Plato and Origins Plato taught that matter was eternal and in his work Timaeus, he gives posits the Demiurgos (although there is some foreshadowing of this being in previous works) who is the world former of the Good that Plato writes about in his work the Republic. The Demiurgos works in an ex materia way. He is also a producing cause and not a purposing cause. Finally, the Good is not a personal God of any kind to be worshipped nor is it a creator. Plato is the only Greek philosopher to believe time had a beginning. Key Points: Matter is eternal; creation=formation; Demiurgos is not producer or eternal; God is not sovereign over everything.
Aristotle and Origins Aristotle posited the one he called “The unmoved mover”. To Aristotle, the universe is eternal and the unmoved mover or “First Cause” was Pure Form or Actuality and not infinite. Like Plato’s Good, it was also not a being to be worshipped, but unlike Plato’s Demiurge, the First Cause is a final and purposing cause, but still should not be equated to the same efficient/producing cause of Christianity that brought the universe into being out of nothing since Aristotle held to an eternal universe. Key Points: Matter is eternal; creation=formation; “unmoved mover” is a former not producer; “mover” is not sovereign over everything.
Plotinus and Origins Plotinus’ cosmogony is that God is ‘one’ that created the world ex deo, that is, out of himself. This act is a process of emanation, where the One unfolds itself as a seed unfolds into a flower. His attempt to explain unity and diversity: Many beings exist All multiplicity is based on prior unity There must be an absolute unity that is the basis of all multiplicity This absolute unity cannot be a being as it is the source of all being and being involves multiplicity This One absolute unity must necessarily unfold itself to produce self-consciousness, called Intellect As the One unfolds itself outwardly, it produces the World Soul, or the “many”
The Biblical Account of Origins The Bible states that the universe/matter is not eternal; only God is eternal. And rather than creating out of Himself, God created everything that is seen from nothing – an ex nihilo creation process. The Bible also makes clear that the Father was the initiator of creation, the Son was the instrumental cause of it all and the Spirit implemented order and supplied life.
“You alone are the Lord. You have made the heavens, The heaven of heavens with all their host, The earth and all that is on it, The seas and all that is in them. You give life to all of them And the heavenly host bows down before You.” (Nehemiah 9:6) “The heavens are telling of the glory of God; And their expanse is declaring the work of His hands. Day to day pours forth speech, And night to night reveals knowledge. There is no speech, nor are there words; Their voice is not heard.” (Psalm 19:1-3) A Single, Eternal Creator
"By the word of the Lord the heavens were made, And by the breath of His mouth all their host.“ (Psalm 33:6) “It is I who made the earth, and created man upon it. I stretched out the heavens with My hands And I ordained all their host.” (Isaiah 45:12) “Thus says the Lord, your Redeemer, and the one who formed you from the womb, “I, the Lord, am the maker of all things, Stretching out the heavens by Myself And spreading out the earth all alone,” (Isaiah 44:24)
Comparing Accounts of Origins One Being Biblical Ex Nihilo Plotinus Ex Deo Plato Ex Materia Aristotle Ex Materia Separate Beings InitiatorFatherOneGoodUniverse Creates / shaped by SonIntellectDemiurgeUnmoved Mover Gives LifeSpiritSoulWorld SoulSoul
A quick Word on the “Galileo” Episode Certainly, the Church needs to avoid another situation like what happened with Galileo. Contrary to some opinions, though, the central driving thought was not so much theological as it was philosophical. Aristotle’s geo-centrism was the prevailing worldview. When Copernicus, Kepler, and Galileo proposed heliocentrism, it was initially supported by the Catholic Jesuit Collegio Romano, but opposed by the secular philosophers of the day. However, the Catholic Church in general also had embraced Aristotle’s teaching and ended up opposing Galileo. But it was not so much based on Scripture as it was on Aristotle.
Good Advice from Galileo “I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with sense, reason, and intellect has intended us to forgo their use.” - Galileo
1.How we view God 2.How we view ourselves 3.How we view morality It affects…
How We View God “The history of mankind will probably show that no people has ever risen above its religion, and man’s spiritual history will positively demonstrate that no religion has ever been greater than its idea of God.” -A. W. Tozer The gods of the Greeks were limited, not sovereign, and flawed. The God of the Bible is the antithesis of them.
How We View Ourselves “Some part of our being knows this is where we came from. We long to return and we can because the cosmos in within all of us. We are made of star-stuff.” -Carl Sagan If human beings are just ‘star stuff’, then they contain no intrinsic moral worth; they are simply matter and nothing more. But human beings created in the image of God do contain intrinsic moral worth as they reflect the image of God.
“You, your joys and your sorrows, your memories and ambitions, your sense of personal identity and free will, are in fact no more than the behavior of a vast assembly of nerve cells and their associated molecules.” - Francis Crick co-discoverer of DNA
"We're just a bit of pollution…. If you got rid of us…the universe would be largely the same. We're completely irrelevant.” - Lawrence Krauss, Physicist
How We View Morality “Why do people believe in evolution? The reason we accepted Darwinism even without proof, is because we didn’t want God to interfere with our sexual mores” -Julian Huxley “Where I stand will at once be the foremost place … ‘all things are lawful’ and that’s the end of it.” -Dostoevsky, The Brothers Karamazov Without God, morals become either totalitarian or emotive
“Natural selection can favor egotism, hedonism, cowardice instead of bravery, cheating, and exploitation.” – Theodosius Dobzhansky
Ramifications of a Certain View If Naturalistic Evolution is true, then there is: - William Provine, Evolutionist
Inconsistency in Evolutionary View How does the evolutionist explain the loss of meaning? In science, the 2 nd law of thermodynamics says that things consistently deteriorate over time – they move towards heat death. Things don’t move from disorder to order but from order to disorder. Biological evolution is defended, though, by saying that the biological parts moved against the entropic stream (or against the whole). What applied to the whole did not apply to the parts. But with meaning, they reverse it and say life ultimately has no meaning (the whole), but it does apply to the parts – give your day to day activities little meanings so that there are meanings against an overarching meaningless that is life.
The Conclusion of A Purposeless Universe If chance be the Father of all flesh, disaster is his rainbow in the sky, and when you hear State of Emergency! Sniper Kills Ten! Troops on Rampage! Whites go Looting! Bomb Blasts School! It is but the sound of man worshiping his maker. - Steve Turner, end of “Creed”
The results of Evolutionism “Nature does not wish that…a superior race should intermingle with an inferior one; because in such a case all her efforts… to establish an evolutionary higher stage of being, may thus be rendered futile.” - Adolph Hitler, Mein Kampf But the world learned its lesson … didn’t it?
The Future of Evolutionism? At the 109th meeting of the Texas Academy of Science at Lamar University in Beaumont on 3-5 March 2006, Dr. Eric Pianka presented a lecture on his concerns about how human overpopulation is ruining the Earth. Minutes before he spoke, the person filming the event was asked not to film or record Pianka because “the general public is not ready for what Pianka is about to tell us.” Professor Pianka said the Earth as we know it will not survive without drastic measures. Then, and without presenting any data to justify this number, he asserted that the only feasible solution to saving the Earth is to reduce the population to 10 percent of the present number.
The Future of Evolutionism? And how would Pianka go about reducing the population of the earth? AIDS is not an efficient killer, he explained, because it is too slow. His favorite candidate for eliminating 90 percent of the world's population is airborne Ebola because it is both highly lethal and it kills in days, instead of years. However, Professor Pianka did not mention that Ebola victims die a slow and torturous death as the virus initiates a cascade of biological calamities inside the victim that eventually liquefy the internal organs. After praising the Ebola virus for its efficiency at killing, Pianka paused, leaned over the lectern, looked at the audience and carefully said, “We've got airborne 90 percent mortality in humans. Killing humans. Think about that.” And what was the audience response…?
A Standing Ovation “I still can't get out of my mind the pleasant spring day in Texas when a few hundred scientists of the Texas Academy of Science gave a standing ovation for a speaker who they heard advocate the slow and torturous death of over five billion human beings.” – Forrest Mims III, scientist in attendance at the meeting.
How You View Origins Has An Impact on Everything…!