The Evangelical Universalist Forum

Evolution, The Flood, and God’s True Nature


#41

Yes, God knows everything that is possible to know. But the future doesn’t exist, and therefore there is nothing to know. The fulfillment of prophecies are not certain; they are but predictions based on what IS known, but prophecies, even those uttered by true prophets of God, don’t always come true. Doubtless God inspired Jonah to prophesy, “Yet 40 days and Ninevah shall be overthrown!” Forty days elapsed, and Ninevah was NOT overthrown. Yes, I know the reason—the Ninevites repented, and so God changed his mind and did not overthrow Ninevah. It seems at the time God inspired Jonah to utter the prophecy, he had expected that the Ninevites would NOT repent.

It is not possible to know in advance what a free-will agent will choose in the future. If someone KNEW in the absolute sense, that you are going to eat an apple tomorrow, then it is now a fact that you will eat an apple tomorrow. Therefore it is impossible for you to refrain from eating an apple tomorrow. And THAT would imply that you will not have the free will to refrain from eating an apple tomorrow. Thus it is a logical contradiction for anyone to KNOW in advance what a free-will agent will choose.

Even God, who is omniscient, has sometimes thought his people would do one thing, when in fact, they did another. Here is an example:

Then the LORD said to me in the days of Josiah the king, “Have you seen what faithless Israel did? She went up on every high hill and under every green tree, and she was a harlot there. I thought, ‘After she has done all these things she will return to Me’; but she did not return, and her treacherous sister Judah saw it.” (Jeremiah 3:6,7 NASB)


#42

Paidion - do you think that Yahweh actually spoke those words to the prophet?


#43

Paidion, on what basis do you believe the Bible teaches universal salvation if it’s impossible to know if creatures will choose to be saved?


#44

Qaz, I love you, too, my friend (which must be agape, since we’ve never met in person). But as you must realize, calling something a “conspiracy theory” can (sometimes) just be a term thrown out to shut down debate—to stigmatize ideas and information that the “gatekeepers” want to discredit. As someone once said, *“ ‘Conspiracy Theorist’ can be used as a PC thoughtcrime label.” *

(For the record, I believe the holocaust and the moon landings really took place. And although I believe Elvis is dead, I think that Paul McCartney is not.)

Conspiracies often seem to be in the eye of the beholder. Here is my top favorite conspiracy theory:
*

2 Cor. 4:4. *


Paidion, while prophets may get things wrong about the future—seeing “through a glass, darkly”—I understand God’s omniscience to be completely unlimited. And even though I believe God works in certainties, not probabilities, I don’t believe that God knowing the future, means we somehow lose freedom of choice. Just because God knows that something will happen, does not mean that He causes it—after all, God’s method of conquering is always to "overcome evil with good.”

For me, omniscience cannot be qualified: it means unlimited knowledge. However, like you, “Open Theism” says that although omniscient, God does not know what we will freely do in the future (for me, a non sequitur). And “Moral Government Theology” argues that God “only knows what is knowable,” that is, He has limited foreknowledge, or, as they term it, “limited omniscience” (for me, an oxymoron).

I believe the eternal God created the construct of linear time at the beginning of the Creation Week, a few days before He created people. Linear time is part of a classroom environment for us to learn about Him, in order for each individual to (eventually) decide to freely receive His love and salvation in Christ. Being both outside and inside this timeline, I think God can see every point on it simultaneously, from its beginning to its end.

I know we could play Bible verse ping pong all day, but here are some I like to support my point:

-Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O LORD. Psalm 139:4.

-Behold, the former things are come to pass, and new things do I declare: before they spring forth I tell you of them. Isaiah 42:9.

-Remember the former things long past, For I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is no one like Me, declaring the end from the beginning. Isaiah 46:9-10.

-This is what the LORD says to his anointed, to Cyrus, whose right hand I take hold of to subdue nations before him and to strip kings of their armor, to open doors before him so that gates will not be shut. Isaiah 45:1. (And, of course, God revealed to Isaiah the name of Cyrus over a century before Cyrus was born.)

-He said, “Lord, you know all things; you know that I love you.” Jesus said, “Feed my sheep. John 21:17.


Blessings.


#45

#46

In my deceased, Protestant mom’s case, I can’t really say if she saw:

What God knew in his mind would happen
What God saw as the most probably outcome
Etc.

Personally, I side with the viewpoint of open theism (a position Paidion more or less embraces).

As far as gifts of the spirit goes, I look at the case of the Roman Catholic priest I know. He has the:

Gift of healing
Gift of hearing God speak

But in his own cases of illness, sometimes he gets results from

Spiritual healing and prayer
A herbal remedy
A conventional remedy or treatment.

Usually I am pragmatic and I do have trouble understanding **contradictory **things - sometimes. Like why Turmpenstein:

Likes to be buddy buddies with Russia’s Putinstein
But stirs up a hornet’s nest with Chinese, over the official one China policy - and risk a trade war, with the second largest economy

But I follow the pragmatic trail. Like:

Following the scientific evidence trail, that leads me to support the big bang, old earth and some form of possible evolution
While acknowledging the benefits of spiritual healing and prayer, supporting the great work of conventional and alternative medicine.

or

youtube.com/watch?v=gApXDGjyksw


#47

Open theism aside, You have to deal with the problem of when the Parousia happened, or was to happen because that is a game changer. All of the Gospels and epistles are written in ‘about to’ language. There was definitely expectation in their writings. :astonished:


#48

I have been posted from my phone a lot lately, so I have made a few typos, also didn’t convey some things I wanted to convey properly. Anyhow, I wanted to add the following thoughts on the matter.

Evolution is loaded word. What I mean by evolution and every other person is likely different in some way. It is far to broad of a term. People try and box someone in a corner with micro and macro evolution. Both sides can provide very convincing arguments. But what I wanted to present is my viewpoint, only for the sake of find someone common ground of fairness.

Science is always self correcting, at some point. It might take a while, but eventually the truth wins out and builds upon more truth. Knowing this, I find it very unfeasible to say that everything we have learned in the last 100 years of astronomy is ‘incorrect’ and while I know I am sweeping with a broad brush, possibly misrepresenting those who disagree with me, I’ll say this: True science builds upon verifying theories. If the model is flawed, it can implode and rightly so. However, sometimes a model is needed, much like putting a puzzle together. Just because we are missing some pieces of the puzzle, doesn’t mean that what we have is incorrect. Imagine putting a puzzle together. It is a picture of a horse… You see some legs, and a tail, part of a head. Everyone thinks it is a horse - but, of course, it might not be. Still, is it wrong to guess? Should take the puzzle apart because there isn’t enough evidence that it is a horse, or do we keep trying pieces? I’d argue the latter.

Who created the universe? God. How did he do it? He just did it! Great, now the conversation is over. No need to study astronomy, because we know God did it. Unfortunately, that is basically how I see young earthers.

Who created the universe? God. How did he do it? I don’t know, but I want to figure it out! I want to learn. That is how I view Christian Evolutionists, so to speak, even those that don’t necessarily believe in all the wild theories of evolution.


#49

Open theism helps me to explain the Health and Prosperity gospel of Joel Osteen. Or to put it into “new age language”, the “law of Attraction”. In other words, our attitudes, thoughts, feelings, prayers, etc. - influence how God responds.

We could say God knows everything, including our free will choices. And we can follow the logic of Calvinist Matt Slick at If God knows our free will choices, do we still have free will?. In which he says this:

We can take the position of theologian A.E. Knoch, where we don’t have fee will. God knows all our choices, but it is God pulling the strings.
We can take the position of folks like Greg Boyd, that God knows all possible or probable outcomes
Etc.

Take a framework (i.e. Hermano, Paidion, etc.), and run with it - whatever works for you. :smiley:

As to What is the Parousia?, from the “Calvinism in Disquiet”, Got Questions site:

That’s what potentially saves mankind. And also implements the Health and Prosperity gospel or law of attraction.

Yes, there is “expectancy”, if you watch TV evangelist Joel Osteen. We expect the best, as children of God. But sometimes God knows a better probably outcome for us, then what we envision.


#50

Hey Randy, you said:

Can you expound? :confused:


#51

We are not locked into a script. We have many possibilities - that God knows. But we have a say, in which probability gets manifested. God does respond to our thoughts, feeling, etc., with possibilities. Either directly, or indirectly (i.e. though the saints or the holy angels). It’s a side benefit of Christ’s death and resurrection. I have to watch some un-redeeming shows tonight. But let me know what’s unclear and I’ll try to clear it up. Keep in mind, I am just working with a framework. Much like choosing Open Theism, Immanuel Kant’s epistemological framework, etc.

These frameworks work for me. But if you find other frameworks work for you, then run with them. :smiley:

I found this article helpful, in explaining the connection:

The Link Between Open Theism and the Prosperity Gospel


#52

HFPZ said:

I’m with you. :open_mouth: :laughing:

Amen. I believe in miracles! And they happen every day :smiley:


#53

Hermano, I don’t believe that prophecy (spiritual wisdom) comes by way of divination as in some magical powers or crystal ball stuff. This is warned against in the Bible. As you mentioned in Acts, the case of knowing of the famine to come, there are many noted famines in the Bible. Famines have occurred in the past and still occur today. Besides which, what kind of famine are they talking about? It could be literal or spiritual as in a lack of manna from heaven meaning people have basically lost the Spirit of God. In any case, if one has wisdom he/she would be able to see it coming as there will be signs. Literally speaking, if people are not working the fields, rotating the crops, making sure there is enough water supply, planting in proper soil, diversifying so as not to put all the eggs in one basket per se etc.etc., then yes, there will be a famine. Spiritually speaking, if people are not following the ways of God, hearts are waxing cold, greed and dishonesty are running rampant, families and communities are falling apart etc. etc. then again there will be a famine. Take the housing market crash for example. If one did not see this coming, I would say they had no wisdom.

As for the Anti-Christ, there are many antichrists. These are the people who do not follow God. They come and go as well. I also believe there are many Christs, meaning anointed ones of God.

Speaking of evolution, I don’t see much evolving going on, as in advancing into a higher intellectual being. Have we gotten any smarter spiritually or even increased in knowledge? I would say not. People today are pulling the same crap they were thousands of years ago. And as for knowledge, how many of us know how to grow crops, pluck a chicken, make candles, milk a cow etc. etc. I think if all the grocery stores went out of business, we would basically starve. No doubt,we all know how to push buttons to get instantaneous results. From what I understand, monkeys can do this. I think knowledge that once was becomes lost and is replaced by knowledge of other things.


#54

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IOYyCHGWJq4

or

youtube.com/watch?v=IOYyCHGWJq4

Well, let’s look at Open Theism , via the world of quantum physics. I share this BBC article today on Twitter:

‘Dead or alive’ cat in physics top 10

This article summarizes some important experimental validations, of themes in Quantum physics. I’ll just share the one regarding the cat:

For folks who like to know more about social media projections in 2017, here’s one I shared also - on Twitter today:

Experts Share Social Media Predictions for 2017


#55

Can you expound this?


#56

Before Davo responds, perhaps you both should read this article:

Does Isaiah 8:12 Debunk Conspiracies?


#57

I am thoroughly convinced that the plain and literal reading of the Bible, even considered as inerrant, contradicts the scientific consensus on only a single point: the biological evolution of man from non-humans, which is precluded by a literal reading of Genesis 2:7 and 2:22.

This was also the view of the early 20th-century Fundamentalists, who wrote The Fundamentals (from which we get our term “fundamentalist”) in 1910-15. They believed that the Bible either outright taught or was at least consistent with the universe and planet Earth being billions of years old, of life being billions of years old, of the biological evolution of plants and animals, and of Noah’s Flood being a local flood that killed all of mankind except for the eight on the ark. Their only beef with the scientists of their day was over the biological evolution of mankind.

The old-fashioned Protestant Fundamentalists did not subscribe to Young Earth Creationism, which is more an outgrowth in the latter half of the 20th century of the theories of George McCready Price, who tried to give scientific justification to the flood visions of the Seventh-Day Adventist prophetess, Ellen G. White. YEC, far from being “that old-time religion”, is a new-fangled thing.


#58

Well, call me “new-fangled”!! :wink:
**
[size=120]Speaking of conspiracies, have you seen “Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed”[/size]? **

Kevin Miller XI’s 2008 documentary film [embedded below] starring Ben Stein contends that the mainstream science establishment suppresses academics who believe they see evidence of intelligent design (ID) in nature and who criticize evidence supporting Darwinian evolution and the modern evolutionary synthesis as part of a scientific conspiracy to keep God out of the nation’s laboratories and classrooms.

The scientific theory of evolution is portrayed by the film as contributing to communism, fascism, atheism, eugenics and, in particular, Nazi atrocities in the Holocaust. Richard Dawkins is one of the people interviewed. The film is in the top 20 highest grossing documentaries since 1982. (Wikipedia)

( or, if it doesn’t load above, just go to youtube.com/watch?v=V5EPymcWp-g )

**Expelled was certainly better received by evangelicals than Kevin Miller’s later Hellbound?**, which questions the traditional hell of eternal torment. If you haven’t seen Hellbound?, I love that one, too!

[size=120]Again, I believe spiritual deception knows no barriers, whether in the arena of religion, politics, or the hard sciences.[/size]

Blessings.


#59

I certainly do not believe that life could evolve without God controlling all the atoms.

There is a certain irony in contemplating that evolution with God is easy, while without God it is basically impossible.


#60

Like multiple, diverse Flood legends from around the world, there are multiple diverse fire-breathing dragon and dinosaur legends from around the world. Are they based in fact, “from way back when”? Did man and dinosaurs coexist?

Gabe, I linked to ***Ancient Dinosaur Depictions***, which shows numerous depictions of dinosaurs, including the Acámbaro (ah KOMM bah roh) figurines here in Mexico. There is a lot of evidence there that man and giant reptiles indeed lived contemporaneously. One could scrutinize that picture-rich page all day long.

But I wanted to add some possible evidence for dinosaurs ***from the Bible itself. ***

On the fifth day, we read, “So God created the great creatures of the sea and every living thing with which the water teems and that moves about in it, according to their kinds…And God saw that it was good.” Gen 1:21.

Would this include some reptiles, and marine dinosaurs? I suggest here that if everything was “good” at this point, then these and other physical beings were not yet violent or carnivorous at that point. With help from sinful Satan, violence and physical death came into the physical world through man’s sin.

Of course, the creatures who came to Noah’s ark did not have to all be adults: they could have been infants or juveniles. And genetically, like Adam and Eve themselves, the various Bible “kinds” had a lot more potential genetic variation back then than today. (Genetic drift causes random fixation of alleles and the loss of variation.)

We must remember the term “dinosaur” didn’t come into use until 1841. And, as far as we know, dinosaurs are extinct in 2017.

Behemoth: Job 40.

Leviathan: Job 41, Psalms 74:14, 104:25-26, Is 27:1.

Finally, regarding the Acámbaro figurines of Mexico (discovered about 90 minutes from my niece’s house in the state of Guanajuato), below I embed a fascinating discussion by Dr. Don Patton. I confess he is not the most engaging speaker; nevertheless, you will find the story that he shares of Waldemar Julsrud, amateur German archeologist, to be absolutely fascinating. Please take the time to watch the video below in its entirety. I promise you won’t regret it.

Certainly, the story is shrouded in obscurity and controversy. In Mexico, as in the U.S., there is no room for the Bible in education generally, or in the sciences, particularly. This story has a heavy lid on it. (I wager none of you had never heard of this find. Certainly no one in my family ever had. Is there possibly a spiritual element to that? Man coexisting with dinosaurs is anathema to the predominate paradigm of Darwinian Evolution.)

Dinosaur Figurines, Fact or Fraud - Dr. Don Patton:


Speaking of archeology, another of my favorite amateur archeologists was Ron Wyatt, an anesthetist from Tennessee. (And yes, Randy, he was a Seventh Day Adventist, although he finally left them.)

Professor Lennart Möller (of the Karolinska Institute in Sweden), with whom I have corresponded, has corroborated some of Wyatt’s discoveries, including his evidence of the Red Sea Crossing.