The atheist response to the text of the Bible is based primarily upon the young earth creationist interpretation, which is flawed. If I put myself objectively in the position of the atheist attempting to debunk the Bible I would start with Genesis Chapter 1. The Chapter passed the inspection of this former atheist.
The Hebrew verb consists of two different states. The perfect state indicates an action which is complete, whereas the imperfect state indicates a continuous or incomplete action.
At Genesis 1:1 the word bara, translated as created, is in the perfect state, which means that at this point the creation of the heavens and the Earth were completed. Later, as in verse 16 the Hebrew word asah, translated as made, is used, which is in the imperfect state, indicating continuous action. The heavens and Earth were created in verse 1 and an indeterminate time later they were being prepared for habitation, much the same as a bed is manufactured (complete) and made (continuous) afterwards.
What this means is that the creation was complete even before the six "days" of creation even began, in fact, later verses in the chapter reveal it was more than likely a long time in between Genesis 1:1 and 1:2.
Diane and Archy are both right. I'm debunking YEC because the Bible doesn't agree with it. I'm doing this in hopes that it will pique your interest, but I don't really have to do that. I'm the resident scapegoat of the month and as such possess more attention than I can stand.
Wouldn't your efforts be more appropriately aimed at YECs then? The discussion has piqued people's interest, maybe, but you are like a person who is trying to buy kiwis at a shoe store - in the wrong place altogether. That is unless your motive is to engage us in discussion of the Bible at all. In this regard you have been wildly successful.
I belong in the Bible-is-just-one-of-thousands-of holy-writings-concerning-thousands-of-present-day-and-historical-deities camp. I do, however, find this kind of communication to be fun at times, so I can appreciate that line of reasoning for participating in this discussion.
I think you must have quite the set of mental gonads to make the statements you make here. Watching and participating in the discussion helps me to further clarify and understand my position. For that, I thank you. Please let me know if you find out that you efforts here have been effective in moving anybody away from atheism and towards believing in your deity. Of course, you may be trying to plant seeds that will come to fruition much later and thus may or may not be linked with these conversations specifically.
Incidentally, I can trace my ability to quit smoking to a single moment when I heard one story, even though I had thought all around the topic for years.
Something just clicked. Is that how it was for you when you stopped being an atheist, and is that your purpose here - to plant those seeds? I just want to know if it works!.
@Diane - RE: "I belong in the Bible-is-just-one-of-thousands-of holy-writings-concerning-thousands-of-present-day-and-historical-deities camp" - have you thought about putting that on a T-shirt?
Oh yeah, it's a riot! It involves mostly staring at other people's chests.
I wouldn't want strangers to be reading my chest for that long. Maybe it could go on the back? Hmmm
Sorry I'm such a slow reader --
If you can't stand the heat --
Any controversial interpretations of the wording of the Bible is all on God. But for the Tower of Babal fiasco, we would all be speaking Hebrew and it would be perfectly clear. An omnscient being would have known this.
Actually Don, a god who knew anything about this planet and how it works, wouldn't have tried to stop them when they began trying to build a tower to heaven - he'd have cocked back in his Holy Laz-E-Boy with a platter of hot nachos in his lap and a cold Bud parked within easy reach on a nearby cloud, watched on his BIGscreen as the uppermost stonelayers passed out from lack of oxygen, and cackled his Holy Ass off!
That whole language confusion and scattering thing was overkill and the work of a rank amateur, designed to provide a religious explanation as for why, if god killed all but 8 people on earth, there were so many people from different places, speaking so many different languages - just an early use of, "Goddidit!"
The original "Tower of Bable" wasn't a tower at all, per se, it was a tiered temple, called a ziggurat, used in Mesopotamia to worship Marduk and the Sumerian/Akkadian pantheon of gods. As you can see from the illustration below, there is a chamber atop the structure. This was designed for their god to rest on his many visits to Earth, and had no bearing on anyone's efforts to reach heaven. But to promote the Hebrew god, it was necessary to tear down the gods of the Mesopotamians, basically saying, "Temple, good, ziggurat, bad!"
God scattered them because he wanted them to fill and subdue the earth, which Nimrod (Likely Tammuz) was preventing in establishing his own kingdom and the tower.
Pure bullshit. And "Nimrod" was a fictional character created by the Yahwist Group in an effort to appear a link existed between the Jews and the actual, historical king, Sargon, who opened up a trade route from Mesopotamia to the Mediterranean, then all the way down the coast of the Levant nearly to the national boundary of Egypt.
BTW - legend says that Sargon's mother sealed him into a reed basket, waterproofed with bitumen, and launched him down the Euphrates River as a baby. Sound familiar?