Tag Archives: flat earth

A (Useless?) Plea to Stop the Madness

Had some short chat time with Joel Richardson today and yesterday. Joel sent me a brief audio link to some comments of Hugh Ross that a good number of people who promote the flat earth idea are actually atheists posing at Christians to make the faith look stupid (listen below):


Ross’s suggestion actually makes a lot of sense, though I don’t think Hugh’s thought is more than an impression at this point (perhaps based on some personal situations or observations). It makes sense because of the endgame — to make Scripture vulnerable to debunking and make the faith look irrational. It’s a coherent strategy and, frankly, an effective one.

I wish Christian Middle Earth (CME) would wake up. I’ve said a number of times that I have a fondness for it because it’s filled with people who have not quit the faith when they didn’t get answers to questions — they tenaciously seek to teach themselves. But CME is bloated with ignorance and deeply flawed thinking. It is doubly cursed by über-literalism and contextual ignorance. To be blunt, most of what CME “researchers” think is truth was said 150 years ago and has been repeatedly debunked ever since.

Without the intellectual crises that snowballed after the age of exploration (16th century), the decipherment of the Sanskrit Vedas (17th-18th centuries), the decipherment of ancient Near Eastern languages in the 19th centuries, and Darwin’s Origin of Species (19th century), CME would be a ghost town. What crises? The discovery of other human beings in lands not mentioned in the Bible . . . The discovery that Sanskrit was actually related to Latin and Greek . . . The discovery of alternative world chronologies that rivaled those of the OT . . . The discovery of stories of human origins and a great flood that were quite similar to those in the OT. These discoveries collectively led to, on one hand, bizarre Bible interpretations about racial origins and diversity, pre- or co-Adamic humans, the nonsensical gap theory with its imaginary pre-Fall Fall, aligning dinosaur fossils with a pre-Eden Eden, etc. People predisposed to despising the creation stories and pre-flood history of “Jews” (OT) found in these other texts alternatives (especially the Sanskrit Vedas). They developed their own theories about earth’s history — for example a series of “roots races” and habitation of earth, first by disembodied spirit-beings from space, on to Atlantean giants, whose knowledge was preserved in human lines peripheral or antecedent to Adam’s — a master race whose ancestry came from superior races (in some versions, white and Nordic). This in turn fed the fires of anti-Semitism and the non-Jewish Jesus, descended of course from the master race. (I fictionalize some of this in The Portent, my sequel to The Facade).

CME folks have actually built a theology ON this sort of material to (they think) combat the occultic versions of the same material (that gets peddled on Ancient Aliens). It’s like fighting cancer with the bubonic plague. Folks — ALL these ideas have discernible intellectual histories that are well-documented. This is why I have said that a lot of CME (and non-Christian Middle Earth — stuff like ancient astronaut theory) are neither biblical viable, nor historically defensible, nor arguable from serious study of the primary texts. People (Christian and otherwise) *used* what they could from non-biblical primary texts and then bent the Bible to their will to bolster their agendas (either “the Bible said this all along” or “the Bible is trash”). Bad hermeneutics, ignorance of the ancient languages, dismissal of the context of primary sources, and just plain flawed thinking (the non sequitur is the sacrament of middle earth in all its denominations) has produced untrue truth. It’s madness. And the spirit of the age — where the death of expertise is glorified since “we have the internet now” — compounds the problem.

The solution is simple: Let the Bible be what it is. God picked the writers and let them be who they were in their own context. Put another way, don’t make the Bible be what it isn’t. It’s not a science book. It’s not a repository of exhaustive knowledge covering everything that’s ever happened. It’s selective. It has its own (God’s) agenda in mind. It’s targeted to certain truth propositions. And, like any other piece of communication, its writers did NOT intend to be understood literally all the time. (See the last question and my answer on my FAQ for more).

So, please, can we just let the Bible be what it is, interpreting it in its own context, doing exegesis of its original language in that ancient context? Without imposing our own modern ideas and questions on it, making it “answer” questions that its writers never raised or addressed? Can we do that?

Maybe I need a faith infusion today, but I’m thinking the answer is just going to be more madness. Dig the trenches deeper and “defend the faith” that at some point popped into our imaginations while we visited Christian Middle Earth.

 

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Mike Heiser on the Underground with Joel Richardson

This is my second interview with Joel Richardson. I always enjoy talking with Joel. He’s one of the good guys in the popular evangelical world.

This second interview took place right after Joel had moved into his new house (and hence a new studio), and we encountered one technical problem — the video of me didn’t “take” (which is honestly not going to hurt the interview at all). 🙂

Joel asks me some good questions about hell, annihilation, the flat earth, and Reversing Hermon content. Enjoy!

 

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More Flat Earth Debunking from the PseudoAstronomy Podcast

Stuart Robbins has added to the work he’s already done on his podcast.  Stuart takes us through more about how young earth creationists also oppose the flat earth nonsense. Anyone who has listened to Stuart before knows he’s not a YEC or creationist. His point here is that even those whose views of the origin of life are contrary to his own have the sense to oppose the flat earth / geocentric idea. I of course believe in a creator, but I’m grateful that Stuart has taken the time to address this absurd idea.

His previous episodes (upon which this one builds) are:

Podcast #78: Historic and Modern Geocentrism

Podcast #152: Modern Flat Earth Thought, Part 3 (Young-Earth Creationists Debunking Flat Earth)

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Exposing Modern Flat Earth Belief – Part 2 of the Exposing PseudoAstronomy Podcast Series

I blogged a short time ago about Stuart Robbins’ podcast series on modern flat earth belief. Stuart is a PhD in geology whose dissertation was on the geology of Mars. His podcast is, as its title suggests, about debunking nonsensical beliefs tied to astronomical subject matter (e.g., Planet X myths).

Part 1 of Stuart’s series can be found here.

Part 2 was just posted.

 

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Final Flat Earth Update

I’ve decided to disable comments on the original flat earth post. It’s clogging my in box at this point and nothing new is being added. Life goes on. If someone finds proof of a “firm” dome (Prov 8:23) “hard as a cast metal mirror” (Job 37:18) and a sea that has an edged limit (Prov 8:27-29), let me know by email. And the same goes for souls being in the loins of a man (Hebrew 7) and women’s hair aiding in conception (1 Cor 11). And for why I believe in inspiration and inerrancy and define those terms in the context of all this, see the original flat earth post or the archive on this site for the “Bibliology” category.

I’m moving on.

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