Creationist Wisdom #832: Medicine Hat Preacher

Today’s letter-to-the-editor — the first one of the new year — brings us back to the Medicine Hat News of Medicine Hat in Alberta, Canada. According to Wikipedia, the city name is from the eagle tail feather headdress worn by Blackfoot medicine men. The letter is titled Obeying the Gospel is life changing, and the newspaper has a comments feature.

Unless the letter-writer is a politician, preacher, or other public figure, we won’t embarrass or promote him by using his full name — but today we’ve got a preacher. It’s Canon Ivor Ottrey, presumably of the St. Barnabas Anglican Church. We previously wrote about two of his letters in that same newspaper — see #824: Facts Disprove Evolution, and before that Creationist Wisdom #818: Scientific Proof. We’ll give you a few excerpts from the rev’s new letter, enhanced with our Curmudgeonly commentary, and some bold font for emphasis. Here we go!

He begins by referring to an earlier letter in that newspaper with which he disagrees — see Science doesn’t align itself with religion — and he declares:

Science is the discovery of what God has created! Could they [science and religion] be any closer aligned?

Then he addresses a point made in the earlier letter:

As you say science can be self-testing but so can the Bible, the inspired Word of God.

Wowie — the bible can be tested! The rev tells us how to do it:

Check out the hundreds of prophecies literally fulfilled; for example, Isaiah’s prophecy of a virgin who would conceive and give birth and call Him Emmanuel. See that the Bible is historically true and has given us the highest moral code in the 10 Commandments which Jesus summarized “Love God with all your being and your neighbor as yourself.”

Fantastic — the bible checks out perfectly! The rev continues:

Further I know when we obey the Gospel we experience forgiveness, peace and joy … it is life changing!

Verily, none can deny it. Then the rev addresses another issue from the earlier letter, which we’ll quote here for context:

Since we all, according to your book, descended from Adam and Eve, but since that didn’t work out the way your god wanted it to (all knowing? really, didn’t see that coming? Couldn’t find a better solution than mass murder on an epic scale?) so he murdered everyone except for Noah and his family.

Here’s the rev’s response:

Re: Did God not know how creation would work out? Yes. He did not create us as robots but people with free will to love Him or reject Him. Love must be free to choose. From the beginning God had prepared a way for our complete forgiveness through the birth, life and sacrifice of our Lord Jesus Christ. This forgiveness is available to all who will receive it.

That was great — problem solved! But the rev’s not done yet. He responds to one more point made in that earlier letter:

Finally, the differences in various people groups of colour and size are the results of the wonderful variety that God put in our DNA in which there is no junk as was declared by scientists re: the parts of DNA they could not understand.

No junk DNA! Isn’t that wonderful? And now we come to the end:

Please note that with the differences, all people are of the same human kind; there is no evolution from one kind to another just as God declared in the beginning.

Fantastic letter! Way to go, rev!

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19 responses to “Creationist Wisdom #832: Medicine Hat Preacher

  1. Its been showed thru trying that to live your life according to the books o’BS would be illegal in most countries!

  2. Richard Bond

    Does this student of the Bible not know that “almah” (young woman) in Hebrew was mistranslated as “parthenos” (virgin) in the Septuagint? And that the New Testament stories were fudged to match this?

  3. Dave Luckett

    Of course he does not know that, Richard Bond. He also does not know, or chooses to ignore, the words that demonstrate that Isaiah was speaking of this young woman, the one right here, would conceive and bear a son and by the time he could tell right from wrong the current threat to Judah from “Ephraim” (the northern kingdom) and Assyria would have passed away.

    That is, the words that demonstrate beyond any possibility of doubt that Isaiah was speaking here of political events in his own time, and NOT of any Messiah.

    Actually, I think I’m being too kind to the Canon. I think he knows that perfectly well, and is telling lies for Jesus. Perhaps he should read again John 8, where Jesus states exactly what he thinks of lies, liars, and where they come from.

  4. So we have free will, but if you use it in a way god doesn’t like, he’ll kill you?
    Nice.

  5. He says that God said that all people are of the same kind and that there is no evolution from one kind to another.
    There is noting in the Bible which says that.
    But if one reads the last verses of the Book of Revelation, there is something about adding to what prophecy says.
    Science tells us that all modern humans are closely related, but the word “kind” is not well defined, either by science nor in the Bible. The concept of evolution does not occur in the Bible.

  6. Michael Fugate

    “See that the Bible is historically true and has given us the highest moral code in the 10 Commandments which Jesus summarized “Love God with all your being and your neighbor as yourself.””

    Historically true? That there really are multiple gods?
    10 Commandments? The rev believes that women are possessions – what an enlightened guy! Next he will be selling his daughters into slavery?
    Love your neighbor as yourself? Unless your neighbor is a heretic, then death is too kind.

  7. Do you think we could explain an ERV to the rev?

  8. “He did not create us as robots but people with free will”
    Such a comfort for rape victims.

    “prophecies literally fulfilled”
    Especially the most important ones, by Jesus himself, about his second coming. Like this one:

    Matth. 24:34 ” Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.”
    Also compare Eccl. 1:4 “One generation passeth away, and another generation cometh: but the earth abideth for ever.”

  9. KeithB – No.

    To borrow a paraphrase from Asimov: a shield of ignorance, proudly borne.

  10. [Paul S:] “So we have free will, but if you use it in a way god doesn’t like, he’ll kill you?
    Nice.”
    I suppose that if God sent a Flood in place of a Jesus, it’s because the pre-Flood people were not ready to “receive its forgiveness”. That’s strange because, according to some creationists, at least one important biblical patriarch* was drowned in that Flood.
    The Flood occurred some 700 years after Adam (1650 after the Creation). How could all people have forgotten the harsh lesson given to the First Man** by his loving (?) Father?

    * Methuselah, Google “lifespans of the biblical patriarchs” for a table.
    ** And Woman but matriarchs are not important in the Bible. If I remember well, Noah’s wife is not even named. Ironically, she’s the mother of all humanity according to this myth.

  11. @Desnes Diev
    The scientifc name “Mitochronical Eve” is a misnomer.
    See the names in the Wikipedia article “Wives aboard Noah’s Ark”.

  12. @TomS: I wasn’t talking science (mitochondria aren’t mentioned in the Bible 😉 ). I just wished to point that the mother of all humanity – for those according credits to this myth, not me – is not considered sufficiently important to be named in the Bible. That’s what I read in the article you refer me to:
    “Although the Bible only notes the existence of these women, there are extra-Biblical mentions regarding them and their names.”

  13. It’s difficult, better impossible, to accept the Jesus story as true and fulfilling prophecy when 1) the prophecies are ambiguous and 2) there is no independent verification that Jesus was in fact a historical person.

    Genetically, since Eve was created from Adam’s rib, the creator not only changed her chromosomes, replacing her Y with an X, he/she/it must also have changed her mitochondrial genome. It follows then that because mitochondrial DNA variation points to Africa as the origin of modern humans, and if all human mitochondria are descended from Mrs. Noah, then perhaps those researchers mentioned the other day should look for the ark remains on an African mountain.

  14. “Isaiah’s prophecy of a virgin who would conceive and give birth and call Him Emmanuel.”

    Even in the canonical account, one of these things does not come true.

  15. “From the beginning God had prepared a way for our complete forgiveness through the birth, life and sacrifice of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

    How is this meant to excuse Noah’s Flood, whose victims pre-date Jesus?

  16. Supralapsarianism

  17. That’s no excuse! (And yes, I did check out what it meant. No wonder Maarten Boudry calls apologetics, “aggravatics”)

  18. Although, according to the flood story, Noah’s wife was an ancestor to us all, she would not be mitochondrial Eve. The children of Noah’s sons got their mitochondria from the sons’ wives, so unless Noah had an unmentioned daughter, none of us get our mitochondria from Noah’s wife.

  19. But Noah was the “Y-chromosome Adam”.
    As far as any extra passengers:
    1 Peter 3:20 … in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water.