Introduction:Chris MacKay

(Chris MacKay) #1

Hi everyone, I am new but have followed rzim and more for sometime. I have struggled with sin in my life and have deep burdens to know: Thorn in the flesh? Whether God allows a sin to plague us to keep us humble or if this statement could never be a sin but physically to the outside of the body? If there are scriptures to help or references to shed light.

Thank you

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(Chris MacKay) #2

I am in golf maintenance. I have found in my work that there are alot of evolutionists in my field because we have to study insects. We have learned that certain insecticides have lost their effects do to immunity overtime and people believe that is evidence for evolution. I have tried to use the argument that God being all knowing and all powerful why would he create a world that he would have to tweak all the time as if to fix something. So then they point to complete metamorphosis like in catapillers and few other insects. I was wondering what is a good argument to complete metamorphosis?

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(Roy Sujanto) #3

Hi Chris,

Welcome first and foremost, glad to have you onboard. And look forward to hear more from you in the future.

Thank you for being so forthright and vulnerable in your introduction, and I’m glad God places you in a yellow field ripe for harvest at your workplace.

Since you mention “thorn in the flesh”, going to Paul’s writing in Rom 7-8 is super helpful for us to reconcile conflicting thoughts of our awareness of sin, yet we keep falling, and of course the solution that we have in Jesus.

First and foremost, God gave us all the laws, so that we are acutely aware of sin. We know when we sin, like you acknowledged. Rom 7:7 says it was the law that showed us our sin. We would never have known that covet is wrong if the law had not said, "you must not covet. And verse 15 says, we want to do what is right, but we don’t do it. Instead, we do what we don’t want to do. But you know, this awareness of sin is necessary so we also acknowledged the need of redemption, and that answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord (verse 25).

The fact is we are all fallen by nature and will fall to sin one way or another, sooner or later, even when we start thinking we will not fall to sin, is in itself a sin of pride/self-righteousness. But there’s a difference when we knowingly, and some rebelliously, indulge in a habitual sin, which can lead to a hardened heart, and we become unrepentant. Sort of like the insects you mentioned who grew immune to the pesticides.

In regards to your second set of question, I would recommend a book “The Case for a Creator” by Lee Strobel (https://www.amazon.com/Case-Creator-Lee-Strobel/dp/0310242096). I gleaned so much scientific wisdom from there. For evolution, you may want to check out Chapter 3 on Doubts about Darwinism.

I won’t claim expert on this field, but immunity would fall under micro-evolution and not macro-evolution. Most creationist allows micro-evolution and it doesn’t goes against Design. Simply said, immunity is a defense mechanism designed by a Creator.

If you have limited scientific knowledge, it is wiser, instead of arguing on evolution, to grant them evolution, and politely ask them about the origin of universe. Because even if evolution is true, they have to explain the origin of life, and they will go into the pre-biotic soup theory, and granted its also true, they still have to explain eventually the first matter, space, and time, which is the Beginning! Even Crick who founded the DNA and a famous atheist, would rather come up with a fairy tale, that takes more faith than a Creationist, of exported spores from alien, called panspermia theory (which actually only pushes the question of the beginning to somewhere else). They would rather grasp any other, even more absurd theories, so long as it’s not creation.

Usually their best defense is to attack back the creationist, “if you say God created the universe, then who created God?” This is a false dilemma presented to you, in fact, this is why it is only logical that we need a creator who transcends space, matter and time, to create them, otherwise you just go into a loop going nowhere in argument.

Of course, before we go into these type of arguments with friends, it is imperative to make sure you have build an open-minded and respectful friendship with them first. And try to discern if they are going through some personal issues, as it is easier to touch them on those basis, rather than intellectually. As the adage says “They don’t care how much you know, until they know how much you care.”

Hope it helps, and see you around bro.

Blessings in Christ,
Roy Sujanto

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(Heidi Mitchell) #4

HI Chris! @Chris_MacKay

Welcome to Connect :relaxed:

I appreciate your openness right off the bat.
I’d like to encourage you in knowing that we all fall short, and all need a Savior.

I appreciated @RoySujanto 's response on a difference between habitual sin and sin that we are tempted by every day of our lives, and try and often do, resist. Habitual sin- the kind we do, almost without feeling anymore- the kind we may try to justify as okay, and continue in it as a welcomed part of life. Even so- the habitual sinner can also be redeemed! When eyes are opened to the truth, and repentance comes, so does our Savior :purple_heart:

Roy’s @RoySujanto response about evolution - so great! This is why I love this community-

When a question is asked- there are so many gifted and wise fellow Believers ready to help.

Love all the Strobel books- I have yet to read the Case for a Creator- but would love to!

Chris- I hope you enjoy exploring the categories and topics within them - great discussions going on. Feel free to post more of your great questions!

Be blessed :relaxed:

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(Sieglinde) #5

Welcome @Chris_MacKay thank you for your honest introduction :heart:

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(Chris MacKay) #6

I want to thank all for their response and love reading new material. This definitely helps me in my walk.

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(Marty Pomeroy) #7

Chris

On the scientific question, I agree with Roy’s response, and would like to add more detail. The Science/Faith connection is important to me and I have spent a lot of time sorting it out for myself and teaching on it.

In dealing with Evolution, there are two things to consider: 1) what is your answer to yourself? and 2) how do you explain it to others.

For the first part, as Roy said, the processes we know about – mutation and natural seclection – are part of microevolution. They are adaptive processes that help species survive environmental changes. They are able to produce some visible changes, like antibiotic and insecticide resistance, and many other minor changes. The question is whether these processes are sufficient to produce some of the sweeping changes in the full history of life (macroevolution). At the root, natural selection can only work on changes presented by mutation, and mutation is a stochastic process (think “random but not evenly distributed”). I don’t see how something fundamentally random can spit out these massive amounts of information for natural selection to work on, because until a set of mutations ARE meaningful (biologically harmful or useful), natural selection ignores them. Given that functioning proteins are hundreds of characters long, way too much luck is required.

For the second part, explaining it to others, I don’t think people make a decision based on a fair review of both sides. Only one side has typically been presented. So I start with a phrase like “I think evolution needed help” or “I’m skeptical the processes we know about can, by themselves, produce all this information” as an opening to see if someone is interested in looking at the issues. You can clarify that there is too much complexity and information in our biosphere, that evolution had to deal itself four aces too many times for it to just be luck. The actual data, I think, certainly does not prove that evolution happened entirely on its own, but we cannot prove either that it didn’t.

Here is a summary of a broader set of scientific facts that need an explanation, which we do not have from science. When taken together, they draw attention to a very likely intentional intelligence behind these things:

  1. The universe had a beginning, Roy’s suggested focus. The science now requires that we all must believe in an infinite, eternal, immaterial “something or someone”.
  2. The constants and properties of our universe are fine tuned to a shocking degree to allow biomolecules to exist and work as they do.
  3. What we know about how biomolecules work and about the early Earth, it is currently ridiculous to assert life started on its own.
  4. Evolution as discussed above is the least certain area, and it is important to accept and acknowledge the processes while at the same time suggesting skepticism that they are adequate on their own.
  5. Humans are clearly a unique species on this planet.

Also an increasing number of books are suggesting that our planet may be unique in our universe as a habitat capable of supporting life like us.

These several scientific areas taken together make much more sense if there is someone behind them. Trying to explain them all by “luck” takes too much faith for me.

And BTW – this alone does not take us to the Christian God. This just tells us there is most likely someone out there. To properly know more about this being, he needs to intentionally make himself known. Which I think he has done as recorded in the writings collected into the Bible.

Take courage in your struggles! Not that we should choose brokenness, but God has done so much for us that I am confident of his deep and determined love. May you discover its fullness, and see how He will bring you through.

Hope that helps!

Marty

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(Nancy Linden) #8

Chris,

I have only read a few posts in regard to your insect issue. First of all, have you considered that a golf course is artificial to begin with? After all, God did not create a golf course as a natural habitat for insects; man created this. Secondly, the way man is trying eliminate these insects is also artificial. It is by God’s grace that the built in DNA can withstand chemicals in the environment to allow this created creature to survive. The mutations from the creature were written in the DNA code for the seeming pest to survive as it serves a purpose on earth. The real problem is the subjectivity in which man is viewing the insect as something not necessary for the integration of overall survival of ecosystems. Also, let’s not overlook that even with the chemical insecticides, these bugs do not turn into another species or morph into a different bug. They are the same bugs, just mutated to the environment. Pretty spectacular I think that God would give these small creatures a wide range to survive. A great book to read is Michale Behe’s, Edge of Evolution, to give you a great perspective that evolution is false. The world wants to confuse people in thinking that mutation “mico-evolution” some how equals “macro-evolution.” What you are experiencing is simple mutation dressed up as evolution, but it is not evolution. Just man tampering with a highly engineered organism that has so much DNA information it can mutate quickly in its life span to continue to serve God’s intelligent ecosystem!

Hope that is some food for thought?

Nancy

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(Nancy Linden) #9

Chris,

A good argument for Complete Metamorphosis: The organism
“devolves” into soup like liquid in the chrysalis! Nobody talks about this. The metamorphosis itself defies evolution as the creature has DNA for one form and then disassembles and reassembles in the chrysalis, reorganizing and reordering itself for a lifespan of a few days or weeks in its life cycle. Nobody can explain the chrysalis mechanism and how evolution is propitiated by this step. Complete metamorphosis is actually a strong argument for special creation and against evolution. It is sad that the evolutionist would use this example for there logic. Please ask them about the liquefied cells and how this could be evolved? A very good resource for this is a video called: Metamorphosis, The Beauty & Design of Butterflies,
by RANDOLF PRODUCTIONS INC / DVD.

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(joanne) #10

Welcome Chris, thanks for your openness. I’m sure you’ll be comforted by the responses from this forum. Be encouraged. Jo

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(Tom Howard) #11

Chris, . You say you use the argument; “why would God create a world that he would have to tweak all the time as if to fix something.”

He didn’t, as he created all things good (Genesis 1:31). The whole world was effected by the fall, not just man and God will one day “fix” this world that man messed up with sin.

As, for example, [Genesis 1:30] shows that before the Fall, every green plant was edible, and every animal ate green plants. But after the fall, many plants became poisonous, and animals became carnivorous.

God fixed the sin issue, but will one day make all things new, restored back to his original design, before man corrupted it. [Isaiah 11:6–9] and [65:25] picture a return, in some sense, to the conditions which prevailed on Earth before God cursed the creation

Sure, God provided for man an atonement, which was “animal blood”. But seeing it was not sufficient (Hebrews 10:1-5) had to fix this, find another, greater atoning blood, thus sending his only Son, born of a virgin (the Holy Spirit over shadowing her). Since the blood line goes through the father and not the mother, Jesus had his fathers pure, untainted blood, able to redeem all of mankind, 1 John 2:2.

Thus when a man is born again, he has now come into this metamorphosis

meta- "change"and morphe "form” - also defined as a change into something new, just as a believer does, 2 Corinthians 5:17. This is what they must be concerned and know about, that they too can be “changed”. Thanks

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(Chris MacKay) #12

Thank you, this is definitely a new way of thought for me.

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