Working Toward a Mature Faith

In undergraduate school, I remember one professor marveling at various features of brain functioning and talking about the reasons that a particular function evolved.  It was just as easy, or easier, for me to think of reasons that these features were designed into the system.  In my first class on physiological psychology, the professor did not have an evolutionary bent that I could tell, and merely marveled at the function and complexity of the brain.  I think many students are unprepared for the naturalistic worldview, and that this often can trigger a crisis of faith.  In their book, God Attachment, Clinton and Straub (2010)1 note that people often enter adulthood with the same views they had with their faith that they learned in early childhood.  In other words, they have not developed a more mature faith that allows them to have an understanding of the problem of evil, the existence of many different religions, and the evolutionary viewpoint (a view espousing the all-powerfulness of useful accidents).  Thus, they are setting themselves up for a crisis of faith that will inevitably come with real-world life experiences and the hard knocks that life delivers.  I frequently encounter people who become sort of paralyzed in that crisis of faith without attempting to find answers to their questions.  They will often just resign themselves to somewhat of a wishy-washy stance like, “I’m not sure I believe everything in the Bible.  I believe, but I’m just not sure about X.”  When asked, they’ll admit they’ve never tried to resolve the issue with learning more about the subject.  So, they end up assuming a distant stance with God on the basis of a particular issue that they have not taken the time to resolve.

I don’t think people have to believe that Genesis is literally true to be saved.  I don’t think there is anything in the Bible that would suggest that.  But I do think it is possible to be logically consistent and hold an intelligent worldview encompassing a literal account of Genesis.  Frankly, I think a literal account of Genesis leads to the most logically consistent stance in explaining the problem of evil in the world (i.e., the fall).  Also, one only needs a vaguely possible scenario to explain certain observations (apparent age of the Earth and Universe) to make this tenable.  If God is all-powerful, then He could have done it.  I’m not advocating a kind of “God did it” approach to science, but I am rather asking believers to explore the issue in more depth and to develop a more mature way of viewing their faith.  This can help believers have a more mature relationship with God.

I would also caution creationists against the view of saying that people who advocate for evolution are liars.  Evolution contains many lies, but to lie involves intent to deceive.  There are times when they do likely lie, but it’s better to be careful about this.  I’d rather look at it as a worldview, which I think contains many untruths.  It’s understandable, just false.

I urge fellow believers, and those with doubts, to more fully explore these issues in order to develop a more mature faith—a faith which can stand up to the complexities of the world and the problem of evil in the world.  More personally, it will help with the very difficult things that you face in your own life and promote a deeper connection with God.

1). God Attachment: Why You Believe, Act, and Feel the Way You Do About God

The Fossil Record Problem-Part V

Here is an interesting single observation challenge for the uniformitarians:

Rock Car

I wonder how long it took this rock to form, and what’s inside…

Rock Car 2

http://creationontheweb.com/content/view/6128/

UPDATE: I’ve turned off comments on this post, and deleted all the comments including my own.

The Five Dimensions: A Creation Science Cosmology Theory

Naturalistic cosmology has had decades of theoretical work and millions in public funding to produce a number of fairy tales, that purport to explain the cosmos. In some ways, creation scientists have only recently begun to put forth their own theories to explain observations of the universe within the context of Biblical explanations.

Recent theoretical work on this issue by creation scientists has focused on 5D symmetical expanding universe in order to explain observations of the universe.

Carmelian Cosmological General Relativity theory is considered in five dimensions. For it to be consistent with both Cosmological Relativity on the largest scales and Special Relativity on the smallest scales, the acceleration of the expansion of the cosmos must have been extremely large at Creation and must be zero at the present epoch. Hence the forced stretching of the fabric of space only occurred during the Creation Week and then ceased. This implies that during the creation of the heavenly bodies, massive time dilation occurred on Earth at the centre of the expansion. It is a necessary conclusion from the 5D theory describing a spherically symmetric expanding universe that light from the most distant sources reaches Earth within the biblical time scale as measured by local atomic time, but takes billions of years as measured in cosmic time. (1)

The article is very technical at points. It takes to account and provides explanations for a number of “anomalies” in current naturalistic cosmological theory. As with all theories, further research into the issue will be needed for testing it.

The article concludes (in part) with:

Observations are consistent our galaxy being situated at the centre of a 5D spherically symmetric universe of finite extent that has expanded many-fold. In terms of cosmological clocks it is as if the universe appears like a still photograph. This is the result of the vast distances and slow intrinsic motions on the cosmological scale. Nevertheless, the validity of the new theory applying to both the current and past epochs leads to the inescapable conclusion that the time it has taken light to travel from the most distant sources to Earth is billions of years of cosmic time, yet a matter of only days or years in local atomic time units.

(1). A 5D spherically symmetric expanding universe, Creation on the Web, John Hartnett


A recent book that may be of interest by John Hartnett

The Fossil Record Problem-Part IV

Geology assuredly does not reveal any such finely-graduated organic chain; and this, perhaps, is the most obvious and serious objection which can be urged against the theory. The explanation lies, as I believe, in the extreme imperfection of the geological record.1

It continues today. This is quite unfortunate for Darwinists, but it does not shake their faith in naturalistic evolution one bit. Because, from their worldview, evolution is true. If there is any evidence against evolution, there is an explanation. In this case, it is that the fossil record is incomplete.

Both the Creationists and IDists have better explanations for the fossil record. Their explanations have more explanatory power. Both provide an explanation for the apparent gaps. To Young Earth Creationists, there is no gap. There was a natural sorting during the great flood. To many, but not all, IDists, an Intelligent Designer shaped the common descent of species by modifying the design at various points.

1 The Origin of Species, Darwin, C. (1859).

Some Recent Writing on the Genesis Flood

Creation on the Web has a recent article entitled, “Golden evidence of the Genesis Flood.”1 The article starts out with:

Most people would be surprised to learn that smooth water-worn gold nuggets are frequently found not only in rivers and streams but on hills and even mountain tops. For example, several years ago, while prospecting on Cape York Peninsula in Northern Queensland, my brother and I detected about 30 nuggets on a hillside and even on the top of the hill. The nuggets ranged from two grams to over an ounce and were all at least partly smooth. The water-worn nuggets were intermingled with partly smoothed rocks from the size of marbles to a pumpkin. Many prospectors wonder how these high-country nuggets became so smooth, but to me it is explained by the world-wide Flood described in the Bible.

Although this account is somewhat anecdotal, and should be taken as such, it is interesting.

1 http://creationontheweb.com/content/view/6043/

The Gospel of Satan?

About Thomas Huxley, Darwin remarked:

Darwin called him, ‘My good and kind agent for the propagation of the Gospel—i.e. the devil’s gospel.’1

Apparently, Darwin didn’t have time for proselytizing, but Huxley did. Huxley also gave us the term ‘agnostic.’

Typical and very unfortunate for atheists (the father relationship aspect):

Neglected by his father, he grew up in poverty, with only two years of formal schooling.

I have to say that I respect his ability to educate himself. That is sorely lacking in the world today. Darwin called Huxley:

‘my good and admirable agent for the promulgation of damnable heresies’.

Oddly, I find myself agreeing with certain of Huxley’s statements.

‘If divine authority is not here claimed for the twenty-fourth verse of the second chapter of Genesis, what is the value of language? And again, I ask, if one may play fast and loose with the story of the Fall as a “type” or “allegory,” what becomes of the foundation of Pauline theology?’

In fact, this is some of the reasoning for YEC.

1 http://creationontheweb.com/content/view/6019/

The Owner's Manual–Young Earth Creationism (YEC)

Think of it like this; you have in front of you an amazingly complex machine, unlike anything you have ever seen before, and you want to understand where the machine came from, what the machine does, and how it does it. As you stand examining the machine a man approaches you and says, “This manual was written by the inventor of this machine and explains how the machine works, why it was designed, and how to maintain and repair it.” Being the skeptic that you are, you reject the manual and tell the man that you can figure this all out on your own using “skeptical” methods and your own reasoning. You simply reply, “That manual was written by a man who claims to be the designer, but how can I really trust that claim. I will investigate this machine and tell you all about it once I have studied it thoroughly.”1

I think this quote and article from Answers in Genesis well exemplifies the differences between believers and atheists. Perhaps this is “on average” and not in the total sense of the difference. Some say that only what we agree on socially is what matters. For believers, the written word, as revealed by God, is what matters. So far, I am not impressed in any way by social agreement. But if your starting point is a belief in God, then the manual has authority and is impressive to me.

1 http://www.answersingenesis.org/articles/2008/10/10/feedback-searching-for-truth