Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Shop talk

We get a lot of secular commenters over at T-blog. Some are quite bright, asking smart questions and leveling intelligent objections.

But other secular commenters are…well…you supply the appropriate adjective.

I haven’t spent much time in my blogging career discussing the Evangelical Left. That’s because the only people who take the Evangelical Left seriously are members of…the Evangelical Left.

It’s a marginal positional—as well as transitional position. A halfway house for nominal Christians who are liberalizing their theology, but wish to retain a toehold in the sanctuary.

Now, some of our secular commenters—not the bright ones, but the…you know…”other” ones, act as if it’s question-begging for me or my other colleagues to post material on the traditional reading of Genesis.

They haven’t quite figured out that they are not the target audience for this material. Rather, this is an intramural debate.

When a theistic evolutionist simultaneously claims to honor the authority of Scripture while, at the very same time, allegorizing Scripture whenever it comes into conflict with the scientific establishment, then it’s entirely legitimate to discuss the correct interpretation of Gen 1-3 or whatever else is on the table.

This discussion was never intended to convince an outsider. Rather, it’s an intramural debate between insiders.

When both sides claim to share certain assumptions in common, then you argue from their common assumptions. If someone denies the operating assumptions, then that calls for a separate argument.

Needless to say, there are parallel debates in secular science—debates over sociobiology, or evolutionary psychology, or evolutionary ethics, or gradualism over punctuated equilibrium.

Do these debates beg the question in favor of evolution? No, because they were never intended to target the creationist community.

I’ve also spent a lot of time debating with outsiders of the historicity of the Bible. So spare us the phony exclamations about how we beg the question. It only makes you look clueless, not me.


  1. :::SNIZZZZ!!!!:::

  2. If nothing else, it certainly beats the older posts in the archves, where the combox was filled with "MAKE MONEY NOW!!" spam.

  3. Maybe if you guys would have paid attention, you wouldn't be a bunch of broke, philosophically stupid security guards with no friends.

    As it stands, you argue over every word and definition. You are the people that,when seen in the grocery store, people go down a different isle.

  4. Steve,

    I hope my comments weren't the impetus for this post. If so, I apologize for bringing up potentially facile comments on whether or not this is an appropriate medium for the particular discussion.

    Anonymous - "philosophically stupid security guards with no friends..." - Where is that coming from? or is that just a little ad hominem thrown in for good measure?