[b-hebrew] Academic Debate"

Yigal Levin leviny1 at mail.biu.ac.il
Wed Oct 31 23:12:44 EDT 2007

----- Original Message ----- 
From: <dwashbur at nyx.net>
>> > On 30 Oct 2007 at 8:22, Yigal Levin wrote in part:
>> >
>> >>Since none of us have yet recieved direct prophecy from God, we
>> >> cannot "take on faith" that the authors of the Bible did either.
>> >
>> To which Dave Washburn answered:
>> > This is perhaps the biggest fallacy of all in "modern" scholarship. 
>> > "It
>> > hasn't happened to me
>> > or anyone I know, therefore it doesn't happen."  Yes, I know I'm
>> > simplifying, but that's the
>> > essence of the argument.  And it's nothing but a cop-out.
>> >
>> No, it's not. I didn not say that "it doesn't happen", only that since I
>> have no empirical evidence of it happening, I can not figure it in as a
>> factor.
> Okay, briefly, what sort of "empirical evidence" would be required?
> Dave Washburn

Any reasonable proof that anyone that I know, or that anyone that I can have 
access to knows, or that any reliable witness that I could ultimately have 
access to knows, that anyone had actually, undeniably, recieved messages 
directly from God. Now I admit, that since we live in a cynical world, it 
would take a lot to convince me, but if He wished to, I'm sure that He could 
find a way. And I'm not being cyinical here myself. As others here have 
stated, modern science is based on observation. That does not mean that 
every one of us has personally observed every "law of nature" in action, but 
we know that reliable witnesses, people working in controlled conditions or 
trained observers in the field, have observered and recorded the various 
phenomena that make up the basis for our understanding of the natural world. 
Claims by people to have seen or experienced things which are not 
explainable by the laws of nature as we know them are rightly treated as 
being "problematic" until the same phenomena are observed again by people 
from within the scientific community, in the same controlled conditions.

In the world as we know it, if a person writes about events that happened in 
the past, he either: 1. had written sources, 2. depended on oral tradition, 
3. made it up. Possibility number 4, "God told him", does not work in the 
world that we live in, which leaves the other three to be discussed on a 
case-by-case basis, which I'm willing to do, but not right now.

Yigal Levin 

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