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gabriel

good news for amateurs - like me

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1 minute ago, The Terrible Triplett said:

I thought God built the ark?

He did use amateurs :), look at the apostles, that was quite a random bunch, included fishermen and a tax collector; but also professional like dr luke and dr paul ;)

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32 minutes ago, gabriel said:

He did use amateurs

When the ark was started yes. But how long did it take to build the ark? Before he sailed, Noag was by no means a novice anymore?

And none of the feats they apostles achieved, left them inexperienced in the end.

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54 minutes ago, The Terrible Triplett said:

Versus arrogance of the Captain and owners, of said Titanic, to keep on going and not due to the engineers. :D

There is  a new theory doing the rounds that a coal fire broke out even before the ship sailed, and that the heat weakened the hull, making the ice berg damage that much more likely and/or worse. I'm not sure I buy it, because the evidence is effectively rumours and dark spots on some photographs, as well as some dumb arguments from silence (the ship is always photographed from one side only). But if true, greed might have played a role as well. The tickets were sold, they had spent lots of money to buy up coal from other ships (so I'm told), not letting her sail (?) would have been a financial disaster. In the end it turned out to be much more than that of course.

23 minutes ago, The Terrible Triplett said:

how long did it take to build the ark?

As I recall, several years, or at least that much is alleged by those who believe it really happened (I do, just in case it's unclear). There is of course considerable debate as to whether the flood was local or global. I personally hold the former view, for the simple reason that when I say "die hele wêreld was onder water" (the whole world was under water) I might in context only be referring to the bathroom. Since we don't know the full context, and because of the sheer physical impossibility of doing that kind of thing with a mere 40 days of rain, it makes more sense to me the other way round. In any case, there are parallels in other ancient writings, such as the Epic of Gilgamesh, so something like it almost certainly happened. And by the end of that decade-long build, Noah was likely an expert :-)

I think one of my favourite quotes would be by a man who is still alive, a John Njoroge, who said:

One incontrovertible proof that the world’s value system is upside down is the fact that God regularly wins by losing.

And that... you just have to love. He sure has a sense of humour about these things init? And with that, I'll get off the pulpit...

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Moved this --- but I do want to coment. The biblical flood may have been the flooding of the Black Sea. Archaeologists have found settlements that were suddenly inundated rather than abandoned due to  a gradual rise of seawater levels. The narrow Bosphorus strait to this day  is still dangerous due to large volumes of water that move through it.  Although I am a scientist I am a firm believer in God. Anyone who has had the opportunity to look at the 650 odd species of Erica from South Africa and says there is no Creator is ignoring the obvious.

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Posted (edited)
26 minutes ago, Chris Hobson said:

Although I am a scientist I am a firm believer in God

there is no way anybody can be a scientist and not come to this conclusion - all else is delusion... "The Man Delusion" :)

interesting one should use the word 'although' - as if to indicate that it is a matter of science vs. God, looking at 'scientific institutions' and universities the culture to deny their Christian foundations has now become entrenched.

[the latter whom all had their inception through Christianity but will not admit such today, see for instance
http://www.cl.cam.ac.uk/~rja14/unauthorised.html
https://www.christs.cam.ac.uk/history-christs-college
http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/03211a.htm ]

newton did not only leave us wonderful equations, but also 'amazing grace'

kindly do not take exception here, for these are 'scientific' facts and not figments of my imagination .

Edited by gabriel

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35 minutes ago, gabriel said:

there is no way anybody can be a scientist and not come to this conclusion - all else is delusion :)

Well... I'm going to disagree with you. Science is a method. You can do science by following the method regardless of where you believe things come from. Science in itself speaks only about the natural world, it actually cannot answer the god-question in either direction. It's also interesting that almost half of professional scientists are in fact atheists (it's split around 45-10-45, with a couple of agnostics in the middle).

However... (how I love to do that!), science is a branch of the larger discipline of philosophy, and was even once called natural philosophy. Science cannot stand on its own feet: Even the common scientistic belief once uttered by Bertrand Russell, that science is the only way to attain knowledge and that what science cannot tell us mankind cannot know, that very statement is not a scientific statement and is by its own assertion something you cannot know. In philosophy we say that it is self-defeating.

It is sort of ironic that Russell would make such a mistake. He was usually more careful about that sort of thing. On the other hand, it is probably no surprise that logical positivism drew so hard on Russell's work, and even less of a surprise that it also destroyed itself.

Once you understand that science needs to fit into a larger system, you can then ask which one makes more sense. And here I am in accord with you guys, that it seems rather alone and without support if it is the final chapter.

Heisenberg did say something about what the first gulp from the glass of natural sciences will do to you... and what waits in the bottom of the glass.

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13 minutes ago, plonkster said:

Science is a method

indeed it is, or rather should be; but can also be used as a term to justify very 'un-scientific' approaches etc - we have seen this lately in the water mismanagement situation; i'm sure nearly any political point of view will be able to get themselves a 'scientist' to prove their point when it comes to stuff like economics or education and health care.

but enough said.

this makes some interesting reading.

:)

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1 hour ago, Chris Hobson said:

 Although I am a scientist I am a firm believer in God. 

However 7 day creationists also miss the boat. The world is not  a couple thousand years old. The empirical evidence shows that the earth is much older. How do I reconcile what I know and see with Genesis? If one looks at the order of genesis and the order that the scientists tell us then there is consensus. The is the small issue of time  a week versus billions of years. One must always remember that the Bible was written for a audience of a bygone era. The level of education and understanding of the peoples of the time was akin to an uneducated  man who has no concept of our modern age. To an audience that I am describing  you do not unleash ideas like evolution etc because with evolution you have to introduce the concept of continental drift. Which if you believe the earth is flat (the common held belief at the time) is a frightening concept with very real disastrous consequences.  

We are able to easily see the use for the parable the Prodigal Son and yet cannot get passed the fact that Genesis must be the gospel truth written for peoples far less sophisticated than even today's poorly educated folk.

If you look at evolution it is not one happy accident but neither was it executed in seven days. God's magnificence and creativity stretches far beyond that.

 

Now I taken this thread off in to a broad tangent.

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I thought of posting an opinion here but decided that would be totally stupid. When folk talk about religion you can only insult them when you differ even if you think it is all a delusion. So I will stay out of this one firstly because it won't promote renewable energy generation knowledge and secondly because we will all find out the true reality at the moment of our last breath or not if the atheists are right. Not that it will matter.

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4 hours ago, Chris Hobson said:

The world is not  a couple thousand years old.

I used to say the same ... till one day a friend of mine asked me a few very salient - scientific - questions, wanting me to explain to him how, based on said scientific facts, things can be as old as we are told.

Few questions I am looking into:
Mountains are old, you can pickup sea seashells and sea creature skeletons on top of mountains. 
Some regions they have loads of snow and excessive rain and all that. And then there are coastal regions.
So one day I was googling something and came across video after video of landslides, mother nature at her most destructive, raging torrents altering the flow of rivers and the landscape, the effect of recurring snowfall, glaciers avalanches over short time frames. Coastal regions calving away fast due to storm surges, changing the look.
How the earths crust can move in a person lifetime.
Hawaii currently having a lava issue, altering their country side. Volcano's that pop their tops taking away half or a whole island.
How is it that their is evidence that the Sahara once was covered in forests?
That the Sahara is expanding so fast every year?
That they find a plane buried in the South pole inside ice that is supposed to be millions of years old?

So I thought, hold on, if mother nature can alter landscapes that quick, rainy to desert can change that "fast", how can we be sure that the surface of the earth has been looking like this for millions of years?

Why did people live so long in the Bible's times, and today, with al our science and health, we hardly see 100?

How is it that new discoveries claim that there is more water deep in the earths crust, than in the oceans?

So I am busy re-working my thoughts on the matter. Hopefully one day with science backing it. :-) 

 

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When it gets to YEC vs OEC debates, I stay out of it :-) And whenever I write anything, I do keep in mind that there are others here who have to suffer through all the drivel... well, I keep it in mind for about two minutes and by that time I have written to much.

Gents, I have rarely found a place where people are this tolerant of others being downright wrong. I like you guys.

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6 minutes ago, plonkster said:

being downright wrong. I like you guys.

now this IS a tolerant group, even i can vouch for that - makes me feel comfy :lol:

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For me (as I scientist) religion is the answer to questions we do not yet have answers for. I do believe however, that we will one day figure out how everything works and then there will be no need for religion anymore. 

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1 hour ago, Fuenkli said:

one day figure out how everything works and then there will be no need for religion anymore

A very common belief, one that has sometimes been referred to as a kind of science-of-the-gaps. There is also this idea, sometimes called NOMA (non-overlapping magisteria) that suggests that science and religion answers different questions, but even that is somewhat misguided I think: There is overlap. I think the only thing we can say with some certainty is that religion answers WHY questions and science does not. Science can tell you the chemical make-up of the cake aunt Matilda baked, but only aunt Matilda can tell you that the cake is for her niece's birthday. That sort of thing.

From this line of reasoning, I derive that knowledge is a much larger discipline than just HOW questions, and for that reason there has to be something bigger. The nature of that something bigger... well... we can talk about that until the cows come home :-)

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Not to belabour the point too much, but it feels like this needs to be said. My faith was somewhat ironically saved by an atheist lecturer, someone that to this day 1) remains atheist and 2) I still have a lot of respect for at least as an intellectual (his personal habits are another matter :-) ). I mean, it was probably not the only factor, but I remember it was the tipping point.

Quite simply, the powers that be at the particular education institution where I was doing my honours degree decided that we should take an intro course into philosophy. The literally wanted to disabuse our little scientific heads from the notion that we were at the top of the academic food chain. So we went through the usual stuff, Kühn, Popper, the stock material for Philosophy of Science (those two words in the same term was in itself a shock to the system)... and then somewhere in the middle we got to Logical Positivism.

Logical Positivism was a movement in the 1920s. What it did, in broad strokes, was to classify what questions are meaningful. Essentially, the idea was that if science cannot answer it (it isn't reproducible, falsifiable, and so forth), then the question isn't meaningful. It might still be emotionally meaningful but it was essentially of not much value. The movement eventually failed because it was internally inconsistent: LP itself wasn't scientifically verifiable. It was self-defeating.

My lecturer must have known this. This is why I still respect him that much: He had the intellectual honesty to simply present the information. He looked at it all himself and came to a different conclusion. On some level I continue to respect that.

After learning about LP, all delusions about the grass being greener on that side (the side where we only believe things if we can prove them in a lab, so to speak) quickly left me. At best, the grass was equally brown over there. The answer wasn't on that side of the fence, not for me. Shortly after that, possibly by providence, I walked into a book store and found a book by C.S Lewis. And that was the final nail in the coffin.

Lewis wrote in The Silver Chair (likely my favourite book in the Narnia series) in the voice of the character Puddleglum, that if the world is as bleak as some people say it is, then I'd rather waste my life living as if it isn't true, because there would be absolutely no loss in doing that. In some Pascal-wager-esque way, being wrong about this would just be one more absurdity about the universe. So here I am... :-)

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1 hour ago, plonkster said:

My faith was somewhat ironically saved

like in saving faith i presume, the atheist only being instrumental, used by God for His purpose... boy, do they freak out if they realize this; in some sense this is a posthume statement.

there is only one thing i can mention regarding the atheist though, and that is that whereas the garden variety christian will never show his true colours, the atheist will, revelation 3:16 comes to mind

On 2018/05/15 at 5:13 PM, Chris Hobson said:

However 7 day creationists also miss the boat.

i'd rather miss the boat than the ark :)

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34 minutes ago, gabriel said:

do they freak out if they realize this

Not all of them. There's an amazingly large number that are extremely chill about it. At least 4 in my immediate circle of extended virtual and/or real friends. I even have one friend who is of a very rare variant, the so-called gnostic atheist. Basically the difference between a gnostic and an agnostic one is that the one claims knowledge (he knows for sure), whereas the other one instead asserts a lack of knowledge.

One should be very careful in this matter of putting people in boxes. All the particular variants of theism are usually rich and colourful systems that draws together various philosohies. If someone tells you that he is a Muslim, or a Buddhist, you can open a book, read up on the views and doctrines, and 9 out of 10 times you'll put that guy in exactly the right box in your head. With atheists it is not that easy. There are no tenets. It's not even a fully formed world view on its own. If you want to look for trouble... then generalise about this matter and see what happens! :-)

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