Friday, January 14, 2011

Kenneth Kitchen supports the conservative view of the OT

15 comments:

John W. Loftus said...

Do you realize that in the face of arguments by Dawkins and others about genocide in the OT that in order to argue against them evangelicals are now biting the bullet by admitting the conquest accounts in Joshua never occurred as written? This is a new era baby. It took Dawkins to highlight this problem before evangelicals admitted these events did not occur as written.

Kitchens is the last of the old school archaeologists. Sometimes old ideas die hard. He's still in defensive mode not realizing the new set of problems on the horizon.

Hey, where's the link to Behe or Dembski about creation to rebut my claim that evolution is a fact?

Sure there are always people you can link to. The consensus is quite the opposite and in both of these cases the consensus is overwhelmingly against you.

Victor Reppert said...

I'm not endorsing Kitchen's position. It is just that there are arguments to be considered.

Uh, I remember reading about the problems with the Amalekite massacres even before I went to seminary, long before Dawkins. I read about the problems with the Cursing Psalms in C. S. Lewis, before any atheist pointed them out to me. I think you're giving Dawkins too much credit in this.

steve said...

Notice that when Loftus looses the game, he changes the rules.

Also notice that Loftus isn't offering a factual rebuttal.

"Consensus" is not an argument.

Moreover, there is no "consensus." Loftus simply redefines "consensus" as all and only those who agree with him.

He is also distorting the position of evangelicals like Lawson Younger and Richard Hess. They interpret Joshua according to original intent (as they construe it).

vocab malone/jm rieser said...

Anyone who thinks that a zoologist from England forced OT scholars to re-evaluate their ideas about ancient Caana is suffering from two things (at least):

1. The Dawkins Delusion
2. A serious lack of reading in the relevant journals (even just the lay ones) or books that are from people in the field.

As far as Kitchen being the last ... I encourage you to peep out fellows such as James Hoffmeier, Steve Collins, or Bryant Wood.

Even reading a liberal in the field such as Bill Dever would be an improvement for John if he thinks Dawkins has something important to say about the ANE.

cl said...

Victor,

You've definitely led Loftus to water, but, can you make him think?


John W. Loftus,

Do you realize that in the face of arguments by Dawkins and others about genocide in the OT that in order to argue against them evangelicals are now biting the bullet by admitting the conquest accounts in Joshua never occurred as written?

Are you changing the subject to the Canaanite genocide, now that your claim, "Archaeology has also shown us there was no Exodus" has been exposed as the fraudulent propaganda it is?

Kitchens is the last of the old school archaeologists. Sometimes old ideas die hard. He's still in defensive mode not realizing the new set of problems on the horizon.

I don't suppose you have any... you know... evidence for these assertions, do you? Or, are you simply hoping readers will swallow your ad hominem whole?

The consensus is quite the opposite and in both of these cases the consensus is overwhelmingly against you.

Ah, yes... "the consensus," forever akin to "they" as extolled by the most rabid conspiracy theorist. You've been linking to the same handful of people for days now, John. How is that consensus?


steve,

Moreover, there is no "consensus." Loftus simply redefines "consensus" as all and only those who agree with him.

And yet, he rants against Christians as being masters of wordplay!


vocab malone/jm rieser,

Even reading a liberal in the field such as Bill Dever would be an improvement for John if he thinks Dawkins has something important to say about the ANE.

Oh, John's familiar with Dever, I assure you. It's one of the 4-6 names he's been repeating for the past 4-6 days. Nevermind that we provided him with just as many experts who drew opposing inferences! What's that saying? Heads John wins, tails we lose? Funny thing is that elsewhere, John writes:

After all Dever became an agnostic because of archaeology.

Yet, Frank Tipler became a Christian because of physics. If John's not a Christian despite Tipler, why does he imply that we should reject the Exodus on behalf of Dever? Is that consistent with approaching one's own position with the scrutiny of an outsider?

cl said...

Victor,

You've definitely led Loftus to water, but, can you make him think?


John W. Loftus,

Do you realize that in the face of arguments by Dawkins and others about genocide in the OT that in order to argue against them evangelicals are now biting the bullet by admitting the conquest accounts in Joshua never occurred as written?

Are you changing the subject to the Canaanite genocide, now that your claim, "Archaeology has also shown us there was no Exodus" has been exposed as the fraudulent propaganda it is?

Kitchens is the last of the old school archaeologists. Sometimes old ideas die hard. He's still in defensive mode not realizing the new set of problems on the horizon.

I don't suppose you have any... you know... evidence for these assertions, do you? Or, are you simply hoping readers will swallow your ad hominem whole?

The consensus is quite the opposite and in both of these cases the consensus is overwhelmingly against you.

Ah, yes... "the consensus," forever akin to "they" as extolled by the most rabid conspiracy theorist. You've been linking to the same handful of people for days now, John. How is that consensus?


steve,

Moreover, there is no "consensus." Loftus simply redefines "consensus" as all and only those who agree with him.

And yet, he rants against Christians as being masters of wordplay!


vocab malone/jm rieser,

Even reading a liberal in the field such as Bill Dever would be an improvement for John if he thinks Dawkins has something important to say about the ANE.

Oh, John's familiar with Dever, I assure you. It's one of the 4-6 names he's been repeating for the past 4-6 days. Nevermind that we provided him with just as many experts who drew opposing inferences! What's that saying? Heads John wins, tails we lose? Funny thing is that elsewhere, John writes:

After all Dever became an agnostic because of archaeology.

Yet, Frank Tipler became a Christian because of physics. If John's not a Christian despite Tipler, why does he imply that we should reject the Exodus on behalf of Dever? Is that consistent with approaching one's own position with the scrutiny of an outsider?

Nick said...

A reference to Dawkins. That someone thinks he's authoritative in this area should leave us laughing for a week at least.

John W. Loftus said...

In the Journal of the American Oriental Society biblical minimalist Niels Peter Lemche states that Kitchen's "contempt for critical biblical scholarship will undoubtedly provoke biblical scholars simply to ignore his book."[3]

Link.

Kitchen is ignored by real scholars and you think he knows what he's talking about?

lol

steve said...

John W. Loftus said...

"Kitchen is ignored by real scholars and you think he knows what he's talking about?"

What makes Lemche the "real" scholar, while Kitchen is not? Where's the argument for treating Lemche as the standard of comparison?

What we're getting from Loftus is just another one of his viciously circular appeals. "Real" scholars are scholars who agree with Loftus. If you disagree with Loftus, you're not a "real" scholar.

Richard Hess, who wrote the review article that Reppert links to, clearly thinks that Kitchen is a "real" scholar.

Loftus uses his fallacious argument from authority to evade dealing with Kitchen's evidence.

Tim said...

Niels Peter Lemche -- the spokesman for the Copenhagen minimalists -- is supposed to be an authority with the heft to displace Kenneth Kitchen?

I hear that the Answers in Genesis guys don't think too highly of Owen Gingerich, either.

Sheesh

Victor Reppert said...

Simply asserting that Kitchen shows contempt for critical biblical scholarship is different from actually showing that he has such contempt, and the problem of coming up with an applicable and non-question-begging conception of what a "critical Bible scholar" is rears its ugly head. Does Lemche confront Kitchen's arguments, or does he Bulverize them away. If the latter, we have another example of the arbitrary disenfranchisement of conservative scholarship.

Alex Dalton said...

After years of witnessing Lemche "argue" against conservative viewpoints on Jim West's Biblical Studies list, I consider him to be one of the most unreasonable and dogmatic people in the field. Frankly, he is the worst kind of atheist fundy and his opinions need to be sheilded from critical response by the doting and dictatorial moderator, Jim West . If Lemche has anything of value to say, please bring it forth. But citing him as if his mere opinion carries any weight, on this particular issue, is laughable.

ds said...

John Loftus wrote

“Do you realize that in the face of arguments by Dawkins and others about genocide in the OT that in order to argue against them evangelicals are now biting the bullet by admitting the conquest accounts in Joshua never occurred as written? This is a new era baby. It took Dawkins to highlight this problem before evangelicals admitted these events did not occur as written.”
Actually, Kitchen addresses arguments about the Conquest not happening in a chapter in the book in question. Kitchen actually agrees that there was no sweeping Genocidal conquest, but argues a close reading of Joshua with background knowledge of the kind of rhetoric used in ancient conquest accounts of this Genre suggests Joshua does not actually affirm a conquest occurred, but rather is using standard ANE rhetoric to describe disabling raids. He has a long section rebutting archeological claims about the conquest.

Whats particular odd about this is Loftus appears to have read Kitchen because he cites from the book in question in his own work. So Loftus presumably knows that Kitchen address these issues, why does he come in here and say otherwise.

RestoredRob said...

A lot of question begging, strawmen and hypocrisy here. First Loftus misstates the claim that evangelicals make a new claim that the events did not occur as written. Completely bogus and false, Hess and Copan demonstrate what was written and the problem is the ignorance and arrogance of inepts such as Dawkins, Loftus and others who dont understand what was written. They ignore the scholastic method archaeologists and historians use when investigating ancient texts by correctly applying the grammatical-historical method of hermeneutics based on the critical-realist approach to history. That basically is to investigate the original language and culture of the time, not complicated. Yet Dawkins et al refuse to do this and instead sophmorically substitute their modern understanding of the English text to make their claims. Scholars dont use that method when investigating the meaning of ancient texts so what makes Loftus, Dawkins et al think it is valid when they do this? Hess, whose credentials are impeccable and Copan demonstrate what was written correcting the inexcusable and willful ignorance on this. And Loftus accuses Christians of wordplay? Just a tad hypocrital when misstating the case of the correct application of hermeneutics used to ascertain the authors original intent calling it,"evangelicals admitted these events did not occur as written." The ignorance and bias are simply axe-grinding.

Then we can address the bogus claims about Kitchen. I suggest Loftus et al educate themselves on the work of Dr. Bryant Wood currently excavating Ai, Yosef Garfinkel of Hebrew Union University who wrote the article that explained the death knell of the Biblical minimalist position advocated by Finkelstein of Tel Aviv showing this position is passe especially due to the authentication of the Tel Dan Stele referring to King David and that the Biblical Maximalist position how holds authority.

BAR 37:03, May/Jun 2011
The Birth & Death of Biblical Minimalism
By Yosef Garfinkel
http://www.bib-arch.org/bar/article.asp?PubID=BSBA&Volume=37&Issue=03&ArticleID=06&Page=1&UserID=0&

And now the recent work is showing that the position of the gradual conquest is errant and simply bad interpretation based on bad assumptions which are now being corrected.

RestoredRob said...

Now lets address the fallacious use of a consensus by Loftus. A consensus simply establishes the assignment of the burden of proof and presumption which is the first step in logic and argumentation used to then evaluate the evidence. The attempt of atheist axe-grinders is to typically abuse this, and instead, replace the evaluation of the evidence by simply regurgitating the presumption. If this were valid we would never investigate anything new. In science the status quo is the consensus which has the presumption that it earned by hypothesis testing. A new hypothesis is to be tested by replicable attempts at falsification which if it survives then becomes part of the status quo and has the presumption. Neo-Darwinism currently has the consensus (which is fading, there are calls for a new paradigm as the hoped for evidence just hasnt come forth) and so has the presumption however much evidence challenging this has been issued. Loftus et al try to side step this and avoid the evaluation of this evidence by invalidly reasserting the presumption via the consensus but the correct application and use of the consensus/presumption has already been done by the assignment of the burden of proof so the evidence being issued cannot logically be ignored by simply asserting there is a consensus.

The increasing call by biologists published in the peer-reviewed literature who say that "[neo] Darwinism in its current scientific incarnation has pretty much reached the end of its rope"(1) is for a new paradigm because, "The main reason is empirical. Genetical Darwinism cannot accommodate the role of development (and of genes in development) in many evolutionary processes"(2) with the result that, "macroevolution and microevolution are decoupled in the important sense that macroevolutionary patterns cannot be deduced from microevolutionary principles." (3) And so "Summarizing the state of the art in the study of the code evolution, we cannot escape considerable skepticism. It seems that the two-pronged fundamental question: "why is the genetic code the way it is and how did it come to be?," that was asked over 50 years ago, at the dawn of molecular biology, might remain pertinent even in another 50 years. Our consolation is that we cannot think of a more fundamental problem in biology"(4)

1. David J. Depew and Bruce H. Weber. BIOLOGICAL THEORY, Nov 8, 2011: Volume 6, Number 1, 89-102, DOI: 10.1007/s13752-011-0007-1
2. IBID
3. G. Ledyard Stebbins and Francisco J. Ayala. Is a New Evolutionary Synthesis Necessary? Science 28 August 1981: Vol. 213 no. 4511 pp. 967-971, DOI 10.1126/science.213.4511.967
4. Koonin EV, Novozhilov AS. Origin and evolution of the genetic code: the universal enigma. IUBMB Life. 2009 Feb;61(2):99-111.

Nobel Laureate physicist Robert B. Laughlin's book A Different Universe summating this and showing why neo-Darwinism is actually antitheory, antiscience:

"Most important of all, however, the presence of such corollaries raises the concern that much of present-day biological knowledge is ideological. A key symptom of ideological thinking is the explanation that has no implications and cannot be tested. I call such logical dead ends antitheories because they have exactly the opposite effect of real theories: they stop thinking rather than stimulate it. Evolution by natural selection, for instance, which Charles Darwin originally conceived as a great theory, has lately come to function more as an antitheory, called upon to cover up embarrassing experimental shortcomings and legitimize findings that are at best questionable and at worst not even wrong. Your protein defies the laws of mass action? Evolution did it! Your complicated mess of chemical reactions turns into a chicken? Evolution! The human brain works on logical principles no computer can emulate? Evolution is the cause!"
Laughlin, Robert B. Basic Books; 1St Edition edition (March 1, 2005), p. 149.