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Author Topic:   What is the definition of Creationism?
Phat
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Posts: 12293
From: Denver,Colorado USA
Joined: 12-30-2003
Member Rating: 1.3


Message 1 of 17 (283139)
02-01-2006 11:20 AM


I wanted to have a discussion and perhaps a clarification on what the definition of creationism is.

After consulting my colleague, Mr. Dictionary, I was informed that:

Websters writes:

cre•a•tion•ism n : a doctrine or theory holding that matter, the various forms of life, and the world were created by God out of nothing — cre•a•tion•ist \-nist\ n or adj


I believe that the universe was created out of nothing by God...yet I am not so sure about the aspects of life on Earth--Biological Evolution is no threat to my Christian WorldView.

So am I a "creationist" by definition or am I an "evolutionist" by definition? Perhaps Mr. Ex-Nihilio can help me with this one! :)

(Miss. topics sounds good to me)


Replies to this message:
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AdminNWR
Inactive Member


Message 2 of 17 (283174)
02-01-2006 12:35 PM


Thread moved here from the Proposed New Topics forum.
  
Percy
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Posts: 18415
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 2.8


Message 3 of 17 (283177)
02-01-2006 12:57 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Phat
02-01-2006 11:20 AM


Great question! I went to Answers.com and found the hacker slang definition of creationism. I definitely subscribe to this:

The (false) belief that large, innovative software designs can be completely specified in advance and then painlessly magicked out of the void by the normal efforts of a team of normally talented programmers. In fact, experience has shown repeatedly that good designs arise only from evolutionary, exploratory interaction between one (or at most a small handful of) exceptionally able designer(s) and an active user population — and that the first try at a big new idea is always wrong. Unfortunately, because these truths don't fit the planning models beloved of management, they are generally ignored.

In case there is any confusion, let me clarify that *I* am the "exceptionally able designer" and *you* are the "active user population." :D

But the first and simplest (and on-topic) definition is this one:

Belief in the literal interpretation of the account of the creation of the universe and of all living things related in the Bible.

Does this sound like you? In any event, looks like just another case of a word having more than one definition.

The Wikipedia entry is very detailed, an interesting read.

--Percy


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jar
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Message 4 of 17 (283179)
02-01-2006 1:00 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Phat
02-01-2006 11:20 AM


both
Theists believe that the universe was created by GOD. What is discovered in the study of evolution, geology, biology, astronomy, physics, chemistry, cosmology, genetics and every other Science is simply the HOW.

I am a Creationsist that accepts the TOE as well as the other discoveries whe have made so far.


Aslan is not a Tame Lion
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NosyNed
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Message 5 of 17 (283182)
02-01-2006 1:15 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Phat
02-01-2006 11:20 AM


Big C, small c
As noted the word, on it's own is loaded with different meanings.

One might use big C Creationist to mean the AIG/ICR type of creationist and the little c creationist to mean the you and Jar type.


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Phat
Member
Posts: 12293
From: Denver,Colorado USA
Joined: 12-30-2003
Member Rating: 1.3


Message 6 of 17 (283244)
02-01-2006 5:16 PM
Reply to: Message 5 by NosyNed
02-01-2006 1:15 PM


Re: Big C, small c
This is interesting, as I read the World Book on CD-ROM They maintain that strictly speaking, a creationist by definition rejects the theory of biological evolution! The only reason that I can see why this would conflict with Christian Belief is because it challenges Biblical Literalism!

Anyway...a little History:

WorldBook1999 writes:

Modern Christian creationist belief stems from a time line published in the 1650's by James Ussher, an archbishop of the Church of Ireland. Ussher constructed the time line by interpreting literally the birth and death dates of figures in the Bible.
According to Ussher, God created the earth and its life forms in 4004 B.C. Today, however, considerable disagreement exists among creationists concerning the date of what they believe was the Creation.

In the 1700's and 1800's, Ussher's ideas were called into question by the theory of evolution and other scientific developments. Christian leaders argued increasingly among themselves about the role of science in understanding Biblical accounts of the Creation. Some maintained the Bible should still be the basic source for information on the origin of the earth and its life.

In the early 1900's, public high schools in the United States began teaching evolution in science classes. In the 1920's, creationists proposed laws in 20 states to ban public schools from teaching evolution. They considered the teaching of the theory to be part of a dangerous trend toward the separation of religious beliefs from everyday life. Several states, including Arkansas and Tennessee, passed such legislation.

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) opposed the laws, saying that they violated the constitutional principle of the separation of church and state. The ACLU challenged the Tennessee law in 1925 by defending a teacher named John T. Scopes, who had volunteered to stand trial on the charge of teaching evolution.

The ACLU lost the Scopes case, and the laws against teaching evolution remained in effect. However, public opinion of creationism suffered as a result of the trial because the press portrayed creationists as uninformed and out of touch with mainstream science.

In the 1960's, more public schools again began to teach evolution, in part because of a fear that the United States was falling behind other nations in the teaching of science. In 1968, the Supreme Court of the United States ruled that laws banning the teaching of evolution were unconstitutional because they made religious considerations part of the curriculum. Despite these setbacks, the creationist movement gained strength in the 1960's.

In the 1970's and early 1980's, scientific creationists proposed laws that would have made creationism a required subject in classrooms that taught evolution. These people argued that creationism, like evolution, is based on science and so should be taught along with evolution. They also said that because evolution is "just a theory," it should be considered a religion. Thus they claimed that teaching only evolution would violate the Constitution both by limiting academic freedom and by supporting one religion over another..

I would like some of our more conservative creationists to explain to me why the teaching of Biological Evolution is a threat to Christianity----aside from being at odds with Genesis.

Why can't Genesis be symbolic? Why need every single word of the Bible have to be so inerrent?

Can't Jesus Christ be literal without the unlikely prospect of trudging up North and dragging two large Polar Bears down to an Ark in the Middle East---among other plausible scenarios...having to be true and just so?

(Thats a bit off topic,) but again the question is being explored:
What defines a creationist?

This message has been edited by Phat, 02-01-2006 03:17 PM


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nwr
Member
Posts: 5585
From: Geneva, Illinois
Joined: 08-08-2005


Message 7 of 17 (283247)
02-01-2006 5:23 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Phat
02-01-2006 11:20 AM


You are an evolutionist.

You are also a creationist.

You are not a Young Earth Creationist (YEC).

What makes this confusing, is that sometimes people use "creationist" to mean "YEC", and they forget about the other types of creationist.


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pianoprincess*
Inactive Member


Message 8 of 17 (283729)
02-03-2006 8:08 PM


There are alot of kinds of creationist out there....

I'm a young earth biblical creationist. so my defenition of creationism would be creation as stated in the Bible.


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mark24
Member (Idle past 3332 days)
Posts: 3857
From: UK
Joined: 12-01-2001


Message 9 of 17 (283731)
02-03-2006 8:18 PM
Reply to: Message 8 by pianoprincess*
02-03-2006 8:08 PM


Pianoprincess,

Perhaps you would be willing to follow up with your 2LOT thread?

Mark


There are 10 kinds of people in this world; those that understand binary, & those that don't
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nwr
Member
Posts: 5585
From: Geneva, Illinois
Joined: 08-08-2005


Message 10 of 17 (283733)
02-03-2006 8:25 PM
Reply to: Message 9 by mark24
02-03-2006 8:18 PM


Perhaps you would be willing to follow up with your 2LOT thread?

That thread was just locked, due to topic drift.

Maybe can ask to have it reopened. But it is perhaps a bit early, since it was only recently closed.


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Modulous
Member (Idle past 241 days)
Posts: 7789
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 11 of 17 (283741)
02-03-2006 9:20 PM
Reply to: Message 6 by Phat
02-01-2006 5:16 PM


Kinds dear fellow
Can't Jesus Christ be literal without the unlikely prospect of trudging up North and dragging two large Polar Bears down to an Ark in the Middle East---among other plausible scenarios...having to be true and just so?

Polar bears are species...Noah had Kinds on his Ark (though possibly a number of species within those kinds). He didn't need a polar bear as long as he had a Bear Kind. The Polar bear didn't exist back then, they later microevolved from whatever bears were on the Ark.

Why can't Genesis be symbolic? Why need every single word of the Bible have to be so inerrent?

I believe it has to do with the manner of its writing, and the manner in which the NT authors refer to it (or refer to Jesus referring to it or whatever).

What defines a creationist?

Someone who believes the world/universe/life was created by a sentient (presumably supernatural) entity. Most often this entity is a god, sometimes as part of a pantheon of gods, but more commonly a monotheistic one. The most vocal of these are christian.


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nwr
Member
Posts: 5585
From: Geneva, Illinois
Joined: 08-08-2005


Message 12 of 17 (283785)
02-03-2006 11:39 PM
Reply to: Message 6 by Phat
02-01-2006 5:16 PM


Re: Big C, small c
I would like some of our more conservative creationists to explain to me why the teaching of Biological Evolution is a threat to Christianity----aside from being at odds with Genesis.

I don't qualify as a conservative creationist. But I'll comment anyway.

The explanation I heard (from an evangelical Christian source), is that pastors were noticing that the youth members of their Church would be strong Christians. Then they would attend college and take a biology class, and come out as atheists. The decision to emphasize literalism (Young Earth Creationism) was, according to this report, a counter measure attempting to stem the loss of youth to atheism.

Sorry, but I don't remember exactly where I heard this. It was on an evangelical radio program a number of years ago. I have no way of confirming its accuracy.

Why can't Genesis be symbolic? Why need every single word of the Bible have to be so inerrent?

There is no good theological reason. The practical reason, is that making it symbolic would defeat the aim of attacking evolution.

There is a theological reason that is often given. It is said that Genesis must be taken literally to support the doctrine of original sin. Personally, I think this is bogus. A symbolic understanding of Genesis works just as well to support original sin. And, in any case, the doctrine of original sin is non-biblical. It seems to have been an invention by Augustine.

Can't Jesus Christ be literal without the unlikely prospect of trudging up North and dragging two large Polar Bears down to an Ark in the Middle East---among other plausible scenarios...having to be true and just so?

Yes, of course that's possible. The arguments for a literal reading of genesis are bogus.
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arachnophilia
Member (Idle past 115 days)
Posts: 9069
From: god's waiting room
Joined: 05-21-2004


Message 13 of 17 (283791)
02-04-2006 12:12 AM
Reply to: Message 12 by nwr
02-03-2006 11:39 PM


Re: Big C, small c
The explanation I heard (from an evangelical Christian source), is that pastors were noticing that the youth members of their Church would be strong Christians. Then they would attend college and take a biology class, and come out as atheists. The decision to emphasize literalism (Young Earth Creationism) was, according to this report, a counter measure attempting to stem the loss of youth to atheism.

Sorry, but I don't remember exactly where I heard this. It was on an evangelical radio program a number of years ago. I have no way of confirming its accuracy.

i've seen the very same phenominon with ancient literature classes. christians go in thinking the bible is special, and then have to read ten other books just like it. what are christians going to do about that? ban gilgamesh?

There is a theological reason that is often given. It is said that Genesis must be taken literally to support the doctrine of original sin. Personally, I think this is bogus. A symbolic understanding of Genesis works just as well to support original sin. And, in any case, the doctrine of original sin is non-biblical. It seems to have been an invention by Augustine.

right -- a literal reading of genesis doesn't really support original sin anyways. i sure don't see it in there.


אָרַח

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nwr
Member
Posts: 5585
From: Geneva, Illinois
Joined: 08-08-2005


Message 14 of 17 (283800)
02-04-2006 12:52 AM
Reply to: Message 13 by arachnophilia
02-04-2006 12:12 AM


Re: Big C, small c
i've seen the very same phenominon with ancient literature classes. christians go in thinking the bible is special, and then have to read ten other books just like it. what are christians going to do about that? ban gilgamesh?

That's probably less of a worry, in that the number of people who study gilgamesh is small compared to the number to take a biology class.

There are probably cases of people who study theology and come out atheists. (I wonder if prophex is reading this :( ).


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arachnophilia
Member (Idle past 115 days)
Posts: 9069
From: god's waiting room
Joined: 05-21-2004


Message 15 of 17 (283801)
02-04-2006 12:58 AM
Reply to: Message 14 by nwr
02-04-2006 12:52 AM


Re: Big C, small c
That's probably less of a worry, in that the number of people who study gilgamesh is small compared to the number to take a biology class.

i'm not sure. but for some reason it tends to produce less serious objections.

There are probably cases of people who study theology and come out atheists. (I wonder if prophex is reading this ).

yes, i've heard of a few. there was on the radio a while back that was talking to npr about the history of the new testament. he mentioned how in the course of his studies he lost his faith. it's a really challenging subject area, if you think about it. lots of hard questions. i must say, it's been doing a number on me and i'm not even actually studying all the material.

but the position of the modern fundamentalist churches seems to be "remove all everything from your life that causes doubt." science, theology, knowledge, education, music... friends, family...


אָרַח

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