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Sunday, June 29, 2008

Bozarth raves on

Christianity has fought, still fights, and will continue to fight science to the desperate end over evolution, because evolution destroys utterly and finally the very reason Jesus’ earthly life was supposedly made necessary. Destroy Adam and Eve and the original sin, and in the rubble you will find the sorry remains of the Son of God. If Jesus was not the redeemer who died for our sins, and this is what evolution means, then Christianity is nothing.

G. Richard Bozarth, ‘The Meaning of Evolution’, American Atheist, p. 30. 20 September 1979.

If evolution provides the basis for this claim by Bozarth, then it seems surprising that the SAD insists that its compliance with materialist (nay, atheist) dogma has no deleterious effect on its mission, or, even more signficantly, on its honouring of the Creator, Christ.

Evolution undoes what really is, and what really is laud's Christ.

43 comments:

John said...

Hang on Eric. Isn't that guy an atheist. Hey, pal, we're Christian and we don't have to listen to those guys because we're saved and have the spirit of God upon us...blah, blah, blah.

Contrast this mentality with that of Jesus' when he dialogued with the pagan Samaritan woman at the well in John 4.

Healyhatman said...

It doesn't have to destroy Christianity if you take Genesis to be a meaningful story as opposed to a history lesson.

Warwick said...

But Healy if you replace Genesis creation with evolution, you destroy the straightforward meaning of Genesis, the meaning that Jesus and the apostles held. And by extension you destroy the Gospel, because the real events of the Gospel are the result of the real events of Genesis.

John said...

Furthermore Healy, if evolution is true then physical death was everywhere, right from the beginning. If the Creator used death as His preferred method of creating then what sort of God of Love is that. Christians would be fools of the highest order trying to convince you that only Christ is Truth and Love. The whole purpose of the Creator becoming Man was to redeem all His creation back to Himself. Why would someone redeem death to Himself?

The Scriptures tell us that at the death of Lazarus, the Creator wept and was angry. That to me shows me the Perfect Man and the Creator in one.

Dave Lankshear said...

Ha ha ha!

Now I've seen everything... do you guys WANT HH to accept the bible? OR is your reading of Genesis 1 more important than HH understanding the relevance and truth of Christianity? Yep, go the gospel!

HH, the majority of Sydney Anglican's recognise the truth of John Dickson's work on Genesis, as we discussed over on Craig's blog.

HH, don't even try with these guys — they are the worst kind of internet trolls, and I've encountered a few! They are worse than many non-Christian internet trolls I've had the misfortune to bump into.

Warwick said...

'Internet trolls' indeed Davey boy; we can add that to the other names you guys fling at us along with your lies about our true position on Scripture.

You are annoyed because we don't bend the knee to such liberals as Dickson and his stories. As was said long ago you are man-followers while we are followers of God. We act as if God both knows and writes the truth while you use the ever-changing best guesses of falible sinful man to reinterpret His Word. You distort Scripture out of recognizable shape, undermining the very Gospel you falsely accuse us of rejecting.

Death before sin destroys the basis of the Gospel.

Dave Lankshear said...

Warwick you've just demonstrated to me that your particular reading of early Genesis is more important than the gospel.

However, as I accept Genesis to be God's word, and I accept the message it actually communicates, then as I've explained a thousand times before (and I'm using that word in the Jewish symbolic sense), YOU should know that I believe Genesis teaches that God made this world, God owns this world, we rebelled against God's rule and die as a result.

IF the literary genre does not actually spell out the mechanisms of HOW all this occurred, then that's fine with me. The doctrine of the sufficiency of scriptures tells us that the bible is all we need as the foundation and final authority for our faith. It's not there to answer our every question about the universe. However, this 'death before sin' question is opening up a whole new theological dialogue. It is not as if there are no defences against the false dichotomy of this Bozarth attack. I note you'd rather accept Bozarth's dichotomy and turn HH away than admit there might be something in the Sydney Anglican method?

What I find incredibly revealing is that rather than simply explain to HH that there are 2 views of Genesis you'd have him believe evolution completely destroys Christianity! Yet you've already stated to me that you believe I can be saved, even though I'm a Theistic Evolutionist? That's a sad contradiction Warwick. Make up your mind.

Warwick, don't act all sensitive about the term Internet trolls when you deal out 'heretic' and 'liberal' with such abandon. As far as I'm aware, John Dickson believes Genesis to be sufficient and inerrant word of God, able to communicate what we need for salvation. John Dickson is a 4 sola's, TULIP, reformed kind of guy. He starred in "The Christ files" screened on Channel 7 over Easter. Basically, he's done more PR for Christianity in the last few months than any of you'll ever achieve in a lifetime.

But for your information, I used the term internet troll as a rebuke, not just a 'name callng' session. If you don't like the term, then google it and learn how to avoid it. Learn to respond to the actual points being employed in a debate. When you ask a question, learn how to read the answer. Don't just rudely ignoring valuable and relevant material simply because you don't like it... you have to ADDRESS this stuff, not just ignore it, to avoid being a troll.

This is boring Warwick... more of the same, and now you're alienating atheists in an attempt to justify your pet theory over your pet chapter in a very, very large bible. Don't you think that's a bit unbalanced?

Warwick said...

Dave you are either slow to understand or deceitful. I and others here have repeatedly said our defence of Genesis is to counter the T/E view which undermines the Gospel. How can death be an enemy, introduced by the sin of Adam if, as you believe, his not quite human ancestors died for thousands or millions of years? Jesus came, died and rose again to reverse the curse-introduced by sin, he came to pay the price-the wages of sin is death. If Genesis 1 isn't historical fact then Jesus had no real need to come and really die, and really rise again. Maybe it's all just spiritual as some of your Anglican brothers teach?

You portray our defence of the Gospel as meaning we consider the foundation of the Gospel to be more important that the Gospel itself. What mindless irrationality is that? What a reverse of reality.

How do you know that Genesis 'teaches that God made this world, God owns this world, we rebelled against God's rule and die as a result.' Why do you select these few bits of information as historical fact while rejecting the words alongside them. What hypocrisy!

Me get sensitive Dave? I spent time in 1969 with the KGB in the USSR charged with espionage. I have debated the Truth with fundamentalist Muslim's and been threatened with death for my trouble. To suggest that I am somewhat bothered by whatever name you or your wimpy mates call me is a laugh. Christians will always be abused for defending the truth against error! Get a grip lad.

I believe you can be saved but that you and many in the SAD are on their way to losing that salvation, and more importantly taking innocents with you, as you progressively reject more and more of Scripture. It is only a matter of time until many of you will no longer believe that Jesus died and rose again, as your more liberal brothers elsewhere do. I have met them and many no longer believe in the Christian Gospel. I remember an Anglican minister on the Nth Shore who said-I don't know if Jesus rose from the dead, but it doesn't matter anyway-still a Christian Dave?

BTW hypothetically speaking even if telling an Atheist God used evolution to 'create' lead to his salvation I would be ashamed to do so because it is a lie. And he will find out. Stick to the truth.

I worked for 13 years in full-time Christian ministry, speaking on these issues, here and OS and met so many atheists who were brought to the Lord when they came to understand that evolution is a belief, not scientific fact. The leader of one very active Australian evangelism ministry was president of the the Young Atheists at university. It was creation-Evangelism which lead to his salvation. You know nothing Dave.

You have such a fawning respect for John Dickson but if I remember rightly he once interviewed me on the TV show 'Swordfish' and knew absolutely nothing about the issue. I had to write the questions for him. What a hoot.

You say 'As far as I'm aware, John Dickson believes Genesis to be sufficient and inerrant word of God,' What equivocation is this? he guts Genesis 1 of its historicity but you think he considers God's word to be inerrant. Blow me down, imagine what a mess of it he would make if he thought it wasn't inerrant!

Dave Lankshear said...

He doesn't gut it Warwick, he reads it with a different literary understanding to you that still communicates the basic truth! As I said above, we accept that Genesis says God made the universe (but not how), that God owns everything, that mankind rebelled (whatever that actually looked like), and that we die as a result. Now there's all sorts of unanswered questions there IF evolution is the way it happened, but that doesn't actually mean anything in and of itself. I have all sorts of questions about the spiritual world... Satan and how old he is and how many angels he corrupted and how the spiritual world interacts with this one and soooo many questions... but God chooses not to answer them all. "Trust me" He says.

So here's a thing — I actually do believe God made the world. I think it was largely through evolution. Maybe God stepped in and hurried some bits up... I don't know... but the thing is, at some point God was 'finished' making mankind. Mankind then had access to the "tree of life" and God walked with them. Imagine it! Then when they rebelled we get this sense that they were kicked out of a SPECIAL GARDEN and lost access to the TREE OF LIFE and what happens when we don't have that?

I hope HH is still reading, because this is a common answer to your objections. (I'm not the best one to be explaining this... but I can report that it is a growing meme in the Sydney Anglican church). ONE answer is that when mankind sinned we returned to the 'natural' processes of aging, death, and decay. All this figurative language leads illustrates other important issues in the ancient world, and then when we hit the big questions such as "Why is there suffering and death?" the SAME answers apply!

Mankind sinned, lost access to the 'tree of life', and God 'left'. What happens in Revelation, that other 'S'uh kewl and literal!" book?

God 'returns', and mankind regains access to the TREE OF LIFE! Woah! Did I just see a book full of apocalyptic picture language take up a bit of Genesis as a natural part of the picture language?

John said...

Dave's poster boy: [John Dickson] starred in "The Christ files" screened on Channel 7 over Easter. Basically, he's done more PR for Christianity in the last few months than any of you'll ever achieve in a lifetime."

We're so happy for you, David, that you've found you're true warrior-hero. Do you think you could get John's autograph for me? I won't wash my hands for a week. Hey, maybe, while the Pope's out here, you might try and get a bit of canonisation action going. What do you think, eh?

BTW, I've been thinking about this number 7 and I think I've figured it out: 7 is the number of coloured pills David has to take every day.

Now Davey, open wide and here comes the little blue pill.

Warwick said...

Dave you wrote 'I actually do believe God made the world. I think it was largely through evolution. Maybe God stepped in and hurried some bits up.

When I read Scripture I see evidence which surpports a 6-day creation where God spoke His whole creation into existence in this time frame.

You are entitled to believe what you like but as a Christian surely must have Biblical support for this belief. Please show us where your belief is supported by Scripture.

If you cannot do this then you have an unBiblical view contradicted by the available Biblical evidence.

Over to you.

Dave Lankshear said...

(Yawns)

John, your straw-man Ad Hominem attacks miss the point. Grow up and demonstrate some of that academic prowess you're so proud of. Anyone can sneer and jeer, it's boring. Back on topic: The bible is replete with number symbolism. Answer the question: DO only 144 thousand people go to heaven?

Warwick, as Genesis is a rebuke to the theology of the pagan world, as Jesus and Hebrews uses the 7th day figuratively, and as the whole bible is full of number symbolism, figurative symbolism, etc... I'm free to investigate the mechanics of how God might have made the world through the scientific process.

Warwick said...

Dave the question was 'Please show us where your belief is supported by Scripture.' You wrote that you believe God used evolution to 'create' therefore I was obviously asking for Biblical support FOR (wait for it)----for the idea that God used evolutionary processes to effect His creation!

I have asked this question of T/E's many times and have never had it answered because there is no Biblical support for such an idea. This clearly demonstrates that the T/E belief comes from extra-Biblical reasoning.

Maybe you are the one to answer!

Dave Lankshear said...

D'uh!

If Genesis is spanking a pagan theology by usurping their myth, and is so chock-full of symbolism and intertextual reference to said pagan myth that it reads as clearly as "Once upon a time..." then quite frankly we ARE free to look at science for HOW God did it when the moral of Genesis is THAT God did it and WHY God did it. OK? I know you don't accept my premise that Genesis is a reinterpretation of a pagan myth, but given I see it that way why ON EARTH do I have to provide biblical evidence for evolution when the bible is silent on it and leaves it up to us?

It's as ridiculous as asking the bible to provide evidence for quantum mechanics, or television operation, or which toaster Christians are allowed to buy!

Warwick, I'm afraid you're a liberal pagan for letting yourself use the internet because you're not allowed to — the bible doesn't tell you which PC or what software to use or even explain it's existence. In other words, there is no answer to your question because the question itself is utterly moronic. Genesis clearly reinterprets a myth, yet contains theological truth. You are asking it to tell you things that are as alien to the authors mind as the internet, and about as relevant.

John said...

Davey,

It's time for your little red pill. Do you remember yesterday when you took that little red pill? Well, it's that time again.

David, you are an exemplar for the idiom 'A liitle knowledge is a dangerous thing'. As my favourite biochemist use to warn, "Plough deeply, son."

John said...

David contends that "my premise that Genesis is a reinterpretation of a pagan myth"

That's right Davey, the 4th commandment is actually mythological. And God speaking face-to-face with Moses and telling him in direct speech that YHWH created everything in 6 days isn't really accurate. That is, God was deceiving ol' Moses.

OK I accept your idea. So what's your proof?

Say, what? John who? John Dickson? Who's that? "A TV superstar, you moron, who has done more for the kingdom than all you moronic creationists put together!"

OK. We surrender. We will ignore God's direct words to Moses where he says that "I, YHWH, created everything in 6 days" and we will follow you and your guru John Dickson. I feel really secure in my faith now.

Furthermore, what numbskulls we are that we didn't see it before: God, YHWH, Himself, the Creator, actually was himself reinterpreting a pagan story and he knew that Moses and the other Israelites, and Calvin, Luther, Theophilus, Lightfoot, Aquinas etc etc should notice that it was really a "spanking" of a pagan myth.

But they didn't notice. What morons! So YHWH rose up a prophet, a super-hero, named John Dickson and his sycophantic side-kick David. Yes, the saviours of Christendom. And what was this insight that no Church notworthy had hitherto noticed? Why, it was number 7, number 7, number 7, number 7, number 7, number 7, number 7.

God bless you guys for your long awaited aid to the Church.

John said...

Davey,

Time for your big purple pill. No, not that end...the other. Open wide.

Dave Lankshear said...

Calm down John and answer the question. It's not that hard — you can do it! I believe in you! You've had all this education!

So, once again... the matter that you've managed to avoid so comprehensively...

Is the number of people going to heaven limited 144 thousand?

Now all you have to do is look at number use in the Israelite culture... you can do it, just pick up a few books from Moore next time you're there and learn! Also, while we're mentioning your academic technique, remember in your exams to ATTEMPT to answer the question.. and try to remember your own quotes re the use of Ad Hominem attacks, there's a good boy.

As for your repetition of 7, check out these facts.

***************

Number symbolism in Genesis 1

A full account of all of the literary devices in Genesis would be inappropriate here and they are well described in numerous technical studies and commentaries. I will, however, draw attention to the number symbolism present in our passage. This provides a compelling example of the unusual nature of the text and of the way the author seeks to convey his message through means other than the surface-level plot.

It is well known that in Hebrew thought the number seven symbolises ‘wholeness’ as a characteristic of God’s perfection. A well-known example is the seven-candle lamp stand, or Menorah, which has long been a symbol of the Jewish faith and is the emblem of the modern State of Israel.


Menorah: emblem of the State of Israel


In Genesis 1, multiples of seven appear in extraordinary ways. For ancient readers, who were accustomed to taking notice of such things, these multiples of seven conveyed a powerful message. Seven was the divine number, the number of goodness and perfection. Its omnipresence in the opening chapter of the Bible makes an unmistakable point about the origin and nature of the universe itself. Consider the following:

a) The first sentence of Genesis 1 consists of seven Hebrew words. Instantly, the ancient reader’s attention is focused;
b) The second sentence contains exactly fourteen words. A pattern is developing;
c) The word ‘earth’—one half of the created sphere—appears in the chapter 21 times;
d) The word ‘heaven’—the other half of the created sphere—also appears 21 times.
e) ‘God’, the lead actor, is mentioned exactly 35 times.
f) The refrain ‘and it was so,’ which concludes each creative act, occurs exactly seven times;
g) The summary statement ‘God saw that it was good’ also occurs seven times;
h) It hardly needs to be pointed out that the whole account is structured around seven scenes or seven days of the week.


The artistry of the chapter is stunning and, to ancient readers, unmistakable. It casts the creation as a work of art, sharing in the perfection of God and deriving from him. My point is obvious: short of including a prescript for the benefit of modern readers the original author could hardly have made it clearer that his message is being conveyed through literary rather than prosaic means. What we find in Genesis 1 is not exactly poetry of the type we find in the biblical book of Psalms but nor is it recognizable as simple prose. It is a rhythmic, symbolically-charged inventory of divine commands.

Literary style and the question of ‘truth’

None of this should trouble modern Christians, or skeptics for that matter. It may be that you choose to dismiss the bible’s relevance and worth but such a choice should not stem from this particular issue. It is not as if truths expressed by literary device are somehow less true than those expressed in simple prose. We have already raised the examples of parable and apocalyptic. Outside of the Bible, we also recognize the capacity of images to convey truth. When Romeo says: ‘What light through yonder window breaks? It is the East, and Juliet is the sun!,’ we all understand what is being said. The statement is no less real than if Romeo had said, ‘Juliet is at the window and she is pretty.’ Only someone unacquainted with the English literary tradition would quibble over the ontological discrepancies between a woman and the sun.

Did God create ‘light’ on Day 1 of creation? He might have. But this is probably not the point of Genesis 1:3. The highly ‘literary’ presentation style of our passage makes it unlikely, in my opinion, that the author intended for us to link his surface plot of a seven-day week with a sequence of physical events in time. Again, the example of the book of Revelation comes to mind. It is universally agreed amongst scholars that the number of Jews present in Revelation’s picture of the heavenly kingdom (144,000) is symbolic not actual. Being a multiple of 12 (the number of the tribes of Israel) the 144,000 figure conveys the idea of a complete number of Israelites. This is recognized even in popular circles (though I note that Jehovah’s Witnesses interpret the number literalistically). Likewise, the literary nature of Genesis 1 suggests to me and to many other biblical historians that the original author of the text, whatever his thoughts of the mechanics of creation, did not intend to convey them in this text. Many will disagree with this conclusion on theological and (perhaps) scientific grounds. I respect their right to differ and remain open to learning more about this supremely important passage of Jewish and Christian Scripture.

Dr John Dickson
Director of the Centre for Public Christianity
Honorary Associate of the Department of Ancient History, Macquarie University (Australia)

Ktisophilos said...

As for "number 7", the Hebrew for "good" (tov) appears 7 times in Gen. 1, and the 7th time it is with me'od, i.e. "very good". The pathetic compromise of Dickson and his thrall Lankshear have death, "the last enemy", as part of this "very good" creation.

Ktisophilos said...

Is the number of people going to heaven limited 144 thousand?

This is in a book loaded with symbolism, unlike Genesis which is loaded with features of historical narrative. In any case, this is not about the number who go to heaven, so get your face out of JW crap.

The 144,000 refer to 12,000 from each of the 12 tribes of Israel who will be sealed to be protected during the Tribulation:

Rev 7:3 ff:

“Do not harm the earth or the sea or the trees, until we have sealed the servants of our God on their foreheads.”
4 And I heard the number of the sealed, 144,000, sealed from every tribe of the sons of Israel: ...

Dave Lankshear said...

KT, you've ignored the point.

But maybe you can answer the question at hand, paw wittle Jowny wowny's gowne all abusey woosey and won't answer the question.

Are only 144 thousand people going to heaven?

Ktisophilos said...

This Dickson person is a neo-Kabbalist with his numerological claptrap.

This is even more egregious than his ignorant claims about chiasmus, which have been shown to appear frequently in historical literature.

Dave Lankshear said...

Oh, really, you mean the Jews understood this number-ology thingy that John's so confused by? How on earth did they understand it, because the PLAIN reading of the text is that only 144 thousand people are going to heaven you LIBERAL HERETIC!

Ktisophilos said...

Lankshear, don't be a moron all your life. This passage isn't even about salvation but protection while the angels are about to harm the earth.

And finding symbols in Revelation hardly proves that numbers are symbolic in Genesis. For all the AngloMooreLiberal prattling about literary genres, they can't tell genre from going to the John.

Warwick said...

I gotta agree with JohnBoy that as Genesis 1 is so chock full of leeterary devices and symbolism it jes caint be fact.

Holy Moley then those pesky 10 Co-mmandments which take the 'furn' outa larf don't gotta be takin leeterally a tall. One of 'em's based upon a whole gunny sack o JD's leeterary devices so theys credibility is jes shot to peeces! Gorn to the Pound Hill. Gonna have some fun tonight!

Sorry Lord I know you sayd man was made at the beginnin of it orl but DL says good ole JD says youse rorng. Those leeterary devarces jes tell a defferent story. So that's it for me.

You airsk urs to beleev death came into this here world cos o sin but now ah kno that's only a symbolic leeterary devarse -something like mythopoeticallegoricity. Boy ahm gettin the haing of this now!

You sayd you made man from the durst o the ground but JD says nope Adam had a Granddaddy who weren't neither dust nor mayn.
But jes holed orn a second Scripture says we wuz made from durst and wen we snuffs it we become durst agin. Now folks iffin that rayt wee ken check it out and see if we is sum kind or primates post snuffin taime. Lets dig urp a few graves and have a looksee-whurps too early, thayt wern still human. Hey weez talkin bout evolution so meebe it takes an eon or two ter happen?

You said you durn mayd your creatures to reeprodoos efter thayer own karnd an thayts waht we see but JD says nope. Sorry you're rorng again!

BTW Dave if you are looking for my literary device I will save you the trouble it's humour. Not very good humour but the best a hillbilly moron can achieve.

But seriously Dave: You did not answer the question because there is no Biblical evidence for your pagan belief. Conversely there is, as explained, much evidence which confirms that God created just as He says in Genesis 1. You just don't want to believe it.

As the apostle says-it is by faith that we understand the world was created of old....

Dave Lankshear said...

You mean they didn't just understand the number 144 thousand to be figurative, but they understood it to be figurative because it contains MULTIPLES of other significant Jewish numbers like 12?

Gosh!

I wonder what other significant Jewish numbers are multiplied all the way through the text of Genesis 1?

Dave Lankshear said...

I'm sorry, help me out here guys 'cause this is really hard... you guys are obviously heretics because the PLAIN meaning of Scripture in Rev 7 is that only 144 thousand people are sealed for heaven... I mean, WHY would it go into so much specific detail? Surely we are just meant to read the plain text? Don't you guys have any FAITH in the bible?

Check it out...

4Then I heard the number of those who were sealed: 144,000 from all the tribes of Israel.
5From the tribe of Judah 12,000 were sealed,
from the tribe of Reuben 12,000,
from the tribe of Gad 12,000,
6from the tribe of Asher 12,000,
from the tribe of Naphtali 12,000,
from the tribe of Manasseh 12,000,
7from the tribe of Simeon 12,000,
from the tribe of Levi 12,000,
from the tribe of Issachar 12,000,
8from the tribe of Zebulun 12,000,
from the tribe of Joseph 12,000,
from the tribe of Benjamin 12,000.

It's so specific and clear! Why bother to explain it all so clearly and specifically and pedantically if it isn't going to happen that way? Gosh... reading it any other way, one would be forced to admit that it's the wisdom of mankind just WANTING scripture to be different. Don't we just accept these things by faith?

Oh, and KT, polite as always aren't we?

Lankshear, don't be a moron all your life. This passage isn't even about salvation but protection while the angels are about to harm the earth.
Poor wittle KT didn't want to read his bibbble all the way through to Chapter 14 where the 144k are mentioned safe on Mt Zion, or eventually show up even safe in heaven with that all important SEAL you mentioned.

Revelation 22:4

"4They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads."

ahhh, sorry, but... do try to get your facts right before throwing the word 'moron' around too liberally.

Ktisophilos said...

Good grief, the text is plainly about 144,000 Jews alive during the Tribulation being sealed before the angels are given permission to harm the earth. That hardly rules out of heaven the Church through the ages.

Throw your JW materials in the trash; they are overflowing your head with crass notions, and goodness knows your head is already full enough of these.

Added to that the obvious apocalyptic genre of this passage, i.e. nothing like Genesis, despite the fertile neo-Kabbalistic imagination of your idol Dickson.

Dave Lankshear said...

Oh really? See, there I was thinking that the 144 thousand Jews became synonymous with the "great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and in front of the Lamb." from Rev 7. They are sealed on their forehead, and the people of God... the Great Multitude, are in heaven on Revelation 22 with names on their forehead. But hey? If you have a different eschatology to my A-mil position, so what? A little semantic difference is all beside the point.

The main point is that many cults have started up by reading parts of the bible literally that were not meant to be read literally. These cults have authority figures that are UNQUESTIONABLE, that everyone else is meant to submit their minds to.

So KT, can I suggest applying a questioning mind to Genesis 1 and actually, honestly asking a few questions for once instead of submitting in fear to some grand poo-bah leader of the YECS? If the Jews understood 12 multiplied by 12 multiplied by 1000 to mean the 'complete number of God's people', then what other number symbols do they catch that we today might miss?

Just imagine if 7's were repeated all the way through Revelation as well? That might indicate a repeated use of the number 7 indicates symbolic non-literal but highly meaningful text... that Jews might be used to 7's.

Imagine if Revelation also used an intertextual reference coupled with number symbolism. Hang on there... it DOES use numbers and references to another highly symbolic text, like quoting OT images of the beasts in Daniel 7. Isn't that amazing? Maybe Revelation is not meant to be taken literally after all!

Gee, I hope Genesis isn't overflowing with 7's in a highly symbolic structure with intertextual references to other mythological or highly symbolic pieces, because that might indicate symbolism as well!

But we all know that speaking like this is heretical! We HAVE TO read the plain literal meaning of the text... which in the case of Revelation means somehow Jesus was born with a sword in his mouth. Anyone who says otherwise is (in your best southern accent) 'just a plain old heretic.'

John said...

David muddies the water: "The main point is that many cults have started up by reading parts of the bible literally that were not meant to be read literally. These cults have authority figures that are UNQUESTIONABLE, that everyone else is meant to submit their minds to."

Let me digest your point here, Davey... hmmm...Theophilus, Calvin, Luther, Lightfoot, Aquinas etc etc, all believed in taking Genesis 1 as literal, real, 6 24-hour days so on the basis of your impressive argument they must be cult leaders.

John said...

Dave,

So, what about the 4th commandment and when YHWH speaks face-to-face with Moses amd tells him that YHWH created everything in 6 days, do you still think it's just number symbolism?

Davey, I've actually studied a little gematria and it's far more impressive than YOUR little 7 story (there's more of 7 in Torah than you or Dickson could imagine). The point is, however, your missing the forest for the trees: that Torah is incredibly replete with sequences of numbers, mirrored halves and threads of 49/50 letters spelling out God's name etc etc, does not eliminate the historicity of Genesis 1, the 4th commandment or Exodus 31.

Look, Davey, all of us on this blog have read Dickson's work long ago, have heard him speak, and have rebutted his mysticism well before you came along here. As I said re the literary devices, every single one that Dickson mentions, EVERY SINGLE ONE, is found in all ancient historiographers.

Furthermore, as I've said, most of the literary devices are found in the Gospels (and Paul's letters!) but no one suggests that we view the Gospels as non-history. You have got to be consistent, Davey.

Go and ask your guru Dickson if he realises that chiasmus is used throughout Exodus and John's Gospel. Don't bother to tell us what you think he would say but go and do some homework before you come here and try to explain a theory you've obviously not done any research on. Any half wit can regurgitate someone else's pathetic theory.

Look, Dave, I don't think you are as dumb as what you come over as, so go and do a little work on chisamus and parallelism etc and report back.

Remember, stay focused.

gwen said...

It has been said within the Diocese that the book of Revelation is the "happy hunting ground for heretics". Young David is revelling in it.

Gwen

Dave Lankshear said...

John,
If you can't discern when the literary device shifts within a book from 'literally true' to 'metaphorically true' then that's your problem. Genesis 1 has some VERY unique uses of 7 AND intertextual reference to an older text, and if one is willing to admit certain historical facts (about the EE existing prior to Genesis as a completed document) then it screams the obvious! But, contrary to your own repeated accusations against TE's, YEC's have never been ones to admit the obvious. The truth is too threatening to your position.

Unsurprisingly, no one here wanted to acknowledge the New Testament's use of the Sabbath. This affects our understanding of both Genesis 1 and Exodus 31.

14 " 'Observe the Sabbath, because it is holy to you. Anyone who desecrates it must be put to death; whoever does any work on that day must be cut off from his people. 15 For six days, work is to be done, but the seventh day is a Sabbath of rest, holy to the LORD. Whoever does any work on the Sabbath day must be put to death. 16 The Israelites are to observe the Sabbath, celebrating it for the generations to come as a lasting covenant. 17 It will be a sign between me and the Israelites forever, for in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, and on the seventh day he abstained from work and rested.' "

If you slow down a bit and let yourselves honestly read Hebrews 4, you'll see that the Sabbath is far more than just the last day of the week, even the 1 day in 7 of special rest. It is being equated to the purpose of God for his people! This is not just the literary device where the 7th day never actually ends in Genesis 1, but is backed up by the plain teaching of Hebrews 4.

When we read the WHOLE bible (not just Genesis 1 my poor obsessed YEC friends) it becomes clear that the use of the Sabbath in Genesis is not just for one special day of the week, but was originally intended as the ultimate purpose of creation! Sadly this was then usurped in human rebellion, but through God's wonderful grace ultimately becomes our final destination. This is the only way Exodus 31 can remain true, otherwise God lied to Moses... unless you all go to church on Saturday? ;-)

The 'Sabbath' remains for us today as the hope of heaven. "There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God;" and "Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest".

God spoke to Moses using the rich language of Genesis 1, which yet again we see has FAR more theological subtlety than just the mere, dry, literal 'mechanics' of creation. Enough of me, over to the real deal.

Hebrews 4
1Therefore, since the promise of entering his rest still stands, let us be careful that none of you be found to have fallen short of it. 2For we also have had the gospel preached to us, just as they did; but the message they heard was of no value to them, because those who heard did not combine it with faith.[a] 3Now we who have believed enter that rest, just as God has said,
"So I declared on oath in my anger,
'They shall never enter my rest.' "[b] And yet his work has been finished since the creation of the world. 4For somewhere he has spoken about the seventh day in these words: "And on the seventh day God rested from all his work."[c] 5And again in the passage above he says, "They shall never enter my rest."

6It still remains that some will enter that rest, and those who formerly had the gospel preached to them did not go in, because of their disobedience. 7Therefore God again set a certain day, calling it Today, when a long time later he spoke through David, as was said before:
"Today, if you hear his voice,
do not harden your hearts."[d] 8For if Joshua had given them rest, God would not have spoken later about another day. 9There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; 10for anyone who enters God's rest also rests from his own work, just as God did from his. 11Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will fall by following their example of disobedience.


Gwen, I have no idea what you're talking about, unless of course you graciously call anyone who disagrees with your 'exact eschatology' a heretic as well?

Ktisophilos said...

Now Lanshear wants to over-spiritualize these 144,000 Jews, who are most definitely alive during the tribulation, not the totality of all saved believers. But spiritualizing biblical mentions of Israel is par for the course for the Moorites—that way they can follow Goebbels Cheng's current antisemitism disguised as "anti-Israelism".

Ktisophilos said...

The people who run this site have documented their case with first rate scholarship from the leading Christian exegetes of the ages. Lankshear and Dickson propose bizarre theological novelties, aka heresies to try to force Genesis (and the rest of Scripture that cites Genesis) to conform to godless uniformitarian / evolutionary pseudoscience.

Dave Lankshear said...

KT,

you're quoting your YEC cult leaders again! Try thinking it through honestly... try actually looking at the data! Enormous blitzing of 7's and intertextual reference in Revelation (the most symbolic book of the bible — and you appear to be reading that all wrong as well) and 7's and intertextual reference in Genesis 1.

Hmmmm, how to read Genesis 1? Tough.

Warwick said...

Yes you are right Dave it is

hard to read Genesis 1 correctly when

man's falible opinions are your ultimate authority.

Have a look three lots of 7!

Four actually, must be hypomythopoeticalallegoricity.

Dave Lankshear said...

This sulking routine you're all doing avoiding the facts? It's finally got dull. When the genetic evidence for evolution hits the streets and you guys are losing USA YEC funding & friends, and the Creationist Museum of denial and fantasy goes broke, and you feel your very faith is coming unstuck... have another look at the evidence John Dickson raises.

Genesis is still God's sufficient word — just don't try to force it to answer questions it's not even concerned with.

With concern both for the extremist views you hold and nastiness with which you all push them,

Bye.

John said...

OK, allow me to be serious for one minute - I can't stand to have you disappear.

Two questions:

1. What evidence would nullify John Dickson's theory

2. If there were evidence that Torah predates EE, would that go some way toward your giving up on the theory? After all, logically then Genesis 1 could not be a reaction to EE if it preceded it.

I know I've been a tad rude to you ol' son, but cut me a little slack, and answer a couple of questions. What do you say?

Warwick said...

Dave you wrote: 'When the genetic evidence for evolution hits the streets and you guys are losing USA YEC funding & friends, and the Creationist Museum of denial and fantasy goes broke, and you feel your very faith is coming unstuck... have another look at the evidence John Dickson raises.'

A few comments:

From my information the evidence from genetics is going the otherway. This is one reason why the intelligent design group is doing so well.


Funds coming from YEC's in the USA-what in the world are you raving about Dave? What funds, and from whom? Where's my share?

Dave John Dickson's stuff(and stuff it is) isn't anything new, it's just old time liberalism. It is such a tangled evasive walk around clear language, obviously constructed on the basis that long-ages and microbe to man evolution is a fact. It denised the historical basis for the Gospel and at least one of the 10 commandments, and more.

I have heard his stuff repeated by members of the SAD including some Moore students I recently met and they were dumbfounded when I gave a defence of YEC-said they had never heard this information before. They were also surprized when I showed them the holes in T/E theology. Maybe one of them will start thinking.

I spoke with a Moore student some years ago and eventually he saw through the T/E nonsense but was threatened that he would not be accepted as an Anglican minister unless he gave up on his creationist beliefs. Shame-bully-boy tactics.

I am happpy to report he is now an Anglican minister and doing very well. It is pleasing to consider what liberation from error is now occurring in his church!

Mies van der Rohe the famous architect has a saying-less is More. I prefer to say-Moore is less.

Ktisophilos said...

Lankshear is a typical AnglioHypocrite. He and Goebbels Cheng whinge about alleged harsh language here, but both are happy to call YEC a "cult". Fine, a cult with members including Irenaeus, Theophilus, Basil, Gregory the Theologian, Ephraim the Syrian, Julius Africanus, John Damascene, John Chrysostom, Augustine, Thomas Aquinas, Luther, Ussher, Calvin, Kepler, Newton, Melanchthon, Steno, Woodward, Wesley, Faraday, John MacArthur and R.C. Sproul is a cult worth joining!

Warwick said...

Dave you said we were receiving USA YEC funding. before I call you a common garden variety liar I will give you the opportunity to defend your remarks.

Question: from whom in the USA is this funding coming? Secondly who in Australia is receiving it?

Maybe you were just mindlessly repeating the anti-creationist slander which abounds in dark musty sections of the SAD. Or maybe you made it up?

So Dave what are you a dupe or a liar?

I think it reasonable that a lack of an answer will mean you are one or the other or both.

Am I being rude in suggesting you are a dupe or a liar Dave? Not at all just descriptive terms.

Over to you!

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