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209vaughn

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Christianity and Evolution
« on: October 20, 2011, 12:51:54 pm »

I am close follower of WLC, but I have a question that has  been eating at me that I need WLC to shed some light on.

Question:
If Christianity and Evolution were to co-exist in harmony along side eachother - at what point did our evolving ancestors recieve their souls?  And at what point are they considered "humans", as we understand ourselves as today.

At what point have did we evolve from "animal" to "human" that God loves and sent his Son to save.


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The Watcher

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Christianity and Evolution
« Reply #1 on: October 20, 2011, 01:46:42 pm »
Well, theoretically God could and would know these answers.  He would have no problem in determining when a non-human primate became a primate.  So if evolution were obvious, then the theist could accept it without knowing when humans received souls.

However, scientifically, evolution has too many holes for me to believe in it--and it is ultimately an act of faith.  I place my faith in an all-knowing and all-powerful God, one whose design, however long or what process it took, is magnificent and too complex to be the result of blind chance.

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209vaughn

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« Reply #2 on: October 20, 2011, 01:52:24 pm »
Greg, your opinion is very close to mine.  

I have no doubt that evolutionary research has uncovered clues about our past.  But full belief in a 100% accurate theory of evolution is just to far out there for me to agree with.

If natural selection were so obviously true, why are there not more intellegent species on this planet?  Why are humans 1000x more advanced and sophisticated than even the second smartest species on the plant?  (idk which species that is, a Chimp maybe?)

Why are there not lots and lots of other species on the planet that are almost as smart as Humans?  It seems to me that if all of Earths species had plenty of time to go through the natural selection process, there would be FAR MORE intellegent and advanced species on this planet.  Not just us humans.

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Duffduff

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« Reply #3 on: October 20, 2011, 03:51:50 pm »
uhhm, @209vaughn:
Thats just weird, if god created everything, then why there are so much perverted animals with no morals?? Animals are perverted as hell, and at the same time humans should follow a resticted sex life ect. ?? The question is, when god created everything, why there are so many other species? And in what image are they created?? Why there are millions of species of insects?? And many of the can kill a human easily. There are billions of bacetria for example, maybe he wanted to create the earth for them, who knows^^ The reason why humans the only beeings with a "high level" intelligence is maybe that our ancestors were in favour to mate when they had big brains, having a big brain and a good intelligence then you could better survive in your environment. And many fossils show that the skull of our acenstors got bigger and bigger with time(that means people with small brains or low intelligence died out) and that could have led that humans got curios about their world and wanted to discouver everything and so on^^ while other animals were to late with their evolution. But there was another species who was close to that, but sadly they died out, i mean the neandertaler who lifed in north europe at that time^^ we maybe have 3% of our genes from him^^

Greets


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Nicholas Olsen

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Christianity and Evolution
« Reply #4 on: October 20, 2011, 06:39:21 pm »
www.Biologos.com is a site that shows pro-evolution views with Biblical Christianity. I only say that because of their interpretation of Genesis fits with evolution, but not 100% evolutionary theory.

Biologos says something like Adam was either the 1st person to receive a soul or the person of focus among many because of his sin with Eve. They do a pretty good job of outlining their view of evolution with the creation story.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lyb7SQefYMA

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depthcharge623

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« Reply #5 on: December 24, 2011, 04:37:03 pm »
Ed Feser has some great blog posts on this subject:

http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2011/09/modern-biology-and-original-sin-part-i.html
http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2011/09/monkey-in-your-soul.html
http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2011/09/modern-biology-and-original-sin-part-ii.html

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Archsage

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« Reply #6 on: December 24, 2011, 06:04:30 pm »
depthcharge623 wrote: Ed Feser has some great blog posts on this subject:

http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2011/09/modern-biology-and-original-sin-part-i.html
http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2011/09/monkey-in-your-soul.html
http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2011/09/modern-biology-and-original-sin-part-ii.html

These are very good reads, depthcharge, thanks. I'm now working my way through the first link and it's pretty darn good. Most of what Feser says is interesting, but I came across this parenthetical aside that I found fascinating, especially because I was thinking somewhat like this not to long ago, before I dismissed it at my own frustration of thought:

Feser wrote: (In fact, some A-T philosophers would hold that the specific genetic and phenotypic traits typical of homo sapiens sapiens are not even essential to human beings considered as a metaphysical category: Anything that was both animal and rational would arguably be “human” in the relevant sense, even if it had a body plan radically different from ours.  See Oderberg’s Real Essentialism for a useful discussion.)
“It is of dangerous consequence to represent to man how near he is to the level of beasts, without showing him at the same time his greatness. It is likewise dangerous to let him see his greatness without his meanness..."  –Blaise Pascal

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Archsage

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« Reply #7 on: December 24, 2011, 06:23:56 pm »
Another interesting quote, from the second link:

Feser wrote: And though Rosenhouse is correct that Genesis is interested in the formation of Adam’s body and not merely the origin of his soul, that too is consistent with the Flynn/Kemp account if we think of the matter God used to form that body as derived from pre-existing hominids rather than straight from the earth.  I know Rosenhouse, Coyne, and Co. would like it to be the case that all Christians are crude literalists --after all, that would facilitate atheist combox smart-assery and other forms of Serious Thinking.  But it just isn’t so.  As a matter of fact, the most traditional Christians are not crude literalists.

Flynn wrote: If I want to know "what Christianity teaches," I would be inclined to ask the Orthodox or Catholic churches, as they have near 2000 years of noodling over it.  Yet when the Coynes of the world want to tell us 'what Christians believe,' they agitate over the idiosyncratic beliefs of Bill and Ted's Excellent Bible Shack, whose teachings go back to last Tuesday.  Go figure.

From the Third Link:

Feser wrote: But what is faith?  It is not what most people think it is; in particular, it isnot a matter of believing something without any grounds for believing it, or believing it simply because you’ve taken a fancy to it, or because through sheer will you’ve worked yourself into a state of belief in defiance of all the evidence. In short, faith, rightly understood, is in no way at odds with reason.  On the contrary, faith is, in a sense, grounded in reason.  
“It is of dangerous consequence to represent to man how near he is to the level of beasts, without showing him at the same time his greatness. It is likewise dangerous to let him see his greatness without his meanness..."  –Blaise Pascal

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Crocoduck

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Christianity and Evolution
« Reply #8 on: December 24, 2011, 06:52:55 pm »
Archsage wrote: Another interesting quote, from the second link:

Quote from: Flynn
If I want to know "what Christianity teaches," I would be inclined to ask the Orthodox or Catholic churches, as they have near 2000 years of noodling over it.  Yet when the Coynes of the world want to tell us 'what Christians believe,' they agitate over the idiosyncratic beliefs of Bill and Ted's Excellent Bible Shack, whose teachings go back to last Tuesday.  Go figure.



I asked the Catholic church, and they teach that a cracker is literally the body of a guy who died 2000 years ago. That really dispelled my false caricature of loony fairy-tale believing dopes (like those silly Protestants!) and illuminated me with the 2000-year old serious theology of True Scotsmen. Noodle away!
"That is why people with higher IQ's do not believe in God, it is due to the fact that He turns His face away from people with over inflated egos.
Humble yourself and you will find Him."
- a Christian

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Archsage

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« Reply #9 on: December 24, 2011, 06:59:40 pm »
VPV wrote:
Quote from: Archsage
Another interesting quote, from the second link:

Quote from: Flynn
If I want to know "what Christianity teaches," I would be inclined to ask the Orthodox or Catholic churches, as they have near 2000 years of noodling over it.  Yet when the Coynes of the world want to tell us 'what Christians believe,' they agitate over the idiosyncratic beliefs of Bill and Ted's Excellent Bible Shack, whose teachings go back to last Tuesday.  Go figure.



I asked the Catholic church, and they teach that a cracker is literally the body of a guy who died 2000 years ago. That really dispelled my false caricature of loony fairy-tale believing dopes (like those silly Protestants!) and illuminated me with the 2000-year old serious theology of True Scotsmen. Noodle away!

Lol someone didn't get it.
“It is of dangerous consequence to represent to man how near he is to the level of beasts, without showing him at the same time his greatness. It is likewise dangerous to let him see his greatness without his meanness..."  –Blaise Pascal

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blank

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Christianity and Evolution
« Reply #10 on: December 24, 2011, 08:32:26 pm »
gregwilson wrote: Well, theoretically God could and would know these answers.  He would have no problem in determining when a non-human primate became a primate.  So if evolution were obvious, then the theist could accept it without knowing when humans received souls.


Or it could be that the religious people simply made up the idea of a soul.

gregwilson wrote:
However, scientifically, evolution has too many holes for me to believe in it--and it is ultimately an act of faith.  I place my faith in an all-knowing and all-powerful God, one whose design, however long or what process it took, is magnificent and too complex to be the result of blind chance.


The scientific theory of evolution is an act of faith? Maybe we don't understand the word "faith" in the same way. Also, evolution isn't simply blind chance.

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ksilvey10

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« Reply #11 on: December 24, 2011, 09:40:37 pm »

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ksilvey10

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« Reply #12 on: December 24, 2011, 10:01:06 pm »

I've been reading in Who Made God? and Craig's section about science is interesting, but there is one question about science and creation that I have never seen addressed:

When God made everything, however you believe he did it, we know that he saw that everything was good.  We also know that sin is the reason everything that we see as evil (suffering, injustice) exists.  However, the evidence we see to support a very old earth, shows that if that Earth is very, very old (billions of years), then everything was not good.  Cancer in dinosaur bones, thorns, and evidence of suffering abounds before there would have been a chance for sin to enter the picture.  It would seem the whole earth was cursed before sin, therefore suffering would have directly come from the hand of good, not as a result of man's sin.  

And I don't believe that.

I guess what I don't understand is that we believe that God is powerful enough and smart enough to create all the complexity of this universe, but he would need a long time to create humans?  If this is the case, then I don't see what difference it makes to God if he could do it in billions of years or days. Follow? And I would think that if he created something brand new that was not in existence, then he could create something that looked (at least to our perception) old.  

So if we are going to throw out Genesis one as no way being literal, then certainly we would have to not only throw out time, but the order of creation as well (plants were made before the sun, but I suppose God's glory could sustain them for a long time, but then again science would say the sun is older than plants)

Basically, I'm saying that the same reasoning, from a scientific point of view, for a slow-process creation is the same reasoning that would refute that man's sin brought suffering in to the world, which creates a very big problem.

Any thoughts?


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Archsage

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« Reply #13 on: December 25, 2011, 06:01:09 am »
On God needing a "long time to create humans"... You do realize the problem with that, right? God is separate from Time. There is no "long" or "short time" with Him. To us it may seem like a really long time, relative to our own lives. But to God, Time doesn't affect Him. So whether or not the creation of the world took a trillion years or a trillionth of a nano-second would not matter at all.
“It is of dangerous consequence to represent to man how near he is to the level of beasts, without showing him at the same time his greatness. It is likewise dangerous to let him see his greatness without his meanness..."  –Blaise Pascal

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Jared Baker

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Christianity and Evolution
« Reply #14 on: December 25, 2011, 11:22:06 am »
I have not read the Feser articles depth posted yet, but he seems to be a rising star in Christian, particularly Catholic, particularly Thomistic, philosophy and apologetics. His name is popping up all over the place these days.

I think it is mistaken to see the soul as something which is "put into" the body. That is traditional Platonist-Cartesian dualism, but there certainly are alternatives. A "soul" can be understood as a life, a mind or a self, and I believe Aristotle's theory of different kinds or layers of soul is insightful. It seems likely that consciousness emerges from special living structures--that God creates mind in this way--and beings attain higher levels of consciousness as the physical substratum develops greater complexities. Human brains happened to evolve until we reached a point of self-awareness which set us apart from all other species. I'm also inclined to believe conscious life was an inevitable result of the built-in teleonomy of the universe.
"I begin with the principle that all men are bores. Surely no one will prove himself so great a bore as to contradict me in this." - Søren Kierkegaard
"As soon as man began considering himself the source of the highest meaning in the world and the measure of everything, the world began to lose its