About Dr. Lisle

Jason Lisle, Ph.D

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.

 

 

227 Responses to About Dr. Lisle

  1. Joe Niemeyer says:

    Hey Jason,
    Just got back from a month long paternity leave so I missed out on a few things. Just happened to be reading this and saw your new position. Wanted to congratulate you and say farewell. It was always a pleasure and a blessing when I had the chance to speak with you. May God bless your research and deepen your walk with Him as He leads you on this new endeavor.
    In Him,
    Joe

    • Dr. Lisle says:

      Thanks Joe. God bless you.

      • Ben says:

        Dr. Lisle,
        I’m doing a paper on the merits of teaching Creationism alongside evolution. Is there any way that I could contact you to ask you a few questions?

    • Fred says:

      Here is an email that I just sent to the editor of Acts and Facts as a suggestion and comment.
      I recently read an article by Jason Lisle entitled Evolutionary Math. This is an article that I think would make a great start to a book that is really needed. I once spent a week with Ken Blanchard the author of the One Minute Manager. I was fascinated how he related that they wrote a kindergarten book for managers with master’s degrees. The book was so popular that Mr. Blanchard went on to build a business around the book, and he later came to Christ.

      I believe that a small book along these lines explaining how “the math does not add up” to support the Theory of Evolution would go along way toward encouraging and strengthening faith. There is a great deal of disparate information on the subject, but I have not found one that covers the subject on the level for those that are not grounded in the subject of math…this would include most teachers.

      On my website, I put together an article entitled a Fine-Tuned Universe, but mine is done from others research in that I do not have a math background. I found in my research that there are number of disciplines that demonstrate that “the math does not add up” and I write to encourage Mr. Lisle to consider the project.

  2. Ben says:

    Jason your material on logical fallacies and presuppitonal apolgetics has encouraged me so much in God’s truth and learning how to defend it rationally. You have caused me to lose all hope of ever having an evolutionary, athiestic, agnostic, or any false worldview outside of Christianity. You have become an extreme blessing in my life. I hope I can meet you in person or have a discussion with you some day.Looking forward of learning more from you for years to come. God bless you Jason.

    • Dr. Lisle says:

      Thanks for that encouraging message Ben. It is my conviction that the truth of Christianity is logically inescapable. When people reject the Bible, they never do it for a good, logical reason. God bless.

      • Ben says:

        Jason, I have alot of questions regarding astronomy, certain logical fallaces, people making up random worldviews, and alot of crazy things. Do you have an email address or a way we can connect?

        • Dr. Lisle says:

          Probably Facebook is the best way to reach me. I can’t always reply because I get so many e-mails. But I will try.

          • Ben says:

            Thanks Dr. Lisle! One question I have is that how do the laws of identity and excluded middle come from God’s nature? I understand how non-contradiction does, but what about the two other laws of logic? I heard an athiest say his account for laws of logic is reasoning but isn’t that begging the question? Can you also explain how affirming the antecident and denying the consequent are valid? I understand how the opposite is not valid but I don’t get the invalid forms. I got into a debate one time with my dad about Christianity not refuting itself but he claims what about the time you got angry and took God’s name in vain? Doesn’t that refute Christianity? But thats like saying a baseball player not hitting the ball doesn’t make him a baseball player right? Sorry about all the questions, but I haven’t found a answers in your dvd series or your books or at least in detail (which I loved greatly). Please explain and God bless Jason!

          • Thomas says:

            New to this type of thing, but i might be able to help a little. Not an expert in anything :D. What I would do is remind your dad that human beings are flawed and there fore will make mistakes like cursing God etc, Christianity doesn’t refute itself. WE ALL have fallen and therefore are able to make mistakes during times of stress or hardship. It’s not Christianity that is contradictary but humans. Again i might be making fallacies all over the place in this but i hope it helps some.

          • Ben says:

            Thanks Thomas it helps alittle. I’ve been studying logical fallacies for months and I”m still doing it. Go on youtube and theirs a video of Dr. Lisle talking on logical fallacies or you can google them if you want to know more (so you can advoid making fallacies like you mentioned). I’ve found it to be fun and entertaining and its very useful in debate with unbelievers. Only about 13 I think appear in evolution/creation debates but I’m trying to memorize a good 80 of different types for fun lol. God bless Thomas.

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben,
            I am new to Dr. Lisle’s site and am not an expert, but I would suggest pointing your father to Romans 3:23 which states, “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God” (KJV). Rather than your using the Lord’s name in vain refuting Christianity, it actually supports the accuracy of the Scriptural fact that we are all sinners in need of salvation. Indeed, if we were capable of sinless perfection, Christianity would indeed be refuted. Your father’s argument assumes that we will never sin again upon receiving Christ, but such is not the case. The Bible states that “the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak” (Matt. 26:41b, KJV). The difference between your taking the name of the Lord in vain and an unsaved person committing the same offense is that you have the Holy Spirit inside of you to convict you of wrongdoing and urge you to repentance.
            Nick L.

          • Ben says:

            Thanks alot Nick. You worded it in a good way. What about the logical fallacies? Got any advice on those two valid forms of the consequent and the antecident? Its hard for me to recongnize fallacies in long paragraphs. I get very caught up in looking at the whole message rather than breaking it down in a point by point fashion. I can do it quite well with a few words and phrases but paragraphs are hard to me.

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben,
            Affirming the consequent and denying the antecedent are the fallacious forms of Modus Ponens and Modus Tollens forms of a hypothetical syllogism (see Lisle, Ultimate Proof, 131-135). Recognizing them in long paragraphs is more difficult than when they are formulated as syllogisms, but learning to translate them into syllogisms can be very rewarding. Last night I was reading a selection form Darwin’s Descent of Man, and I came across his discussion of the similarities to be found among the embryos of various species. These similarities do not exist, incidentally. Darwin spends much time on this point, but when you break down his argument, it’s actually the logical fallacy of affirming the consequent. The long paragraph Darwin wrote can be worded: “Darwin argues that similarities among species embryos proves evolution”. This argument can then be changed into a hypothetical syllogism as follows: 1) If species descended from a common ancestor, we would expect to find embryonic similarities. 2) We find (according to Darwin) embryonic similarities. 3) Therefore, species evolved from a common ancestor. When you write it out as a H.S., it is clearly an instance of affirming the consequent. Tackle the long paragraph by identifying the key proponents of the argument. Once you have the key proponents, analyze how the author relates them to each other. Once you boil down an argument into simple relationships between basic proponents, it’s far easier to judge the validity of the argument. (Dr. Lisle would be able to provide you with a better and more concise explanation.)
            Nick

          • Ben says:

            I’m confused about where to respond. You said to respond at the top but I think I’m at the top? Not sure, well I just bought an electronic version of The Ultimate Proof and as I’m reading through it I noticed their was a-lot of small things I completely forgot about. In chapter 2 of his book under the section called “The Necessity of Being Non-Arbitrary” Dr. Lisle mentions some people say “It is not important that we have a reason for things like logic and the reliability of senses and memory. It is enough that we are able to act upon them. We can know lots of things, even though we may not have a reason for those things we take for granted.” If I understand Dr. Lisle’s explanation he is saying that a belief isn’t the samething as knowing something, but that when you know something its a fact, and that knowledge and belief are separate things? I’m very confused about that section of that book. Can begging the question be committed when people with a single proposition or a single statement without their phrase “therefore” or “because”? Are the endnotes at the end of each chapter simply a summary?

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben,
            No, the notes at the end of each chapter are not summaries; they are generally further explanations or references to other sources. For instance, the superscript 1 on page 47 (the first note of chapter 3) is there to tell you that the section to come is an adaption of an article Dr. Lisle wrote at an earlier time. Other references point you to verses or sources that provide additional information.

            As for the difference between knowledge and belief, that’s actually an unresolved issue within philosophical circles. There are numerous definitions of ‘knowledge’ that vary widely. The issue ties to the discussion of the nature of truth. Many believe that truth is relative, and relativists generally fit within two main camps: those of subjectivism and conventionalism. Others (like you and me) do not believe truth is relative. Your question ties specifically into the field of epistemology, the study of the nature and justification of knowledge. Knowledge and belief are not necessarily the same thing. Knowledge is an accumulation of true propositions; a belief is not necessarily true. People believe things that are not true. Before Copernicus, it was believed that the sun revolved around the earth. Not only was this a belief, but it was also an empirically justified belief. That is, people’s physical observations seemed to support it. They saw the sun come up on one side of them in the morning and go down on the other side at night. Cleary (they thought), the sun is moving around the earth. Did they have ‘knowledge’ that the sun rotated the earth? Most definitions of knowledge would say no. Plato defined knowledge as a justified, true belief. This definition is rather simple. You know a specific something if and only if you meet three criteria: 1) You believe it, 2) You are justified in believing it, and 3) What you believe is actually true. This seems like a satisfactory way of relating beliefs to knowledge, but Edmund Gettier proposed a problem for this model that is too lengthy to give full credit to here. Epistemologists try to circumvent the Gettier problem, as it is called, by many methods such as redefining what a ‘Justified’ belief is or by adding a fourth condition to the three-condition model mentioned above. There are several other aspects of this discussion that would be interesting to you, including internalism versus externalism and the concept of virtue epistemology. If you’d like a thorough, accessible discussion of truth, knowledge, and beliefs, check out the early chapters of ‘The Love of Wisdom’ (Cowan and Spiegel, 2009).

          • Ben says:

            Nick, I’ll check out the book when I get the chance. In chapter 8 under “Enthymemes. It reminds me of debates I have done online even though its only been a few. If I understand that part of the book its basically just feeling in random or unstated information in a person’s argument regardless if its true or false? That is completely acceptable to do or am I misunderstanding that as well?

            Under chapter 9 under when it talks about circular reasoning I notice it talks about failed explanations for it. If someone says I believe “a” is true because “b” is true which would mean “a” is not your ultimate standard (which I have experienced before). The other failed explanation would be I know “a” is true because it implies “b” must be true too, which is begging the question but how does it because the fallacy of affirming the consequent? What are some examples I could fit in for “a”, “b”, or even other beliefs such as “c” or all the way down to “h” for that matter? If I said gay marriage or slavery was okay or not okay due to society agreeing or not agreeing with it what would that be?

          • Patrick says:

            Dr. Jason,
            I only have access with e-mail, and had some questions for evolutionary arguments. Could you send me an e-mail at 19neippp@alstudent.org so I could ask my questions?

            Thanks! God is Working through you!

            A Child of The One True King,
            Patirck Jo. Neipp

      • Ben says:

        Sorry I didn’t mean to post the same thing twice. I saw that it didn’t post the first time so I thought I had to do it again, and then I noticed it did post the first time. Sorry about the mix up.

        • Ben says:

          My dad is a Christian, hes just very inconsistent about it. I know how Buddhism refutes itself by the teaching you have no desires is a desire within itself. Islam refutes itself by stating Allah is too big for man to understand but laws of logic are. Hinduism not possible to know knowledge but that is knowledge within itself, but how does Wicca/Pagan religions refute themselves, along with the Greek and Egyptian gods? I know Dr. Lisle mentions a book in one of his dvds of a person who has written a book on this topic but I can’t seem to find the author. How do you know all this information? Do you got an email if you do not mind sharing? Theirs alot I would love to talk about Nick! God bless and thanks for your knowledge.

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben,
            I also have relatives who hold Christian views inconsistently, so I understand the frustration that you sometimes feel in discussing the issue with them. As for how I know anything I’ve mentioned, I feel called to pursue a career in Biblical creationism, prompting me to do as much research as possible on the subject. I enjoy collecting various books and other resources on the topic from ministries like AiG and ICR. I also have access to an excellent database with full-text articles from over 11,000 publications, which offers excellent research opportunities. Regarding my email, I don’t give my contact information out, but I’d be happy to continue discussing these issues with you as long as Dr. Lisle does not object to the amount of space we’re taking. Keeping the discussion public is also helpful in that it offers other people the opportunity of joining in if they feel so inclined. If you have some specific areas of interest in the field, I could possibly point you towards some useful resources. You mentioned interest in Dr. Lisle’s discussion of the laws of logic, and an excellent book presenting a Christian perspective of philosophy as a whole (and touching upon logic) is ‘The Love of Wisdom’ by Steven Cowan and James Spiegel. The book is published by B&H Publishing group out of Nashville (2009).
            Nick

          • Ben says:

            Okay thanks Nick I’ll check it out. I think seemingly that when I debate in person its harder for me to pay attention to a person’s arguement. I do a much better job reading instead. In person I get frustrated and embarassed trying to focus on the speech. Do you personally discuss things in person with people or such as reading like online here? Any websites I can go practice doing presuppitonalism with unbelievers? I found a webpage with information against AIG unfortuantely and I’m having a hard time refuting it. Could you point out its fallacies? I think some of the points like at 5 and 9 is reinfication, 7 is an irrelvant theist and 6 is begging the question. I would explain why I think it be those fallacies but it take up alot of space. Could you spot them? http://www.infidels.org/kiosk/article791.html

          • Ben says:

            Also, its not just that link but I find information and websites talking on matter, time, and space, and God must be made of energy or matter and not both using alot of big words trying to give definitions of god and space and everything else out there not understanding anything that they are saying. I would have no idea if they are begging the question, being honest or dishonest as in simply using big words just to make themselves look smart. Like you said earlier about not knowing everything about science isn’t nessairy since it all depends on uniformity of nature would that make his or her claims about matter, time, space, god, energy, etc not confirmed since they wouldn’t have a foundation for uniformity? Also I understand that a sound arguement must have a true conclusion, and that an arguement is valid if the chain or reasoning follows. I’ve listen to Dr. Lisle’s teaching on it many times and I’m still stumped on detecting valid, unvalid, sound, and unsound arguements. I mean simply if I said all dogs are mammals, all mammals have kidneys, therefore all dogs have kidneys I understand is both sound and valid. An arguement can be bad due to a false premise or an error in the chain of reasoning (logical fallacy basically) right? But what if I came up with a worldview that says all dogs are mammals, all people named Tim are made of cheese, therefore all stars are made of snow and in my worldview thats valid and sound because I said so? How could we know if something is valid if somebody comes up with something silly like this? I’m just kinda lost on detecting valids and unvalids and the sound material.

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben,
            Yes, I’ve debated things on a person-to-person basis before, but most of my experience has been in some form of correspondence. I’ve held correspondence conversations with a professor of biology from California and a marine biologist from Spain, but the majority of my conversations have been informal. I can unfortunately not offer you any websites on which you can hone your skills (since I know of none), but reading any evolutionary material would give you the opportunity.

            As for the website you posted, be aware that you will not always be able to find a logical fallacy in an opponent’s argument. Remember that the soundness of an argument depends not just upon a valid argumentative form, but also on the veracity of the argument’s premises. For instance, you mentioned the dog/mammal/kidney example. Imagine if I were to argue “All dogs are mammals; all mammals have two heads; therefore, all dogs have two heads.” My argument is entirely valid. It is the falseness of the second premise that makes the argument unsound. In like manner, you may not be able to find a logical fallacy in each of those arguments from the posted website. A long time ago, Cardinal John Newman compared challenges to one’s faith to mathematical problems. He said that someone stumped on a math problem may not know how to solve it, but they still can rest in the knowledge that there IS a solution. Don’t approach an evolutionist’s argument with the fear of finding out something that would disprove your faith; instead, approach an argument with the knowledge that any argument that contradicts your faith contains an error somewhere, no matter how difficult to spot. I will post a separate post dealing with a couple of the items from the website you posted.
            Nick

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben, I posted a response dealing with a couple of the objections from the website you posted, but the blog says that my comment is awaiting moderation. This could be due to its length, but I am not sure.
            Nick

          • Ben says:

            Thanks Nick. So sound means its just clear and true? Valid means that it follows which means that it does make sense. That the information presented could possibly be sound and true? Like the one with two heads? Its valid because it makes sense but its not sound because simply no two headed creature has ever been found (from a natural sense, not from a mutated sense)? I get that right? If somebody brings up something too hard for me to understand or don’t know how to refute how should I respectfully respond?

          • Nick L. says:

            You’re correct, Ben; a sound argument is one whose argument form is valid and whose premises are true. Cowan and Spiegel list the following formula: Validity + Veracity = Soundness. In order for the conclusion of an argument to be undeniably true, the premises leading up to it must be true, and the way in which the premises are related to each other must be a valid form of logic. It is important to note, however, that an unsound argument can have a true conclusion. Consider this argument: “All people named Jason are veterinarians; Dr. Lisle is named Jason; therefore, Dr. Lisle is an astrophysicist.” The first premise of this argument is false, and the argument form is not valid. Despite this, the conclusion is true.
            You also mentioned relating government to religion. This is certainly an important connection. God set up three general institutions: the church, the home, and government. Finding a proper balance of these three is often the goal of a good government. Romans 13 is an excellent chapter discussing government, and I would highly recommend James M. Willson’s book ‘The Establishment and Limits of Civil Government’, available at the American Vision website. The book provides an in-depth analysis of Romans 13. You will find that many socialistic systems follow naturally from an unbiblical worldview such as naturalism. If people are nothing but animals, then we are controlled by our environment. If we are controlled by our environment, then controlling our environment can help manage our behavior. If this is true, then the more control that is exercised over our environment, the better our behavior can be managed. Therefore, if naturalism is true, then the biggest, most tyrannical, controlling government possible is the only way to go. The relation of government to religion is yet another reason that the creation/evolution controversy is so important. Limited government follows naturally from a Christian mindset, but socialism and dictatorships follow naturally from a naturalistic mindset.

        • Ben says:

          Is their a way I can get quizzed for practice on detecting valid and invalid arguments? I always lose myself generally when I listen or hear other people when I focus on their general message regarding anything. Do you think its worth studying every logical fallacy type or just the ones that occur in origins debate? I started to study every kind for fun but it seems crazy.

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben, you mentioned that you’ve got Dr. Lisle’s book ‘The Ultimate Proof’. There are two appendices in the book that offer you a chance to hone your skills on real-life examples of evolutionist and atheist arguments. Dr. Lisle’s responses are at the end of each entry, but don’t read his reply until you formulate one of your own. I believe he suggests even writing down your own response on paper before proceeding to his response. That would be a great way to get some practice, since the answers are there for you when you need them. Or, if you want a different format, just check out any of the sites out there that try to discredit organizations like ICR and AiG. There are several of them out there, and any one of them would be a great opportunity to try out your skills. An old-earth friend of mine recently pointed me to a site run by a man named Richard Deem. Perhaps you can Google him. Go through his arguments and see how you would respond to each objection. Once you formulate a response, you could also go to the Answers in Genesis website and try to find an article in the Q&A section dealing with what he says. As for memorizing every form of logic, I don’t really think that’s necessary, but Dr. Lisle would be a better person to ask. If I remember correctly, there are 256 valid forms of a categorical syllogism alone. Again, though, I would prefer to appeal to Dr. Lisle on that one.

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben,
            I want to alter something that I said yesterday. In discussing the relationship between government and Christianity, I believe I stated that the purpose of a good government is often to try to find a proper balance between the three institutions that God established: the home, the church, and government. This is incorrect. Finding a perfect balance between these three institutions is often very difficult, but because government is one of the three institutions God created, it cannot be made responsible for finding a proper balance among all three. This would destroy the checks and balances that are supposed to be present among all three. The purpose of a good government should be to reward good and punish evil, as stated in Romans 13.
            Nick

          • Ben says:

            I think I’m so obsessed with presuppitional apologetics and this whole topic that I forgot about my relationship with God. I’ve been turning against my family and living by how I feel emotionally and I lost my job today and my dad is begging me about work. I’m not sure where things are going for me. I need to work on my relationship with Him. Any suggestions on how I can begin? I need to start walking the walk.

          • Ben says:

            Also, what do you think of the Reason Rally in Washington DC on March 24th next month? I don’t see the point. If people don’t care about the existence of God and we are wrong than why care? Do you think its a big sign of the end times? How are we to minister the truth to Jews? They believe in the Old Testament like we do but simply reject the New Testament How can we use the presupposition approach on them? Can you give me links and urls of every source of information you can possibly give me? I want to learn as much as I possibly can. You seemingly know alot and I want to know as much science as possible. With the Christian worldview do you think its really just important to minister to people and encourage them to have a relationship with God and build it up? Regardless if they believe in evolution or not, old earth creation or young earth creation, or tongues, healing, prophecy, or none of those. The main goal is just to encourage and present the general salvation truth of Jesus to all non believers correct? Thats the impression I’ve always had.

          • Ben says:

            What were categorical syllogisms? Such as the formal fallacies he talks about in his DVDs and books? Generally I just try to focus on the basic fallacies and not the category type it belongs in. I try to focus on ones that general appear in debates on origins. In order to be logical about anything such as coming to a reason to take out trash, eating food, or simply stopping at a stoplight driving, all daily life activity does it have to agree with the laws of logic? If not whats the difference between coming to supposed rational conclusions of activity of every day life and the laws of logic? How is modus pones a law of logic? Is Modus tollens also a law of logic? How do these along with the law of identity and excluded middle come from God’s personality? Whats the difference between the laws of excluded middle and non contradiction? Also, my family seemingly doesn’t care to debate me on God and spirituality with me anymore and they want to live worldly lives, but I kinda worry about them and if they die I want to know they are saved but seemingly they are just obviously blind. I know loving and serving others is the most affective way to reach the lost. Doesn’t Proverbs say to only look for those with an ear that is willing to hear and ignore the wicked and foolish person?

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben,
            When it comes to balancing your spiritual walk with your apologetic learning, I don’t feel qualified to comment. I can discuss logic, science, and evidences comfortably, but I don’t think I should offer theological advice; that would be an area reserved for your pastor or spiritual leader. What I can tell you is that God is ready, willing, and more than able to help you through any struggles you come upon in life, such as losing your job. “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart, and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths” (Prov. 3:5-6, KJV).
            Since I have not heard of the Reason Rally, I would have to research it before commenting.
            As for witnessing to orthodox Jews, I would advise following the examples set for us in Scripture. Much of Christ’s ministry recorded in the Gospels involves Him interacting with a Jewish audience. The Jews believe that a Messiah has been promised; they just don’t believe He’s come yet. Getting them to recognize that Jesus is the promised Messiah has been the main goal of Jewish-centered evangelizing efforts for nearly over two millennia. I would also advise looking over and carefully contrasting Peter’s sermon to the Jews at Pentecost in Acts 2 with Paul’s sermon to the Greeks on Mars’ Hill in Acts 17. Paul spends much time discussing the God who is the center of his message, but Peter skips this step, since the Jews have knowledge of the God of the Old Testament. Peter jumps directly into the fact that Jesus “whom ye [the Jews] crucified” (Acts 2:36) is the Christ. I would suggest purchasing Ken Ham’s DVD presentation “Why Won’t They Listen?” (available at the Answers in Genesis website). An interesting question to ask a Jew is who they believe Jesus was. (Jesus asks this question Himself several times.) Many Jews respond “He was a great teacher” or “He was a mighty prophet”. The fact that Jesus clearly claimed to be the Christ denies this possibility. Jesus is either 1) a liar, 2) a lunatic or 3) exactly who He says He is. There are no other options. I believe posts get held back if they are too long, so I will start a separate post dealing with some of the other things you mentioned.
            Nick

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben, you asked about whether or not the creation/evolution issue is really critical in witnessing, or whether it’s more important just to present the salvation message alone. What I offer here is nothing but my personal opinion; thus, anything I say should not be construed as to necessarily represent the opinions of Dr. Lisle, the AiG ministry, the ICR ministry, etc.
            Salvation does not depend upon our interpretation of Genesis. Dr. Hugh Ross claims to have asked Jesus to forgive him of his sins and be his Savior. Because of this, I classify Dr. Ross, an old-earth creationist, as a born-again Christian. That being said, I think an old-earth interpretation of the Bible is inconsistent with a proper view of salvation, redemption, etc. Old-earth interpretations, local flood interpretations, death-before sin interpretations, etc. all undermine the authority of Scripture. As such, they are counterproductive to the Gospel message. A literal Genesis provides the foundation for the salvation message. I have written lengthy papers on this issue, but I can unfortunately not attach documents to a blog post (that I know of). All old-earth interpretations involve death before sin, undermining the doctrine of atonement. God created a perfect world in which there was no death. Death came into the world through the fall in the Garden of Eden. Any interpretation that denies this will ultimately lead to compromise and confusion. Space does not permit a full explanation of why I believe this is so, but I would recommend your viewing ‘The Great Debate’ series in the media area on the AiG website. Ken Ham and Jason Lisle spend nearly five hours detailing what I cannot possibly hope to reproduce in a few hundred word blog entry. One interesting evidence that seems to point towards the fact that there was no death before sin is the fact that God speaks of a future time when He redeems His creation when carnivorous activity will cease (the lion will lay down with the lamb). The fact that the coming state of perfection will be free from animals eating each other seems to suggest that the past state of perfection was equally free from carnivorous behavior.
            In conclusion, I would argue that yes, a literal Genesis is very important when presenting the salvation message.

      • Ben says:

        I understand “if p, then q, q, therefore p”. “If p, then q, not p, therefore not q” I’ve read the book and watched all of his DVDs many times (besides the astronomy ones) and its just valid and invalid stuff that I’m trying to connect with. I need practice with fallacies. I debate sometimes on facebook, but when people bring up carbon dating, distant starlight, dinosaurs, elements, any kind of science I don’t know how to respond with it since I lack knowledge in science majorly. I noticed how you brought up material from Richard Dawkins. I wouldn’t be able to spot the information you provided since well I wouldn’t know. I use to watch a lot of material from Dr. Kent Hovind and it his material did make sense, but its a lot to try to memorize. Seemingly I think logical fallacies is the most easiest to grasp for me. If I were to debate Richard Dawkins or such I would have no where to begin unless they mentioned phrases like “science says” which is the fallacy of reinfication for example but biology, astronomy, any science is just above my head currently. Should I really take science courses in order to learn whose being honest and dishonest regarding these types of science or is learning about logical fallacies good enough? I’m the only one in my family who cares about defending the faith. God bless Nick thanks for the info.

        • Nick L. says:

          Ben,
          The wonderful thing about the Ultimate Proof of creation that Dr. Lisle discusses is that we don’t have to go through and memorize all sorts of scientific information. You mentioned a scenario of your debating Richard Dawkins. Dawkins is a highly intelligent individual, and he would be able to talk about various scientific elements far more readily than most people. But if you were to debate him, you would have the edge. You see, science itself is only understandable if based in a literal Genesis. Dawkins appeals to science, but what basis does he have for practicing science? This is the vital importance of Dr. Lisle’s discussion of the preconditions of intelligibility and uniformity in nature that are grounded in Genesis. Dawkins holds his worldview inconsistently; he has no reason to believe in the preconditions of intelligibility. He can bring up the objection of distant starlight, for example, but you wouldn’t have to be able to give him a lecture on Anisotropic Synchrony Convention or Gravitational Time Dilation. All you would have to do is to point out the fact that the measurements and calculations used when analyzing distant starlight depend upon uniformity in nature. Dawkins is also depending upon the reliability of his own senses, but the reliability of our senses and uniformity in nature are both impossible in Dawkins’s naturalistic worldview (Lisle, Ultimate Proof, 58-59). Being able to counter scientific evidences is certainly a valuable skill, but there will always be someone more scientifically adept than you are, no matter how many evidences you learn. Dr. Lisle’s method circumvents this potential problem by giving the advantage to anyone who stands upon a literal Genesis rather than whoever can recite the most scientific information.
          Nick

          • Ben says:

            Oh that makes perfect sense. All science depends on uniformity of nature regardless whatever an individual says. What about the truth claims and relativism? Some might say well that’s truth for you but not truth for me but then saying their are no absolutes is an absolute statement but then they may say well that’s your truth and it could be a arbitrary circle argument. I pointed out to my dad before that laws of logic are depended on the biblical God, and naturalism can’t account for it. He replied so? Who cares what others think? They have the right to believe whatever they want so let them be. Why does it matter? I replied its arbitrary. He agrees with me we all should have a good reason why people believe what they believe (but this seems inconsistent of him). He said people believe their information from other sources that they get (books, media etc) but I explained you got to ask the killer question how do you know that information is true? It all must go back to an ultimate standard. Its quite frustrating talking to him or anyone in my family. How should I handle these silly responses? I was looking a blog on the internet and it claimed that the original Greek of 1John 2:22 stated that Jesus is not the Christ (τις εστιν ο ψευστης ει μη ο αρνουμενος οτι ιησους ουκ εστιν ο χριστος). I used a Google translator and it stated the something. I’m not sure what to think of it. The rest of scripture as far as I’m aware confirms Jesus is the Christ, but I don’t know about it it seems kinda scary I think.

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben,
            Yes, you’re exactly right about the self-defeating nature of relativism. A person who believes that there are no absolute truth claims cannot possibly hold to their view consistently, due to the fact that they believe in the absolute truth of the fact that there are no absolute truths. As Dr. Lisle stated in one of his Nuclear Apologetics presentations, if relativism is true, it’s false . . . in which case it’s false. In dealing with your father, remember that an ultimate proof is only that. It is not an ultimate persuasion. There is a world of difference between the two. When Dr. Lisle states that the ultimate proof leaves your debating opponent with no rational response, the key word is ‘rational’. Indeed, they may still have a response, as evidenced by your father’s attempts to circle around the argument, but his response is not ‘rational’. All you can do is point out the inconsistencies, irrationalities, and arbitrariness in his worldview. Doing so will not necessarily convince him to immediately abandon his worldview and embrace yours, unfortunately.
            As for the Greek verse you mentioned, there seems to be an error in the typology of the verse. I pasted the Greek sentence that you posted into Google Translate, and it came up with a rather convoluted sentence. At the bottom of the screen was a suggestion saying “Did you mean . . .” Upon clicking the suggested spelling suggestion, the verse translates “The liar is he the if not the essential denying that Jesus is the Christ.” As you can see, this sentence is also rather confusing. If you look at a Greek-English interlinear version of the New Testament, the literal translation of the verse is “Who is the liar, except the (one) denying, (saying) that Jesus is not the Christ? This is the antichrist, the (one) denying the Father and the Son”. The words in parentheses are words that are not actually written down, but are implied by the other words of the sentence. For instance, the Spanish sentence “Bebo una taza de café” is translated “Drink a cup of coffee”, but the way the word ‘bebo’ is spelled implies that ‘I’ is the subject of the sentence, making a proper translation “I drink a cup of coffee”. Meanings can be shifted a great deal when people fail to account for words that are implied by the original language.
            Nick

          • Ben says:

            Also Nick (or Dr. Lisle I suppose this goes to anybody too) seemingly my family has talks about political things such as at restaurants and I’m not informed about that and I want to somehow tie God’s truth involved with it but I don’t know if that’s something that really seems likely. I think God’s spiritual truth is far more important than just temporary things that pass away like laws or where America is going so on and so fourth, but I’m unsure about trying to blend it in without annoying them and such I’ve tried it before in the past and doesn’t seem to work out.

        • Ben says:

          I agree with everything you said regarding the salvation and such. I have seen the debate between Hugh Ross and Dr. Lisle on youtube. The 4 or 5 hour video, along with a 40 minute different debate also on youtube. What about modus ponens? I heard Dr. Lisle state that is a law of logic, but after looking at many websites on google everybody says that their are only three laws of logic which are non contradiction, excluded middle, and identity, nothing about modus pones or modus tollens. Some websites said that rational inference was the fourth law of logic but other than that nothing more. How many are their? I’ve also read throughout the internet that some people claim that they have mathematical or some form of method for rejecting the laws of logic, how must someone use laws of logic in order to disprove laws of logic too? Don’t the laws of logic, and uniformity somewhat go hand and hand together? I know the common responses from evolutionist regarding the laws and uniformity and heard them personally myself in debates, but how would a Muslim, Buddhist, or a Mormon respond possibly?

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben, there are three ‘laws of logic’. These are the law of non-contradiction, the law of identity, and the law of the excluded middle. These are the basic laws of logic, or laws of thought. Modus Ponens and Modus Tollens are not laws of logic; they are forms of a mixed hypothetical syllogism. There are several types of logical arguments. One category is the hypothetical syllogism, which involve an “if . . . then” construction. “If P, then Q. P. Therefore, Q” is the Modus Ponens form (also called affirming the antecedent). “If P, then Q. Not Q. Therefore, not P” is the Modus Tollens form (also ‘denying the consequent’). You asked in an earlier response about categorical syllogisms (hereafter CS). CS’s are another type of logical argument, just like HS’s. They take forms like the following: “All S are M. All M are P. Therefore, all S are P”. Because these arguments deal with categories (eg. “all S”, “no S”, “all M”, etc.), they are ‘categorical’ in nature. The five basic forms of an logical argument are generally considered to be: 1) Constructive Syllogism, 2) Hypothetical Syllogism, 3) Disjunctive Syllogism, 4) Constructive Dilemma, and 5) Reductio ad Absurdum. You can find more information on each of these in the book by Cowan and Spiegel I referenced in another post.

            I really don’t put much stock in the idea of someone ‘disproving’ the laws of logic. The only way to disprove something would seem to be to present some sort of argument showing its falsity. But an argument must follow the laws of logic in order to be plausible. So arguing against the laws of logic goes back to the examples Dr. Lisle mentions of people arguing against the existence of words or air, even while utilizing the very thing they argue does not exist.

            I’ll have to write a separate post to briefly discuss the last question regarding other faiths.

          • Nick L. says:

            I have not had very much interaction with the faith beliefs of Buddhists and Mormons, but I know that neither group holds to a literal interpretation of Scripture, thus dooming them to failure. Muslims will not find the basis for laws of logic in Allah. For example, Allah occasionally contradicts himself, proving he cannot be the source of the law of non-contradiction. Allah is also incapable of descending to the level of his creation, but he is supposed to be omnipotent. Claiming that a being is omnipotent and pairing that claim with the claim that there is something that being is incapable of seems to be another contradiction. Even identifying Allah with an aspect of his creation is considered blasphemous in the Muslim faith. It is called the sin of ‘shirk’. The God of the Bible is not incapable of descending to the level of humanity. “The Word was made flesh and dwelt among us” (John 1:14) when God “took on the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of man” (Phil. 2:7, KJV). The Muslims end up in the same fix that the Jews do when it comes to the question of who Christ was. They also claim that He was “a great prophet” or “a good teacher”. See my earlier post for the problem with that attempted explanation. Time constraints keep me from going into further depth on this particular issue, but perhaps Dr. Lisle can offer you additional information.

          • Ben says:

            I understand if people bring up a field I don’t know about I explain how its process must perform under uniformity of nature and how you can’t account for it, but what if they say carbon dating, fission track dating, luminescence dating, or starlight estimates seem to be mostly accurate and correct due to the amount of most scientist that agree with its calculations. Regardless if its 100 percent accurate or 0 percent accurate it must work with uniformity of nature? Seems like I would just be repeating myself. What if someone says uniformity doesn’t happen, its changes all the time but its moving so slow that we as people can’t detect it with our senses or with scientific tools yet. Of course that would be begging the question correct?

            How should I start a debate with someone who has rejected biblical authority? Should I start with asking for an account for laws of logic, uniformity of nature, and absolute morality?

            One of my friends says you just need to love the person, you just need to tell the person about the good news of the gospel and the love of Jesus and if they reject that standard walk away until they come back to you, but most people at least I’m aware of reject it and are aware of what the Bible claims, regardless. I do know that love is obviously needed for ministry and teaching, but apologetics is just as important as well isn’t it? Doesn’t the book of Acts mention Paul giving explanation and argument for the faith? Even Proverbs chapter 4 mentions how we should approach a fool.

            I’ve heard Dr. Lisle say a worldview must be consistent or you can come up with anything, but how is that so? I could say either people don’t exist and/or mars is made up of sugar. If I believed anything in my worldview why would it matter if I’m inconsistent or not? Basically the last 5 or 3 minutes of Dr. Lisle’s presentation on his logical fallacy dvd is what I’m referring to is what I’m not grasping well yet.
            Thanks alot Nick again for addressing alot of these issues. Its been a huge blessing.

          • Ben says:

            I got involved with another debate again, but it was extremely strange I thought. I was explaning how other religious worldviews refute themselves, but the critic was claiming how all religions are the same, and I was basically committing a straw man with my case. He said natural law and morality come from dharma and uniformity comes from a circle of creation preservation destruction and creation it is there “uniformity of nature” that all life is created preserved for awhile then destroyed. Vishnu brahma and shiva… in Hindu thinking. God isn’t a creator god is the universe. His fragmentation is what creates you. I didn’t know how to respond to that so I let it go.

            He claimed Jesus never calimed to be God, It was in fact the roman senate who claimed that 5 months after his death. It was a show of power to other nations that they had killed gods avatar, but even if that was true about the Romans, the Bible still proclaims that Jesus was God the Son.

            He told me I need to read the five pillars of islam which he supposedly proclaimed that uniformity and natural law (I was talking about the laws of logic, but I think he thought I meant natural laws) explains it, which of course I would have no idea where to find one so I left that too.

            His friend said that the law of non contradiction is made when people say Jesus was God, but also not God at the sametime. Now their are different theories and understandings of that. Some Christians say Jesus was not fully God on the earth. Jesus was fully God on the earth, and some say that Jesus was both in a different sense. Based on what my grandpa as presented to me on this subject is that Jesus was not God while he was on the earth in his earthly body (I do not know the scriptures he presented for his position on it at the top of my head) but regardless how should that be answered? Was Jesus fully God and man and how would it break the law of non contradition? Eventually at the end of our talk the first person proclaimed he was agnostic, and if that was so what was the point of bringing up all the Islam and Hindu philosphy into the discussion, I don’t know what to think. Sorry Nick for all these siturations and questions over the past while. I hope its not too much…

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben, I’ll try to cover much of what you mentioned. First and most importantly, Jesus most certainly does claim to be the Son of God. He does so numerous times. See John 14:8-10, John 11:4, Romans 1:1-4, and especially John 10:30. Also, the Roman government denied that He was the Son of God, as did the leaders of the Jews. As a matter of fact, this is made very clear due to the fact that Jesus was accused of and tried for blasphemy after claiming to be the Son of God (see John 19:6-8). Many did believe Jesus’ claim (such as the centurion who said at the crucifixion that Jesus surely was the Son of God), but most of His Jewish audience rejected Him. I would respond by asking your agnostic associate who he believes Jesus truly was, and I would also ask him respectfully if he has read the four Gospels, since his propositions make numerous errant claims about their content.
            You mentioned Buddhism and a few other religious persuasions, and since I am reaching somewhat beyond my intellectual sphere in attempting to provide an answer or refutation for them, I would defer to anyone (such as Dr. Lisle) who is more familiar with these religions than I am. Any religion not founded upon a literal Genesis will end up failing the AIP test that you read about in Dr. Lisle’s book. Sometimes, the faults of the religion will be difficult to pinpoint when they are dressed up in the jargon of Eastern mysticism. Buddhism fails on numerous accounts, but I only have space for one. Consider the Buddhist belief that there are many, many (even innumerable) ways to become one with ultimate reality (becoming one with ultimate reality is essentially the ‘salvation’ doctrine of Buddhism). If there are many ways, then my way may be different from yours, but neither of us is incorrect. The Mandukya Upanishad states: “Om. This eternal word is all: what was, what is and what shall be, and what is beyond is in eternity. All is Om”. It should be clear that Buddhism involves a great amount of arbitrariness and relativism. Any religion that entails multiple ways to salvation is inherently relativistic, and you are capable of refuting any relativistic worldview. It really is not necessary to become fully educated in the many religions of the world, but if you would like an accessible and thorough presentation of many other religions (from a Christian perspective), check out ‘The Universe Next Door’ by James Sire. I’ll continue in another post.

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben, yes, I posted a response the other day that is currently awaiting moderation (most likely due to its length). In it, I responded to a few of the objections from the website you posted and provided a few articles for you to read from the AiG website.
            Regarding Jesus’ actual physical powers on earth, the Bible is clear that Jesus was wholly God and wholly man during His earthly ministry. Because He is God, He is capable of taking on the form of His creation, living as His creation lives, and undergoing the physical conditions and temptations that His creation undergoes. Jesus was entirely able to turn the stones to bread when tempted to, just as He was able to walk on water and rise from the dead. The fact that He suffered death (even though He certainly did not have to as an immortal Being) ties into the doctrine of redemption. In the book of Exodus, the Hebrews in Egypt observe the first Passover by shedding the blood of a lamb without spot or blemish. A spot is an inherited defect, and a blemish is an acquired defect. Jesus was (and is) “the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world” (John 1:29). Jesus was a lamb without spot or blemish. He was born without an inherent sin nature (via the virgin birth), making Him ‘without spot’; and He lived a sinless life, making Him ‘without blemish’. Because He satisfied these two conditions, Christ became the propitiation for our sins. He does not violate the law of non-contradiction by being God and man. The law of non-contradiction states that a proposition cannot be both true and false at the same time in the same sense. Christ limited His power and “took on the form of a servant and was made in the likeness of man” (See the full text of Philippians 2). This did not cause Him to be any less God.

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben, you are correct that it is very important to be able to provide a thorough defense of our beliefs. My main life verse is 1 Peter 3:15, a verse Stephen posted in one of his posts. The verse states: “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear” (KJV). You are also correct that a worldview must be consistent throughout. As you said, someone can invent any worldview they wish, but a worldview is not so much an invented ideology as it is a practiced and lived-out mindset. For instance, my worldview tells me that you exist; because of that belief, I’m typing up this post for you to read. A Hindu would not necessarily agree with me that you exist. Even if this hypothetical Hindu were to meet you face-to-face and shake hands with you, they still might deny your existence. Such absurd practices fit within a Hindu’s worldview, but they are not consistent with the way a Hindu lives life. If you hold out a $100 bill to a Hindu, they’ll take it, even if they deny that you and the bill exist. This is an inconsistency. What we try to do in Christian apologetics is to show the inconsistencies that an evolutionary worldview entails. In an evolutionary worldview, science is impossible, but evolutionists still practice science as though their worldview allows for its existence. So the question really does not come down to what you think your worldview says. The question comes down to whether or not what your worldview says is consistent with how you live.

            Incidentally, our posts are beginning to spread all over this particular thread. You may want to post your next post at the top of the page to keep our responses a bit more tidy and easy to follow. Also know that I do not mind the questions at all. My only concern is that Dr. Lisle may object to the amount of material I’m typing on his blog! ☺

        • Ben says:

          Dr. Lisle wherever you are I would really love to hear your thoughts regarding Nick and I’s conversation. Nick. I thought I read differently, okay three basic laws. In a unforunate but furtunate way I lended a good friend of mine Dr. Lisle’s book and all his DVDs regarding apologetics assuming she would watch them in a week or so but its been way longer so I’m not exactly sure when I’ll get it back but I was going to by a electronic version on AIG so its kinda hard for me to refresh my memory on all this material. I debated someone for my second time ever with this presuppitonal approach in person regarding morality and relativism. The person kept trying to change the subject to something random off topic after I pointed out arbitrariness in his worldview. I didn’t want to anger him or try to turn him away from God so every other topic he brought up I tried giving spiritual truth to him, but still he changed the subject time to time. I always heard it was rude to interrupt but I wasn’t sure how to keep the topic on morality and such. When I do the A.I.P. test mentioned in Dr. Lisle’s book is it really necessary to use every part or just use the ones that appear more often? I know that their are subcategories within arbitrariness, inconsistencies, and the preconditions of intelligibility but I just know what the basic words mean, not the sub categories. If I don’t know them its not necessary correct? Just the basic terms? Same with logical fallacies. I know equivocation is a type of ambiguity but it seems very unnecessary from what I understand.

          I’m not sure if this fear is from the fruit of the flesh mentioned from scripture or demonic or something else, but God has given me a huge desire to make sure kid’s are guaranteed to stay in the faith. Dr. Lisle’s lesson’s on apologetic s has caused me to be secured in it, but kid’s at my previous high school, and around my home country I worry for their faith, and I want to teach them about all this material but seemingly where to start. I’m very young and I wouldn’t know how to begin a ministry anyway, this article kinda explains what stirs me up http://www.answersingenesis.org/articles/am/v4/n4/going-gone. Just this urge is seemingly growing in me and I’m not sure where or how can God use it to teach others through me. I forgot but a few days ago you had some articles or some points you had for me but it was pending or it needed to be requested through Dr. Lisle first? Anyway I can get those still or is it still a waiting progress?

          Also, would Deuteronomy 11:26 be an example of excluded middle, and the Genesis account be creation be an example of law of identity? I’m still trying to figure out how God can account for the other two laws but simple scriptures like these are seemingly all I can find.

      • Ben says:

        Nick, I’m having issues answering problems supposedly with the gay gene issue in DNA. People say they were genetically born that way. In my high school class we debated this topic, but my response was if we want to say their is a gene like that I could easily say I was born a murderer or a firefighter, I suppose scientist would have to start looking for a gene that turns people into murderers, firefighters, ice cream truck drivers, or anything for that matter. I’ve heard the response you can’t feel murder or get a feeling from so it can’t be a gene. I’ve replied of course you can feel (as in pleasure) from murder, putting out fires, or whatever. Infact in my state about two months ago a teenager killed a small child and wrote in her diary that she murdered her due to she wanted to know what it felt like to murder and she said it felt great. I mean I think this whole argument makes the gay gene in DNA just silly and arbitrary. What do you think Nick?

        Another issue I have with the worldwide flood issue during Noah and the ark scene is how did the animals not eat each other? I know before the fall that all life ate plants since grass and plants weren’t considered alive from a biblical perspective so it wasn’t until after the fall animals and people started to eat other animals and living things, but if that is true than animals would of eaten each other since the flood took much time after the fall. Plus wouldn’t certain animals need a certain amount of foods to survive, exercise? I know bugs didn’t need to be on the ark due to their ability to float on top of water such as ants and others. Alot of these questions I’ve gotten were from http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/faq-noahs-ark.html which is seemingly a popular website I think. Anyway can you help me refute its claims? The whole website seemingly brings up topics such as dating methods and such but all the information on that site depends on uniformity correct which can’t be explained by unbelievers?

        • Nick L. says:

          Ben, you are correct that enthymemes are entirely acceptable. An enthymeme is nothing more than an argument in which one of the premises or the conclusion is not explicitly stated. For instance, recall the example I mentioned of Darwin some time ago. Darwin essentially said in ‘Descent of Man’: “Embryonic similarities prove that we all came from a common ancestor”. That’s not the exact wording, but I don’t have the text in front of me. Darwin lists one of his premises (‘There are embryonic similarities among various species’), and his conclusion (‘Therefore, we came from a common ancestor’). What he leaves out is his first premise (‘If species evolved from a common ancestor, we would expect these embryonic similarities’). Darwin did nothing wrong by not setting up his argument in a three point, syllogistic fashion, but we are free to ‘translate’ his argument, so to speak, into a formal argument form. See my post about Darwin for the discussion of the logical fallacy he commits here.

          I don’t fully understand the question regarding circular reasoning, but as for the so-called ‘gay gene’, there is no such thing. Our genes provide the information for our hair color, height, eye color, gender, etc. Our orientation is directly tied to our gender. Choosing a homosexual lifestyle is not a genetic decision. It is a personal choice. Consider this: if there were indeed a ‘gay gene’, we would expect to find the same gene in animals, would we not? We would expect to find animals that lived in a homosexual lifestyle. We find no such thing. That would seem to be evidence against the existence of a ‘gay gene’. (Since you’re studying logical arguments, the argument proposed would be a Modus Tollens.) Also, I don’t know if the person who proposed the ‘gay gene’ was an evolutionist or not, but evolution and a homosexual lifestyle are utterly incompatible. One of evolution’s main mechanisms is survival of the fittest, a mechanism directly tied to reproduction. The organisms that produce the most offspring are considered the ‘most fit’. A homosexual couple will produce no offspring, making homosexual behavior contrary to a naturalistic philosophy.

          I’ll try to respond tonight to the ark questions, and I’ll check out the website you posted, but I’ll mention quickly that many creationists feel that it is highly likely that the animals on the ark went into an extended period of hibernation during the Flood. More on that later. ☺ Hope I was able to help!

          • Ben says:

            Thanks alot Nick! I’ve been trying to answer feedback emails that Dr. Lisle mentions in his book. When I compare mine to his his sounds a whole lot more professional. Mine are either alot shorter or longer than his depending on the email. I hit on the same general points almost I think that he does. How would you suggest on how I can improve my feedback responses in the book, or I suppose just in general to make it seem more professional and affective? The circular reasoning deal can be found in chapter 9 about the closing the loopholes.

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben,
            It’s often difficult to keep everything in your mind when you engage in a discussion with someone who doesn’t agree with your stance. Know that you don’t necessarily have to keep the exact terms and definitions in your mind. You just have to be able to employ the concepts. Dr. Lisle discusses the use of analogies in arguments. If you encounter an argument in which your opponent falls prey to the fallacy of affirming the consequent, you don’t necessarily have to be able to refer to it as such. You don’t even have to remember that the flaw is called ‘affirming the consequent’. All you would have to do is say “Your argument is akin to arguing that it must be raining outside since the grass is wet”. Such a simple analogy can show the fact that a consequent does not necessitate one specific antecedent.
            As for being nervous, I don’t know that you’ll ever be able to stop being ‘nervous’. The fact that you’re nervous shows that you know that there is potentially a great deal at stake in the conversation. Your nervousness stems from your desire to do the best possible job. It’s easy to say “Just relax”, but it’s far more difficult to actually put that advice into practice. I get somewhat nervous when I hold conversations with evolutionists, atheists, etc., but the nervousness doesn’t stem from my being afraid of being wrong. That’s a very important thing to remember. If you’re upholding God’s word against a secular world, you don’t have to worry about being wrong. The triune God of the Bible IS the Creator and Upholder of the material universe, and when you stand as His representative to this world, you must always remember that you’re on the winning side. As the Apostle Paul states in Romans 8:31, “If God be for us, who can be against us?” (KJV).

          • Ben says:

            Thats a good verse. I took the quiz for my first time ever in Dr. Lisle’s book Diserning Truth. I got about 15 wrong out of all 65 or whatever the amount it was and some of the onces I missed I compltely guessed on. It took me about a minute to put an answer, and in the end I got a headache matching the words up with the arguement. I’m having a hard time telling the difference between a question-begging eipthet and ad hominums, appear too fallacies, and with the generalization fallacies.Aren’t the appear too (fear, pity, etc) and the emotional types just a type of red herring fallacy? Such as being irrelevant to the topic?

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben,
            I don’t have the ‘Discerning Truth’ book that you mentioned. A question-begging epithet is an attempt at an argument that uses biased and emotionally-charged language. Your opponent not only assumes the truth of his position, but also labels your position with intensely negative verbiage.

            An ad hominem fallacy is similar to the question-begging epithet, but an ad hominem is directed at you rather than your stance. For instance, assume for a moment that I’m an evolutionist and you’re a creationist. If I tell you to stop indoctrinating children with false science, I’m engaging in a question-begging epithet (since I’m labeling your position as bad and assuming mine is correct). But if I dig in your past and find out something bad about you and then argue that your scientific theories can’t be trusted since you did such-and-such in your past, I’m engaging in an ad hominem (because I’m attacking you, not your position).

            Appeals to fear, pity, popular opinion, etc. can all be categorized as irrelevant, but the reason that they’re irrelevant is that the emotions involved have absolutely no connection to the truth or falsehood of the arguments being discussed. For instance, I cannot argue that Richard Dawkins’s stance on origins is wrong since only 8% of people are atheists. That’s an appeal to popular opinion. What the majority thinks really doesn’t matter. At one point, the majority felt that the earth was flat, that the sun rotated the earth, etc. Bringing fear, pity, or general consensus into the argument is entirely irrelevant, since these factors can change with time. Truth is immutable; that is, it cannot and does not change with time. Emotions do, which make emotions and truth impossible to relate to each other in an argument.

            Nick

          • Ben says:

            What is your position on classical apologetics? I know how eviditial style is based on the fallacy of reinfication and that presuppositional apologetics is very biblical, but what about classical or perhaps any other method of apologetics? Do the facts of science change much over decades? Such as a science presentation of astronomy, biology, etc over 5 or 10 years would the information still be current or does that all depend on the subject and the information presented by the author? I noticed Dr. Lisle’s video on Distant Starlight is from 2005 and his Big Bang video is from 2008 I think. I just don’t want to present material to my friends who are non believers that they would consider old or something. I got alot of material from Dr. Kent Hovind from 2003 that is very good I think but I’m not sure if its still in contact with today’s state of time.

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben,
            I don’t know that it’s necessarily accurate to say that evidential apologetics is based on the fallacy of reification. I think evidences are definitely a strong part of apologetics, but I agree with Dr. Lisle that evidence itself should not be relied on as the sole tool of apologetics, due to the fact that anyone who is thoroughly committed to their worldview will invent rescuing devices to reinterpret the evidence. I do think that learning various scientific facts can be very useful, especially when your opponent brings up evidences and asks you to explain them. It’s also very useful when you’re in casual conversations with people who simply want more information about creationism. Many people still think we evolved from the fossil ‘Lucy’ (Australopithecus afarensis). Many of them are highly interested in the various flaws in the Australopithecine ‘family tree’. For an excellent discussion of Lucy, check out Dr. David Menton’s DVD “Lucy: She’s no Lady” (available at the Answers Bookstore). Presenting obstacles to common ‘evidences’ of evolution is an excellent way to interest people in further dialogue. As for scientific facts changing, I think that would have to ultimately depend on what fact you’re talking about. For instance, the ‘moon dust’ argument used to be very popular in showing evidences for a young solar system. Creationists have recently revisited that argument and decided to avoid it due to some unresolved issues in the model. I think that you can probably predict which information will remain valid by examining the field involved. Paleontology seems to be a fairly ‘safe’ zone of science, since facts about fossils rarely change. That’s not to say that they DON’T change, because they certainly do. But when facts ‘change’ in paleontology, it’s generally caused by the scientific community correcting faulty information regarding a fossil’s characteristics or reconstruction. One example would be Neandertal man. Boulle constructed the original fossil incorrectly, but it has recently been reexamined and corrected to assume an upright posture, as opposed to the stooping posture Boulle used. Regardless of this ‘correction’, the Field Museum in Chicago still has the old Neandertal construction on display, labeled ‘An Alternative View of Neandertal’. If you’re studying works by creationists like Marvin Lubenow that point out problems in a fossil form, that information seems very unlikely to change with time. As for Dr. Lisle’s astronomy videos, I’m sure that the information you’ve seen is still entirely relevant. Some minor information may change, but it’s rarely anything crucial. For instance, in Dr. Lisle’s 2005 video on distant starlight, he discusses the ‘CDK’ theory (involving the speed of light slowing down), GTD (gravitational time dilation), and ASC (anisotropic synchrony convention). Dr. Lisle does not choose one specific ‘favorite’ model in the DVD, due to the fact that much research is still needed on each of them, but he has since done extensive study on the lattermost model (ASC) and has presented it as one of the more likely candidates for solving the distant starlight issue (see his article on ASC in the Answers Research Journal for more information).
            Nick

          • Ben says:

            My grandpa at his church was talking about signs and wanders and how many churches teach that they have passed away such as tongues for example because they don’t see it. I was thinking to myself for awhile and I decided to write it on paper in “if p, then q” format a couple of times with my word choices I realized something thats puzzling me. If I said hypothetically

            1. If tongues are for today, we would expect to see them in the church (p)
            2. We do see them in the church. (q)
            3. Therefore, tongues is for today. (p)
            or I said

            1. If tongues are not for today, we would not to expect to see them in the church. (p)
            2. We don’t see them in the church. (not q)
            3. Therefore tongues is not for today. (p)

            This argument affirms the consequent for the first one (I think) and for the second one I have no idea. However, if tongues is for today and that is the position that we hold (hypothetically) would it matter if its a fallacy since thats what we would expect? Perhaps what if I changed some of the basic words around with “don’t expect, we expect, today, not for today, etc” it could change from invalid to valid or sound to unsound arguments correct? Also, would it matter if our specifics of the position we hold on the topic was what we expect to see regardless what we see in the church? I’m not sure if this is making much sense. I’m just very confused what to think on this issue (not the topic of tongues but the argument for or against tongues in this format p, q, etc), but with these two fallacies and the specific word choices and if results make a worldview true. I understand affirming the consequent is “if p then q, q therfore p” and denying the antecident is “if p then q, not p, therefore not q” denies the antecedent, but I don’t get the “if p, then q, not q therefore p,” “if p, then q, p, not q” and all the other combinations I can get with those two letters. If you could clear this up I appreciate it.

            Also, I understand if an argument is valid it means it follows, but can I get an easier explanation of it? I mean what does the word “follow” mean? I’m having a hard time grasping that term.

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben,
            You asked a rather tricky question. You are correct that the first argument is an instance of the logical fallacy of affirming the consequent. As for the second argument, it is actually also a form of affirming the consequent. It’s more difficult to recognize since you used ‘not’ in both of your premises. The argument as written was:
            1. If tongues are not for today, we would not expect to see them in the church.
            2. We do not see them in the church.
            3. Therefore, tongues are not for today.
            Your first premise is the ‘If P, then Q’ portion. In this argument, P is “If tongues are not for today”, and Q is “we would not expect to see them in the church”. Your second premise affirms the Q portion (by stating that we don’t see them in church). Your argument as posed is thus “If P, then Q. Q; therefore P”, rather than “If P, then Q. Not Q; therefore, not P”. You’re affirming Q, but in this case, Q is a negative. By stating “We do not see them in the church” in premise 2, you’re not stating “not Q”. You’re stating “Q”. Thus, both the first AND second arguments are examples of affirming the consequent. In order to formulate the argument validly you would have to phrase it as follows:
            1. If tongues are for today, we would expect to see them in the church.
            2. We do not see them in church.
            3. Therefore, tongues are not for today.
            Please note that I’m not addressing my opinion regarding the actual truth or falsity behind any of these premises and am thus not taking a position on the tongues controversy. I’m only discussing the argument forms themselves. The opposite position could be argued with the following valid form:
            1. If tongues were not for today, we would not see them in the church.
            2. We see them in the church.
            3. Therefore, it is not true that tongues are not for today; that is, tongues are for today
            Here are the two VALID forms being discussed:
            1. If P, then Q.
            2. P.
            3. Therefore, Q.

            1. If P, then Q.
            2. Not Q.
            3. Therefore, not P.
            These two forms are affirming the antecedent and denying the consequent, respectively. Here are the two invalid forms that mimic the forms above:
            1. If P, then Q.
            2. Not P.
            3. Therefore, not Q.

            1. If P, then Q.
            2. Q.
            3. Therefore, P.
            These two forms are denying the antecedent and affirming the consequent, respectively. I did write this post hurriedly, so I’ll reread this post later to be sure I stated the argument forms correctly.
            Nick

          • Ben says:

            Regardless if tounges is for today or not for today is a different subject that I wasn’t planning on getting into. It was just the methods for explanations for the positions I was questioning about that (for any part of the scriptures actually could also apply I assume). How does it make the arguement follow if “p then q, not q, therefore not p” and “if p then q, p therefore q” valid? The invalids make perfect sense to me but not the valid parts. Anyway you can personally quiz me on the whole apologetics deal? Everything from the Ultimate Proof book so on and so forth?

          • Ben says:

            I also remembered something about the tounges arguement issue. Could it also be a hasty generalization and appear to majority fallacies? If every church said they believed or don’t believed in tounges it doesn’t make it true or not true since the majority of belief doesn’t determine truth of course (samething with evolution and anything else). This doesn’t just apply with the tounges topic but any biblical topic as well from prophecy, healing, prayer, etc or worldly ideas like Buddhism, Islam, Paganism, etc. Its seems kinda confusing with all the fallacies that this can play in. Isn’t it true what might be considered a fallacy could depend on your worldview as well?

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben,
            When it comes to what makes a valid argument, you have to analyze whether or not the conclusion of the argument is inescapable, given the veracity of the premises. For instance, consider this argument:

            1. If Team A scores more points than any other team, Team A wins.
            2. Team A scored more points than any other team.
            3. Therefore, Team A won.

            If statements one and two are true, there is absolutely no way that statement three can be false. This is why we can say that statement three ‘follows’ from statements one and two. We know that what requirements need to be met for Team A to win (statement one), and we know that Team A met those requirements (statement two). Therefore, it logically follows that Team A won. The argument above is a Modus Ponens form of a hypothetical syllogism (also called affirming the antecedent). The other valid form you mentioned is the Modus Tollens:

            1. If Team A scores more points than any other team, Team A wins.
            2. Team A did not win.
            3. Therefore, Team A did not score more points than any other team.

            This argument is valid due to the same fact mentioned above: statement three cannot be untrue if statements one and two are true. Since Team A did not win, Team A must not have fulfilled the qualifications for winning. Statement one tells us what those qualifications are, so we are logically justified in deducing that Team A did not score more points than any other team. Now look at these two fallacious arguments:

            1. If Team A scores more points than any other team, Team A wins.
            2. Team A won.
            3. Therefore, Team A scored more points than any other team.

            This argument is invalid. It affirms the consequent and assumes that scoring the most points is the ONLY way that Team A could have won. Perhaps all the other teams scored more points but conceded the match for an unspecified reason.

            1. If Team A scores more points than any other team, Team A wins.
            2. Team A did not score more points than any other team.
            3. Therefore, Team A did not win.

            This argument is invalid as well. It denies the antecedent. As stated above, Team A may have won by a different means than scoring the most points.
            An argument ‘follows’ if the conclusion is logically inescapable (provided the premises are true). An argument that follows is a valid argument. An invalid argument is one in which the conclusion does not ‘follow’. The reason that the argument does not follow is that the conclusion is NOT logically inescapable.
            Actually, laws of logic do not originate in or depend on one’s worldview. Logical explanations for our beliefs are not part of our actual belief system (our worldview). Our ‘noetic structure’ is the term given to both our beliefs and our explanations and justifications for those beliefs.

          • Ben says:

            A friend asked me once if the Christian worldview is true, why do other people of other faiths such as Islam for example claim to see their God or Gods when they have a near death experience. How would you answer that?

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben,
            Near-death experiences and the sensations that can accompany them are well outside my realm of knowledge. Psychoanalysts generally attribute nearly 30% of visions and things near death to hallucinations, but certain unifying factors keep them from labeling them all as hallucinations. When you’re nearing death, or think that you’ve already reached it, your mind operates very differently. You become more prone to see and hear things that are not necessarily ‘true-to-life’ but are instead tied to feelings and beliefs inside you. Your worldview determines your hopes and aspirations for the afterlife, and I would thus assume that one’s worldview would affect what one experiences when they are convinced that they are nearing the afterlife. That’s really all I can offer in the way of information on that particular subject. Apologetics and observational science are much more in my line than NDE’s, OOBE’s, etc.

          • Ben says:

            That kinda clears things up. I got a few questions regarding the heavenly realms and spirits in scripture. I know that probably doesn’t involve too much science (unless you know of somehow it does). Throughout scripture it talks about angels destroying Israel for their disobedience in the old testament. Demons causing sickness. Our fight not being against flesh and blood. Walking on water, healing, prophecy. Alot of very strange activity in scripture (I suppose its supernatural obviously). But how does that all work in reality? I know God (and demons as well) seemingly do works that are out of what we can observe with our senses like the examples above but how it just too mysterious. Do you have any knowledge or understanding of how these things are current? Also, if I remember right at the end of the gospels it says Jesus went on a cloud and up into Heaven, but aren’t clouds not solid? If he went up how fast must of the cloud been moving in order to get to Heaven? I think its too mysterious to understand from a natural perspective.

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben,
            When it comes to the activities of the spiritual realm in modern times, it’s important to remember that the spiritual realm is just as much “reality” as the physical realm. Angels and demons certainly play a part in our spiritual lives, hence the Apostle Paul’s instructions to equip ourselves for spiritual warfare. Although the interaction between the spiritual and physical realms is sometimes manifested in physical ways, this is not always the case. The disciples, for example, made the mistake of assuming that any illness could be attributed to some spiritual purpose, retribution, demonic activity, etc. Upon seeing a man born blind, they asked Jesus who had sinned: the man or his parents. Jesus responded by telling them that the man’s blindness was not a punishment for anyone; it was rather so that God could be glorified.
            We are told that “we wrestle not with flesh and blood” but rather with spiritual enemies. Because of this, it is important that we build ourselves up spiritually in as many ways as possible: prayer, study, meditation, fellowship, etc.
            As for Jesus ascending on a cloud, you’re correct that a cloud is certainly not generally considered suitable footing, but then again, neither is water, a fact that did not keep Jesus from walking on water. Jesus’ transcendent, sovereign nature allows Him to engage His creation in ways that we cannot.
            It’s important to remember that the physical boundaries that we are under do not hamper the spiritual realm. A spiritual being and a physical being exist differently with different functions and needs. The resurrected Christ was capable of passing through walls and locked doors, due to the fact that walls and doors are strictly physical entities. That being said, Christ also ate food after His resurrection, proving that He was also able to engage with the physical world when it suited His pleasure. Also, you’re correct that science is basically useless in this discussion. This is because science is the study of the physical realm. Spiritual elements cannot be measured or experimented upon like physical elements.
            Nick

          • Ben says:

            What are your thoughts regarding the rapture? Some people say its just our bodies that get left behind and our spirits taken up. That our bodies go as well as our spirits. Babies stay, don’t stay. All Christians go don’t go.I think its quite mysterious. Would you consider our generation near the last days? My dad makes the arguement that people will be saying that for thousands of years and it still hasn’t came, but scripture itself states that people in the last days will be stating that samething. Also, hasn’t some form of science detected a bug like creature in the ground (simliar to the locuses in Revalation)? I’ve heard rumors over the past few years of bug like creatures being discovered.

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben,
            I don’t think I’m a good source to consult regarding the rapture. The Christian community is widely divided on the Rapture: post-tribulation, mid-tribulation, pre-tribulation, and amillennialism each have major followings. As for whether or not our generation is in the last days, I agree that people have been saying that for thousands of years, but someday, the generation who claims that will be right. I don’t agree with those who feel that an exact date can be set on the Rapture, since the Bible clearly states that no man knows or can know. The only thing I can offer is that if Jesus were to return today, the Christian community would not be able to complain that the times do not fit with His return. That doesn’t mean He’s necessarily coming today or even anytime soon, since many other times have also fit the described world circumstances He mentions.

          • Ben says:

            Can science explain any bibilcal supernatural activity that doesn’t involve the laws of nature? Such as Jesus new body? What exactly is it made of and how does it operate? Thats another issue, their is so much supernatural unexplanable material in God’s Word that people don’t want to believe it because they can’t understand it with their natural minds. Is that so?

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben,
            I don’t know of any scientific fields that can offer explanations of supernatural occurrences, Jesus’ new body, etc. The very definition of ‘supernatural’ places such events beyond the jurisdiction of science.
            The rejection of all things supernatural is certainly a recurring theme when dealing with those who reject Biblical authority, which is why we often have people trying to redefine what a specific miracle ‘really meant’. People propose ridiculous hypotheses about how the water that Jesus walked on was really just a shallow pool over a rock cliff on which He walked. Such theories and beliefs deny the fact that God is the transcendent Master of His creation and is able to interact with it however He wills.

          • Ben says:

            Do you know of any recent miracles in the past generation or decade? So many unbelievers say their isn’t any evidence that anything can go against the laws of nature outside of the Bible. My grandpa has seen a man recieve an entire eye back through a whole church praying for him. Now that is obviously against the laws of nature. Do you believe Hell is a literal lake of fire or just poetry like such as how Rob Bell unfortuantely presents it? Do you think people will regret it after spending a day in Hell if its literal? As far as I’m aware scripture makes it clear that it is literal, but why is the church so divided among the topic of Hell, along with many other topics?

        • Ben says:

          I’m still having trouble with invalid and valid arguments. My issue is that couldn’t something be true eventually if you give it enough time? Such as if I said for an example, all mammals have DNA, toothpaste kills germs in the mouth, therefore vacuum cleaners exist on Mars. This is invalid right because it doesn’t follow right? I’m having trouble with the definition of the word “follow.” I’m thinking in terms as somebody who might have a worldview that says anything can happen regardless what you say even though their might be a lack of evidence, proof, or support for the situation but possibly as time goes by it could possibly happen. I’m kinda confusing myself with it. Sound arguments I completely understand since the facts are concluded from the explanation, but if the facts change, the conclusion would change therefore the sound argument would because unsound. Thats my only issue with valid, invalid, sound, and unsound. Could time change the tables I suppose?

          Also with that debate I told you about with the agnostic person who claimed all religions are the same, couldn’t I use the don’t answer, answer strategy? I could of said I don’t accept your standard that they are all the same, but hypothetically if they were the same for the sake of the arguement you couldn’t say Christianity is wrong or fairytales simply because it just be another method to reach Heaven, nirvana, perfection, whatever etc. right?

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben,
            Just wanted to give you a quick note saying that I’ve unfortunately got a very busy weekend and will not be able to give you a full response till Monday. God bless,

            Nick

          • Ben says:

            Okay Nick, thanks alot. Hope you enjoy your weekend! God bless.

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben,
            When it comes to sounding professional, I wouldn’t worry if Dr. Lisle’s responses sound more professional than yours. Dr. Lisle is a PhD astrophysicist; as such, he’s going to sound more professional than you or I due to the simple fact that he IS more professional. ☺When it comes to presenting your argument effectively, I think one of the most important elements to include in your writing is confidence. Remember as you’re speaking that you are in the right, and whoever you’re debating is incorrect from the start (if you’re in an origins debate, that is).

            When it comes to valid/invalid arguments, a conclusion only ‘follows’ the premises if there is a logical and inescapable relationship between them. For instance, consider categorical syllogisms such as: “All dogs are mammals; all mammals have kidneys; therefore, all dogs have kidneys”. This argument deals with three categories: dogs, mammals, and organisms with kidneys. If you were to change the conclusion of this argument to “All cats have lungs”, the argument would be invalid because you’re speaking of two categories (cats and animals with lungs) that are not connected to the two premises. Although the argument would then be invalid, it would still be true because all cats DO have lungs. This is an important thing to remember. The fact that an argument is unsound or invalid does not necessitate a false conclusion. The conclusion can still be true. I suppose that this is where time comes into the equation. If you propose an unsound argument, the conclusion may still be proved true in the future by a different means (perhaps empirical observation or a sound argument).

            You’re correct that you could have approached the agnostic in the manner you mentioned. You could have led him/her to the conclusion that Christianity cannot be eliminated if he/she believes that there are many ways to salvation. That would potentially lead to the agnostic saying “Well then take Christianity if you want to; just don’t bother me with it”. Although you would have pointed out an inconsistency in your opponent’s stance, I think you might be giving ground in a way in that particular argument since you’d be appealing to your opponent’s relativism to support your own position. Arguing reminds me of chess a great deal. Not every opportunity to put your opponent in ‘check’ (by making a point) should be taken. Some opportunities leave your opponent an easy ‘out’ that may make it harder or longer for you to reach ‘checkmate’.

          • Ben says:

            I think I understand it now a least alittle bit better, if its invalid it means that another category has been introduced to the original topic, and if its valid it means that the category of information has remained the same. Sound arguments just simply mean that the category has remained the same through the whole argument, and the premises and conclusions are true. If an argument has true premises but a false conclusion, or an argument has a true conclusion but false premises than its invalid at least until science can prove in the future otherwise?

            I don’t understand your answer with the example of the chess game. Sorry I never played Chess and its too confusing with statues and such lol. Could you describe it in a different way?

            Also, I notice Dr. Lisle mentions in his book that an ultimate standard must prove itself, but if you don’t know your ultimate standard is true you can’t know anything? How does that make sense? If I believed water is a compound (which is true) and you asked me where I got it from I would say my high school science teacher, and if you asked where he got it from he would say another source, etc but if that source just guessed and didn’t know for sure how does it mean that I don’t know water is a compound (a compound is two or more elements mixed together in case you didn’t know). But isn’t that similar as in saying, I can play my video game. I got the game disk, system, power cord, tv, all the equipment, but then you don’t got a wall outlet for power so having everything else is pointless to have isn’t it? Sorry I’m not best with coming up with examples but thats just one I kinda know from experience.

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben,
            Valid/invalid/sound arguments do not necessarily depend upon keeping the same category throughout. That is only applicable to categorical syllogisms. A valid argument is one with a proper form, such as “If A then B; if B, then C; therefore, if A, then C.” An invalid argument is one with an improper form. A sound argument is a valid argument that also has true premises. Validity plus veracity equals soundness.

            Also, you never have to prove your ultimate standard to yourself. Your ultimate standard is whatever concept lies at the back of all of your intellectual trails. Yours is the Bible; Richard Dawkins’s is naturalism. Dawkins uses naturalism as an ultimate standard that all of reality must be interpreted through (for him). You and I use the Bible in the same way. At times, we inadvertently change our ultimate standard and must reorient ourselves. For instance, there are many who question the Virgin Birth. Science has stated unequivocally that a virgin birth is impossible. Because of this, many who consider themselves Christians are reinterpreting the word ‘virgin’ to mean ‘young woman’ in the Bible instead of its intended meaning. Those who are compromising on this issue are setting humanity’s opinions up as their ultimate standard rather than Scripture. As Dr. Lisle states in ‘Ultimate Proof’, you can certainly stand on your ultimate standard while defending it to others, just as you can stand on a hill in a battle while defending it. An ultimate standard must prove itself because it must be self-consistent throughout. Our ultimate standard (the Bible) proves itself, while Dawkins’s (naturalism) fails to do so.

            As for the ark discussion, the website you posted actually depends upon the same arguments that have been used for nearly two centuries in attempts to refute a global flood. It’s surprising that those who wish to disprove a global flood have not been able to come up with new arguments after the old ones have been disproved. The website inflates the number of animals needed on the ark by a great deal. A correct figure is roughly 16,000 (a Biblical ‘kind’ is generally considered to be the equivalent of the taxonomical ‘family’ or ‘genus’, NOT ‘species’) . The capacity of the ark is misrepresented as being too small, when one third of the ark’s capacity would actually be sufficient for all the animals needed. The hibernation factor has already been mentioned and effectively combats the issues of animal care, exercise, etc. Many of the arguments also beg the question by assuming the same climatic zones and topography in the pre-Flood world as in the post-Flood world. It is very likely that the specialization seen in the diets of many animals (like koalas and pandas) actually came into existence AFTER the Flood. I’d highly recommend your checking out the article archives on the websites of ICR and AiG. There are several wonderful references there that deal with these issues in far more depth than I can include in a brief blog post.

          • Ben says:

            That makes sense I suppose. So its not wrong to stand on your own ultimate standard to support it, if so why is it wrong to say that the Bible is the Word of God because it says it is? Both of those statements are true. I’m standing on my worldview to support it. I know its seemingly arbitrary without backing it up with a form of evidence. If I argued with this should I then explain about material that scripture does not mention as direct such as the laws of logic or uniformity sense non Christians do believe in those things? Non believers do believe in these things but they are biblical principles and they rely on them. Would that still be standing on our worldview even though the Bible doesn’t use words and phrases like laws of logic and uniformity?

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben,
            The Bible is the only ultimate standard that one can stand on without self-destructing. A naturalistic worldview is an ultimate standard to many people, but its inconsistencies cause it to fall apart. When dealing with ultimate standards, “some degree of circular reasoning is unavoidable” (Lisle, ‘Ultimate Proof’, 145). It is for the exact reason that you mentioned that the Bible is the only tenable ultimate standard: only the Bible consistently provides for the preconditions of intelligibility. Pointing out the inconsistencies found in other worldviews helps to illustrate the undeniable supremacy of a Biblical worldview.

            Incidentally, we were discussing worldviews and the nature of a worldview a few days ago. I came across an excellent definition of a worldview that I thought I’d share with you. James Sire defines a worldview as “a commitment, a fundamental orientation of the heart, that can be expressed as a story or in a set of presuppositions (assumptions which may be true, partially true, or entirely false) that we hold (consciously or subconsciously, consistently or inconsistently) about the basic constitution of reality, and that provides the foundation on which we live and move and have our being” (‘The Universe Next Door’, 20). Each facet of this definition is a very important part of a worldview.
            Nick

          • Ben says:

            I would define a worldview as simply all your presuppositions and your basic beliefs about reality shoved all together. Would that be accurate at all? My grandpa said he may allow me to present this arguement to our church within the next year or so. Their probably be older people and younger people alike and most of them probably don’t have a PH.D in anything. Should I advoid using big words or use them but define them first?

            What kind of arguements have you experienced that were not mentioned in the Ultimate Proof? I’ve experienced alot of them at times and took me awhile to rationally come back with a response. How would you handle an unexpected response?

          • Nick L. says:

            Ben,
            Yes, that’s a workable definition of a worldview. The important thing to remember about a worldview is that everyone has one, regardless of whether or not they think they do and regardless of whether or not they can fully articulate it.

            As for your second question, I’d prefer to defer to Dr. Lisle on that. I’ve never presented information in a public speaking engagement, so he’d be a much more appropriate person to offer you advice on that. He also does an excellent job in his own lectures of presenting the materials in an accessible manner. His ‘Ultimate Apologetics’ series is admirably accessible to those without an extensive background in logic, apologetics, etc.

            Nick

          • Ben says:

            Have you heard of the term improv? Its normally used in acting and drama fields. It means to come up with information randomly on the spot. Normally when I debate people on the internet or if I read statements from critics I get emotionally worked up and try to stay focused on how I should rationally respond. All of a sudden I forget everything I know about logical fallacies, the A.I.P test, and everything else and when I try to respond my mind just goes blank, and I have to try to refresh my memory about all this material as if I have to reboot my computer when it locks up or crashes. Any suggestions on how I could remember to keep calm and advoid getting too nervious and to think before I speak or I suppose think before I being to think about what I should say if that made sense?

        • Nick L. says:

          Ben,
          As for carnivorous activity aboard the ark, I briefly mentioned that many creationists believe the animals went into an extended period of hibernation. Many animals hibernate seasonally, and “it is probably that the latent ability to hibernate in one form or another is present in practically all mammals” (Snelling, ‘Earth’s Catastrophic Past’, Vol 1, 148). Remember that we already know that the animals were not behaving ‘normally’ at the time of the Flood. The animals CAME to Noah; he was not forced to travel the earth to capture them. God gave these animals some sort of instinct to seek out Noah, and there is certainly nothing shocking about the possibility that God also gave the animals a hibernation instinct during the Flood. J. Woodmorappe has a wonderful work called ‘Noah’s Ark: A Feasibility Study” (1996) that I would recommend (available from ICR). I would also recommend Andrew Snelling’s ‘Earth’s Catastrophic Past’ and John Whitcomb’s ‘The World that Perished’ (both available from ICR as well). These three references provide comprehensive coverage of the various aspects of a global Flood. I’ll try to check out that website tonight, but I’ve run out of time for the moment.
          Nick

          • Ben says:

            Okay thanks alot. What about presenting presupposition apologetics to teenagers or perhaps a group of adults with a low amount of knowledge or simply people who don’t like big words? How would you approach them? I’m hoping within a year or so to present this method of defending the faith to my grandpa’s church once I fully understand and grasp it but I’ll probably lose most of them using words such as laws of logic, uniformity, logical fallacies, and such.

    • Sam says:

      Hey Dr. Lisle,
      My question (if you could reply to me via email) is this… Can you give me a quick understanding of Budhism and Hinduism and why they are false. I know that they are false because the Bible states that they are, buy can you explain to me what makes them false worldviews. Thanks! God Bless

  3. Will Duffy says:

    Love the Ultimate Proof so much! Attempting my first discussion discussing worldviews and the preconditions of intelligibility. Have a question for you if possible. Not sure it would be appropriate here on your bio or on one of your blogs with an unrelated topic. You have my email if you ever have time for a question. If you’d like me to ask on the blog, let me know. Thanks!

    • Dr. Lisle says:

      I’m glad you like the book. For the moment, I’m keeping this blog focused on God’s Law – and it’s a good place for discussion on that issue. For other issues, you might try my Facebook page. If it’s a question that others might also find interesting, go ahead and post it on my wall. I’ll try to answer – time permitting! :-)

  4. stephanie says:

    So glad to hear about your new position! I was kind of worried when your blog at AIG was discontinued, but I’m happy to see you continued the series here. Thanks for your stand on Creation science. You are inspiration to me, as science is important field to me, one that I’d like to look into. And like Ben’s comment, do you have an e-mail?

    • Dr. Lisle says:

      Thanks Stephanie. I’m really excited to begin work at ICR, and there are some really amazing projects in the works there (top secret for now!) that are going to have an incredible impact on our culture. You are welcome to e-mail me on Facebook, or post questions on my wall.

  5. Steve Taylor says:

    Why can’t AIG bring themselves to say where you have gone or, indeed, even that you have left ? Why can’t you say, on this blog at least, where you came from ? Isn’t this a form of dishonesty ? Aren’t there rules about dishonesty ?

  6. Dr. Lisle says:

    Steve, I have decided not to disclose the specific reasons why I left AiG. Please respect that. My decision to leave was something that I had prayed about for nearly two years; I believe I am following the Lord’s direction in going to ICR, and I am really excited about what the Lord is doing and is going to do through ICR. Furthermore, AiG is under no obligation to tell people that I have gone to a sister ministry.

    Proverbs 17:27, 10:19

  7. Dr. Lisle,
    While I was sad to hear that you are leaving AIG, I’m excited to see how God is going to use you and your research at ICR. I still recommend many of your resources to others on a regular basis, and I’m planning on continuing to do so. As a high-school senior interested in apologetics, I found your lectures to be both very intellectual and very interesting.

    In Christ,
    Stephen

    1 Peter 3:15

  8. P. says:

    Hi,
    I’m an astrophysics Ph.D. student whose research flirts with big bang cosmology. I find myself getting frustrated at times, but I’ve been unable to find any resources that aren’t written for laypeople. Do you have any resources or advice? Feel free to contact me if this blog lets you see the address I entered.
    Thanks.

  9. Hello Dr. Lisle- Just wanted to write to say how delighted I was to hear you’re joining ICR! They are a wonderful ministry (which you already know) and I certainly hope they will put you to active work in not only in research but lecturing! Being a native Texan and a close drive to ICR’s hospitable and fascinating headquarters, I’m always thrilled when I learn my home state is to improved by such imports like yourself. Every blessing in Christ- Rebekah L. Holt, eQuest For Truth

  10. Bruce Odel says:

    Hi Dr. Lisle:
    So GLAD I was directed to your new website. I had written AiG about finding you and your blogs on AiG, and they sent me this website today. GOD WILL Bless You in your missions at ICR, they are very wonderful people too!
    I drove from Asheville to meet you and get your autograph on your Proof of Creation Book, about this time last year in Johnson City, Tn. Deeply love your books and DVDs and have given some to my former students (I’m retired H.S. Biology/Physics teacher). I used the great ICR materials most of my teaching years, with my students! Also given over 2 cases of the Answers in Genesis 1 books to Pastors, students and anyone willing to read.

    AiG also said you would probably archive ALL your older blogs from AiG onto this web site. I wanted to read some your earlier blogs again, but they are NOT available. I hope you will do that and please let me know how I can find and read them!

    Outside our Lord’s Living Scripture, your work is the best availiable, ever! May GOD continue to Bless and give you His Wisdom! What a wonderful Blessing you are, my friend!

  11. Dr. Lisle, we met briefly in July. I was with my daughter at the conference. I have a Masters in Physics from Purdue University. I currently teach high school and as adjunct professor at a couple of four colleges when their physics teachers take Sabbaticals. I was married when I attended Purdue, so even though I passed my PhD qualifying exam, I could not bring myself to put my wife and kids through 3-5 more years of married student housing. I would like to find a way to work on PhD, but in a God honoring way (or at least use my education to further creation science). Any suggestions?

  12. Nick Tavani MD, PhD says:

    Lots of focus is on God as Creator but what about God as Sustainer of His universe? We learn from Scripture that the laws of nature are not only set in place by, but kept in place (sustained) by the Holy Spirit. Can we detect this in any way other than “by faith”, that is, would God’s sustainance of nature be in any way observalbe, testable and/or measurable, at least theoretically even if we don’t (yet?) have the technology available? And, finally, might this relate to the apologetics Argument from Design? Thanks.

  13. Woodwork says:

    I’ve learn some just right stuff here. Certainly price bookmarking for revisiting. I surprise how much attempt you set to create such a excellent informative website.

  14. Nick L. says:

    Dr. Lisle, I wanted to extend my congratulations to you as you take up your position with ICR. My homepage (www.icr.org) had an article welcoming you to the organization this morning. I know God will continue to use you greatly as you work to spread the news of His creation and majesty.

    Nick L.

    • Ben says:

      Is this the same Nick I was talking too awhile back? If so thanks alot for the information you’ve given me. Its been helpful. Also, Dr. Lisle congrats on your new position. I hope to see new and exciting experiences from you. Hope all is well.

  15. Matthew says:

    Greetings Dr Lisle,

    The reason I have sent you this email is because I have some questions regarding the creation of the universe and would like some answers from a qualified Creationist in the field of astrophysics. I myself am a Bible believing Christian, I believe in a literal 6 day Creation, each day consisting of 24 hours. However, I am exploring Cosmology more and more and all the information points straight towards a Creator. Now the event I have come to see as the Creation when God said, “let there be light”…that is where my questions pertain. I have read several sources where they name that event, The Big Bang. Not the way the secularists try to pose the theory, in this case the Big Bang is used to describe the event where God spoke the world into being anywhere from 6,000-10,000 years ago. The term here is simply used to describe the Cosmological event of God first creating the world. I simply want to know if this is a valid way of looking at God creating the universe…I suppose a better way to phrase my question would be, what is the best way to use what understanding we have of His Creation to describe God creating everything? Am I making any sense? My email address is pittengermdp@gmail.com. If it isn’t too much trouble for you, would you please respond to that address, I’m not sure if I would receive notification if you answer this on your blog…thank you so much.

    Sincerely,
    Matthew

  16. Ben says:

    I have a question regarding the nature of God. I heard an arguement that we as Christians can’t even account for His nature. Why is the nature of God the way it is? Why is that nature of the nature of God the way it is? Why is that nature that causes the nature the nature of God the way it is? I’m not sure if it makes sense but basically its seemingly an endless amount of natures of God. How can this be solved? God bless

  17. Rick says:

    Dr. Lisle, I pray I have not chosen the wrong forum for this question— I am searching for a program that I can use to feed my son’s desire to know the Cosmos. We visited Creation Museum and viewed your Created Cosmos and read your book, Taking Back Astronomy. I found that Digistar Three and Four are a little pricey for our Home School budget even without the dome! I looked at Starry Night Podium which fits. Would you make a recommendation of this or have other suggestions?
    Blessings.

  18. David lane says:

    I’d like to see the diploma and transcript from the educational institutions you claim to have attended. Or at least the release forms so I can get copies of any credentials you claim to hold.

    I find the claim that you are a Phdor hold any degree in Science to be more unbelievable than the god you propose to represent.

    • Nick L. says:

      Dave,

      You should be able to find the credentials you’re looking for with a bit of research. I have Dr. Lisle’s 227 page PhD dissertation as a PDF file on my computer. It is titled “Probing the Dynamics of Solar Supergranulation and its Interaction with Magnetism.” There are six signatories who all witnessed that the document met all qualifications. Dr. Lisle’s 1997 B.A. in Physics and Astronomy is from Ohio Wesleyan University; his 1999 M.S. in Astrophysics is from the University of Colorado, as is his 2004 Doctor of Philosophy degree (Dept. of Astrophysical and Planetary Sciences).

      That being said, Dr. Lisle’s credentials (as superb as they are) really have no bearing on the issue. Attempting to disprove his belief system merely by discrediting his academic acheivements is just a variation of the Ad Hominem fallacy.

      If you don’t mind sharing, what are your reasons for rejecting the message of creationists such as Dr. Lisle and myself?

    • Josef says:

      It seems that David is trying to discredit Dr. Lisle by questioning his credentials. This is a common tactic by evolutionists who just can’t accept that there are people who have real scientific credentials who have not fallen prey to the evolution fairy-tale.

      If Dr. Lisle were really lying about his graduating from the University of Colorado (at Boulder) with a PhD in Astrophysics, then surely that University would have called him out by now. At the very least, there would be students who would have been contemporary with Dr. Lisle who would have called him out. Why is it that the University nor any students have not called him out? Perhaps the simplest answer is because he really did graduate with a PhD in Astrophysics.

      Also, Dr. Lisle isn’t obligated to disclose his transcripts to someone just to appease their curiosity. I do not expect Dr. Richard Dawkins to disclose his transcripts from every University he ever attended just because I might be curious to see what he actually studied.

      David Lane says: “Because of his rejection of reason and logic. Changing or disregarding results that don’t fit your accepted world view is disingenuous at best and in the scientific world completely ludicrous. There is no way an accredited university would allow a PhD to be conferred upon someone that couldn’t adhere to the simplest and most basic scientific principals.”

      Here David claims that Dr. Lisle rejects reason and logic, and gives no evidence for this. I find this fascinating since Dr. Lisle writes quite a bit about logic, is a big advocate of Christians becoming familiar with logic, and he has demonstrated several times how logic does not comport with any worldview but the biblical one.

      Also, David gives no such examples of Dr. Lisle, “[c]hanging or disregarding results that don’t fit [his] accepted world view”. In fact, I would say it is the evolutionists who are guilty of disregarding results that do not fit their worldview. Such as the fact that we only ever observe life come from life (the law of biogenesis) without a single exception. Yet, the evolutionists ultimately disregard this and believe that abiogenesis happened at least once in the unobservable past.

      David then claims that Dr. Lisle does not, “adhere to the simplest and most basic scientific principals” and again, he does not give a single example to substantiate his claims against Dr. Lisle.

      Ultimately what it comes down to is that David Lane cannot refute Dr. Lisle’s arguments, so he has decided to attack Dr. Lisle’s credibility. Perhaps David is unaware that the validity of an argument is independent from the arguer. Even if it were true that Dr. Lisle didn’t really graduate with a PhD, it wouldn’t change the merits of his arguments.

  19. David lane says:

    Because of his rejection of reason and logic. Changing or disregarding results that don’t fit your accepted world view is disingenuous at best and in the scientific world completely ludicrous. There is no way an accredited university would allow a PhD to be conferred upon someone that couldn’t adhere to the simplest and most basic scientific principals.

    And no, it is not an Ad Hominem attack to be less skeptic of the existence of god than his credentials.

    • Nick L. says:

      I agree entirely with your statement that “Changing or disregarding results that don’t fit your accepted world view is disingenuous at best and in the scientific world completely ludicrous” (Lane, 2012). But merely stating the undesirability of this action does not convict Dr. Lisle of committing it, you know. You stated below that you await evidence to support the YEC position, but you have yet to present any evidence for your own convictions. I would be willing to present you with evidences that support my worldview, but in the spirit of fairness, you should reciprocate. Also, please note that I said ‘evidences that support’ rather than ‘evidences that prove’. In this particular debate, most evidences appealed to can be explained away by a rescuing device on either side. The alleged existence of the ‘Oort Cloud’ is an example of something evolutionists explain away by a rescuing device.

      Also, Dave, I have to point out that your line of reasoning is a bit circular at times. You appeal to Dr. Lisle’s alleged lack of skill as proof that he cannot possibly hold a PhD, but then you support your theory that he does not have a PhD by saying that no one would give a doctorate to someone who displays his lack of skill. Are you not assuming what you’re trying to prove in this case?

      Thirdly, stating that no one would “allow a PhD to be conferred upon someone that couldn’t adhere to the simplest and most basic scientific principles” is really rather irrelevant. You are correct in stating that this is the case, but no one is claiming that this has been done. Since Dr. Lisle DOES hold a PhD (I could even give you the names of the six signatories from Colorado U), he has clearly proven that he can indeed adhere to the rules of science.

      Lastly, you are correct in stating that an Ad Hominem attack is not being “less skeptic [sic] of the existence of God than [Lisle's] credentials” (Lane, 2012). But once again, you are confusing what I said. I said that your attack on his credentials as proof of the inaccuracy of his belief system was an Ad Hominem attack.

      Blessings,

      Nick L.

  20. David lane says:

    Oh and additionally to address your final point, the complete lack of evidence on the creationist view point is troubling at best. Especially when weighed against the voluminous mountain of scientific evidence to the contrary.

    Unlike most who study religious subjects, I have been swayed by evidence. Having been an ordained minister and then a Atheist, I once held that Jesus had never existed at all. But after exhaustive research of the arguments on both sides of the issue, I feel I have finally solved the issue of the origin of Jesus. Though I must now admit he probably did exist I think rather logically and conclusively I can state the historical Jesus of the bible is misplaced by nearly a century. The removal of the synoptic gospels from the NT would improve the accuracy of the book immensely.

    • Dr. Lisle says:

      > “the complete lack of evidence on the creationist view point”

      This sounds like someone is “Changing or disregarding results that don’t fit [his] accepted world view.”

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