Deep Time – the god of our Age

Throughout history, human beings have had the tendency to reject their Creator, and replace Him in their lives with gods of their own making.  From the Greek and Roman pantheons, to the Egyptian sun-god, people would rather worship a god that they create than the God who created them.  Such false gods always have the following characteristics.  (1) They are attributed one or more characteristics or powers that belong only to the Living God, especially a power over some aspect of nature.  (2) They are given allegiance, worship, or reverence above God in at least some way.  (3) They are created either physically or conceptually by man. (4) They are not the Living God, the Creator of all things.

In our modern “educated” world, people often look back at the silliness of the Greek, Roman, or Babylonian gods, as if we are far too sophisticated for such primitive nonsense.  But that just isn’t the case.  There are many false gods in our modern world; entities that are revered by people above God, and attributed powers that they cannot literally possess.  Whether it is the worship of concepts like nature, or power, or physical entities like money, such things should not be respected above God, and they cannot do what God alone can do.

But one false god stands out among others today; this god is worshipped and reverenced as the ultimate god of our culture.  Many books have been written about him, and dedicated to him.  He is the foundation of most modern philosophy and education.  What is the ultimate false god of our age?  Is it Evolution?  No, Evolution is certainly a popular god.  But many people doubt Evolution.  And in any case, Evolution answers to a higher god – a god who is far more popular and powerful than Evolution: the god Deep Time.

Deep Time is the concept of vast ages of pre-history: the notion that the Earth and universe are billions of years old.  It is a popular belief today, and is considered by many people to be the mainstream “scientific” position.  Disciples of Deep Time would probably object to the notion that he is a god, or that he is even a person at all.  They might say that Deep Time is an academic concept, the conclusion of scientific reasoning – not a person with power.  However, by their actions, Deep Time disciples do indeed imbue him with personal characteristics and powers that only a conscious being can possess.  Students of logic will recognize this as a reification fallacy.  Nonetheless, for this article, we shall honor their beliefs and refer to their god as their actions suggest that we should.  Deep Time, as he is commonly followed today, does indeed fit the characteristics of a false god.

Consider (1) Deep Time has characteristics and powers that belong to God alone.  In fact, the parallels are truly amazing!  For example, Deep Time has the power of creation.  According to His followers, he has made stars, planets, and galaxies.  He has made canyons, and mountains.  Deep Time separated the continents and oceans.  He has made all living creatures through his servant – Evolution.  Indeed, Deep Time took the elements of this world, and from that dust he made man.  These are all powers and actions that are rightly reserved for God alone (Nehemiah 9:6, Psalm 33:6, Job 38:4, Psalm 104:5-8, Genesis 1:9-10, Genesis 1:20-25, Genesis 2:7).

But it doesn’t end there.  Deep Time is also said to have tremendous power to direct the course of events in the universe.  Deep Time creates and destroys species and civilizations at a whim.  He gives life and takes it away.  He continually shapes the earth as he sees fit – changing deserts to lush gardens, and gardens to deserts.  Deep Time existed long before man, and will continue long after man, or so we are told.  Again, these are characteristics that are rightly attributed only to God (Acts 17:26, Job 42:2, Isaiah 46:10, Isaiah 45:7, Amos 3:6, Acts 17:25, 1 Timothy 6:13, Job 1:21, Isaiah 51:3, 43:19-20, Genesis 13:10, Deuteronomy 29:23, Genesis 17:1, Deuteronomy 33:27, Isaiah 43:10, Revelation 22:13).

But according to his disciples, nothing is too difficult for Deep Time!  He is able to do any miracle!  Consider this famous quote from Dr. George Wald, “Time is the hero of the plot. … Given so much time, the impossible becomes possible, the possible becomes probable, the probable becomes virtually certain.  One only has to wait; time itself performs the miracles.”  Yes, the gradual evolution of dust into people may seem impossible.  But with Deep Time, all things are possible!  He is the “hero of the plot!”  Compare this with the characteristics associated with the biblical God (Matthew 19:26, Jeremiah 32:17).

(2) Disciples of Deep Time worship him with reverence and awe.  They may deny this with their words, but their actions indicate that they do cherish this god above all others.  This makes sense: if indeed Deep Time does have the powers and abilities that his disciples attribute to him, then he should be worshiped.  Such worship takes place in the schools and universities, where Deep Time’s wonderful works are praised all the day long.

The worship of Deep Time is found in many a science textbook too.  Sandwiched in between the discussions of science will be stories about the amazing feats of Deep Time.  A little science here, and an amazing story there.  Although Deep Time has nothing to do with science, often the science and the stories are interleaved such that it can be difficult to tell where one begins and the other ends!  The mixture makes for an entertaining, though deceptive read.

Devotees take their religion very seriously.  Deep Time must not be questioned.  That would be sacrilege!  Those who fail to worship at the altar of Deep Time are ridiculed, and face being expelled from the classroom.  Textbooks that fail to acknowledge the supreme lordship of Deep Time are not likely to be used, or even published.  Those who wish to work as professors must swear allegiance to Deep Time and His servant Evolution if they want to be hired.

(3) Deep Time is manmade.  The concept of vast ages of prehistory is not something that has been revealed to us by the Living God, nor recorded by the history books of men.  Rather, it is an invention of man to account for the characteristics of our present world without invoking biblical history.  The modern version of Deep Time can be traced back to James Hutton – a medical doctor who lived in the 18th century.  His ideas were further popularized by Charles Lyell in the early 19th century.  However, this is merely a re-imagining of a much older idea.  A number of ancient cultures believed that the Earth was significantly older than the biblical timescale.

(4) Deep Time is not the Living God.  Nor is Deep Time an aspect of God, a creation of God, or an ally of God.  Deep Time exists only as a concept, created by the mind of men.  He has no literal existence.  Although his disciples ascribe to him many of the characteristics of the biblical God, it is clear that Deep Time is fundamentally different than the God of the Bible.

The biblical God is love (1 John 4:8).  The biblical God is righteous, just, and merciful.  He made a perfect world with no pain or death, a world that was corrupted by Adam’s sinful actions.  God punishes evil, as any good judge will do.  However, God is so full of love and mercy, that He has extended forgiveness to all who will trust in Him.  He has paid the penalty for their treason by dying on a cross in their place, and will undo the curse of death by resurrecting everyone.

But Deep Time is a cruel, uncaring creator.  He creates billions of organisms, only to slaughter them off at a whim.  He does not care about justice or love, and is merciless and arbitrary in his judgments.  He creates using death and pain, and does not listen to the cries of anguish of his creations.  He punishes the innocent along with the guilty, and rewards evil and good alike.  There is no forgiveness or mercy to be found in Deep Time – only the certainty of death.

This last characteristic deserves special attention.  For the biblical God, death is an enemy that was introduced by Adam’s sin: an enemy that God Himself will destroy (1 Corinthians 15:21, 25-26).  But death is Deep Time’s ally and servant.  Evolution works through death.  Progress is made incrementally by the slaughtering of billions of creatures, so that one may gain a slight improvement.  What a sadistic and inefficient process that Deep Time has chosen!  I can only say that I’m grateful to the Living God that Deep Time doesn’t actually exist.  What a horrible god he would be!

Since Deep Time is so contrary in nature and actions to the God of Scripture, it is disappointing that many Christians attempt to honor and serve both of them.  There are those who teach that God used Deep Time to create the universe, in stark contrast to God’s own revelation of creation.  They claim that God used billions of years of death and suffering to get the world to be the way He wanted it (apparently unaware that death is an enemy of God, and one that was introduced as a punishment for Adam’s sin.)  It’s not that modern Christians want to give up the True God.  Rather, they simply want to add another god, one who is contrary in nature and actions to the Living God.  Unfortunately, this type of syncretism has been a common failing in God’s people.

Consider the Israelites.  Their main struggle was not with giving up God completely, but with adding other gods.  They wanted to merge their beliefs with the pagan practices of the day, and worshiped and served the gods of Canaan.  This was totally inappropriate, not only because the Canaanite gods are fictitious inventions of the mind, but because God alone deserves our worship and does not tolerate idolatry.  In the First Commandment, God states that “You shall have no other gods before Me.”  The phrase translated “before Me” has the meaning of “in my presence.”  Scripture is clear: God alone is to be worshiped as God (e.g. Matthew 4:9-10).

Remember reading of Baal?  Baal was the Canaanite god of weather and thunder.  The Israelites often fell into Baal worship, in violation of the First Commandment.  Elijah pointed out their absurd inconsistency in 1 Kings 18:21, “How long will you hesitate between two opinions? If the LORD is God, follow Him; but if Baal, follow him.”  It was illogical for the Israelites to attempt to serve two contrary gods (and immoral).  Are we any different today when we try to add other gods to Christianity?

No man can serve two masters (Matthew 6:24).  Those Christians who want to believe in Deep Time along with the biblical God are being dreadfully inconsistent.  They may claim that they serve the Lord alone, but by their actions they reveal that Deep Time is their primary god, and the Lord is secondary.  We can tell this by the way they handle Scripture.  For the Deep-Time-Christian, all Scripture is interpreted in light of the dictates of Deep Time.  Thus, Deep Time is primary, and the Scriptures are secondary.  Indeed, if the Scriptures were primary, then the individual would have to reject Deep Time as a false god (Exodus 20:3, Isaiah 45:5-6) and fictitious concept (Exodus 20:11)

It can be discouraging to see so many Christians attempting to serve the pagan god Deep Time.  It often feels like the Christians who truly stand on God’s Word are so very few.  But we should remember that Elijah was discouraged as well.  In a time when he was afraid for his life, and thinking that he was the last faithful believer he cried out to God (1 Kings 19:14).  But the Lord responded, “Yet I will leave 7,000 in Israel, all the knees that have not bowed to Baal and every mouth that has not kissed him.” (1 Kings 19:18).  Think of this the next time you are discouraged about the rampant compromise within the Church.  How many more Christians has the Lord kept for Himself who have not bowed the knee to Deep Time?

About Dr. Lisle

Dr. Jason Lisle is a Christian astrophysicist who writes and speaks on various topics relating to science and the defense of the Christian faith. He graduated summa cum laude from Ohio Wesleyan University where he double-majored in physics and astronomy and minored in mathematics. He then earned a master’s degree and a Ph.D. in astrophysics at the University of Colorado in Boulder. Dr. Lisle specialized in solar astrophysics and has made a number of scientific discoveries regarding the solar photosphere, including the detection of giant cell boundaries using the SOHO spacecraft. He also does theoretical research and has contributed to the field of general relativity. Since completion of his research at the University of Colorado, Dr. Lisle began working in full-time apologetics ministry, specializing in the defense of Genesis. He has written a number of articles and books on the topic. His most well-known book, The Ultimate Proof of Creation, demonstrates that biblical creation is the only logical possibility for origins. Dr. Lisle wrote and directed the popular planetarium shows at the Creation Museum, including “The Created Cosmos.” He now works as director of research at the Institute for Creation Research.
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494 Responses to Deep Time – the god of our Age

  1. Jason Andrich says:

    Excellent job! This really speaks to a term I heard a few months ago; the atheistic trinity. The atheists’ triune god is matter, time, and chance.

    • Jonathan Bradford says:

      ‘The atheists’ triune god is matter, time, and chance.’

      Also commonly personified as Father Time, Mother Nature, and Lady Luck. And they say they aren’t religious! :)

      • Matthew Marta says:

        That is a very good analysis of worshipping idols and the foolishness thereof. Todays Gods are better known as mans Ideas= Ideology=Idols= Imagination=Image, all start with the big “I”. Man is himself considered the greatest and only God. I enjoyed watching “God of Wonders” in which Dr. Lisle, Dr. Whitcomb, and several others make excellent points to our awesome Creators power, will, and Love all which are clearly visible through Creation and finally ending at the cross of our Lord Jesus.

    • Reynold says:

      I’m sorry, but this is the most stupid thing I’ve read all week.

      Matter, time, chance, “deep time”, etc. can’t be “gods” because none of them are sentient! They aren’t even living things like animals are.

      Seriously: What drugs are you people on?

      They are either processes like evolution, or just physical things like matter.

      This is apparently a case of projection here: Theists assume that everyone must worship something, so if atheists don’t worship the theist god, then they MUST worship something. Am I right?

      When Lisle says:

      The statement “Jupiter is in the constellation Taurus” is a “description of reality,” and it is true – for now (June 24, 2013). But next week, it will not be true. Jupiter will be in Gemini. If laws of logic were merely a “description of reality” as you suggest, then we would expect them to change with time, since reality changes with time. But they don’t. Thus, your claim stands refuted

      He doesn’t understand either reality OR logic. It’s sunny right now, but soon it’ll be dark is also a description of reality, and it’s one that’s actually true as opposed to that horoscope b.s.

      One is a physical description of reality, and one is a logical description that is based on observations.

      • Reynold says:

        Meh. Botched a tag.

        • Reynold says:

          Ok…I’ll talk about logic just a wee bit…it is a way of thinking, a methodology, that makes generalized observations about reality that include physical processes, matter, etc.

          [Dr. Lisle: The question is: on what basis do you trust that logic is the correct way of thinking? And how do you know that logic will work in future situations, or in regions of the universe that you have not experienced? By the way, logic doesn't deal so much with observations of the physical universe as it does the relationship between concepts.]

          It is not a “description/observation” by itself.

      • Micah says:

        >Matter, time, chance, “deep time”, etc. can’t be “gods” because none of them are sentient!

        Jason gave clear characteristics for what equates a ‘false god’,
        so if you’re going to argue over what a ‘god’ is you need to stick to his definition or else you aren’t really even addressing his argument. Of course you are going to have quite a bit of trouble with that because ‘Deep Time’ as he pointed out fits those characteristics quite well.

        Seriously: What drugs are you people on?

        If you’re going to try to make a logical case for yourself you might want to avoid fallacies such as this one: The Complex Question.

        He doesn’t understand either reality OR logic. It’s sunny right now, but soon it’ll be dark is also a description of reality, and it’s one that’s actually true as opposed to that horoscope b.s

        Okay first, you just proved his point. How we describe reality changes all the time (e.g. If i was to describe reality right now i could say its sunny outside, but in a couple hours my description would change because now it would be dark.). If laws of logic were merely a description of reality then there is no reason to assume that they wouldn’t change since descriptions of reality are always changing.
        Second, what are you talking about with horoscopes? Last week Jupiter was indeed in the constellation named Taurus (I say last week because it might be in Gemini now, i’m unsure.) The truth of that has nothing to do with horoscopes.

        One is a physical description of reality, and one is a logical description that is based on observations.

        If logic was based on observation then that means logic would cease to exist if there was no one around to observe the universe. But according to evolution there was nothing to observe the universe at the beginning which means logic didn’t exist back then!

        Also if logic was based on observation then that would mean you could never know logic would continue to work in the future because you cant ‘observe’ the future. It would also mean that you couldn’t know anything about unobserved parts of the universe since logic might work differently or not at all over there. In other words, all possibility of knowledge would be destroyed, which is what Jason has been saying for a long while now: Any worldview other than the Biblical one leads to absurdity.

        • Tony says:

          Logic cannot b different in other parts of the universe, because if it was then contradictions are okay, and if contradictions are ok I could still be 100% correct about logic on earth being correct all accross the universe,even if it was different in other parts of the universe so in other words its self refuting to claim logic might wrk differently in other parts of theuniverse

          [Dr. Lisle: I appreciate the attempt, but this doesn't work because you would still be making the argument here on earth, and thus would be contradicting yourself which is not permitted here. Your argument might work for here, (contradictions cannot be true on earth in the present because the alternative is self-refuting), but only if you allow circular reasoning. When you argue that the claim must be false because it leads to self-refutation, you have tacitly assumed the law of non-contradiction. Without the law of non-contradiction, you cannot know that self-refuting claims are wrong.]

          [What you need to demonstrate is that (1) logic will also work just as well in the distant universe, and (2) logic will work just as well in the future as it does today. The Christian worldview can justify both of these truth claims. But your worldview cannot.]

          you misunderstand what Reynold had said, if no mind was to observe a rock that rock would still not be both a rock and a snake at the same time! Which means that logic is not dependent on any mind to remain legit and true

          [Dr. Lisle: It is certainly true that laws of logic do not depend on any human mind; but then that leaves open exactly what are laws of logic? They cannot be human constructions if they remain true before people existed. Yet they are abstract. How do you account for this in your worldview?]

          The only thing you proved is that you can’t even understand the argument of others and that one who follows a “bliblical” worldview like you can’t even understand the arguments of others because they are so blinded by their absurd ignorance

          [Dr. Lisle: You are projecting again. If you come up with a rational defense of your worldview, I'd love to read it.]

          • Tony says:

            No I wasn’t reasoning in a circle

            [Dr. Lisle: you were attempting to argue that logic must be universal by claiming that the alternative was self-refuting and thus wrong. But in concluding that a self-refuting argument is wrong, you are tacitly assuming the law of non-contradiction. In using logic to argue for logic, you reason in a circle.]

            Micah was, and I was just showing how his circle refutes its self!

            [Dr. Lisle: How do you know - in your worldview - that self-refuting positions (contradictions) are always wrong? You still have not given a rational answer to that question.]

            I was not contradicting myself!

            [Dr. Lisle: In the hypothetical scenario you put forward in claiming that laws of logic were truly universal while considering that they are not universal, you claimed that you would still be correct since the laws of logic would not be universal. But that isn't accurate. Your claim would simply be wrong.]

            Your claim made no sense! Also I told you logic is a description of the nature of reality, since what ever logic describes is logical then it was logic before people got there!

            [Dr. Lisle: I have already refuted that many times. But for the sake of hypothesis, what aspect of the nature of reality do think that logic is describing? How on your worldview can you know that logic will work tomorrow, or one second from now?]

            • Tony says:

              Simple because denying logic is self refuting,! You must assume that the always work the same to claim they don’t work the same to claim logic is not universal you must first assume that it is universal!

              [Dr. Lisle: No you don't. You might assume that laws of logic work merely in areas that you have observed. There would be no problem with that hypothesis. Laws of logic need not work everywhere in order for them to work here. Isn't that obvious? On what basis, therefore, do you assume that they work in regions that you have not observed, or at future times?]

              The aspect that they describe is how reality operates,you have not refuted anything you don’t even understand the argument!

              [Dr. Lisle: No, they describe the correct chain of reasoning between concepts. They operate entirely in the abstract realm of thought. You are confusing laws of logic with laws of nature. Laws of nature describe (and prescribe) how the physical universe operates.]

              • Brian Forbes says:

                I have a foster daughter. She argues with everything, and I mean everything that might be taken as an insult on her. “A, you’re looking radiant today!” “No I’m not!” She also has the habit of taking sides regardless of the truth. About two months ago, she always took my side and said she would defend me, no matter the issue. She would say, “It’s not your fault. It’s nobody’s fault.” Clearly, someone is at fault, and most of the time I know who it is. These days, she takes my wife’s side more than mine, no matter the issue. My other kids go crazy trying to reason with her, because there’s no basis for her assertions – at least it seemed that way to them… until…

                I told my kids the secret behind A’s mindset. She didn’t argue with us because she understood the logic and wanted to change our minds. She argued with us because she wanted to express her loyalties. Logic be darned.

                I see a lot of A in Tony. It doesn’t matter the argument, it’s always that Dr. Lisle doesn’t understand, he’s right, the Dr. is wrong. He’s arguing that logic is important and universal, yet his logic is lacking. We should all remember that Tony is like A in that the truth isn’t determined by logical argumentation here, but by loyalty – or, to put it another way, logic is the team he’s fighting for. You’re not going to win this debate, because the only way you can win is to change his loyalties, and you’re going about that all wrong. My kids understand this now, and it helps them not to bicker so much. You win this debate with a laugh and a hug.

                In short, remember love in your debate. There’s people on the other side… illogical people.

                • Josef says:

                  Exactly, I feel as though Tony is replying without giving much, if any, actual thought to Dr. Lisle’s arguments. Most of what he says has already been addressed several times over.

                  Just below where Dr. Lisle has pointed out Tony’s use of circular reasoning is a great example of what I’m referring to. Tony had boldly stated that circular reasoning is always wrong, but he uses circular reasoning himself. Dr. Lisle kindly pointed this out to him, and if this were the first case of this, that would be one thing. But I know Dr. Lisle has pointed out Tony’s use of circular reasoning several times already, but yet, Tony still insists that circular reasoning is always false. And Tony using an exclamation mark at the end of every sentence does not make his argument any more compelling!

              • Tony says:

                “Laws of logic need not work everywhere in order for them to work here”
                that’s a self refuting statement

                [Dr. Lisle: What makes you think that? There is nothing self-refuting about proposing that laws of logic may not apply in some regions of the universe, so long as they work here.]

                its actually impossible to find a place where logic does not work or works diferently

                [Dr. Lisle: How do you know? Have you been to every place in the universe to check? You have made a universal claim, but you do not have universal experience. This also flatly contradicts what you stated earlier - about laws of logic supposedly not working the same at very small scales.]

                • Josef says:

                  That’s not a self-refuting statement. That is simply stating a fact that even if laws of logic doesn’t apply at some location x light years away from earth, that wouldn’t change the fact that they work here.

                  But, just because they work here, that doesn’t mean that they apply at the location x amount of light years away. Have you tested logic in deep space? How do you know they hold up since the only experience you’ve ever had with logic is here on earth?

                • Tony says:

                  “This also flatly contradicts what you stated earlier – about laws of logic supposedly not working the same at very small scales.”
                  well you said you took classes about quantum physics and their is no different in logic and i couldnt find anything to really confirm or deny what you said so i had to drop it for know

                  [Dr. Lisle: Okay. I just found it to be a surprising reversal since earlier you were arguing for a position that you have now claimed to be self-refuting. You're allowed to change your mind of course. Now the challenge will be to justify the universality of logic on your worldview.]

                  • Tony says:

                    simple because it is impossible!

                    [Dr. Lisle: It is impossible to justify the universality of laws of logic on your worldview, but I don't think that's what you meant. Is it? If you have a reason on your worldview to believe in the universality of laws of logic, what is it?]

                    • tony says:

                      i told you its impossible for logic to just become “different”

                      [Dr. Lisle: How do you know that? Try backing up your claims with rational argumentation.]

                    • Tony says:

                      we have been through this it just is impossible!

                      [Dr. Lisle: Unsupported claims can be dismissed as arbitrary. This is the problem with secular thinking. It is totally arbitrary. Secularists have blind faith and cannot give good reasons for their beliefs. This has been my point from the beginning.]

                    • Tony says:

                      again we have been through this already, but it seems like you just cant understand

                      [Dr. Lisle: Irony. I was just thinking that about you. It appears that you are now essentially conceding that you do not have a logical, objective reason for your beliefs. They are arbitrary and irrational.]

                  • Tony says:

                    this comment again, shows that you dont understand what you talk about first of all, all reasoning goes in a line, and the axiom is the end of that line,

                    [Dr. Lisle: Then how do you know that your axiom is true? This is the question you seem unable to answer within your own worldview. And it seems that you haven't really thought about it carefully at all. If you don't have a logical reason to accept your axiom, then you accept it by blind faith (by definition) and hence you don't really know if it is actually true.]

                    circular reasoning is a fallacy, which means you cannot use it, again this shows me that presupptionalists in general dont know what axioms are

                    [Dr. Lisle: Your axiom is unjustified in your worldview. You have no objective, logical reason to accept it. It is therefore arbitrary, blind faith - by definition. Thus, all your other beliefs that are based on it are also unjustified. Your thinking is completely without any rational foundation whatsoever. This is a common characteristic of all non-biblical worldviews. Tony, you have demonstrated the truth of Proverbs 1:7 over and over again. Apart from the biblical God, knowledge of anything would be impossible.]

                    • Tony says:

                      “you have demonstrated the truth of Proverbs 1:7 over and over again.”
                      no you have demonstrated the fact that you cant realize the fallacy of circular reasoning

                      [Dr. Lisle: That's a question-begging epithet fallacy. You are the one trying to justify logic by appealing to a logical argument - isn't that circular? Other times you seem to accept it arbitrarily, by blind faith. You just can't seem to make up your mind. What is your answer to the trilemma? (A) logic is unjustified (accepted by blind faith). (B) logic is justified by something illogical (irrational). (C) Logic is justified by logic (circular). What is your answer?]

                      “Apart from the biblical God, knowledge of anything would be impossible.”
                      again you are not making anysense,

                      [Dr. Lisle: Apart from Christianity, logic cannot be justified because you would be stuck in an epistemological trilemma. What part of this are you having difficulty understanding? I'm happy to clarify as needed.]

                      just running around in circles

                      [Dr. Lisle: Aren't you the one reasoning in circles? I have a rational foundation for logic, morality, uniformity, rationality, etc. You seem to either accept them by blind faith, or appeal to them as their own foundation - circular.]

                      also the funny thing is that there is no one agreed definition of knowledge among thinkers, and “true justified belief” does NOT mean knowledge

                      [Dr. Lisle: Then what is your definition of knowledge? If you can't provide one, then your objection is simply a question-begging epithet. Knowledge does have to be true, justified belief because any alternative leads to absurdity. But I will listen if you want to provide another definition.]

                    • Tony says:

                      first of all just like many of Plato’s ideas his definition of knowledge is and has been declared to be absurd

                      [Dr. Lisle: Declaring something absurd doesn't make it so. I could declare that "Tony does not exist" but that wouldn't make it true. If you have an actual argument against the definition of knowledge I provided, you need to make it.]

                      as his government as shown in ” The Republic”lets take a look at the Chinese characters for knowledge”知識” lit literally means to understand and recognize,

                      [Dr. Lisle: 'Understand' and 'recognize' are merely synonyms of 'knowledge.' You are basically arguing that knowledge is knowledge - which is true but useless as a definition, and does not refute the fact that knowledge must be true justified belief. (Also, the Chinese definition is not the one at issue, so this entire line of argumentation is the fallacy of irrelevant thesis.)]

                      so in Chinese knowledge cannot mean “true justified belief” because the word for it cannot mean those things!

                      [Dr. Lisle: You have begged the question (your argument is viciously circular). You argue that knowledge cannot mean those things because it cannot mean those things. In reality, 'knowledge,' 'understanding,' and 'recognition' are synonyms that mean "true, justified, belief." Any alternative (which you have yet to provide) will lead to absurdity.]

                      Again Platonic definitions for knowledge have themselves been declared absurd and impossible by many philosophers

                      [Dr. Lisle: This is the fallacy of irrelevant thesis. Simply declaring something absurd doesn't make it so. You need to start thinking rationally. Really, you need to repent before God and beg Him to help you. Jesus saves us not only from hell, but from irrationality. Apart from the Christian worldview, your thinking will continue to be as absurd, inconsistent, and arbitrary as it has been in our dialogs. By the way, I notice that you still haven't been able to answer the trilemma from your own worldview. Hint: You can't. Only Christ can save you from intellectual (and physical) hell. "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction."]

                    • Tony says:

                      i told you your trilemma doesnt exist

                      [Dr. Lisle: Of course it exists! I just stated it. It is irrational to answer an argument by claiming that the argument doesn't exist! Nice try though.]

                      we been trough this you clear dont know what an AXIOM is,

                      [Dr. Lisle: With that answer, I'd say that you don't know what an axiom is, nor how to justify yours. Your faith is blind, as you continue to demonstrate. You seem to think that stating that your belief is an axiom makes it okay that you can't defend it logically. But this is not so. Blind faith is irrational, and is the inevitable position of all non-Christian worldviews.]

                      there is a reason why axioms exist and circular reasoning is a FALLACY

                      [Dr. Lisle: Then how do you know that your axiom is true? Is it (A) you don't know, (B) you know because of an illogical reason, or (C) you know because of a logical reason? This trilemma is unanswerable from your worldview. Yet it follows from the law of the excluded middle. Your worldview is hopelessly irrational.]

                      also repeating that Sye Ten guys rhetoric doesn’t work,the fact that you take him seriously shows that you need lots of help.He like you goes on emotional rants when he is losing

                      [Dr. Lisle: Isn't that exactly what you are doing? You can't answer the tough questions, so you pretend they don't exist. You cannot have knowledge on your worldview so you try to deflect the question by redefining knowledge. If you want to be taken seriously, you need to have reasons for your beliefs, and not just state them over and over.]

                      But anyways you fail to realise in Chinese knowledge cannot mean “true justified belief” the words used in Chinese for “true justified belief”are totally different then the one for knowledge,

                      [Dr. Lisle: The English word for "dog" is totally different from the word "canine." By your reasoning, this proves that dogs are not canines. No, you are confusing a verbal token with a referent, which is an equivocation fallacy. Moreover, we are talking in English, using the English word for knowledge. So, appealing to the Chinese language is utterly irrelevant.]

                      [I have shown by an argument that knowledge is true, justified, belief, because any other definition will allow us to call things "knowledge" that clearly are not, or reject knowledge that clearly is. You haven't been able to counter that, so I'm taking that as a concession of defeat. Let's move on. What is your answer to the trilemma?]

                      but the point is here that ONLY in europeanlanguages can you invent such a absurd definition for knowledge!

                      [Dr. Lisle: What is absurd about it? You just can't seem to make a coherent counter-argument.]

                      , the defintion cannot be universal

                      [Dr. Lisle: This is the fallacy of irrelevant thesis. I have defined my terms clearly, and pointed out that you cannot have knowledge based on this definition. Do you concede that indeed you cannot have knowledge in the sense of true justified beliefs on your worldview? Do you agree that your faith is blind and irrational?]

                      the fact that you dont know there are other defintions for knowledge and you think them to be absurd shows great academicdishonestly/ignorance/

                      [Dr. Lisle: I am aware that other people have attempted other definitions, but these would allow us to "know" things that we really don't know, and to not "know" things that we really do know. Thus, such definitions are self-refuting. Regardless of what definition we use, do you concede that your worldview would make it impossible to have true, justified, beliefs? If so, then we are in agreement on the issue. If not, then you must still answer the trilemma. I don't think you can.]

                    • Tony says:

                      you never heard of Edward Gritter have you?

                      [Dr. Lisle: This is the fallacy of irrelevant thesis.]

                      the only reason you use Plato’s definition is not because everything else is “absurd” its because your apologetic can only work with this definition,

                      [Dr. Lisle: Prove it. Come up with some other definition that is not self-refuting, and consistent with what we normally call knowledge. If you can't (and so far you haven't been able to), then I must dismiss your claim as arbitrary.]

                      and no matter how many times its been refuted you MUST hold on to it.

                      [Dr. Lisle: Actually, it has never been refuted. But if you think you can, by all means do so. In any case, it will not save your worldview from utter absurdity. You cannot justify your foundational beliefs - they are arbitrary and hence irrational. If you disagree, then what is your answer to the trilemma? I predict that you will again try to deflect the question rather than answering it.]

                    • Tony says:

                      Ok then by showing utter ignorance for the work of Edward gritter you demonstrate that you don’t understand how flawed your understanding of knowledge is

                      [Dr. Lisle: That's the fallacy of faulty appeal to authority. My prediction is confirmed. You deflected the question since you can't answer it. Are you at least starting to realize how irrational your worldview is?]

                    • Tony says:

                      uh no…incase you havent realized youe entire argument is an arugment to authoruty-”god dun it” ,

                      [Dr. Lisle: This is another straw-man fallacy. My argument for God is that without Him knowledge would be impossible. You have demonstrated that my claim is true. You couldn't know anything on your own worldview because you cannot even justify logic (or morality, reliability of senses, science, etc.)]

                      and the fact that you think that was an appeal to authority is a joke!

                      [Dr. Lisle: When you substitute a name instead of making a rational argument, that's an appeal to authority fallacy. You could greatly benefit from a class on logic.]

                      it appears you are far more academicaly dishonest than meets the eye!

                      [Dr. Lisle: That is an ad-hominem fallacy, and it is unsupported. Moreover, morality has no basis in your worldview, as we have previously established. When you argue that something is "dishonest" you are relying on the Christian worldview and have revealed your suppressed knowledge of God.]

                      when i referenced Edward Grittier I was refering to “Grittier Problems” something i dont thuink you have year heard of!

                      [Dr. Lisle: No, I haven't. But since you appealed to a name but made no actual argument, you have merely committed an irrelevant appeal to authority.]

                      and i anwsered your question before it just seems you dont understand axioms, and their properties, so you can have an excuse in begging the question

                      [Dr. Lisle: No, you still have not answered my trilemma. Is the axiom of logic (1) arbitrarily assumed (blind faith), (2) justified by something illogical (irrational), or (3) justified by a logical reason (circular). All you have to say is "1", "2", or "3." Is that so hard?]

                    • Tony says:

                      Hahaha your funny dr.lisle I gave you countless rebuttals

                      [Dr. Lisle: Where? Not on this blog. You haven't provided any rational rebuttals at all as far as I can tell.]

                      and you admitted that your morals are relativistic

                      [Dr. Lisle: Where? No, morality applies equally to all people because all are made in God's image and God is sovereign over all people. In your worldview people are just chemical accidents. Bags of chemicals do not have morality. When vinegar reacts with baking soda, it is neither right nor wrong. It just "is." Your worldview can never make the leap from what is to what should be.]

                      and you didnt even understand any of the things about morals i talked about,

                      [Dr. Lisle: Actually, it seems that you didn't understand the point of the story that you told - ironically. Your view of "morality" is the same as selfishness - namely "right" is what benefits (or is likely to benefit in the future) oneself.]

                      as well you fail to understand the arguements i gave about logic,

                      [Dr. Lisle: Did you give an argument for the legitimacy of logic? If so, was it a logical argument? If not, then we may reject it. If it was a logical argument, then aren't you reasoning in a circle? Didn't you tell me that circular reasoning is always wrong? What is your answer to the trilemma?]

                      hut i guess i was too subtle and need to be blatanly clear mext time

                      [Dr. Lisle: Yes, please be very clear. You can start by clearly stating your answer to the trilemma.]

                      I gave countless justifications for those things but you just refuse to accept them

                      [Dr. Lisle: You did attempt to justify morality, reliability of senses, logic, etc. But I showed that your justifications were self-refuting. Don't you remember? Your view of morality reduced to selfishness; your argument for reliability of senses didn't work - you couldn't know that you are not a mud puddle; and your argument for logic used logic - circular reasoning. I'm asking if you have any logically sound arguments for your beliefs. Apparently you don't. And that's the point.]

                      and you misdefine what an axiom is,

                      [Dr. Lisle: "A maxim widely accepted on its intrinsic merit", or "a statement accepted as true as the basis for argument or inference: POSTULATE" These are standard dictionary definitions. My question to you - which you seem to be unable to answer - is "how do you know that a given axiom (logic for example) is true?"]

                      you can’t realize how damaging Grettier problems are to your beliefs about

                      [Dr. Lisle: Since you haven't actually made an argument here, I can dismiss your claim as an irrational question-begging epithet. It would be like me saying, "Have you listened to the Bahnsen-Butler CDs on transcendental arguments? No? Well, then you don't understand how wrong you are."]

                      no dr.lisle al you have proven is that your thinking is extremely compartalmemtalized

                      [Dr. Lisle: I find it interesting how many comments you make Tony that make no sense applied to me, but apply to you perfectly. This is one example. My worldview can make sense of logic, (objective) morality, science, reliability of senses, etc. in a unified way. You believe in all these things of course, but they are unjustified and isolated in your thinking. You don't have a rational worldview that ties them together. In other words, your thinking is very compartmentalized.]

                    • Tony says:

                      “Moreover, morality has no basis in your worldview, as we have previously established. ” No we haven’t,

                      [Dr. Lisle: Yes, we did. Scroll up and re-read that section. Your analogy demonstrated that morality=selfishness in your worldview.]

                      all we have established was that you have only extremely euro-centric thinking, that you cant comprehend Chinese notions of morality,

                      [Dr. Lisle: You explained it very well and I do comprehend. In your view we should behave in a particular way if it is likely to benefit us in the future. Your story made that very, very clear. Remember? Of course this position is irrational, and would condemn as wrong actions like sacrificing oneself to save another.]

                      this is like saying only English can provide a basis for grammar

                      [Dr. Lisle: English entails rules of grammar, as do other languages. But all systems of morality tacitly assume the Christian God, otherwise they would be unjustified.]

                      i ahve no “supressed” knowledge

                      [Dr. Lisle: You reveal your suppressed knowledge of God by relying on your senses, by relying on logic, by relying on science, by appealing to morality, etc. None of these things would make sense apart from God. You can lie to yourself or to me. But your actions make it obvious that you do know God.]

                      your your tribal bronze age deity this is nothing more then just delusional insult typical of people

                      [Dr. Lisle: This is a question-begging epithet - the last resort of people who cannot defend their position logically.]

                      how admit they reason in circles,

                      [Dr. Lisle: Isn't that what you are doing? You seem to be arbitrarily assuming that I am wrong, and using that as a basis for proving that I am wrong. Isn't that fallacious? What is your answer to the trilemma? Is logic unjustified in your worldview? If it is justified, is it justified logically, or illogically? If you cannot answer these simple questions, then do the right thing and concede that you are irrational.]

                      once again your so called trilemma doesnt work because you dont seem to understand the definition of an axiom

                      [Dr. Lisle: The trilemma follows logically from the law of the excluded middle. Either logic is justified (non-arbitrary) or it is not the case that it is justified. If it is justified, then that justification is logical or it is not the case that it is logical. I'll tell you what Tony, let's take it one step at a time. Just answer this question from your worldview:

                      "Is there a reason to accept logic, or is it not the case that there is a reason to accept logic?" The law of the excluded middle precludes any other possibility (either A or not-A). So which is it?]

                    • Micah says:

                      >Hahaha your funny dr.lisle

                      Thats funny, through out your exchanges with Dr. Lisle i have been thinking the same thing about you. Although honestly, i’m not sure whether to find irrationality humorous or tragic.

                    • Tony says:

                      “Your analogy demonstrated that morality=selfishness in your worldview”
                      again this show you DIDN’T understand,

                      [Dr. Lisle: Tony, have you considered the possibility that you have missed the moral of the story? Your story indicated that the parents were treating someone in a fashion that, if they continued, would likely be the way their son would treat them - an undesirable result. They began acting in a different way when they realized that their previous actions would have led to an undesirable future for them.]

                      and this would mean Jesus taught morality was based on selfishness

                      [Dr. Lisle: Hardly. We have moral obligation to our Creator, in the Christian worldview.]

                      and the fact that you said that shows,you are just saying that because your brain is so compartmentalized that you just CANNOT conceive of morality outside your own tribal deity,

                      [Dr. Lisle: Actually, Tony, that is what you are doing. I'm giving an objective logical basis for objective morality, and pointing out that you have no such basis on your worldview.]

                      again saying that everybody else must assume your god to exist to have morality

                      [Dr. Lisle: I haven't merely "said" that; I have demonstrated it. And you've helped me do it. You have shown that on your own worldview, you cannot account for actual morality. In your worldview morality reduces to selfish relativism.]

                      is like saying everyone else must assume English to have grammar

                      [Dr. Lisle: This is the fallacy of false analogy. It also implies that you believe different cultures can have different morality (e.g. what is right for one culture can be wrong for another) which is cultural relativism. Is this what you believe?]

                    • Tony says:

                      also incase you dont know the most basic axiom like that of logic is just true because it is from everything else we reason with,

                      [Dr. Lisle: Okay. But when you say "because" you are giving a reason. Is your reason logical or illogical?]

                      see know if there is anymore actually justfication it would mean either circular reasoning

                      [Dr. Lisle: Actually, even the tiniest bit of justification is circular reasoning, since you are using logic to justify logic.]

                      or infinite regress and you chose circular reasoning which means that your argument is worthless and a bare naked assertion

                      [Dr. Lisle: Actually, this is your argument Tony. You are the one using logic to defend logic. You are the one arguing in circles, and then claiming that such an argument is "worthless and bare naked assertion." Do you see how you have just refuted yourself? This is the sort of irrationality that is inescapable in all non-Christian worldview.]

                    • Tony says:

                      “You can lie to yourself or to me. But your actions make it obvious that you do know God.”
                      dont be redicoulous i am not lying

                      [Dr. Lisle: Yes you are. The Bible makes it clear that everyone knows God because God has made Himself known to all (Romans 1:18-22). And you demonstrate this by relying on your senses, your memory, on laws of logic, on uniformity in nature, on morality, and so on, all of which make no sense at all on your own professed worldview. If you really didn't know God, you wouldn't trust your senses, or reasoning, or logic, etc.]

                      you are just saying that again as arrgoant presupptionilist who enjoys talking down to people,

                      [Dr. Lisle: That is another abusive ad hominem fallacy.]

                      again you show your own abusrdity by making such statments,

                      [Dr. Lisle: What have I said that is "absurd?" Can you show me a claim that has broken a law of logic, or is arbitrary, etc.? I have provided rational reasons for my beliefs. With respect, it is your worldview that has been exposed as absurd.]

                      filled with question begging,

                      [Dr. Lisle: Tony, you are the one begging the question when you appeal to logic in your defense of logic. In fact, I don't think you have given any good (non-question-begging) reason for anything in your worldview.]

                      fallacy of eviuocation and fallacy of division,

                      [Dr. Lisle: You'll have to make an argument for that. Otherwise, you are comitting the fallacy of the question-begging epithet.]

                    • Tony says:

                      “In your worldview people are just chemical accidents. Bags of chemicals do not have morality. When vinegar reacts with baking soda, it is neither right nor wrong. It just “is.” again a fallacy of division and composion,

                      [Dr. Lisle: It would only be the fallacy of composition if humans are more than just bags of chemicals. If we had a soul for example. But on your worldview, there can be no fallacy because humans are simply bags of chemicals with no design or purpose.]

                      and also i guess the moral of that chinese story i told you was too subtle your you to understand

                      [Dr. Lisle: The moral was very clear. What other conclusion could I rationally draw? If you can't give me one, then I'll take your comment as a question-begging epithet fallacy, and we can move on.]

                      and “Your worldview can never make the leap from what is to what should be” Ok its clear that story i told you, you DONT understand it it and you would be laughed out of every East Asian country if you tried to tell them what you told me ….

                      [Dr. Lisle: This is another question-begging epithet fallacy. Tony, you love to make claims, but you never back them up with logic! If you think I've misunderstood your story, then make a case for it. I'll listen. But if you make no case, I'll assume that you're just full of hot air.]

                      “If people regarded other people’s families in the same way that they regard their own, who then would incite their own family to attack that of another? For one would do for others as one would do for oneself.” – Mozi

                      [Dr. Lisle: In the Christian worldview, yes, we should treat others as we want to be treated since they are created in the image of God. But on your worldview, it seems the only reason to be nice to other is in hopes that they will in the future make the logical mistake of reciprocating. In other words, it will likely benefit me. So this quote reinforces my interpretation of your story, that morality is just another word for selfishness in your worldview - which of course is not true morality at all.]

                      “The sage has no interest of his own, but takes the interests of the people as his own. He is kind to the kind; he is also kind to the unkind: for Virtue is kind. He is faithful to the faithful; he is also faithful to the unfaithful: for Virtue is faithful.” –Laozi

                      [Dr. Lisle: Makes sense in the Christian worldview. But in the secular worldview, WHY? Why should I be "kind" unless I think it will benefit me in the future (selfishness)? Can you answer that Tony?]

                      “Regard your neighbor’s gain as your own gain, and your neighbor’s loss as your own loss.” –Laozi

                      [Dr. Lisle: In the Christian worldview, we should indeed love others as ourselves. We are all made in God's image. But if other people are just chemical accidents of nature, it makes no sense to treat their gain as my gain. Are you starting to understand now? You are stealing from the Christian worldview to support ideas that make no sense on your own professed worldview.]

                      “you couldn’t know that you are not a mud puddle; ”
                      first of all that is an unfalsable arguement and therofore worthless

                      [Dr. Lisle: I take this to mean that indeed on your worldview you cannot know that you are not a mud puddle. That's my point. Knowledge of anything would be impossible apart from the biblical worldview. I think we are in agreement on that issue now. Yes?]

                      and second of all this is a fallacy of divison and compostion- i thought i made my self clear on that.

                      [Dr. Lisle: The fallacy of division and composition involve assuming that what is true of the whole is true of the parts or vice versa when there is a compelling reason that this is not the case. You'll have to make an argument to claim this fallacy because some things are true of the parts and whole, and others are not. Example, A house made of red bricks is red. That works. A house made of light bricks is not light (because their weight adds). See? So you'll have to make a case if you are going to claim that fallacy. You still haven't provided any rational reason on your own worldview to assume that you are not a mud puddle.]

                    • Tony says:

                      no Dr.Lisle again you fail to realize your fallacy of division, the fact that you said its only a fallacy if people have souls is nothing more than special pleading, the fact that you dismissvley call people “bags of chemicals” shows your ignorance for science and chemistry its like saying a box a hobo lives in is the same as the Sydney opera house! so i am going to have to use an video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N9FaCdc4uLw&feature=c4-overview&list=UUiVyaC3sQ1puw3Qj9Ccx2xw and as well ” But on your worldview, it seems the only reason to be nice to other is in hopes that they will in the future make the logical mistake of reciprocating”
                      WRONG- in case you cannot realize our brains are advanced enough to realize that we shouldnt treat people the same way we would not want to be treated, not because we hope to get something in return but because we ourselves can imagen what its like to be in the position of that person who is suffering. It seems like you cannot conceive of the Chinese notions of morality, so then you make up these awful post hoc rationalizations

            • Tony says:

              Also you don’t understand I was showing how Micah’s argument was in a circle and it doesn’t even work! Again like I told you there is a reason why circular reason is called a fallacy! If there where times when it was ok than why isn’t it in all the logic textbooks?

              [Dr. Lisle: Again, I'm just amazed that you haven't yet realized that your reasoning is circular. You have argued that a denial of logic is self-refuting. I don't disagree with your argument. But it is a logical argument, and thus a circular argument in this case since logic is what you are trying to justify. See, you have tacitly assumed the veracity of logic in order to make an argument for logic. You've assumed what you are trying to prove, which is to say that you have begged the question. Do you understand this? Is your argument fallacious?]

              • Tony says:

                uh no in case you havent noticed yet i am talking about IF a person denies logic they are promoting a self refuting statesmen, and reason in a circle. I my self never made this argument i just shown what happens if a person does deny logic

                [Dr. Lisle: You are using logic to argue for logic when you argue that the alternative leads to absurdity. It's circular.]

                • Tony says:

                  no i said the person who offers proof for no-logic does that

                  [Dr. Lisle: Tony, you still haven't realized the bind that you are in. I've asked you for a reason on your worldview to have confidence in logic. You haven't been able to give one. You simply assume it on blind faith. You state that the alternative is self-refuting (and I agree). But you don't seem to realize that this is irrelevant and does not provide a reason for believing in logic unless you add two additional propositions: (1) Self-refuting positions are always false. (2) The law of the excluded middle (either A or not-A). Then your argument becomes:

                  1. A or B (logic is legitimate or it isn't, by the law of the excluded middle)

                  2. not B (because self-refuting propositions are always false, by the law of non-contradiction)

                  3. Therefore A (by disjunctive syllogism.)

                  But you have used all sorts of rules of logic to draw this conclusion. You've assumed the law of non-contradiction, the law of the excluded middle, and a disjunctive syllogism, to name a few. In other words, you have assumed logic in order to make a case for logic. You told me previously that we are not allowed to assume as a premise what we are trying to prove - that circular reasoning is always fallacious and worthless. Would you like to modify or clarify your claim?

                  Let me help you to see the inescapable bind that you are in. I'm going to ask you for a reason on your worldview to believe that logic is legitimate. You only have three options. You can admit that you don't have a reason, in which case I will point out that you are being arbitrary and that your faith is blind. You can give me a reason that is not logical, in which case I will accuse you of being irrational (by definition), and thus will dismiss your reason as illogical. Or you can give me a reason that is logical (uses logic), in which case I will point out that your reasoning is circular because you have assumed the correctness of logic in order to argue for the correctness of logic.]

                  • Tony says:

                    you do realize that to argue that self-refuting premises are not always wrong

                    [Dr. Lisle: Now you've committed the straw-man fallacy. I'm not arguing that self-refuting premises are not always wrong. My position as a Christian is that contradictions are always wrong because they are contrary to the nature of God in whom is all truth. I'm asking you to justify the universal nature of logic on your worldview, but so far you haven't been able to. This has been my claim from the very beginning of our dialog.]

                    you yourself must assume they ARE always wrong

                    [Dr. Lisle: In the Christian worldview, the law of non-contradiction makes sense. Its universal nature is consistent with the sovereignty of God. So I can say with confidence that contradictions are always wrong. But how can you possibly know that logic is universal on your own worldview? I say you can't.]

                    also from the false triliemma you shown me it’s clear you dont know about axioms

                    [Dr. Lisle: If it is a false trilemma, then what is the fourth alternative? If you don't have one, then your claim is just a question-begging epithet fallacy. If an axiom is unjustified (which is to say that there is no objective, logical reason to believe it), then a belief in it is blind faith by definition. So, with all respect, I'm going to suggest that you really don't know very much about axioms, or how they are justified. In any case, what is your answer to the trilemma?]

                    • Tony says:

                      hold on are you saying that axioms are justfied by themselves?

                      [Dr. Lisle: I'm asking you how you justify your axioms.]

                    • Micah says:

                      An axiom would have to be justified by itself. If it appealed to something else then it wouldn’t be the axiom anymore!

  2. Caleb Lewis says:

    Very well written Dr Lisle!
    I hadn’t ever thought of time being a god from an evolutionary perspective, but it really makes sense!

  3. Craig Yadon says:

    I wanted to ask your thoughts on the film The Star of Bethlehem by Rick Larson. Have you looked into his findings? I’ve come to admire your opinions would appreciate any comments. I couldnt find anyother way to contact you.

    • Dr. Lisle says:

      I wouldn’t recommend that video. He makes a number of mistakes in the science, and his “solution” isn’t ultimately consistent with the biblical text, in my opinion. I have no doubt that he is sincere. But I believe he is mistaken. Thanks for asking.

  4. Atticus Sheffield says:

    Wunderbar! So far, this is the second satirical article I’ve read by Dr. Lisle, and they’re both great (although I still like “On the Origin of Articles” better).

    Now watch; it’ll only be a matter of time (possiby “deep time”) before Niel Yoder posts something to ridicule this as “sweeping rhetoric” or a gross misrepresentation, and then go on to prove Dr. Lisle’s point.

    • Atticus Sheffield says:

      Neil, not Niel.

      • Neil Yoder says:

        Hmm…like NIELS Bohr maybe? ;<) (Usually they get it as Neal)I’m still awaiting my response to “Josef” on the Endangered Species article…..and maybe some of Dr Lisle’s lengthy comments there as well….

        • Atticus Sheffield says:

          If Dr. Lisle isn’t already working on a response to your last Endangered Species post, I’ll be getting to that soon (possibly in the next day or so). Sorry we didn’t get to it earlier; it probably got lost under all the other “recent posts”.

          • Neil Yoder says:

            Sure, no problem………..by “we” you are referring to Creation Research (ICR) staff or affiliates w/ Dr Lisle I presume?? ;<)

            • Atticus Sheffield says:

              “We” as in me, Dr. Lisle, Jacob Howard, Nick L., and such. As far as I can tell, Dr. Lisle is the only one of “us” that is directly affiliated with ICR.

  5. Eddie Staples says:

    Great piece! It’s so true—dogma of sort can be found in other “scientific” circles as well (fields not concerned with origins, such as health care), but Deep Time has to take the cake as being daddy of them all if God Himself is not to be recognized as creator of the universe.

    It doesn’t make sense to think that time itself “does” anything, but nonsense is the only alternative to sense, which is sustained in God according the His word (I just finished “Ultimate Proof of Creation”, and just received “Discerning Truth” in the mail as well—I look forward to reading it.)

    I mentioned this before, but it seems to me that the idea of deep time fails as soon as you acknowledge that the universe has any age *at all*, since many (if not all) proponents slyly conflate “deep time” with the idea of infinitude (time extending eternity past), which is something the universe doesn’t have the luxury of in light of biblical history or man’s recent idea of billion years.

    • Eddie Staples says:

      Too bad I can’t edit my comment! :) Just wanted to add, I believe you alluded to the implied (and inconsistent) idea of infinitude when you quoted Dr. George Wald. Even if time limits were taken out of the way (for the sake of argument), there’s no way anyone claiming science could claim to know, because we can’t do experiments on the past, or go back and look ourselves. All we can do is 1) take God’s word, or 2) come up with our own nearsighted conjectures.

  6. Kenny says:

    Dr. Lisle,

    Your post really only applies to pure naturalism and not Old-earth creationism.

    1 Corinthians 15 deals with human physical death. As far as the “last enemy” being death, again this is only death of humans. Look at the context of 1 Cor. 15:21-26, 51-57; 2 Tim. 1:10; Rev. 20:4-6, 13-14, 21:3-4. These all deal with the fact that human death is defeated when we receive our resurrected bodies. There is nothing in the Bible which says that animals did not die until Adam sinned. In fact, carnivorous activity is from God and declared good (Ps. 104:21-28).

    Psalm 140:27 “They all wait for Thee, To give them their food in due season.
    28 Thou dost give to them, they gather it up; Thou dost open Thy hand, they are satisfied with good.”

    During creation, God killed them off and replaced them:
    Psalm 104:29 “Thou dost hide Thy face, they are dismayed; Thou dost take away their spirit, they expire, And return to their dust.
    30 Thou dost send forth Thy Spirit, they are created; And Thou dost renew the face of the ground.”

    The Bible never says that this creation was perfect, in the way young-earthers seem to teach it. There will be a perfect creation in the future (2 Peter 3:13; Rev. 21:1-2, 27).

    Unlike what you have stated, pain was multiplied/increased in Genesis 3:16, so it had already existed before the fall. The same word form multiply (rabah) is used for the already existing animals (Gen. 1:22) and the already existing humans (Gen. 1:28).

    The earth was not cursed, the land of Eden was (Gen. 3:17). Adam was kick out of the garden, not Eden. Later, Cain left Eden, but Adam remained and worked that land. That is the context. Romans 8 is about how we as sinners effect creation around us. Notice, that creation’s cure (Romans 8:21) is same as ours (Romans 8:23), our completed adoption at the resurrection. At that time we will no longer sin and we will rule over earth as God intended, during Jesus’ earthly reign. So, Romans 8 is not dealing with Gen. 3.

    • Dr. Lisle says:

      Hi Kenny,

      >Your post really only applies to pure naturalism and not Old-earth creationism.

      Actually, it must apply to old-earth creationism, and cannot apply to naturalism. Naturalism rejects the biblical God, whereas old-earth creationism essentially adds another “god.” That was the point.

      >1 Corinthians 15 deals with human physical death. As far as the “last enemy” being death, again this is only death of humans. Look at the context of 1 Cor. 15:21-26, 51-57; 2 Tim. 1:10; Rev. 20:4-6, 13-14, 21:3-4.

      The Bible teaches nothing so restrictive; none of the passage you listed even hint that death is normal for the animal world but was introduced only to humanity. The Bible is written for human beings, and so it concentrates primarily on God’s relationship to humanity. But that doesn’t mean that God doesn’t care about animals too. He does, though not to the same extent as people of course (Luke 12:6-7).

      The Bible teaches that when God saw everything that He had made, it was “very good.” To think that the world was full of (animal) death and suffering, and that God looked upon such suffering and pronounced it “very good” is to make God into a cruel ogre. A god who delights in torturing his creations is not much of a god, and certainly is not the biblical God.

      > These all deal with the fact that human death is defeated when we receive our resurrected bodies.

      Yes. It’s not clear why you think that these somehow suggest that animal death is good and normal. Although the focus is primarily on human death, the text does not restrict it to such. It’s not just humanity that will be restored in the resurrection, but the world as well (Acts 3:21). God makes ALL THINGS new (Revelation 21:5)

      > There is nothing in the Bible which says that animals did not die until Adam sinned.

      Since the focus of Scripture is humanity, we wouldn’t necessarily expect the text to be as explicit when it comes to animals. Nonetheless, if we read the Bible in context and allow Scripture to interpret Scripture without imposing outside philosophies which are foreign to the text, then we can come to no other conclusion than the fact that animal death began with the curse.

      Remember, Genesis 1:31 teaches that God saw that everything He had made was “very good.” So of course the world would not have pain and suffering, cancer and other diseases at that time. When were such things introduced? Romans 8:18-22 indicates that the corruption due to man’s sin extends to all the created world.

      God instituted animal death at the time of the fall of man. When Adam sinned, what did God do? He provided skins of clothing. Those would be animal skins. So God sacrificed an animal or animals to cover the shame of Adam and Eve – a picture of the ultimate Sacrifice to come. Death was introduced into the world as the right punishment for Adam’s sin.

      > In fact, carnivorous activity is from God and declared good (Ps. 104:21-28).
      > Psalm 140:27 [sic] “They all wait for Thee, To give them their food in due season.
      28 Thou dost give to them, they gather it up; Thou dost open Thy hand, they are satisfied with good.”

      It sounds like you’ve been reading Ross, who loves to take the Psalms out of context in order to rewrite Genesis. Psalm 104 discusses God’s providence in today’s cursed, fallen world. It is not referring to the original creation, as should be obvious from the fact that it was written thousands of years later, and refers to ships in the sea (verse 26) and the country of Lebanon (verse 16), which obviously did not exist until long after creation.

      The Bible is explicit that all living animals were vegetarian before the fall. Speaking to Adam and Eve in Genesis 1:28-29, ‘Then God said, “Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the surface of all the earth, and every tree which has fruit yielding seed; it shall be food for you; and to every beast of the earth and to every bird of the sky and to every thing that moves on the earth which has life, I have given every green plant for food”; and it was so.

      Notice that EVERY beast of the earth and indeed EVERY living thing that moves on the earth was to eat plants originally. Only after the flood does God give human beings His blessing to eat meat (Genesis 9:3). The Scriptures don’t say when God gave animals permission to eat meat. (Again, the Scriptures focus primarily on humanity). But it obviously would have been sometime after Adam’s sin.

      > During creation, God killed them off and replaced them:

      Deep Time is a cruel creator indeed! He creates billions of organisms only to slaughter them off mercilessly. I’m so glad I serve the biblical God instead. The biblical God is Love (1 John 4:8)

      > Psalm 104:29 “Thou dost hide Thy face, they are dismayed; Thou dost take away their spirit, they expire, And return to their dust.
      30 Thou dost send forth Thy Spirit, they are created; And Thou dost renew the face of the ground.”

      Psalm 104 rehearses God’s providence in today’s fallen world. The verses you cited refer to the cycle of life and death that exists today – not the “very good” world that was originally created. This should be obvious: (1) the Psalms were written thousands of years after creation and are not historical accounts, but rather songs of praise to God. They may have occasional allusions to the creation week, but this doesn’t make them “accounts” like Genesis. (2) The Psalms are poetic in nature and should never be treated as historical narrative, particularly when such a view would conflict with the straightforward history of the Bible recorded in the narrative sections. (3) Psalm 104 is about God’s providence in today’s world. This is obvious since it talks about ships, Lebanon, carnivorous activity, and death – all things that we know Scripturally would not have existed before the fall. (4) Passing allusions to creation do not make a creation account. If I said, “look at the moon tonight which God has made” this is not a creation account. It describes the present world, and mentions that God has made it.

      > The Bible never says that this creation was perfect, in the way young-earthers seem to teach it.

      God Himself called the original world “very good” – “exceedingly good” is an even more accurate translation. Actually, the Bible teaches that everything God does is perfect (Deuteronomy 32:4) – without blemish or defect. Thus, when we put our confidence in Scripture, we must conclude that when God says the world was originally exceedingly good, it must have indeed been so. It would therefore not contain the things that by God’s standards are bad – such as sickness, pain, bloodshed, or death. Indeed, Jesus healed the sick, and resurrected the dead. This wouldn’t make sense if such things were considered “good” by God.

      The notion that God would make an imperfect world is fundamentally irrational. If the original world were not perfect, then it would have been flawed in some way – by definition. If the world were flawed in some way, then who would be responsible for such a flaw? It cannot be man, who had not yet sinned. The blame would lie with God. Any imperfection in the original creation would have been God’s fault. But God has no faults.

      The original world was perfect because God is perfect, and thus everything He does is necessarily perfect. God makes no mistakes at all; thus, it is impossible for the original creation to have been anything less than absolute perfection. Anything less is contrary to the nature of God. He gave man the power of choice, and man chose to rebel against God. At that point the world was no longer perfect. One would have to be strongly motivated by an unbiblical philosophy to miss this crucial biblical teaching.

      > There will be a perfect creation in the future (2 Peter 3:13; Rev. 21:1-2, 27).

      Actually, these verses don’t really say that the future creation will be “perfect.” Don’t get me wrong; I trust that the eternal state will indeed be perfect, but not from these verses. Rather, it is because of the character of God as revealed in the Scriptures. God is perfect, and so anything He makes will be perfect. I trust that the eternal state will be perfect because whatever God does is perfect, and there will be no sin to corrupt such perfection. For the same biblical reasons, I trust that the world was perfect before sin.

      Revelation 22:3 states that there will be no more curse. Since the curse which was brought about by man’s sin is what caused the original world to be no longer perfect, it stands to reason that once the curse is removed, the world will be perfect again. According to Revelation 21:4, all the things we associate with the curse will be removed in the eternal state – including death.

      The point is this: if you don’t believe that the original world that God created was perfect, then you have absolutely no logical reason to believe that the eternal state will be perfect.

      > Unlike what you have stated, pain was multiplied/increased in Genesis 3:16, so it had already existed before the fall. The same word form multiply (rabah) is used for the already existing animals (Gen. 1:22) and the already existing humans (Gen. 1:28).

      That’s fallacious reasoning. An increase is just that: an increase. The Hebrew word can indicate an increase from nothing to something, or from something to something bigger. Going from zero to something greater than zero is an increase. And the word is used that way in a number of instances. The flood waters increased from nothing to something (Genesis 7:17), Hagar’s descendants were increased from nothing to many (Genesis 16:10), God’s miracles in Egypt were increased from nothing to many (Exodus 7:3), wealth can go from nothing to great increase by labor (Proverbs 13:11), and so on.

      So clearly, the word does not remotely imply that there must have been pain to begin with. Indeed, this would contradict Genesis 1:31 which says that everything was “very good.” When the curse is removed, and all things are restored (Acts 3:21), there will once again be no pain (Revelation 21:4).

      > The earth was not cursed, the land of Eden was (Gen. 3:17).

      No – the curse is not limited to Eden. Romans 8:21-22 teaches that all creation groans under the bondage of corruption. The effects of the curse due to Adam’s sin were worldwide, which makes sense since he was to rule over what God had made. Moreover, since the entire world (everything that God had made) was “very good” when God finished creating, and since today the entire world is not “very good”, it should be obvious that the curse has impacted the entire world, not just Eden.

      Even a careful reading of the text in Genesis indicates a universal effect. God cursed the serpent “more than” all the cattle and beast of the field – implying that they too were cursed, though to a lesser extent. (Genesis 1:14). Of course, since animals die now, and suffer disease and other types of pain, it is obvious that they too were affected by the curse since such things are not “very good” by God’s standard.

      > Adam was kick out of the garden, not Eden. Later, Cain left Eden, but Adam remained and worked that land. That is the context.

      Yes. But all creation was cursed because Adam was God’s steward over the earth.

      > Romans 8 is about how we as sinners effect [sic] creation around us.

      It goes back to Adam specifically (e.g. Romans 5:12).

      > Notice, that creation’s cure (Romans 8:21) is same as ours (Romans 8:23), our completed adoption at the resurrection.

      Just as human beings were once immortal and perfect, the Earth was once perfect and without death. Both humanity and the world have been cursed and await deliverance. Once again, the Earth will be perfect and without death, just as people will be perfectly righteous and without death again. But Romans 5-8 makes no sense in an old-earth theology.

      > At that time we will no longer sin and we will rule over earth as God intended, during Jesus’ earthly reign.

      That’s one particular view of eschatology – which I’m not going to get into at this time.

      > So, Romans 8 is not dealing with Gen. 3.

      Romans 8 is an obvious reference to Genesis 3 and makes no sense apart from it. When did the world become corrupt? It was when Adam sinned. That’s when death came into the world (Romans 5:12). The entire world was “very good” before this event. And it will be again.

  7. Pingback: Deep Time – the god of our Age | Time For Discernment

  8. Andrew says:

    This highlights how pagan philosophy can be dressed up as modern “science”
    I have heard the argument that given infinite (or at least billions upon billions of years) time, an Ape would eventually type out a play by Shakespeare but the question remains who is the author of infinity (or the Ape) if not God and who created time and -called “infinity” to exist in in the first place? The comforts of deep time are easy to appreciate as they can hide and smudge a multitude of mysteries, theories, philosophies and difficult questions and gives perhaps false sense of antiquity and place in the universe that would otherwise avoid the harsh questions of reality and existence
    “I am says the Lord, we can fall into the trap of infinite regression but I am says it all, creation needs a creator, no thing produces nothing, there can be no such thing as “blind chance” if there was no thing to conceive of the notion of chance in the first place. Circumstance, chance, infinity, matter, energy, maths, logic, something from nothing all require an author unless you believe in magic. Time has become the magic wand to produce the universe out of the magic hat and evolution from the witches cauldron to produce life from matter.

  9. Mick J says:

    Dr Lisle,

    Very interesting article. I appreciate your work. I am 19 years old and am currently discerning my call to live a religious life.
    I had a simple question for you. What particular sect or Christianity do you subscribe to (Roman Catholic, Baptist, Lutheran, Presbyterian, etc)? I am simply curious. I haven’t been able to find this information on the internet.

    Mick

    • Charlie says:

      Hello Mick,
      I don’t know if you’ll be back to check this since it has been a long while since you posted this. But my heart went out to you when I read your post. You said that you are discerning your calling to live a religious life, and then asked Dr. Lisle what doctrine of Christianity he follows.
      My questions to you are: Are you yourself professing belief in a Christian doctrine? If so, are you set in a specific doctrine yourself? Or are you professing a religious belief that is not Christian?
      And overarching all of those questions is is this: Are you seeking truth, and do you remain teachable; willing to consider what is actually true, even to discover what your ultimate standards are by which you determine what ‘truth’ is and see whether they stand up to careful scrutiny? Mainly, whether they stand as a legitimate, rational, ultimate standard?
      God’s word stands up to all scrutiny. His word alone can provide a legitimate, consistent, and rational ultimate standard by which all else is understood and determined. I pray this is encouraging to you-that you even think to come back and find it in order to be encouraged. May God call you to Himself and give your eyes to see and ears to hear.
      ~Charlie~

  10. Enrique Caudillo says:

    Mr. Lisle, the belief that the earth was created recently is faith-based (non-secular). Is the belief that the earth formed naturally (or directed naturally by a god) across deep time really faith-based?

    • Josef says:

      Even the idea that the earth is 4.6 billion years old is “faith-based”. Let’s not confuse “secular” as meaning “without faith”. A secularist has faith that his uniformitarian assumptions about the past are accurate through all time in the past.

      • Enrique Caudillo says:

        Faith-based beliefs are not secular, because they compete with or deny other faiths. Faith is religious. If uniformitarianism or Deep Time cannot be proven as undeniable facts, then they are faith-based and therefore not secular. This is what I intended for all to understand…

  11. Josef says:

    >“Faith-based beliefs are not secular, because they compete with or deny other faiths.”

    Ironically if we stick to this definition of “secular” then secularism itself wouldn’t be considered secular because secular beliefs also compete with other faiths/beliefs, e.g. creation versus evolution.

    >”Faith is religious.”

    Secular beliefs are “religious” in the sense that they are ultimately founded on faith. Also, faith isn’t necessarily religious in the traditional sense of “religion”. For example, if you were to go into surgery, you’d have faith that your doctor will do his best to perform his job, right? You also have faith in his skill-set, right? Do you consider these religious beliefs? If not, then this is an example of faith that is not religious, therefore it is not true that faith is always religious. If you do consider these religious, then I guess everyone is religious.

    >“If uniformitarianism or Deep Time cannot be proven as undeniable facts, then they are faith-based and therefore not secular.”

    Well I certainly would say that uniformitarianism and the secular age of the age can’t be proven by undeniable facts. If these “facts” were truly undeniable, then there wouldn’t be a debate, would there?

    Also, I must point out that if it is true that anything that requires faith gets disqualified as being secular, then there really isn’t such a thing as secular beliefs.

    • Enrique Caudillo says:

      You bring up an excellent case. I suppose it would be necessary to distinguish between religious faith and non-religious faith. The question is whether the issue of Deep Time is a religious faith-based issue, or a non-religious faith-based issue. I would say that it is a religious faith-based issue because it ultimately deals with God/god/gods as to whether He/it/they exist and how/if He/he/she/it/they created the heavens and the earth.

      We can therefore say that a secular belief is simply a non-religious belief such as, “I think it will rain tomorrow.” So, in secularism, there would be no invoking of any religious faith-based belief unless it is explicitly stated so for every single occasion throughout.

      • Enrique Caudillo says:

        Our education systems, when dealing with the unobserved past, deny God/god/the gods the possibility that he/she/they acted in a supernatural way on occasions not absolutely verifiable and therefore stumble onto religious faith-based issues. This implies that the school systems are not secular. A true secular system may not prescribe any particular religious faith-based belief/s without being more than explicitly clear.

  12. Steve Drake says:

    the belief that the earth was created recently is faith-based (non-secular). Is the belief that the earth formed naturally (or directed naturally by a god) across deep time really faith-based?

    Enrique,
    If I may interject myself in your dialog with Josef, I’m curious as to what lies underneath your question above? What is the question at the heart of your objection to Dr. Lisle’s post about the idolatrous nature of those Christians who hold to ‘Deep Time’?

  13. Enrique Caudillo says:

    I suppose the question at heart would be, whether we can protest to the belief of Deep Time with any legitimacy in the secular systems (e.g. public schools)?, because if not, then the remarkable claims made by creationists will not have any significant impact on the establisments of society. More than this, I wanted to convince my friends that secularism, contrary to our self-hazardous perception of it, is in favor of the defense of our particular God of YECism, if properly defined.

    I will provide a preliminary definition of secularism as, in my honest opinion, it should be understood:
    Secularism is the momentary, voluntary negation of indoctrinating others of one one’s religious beliefs. Religious beliefs can be discussed but they must be clearly acknowledged as such. Morality is honored in a secular environment and everyone’s religious beliefs must be respected. No teaching must deny or contend with a religious faith-based belief. Secularism must be truly unbiased and non-religious but never anti-religious.

    • Enrique Caudillo says:

      I should probably also attempt to define a religious belief (a religious faith based belief) as:
      A belief that supports or contends with the existence of any particular god or gods or their supernatural workings in the unobserved past or as revealed in recorded history, religious works of authority, or as taught by a denomination.

  14. Steve Drake says:

    Enriquqe,

    I suppose the question at heart would be, whether we can protest to the belief of Deep Time with any legitimacy in the secular systems (e.g. public schools)?,

    The millions and billions of years of ‘deep time’ are part and parcel of man’s attempts to worship that which is created and not the Creator, exchanging the truth of God for a lie (Rom. 1:25). It’s a philosophical construct that man builds to suppress the truth that he knows God exists (his own constitution tells him this), but denies it, finding ways to bolster and support this denial and refusal to acknowledge God and honor Him for who He is. Do you know this God?

    More than this, I wanted to convince my friends that secularism, contrary to our self-hazardous perception of it, is in favor of the defense of our particular God of YECism, if properly defined.

    I’m not sure I follow. How do secularists support the God of Scripture and its doctrine of creation? Do you have any documentation, quotes, citations to support this?

    • Enrique Caudillo says:

      I think that you are defining secularism, essentially, as anti-Christian doctrine. You cannot possibly be saying that a philosophical construct, like deep time, that would be an attempt “to worship that which is created and not the Creator” or anything that exchanges “the truth of God for a lie” should be taught in secular environments (such as public schools) as being acceptable to everyone, and therefore secular, right? Yes, I have put my faith in Christ the Lord, the only one who always speaks the truth.
      If I have been taught correctly, deep time is a religious belief, if it is not an absolute proven fact, because it implies that, if a god or gods exist, they MUST have created or formed the heavens and the earth across millions and millions of years. If someone denies or contends with your own religious beliefs (faith based beliefs relating to god or gods or the supernatural in the un-testable, unrepeatable, unobserved past), then they are making a religious claim. If someone says, for instance, that “no one whose body was completely destroyed has ever risen from the dead in the past”, then they are making a religious claim. Likewise, if someone says “man evolved gradually across millions of years by natural selection and mutations”, then they also are making a religious claim, since they are declaring revelation (faith based absolute knowledge) by denying the equivalent possibility that a supernatural event explains the same phenomenon.
      A secularist, I suppose, would be a person who encourages a non-religious environment however, religion is not always barred in these environments if someone states that “this is what my religion teaches”, i.e. only for educational purposes and not for indoctrination. This secularism, which I am defining to the best of my ability, would be in favor of the God of Biblical Creation because it better defines for us what can and cannot be taught in secular systems as facts and how. Biblical Creationism would be on equal ground as say Theistic Evolutionism, Atheistic Evolutionism, Old Earth Creationism, etc.

  15. Steve Drake says:

    Enrique,
    What is your point about Dr. Lisle’s post? How do you agree or disagree with his post? I think you have summarized your point by saying:

    whether we can protest to the belief of Deep Time with any legitimacy in the secular systems”

    This has no relevance to Dr. Lisle’s post, and I fail to see how that dovetails with anything he says.

  16. Enrique Caudillo says:

    Alright that’s true, but I don’t know any other way of introducing these new (and important) concepts to him. Thank you!

    • Charlie says:

      Hello Enrique,
      I’m late to the discussion I know, but I took an interest as I read through just now and couldn’t help but want to ask you why it is so important that you define secularism as something objective/not religious, as opposed to being anything that is against Biblical Christianity? In the gospels Christ makes clear that we are either for Him or against Him, we either gather with Him or scatter from Him. There is no middle ground or ‘neutral’ ground.
      I’m guessing that the difficulty you are having may be whether there is a neutral ground where one may be neither for Christ/Christianity nor against Him? Is this the issue more specifically, from which the question over the definition and use of the word ‘secular’ arises?
      A lot of people, definitely a lot Christians, think that there is neutral ground. It sounds to me like you may think that as well and have decided to label that neutral ground as ‘secular’. But Scripture makes clear that there is no neutral ground. Those who understand this would obviously not apply the term ‘secular’ to a hypothetical ‘neutral ground’ which they know does not exist. As such, I think you will find that the meaning most commonly applied to ‘secular’ by presuppositional followers of Christ, is anything that is contrary to Christ. Things contrary to Christ are most certainly religious as they are beliefs. They are, however, beliefs that are not correct since they are contrary to Christ who is ‘the Way the Truth and Life’.
      A life example from your discussion above is the public school system. It professes not to be Christian. Yet surely there are some public schools that teach much Christian doctrine. On the other hand, there are many that also teach that which is contrary to Christ (i.e. Deep Time). ‘Secular’ may be a term used in an overarching sense for someone or some organization that does not profess/teach faith/belief in Christ, even though they may in part believe or teach things which are true and consistent with the Word of God. All things contrary to Christ are ‘secular’-as I understand the word.
      If you do get a chance to read this, I hope it helps. Mostly, I hope I understood you correctly and that this deals well with the questions you are facing. If I misunderstood, please feel free to respond and clarify!
      ~Charlie~

  17. J Zarred says:

    For all the fallacies and all of the lies I have heard in order for people in the United States to denounce the truisms of scientific discovery and the empirical evidence that justifies that your ideas of bringing religion into education is disgusting. If you actually went to school and actually did physics and chemistry you would understand the math and science behind the deduction of time. The reason you state that time is a creation of man is because you are unable to comprehend due to your ignorance of religious infatuation. Pick up any microbiology article and tell someone in that field how a “Creator” could deduce such intrinsic diversity within the functionality and molecular makeup of these organisms. Your ignorance blinds the fact that physics and math is not the only proof of non-creation, it just rectifies that you are living in fallacy and it scares liberal thinking people like myself to send their children into a society where slander and lies are being conveyed in their basic education.

    • Micah says:

      Zarred. You dont seem to quite grasp Dr. Lisles article, in fact, you wrongly accuse him of ‘stating that time is a creation of man’. Dr. Lisle has a P.H.D in astrophysics so attacking his education probably isn’t the best idea.
      I would recommend reading the article again, slowly. Try to actually understand what he is saying. Next time you reply try not to use logical fallacies such as straw-men.

    • Josef says:

      J Zarred: “If you actually went to school and actually did physics and chemistry you would understand the math and science behind the deduction of time.”

      As Micah has already pointed out, Jason Lisle has a Ph.D. in Astrophysics. But this statement here is actually quite a bit more embarrassing than simply making a mistake. Because all Zarred had to do was click on the “About Dr. Lisle” link at the top of this very page, and he could have saved himself from showing that he hasn’t even done the slightest bit of research on the one he criticizes! Had he actually taken the time to read Dr. Lisle’s biography, he would have seen this:

      “[Jason Lisle] graduated summa cum laude from Ohio Wesleyan University where he double-majored in physics and astronomy and minored in mathematics. He then earned a master’s degree and a Ph.D. in astrophysics at the University of Colorado in Boulder. Dr. Lisle specialized in solar astrophysics and has made a number of scientific discoveries regarding the solar photosphere, including the detection of giant cell boundaries using the SOHO spacecraft. He also does theoretical research and has contributed to the field of general relativity.”

      Also, I can’t help but think that Zarred’s statement is sort of a “jab” at creationists, in that he has it in his mind that just because someone is a creationist, they must not have gone to college and studied the sciences. Not only does Jason Lisle’s background refute this, there are also a lot of other creationists with just as impressive credentials as well. And though my credentials are nothing to brag about compared to Dr. Lisle’s, I happen to have a BS in chemistry, and have nearly completed minors in both biology and mathematics. And I never found any compelling reason in college to abandon the creationist’s model.

  18. Andrew says:

    I think he’s gone away to eat some non-created humble pie.

  19. Graciela says:

    I learn alot from reading your blogs and comments Dr. Lisle, and you are great encouragement for me. I go to a public high school in Texas and am completely aware of the god of our Age. I wish that I were taught of God’s creation from the Bible in school because I desire so much to learn more about His glory in His creation all the time. It’s hard and a battle everyday because there is opposition and as well as temptation. I’m afraid I don’t know too much about how to debate creation and evolutionism but just reading your blogs has helped me to learn more solid biblical truths and how to defend the Faith. Thanks!

  20. Dean says:

    Hi Dr. Lisle! I thank the Lord for your writings, you’ve taught me a great deal about God’s creation and how to be logical and exhibit good reasoning.

    I had a question for you and I thought this might be the best place ask it –

    This question was posed to me that I’m having some trouble getting my head around – If God is infinite, and He is outside of His creation and is separate from it (made it out of nothing, non-panenthistic), how can God be truly infinite? How can the material realm not be a part of the infinity that God is – In effect, how could you “add on to infinity”?

    Now I suspect there might be a faulty assumption or misunderstanding underlying the question itself, but I can’t quite put my finger on it yet. I would greatly appreciate your thoughts on it!
    Anyway, thanks again!

    • Dr. Lisle says:

      Hi Dean.

      When we say that God is infinite, we mean that some of His attributes are unlimited. His knowledge, His power, for example. Interestingly, some aspects of God are not infinite. The number of persons in the Trinity is three – not infinity. I think you are correct that question is faulty. There are at least two problems that I see. First, mathematicians will point out that you can add to or subtract elements from infinite sets without changing the number. In other words, infinity plus one is still infinity.

      But more importantly, when God created the universe He created something separate from Himself – something that is not God. And so He wasn’t adding anything to Himself. Consider this analogy:

      The number line is infinite, yes? The numbers extend from negative infinity to positive infinity. Yet, there are things that are not numbers that are not found on the number line. A duck, for example, cannot be found anywhere on a number line. Would it be reasonable to assume that since ducks are not found on a number line, that the number line is not infinite? No. The number line is infinite by definition, yet there are things that exist apart from it. Likewise, God is infinite, and yet He has created things that exist that are not “part” of Him.

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