I normally ignore such things. But this time I am going to respond. Stephen has decided to use his blog to blast me. He is, of course, entitled to do that. But he goes a little over the top this time. He does so by answering a comment from one of his readers. He writes and writes and writes three long comments worth. I’ll just deal with some of the highlights.
He seems to have been particularly upset when I edited one of the comments he made in this blog. I removed the name of an individual he was inferring was a computer hacker who thus, deliberately, in an academic and scientific environment, cheated and faked carbon dating results. Because he had no evidence, I found it despicable and removed the name.
That will not do. He states early in his three part long expanded comment:
If a hacker had modified the program to convert the Shroud samples’ dates to dates which clustered around 1325, then all but the hacker would be none the wiser.
In my next post I will provide evidence that [ . . . name omitted by me . . .] was the hacker.
And, then he warns me (and I guess several of us):
I told Dan and his commenters that the Holy Spirit had been prompting me to warn both them and Dan that they who personally attack me, a Christian who is only seeking to serve his Lord, that Jesus will, if they don’t repent, avenge their attacks on me[.]
Stephen tells us he is basing this on Romans 12:19, ye olde Vengeance is mine admonition.
But that is not enough. He says of me:
Dan is himself close to being a secularist. In the past he has said he has `no problem with evolution’. But the "evolution" which rules the secular scientific world is that "…God had NO PART in this process."
Secularist? Being an Episcopalian, let me quote from Wikipedia on how Anglicans view this:
Anglicans (including the Episcopal Church in the United States of America, the Church of England and others) believe that the Bible "contains all things necessary to salvation," while believing that "science and Christian theology can complement one another in the quest for truth and understanding." Specifically on the subject of creation/evolution, some Anglicans view "Big Bang cosmology" as being "in tune with both the concepts of creation out of nothing and continuous creation." Their position is clearly set out in the Catechism of Creation Part II: Creation and Science. In an interview, the [former] Archbishop of Canterbury Dr Rowan Williams expressed his thought that "creationism is, in a sense, a kind of category mistake, as if the Bible were a theory like other theories. Whatever the biblical account of creation is, it’s not a theory alongside theories… My worry is creationism can end up reducing the doctrine of creation rather than enhancing it."
The Catholic position is not very different (IMHO). It should be noted that (still quoting from Wikipedia):
Under Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, the International Theological Commission published a paper accepting the big bang of 15 billion years ago and the evolution of all life including humans from the microorganisms that formed approximately 4 billion years ago.
It should also be noted (Wikipedia still) that
the National Council of Churches USA [representing most mainline Protestant denominations] has issued a teaching resource . . . . This resource cites the Episcopal Church, according to whom the stories of creation in Genesis "should not be understood as historical and scientific accounts of origins but as proclamations of basic theological truths about creation."
If I’m close to being a secularist, I’m in good company. But then again, so what?
Dan also has said he has no problem with there being multiple universes, but the Multiple Universe Theory is the Atheistic attempt to explain away the fantastic level of design evident in the laws and constants of the one and only Universe that science can detect.
Does God not exist if there are multiple universes?
The best quote on the subject of the multiverse to appear in this blog was by MouseIntheHouse who wrote:
according to Frank Tipler of Tulane [pictured at blackboard]there are an infinate number of [Turin] shrouds but they are in different universes.
Just for fun read in this blog from 2011:
Now we get to the good stuff. Stephen writes:
Dan . . . even seems to think the resurrection was not physical: one instant Jesus body was in the tomb, and the next instant it is resurrected, with nothing in between.
What is not physical about this? What is supposed to be in between? Granted, if this may not be very scientific, for what change of state occurs in this world without a process? None that I can think of. But what I said in my next instant explanation is completely biblical.
John 19:41 Now there was a garden in the place where he was crucified, and in the garden there was a new tomb in which no one had ever been laid. 42And so, because it was the Jewish day of Preparation, and the tomb was nearby, they laid Jesus there.
John 20:1 Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene came to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the tomb.
What happened between the last verse of John 19 and the first verse of John 20? Now, it is true that the accounts in the four gospels vary significantly (Here is a good chart on that) but where is there something in between?
Here is a clue to what Stephen is thinking:
So Dan is against John Jackson’s theory that the Shroud’s image was caused by the cloth’s collapse into the field of radiation where Jesus’ body had been.
That is close to, if not actually Gnosticism, the super-spiritual position that was already a problem in the New Testament letters and became a major problem in 2nd century.
Gnosticism? What super-spiritual position did I advocate? I happen to believe in a physical resurrection. I just see it differently. And even then, I’m just wondering if it might be so. But when and why, anyway, is what I consider or believe all that important when it comes to studying the shroud?
Here is what!!!
They (and Dan) fit the description of the Apostle Paul: Tim 3:5: "having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people."
But was Paul thinking about blogs?
Stephen wraps up:
. . . I am preparing a post, "Were the radiocarbon dating laboratories duped by a computer hacker?: The evidence for [so and so] being the hacker." . . .
I strongly believe that Jesus is going before me in this and that He will progressively reveal what REALLY happened in the C-14 dating of His Shroud.
If Jesus is for me, who CAN be against me! (Rom 8:31).
Stephen E. Jones