Friday, October 16, 2015

How Many 'Coincidences' Does It Take?

Although this post is about bias against the Bible it is not about questions, but an attempt to debunk it altogether so I've decided to respond to it under another title outside of my series called,  "Answers To A Few Biased Bible Questions."
I posted this on my wall on Facebook.  The comments that are numbered are from someone attempting to debunk the claims in the meme (which is a defense for the scientific reliability of the Bible.)  My replies are an attempt to give a reasonable answer to each one. 

**Disclaimer: I am not the creator of the following meme that is in the line of debunking.
Chrystal (facebook user) -- 》(My replies)
1. Isaiah 4:20 the circle of the earth. Circles are flat. 

》》*[[Isa 40:22]] WEB* It is he who sits above the circle of the earth, and its inhabitants are like grasshoppers; who stretches out the heavens like a curtain, and spreads them out like a tent to dwell in;
Yes, circles are flat. Let's look at the Hebrew word used here in this context though:
[ḥūḡ - ח֣וּג] According to BibleStudyTools.com the word should be translated: "super sphaeram", Pagninus; "globum", Montanus Vatablus; "super orbem telluris", Vitringa
As you can see here there are three key words in this definition:
Sphaeram (sphere)
Globum (globe)
Orbem (orb)
I think it's safe to say that the word, "sphere" isn't out of context.

2. Jeremiah 33:22 The host of heaven (God) can not be numbered, does not even say the word stars. 

》》*[[Jer 33:22]] WEB* As the army of the sky can’t be counted, and the sand of the sea can’t be measured; so I will multiply the offspring of David my servant and the Levites who minister to me.’”
I have a more literal translation, and I'm guessing you were reading from the NKJV (New King James Version) because I've searched through several others and that is the only one I found that said, "host" in it.  Nonetheless, even in our English vocabulary today a definition for host is, "a vast multitude" which would make sense since obviously God cannot be numbered and in comparison to, "sand of the sea" stars fits better (not to mention that every other translation/version says, "stars."

3. Job 28:25 to make the weight for the winds (not air). Wind is not air. Other planets have wind, but not air. God would know the difference.1 Corinthians differeth from another star IN Glory. 

》》*[[Job 28:25]]
*BBE* When he made a weight for the wind, measuring out the waters;
*EasyEnglish* He decided the power of the wind. And he decided the size of the seas.
*ISV* “He imparted weight to the wind; he regulated water by his measurement.
*KJV* To make the weight for the winds; and he weigheth the waters by measure.
*NET* When he made the force of the wind and measured the waters with a gauge.
*NHEB* He establishes the force of the wind. Yes, he measures out the waters by measure.
*WEB* He establishes the force of the wind. Yes, he measures out the waters by measure.
Admittedly this doesn't say air.  However,  what is wind without air?  
You argued that on some other planets there is wind,  but no air.  I've done some research since you've stated this.  Some other planets like Mars do have air other than earth, and others like Neptune that have wind caused by gas.  There are others that have no atmosphere because they're too hot like Mercury.  There's no wind on Mercury, or any other planet workout atmosphere. 
Back to the original statement from Job 28:25 about wind --on earth-- having weight:
What is wind without air?

4. Job 38:19 Implies that he is looking for light or asking where the light is. That means he is moving not the light. Verse 20 doesn't even use the word light. 

》》*[[1Co 15:41]] WEB* There is one glory of the sun, another glory of the moon, and another glory of the stars; for one star differs from another star in glory.
Admittedly again this verse doesn't say what is implied in the meme.   I think the right verse should've been:
*[[Psa 147:4]] WEB* He counts the number of the stars. He calls them all by their names.
But I wasn't the maker of this meme.

5. Job 26:7 Does not use the word float or space. And hangeth the earth upon nothing, It's not nothing it's the sun's gravity. 

》》*[[Job 26:7]] WEB* He stretches out the north over empty space, and hangs the earth on nothing.
Lets be real,  Chrystal.  We both know what is implied here.  Does the earth hang on anything?  And because of the Sun's gravitational pull,  does earth not float?

6. Ecclesiastes 1:6 Says the wind blows north and south, does not use the word cyclone. 

》》*[[Ecc 1:6]] WEB* The wind goes toward the south, and turns around to the north. It turns around continually as it goes, and the wind returns again to its courses.
Again,  implications; and it doesn't just say that the wind blows, "North and south" it says that it,  "...turns around continually as it goes,  and the wind returns again to its courses."
As opposed to the wind just blowing straight.  This verse implies that the wind is constantly moving and in different directions.

7. 2 Samuel 22:16  says nothing about valleys or mountains or the ocean floor. Says simply that it's the foundation. 

》》*[[2Sa 22:16]] WEB* Then the channels of the sea appeared. The foundations of the world were laid bare by Yahweh’s rebuke, at the blast of the breath of his nostrils.
Yeah,  I'm with you on this one Chrystal.  Doesn't mean necessarily that this is incorrect,  but,  like yourself,  I just don't see it either.

8. Jonah 2:6 Says nothing about water or oceans. He is simply standing at the foot of a mountain looking up at it. 

》》*[[Jon 2:6]] WEB* I went down to the bottoms of the mountains. The earth barred me in forever: yet have you brought up my life from the pit, Yahweh my God.
Again I would have to agree with you.

9. Leviticus 17:11 Says the blood is for atonement of the soul, says nothing about health. 

》》*[[Lev 17:11]] WEB* For the life of the flesh is in the blood. I have given it to you on the altar to make atonement for your souls; for it is the blood that makes atonement by reason of the life.
Yes, the passage of scripture does say life is in the blood; however I also do not see where it says anything about health also.

10. Hebrews 11:3 doesn't say anything of the kind. In fact I think it says the opposite. Things which are seen are NOT made of things which do appear. NOT made of things which do appear. If it appears that means it WAS invisible. 

》》*[[Heb 11:3]] WEB* By faith, we understand that the universe has been framed by the word of God, so that what is seen has not been made out of things which are visible.
Here's what you said again:
"Hebrews 11:3 doesn't say anything of the kind. In fact I think it says the opposite. Things which are seen are NOT made of things which do appear. NOT made of things which do appear. If it appears that means it WAS invisible."
You might have confused your self there, not to be rude.
This is what it says:
So that
What is seen
Has not
Been made
Out of
Things which are
Visible
In other words:
The things that you can see,  they're made out of invisible things.

11. Job 38:16 Ok I'll give you that one. But you need only walk on the earth to see that. It doesn't take god. And may I point out that scientists were very ignorant back then because religion controled everthing? Do not bear false witness.

》》*[[Job 38:16]] WEB* “Have you entered into the springs of the sea? Or have you walked in the recesses of the deep?
You'll only give me one?  =P
No one person knew of these things because deep sea diving didn't exist so when God said this it was pure revelation. 
How do you know that science was controled by religion?  Maybe science relied on religion a lot, but controled?  No.  Atheists, and free thinking philosophers existed then too.  Maybe not so much in the Hebrew culture,  but elsewhere in various other world cultures as well.
I respect your determination for truth,  and even I learned something from this.  I hope that others can also take from this to be honest,  and do research because honestly I didn't even look up these scriptures before I posted the meme on Facebook.
Thank you Chrystal.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Answers To A Few Biased Bible Questions Part 2

Let me just start by saying that I am more than thrilled that I am able to begin a blog series in attempting to answer biased questions about the Holy Bible.  The format for this part is a bit different than Part 1 in the sense that Part 1 was me noticing some some questions from a certain atheist that I thought needed some answers.  I couldn't think of a better way to do that than in a more thoughtful one such as a blog post where I could put all of the information in one spot so to more efficiently answer it as opposed attempting to explain it without any interruption of thought. 
The format I chose for this is similar.  I asked in Facebook post in a group called, "Atheist vs Theist Debate" if anyone had any questions/comments on the topic of female rights in the Bible, and I said it was for a blog post.  I also had some unrelated questions that I will be adding to Part 3 of this blog series.  These are the polite and on-topic questions/comments that were presented:

Ethan Winters
If god truly hated abortions, why do 15-20% of pregnancies end in miscarriage?
  > Source for that statistic- https://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/001488.htm

》In my attempt to answer your question let's think about something.  You either believe that abortion is good, bad, or amoral. If you believe that abortion is good then why is miscarriage bad? You've already made your position on the issues so I'm going to scratch out abortion being bad to you.
So it's a tie between good and amoral. Why is abortion being compared to miscarriage? Abortion is controlled, whereas miscarriage is not (in most cases.) since you obviously don't think that it's bad I ask why do you think it's good or amoral?
Miscarriage is a natural occurrence, and abortion is intentional killing. 

Vidar Lystad Johansen
He prefer[s] to drown or starve them [female babies] after birth.

》I honestly don't know where this is going.
I'm guessing that you're talking about the Great Flood,  and females who are born in impoverished cultures?

Out of all of the comments out of the rhetoric I think this one makes the least sense.
Nonetheless, I will attempt to entertain it. 

1. He prefer[s] to drown [female babies]...
Yes,  many females/female babies died during the Flood. 
I think you may also possibly be talking about people killing female babies via drowning? 

2. ...or starve them [female babies] after birth.
Yes,  babies in parts of the world are dying due to starvation as well as male babies, men,  and women...
And yes, starvation does exist.

Rhetoric
noun
The art of using language, especially public speaking, as a means to persuade.
Meaningless language with an exaggerated style intended toimpress.

James Bradshaw
Biblical slavery included prisoners of war, their wives, and children.

》Thank you for your concern on biblical slavery.  This does pertain to biblical female rights, even if it is in the least bit.
Yes, Biblical slavery did include, but not limited to, prisoners of war.
However, this is more of the topic of of slavery than female rights.  I will add this to my next part (Part 3) of this blog series.

Craig McHenry
Why would you want to give women less right to bodily autonomy than corpses?
A corpse cannot have its organs donated unless they gave consent prior to dying.
Why should a woman be forced to be an incubator against her will?

》Thank you for your concern for female rights in regards to abortion.  I think the real question is, "If the baby is considered to be a woman's organ then why would her DNA be different from the baby's?"
If their DNA were the same then I could see that, but the plain and simple fact is that it's not and the baby is a person separate from the mother (not an organ.)

Alec Isaacs
God drowned a lot of babies and pregnant women in the Bible.

》Fair enough.

Thomas Lee
Your god is supposed to know what 'fate' awaits every fertilized egg. Whether the person it eventually develops into will be sent to hell or some other eternal consequence. With this knowledge, this god still makes people. So isn't this exactly like making people just populate that place or predicament other than eternal paradise? Where exactly is the morality in that?

》Thank you, Thomas for your concern as it relates to God's providence, and morality.  God isn't making people, but people are making people.  Sure God knows our future, but Him knowing our future doesn't mean our future is a direct effect of that.
Example:
You're watching a movie for the second time.  You already know what's going to happen because you've already seen it.  Is your knowledge of what's going to happen next the actual cause of what happens next?  No.  You know what's going to happen, but your knowing this does not cause it to happen.

I don't know if there is a final judgement for all people to accept the salvation of Christ or not.  This is what I understand, and so I'll just leave it at that; for now at least.

Thank you all for your participation in this blog series, and I hope I have adequately answered all of your questions.