also don't see a logical
need to believe in God in order to love and protect my family. How does it follow to think that you need to believe in God
in order to love others?
Russ: If you know why, then tell me why. You are not giving me your logic; all you say is “I think I know why.”
I say that you need to believe in God in order to love BECAUSE mindless amoral dirt cannot produce love, intellect or morality. What is love? Wikipedia says “Love is an emotion of strong affection and personal attachment. In philosophical context, love is a virtue representing all of human kindness, compassion, and affection … Love may also be described
as actions towards others (or oneself) based on compassion or as actions towards others based on affection.”
When I think of the words, “emotion, kindness, affection,
virtue, and compassion,” the last thing that comes to my mind is genetics. Love is the opposite of what selfish altruistic
atheism would have as a goal; it abandons self in favor of concern for others.
Amoral Eternal (MAE-god) soup which atheists say produced life cannot possibly produce any meaning."
That is true. [Referring only to the last statement.]
Ruse: You said “That is true” and then you proceeded
to show that it is NOT true. Are you listening to yourself? Again, you are not explaining your logic –how you reach
Bernie: But humans have the brain power to observe the world and have consciousness,
so we can make meaning for our lives while we exist. We are not mindless soup.
Russ: This is how you create god in your own image. You, and not
God, decide what is moral all by yourselves. How can no-intelligence create intelligence? The most simple life forms are really extremely complicated combinations of extremely
assembled elements. And not even the most “simple” life-sustaining and reproducing life form can be produced in
a laboratory. First you say that
life has no meaning. Second, you say that mindless amoral eternal matter produced life. And now you say that we can make meaning
for our lives because of advanced brain power. I see you contradicting yourself when you flow from one to another –from
no meaning to meaning, from no morality to morality, from no intelligence to intelligence. It is like saying “it cannot
possibly happen, but it does. Just believe it.” Oh, but that means “have faith in the ability of nothing to produce
intelligent meaning in life. Again,
why is it that the advanced brain power of humans seeks after a Creator god? Until you acknowledge the existence of an Eternal Moral and Personal God, you
only have your pity parties.
Bernie: I don't see how acknowledging the existence of mythical creatures solves
Oh, so God is a myth but your mindless amoral eternal god [call her MAE] is real – now that is a mythical creation of
your mind. What kind of DNA is that inside you which pushes you to find meaning in life? Acknowledging the existence of an
eternal moral God saves you the trouble of seeing yourself as a god who will ultimately fail you with no real answers about
the meaning of life. Eccl 12:8,
14 Vanity of vanities, saith the preacher; all is vanity. … For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every
secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil.
Bernie: Did you see my presentation, as the file links were given above? I know you have a scholar's
mind, but your last post looked mostly flippant."
Russ: I saw one paragraph. Send me the link to the whole presentation and I will evaluate it.………………………………………………
14. CAN YOU FEEL JESUS, 5-2-10
Bernie: Can you really feel
Jesus in your heart?
1. Yes, our spirit is able to detect the Spirit of
God within. Rom 8:16 The Spirit
itself beareth witness with our spirit , that we are the children of God:
2. It is the Spirit of God within believers which reveals spiritual
things via the spirit within man. 1
Cor 2:11 For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth
no man, but the Spirit of God.
3. True born again believers actually KNOW that they have been saved. 1 John 5:13 These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of
the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.
4. Atheists and God haters
have rejected God’s revelations of Himself through the things He created.
Rom 1:19 Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed
it unto them.
Rom 1:20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly
seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:
Rom 1:21 Because that, when they knew God,
they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.
Rom 1:22 Professing themselves to be
wise, they became fools.
Just because we cannot literally reach out and touch something does not make it unreal. I cannot see atoms, or electrical
charges, or touch the sun but I know they are real because I feel their presence. A blind man cannot even see the sun, but
the world is still real around him. Love, hate, fear, joy, and contentment are just as real as tangible things.
God is Spirit but He makes
Himself known to those who truly seek Him and to many who are not truly seeking Him. While there have been many Christians
who have become atheists, there are also many atheists who have become Christians.
15. CHANGES IN SCIENCE AND THEOLOGY5-3-10
Bernie: Yes- science constantly changes, or upgrades, as we learn more.
Russ: Science changes more
than theology: geocentric Earth, flat earth, horse-hairs to worms, eating salt tablets to prevent heat stroke; first aid for
Bernie: That is positive, compared to theology that doesn't change.
Russ: Facts cannot change.
God’s character cannot and does not change. He is full of mercy but must punish sin.
Bernie: Old theology says that Adam is the reason
why people died; his disobedience brought death into the world.
Russ: Theology focuses on spiritual death of sentient beings that have self-awareness.
Old theology teaches that Adam sinned and died both physically and spiritually because of his sin. Science says there is no
reason why mankind cannot physically live forever but has not figured it out yet.
Bernie: Now old earthers need to re-work theology because you now
know the earth is very old and there was much death way before Adam appeared.
The argument between old and young earthers revolves around 2 Peter 3:5: “For this they willingly
are ignorant of, that by the word of God the heavens were of old , and the earth standing out of the water and in the
water.” If this means that God created the Earth with apparent age, then He could have also
created it with signs of pre-existing death. I do not deny that there is a problem here. However,
evolutionists rework that theory much more than Intelligent Designers. Death before Adam was not the result of sin. Even Scofield
taught that eons of death preceded a new creation in Genesis One. Neanderthal was not punished because of his sin.
Bernie: In science, we follow
the facts. Change is positive.
Russ: How can you say that change is positive when it is purely by chance mutation? How many eons of years does it
take mutate “negative” non-advancing changes before a real advance actually occurs? Does 17 billion years even
remotely allow for the great diversity and complexity of life? I doubt it. Your previous infinite age of the universe theory
has destroyed your working model. Intelligent Design follows many of the same facts you use but with
a Creator presumption who has specifically created every major species. On the other hand you have thousands of missing links
between species and do not even attempt to explain them.
Bernie: Some science changes are very big, like the change from a geocentric view of the cosmos to a heliocentric
view. But we'll never go back to a geocentric view.
Russ: It took the Church centuries to settle the Trinity doctrine and I doubt
it will ever go back to the Arian view of JWs and Mormons.
Bernie: We now know more than the ancients because of our technology. They were
wrong because they didn't have the data.
Russ: Christians know much more about the Patriarchs because of archaeology which has proven much
of the data to be true. And computers allow us to see how God protected Biblical documents better than ever.
About evolution: we know it happened because of the DNA record when doing genomic studies (re: pseudogenes, fused chromosome
#2, and other data-points).
Russ: No. Common genetics merely proves a common designer. You still have absolutely no clue how species changed from
(1) self-duplication to (2) sexes (an improvement?) to (3) soft shelled eggs in the ocean to (4) hard shelled eggs on land
to (5) live birth to (6) whales giving birth tail first. How many generations of live-birth land creatures which evolved into
live-birth whales died before they decided to give birth tale first and tell their young to hold their breath until they surfaced?
Bernie: How exactly did evolution happen? There are always new mechanisms being discovered, as
to HOW it happened. But we can be SURE it happened without knowing HOW because of the data.
Russ: When Creationists use that kind of logic,
you laugh. John 1:9 That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world. We argue that the data from nature and science shows the necessity for Intelligent Design. And we argue that, in addition
to date, we have an inner light, the image of God, the conscience which witnesses to us of God’s existence. Your viewpoint sounds like faith to me --- a whole lot of faith in an unproven theory. I
hope you do not start all over from nothing every time you decide to upgrade a computer chip. You are not smarter than God.
Bernie: It is like looking at DNA at a murder crime scene. You can see a dead body, a murder victim, and study the
DNA and see the DNA of the attacker on the victim due to a fight. How exactly did they fight, and how exactly was the victim
killed, and was the attacker killed (since the attacker isn't there)? -- we can't know. But we CAN KNOW who the attacker
is because we have his DNA.
Russ: Bad example. Knowing who the attacker is does not prove motive or what made the attacker an attacker. It does
not go to his origins. If the DNA shows that the attacker was an animal or Neanderthal, you would not
prosecute them in court. But you would prosecute a Homo Sapien because the DNA proved that he was morally responsible for
his crime. Why is he moral and the Neanderthal and animal are not? We are right back where we began.
then, THAT evolution happened is a fact, HOW it happened (exactly) is still being uncovered."
Russ: You always start with a pre-existing
“something” which evolved. You do not want to discuss where that “something” came from. Where is the evidence that evolution crossed from one species into another? I only see great change within a species
like Darwin’s finches at Galapagos – they were still all finches. My studies of evolution
show me that you still cannot even prove that ancient erect Homo evolved from one erect Homo into another (whether they did
or not). Your evidence is sadly lacking in every corner of the lab.
16. DISUNITY AMONG CHRISTIANS5-3-10
Tad: Russell, just remember that there is no full unity in Christendom even on what should be the
very basics of the faith – “faith alone" being one of them. Scripture teaches no such thing, so be careful
in mixing your personal (albeit modern) views of the faith with orthodoxy."
Russ: First, why are you so quick to point out the errors of Theism
and so unwilling to answer any of my “how” questions about your faith during the past month? You know everything
about that which you disagree and little about what you want to defend. “The DNA proves it” proves nothing other
than a common designer. Is that all you have to offer? Second, you are biblically ignorant to tell me that Scripture knows nothing about faith alone. The Scripture I get
this from is first century Bible if you want to call that modern. Isn’t that when Paul lived? And Martin Luther only
rediscovered it in 1517. Third,
I can gather Baptists, Catholics, JWs, Methodists, Mormons, Presbyterians and SDAs. They will all agree: (1) that there is
an Eternal Pre-existing personal moral God, (2) that we are all sinners, (3) that sin has somehow separated us from God, (4)
that we must seek God’s will for our lives and (5) that we should strive to live a moral life. Those are the basics
I was talking about. Why do we believe this? By faith. We all believe in an eternal intelligent personal moral God. On the other hand you atheists also
have your own Mindless Amoral Eternal god (I named her Mae), but you do not want to go there because you want to discuss everything
except beginnings. Your pre-existing eternal immoral something about the size of a BB superheated and exploded. Therefore,
we both begin with FAITH in something. Other than agreeing that (1) a mindless BB-sized-something exploded, do all atheists believe (2) that they
commit moral indecencies, (3) that they should seek ways to stop committing moral mistakes and (4) that they must commit themselves
to being better citizens? Therefore,
your point proves nothing. Just because we do not agree on every point proves no more than my arguing that atheists do not
agree on every point. I do not use that argument to prove that atheism is wrong. Your existence is finite
and infinitely unjust with no recompense for the most gruesome of crimes and sin (which really do not even exist in your theology).
Eccl 12:14 For God shall
bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil. Truly, without an after-life judgment, “Vanity of vanity;
all is vanity.”
You have absolutely no reason NOT to murder, steal, cheat on your spouse, or abuse
any neighbor or child. There is no right or wrong, good or bad. Life has no meaning and you cannot truly care about anybody
else other than yourself without admitting the existence of a moral God.
17. BIOLOGY BOOK, 5-2-10
Russ: I have just read about 6 different atheist evolutionists. They all agree on evolution
but seriously disagree about when man suddenly received his advanced brain. What is the difference? You agree on evolution.
We agree on salvation by grace through faith. You disagree on many points of evolution. We disagree on many points of theology.
You cannot criticize us
without criticizing your own “religion.” I just bought a college textbook, Biology, Sixth Edition, by Raven Johnson.
The Preface, page xxii, reads “In addition to the extensive revisions of the ecology, evolution and botany sections
… we have thoroughly revised the rest of the text as well.”
dare tell me what a “settled” science you have. I paid only $2.00 for this textbook because it had to be revised
again!!! Ther efore, atheists do not have your act together either.
You asked “Is God giving positive signs to Mormons, even
though Mormon theology is heresy?”Yes, God has Mormon believers who sincerely worship Him to the
best of their ability just as he has believers in other denominations.
How about atheists? Do you all agree on child discipline? Homosexuality?
The death sentence? Why not? You have had about 4 million evolutionary years on earth to cull out the wrong and disagreeable
group thoughts? How many more millions of years will it take to evolve into a perfect sinless race which needs no improvement?
That appears to be where you are taking all of this by accidental mutations. Your “god” is much more feeble than
18. COMPLEXITY IN CREATION,
Atheist: It most certainly can be both (moral and genetic). It's
all in how you perceive it. Is the flower red, or is the flower reflecting all wavelengths except the red ones? Now you have
the eyes of a butterfly and can see colors in the ultraviolet range. What color is the flower now? What color is the flower
in a room with no sunlight, no wavelengths to reflect? If you are color-blind and cannot distinguish red from green, is the
apple still red? You, sir, are DNA-blind. You cannot see in the "ultraviolet range" of possibilities.
Russ: What is the purpose
of the above discussion? What are you trying to prove with it? We are not discussing color perception. We are discussing morality
perception. Just because a butterfly, insect, or bird can perceive colors does not mean they can comprehend morality. For me at least the ability
to distinguish colors is a blessing from God. Many birds, insects and animals cannot distinguish colors. How does evolution
teach that colors benefit us --homo sapiens, mankind-- and allow us to survive better? Why evolve the ability
to see colors at all? How is the ability to distinguish colors a step up in the evolutionary scale?
If our ability to see colors has no tangible benefit for mankind to ascend the evolutionary scale, then its key function
must be for our happiness and pleasure rather than survival – and that flies in the face of atheism.
Why does a mother hen sit
on her chicks and die in a fire to protect THEIR future and not her own? Why does a soldier fall on a grenade to protect the
future of others and not his own? Your
arguments are all about the HOW and not about the WHY because you see absolutely no REASON behind what happens other than
blind mutant chance. In your philosophy you are only the result of a million mutant chances with nothing moral forcing them
to get better or worse because there is no such thing as good and bad. You could just as easily be a mass murderer but there
is still nothing “immoral” about that because a mass murderer is merely doing what his/her genetic code commanded.
Good “morality” is the image of God within his greatest creation. Bad “morality”
as the result of SIN. Your system of logic permits you to excuse all bad morality because good and bad cannot exist from a
Mindless Amoral Eternal something. I cannot excuse bad behavior or sin; you can. You see the “possibility”
(no – reality!) that the most immoral criminal is not guilty because he/she is merely scratching an urge from DNA. I
see the “possibility” (yes –possibility) that anybody can change through the power of God changing a person’s
inner being through conversion. My possibility is your impossibility unless a chance mutant gene changes you from the inside
19. AN ATHEISTS EXPLAINS MORAILTY, 6-1-10
http://www.facebook.com/note.php?note_id=395917791851 Bernie’s Suggest
Tom Flynn: Secular humanism propounds a rational ethics based on human
experience. It is consequentialist: ethical choices are judged by their results.
Russ: Impartial unintelligent
amoral RESULTS of random consequences “judge” (decide) what is “rational” (to be reasoned). Can you
follow that? Read his first statement again and try to honestly re-phrase it as I did. He says that human “ethics”
are based on the plurality of random “results” and not on intelligence. Of course, it must be that way because
an unintelligent god cannot create intelligence. What we call intelligence is a figment of our imagination.
“Consequence” simply means “result.” I suppose the use of long important-sounding words makes
one appear more intelligent. A consequentialist is a person who bases his future actions on the results of his
past actions. There is no intelligence involved. The
successful repetition (result) of one action over another action determines what is best for survival and/or pleasure. It
is not a matter of what is “moral” or “immoral”; rather it is a matter of pure chance eventually leading
to the beneficial change as in all evolutionary processes and mutations which survive. In other words, if you get away with it, then keep on doing it. That which you
get away with most of the time must be the moral thing to do. If you murder, cheat, steal or lie a million times, the DNA
which pre-programmed you to do those things will be preserved. I suppose the logic is that, sooner or later, the non-perpetuating (not morally bad or morally
worse) actions will NOT benefit the individual or the group and will be more randomly rejected and more randomly replaced
with random actions which coincidently are the same as those which moralists say respect life and the property of others and
randomly better provide for the propagation of the species and a better lifestyle. The end justifies the means. Did I say
it correctly? While there is a
certain logic in this random non-logic, its sheer results can lead people like C. S. Lewis to decide that there must really
be a moral God after all. He interpreted the existence of conscience within mankind as an innate knowledge of right and wrong,
good and evil which could only come from God. Is it just a coincidence that both atheism and theism have reached many of (if not most of) the same moral results
about fundamental issues of right and wrong? Atheists say that the choice (of what later became right verses
wrong) was guided by “results” and theists say that the choice was guided by an innate conscience from God.
Tom: Secular humanist ethics
appeals to science, reason, and experience to justify its ethical principles.
Russ: Therefore there is no moral component to it. It is simply
a numbers game. You cannot show morality in a science test tube. And what atheists call “reason” and “logic”
are only the random “results” / ”experiences” of mutant genes which “inform”
(by sheer numbers) humans to choose the majority (lab-tested) result. Majority random results result in the best random reproduction
of the species.
Since “accidents” are events which occur which should not have occurred, then it is not a word for atheists to
use. To an atheist accidents are merely random occurrences. The problem I see here is that those
atheists who are not interested in the survival of the species and are motivated purely by self-interests (self-preservation)
see no moral sin (right or wrong) in doing what pleases themselves. This is exactly what is described in the Bible in Romans
Observers can evaluate the real-world consequences of moral decisions and inter-subjectively affirm their conclusions.
Russ: His first sentence
is immoral to me because I do not agree with his “results” determined definition of “moral.” Now he
is trying to explain how secular humanism can be moral by using his convoluted definition of the word “moral.”
He is reasoning in a circle. First he says that “consequences-results” determine what are moral decisions; then
he says that moral decisions determine the consequences. Third, observers can “evaluate” (make judgment calls)
about the random results and “subjectively affirm” (not influence) the direction the random results point (to
perpetuate the species or make something right or wrong, good or bad?).
mutant results cannot make conclusions. To conclude something is to make a judgment call – unless he means by conclusion
“an end result.” They are still not “moral” decisions and atheists still have no legitimate
authority to use that word. Call them “random result determined actions” because that is all that they are with
no logical force behind them. Even though the results may have been repeated successfully a trillion times, they may still
lead to disaster and destruction of the species. If Hitler had mass produced the nuclear bomb first, we may all be living
in the Third Reich now. If our planet continues to follow the current trend, we may all be either atheists or Muslims within
a few centuries. Does that make it right? Using your logic, it is OK to have sex with an animals as long as it is not harming the animal, self or society. Well,
it may not appear to be harming anybody else, so do it. Could this be the source of AIDs? Who cares what the conscience tells
us? Tom: Millennia of human
experience have given rise to a core of “common moral decencies” shared by almost all.
Russ: Reword: “Millennia of humans affirming
the results of random mutant changes which appear to have led to superior survival has randomly resulted in what secular humanists
Isn’t that neat? Even without a moral God in creation, random
mutant genes result in the same morals as God wants.
Do you actually think that
our societies are becoming more and more moral because of evolution? What evidence do you have for this great conclusion?Atheistic evolution and/or speciation have failed. Millennia of human evolution has NOT erased and replaced in our
society those who are predisposed to adultery, rape, murder, theft and similar crimes. Marie cautioned me not to dare suggest
that homosexual marriage is wrong; how do insure that homosexuality in genetics is propagates if they do not reproduce better
homosexuals? Rather than being pushed to the remotest outer limits where recessive genes are supposed to eventually disappear,
after millions of years, the genetic pool of murderers, rapists, and homosexuals appears to be increasing. Yet evolution is
supposed to cull out such incapable-of-self-propagating genetics because they are not dominant and are harmful to survival
of the species.
Human happiness and social justice are the larger goals of secular humanist ethics.
Who are you to make this determination? Did you somehow consult with our DNA to learn this? Are we evolving happiness genes
to help us survive? Can animals, insects, and amoebas who have been around since the beginning not survive unless they are
happy? You are merely mimicking what your genes predispose you to say. Cannot the human species survive and reproduce without
being happy? Is there any evidence that DNA which produces social “justice” is slowly replacing DNA which does
not? What is “justice” anyway? Is that not a moral term? Do you have any right to use it? If what you say is true, then atheistic humanists would be the
most moral of all citizens. And those countries which espouse social humanism would be far better places to live in. Perhaps
you prefer Russia, Cuba, Angola or Laos.
Tom: Quoting Owen Flanagan: “These conditions include freedom from want and fear, freedom
of conscience, freedom to inquire, freedom to self-govern, and so on.”
Russ: There can be no freedom from want as long as DNA produces
lazy people who do not want to work and greedy people who do not want to share. There can be no freedom from fear as long
as DNA perpetuates murderers, rapists, and sadists.
There should be no conscience if there
is no god; who are you kidding? Do you listen to yourself? What you call “goals
of social humanist ethics” are only that very thing. They are not goals of atheistic evolution because random amoral
atheistic evolution, by its very nature, can have no goals. It is blind chance and nothing else. These “goals”
are only the opinions of men and women who are atheists and are striving to justify decent behavior. What
is “freedom of conscience”? Does it mean that, by observing atheistic mores agreed upon by their social
group, they can sleep without a guilty conscience? Where did they get that conscience from? Is it the product of the highest
form of evolution? When you sin, when you go against your conscience, that guilt you sense is the ‘image
of God’ within you telling you that you are a sinner. You cannot blame it on genetics.
Tom: Secular humanism takes upon itself the Enlightenment
project of emancipating individuals from illicit controls of every type: the political control of repressive regimes;
the ecclesiastical control of organized religion; even the social controls of societal and family expectations,
conventional morality, and the tyranny of the village.
Russ: You are all over the spectrum. First,
“secular humanist ethics” cannot exist with and from an individual because that would merely be his own opinion.
Therefore “secular humanist ethics” must refer to the humanist-group consensus concerning its own definition of
what is moral or immoral, right or wrong, and good and evil – derived from entirely random results. Therefore it is
your own consensus opinion and not that of the rest of the world in general. Second, you say that they
“emancipate individuals from illicit controls of every type.” “Illicit” means “contrary
to accepted morality.” You are really twisting your words here. You cannot really mean “illicit” because
amoral godless atheism has no claim to a definition of moral values – only following the most favorable random consequences.
You cannot mean “of every type” because you are exalting the definition of morality agreed to by the atheistic
… social controls of societal and family expectations, conventional morality, and the tyranny of the village.”
Again, you cannot mean the expectations of the society of amoral atheistic humanists. “Conventional morality”?
Yes, that is what you oppose. You want to make god in your own image. “The village” – do you mean group
mentality? That is all you have. Individuals cannot speak for the group; only the group can speak for the group and its individuals.
I find very little logic in your statement. It might sound good from a podium, but it makes no sense when carefully scrutinized.
What is a “repressive
regime”? What gives atheists the right to say that about any regime? They argue from the viewpoint of an eternal god
who is amoral and unintelligent and only affirm what is “good” or “repressive” after observing random
results of mutation. Some repressive regimes have survived over 1000 years because they were more powerful than their opponents.
Had Hitler used the nuclear bomb first, his repressive regime might rule the world now. And atheists would call it “moral”
because it produced “results” that were best at self-perpetuation. Tom then said that
secular humanism emancipates from the ecclesiastical control of organized religion. Look at what secular humanism has done to Europe. They have the most government, the highest taxes, the
smallest houses and cars and the least freedom. Tom: Atheism and free thought trace their roots to ancient Greek philosophy, with its emphasis on rational inquiry
and curiosity about the workings of nature.
Russ: Whether true or false, your admission harms your argument. The Greeks worshipped gods made
in the image of men just as secular humanists do today. They had no moral basis in a personal moral God. They were so rational
that they thought the stars depicted gods fighting each other across the heavens every night. Their moral standards approved
of orgies. And, they were not atheists.
After enturies of humanist wisdom, you still cannot tell us whether the chicken or the egg came
20. SELF-SACRIFICE, 6-1-10
Marie: “Why does a mother hen or a soldier give their life to protect another?
Because it feels really good. It feels satisfying and rewarding. That's WHY.”
Russ: Incredible. You are destroying your own logic. If a random acidental mutant DNA produced
a few rare individuals who resist their basic DNA of self-preservation, that mutant DNA strand would be removing itself in
the “sacrifice.” Another mutant DNA would have to evolve to replace it.
Marie: “I could tell you HOW we know that, scientifically;
how we know what is going on in the brain when someone behaves selflessly. I could tell you how science believes chickens
and humans developed that sort of feeling from that sort of behavior over the eons. But the bottom line is, it feels good.
(WHY does it feel good? That's all a HOW is, really. Every answer to a WHY brings up another question.”
Russ: The “feeling”
is self-destructive and very short-lived. The deceased doer cannot tell his/her generation how great the feeling was. You
said that a HOW is really only a WHY which feels good. So that is WHY people rape and steal –because it FEELS GOOD.
No accountability. No justice. No repayment. No sin. No morality. If it feels good, do it. And you actually think you are
convincing me to become an atheist!
Marie: “Hang around a 3 year old for 5 minutes to see that in action!!)”
Kelly: So a 3 year old pitches a temper tantrum
because it feels good – even though the consequences (discipline-depravation) might NOT feel so good. No. They pitch
a temper tantrum because they are selfish and greedy and want all the attention. What does that have to do with our question?
Three year olds do not sacrifice their lives for others because it feels good.
Marie: “Evolution actually does provide reasons for why animals
behave in morally acceptable ways. Russ: You are disagreeing with Bernie’s expert, Tom Flynn,
who says that morality is derived by following the majority of random mutant results.
Marie: The survival of the social unit increases the chances for survival of the species.
Russ: According to Tom Flynn, the survival of the social unit is best determined by following the
majority of random mutant results.
Marie: The social unit provides protection, and
increases the opportunities for getting food. There are many benefits for getting along and not making enemies.”
Russ: Yes, but this is not
because of any moral superiority – random mutant results which best protect and propagate the species (per Flynn). Yours is also the justification for criminal gang mentality. Adherence to the rules of the social unit increases the
opportunities for survival of the gang’s goals.
Marie: “Russell, you seem to be certain
that I excuse immoral behavior. I don't believe I've ever said anything to you to indicate that is true. You stereotype
me, based what you believe is atheist logic. I hang out with a lot of atheist friends, and none of us excuse immoral behavior.
None of us go around with big anger issues, or cheat on our spouses, or go on killing sprees. We work hard for a living, we
pay our taxes. We are very much like you. The only thing that is different about us is that we don't pray. When we need
help, we turn to each other. Our faith is in our fellow man.”
Kelly: Believe me, I mean nothing personal and am not accusing you of immoral
behavior. I am simply trying to sort out the logic you use. As atheists you begin with a-moral behavior which cannot distinguish between good and bad, right
or wrong. There can be no immoral or moral behavior since both are the result of random mutant genetics. Is that true or not?
That is my logic. Do you agree or not? If not, then tell me what is wrong with my conclusion. This is important. Although I do not think atheists deserve
me using the terms “moral” or “immoral,” I will for argument’s sake. From Bernie’s documents,
random mutant “consequence-determined choices” better fits.
How can I, or why should I, condemn your apparent moral behavior?
As a DNA preprogrammed “moral” atheist you have surrounded yourself with like-minded friends for the betterment
of all. You have weighed the consequences of choices and have decided which are best for you personally to follow.
However you cannot deny
that there are also DNA preprogrammed “immoral” atheists who have surrounded themselves with like-minded anti-society
friends for the same reason.
Marie: “My husband is bipolar. He engaged in immoral behaviors for many years. He stopped drinking because I
would not marry him unless he did. Then after we married, he saw doctors, got medication and counseling, and now is one of
the most moral people I know. He did that without any conversion, without any god. He did it because he wanted to be a good
Since you are an admitted atheist, then I disagree with you using the word “immoral” because unintelligent and
unguided random mutant evolution knows no boundaries of good and bad, moral or immoral. What you
probably should say is that your husband once engaged in activity which was contrary to the rules and mores agreed upon by
the village-society of secular humanists. And those rules were determined by observation and reaction to consequences-results
of behavior. Your husband is bi-polar
and I have an inherited disease called cone-dystrophy. I do not deny that either mutant genes or damaged genes from disease
or drugs caused both. Both are physical imperfections. He has been helped with drugs and counseling. There is no cure for
conversion? Your husband was converted to his love for you. Your husband used his brain power and weighed what he thought
would be the results of not seeking help verses losing you and your love. He wanted the result of his actions to be interaction
with you, therefore he sought help.
It is comparable to me be converted to God’s love for me. I weighed what I thought I needed
to do in order to be saved. And I considered the consequences of a conscience un-quieted by the burden of un-forgiven sin. All three of us have needs to be fulfilled through spiritual conversion. God has still placed into all of us a conscience
which alerts us to wrong actions and seeks for a meaning in life beyond ourselves. A very wise prophet once wrote that “all of our righteousness is as filthy
rags” (Isa 64:6). Although a very moral man, he realized that his morality fell far short of the goodness of God. I
am happy for you and for your husband that your lives have changed for the better, but you still know deep within your conscience
that you fall short and improvement is still needed. That is part of our nature, who we really are and why we are here. You
may have not needed God or a spiritual conversion in your own opinion, but there is still much more to life than death and
God can fill that void.
THE GOAL OF DNA, 6-2-10
Marie: “The goal of DNA is procreation,
survival of the species in general and of the genes (NOT the individual organism, but the genes!).
Kelly: Random mutant-evolved DNA may improve as a result of the sheer better survival of the majority results, but
it can have no rational (reasoned) goal. A goal involves intelligent thinking, desire, vision, plans, and some commitment.
Wikipedia says that a goal is similar to purpose or aim, the anticipated result which guides reaction, or an end.
Marie: If my genes are passed on, I've
done my job.”
Russ: Therefore, if you
never procreate, you have failed if you do not reproduce your genes through childbearing. Reproduction may be your goal, but it is not the goal of your genes
because they can have no goal.
Although it is incredibly un-intelligent to
make such a statement about something as complex and interdependent as DNA, this must be true of DNA without the influence
of a designer. First, your idea
of DNA does care whether a species survives or not. Second, if you DIE childless saving friends by falling on a grenade or
rescuing them, your DNA ends! The self-preservation and self-propagating philosophy contradicts itself if there is a “feel
good” self-sacrificing aspect which cancels it out. And what about homosexuals? Most have
no reproduction and preservation of their genes. What is their goal in life?
Marie: “THAT is the best case self-preservation of the DNA
and as a parent I am driven like a crazy person to help my kids reach reproductive adulthood at all costs.”
Kelly: Listen to yourself
here. I sense you are a good loving mother, but you sound like you will urge your children to have sex and reproduce at the
earliest possible moment in life which is immoral in my opinion. They can be successful and contribute to society whether
they reproduce or not.
What if your child carries a bi-polar gene? Would you still insist on reproduction rather than adoption?
Marie: “If I can't pass on my genes, but my sister or my brother or my uncle does, then
at least part of my genes carry on as well. If no one in my family survives to pass on their genes, but a group of humans
does, then the species carries on, and the genes are happy.”
Kelly: Happy genes. Sounds like a Mother Goose fairy tale or a tight blue-jeans
commercial to me. This is becoming silly. You may as well write a song to the tune of Happy Days. Genes are not sentient beings
and cannot express emotions, especially your concept of random mutant atheistic genes.
Marie: “Altruism is an argument in favor of
evolution, not against it.
Kelly: First you say that you are “driven like a crazy person” to make sure your children reproduce. That,
my friend, means that you think genes are very selfish and driven to reproduce at all cost. Now you say the opposite –
that “altruism (selfishness) is an argument in favor of evolution.” Make up your mind.The Bible
is the most altruistic book one can find. “While we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” (Rom 5:8). “For
God so loved the world that He gave …” (Jn 3:16). The “greatest” is urged to “serve.”
Evolution is random mutant “survival” of the fittest – not selfish denial of
the fittest. Evolution does not sacrifice itself in order that the less fit should survive.
Marie: “A 3 year old does not pitch
a temper tantrum because it feels good. They do it as a means of testing boundaries, as in how much can I get Dad to break
the rules if I cry and yell? And yes, sometimes that does backfire, and sometimes it succeeds in stretching the boundaries.”
Kelly: Again, this has nothing
to do with the current discussion of self-sacrifice. I do not understand how and why you somehow connect the two discussions.
Let that 3 year old achieve his/her goal and you will be raising a very selfish domineering brat who
does not respect you or others.
On the other hand, why even bother? If the child’s random mutant preprogrammed DNA determines
how it is going to act, then it is merely following its program and should not be disciplined. That is the result of atheistic
logic (not necessarily your own).
Marie: “So it's like gambling. A win when you gamble does indeed light up the same part
of the brain as an altruistic act does. The part scientists call the reward, or pleasure center.”
Kelly: Aha, so this is why you connect the
child’s temper tantrum with a soldier falling on a grenade. The huge difference is that the child survives to remember
the pleasure of the win. And how does the dead solider pass on the pleasurable experience of dying? Also, what did this pleasure center in the brain evolve from? The
thrill of the kill perhaps? I agree that temper tantrums test the boundaries of the parents. The child wants
to see how much he/she can get away with before being disciplined. But that is far from being the same as self-sacrifice;
we both know it is closer to selfishness.
Does self-sacrifice and selfishness light up the same part of the brain?
Does your test prove that both emotions are of equal value or merely that the same part of the brain handles both? After all,
we can pull a trigger or feed a baby with the same hand.
Marie: “So, there it is, the mechanics of altruism. The HOW (Sorry! I couldn't help myself!)
In that sense, your behavior comes from the genes you got from your parents, AND your environment as well.”
Kelly: Not impressed. Different
neuro-specialists might interpret the results differently. I turn on my front porch light when I hear friends knocking and
when I suspect something dangerous approaching. Admit or not, your logic is, since my behavior comes from my genes, then I am not responsible for my actions! And
I can justify anything I do and not call it sin. What you call antisocial “genes” we call “the sin nature.”
Marie: “Genes can
be turned on and off. For instance, identical twins raised in separate homes have identical genes. But the way one was raised
may trigger a gene to be switched on, while the way the other was raised may cause a gene to stay off. This determines what
proteins (amino acids) are produced and released into the blood stream. And this can alter behavior.”
Kelly: First Tom Flynn says that the majority
of random mutant results determine morality. Now you add to that the way we are raised. I have five siblings; we were all
raised the same way, yet we are all very different. We are more than the sum
of our parts and genes. We have free will and can choose to overcome adversity of be different from our twin with the same
genes. We are not mere blind automatons and salves to our genes. We still have part of the image of God’s morality within
our consciousness. So, you
can actually CHANGE WHO YOU ARE and are not captive to your genes. You can actually THINK yourself into a better or worse
person. Sounds like freedom of the will to me –today you will choose whom you will serve—the inner nature or the
image of God.
“This is a somewhat plastic system, since changes in environment can change the expression of certain genes (on or off).
In some cases I believe a strong will can achieve the same! Biofeedback works with other systems of the body, such as raising
temperature or increasing circulation.”
Kelly: You are actually describing one set of preprogrammed DNA sequences overriding another set
of preprogrammed DNA sequences –none of which actually cause the genes to MUTATE to be passed on. You sound more and
more like a theist.
“Another fact to consider is that much adult criminal behavior is rooted in mental illness.”
Kelly: And how does an atheistic secular humanist
define mental illness. What makes the mentally ill person any less moral and guilty than anybody else. After all, the mentally
ill person arrived at his state in the same manner in which you arrived at your state of mind – random mutated genetics
from you goddess, Mae – Mindless amoral eternal matter. Defective dominant genes. Who are you
to say that they should be the NORM and YOU are the abnormal? Aren’t you playing God to say that their behavior is wrong?
Does not a “criminal” with those genes have the same right as you do to say his genes are the norm? If there is
no moral god guiding any of this, then his behavior is not right or wrong – it just exists as a result of mindless evolution.
Marie: “Dear Russell,
I am not foolish enough at age 58 to think I can convert you to atheism. I would not want to. Your faith is important to you,
and I'm happy for you that you have it! (However, if you tell me I can't have a desperately needed abortion, or can't
marry the woman I deeply love as a soul mate and sexual partner because I am a woman myself, then we have a problem in our
definition of morals.”
Kelly: I am merely trying to use your own logic against your arguments. In my opinion you have no consistent working
definition of “morals.” For instance, you picked out abortion and gay marriage. I then ask you “Why did
you leave out murder, rape, sex with animals and marriage to animals?” Do you see my argument? You have “moral”
boundaries but you do not want to attribute the existence of morality to anything but blind mindless chance. Yes, we do have a serious difference of opinion on the very definition
of morals. I do not think that you have defended even the right to use that.
The writer of Bernie’s article
called it “consequentialistic” -- simply follow the majority “result” which has, over time, provided
the best opportunity to live longer and happier. That, my dear, is a poor definition of right and wrong. And, please tell me again how most homosexuals fulfill your “goal
of DNA” and perpetuate themselves through reproduction.
Marie: “Finally, you
speak to the hunger for knowledge, or at least that's what I call it. You call it seeking for a meaning in life beyond
ourselves. I see the need to grow and stretch and explore in all creatures.”
Kelly: The need? Or the actual exploring? I do not see creatures
other than man “exploring”; they are simply trying to find ways to survive.
Since our discussions began I have purchased a college
textbook which uses evolution as its foundation, Biology, Raven Johnson, McGraw Hill. I am not in this discussion
to play. I am here to learn and to help others discover a loving God.
Marie: “Myself, I wanted to know what was going to happen when I die. I
believe I have figured it out, and I am thrilled with the idea that I will go back someday to where I came from. Ashes to
ashes, dust to dust. Elementary particles swirling in a nebula. Stardust. My thinking self will die when I do, and I'm
perfectly happy to let it go.”
Kelly: Regardless of how you try to portray it as something transcendental, your description of death is sad, pitiful,
nauseous, and ugly. The greatest questions of all time: What am I? Why am I here? What is life all
about? Why am I different from everybody else? Is there a purpose or goal in life? – you answer “random mutant
chance” – no reason, no purpose; it does not matter who you are or who your descendants might become.
Stardust? Pixie powder? Not until the earth explodes. You will simply be mud clinging to somebody’s
shoes, mixed with who-knows-what and dirtying the floors of somebody’s house. In your theology, the life spark which
was you will cease to exist. You will never know how much of what you did really achieved in life and you will not care. You
view of death is stark pessimism with no hope.
On the other hand, I am happy knowing that my books are impacting millions for good change. I hope
to see my children achieve something good before I die. I expect to spend eternity with God asking questions and learning.
I sleep well and do not fear death. For me there is no death – only a new beginning; only a change from one kind of
life into another. I wish I could convince you of that kind of change to come.
22. DNA PROVES EVOLUTION, 6-2-10
Bernie: “There are many gaps in evolution.”
Russ: In my opinion evolution is nothing but gaps. You can show
me a flow chart from one species to another such as dogs, cats, horses, shells; but you cannot show me one flow chart between
species such as mouse, to cat, to dog, to ape, to human.
Bernie: However, there is
also evidence that evolution (of man from animal) actually happened, by studying the DNA.
Russ: Yes. DNA. Custer’s last stand.
You cannot show it from any current life form or from fossil records. Do you not see this as a retreat? I do.
And why don’t we use monkeys for organ transplants rather than pigs if they are so much closer
to us? And would you rather have a heart valve from an orangutan or baboon than from a pig?
Russ: False genes; false genetics. Of course,
the real genetics cannot prove it beyond a doubt, so the false genetics will.
I did my homework on pseudogenes. They are non-functional; the
real functioning genes they may have begun to copy were subsequently copied correctly and function correctly. They are false
starts, abortions in the gene pool which have no function whatsoever. Their presence affects absolutely nothing and that is
probably why there is no rush to flush them from the gene pool. They can be left in without harm.
Bernie: There are many evangelical scientists
who fully accept biological evolution of man from animal because of the evidence in our genes.
Russ: Nice. You want me to believe the part
about evolution and I want you to believe the part about a personal Creator God. Your selectiveness makes me ignore your statement
because you ignore what those evangelicals believe about God’s existence.
Bernie: Either man evolved from animal, or God designed it in such
a way as to deceive us into thinking so (which would make God a liar and deceiver). The DNA evidence shows the footprints
of travel between species.
Russ: Not so. The DNA evidence only proves a common design blueprint. The fact that a whale has five fingers on its
fins does not prove than man evolved from whales or from a common ancestor. The fact that a child’s wagon and tricycle
have different sets of wheels does not prove that they do not have a common designer.
Bernie: There is more evidence in DNA besides just pseudogenes,
too. But pseudogenes are enough to demonstrate it beyond a reasonable doubt."
Kelly: Similar design does not prove that one
design evolved into another. And different design does not prove that one design did not evolve into another through the
mind of the designer. Dot matrix printers have been replaced by ink-jet printers. That does not prove that different people
must have designed them. Two-barrel and four-barrel carburetors have been replaced by entirely different designs. That does
not prove that they were not designed by the same person.Common design merely proves that the designer used common sense,
saved a lot of extra inventiveness and used the basic platform for creation which worked. That is also how DNA works by making
copies of itself.
You are assuming that God started from scratch to make man rather
than use pre-existing identical DNA he successfully used to create lower life forms. Would a Windows 7 designer discard al
of the technology found in previous editions or start from scratch. Yet Microsoft Vista was not suddenly replaced by Windows
7 without an intelligence behind the change. Since pseudogenes do not affect the functioning of the
remainder of the gene pool, there is no reason to begin all over from scratch. The existence of pseudogenes does not mean
that the design is flawed; it is simply not absolutely perfect. And it is your false assumption that we claim Adam was created
perfect. Weapons went from
hands and teeth to clubs to spears to bows to bullets to lasers. Did any of those “evolve” into another or was
a better model found? Of course not. But you want me to believe that it absolutely must be the case when species have similar
genes. When Windows went
from 3.5, to 98 to Me to XP to Vista to 7, did the program designers start all over again or did they build on previous successes?
You say that mindless evolution is enough to do this but God cannot!!! That is ultra-stupid logic.
I have an evolutionary chart from Time,
Aug 23, 1999, How Man Evolved, pages 54-55. It does not even have a common ancestor for great apes and chimpanzees. Great
apes, chimpanzees and all erect forms supposedly evolved from a common (YET UNPROVEN) ancestor between 4 and 6 million years
ago! Lots and lots of gaps.Next the chart shows 14 different types of erect part-men: (1) Ardis, (2) Austras,
(3) Afars, (4) Afris, (5) Aethis, (6) A. garnis, (7) A. bolsei, (8) A. robustus, (9) Homo Rudolf, (10) homo habillis, (11)
Homo ergaster, (12) homo erectus, (13) homo antecessor, (14) homo Neanderthal and finally (15) homo sapien.
A. NONE are linked to each other.
B. NONE are linked to the common ancestor of 4-6 million years ago.
C. ALL appear and disappear suddenly.
D. NONE have exact homo sapien DNA.
E. Homo Sapien suddenly appears.
chart shows homo sapien existing before Neanderthal and even you admit that Neanderthal is a DNA dead end.
G. There chart shows homo erectus and homo sapien existing at the same time but does not link them.
Lots of gaps. Lots and lots of gaps. What makes modern man different from ancient man is the existence
(not of tools) but of worship relics, plus modern man stops to bury his dead and monkeys do not.
Then there is the National Geographic,
Apr 27, 2003, pages 14-15. Here the common ancestor of all life forms is the very elusive EOMALA with a “question mark”
beside its name. Good link! Good proof! You guys are all nuts.
From yet another angle, if evolution is purely random mutations, then why is
there so much consistency? Why do so many creatures have 2 eyes, 2 ears, 4 limbs, two lungs and similar anatomies? Why don’t
we see the diversity among humans that we see among fish and insects?
23. False DNA Prove Evolution
Bernie: …”there are obvious
copying errors recorded in DNA. You can't have copy errors without descent! And there's no reason for God to create
man from scratch but include errors from lower forms of life. This is what makes it so obvious that man evolved from animal
rather than being a separate creation from scratch.”
Russ: The underlined portion of your statement can only be valid if the pseudogene
affected anything else – and it does not. Since it has absolutely no effect on the rest of the genes, there is no reason
for God to begin again from scratch. It’s like a builder leaving some unused nails inside the frame of a wall. They
affect nothing and it makes no sense to tear the wall down to remove them. Your argument is based on the false assumption that God created Adam and Eve
absolutely perfect in every way. Yet I do not read that in God’s Word. Instead Adam was created with the “propensity”
to sin. Sooner or later he would have sinned. Why? Because it was never God’s design to create man perfect in every
way. There was always room for growth and improvement. God deliberately did not create him as a robot. The fact that Christ
was “the lamb slain from the foundation of the world” (Rev 13:8) implies that God knew that man would sin and
made provision for it.
…”there is a movement amongst the evangelical scholars to fully accept evolution … as God's chosen
way to create."
If you mean unlimited change within a species, I would agree. However, if you mean change from one species into another, I
disagree. My gut tells me that your conservative evangelists are really moderates or liberals masquerading