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.

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The first cause conundrum has become a little beside the point in that few, if any, cosmologists are touting the idea that nothing preceded the beginning of the Big Bang, only that we can at best speculate about what that might be and concoct theories whose form of "proof" is that they have explanatory power if not evidence. Hence, multiverses, multiple dimensions, strings, and branes. 

David,

I don't think you understand, and considering your years as a supposed atheist, that arguing over the translated meaning of Hebrew/Aramaic scriptural text is a non-starter for me. I doubt the very existence of any supernatural beings so why would I want to discuss a text from one of thousands of religions? None of these ancient texts qualify as reputable verifiable evidence to the existence of invisible entities. If you cannot persuade me to get on board the "there is a god" train then why talk about a book that covers only one god in particular. 

You never responded to my previous question:

"If you consider the evolutionary origins of religious thought going back to animism and other primitive belief systems involving agents and the supernatural I don't understand the reluctance by many to necessarily lump all religious belief in the same basket. To me the fact that original belief systems are based on ignorance, misconceptions and misguided inferences invalidates any subsequent supernatural belief systems. If the original notions of supernatural agents is predicated on fallacy then all subsequent notions are equally false. How could one reach a point where they believe that at some specific point along the social/cultural development of religious thought that suddenly there is validity and truth to a specific belief system? It's nonsensical."

Ed,

I can understand your disinterest in the Hebrew / Aramaic text, so this discussion isn't for you. I understand that.

You doubt the supernatural, and I get that, as well. But the Bible actually mentions many gods, some were supernatural and some were not.

In response to your quote on religion, I'm sorry I couldn't get to it sooner, but that thread felt more and more like a crusade to me than a discussion.

Everything changes. Some for good and some for bad. I've studied briefly the history of the 8 major religions and the majority of their texts. Much of the debate dismissing the origins of religion as superstition and ignorance extremely subjective and conjectural; this in as much as I find religion in an organized sense, a loathsome transmogrification in progress. I wouldn't disagree that they can all be lumped into the same rubbish heap, but most of them have little if anything to do with the supernatural. To me the majority seem to be historical legend. On the other hand, from an historical perspective without the historical transmogrification inherent in history itself not being entirely dissimilar, as well as the blatantly obvious errors cause, for example, by the Egyptian historian Manetho alone, the seemingly more practical becomes even more absurd. Given a careful consideration of this and an accurate Biblical chronology compared  to secular historical accounts and the far more reliable astronomical charts it is a great deal more plausible to concede that those religious teachings came from the alluvial plains of Ur and Babylon. The tower of Babel. I have written quite a bit on this and will be putting those articles up on my website in the coming months.

How could one reach the point where it is believed that at some specific point along the social/cultural development of religious thought that suddenly there is validity and truth to a specific belief system? I suppose unless one was absorbed in some preconceived alternative quite possibly even more absurd it would obviously have to go one way or the other.

I would like to imagine that there are a great deal of discoveries that to us may seem nonsensical, but, like I said. It would seem more nonsensical to fashion them in advance to our own liking. That would retard the progress natural and only conclude with its obvious demise.

RE: "I have written quite a bit on this and will be putting those articles up on my website in the coming months." - FINALLY, a remedy for my insomnia!

You doubt the supernatural, and I get that, as well. But the Bible actually mentions many gods, some were supernatural and some were not.

I'm not familiar with the concept of a natural God. Name some names.

It's amazing to think that so much of the religious world's whole understanding of creation boils down to Hebrew semantics.

What a kick in the asah.

Huh. What a kick in the asah . . . that was amusing. Good one, Marc. 

Since you are a word guy, I felt obligated ;^)

Then there is the nephilim...

 Genesis is a good place to start reading maybe but it doesn't matter where you start if you're debunking. You can find bull shit all through out the book.

 If I were to believe that book then why not all the other religions, myths, folktales, urban myths and lies.

Jared,

The Nephilim does seem to generate a great deal of interest. On my old website the page on giants and the Nephilim always got good search numbers.

I often wonder, though, when atheists compare religions and their texts if perhaps they are not very familiar with them. They really don't compare to the Bible. I'm not just saying that because I love the Bible, but in my opinion that has proven to be the case.

"The atheist response to the text of the Bible is based primarily upon the young earth creationist interpretation"

 That is a blanket statement.

 I think it's interesting that the interpretation changes so conveniently. It's like watching someone that has no identity of their own. 

Jared,

The teachings of apostate Christianity are the majority by far. 99% at least. It is only natural that the antithesis of that is apparent.

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