Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Archbishop of Canterbury backs evolution

Archbishop of Canterbury backs evolution: Well, he is a Primate, The Register, Chris Williams, 21st March 2006. The Archbishop of Canterbury has condemned the teaching of creationism in schools. [See also BBC. This is a good (bad) example of a modern, secularised, naturalistic, "lukewarm" Laodicean church:

Rev 3:14-22: 14"To the angel of the church in Laodicea write: These are the words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the ruler of God's creation. 15I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! 16So, because you are lukewarm-neither hot nor cold-I am about to spit [Gk. emesai = "vomit"] you out of my mouth. 17You say, 'I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.' But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked. 18I counsel you to buy from me gold refined in the fire, so you can become rich; and white clothes to wear, so you can cover your shameful nakedness; and salve to put on your eyes, so you can see. 19Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest, and repent. 20Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me. 21To him who overcomes, I will give the right to sit with me on my throne, just as I overcame and sat down with my Father on his throne. 22He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches." (my emphasis)

which has completely lost the plot! The leader of the Anglican Church is more concerned about the teaching of "creationism" than he is about the teaching of atheism. Because that is what the "evolution" that is taught in schools is, "the standard scientific theory that God had no part in this process'":

"Facing such a reality, perhaps we should not be surprised at the results of a 2001 Gallup poll confirming that 45 percent of Americans believe `God created human beings pretty much in their present form at one time within the last 10,000 years or so'; 37 percent prefer a blended belief that `human beings have developed over millions of years from less advanced forms of life, but God guided this process'; and a paltry 12 percent accept the standard scientific theory that `human beings have developed over millions of years from less advanced forms of life, but God had no part in this process.'" (Shermer M.B., "The Gradual Illumination of the Mind," Scientific American, February 2002. My emphasis)]

In an interview with Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger, Dr Rowan Williams said the Biblical creation stories do not belong in the same category as evolutionary theory. [This is missing the main point. The Bible says in its very first sentence," In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth" (Gen 1:1) but "evolutionary theory" says "God had no part in this process". If Christianity is true (which it is) then the twin metaphysical pillars of evolution: 1) materialism (matter is all there is = there is no God); and 2) naturalism (nature is all there is = there is no supernatural = there is no God) are false. If the Archbishop had any guts (assuming he is even a Christian) then he should make that point, loud and clear, before he criticises Christian schools who are, after all, teaching creation , even if they may be wrong on the timeframe.]

He explained: "My worry is creationism can end up reducing the doctrine of creation rather than enhancing it." [He does not say what he thinks "the doctrine of creation" is; nor how can teaching that God created reduce it; nor how teaching "evolutionary theory" which claims "God had no part in this process", enhance it!]

Dr Williams's comments indicate he believes that creationism and evolution are not two sides of the same coin, however. He said: "I think creationism is...a kind of category mistake, as if the Bible were a theory like other theories. If creationism is presented as a stark alternative theory alongside other theories I think there's just been a jarring of categories." [The Archbishop ignores that it is "evolutionary theory" which is the "stark alternative theory," claiming that "God had no part in this process." Even the strictest YEC can accept that God worked 99.999% through natural processes, but "evolutionary theory" cannot accept that God worked even 0.001% supernaturally. As Christian geneticist David Wilcox pointed out, "One can be a theistic `Darwinian,' but no one can be an atheistic `Creationist'":

"I conclude that the easy acceptance of neo-Darwinism as a complete and adequate explanation for all biological reality has indeed been based in the metaphysical needs of a dominant materialistic consensus. One can be a theistic `Darwinian,' but no one can be an atheistic `Creationist.'" (Wilcox D.L., "Tamed Tornadoes," in Buell J. & Hearn V., eds., "Darwinism: Science or Philosophy?" Foundation for Thought and Ethics: Richardson TX, 1994, p.215)

So the real extremists are the evolutionists! ]

As leader of the Church of England, the Bishop's intervention also puts the heads of the two most popular flavours of Christianity, Catholicism and Anglicanism, at odds with creationists. Both Pope John Paul II and current Pontiff Benedict XVI have spoken out in favour of evolution being incorporated into religious people's view of the world. [This is just playing the usual word-games with "evolution". If the question is, "did God have a part in this process?" then the "creationists", as well as the "Pope John Paul II and current Pontiff Benedict XVI" (and Archbishop Williams if he claims to be a Christian) are on the same side in their answer "yes", as opposed to the evolutionist side's answer that "God had no part in this process."

That is the crucial part of "evolutionary theory's" two-part claim, which is not just that: 1) "human beings have developed over millions of years from less advanced forms of life" (since God may have "guided this process"), but 2) "God had no part in this process."

If the Archbishop wants to stem the worldwide decline of the Anglican Church:

Statistics Suggest Anglican Church of Canada in Huge Decline, Christianity Today, February 13 , 2006, Daniel Blake ... The Anglican Church of Canada has experienced a huge decline over the past 40 years, according to a new independent survey. ... A retired marketing expert, Keith McKerracher carried out the report, according to the Church of England newspaper. The report was then passed on to the House of Bishops. After the report was released, McKerracher explained, "My point to the bishops was: Hey listen, guys, we're declining much faster than any other church. We’re losing 12,836 Anglicans a year. That's 2 percent a year. If you draw a line on the graph, there'll only be one person left in the Canadian Anglican church by 2061." The decline has coincided with the liberalisation of the Church views over the past four decades; something that has also been witnessed in the Episcopal Church USA. Ted Byfield, a long-time observer of Canadian culture, who has published a weekly news magazine in Canada for 30 years and now serves as general editor of `The Christians', a 12-volume history of Christianity, has suggested that this liberalisation of the Church is the core reason for the decline, reports Dutch Christian newspaper ‘Reformatorisch Dagblad’. McKerracher, however, also said that he did not believe that the Anglican leaders in Canada would respond in any significant way to the findings. He continued, "The church is in real crisis. They can’t carry on like it’s business as usual. They talk things to death. And my impression is that the bishops are not going to go around telling priests to shape up." (my emphasis)

then he needs to start publicly supporting creation and attacking "evolutionary theory" in its claim that "God had no part in this process."]

Stephen E. Jones, BSc (Biol).
"Problems of Evolution"

"But some of the cases which have been brought forward, and which have met with very general acceptance, seem less satisfactory when carefully analysed than they at first appear to be. Amongst these we may mention `the neck of the giraffe.' At first sight it would seem as though a better example in support of `Natural Selection' could hardly have been chosen. Let the fact of the occurrence of occasional, severe droughts in the country which that animal has inhabited be granted. In that case, when the ground vegetation has been consumed, and the trees alone remain, it is plain that at such times only those individuals (of what we assume to be the nascent giraffe species) which were able to reach high up would be preserved, and would become the parents of the following generation, some individuals of which would, of course, inherit that high-reaching power which alone preserved their parents. Only the high-reaching issue of these high-reaching individuals would again, ceteris paribus, be preserved at the next drought, and would again transmit to their offspring-their still loftier stature; and so on, from period to period, through aeons of time, all the individuals tending to revert to the ancient shorter type of body, being ruthlessly destroyed at the occurrence of each drought. (1.) But against this it may be said, in the first place, that the argument proves too much; for, on this supposition, many species must have tended to undergo a similar modification, and we ought to have at least several forms, similar to the giraffe, developed from different Ungulata. ... A careful observer of animal life who has long resided in South Africa, explored the interior, and lived in the giraffe country, has assured the Author that the giraffe has powers of locomotion, and endurance fully equal to those possessed by any of the other Ungulata of that continent. It would seem, therefore, that some of these other Ungulates ought to have developed in a similar manner as to the neck, under pain of being starved, when the long neck of the giraffe was in its incipient stage. ... If, as Mr. Darwin contends, the natural selection of these favourable variations has alone lengthened the neck of the giraffe by preserving long necked individuals during droughts ; similar variations, in other similarly-feeding forms, ought similarly to have been preserved, and so have lengthened the neck of such other Ungulates by similarly preserving them during the same droughts." (Mivart St.G.J., "On the Genesis of Species," Macmillan & Co: London, Second edition, 1871, pp.28-29, 31)

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