Origins: Science and Faith (Rethink 315)

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Some first impressions after watching this:

As Josh noted, Marcus Ross is forthcoming when it comes to some issues. His willingness to say “I don’t know” was refreshing. Indeed, this is a much better approach than entertaining questionable speculations about some subjects.

Josh, you and Fuz came across a lot more as waving your hands, making stuff up as you went along. Part of this has to do with the material. But I think you need to re-think your approach and ideas, because they seem hopelessly muddled.

As one example - the evolutionary history of humans is rich, with many open questions but still a compelling timeline and players. Trying to merge this with (what I opine is) a confused, even fabricated Biblical narrative leads to nonsensical discussions. (For example, the back-and-forth about Neanderthals, other hominids, and their degrees of humanity was, sorry to say, awful.)

Those are my first impressions, for what they are worth.


A transcript, perhaps?

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What do you mean on this one?

In this particular case, we weren’t really going deep on the science, and I wasn’t given an opportunity to do a presentation ahead of time. Typically, I do not do panels for this reason, but this one was local, so I did it.

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I think you might consider taking a page from Ross’ notes and just saying, or explaining, “I don’t know” - in particular, that you have no clue about what Genesis is about. And leave things at that. This would be much better than a back-and-forth that comes across as a mock-serious discussion about a fairy tale.

(I’m not necessarily saying that the Bible is a fairy tale. But the ways Genesis were discussed certainly came across that way.)


Possibly. I’ll think about it. Thanks for the input (and the support!).

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I watched the entire exchange, but in chunks. I saw @Art impression so I had it in mind while I watched.

I’d have to say that Ross is a very good communicator and gives a very attractive YEC presentation. One part is his communication style - he answers questions directly and authoritatively and doesn’t opine. The other part is his willingness when discussing science to say what he doesn’t know and mention a few key points that support his position without overstating them or getting defensive. On scripture and theology he was very definitive where he thought scripture was clear and where it was more ambiguous. Interestingly, when I was studying Genesis I noticed how Genesis 5 brought Genesis 1 and 2 together, which I hadn’t thought about/noticed before. I had also thought about whether the Tower of Babel was an event not attended by all living people, but perhaps by representatives of all living peoples of the world along with locals. I ultimately didn’t settle there (I forget why), but it was interesting he brought that up.


I found your closing remarks somewhat inspiring, despite sharing none of the faith on which they’re founded. Good bit there.

But the other two guys: having spent a lot of time interrogating dishonest witnesses (and, regrettably, sometimes representing dishonest clients – you don’t get to pick 'em when you’re a junior associate in a law firm) in my prime, I can’t say that I see anything in them other than stone-cold mountebankery. It takes a very special kind of personality to be able to pull that off and appear to be sincere while doing it. But I have seen it done – oh, so many, many times, and it is unfortunately very familiar.


I got to meet Marcus at ETS this past November. He even attended my talk on Genesis 1. He was gracious, engaging, and interested in real dialogue. I mentioned my relationship with Todd Wood, and he assured me there are more Todd Woods out there. If so, this will serve YECs well. Now, if only they had more of a platform and following than some others :slight_smile:


How? Honest YECs produce no better science or apologetics than dishonest ones.


They admit problems with their own position and agree with the strength of evolutionary evidence. I see intellectually honesty as a plus.

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To be honest, they admit some of the problems with their own position and ignore many others and agree with the strength of evolutionary evidence to some degree. Nevertheless, the “science” they produce is of no value. Morally, they may be better, but how will that serve YECs well?


I’m thinking of YEC people more than the YEC position. Enabling greater dialogue with those of other positions serves everyone, and, from a Christian point of view, serves the church’s mission.

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It seems as though they have to pick the corner they want to be painted into. If they admit that their acceptance of YEC is due to religious belief then there are serious theological problems they have to deal with (e.g. Omphalos). If they try to claim that YEC is supported by scientific evidence, then they have some serious scientific issues to sort through.

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