A useful tag team: the Bible and iPads

Atlantic City promoted several firefighters to the rank of Battalion Chief and Fire Captain thanks to some quick thinking and technology.  At Friday morning’s promotion ceremony, it was realized no one had brought a bible to City Council chambers, where the brief ceremony was held.  After some quick thinking, the Bible app was pulled up on an iPad, which was then used to swear in the eight officers to their new positions.

Promoted to the rank of Battalion Chief were Joseph Haney, Allen Huggins, William Brooks, Angelo DeMaio, and Thomas Culleny, Junior.

Promoted to the rank of Fire Captain were Jeffrey Bird, James Gillespie, and Joseph Daily.

Quote source

Laird, P. (2013) ACFD Promotes Sworn in with Ipad App. Worldnow.  Available http://www.nbc40.net/story/21083816/acfd-promotion. Last accessed 26th Nov 2014

Educating atheists who rely on ‘goddidit’ rhetoric

I came across this assertion a while back.  Some folk were talking about theism and the philosophy of science:

Nonsense, the fine-tuning argument is just a glorified argument from ignorance.

It basically says: “We don’t know how the constants came to have the values that they do, therefore they were set that way by God”. That we don’t know something doesn’t mean goddidit, it means we don’t know.

Sure, the [physical] constants are finely balanced. But we know nothing about the mechanism by which they came to be that way. We don’t for example even know if they could in theory have any other values. We just don’t know and there’s no way to make that into goddidit.

But that’s a misinterpretation of reality which presupposes that philosophical naturalism is true.  The better interpretation is below:

Yet if God has truly and causally created all things, is self-contained and sovereign and by His providence governs and controls all things, then no fact is a fact apart from God nor has a full and valid interpretation apart from Him. Every fact is a God-created and God-interpreted fact, and this world exists only as a God-created and God-interpreted world. While man’s knowledge of the world, and of Scripture, cannot be exhaustive, it can be true to the measure that it recognizes and interprets what has been fully interpreted by God.

Quote sources

  1. Arantheal (2011). Response to Do you think the astronauts know that God set up the physical forces they have to use in space travel? Yahoo! Answers.  Available http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20120306101609AA7uePL. Last accessed 22nd Nov 2014.
  2. Rushdoony,  R. J.  (2013) Van Til and the Limits of Reason .  (Ebook). Ross House Books.  Location 264-68.

Don’t be afraid of using ‘he’ instead of ‘they’

Annoying Habits of Some Philosophers:

5. Advertising one’s political correctness. I am reading an article on some arcane topic such as counterfactual conditionals, when I encounter a ungrammatical use of ‘they’ to avoid the supposedly radioactive ‘he.’ I groan: not another PC-whipped leftist! I am distracted from the content of the article by the political correctness of the author. As I have said more than once, PC comes from the CP, and what commies, and leftists generally, attempt to do is to inject politics into every aspect of life. It is in keeping with their totalitarian agenda.

If you complain that I am injecting politics into this post, I will say that I am merely combatting and undoing the mischief of leftists. It is analogous to nonviolent people using violence to defend themselves and their way of life against the violent. We conservatives who want the political kept in its place and who are temperamentally disinclined to be political activists must be become somewhat politically active to undo the damage caused by leftist totalitarians. By the way, there is nothing sexist about standard English; the view that it is itself a leftist doctrine that one is free to reject.

Quote source

Vallicella, B. (2014). Annoying Habits of Some Philosophers. Maverick Philosopher. Available http://maverickphilosopher.typepad.com/maverick_philosopher/2013/09/annoying-habits-of-some-philosophers.html. Last accessed 22nd Nov 2014.

Best to avoid shops on Sunday

Instead, we honor the Lord on the first day of the week, which is Sunday. This is not the Sabbath; but I think very important. America was a much better nation when stores used to close on Sundays. In fact, many stores lowered their window shades on Sunday, so people couldn’t window shop. This was out of respect for the Lord.

Quote source

Stewart, D.J. (n.d). The Nine Commandments of God. Jesus is Saviour. Available http://www.jesus-is-savior.com/the_nine_commandments.htm. Last accessed 22nd Nov 2014.

2013 was a great year (in this respect)

This from someone who takes evolution literally:

Evolution did not fare well in 2013. The year ended with the anti-evolution book Darwin’s Doubt as Amazon’s top seller in the “Paleontology” category. The state of Texas spent much of the year trying to keep the country’s most respected high school biology text out of its public schools. And leading anti-evolutionist and Creation Museum curator Ken Ham made his annual announcement that the “final nail” had been pounded into the coffin of poor Darwin’s beleaguered theory of evolution.

Americans entered 2013 more opposed to evolution than they have been for years, with an amazing 46 percent embracing the notion that “God created humans pretty much in their present form at one time in the last 10,000 years or so.” This number was up a full 6 percent from the prior poll taken in 2010. 

Quote source

Giberson,  K. W. (2014). 2013 Was a Terrible Year for Evolution. The Daily Beast.  Available http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2014/01/02/2013-was-a-terrible-year-for-evolution.html. Last accessed 15th Nov 2014

The greatest evil does not result from people zealous for God

The simple fact of history is that the greatest evil has always resulted from denial of God, not pursuit of Him. Dennis Prager has noted, “In this [20th] century alone, more innocent people have been murdered, tortured, and enslaved by secular ideologies, nazism and communism than by all religions in history.”

Grab an older copy of the Guinness Book of World Records and turn to the category “Judicial,” sub-heading “Crimes: Mass Killings.” You’ll find that carnage of unimaginable proportions resulted not from religion, but from institutionalized atheism.

Guinness reports, “The greatest massacre ever imputed by the government of one sovereign against another is the 26.3 million Chinese killed during the regime of Mao Zedong between 1949 and May 1965. The Walker Report published by the U.S. Senate Committee of the Judiciary in July 1971 placed…the total death toll in China since 1949 between 32.25 and 61.7 million.”

In the USSR, Nobel Prize winner Alexander Solzhenitsyn estimated that state repression and terrorism took over 66 million lives from 1917 to 1959 under Lenin, Stalin and Khrushchev.

The worst per capita genocide happened in Cambodia under the Khmer Rouge. According to Guinness, “More than one third of the eight million Khmers were killed between April 17, 1975 and January 1979.”

The greatest evil does not result from people zealous for God. It results when people are convinced there is no God to whom they must answer.

Quote source

Koukl, G. (2006). Christianity’s Real Record. Available http://townhall.com/columnists/gregorykoukl/2006/11/21/christianitys_real_record/page/full. Last accessed 8th Nov 2014.

The loving God of the Old Testament

My father once was asked to lecture on the question of whether the God of the Old Testament and of the New Testament is the same. He started by quoting dozens of Scripture passages proving that the God of the Old Testament was a God of love and mercy who would set aside His vengeance. Then he turned to the book of Revelation showing that the God of the New Testament is a God of vengeance who never will love His enemies. Then he asked his listeners how we could ever harmonize the loving God of the Old with the judging God of the New Testament. The listeners at first were confused but soon understood the lesson.

Quote source

Schirrmacher, T. (1992). “Love is the Fulfilment of Law: With the Law Dies Love” in Calvinism Today.