How can we trust the Bible if it's not inerrant?

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How can we trust the Bible if it's not inerrant?

Post #1

Post by otseng »

From the On the Bible being inerrant thread:
nobspeople wrote: Wed Sep 22, 2021 9:42 amHow can you trust something that's written about god that contradictory, contains errors and just plain wrong at times? Is there a logical way to do so, or do you just want it to be god's word so much that you overlook these things like happens so often through the history of christianity?
otseng wrote: Wed Sep 22, 2021 7:08 am The Bible can still be God's word, inspired, authoritative, and trustworthy without the need to believe in inerrancy.
For debate:
How can the Bible be considered authoritative and inspired without the need to believe in the doctrine of inerrancy?

While debating, do not simply state verses to say the Bible is inspired or trustworthy.

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Re: How can we trust the Bible if it's not inerrant?

Post #1361

Post by Diagoras »

[Replying to otseng in post #1360]

Exactly. Our non-central position in the Milky Way is easily (empirically) observed by anyone outside on a clear night. The inference about the galaxy is therefore reasonable.

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Re: How can we trust the Bible if it's not inerrant?

Post #1362

Post by otseng »

Diagoras wrote: Fri Sep 16, 2022 4:12 am Exactly. Our non-central position in the Milky Way is easily (empirically) observed by anyone outside on a clear night. The inference about the galaxy is therefore reasonable.
The issue is not whether we are at the center of our galaxy. Of course we're not. As I stated before:
otseng wrote: Wed Aug 24, 2022 6:41 am The issue is not if the earth is at the center of our solar system or our galaxy. Of course the earth revolves around the sun and our solar system is on the arm of the Milky Way galaxy. The issue is if the earth (or you can consider our galaxy) to be at the center of the universe. How can one charge the ancients to be ignorant to believe in geocentrism if modern people cannot justify the belief we are not at the center of the universe?
The question is if we're at the center of the universe, not our galaxy.

It does not follow that because we're not at the center of our galaxy, therefore we are not at the center of the universe. In fact, as I've pointed out, empirical evidence points to us being at the center of the universe. And there is no empirical evidence that has been presented to the contrary.

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Re: How can we trust the Bible if it's not inerrant?

Post #1363

Post by Diogenes »

Diagoras wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 11:41 pm
I wouldn't mind taking part in a discussion of Sumerian influences on the Bible at some point. Perhaps best taken to a new thread, but it was too good to ignore the reference Diogenes posted here.
Done: viewtopic.php?p=1092043#p1092043
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Re: How can we trust the Bible if it's not inerrant?

Post #1364

Post by EarthScienceguy »

[Replying to otseng in post #1359]
Never said I deny any essential element of the Christian faith.
Of course, they would deny the absence of the autographs affects inerrancy since if they affirmed it, it would nullify their assertions.
Then why do you say that the Chicago statement is how you define inerrancy?

If your assertion is correct we do not know what the original autographs said and then you would have no idea of what the essential elements of the Christian faith are.
If your statement is true how are you deciding what is Biblical and what is not Biblical?
Deciding what is Biblical? Of course the Bible is Biblical. But, if your question is what is the Bible, then that would be a question for another thread.
Ok, then let me rephrase my statement. If your inerrancy statement is true then how are you deciding what is God's special revelation to man? That is the question inerrancy answers. God took special care to protect his word like Revelations says that He did and the Bible is God's special revelation to man. To deny inerrancy is to deny the power of God to protect His special revelation.

This last statement is more to Christians and I do not know if you are a believer or not.

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Re: How can we trust the Bible if it's not inerrant?

Post #1365

Post by otseng »

[Replying to EarthScienceguy in post #1368]

We've gone too off-topic. If you want to discuss the Bible and inerrancy, we can discuss in On the Bible being inerrant.

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Re: How can we trust the Bible if it's not inerrant?

Post #1366

Post by otseng »

If the universe is flat (which measurements back up), then the universe is not curved onto itself. So, the ad hoc explanation of inflationary theory is added.
In physical cosmology, cosmic inflation, cosmological inflation, or just inflation, is a theory of exponential expansion of space in the early universe. The inflationary epoch lasted from 10−36 seconds after the conjectured Big Bang singularity to some time between 10−33 and 10−32 seconds after the singularity.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inflation_(cosmology)

Note this is entirely theoretical and there is no empirical evidence to support this. So why would cosmologists continually propose ideas that are ad hoc and have no empirical evidence to support it?

I believe the primary reason is the assumption of naturalism in science. Ironically, they must invoke extranatural explanations (curved wrapped universe, inflation) that have no evidence to support them. As we look at areas dealing with cosmology, we see the cracks of the assumption of naturalism leading to beliefs that lack any evidentiary support.

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Re: How can we trust the Bible if it's not inerrant?

Post #1367

Post by Diagoras »

otseng wrote: Mon Sep 19, 2022 7:12 amNote this is entirely theoretical and there is no empirical evidence to support this. So why would cosmologists continually propose ideas that are ad hoc and have no empirical evidence to support it?
Not true. The theory of inflation was conceived in around 1979 to resolve some problems with the Big Bang, and subsequent scientific effort went into making testable predictions about inflation, such as gravitational waves. The linked article below details some of the successes (e.g. measuring what sort if structures should form on different scales) of inflation as a good model to understand the universe.

Calling this ‘ad hoc’ is frankly insulting.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/startswith ... 3116281d07
I believe the primary reason is the assumption of naturalism in science.
Yes, ‘all knowledge of the universe falls within the pale of scientific investigation’.
Ironically, they must invoke extranatural explanations (curved wrapped universe, inflation) that have no evidence to support them.
<bolding mine>

Inflation and curvature relate to the universe and are therefore ‘natural’. I recognise that you can’t very well use the term ‘supernatural’, since science doesn’t recognise it.

You may claim there’s ‘no evidence’ but that is incorrect. See above link.

As we look at areas dealing with cosmology, we see the cracks of the assumption of naturalism leading to beliefs that lack any evidentiary support.
No, we actually see theories being constantly tested and refined, holding up remarkably well as an explanation of both the early universe and what we see in the cosmos today.

And - again - evidence exists. Unlike for any god you care to mention.

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Re: How can we trust the Bible if it's not inerrant?

Post #1368

Post by otseng »

Diagoras wrote: Mon Sep 19, 2022 11:56 pm The theory of inflation was conceived in around 1979 to resolve some problems with the Big Bang,
This is the telltale sign that something is ad hoc - something is proposed that does not flow from the model and is created purely to address problems in the model. From your source, it identifies the issues the observations that the Big Bang theory fails to address.
Provide a mechanism for explaining those three puzzles — the temperature uniformity, the lack of high-energy relics, and the flatness problem — that the Big Bang has no solution for.
https://www.forbes.com/sites/startswith ... 46f1191d07

Nobody also seems to even question what would cause an inflationary event and why would it only occur once? And does the Big Bang theory predict this?

Also I'm not saying something should be dismissed automatically if ad hoc things are presented. But, a theory is suspect if there's a multiplicity of ad hoc additions.
Ironically, they must invoke extranatural explanations (curved wrapped universe, inflation) that have no evidence to support them.
Inflation and curvature relate to the universe and are therefore ‘natural’. I recognise that you can’t very well use the term ‘supernatural’, since science doesn’t recognise it.
I define natural as something as part of our 3 dimensional space-time that is empirically detectable. Since cosmology invokes things that are not detectable and outside of the 3 dimensional world, I use the term extranatural. Yes, I think it is synonymous with supernatural, but I want to avoid the religious implications for now. Though obviously we'll have to get to this at some time.
As we look at areas dealing with cosmology, we see the cracks of the assumption of naturalism leading to beliefs that lack any evidentiary support.
No, we actually see theories being constantly tested and refined, holding up remarkably well as an explanation of both the early universe and what we see in the cosmos today.
Any model can hold up if ad hoc explanations are continually added to it.

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Re: How can we trust the Bible if it's not inerrant?

Post #1369

Post by Diagoras »

otseng wrote: Tue Sep 20, 2022 7:20 am This is the telltale sign that something is ad hoc - something is proposed that does not flow from the model and is created purely to address problems in the model.
Others would say, “refine the original model based on the results of experiment.” It’s pretty much standard for many physical sciences.

Nobody also seems to even question what would cause an inflationary event and why would it only occur once?
Have you tried Googling answers to this? Strikes me that you’re arguing from ignorance here.

And does the Big Bang theory predict this?
Maybe I don’t understand your point. The original theory isn’t going to be able to predict the refinement required to itself, is it?

Also I'm not saying something should be dismissed automatically if ad hoc things are presented.
Good. I note that you omit any reference to why ‘ad hoc’ adjustments are made to a theory in the first place: because they are a better fit to what is observed after the original theory is tested. The way you present it, there’s just a bunch of folk speculating off the top of their heads. That’s not how things work.

But, a theory is suspect if there's a multiplicity of ad hoc additions.
Scientists test theories. If the theory fails, it’s revised or sometimes discarded entirely. So it’s correct to treat any theory as suspect until it passes all tests perfectly.

Perhaps read up on the perihelion of Mercury as an example.

I define natural as something as part of our 3 dimensional space-time that is empirically detectable.
Morals and friendship aren’t natural?

Since cosmology invokes things that are not detectable and outside of the 3 dimensional world, I use the term extranatural.
Isn’t time often referred to as the fourth dimension?

Can you give an example of something ‘invoked’ by cosmology? By which I mean, “call on (a deity or spirit) in prayer, as a witness, or for inspiration”? Unusually theological language for the topic, I would have thought. See below for why:-

Yes, I think it is synonymous with supernatural, but I want to avoid the religious implications for now. Though obviously we'll have to get to this at some time.
Thank you for acknowledging this.

Any model can hold up if ad hoc explanations are continually added to it.
Already answered. Continual refinement is required for any scientific theory that doesn’t show perfect prediction.

And, to actually get closer to the OP, can you honestly say that the description in Genesis of how the world was formed is a robust and accurate one? And that all the hand-waving explanations for inconsistencies and scientific errors offered by creationists aren’t themselves a bunch of ad-hoc reasoning?

Talk about having your cake…!

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Re: How can we trust the Bible if it's not inerrant?

Post #1370

Post by William »

[Replying to otseng in post #1368]
I define natural as something as part of our 3 dimensional space-time that is empirically detectable. Since cosmology invokes things that are not detectable and outside of the 3 dimensional world, I use the term extranatural. Yes, I think it is synonymous with supernatural, but I want to avoid the religious implications for now. Though obviously we'll have to get to this at some time.
Yes.

It seem to me at least that the terms extranatural and supernatural are placeholders reserved for things which are still to be discovered about nature.
Once something is discovered about nature, that something is seen to be what it has really always been when it was not discovered. It is seen to be natural and referred to as such.

On the big question "Is the universe a creation" [implying a Creator or Creators] the answer is still unknown but even it it is proven to be the case, a Creator/Creators would also require being regarded as natural.

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