Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Dr. Terry Mortenson defends biblical creationism on public radio



In this interview, Dr. Terry Mortenson of Answers in Genesis defends why he believes Genesis should be taken as straight-forward history up against several others who believe in theistic evolution (one of which is apparently not a theist at all). Though each person didn't have much time to develop their ideas, I thought the contrast between the positions was very clear.

The interview begins at about 7:45 into the program. You can listen to it HERE, where there is also the option to download.

(ht: Ken Ham)

19 comments:

Rey Discomfort said...

If by very clear you're referring to Dr. Terry Mortenson's ignorance ( willingly?) to geology, evolution and just about anything science then we can agree on something.

The problem with people like Terry, and Ken is that they lie, there really is no other way to define it.

In my opinion neither one of the two is ignorant to the evidence, they're willingly lying for their own personal beliefs.

Rey Discomfort said...

(taken from the AiG website)
Scientists use a technique called radiometric dating to estimate the ages of rocks, fossils, and the earth. Many people have been led to believe that radiometric dating methods have proved the earth to be billions of years old. This has caused many in the church to reevaluate the biblical creation account, specifically the meaning of the word “day” in Genesis 1. With our focus on one particular form of radiometric dating—carbon dating—we will see that carbon dating strongly supports a young earth. [b]Note that, contrary to a popular misconception, carbon dating is not used to date rocks at millions of years old.[/b]

Take a long, hard, good look at that last sentence.

Creationist themselves admit that Carbon dating is NOT used to date something that is millions or billions of years old.

Why is there no mention of the other dating? -methods, uranium lead, samarium-neodymium .. etc

Mike Felker said...

That's ridiculous. The other forms of radioisotope dating are all over the AIG website. The reason they probably didn't mention it is because of the context: people always think that c14 dating is used to date things millions of years, and they constantly have to clear up this misconception. Just because they didn't mention it in one quote equates to some pretty lame hair-splitting on your part.

Why not address what was said in the interview? Mortenson did mention the other dating methods pretty explicitly. Do you really think they're trying to hide something?

Rey Discomfort said...

When a scientist’s interpretation of data does not match the clear meaning of the text in the Bible, we should never reinterpret the Bible.

AiG is not objectively looking for the truth, that much is obvious.

Do me a favor - present terry's arguments so that we don't run into the same problem we had in the last ( now dissapeared ) post.

And yes in my opinion YEC's have a lot to hide, like the facts.

Mike Felker said...

Rey, how about just listening to the program and deciding for yourself?

Rey Discomfort said...

Dr. Terry Mortenson say's
...have discovered scientific evidence that those assumptions used by evolutionist to interpret the radioactive decays are not valid assumptions.

That's a pretty bold statement with no peer reviewed research to back it up, but leave it to Mortenson to suggest it's a conspiracy.

I've only listened to about 25 minutes, I couldn't bother to listen to Mortenson's lies anymore. It's my opinion that he's lying because I have no reason to believe that he's just crazy or ignorant.

This assumption, and that's all it is - that the world is young is ridiculous. There is no truth being sought, in the AiG's own words;

When a scientist’s interpretation of data does not match the clear meaning of the text in the Bible, we should never reinterpret the Bible.

Can you even cite one argument that Mortenson has any kind of truth to it (in regards to the age of the earth)? - I'd be happy to hear it.

Mike Felker said...

If you'd like evidence for Mortenson's view on radioisotope dating, check out the R.A.T.E books.

Rey Discomfort said...

I don't feel the need to play this game, Mortenson's views are based on false assumptions, the same assumptions that RATE ( D. Russell Humphreys and John R. Baumgardner ) later abandoned (somewhat) - their geological views.

They have no peer reviewed anything to back up anything that they claim, they referring to AiG, RATE, and probably the majority if not all YEC apologist.

You're entitled to any beliefs that you feel are logical to your own personal belief in biblical literalism, or whatever you want to call it - but don't try to pass it off as anything more than fantasy without evidence.

Mike Felker said...

So, in other words, you are asking for evidence and then refusing to read the evidence that i'm providing?

Rey Discomfort said...

I'm refusing conjecture, and that's all that Mortenson, and RATE have to offer.

I don't believe you've kept up to date with RATE if you're asking me to take geological evidence they've already conceded they were wrong about as evidence in support of Mortensons views.

So if it's evidence you want to provide, do so - but please avoid citing Mortensons opinions as such.

Mike Felker said...

I'll take that as a "NO", that you have not and will not read the R.A.T.E books.

Rey Discomfort said...

So in other words Michael, your belief in the age of the earth is a belief that is based on literal interpretation of the Bible and reality isn't going to get in the way of that?

Why do I need to read any of RATE's book to know the claims they've made?

It's quite simple, you're sticking to a fringe belief because you're dogmatic YEC beliefs because there is obviously some kind of vast secular conspiracy to suppress all information that the earth is young (one of Mortenson's arguments).

Mike Felker said...

So in other words Michael, your belief in the age of the earth is a belief that is based on literal interpretation of the Bible and reality isn't going to get in the way of that?

No, because the Bible is the only basis for which you can know anything about reality at all. But this is dealing with epistemology, which is another discussion for another time.

Why do I need to read any of RATE's book to know the claims they've made?

Even though I think Dawkins is a really poor atheist apologist who makes really bad arguments, I still read his books and evaluate his arguments. To me, this gives you much more credibility and something to stand on than someone who dismisses everything Dawkins says without reading him.

So, choose to ignore any and all research you want. But you're not going to have any credibility in my mind.

It's quite simple, you're sticking to a fringe belief because you're dogmatic YEC beliefs because there is obviously some kind of vast secular conspiracy to suppress all information that the earth is young (one of Mortenson's arguments).

I've never said this and I have no idea where you got this from. I think secularists are, for the most part, honest researchers with some incorrect presuppositions. And i'm sure Mortenson would say the same.

Rey Discomfort said...

No, because the Bible is the only basis for which you can know anything about reality at all. But this is dealing with epistemology, which is another discussion for another time.


Reality as you want to believe it, not reality as what is. Do you also believe in the literal interpretation of Noah's ark?

Even though I think Dawkins is a really poor atheist apologist who makes really bad arguments, I still read his books and evaluate his arguments. To me, this gives you much more credibility and something to stand on than someone who dismisses everything Dawkins says without reading him.

So, choose to ignore any and all research you want. But you're not going to have any credibility in my mind.


In my opinion, I honestly don't believe you have Read Dawkins books because from what I can gather, you know little about him. I'll be honest, I could care less about his arguments for, or against religion, I only really care about the facts presented for evolution and he does a great job at providing them, which is why as a scientist he's very well respected.

I've never said this and I have no idea where you got this from. I think secularists are, for the most part, honest researchers with some incorrect presuppositions. And i'm sure Mortenson would say the same.

This is one of Dr. Mortenson's arguments, he openly implies it too.

Now, I do apologize if by asserting that you also believe there is some vast conspiracy by "evolutionist" I'm misrepresenting your view(s) - but I come to this conclusion only because I'm assuming that you share the same views with the likes of Luskin, Mortenson, Behe, Ham, Meyers -

Anyways, enough on my part for now, I need to try to convince myself that AC:2 wasn't a bunk purchase.

And one last thing, if you're not already familiar with John Loftus I'd recommend checking him out (he was a former student of WLC)

Mike Felker said...

Reality as you want to believe it, not reality as what is. Do you also believe in the literal interpretation of Noah's ark?

Well, what you choose to believe is going to be based on your presuppositions, which in your case, is naturalistic materialism. And the manner in which you view reality is through this lens.

And yes, I believe that the account of the flood and Noah's Ark really happened.

In my opinion, I honestly don't believe you have Read Dawkins books because from what I can gather, you know little about him. I'll be honest, I could care less about his arguments for, or against religion, I only really care about the facts presented for evolution and he does a great job at providing them, which is why as a scientist he's very well respected.

I have read Dawkins, so think what you will. As to how much I know about him, i'd like to know why you think that I know "little" about him? Have I said something about him that is inaccurate?

This is one of Dr. Mortenson's arguments, he openly implies it too.

Now, I do apologize if by asserting that you also believe there is some vast conspiracy by "evolutionist" I'm misrepresenting your view(s) - but I come to this conclusion only because I'm assuming that you share the same views with the likes of Luskin, Mortenson, Behe, Ham, Meyers -


For one thing, there is a lot of differences between "Creationists" and "ID'rs." And this should be pretty apparent in reading a book by, let's say, Ken Ham vs. reading something by Meyers.

But for me, I don't think I know of any individual that represents what I believe to a "T." I disagree with all of these men on a lot of things, especially the ID'rs.

In light of this, I just want to be held accountable to and defend only what I believe, not what other men believe.

As for John Loftus, i'm a bit familiar with him. I've heard him do a few radio debates and thought he was a pretty intelligent guy who has actually taken the time to examine theistic arguments. But its been a while, so I can't say I remember much more about him than this.

To my knowledge, he hasn't written any books. But i'll look him up and see if he has any blogs that I can add to my RSS. Also, if you know of any debates he's done, throw them my way. I can tell a lot about a person based on how they handle themselves in public debate.

Rey Discomfort said...

Loftus was a former pastor, former student of Craig and holds several masters in various Christian studies. He has written several books that I'm aware of, and most if not all deal with atheism - Personally the difference between Loftus and a Biologist debating for Atheism, is that Loftus knows their arguments well because they were formally his.


Why do I believe you haven't read Dawkins books?
-Well because I've only seen you nit pick at the jabs he's taken at other creationist (IDers) and YEC's. Why not focus on the evidence he presents?

There is little difference between creationist and IDers, but there is a small gap between the 2 and YEC's.

I can understand why you disagree with ID'ers, they don't bother with the YEC arguments because they know they'd lose a great deal of credibility

- Evidence contradicts a young earth, global flood etc. And it's not a matter of what argument I've read by an apologist that says how credible my belief is, i'm not here to learn more about religion only discuss the facts (and a global flood not happening is one of them).

And I'll stop lumping you with others if you can, rather than identify your argument with a book - Just use what you feel is strong evidence in support of what you believe.

Mike Felker said...

I suppose that if you've only read my recent comments about Dawkins, I could see how you'd think that. But i've written a full review of "The God Delusion" where I evaluate some of his arguments. So you can either believe me or not when I say that i've read Dawkins.

And you are wrong in why I disagree with ID'rs. It has nothing to do with Young Earthism. It has to do with their ambiguity in seeking to establish an "intelligent designer." For me, this is pointless until you establish who this designer is. Also, I disagree with their insisting that ID be taught in schools.

Next, the reason I recommended a book is because science is simply not my area of expertise. I feel equipped to discuss the basic concepts, but nothing too technical. That's why I refer you to others who have the expertise that I do not.

And that's why you will rarely see me engaging the technical scientific issues as they relate to creation, evolution, etc.

I'm more of a "big picture" guy when it comes to this stuff. I discuss the general issues, but not the highly technical stuff.

Rey Discomfort said...

Next, the reason I recommended a book is because science is simply not my area of expertise. I feel equipped to discuss the basic concepts, but nothing too technical. That's why I refer you to others who have the expertise that I do not.

And that's why you will rarely see me engaging the technical scientific issues as they relate to creation, evolution, etc.


Understood, but you're still assuming that those whose expertise you are referring me to have anything to support their claims, and honestly they don't - and some of those experts are not even experts in the fields they're writing books about - perhaps this is where all the confusion is?

RATE, to my knowledge has nothing peer reviewed, RATE to my knowledge has not debunked nor refuted anything that's evidence for the Earth being billions of years old.
RATE, to my knowledge (at least 2 of the founders) have conceded that they have just about given up trying to look for evidence to support their claims through geological means (because none supports it).

Now, I made a promise to myself not to get into theological debates because it's not my area of expertise but, I personally feel that this need to pursue a literal interpretation of the bible through physical means -- (YEC's, Noah's Ark) only serves to push people away (because of the overwhelmingly evidence against a young earth, and noah's ark -- yes there was no global flood -- there is no evidence for it, I could cite many sources as evidence, and give a point by point on why it did not happen).

And ID doesn't define the designer (at least not publicly) because they are trying to push intelligent design into the schools science curriculum (and they do cite the Christian God -- see the wedge document)

Nick Daniels said...

Good interview. We also interviewed Dr. Mortenson on our podcast recently. You can listen to it at http://breakingunbelief.org/2009/12/what-was-one-of-the-churchs-greatest-mistakes/