The Solid Sky

In a Facebook group I am a part of, Geoffrey Jones shared this helpful collection of excerpts from Jewish and Christian texts indicating that the ancient interpreters of the Bible understood the firmament to be solid: “Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, the middle layer of water solidified,and the nether [Read More...]

Ancient Cosmologies and Modern Cosmologists

A talk offering visualizations of ancient cosmologies came to my attention. I will embed the first part below, but click through to see the rest, including the slides posted separately. [youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sk_dTIfltBo[/youtube] IO9 (among others) raised the question once again of how some top-notch physicists – and a starship captain! – came to be involved in [Read More...]

The Solid Sky

Hector Avalos has a lengthy and detailed post about the solidity of the sky – the “firmament” – in ancient Israelite thinking, as found reflected in the Bible. Click through to read it, especially if you are not aware of how this provides overwhelming evidence that so-called Biblical literalists in fact pick and choose what [Read More...]

Believing Genesis

The above is based on a Facebook comment I wrote in response to a question that pitted the Biblical creation account against “Darwinism”: It is indeed a false dichotomy. Moreover, if you are talking about the details then you have to believe the order in Genesis 1 and the different order in Genesis 2, and [Read More...]

Reading Genesis Literally

There’s a new blog, Scribalishess, written by a Hebrew Bible professor. Here is a quote from the end of the first substantive post, on reading Genesis literally: This is why biblical literalism (in the sense stated at the beginning) fails. It fails to read Genesis 1 literally. It fails to acknowledge the ancient writer’s worldview. It [Read More...]

Different Design Arguments

The major difference between the kinds of design arguments one encounters in cosmology and biology is this: The design argument in physics involves accepting what the majority of scientists in that field conclude, while the design argument in biology involves rejecting what the majority of scientists in that field conclude. And conversely, the objections to [Read More...]

Another Way Young-Earth Creationism is Unbiblical

Young-earth creationism takes it upon itself to do something that none of the Biblical authors does. Even though there were lots of different views in Mesopotamia and Egypt, and later in Greece and Rome, about the processes involved in nature, we never see a Biblical author challenge any of those views. Not one. Sometimes, however, [Read More...]

The Bible in Pre-Scientific Context

As a result of a comment on my blog, I’m wondering whether there is any book that focuses scholarly attention on those places in the Bible where authors assume the pre-scientific understanding of that time. The firmament, bees from a lion corpse and other references to spontaneous generation, taxonomies of animals, celestial movements, and so [Read More...]

Sailing the Waters Above

The above screenshot from a Yahoo! question came my way via Facebook. Most felt it to be a parody. If so, it is a good one – taking the Bible at its word and insisting on its literal truthfulness about a detail that most self-proclaimed literalists are happy to ignore. Perhaps I should do a [Read More...]

Up, Up, and Away!

Today was the Feast of the Ascension. There are two favorite quotes of mine related to the ascension, which I have shared at least twice before on this blog. Here they are again: First, Keith Ward (The Big Questions in Science and Religion, p.107): We now know that, if [Jesus] began ascending two thousand years ago, [Read More...]

Ancient Hebrew Cosmology

Nick Norelli shared the image below depicting ancient Hebrew cosmology, i.e. the cosmological assumptions of the authors of the Jewish Scriptures/Christian Old Testament. (It is from the new Logos 5 software which I am looking forward to testing out and blogging about soon.) Nick asks whether those who reconstruct this view of the cosmos based [Read More...]


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