In this typical lower level college text on logic,(1) the author continues his efforts to place Christianity on the same level as astrology and horoscopes by referring to it as an untestable and implausible theory and by attacking the Judeo/Christian Scriptures behind it. His target in this chapter is the Genesis flood, the historical account of how God used Noah to save the family of man from extinction, as well as all the basic kinds of animals on earth that couldn’t swim and were air breathing.
Noah is an easy target, as most of us have grown up with the funny nursery book images of the small little tub like boat with a couple of dozen pairs of animal kinds on it, (always at least some giraffes) and besides that, it is an epic tale which would be easy for even many Christians and Jews to place in the myth class.
Despite that, there is a wealth of evidence and data to suggest the story is an entirely accurate account. World wide flood stories, world population growth, genetic similarity among all humans, etc. I’m not going to go into all of that here now, the information is readily available on the web (aig or icr, some here on this blog, Tony Bowe’s blog) and elsewhere. I will answer directly only the questions Mr. Hurley hurls at the Mosaic account and since his main goal is to discredit the reliability of Scripture, I want to point out that the Scriptures as an authority have proven reliable repeatedly, historically, in its prophetic claims and when compared to nature. Darwin however, Mr. Hurleys authority, has proven unreliable again and again, and evolutionists are constantly having to readjust their claims and their theory to fit new data. So why do we struggle with Moses and his flood story but smugly swallow Darwin’s spontaneous generation or the unscientific idea that the universe created itself?
We’ll break up his argument into two posts, because it takes more space to answer a charge then make one. Here is one of his questions;
“Based on the human hours it took to build the Titanic….How long do you think it would have taken Noah and his wife and three sons to build the ark?”
Hurley goes on to suggest because of its size and the amount of lumber needed, along with the number of species (next post) and the question of how Noah collected all the animals makes the story implausible. He asks, ” Is scientific creationism a plausible theory?”
First since this is a logic book, let me just point out that once again Hurley has violated his own rules of logic by using the strawman argument. The argument he presents is aimed at the reliability of Moses and the Scripture, not creationism. When creationists debate, they are first trying to falsify the Darwinian theory of biological evolution and Lyell’s theory of uniformitarianism, and they concentrate on the biological and geological data, not the Jewish Scripture. That would be a separate debate. Hurley appears to be scared to death of dealing with the scientific arguments against evolution, so commits a logical fallacy by submitting the flood story in the place of the scientific evidence for creation.
But back to the Ark. The Ark was roughly 450′ long and 75′ wide and 45′ tall. The Titanic was almost twice that size at 880′ long and 92′ wide. The Ark had no motors, no pumps, no electricity, no furnaces are mentioned or boilers or steam engines and no metal. No gymnasiums, no ornate chandeliers or glass, swimming pools, cafes or any of the other luxuries and complexities that the Titanic had.
The Titanic had an incredible amount of metal and glass, much extremely ornately crafted, which by themselves would have taken an incredible number of man hours to design and install. Take a look at the interior photos of the Titanic and you will be stunned at the exquisite and ornate old-fashioned design, carved pillars, skylights, etc.. The Titanic had;
24 gas furnaces
159 coal furnaces
5 ballast and bilge pumps plus 3 other giant pumps
Two giant steam engines and a turbine
Swimming pools, gymnasium, restaurants and cafes, libraries, Turkish baths and etc.
electricity and wiring and lighting all through the ship.
The Ark was a simple wooden ship of three floors covered with pitch and the family of Noah, a total of 8 people, had decades to build it. As a matter of fact, I can find nothing in scripture that states Noah didn’t contract out for lumber or other help from the surrounding society. But even barring that, by comparing the man hours to build the Ark to those needed to build the Titanic, Hurley is actually committing another logic fallacy, the false dichotomy, or arguably another strawman, as well as the argument from silence fallacy. Incredible.
Hurley’s textbook also raises serious questions about the ability of our largely government underwritten secular colleges ability to educate free from religious bias and in an accurate and fair manner. This is particularly true when you realize our federal government refuses to give FASFA to any student who wants to attend a seminary. In this allegedly religion free society, why is attacking one religion in the most intolerant and biased fashion allowed while another religion, secular atheism, is not only never questioned, it is the background indoctrination of choice?
Hurleys attack on Moses continued next post.
(1) Hurley, a concise introduction to Logic, ninth edition.