Baptist Brethren

Elevating the Word of God and defending eternal truths!

Extinction Events Are Declining to the Biblical Level

Posted by Chris Cline on July 30, 2008

New research may change conventional thinking on fossil diversity and extinction rates.1 John Alroy, a researcher at the University of California Santa Barbara, and 34 other scientists recently completed a 10-year study on the subject, published in the journal Science.2

Other scientists tend to count just the first and last occurrences of fossils, but Alroy and his colleagues undertook the monumental task of examining the over 280,000 known fossil records, with the help of the extensive and detailed web-based Paleobiology Database. They concluded that earth has experienced only three major extinction periods, instead of the long-held belief that there were five—at the end of the Ordovician, the late Devonian, the end of the Permian, the end of the Triassic, and the end of the Cretaceous—also known as the “Big Five.”

Conventional paleontology held that species recovered and diversified slowly and gradually after a major extinction event. However, this new research contends that species that survived extinction events “diversified” rapidly, only to then level off (stop evolving) for vast periods of time. This does not fit with Darwinian models, which would predict the slow, gradual, continual evolution of species.

The creation model, however, fits Alroy’s conclusions rather well. In this model, there was one—not three—mass extinction event. Those species that survived the catastrophe carried on, retaining their forms and identities, and leaving a record of having leveled off. They never went on to morph into different kinds.

Present research has narrowed earth’s major extinction events from five to three. Future research may well compress those three into one large extinction event coinciding with Genesis chapters 6-9. To date, the only historical event that fits fully with the fossil evidence is the Flood of Noah’s age as documented in the Bible.

References

  1. Disproving Conventional Wisdom on Diversity of Marine Fossils and Extinction Rates. Science News. Posted on ScienceDaily.com July 14, 2008, accessed July 15, 2008.
  2. Alroy, J. et al. 2008. Phanerozoic trends in the global diversity of marine invertebrates. Science. 321: 5885.

Posted in Bible, Christian, Creationist, Evolution, God, Misc | Leave a Comment »

Ronald Reagan and the King James Bible

Posted by Chris Cline on July 23, 2008

The following transcript is one of Ronald Reagan’s famous radio addresses. In this address (which aired September 6, 1977), Ronald Reagan, the great orator, eloquently gives his thoughts on the “Good News Bible” (also called the Good News for Modern Man and Today’s English Version) in comparison to the Authorized Version or the King James Bible.

 

 

What would you say if someone decided Shakespeare’s plays, Charles Dicken’s novels, or the music of Beethoven could be rewritten & improved?

I’ll be right back. . .

Writing in the journal “The Alternative”, Richard Hanser, author of The Law & the Prophets and Jesus: What Manner of Man Is This?, has called attention to something that is more than a little mind boggling. It is my understanding that the Bible (both the Old & New Testaments) has been the best selling book in the entire history of printing.

Now another attempt has been made to improve it. I say another because there have been several fairly recent efforts to quote “make the Bible more readable & understandable” unquote. But as Mr. Hanser so eloquently says, “For more than 3 1/2 centuries, its language and its images, have penetrated more deeply into the general culture of the English speaking world, and been more dearly treasured, than anything else ever put on paper.” He then quotes the irreverent H. L. Mencken, who spoke of it as purely a literary work and said it was, “probably the most beautiful piece of writing in any language.”

They were, of course, speaking of The Authorized Version, the one that came into being when the England of King James was scoured for translators & scholars. It was a time when the English language had reached it’s peak of richness & beauty.

Now we are to have The Good News Bible which will be in, “the natural English of everyday adult conversation.” I’m sure the scholars and clergymen supervised by the American Bible Society were sincerely imbued with the thought that they were taking religion to the people with their Good News Bible, but I can’t help feeling we should instead be taking the people to religion and lifting them with the beauty of language that has outlived the centuries.

 Mr. Hanser has quoted from both the St. James Version & the Good News Bible some well known passages for us to compare. A few thousand years ago Job said “How forcible are right words!” [Job 6:25] The new translators have him saying “Honest words are convincing.” That’s only for openers. There is the passage [Eccl. 1:18], “For in much wisdom is much grief: and he that increaseth knowledge increaseth sorrow”. Is it really an improvement to say instead, “The wiser you are, the more worries you have; the more you know the more it hurts.”

In the New Testament, in Mathew, we read “The voice of the one crying in the wilderness. Prepare ye the way.” [Matthew 3:3] The Good News version translates that, “Someone is shouting in the desert. Get the road ready.” It sounds like a straw boss announcing lunch hour is over.

The hauntingly beautiful 23rd Psalm is the same in both versions, for a few words, “The Lord is my shepherd” but instead of continuing “I shall not want” we are supposed to say “I have everything I need.”

The Christmas story has undergone some modernizing but one can hardly call it improved. The wondrous words “Fear not: for; behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy” has become, “Don’t be afraid! I am here with good news for you.”

The sponsors of the Good News version boast that their Bible is as readable as the daily paper – and so it is. But do readers of the daily news find themselves moved to wonder, “at the gracious words which proceeded out of his mouth”? Mr. Hanser suggests that sadly the “tinkering & general horsing around with the sacred texts will no doubt continue” as pious drudges try to get it right. “It will not dawn on them that it has already been gotten right.”

This is Ronald Reagan. Thanks for listening.

 — aired September 6, 1977

Posted in America, Bible, Christian Jokes, Misc | Leave a Comment »

Academia to high schools: No God allowed

Posted by Chris Cline on July 19, 2008

Arguments were heard today in a federal district court case to determine whether a state university system can dictate that private Christian schools in the state teach their college prep courses from exclusively secular, Bible- and God-free textbooks.

As WND reported earlier, the University of California system adopted a policy last year that basic science, history, and literature textbooks by major Christian book publishers wouldn’t qualify for core admissions requirements because of the inclusion of Christian perspectives.

Robert Tyler, who is representing Calvary Chapel Christian School and five students in the case against the University of California, told WND that the university’s discriminatory policy creates an ultimatum for Christian schools. “If you want courses to be approved in private education, so your students are qualified to attend (UC) institutions, you must teach from a secular point of view,” he said.

“Christian schools will have to decide: teach from a Christian worldview and eliminate your student’s ability to attend a UC school, or teach from a secular worldview, so that the kids can enter the UC school system,” he explained.

“Essentially what’s happening is the UC has to pre-approve courses taught in high school,” Tyler said. “It’s pretty shocking, because in depositions UC reps made it clear: whether it be English, history or science, the addition of a religious viewpoint makes it unacceptable.”

Tyler also told WND that though a decision from Federal District Court Judge Otero is expected in the next two to three weeks, he fully expects the case to be appealed to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, and perhaps even the U.S. Supreme Court, since both sides are firmly entrenched and likely to appeal if Otero decides against them.

“We believe that UC’s discrimination is clearly unconstitutional and violates the First Amendment, because UC is attempting to secularize Christian schools,” Tyler said.

“The UC is intent upon defending some ‘right’ to discriminate unlawfully,” he said. “They seem steadfast that students will not be adequately prepared for college because a Christian worldview was added to their curriculum.

“We won’t accept that, and we’re resolved to take this to higher court if necessary.”

Read The Rest Here – http://www.worldnetdaily.com/?pageId=69997

Posted in America, God, Misc, Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »

The Plant of Renown

Posted by Chris Cline on July 16, 2008

“I will raise up for them a plant of renown, and they shall be no more consumed with hunger in the land, neither bear the shame of the heathen any more.” (Ezekiel 34:29)

This “plant of renown” is, of course, the Lord Jesus Christ, and this promise is the climax of one of the great Messianic prophecies of the Old Testament, assuring Israel that her Messiah would deliver them some day from their long exile and bondage. David would again be their shepherd (v. 23); there would be “showers of blessing” (v. 26); and they would again be the people of the Lord (v. 30).

The same “renown,” usually translated “name,” is actually the same as “Shem,” the name of the faithful son of Noah. This “plant of Shem” would fulfill God’s ancient prophecy, through Noah: “Blessed be the Lord God of Shem.” Japheth (progenitor of the Gentiles) would “dwell in the tents |that is, the spiritual family| of Shem” (Genesis 9:26-27).

The primary meaning, however, no doubt centers on this “plant of the name”–that is, that one whose name would be implanted firmly and permanently in the very ground He had created, in Israel. There, in that place of His choosing, He is the “true vine” (John 15:1), who will provide the true nourishment for His people forever.

And yet, at first, He must “grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground” (Isaiah 53:2). That is, He would appear first as a mere sprout out of a dead stump, “a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch . . . out of his roots” (11:1). This “tender plant” would be badly “bruised” (11:2, 10) for our iniquities, but then He shall “see his seed prolong his days,” and become our plant of renown forever. “He shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper” (Psalm 1:3). He is our very tree of Life! HMM

Posted in Devotionals | Leave a Comment »

Oceanic Currents and the Paths of the Sea

Posted by Chris Cline on July 12, 2008

Have scientists found the “paths of the seas”? Psalm 8:6-9 says, “Thou madest him to have dominion over the works of thy hands; thou hast put all things under his feet: All sheep and oxen, yea, and the beasts of the field; The fowl of the air, and the fish of the sea, and whatsoever passeth through the paths of the seas. O LORD our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth!”

We know that there are currents and gyres in the oceans, and these may be part of what the psalmist was referring to. However, scientists concede ignorance of ocean circulation patterns, and, as always, more research needs to be done.

Physicist Hepeng Zhang of the University of Texas at Austin, however, has discovered an undersurface wave crashing phenomenon that could be maintaining the slope angle of continental shelves, and may be involved in ocean current mixing.1 In an article posted on ScienceDaily, Professor Zhang said, “How exactly this will contribute to ocean circulation, I really don’t know, but it is definitely a step we have to understand before we can understand global ocean circulation.”2

Experiments in an aquarium have shown that when underwater wave angles match the angle of the continental slope, “intense waves”2 result. Sediment from continental runoff would, unless otherwise redistributed, pile up and form steep continental slopes. The newly discovered waves are called boundary flows, and are found at the underwater boundary between layers of water with different densities. They may be eroding sediment, mixing it, and maintaining the shallow (three degree average) continental slope angle.

“The internal waves could also play a role in larger ocean currents by bringing cold water up from the deep ocean to the surface at the equator,” said Professor Zhang.2 It is significant that in both oceanic and other sciences, there is no experimental data that conflicts with biblical information, rightly interpreted. We hope to discover more about our oceanic currents and we anticipate that new discoveries, like this one, will underscore the truth of Scripture.

References

  1. Zhang, H. P. et al. 2008. Resonant Generation of Internal Waves on a Model Continental Slope. Physical Review Letters. 100 (24): 244504. DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.100.244504
  2. Invisible waves shape continental slope. Science News. Posted on sciencedaily.com July 1, 2008, accessed July 2, 2008.

* Mr. Thomas is Science Writer.

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