Darwin a racist?

Discussions on creation beliefs within Christianity, and topics related to creation.
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#16

Post by JohnClark » Thu Aug 24, 2006 1:24 am

So...I guess I'm failing to see the point here. Was Charles Darwin a racist/sexist man? Almost certainly. Does that have anything to do with the validity of evolution? No, not at all. To give another example of the same, Thomas Jefferson was one of the most important figures in early America, and yet he owned slaves and considered blacks inferior to whites. Does this render his political writings and developments meaningless? Certainly not, and we can see both the good and the bad in him, just as we can in Darwin. Darwin's attitudes towards women and blacks may not be worthy of emulation, but they don't discredit his work any more than Jefferson's slave owning discredits the constitution.

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#17

Post by Canuckster1127 » Thu Aug 24, 2006 5:54 am

JohnClark wrote:So...I guess I'm failing to see the point here. Was Charles Darwin a racist/sexist man? Almost certainly. Does that have anything to do with the validity of evolution? No, not at all. To give another example of the same, Thomas Jefferson was one of the most important figures in early America, and yet he owned slaves and considered blacks inferior to whites. Does this render his political writings and developments meaningless? Certainly not, and we can see both the good and the bad in him, just as we can in Darwin. Darwin's attitudes towards women and blacks may not be worthy of emulation, but they don't discredit his work any more than Jefferson's slave owning discredits the constitution.
I fail to see the validity of the argument as well.

By the standards of his day, it could even be argued that Darwin was progressive.

In the context of the US at this time, Civil war and following, even some of the most strident abolitionists still maintained the superiority of the white "race" over the "black" race.

Lincoln himself repeatedly, while being anti-slavery, made it clear that he believed the negro was in no way the equal of the white man on many levels. He even early on, advocated emancipation with forced emigration back to Africa or to a colony in Central America. He made it clear, on several occassions, that he saw the constitution as allowing for slavery, and he stated openly in a letter to Greely during the civil war that he believed the Union itself more important than slavery and if he could save the Union by continuing slavery he would.

In the end, the emancipation proclomation, while entirely consistent with Lincoln's personal feelings which condemned slavery wholeheartedly, was issued because Lincoln deemed it consistent with what was needed to bring things to a head and force a conclusion in the war that would settle the issue forever. He did this first and foremost as needful for the Union, not on his moral opposition to slavery.

You have to realize that at this time of history, in England and the US, that even while Egland had abolished the slave trade some time earlier, there was still a very clear deliniation in the minds of white europeans and Americans that saw the African, as backwards and inferior.

Rather than attributing this to cultural issues, a difference in climate and resources (etc.), they saw it in terms of what appeared to them as genetic and even theological confirmation of their own superiority.

It has taken time to move away from that, and frankly we still live in a world where that viewpoint exists in varying forms in this and other contexts, whether white/black, arab/jew, hutu/tutsi .... etc.

Hitler derived a significant portion of his program from concepts strengthened by Darwin that moved from science into philosophy and were based upon a concept called eugenics. It's highly improbable that Darwin would have approved of that particulat use.

A good deal of what I see happening in the entire evolution/creationism debate is a confusion of terms of fields that happens on both sides.

Evolution is sound science. There is much that is clearly demonstrated to high scientific standards in terms of changes over time. Christians would do well to be more familiar with this and there is an apalling lack of education and appreciation of this that is addressed in other threads.

What is also true is that beyond the platform of sound science, there is a realm within the culture of evolution that is not purely scientific, in the sense that it cannot be proven and is not strictly falsifiable.

Christians sometimes break this into the category of "Macro" and "Micro" evolution. I frankly think the terms not particularly helpful and so I try to avoid them.

Is it reasonable to presume that because science, by its inherent nature, can only deal with natural causes, that therefore only natural causes exist?

My answer is no. But because science is limited in that regard, that is all it reasonably can deal with as a field.

There are multitudes of scientists who recognize this and yet are still effective and good scientists in terms of their work and approaches. They have no difficulty realizing that their field requires a scientific methodology while their own beliefs and values easily accept that there is truth outside of science and that the supernatural can exist and influence our world and them personally.

There is a branch of philosophy, however that I refer to here as "Methodological Naturalism" that in effect takes the position, that only that which is "true" scientifically can be relied upon and therefore anything that falls outside of that realm is to be presumed not true until proven otherwise.

In "macro" evolution, this translates to the presumption that because the supernatural cannot be proven to scientific preciseness and exactitude, that only those explanations that are naturalistic and observable are to be considered.

Thus, a framework is constructed with underlying assumptions that in turn become somewhat circular, even though they are not always stated openly in the logical constructs.

This is where a great deal of the argument takes place.

Evolutionists do not openly state their underlying presuppositions or recognize them as based in epistomology and philosophy rather than hard science.

Creationists (Old and Young) often times do not do the work to understand the science that is there that is pretty strong and very clear as to the current observable presence of evolution.

We talk past each other using our own terminology and definitions.

I know this is in many ways a gross oversimplification. But I think there is a great deal of truth in it that can help in the discussion from both sides.

Using arguments like attempting to paint Darwin as a bigot is really just an appeal to emotions and has nothing to do with the merit of the argument.

My thoughts anyway.

Have at them. ;)
Dogmatism is the comfortable intellectual framework of self-righteousness. Self-righteousness is more decadent than the worst sexual sin. ~ Dan Allender

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#18

Post by Gman » Thu Aug 24, 2006 12:31 pm

JohnClark wrote:So...I guess I'm failing to see the point here. Was Charles Darwin a racist/sexist man? Almost certainly. Does that have anything to do with the validity of evolution? No, not at all. To give another example of the same, Thomas Jefferson was one of the most important figures in early America, and yet he owned slaves and considered blacks inferior to whites. Does this render his political writings and developments meaningless? Certainly not, and we can see both the good and the bad in him, just as we can in Darwin. Darwin's attitudes towards women and blacks may not be worthy of emulation, but they don't discredit his work any more than Jefferson's slave owning discredits the constitution.
Well, that may be true, however there is a lot of controversy that happens during these evolution/creation debates about this very topic. Does evolution promote immorality? What are we really saying here? I think wikipedia puts things into prospective...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Creation_e ... ontroversy
Claims of immorality

A common creationist claim is that their opponents are bound by an inherently atheistic and immoral cult of scientific materialism and evolutionary philosophy either partially or wholly responsible for the ideological structures of modern social movements and governments which, they claim, promoted racism, sexism, eugenics, and genocide. In particular, it is often claimed that Nazism was inspired by evolutionary theory. Creationists point to early racial theories and theories of sex promoted by many 19th century scientists and natural philosophers who were responsible for the early development of the principles of evolution (including Charles Darwin) that promote an evolutionary explanation for hierarchical social structures.

Modern scientists are careful to distinguish between the scientific facts of evolution and the philosophies that claim inspiration from evolution but are based on external assumptions. In particular, the notion of progress in evolutionary process is associated not with the Neo-Darwinian model of evolution but rather with the now-discredited ideas of Lamarckism (for more on this subject see devolution). "Evolution-as-progress" was somewhat popular in 19th century philosophy, for example it was the positivistic explanations offered by Herbert Spencer that served as the progenitor of survival of the fittest idealizations and eventually Social Darwinism. While creationists often claim this to be evidence that evolution promotes a structurally violent hierarchy opponents point to such argumentation as an example of the naturalistic fallacy. While advocates of Nazism may adopt evolutionary rhetoric to support their ideas, it does not necessarily follow that it was evolution that spawned these perspectives. There are also examples of religious discourse used to support many of the same ideas, including various religious attitudes to racism, slavery, gender, and even communism. Futhermore, Darwin in Origin of Species calls his theory "the doctrine of Malthus applied with manifold force to the whole animal and vegetable kingdoms; for in this case there can be no artificial increase of food, and no prudential restraint from marriage." The Rev. Thomas Malthus wrote his doctrine as a critique of secular hopes for social reform, and applied it to humanity alone.
I highlighted "necessarily" here because it could be argued either way. That's true... As it states "While creationists often claim this to be evidence that evolution promotes a structurally violent hierarchy opponents point to such argumentation as an example of the naturalistic fallacy.

Thus the battle continues.. on to naturalistic fallacy we go...

A quote from AIG (sorry), "It is a logical fallacy (called the Naturalistic Fallacy) to derive moral codes from science. Morality tells us what people ought to do, while science can at best only tell what people actually do. Science may indicate that if a 20 kg weight is dropped from a height of 100 metres on someone's head, it would probably kill him; morality is determined by our Creator who declares that murder (intentional killing of innocent humans) is wrong."

"However, evolution provides no moral basis for treating women well — since it provides no basis for morality at all! In fact, it seems to be a well-kept secret that Darwin and the founders of modern evolutionism consistently taught that the alleged physical and mental inferiority of women was strong proof of evolution by natural and sexual selection. This can't simply be dismissed as just a product of their cultural prejudices — they went out of their way to try to prove female inferiority to bolster evolution."

http://www.answersingenesis.org/news/lerner_resp.asp

or

"Most evolutionists today wouldn't dispute the biblical creationist understanding that all 'races' came from the same original population (they would not agree that it was only two individuals), although that wasn't always the case. Evolutionists teach that these groups 'evolved' independently from each other, separated for many tens of thousands of years. Evolutionists feel this length of time is necessary to explain the development of physical differences between the 'races'.

This misleading concept gives rise to the idea that some 'races' have developed and become more 'sophisticated' faster than others, leading to the ultimate conclusion (often subconsciously) that certain 'races' are superior to others."

http://www.answersingenesis.org/creatio ... racism.asp

Now while I don't support AIG as such, I can see the argument here... And yes, you could probably bend the Bible around a bit to promote your racism too... I'm just having a problem with the statement, "If one says that evolution doesn't promote immorality." My question to that is how couldn't it if it can't really define what immorality is? It seems to be pointing to a hierarchy where one could say that there are higher evolved races than another. Bigger brains, higher (evolved) intellect, calling people sub-humans, etc... Right? And that premise could be used to support their bias on a naturalistic level.

The spiritual realm is dissolved in the naturalistic world. Yes, I understand that there is a hierarchy in the spiritual realm too, but not so in the human spiritual realm (meaning in the exclusion God or the angles..) because spiritually we are all the same... According to the Bible men and women and all the races of the world are the same spiritually... Evolution deviod of spirituality cannot make this claim. It just teaches that we are simple mechanisms... Someone maybe a porsche and someone maybe a yugo.. Ouch. My car is better than your car... etc...

Here is how the Bible defines equality:

There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. (Galatians 3:28.)

Just food for thought...

G -
The heart cannot rejoice in what the mind rejects as false - Galileo

We learn from history that we do not learn from history - Georg Friedrich Wilhelm Hegel

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable, if anything is excellent or praiseworthy, think about such things. -Philippians 4:8

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#19

Post by Gman » Sat Aug 26, 2006 7:15 pm

the_second_coming wrote:Now, when races have equal opportunities it is more than clear that no race is any better than any other, although it does have to be said that there are some statistics floating round to the contrary. Asians are said to be cleverer than Caucasians and Caucasians cleverer than Blacks (but statistics rarely tell the full story).
You don't want to say intellect here? Why are you using the word clever here? Yes you are correct, that is what evolution can teach very clearly.. That Caucasians are smarter than blacks, that the superior races will eventually wipe out the savage races.. It's a survival of the fittest... Right?
Darwin also lived in a time where women were inferior to men. Many factors contributed to this; the fact that women had to have and rear children, meant it was natural for women to have a role in the home, no one bothered to educate women so how could they ever prove their equality with men? This and the fact that they are physically weaker meant that Darwin was almost totally justified in his musings.
Is this how you prove that one sex is equal to another sex? Through mere intellect?? Wow!! This is exactly what evolution teaches.. In the spiritual world men and women are the same equally... Evolution claims there is no spirituality, therefore men and women can never really be equal.. Someone might have a little genetic advantage over the other. Even if it an extremely small percentage... Intellectually too.. :wink:
However he should have realised that it was only because of oppression of women by men that they had not been able to develop as men did.

Whatever you may think of Darwin you have to agree that, give or take a few controversial points, his theory of evolution is a lot more feasible than Genesis.


While I may believe that some aspects of evolution are true I have a problem that life was formed out of the mud without a creator. Even most scientists, at least the honest ones, claim that there is no 100% proof of evolution outside of God.. Sorry again you have the wrong facts..
And anyway I pity Christian women a lot more than I pity female evolutionists. The Bible claims to be the word of God and still manages to be inherently sexist, Darwin never claims to be all-seeing and all-knowing, he is human, he can make mistakes.
Where is your proof that the God of the Bible is sexist?? I pity both male and female who follow evolution... It claims that one person is more evolved than another. That's all? It has no message, it has no future, it has no cause... It other words it really promotes nothing, but simply breaks down people to simple mechanisms. Helpless robots casing their tails... No spiritually... a meaningless life... Is that what you really want?
if God sees women and men as equal he should have said so 4000 years ago.
This is a clearly wrong assumption.. You are off about 50,000 years when man was first created on the earth. God created man and woman equally and in his image way back in the beginning, (Genesis 1:27, Genesis 5:1-2). There were also women taking roles of men in the OT.. There are many verses to back that up.. Have you ever read the Bible before? It might be good to read it first before you jump into any conclusions..

By the way I'm a registered democrat too if you want to talk politics as well...

Just a thought... Take care..

G -
The heart cannot rejoice in what the mind rejects as false - Galileo

We learn from history that we do not learn from history - Georg Friedrich Wilhelm Hegel

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable, if anything is excellent or praiseworthy, think about such things. -Philippians 4:8

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#20

Post by roverdisc1 » Sun Aug 27, 2006 4:12 am

Is there any way that anyone can think of this on different terms?

Maybe Darwin was racist and sexist, compared to today's society was that so wrong?

Tell me about any issue other than abortion that isn't racist or sexist. In the hayday of America.....America.......America.......The United States of America, the same America that wants Blacks (not African-Americans) to have equal rights.

Women may have been given equal rights but at some point they were the masters of the household. They shaped the America that we have today. They molded the minds of the children that now run our country, because they could stay at home and raise America. Because of taxes and a fierce change in values, women now have to work and cannot mold the children of the future, the children that are now running the country.

I hate to say it, but maybe Darwin was right. I don't think our country can stand multi-culturalism, bi-lingualism and multi-genderism. There is a reason we did so well iin the past and why we are failing so miserably now. I really don't care if anyone thinks they deserve repartation for something the USA didnt do in the first place, if we don't all come together and become what we once were, it is all doomed.

If I am being to harsh, then there needs to be Polish-Americans, German-Americans, Irish-Americans, Puerto Rico-Americans, Haitian-Americans, Russian-Americans, Spanish-Americans, Mexican-Americans, English-Americans, Jewish-Americans, Canadian-Americans, Japanese-Americans...............can anyone see the issue here............where are the AMERICANS??????????

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#21

Post by Gman » Sun Aug 27, 2006 9:09 am

roverdisc1 wrote:Is there any way that anyone can think of this on different terms?

Maybe Darwin was racist and sexist, compared to today's society was that so wrong?
Yes... Is racism ever right?
Tell me about any issue other than abortion that isn't racist or sexist. In the hayday of America.....America.......America.......The United States of America, the same America that wants Blacks (not African-Americans) to have equal rights.
Correct... Outside of God and the Bible, you will find racism everywhere. Even in Christians...
Women may have been given equal rights but at some point they were the masters of the household. They shaped the America that we have today. They molded the minds of the children that now run our country, because they could stay at home and raise America. Because of taxes and a fierce change in values, women now have to work and cannot mold the children of the future, the children that are now running the country.
You might have a point there...
I hate to say it, but maybe Darwin was right. I don't think our country can stand multi-culturalism, bi-lingualism and multi-genderism. There is a reason we did so well iin the past and why we are failing so miserably now. I really don't care if anyone thinks they deserve repartation for something the USA didnt do in the first place, if we don't all come together and become what we once were, it is all doomed.
Oh, I think Darwin was right too. He correctly identified the problem, that is certain. He just forgot one thing... A CURE for the problem.
If I am being to harsh, then there needs to be Polish-Americans, German-Americans, Irish-Americans, Puerto Rico-Americans, Haitian-Americans, Russian-Americans, Spanish-Americans, Mexican-Americans, English-Americans, Jewish-Americans, Canadian-Americans, Japanese-Americans...............can anyone see the issue here............where are the AMERICANS??????????
I don't think you are being harsh... I would agree with this... Let's all mix.. What harm would this do? I'm trying to do my part... I'm white and my girlfriend is asian.. :wink:
The heart cannot rejoice in what the mind rejects as false - Galileo

We learn from history that we do not learn from history - Georg Friedrich Wilhelm Hegel

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable, if anything is excellent or praiseworthy, think about such things. -Philippians 4:8

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#22

Post by roverdisc1 » Tue Sep 05, 2006 1:44 pm

Yes... Is racism ever right?

Let's pose the question another way. Is racism always wrong? Has an elderly caucasian woman ever been accused of bombing the WTC? Has a black man or woman ever been accused of bombing the WTC? Other tha middle eastern men, has anyone been accused of bombing the WTC? The answer would simply be NO. Yet with the left wing of America, we should not profile. Does this make any sense? NO! But this is racism and it is justified.
Oh, I think Darwin was right too. He correctly identified the problem, that is certain. He just forgot one thing... A CURE for the problem.

Darwin didn't forget anything! Why is it up to him to solve the problem? Why can't we do that for ourselves? If I were to ask a.....child let's say...why there are so many homeless people, that child might respond that ther are not enough homes. The problem has been identified but the solution is much more vast than even today's society can figure out.
I don't think you are being harsh... I would agree with this... Let's all mix.. What harm would this do? I'm trying to do my part... I'm white and my girlfriend is asian.. Wink

Trying to do your part is not simply dating a woman of "Asian Descent", but insuring that she realizes that she is NOT Asian-American. Don't get me wrong, everyone should know and be proud of their lineage, but if you are a citizen of this country then you are an AMERICAN. No hyphens, no special treatment........be an American or get out.

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#23

Post by Gman » Tue Sep 05, 2006 5:10 pm

roverdisc1 wrote:Darwin didn't forget anything! Why is it up to him to solve the problem? Why can't we do that for ourselves? If I were to ask a.....child let's say...why there are so many homeless people, that child might respond that ther are not enough homes. The problem has been identified but the solution is much more vast than even today's society can figure
I think you have misunderstood the problem created by Darwin. Darwin claims that the evolutionary process occurred without God. Therefore there is no God per say. And to answer your question, we CAN'T do it ourselves because our sinful nature draws us away from loving our neighbor as we should. Of course we should try to love all people, but sometimes we need the guidance of God's love in spirit (something to focus outside of ourselves). In other words we all need HELP... Unless we are too prideful not to admit it...

The problem of equality is that it can never be achieved in a naturalistic world without God... They are in direct opposites of each other... Evolution defines equality on the basis of intelligence and physical attributes. God defines equality on the basis of spirituality and on the soul of the person.

One of the main problems with equality in our day, evolutionists say is that women have been portrayed as less superior to men is because women role's for the most part was to stay at home and take care of the children. They did not go to colleges like the men and further their minds and careers. Now that is all changing. Women now have the opportunity to go to universities and get degrees just like the men now. The more women stay in colleges and get degrees like men the more EQUAL they will become in society. Then they will be able to earn as much as men and therefore put the balance back in the evolutionary tilt. In other words it is one's intelligence and one's education that will define how equal you are to another person (not to mention one's career status).

Have you been reading the other post before this one? This is what another person stated..
Darwin also lived in a time where women were inferior to men. Many factors contributed to this; the fact that women had to have and rear children, meant it was natural for women to have a role in the home, no one bothered to educate women so how could they ever prove their equality with men? This and the fact that they are physically weaker meant that Darwin was almost totally justified in his musings.
It's all right in front of you... This is the problem that Darwin started... The only way to fix it is to diffuse how we define evolution... An evolution without God is silly from a moral sense.

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The heart cannot rejoice in what the mind rejects as false - Galileo

We learn from history that we do not learn from history - Georg Friedrich Wilhelm Hegel

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable, if anything is excellent or praiseworthy, think about such things. -Philippians 4:8

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#24

Post by Gman » Tue Sep 05, 2006 7:30 pm

Here is another classic example of equality based on intelligence from Wikipedia on the topic of evolution and devoltion.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evolution
Evolution and devolution

One of the most common misunderstandings of evolution is that one species can be "more highly evolved" than another, that evolution is necessarily progressive and/or leads to greater "complexity", or that its converse is "devolution".[45] Evolution provides no assurance that later generations are more intelligent or complex than earlier generations. The claim that evolution results in progress is not part of modern evolutionary theory; it derives from earlier belief systems which were held around the time Darwin devised his theory of evolution.

In many cases evolution does involve "progression" towards more complexity, since the earliest lifeforms were extremely simple compared to many of the species existing today, and there was nowhere to go but up. However, there is no guarantee that any particular organism existing today will become more intelligent, more complex, bigger, or stronger in the future. In fact, natural selection will only favor this kind of "progression" if it increases chance of survival, i.e. the ability to live long enough to raise offspring to sexual maturity. The same mechanism can actually favor lower intelligence, lower complexity, and so on if those traits become a selective advantage in the organism's environment. One way of understanding the apparent "progression" of lifeforms over time is to remember that the earliest life began as maximally simple forms. Evolution caused life to become more complex, since becoming simpler wasn't advantageous. Once individual lineages have attained sufficient complexity, however, simplifications (specialization) are as likely as increased complexity. This can be seen in many parasite species, for example, which have evolved simpler forms from more complex ancestors.[46]
Actually this quote is trying to sugar coat the message that evolution is "all inclusive" since it can favor the lower mechanisms via devoltuion. But what it is really telling us is that it can base it's entire premise on intelligence.

In other words, through natural selection a mechanism can actually favor lower intelligence if those traits become a selective advantage in the organism's environment. Btw, if it is saying that it can favor lower intelligence, then that means it can also favor higher intelligence as well.

What this means is that natural selection is actually basing it's advantages on intelligence even if that intelligence may be a lower one... Basing one's advantage with any type of complexity or intelligence flys in complete opposistion to God and the Bible. We worship a God of spirit and love... A God of humility.

There you go, we still see prejudice via evolution in the year 2006. I rest my case...

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The heart cannot rejoice in what the mind rejects as false - Galileo

We learn from history that we do not learn from history - Georg Friedrich Wilhelm Hegel

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable, if anything is excellent or praiseworthy, think about such things. -Philippians 4:8

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#25

Post by hetfield » Wed Nov 29, 2006 7:31 pm

I think the word racist and tolerance have been opened to interpretation more today than ever, I wouldn't call the guy a racist even though he claimed in a chart that black people are the closest to monkeys, we saw the chart in class, the teacher said he was a racist, but maybe to him that was the obvious conclusion based upon his interpretation. I mean afterall in his evolution theory someone has to come last in intelligence, it just so happens to be the ones who point fingers at others doing it the most.
"The greatest feeling is looking at something, and wondering how it works-"Albert Einstien.

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#26

Post by tj rich » Thu Dec 07, 2006 4:52 am

Darwin was a racist, Einstein a mysogonist, Newton, Hooke, Maxwell, Galileo all held views that we should find contemptible. Type "slavery in the Bible" into google and you will see that in times gone by we had different standards from today-even God it would seem. Thankfully society has moved on (slavery abolished in USA 1865), science has moved on (human genome shows all races as human), yet the bible still reads the same. . .Gman I thought better of you. :(

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#27

Post by Turgonian » Thu Dec 07, 2006 10:02 am

Slavery?
Glenn Miller wrote:The word >ebed, however, denoted not only actual slaves occupied in production or in the household but also persons in subordinate positions (mainly subordinate with regard to the king and his higher officials). Thus the term >ebed is sometimes translated as "servant." Besides, the term was used as a sign of servility in reference to oneself when addressing persons of higher rank. Finally, the same term was also used in the figurative meaning "the slave (or servant) of God." Thus, the patriarchs Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, prophets, David, Solomon and other kings are regularly called slaves of Yahweh (Exod 32:13; Lev 25:55; 1 Sam 3:9; Ezra 9:11, etc.). Similarly, all the subjects of Israel and Judah are called slaves of their kings, including even wives, sons, and brothers of the latter (1 Sam 17:8; 29:3; 2 Sam 19:5, etc.; cf. also Gen 27:37; 32:4). Addressing Moses and prophets, the Israelites called themselves their slaves (Num 32:25; 1 Sam 12:19, etc.). Ruth refers to herself as a slave girl of her relative Boaz (Ruth 3:9). Being a vassal of the Philistine king Achish, David called himself his slave (1 Sam 28:2). It is natural that the same vague and inexplicitly formulated social terminology characteristic of the ANE is also used in the Bible in relation to the subjects of foreign rulers. For example, courtiers of an Aramean ruler or the soldiers of the Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar II were considered slaves of their monarchs (2 Kgs 6:11; 24:10-11). It is natural that kings of Judah depending on more powerful rulers of neighboring countries were considered their slaves. Thus, Ahaz is referred to as a slave of the Assyrian king Tiglath-pileser III (2 Kgs 16:7). In modern translations of the Bible >ebed/doulos and several other similar terms are rendered "slave" as well as "servant," "attendant," etc. Such translations, however, might create some confusion and give the incorrect impression that special terms for the designation of servants and slaves are attested in the Bible…However, selecting the proper meaning from such a broad metaphorical application of the term designating a general dependence rarely presents great difficulty. For example, Abimelech, king of Gerar, called up his slaves and told them his dream (Gen 20:8). Apparently, these "slaves" were royal courtiers and officials. Abraham gathered 318 of his slaves, born in his household, in order to recover his kinsman Lot who had been captured by Chedorlaomer and three Mesopotamian kings (Gen 14:14). At least, a part of these persons constituted freeborn members of Abraham's family. Upon ascending the throne of Judah, Amaziah executed his slaves who had murdered his father, the former king (2 Chr 25:3). These slaves were certainly royal dignitaries. When Josiah, king of Judah, had been killed at Megiddo, his body was taken in a chariot to Jerusalem by his slaves (2 Kgs 23:30). It is quite evident that these slaves were royal soldiers. In a number of cases, however, the interpretation of the actual meaning of the ambiguous >ebed may be disputed. For instance, the steward of Abraham's household who was in charge of all his possessions is called his slave (Gen 24:2). His status can only conjecturally be interpreted as an indication of actual slavery and, of course, he could have been a freeborn person." [ABD, s.v. "Slavery, Old Testament"]

In the ANE, legal systems divided 'slaves' into different categories, and prioritized interventions (social intervention has costs, remember, and scarce resources in the ANE had to be allocated to optimize their effect on social/community survival) around these categories:

"In determining who should benefit from their intervention, the legal systems drew two important distinctions: between debt and chattel slaves, and between native and foreign slaves. The authorities intervened first and foremost to protect the former category of each--citizens who had fallen on hard times and had been forced into slavery by debt or famine." [HI:HANEL:1,42]

In the OT case, we will see a similar interest: most legislation will be about Hebrew ("native") individuals who, for reasons of debt/famine, sell themselves into short-term slavery ("debt slaves"). Accordingly, we will examine this class of 'slaves' first (native, debt).

Hebrew 'slavery' (i.e., a Hebrew 'servant' of a Hebrew 'master'; we will do foreigners next) occurs in a very specific socio-economic-religious context, and only actually makes sense (in its structure) in that context. Like the ANE, the context is a constant struggle for economic stability. The Mosaic law contains numerous initiatives designed to preclude someone having to consider voluntary slavery as an option...
Tj Rich, I thought better of you. If you're interested, you can click the link at the top and read the whole article, which has a lot more of valuable information.
The Bible says they were "willingly ignorant". In the Greek, this means "be dumb on purpose". (Kent Hovind)

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#28

Post by Gman » Thu Dec 07, 2006 8:01 pm

Thanks Turgy...
tj rich wrote:Darwin was a racist, Einstein a mysogonist, Newton, Hooke, Maxwell, Galileo all held views that we should find contemptible. Type "slavery in the Bible" into google and you will see that in times gone by we had different standards from today-even God it would seem. Thankfully society has moved on (slavery abolished in USA 1865), science has moved on (human genome shows all races as human), yet the bible still reads the same. . .Gman I thought better of you. :(
Well I did my google search and came up with this verse....

"He who kidnaps a man, whether he sells him or he is found in his possession, shall surely be put to death." (Exodus 21:16)

Hmm, If someone kidnaps (or steals) a man whether he sells him or he is found in his possession, shall be killed... Is the Bible actually saying it is wrong to force someone into slavery?

You really should read more about in the Bible before making such accusations.. It was not the Bible or God that authorized this type of slavery.. People misinterpreted it then tried to justify themselves through it...

Source: http://www.godandscience.org/apologetic ... bible.html

Also perhaps you should read what Darwin said about other races. Modern apologists for Darwin stress that he had reference mainly to animal "races," or subspecies, but there is really no doubt that he meant it to include human races as well. In his later book, The Descent of Man, Darwin wrote:

"At some future period, not very distant as measured by centuries, the civilized races of man will almost certainly exterminate and replace the savage races throughout the world. At the same time the anthropomorphous apes. . . will no doubt be exterminated. The break between man and his nearest allies will then be wider, for it will intervene between man in a more civilized state, as we may hope, even than the Caucasian, and some ape as low as a baboon, instead of as now between the negro or Australian and the gorilla. (Darwin; “The Descent of Man”, 2nd ed. P.178)."

Do you realize what Darwin was saying here? In the future, via evolution and natural selection, the civilized races of man will almost certainly exterminate and replace the savage races throughout the world? You mean that there are people on this planet that are more genetically evolved than others and they are going to eliminate the lower class? And you find this acceptable?

Sorry pal, this is one of the main reasons why I hate evolution... I absolutely will fight against it... And people that praise Darwin don't know any better.. Period..
The heart cannot rejoice in what the mind rejects as false - Galileo

We learn from history that we do not learn from history - Georg Friedrich Wilhelm Hegel

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable, if anything is excellent or praiseworthy, think about such things. -Philippians 4:8

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#29

Post by tj rich » Fri Dec 08, 2006 3:16 am

I'm not defending Darwin or Darwinism, I'm suggesting that people and their ideas should be taken in a historical context. Darwin's personality has no bearing on the validity of his theory. I'm not a theologian and I referred you to the web page to show how the bible has been used to endorse slavery, I'm happy that you are able to claim it doesn't but people did in the past. The bible hasn't changed but we have. Modern evoloutionary theory has moved on from Darwin and we can now see his mistakes but to lambast him as a racist in a time of mass slavery in America seems pointless. We know he was wrong because science has proved him wrong. You're right on one point though - some of us really don't learn anything from history.

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#30

Post by bizzt » Fri Dec 08, 2006 8:20 am

tj rich wrote:I'm not defending Darwin or Darwinism, I'm suggesting that people and their ideas should be taken in a historical context. Darwin's personality has no bearing on the validity of his theory. I'm not a theologian and I referred you to the web page to show how the bible has been used to endorse slavery, I'm happy that you are able to claim it doesn't but people did in the past. The bible hasn't changed but we have. Modern evoloutionary theory has moved on from Darwin and we can now see his mistakes but to lambast him as a racist in a time of mass slavery in America seems pointless. We know he was wrong because science has proved him wrong. You're right on one point though - some of us really don't learn anything from history.
However it is the Bible that we hold in regard not what People Did! If you still want to hold to your accusation
Type "slavery in the Bible" into google and you will see that in times gone by we had different standards from today-even God it would seem. Thankfully society has moved on (slavery abolished in USA 1865), science has moved on (human genome shows all races as human), yet the bible still reads the same

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