Christian vs. public school education

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Re: Christian vs. public school education

#31

Post by PeteSinCA » Wed Jun 19, 2013 12:01 pm

neo-x, just an explanatory note, when I say "Designer" I'm not invoking ID. Much of my experience in electronics is in engineering, i.e. the design side of things.
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Re: Christian vs. public school education

#32

Post by RickD » Wed Jun 19, 2013 12:46 pm

Hey Neo, what happened to your popcorn eating cat avatar? You've gone "generic" on us. :mrgreen:
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Re: Christian vs. public school education

#33

Post by ClassicalTeacher » Wed Jun 19, 2013 4:59 pm

RickD wrote:Hey Neo, what happened to your popcorn eating cat avatar? You've gone "generic" on us. :mrgreen:

Yeah! I thought that was a very cool avatar and I was going to ask you if I could copy it. (I am a cat lover...)

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Re: Christian vs. public school education

#34

Post by ClassicalTeacher » Wed Jun 19, 2013 5:01 pm

neo-x wrote:
ClassicalTeacher wrote:
neo-x wrote:
Jac3510 wrote:Neo,

Just to echo what others have said, while there is a government run educational system that most kids are enrolled in, there is a very, very large private educational system. I was actually home-schooled six of my twelve years, and I can promise you those six years were MUCH better in EVERY respect than the six years I spent being babysat by Uncle Sam. Anyway, a significant part of that private educational system is run by churches. Put differently, there already are a lot of church-run schools, and the kids who come out of them do just as well if not better than their public school counterparts.

Also, I realize that you are a TE, but you, of course, realize that a lot of people disagree with you here. It is just not true that rejecting evolution hinders anyone's ability to work in any field of science--not even biology. In fact, some have argued (rightly, I think) that evolution is actually harming our ability to understand such fields as biology.

You may find these two links interesting:

http://voices.yahoo.com/where-scientifi ... 09360.html
http://creation.com/railroad-wants-monkey-off-its-back

FYI, I don't really do YEC debates, particularly from a scientific perspective. It's not that I think science can or can't address this issue, and it's not that I think I can or can't address the issue. It's that all of us only have so much time to dedicate to certain areas, and the area I have chosen to focus on are primarily philosophical and theological. Coming from my side of things, it's a sad thing to see that those who have decided to dedicate themselves to scientific pursuits discount the reliability of what we know from philosophy and theology. They don't realize that such an attitude is intrinsically theological and philosophical, not scientific. My point is simply that I've concluded that some things can be know better through some areas than others, and I've likewise concluded that what the Bible says is true regardless of what anyone else or anything else says. I'm absolutely convinced that the Bible teaches YEC (though not the traditional 6,000 year model--that's just based on a bad assumption about the nature of genealogies in Genesis), and because of that, it doesn't really matter to me what scientists say on this particular subject.

Look at it this way: one hundred years ago, scientists were adamant that some form of the steady-state model had to be correct. Then they discovered the big bang, which you can't deny now without looking like a fool. What they did was discover the beginning of the universe, which is to say, they finally figured out what we theologians have been saying for millennia. Now they're saying that this beginning happened billions of years ago. Eventually, if Jesus doesn't come back, they'll get it right, too, and figure out that it all happened relatively recently. Again, we're just waiting on science to catch up with God.

And so it is with evolution. We've discovered the Cambrian explosion. We've discovered remarkable similarities between creatures and abilities to adapt to their environments. Evolutionists use that to say that there was a common ancestor. Or, we could just say, "Yup, well God did tell us that He made everything, and that's just what good designers do -- they draw up designs and modify them here and there to create different models of that same design. And wouldn't you expect a smart designer to make His designs able to adapt to a changing world?"

Here, scientists who haven't drunk the kool-aid are starting to catch up with God, too. They're still far behind, but they're figuring it out. And all of that is, again, why I don't really do science debates. I don't have the credentials, and why should I spend the time going to get them when I already know what God says I'm going to figure out after years of studying it? I'm not downplaying the value of that work. Someone has to do it. I just find other things more interesting than fact-checking God--just my personal position. So I say, let those who want to go into that field go for it. Some of them have, and some of them are making arguments about the origins of the universe and mankind, etc. But MOST scientists aren't interested in origins at all. They're interested in how the universe operates RIGHT NOW and they are building technology in light of those facts.

Bottom line: what we need aren't people who are going to assume evolution is true. What we need are people who can look at the way the universe and the organisms in it operate and then build the technologies we need to make life better, more productive, safer, healthier, etc. Kids who graduate from church-run schools or home-schools or whatever are just as capable of that as kids who are educated by government controlled anti-theistic, postmodern, communistic, progressive secularists.
I don't disagree with the overall point of what you wrote Jac.

Jac you also know that a lot of people (infact lots and lots) disagree with you on your stance. Anyways, I'm fine with it if you choose to hold to that view but I think CT is going beyond that, its not just that rejecting evolution hinders people to learn science (though I certainly think it does) but then if you are taught YEC in school with the idea that evolution is an athiestic/poor/BS/evil theory, and then go to study biology and study evolution, you will have to come to one conclusion either what you were taught was wrong in school or what you are being taught right here is false. And even if one can reject evolution and be a biologist, he will be practicing based on the study of evolution not YEC. Either way, regardless of whether you study YEC or not, on science grounds it will be of no value. And yet to preach to students that evolution is BS, is way wrong when in field they will be doing just that.

And the yahoo article you cited, fails to mention a lot, including (surprisingly)that nearly all research and advances in medicine from the last 20 years to now is based on the fact that humans share DNA with the animal and plant kingdom at large. New treatments to cancer HIV and many others are open to possibility because of evolution science. genetics, microbiology, virology and others, all use evolutionary theory as a cornerstone to work. Modern biology certainly uses evolution at its core.
http://www.actionbioscience.org/evoluti ... iucci.html
http://visions8.beyondgenes.com/
http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1 ... x/abstract
http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/faq-int ... ology.html
I could cite more articles but since you are busy usually and don't want to spend a lot of time debating this topic (reading from your post) I'd understand if you do not want to debate this further.

CT,
Francis Collins is a T.E and he doesn't think evolution is poor or atheistic. Infact C.T you will probably benefit from reading his books, if you haven't already (but I doubt that).
You obviously did not read my post. I said that I have read Collins' books. And, I am aware that he is a "T.E." and mentioned as much in my post. In addition, I never said that I taught YEC...I said that I lean in that direction, but have not come to any conclusions. I do not believe in evolution. That's what I said.
My apologies CT, I misread your post, in a hurry if I may add.

What exactly in evolution do you disagree with? seeing that it is the best theory out there, I often find it strange when people say that. You do not have to answer if you do not want ofcourse. but if you do, I'd be interested to know. By the way if you do not believe in evolution then either there is creationism as in YEC or ID left, nothing else to hold on to.
Since this is not an evolution vs. creationism thread and there already exists one here, I will gather my thoughts at some point and respond there.

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Re: Christian vs. public school education

#35

Post by ClassicalTeacher » Wed Jun 19, 2013 5:03 pm

Here is an excellent article on the difference between a classically modeled education and what passes for education today. There are more and more schools--mostly private, elementary schools--which offer a classical curriculum.

http://townhall.com/columnists/kenconno ... /page/full

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Re: Christian vs. public school education

#36

Post by Jac3510 » Wed Jun 19, 2013 9:06 pm

neo-x wrote:I don't disagree with the overall point of what you wrote Jac.

Jac you also know that a lot of people (infact lots and lots) disagree with you on your stance. Anyways, I'm fine with it if you choose to hold to that view but I think CT is going beyond that, its not just that rejecting evolution hinders people to learn science (though I certainly think it does) but then if you are taught YEC in school with the idea that evolution is an athiestic/poor/BS/evil theory, and then go to study biology and study evolution, you will have to come to one conclusion either what you were taught was wrong in school or what you are being taught right here is false. And even if one can reject evolution and be a biologist, he will be practicing based on the study of evolution not YEC. Either way, regardless of whether you study YEC or not, on science grounds it will be of no value. And yet to preach to students that evolution is BS, is way wrong when in field they will be doing just that.
I have no doubt that secular universities teach all of the sciences from an evolutionary perspective. What you don't seem to appreciate is that just because universities teach from that perspective, it does not follow that the practice of the fields come from that perspective. Obviously, if I believe YEC, then I will believe that what I was "taught in school was wrong or what being taught right here is false." But what does that have to do with anything. My wife was actively taught at her state university that truth is relative and that Christianity isn't true. So what? You may say that evolution is a scientific fact whereas moral relativism or the truth of Christianity are not, but then you would just be begging the question. If evolution is NOT true (and I don't think it is), then there's no substantive difference whatsoever.

The point here is that whatever we are taught in school, it is up to us to go into our chosen fields and practice to the best of our abilities, and there is absolutely NO evidence that if a person rejects evolution that they will make for subpar scientists. As one of the articles I quoted says,

  • Dr. Marc Kirschner, chair of the Department of Systems Biology, Harvard Medical School, stated: "In fact, over the last 100 years, almost all of biology has proceeded independent of evolution, except evolutionary biology itself. Molecular biology, biochemistry, physiology, have not taken evolution into account at all."

Now, perhaps you are better educated than the chair of the Department of Systems Biology at Harvard Medical, but I doubt it!

And the yahoo article you cited, fails to mention a lot, including (surprisingly)that nearly all research and advances in medicine from the last 20 years to now is based on the fact that humans share DNA with the animal and plant kingdom at large. New treatments to cancer HIV and many others are open to possibility because of evolution science. genetics, microbiology, virology and others, all use evolutionary theory as a cornerstone to work. Modern biology certainly uses evolution at its core.
http://www.actionbioscience.org/evoluti ... iucci.html
http://visions8.beyondgenes.com/
http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1 ... x/abstract
http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/faq-int ... ology.html
I could cite more articles but since you are busy usually and don't want to spend a lot of time debating this topic (reading from your post) I'd understand if you do not want to debate this further.

Look at the part I underlined. This is NOT true, and this is very important, because it goes to the issues I was talking about earlier. You are wrong on two levels:

1. You are apparently equating "humans share DNA with the animal and plant kingdom" with the Darwinian claim of common descent. That, however, is just an interpretation of what the hard data actually says. What the hard data actually shows is that human and animal and plant DNA tends to be very similar in different organisms. Common design could just as well account for the similarity as common descent. Thus, evolution has absolutely NO exclusive claim on the comparative structures of DNA here.
2. Biological researchers don't care about the evolutionary pattens of the development of any given organism. I have no doubt that noting the close comparisons between this and that organism can be very beneficial for developing vaccines and the like, but that has nothing to do with evolution. Such scientists look at the way things are RIGHT NOW and do their research based on how organisms actually exist TODAY. Knowing their supposed evolutionary development doesn't in the least contribute to the development of any such technology.

The bottom line is that hard science deals with observations about reality as we experience it right now. Certainly those observations can be interpreted in an evolutionary light. They can also be interpreted in a teleological light. It's just dishonest of you to pretend that evolutionists somehow have an edge here. It's even more dishonest for you to imply that if a person is taught YEC and taught to reject evolution then their ability to practice good science will be hindered.
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Re: Christian vs. public school education

#37

Post by neo-x » Wed Jun 19, 2013 9:44 pm

Jac3510 wrote:
neo-x wrote:I don't disagree with the overall point of what you wrote Jac.

Jac you also know that a lot of people (infact lots and lots) disagree with you on your stance. Anyways, I'm fine with it if you choose to hold to that view but I think CT is going beyond that, its not just that rejecting evolution hinders people to learn science (though I certainly think it does) but then if you are taught YEC in school with the idea that evolution is an athiestic/poor/BS/evil theory, and then go to study biology and study evolution, you will have to come to one conclusion either what you were taught was wrong in school or what you are being taught right here is false. And even if one can reject evolution and be a biologist, he will be practicing based on the study of evolution not YEC. Either way, regardless of whether you study YEC or not, on science grounds it will be of no value. And yet to preach to students that evolution is BS, is way wrong when in field they will be doing just that.
I have no doubt that secular universities teach all of the sciences from an evolutionary perspective. What you don't seem to appreciate is that just because universities teach from that perspective, it does not follow that the practice of the fields come from that perspective. Obviously, if I believe YEC, then I will believe that what I was "taught in school was wrong or what being taught right here is false." But what does that have to do with anything. My wife was actively taught at her state university that truth is relative and that Christianity isn't true. So what? You may say that evolution is a scientific fact whereas moral relativism or the truth of Christianity are not, but then you would just be begging the question. If evolution is NOT true (and I don't think it is), then there's no substantive difference whatsoever.

The point here is that whatever we are taught in school, it is up to us to go into our chosen fields and practice to the best of our abilities, and there is absolutely NO evidence that if a person rejects evolution that they will make for subpar scientists. As one of the articles I quoted says,

  • Dr. Marc Kirschner, chair of the Department of Systems Biology, Harvard Medical School, stated: "In fact, over the last 100 years, almost all of biology has proceeded independent of evolution, except evolutionary biology itself. Molecular biology, biochemistry, physiology, have not taken evolution into account at all."

Now, perhaps you are better educated than the chair of the Department of Systems Biology at Harvard Medical, but I doubt it!

And the yahoo article you cited, fails to mention a lot, including (surprisingly)that nearly all research and advances in medicine from the last 20 years to now is based on the fact that humans share DNA with the animal and plant kingdom at large. New treatments to cancer HIV and many others are open to possibility because of evolution science. genetics, microbiology, virology and others, all use evolutionary theory as a cornerstone to work. Modern biology certainly uses evolution at its core.
http://www.actionbioscience.org/evoluti ... iucci.html
http://visions8.beyondgenes.com/
http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1 ... x/abstract
http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/faq-int ... ology.html
I could cite more articles but since you are busy usually and don't want to spend a lot of time debating this topic (reading from your post) I'd understand if you do not want to debate this further.

Look at the part I underlined. This is NOT true, and this is very important, because it goes to the issues I was talking about earlier. You are wrong on two levels:

1. You are apparently equating "humans share DNA with the animal and plant kingdom" with the Darwinian claim of common descent. That, however, is just an interpretation of what the hard data actually says. What the hard data actually shows is that human and animal and plant DNA tends to be very similar in different organisms. Common design could just as well account for the similarity as common descent. Thus, evolution has absolutely NO exclusive claim on the comparative structures of DNA here.
2. Biological researchers don't care about the evolutionary pattens of the development of any given organism. I have no doubt that noting the close comparisons between this and that organism can be very beneficial for developing vaccines and the like, but that has nothing to do with evolution. Such scientists look at the way things are RIGHT NOW and do their research based on how organisms actually exist TODAY. Knowing their supposed evolutionary development doesn't in the least contribute to the development of any such technology.

The bottom line is that hard science deals with observations about reality as we experience it right now. Certainly those observations can be interpreted in an evolutionary light. They can also be interpreted in a teleological light. It's just dishonest of you to pretend that evolutionists somehow have an edge here. It's even more dishonest for you to imply that if a person is taught YEC and taught to reject evolution then their ability to practice good science will be hindered.


Jac did you read the links? if not then it will be equally dishonest of you to reject what I am saying here without considering what I have put forward.

Now, perhaps you are better educated than the chair of the Department of Systems Biology at Harvard Medical, but I doubt it!
I am not, neither are you, but you seem to be speaking from a position of authority, and it goes without saying that many do not agree with Dr. Marc Kirschner, would it have any affect if say some university professors said that evolution in modern biology is the corner stone of the whole thing? I doubt you will consider other scientists views on how evolution in modern biology is relevant.
humans share DNA with the animal and plant kingdom at large.

Jac how does you your child share your DNA, or you share your dad's and mum's? is it different from common descent? infact your child's future children will have both your parents DNA in her, your child has no original DNA, you don't have original DNA, you have what was passed down to you by various generations before you and same goes for your child and then later his/her children. No child has an oiginal DNA, it only has what is passed down from parents. Unless you can tell me that there is something other than reproduction that your child has a line of DNA going back to your parents and their parents and their parents and so on and so forth. But not of your neighbors or my family or anyone else's in the world (who have their own DNA lines going back)?

Now are you saying that there is some different method of having common DNA other than reproduction?

Thus, evolution has absolutely NO exclusive claim on the comparative structures of DNA here.

It would be true only if a separate known process was found, until that happens, it absolutely has that.

but that has nothing to do with evolution

It has everything to do with it because evolution without common descent does not occur.

It's just dishonest of you to pretend that evolutionists somehow have an edge here.

Until you have a good theory, they have the edge and a rather substantial edge at that. You seem to be under the impression that somehow basics of evolution can be interpreted just anyway you like.

And there's no pretending here and I don't appreciate you saying that since I gave you plenty of material to consider, I could give you more, perhaps you will consider after you have read them.

It's even more dishonest for you to imply that if a person is taught YEC and taught to reject evolution then their ability to practice good science will be hindered.

No, if a person is taught to reject evolution, and if he at a later stage accepts evolution he will think of YEC as false, and if he still believes in YEC, he will think that evolution is false. Because both YEC and evolution can't both be true at the same time. Though I have never said that that a YEC can't be a good biologist. I did however say that saying evolution is a poor theory (which it is not) will affect children's conception of it in the long run, just as teaching evolution has affected children conception.

I have no doubt that secular universities teach all of the sciences from an evolutionary perspective. What you don't seem to appreciate is that just because universities teach from that perspective, it does not follow that the practice of the fields come from that perspective. Obviously, if I believe YEC, then I will believe that what I was "taught in school was wrong or what being taught right here is false." But what does that have to do with anything. My wife was actively taught at her state university that truth is relative and that Christianity isn't true. So what? You may say that evolution is a scientific fact whereas moral relativism or the truth of Christianity are not, but then you would just be begging the question. If evolution is NOT true (and I don't think it is), then there's no substantive difference whatsoever.


There is a difference in what is taught in a philosophy class and in a science class. Your wife was obviously also taught that 2+2=4, has that changed with schools or universities? Ah! but you will say science changes, absolutely it does but not like philosophy. That's the whole point of a theory, it can be tested, verified, falsified, improved, rejected. But only on observation and evidence, facts, not on whim and preference and assertions, evolution is pretty much a solid theory now, plenty to back it up. There could be changes in further details but common descent and NS, remain undisputed.
Last edited by neo-x on Thu Jun 20, 2013 5:57 am, edited 5 times in total.
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Death by starvation is a terrible thing, Goodsir, continued Stanley.
And with that we went below to the flame-flickering Darkness of the lower deck
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Re: Christian vs. public school education

#38

Post by neo-x » Wed Jun 19, 2013 9:54 pm

RickD wrote:Hey Neo, what happened to your popcorn eating cat avatar? You've gone "generic" on us. :mrgreen:
The cat is back Rick, I see you missed her. :mrgreen:
ClassicalTeacher wrote:
RickD wrote:Hey Neo, what happened to your popcorn eating cat avatar? You've gone "generic" on us. :mrgreen:

Yeah! I thought that was a very cool avatar and I was going to ask you if I could copy it. (I am a cat lover...)
You can if you like. :esmile:
It would be a blessing if they missed the cairns and got lost on the way back. Or if
the Thing on the ice got them tonight.

I could only turn and stare in horror at the chief surgeon.
Death by starvation is a terrible thing, Goodsir, continued Stanley.
And with that we went below to the flame-flickering Darkness of the lower deck
and to a cold almost the equal of the Dante-esque Ninth Circle Arctic Night
without.


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Re: Christian vs. public school education

#39

Post by neo-x » Wed Jun 19, 2013 9:59 pm

PeteSinCA wrote:neo-x, just an explanatory note, when I say "Designer" I'm not invoking ID. Much of my experience in electronics is in engineering, i.e. the design side of things.
I see, usually when people use the word designer, the first thought goes to ID. So you see design apparent but not the same way as ID, is their a difference between what you hold as designer and how the ID community uses it? I'm curious.
It would be a blessing if they missed the cairns and got lost on the way back. Or if
the Thing on the ice got them tonight.

I could only turn and stare in horror at the chief surgeon.
Death by starvation is a terrible thing, Goodsir, continued Stanley.
And with that we went below to the flame-flickering Darkness of the lower deck
and to a cold almost the equal of the Dante-esque Ninth Circle Arctic Night
without.


//johnadavid.wordpress.com

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Re: Christian vs. public school education

#40

Post by neo-x » Wed Jun 19, 2013 10:13 pm

CT
Since this is not an evolution vs. creationism thread and there already exists one here, I will gather my thoughts at some point and respond there.
Appreciated.
It would be a blessing if they missed the cairns and got lost on the way back. Or if
the Thing on the ice got them tonight.

I could only turn and stare in horror at the chief surgeon.
Death by starvation is a terrible thing, Goodsir, continued Stanley.
And with that we went below to the flame-flickering Darkness of the lower deck
and to a cold almost the equal of the Dante-esque Ninth Circle Arctic Night
without.


//johnadavid.wordpress.com

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Re: Christian vs. public school education

#41

Post by PeteSinCA » Thu Jun 20, 2013 5:56 am

1. You are apparently equating "humans share DNA with the animal and plant kingdom" with the Darwinian claim of common descent. That, however, is just an interpretation of what the hard data actually says. What the hard data actually shows is that human and animal and plant DNA tends to be very similar in different organisms. Common design could just as well account for the similarity as common descent. Thus, evolution has absolutely NO exclusive claim on the comparative structures of DNA here.
2. Biological researchers don't care about the evolutionary pattens of the development of any given organism. I have no doubt that noting the close comparisons between this and that organism can be very beneficial for developing vaccines and the like, but that has nothing to do with evolution. Such scientists look at the way things are RIGHT NOW and do their research based on how organisms actually exist TODAY. Knowing their supposed evolutionary development doesn't in the least contribute to the development of any such technology.

The bottom line is that hard science deals with observations about reality as we experience it right now. Certainly those observations can be interpreted in an evolutionary light. They can also be interpreted in a teleological light.
I've been working in my specialty in electronics for over 30 years. Many of the design elements - ICs, transistors, MOSFETs and high performance capacitors - have been much the same that entire time. Proteins are synthesized from the same amino acids, whether by an amoeba or by a human. Similarly, I can look at a particular model of power supply (my specialty) and recognize higher level design elements (topology, aspects of the control loop) by looking at it for a minute or two. Testing or troubleshooting a particular unit in hand require observation and familiarity with the design, not an ability to trace/guess/imagine the lineage of a particular design.

neo-x, my familiarity with Christians looking at Creation vs. Evolution from Science backgrounds began in the early-mid 1970s, a decade or two before the ID people came around. With marriage, family and career (you know, keeping food on the table and a roof over-head) I haven't followed the Creation vs. Evolution scene much since the late 1970s. The same is true of another interest I had in the early-mid 1970s, learning about and reaching out to Jehovah's witnesses. At any rate, I'm not too familiar with the ID folk, so I'm neither commenting on their ideas nor distancing myself from their ideas (beyond noting my very limited knowledge thereof).
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Re: Christian vs. public school education

#42

Post by neo-x » Thu Jun 20, 2013 6:02 am

PeteSinCA wrote:
1. You are apparently equating "humans share DNA with the animal and plant kingdom" with the Darwinian claim of common descent. That, however, is just an interpretation of what the hard data actually says. What the hard data actually shows is that human and animal and plant DNA tends to be very similar in different organisms. Common design could just as well account for the similarity as common descent. Thus, evolution has absolutely NO exclusive claim on the comparative structures of DNA here.
2. Biological researchers don't care about the evolutionary pattens of the development of any given organism. I have no doubt that noting the close comparisons between this and that organism can be very beneficial for developing vaccines and the like, but that has nothing to do with evolution. Such scientists look at the way things are RIGHT NOW and do their research based on how organisms actually exist TODAY. Knowing their supposed evolutionary development doesn't in the least contribute to the development of any such technology.

The bottom line is that hard science deals with observations about reality as we experience it right now. Certainly those observations can be interpreted in an evolutionary light. They can also be interpreted in a teleological light.
I've been working in my specialty in electronics for over 30 years. Many of the design elements - ICs, transistors, MOSFETs and high performance capacitors - have been much the same that entire time. Proteins are synthesized from the same amino acids, whether by an amoeba or by a human. Similarly, I can look at a particular model of power supply (my specialty) and recognize higher level design elements (topology, aspects of the control loop) by looking at it for a minute or two. Testing or troubleshooting a particular unit in hand require observation and familiarity with the design, not an ability to trace/guess/imagine the lineage of a particular design.

neo-x, my familiarity with Christians looking at Creation vs. Evolution from Science backgrounds began in the early-mid 1970s, a decade or two before the ID people came around. With marriage, family and career (you know, keeping food on the table and a roof over-head) I haven't followed the Creation vs. Evolution scene much since the late 1970s. The same is true of another interest I had in the early-mid 1970s, learning about and reaching out to Jehovah's witnesses. At any rate, I'm not too familiar with the ID folk, so I'm neither commenting on their ideas nor distancing myself from their ideas (beyond noting my very limited knowledge thereof).
Thats alright pete I understand :esmile: , I do want to label you or anything. Just as a side note, I think you are actually putting forth the same argument as the ID folks do, at least on the outset. I could not spot any significance difference though that may vary in detail if we compare, not sure.

Thanks for giving some background, appreciated.
It would be a blessing if they missed the cairns and got lost on the way back. Or if
the Thing on the ice got them tonight.

I could only turn and stare in horror at the chief surgeon.
Death by starvation is a terrible thing, Goodsir, continued Stanley.
And with that we went below to the flame-flickering Darkness of the lower deck
and to a cold almost the equal of the Dante-esque Ninth Circle Arctic Night
without.


//johnadavid.wordpress.com

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Re: Christian vs. public school education

#43

Post by pat34lee » Fri Oct 04, 2013 2:01 pm

This thread was interesting but it went off-track in the second page and never came back.

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Re: Christian vs. public school education

#44

Post by Philip » Fri Oct 04, 2013 7:22 pm

Below is an outtake of an article on homeschooling that I originally wrote at the request of another online Christian forum. It includes some criticism of the rationale for homeschooling that some may not have considered - but, overall, I believe it is balanced.

Should Christians homeschool their kids? Sometimes yes, sometimes no.

I’ve thought about the issue of homeschooling – a LOT. Sometimes it’s a good idea, but some Christians homeschool with good intentions, yet for the wrong reasons. It presents a complex issue that many Christian families wrestle with. Every family’s situation and variables are different and there is no ONE universally correct answer as to whether homeschooling is right or wrong. Certainly, the education paths and choices we choose may change, as do often the available options and variables. And whatever homeschooling choices we ultimately make, we need to make sure that our decisions have been arrived at through much prayer along with a comprehensive investigation into the available public and private (if affordable) school options.

Yes, there can be many positive reasons for deciding to educate one’s children at home, as an alternative to public or private schooling. As well, one’s justifications for homeschooling may, in fact, change – and perhaps, several times. Parent’s schedules, finances, work situations and lack of quality education options in one’s area can certainly make homeschooling a good option. Some children, especially those in their early school years, can tremendously benefit from the individual attention, instruction and love they can receive through a qualified and dedicated homeschooling parent. If the area school options are academically substandard – and certainly, if they are not SAFE – it makes sense to consider homeschooling. Certainly, no public school on earth can ALWAYS be 100 percent free from ALL dangers - and neither can walking across a public street in broad daylight. The key consideration here is that you have a high confidence level as to the school’s track record of being a safe environment.

And homeschooling need not necessarily encompass a child’s entire academic career, as such decisions will be impacted by the changing variables of school choices and family situations. Periods of homeschooling may only include strategic portions of a child’s elementary, middle or high school years. One size does NOT fit all, as typically, no family’s situation ever remains static.

An important homeschooling variable to consider should be whether one is appropriately gifted and/or has the adequate training or teaching skills to do so effectively (and in some states, legally). You may be in a state that requires specific academic credentials and strict criteria for homeschoolers - can you meet such requirements? Are you willing to undergo the needed sacrifice of time, energy and patience to effectively teach?

Christians often fear the “worldly” influences and worldviews that their children will be exposed to – and rightfully so – as schools daily expose them to the value systems of non-Christian students, teachers and faculty members. They may be exposed to books and materials that reinforce immoral beliefs: Homosexuality is simply an "alternative lifestyle;" that abortion is acceptable; and sex before marriage is normal, and even healthy. But to think that one can keep their children in some little Christian “cocoon” that will keep their eyes and ears away from all bad influences – well, that make work for a period – but, ultimately, your children are going to one day have to face such influences without you.
Are your children and your Christian faith so small that it cannot handle viewpoints that are different or unwanted? And exactly how long are you going to try to protect them – all the way through high school? Are you then going to send them to a Christian college? The REAL world they are headed to has no Christian “bubble” to protect them. And they are one day going to have to deal with it, live in it, and work in it. How do you think isolating them in your little Christian cocoon is going to prepare them for that? How are they going to know how to deal with people whom don’t share their worldview?

If one’s available schools are safe and academically solid, when they are exposed to things or ideas you find threatening, why not use such situations as teachable moments. For example, if the class is learning about evolution/Darwinism, why not teach them your Biblical views while also explaining why you disagree with it – why you think the Bible disagrees with it (if that is what you believe about that issue). Teach them that many things they see or encounter are wrong, sinful, to be avoided, and WHY. Let them see the wrong of things while learning to stand up to them, to understand the issues. Why not let them learn how others in the world think, act and communicate – as they are one day going to have to navigate that world. How does anyone think they are giving their children the tools to do that if they isolate them in an artificial, protective environment? Many will be in shock and have great social discomfort if they leave your home and hit the real world. Many won’t be prepared. How could they be?

Despite the many positive advantages and conveniences of home schooling, there are, however, some extremely important spiritual and societal considerations that may lead Christians to decide in favor of public or private-school options. UNLESS one’s public school options are significantly academically deficient or well-known to be dangerous, consistently utilizing morally objectionable curriculum content, or prohibitively distant and/or truly inconvenient (or otherwise logistically impossible) for your schedule, you should seriously and prayerfully consider the societal costs of long-term homeschooling. Whenever good schools are available, and Christians in massive numbers choose to homeschool their children, there are some very negative spiritual/societal repercussions.

After kids are seven or eight, they begin to become significantly influenced by others, and especially by their friends at school. Of course, this impact is a two-way street, but whenever massive numbers of kids from Christian homes are kept out of public schools, opportunities to influence secular society and to bring our enormous and collective Christian influence and outlook to countless communities of non-Christian children are lost. And the potential of such massive Christian influence goes far beyond just our children’s’ impact upon their non-Christian friends, as Christian parents’ involvement in schools, school boards, PTAs, field trips, special programs and events all add up to a tremendous reinforcement and exposure of our Christian principles and faith to non-Christian parents and teachers. And, when in public schools, Christian kids not only influence and expose their beliefs to their unbelieving friends and teachers, but they also reinforce these same beliefs to each other as well, all while simultaneously facing the mutual difficulties and challenges of the secular world (one in which they will, one day, no doubt, face as adults).

The “Great Commission” does not allow us the safety of ONLY associating with fellow believers, as evangelism necessitates that WE must go to the world, not waiting on the world to approach US! Similarly, God has instructed us to not be OF the world, while also making it clear that we ARE to engage and challenge it. In fact, Jesus’ friendships and associations with common sinners, and in very public places, were well-known (Matthew 11:19). He no doubt knew that in order to reach sinners, He had to go to where they were, and into the common squares and establishments they frequented. In applying the lessons of Scripture, if the masses of Christians keep their children from public schools, millions of non-Christian children and their teachers will never experience our collective Christian witness and influence. Such a mass-withdrawal from public schools would mean that Christians would be, in effect, be abandoning the millions of children and their schools to the destructive influences and the collective despair of unbelievers.

My 15-year-old son recently related an interesting conversation he had with one of his non-Christian classmates. The other child’s parents had raised him with an agnostic/atheistic outlook. As my son happened to be commenting on his beliefs in Jesus and the Bible, the other boy suddenly said, “Every religion’s got a book, so what’s the big deal about the Bible?” If my son or another Christian child wasn’t around to talk to and influence such unbelieving peers, WHO would be? Or WHEN? Think about it, over the public school career of just one Christian child, how many hundreds of non-Christian kids that boy or girl will personally come in contact with, and of the countless opportunities they will have to model Christian influences and beliefs. Think of how those same individual kids are also having their own Christian outlooks reinforced by their own Christian friends and peers. Our children are a powerful witness to our society, and withdrawing them, particularly in large numbers, from public schools, effectively removes our enormously important influence upon secular society. So, consider that Christian homeschooling, certainly in massive numbers, effectively abandons our ability to have a much-needed Christian presence in our public schools and nation.

My son has a best friend that he grew up with in school, since kindergarten. They are now both 15. The friend's family were not Christians. Several years ago, after a Saturday evening sleep over, we took the friend with us to church. This happened with more and more frequency. Eventually, the friend began coming with us for Sunday evening Youth Group. He became a Christian. Guess who he recently brought to our church with him? Yep, his unbelieving parents. And that's just one kid that my son gets to model his faith to. He's constantly having "God discussions" with his friends at school. Do the math - Christians kids and families can have a huge impact for Christ through the schools. And they should where they can.

If our children grow up, only being exposed to fellow Christians and those sharing our common beliefs, how will they know how to interact with non-Christians – much less how to ever influence or understand them? And how strong or valid is our own faith if we DON’T believe that the Scriptural instruction our children receive at home, along with our prayers and God's promises for protection, will adequately equip them with the ability to resist the temptations, evils and corruption commonly found in public schools? Certainly, these very same temptations and evils await our children, whether in college or afterwards, yet by then will have multiplied, many times over, in severity and consequences.

In conclusion, the question of homeschooling is truly one of balance, and of PRAYERFULLY weighing what is right for your family’s present circumstances in conjunction with the available public and private options, and within the parameters of our Christian responsibilities to engage and impact a hell-bound, secular society.

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Re: Christian vs. public school education

#45

Post by pat34lee » Fri Oct 04, 2013 9:58 pm

I agree. Also, not every parent is capable of home schooling, even if they had the time and money to do so. Private schooling is an alternative, but not always within the budget available. Whichever way is chosen, parental involvement is the key. With public schools, this means the parent should be involved with what the child does in school every day. This includes finding out what is taught in the classroom as well as what is given for homework. If your children are being taught values against those you hold, you can't counter them if you don't know.

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