Atheist Pastor

Thomas’ Pastor Became Atheist. Why? opens:

Teresa McBain ministered in the Methodist church for twenty years. Today, she pastors at Lake Jackson United Methodist Church in Tallahassee, Florida, but also ministers as the public relations director of the American Atheists. She says that she used to believe in the God of the Bible, but she recently changed her mind: “I know it’s a lie. I know it’s false.” Why has she rejected God?

You know what else is false? The picture above Thomas’ article is not her! This is not even pointed out anywhere (but you can tell by the hair, and other things), and when people are prepared to lie over even that you can be forgiven for backing away slowly. Some other points here: first, how do you ‘minister’ at American Atheists? Second, you may be wondering how she can remain a pastor while acting as PR director at an atheist organisation – the answer seems to be that the AA press release (from the 3rd of July, this is stale news) is titled Former Pastor Teresa MacBain New Public Relations Director. At the time of the NPR recording (April 30) she seems to still have technically been a pastor, but a line therein states:

The sermon she gave that day was her last.

So where Thomas got the idea she still pastors – for goodness sake, another article he links is titled Ex-Pastor Turned American Atheist Director Tells How She Lost Faith, what more does he need? – I really don’t know. [EDIT: The above quoted paragraph has now been modified to better reflect reality.]

Anyway, back to the apostasy:

She explained her reasons to the Christian Post, saying, “One [reason] was the contradictory nature of the Bible; the lack of scientific or historical foundation or accuracy, which took me a very, very long time to come to terms with.”

Naturally, the ICR doesn’t want any of its supporters following the same line of reasoning. Interestingly, this is not necessarily sufficient to make a person go all the way to atheism. There are many people out there, after all, who do not care tuppence about the historical accuracy of the Bible yet are still quite definitely Christian. Fundamentalists like Thomas rail at them for this, perhaps not without good reason, but that changes nothing about their existence. So I’m not sure why McBain went all the way, so to speak, but I’m not about to say she made the wrong decision.

It makes sense to reject the God of the Bible if the Bible contained errors and lacked scientific or historical foundation. But it doesn’t. Analyzing and teaching the amazing ways that true science confirms Scripture is what motivates the ministry of ICR—evidence for the veracity of science and Scripture abounds.

It may motivate them, but as we saw just yesterday they’re no good at it. What has he got that might persuade us otherwise?

While McBain may represent those who are unfamiliar with or reject the truth of Scripture, scientific and historical confirmations of the Bible exist in abundance. A summary of ICR News reports during the month of June 2012, a small sampling of evidence, provides just a snapshot of recent examples:

HAHAHAHAHA!

June was fun. Let’s see what he has:

Gene control regions are protected from tampering, which means that assuming that evolution tampers with them is a faulty conclusion.

Tomkins’ June 11 article was covered in Recombinant Hotspots, and the key takeaway from that was:

While recombination hotspots do exist (see this PLoS Biology primer, along with figure one of this paper), they do not have a monopoly on recombination.

Next!

Evolutionists turned a blind eye to original dinosaur red blood cells when they claimed that Otzi the Iceman’s red blood cells were the oldest preserved. Red blood cells in dinosaur fossils fit with the biblical young world.

Excluding the last one, this and all the rest are from Thomas himself. This one was from June 13 and was covered in Ötzi’s Blood. Importantly, we don’t really know for certain that the dinosaur cells are the real deal, and it wouldn’t matter if they were to the age of the Earth.

A clay seal with the oldest inscription of the word “Bethlehem” confirms that it had been a village before Micah prophesied that the Lord would be born there.

While I’m perfectly prepared to concede that the bulla is genuine, I’m not sure how it’s relevant. Thomas has skipped an article here, as it happens.

Squid ink, made of original, unmineralized biochemical melanin, cannot possibly be as old as its 160-million-year age assignment, confirming the Bible’s historical time line as well as its account of the great Flood.

Who says it can’t? I certainly don’t. Melanin is hardy stuff.

The precisely arranged body parts of rorqual whales were all required to coexist simultaneously for them to eat and survive, confounding whale evolution and confirming Genesis 1:21.

Except that they weren’t needed all at once.

Whoever arranged the molecular machines that perform plant photosynthesis understood quantum mechanics far better than any physicist.

When people talk about solving complex differential equations as part of the process of catching a tennis ball, they’re joking. That’s not how sport is done (unfortunately), and the same goes here.

A 1984 Bible-based model for the origin of planets predicted that Mercury’s crust would contain remanent magnetism from its recent creation. This was confirmed by MESSENGER’s most recent survey in 2012.

This article, remember, was the replacement for the one on Enceladus that was pulled for a fatal maths error – I wonder what Thomas would class that as on this list? As for this article, it’s not like those damn evolutionists made a contrary prediction. Anyone could have guessed this result, and Humphreys’ “Bible-based model” thus fails Occam’s razor.

Finally:

The newly published bonobo genome has a hallmark of special creation—its gene sequences do not match any evolutionary tree, but comprise a well-integrated mosaic of gene systems.

I still haven’t gotten around to this one – Anti-Evolutionary Secrets of the Bonobo Genome – so I’ll deal with it now. Aside from his usual “they’re not actually that similar” line, which while perhaps correct is far from “anti-evolutionary,” Tomkins returns to the subject of Incomplete Lineage Sorting. He last used this line in Gorilla Genome Is Bad News for Evolution, which I also did not cover in a timely fashion (I have a bad track record with his articles). However, PZ Myers did, utterly demolishing the idea that ILS is bad for evolution in his post A tiny bit of knowledge is a dangerous thing. And that’s all that needs to be said here – Myers’ article is equally applicable to this DpSU as that.

So where were we? Oh, that’s right, how McBain is refusing to accept the evidence for the Bible’s accuracy:

The idea that the Bible has contradictions and lacks scientific or historical confirmation is popular, but it is wrong.

In a dramatic moment at the 2012 Annual Convention of American Atheists in Bethesda, Maryland, MacBain apologized to her new atheist friends for having been one of those “crazy fundamentalists.” Believing in the fundamentals of the Bible would be crazy if the Bible were not internally, scientifically, and historically reliable. But because its verifications are so overwhelming, refusing to believe it is crazy.

Nope, he’s the crazy one here if he thinks his list of “science” articles is proof of the bible’s reliability. Even more so if he thinks the ICR’s “Evidence for Creation” articles (also linked) do the same.

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5 thoughts on “Atheist Pastor

  1. I was tempted to say something about the Bonobo piece when it came out. It omits two pretty key pieces of information: the first being that I can find no evidence of “rejecting” non-similar parts of the sequence. Indeed, the first step in their analysis was to compare the whole genomes of chimps, bonobos, humans, orang-utans and several other species of ape.

    Secondly, ICR believes that 25% of genes are ILS influenced. In reality only 5% of the genome suffers from ILS. However, that 5% is spread out through 25% of the genes.

    • However, that 5% is spread out through 25% of the genes.

      How does that work?

      As for the rejecting part, Tomkins’ shtick seems to be that to get such high results the various researchers that have done this kind of research did not compare segments known to be very different. I’ll get to that claim…someday, when I get my head around it.

      I’m currently planning to major in cell and molecular biology, so we’ll see what I think in 3 years time. 🙂

    • Te 5% total is the number of base pairs (or some other small unit of genome) whilst the 25% is the number of genes which contain some of that 5%.

      “about 25% of all genes contain regions of ILS”

      Unfortunately I can’t get the specifics since firefox is refusing to load pdfs, so can’t check the supplementary information where details are given.

  2. “Believing in the fundamentals of the Bible would be crazy if the Bible were not internally, scientifically, and historically reliable. But because its verifications are so overwhelming, refusing to believe it is crazy.”
    The Party line. The God Party line. Because if Thomas was to end up doubting or even becoming like McBain, he would be FOR it. God – the punitive God of the Bible, punitive when people don’t donate their whole lives and brains to him – would be very angry indeed.
    YECs are supposed to start with the Bible. The ICR states that it ‘analyses’ and ‘teaches’ “the amazing ways that true science confirms Scripture”. But it starts with bits of science and then force-fits them to scripture – with generalised claims that design is more plausible than undirected evolution, that whales are ‘irreducibly complex’, arguments from incredulity, and claims that because certain substances apparently remain preserved intact over millions of years to the surprise of scientists therefore all other evidence must be ditched and one must assume a ‘Biblical’ age for the Earth. It’s as if scripture refuted modern science. But the people attempted to refute modern science, whilst claiming that scripture did so, are the young Earth creationists – who go BEYOND what scripture actually tells us and make it a weapon against ‘faulty’ science.
    I’m emailing this link to the ICR. For them to delete because it doesn’t accord with their worldview.

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