Friday, 10 October 2014

Calvin's Ghetto

Spotted today in the suburbs. The local Reformed Church proudly proclaims its ignorance of science.

Reformed Christians come in two main varieties. Presbyterians  are the most common in these parts, their Calvinism being strained through a Scottish sieve. Generally these folk are relatively innocuous, though the New Zealand church is increasingly taking on a more conservative position as those with 'get up and go' get up and go. Recent reversals on social issues indicate an ageing membership corralled by Rotarians and National Party electorate committee members.

The Reformed Churches of NZ seem to provide a safe haven for strict Calvinists, home-schoolers, and members of the white South African diaspora.

Though the word 'debate' is used on the sign, I doubt whether there'll be anyone there to defend a non-creationist perspective. Notable too is that there is no speaker's name provided. I guess they'll dredge up one of the regular guys on the apologetics circuit. Whoever it is will be preaching to the choir; it's hard to imagine anyone other than the already convinced turning up. This is one battle that is well and truly lost.

Except in intellectual ghettoes like this.


  1. Aw, c'mon. Don't mislead your readers. Everybody knows that the theory of evolution was disproven once and for all in the 1920's by a down-on-his-luck high school dropout ad man who did intensive research into the issue in the public library of Portland, Oregon. He shot down Darwin and all the rest, and when it was over they were lying in the dusty streets of Portland with lead in their bellies. Ever since then there has been no need for any further research in evolution, for it was proven wrong for all time by the strongest arm in the west.

  2. I am a Christian and I believe in evolution. Froese and Bader in their study of American belief in God indicate that most Christians in North America believe in evolution. This is kinda last century.

    -- Neo

  3. There is no debate... That evolution happened (and is still happening) is a proven scientific fact. One can holler "theory" all they want but that "theory" is based on facts and evidence and not on some ignorant guess and presumption like some holy roller, happy clapper crowd of nincompoops who know nothing but imagine they know everything. It's funny, but really not, how these creationist jokers and crooks are the very people who run the government in the USA, a nation capable of destroying the world a hundred times over, and who wants everybody else to be as ignorant and stupid as they are.

  4. Each side poo poos the other's guesses. That wastes time, and should be foregone. Scientists "guessed" based on observable phenomena in space, that a planet they could not see or detect must exist in a certain area. Later, with better equipment, they were able to document that the phenomena were due to the presence of the planet Neptune. That is an example of scientific "guessing". Believers attribute certain observable phenomena to God. Perhaps in the future, we will have scientific equipment capable of measuring what causes these phenomena also.


  5. The thing about a scientific "guess" is that no one commands that it be believed and threatens hellfire and eternal damnation for not believing it. That's one "hell" of a big difference between a religious guess and a scientific guess. Even so, with science it's not a "guess", it's more of a tentative hypothesis that has little evidence to support it.

    If a scientific speculation turns out to have no evidence to support it, what did it hurt, who did it harm? OTOH, if a religious speculation (like witches causing crops to fail) turns out to have no evidence to support it, what did it hurt, who did it harm?

    1. Yes, and it also doesn't help that some of the religious speculators have treated the scientists as if they were the witches. But, assigning enemy status is one thing that keeps so many people from attempting to find neutral ground. Rather than becoming part of the system of checks and balances upon one another, the two sides often seem so opposite that compromise is unthinkable, especially in such classic battlegrounds as school classrooms, where there is an ongoing fight for the minds of youth. The opposing beliefs bring a natural and insurmountable animosity.

      Sometimes it is fun to indulge in a little exercise, just to watch peoples' boggled minds. When some polarized individual asks how you feel about a particular subject for which it is nearly impossible not to take sides, claim to be neutral. As an example: "So, Bob, how do you feel about abortion?" Bob: "Well, Jerry, I have no opinion. I see merits on both sides of that argument, so am pretty much neutral."


    2. There is no neutral ground between facts and evidence on the one side and superstition and magic on the other. Yep, the world is full of clever arguments but you don't need clever arguments when you have demonstrable truth. Sadly, demonstrable truth is not good enough for some people, especially those who don't want to see it.

    3. This reminds me of the story where scientists drilled a deep hole - so deep that they "broke through to Hell", and then lowered a heat resistant microphone down into the hole- with which they recorded the screams of people burning in Hell.
      The Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN) broadcast the screams, and claimed them to be proof of Hell (which was later revealed to have been from the soundtrack of an old movie.)

      It's what's expected from the likes of the WCG or TBN (to name two out of a plethora).

      Such orgs do not disappoint if you lean toward emotion-triggered teachings meant to engender loyalty (and possibly financial contributions).

      However, some people get kooky and oddly 'fervent' when wanting to spread their latest and greatest understanding of Biblical stuff.

      It's good to counter such crap.