Saturday, April 24, 2010

Doing what I do

Someone posted this during a discussion, no points for guessing the subject being debated. It's about how apparently the Bible has a wealth of scientific knowledge we are only in recent days rediscovering. Seen many of these before, but some are new to me. Of course, lists like this are always so tempting to rip apart (if you're me. Which you're probably not), and my internet argument modus operandi pretty much requires me to do so, so...
Figured I'd post it here too, I'm not really satisfied with the last post and I want a better return to business as usual (as much as that can mean anything here). Onwards to the deconstruction of fucknuggetry.

101 Scientific Facts & Foreknowledge (that aren't actually there)

1. The earth free-floats in space (Job 26:7), affected only by gravity. While other sources declared the earth sat on the back of an elephant or turtle, or was held up by Atlas, the Bible alone stateswhat we now know to be true – “He hangs the earth on nothing.”
Common mistake, but Atlas was supposed to hold the heavens, not the Earth. Much like, say, those pillars of heaven mentioned 4 verses later, in Job 26:11. But I'm sure that particular verse was allegorical, whereas the first one is clearly literal. In any case, the Earth being unsupported is not a particularly original idea. Think about it, ultimately you can always keep asking what's under the turtle that's holding the elephants, and you either go with turtles all the way down or nothing. I'd be more impressed if it had said something about the Sun's gravity.
2. Creation is made of particles, indiscernible to our eyes (Hebrews 11:3). Not until the 19th century was it discovered that all visible matter consists of invisible elements.
Wow. Read the verse in context, it's talking about faith and the word of God, not particles. Besides, very early atomic models existed since Democritus, at least. As in, before Hebrews was written.
3. The Bible specifies the perfect dimensions for a stable water vessel (Genesis 6:15). Ship builders today are well aware that the ideal dimension for ship stability is a length six times that of the width. Keep in mind, God told Noah the ideal dimensions for the ark 4,500 years ago.
You know, I can't seem to find anything on the study that supposedly showed the ideal dimensions of the ark, outside creationist websites? Wonder why that is. In any case, the construction of ships was not a new business even by the time Noah allegedly lived, nevermind the time Genesis was actually written.
4. When dealing with disease, clothes and body should be washed under running water (Leviticus 15:13). For centuries people naively washed in standing water. Today we recognize the need to wash away germs with fresh water.
Apparently it takes a genius to figure out that if you wash in stagnant water, the filth stays there. I've heard arguments by fifth-graders about showers vs baths that used this argument, but no, I'm sure this time it was divine wisdom.
5. Sanitation industry birthed (Deuteronomy 23:12-13). Some 3,500 years ago God commanded His people to have a place outside the camp where they could relieve themselves. They were to each carry a shovel so that they could dig a hole (latrine) and cover their waste. Up until World War I, more soldiers died from disease than war because they did not isolate human waste.
Staying away from your own faeces is an animal instinct. That's partly why find their smell... unpleasant.
6. Oceans contain springs (Job 38:16). The ocean is very deep. Almost all the ocean floor is in total darkness and the pressure there is enormous. It would have been impossible for Job to have explored the "springs of the sea." Until recently, it was thought that oceans were fed only by rivers and rain. Yet in the 1970s, with the help of deep diving research submarines that were constructed to withstand 6,000 pounds-per-square-inch pressure, oceanographers discovered springs on the ocean floors!
A spring is a water source. The verse could just as easily be there just because the writers assumed that any body of water must have a spring from where its water comes from (which is incidentally not what hydrothermal vents, the actuals hot springs in the ocean, do).
7. There are mountains on the bottom of the ocean floor (Jonah 2:5-6). Only in the last century have we discovered that there are towering mountains and deep trenches in the depths of the sea.
Jonah was written by people who believed that a flood had once covered mountains. It's not unreasonable to say they got the idea of underwater mountains from there. If those verses even meant that there are underwater mountains and not, say, that there's water underneath the roots of "land" mountains.
8. Joy and gladness understood (Acts 14:17). Evolution cannot explain emotions. Matter and energy do not feel. Scripture explains that God places gladness in our hearts (Psalm 4:7), and ultimate joy is found only in our Creator’s presence – “in Your presence is fullness of joy” (Psalm 16:11).
Bold claim, and one that happens to be remarkably wrong. Evolution does explain emotions, they can be quite useful for survival, especially in social animals. One might argue that it does not explain the specific mechanisms through which we experience emotion, but a) that'd be in the realm of neurology, not evolution and b) the Bible doesn't explain that either, it just makes a bold claim about it. Aetiological mythology is not scientific fact.
9. Blood is the source of life and health (Leviticus 17:11; 14). Up until 120 years ago, sick people were “bled” and many died as a result (e.g. George Washington). Today we know that healthy blood is necessary to bring life-giving nutrients to every cell in the body. God declared that “the life of the flesh is in the blood” long before science understood its function.
Um, yeah, no. Bloodletting was based on the theory of four bodily humours, which was, of course, wrong, but those that practised it were still quite aware that if you took too much blood out of a person, they died. Hence the fact that a lot of medical practice revolved around closing haemorrhaging wounds.
10. The Bible states that God created life according to kinds (Genesis 1:24). The fact that God distinguishes kinds, agrees with what scientists observe – namely that there are horizontal genetic boundaries beyond which life cannot vary. Life produces after its own kind. Dogs produce dogs, cats produce cats, roses produce roses. Never have we witnessed one kind changing into another kind as evolution supposes. There are truly natural limits to biological change
Creationism is scientific fact now? Despite being opposed to by the overwhelming majority of a) scientists and b) scientific evidence? I must admit I'm confused.
Also, the only reason we have never observed one kind changing into another is because kinds are undefined. There's not criterion for determining what's one kind or another, making the claim one kind cannot change into another unfalsifiable and irrelevant. On the realm of scientific classification that matter, we have observed speciation, and have plenty of evidence for it having taken place in the past.
11. Noble behavior understood (John 15:13; Romans 5:7-8). The Bible and history reveal that countless people have endangered or even sacrificed their lives for another. This reality is completely at odds with Darwin’s theory of the survival of the fittest.
Oh look, another pointless dig at evolution. Social animals, the selfish gene, read on that to see how the ToE does selects for altruism.
I'm confused as to how the Bible showing noble acts qualifies as some surprising scientific discovery, by the way.
12. Chicken or egg dilemma solved (Genesis 1:20-22). Which came first, the chicken or the egg? This question has plagued philosophers for centuries. The Bible states that God created birds with the ability to reproduce after their kind. Therefore the chicken was created first with the ability to make eggs! Yet, evolution has no solution for this dilemma.
Oh for the love of Yog-Sothoth! The chicken and egg dilemma is a metaphor, not an actual, serious scientific concern. The evolutionary explanation for it is quite simple, really (though it depends on whether you define a chicken egg as an egg laid by a chicken, or as one from which a chicken is born)
13. Which came first, proteins or DNA (Revelation 4:11)? For evolutionists, the chicken or egg dilemma goes even deeper. Chickens consist of proteins. The code for each protein is contained in the DNA/RNA system. However, proteins are required in order to manufacture DNA. So which came first: proteins or DNA? The ONLY explanation is that they were created together.
Or that the protein/nucleic acid relationship is not identical to what it was at first. That it, perhaps, evolved....
14. Our bodies are made from the dust of the ground (Genesis 2:7; 3:19). Scientists have discovered that the human body is comprised of some 28 base and trace elements – all of which are found in the earth.
The dust of the ground is mainly silicon-based. Humans are carbon-based.
15.The First Law of Thermodynamics established (Genesis 2:1-2). The First Law states that the total quantity of energy and matter in the universe is a constant. One form of energy or matter may be converted into another, but the total quantity always remains the same. Therefore the creation is finished, exactly as God said way back in Genesis.
OK, seriously, what? The verse just says that God finished creating the heavens and the Earth on the sixth day. Jumping from there to thermodynamics is just a teeny bit of a stretch.
16. The first three verses of Genesis accurately express all known aspects of the creation (Genesis 1:1-3). Science expresses the universe in terms of: time, space, matter, and energy. In Genesis chapter one we read: “In the beginning (time) God created the heavens (space) and the earth (matter)…Then God said, “Let there be light (energy).” No other creation account agrees with the observable evidence.
In the same spirit as the last, and just as much of a stretch. Really, this is supposed to be some shocking revelation of hidden truths?
Also, um, the Genesis creation myth, and observable evidence, well... let's just say they get along as well as typing at 3 in the morning and my ability to make colourful analogies. (I'm not even sure if that makes sense, and it still makes more sense than saying that creationism matches the evidence)
17. The universe had a beginning (Genesis 1:1; Hebrews 1:10-12). Starting with the studies of Albert Einstein in the early 1900s and continuing today, science has confirmed the biblical view that the universe had a beginning. When the Bible was written most people believed the universe was eternal. Science has proven them wrong, but the Bible correct.
More "The Bible kinda sorta hints at something that on some level agrees with modern science and is not surprising or revolutionary in any way at all"? It's getting old quick.
18. The earth is a sphere (Isaiah 40:22). At a time when many thought the earth was flat, the Bible told us that the earth is spherical.
Read the verse. It says "circle". Do I need to highlight what the very obvious difference between a sphere and a circle is?
19. Scripture assumes a revolving (spherical) earth (Luke 17:34-36). Jesus said that at His return some would be asleep at night while others would be working at day time activities in the field. This is a clear indication of a revolving earth, with day and night occurring simultaneously.
One very important word is missing from those verses. It's "day". Besides, and this applies to the above point as well, the Greeks already had a spherical earth model.
20. Origin of the rainbow explained (Genesis 9:13-16). Prior to the Flood there was a different environment on the earth (Genesis 2:5-6). After the Flood, God set His rainbow “in the cloud” as a sign that He would never again judge the earth by water. Meteorologists now understand that a rainbow is formed when the sun shines through water droplets – which act as a prism – separating white light into its color spectrum.
Remember when I said that aetiological mythology is not scientific fact? Get used to it, because I'm going to repeat it a lot. It applies here too. Neither verse says a word about refraction.
21.Light can be divided (Job 38:24). Sir Isaac Newton studied light and discovered that white light is made of seven colors, which can be “parted” and then recombined. Science confirmed this four centuries ago – God declared this four millennia ago!
Another verse that says nothing about refraction. It's not quite clear what exactly it means, different versions render wildly different translations of the phrase.
22. Ocean currents anticipated (Psalm 8:8). Three thousand years ago the Bible described the “paths of the seas.” In the 19th century Matthew Maury – the father of oceanography – after reading Psalm 8, researched and discovered ocean currents that follow specific paths through the seas! Utilizing Maury’s data, marine navigators have since reduced by many days the time required to traverse the seas.
Paths of the sea could mean anything from sea trade routes to ocean currents. Which weren't a new discovery, either. Maury's contribution was in mapping currents, not discovering them.
23. Sexual promiscuity is dangerous to your health (1 Corinthians 6:18; Romans 1:27). The Bible warns that “he who commits sexual immorality sins against his own body,” and that those who commit homosexual sin would “receive in themselves” the penalty of their error. Much data now confirms that any sexual relationship outside of holy matrimony is unsafe.
As a matter of fact, the most relevant fact regarding safe sex is protection, not marriage. You might argue that condoms did not exist back then and that having a single partner diminished chances of getting an STD. And of course, you would be right, but marriage, holy or not, is neither a guarantee nor the only possibility for sexual exclusivity. By the by, monogamy existed long before the Bible and those verses are about sin and thus spiritual well-being, not health.
24. Reproduction explained (Genesis 1:27-28; 2:24; Mark 10:6-8). While evolution has no mechanism to explain how male and female reproductive organs evolved at the same time, the Bible says that from the beginning God made them male and female in order to propagate the human race and animal kinds.
I can't help but notice the curious definition of "explained" being used. The verses only assert that males and females exist, which I'm pretty sure is not a shock to anyone. It does ignore we come in more than those two varieties, though.
As for evolution, we have intermediate states of species that can reproduce both sexually and asexually. Voilà, a mechanism for the evolution of sexual reproduction.
25. Incalculable number of stars (Jeremiah 33:22). At a time when less than 5,000 stars were visible to the human eye, God stated that the stars of heaven were innumerable. Not until the 17th century did Galileo glimpse the immensity of our universe with his new telescope. Today, astronomers estimate that there are ten thousand billion trillion stars – that’s a 1 followed by 25 zeros! Yet, as the Bible states, scientists admit this number may be woefully inadequate.
See, there's two ways of reading that verse. You can either interpret it literally, in which case it's false, because starts can be numbered, or you interpret it figuratively, in which case it simply means there's a lot of stars. Which, as it turns out, was obvious to anyone even back then.
26. The number of stars, though vast, are finite (Isaiah 40:26). Although man is unable to calculate the exact number of stars, we now know their number is finite. Of course God knew this all along – “He counts the number of the stars; He calls them all by name” (Psalm 147:4). What an awesome God!
Really, really reaching now. It's supposed to be an awe-inspiring demonstration of God-given knowledge that there's an actual number of stars? Seriously.
27. The Bible compares the number of stars with the number of grains of sand on the seashore (Genesis 22:17; Hebrews 11:12). Amazingly, gross estimates of the number of sand grains are comparable to the estimated number of stars in the universe.
Again with the number of stars. Really, we don't have any decent numbers for either. We have wild estimates, that are sorta kinda not that far apart (as in, one is a hundred times greater than the other, based only on visible galaxies and assuming there's only grains of sand on Earth). It's pretty damn obvious the verse was just a poetic way of giving an impression of vastness, in any case.
28. Rejecting the Creator results in moral depravity (Romans 1:20-32). The Bible warns that when mankind rejects the overwhelming evidence for a Creator, lawlessness will result. Since the theory of evolution has swept the globe, abortion, pornography, genocide, etc., have all risen sharply.
On some level, a trivial prediction, in that what is immoral is subjective and depending, amongst other things, on the religion of whoever is doing the judging. By which I mean to imply that, if a certain religion is less popular, it should come as no surprise that the acts condemned by such a religion become less rejected. This besides the fact violent crime has been steadily going down over time, contradicting the claim of increasing moral depravity. I'd really like to see the stats on genocide, especially after factoring that Hitler was a Creationist and Stalin promoted Lysenkoism. Neither of them was particularly fond of the ToE. Also, cum hoc ergo propter hoc fallacy.
29. The fact that God once flooded the earth (the Noahic Flood) would be denied (2 Peter 3:5-6). There is a mass of fossil evidence to prove this fact, yet it is flatly ignored by most of the scientific world because it was God’s judgment on man’s wickedness.
The fossil evidence that is clearly ordered as expected from evolution, not disordered with animals from different ages appearing in the same layers as flood geology would predict? That fossil evidence?
30. Vast fossil deposits anticipated (Genesis 7). When plants and animals die they decompose rapidly. Yet billions of life forms around the globe have been preserved as fossils. Geologists now know that fossils only form if there is rapid deposition of life buried away from scavengers and bacteria. This agrees exactly with what the Bible says occurred during the global Flood.
See above comment about what the Flood would show in terms of fossils, also factor in that the timescale is much greater than what the flood assumes and thus there was more time to create fossils, explaining the supposedly high number using an evolutionary model.

31. The continents were created as one large land mass (Genesis 1:9-10). Many geologists agree there is strong evidence that the earth was originally one super continent – just as the Bible said way back in Genesis.
Except that those verses say nothing at all about the number of land masses.
32. Continental drift inferred (Genesis 7:11). Today the study of the ocean floor indicates that the landmasses have been ripped apart. Scripture states that during the global Flood the “fountains of the great deep were broken up.” This cataclysmic event apparently resulted in the continental plates breaking and shifting.
Nothing here about continental drift, just making a wild assumption about possible causes for it that is unsupported by the evidence.
33. Ice Age inferred (Job 38:29-30). Prior to the global Flood the earth was apparently subtropical. However shortly after the Flood, the Bible mentions ice often – “By the breath of God ice is given, and the broad waters are frozen” (Job 37:10). Evidently the Ice Age occurred in the centuries following the Flood.
The Bible mentions ice often, therefore it obviously meant there was an Ice Age. Of course. It all makes sense now. Do the Bible's frequent mentions of lightning mean there was a Lightning Age?
34. Life begins at fertilization (Jeremiah 1:5). God declares that He knew us before we were born. The biblical penalty for murdering an unborn child was death (Exodus 21:22-23). Today, it is an irrefutable biological fact that the fertilized egg is truly an entire human being. Nothing will be added to the first cell except nutrition and oxygen.
The verse in Jeremiah talks about God's omniscience, not life in the womb. And, um, something will be added to the first cell besides nutrition: Several trillion other cells, which will allow the body to perform specific functions that at first it cannot. A single cell and an entire, living, breathing, thinking human are completely different. As for irrefutable biological facts, the egg and the sperm are both alive before conception. Therefore, life does not begin at that point, it simply continues.
35. God fashions and knits us together in the womb (Job 10:8-12; 31:15). Science was ignorant concerning embryonic development until recently. Yet many centuries ago, the Bible accurately described God making us an “intricate unity” in the womb.
As it turns out, it's not God's hands that knit people in the womb, it's an entirely biological process. Besides, what's supposed to be the grand discovery here? That human bodies are intricate? That they are unities? Because neither of those was a secret.
36. DNA anticipated (Psalm 139:13-16). During the 1950s, Watson and Crick discovered the genetic blueprint for life. Three thousand years ago the Bible seems to reference this written digital code in Psalm 139 – “Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being unperfect [unformed]; and in Thy book all my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when as yet there was none of them.”
Watson and Crick discovered the double helix structure of DNA, not DNA itself. The verse does not mention DNA in any way. I see what it's supposed to be, but "thy book" seems a pretty straightforward reference to God determining the future. "It is written" is a common metaphor for destiny.
37. God has created all mankind from one blood (Acts 17:26; Genesis 5). Today researchers have discovered that we have all descended from one gene pool. For example, a 1995 study of a section of Y chromosomes from 38 men from different ethnic groups around the world was consistent with the biblical teaching that we all come from one man (Adam)
Almost every single creation story has all of mankind descending from one single man. Y-chromosome Adam is simply the earliest male common ancestor to all humans, which incidentally fits with evolution perfectly (and the timeline does not match creationism at all)
38. Origin of the major language groups explained (Genesis 11). After the rebellion at Babel, God scattered the people by confounding the one language into many languages. Evolution teaches that we all evolved from a common ancestor, yet offers no mechanism to explain the origin of the thousands of diverse languages in existence today.
Perhaps because the ToE is a theory of biology, not linguistics? Also, once again, an aetiological myth is not a scientific explanation.
39. Origin of the different “races” explained (Genesis 11). As Noah’s descendants migrated around the world after Babel, each language group developed distinct features based on environment and genetic variation. Those with a genetic makeup suitable to their new environment survived to reproduce. Over time, certain traits (such as dark skin color for those closer to the equator) dominated. Genesis alone offers a reasonable answer to the origin of the races and languages.
See above note on aetiological mythology, excuse me while I scoff at that last sentence, and what in the bloody name of Osiris are they doing using evolution by natural selection while simultaneously decrying it?
40. God has given us the leaves of the trees as medicine (Ezekiel 47:12; Revelation 22:2). Ancient cultures utilized many herbal remedies. Today, modern medicine has rediscovered what the Bible has said all along – there are healing compounds found in plants.
The rebuttals are writing themselves at this point. Herbal medicine existed before the Bible and was never lost, so it wasn't "rediscovered".
41. Healthy dietary laws (Leviticus 11:9-12). Scripture states that we should avoid those sea creatures which do not have fins or scales. We now know that bottom-feeders (those with no scales or fins) tend to consume waste and are likely to carry disease.
And then scripture revoked those dietary laws, probably because they were inconvenient. Which is why you can eat lobster and not go to hell. Regardless, an ability to observe that eating certain animals killed people does not require divine wisdom.
42. The Bible warns against eating birds of prey (Leviticus 11:13-19). Scientists now recognize that those birds which eat carrion (putrefying flesh), often spread disease.
See above.
43. Avoid swine (Deuteronomy 14:8). Not so long ago, science learned that eating undercooked pork causes an infection of parasites called trichinosis. Now consider this: the Bible forbid the eating of swine more than 3,000 years before we learned how to cook pork safely.
See above.
44. Radical environmentalism foreseen (Romans 1:25). Two thousand years ago, God’s Word stated that many would worship and serve creation rather than the Creator. Today, nature is revered as “Mother” and naturalism is enshrined.
Mother Earth worship existed long before the Bible, see Gaia. Naturalism has nothing to do with environmentalism, which has little to do with nature worship.
45. Black holes and dark matter anticipated (Matthew 25:30; Jude 1:13; Isaiah 50:3). Cosmologists now speculate that over 98% of the known universe is comprised of dark matter, with dark energy and black holes. A black hole’s gravitational field is so strong that nothing, not even light, escapes. Beyond the expanding universe there is no measured radiation and therefore only outer darkness exists. These theories paint a seemingly accurate description of what the Bible calls “outer darkness” or “the blackness of darkness forever.”
And I'm sure the references to darkness could not possibly be due to the fact the night sky is dark.
46. The Second Law of Thermodynamics (Entropy) explained (Psalm 102:25-26). This law states that everything in the universe is running down, deteriorating, constantly becoming less and less orderly. Entropy (disorder) entered when mankind rebelled against God – resulting in the curse (Genesis 3:17; Romans 8:20-22). Historically most people believed the universe was unchangeable. Yet modern science verifies that the universe is “grow(ing) old like a garment” (Hebrews 1:11). Evolution directly contradicts this law.
Simply speaking, the Second Law of Thermodynamics says that heat will not spontaneously flow from a colder object to a hotter object. There are a number of ways to phrase it, and it has many implications, but it does not say that over time things get worse. That's going from simplification to outright abuse. Evolution in no way conflicts thermodynamics. That things grow old is not a particularly groundbreaking idea.
47. Cain’s wife discovered (Genesis 5:4). Skeptics point out that Cain had no one to marry – therefore the Bible must be false. However, the Bible states plainly that Adam and Eve had other sons and daughters. Cain married his sister.
I'm not quite sure what this has to do with anything. Was Cain's wife also a recent discovery predicted in the Bible?
48. Incest laws established (Leviticus 18:6). To marry near of kin in the ancient world was common. Yet, beginning about 1500 B.C., God forbid this practice. The reason is simple – the genetic mutations (resulting from the curse) had a cumulative effect. Though Cain could safely marry his sister because the genetic pool was still relatively pure at that time, by Moses’ day the genetic errors had swelled. Today, geneticists confirm that the risk of passing on a genetic abnormality to your child is much greater if you marry a close relative because relatives are more likely to carry the same defective gene. If they procreate, their offspring are more apt to have this defect expressed.
Incest laws were established as much for the ick factor as for any health concerns. You'll notice they prohibit "uncovering the nakedness" of people to which you're not related by blood.
49. Genetic mixing of different seeds forbidden (Leviticus 19:19; Deuteronomy 22:9). The Bible warns against mixing seeds – as this will result in an inferior or dangerous crop. There is now growing evidence that unnatural, genetically engineered crops may be harmful.
Those are simply rules against mixing. You'll notice they also forbid plowing with a donkey and an ox, and trust me, those are not going to mix their genes just by being in close proximity. Never mind mixing wool and linen. By the way, genetic engineering has been one of the best methods for improving crops for a while now.
50. Hydrological cycle described (Ecclesiastes 1:7; Jeremiah 10:13; Amos 9:6). Four thousand years ago the Bible declared that God “draws up drops of water, which distill as rain from the mist, which the clouds drop down and pour abundantly on man” (Job 36:27-28). The ancients observed mighty rivers flowing into the ocean, but they could not conceive why the sea level never rose. Though they observed rainfall, they had only quaint theories as to its origin. Meteorologists now understand that the hydrological cycle consists of evaporation, atmospheric transportation, distillation, and precipitation.
It's not God that makes the drops of water rise. It's heat. How weird that the explanation of the water cycle never mentioned that. Almost as if it was just a simple observation that rainwater must go back to the clouds somehow.
51. The sun goes in a circuit (Psalm 19:6). Some scientists scoffed at this verse thinking that it taught geocentricity – the theory that the sun revolves around the earth. They insisted the sun was stationary. However, we now know that the sun is traveling through space at approximately 600,000 miles per hour. It is literally moving through space in a huge circuit – just as the Bible stated 3,000 years ago!
Except that the verse says that it has a circuit from one end of heaven to the other. A concept that doesn't fit at all with what actually happens, but is right at home in a geocentric model. Whoops.
52. Circumcision on the eighth day is ideal (Genesis 17:12; Leviticus 12:3; Luke 1:59). Medical science has discovered that the blood clotting chemical prothrombin peaks in a newborn on the eighth day. This is therefore the safest day to circumcise a baby. How did Moses know?!
Maybe, just maybe, they noticed less babies died when circumcised on the eighth day. Incidentally, the safest day to circumcise a baby is most likely never.
53. God has given us just the right amount of water to sustain life (Isaiah 40:12). We now recognize that if there was significantly more or less water, the earth would not support life as we know it.
The verse says nothing about amounts of water needed for life.
54. The earth was designed for biological life (Isaiah 45:18). Scientists have discovered that the most fundamental characteristics of our earth and cosmos are so finely tuned that if just one of them were even slightly different, life as we know it couldn't exist. This is called the Anthropic Principle and it agrees with the Bible which states that God formed the earth to be inhabited.
Ah, the Anthropic Principle. I never get tired of Creationists invoking it, mostly because it hurts their case so much more than it helps it. Simply stated, the anthropic principle is that if there is sentient life to observe the universe, the universe must be such that it allows for sentient life. Perfect selection bias. Even if the conditions for life are a one-in-a-kazillion shot (the "finely-tuned" argument), it is impossible even in theory to find that the universe does not fit those conditions. We can't test for a universe that doesn't allow life, so the claim that the universe must have been meant to do so is ultimately unfalsifiable and thus scientifically irrelevant.
55. The universe is expanding (Job 9:8; Isaiah 42:5; Jeremiah 51:15; Zechariah 12:1). Repeatedly God declares that He stretches out the heavens. During the early 20th century, most scientists (including Einstein) believed the universe was static. Others believed it should have collapsed due to gravity. Then in 1929, astronomer Edwin Hubble showed that distant galaxies were receding from the earth, and the further away they were, the faster they were moving. This discovery revolutionized the field of astronomy. Eisntein admitted his mistake, and today most astronomers agree with what the Creator told us millennia ago – the universe is expanding!
Half of those use stretched out the heavens, as in the process is already over. That couldn't possibly mean that it's a way of saying that God, the Creator, built the heavens, right?
56. Law of Biogenesis explained (Genesis 1). Scientists observe that life only comes from existing life. This law has never been violated under observation or experimentation (as evolution imagines). Therefore life, God’s life, created all life.
Once again, that weird confusion of aetiological mythology and scientific explanation. It's tiring. Incidentally, the "law" of biogenesis is a paradox under any model, since if life can only come from life, where did life originally come from? Sure, you could postulate a closed loop of time or something, but it would make much more sense to say that it comes from something we can already observe and have working models for how it could have brought forth life, wouldn't it? Something like abiogenesis, perhaps.
57. Animal and plant extinction explained (Jeremiah 12:4; Hosea 4:3). According to evolution, occasionally we should witness a new kind springing into existence. Yet, this has never been observed. On the contrary, as Scripture explains, since the curse on all creation, we observe death and extinction (Romans 8:20-22).
I'm sure you can guess what I'm going to say, but I'll say it anyway: Aetiological mythology is not scientific explanation!
I've also said this before, but kind is an undefined and thus meaningless term.
58. Light travels in a path (Job 38:19). Light is said to have a “way” [Hebrew: derek, literally a traveled path or road]. Until the 17th century it was believed that light was transmitted instantaneously. We now know that light is a form of energy that travels at ~186,000 miles per second in a straight line. Indeed, there is a “way” of light.
Um, the verse says light has a dwelling, not a way. Regardless, a path of light is not a difficult observation to make. The existence of shadows is a pretty obvious evidence that light travels from a source to a destination, and there are places it does not reach. I'd be more impressed if it had mentioned that light had a speed.
59. Air has weight (Job 28:25). It was once thought that air was weightless. Yet 4,000 years ago Job declared that God established “a weight for the wind.” In recent years, meteorologists have calculated that the average thunderstorm holds thousands of tons of rain. To carry this load, air must have mass.
Air having mass is by no means a new discovery.
60. Jet stream anticipated (Ecclesiastes 1:6). At a time when it was thought that winds blew straight, the Bible declares “The wind goes toward the south, and turns around to the north; The wind whirls about continually, and comes again on its circuit.” King Solomon wrote this 3,000 years ago. Now consider this: it was not until World War II that airmen discovered the jet stream circuit.
The fact that wind changes direction has always been pretty obvious. By the way, jet stream blows mainly west to east, so wind that "goes toward the south, and turns around to the north" cannot be a reference to jet stream.
61. Medical quarantine instituted (Leviticus 13:45-46; Numbers 5:1-4). Long before man understood the principles of quarantine, God commanded the Israelites to isolate those with a contagious disease until cured.
"Hey, you know that guy who was sick? Now his familiy are sick too!" "Huh. Maybe sickness can pass from one person to another" "That might be it. It would be a good idea to keep sick people away from the healthy". Doesn't really take a genius to figure it out, let alone divine revelation.
62. Each star is unique (1 Corinthians 15:41). Centuries before the advent of the telescope, the Bible declared what only God and the angels knew – each star varies in size and intensity!
Stars had been used to navigate long before the Bible, so people had long figured out that each star had a unique place in the sky, and thus were different.
63. The Bible says that light can be sent, and then manifest itself in speech (Job 38:35). We now know that radio waves and light waves are two forms of the same thing – electromagnetic waves. Therefore, radio waves are a form of light. Today, using radio transmitters, we can send “lightnings” which indeed speak when they arrive.
Lightning is not the same as light, y'know. Besides, the verse in context talks about things only God can do. Doesn't fit as foreshadowing radio.
64. Laughter promotes physical healing (Proverbs 17:22). Recent studies confirm what King Solomon was inspired to write 3,000 years ago, “A merry heart does good, like medicine.” For instance, laughter reduces levels of certain stress hormones. This brings balance to the immune system, which helps your body fight off disease.
The wonderful miracle of figuring out that people feel better when they are happy.
65. Intense sorrow or stress is harmful to your health (Proverbs 18:14; Mark 14:34). Researchers have studied individuals with no prior medical problems who showed symptoms of stress cardiomyopathy including chest pain, difficulty breathing, low blood pressure, and even heart failure – following a stressful incident.
See above, reverse it.
66. Microorganisms anticipated (Exodus 22:31). The Bible warns “Whatever dies naturally or is torn by beasts he shall not eat, to defile himself with it: I am the LORD” (Leviticus 22:8). Today we understand that a decaying carcass is full of disease causing germs.
Says nothing about microorganisms, just that rotten meat is unhealthy. Trivial observation.
67. The Bible cautions against consuming fat (Leviticus 7:23). Only in recent decades has the medical community determined that fat clogs arteries and contributes to heart disease.
Behold, more trivial observations. That we didn't know why fat was unhealthy didn't mean it took the word of God for us to figure out it was.
68. Do not consume blood (Leviticus 17:12). A common ritual in many religions in the ancient world was to drink blood. However, the Creator repeatedly told His people to abstain from blood (Genesis 9:4; Leviticus 3:17; Acts 15:20; 21:25). Of course, modern science reveals that consuming raw blood is dangerous.
See above.
69. The Bible describes dinosaurs (Job 40:15-24). In 1842, Sir Richard Owen coined the word dinosaur, meaning “terrible lizard,” after discovering large reptilian-like fossils. However in the Book of Job, written 4,000 years earlier, God describes the behemoth as: the largest of all land creatures, plant eating (herbivore), with great strength in its hips and legs, powerful stomach muscles, a tail like a cedar tree, and bones like bars of iron. This is an accurate description of sauropods – the largest known dinosaur family.
It doesn't say the tail is like a cedar tree, only that it moves like one. Could easily be a description of a hippopotamus or another large mammal. Or just a mythological monster based on a mix of descriptions.
70. Pleasure explained (Psalm 36:8). Evolution cannot explain pleasure – even the most complex chemicals do not experience bliss. However, the Bible states that God “gives us richly all things to enjoy” (1 Timothy 6:17). Pleasure is a gift from God.
Almost an exact repetition of 8, see response to that.
71. Life is more than matter and energy (Genesis 2:7; Job 12:7-10). We know that if a creature is denied air it dies. Even though its body may be perfectly intact, and air and energy are reintroduced to spark life, the body remains dead. Scripture agrees with the observable evidence when it states that only God can give the breath of life. Life cannot be explained by raw materials, time, and chance alone – as evolutionists would lead us to believe.
Any cause of death damages the body in some physical, observable way, meaning the body cannot be "perfectly intact" after dying, meaning the entire premise is flawed.
72. Origin of music explained (Psalm 40:3). Evolution cannot explain the origin of music. The Bible says that every good gift comes from God (James 1:17). This includes joyful melodies. God has given both man and angels the gift of music-making (Genesis 4:21; Ezekiel 28:13). Singing is intended to express rejoicing in and worship of the Lord (Job 38:7; Psalm 95:1-2).
I wonder how many more times I'll have to use the "aetiological mythology is not scientific fact" response? Or "Evolution does not address that because it has nothing to do with its field of study"? Some questions will always haunt me.
73. Our ancestors were not primitive (Genesis 4:20-22; Job 8:8-10; 12:12). Archeologists have discovered that our ancestors mined, had metallurgical factories, created air-conditioned buildings, designed musical instruments, studied the stars, and much more. This evidence directly contradicts the theory of evolution, but agrees completely with God’s Word.
Our ancestors were not a monolithic group. Some were more advanced than others, usually because they were later in time or had contact with other civilizations. Has little to do with the theory of evolution.
74. Cavemen described in the Bible (Job 30:1-8). Four thousand years ago, Job describes certain “vile men” who were driven from society to forage “among the bushes” for survival and who “live in the clefts of the valleys, (and) in caves of the earth and the rocks.” Therefore “cavemen” were simply outcasts and vagabounds – not our primitive ancestors as evolutionists speculate.
So... they describe outcasts from society. Astounding. Also, I love how the fact that the Bible mentions people who lived in caves automatically disproves evolution.
75. Environmental devastation of the planet foreseen (Revelation 11:18). Though evolution imagines that things should be getting better, the Bible foresaw what is really occurring today: pollution, destruction and corrupt dominion.
Evolution applies to living beings, not the environment, and does not necessarily imply anything will get better. What is described in Revelation 11 has not yet happened (and never will), so I wonder why verse 18 in particular is supposed to describe current events.
76. The seed of a plant contains its life (Genesis 1:11; 29). As stated in the Book of Genesis, we now recognize that inside the humble seed is life itself. Within the seed is a tiny factory of amazing complexity. No scientist can build a synthetic seed and no seed is simple!
Something that has been known since, um, the beginnings of agriculture. Knowledge as old as human civilization is supposed to be surprising?
77. A seed must die to produce new life (1 Corinthians 15:36-38). Jesus said, “unless a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it produces much grain.” (John 12:24). In this verse is remarkable confirmation of two of the fundamental concepts in biology: 1) Cells arise only from existing cells. 2) A grain must die to produce more grain. The fallen seed is surrounded by supporting cells from the old body. These supporting cells “give their lives” to provide nourishment to the inner kernel. Once planted, this inner kernel germinates resulting in much grain.
See above.
78. The order of creation agrees with true science (Genesis 1). Plants require sunlight, water, and minerals in order to survive. In the first chapter of Genesis we read that God created light first (v.3), then water (v. 6), then soil (v. 9), and then He created plant life (v. 11).
Yet God created the sun on the fourth day. After plant life.
79. God created “lights” in the heavens “for signs and seasons, and for days and years” (Genesis 1:14-16). We now know that a year is the time required for the earth to travel once around the sun. The seasons are caused by the changing position of the earth in relation to the sun. The moon’s phases follow one another in clock-like precision – constituting the lunar calendar Evolution teaches that the cosmos evolved by random chance, yet the Bible agrees with the observable evidence.
Little known fact about the theory of evolution: it deals with biology, not cosmology.
80. The Bible speaks of “heaven and the highest heavens” (Deuteronomy 10:14). Long before the Hubble Space Telescope, Scripture spoke of the “heaven of heavens” and the “third heaven” (1 Kings 8:27; 2 Corinthians 12:2). We now know that the heavens consist of our immediate atmosphere and the vast reaches of outer space – as well as God’s wonderful abode.
All heavens spoken of are spiritual, not physical, and thus have nothing to do with the Hubble.
81. Olive oil and wine useful on wounds (Luke 10:34). Jesus told of a Samaritan man, who when he came upon a wounded traveler, he bandaged him – pouring upon his wounds olive oil and wine. Today we know that wine contains ethyl alcohol and traces of methyl alcohol. Both are good disinfectants. Olive oil is also a good disinfectant, as well as a skin moisturizer, protector, and soothing lotion. This is common knowledge to us today. However, did you know that during the Middle Ages and right up till the early 20th century, millions died because they did not know to treat and protect open wounds?
Wine has been used as a disinfectant since pretty much forever. I can find no reference to olive oil having a use as a disinfectant. In any case, both substances have religious symbolic uses, so it could just be Jesus curing people using his magical powers as he does constantly throughout the Gospels.
82. Man is “fearfully and wonderfully made” (Psalm 139:14). We are only beginning to probe the complexity of the DNA molecule, the eye, the brain, and all the intricate components of life. No human invention compares to the marvelous wonders of God’s creation.
Humans being complex was never a surprise to anyone.
83. Beauty understood (Genesis 1:31; 2:9; Job 40:10; Ecclesiastes 3:11; Matthew 6:28-30). Beauty surrounds us: radiant sunsets, majestic mountains, brightly colored flowers, glowing gems, soothing foliage, brilliantly adorned birds, etc. Beauty is a mystery to the evolutionist. However, Scripture reveals that God creates beautiful things for our benefit and His glory.
See response to 8 and 70.
84. Strong and weak nuclear force explained (Colossians 1:17; Hebrews 1:3). Physicists do not understand what binds the atom’s nucleus together. Yet, the Bible states that “all things consist” – or are held together by the Creator – Jesus Christ.
If Jesus holds everything together, how come it's only supposed to explain nuclear forces and not, say, electromagnetism? Reading way too much into it mixed with god of the gaps fallacy.
85. Atomic fission anticipated (2 Peter 3:10-12). Scripture states that “the elements will melt with fervent heat” when the earth and the heavens are “dissolved” by fire. Today we understand that if the elements of the atom are loosed, there would be an enormous release of heat and energy (radiation).
I'm sure this could not possibly refer to the fact things melt with heat.
86. The Pleiades and Orion star clusters described (Job 38:31). The Pleiades star cluster is gravitationally bound, while the Orion star cluster is loose and disintegrating because the gravity of the cluster is not enough to bind the group together. 4,000 years ago God asked Job, "Can you bind the cluster of the Pleiades, or loose the belt of Orion?" Yet, it is only recently that we realized that the Pleiades is gravitationally bound, but Orion's stars are flying apart.
Wikipedia on the Pleiades star cluster: "Astronomers estimate that the cluster will survive for about another 250 million years, after which it will disperse due to gravitational interactions with its galactic neighborhood."
87. Safe drinking water (Leviticus 11:33-36). God forbade drinking from vessels or stagnant water that had been contaminated by coming into contact with a dead animal. It is only in the last 100 years that medical science has learned that contaminated water can cause typhoid and cholera.
More trivial observations.
88. Pest control (Leviticus 25:1-24). Farmers are plagued today with insects. Yet God gave a sure-fire remedy to control pests centuries ago. Moses commanded Israel to set aside one year in seven when no crops were raised. Insects winter in the stalks of last year’s harvest, hatch in the spring, and are perpetuated by laying eggs in the new crop. If the crop is denied one year in seven, the pests have nothing to subsist upon, and are thereby controlled.
If the method is flawless, one might wonder why more farmers don't use it nowadays. I'll give you a hint, the answer lies in that the method expects a literal miracle to provide food on the seventh year (Lev 25:20 'And if you say, "What shall we eat in the seventh year, since we shall not sow nor gather in our produce?"21 Then I will command My blessing on you in the sixth year, and it will bring forth produce enough for three years)
89. Soil conservation (Leviticus 23:22). Not only was the land to lay fallow every seventh year, but God also instructed farmers to leave the gleanings when reaping their fields, and not to reap the corners (sides) of their fields. This served several purposes: 1) Vital soil minerals would be maintained. 2) The hedge row would limit wind erosion. 3) The poor could eat the gleanings. Today, approximately four billion metric tons of soil are lost from U.S. crop lands each year. Much of this soil depletion could be avoided if God’s commands were followed.
Really need some evidence for this fantastic method for the prevention of soil depletion.
90. Animal instincts understood (Job 39; Proverbs 30:24-28; Jeremiah 8:7). A newly hatched spider weaves an intricate web without being taught. A recently emerged butterfly somehow knows to navigate a 2,500-mile migration route without a guide. God explains that He has endowed each creature with specific knowledge. Scripture, not evolution, explains animal instincts.
Aetiological mythology. Scientific fact. Not the same thing.
91. Animals do not have a conscience (Psalm 32:9). A parrot can be taught to swear and blaspheme, yet never feel conviction. Many animals steal, but they do not experience guilt. If man evolved from animals, where did our conscience come from? The Bible explains that man alone was created as a moral being in God’s image.
The psalm talks about understanding, not morality. This despite the fact that several animals have been shown to learn.
92. Pseudo-science anticipated (1 Timothy 6:20). The theory of evolution contradicts the observable evidence. The Bible warned us in advance that there would be those who would profess: “profane and idle babblings and contradictions of what is falsely called knowledge (science).” True science agrees with the Creator’s Word.
I'll skip the obvious dig and point out that people have babbled more or less since the beginning of language.
93. Science confirms the Bible (Colossians 2:3). These insights place the Bible far above every manmade theory and all other so-called inspired books. In contrast, the Koran states that the sun sets in a muddy pond (Surah 18:86). The Hadith contains many myths. The Book of Mormon declares that Native Americans descended from Jews – which has been disproven by DNA research. The Eastern writings also contradict true science.
I'm sorry, did they just quote a Bible verse that says the Bible is true as evidence that the Bible is true?
94. Human conscience understood (Romans 2:14-15). The Bible reveals that God has impressed His moral law onto every human heart. Con means with and science means knowledge. We know it is wrong to murder, lie, steal, etc. Only the Bible explains that each human has a God-given knowledge of right and wrong.
Aetiological mythology. Which, by the by, does not even appear in those verses.
95. Love explained (Matthew 22:37-40; 1 John 4:7-12). Evolution cannot explain love. Yet, God’s Word reveals that the very purpose of our existence is to know and love God and our fellow man. God is love, and we were created in His image to reflect His love.
See response to 8, 70 and 83. This argument is getting slightly worn.
96. The real you is spirit (Numbers 16:22; Zechariah 12:1). Personality is non-physical. For example, after a heart transplant the recipient does not receive the donor’s character. An amputee is not half the person he was before loosing his limbs. Our eternal nature is spirit, heart, soul, mind. The Bible tells us that “man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart” (1 Samuel 16:7).
Um, nobody believes personality is in the heart. A brain transplant might be more relevant.
97. The cause of suffering revealed (Genesis 3; Isaiah 24:5-6). The earth is subject to misery, which appears at odds with our wonderfully designed universe. However, the Bible, not evolution, explains the origin of suffering. When mankind rebelled against God, the curse resulted – introducing affliction, pain and death into the world.
Aetiological mythology.
98. Death explained (Romans 6:23). All eventually die. The Bible alone explains why we die – “The soul who sins shall die” (Ezekiel 18:20). Sin is transgression of God’s Law. To see if you will die, please review God’s Ten Commandments (Exodus 20). Have you ever lied? (White lies and fibs count.) Ever stolen? (Cheating on a test or taxes is stealing.) Jesus said that “whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart” (Matthew 5:28). Have you ever looked with lust? Then you’re an adulterer at heart. Have you ever hated someone or called someone a fool? If so, the Bible says you are guilty of murder (Matthew 5:21-22; 1 John 3:15). Have you ever used your Creator’s name (Lord, God, Jesus, or Christ) in vain? This is called blasphemy – and God hates it. If you have broken these commandments at any time, then by your own admission, you are a blasphemer, a murderer, an adulterer, a thief, and a liar at heart. And we have only looked at five of the Ten Commandments. This is why we die.
The first part, which at least has some vague attempt at addressing the topic of the list, has a very simple answer (I bet you can guess what it is) . The rest is irrelevant, though the answers are yes, no, frequently, both, and constantly, in case anyone cares.
99. Justice understood (Acts 17:30-31). Our God-given conscience reveals that all sin will be judged. Down deep we know that He who created the eyes sees every secret sin (Romans 2:16). He who formed our mind remembers our past offense as if it just occurred. God has declared that the penalty for sin is death. Physical death comes first, then the second death – which is eternal separation from God in the lake of fire (Revelation 21:8). God cannot lie. Every sin will be judged. His justice demands it. But God is also rich in mercy to all who call upon His name. He has made a way for justice to be served and mercy to be shown.
Aetiological myth, I don't believe in God so by extension I don't believe he sees secret sins, and God can lie. Remember when he told Adam that on the day he ate from the forbidden fruit, he would surely die? Remember how he didn't die that day?
100. Eternal life revealed (John 3:16). Scientists search in vain for the cure for aging and death. Yet, the good news is that God, who is the source of all life, has made a way to freely forgive us so that we may live forever with Him in heaven. “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8). “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16). God desires a loving, eternal relationship with each person – free from sin, fear, and pain. Therefore, He sent His Son to die as our substitute on the cross. “The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23). Jesus never sinned, therefore He alone qualified to pay the penalty for our sins on the cross. He died in our place. He then rose from the grave defeating death. All who turn from their sins and trust Him will be saved. To repent and place your trust in Jesus Christ, make Psalm 51 your prayer. Then read your Bible daily, obeying what you read. God will never let you down.
All pretence of this being about scientific fact has been abandoned by now. Nothing but feeble preaching.
101. The solution to suffering (Revelation 21). Neither evolution nor religion offers a solution to suffering. But God offers heaven as a gift to all who trust in His Son. In heaven, “God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away” (Revelation 21:4).
See above.

Any instances of this being rambling, confusing or what not, I'll blame on the fact that a significant part of it was written with increasing sleep deprivation and decreasing blood caffeine levels.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Hello, interwebs

For once, the month-long lapse between posts was not my fault. Phone company basically fucked us over and for the last 4 weeks, roughly, I've been without internet at home. Which, as you might have cleverly deduced, prevents me from blogginating, amongst a fuckton of other things.
It did give me time to do a lot of other stuff, though. Like playing through Golden Sun 1 & 2 and Phantasy Star 4, rereading most of the Fullmetal Alchemist manga, watching Dr. Horrible's Sing Along Blog a stupidly high number of times, and finally rewatching all of Firefly, plus Serenity. It's better the second time. Also, read too much Cthulhu mythos stuff and found my new god in Yog-Sothoth.

In other, more-like-the-usual-subjects-of-my-blog news, Kent Hovind recently published an interview with Ardipithecus. Yes. It's just as stupid as it sounds. Assuming you know who and what Kent Hovind and Ardipithecus are, cause if you don't it's going to sound more baffling than anything else. Anyway.

One of the best parts: someone who purports himself to be an an expert on evolutionary biology, indeed, more so than any actual evolutionary biologist, ridicules paleontology in general and considers it to be useless. Almost tops the fact that Kent motherfucking Hovind feels he can take the moral high ground. A lecture on how we're trying to use our beliefs as free moral licence is kinda empty when the lecturer is a convicted criminal due to the fact he thought his beliefs gave him permission to commit tax fraud.

Sorry about the rambling nature of this, I just needed to post something, get my thoughts in something vaguely resembling order and assorted etceteras.