December 6, 2014

That "Copies of Pagan Myths" Nonsense

One of the most annoying and tiresome attacks on Christianity is when atheists will say, "You st00pid dumb Xtians are just copying ancient pagan religions!", and then they throw some outright falsehoods that they gleaned off the interwebs. Fact check, please! But no, that requires intellectual honesty.

Wikimedia Commons / Ad Meskens


What if a pagan god showed up at your Christmas service and said that you're really celebrating his birth, and that Jesus is just a copy of pagan myths? Here are two videos. The first is a cartoon that dispenses with the myths. The second is from Ian Juby's "Genesis Week", where he deals with the Horus manure.



 
 
Start at the 18 minutes 9 seconds mark to get right to the Horus stuff:

November 9, 2014

Atheism, Secularism and Lack of Logic



by Cowboy Bob Sorensen

One of the main problems that atheists have is prejudicial conjecture. That is, they get all het up, thinking they know about something and spouting off their uninformed opinions while also trying to influence the views of others. When it comes to the Bible, many atheists not only resort to prejudicial conjecture, but many other logical fallacies including the straw man. Sorry, Cupcake, but we don't have to defend something we don't hold to or didn't say. This includes quote-mined material from the Bible. 


Made at Atom Smasher
Numerous fallacies can be rounded up in regards to creation science. They will misrepresent creationists, call us liars (their "proof" is essentially based on "because I said so repeatedly", but actually makes them the liars because of no real evidence), appeal to motive, poisoning the well, unfounded accusations, loaded terminology and a whole lot more. With just a little learning about informal logical fallacies, it's easy to spot atheopaths using numerous errors in what passes for reasoning on their world.


This is "Fair Use" for educational purposes. Also, I see that someone didn't cotton to Haywire's rants.
Another trick is redefining words to suit their purposes. The established definition of atheism is someone who believes there is no God or gods. Since that fails logic and philosophy tests, they have conveniently redefined it into someone who "lacks belief", but they are still making a belief statement. (Fine, I lack belief in a universe without God.) Since atheism is such a negative religion, it has been also redefined as secularism or even secular humanism, but both terms still come down to meaning "atheism". "Secularism" is not "neutral"; secularists keep working on removal of all vestiges of Christianity in public life. That is an establishment of an atheist religion, not "neutrality"!

One of the most popular efforts of quote mining by atheists in America is the so-called "Constitutional separation of church and state". Many people believe the lie that this is in the US Constitution. I remember some of a conversation about 30 years ago, I said to a guy, "The Constitution says that the church shall be separate from the state, and the school from the church". The other guy said, "Yes!" Then I informed him that I was almost-quoting from the USSR Constitution (it's in the 1936 and 1977 USSR Constitutions). He didn't like that trick, but it showed how he had accepted a belief without truth. The fact is, despite the manipulations and trickery of secularists, there is no such thing as the separation of church and state in the US Constitution! But atheist-sympathizing judicial activist judges in this country act like it's there.

Let's get back on the original trail again.

Atheists and other anti-creationists give uninformed opinions when they attack Christians and biblical creationists. Some think they've found problems with the Bible, therefore there is no God, but their objections have been answered long, long ago and answers are posted online. Very few have the intellectual integrity to honestly investigate from the sources about what we believe and teach. They get their information from other atheopaths and anti-creationists who misrepresent us, or just base their opinions on watching or reading secular humanist-based science fiction. How about going to the source instead of fallaciously paying attention to poorly-thought second-hand opinions? There really is a Creator, and he makes the rules. We are all going to be answerable to him one day. For some of us, it will be a joy. For others, it will be Hell (Phil. 2.9-11, Rev. 20.15). By denying God, you're making your choice with your pretended "secular" neutrality.

Wild Bill Finlay is an American Conservative commentator and a Christian. He has some good observations in this short video.

October 13, 2014

Atheists and Anti-Creationists Crazy from the Hate

by Cowboy Bob Sorensen
Edited 10-14-2014.

The inspiration for this article is backwards. I saw a rant in an inconsequential forum by a vituperative but unimportant atheist. Then I read the article on one of the sites I subscribe to that brought his childish "you deny evolution and billions of years, so you're a liar" reaction. The article in question is by former theistic evolutionist Dr. David Catchpoole of CMI, "Faith can move mountains (but it can't change history)". He wrote a short article about the global Genesis Flood from his biblical creationist (young earth) perspective, and was given an ad hominem attack for his efforts by the aforementioned atheopath.

Dr. Catchpoole gave links in that article to some of the science articles supporting the Genesis Flood, but the critic did not seem to be interested in reading or responding to those. 

The uneducated atheopath railed against Catchpoole, displaying his inability to distinguish between a different interpretation of evidence and a lie (plus being intolerant of people for even having a non-evolutionary viewpoint). This shows something that I have been saying for years: Hate stupidifies. (Stupidify is a word I picked up from Matt Slick of CARM.) This fits with something that some theologians call the "noetic effect of sin", where God essentially says, "Enough! Have it your way, I won't contend with you any longer" (Romans 1.24-25). The point is that sin corrupts all aspects of someone's life, including the ability to reason. They think they can cogitate on something and be brilliant, but they really can't think well at all.



I've seen it. Some people can carry on a conversation, offer analysis of situations or observed facts, and so on. When it comes to matters of morality, theology and so on, their nice horsie of thought suddenly throws them from the saddle. What baffles me is that people make the most basic errors of logic, and are so consumed with hate that they do not make sense, and cannot be schooled in the most basic principles. I have pointed out the errors of some people, and then they justified their bad logic by doing the same things again, and they consider personal attacks to be "rational arguments"! God is right, they claim to be brilliant, but that's not the case (Romans 1.22). Worse, others who are in agreement with their hatred of God and excuses to reject him applaud the bad logic (Romans 1.32).

Many obstreperous atheists seem to think that they have a crusade to protect "science" and "reason" from "religion". What they are really doing is spreading hatred, bad logic and bigotry. If they want to have a purpose, get on God's side and fight for what is right. Someone rightly said, "If you want to rebel against someone, rebel against the devil!" That's true, since he is their master.

It is clear that true "freethinkers" are not atheists who believe they are intellectual. They are rebelling against God and are actually under the control of Satan (2 Corinthians 4.4, John 8.44). True free thinking comes through something that is irrational to them, and that is through submission to God (Proverbs 1.7). Until they repent and make Jesus Christ the Lord of their lives and thinking, they remain fools (Psalm 53.1) under their master's control. Addendum: An excellent article on a Christian view of the intellect is here.

October 6, 2014

Pluto, Special Pleading and Popular Opinion


The fallacy of "Special Pleading" is a form of "Moving the Goalposts" by ignoring important information, changing criteria to bolster one's position, appealing to emotions, and similar tactics. Christians and creationists have to deal with this quite a bit. F'rinstance, when I said that Bill Nye used bad science and logical fallacies when debating Ken Ham, I produced abundant supporting evidence. A critic cried, "...I have NOT studied it in detail. However, I note that it FAILS to quote anything Nye actually said at the debate with Ken Ham VERBATIM..." That's a clear example of moving the goalposts and special pleading (as well as the brilliant logical procedure of arguing from something not studied). Owlhoots like this tend to defend their logical fallacies with more fallacies, such as appeal to motive.


So, how about Pluto, the ninth planet of the solar system. Oh, wait. It was disqualified, and with apparently good reasons. People don't like it. We want Pluto to be a planet! When does popular opinion decide scientific classifications? An article in Time said, "The People Have Voted: Pluto is a Planet!" Isn't that misleading? Who cares how the people voted? The people's vote did not change the minds of astronomers. A worse title is, "Pluto Is a Planet Again, According to Harvard Astronomers", which is completely untrue. (Secular science, especially the pro-evolution press, pulls this kind of stunt frequently.) They did a bait-n-switch to get people to read the article, and then clarified with, "At least, that is, according to the audience at a debate at Harvard. Astronomers at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysicists (HSCFA) debated the topic “What is a planet?"


Mayhaps the definition of "planet" will change, but will that be based on moving the goalposts?

September 30, 2014

Problems with Secularist Theories of Knowledge

Back in college, I was not fond of philosophy and often cut class. One day, I showed up and it was test time. Essay test time. So I pulled out my mental shovel and piled it on and aced the test. Perhaps if we had started with theories of knowledge and presuppositions, I would have appreciated such things more. It took people like Jason Lisle and Greg Bahnsen to prompt my thinking in such areas.

Are there absolutes? How do you know what you know? What is your epistemology? Can we know things? How can we know anything? If we can't know things, then why can't we know them? We all have our starting points and use basic logic (such as the Law of Contradiction). Atheistic worldviews tend to be arbitrary and self-refuting in nature. Skepticism (the philosophy, not the modern stripped-down definition), Empiricism, Scientism, Rationalism and more are irrational and inconsistent.

We all have our ultimate starting points for our worldviews. The biblical Christian worldview is consistent, and has the necessary preconditions of intelligibility.

Jason Petersen of Answers for Hope discusses these matters in this 54-minute video presentation. A recommendation for people like me who play lectures at accelerated speed: Don't. The microphone is not close to Jason, and he talks at a decent speed anyway, so speeding it up may not be worth it.

September 18, 2014

Semantics, Logic and Anti-Christian Bigotry

People get upset over definitions and those who do not know the re-definitions of some words. Anti-creationists and atheopaths will use *their* definitions as excuses to express bigotry and indulge in persecution.

by Cowboy Bob Sorensen

A "meme" that I used on a post 1 provoked some amazingly obstreperous and arrogant comments from anti-creationists. They misused logic and presented some remarks that were saturated with hate. These were predicated on what they considered a misuse of "science", the current definition of the Big Bang. My introductory remarks in the post said that the Big Bang was an explosion, and the article that I linked in the post had did not discuss the Big Bang, it was about other explosions. But they apparently didn't bother to read that one, they wanted to rip the "anti science" of calling the Big Bang an "explosion".

Well, was the Big Bang an explosion? Or, more importantly for this article, is it justified to make such a remark? Yes, definitely. First, the Big Bang is called an explosion (or inferred by words like "cataclysmic") in dictionaries 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, but some must have received the memo that the "explosion" was upgraded to "rapid expansion" 7. Second, science-related sites including NASA, the American Museum of Natural History, National Geographic, PBS, BBC and others refer to it as an explosion 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13.

Redefining words when the original meanings become inconvenient is becoming more frequent, it seems:
  • "Atheism" is changed from the established meaning of "denial of the existence of God" 14 into the vacuous "lack of belief".
  • "Vestigial organs" moves from meaning leftovers from our evolutionary past that we do not need anymore 15 (false!) into Coyne's "no longer performs the purpose for which it evolved" 16 (begging the question as well as conveniently redefining the word).
  • Although everything came from "nothing", the word "nothing" now seems to mean "almost nothing, but we have to debate what nothing really means now" 17 .
  • The Big Bang is now a "rapid expansion" 18, even though the thing isn't really understood in the first place and gets constantly revised 19, and we have a great deal of evidence that it did not happen 20.
So, the Big Bang is not an explosion, it is a rapid expansion that moved faster than the speed of light 21 and pretty much looked like an explosion, it had previously been defined as an explosion, it really isn't, and if you call the Big Bang an explosion, you'll get slapped down by haughty pseudo-intellectuals who want to play with words. Pretty intolerant of them to be that way when people use completely understandable references to the Big Bang as an explosion.

Hey! Like many other people, and with good reasons, I said the Big Bang is an explosion!

Sorry to keep you, but there were some things that troubled me when I found groups in which this "meme" was "shared" (reposted on Facebook). People were using the redefinition to get uppity and attack Christians and creationists. This "meme" asked, "If someone believes that order can come from an explosion, do I want him repairing my computer?" (Come on, people, things like that are brief, using humor and often making a point.) I concluded that those tinhorns were pretending to use "reason" and "logic" (very badly) as excuses for expressing hatred:





This last one is full-blown atheopathy:

In an article I wrote about how Christian persecution is increasing, I quoted Matt Slick as saying that people act in a manner consistent with their beliefs 22. Indeed, people are expressing irrational opinions. Sometimes they act on them. Bigotry begins with words, and persecution comes from that. It will only get worse. But we were told to expect that (Matthew 5.11, John 15.18-22).

ADDENDUM: Nate has lied about me in the past, and helped prove my point with a worthless comment and loaded terminology. "Damage control"? An article that took about 3-1/2 hours to write and has over 20 supporting links is proving a point. Damage control? Not hardly!


 

August 28, 2014

The Increase of Christian Persecution

by Cowboy Bob Sorensen

Disclaimer: I do not endorse all opinions on all sites found in supporting links.

This article is another of those times when several things came together for me that had been in the works for a while. I think God does that, just brings things together like that.

The Arabic letter that begins their word for Nazarine has become a social media event. Moslems are using it to mark the homes of Christians in Iraq (if there are any left there now), which is reminiscent of the way Nazis marked property belong to Jews. People are using this symbol and variations on it in social media to express solidarity 1. However, this is not anything new or unusual. Persecution of Christians is happening worldwide, especially in atheist and Moslem countries. There are ministries dedicated to spreading information and giving support to the persecuted Christians 2, 3, 4, 5.

Some of the threat to Christians is the increased Islamization in the West, but the more current threats are from militant atheists and secularists.

Currently, blatant physical persecution of Christians in Western countries is rare. It is primarily done as discrimination, hidden behind other excuses (such as poor job performance, or daring to publish information that questions evolution in peer-reviewed material 6). I have documented many instances in this Weblog of atheistic discrimination and persecution. (Some dishonest atheists claim that Christians are not being persecuted, and that they are instead! Ironically, William Murray, the son of famous misotheist Madalyn Murray O'Hair, leads the Religious Freedom Coalition 7.) Although what we endure in Western countries is much milder than our brothers and sisters in Christ are facing in other parts of the world, be certain that it is coming our way 8, 9, 10, 11.

As I mentioned before, there is not much "I'm persecuting you because you're a Christian". Instead, there are excuses and false charges used as excuses to harass, imprison, torture and murder Christians. A good part of this is done by labeling. Sometimes it is with "criminal" charges, some labels are as vague as "enemy of the state" or "child abuser" (Clinton Richard Dawkins likes to equivocate and call Christians who teach their values to their children "child abusers", for example 12). One reason I believe that many atheists hate Christians who teach creation is that we want to encourage people to think critically and examine the evidence instead of simply believing what "scientists say". This also slows atheists down when they want to defame us by appealing to people's emotions with illegitimate, loaded-term labels. Persecution and discrimination begin with words.

Take a look at this 3-1/2 minute video:




"More and more people are having a hatred for Christians . . . People behave in a manner consistent with what they believe. If they believe that Christianity's okay . . . they're going to behave very much differently than someone who believes Christianity is a hate-mongering, filthy religion that needs to be destroyed. People with different belief systems are going to behave in different manners based on the belief system that they have. We behave in a manner consistent with what we believe, not with what we don't believe. I have seen an increase in hostility towards Christianity from all types of groups..."
— Matt Slick, "Matt Slick Live", CARM.org, June 2, 2014
Now I am going to give an example of some of the nonsense that I frequently deal with (which is about 1/100 of what major creation ministries constantly endure). This character is inconsequential and cannot harm me (and I dislike indulging his craving for attention), but his libel illustrates what Paul Washer and Matt Slick are saying 13.

Later, another liar stated, "bob just said you want to kill all creationists" [sic]
Remember, persecution and discrimination begin with words. Words express thoughts and attitudes. People appeal to emotion 14, get others on "their side" and things escalate from there. It has happened before in history, and it is happening again. We need to stand firm and remember what God has told us in his written Word (Matt. 5.10-12, Matt. 24.9, John 15.20, Acts 8.1, 1 Cor. 15.9, 2 Cor. 4.8-12, 2 Tim. 3.12, 1 Peter 2.19-20, Psalm 14.1, Prov. 1.7).

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