Logic Textbook Attacks on Moses: Target the Ark Part two
In his second year college logic textbook, A concise introduction to Logic, Hurley continues to think he is attacking “Creationism” while he attacks various parts of the bible. In this chapter he has targeted Noah and the Ark, the famous history from Genesis. And there is at least a little logic behind that. No one ever would have questioned Darwin and Lyell’s atheistic fairy tale it seems, if there hadn’t been this book by Moses hanging around. By attacking Moses, Hurley can both attempt to discredit the source from which much of his opposition comes, and at the same time avoid the real scientific arguments directed against the so-called “theory” of evolution, which frightens true believers like himself. It’s okay to be skeptical, but not of atheism or its creation story. Let’s talk about the Ark, not entropy.
But it is such a waste of time to attack Moses, because eventually Moses will win all arguments. His history will turn his attackers on their heads, and they will still have to respond to all the attacks on a theory that demands the world created itself out of nothing, for no reason. Continuing his attack on the Ark story, Hurley brings up the question of the number of species which must have been on the ark. He says;
“Is it plausible that all the animals that populate the earth today were saved on Noah’s Ark?’
He goes on to list 25,000 species of birds, 15,000 species of mammals, 6,000 species of reptiles and he also mentions the dinosaurs and the millions of species of insects. Once again though, Hurley is forming a straw man argument, because the bible isn’t talking about species on the Ark, but kinds. And of course not all the animals that populate the earth today were on the ark because many of the species alive today didn’t exist yet. We can be sure there weren’t any Chihuahuas or poodles yet, and we know there weren’t 500 species of pigeons either because all of these different breeds of pigeons came from one breeding pair. So once again, Hurley is not interested in playing fair, he just want’s to attack what he feels is a weak point in the bible. But the bible speaks of kinds and that would be roughly equvalent to a genus, and there is some evidence it could even relate to the “family” class of animals.
Speciation can happen very quickly, and for example all of the dogs that exist today, including wolves and coyotes, dingoes and domestic dogs can interbreed and could have easily descended from one pair of the dog kind on the Ark. If the biblical kind equals a genus, the total number of animals is reduced to 16,000 and if to a family, the number could be as few as 2000, or somewhere between those numbers. The Ark was huge, its total volume was over one million cubic feet and roughly equivalent to 520 rail cars. There were no more than 50 dinosaur kinds at the most, all which are small at birth and grow slowly, so pairs of young dinosaurs good have been taken on the ark with the rest of the animals
In fact, there may be far fewer kinds of dinosaurs and other extinct animals than are listed in many college textbooks. This is because if two identical fossils are found on different continents, they are often given different names. Dr. Raup, a leading paleontologist for years at the Chicago Museum of Natural History suggested that as many as 70 percent of the species “discovered” are later found to be identical to existing species. A younger or smaller Allosaurus for example, or one with slight differences may be renamed as an entirely different species. (1)
Hurley also makes a big issue of how Noah and his family could have rounded up all of the kinds of animals and brought them to the Ark. This brings up another aspect of the flood story that Hurley never mentions. Christians believe in a supernatural God that can and does intervene when he chooses to with mankind. When evolutionists make claims that, “given enough time, anything can happen” such as dead matter forming into reproducing biological machines, they are not making a statement that is consistent with their atheistic world view. Atheists cannot appeal to miracles, they can only logically appeal to observable processes and dead matter has never been observed forming itself into a living creatures.
Theists though, can appeal to God’s supernatural intervention without being logically inconsistent. And according to Moses, God himself promised to bring the animals to the Ark.
“”And of every living thing of all flesh, . . . two of every sort shall come unto thee, to keep them alive” Gen.6: 19,20.
So there you have it. While some may stumble over the Genesis history of the global flood, there is nothing in the account that couldn’t have plausibly happened. Mr. Hurley now needs to explain how dead matter formed itself into orchids and butterflies, buffalo and lizards…and human beings. And why. Logically.
Don’t hold your breath.
(1) Conversation between Luther Sunderland and David Raup, taped and given to the New York dept of Education, available from any public library, ERIC, document reproduction service microfiche, ED 228 056, Darwin’s Enigma, the Fossil Record