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Talk:Biblical worldview

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Resurrected v. was Resurrected

Where it talks about Jesus surely it should be 'was resurrected'? EddyP 12:17, 26 March 2009 (UTC)

The usual form is "was resurrected", which i thing we should go with, but there's a fine point of debate here - resurrected implies that he did it himself, while was resurrected implies an outside agency resurrecting him. JustSimon 12:34, 26 March 2009 (UTC)
If Jesus resurrected himself it should say 'resurrected himself'. EddyP 12:36, 26 March 2009 (UTC)
Technically He did resurrect Himself, didn't He? Since He and the Father are One (or Three?)? ħuman Number 19 03:08, 2 April 2009 (UTC)
I intentially left out "was" generally for reasons as speculated. Jesus was resurrected by God the Father, but they are one. I didn't go with "resurrected Himself" because it was a little redundant (in the morning you get up, rather than get yourself up, at least normally). Also, when speaking of a triune being, there are subtleties that are not easy to convey. Jesus the second Person of the Trinity was Resurrected by God the Father (the 1st Person of the Trinity). So He both resurrected Himself and was resurrected by another, although the other was not really and outside agency. As a parallel, Genesis says "God created" and in the New Testament it is made plain that everything was created through Jesus. Also, Jesus accepted certain limitations as a man, and I am not confident on declaring exactly when he put them aside. Like I said there are subtleties, and who could hope to fully understand God? I am happy to leave "was resurrected" if that is the consensus, as it is accurate enough given the preceding.BradleyF (LowKey) 03:29, 2 April 2009 (UTC)

Adam sinned, and as the federal head of humanity...

If that is really the way he is described, that might need a link to an article explaining what it means. Or is it some sort of parody? ħuman Number 19 23:38, 26 March 2009 (UTC)

No, it's not parody. It's a summary phrase to clarify why Adam's sin brought death to the whole of humanity, and in part why the whole of creation was cursed as a result. Maybe a fuller explanation would be appropriate in Adam or sin. I'll put it on my to do list. BradleyF (LowKey) 03:15, 2 April 2009 (UTC)
Using that "logic", it would be both moral and legal to start summarily executing Japanese now for their granddads' war crimes in the 1940s. --Gulik 23:37, 18 April 2009 (UTC)
That would be unbiblical. Ezekiel 18:20 The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him. Mega 01:13, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
"The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father" - but is that not the very doctrine of original sin? ħuman Number 19 04:43, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
You are confusing effect with intention. When a father is imprisoned for a crime, the son is not also punished, but suffers anyway by the absence of his father. Philip J. Raymentdiscuss 06:29, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
No one has answered my question yet - in English. ħuman Number 19 06:46, 19 April 2009 (UTC)

(undent) Seems like God's intent to punish later generations for the action of an earlier one is clear, in the Ten Commandments at least - "You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I the Lord your God am a jealous God, punishing children for the iniquity of parents, to the third and the fourth generation of those who reject me". How does this reconcile with Ezekiel, unless that was meant to apply to the actions of men but not God? This is an example of the kind of issue I listed on my user page. --DinsdaleP 15:16, 19 April 2009 (UTC)

See here. The Bible also says that children are not responsible for their parent's sins. Despite superficial appearances, I'd say that the Exodus verse you quote still falls in the category of effect rather than intention. Philip J. Raymentdiscuss 15:49, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
Based on the link, it seems that Ezekiel was referring to the laws of man, while the Ten Commandments are obviously laws from God. This doesn't answer how the Exodus verse is "effect" versus "intent", though - if anything it's the opposite since God is stating that multiple generations will suffer punishment from God himself, and that this is intentional in all cases as opposed to coincidental or merely possible. If I'm reading the commandment wrong I'll keep an open mind, but it seems clear enough. --DinsdaleP 18:31, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
It's a shame that your quote above cuts off God in mid sentence. The rest of the sentence is, "but showing steadfast love to the thousandth generation of those who love me and keep my commandments." If you take the "fourth generation of those that reject me" to mean simply the great-great grandchildren of individuals that rejected God, then the last clause of the sentence must then mean the great98 grandchildren of individuals that loved and obeyed God. Logically, the "steadfast love" must trump the "punishment" everytime in this instance (see how far back 1000 generations would take you). Notice that the statements are about "generation of those that" not "generation after those that" or "generation from those that" . It is still talking about those committing the rejecting, or the obediance, but speaking in generations (like we do when we speak of baby boomers and gen x) rather than individuals. A generation can also be a society or culture. Also remember that the Hebrews had a saying about a father eating sour grapes and his children's teeth being set on edge - in effect saying the son suffers the punishment of the fathers sin. God said, "Stop saying that" (through both Jeremiah and Ezekial) because "the soul that sins is the soul that dies". God also makes a point of saying that if the next generation rejects the rejection of their forefathers, He will not condemn them, but if the generation after that again rejects Him, they will be condemned. He is quite specifically saying that we do not inherit punishment from others.BradleyF (LowKey) 03:07, 20 April 2009 (UTC)
Can't go back 1000 generations, that's at least 15,000 years or so. Most of them must be still to be born. Can we calculate a minimum time for the end of the universe from this? About 9000 AD? ħuman Number 19 18:53, 20 April 2009 (UTC)
With all respect, Bradley, I think you're really reaching to support that position. Since the versions of the Bible are all translations of translations, it's really hard to determine the precise grammar (and therefore the precise meaning) since we're not looking at the original text of the Commandment as delivered to Moses. The statement "fourth generation of those that reject me" is far more likely to be a reference to the descendants of the offenders than to their contemporaries - why mention multiple generations at all if you're referring to the contemporaries of a group of offenders? As for "showing steadfast love to the thousandth generation of those who love me and keep my commandments", that seems to refer to an unbroken line of those who are good and obedient. When someone breaks God's commandments I don't believe they'd get a pass because they are within 1000 generations of a good, devout ancestor.
What I've found in reading parts of the Old testament is that there are instances of people being killed with the explicit or implicit approval of God, such as Deuteronomy 3:1-7, where God gives his followers victory over their enemies, and does not deter, prevent or even criticize them for slaying the men, women and children in the lands being taken. This seems to support the Old Testament concept of it being acceptable for younger generations (in this case the children of the conquered) to pay the price of their ancestors actions or alliances.
This is one of the aspects of the Bible and Christianity that I've had difficulty coming to terms with since my college years - Jesus is part of God, and of the same nature of God, yet the God (in the "God the Father sense) of the Old Testament not only interacted with people more directly, but acted with human traits like jealousy, pride, and wrath, and in more than a few cases indifference and tacit approval of cruel or unjust acts by his followers. Jesus represents the loving and compassionate nature of God, but if God is a trinity with each part having a consistent nature, then the "God the Father" aspect with all of the negative qualities is still at the head, and by definition Jesus as "God the Son" condones that aspect's actions as well. This is all way off topic, but I'd like to find a place here on ASK to continue the discussion. --DinsdaleP 20:43, 20 April 2009 (UTC)
The versions of the Bible are not "all translations of translations". That is just typical bibliosceptic misinformation. Most modern translations have been made directly from the original languages. What is true is that the one-step translations are not from the original copies, but from copies of copies of copies. However, we also know that the Jews went to great lengths to ensure that the copies were verbatim, using various devices including something akin to checksums, so even a claim that we are not looking at the original text is on shaky ground.
As for verses such as Deuteronomy 3:1-7, perhaps this will explain it (although I haven't read it through myself and it's fairly long). It does also have a comment on children (not) being punished for their father's sins.
I agree with you about Jesus being of the same nature as God. The difference lies in different circumstances and emphases rather than in nature.
As for many of your other points below, one question I will ask is how much have you looked for answers? Your reference to "translations of translations" appears to come straight from bibliosceptic sources, indicating that you've done your share of reading them. But how much reading have you done from Christian apologists? As far as possible I try and avoid directing people to entire web-sites rather than particular articles, but I think an exception is justified in this case, so I'd recommend the following:
  • Creation Ministries International, but mainly for creation/flood/evolution/etc. stuff, although it's not all that.
  • Tektonics for general apologetics. They have a handy "Scripture search" box, although the site didn't have anything listed for the Deuteronomy passage, but does cover the general point in other ways.
  • Christian ThinkTank, also for general apologetics. This one had the link above.
One point these sites make is that we need a good understanding of society at the time.
Philip J. Raymentdiscuss 03:36, 21 April 2009 (UTC)
Hang on a bit.. You're saying that 2 consecutive phrases rendered in the same form (and I was working from both an Engish translation and Ancient Hebrew there, BTW) mean two totally different things? Why should they, other than to fuel the objection about the first phrase? Why should "of those" mean "descended from those" the first time but "only those" the second time in the same statement? BradleyF (LowKey) 00:57, 21 April 2009 (UTC)
What I was trying to state is that in my interpretation, both references, "the fourth generation of those" and "the thousandth generation of those" are consistent in that they refer to the generations that follow the one in question. It also seems that there's a consistency in both statements regarding God's intention to show favor or disfavor to subsequent generations depending on how one acts in the present. My take on the combined, unedited statement is that while God promises to show "steadfast love" for a thousand generations of those who love him and keep his commandments, this assumes that those descendants are also loving him and keeping his commandments. As soon as the chain of love and obedience is broken, then the punishment begins with the descendant who is at fault, and the punishment is carried to the 3rd and 4th generation of that violator. Since good behavior merits 1,000 generations being favored and bad behavior only merits 4 generations being punished, there's obviously a major bias towards carrying goodwill forward versus punishment, but punishment is being carried forward to future generations nonetheless. I could be wrong, of course, but this seems a simple and consistent interprtation of the passage. --DinsdaleP 01:34, 21 April 2009 (UTC)
(How many indents are we up to?) I can't see how that interprestation can be consistent. You are assuming two different prerequisites for comparable situations with no good reason (certainly no Scriptural one) being given for that assumption. You speak of breaking the chain of "love and obedience". What of breaking the "chain of rejection". God quite specifically laid out an example of 3 subsequent generations - righteous, wicked, righteous (I stated it backwards above)- saying that each individual will be dealt with according to their own obedience or rejection (it's in Ezekial 18). That flies directly in the face of what you assert here. You have said that you have a problem with this position that God punishes the descendents of the offenders, but you do not give a Scripturally consistent reason for that position (apart from apparent prooftexting).BradleyF (LowKey) 02:24, 21 April 2009 (UTC)
I'd say we over-indented ourselves a while back :-). For what it's worth, it was never my intention to come across as quote-mining or selectively editing from the O.T. If it helps, I agree with you that the whole bias towards God favoring or disfavoring a generation can be changed with the actions of that generation - if you show love and obedience you should (hopefully) come into favor regardless of what your ancestors did. If I interpreted this correctly, though, then why even mention God favoring or disfavoring future generations at all, if they are judged by their individual actions anyway? I'd like to continue the conversation elsewhere if you would as well, Bradley - any suggested location? --DinsdaleP 15:21, 21 April 2009 (UTC)


According to Dante (too late to be in the Bible, but a pretty cool dude nonetheless), God remains constant but the way he appears depends on the observer. So God's nature as perceived by Moses, Joshua, Balaam and all those people was different from God's nature as observed in Jesus. Same God, different humanity, so a different apparent manifestation. Does that make sense? I've had a few lemsips here.--CPalmer 20:52, 20 April 2009 (UTC)
The premise makes perfect sense, but it doesn't seem to play out that way in the Bible. If God's morals and reward/punishment system of justice were a constant, different men could perceive it differently (i.e. fair versus unfair), but the values and actions of God would be consistent regardless. Instead, God states that 3-4 generations of an unbeliever will be cursed because of the ancestor's actions, and this attitude is backed up by his direct actions like killing the all of the firstborn sons of Egypt to make a point to Pharoh. This is also the same God that tormented Job to prove a point to Satan - why would an omnipotent being need to make an innocent man suffer to make any kind of point to an entity considered evil? Maybe this is just my inability to see things in the right perspective, but it seems like the God of the Old Testament is more of a representation of our own human failings cast in supernatural form, like the ancient Greek and Roman Gods, then a truly divine being who surpasses our failings. --DinsdaleP 21:15, 20 April 2009 (UTC)
There is no denying that the God of the Old Testament is violent and wrathful; perhaps you could say though that these traits were in keeping with the times, as it was a much harsher era than today. I'm put in mind of the war in Iraq, where the US and UK were actually trying to minimise the number of Iraqis they killed as well as their own casualties, something nobody thought about even 100 years ago let alone 3000. In Moses' time, there was no suggestion that the God of Jacob had any obligation towards anyone other than the descendents of Jacob. In the case of Pharoah, you might also consider that he'd had ten warnings before the angel of death got involved!
As for Job, I think don't think it's meant to have happened.--CPalmer 21:37, 20 April 2009 (UTC)
"But the LORD hardened Pharaoh's heart, so that he would not let the children of Israel go." Hardly sounds like Pharaoh was at fault for ignoring the warnings. Or is this one of those lines that we are not supposed to take literally. Despite the rest of the story being Literal. --ScottA 23:44, 20 April 2009 (UTC)

(unindent) The recent comments are interesting, but do not directly address the point about God punishing subsequent generations for the actions of a prior one they had nothing to do with (other than being born into the wrong family). To the points that were mentioned since my last post:

  • God was violent and wrathful despite the actions of men, not because of them - surely no action in the Old Testament can compare to the scale of suffering man inflicted on other men in the 20th century, but in those times he is said to directly order the killing of others, sacrifice of living creatures to himself, and in the referenced case of Exodus, he kills large numbers of people simply for being the firstborn son in their family. A just God could demonstrate both his power and anger to Pharoh without having to kill unrelated individuals.
  • A God that is supposed to be consistent in respecting and cherishing life would not condone or order the death of others because they were not the descendants of Jacob (All life is equally precious, but some are more equal than others?). Even when war is waged today, it is considered an immoral war crime to kill civilian women and children in addition to hostile enemy forces.
  • The degree to which God condones the killing of innocents to make a point happens multiple times in the Bible. For another example, he brings Abraham to the brink of killing Isaac before letting him know he passed that test of faith, but allows Jeptha to go through with a promise that went tragically wrong, instead of stopping him after his intention to honor his promise was beyond doubt. No one here who believes in the Bible can believe that God did not have the means to prevent that human sacrifice, so preventing it in one case while allowing it in another requires an equally deliberate intent on God's part, which I find difficult to reconcile.
  • How is the story of Job not meant to have happened? It's my understanding that it did, as far as the Old Testament is concerned.

--DinsdaleP 00:18, 21 April 2009 (UTC)

The Old Testament God isn't meant to be consistent in cherishing life. It's made clear everywhere that he is the God of the Israelites only - other tribes have their own gods. And it's wrong of you to say 'even when war is waged today' - today's wars are conducted far more ethically than the wars of OT times, when it was pretty standard to slaughter innocent people just to make your point.
Job is grouped with the other wisdom literature in the Bible (Psalms, Proverbs, etc), not with the history, so it's evidently a fable. The style of it is very poetic too, not historical like Kings or Samuel for example.--CPalmer 08:24, 21 April 2009 (UTC)
The God of the Old Testament predates the start of the nation of Israel, and even before the nation of Israel, God said that He would bless all nations. God was not just the God of the Israelites.
Job is grouped with the wisdom books, and is largely poetry, but that doesn't mean that it's not true. An outline of Job is as follows:
  1. Chapters 1 & 2 explain how Job came to be tested, and how his so-called friends came to be talking to him.
  2. Chapters 3 to 37 records the conversation between Job and his three friends.
  3. Chapter 38 to 42:6 records what God said to Job.
  4. Job 42:7 to the end (Job 42:17) explain that God tells Job's friends off, that Job prays for his friends, and explains what happened to Job after.
Of these four sections, the second and third are in the form of poetry. The first and fourth are in the form of narrative. There's no reason to think that the content of the book of Job is fiction.
Philip J. Raymentdiscuss 12:24, 21 April 2009 (UTC)
Hm, looks like I may not be as orthodox as I thought then. Hope I'm not a heretic.--CPalmer 12:28, 21 April 2009 (UTC)
Thanks for the clarification, Philip. I'd be interested in your thoughts on the points above if you have time, because they are examples of the questions that challenged my faith, and I'm always looking to see what answers others have found for themselves with them. --DinsdaleP 15:26, 21 April 2009 (UTC)
Not to challenge Philip as I think his interpretation is most certainly valid, but I do also think there is ample biblical basis for the OT God only being God of the Jews. The promise to bless all nations has been fulfilled in Jesus, but needn't have been before then. Yes He existed before Jacob, but when Isaac gave his blessing to Jacob I believe that he also passed on his special relationship with God, hence the importance of that blessing and of Jacob taking Esau's birthright. Finally, all through Kings and Chronicles where the Israelites are punished for not worshipping God, non-Israelites do not receive the same punishment - in fact, they often gain by being the instruments of God's punishment. Why? I think it's because He isn't their God, so they have no obligation to worship Him.--CPalmer 15:36, 21 April 2009 (UTC)
Certainly God had a special relationship with the Israelites, and it was to be through them that the rest of the world would be blessed, and yes, Jesus was the (a?) fulfilment of that. Non-Israelites were often punished: the Israelites' attacks of other people were part of that, as was the defeat of armies that attacked Israel at times other than when God wanted to punish Israel. Then there were people like Naaman, Ruth, etc., non-Israelites who were also blessed by God. Also, after Abraham sent Hagar and Ishmael away, God still cared for them (Genesis 21:17-20). Philip J. Raymentdiscuss 02:23, 22 April 2009 (UTC)

Clarification

Maybe I need to re-ask my question. Where does the phrase "federal head of humanity" come from? I get that Adam is the father of us all, but what does the word "federal" mean in this context? I know the answer is probably very simple and just unfamiliar to me, maybe I could look it up or something, but I think that asking here is a reasonable way to do that, since I read it here. ħuman Number 19 19:09, 20 April 2009 (UTC)

Inerrancy?

The thrust of the article is that only a conservative view of Scripture is true, and it assumes that the Bible consists of the Christian scriptures. But a Jew who scrupulously kept all 613 Mitzvot in the Bible yet rejected Christ as Messiah would not have a biblical worldview according to this article. Mega 21:52, 18 April 2009 (UTC)

That's about right, and consistent with the worldview of this site. Philip J. Raymentdiscuss 06:31, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
Particularly as the Tanakh provided plenty of prophecy to point to Messiah, all of which was fulfilled in Jesus of Nazareth. To reject Jesus as Messiah requires rejecting the prophecy in Jewish scripture. There are Jews who do not reject Jesus, but remain Jews. Also, notice that is is "Biblical worldview", rather than Torah, Talmud, or even Tanakh worldivew.BradleyF (LowKey) 10:29, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
We await the Philip J. Rayment-approved fully annotated translation which tells us clearly which portions of the text are supposed to be literal history/science and which are poetry/allegory/metaphor/hallucination. Philip, I own six Bibles, what are the chances of one being close to the Truth? ħuman Number 19 06:51, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
This has been answered over and over (even if not in the way you are demanding), so could you please give it a rest? Philip J. Raymentdiscuss 07:28, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
I'm with Human on this one. I can't find any explanation on your blog of which bible passages are literal and which are not and why. Your reliance on the context of a passage is completely unhelpful to those of us not drawing the same conclusions as you. Teh Terrible Asp 18:46, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
We're extremely dense, Phil. Please answer it again, in nice clear simple words that we can all understand. --Gulik 02:20, 20 April 2009 (UTC)
See here. Philip J. Raymentdiscuss 02:31, 20 April 2009 (UTC)
That's not an answer, that's an assertion. You claim you can tell by the language what is metaphor, and what is literal history. However, as User:Catholic pointed out to you, the majority of experts (and I presume he was talking about the Catholic church here, who not only make up the majority of the lay believers and clergy, but also the vast majority of professional biblical scholars) do not agree that the genesis account is a literal history, nor that it happened 6000 years ago. If it is so obvious from the text, why is there no agreement amongst even believers let alone us lot who are so made as to be unable to believe? It would help if you gave examples. Cite passages that are literal, and some that are allegorical and point out the features that demonstrate the distinction. Personally, I can't think of a useful metric to distinguish the two, especially in a language that hasn't been spoken conversationally in millennia. --Jeeves 06:39, 20 April 2009 (UTC)
Let's try this yet another way. Do you acknowledge that most literature (the Bible, newspapers, text books, journals, etc.) have both literal and figurative language. That is, they have at least some of each?
And do you acknowledge that none of these publications come with "handy guides" to distinguish the two.
Given those two points, why is it that this encyclopædia is expected to offer a "handy guide" to distinguishing the two in the Bible, a book that's been around for 2000+ years, and which has been extremely-widely circulated, discussed, studied, disected, commentaried, etc. Why is it all of a sudden the responsibility of this encyclopædia to provide a "handy guide" on the demand of some bibliosceptics?
"However, as User:Catholic pointed out to you, the majority of experts ... do not agree that the genesis account is a literal history": If you are talking about this comment, then you have it exactly back to front. A world-leading expert not only says that the genesis account was intended as literal history (whether it's correct is a separate issue), but also says that this is the consensus of the other world-leading experts. Catholic then offered his personal opinion that the world-leading expert was wrong on that second point!
Why is there no agreement among believers? Because they've been brainwashed into believing that science has proved that the world was not created the way the Bible clearly reads. Evidence? See old Earth creationism in which leading lights of those believers admit that their reason for thinking that it's not literal history is the so-called science, not the text itself. They even admit that the text does support the creationists!
Philip J. Raymentdiscuss 13:29, 20 April 2009 (UTC)
That's not how I read Catholic's post. I read it as Catholic claiming that most experts on theology and study of the Bible don't agree with Mr Barr, i.e. that they don't agree that Genesis is a literal history.
I think that's Jeeve's request for a "handy guide" is justified because a) this site is championing the "Biblical world view" and b) many (if not most) theologians appear to disagree with that world view, which can be terribly confusing to those not convinced by your claims. Ajkgordon 15:15, 20 April 2009 (UTC)
Ajkgordon, you are correct and incorrect at the same time. Yes, Catholic was claiming that most experts don't agree with Barr that Genesis was intended to be read as literal history, but in saying that, he was effectively disagreeing with Barr's claim that the other experts agreed with him.
The "handy guide" is not justified on the ground that you put, because (a) this site is by no means unique in having that view, and (b) according to Barr, most experts agree with this site's view on how the text was meant to be understood. See also my further comments below.
Philip J. Raymentdiscuss 03:52, 21 April 2009 (UTC)
PJR - if you want to make a point that anyone here trying as hard as they are to get your methodology on determining inerrancy will give you a high five for, why don't you just go ahead and give us an analysis of what all from the beginning of Genesis is literal and what isn't. Rather than trying to nail you down on something you obviously have no intention of answering directly, why don't you just show us how your analysis works on specific bible passages? Show us something new with a different approach. This discussion is getting tedious for your inability or refusal to make this single point you apparently wish so ardently to make. Teh Terrible Asp 16:31, 20 April 2009 (UTC)
He'd like to, but he can't. Because once he shows us the measuring-stick he's used to determine that Genesis is TOTALLY LITERAL, unbelieving jerks like me will use it as a club to beat him with by pointing out how it works just as well on parts of the Bible he'd find inconvenient to have to take literally. --Gulik 16:51, 20 April 2009 (UTC)

(OD)Well I am glad that we have handy "page", "discussion", and "history" tabs at the top here, otherwise so many people would not be able to tell what they are looking at. If the discernment that you exercise unconsciously whenever you read anything else really is so hard to invoke when it comes to the Bible, then try this article which not only spells out the styles, but gives handy examples, and a walkthrough. There is also some feedback and a response for the same article and for those who want to look further this and this might be helpful. I know these all link to the same site but that is because it was the first site I looked at and it answered this so many times that I didn't look further. The first such article (on the site) was dated 1979, but even Flavius Josephus was dealing with this. Those genuinely interested in an answer should find these articles helpful. There is another textal analysis that I was trying to track down, but it is highly technical and aimed at those who refuse to acknowledge the workability of the commonsense approach. Should I keep looking? BradleyF (LowKey) 00:27, 21 April 2009 (UTC)

Thanks for the links... it might be cool to condense the info (if possible?) into an article here, perhaps part of the Biblical worldview one? ħuman Number 19 00:45, 21 April 2009 (UTC)
Yes, hopefully we will have this information on this site. But Bradley is correct, as I have pointed out numerous times now, that you are demanding something that is not demanded of anybody else. You are all capable of distinguishing literal from figurative text in other circumstances, and your demand for a "handy guide" here is simply because of your own unwillingness to use that discernment on the Bible. Also, a point that I've hinted at before, including in figurative language, is that language is, to start with, literal. It follows that you should normally read language literally unless there is reason to believe that it is figurative. Therefore, the onus is on those who want to read it figuratively to demonstrate that, not on this site to demonstrate that it is literal. Philip J. Raymentdiscuss 03:52, 21 April 2009 (UTC)
I guess we are at an impasse. I clearly read Genesis (for example) figuratively, and in that way it's a pretty good chunk of literature. A very interesting insight into bronze and iron age culture, fears, hopes - and intelligence at telling beautiful stories. I disagree with your random claims about how to read language, and offer a "modest proposal" as evidence - satire is written in a literal fashion, but is not intended to be read in such a way. As far as the onus, that goes both ways. Is it my job, say, to prove you wrong, or yours to prove you're right? Oh, and I hope you have more than just that Barr guy arguing for your interpretation of Genesis. ħuman Number 19 04:45, 21 April 2009 (UTC)
Here is that technical article. The onus doesn't really go both ways, all text should be taken literally by default, and only taken otherwise if there are reasons for doing so (usually markers in the text itself). The example of a novel written as a historical narrative is actually a good example. It is still intended to be read and understood literally (except for obvious imagery used on occasion) regardless of whether it is to be accepted as true. A literal creation account and a true creation account are not automatically congruent or concommittant (e.g. our position is that it is both, Barr's is that it is only literal). Regardless, although there hasn't been any attempt to point out textual markers to take Genesis 1-11 as anything other than literal history, there has been plenty of work done to show why it is literal history. BradleyF (LowKey) 06:20, 21 April 2009 (UTC)
Satire is an example of literature that is intended to be taken literally, but not to be taken seriously, or as true. BradleyF (LowKey) 06:23, 21 April 2009 (UTC)
Human, yes, there are other scholars who argue that Genesis was intended to be read literally, but as has been pointed out repeatedly, Barr himself is saying that it's not just himself, but essentially all the world-class experts in Hebrew and Old Testament. So that in itself is saying that it's not just him. Philip J. Raymentdiscuss 06:45, 21 April 2009 (UTC)
For argument's sake, let's agree that Barr is correct - that essentially all world-class experts in Hebrew and the Old Testament agree that Genesis was intended to be read literally. So, what are the options for the Creation account in Genesis?
1. God dictated the true historical record of Creation and it was faithfully written down in Genesis. Or God inspired the authors of Genesis to write the true historical record.
2. God dictated or inspired the Genesis Creation account and intended for it to be read literally even though it is allegorical.
3. The authors of Genesis wrote down tribal legends of Creation accepting them to be the true historical record of Creation.
4. The authors of Genesis wrote down tribal legends of Creation accepting that they were probably allegorical but intending them to be taken literally because the people needed something definite in which to believe to make sense of their environment.
5. The authors of Genesis just made it up based on some half-forgotten legends for political reasons, e.g. giving the tribe some identity, cohesion, etc., and intended for it to be taken literally.
There are probably more. But what this shows is that, just because it was intended to be taken literally or accepted as an accurate historical record, doesn't necessarily mean that it should be or indeed that it is. Ajkgordon 08:04, 21 April 2009 (UTC)
So you're basically saying that "Even if it's meant literally, that doesn't mean that it's correct". True, but I've been making that point all along. And yet the argument has been about whether it's literal or metaphor, not whether it's true or not. You've just switched to a different argument. Philip J. Raymentdiscuss 12:36, 21 April 2009 (UTC)
Yup! The other argument didn't seem to be going anywhere. The truth is that many "world-class" theologians don't even accept that the Creation account was ever intended to be taken literally, let alone should. Which makes it confusing for those Christians who have never really considered it (most, probably) and for those non-Christians trying to understand this so-called Biblical world view. Ajkgordon 12:46, 21 April 2009 (UTC)

Biblical worldview expects...

In my opinion, there's a lot of cases where "A Biblical worldview" should be changed to "Proponents of a Biblical worldview." For example, can a worldview really expect, accept or reject? Sterile 01:46, 11 September 2009 (UTC)

You're probably right: It's a bit of anthropomorphization. However, it's less clumsy than saying "proponents of..." in all those cases. Jim 02:12, 11 September 2009 (UTC)
Oh, I know I'm right, and I can find a grammar book that tells me so. There's a certain lack of precision that bugs me. Sterile 14:32, 11 September 2009 (UTC)
I'm with Sterile. It bugs me to see "Biblical worldview judges human...". It also bugs me to see "Science says ..."[1], but perhaps that's a pet peeve I need to vent on a different page.
It is possible for someone to believe in certain things, without actively trying to convince other people to believe those same things. And so it is theoretically possible for someone to "have" a worldview without "being a proponent of" that world view.
So "... people who have a Biblical worldview ..." would be a more precise replacement in most places, although it is even more verbose. --DavidCary 01:22, 12 September 2009 (UTC)
You mean a usage guide. :p.. Fine, change it. Jim 02:37, 12 September 2009 (UTC)

Bradley and Philip's edits

You're entitled to your own worldview, but not to your own facts outside that worldview. Specifically:

  • Ussher's full chronology depended on significant research outside the Bible, so trying to minimize this is misleading. His calculation of the Creation Week at 4004 BC depended comparatively heavily on the Bible, but Philip prefers saying "timescale" rather than specifically referring to the Creation Week. Where are we going with this?
  • Human opinion v. Human reason "Reason" is the commonly used term to desccribe what is meant here. "Opinion" is too vague and can have many different meanings.
  • Biblical worldview as inconsistent with view of the mainstream scholars: Tough to believe anyone is disagreeing with this, expecially people who were arguing that it was not being given a fair hearing by mainstream scientists last week.Jim 02:09, 11 September 2009 (UTC)
I made the edits piecemeal for a reason.
  • "Where we are going" is that Ussher's chronology is not a requirement of a Biblical Worldview, but ~6000 years is. The timescale is a requirement and Ussher's chronology is one that fits the requirement. The other research was not being downplayed. Parenthesisation was because the extra-Biblical research was not directly a part of what the statement was about (but was significant in that it fit with a Biblical timescale).
  • "Reason" is not the best word. The tone implies that reason and Biblical worldview are not wholly compatible, which is untrue. Reason is also much too broad - opinion is actually less vague. Conclusions is a good word, but is at risk of over-use in the article.
  • You are conflating scholars and scientists. For example, historians are scholars, archeologists are scientists; or at least that is sufficiently the case to generalise a little. Mainstream historians may hold a Biblical worldview without inconsistency, or even explicitly addressing/expositing their worldview. BradleyF (LowKey) 04:24, 11 September 2009 (UTC)
But that's exactly what the article says, that in some cases human reason and a "Biblical worldview" are in fact incompatible. The article says that where ever human reason and the Bible disagree on an issue, the Bible is necessarily correct and humans wrong. For example, everything we know leads us to believe that the Earth is on the order of four billion years old. We know this from multiple, independent and cross-confirming sources. However, you say the Biblical worldview demands a 6000 year chronology. Human reason must be abandoned and excuses must be made as to why what we think we know is in fact wrong.
Of course, this whole argument is wonderfully self defeating, since anything gleaned from the Bible is necessarily filtered through the supposedly unreliable lens of human reason itself. For example, I learned the other day from my reading that Augustine of Hippo, himself what you might now describe as a "Young Earth Creationist" totally disagreed with today's AiG et al. received wisdom that the Genesis story is a literal account of the creation of the world. Not unreasonably he suggests that no powerful god would need to take six days over creating things, and in actuality everything was poofed in to existence at once. Human reason at work, but presumably you would think flawed. --Jeeves 10:10, 11 September 2009 (UTC)
Jonathan Sarfati does appear to hold that the Bible trumps reason. And as the article points out, current historical scholarship on Egypt would preclude any mainstream Egyptologist from holding the "Biblical worldview." o ListenerXTalkerX 04:32, 11 September 2009 (UTC)
"Reasoning" and "reason" are not equivalent (I am not splitting hairs, there are differences in the meaning, scope and use), and as I said the tone implied incompatability with reason, which the Sarfati quote does not indicate anyway.
Actually, there are mainstream Egyptologists who do not subscribe to the generally accepted chronology, only some of whom express holding a Biblical worldview. Yes, yes; you will want names. Give me a bit. BradleyF (LowKey) 05:34, 11 September 2009 (UTC)
I'll preempt you. David Rohl is not a mainstream Egyptologist. --Jeeves 10:35, 11 September 2009 (UTC)
Um, just to clarify: Scientists are scholars, too. They use the literature, write in scholarly journals, etc. Splitting hairs doesn't help you. Also, a religious scholar reads and analyzes texts; that does not necessarily mean he or she is a proponent of the religion. Sterile 14:35, 11 September 2009 (UTC)
I want to go through what your latest reversion and comments, Bradley:
  • Reason v. opinion You don't actually define the difference is between "reason" and "reasoning." I would guess that reason is the thing being described, while reasoning is the particular instance of the thing. Opinion connotes mere personal judgement or preference, not the consensus of experts working in the relevant field, which is what is being described here. It is impossible for me to know what you mean by vague statements about the "tone" of the context in which reason is used. Could you clarify?
  • Biblical revelation v. narrative of the Bible "Biblical revelation" is problematic for, among other reasons, what DinsdaleP and I discuss below. "Narrative of the Bible" is far from perfect, but that phrase is at least a start to acknowledging some of the assumptions of the Biblical worldview.
  • Ussher's chronology We don't need to specifically use Ussher. His chronology is just the one best known to fundamentalists because it was the one used in the Scofield Reference Bible.
  • "This puts the Biblical worldview at odds with not only much of what is commonly accepted by the scientific community, but with mainstream ancient history and archeology as well." This two other different statements on the same themse have been removed from the article. Other than your confusion about scholars and scientists, how do you justify removing these? A list of conclusions reached by modern scientists, historians and archeologists that those holding the Biblical worldview would reject would be quite lengthy. (Incidentally, archeologists are not really scientists. In my university, archeology was part of the classical studies department.) Jim 22:42, 12 September 2009 (UTC)
Ussher's full chronology depended on significant research outside the Bible, so trying to minimize this is misleading. His calculation of the Creation Week at 4004 BC depended comparatively heavily on the Bible, but Philip prefers saying "timescale" rather than specifically referring to the Creation Week. Where are we going with this? I forget what my intention was, but using "timescale" was probably because Ussher developed a "complete" chronology, not just a date for creation. I'm not sure how much his chronology of biblical events (as opposed to non-biblical events) depended on non-biblical research (but not too much, I would have thought), although he did of course tie the biblical chronology to firmly-known dates from extra-biblical sources.
"Opinion" is too vague and can have many different meanings. Perhaps it is too vague, but the basis for using the term is that much of the "reasoning" is based on presuppositions which are merely opinion.
...everything we know leads us to believe that the Earth is on the order of four billion years old. Absolute rubbish. Whilst there is some evidence for that age, there is also evidence for younger ages, so to say that "everything we know" points to four billion years is blatantly false.
We know this from multiple, independent and cross-confirming sources. Rather, from conclusions drawn based in part on anti-biblical presuppositions, and with many inconsistent results.
...anything gleaned from the Bible is necessarily filtered through the supposedly unreliable lens of human reason itself. As I've said just above, the problem with human reasoning is the presuppositions behind it. If the presuppositions are the correct ones, then the reasoning is usually pretty good.
...Augustine of Hippo, himself what you might now describe as a "Young Earth Creationist" totally disagreed with today's AiG et al. received wisdom that the Genesis story is a literal account of the creation of the world. You overlook that "AiG et al. received wisdom" is actually the straightforward reading of the Bible, as confirmed by a consensus of relevant scholars, and that Augustine was an exception in believing that.
Not unreasonably he suggests that no powerful god would need to take six days over creating things... True, that's not unreasonable at all. However, there's two fallacies there. One is to deduce that God must have done A when he specifically says that He did B, and the other is to overlook that God might have a reason for taking longer than He needed to (Exodus 20:9,11).
Human reason at work, but presumably you would think flawed. Yes, for the reasons I've just given. People who believe that they know better than what God has revealed have frequently been proven wrong.
Jonathan Sarfati does appear to hold that the Bible trumps reason. If two people (or groups of people), each use their own reasoning and come to different conclusions, then (at least) one must be wrong. As the Bible is inerrant (this is the logic), the "reasoning" of people who disagree must be wrong. Perfectly logical, as long as you accept the premise, and without disparaging the value of using reason.
Philip J. Raymentdiscuss 07:08, 15 September 2009 (UTC)
so Doctors must quit treating leprosy with effective drugs because thats contrary to the bible view of rubbing them with bird blood ? Leviticus 14:2-52) Since the Bible is inerrant the Doctors reasoning, despite results, must be wrong. Shall I prepare a letter to the AMA for your signiture ? Hamster 16:33, 27 March 2010 (UTC)
That passage is not talking about curing someone from leprosy but describes a purification ritual for someone who has already been cured. --OscarJ 16:47, 27 March 2010 (UTC)
sorry yes, I see that, wrong in my Bible reference. I should have said "dip in Jordan river 7 times" Hamster 17:18, 27 March 2010 (UTC)
Are you talking about 2 Kings 5:14? This is obviously not a standard method to cure leprosy, but a miracle which occurred only in this single instance, so I don't understand how it's related to your previous comment. --OscarJ 17:42, 27 March 2010 (UTC)
Dipping a in the blood of b c times to purify someone after being cured of d does seem a lot like pagan ritual leftovers. Then again, if you did manage to be cured of leprosy in those days, you'd probably be willing to try just about anything to show God you were thankful, no matter how patently absurd it was. SallyM 17:46, 27 March 2010 (UTC)
gee Oscar, I thought the consistancy of God was one of the reasons that creationists created science. If God is going around doing one off miricles how can anyone investigate and develope science ? Hamster 18:17, 27 March 2010 (UTC)
Even if the leprosy cure was as Hamster described, that doesn't mean that other cures are not possible, so the question was illogical anyway.
You've heard the phrase, "the exception that proves the rule"? The point is that the existence of exceptions to the rule does not disprove the existence of the rule itself. Miracles are exceptions to the rule, but the rule—that God is not capricious and doesn't change the laws of nature on a whim—stands.
Philip J. Rayment 01:58, 31 March 2010 (UTC)

Inherent Contradiction?

This section of the article made me wonder if it's self-contradicting:

"A Biblical worldview explicitly rejects the notion of applying human opinion in critically analyzing the Bible, when such does not respect the Bible as authoritative. Rather than interpret the Bible according to human opinion, a Biblical worldview judges human opinion by comparing it to the Bible."

The problem with this statement as I see it is that the very definition of what books comprise "the" Bible, and what translations should be accepted as authoritative and inerrant, are up to the opinion of men. Simply stated, different Judeo-Christian sects have different views as to what books should be considered Biblical canon, and which should be considered Biblical apocrypha. How, then, can the Bible be held up as an absolute inerrant basis for a worldview when the basis itself is relative, and not absolute?

This also goes to comments made in the Mosaic law Talk page, (which can be referenced there instead of being repeated here), where some aspects of the Mosaic code in the Old Testament were considered by men such like St. Paul to be ritualistic or ceremonial in nature, and not observed as the morality-related laws should be. Whether one considers him to be inspired by God or not, Paul was simply a man who wrote his opinions and letters on Christian theology without ever meeting Jesus. The decision that the writing of this individual should be considered Biblical canon while the work of other men who followed him, like St. Augustine or Thomas Aquinas should not, is the result of human opinion.

If the Bible was a single, unchanging absolute text the assertion above would be easier to accept, as if all men agreed that a single bar of inert metal represented what "one foot" means when the temperature is constant. In the case of a Biblical worldview, though, there are many bars of many lengths, so we can only regard the Bible as an inerrant standard in a general, metaphorical sense.

Thoughts? --DinsdaleP 00:00, 12 September 2009 (UTC)

Bingo. Jim 02:35, 12 September 2009 (UTC)
DinsdaleP, you ask some interesting questions.
Do you think the entire article as a whole is wrong (because it is self-contradictory), and therefore incorrectly describes the subject, and so we need to edit this article to correctly describe the subject? How else can we can improve this article?
I see that, historically, there has been widespread disagreeing opinions over whether "1" is a prime number.
However, the fact is that the integer "1" is absolutely not a prime number.
How can the fact that "1 is not a prime number" be held up as an absolutely inerrant basis for further theorems, when the basis itself is clearly a matter of opinion?
p.s.: You may be surprised to learn that many people believe that Jesus spoke with Paul, as described in Acts 9:5 , Acts 22:8 , Acts 22:18, and Galatians 1:12 .
--DavidCary 03:13, 12 September 2009 (UTC)
I don't see the concept of a Biblical worldview as inherent;y problematic if you're a person of Judeo-Christian faith. My comment was specifically regarding the italicized excerpt above, which seems to state that a Biblical worldview does not allow human opinion to interpret the Bible as people see fit (i.e. the Bible is the "standard" that human actions should be interpreted against instead). If "the" Bible is effectively a different translations and collections that people can't agree on standardizing into a single edition, and which even the most devout Christian has to choose which one to take as literal, then even that well-intentioned choice is the result of well-intended opinion, that's all.
I'm also aware of the interaction with Paul referenced above, but there's a big difference between a few lines from a disembodied voice spoken during Paul's conversion, and traveling/living with Jesus as a teacher in person. Paul wrote his subsequent canonical work under God's inspiration, but supposedly so did Augustine and other Doctors of the Church when they wrote influential works left out of canon. What is considered "canon" was th result of voting during Christian councils - an act of opinion that we can only speculate about how close to unanimous the voting was. --DinsdaleP 13:09, 12 September 2009 (UTC)
I'm under the impression that this site was set up to reflect a specific "Biblical worldview," which sees the Bible as a set group of texts with a plain meaning. We probably need to define what is meant by "worldview." I'll quote from Wikipedia, for lack of a better source. A worldview is a "fundamental cognitive orientation of an individual or society encompassing natural philosophy, fundamental existential and normative postulates or themes, values, emotions, and ethics." Also, the term "refers to the framework of ideas and beliefs through which an individual interprets the world and interacts with it." So, it's more than a simple list of propositions with which one agrees.
Just to tie this to a specific person, let's look at Jonathan Sarfati's worldview. An important part of it, anyway, seems to be reflected in the quote in the article: Human reasoning needs to be judged on the basis of whether it confirms or denies "what God has revealed in Scripture." In fact, this seems to be the essence of his worldview. Certain beliefs follow from that worldview: a 6,000-year old Earth, talking snake and Great Flood. Those beliefs may also form part of his worldview, but the essence of the worldview is the Bible as revealed historic and scientific truth.
Now, when people who disagree with Sarfati read the quote, it becomes "It is folly to elevate man's reasoning above [my interpretation of] what God has revealed in Scripture." However, I don't think Sarfati himself would agree that the bracketted text is appropriate, as he doesn't believe he is interpreting the Bible.
On Paul--I don't think it is fruitful to contrast Paul against accounts written by people who were "traveling/living with Jesus as a teacher in person." Modern scholars don't believe the Gospels were written by their traditional authors. Even Peter's letter(s) were written after his death.
I also believe that you are mistaken on the degree of authority given by Christians to Augustine or the other Doctors. While some theologians (like Aquinas) very influential in Catholic theology, but the ability to promounce authoritatively on faith and morals is typically reserved to the bishops as a body or, more recently, to the Pope. Calvinists will typically justify predestination on the basis of Biblical revelation, even if they use Augustine's ideas. In any event, Christians believe that the Bible is authoritative not because of the merits or knowledge of its human authors, but because it was divinely inspired. Jim 17:36, 12 September 2009 (UTC)
I nearly didn't respond here, because most of what I'd like to say has been said, but then decided that there was one point I should pick up on.
However, I don't think Sarfati himself would agree that the bracketted text is appropriate, as he doesn't believe he is interpreting the Bible. I wouldn't agree with this. Rather, Sarfati wouldn't agree that the bracketed text is appropriate as he is espousing a principle. That is, human opinion/reasoning must in principle concede to God's revelation, but in practice there may be occasions in which human reasoning is needed to determine just what the Bible is teaching. So you can have these alternatives:
  • The Bible says X, and Bill argues that this means X1.
  • The Bible says X, but Fred argues that this means X2.
  • The Bible says X, but Joe says that the Bible is wrong, and Y is actually true. Joe may not be saying "the Bible is wrong"; he may be putting it more subtly, such as "the Bible is not meant to be literal", even though there's no evidence of any sort of figure of speech.
Sarfati (et. al.) is saying that Joe is wrong, because the Bible trumps Joe's conclusion. He is not commenting on whether Bill or Fred are correct.
Back to the principle that I mentioned. When my father went to Bible College, they had rules that must be obeyed (of course, but keep in mind that this was a conservative Christian institution in the early 1950s). However, one of their rules was, "if any of their rules contradicted something in the Bible, the rule was invalid". I don't know that anybody ever managed to successfully challenge any of their rules, and if anybody did challenge, they would have had to convince the college administrators that they were correct (i.e. they would have had to use reasoning), but the principle, nevertheless, was that the Bible trumps their rules. And that is what all this is about; different interpretations of the Bible don't negate that principle.
Jim possibly meant this when he said that the essence of the worldview is the Bible as revealed historic and scientific truth, but he seemed to be thinking differently with his comment about Sarfati.
It follows from all this that in order to determine what the Bible is meaning, one must actually try and determine what the author's intent was, and any "interpretation" that is at odds with that is invalid. As it is quite clear that the intent of the author of Genesis 1 was to say that the world was created in six ordinary days (see Creation week for a brief summary of the reasons), then any contrary conclusion is invalid. Creationists sometimes disagree about the precise meaning of certain passages (for example, does the reference to the "waters above" refer to the atmosphere, a now-collapsed 'vapour canopy', or something else?), but they agree that whatever the Bible means, that is the truth.
Philip J. Raymentdiscuss 10:30, 15 September 2009 (UTC)

Near-consensus

I added the clause about "primarily known for rejecting the idea" as I do not know of any creationist scientist today who is better known for his (secular) scientific work than for being a creationist. Although it is possible that there are counterexamples in the form of closeted creationists, if such a claim is to be used in that capacity here, it should be sourced to some sort of survey. o ListenerXTalkerX 17:29, 10 March 2010 (UTC)

Exactly. If there was a genuine scientific controversy it wouldn't matter which position scientists took, it would be entirely normal to see people on either side of the "debate". Also Philip seems to think "consensus" means 100% of the scientists in the field agree, which isn't true. If that were true then there'd be no consensus on anything. If evolution is a near-consensus then so is every other consensus in science. Jaxe 17:54, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
one of CMI people is a PhD Physicist doing some interesting stuff with cryogenically cooled crystal clocks. Hamster 20:35, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
Is he better known for his scientific work or his advocacy of creationism? o ListenerXTalkerX 20:37, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
hard to say , he does articles for creation magazines but also publishes in the science journals. He is a researcher at a University. Dr John G Hartnett, PhD Physics. seems to be the exception though Hamster 21:03, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
If it is hard to say than he cannot be "primarily known for" rejecting universal common descent (RUCD for short). He has published quite a bit in journals and also at least one major secular book that I know of. I had initially seen the added clause, but left it alone as a discussion for another day. The problem with it is primarily epistomological, in that since our only sample of RUCD scientists are those that are already known to be RUCD, and they are known to be RUCD because they have usually made a point of it and thus became known for it, we have no way knowing how many scientists reject universal common descent but keep quiet about it, simply because they keep quiet about it and thus prevent us from knowing. I am not saying that this is some huge number, but that it could possibly match or exceed the number that are known, in which case the added clause is incorrect. In a classic vicious circle dynamic, the "near consensus" becomes both the cause and the result of dismissing those who reject UCD. BradleyF (LowKey) 21:45, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
How about if we restrict it to the field of scientists who have explicitly taken positions on the subject (i.e., only the actual contributors to a scientific consensus)? o ListenerXTalkerX 21:56, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
If you don't know how many scientists reject UCD then how can you possibly know it's a near consensus? Jaxe 22:58, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
@LX, I think that would be a smallish number. Taking a position on the subject is similar to acknowledging that the controversy/debate exists, and then we have that argument all over again.
@Jaxe, we know some, but we don't know all. Not knowing all does not annihilate those we do know.
What about a separate sentence (ratehr than a follow on clause) along the lines of, "For those known to reject UCD, this rejection itself generally becomes a major distinguishing feature," as an interim measure. It is still clunky, and I don't know if it should be in the lead but it is a bite sized piece to work with. BradleyF (LowKey) 23:11, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
How many is this "some"? Only one person has been named so far. Jaxe 23:58, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
I meant we know some scientist who reject UCD. CMI, ICR etc have published lists of them. Dr Hartnett is an example of one who is known, without his rejection being his major distinguishing feature. BradleyF (LowKey) 01:43, 11 March 2010 (UTC)
One of the problems with citing numbers of scientists is that different scientists reject different amounts of evolution. That is, the actual numbers depend on the precise position being discussed.
Having said that, I provided evidence in support of the claim by linking to the Support for creation and evolution article, specifically to the section on scientists. That section relates that according to a Gallup Poll, 5% of U.S. scientists are creationists, and that this amounts to 100,000 scientists. There is nowhere near 100,000 scientists known for their creationist views, and it's also well documented that many remain "in the closet". Therefore I believe that the case is made that most creationary scientists are not "primarily known for rejecting the idea". Jaxe removed this on the excuses that (a) I was "citing myself" (I wasn't; I was referring readers to an article which cited a Gallup Poll; the fact that I wrote that article is irrelevant), and (b) that this somehow is not relevant.
Is he better known for his scientific work or his advocacy of creationism? A fair question, I guess, but the problem is, how do you tell? In creationist and anti-creationist circles, he's almost certainly better known for being a creationist. In the field in which he works, there's a good chance that he's better known for his work. In the general public's mind, he would be almost entirely unknown. We'd need to do a large survey to answer that question.
If you don't know how many scientists reject UCD then how can you possibly know it's a near consensus? Or that it's not?
...Philip seems to think "consensus" means 100% of the scientists in the field agree... What makes it seem that? Rather, I would say that 95% is not a consensus, but a near-consensus.
Philip J. Rayment 01:58, 11 March 2010 (UTC)
Quoting raw numbers and percentages is useless here since consensus is not decided by either those. Plus we don't know how many of those 100k are biologists/life scientists so it tells us nothing useful even if it were decided that way. The figure is also statistically dubious since you extrapolated it from a much smaller sample.
We know there's not a "near-consensus" because if there were then that's what the various scholarly organisations, scientific panels, conferences and journals would be saying. They're not saying that. They're saying it's one of the strongest consensuses in science.[2][3]
As for so-call 'in the closet' creationists... so what? If they're not publicly expressing their views then they're not supporting them. They're just privately held beliefs. Science is not decided by privately held beliefs, it only counts those who are active in the field. If they're not active and outspoken their views can't be considered. (They may be doing science in some other field like the physicist mentioned above, but that's irrelevant to the this discussion.) Even if we could somehow read their minds, I don't believe these closet creationists exist outside your fantasy world. Jaxe 12:34, 11 March 2010 (UTC)
If consensus is not based on how many agree, what is it based on?
Plus we don't know how many of those 100k are biologists/life scientists so it tells us nothing useful even if it were decided that way. Ignoring that there is some idea of how many in Support for creation and evolution, you've not answered my second last point in my last post. If we don't know, how can you say that it is a consensus?
The figure is also statistically dubious since you extrapolated it from a much smaller sample. Nonsense. The goal of polls is to get statistically-relevant results, and all polls are intended to be extrapolated to the full population.
We know there's not a "near-consensus" because if there were then that's what the various scholarly organisations, scientific panels, conferences and journals would be saying. Not given the bias that they clearly demonstrate, such as refusing to grant qualifications, refusing to give grants for research to creationists, refusing to publish creationist and ID papers, etc.
They're saying it's one of the strongest consensuses in science. They are also clearly lying. "the evidence in favor of the evolution of man are sufficient to convince every scientist of note in the world" is utter rot, given the scientists of note who reject it. "Evolution is one of the most robust and widely accepted principles of modern science." Only 95% of U.S. scientists accept it, compared to how many which accept, say, gravity? 99.99%?
As for so-call 'in the closet' creationists... so what? If they're not publicly expressing their views then they're not supporting them. This is special pleading. By eliminating the "in the closet" ones, you are virtually arguing that all the creationists who are mainly known for supporting creation are mainly known for supporting creation!
Even if we could somehow read their minds, I don't believe these closet creationists exist outside your fantasy world. I provided hard evidence, in the form of a poll, and you choose to dismiss that with your subjective beliefs! What happened to claims that science is based on evidence?
Philip J. Rayment 13:58, 11 March 2010 (UTC)
Until you have demonstrated there is a conspiracy you can't use it as an excuse. Since there is no evidence of this conspiracy I'm ignoring all responses that imply one.
On topic of how we can know when there is/isn't a consensus, there is no official body or method that decides this. Science is not a democracy where the truth is voted on. There is no definite threshold that once passed suddenly generates a consensus. It's more of a zeitgeist; a general attitude of acceptance towards an idea. The best sources we have to determine where the science community stands is resolutions passed and statements made by the various scientific societies. They all consistently and unreservedly support evolution and have repeatedly done so for at least the last century. Jaxe 14:34, 11 March 2010 (UTC)
I never mentioned a conspiracy. You have instead ignored evidence of bias.
On topic of how we can know when there is/isn't a consensus, there is no official body or method that decides this. Yet you quote official bodies!
Science is not a democracy where the truth is voted on. Yet you claim consensus!
There is no definite threshold that once passed suddenly generates a consensus. Agreed, but the word does have a meaning.
It's more of a zeitgeist; a general attitude of acceptance towards an idea. And 95% is not general acceptance in my book.
The best sources we have to determine where the science community stands is resolutions passed and statements made by the various scientific societies. No, consensus is agreement, and that is determined on numbers, not resolutions or declarations.
Philip J. Rayment 14:42, 11 March 2010 (UTC)
As Mr. Rayment insists on using his own definition of "consensus", I would suggest leaving it as he likes and creating a consensus article explaining exactly what Mr. Rayment believes "consensus" is (alongside other nebulous terms such as "general" and "agreement"). Then maybe we can contrast that with other notions of consensus. SallyM 14:56, 11 March 2010 (UTC)
*faceplam* Read the intro here[4] and then reply again using the scientific definition not the general definition of consensus. You have misunderstood the word. It really is very difficult to communicate with you when you consistently use scientific words in this creative fashion. Jaxe 15:14, 11 March 2010 (UTC)
Jaxe, we can't stop Mr. Rayment from doing anything, so we need another way to settle this. The best we can hope for is to get him to clearly define his terms. That way he can continue to do as he pleases and we can better understand what he's talking about. Please join me in encouraging him to do so and refraining from further exchanges until then. SallyM 15:35, 11 March 2010 (UTC)

If the term 'consensus' is such a problem, why don't you simply alter the wording to something different, such as " the concept of common descent of living creatures through evolution is accepted by most of the scientific community" or something similar. --OscarJ 15:50, 11 March 2010 (UTC)

The term is not a problem when used correctly. Consensus is very important and should certainly be included in any article discussing levels of support among scientists. Jaxe 16:01, 11 March 2010 (UTC)
It's not nearly as accurate. An uninformed reader wouldn't know that evolution is accepted by such an overwhelming majority from the word "most". But perhaps another wording can be agreed upon. SallyM 16:02, 11 March 2010 (UTC)
"...is accepted by the overwhelming majority of the scientific community", then. --OscarJ 16:06, 11 March 2010 (UTC)
Why not just remove the word 'near'. Jaxe 16:13, 11 March 2010 (UTC)
Oscar, that'd be fine with me. Let's see what Mr. Rayment thinks. SallyM 16:15, 11 March 2010 (UTC)
As Mr. Rayment insists on using his own definition of "consensus"... I do not.
Read the intro here and then reply again using the scientific definition not the general definition of consensus. That talks about "consensus" in the scientific arena, but the definition itself seems no different to normal use. How do you think it's different? (And even if it is, why do we have to use the scientific sense?)
You have misunderstood the word. It really is very difficult to communicate with you when you consistently use scientific words in this creative fashion. It really is very difficult to communicate with you when you consistently tell me I'm wrong without actually explaining how or why I'm wrong.
An uninformed reader wouldn't know that evolution is accepted by such an overwhelming majority from the word "most". But is it? What do you define as an "overwhelming majority"?
Why not just remove the word 'near'. Because I believe that that would be misleading. "Unanimity" means everyone, no exceptions. "Consensus" means, according to that Wikipedia article (on this particular point I don't disagree), "general agreement". But what exactly qualifies as "general agreement"? My argument is that 95% is not "consensus", but I'm happy to call it "near consensus". Evolutionists frequently use argumentum ad populum, that essentially everyone is in agreement on evolution. Jaxe switches from looking at independent poll figures to looking at self-serving declarations by evolutionists. As these evolutionists don't cite figures either, then it's effectively "consensus by decree", which is not the way to determine if consensus exists! The Wikipedia article pushes the evolutionary POV, claiming that there is no scientific dispute (burying their heads in the sand over the existence of all those creationary scientists and creationary peer-reviewed journals that do dispute it). But this site is not going to follow the crowd in that respect, and will recognise the existence of a small but significant opposition.
So what is really the issue? Is it (a) that you consider 95% to be "consensus", (b) that you think I'm defining "consensus" incorrectly, (c) that you think "consensus" is based on self-serving declarations, or (d) something else? Let's at least understand exactly what we are disagreeing on.
Philip J. Rayment 09:49, 12 March 2010 (UTC)
Please go to consensus and enlighten us as to what you think consensus is, what consensus looks like, and how consensus is reached. Please also define any other terms you introduce (e.g. "general"). SallyM 13:50, 12 March 2010 (UTC)
Why should I do that when I've already said that I accept the normal definition of "consensus"? Why not answer my question above about just where we disagree, because it may not in fact be with the definition of the word. Philip J. Rayment 23:39, 12 March 2010 (UTC)
Because you've apparently accepted many different definitions of "consensus". Please see Talk:Consensus. Please. SallyM 13:24, 15 March 2010 (UTC)
"Apparently"? What different definitions? This is all just a case of vague accusations. The Talk:Consensus page adds nothing to this particular conversation. Philip J. Rayment 13:58, 15 March 2010 (UTC)
Sorry I would have responded sooner but I rolled my eyes so hard they've only just settled. It's obvious you will never accept that there's a consensus even when the scientists themselves tell you there is. If you don't accept that then you won't accept any amount of evidence. Additionally you don't understand how science works (you still think it's a democracy) so there's really no point in continuing this discussion. Jaxe 21:11, 18 March 2010 (UTC)
Probably, as far as I know, the only cases where we can be sure there is a consensus is when someone says there is a consensus and Mr. Rayment agrees. SallyM 21:26, 18 March 2010 (UTC)
I forgot to mention some stuff. Science is built on a system of mutual respect. Every scientist starts off as an unknown with zero respect, and then gradually earns it by demonstration of skill. If you have a history of producing terribly flawed papers full of mathematical mistakes and bad methods then very few people are going to listen to you, whereas if you've won the Nobel prize for physics people are going to pay attention. That's how it should be; listen to the people who have demonstrated they should be listened to.
This 95%-5% statistic tells us nothing of the distribution of respect, and thus can tell us nothing of whether there's a consensus or not. How many of those 5% are qualified in biology/life sciences? How many are active in the field? How well received is their work? My guess would be very few of them are qualified, very few of those that are qualified are active and none of those that are active have produced anything notable. I'm sure you'd guess something different, but the point is this statistic doesn't tell us, so it's useless. Jaxe 19:24, 19 March 2010 (UTC)
Sorry I would have responded sooner but I rolled my eyes so hard they've only just settled. Cut out the denigration and stick to the arguments.
It's obvious you will never accept that there's a consensus even when the scientists themselves tell you there is. Which scientists? The 95% who agree, or the 5% who don't? And why should I accept an argument-by-authority from scientists about a supposed consensus when the evidence (figures) show differently?
If you don't accept that then you won't accept any amount of evidence. But you are not citing evidence but assertion!
Additionally you don't understand how science works (you still think it's a democracy)... No I don't. I know that neither consensus nor majority opinion makes evolution correct! You are the one arguing the democracy card!
This 95%-5% statistic tells us nothing of the distribution of respect... And neither do self-serving claims of consensus not backed by evidence.
How many of those 5% are qualified in biology/life sciences? How many are active in the field? How well received is their work? How many of the alleged consensue are qualified in biology/life sciences? How many of the consensus are active in the field? How well received is the work of the consensus?
My guess would be very few of them are qualified, very few of those that are qualified are active and none of those that are active have produced anything notable. My guess is that that's your bias showing.
...but the point is this statistic doesn't tell us, so it's useless. No more useless than self-serving claims by the majority that there is consensus.
Philip J. Rayment 03:06, 23 March 2010 (UTC)
Like I said, there's no point continuing this discussion since you don't understand what we're talking about. I'm having to correct your misunderstandings every singe reply instead of discussing the point. Until you fix your mental block you have with understanding science then any discussion on it will be complete nonsense. I can recommend some reading if you want help dealing with your problem, but I imagine you're too emotionally invested for it to do any good. Jaxe 22:19, 23 March 2010 (UTC)
You've yet to show that consensus is correctly determined in any way other than by numbers. I reply to each of your points, and you ignore my replies and simply assert that I'm wrong with ad hominem arguments. That's not discussing the point. Philip J. Rayment 23:43, 23 March 2010 (UTC)
Another reply and another misunderstanding. You have repeatedly confused 'ad hominem' with 'insult' all over this site. Please learn the difference.[5][6] This is doubly irrelevant since I wasn't even insulting you, but bring up a perfectly valid point: you don't understand science. This is a vital point since if it is true (which it evidently is) then there is no point discussing 'consensus' or any other scientific term until you do understand science at some basic level. I have explained to you how consensus should be determined but you dismissed it with some conspiratorial mumblings. That in itself demonstrates just how disconnected you are from the scientific community. Furthermore you have a terribly annoying debating habit of replying only to sentence fragments and not the main points of a post. It's a tactic to derail the topic and bring up red herrings and irrelevancies at every possible opportunity. Jaxe 00:26, 24 March 2010 (UTC)
You have repeatedly confused 'ad hominem' with 'insult' all over this site. I'm not convinced, although perhaps I have on occasions. Your first link says that "Argumentum ad hominem is the logical fallacy of attempting to undermine a speaker's argument by attacking the speaker instead of addressing the argument. ... the attack must be used for the purpose of undermining the argument.". Whilst I agree with this, the problem is that I believe that many of the attacks are for the purpose of undermining the argument. It continues: "Therefore, if you can't demonstrate that your opponent is trying to counter your argument by attacking you, you can't demonstrate that he is resorting to ad hominem." But being unable to demonstrate that, i.e. to show a specific link, doesn't mean that it's not the case. To put it another way, Wikipedia defines the argument as:
Person 1 makes claim X
There is something objectionable about Person 1
Therefore claim X is false
But what if the third point is implicit rather than explicit? I agree that most cases here do not explicitly make the third point, but I believe that they implicitly do. The examples in your first link presume that if the link is not explicitly there, it does not exist. Nevertheless, I'll try and watch this more carefully in future. And of course you and your colleagues could help by addressing the argument rather than insulting me; even where insult is not ad hominem, it's still unacceptable.
This is doubly irrelevant since I wasn't even insulting you, but bring up a perfectly valid point: you don't understand science. Except that I do understand science. Rather than address the issues, you conflate disagreement with ignorance. So it is not a valid point at all.
...then there is no point discussing 'consensus' or any other scientific term... It's an English term, not specifically a scientific one. Wikipedia's Scientific consensus article which I think you directed me to says that "Consensus implies general agreement, though not necessarily unanimity." That is, it is effectively talking about numbers. "General agreement" means that almost all agree. If the numbers are 50:50, for example, then it's not true that there is "general agreement". The article does put this in the context of a field of study, but that's the case with any "consensus"—it might be the consensus of a board meeting, for example—all "consensus" are in particular fields/contexts/groups/etc., so the fact that "scientific" consensus is in a particular field of study does not mean that it's a special meaning of "consensus". The Wikipedia article also explains how agreement (consensus) is reached in science, but that's distinct from what it is.
I have explained to you how consensus should be determined... More to the point is that you've asserted, and ignored or dismissed that it remains "general agreement".
Furthermore you have a terribly annoying debating habit of replying only to sentence fragments and not the main points of a post. Yet my post that you replied to did not do this! Anyway, you are incorrect. Replying to individual points does not mean that I'm not replying to the main points, and I do reply to the main points.
It's a tactic to derail the topic and bring up red herrings and irrelevancies at every possible opportunity. No, it's a methodology to be clear.
Philip J. Rayment 01:53, 24 March 2010 (UTC)
Then it's a failed methodology since the results have invariably been nonsense. You don't like the idea of evolution being the strongest consensus in science and all these mental gymnastics are your frantic attempt to avoid admitting it. Scientific consensus is achieved though "communication at conferences, the publication process, replication (reproducible results by others) and peer review". Can you name any other type of consensus that achieved though these means? Informed consensus of experts based on a strict methodology of testing and falsification has nothing in common with a bunch of non-experts who just happen to hold the same opinion on something. You inability to understand the difference between general consensus and scientific consensus is more evidence you don't understand how science works. Jaxe 02:10, 24 March 2010 (UTC)
Then it's a failed methodology since the results have invariably been nonsense. Invariably? Yet various other people (including RW people) also use the template.
You don't like the idea of evolution being the strongest consensus in science and all these mental gymnastics are your frantic attempt to avoid admitting it. Evolution is by no means the strongest consensus in science. Do more scientists agree with evolution that with, say, gravity? Of course not.
Scientific consensus is achieved though "communication at conferences, the publication process, replication (reproducible results by others) and peer review". Yes. So? I already addressed this. That is how it is achieved, not how it is defined. Did you not read that in my previous reply? If so, why did you ignore it?
Can you name any other type of consensus that achieved though these means? Many other consensuses are achieved through communication at conferences and the publication process at least.
Informed consensus of experts based on a strict methodology of testing and falsification has nothing in common with a bunch of non-experts who just happen to hold the same opinion on something. Yeah, well, if evolution was actually falsifiable...
you have been shown several ways of falsifying evolution. Cambrian fossil bunnies is one. An organism that fits between any two lines of descent is another. Neither has been found in about 150 years but it could be any day now. Hamster 16:19, 27 March 2010 (UTC)
This can be expanded to a general prediction that says no organism will ever be found to have existed at a time before it could have possibly evolved. Jaxe 16:41, 27 March 2010 (UTC)
On falsifying it, see origins science. Jaxe's comment begs the question of whether it is possible to unequivocably predict when something could have possibly evolved. Many fossils (or living specimens) have already been found from times when they weren't supposed to exist, but an evolutionist would just argue that nobody said that they "couldn't possibly" have evolved then. In other words, is this really a falsifiable prediction that evolution can make? Philip J. Rayment 02:08, 31 March 2010 (UTC)
You inability to understand the difference between general consensus and scientific consensus is more evidence you don't understand how science works. Your inability to address the points in my previous reply shows that you don't understand how consensus of any sort works (it's by thrashing out disagreements, not by ignoring them).
Philip J. Rayment 13:32, 27 March 2010 (UTC)
You know all those ignorant creationists who say evolution is "only a theory" using the general definition instead of the scientific definition? That is exactly what you're doing now. Scientific consensus is more than just an agreement, it takes into account who is agreeing and for what reasons and how well qualified and experienced they are and on what evidence and on how much evidence and the level confidence they have and the strength of any opposing views and many other factors. You want to ignore all that and treat science as a democracy where ideas are voted into consensus. Not only that but you also want to define the percentage needed to achieve consensus to always be just a little bit more than that percentage who agree evolution is a fact. If this survey had happened to be 96% instead of 95% than you'd still be saying that wasn't enough, well is 97% enough? 98%? Why should anybody care what you think is enough anyway? It's clear this is a stupid way to go about it. Let's listen to what the scientists are saying instead of you. Which scientists? How about the most widely respected ones? The ones that have demonstrated they know what they're talking about. The ones who are actively participating in the community, they should know after-all. How about listening to all those scholarly bodies and societies that represent literally tens and hundreds of thousands of scientists. Oh wait, what was I thinking, they all say evolution achieved consensus a century ago, we can't have that. Yeah, let's say that 96.8743% is consensus, and since evolution just misses that, you win Philip, you've convinced me. The theory must be in crisis since 5% of scientists (all of which we know nothing about, but let's ignore that) don't accept it. Jaxe 15:00, 27 March 2010 (UTC)

(undent) perhaps we could get a survey of biologist who are non-christian, non-muslim, non-jewish and non-athiests to opine on evolution. Hamster 16:12, 27 March 2010 (UTC)

You know all those ignorant creationists who say evolution is "only a theory" using the general definition instead of the scientific definition? That is exactly what you're doing now. No, I'm not. There is no problem with creationists saying evolution is "only a theory"; it is a legitimate use of the word. The problem that you allude to is when they are quoting scientists saying it, when the scientists are using the word in a scientific sense. So the creationists are in effect (if not in actuality) saying, "Even the scientists describe it as only 'a theory', so that's all it is". In doing this, they are misrepresenting the scientists' scientific use with layman's use. But if they are not (even implicitly) quoting the scientists, but instead just providing a layman's description, then there is no problem. In this case, I'm not quoting a scientist's description, so I'm not doing the same thing at all.
And that's a point that I've missed making before. You are essentially arguing that the article must use the scientific sense of the word (as well as arguing what that sense is, which we don't agree on), when there is no reason to do so. This is not a scientific paper, but a general encyclopædia article. Unless there is some indication to the reader otherwise, we should be using the layman's understanding of the word.
Scientific consensus is more than just an agreement, it takes into account who is agreeing and for what reasons and how well qualified and experienced they are and on what evidence and on how much evidence and the level confidence they have and the strength of any opposing views and many other factors. Yet it was you who pointed me to wp:Scientific consensus which doesn't define it that way.
Not only that but you also want to define the percentage needed to achieve consensus to always be just a little bit more than that percentage who agree evolution is a fact. Where have I indicated that? I expect an answer to this question if and when you respond to this post.
How about listening to all those scholarly bodies and societies that represent literally tens and hundreds of thousands of scientists. The ones that have an ideological commitment to a naturalistic explanation? Sure, they'll give an objective answer, won't they?
perhaps we could get a survey of biologist who are non-christian, non-muslim, non-jewish and non-athiests to opine on evolution. Do you wish to nominate the telephone box they meet in?
Philip J. Rayment 02:43, 31 March 2010 (UTC)

sarfati quote - implications?

"It is folly to elevate man's reasoning above what God has revealed in Scripture. ” —Jonathan Sarfati Hamster 17:57, 10 March 2010 (UTC)

Exodus

LowKey, what event are you referring to when you metnion:

It also dates the exodus from Egypt of the Hebrew people much earlier than recorded in the Bible, and thus concludes that this exodus is not the Biblical Exodus at all.

I suspect you may be talking about the Hyksos, but in either case the sentence isn't very clear and would benefit from a citation. --The Egyptian 12:45, 11 March 2010 (UTC)

Sorry, I didn't see this earlier. I agree that the sentence is not very clear; it definitely needs improvement. I will have to look this up again for the reference. I recall reading a couple of different times that the Biblical Exodus didn'thappen because the exodus that did happen was too early. The "too early" was determined by using the standard chronology. I am trying to express that this particular criticism is a chronological criticism rather than a criticism of factuality, in that the criticism is not that there was no exodus but that it wasn't the Biblical one. I didn't that that was made clear in the sentence as it was. I will see what I can find. BradleyF (LowKey) 02:49, 14 March 2010 (UTC)
UPDATE: I am still looking. I have found a number of articles to the effect that the Exodus has been misdated, but they are mostly from detractors of the standard chron. I have not been able to find a pro standard chron article that specifically addresses it (either by saying that the Biblical account is misdated or by saying no exodus took place). BradleyF (LowKey) 04:11, 31 March 2010 (UTC)

A Christian worldview... A Protestant worldview?

When this article uses the word "Bible", it means specifically the Christian Bible (as opposed to e.g. the Jewish Bible). More specifically I think, the authors of it mean by "Bible" the Protestant canon, not the Catholic or Eastern ones — their "biblical worldview" is not based on Tobit, Judith, or 2 Maccabees. Furthermore, it is also more specifically Protestant, in that it reflects the idea in Protestant Christianity that the Bible is the chief source of authority, to which all other sources of authority are subordinate (sola scriptura); rather than the Catholic or Orthodox idea that there are other sources of authority parallel to scripture (Tradition and Magisterium) and which equal it in authority. So the article should really make clear that it is talking about a specifically Protestant Christian worldview, which the term "Biblical worldview" makes insufficiently clear. Maratrean 11:50, 23 June 2011 (UTC)

I've been thinking about this, but I don't think you have much of a case, although that doesn't necessarily mean that your points can't be mentioned at all. It seems to me that you are making several distinct points.
  • The article is referring to the Christian Bible rather than, say, the Jewish Bible.
    • But the Jewish Bible is not normally referred to by that title, is it?
  • The article is referring to the Protestant canon rather than other canons.
    • What in the article would be changed by including the books that are not part of the Protestant canon? This article is about the view that is based on the Bible, whatever that Bible comprises, in a sense.
  • The article reflects a Protestant view of the Bible's authority.
    • Perhaps that should be mentioned, but this article is primarily describing the view, regardless of who holds it.
Philip J. Raymentdiscuss 14:33, 28 June 2011 (UTC)
Well, the main doctrinal difference I am aware of, in including the Catholic deuterocanon, is 2 Maccabees 12:40-46, which justifies prayer for the dead. The traditional Catholic interpretation of that passage is Purgatory. An alternative interpretation, is that salvation is possible in the afterlife (e.g. those in Hell may repent and be let out). Compare that to a traditional Protestant understanding of the afterlife (after death, proceed directly to heaven or hell; your destination is fixed by the moment of death, and nothing can change it.) Under that understanding, prayer for the dead makes no sense. So, this passage supports either the Catholic understanding, or the alternative interpretation I mentioned, but not the traditional Protestant one. I think such a big difference in beliefs about the afterlife makes a pretty big difference to worldview. Maratrean 22:45, 15 July 2011 (UTC)
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