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Tuesday, 25 February 2014

BDH on Uni, Classics and Geology volume P535 28.12.13 Sydney




















29 comments:

  1. Is Bruce D Hales aware of the tiny zircon crystal which was discovered in the Jack Hills of Western Australia? It has recently been confirmed that it dates from 4.4 billion years ago and therefore gives us a useful indication of when the Earth's crust was formed.

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    1. http://m.smh.com.au/technology/sci-tech/gem-found-on-australian-sheep-ranch-is-the-oldest-known-piece-of-earth-scientists-find-20140224-hvdkd.html

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    2. BDH has certainly heard of zircon, and maybe even this particular crystal. Why else would he have zircon on his mind? It’s not something people often mention.

      On 7 October 2012 in Sydney he said this, (Vol. 128 page 11), “No, I haven't finished yet. Give us a chance. See, the thing is we might get bedazzled by these things. Is that likely in the current age, present age? You say, Well, you know, I can't go to a mine. No, but I can go to a ninety-nine level skyscraper. And I might be bedazzled by it all, the marble, and the glass, and the zircon. What's zircon? Anybody know what zircon is? Phil Tregenza, do you know what zircon is?”

      It is possible that the physical evidence might have convinced BDH (unlike some of his Brethren) that the Earth is very old, because on one of the pages displayed by Laurie (White Book 535 page 14, Sydney, 28 December 2013) he says, “Of course, it you studied geology, which was an excellent subject too, because that was dealing with creation. A lot of it, of course, millions and millions of years ago, which you didn't really have to worry about, except it exists.”

      So the various science-deniers on this blog who have derided the 300,000-year old domestic hearth and the almost million years of human occupation of Britain and the 66-million year old dinosaur fossils and the 13.8 billion-year-old universe should perhaps take note. BDH apparently believes in an old earth, so he can hardly object if you do so too.

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  2. 'This pocket white book is intended to facilitate ready accessibility of the ministry and should not distract from reading the full white book'

    They also make marvellous fire lighters!

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  3. On page 8 of White Book 535 (Sydney, 28 December 2013) there are some revealing phrases that shock me.

    “I was thinking this morning, not that we want to overemphasise it, but educated people that have an issue with us because we're holding back the children from attending university, full-time university, like used to be done forty years ago, fifty years ago, sixty years ago, so forth. But,' see, they don't realise what they're doing. What they’re doing is to teach the children to be independent of them.”

    Contrary to what you say, Mr Bruce, we most certainly DO realise what we are doing, and we have expended a lot of thought and effort in making sure we do it. Teaching our children to be independent of us is a large part of what being a parent is all about. I would have regarded myself as a dismal failure if my children had not achieved autonomy, self-determination and independence. You talk as if the achievement of independence is a bad thing.

    And then you sound as if you are complaining when you go on to say, “. . . and then they don't need what their father and mother have got, they become independent and completely self-supporting.” But of course they do! We would have failed them badly if they did not! Surely you don’t think that is a bad thing?

    I have an excellent, loving, mutually supportive, collaborative relationship with my adult children, but they could manage perfectly well without me, financially, morally, spiritually, and emotionally. I think that should be every parent’s aim.

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    1. So well put Ian. My goal was never to control my children, but to train them up in the way they should go, to nurture them, empower them and release them into independent adulthood. The idea of controlling them is creepy. A bit like something a cult leader would say and do ...

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    2. It's all about control, Ian. Total control. Keep this cycle going and you have generation after generation of blind adherence to whatever the dictator says. That's exactly what the PBCC hierarchy desire.

      What makes this so controversial is that it is one of the Charity Commission's requirements for attaining public benefit and for this to be stated publically by leader Hales just days before that agreement was announced is astonishing. This will be going straight to the Charity Commission for their consideration. I would urge all readers to contact their MP's with this fresh evidence. Nothing 'historical' about December 2013.

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    3. I think you are probably right, Anon, when you say that the restrictions on education is to make people easier to control. Jim Taylor seemed to think about it that way. In 1960 or 1961 in Barbados he said, “You want to keep your children at home and get them to understand the truth, and not let them leave your home to go to college to learn. That is the whole trouble. We do not regard the household properly and then our children go out, and they get out of our control.”

      That view is understandable: they will indeed get out of our control, and so they should, but I think the policy shows an appalling failure to consider for the children’s best interests. It is not only that students will be out of control when they are out of their parents’ sight: they will also become permanently out of the Brethren’s control when they begin to think for themselves and establish their autonomy. One method to control people is to deceive them, and well educated people can be devilishly difficult to deceive and control.

      Learning to think for yourself was certainly seen as something to be prevented. The centres of education were accused of disregarding the law or principles, and publicly telling the children to think for themselves. (Ministry of James Taylor Jr. Vol. 123: page 119, Winnipeg, 17-18 May 1968). This last accusation actually came from Mr Alex Henry Sr. of Winnipeg, and Mr Taylor agreed with it.

      So part of the conscious strategy was to prevent people from learning to think for themselves. Tragically, I think it still is. “All you have to do is be obedient; we'll do the thinking, you do the doing.” (BDH Vol. 41 page 79)

      You might as well keep them on mind-numbing drugs, or stove their heads in with a sledge hammer. It is utterly tragic.

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    4. Note that he refers to '...full time university...' which leaves the door open for self paced distance education. If the student enrols in a utilitarian degree e.g accountancy, engineering etc., then there is NO philosophy type units in the electives and the course is only an advancement to what they teach as post secondary units in their own schools - in Australia TAFE units and in UK HNC. At present PBCC kids do university study but not on campus and why shouldn't they as really it is only an advanced level of what already do.

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    5. As they degrees are self paced off campus and UTILITARIAN and not LIBERAL [e.g. BA MA etc] there is no issue.

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  4. So BDH is an old earth believer, young earth denier.
    Is Bruce D Hales saying that the holy Creation story as written in Genesis of God our Father creating the heavens and the Earth...is just another myth?

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    1. No, I don’t think BDH is saying the Genesis story is a myth. He still expounds the line of extreme literalism, as seen in White Book 535 page 13, and he thinks the laws of nature, including physics and chemistry are all bound up in the Bible, as seen on page 14. So he presumably takes the line that the whole of the Bible is accurate scientifically as well as historically.

      If questioned about the millions of years that he refers to, I suppose he might opt for the gap theory, which falls short of being a self-consistent explanation, but it could be seen as a step in the right direction, a small concession to the weight of empirical evidence.

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    2. In church last Sunday I thought of the Hales Exclusive Brethren's attitude to the Scriptures - and some of the discussion we've had on this blog.

      The first reading in our Anglican church last week was Genesis 1-2:3, the Bible's opening and majestic account of creation. On the leaflet given to each person in the congregation, where the Bible readings are listed so that people can follow them up at home afterwards if they want to, the Vicar had written; "An ancient and theological account of creation". I thought that was a true, useful and succinct summary. It may be that Bruce D Hales is moving towards that kind of understanding of early Genesis.

      Anonymous 25 February 2014 21:34 - it always interests me that the 'King James Version only' people, especially in the USA, frequently deride J N Darby as a moderniser because he knew the limits and errors of the KJV and its Textus Receptus source and wanted to work from the biblical textual discoveries of C19.

      Old earth - up-to-date biblical scholarship - Bruce D Hales could begin confidently to develop his theology to help the Brethren better to understand the importance and value of the Bible in C21.

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    3. One thing BDH could do immediately is stop the use of Thee, Thou, Thine and the verb forms art, hast, hadst. In the original languages of the Bible there is no distinction between addressing a human being and addressing God.

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  5. You can't polish a turd so yes there is a significant distinction between addressing God and man. Those words BDH uses are also used by countless other people.

    What an utterly dumb statement from the dipstick we have here.



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    1. I think you have misunderstood the chap to whom you address your abusive comments. He was only talking about the biblical languages, not about reverence or attitude or anything else, and I can confirm that what he said about the biblical languages is true. It is also relevant to the question of what kinds of pronouns are appropriate in prayer.

      There was a time in the English language when Thee and Thou were less respectful that You when addressing a superior. Thee and Thou were the words you would use when chatting to your mates, but when addressing a superior the usual word would be You. So there is not really much rationale or precedent for using Thee and Thou and other archaic word forms when addressing God. The habit probably arose for the rather trivial reason that the KJV was written in somewhat archaic language, which was quite inappropriate considering that the New Testament was not written in formal, literary or archaic Greek: it was written in the ordinary, everyday type of Greek, the language of the street.

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    2. Dear Anonymous 26 February 2014 14:51 - check the original Hebrew and Koiné Greek of the Old and New Testaments and you will find that Anonymous 26 February 2014 08:54 is absolutely right in what s/he has written.

      You may find it interesting (and surprising) to find out more about how 'thee', 'thou' and 'thine' were used in late mediaeval and Tudor/Stuart English. Shakespeare's use is instructive too.

      Some people nowadays do stick to 'Thou' etc when addressing God, and countless Christians continue to sing old hymns which use that form, but vast numbers of English-speaking Christians today use 'You' when addressing God in prayer or in modern hymns - not because they want to be overfamiliar or show a lack of reverence, but because that's the biblical way.

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    3. Religion addresses God as a distant being in special reserved and obscure language. Christ addresses God as Abba Father.
      Religion is man's attempt to reach God. The redemptive work of Christ is God reaching out to mankind. I'll go for faith in Christ and address God as Abba Father, Dad, Daddy, Papa, as I recognise his gifted sonship to me.

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    4. It occurred to me this morning that the archaising of language is sometimes deliberate because it's felt that old-fashioned words and phrases convey authority and 'eternal' values in a way that contemporary, everyday language doesn't.

      Even when the Hebrew people were speaking Aramaic (after the Babylonian exile in the sixth century BC) they stuck to what is now called 'classical' or 'biblical' Hebrew for their sacred documents. It seemed right to them to keep the old-fashioned feel in the written language of the Torah (the Pentateuch), the Prophets and the Psalms etc and not to modernise it.

      If you're ever in the Louvre Museum in Paris, go and look at the C18 BC Code of Hammurabi from ancient Babylon (modern Iraq). This is a law code carved in diorite stone where the cuneiform writing was deliberately old-fashioned - in order that readers (in Abraham's era) would think that the behaviour requirements it depicted had their roots in ancient, foundation dynasties.

      The documents of the New Testament were not at all like this. They were all written in Koiné Greek, the ordinary, everyday language of the street. Jesus's teaching to love God, to love your neighbour as yourself, and even to love your enemy, was recorded in the common, up-to-date, modern language of the Graeco-Roman empire.

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    5. It is also significant that the version of the Old Testament most often used and quoted by Jesus, his apostles and the four evangelists was also written almost entirely in everyday, modern, Koiné Greek, not in a classical, literary or archaic form of Greek, the main exception being the Book of Wisdom.

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  6. Why does BDH say that he is not going to go by ministry anymore, only by the Bible and then proceeds to print excerpts of old ministry?

    Puzzled in Portsmouth

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    1. Puzzled in Portsmouth - what do you mean? what old ministry has he been reprinting?

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    2. Read the index above and you will see the old ministry being republished. I guess beedy has run out of things to say.

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    3. I was referring to the index listing on the above ministry book - the first two entries are BDH and the rest are all reprints of JND, FER , JTJr and JSH.

      Puzzled

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  7. This begs the question - so do Exclusive Brethren now PBCC members even know of new agreement made that if members want to go to University they have to leave the cult to attend university then they can go back in if they still want to? It sounds like an odd agreement to make at the very same time as this was being said...

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    1. I don't think the HEB leadership give two hoots about that CC agreement, Suzie. That is certainly the feeling I am getting from their actions (or lack of) since mid-Jan, to say nothing of some of BDH's comments in ministry.

      A current HEB/PBCC member told me many of the flock don't even want HEB separation practices changed - "they are so indoctrinated, they believe it makes them special". When shown a copy of the full CC document they could read some weeks ago, they weren't interested, saying vaguely that they expected everybody would get a copy at some stage...

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    2. The emphasis is in GOING TO UNIVERSITY as opposed to self paced distance education like the Open University

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  8. The Exclusive Brethren now PBCC leaders claims to "understand the Bible" while he then sneers at the study of classics - Greek culture and also the language of the Biblical New Testament of Jesus' time, is totally ridiculous. Laughable even...

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  9. "So you find them at the other side of the world...." The "Man of Grog" is frequently at the other side of the world. Would it not be more in keeping if he stayed at home?

    Girth Crusty

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