Putting Words in God’s Mouth

Yes, you have. But I, for one at least, don’t understand your argument.

It is quite possible to have an idea of what sin is regardless of what has transpired in the past.

In any case, according to the story, the first couple in the garden at Eden (pleasure), had no problem killing things to eat. They ate fruit, for example, which killed it.

God made many trees that were specifically good for eating:
Out of the ground Yahweh made to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight and good for food.

And Yahweh commanded the man, ‘You may freely eat of every tree of the garden;

Eating things kills them.


Thank you for the reasoned reply.

You are correct that fruit dies when eaten. Grains of wheat die when made into flour, etc.

That is the scientific definition of death.

But the scripture seems to make a distinction between animal and plant “death”. The plants provided food for the animals. So parts of plants were used for food, thus dying. I don’t know of grain plants that can provide food without dying, actually. But flesh was not given to man for food, nor, apparently any of the animals.

That is the only way I can make sense of it. God said to Adam that he would die if he took the fruit. His death was apparently different from the death of the cells of the fruit he ate, for he was not subject to death prior to that, even though his intestinal cells shed as did his skin. The outer layer of the epidermis is even made of dead cells.

But the NT speaks as if this second kind death, the death of Adam from sin as something that can be destroyed, defeated, as opposed to the plant death that was part of the creation.

Scientists would not make such a distinction.

But larger point is still how are you folks going to deal with the theology? This plant thing is a distraction, a thing scripture does not even consider.

But the larger issue is us. What about our death?


I do not think you guys understand Goldstein. He works for a church, not a scientific association. He takes the theology seriously as do I. My feeling from the comments here is that you guys are very bought into the science, such that the theological issues carry little weight. Is that not so? So, since he is invested in a different worldview, you will not understand why he writes like he does.

Evolution is very threatening to Adventist theology. The two are really. Incomparable. That is why I say that Evo. destroys NT theology. None of you have shown that it does not.

So that is the rub. I don’t know of a solution that can include both. Either one is distorted or the other.

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You may surmise, postulate this but there is insufficient information regarding the food of animals.

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How about a discussion of the real theological issues, death, heaven and the rest? Food of animals??

IF Evo destroys ones belief in God of even God himself, well then, ones belief is very limited and failing or they have a very weak God.


One of the challanges is theology itself. Science continuously evolves (!) through the testing and retesting of available data. As an example, DNA was discovered during the lifetime of EGW but it took a further 80 years to understand its full potential and even today, new and better understanding of it has allowed major improvements in health outcomes.

Now over the same time, how has our theology progressed? Or has it even? Our theologians haven’t made as much effort in understanding God and his interaction with us as science has with its subject and with the obvious overlap when it comes to nature, our theology is positively ancient.

So let the theologians, both amateur and professional, spend more time in understanding the nature of God instead of just relying on a 19th century understanding of Him.


Theology began who knows how long before Genesis was written and has continued along countless divergent paths for two millennia after a proverbial coin was tossed and Revelations was added to what was then pronounced the “settled canon”.

That some impose arbitrary limitations on the potentially never-ending theological process by insisting that there are only a handful of authoritative resources available for this type of study, effectively eliminates those people’s ability to learn much, if anything, new on the subject of our maker. Further, the assumption that one can understand that entity better by trying to reestablish our long dead forebear’s conception of her, him or it is only that; an assumption which is as unlikely to be realized as is the possibility of literally turning back the hands of time and enjoying dinner with Abraham, Martin and John.

This manmade, artificial prohibition does not apply, however, to those whose thinking is not arbitrarily constricted and dogmatically restricted to a handful of 2,000-year old texts.

For them, every new philosophical treatise or scientific hypothesis is a another opportunity to become more god-like in their understanding of our creator.

Are any of these newer resources and insights absolutely authoritative or an indication that a third collection of texts should be selected, canonized and somehow imposed on anyone who hints at reopening the investigation into the nature of our maker?

Sure, if we want to usher in a totalitarian New Dark Age similar to that which followed on the heels of the “completion” of the old NT and which ended only gradually as supposed “divine writ” was subjected to the scrutiny and skepticism of biblical scholars who didn’t stop asking reasonable questions just because organized religion insisted it has the only acceptable interpretation of their purportedly god-inspired (whatever that might mean!?!?!) but hopelessly antiquated answer sheet.

No need to be binary.

As a non-Adventist who does not take much of anything I read in the OT, NT, or scientific literature as absolute gospel-the best grade to which any of them can aspire is an “I” until such time as no further facts are coming in-I’m convinced all of it is distorted to some extent, perhaps even having become FUBAR beyond all recognition.

But I don’t go so far as to say it’s all pointless. Just as we discard most of the plant; roots, stalk, leaves, tassel and husks in order to get to the kernels of corn, I believe there is some truth to be found no matter where one looks and even if one must cut through countless layers of detritus to find it.


The fact of evolution (that is has occurred) and the theory of evolution which explains that fact is not the root of the problem. The baseline issue is reason vs faith (as a method of acquiring knowledge), and evidence vs faith (as a method of acquiring knowledge). Faith, in this sense, is the epistemological process of taking someone’s claim of having special knowledge uncritically. This is a purported means of “knowing” which bypasses all protocols of testing against empirical observation, verification, and guarding it a priori against falsification. It is thus a short circuit in the thinking process.

The tools which constitute critical thinking must be tools for finding the truth. And that means tools for discovering which beliefs are false. And that means continually admitting to yourself that you might be wrong about something . If that scares you, then the simple fact is: you won’t be a reliable thinker.

Of course, the only way to know a belief is false is to find out that some other explanation of the evidence for that belief is as or more likely—and thus, discovering a false belief always produces one or another true belief. But the only way to know a belief is true , is to sincerely and effectively try to prove it false and fail .

That process is anathema to one who refuses to question the conclusions of his faith and allow them to be falsified by clear and sufficient evidence.


Bart, faith is not a method. It is a decision to trust the evidence you have.

Darrell, in your own words “it is a decision to trust”. Please tell me what the evidence is that you trust other than to take someone’s word for the veracity of their claim. You are thereby acquiring “knowledge” or a substitute for knowledge. That is a method.

Agree completely!!! Please do this!! The discussion has touched on evolution. Please know the naturalistic form of this has been falsified, but the overall paradigm has become a religion to most difficult for many to let go of, and so hang on to the hope that materialist evolutionism will be shown to have a foundation in empirical science. Faith?

Neil’s Bohr demolished any hope of finding a materialistic explanation for the existence of matter when he noted that the things we call matter aren’t really things.

Since then, it is a “god of the gaps” leap of faith to believe that any object exists independent of the existence of the observer.

Obviously, the conflict between quantum and Newtonian physics has not been resolved but only a religious mindset is holding onto the hope that we can somehow get back to our forefathers faith in materialism.

Ahhh…the old change-the-subject tactic when faced with a difficult question. Again,

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I agree Bruce; it is the reasonable view from all we have learned from science–biological information systems as well cosmological fine tuning and quantum physics

I Matter is the ground of all being.

II Human beings are the product of the mindless evolution of matter.

III Free will and moral conscience (our minds) are only illusions creating our sense of autonomy and self.

IV God most probably does not exist.

This is the faith of materialism!!

The point is that the very thing secular humanism loves and cherishes most probably does not exist–the thing called “human reason.”
An “illusion based on an illusion” is what Daniel Dennett, a neuro quack-doctor says of the human mind. In rejecting God is the obligation to believe that the mind is “a bag of tricks, cobbled together over the eons by the foresightless (sic) process of evolution by natural selection.”
But what we have actually discovered in science is now only the reality but the necessity of mind before matter.

Dennett, D., Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon, Viking, New York, NY, p. 107, 2006

The German physicist Werner Heisenberg (1901-1976) is one of the fathers of quantum mechanics (one of the greatest scientists of the 20th century) put it poignantly, “The first gulp from the glass of natural sciences will turn you into an atheist, but at the bottom of the glass God is waiting for you.”

“Der erste Trunk aus dem Becher der Naturwissenschaft macht atheistisch, aber auf dem Grund des Bechers wartet Gott.”

Physics and Philosophy: The Revolution in Modern Science. Published August 3rd 2000 by Penguin Classics

I prefer the idea that the creator is there at the bottom of the abyss staring back at us, as opposed to any of the mythical gods created by religions in order to help promote their terrorist scare tactics.

I further suspect that the creator’s face will look eerily similar to our own.

(Which admittedly sounds a bit Genesis-y….)


Ok, not sure what this means, but…

I see what you are saying. With this a agree of course! You extrapolate this to believe no genuine knowledge of creation or a Creator is possible. This is a faith statement would you agree?

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Like when parents use fear of god to entice kids to eat their vegetables.

Or if the RCC says we’re going to go all “Inquisitive” into your heresy….