Noah's Ark theme park founder blames devastating hurricanes on sins

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  1. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by ThrillVille Cardinal51 View Post
    What he said is biblical. As in, if the first humans Adam and Eve had not sinned, the world would be perfect.

    I hope he didn't mean to single out particular people and blame their sins as the cause...
    In the Genesis story they ate a forbidden fruit.
    Did they sin or were they just disobedient? The word "sin" I suppose covers a wide area but to me a sin would have to be quite a lot above eating forbidden fruit, say more in the line with harming another person or robbery.
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  2. #77
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Professor View Post
    In the Genesis story they ate a forbidden fruit.
    Did they sin or were they just disobedient? The word "sin" I suppose covers a wide area but to me a sin would have to be quite a lot above eating forbidden fruit, say more in the line with harming another person or robbery.
    I think the way it's laid out in the story their disobedience is a sin. After all, there were grave consequences.

  3. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by theguru View Post
    Hurricanes are a result of people’s sins, Ken Ham, the president and founder of the Creation Museum and the Ark Encounter in Williamstown, tweeted on Wednesday.

    “Devastating Hurricanes-reminder we live in a fallen groaning world as a result of our sin against a Holy God-it’s our fault not God’s fault,” he tweeted.

    In the tweet, he posted a picture with a verse from Romans 8:22: “For we know that the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs together until now.”

    Ark, Creation Museum founder blames hurricanes on sin | Lexington Herald Leader
    Hamm was not blaming any one person's sin for the hurricane or any one population's sin (such as the Barbuda islanders) for causing the hurricane. In fact, he wasn't even blaming the collective sin of the entire world's population for this particular hurricane or any other natural disaster. He was making the point that according to Christian (and Hebrew theology) the world was created a paradise. When the first human's lifted themselves up and usurped the place of God by deciding right and wrong for themselves, irrespective of the command of their Creator, (this was the act of eating the forbidden fruit) there were consequences to this sin. These consequences also effected the natural world. This is known as the Fall. Natural disasters are one consequence of the Fall.

    What Hamm is addressing is when people say, "How could God do this or allow this to happen?" He is saying that the reason it happens is because humanity is Fallen. If that had not first happened, these consequences we see would not exist. So he is not "blaming the vicitms" of the hurricane or any one group of sinners for the hurricane. He is saying that sin entered the world and with it these consequences. The same consequences we've seen throughout human history. It's not God's fault we have hurricanes. That is Hamm's point.

    If you wish to ask further questions, like what purpose could natural disasters possibly hold in God's design, then go to AnswersinGenesis.org where they have a large Q&A section. Or if you prefer to consult a resource that comes from a person from a mainline denomination, I would suggest that you take a look at C.S. Lewis's book, The Problem of Pain. Lewis was an atheist who became a believer and was an Anglican.

    This quotation will give you a flavor of Lewis's book as Daniel Ritchie describes it:

    Lewis had tasted pain in ways that few can relate to. He lost his mother at an early age, saw his dad emotionally abandon him, suffered from a respiratory illness as a teenager, fought and was wounded in World War I, and finally had to bury his beloved wife. Through all of this, Lewis wrote about all of his heartache in his work The Problem of Pain. In this work, Lewis penned one of his most famous lines:

    Pain insists upon being attended to. God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our conscience, but shouts in our pain: it is His megaphone to rouse a deaf world.
    We are most keenly aware of God’s character in our suffering. It is when our self-sufficiency is peeled away that we see how weak we really are. It is in that moment of weakness that, as God tells Paul in 2 Corinthians 12:9, “my power is made perfect in weakness.” It is in our pain that God has us taste his power most intimately.


    Daniel Ritchie was born without arms and he endorses CS Lewis's view of suffering in a testimony found here: God Shouts to Us in Our Pain | Desiring God

    I would caution you against mocking Christian theology. Its ideas have been well-thought out over time. It offers an understanding of the world that is not simplistic but addresses the realities of life as we know it. Some Christians are simplistic and sometimes say stupid things, but show me which group of people that you cannot say that about, including scientists.

    The objections to what Hamm stated that come most easily and commonly to people are sophomoric attempts to mock God or those who believe in Him. I would suggest rather, you read some of the thinkers through the centuries who have dealt with the question of theodicy, "How can a good God who is also all-powerful allow His people (or His creation) to suffer?"

    Someone lamented how little science is taught in KY schools. I lament how little philosophy is taught in our colleges and universities. It may save us from very shallow thinking and the usual sort of inept reasoning that surrounds such questions via twitter. I am not saying every deep thinker will come out on the side of Christian theology. I am saying Hamm's view of suffering on this earth is not easily dismissed and one must apply rigorous rules of logic in dealing with it adequately.

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    I can't speak for Mr. Hamm, so I have no clue what he was thinking...

    I've read and heard lots of comments about hurricane Irma and to the fact that God was punishing the people of Florida because of their sins. I do not believe that is how God works and I want you to think about the above statement and compare it to what Jesus said in Luke 13:1-5. There were some who thought others were greater sinners than themselves because a building fell on them. And they reasoned that God was punishing them for their sin.


    Here is the scripture and what Jesus has to say about accidents and murder.

    1 Now there were some present at that time who told Jesus about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mixed with their sacrifices. 2 Jesus answered, “Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans because they suffered this way?

    3 I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish.

    4 Or those eighteen who died when the tower in Siloam fell on them—do you think they were more guilty than all the others living in Jerusalem?

    5 I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish.”

    It is true that we will receive punishment for our sins, if we don't repent, but that punishment will take place on the great day when God comes. He will settle all scores and make everything right. That is what is meant by the statement "The wages of sin is death". It is a spiritual, eternal, death and has nothing to do with a physical death in this life.

    And Let's not forget our brother Job and the trials he experienced. His friends accused him of an outlandish secret sin that God was punishing him for. But the Bible says that Job was perfect and upright (Job 1:1). It was Satan who worked against Job (Job 18-12). Satan controlled the weather, other people, Job's health, and used them against him. It wasn't God.

  5. #80
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    The Giant Red Spot has been raging on Jupiter for more than 350 years. Apparently, there's been some bad sinning going on there for a long time...

    Come on folks, quit blaming God for killer storms. Pure silliness.

  6. #81
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    Quote Originally Posted by Science Friction View Post
    The Giant Red Spot has been raging on Jupiter for more than 350 years. Apparently, there's been some bad sinning going on there for a long time...

    Come on folks, quit blaming God for killer storms. Pure silliness.
    While you and I actually kind of agree on this issue as a whole, I am not sure what you mean with this jupiter thing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Science Friction View Post
    The Giant Red Spot has been raging on Jupiter for more than 350 years. Apparently, there's been some bad sinning going on there for a long time...

    Come on folks, quit blaming God for killer storms. Pure silliness.
    I agree with your conclusion. The stuff about Jupiter does not discount Hamm's statement.

  8. #83
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    Quote Originally Posted by PP1 View Post
    While you and I actually kind of agree on this issue as a whole, I am not sure what you mean with this jupiter thing.
    I think he's saying that while humanity has a tendency to be Earth-centric, there's a big universe out there where there's probably more spaces with no intelligent life than not, but still various forms of weather phenomenon that regularly takes place irrespective of whether or not there is or isn't life.

    I believe that SF was making an attempt to have others look beyond Planet Earth into the the vastness of the Universe to understand weather patterns as something that happens in many various places depending on various planet's atmospheres, and not necessarily from the hand of a vengeful god, because if it was about that why would he bother in places with no intelligent life anyhow.

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    Quote Originally Posted by B-Ball-fan View Post
    I'm guessing that all animal life has always needed to eat something to sustain itself, hence the reason Adam & Eve went for that forbidden apple. I'm wondering that before they went and ruined it for everyone, did all animal life sustain itself only on plant life so that no animals would ever die for the sake of another animal being eaten?

    ...And considering that plant life too is life, did all plants live forever before Adam & Eve screwed up?

    Perhaps nothing needed to eat anything before they ate the apple, but if they weren't hungry why would they have been tempted to eat it in the first place.

    I'm confused.
    I look at the Adam and Eve story as mythology but the way I understand it is the couple lived in paradise and were innocents.They didn't know the difference between right and wrong when the serpent spoke to them. God punished them (and in the end all mankind) for allowing the snake to coerce them into eating the forbidden fruit. They knew the fruit was forbidden but when the serpent said otherwise, that it was okay to eat the fruit, being innocents and not knowing the difference ibetween right and wrong, they listened to the serpent. Also, according to scripture God is All-Knowing. He knew in advance what would happen in the Adam and Eve/Serpent meeting. He is also All-Powerful. He had the power to protect the two innocents, and in essence all future humanity. He is also Merciful. He should have the mercy to use that power to stop the snake (imperfect and shouldn't have been in the perfect paradise in the first place) from seducing Adam and Eve. In addition, the female Eve gets most of the blame for the original sin. This certainly hasn't enhanced women's opportunities for advancement up the social and political ladder in Abrahamic dominated religious areas of the world.

  10. #85
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Professor View Post
    I look at the Adam and Eve story as mythology but the way I understand it is the couple lived in paradise and were innocents.They didn't know the difference between right and wrong when the serpent spoke to them. God punished them (and in the end all mankind) for allowing the snake to coerce them into eating the forbidden fruit. They knew the fruit was forbidden but when the serpent said otherwise, that it was okay to eat the fruit, being innocents and not knowing the difference ibetween right and wrong, they listened to the serpent. Also, according to scripture God is All-Knowing. He knew in advance what would happen in the Adam and Eve/Serpent meeting. He is also All-Powerful. He had the power to protect the two innocents, and in essence all future humanity. He is also Merciful. He should have the mercy to use that power to stop the snake (imperfect and shouldn't have been in the perfect paradise in the first place) from seducing Adam and Eve. In addition, the female Eve gets most of the blame for the original sin. This certainly hasn't enhanced women's opportunities for advancement up the social and political ladder in Abrahamic dominated religious areas of the world.
    C'mon man, why'd you have to go and be so logical? LOL!

    Sorta reminds me of this...


  11. #86
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Professor View Post
    I look at the Adam and Eve story as mythology but the way I understand it is the couple lived in paradise and were innocents.They didn't know the difference between right and wrong when the serpent spoke to them. God punished them (and in the end all mankind) for allowing the snake to coerce them into eating the forbidden fruit. They knew the fruit was forbidden but when the serpent said otherwise, that it was okay to eat the fruit, being innocents and not knowing the difference ibetween right and wrong, they listened to the serpent. Also, according to scripture God is All-Knowing. He knew in advance what would happen in the Adam and Eve/Serpent meeting. He is also All-Powerful. He had the power to protect the two innocents, and in essence all future humanity. He is also Merciful. He should have the mercy to use that power to stop the snake (imperfect and shouldn't have been in the perfect paradise in the first place) from seducing Adam and Eve. In addition, the female Eve gets most of the blame for the original sin. This certainly hasn't enhanced women's opportunities for advancement up the social and political ladder in Abrahamic dominated religious areas of the world.
    This is wide of the mark on many counts. Just one point, Christianity has always elevated the plight of women everywhere it was introduced. Women's rights originated with Christians.

    There was a sociological study done in a peer reviewed professional journal which demonstrated that everywhere "Protestant conversionary missionaries" go and preach the Gospel, the level of freedom experienced by the population, education, women's rights, justice etc. rises to a high degree even though the primary intent of the missionaries was to preach the Gospel. These other benefits follow because of the egalitarian nature of the Christian message. Robert Woodbury was digging into an enigma why some nations developed stable representative democracies while neighboring nations developed authoritarian rulers and internal conflict. Woodberry discovered that the common denominator where democracy flourished was the prior presence of Protestant missionaries.

    Areas where Protestant missionaries had a significant presence in the past are on average more economically developed today, with comparatively better health, lower infant mortality, lower corruption, greater literacy, higher educational attainment (especially for women), and more robust membership in nongovernmental associations.

    He knew this would be hard for secular academics to receive so he did a ton of research eventually earning a grant to hire 50 researchers. He went overboard on proving his point and looking at his data from every angle until he was sure the most skeptical scholar would have to acknowledge the amount of data that supported his thesis. He won the award for excellence in his field of study. It just isn't true that Christianity holds women down. History goes against this false narrative. BTW, the term "conversionary missionary" used by the sociologist is his way of saying Protestant evangelical missionary.

    Here's a description of Woodberry's research by others:

    In spite of Smith’s concerns, Woodberry’s historical and statistical work has finally captured glowing attention. A summation of his 14 years of research—published in 2012 in the American Political Science Review, the discipline’s top journal—has won four major awards, including the prestigious Luebbert Article Award for best article in comparative politics. Its startling title: “The Missionary Roots of Liberal Democracy.””[Woodberry] presents a grand and quite ambitious theory of how ‘conversionary Protestants’ contributed to building democratic societies,” says Philip Jenkins, distinguished professor of history at Baylor University. “Try as I might to pick holes in it, the theory holds up. [It has] major implications for the global study of Christianity.”

    “Why did some countries become democratic, while others went the route of theocracy or dictatorship?” asks Daniel Philpott, who teaches political science and peace studies at the University of Notre Dame. “For [Woodberry] to show through devastatingly thorough analysis that conversionary Protestants are crucial to what makes the country democratic today [is] remarkable in many ways. Not only is it another factor—it turns out to be the most important factor. It can’t be anything but startling for scholars of democracy.””I think it’s the best work out there on religion and economic development,” says Robin Grier, professor of economics and international and area studies at the University of Oklahoma. “It’s incredibly sophisticated and well grounded. I haven’t seen anything quite like it.”


    You can read more about his study here: How Christian Missions influenced democracy… – Signposts 2

    You, @The Professor, also misunderstand the meaning of the Genesis account. I think you misunderstand the details and also fail to take into account why God would allow the woman and the man to be so tested. You just assume that to do so is somehow nefarious on the part of a God who is supposed to be compassionate, merciful, all-powerful, etc. I think this is a simplistic and erroneous understanding of the Biblical story.

    The questions you raise about the text are valid questions. The conclusions you have drawn (or implied) in your post do not reflect the best answers to the questions you raise, IMO.

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    Quote Originally Posted by oldgrappler View Post
    This is wide of the mark on many counts. Just one point, Christianity has always elevated the plight of women everywhere it was introduced. Women's rights originated with Christians.

    There was a sociological study done in a peer reviewed professional journal which demonstrated that everywhere "Protestant conversionary missionaries" go and preach the Gospel, the level of freedom experienced by the population, education, women's rights, justice etc. rises to a high degree even though the primary intent of the missionaries was to preach the Gospel. These other benefits follow because of the egalitarian nature of the Christian message. Robert Woodbury was digging into an enigma why some nations developed stable representative democracies while neighboring nations developed authoritarian rulers and internal conflict. Woodberry discovered that the common denominator where democracy flourished was the prior presence of Protestant missionaries.

    Areas where Protestant missionaries had a significant presence in the past are on average more economically developed today, with comparatively better health, lower infant mortality, lower corruption, greater literacy, higher educational attainment (especially for women), and more robust membership in nongovernmental associations.

    He knew this would be hard for secular academics to receive so he did a ton of research eventually earning a grant to hire 50 researchers. He went overboard on proving his point and looking at his data from every angle until he was sure the most skeptical scholar would have to acknowledge the amount of data that supported his thesis. He won the award for excellence in his field of study. It just isn't true that Christianity holds women down. History goes against this false narrative. BTW, the term "conversionary missionary" used by the sociologist is his way of saying Protestant evangelical missionary.

    Here's a description of Woodberry's research by others:

    In spite of Smith’s concerns, Woodberry’s historical and statistical work has finally captured glowing attention. A summation of his 14 years of research—published in 2012 in the American Political Science Review, the discipline’s top journal—has won four major awards, including the prestigious Luebbert Article Award for best article in comparative politics. Its startling title: “The Missionary Roots of Liberal Democracy.””[Woodberry] presents a grand and quite ambitious theory of how ‘conversionary Protestants’ contributed to building democratic societies,” says Philip Jenkins, distinguished professor of history at Baylor University. “Try as I might to pick holes in it, the theory holds up. [It has] major implications for the global study of Christianity.”

    “Why did some countries become democratic, while others went the route of theocracy or dictatorship?” asks Daniel Philpott, who teaches political science and peace studies at the University of Notre Dame. “For [Woodberry] to show through devastatingly thorough analysis that conversionary Protestants are crucial to what makes the country democratic today [is] remarkable in many ways. Not only is it another factor—it turns out to be the most important factor. It can’t be anything but startling for scholars of democracy.””I think it’s the best work out there on religion and economic development,” says Robin Grier, professor of economics and international and area studies at the University of Oklahoma. “It’s incredibly sophisticated and well grounded. I haven’t seen anything quite like it.”


    You can read more about his study here: How Christian Missions influenced democracy… – Signposts 2

    You, @The Professor, also misunderstand the meaning of the Genesis account. I think you misunderstand the details and also fail to take into account why God would allow the woman and the man to be so tested. You just assume that to do so is somehow nefarious on the part of a God who is supposed to be compassionate, merciful, all-powerful, etc. I think this is a simplistic and erroneous understanding of the Biblical story.

    The questions you raise about the text are valid questions. The conclusions you have drawn (or implied) in your post do not reflect the best answers to the questions you raise, IMO.
    Is this the article?

    The Missionary Roots of Liberal Democracy | Robert D Woodberry - Academia.edu

  13. #88
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    I believe that is the very one. I first heard about it in Christianity Today, Jan. 8, 2014.

    According to the article, this study is being confirmed by other studies launched since Woodberry's findings were published.

    Yet so far, over a dozen studies have confirmed Woodberry's findings. The growing body of research is beginning to change the way scholars, aid workers, and economists think about democracy and development.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Watusi View Post
    I can't speak for Mr. Hamm, so I have no clue what he was thinking...

    I've read and heard lots of comments about hurricane Irma and to the fact that God was punishing the people of Florida because of their sins. I do not believe that is how God works and I want you to think about the above statement and compare it to what Jesus said in Luke 13:1-5. There were some who thought others were greater sinners than themselves because a building fell on them. And they reasoned that God was punishing them for their sin.


    Here is the scripture and what Jesus has to say about accidents and murder.

    1 Now there were some present at that time who told Jesus about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mixed with their sacrifices. 2 Jesus answered, “Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans because they suffered this way?

    3 I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish.

    4 Or those eighteen who died when the tower in Siloam fell on them—do you think they were more guilty than all the others living in Jerusalem?

    5 I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish.”

    It is true that we will receive punishment for our sins, if we don't repent, but that punishment will take place on the great day when God comes. He will settle all scores and make everything right. That is what is meant by the statement "The wages of sin is death". It is a spiritual, eternal, death and has nothing to do with a physical death in this life.

    And Let's not forget our brother Job and the trials he experienced. His friends accused him of an outlandish secret sin that God was punishing him for. But the Bible says that Job was perfect and upright (Job 1:1). It was Satan who worked against Job (Job 18-12). Satan controlled the weather, other people, Job's health, and used them against him. It wasn't God.
    Very well thought-out and eloquent post, Toots. I agree with just about every word of it.

    The one difference I might have is that there are other stories that indicate God does punish people because of sin (Ananias & Sapphira, for example, in Acts 5), but one could make an argument that He was dealing with believers here & not unbelievers (at least people who claimed to be believers).

    I do think, though, that the origin of this world's heartache is the curse that came about because of man's sin. I know that puts me in a minority, perhaps, but that is okay. I feel as though one of Christianity's foundations is that the world & the humans that inhabit it are fallen, and that the return of Christ will usher in an eternal era of a redeemed world & a redeemed humanity. The curse brought about by sin will be lifted.

    Do I think God sent these hurricanes as a punishment for some sort of specific sin in Florida, Texas, etc.? No. Having said that, I can't state that as fact either.

    A passage of Scripture that has always stuck with me when I'm left with more questions than answers is Isaiah 55: 8-9, where we're told that God's ways are not our ways and His thoughts are not our thoughts--that His ways & thoughts are higher than ours.

    There are times when God punished in the Bible & I think He shouldn't have (like that guy Uzzah who touched the ark of the covenant to keep it from falling & God struck him dead for it). There are other times when God did not punish & I think he should have (like Pilate choosing the political thing & not the right thing). I'm often left scratching my head at why God does or does not act. In the case of Job, as you referenced, Satan attacked, but God permitted it when He clearly could have prevented it.

    So I just have to trust that His ways and His thoughts are better & higher than mine.

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    So I just have to trust that His ways and His thoughts are better & higher than mine.
    This reminds me of a song that has been on my heart lately. Trust In You by Lauren Daigle.

    Letting go of every single dream
    I lay each one down at Your feet
    Every moment of my wandering
    Never changes what You see
    I try to win this war
    I confess, my hands are weary, I need Your rest
    Mighty warrior, king of the fight
    No matter what I face You're by my side
    When You don't move the mountains
    I'm needing You to move
    When You don't part the waters
    I wish I could walk through
    When You don't give the answers
    As I cry out to You
    I will trust, I will trust, I will trust in You
    Truth is, You know what tomorrow brings
    There's not a day ahead You have not seen
    So let all things be my life and breath
    I want what You want Lord and nothing less
    When You don't move the mountains
    I'm needing You to move
    When You don't part the waters
    I wish I could walk through
    When You don't give the answers
    As I cry out to You
    I will trust, I will trust, I will trust in You
    I will trust in You
    You are my strength and comfort
    You are my steady hand
    You are my firm foundation
    The rock on which I stand
    Your ways are always higher
    Your plans are always good
    There's not a place where I'll go
    You've not already stood
    When You don't move the mountains
    I'm needing You to move
    When You don't part the waters
    I wish I could walk through
    When You don't give the answers
    As I cry out to You
    I will trust, I will trust, I will trust in You
    I will trust in You
    I will trust in You
    I will trust in You
    Songwriters: Lauren Daigle / Michael Farren / Paul Mabury
    Trust In You lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Capitol Christian Music Group

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