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Sunday, July 19, 2009

Following up Genesis 1:4 - Is God Fallible?

I believe the question underlying the comments and my answers to come is as follows:


Dialogue and commentary as follow-up to the previous post. My comments in italics. lava in red. chaos-engineer in blue. My posting that follows will be in normal script.


My primary point at this juncture is to reiterate God's wisdom. He did not intend to have a Universe percolate for a few billion years before He made the Earth. He didn't need to have multiple millions of years of evolution with all the pain and grief and death involved. God is just. God made a just creation.

Perhaps my favorite part...Radar, did we read the same OT? OT God was a pretty cruel guy- which includes wiping off the face of the earth every human except noah and his family. I guess he just screwed up the first time, huh?

I think the question you need to ask first is why did God do that? The answer is in the Bible and it does not involve God being either cruel or mistaken. As I will remind you all later on, someone else was to blame.

(I) maintain that God is not a liar because He states plainly that:

1. He made the light before He made any sources of light.
2. He investigated that light and proclaimed it good.

OHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH, he investigated it! ?????? God needs to investigate something he made?

Let's let chaos_engineer bring his viewpoint into the discussion by answering my question back to lava as follows:

Why would you be surprised that a creator would review a portion of what was created?

Well, I'm surprised because I'd always kind of pictured God as the sort of designer who would "get it right the first time". So there'd be no need for a "review" or "approval" phase.

If you read the language of the scripture, God declares what was accomplished as good. That He would declare His approval of a completed work is hardly surprising. Not only is it the period at the end of the creative sentence, it was also a declaration to the reader. God is telling us that this portion of His creation was good...all good...nothing wrong or missing. It seems pretty obvious by definition that God would not be reviewing to satisfy Himself that it was correct but rather to instruct and assure the reader. Another aspect to this may well be that God was admiring His handiwork, a normal reaction to completion of a creative act.

Beyond that, if God is modeling the creative process He would certainly want to include a review, since fallible man had darned well better review his own designs and carefully at that.

In other words, I'd assumed that the phrase "God saw that it was good" was meant to be poetic. In order to be literally accurate, it should have been something like, "God had known that it would be good".

Why so? I see no reason why both statements would not be true. You are going to have to make a case that your statement is logically superior. God is not required to define His powers at every turn. God would have known it was good beforehand. God knew it was good afterwards. God saw that it was good at the time. Seeing as how this is a literal and historical account the tense that is most appropriate and the observation that is most sensible is the one used in Genesis. There is no hint of poetic or prophetic language here.

Was I wrong? Is it possible that God tried to create light a couple of different times before He was satisfied that it was working the way He wanted it to? And the failed attempts just didn't get mentioned in the Bible?

Are you serious? Do you visualize God as a bigger and more powerful and smarter Thomas Edison?

If so, I've got to lower my opinion of God. If He'd put more effort into the "Conceive" and "Plan" phases, then maybe there wouldn't have been so many problems found in the "Review" phase and we could have had fewer world-wide floods and such.

Wow. I asked a question in the Viking post that not one commenter has even attempted to answer about how you would have created the Universe and done a better job with the light problem and no one has come up with an answer. That is probably because there is no better way for God to have done it. You are making the assumption that God was wrong about whether creation was good. We are not done with the first chapter of Genesis but I will give you a hint - God isn't the one who screwed things up here. There is the small matter of Adam and Eve and original sin and I am not referring to either sex or apples. In advance of coming events I am going to say that God made a perfect creation and placed within creation an innocent mankind. Not perfect nor imperfect but innocent. Innocent mankind was allowed to have freedom of choice, so that he and she would not be robots but could make decisions for themselves. This allowed for the possibility of error, not on the part of God, but on the part of mankind. But suppose you tell me how he could give man free will and free choice if man was not given any choices?

(That said, I do think that God's done an above-average job. Yes, there's a lot of room for improvement. But at least there aren't any of those embarrassing episodes where frost giants steal stuff from Him and He has to dress up like a woman to trick them into giving it back. That's more than I can say for some gods.)

My first reaction is to say that the attempt at humor marginalizes the dialogue and reveals that you do not have much if any respect for the possibility of a Creator God. It is almost like your comments were just a run up to a punchline.

Not that chaos or lava necessarily fit the profile, but there are plenty of people who believe they are far too intelligent to believe in a Creator God. They often have nothing but contempt for God and anyone who would believe in Him. The common denominator I have observed about every single one of them is that they all have a belief system and a world view and they consistently present scenarios for the creation of the Universe that are far less logical and coherent than "In the beginning God created..."

Richard Dawkins seems to be that kind of guy, and therefore it was hilarious when Ben Stein got him talking about origins and eventually got Dawkins to admit that he had no problem with the idea that all life on earth was designed as long as some alien race from somewhere else in the Universe had done the designing! Ridiculous! Dawkins admitted foolishly that his issue was not that there is a designer label on life, but rather that the name on the tag is GOD! If it said E.T. the Extraterrestrial then Dawkins would be fine with it.

If you can, assert that you do NOT have a belief system and you do NOT bring presuppositions with you to the table when considering origins. That would be an interesting statement. I am confident I can refute quite easily any of you who think you do not involve suppositions or beliefs in daily life or the study of science.

Any engineers among you who can come up with a better way to create the vast and observable Universe and an Earth populated with mankind and various other flora and fauna in a six day period of time than the method used by God are invited to share that with us.

Of course, in this blog we have not finished even the first chapter so on to the next verse after this post.

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