<quote from Real Faith & Reason, vol 2>
Consider this conversation between two people.
Sandy Sandbuilder: “I don’t understand why science is still rejected to this day. The big bang is a scientific theory supported by testing, observation, and logic. It’s not a belief or a myth. Why is it so hard to believe as opposed to an all-powerful spiritual being creating the universe in a week?”
Rocky Rockbuilder: “The big bang story is a made-up story based on interpretations of observations, and persuaders base those interpretations on assumptions. Assumptions consist of made-up stuff, so these stories consist of made-up stuff. God is real, and those of us who know Him through Jesus Christ experience His moment by moment leading, teaching, and correcting. He assures us that the Bible is His word without error. He commands us not to add our made-up stuff to His words since He speaks through Scripture and every means mentioned in Scripture—and what He reveals is enough.”
Sandy: “It’s not a made up story. It starts out as a hypothesis. It then is studied, and evidence gathered. There is enough evidence to support the Big Bang. Big Bang is the general consensus by the smartest men and women on the planet because enough data is there. We are not talking about assumptions but definitive facts.”
Rocky: “We can repeatedly observe definitive facts. Let me observe these facts if you insist they’re facts. I’m not going to take your word for it based on hearsay from people you say are smart. Hearsay doesn’t constitute a definitive fact. You can supply a test to show that it happened if you know it’s true. The test to show that it happened must include no assumptions. Let me observe the billions of years repeatedly without any stories or assumptions.”
Sandy: “Then look up at the stars. You are seeing history. What we see has taken millions of years to reach us, so you are literally observing history every time you look up into the night sky.”
Rocky: “So are you now telling a new story that God couldn’t have gotten distant starlight to the earth within the biblical timeline by any means natural or supernatural? Can you show me a way that I can test your new story?”
Sandy: “You are simply brushing aside all evidence by saying god didn’t make it happen that way. All based on one book you read.”
Rocky: “I didn’t see any evidence for your story. Show me the way to test your story about distant starlight and God’s limitations. If science shows that God has this limitation, then there’s a way we can repeatedly observe the history of how He couldn’t get the distant starlight to the earth. Show me how to test what you’re claiming. If you were to ask me to give you a way that you can know Jesus Christ exists, I would do it for you. I’m asking you for a way to test your bare claims.”
Sandy Sandbuilder has fallen for the fallacy of irrelevant evidence, using a real observation that doesn’t prove his conclusion. When thinkers irrationally try to apply science where they can’t test the conclusion, they often use irrelevant evidence to fool themselves and others. Sandy also uses the fallacies of phantom science and phantom evidence, mentioning the words “science” and “evidence” as if he had presented real science and evidence. But he didn’t present any science or evidence. We can observe stars, but we can’t observe Sandy’s story. We can’t physically observe or test a story about God getting distant starlight to earth within the biblical timeline or not doing so. We can’t observe the big bang happening by looking at the stars.
Rather than making unsupported claims about starlight, Sandy could have claimed that radiometric dating proves his point. But radiometric dating doesn’t prove his point since no one has validated radiometric dating. Validation is the scientific process of “proving” what we believe to be true by testing and observing, which would involve testing rocks of known age.
However, scientists can’t validate radiometric dating on rocks of known age. Every time a rock of known age is sent in for radiometric dating, the dating is way off. For instance, Mount St. Helens newly formed rock was zero years old, but it yielded a range of dates from 350,000 years old to 2.8 million years old. If Sandy had made claims about radiometric dating, Rocky could have just asked Sandy a question. “Can you point to any study that tested many different rocks of known age and proved that radiometric dating is consistently accurate on rocks of known age?” There’s no such study.
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