Kingdom of Priests

Kingdom of Priests

When Cultures Collide in “The Pit of Hell”

posted by David Klinghoffer

I did a radio interview today with a fellow down in Texas who had a real preacher’s style. Entertaining guy but at one point he asked, letting his voice rise and rise like he was at the pulpit, “David, would you not saaaay that Darwinism is a lie, from its top to its bottom, sprung straight from the pit of Hell!?” 

There was sort of an awkward pause. I’m a pretty mild and soft-spoken kind of person. I didn’t want to disagree with him, but I couldn’t quite echo his sentiment, neither the style nor the substance. “Well,” I offered, “that’s not exactly the way I would put, though I like your formulation! What I would say is that it’s a delusion with, um, some very negative social consequences.” I felt bad about having to disappoint him.

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posted June 18, 2009 at 11:01 pm

Actually I would have said, “No I think that creationism is for those who don’t like reality.” Anyone who thinks that the earth is only 6,000 years old and that dinosaurs walked alongside people need to have their heads examined. I am a Christian but I believe that we evolved. (God was behind the process of course.) And just because I am a Christian does not mean I have to park my brain at the church door.

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David Klinghoffer

posted June 18, 2009 at 11:43 pm

Then welcome to the intelligent-design community, Richard!

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What's Good for the Goose

posted June 20, 2009 at 12:39 am

Jews don’t go in for fire and brimstone do they? Frankly, I think you were a bit too accommodating. That’s embarrassing.

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Gabriel Hanna

posted June 21, 2009 at 10:41 pm

Then welcome to the intelligent-design community, Richard!
And don’t forget to welcome Hitler:
The fox remains always a fox, the goose remains a goose, and the tiger will retain the character of a tiger. The only difference that can exist within the species must be in the various degrees of structural strength and active power, in the intelligence, efficiency, endurance, etc., with which the individual specimens are endowed. It would be impossible to find a fox which has a kindly and protective disposition towards geese, just as no cat exists which has a friendly disposition towards mice. –Mein Kampf
From where do we get the right to believe, that from the very beginning Man was not what he is today? Looking at Nature tells us, that in the realm of plants and animals changes and developments happen. But nowhere inside a kind shows such a development as the breadth of the jump , as Man must supposedly have made, if he has developed from an ape-like state to what he is today.–Table Talk
The most marvelous proof of the superiority of Man, which puts man ahead of the animals, is the fact that he understands that there must be a Creator.–Table Talk
Hitler believes in a Creator, and he accepts microevolution and denies macroevolution, which is indistinguishable from the ID perspective.
Surely, David, you are familiar with a textbook called “Of Pandas and People”?
You are of course aware that the Darwinian position is that pandas recently evolved from carnivores to vegetarians. You also know, because you read Mein Kampf and I just quoted it above, that Hitler denies that such a thing is possible.
The next you lecture somewhere about Darwin’s responsibility for Hitler, in the back of your mind you will know you are telling a lie. You may be able to persuade yourself that it’s okay to lie for God–but inside you, it will burn a little.

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posted June 22, 2009 at 1:55 am

let me just say two words. “carbon dating”. uh uh aaah! i know what your head in the sand response is. you are correct in your assertion that the highly technical scientific process is inaccurate…it has been shown to be off by thousands..nay…HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF YEARS for gods sake!! Of course when carbon dating has been used to show that dinosaur bones are a hundred MILLLLION…nay one hundred and NINETY MILLION years old – a few hundred thousand years is meaninglesssk. game set match.

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Gabriel Hanna

posted June 22, 2009 at 2:46 am

Bill, I didn’t say anything about the truth of evolution; I only commented on David’s Hitler smear.
But physics is what I do for a living. If you knew anything about radioactive dating at all, you would know these things:
Carbon-14 isn’t used to date fossils, because its half-life is 5700 years. This is only good for bones and artifacts. For fossils you need potassium-40 (half-life 1.2 billion years).
If radioactive dating doesn’t work, neither do nuclear power plants. It’s the same law of physics.
I have a B.S. and M.S. in physics and I am finishing up my Ph.D. in physics at Washington State University (you can look me up). If your physics education is superior to mine then prove to me what you understand about radioactive decay that I don’t.
If not, don’t be surprised that you look like an idiot when you try to talk about something you know nothing about.
If you get all of your information about physics from anti-evolution sources, don’t be surprised that they may leave out crucial facts that don’t support their arguments–like Hitler believing in a Creator who directly influences human events, and Hitler not believing in Darwinian evolution.
One reason I get on people like David, misrepresenting evolution, is because if they ever do manage to convince the public that evolution isn’t real, then physics is going to be targeted next.
Modern physics is in a lot of ways harder on God than Darwinian evolution ever could be. The Big Bang, for one.

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posted June 22, 2009 at 4:57 am

Hell probably is a lot worse than anything a political demagogue and/or junk scientiest could ever imagine. Short of evolving beyond its influence, the best thing a society can do about a lie is stop feeding it.

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posted June 22, 2009 at 10:28 am

I’m amazed at the number of people who rush forward to claim Darwinism or whatever the current term is (Is it still “Punctuated Equilibrium”?) as actual science.
“Gabriel Hanna” claims the same laws of physics make radiometric dating and nuclear power plants work. I beg to differ.
All forms of radiometric dating rely on _assumptions_ of the amount of a particular radioactive isotope of the element being measured being a constant–as well as the rate of decay. Both of those assumptions are impossible to verify, given our short time on this planet and the lack of valid scientific data on the subject from even 1,000 years ago. Believing without proof is often called faith.
Nuclear power plants work because certain substances produce enough heat to turn water into steam. That doesn’t require any faith, although we do have faith that they will just generate electricity and not poison us.
Billions and Billions years of evolution? Yeah. Right. Takes less faith to believe the Bible. At least it tells us how God wants us to live together in peace. Read it for yourself at any of the online sites (for example

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Gabriel Hanna

posted June 22, 2009 at 11:05 am

All forms of radiometric dating rely on _assumptions_ of the amount of a particular radioactive isotope of the element being measured being a constant–as well as the rate of decay. Both of those assumptions are impossible to verify, given our short time on this planet and the lack of valid scientific data on the subject from even 1,000 years ago. Believing without proof is often called faith.
Another person who gets all his talking points from the creationists.
Radioactive decay is about probability. You don’t have to watch one atom for a million years to see if it decays. You can watch billions of atoms for a short time, count how many decayed, and calculate the decay rate. That is easy to measure.
The only unproveable assumption is that subatomic particles are identical. Nuclear plants operate on the radiocative decay of U-239 and other elements. If the laws were wrong, nuclear plants would not work.

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posted June 22, 2009 at 1:05 pm

Why would any one lie about science. Are you religious Luddites so insecure that you have to approach the debate from the stance of a victim. Religious practice today enjoys unprecedented freedom on a personal level so there is no reason to feel threatened. (Those opposing may be reminded of the dark ages, oppressive church and that state in the USA where it was illegal to practice as any other denomination than the prescribed denomination). Science teachers in our school are not vitriolic as the those who are so desperate to stop the teaching of science in our school.
If science has assumptions, then religion requires faith. Both require you to suspend judgment and believe in the unseen. Can we not agree that we should be left alone to decide for ourselves which is more palatable? Like choosing between chocolate and vanilla at an ice ream parlor. I actually like a bit of both twirled together. So stop all this loaded talk of ‘lies’ and stop threatening me with hell. Listening to all this drivel is indeed hell itself.

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posted June 22, 2009 at 1:25 pm

Gabriel Hanna, I like the cut of your jib. Just because some people don’t understand the science they assume it’s false. I guess that’s the beauty of orthodox religion; uncomplicated, easily digestible bite sized morsels for simple people.
Modern medicine has a term for people who sees visions and hears voices: Schizophreniacs. Think how wonderful the world would be today if Muhammad/Jesus/etc.. were on psychotropic drugs to deal with their delusions.

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Gabriel Hanna

posted June 22, 2009 at 2:44 pm

sfgx, what if Jesus came back already and he’s doped up in a mental hospital somewhere?
I don’t much like that thought either.
Maybe you have it backward, and the schizophrenics are really saints.

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Jack Sinnott

posted June 22, 2009 at 8:51 pm

Evolution is fact, case closed. Stating otherwise is evidence of ignorance not doubt.
That said, the religious impulse is also fact. Whether that impulse points at or reflects something “out there” or is purely a subjective interior experience I leave to each person.
This science vs. religion debate is so stale and trite – and senseless. I fail to see what the two have to do with one another. Science has nothing to say about that interior experience. Yes, science can tell us all about the brain chemistry ungirding our neurochemical pathways. But it can tell us nothing about what that experience *means* – nor why we should care. That is the role of art, of poetry, of dance, of all the arts and, yes, of religion.
Gould had at least this right: non overlapping magesteria, indeed.

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Gabriel Hanna

posted June 22, 2009 at 9:13 pm

Jack Sinott, whether religion SHOULD conflict with science has nothing to do with whether it DOES.
If there really were non-overlapping magisteria then I think that it COULDN’t happen, but religions make empirical claims all the time and they just end up having to back off when science is able to evaluate them.

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Smart Thinking

posted June 22, 2009 at 10:01 pm

Regardless of what you believe!!! The change in the size of the sun over the past 400 years is important in the study of origins. Over 100 thousand years these changes would have accumulated so much that life of any kind on the earth would have been very difficult, if not impossible. Thus, all life on the earth must be less than 100 thousand years old. The sun, 20 million years ago, would have been so large that it would have engulfed the earth. The earth cannot be more than 20 million years old. Those dates as upper limits rule out any possibility of evolution requiring hundreds of millions of years. However, the tiny change that would have occurred in the sun during the Biblical time since creation would be so small as to go almost unnoticed. Thus, the changes in the sun are consistent with recent creation.

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posted June 22, 2009 at 10:13 pm

“I guess that’s the beauty of orthodox religion; uncomplicated, easily digestible bite sized morsels for simple people.”
Clearly you need to study the subject a little more closely. Religion is hardly uncomplicated, nor is it easily digestible for “simple people”, as you call them in your condescending manner. I guess us simple folk will simply have to acquiesce to your superior intellect…eh?

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Your Name

posted June 23, 2009 at 1:24 am

I for one believe firmly that the bible is the only word of God, and must be interpreted literally. That is why in the face of mass scientific lies, I cling to passages that refer to the four corners of the earth, and thus believe the world is actually flat, and all those pictures are just mock ups.
I was criticized for secretly buying an asian teen, and then beating her when she did not obey me. I quickly took the athiest naysayer to the bible and showed him where the bible explicitly states that not only may I own a slave, but that I also have the right to beat the slave, even to death, so long as the slave does not die before sundown, for the slave is surely my just property.
And like the Mormons, I also believe that I have the right to have as many wives as I want, and that the only rights they are to have are as to what rights I give them. Did not many great servants of God have many wives?
All those things those athiest scientists call stars and planets and microscopic realities are just reflected illusions.
When I was in college, one of my professors pointed out that when Moses and the Jews parked, and when Moses went up the mountain and got the 10 commandments, that they were parked next to the ruins of Mesopotamia, where thousands of stone tablets called Hammarabi’s Code were laying around, and that if he broke a hundred of them, he could go back and in five minutes get some more. The code had been inscribed on stone. He suggested we read the code, notice the profound similarity of the code not only to the 10 commandments, but also to the “Laws of Moses.” Well, I read the code, and told him it could only be a coincidence.
Its so sad that so many other cultures belive “their bibles” are true, too. Its just so sad – they are condemned to that awful pit from hell those scientists and their lies sprang from.

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Your Name

posted June 23, 2009 at 2:18 am

The real question isn’t science or religion. It’s can we as a species learn to live with eachother on a planet and not ruin it. Then the answer can be science and religion. A whole lot of praying and a whole lot of flipping words and jargon some people don’t understand is not the answer to the current question. Are we arrogant as individuals or arrogant as a species?(You will solve the world’s problems or you assume someone else will??)…Get up and recycle or plant a friggen tree! or develop paint-on solar film, or get to your church and go on a mission to teach kids in Hondoras how to farm, or send aid to refugees. Adopt a friggen child instead of making more. I want to see staind glass solar panels on churches and bipartisans votes!
Now whose’s with me? And feel free to make jabs. I do enough good for the planet (I start community gardens (yes multiple), recycle, I don’t smoke, I don’t liter, I zero my carbon footprint, all foodwaste goes to compost, I shop local(I will someday have an electric car) People like me because i’m honest, with execelent family values. If im a candidate for hell then god is crooked.
And as much as I wanna say something to Smart Thinking for his/her…err…interesting portrayal of fact…Sometimes Yahoo news has typos…in their umm…science news…so…the corresponding age and size of the sun.. i make mistakes like that all the time. Your argument was well formatted though! And would have been logical given correct data.
Go Green!!!!!

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Gabriel Hanna

posted June 23, 2009 at 3:04 pm

As Smart Thinking shows, it’s not just evolution that creationists make stuff up about.
They also have to invent things about astronomy, nuclear physics, and if they ever find enough intelligence to work through the math, quantum mechanics.
There is no reputable astronomer who thinks the Sun was bigger than Earth’s orbit since it condensed out of the interstellar gas.
Go that link and the first thing you will see will be a graphic showing where the sun is on the main sequence. It will expand to be larger than Earth’s orbit in about 5 billion years, but has not done so yet.
But perhaps Smart thinking is really an expert in stars and nuclear fusion and he can explain to us his new theory of stellar evolution, which I am sure is under peer review even as we speak.

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posted June 23, 2009 at 4:14 pm

“Smart Thinking” – what an ironic handle.

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