posted Nov 17, 2010, 9:14 AM by Numbers Logos
updated Oct 9, 2015, 1:14 PM
COMPUTER COMPARISON OF NFL TEAM RECORDS ranks teams by their results (games won and lost, points scored and yielded) and their opponents (ranked by their results and opponents). What makes these rankings unique are the simple verification procedures shown in samples that follow the rankings. So retrieve your calculator and participate in an experience more descriptive than any narrative.
Computer comparison rankings are an alternate measure of season-long objective results, as defined in the first sentence, not a subjective commentary on how well the teams are playing now. Computer rankings are objective and more inflexible as games are added to the data base. Opinion rankings are subjective and flexible. The methods are quite different but the results are often surprisingly similar. Because of the accrued inflexibility, computations end with the regular season. A few minutes calculating your own sample verifications will cause a realization, if not fascination, that the rankings, together with each of the data elements that drive them, visibly fit to each other like the pieces of a jig-saw puzzle.
END OF DESCRIPTION. END OF COMPUTER COMPARISONS.
OFF TOPIC DISCUSSIONS
Personal comments, and quotes, are posted in response to the March 24, 2012, pep rally of atheists who enjoy thinking they follow science on a one-way street to godlessness.
Language of God by Francis
S. Collins, Head of Human Genome Project, now Director, NIH. Excerpts, pp 66-67:
“The existence of the Big Bang begs the question of what came
before that, and who or what was responsible.
It certainly demonstrates the limits of science as no other phenomenon
has done. The consequences of Big Bang
theory for theology are profound. For
faith traditions that describe the universe as having been created by God from
nothingness (ex nihilo), this is an electrifying outcome. ….caused more than a few agnostic scientists
to sound downright theological.
….Astrophysicist Robert Jastrow wrote….’Now we
see how the astronomical evidence leads to a biblical view of the origin of the
world. The details differ, but the
essential elements and the astronomical and biblical accounts of Genesis are
the same: the chain of events leading to man commenced suddenly and sharply at
a definite moment in time, in a flash of light and energy.’ ….The Big Bang cries out
for a divine explanation. It forces the
conclusion that nature had a defined beginning.
I cannot see how nature created itself.
Only a supernatural force that is outside of space and time could have
FROM THE BLOGOSPHERE
Science is God's tool box, not atheism's lapdog
Worth the increased subscription price. Thank you Washington Post for publishing this antidote to atheists’ GOD OF THE GAPS fortune cookies claiming scientific advances are God’s inevitable rendezvous with claustrophobia. Thank you for replacing their ignorance-is-bliss version of the gap with an exponentially fuller appreciation of its magnitude.
I lack belief in the atheist all natural—i.e., non-supernatural--options:
(1) The universe, including any necessary elements, naturally and without cause created itself out of nothing. Or…
(2) The universe, and any necessary elements, naturally existed without beginning. ( Wholly unobservable.) Or....
(3) Equally unproved alternatives to the logically inclusive pair of options (1) and (2).
GAP SPECULATIONS: VERSION I
God's creation of the universe was not a fast breaking slam dunk with no opposition on the court. Without opposition, a perfectly good God would have created a perfectly good universe of perfectly good worlds populated by perfectly good people universally in harmony with Himself. But God’s perfect goodness is opposed by the unfathomable power of cosmic "nature." Almost as unfathomable as His own.
In a "natural" state, the universe would be nothing.
Things we call natural in the broadest sense—all that we experience with our senses and scientific instruments—are unnatural, or supernatural, because they are something from nothing, violating what would be the "natural" state.
The supernatural is sufficiently powerful to claim victories over the "natural," such as creation of the universe and the life and resurrection of Jesus Christ, but the powerful pull of the "natural" is not yet vanquished nor denied its own corrupting victories.
The pull of the "natural"—its rebellion against the unnatural (supernatural)—finds expression in sin and disasters, manmade and otherwise, events and conditions we may blame on Satan.
The supernatural vs. "natural" conflict may be the source of, or synonymous with, other bi-polarities: God vs. Satan, creation vs. void, light vs dark, good vs. bad, love vs. hate. Life vs. death?
GAP SPECULATION: VERSION II
God created the evolution of atheists and loves them as much as He loves us who already embrace that love appreciating the awesomeness of it.
Atheists cannot take all the responsibility for their doubting Thomas response to God. I believe doubt and division were baked into the cake before there were space or time. My speculation is that God was an immaterial cognitive force outside of space and time, but He was not alone in that description. I call the other cognitive force "nature" because I don't know what else to call it, and it seems natural to me that the immaterial status quo would naturally be incapable of, and naturally resistant to, anything else. But here we are, in a material reality. Because? God didn't like the status quo of eternity past and used the mysterious and awesome power He had to create a universe large enough to beat the odds against grateful cognition. The odds were great because He was opposed by the almost as formidable anti-creative force of "nature." To the oppositional participation of the anti-creative force I attribute most of the negatives we experience, including, natural disasters, illness, injury, malice, mistakes, blasphemy, mosquitoes, etc. In our frame, most of us perceive the duration of this "evidence" challenging God's omnipotence as endless fore and aft. But in God's frame, from His creation of time until His ultimate defeat of the anti-creative force and to eternity beyond, the moment of challenge to His omnipotence may be likened to the twinkling of an eye, to page A1 in an encyclopedia....
Godvsnogod conversation is still so short of scientific evidence or proof of anything, it negates relevance to scientific method. BURDENS OF PROOF have no rightful place in the conversation except in reply to foolhardy claims of proof.
Atheist handbooks define CLAIMS of proof as recognizable noises escaping the lips of theists; a disease unique to theists, atheists being immunized by word play like LACK OF BELIEF and manipulated definitions of themselves and EVIDENCE.
Whatever textbooks say, overexposure to atheists’ blog commentary proves EVIDENCE—or not-- is in the eyes of atheist beholders, varying to support arguments.
Atheists use language like “some evidence” and “evidence to suggest,” but not when it's more convenient to opine evidence is no evidence at all if it doesn’t prove everything (i.e., no such thing as evidence of incremental or suggestive worth).
What is evidence when an atheist thinks cosmology is irrelevant to godvsnogod and the theist thinks it’s first in relevance? Atheists solicit evidence predestined to be irrelevant on arrival. If existence, material reality, and cognition are not credible as incremental or suggestive evidence for the existence of God, it’s only because atheists don’t want them to be.
In court, acquittal would be an atheist’s definition of ZERO EVIDENCE to indict, meaning unsuccessful prosecutors should always be sued for malpractice.
“CANNOT PROVE A NEGATIVE” is the half truth repeated endlessly as a cloud of propaganda to obscure the whole truth: Science cannot prove anything about the existence/nonexistence of God. But anybody who wants to has the free will to prove it to themselves.
A multiverse-sized God who loved the inheritors of a cosmic speck of dust entered into it as vulnerable flesh knowing and accepting the excruciating pain commensurate with our needs for forgiving grace.
Issues I grapple with
The Language of God by Francis S. Collins, head of Human Genome Project, now Director, NIH. [back cover]
“Dr. Collins believes that faith in God and science can coexist.…He has heard every argument against faith from scientists, and he can refute them.He has also heard the needless rejection of scientific truths (i.e., evolution) by some people of faith, and he can counter that, too.”Italics added
Encouraged by a renowned scientist, a Christian who loves the God of the Bible, I believe the Creator created evolution--its prolonged unfolding shaped by the supernatural vs. "natural" conflict described above. Regardless of transient flaws imposed by the resistant force of "nature," which abhors everything but nothing, I have no doubt that God is the Creator.
To begin with, I have to deal with a logical list limited to two options: (1) The physical universe (including black holes, curved spaces, energy, matter, whatever) has existed without beginning, or (2) Nothing became something. Two of the world's most accomplished contemporary scientists, quoted elsewhere, regard the Big Bang as equivalent to option (2). Scientifically or otherwise, any burden of proof should be on those who assert there is no God in either option.
FREE WILL HYPOTHESIS
Romans 8:28-39 is often cited in discussions on God’s predestination of believers. However, the Bible has multiple verses about free will, including Proverbs 16:9: The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps. http://www.openbible.info/topics/free_will
Free will, predestination, and God’s omniscient foreknowledge: predestination is not a tenet of my tradition, and I find it difficult to reconcile the other two. Here is my speculation: It is God’s free will to give us free will, enabled by God’s election to know history (or most of it?) as it unfolds. But God is not surprised by unfolding history. When your life here is done, there will have been nothing in it that was not included in a universe of possibilities all known exhaustively and intimately by God from the beginning. It may seem that this “free will”hypothesis, by denying His foreknowledge of history, diminishes God’s omniscience. But suppose God loaded all his earth knowledge into two computers before discarding one.
- The predestination computer contained everything historical and everything destined to be history.
- The free will computer mirrors, as history or future possibilities, the contents of the first computer. But this computer also contains all the possibilities that never became history and never will.
If the foreknown history (predestination) computer was at capacity, the free will computer, without historical foreknowledge, would have to be larger by an order of magnitude we cannot imagine.
I apologize for minimal qualification to creatively hypothesize this “tension” away or conjecture on the mind of God. I pray that He be amused, not annoyed. (Isaiah 55:8-9)
Growing up modestly in exceptionally prosperous community and country, much of my life has been shadowed by fear of anything or anybody that might change that status quo. But such fear is not the love of God and neighbor that Jesus taught. Thank God for the power of prayer, the gift of love, and forgiveness through Jesus the Christ. 7/31/12 Thanks be to God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit for the melting sunshine on our doubt. Heaven can wait. It is well with my soul. How great thou art. Thank you God for Handel. 2/14/14