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Creationism, being Bible-based, is good (Talk.Origins)

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Response Article
This article (Creationism, being Bible-based, is good (Talk.Origins)) is a response to a rebuttal of a creationist claim published by Talk.Origins Archive under the title Index to Creationist Claims.

Claim CH010:

Creationism, because it is based on the Bible, is moral. The denial of Creationism is a denial of the Bible and is therefore immoral.

Source: No source given.

CreationWiki response:

This is not a creationist claim. Where did they get this one from? They don't even cite a source. Its only purpose seems to be to provide an opportunity to poke fun at Creationists. (Talk.Origins quotes in blue)

1. Many evils in the past have been justified by claiming Biblical support. Claiming a Biblical basis has no bearing whatsoever on whether something is good or not.

Which is exactly why Creationists make no such claim.

2. Creationism is not based on the Bible. Most people who accept the Bible do not accept creationism.

This is nothing but an Appeal to Popularity. The fact is that creation science is based on the Bible. It is Biblical creationists that first started researching creation scientifically.

Biblical Creationism (we will not deal here with creationism based on the Qur'an or Vedas) is based on one particular interpretation of the Bible.

True, but it is the only natural interpretation of it. All of the alternative interpretations are attempts to squeeze evolutionary timescales into the Bible. Basically, these alternative interpretations require interpreting the Bible on the basis of theories that assume the Bible is wrong.

It is a form of religious bigotry; it declares that a particular religious interpretation applies not just to people of that religion, but to everybody everywhere, and that the religion of anyone who believes otherwise is wrong.

First of all, use of the term "bigotry" is an appeal to emotion since it is an extremely emotionally charged word. Bigotry involves an unwillingness to let other views exist or exist without persecution. It has nothing to do with asserting that others are wrong, or trying to convince others that you are right.

Second this is a relativist fallacy, by virtue of the fact that it is asserting that truth is relative. If something is true then it is universally true, and as such it is true for everyone, and anyone that disagrees is wrong. This is basic logic not bigotry. The only way for two or more contrary views on a subject to all be equally true is for all of them to be wrong.

For example, it is true that 2+2=4. It is true for everyone, even for someone who believes that 2+2=3. Thinking that someone is wrong for believing that 2+2=3 or even telling them that they are wrong, is not bigotry.

This bigotry is overt from many creationists. In fact, creationism claims to apply an individual's religious opinion to the whole universe. That is not merely bigotry; it is also hubris. Since bigotry and hubris are immoral, creationism is immoral at its very foundation.

This is just a continuation of Talk Origins' use of appeal to emotion and relativist fallacy.

The Genesis account deals with the origin of the universe, so, if it is true, it does apply to the entire universe. Once again, if something is true then it is universally true, so truth applies to the entire universe. So naturally if one thinks that a particular view is true then it applies to the entire universe, particularly if it deals with the entire universe as the Genesis account does. It is not bigotry; or arrogance (hubris) to claim that an account about how the universe came into existence applies to the entire universe, and everyone in it.

By the way Evolutionists claim that their views apply to everyone and the whole universe as well, so by Talk Origins' own "logic" they are at least as bigoted or arrogant as Creationists.

3. Creationism is as much a political movement as a religious one. For example, the "wedge" strategy of Phillip Johnson and the Discovery Institute is funded by Howard F. Ahmanson Jr. and his wife Roberta. (Johnson dedicated one of his books to them.) Ahmanson supports Christian Reconstructionism, which seeks to replace American democracy with a fundamentalist theocracy. In the society he favors, the death penalty would be required for "offenders" such as witches, homosexuals, incorrigible children, and people who disagree with the state religion.

This is a gross over-generalization. The overwhelming majority of Creationists or even politically active Christians have nothing to do with this group. Christian Reconstructionism is such a small group as to be irrelevant. Creation science has NOTHING to do with Christian Reconstructionism.

This claim by Talk Origins is interesting, since, especially in the United States, anti-creationism was pushed into education through judicial and political mechanisms, for example in the Scopes trial where evolution lost out to creationism. Evolutionists have no compunction about enforcing their views politically and through hierarchical academic control.

4 Morals are properly judged based on deeds, not claims. There are several indications that creationist deeds are below average morally.

Even if there are a few bad apples among creationists, they are an overwhelming minority. In any group of any size you can find someone that is less than honest. Based purely on the laws of probability some evolutionists are bound to be dishonest. If one wanted to show their misdeeds, similar claims could be made about them. In neither case would it be a representative sample.

Also, if you consider the more than hundred million people killed in pogroms and genocide during the twentieth century alone by the most well-known overtly atheistic and anti-Creationist regimes (Lenin, Stalin, Mao Tse-Tung, Pol Pot), then the nonsense of this claim becomes self-evident.

As mentioned at the above link, 99% of all out-of-context quotes used by creationists were lifted by one group that is known to be unreliable. Most of those who use such quotes do not know they are misquotes. While this is poor scholarship, it is not dishonesty, since dishonesty requires knowing that it is a misquote.

This very list shows even worse forms of misrepresentation of cited sources by Talk Origins. They include CG110, CG111,CH001, CH010.1 and the Biblical references below. There are several cases where they attribute claims to creationists that are not made. They include CG030 and this claim.

  • bogus credentials [Vickers 1998]

While the use of bogus degrees is inexcusable, it first needs to be established what is a bogus degree.

A degree issued without any academic work is by definition bogus; this type of diploma mill can be found in magazine advertisements. Even seeking such a degree would be dishonest. Sometimes however they go through the formality of requiring a dissertation, but they accept all submitted dissertations regardless of content. In this case the "student" may actually be deceived into thinking the degree is legitimate. The victims of this type of diploma mill are not themselves dishonest.

The laws of probability indicate that sufficient research would likely find both Creationists and Evolutionists with "degrees" from such places.

Some Christian institutions offer legitimate degrees, but have not sought accreditation for reasons that have nothing to do with academics. Sometimes creationists have been accused of having bogus degrees in such cases even when the degrees from the institution are accepted by accredited institutions.

Sometimes creationists have been falsely accused of having bogus degrees through a total misrepresentation of the institution that issued the degree.

Before claiming that someone is dishonest for using a bogus degree it must first be shown that the degree is bogus, and that the person using it knows that it is bogus.

Also as a side-note, it might be mentioned here that Charles Darwin's only degree was in theology.

First of all there is a difference between erroneous and fraudulent. A erroneous claim is simply wrong, while a fraudulent claim is a deliberate fabrication. Furthermore, to be considered dishonest, the person making the claim needs to know that the claim is erroneous or fraudulent.

Talk Origins gives no indication in its "refutation" of any of these four examples that they are fraudulent. The Lady Hope story, if false, would have to be a deliberate fabrication. However for someone to be considered dishonest for using it, they would have to know that it is erroneous.

Not only is there no evidence that the Paluxy footprints are fraudulent, but a closer look at Talk Origins' "refutation" suggests that it is Talk Origins' "refutation" that is erroneous. They present no real evidence for their claims, but when the evidence is actually examined it tends to support the human track theory.

While Moab Man does seem to be a recent burial there is no reason to call it a fraudulent claim. It is an erroneous claim but not fraudulent one. To be considered dishonest, someone supporting the Moab Man claim would have to know it is erroneous.

The problem with Malachite man seems to be its association with Moab Man. When the two Moab Man skeletons are eliminated, the eight remaining Malachite man skeletons give evidence of being authentic.

Talk Origins seems to define a refuted claim as any claim that they claim to refute, even if their refutation has itself been refuted. Even if a claim has actually been refuted, a person still making the claim needs to know that it has been refuted and to have recognized the refutation as legitimate before he can be considered dishonest.

However, the examples cited above cannot be really be considered refuted since the moon dust argument has a possible refutation of Talk Origins' refutation and the second law of thermodynamics argument has multiple refutations of Talk Origins' refutation. Here are some refutations of Talk Origins' refutation of the second law of thermodynamics argument:


Thermodynamics vs. Evolutionism

Creation, and Thermodynamics

And calling your opponents bigots as Talk Origins does in response #1 is not vilification of opponents?

The first thing that needs to be noted is that the scientists mentioned in the cited article are part of the Intelligent Design movement, but not Biblical creationists. Therefore their characters have no relevance to the honesty of Biblical creationists.

Second, the scientists mentioned in the cited article were not vilifying their opponents but were simply comparing their efforts to those of freedom fighters in the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany.

  • The examples above are not indicative of all creationists. Most creationists, like most people of any category, are good people on the whole.

This shows that Talk Origins is using a Biased Sample.

  • But creationists, unlike evolutionists or most other people, have a strong ideological commitment.

WRONG!! Evolutionists also have a strong ideological commitment but it is to absolute naturalism, uniformitarianism and Evolution. Talk Origins' condescending attitude towards creationists proves this to be the case.

  • Strong commitments such as theirs can, and judging by the examples above probably do, lead people into questionable morality if they think it would support what they consider a higher cause.

Based on some of Talk Origins' material, they seem to be speaking from personal experience.

One thing Talk Origins is clearly ignoring is the fact that, as Christians, Biblical Creationists believe that they are accountable to God for their actions. This accountability is a strong motivation towards honesty. Furthermore Talk Origins' examples of alleged dishonesty are seriously flawed. If nothing else, Talk Origins' is ignoring the matter of willfulness in the question of honesty.

  • Objective study is still necessary to determine definitively whether creationists are any less moral than average, but theory and what evidence there is suggests that that is the case.

This Talk Origins claim is anything but objective. Talk Origins' theory is flawed in that it ignores the effects of Christian belief and philosophy on such traits as honesty.

Their "evidence" is flawed on more than one point. First, Talk Origins' is ignoring the matter of willfulness in the question of honesty. Second, most of the claims that Talk Origins categorizes as fraudulent or refuted can still be honestly defended. Talk Origins' claim, that these are fraudulent or refuted, ignores the fact that there are legitimate refutations for their refutations. Talk Origins' last bit of evidence is totally bogus.

As a result of Talk Origins' flawed theory and flawed "evidence", Talk Origins' conclusion is also flawed.

5. The Bible is not a consistent guide to morality; it describes several actions that would generally be considered immoral if not downright repugnant.

Only if they are taken out of their Biblical and historical context. Furthermore, sometimes the historical portions of the Bible do refer to the immoral acts of individuals. Sometimes it does so just because they are part of the history of events.

  • Numbers 31:17-18: Moses commands his troops to kill every woman and child in Midian, except they are to keep the young virgins for themselves.

First of all this was part of a war, and essentially the only real goal in war is to kill the enemy, any exceptions are acts of mercy.

Moses sent only 12,000 men on this campaign, and yet there is no mention of resistance or supernatural help. This suggests that the number of Midianites involved was small enough to suggest that this was only one tribe.

As a part of the war these Midianites were involved in a plot to draw Israel in the worship of the pagan "god" baal-peor. This "worship" involved fornication with women. The apparently small number suggests that nearly the entire group of Midianites were involved, with one natural exception, by definition virgin women would not have been involved.

The attack was in retribution for the plot, so the only ones not killed would be those not involved. Apparently only the virgin women were not involved, so they were spared.

  • In Exodus 32:27, Moses commands his people to kill their brothers, sons, and neighbors who worshipped improperly.

This was far more than simply worshiping improperly. The way Talk Origins words it is grossly downplaying what happened. In verse 7 God tells Moses that the Israelites had corrupted themselves. This implies that this "worship" involved public sexual debauchery that would get a person arrested in most if not all 50 U.S. states. To make matter worse they were doing it in the name of God. So this was far more than the simple screw-up that Talk Origins makes it look like.

  • According to 2 Kings 2:23-24, Elisha called down a curse on some youths, resulting in 42 of them being killed by a bear, simply because they mocked his baldness.

There is more to this account than Talk Origins indicates. First, the Hebrew indicates that these youths could have been in their 20's; second, the text does not say they were killed, but mauled. The verse suggests that they came out of the city, where bandits and wild animals posed very real threats at the time, for the purpose of mocking Elisha. The very fact that 42 of them are mauled suggests that there were at least 42 in their group, and thus posed a physical threat. Their actual mocking goes beyond his baldness. The actual phrase was "Go up thou bald head."

Elisha was fighting the state-established worship of Baal. This worship included among other things the sacrificing of babies.

Their mocking included a sarcastic reference to Elijah's ascension, making this more than a personal insult. In one way their mocking was sarcastically telling him go away. More importantly it was a challenge to God's authority and Elisha's authority as prophet. In all likelihood these young men were associated with Baal worship and possibly put up to the mocking by Baal's priests.

Given the totality of the situation, this challenge had to be dealt with.

  • In 1 Chronicles 13:7-11, Uzza is killed for trying to keep the Ark of the Covenant from harm.

Even if Uzza's intentions were good, his actions were still a violation of God's law regarding the Ark. The Ark was not to be touched and the penalty for doing so was death. Even today in the United States committing a crime even for good reasons is not an excuse.

If a person steals to help someone else, such as feeding his kids, he will still go to jail if he is caught.

Here is a true story of just this type thing. There was a man in a major U.S. city whose wife was being repeatedly raped by a neighbor. They called the police many times and the police did nothing. Finally the man couldn't take it any more. He got a gun, broke into the neighbor's apartment and shot and killed him in his sleep. He was arrested, charged and finally convicted of 1st degree murder. Today he serving a life sentence, which was the maximum penalty in the state where he lives. The fact that he shot the guy to stop him from raping his wife, a good reason; was not considered an excuse.

The simple fact is that regardless of Uzza's intentions he committed a crime and paid the penalty for that crime.