The Instigator
Pro (for)
0 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
8 Points

Current Scientific Understanding and The Bible Are Not Reconcilable.

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Post Voting Period
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after 2 votes the winner is...
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 11/2/2012 Category: Science
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,960 times Debate No: 26815
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (13)
Votes (2)




My resolution: Current scientific understanding and The Bible are not reconcilable .

Please no trolling or semantics.


current- generally accepted, used, practiced, or prevalent at the moment.

scientific understanding- understanding of
phenomena of, relating to, derived from, or used in science.

The Bible- a canonical collection of sacred texts in Judaism or Christianity.

are- present 2d singular or present plural of be.

not- used as a function word to make negative a group of words or a word.

reconcilable- to make consistent or congruous.

Round Structure-
1. Acceptance
2. Main Arguments
3. Rebuttals
4. Rebuttals to Rebuttals
5. Conclusion/Resolution Reached



I appreciate my opponent having challenged me to this debate, and I wish him luck.

In related news, I accept.
Debate Round No. 1


Hello AMTY, I hope we have a fun debate, may the best man win.

Scientific Errors in the Bible-

Fowls and Insects-

Lev. 11:20-3

"All fowls that creep, going upon all four, shall be an abomination unto you. Yet these may ye eat of every flying creeping thing that goeth upon all four, which have legs above their feet, to leap withal upon the earth; even these of them ye may eat; the locust after his kind, and the bald locust after his kind, and the beetle after his kind, and the grasshopper after his kind. But all other flying creeping things, which have four feet, shall be an abomination unto you."

This would not conform to current scientific understanding because according to current scientific understanding, fowls have two legs not four;, and insects have six legs not not four.

Bat Classification-

Leviticus 11:13-19

"And these are they which ye shall have in abomination among the fowls; they shall not be eaten, they are an abomination: the eagle, and the ossifrage, and the ospray, and the vulture, and the kite after his kind; every raven after his kind; and the owl, and the night hawk, and the cuckow, and the hawk after his kind, and the little owl, and the cormorant, and the great owl, and the swan, and the pelican, and the gier eagle, and the stork, the heron after her kind, and the lapwing, and the bat."

This of course can not conform to current scientific understanding because under science bats (mammals) are not considered fowls (birds).


Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Infraclass: Eutheria
Superorder: Laurasiatheria[
Scientific classificatione
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Clade: Dinosauria
Clade: Theropoda
Clade: Avialae
Class: Aves

The value of Pi-

1 Kings 7:23

"Then he made the molten sea; it was round, ten cubits from brim to brim, and five cubits high. A line of thirty cubits would encircle it completely."

This of course does not conform to current scientific understanding because a circle with a diameter of 10 units should have a circumference of about 31.4159265358979(…) units (10×π) and not 30. Alternatively, if we used these numbers to calculate π (circumference ÷ diameter) we would get a result of precisely 3.

Rabbits and Cud?-

Leviticus 11:5-6

"And the hare, because it chews the cud but does not part the hoof, is unclean to you."

This does notconform to current scientific understanding because rabbits do'nt have hooves or chew the cud.

The problem here is that cud is food that is regurgitated from the stomach into the mouth so that it can be chewed again and neither the rock badger or the rabbit regurgitate their food into their stomachs to chew.

Another problem with this is rabbits or hares do not have hooves.

Time Gap-

Another reason why the Holy Bible is unlikely to conform to current scientific understanding is- The Time Gap

When did the Bible come to be-

The Bible was written over a period of about 1700 years by more than 40 different authors.

From about 1700 BC to 90 AD

Old Testament
Book Author Date Written
Genesis Moses ? - 1445 B.C.
Exodus Moses 1445 - 1405 B.C.
Leviticus Moses 1405 B.C.
Numbers Moses 1444 - 1405 B.C.
Deuteronomy Moses 1405 B.C.
Joshua Joshua 1404-1390 B.C.
Judges Samuel 1374-1129 B.C.
Ruth Samuel 1150? B.C.
First Samuel Samuel 1043-1011 B.C.
Second Samuel Ezra? 1011-1004 B.C.
First Kings Jeremiah? 971-852 B.C.
Second Kings Jeremiah? 852-587 B.C.
First Chronicles Ezra? 450 - 425 B.C.
Second Chronicles Ezra? 450 - 425 B.C.
Ezra Ezra 538-520 B.C.
Nehemiah Nehemiah 445 - 425 B.C.
Esther Mordecai? 465 B.C.
Job Job? ??
Psalms David 1000? B.C.
Sons of Korah wrote Psalms 42, 44-49, 84-85, 87; Asaph wrote Psalms 50, 73-83; Heman wrote Psalm 88; Ethan wrote Psalm 89; Hezekiah wrote Psalms 120-123, 128-130, 132, 134-136;
Solomon wrote Psalms 72, 127.
Proverbs Solomon wrote 1-29
Agur wrote 30
Lemuel wrote 31
950 - 700 B.C.
Ecclesiastes Solomon 935 B.C.
Song of Solomon Solomon 965 B.C.
Isaiah Isaiah 740 - 680 B.C.
Jeremiah Jeremiah 627 - 585 B.C.
Lamentations Jeremiah 586 B.C.
Ezekiel Ezekiel 593-560 B.C.
Daniel Daniel 605-536 B.C.
Hosea Hosea 710 B.C.
Joel Joel 835 B.C.
Amos Amos 755 B.C.
Obadiah Obadiah 840 or 586 B.C.
Jonah Jonah 760 B.C.
Micah Micah 700 B.C.
Nahum Nahum 663 - 612 B.C.
Habakkuk Habakkuk 607 B.C.
Zephaniah Zephaniah 625 B.C.
Haggai Haggai 520 B.C.
Zechariah Zechariah 520 - 518 B.C.
Malachi Malachi 450 - 600 B.C.

New Testament

Book Author Date Written (A.D)
Matthew Matthew 60's
Mark John Mark late 50's
early 60's
Luke Luke 60
John John late 80's
early 90's
Acts Luke 61
Romans Paul 55
1 Corinthians Paul 54
2 Corinthians Paul 55
Galatians Paul 49
Ephesians Paul 60
Philippians Paul 61
Colossians Paul 60
1 Thessalonians Paul 50 - 51
2 Thessalonians Paul 50 - 51
1 Timothy Paul 62
2 Timothy Paul 63
Titus Paul 62
Philemon Paul 60
Hebrews (Paul, Apollos, Barnabas...?) 60's
James James, half brother of Jesus 40's or 50's
1 Peter Peter 63
2 Peter Peter 63 - 64
1 John John late 80's
early 90's
2 John John late 80's
early 90's
3 John John late 80's
early 90's
Jude Jude, half brother of Jesus 60's or 70's
Revelation John late 80's
early 90's

When did Modern Science come to be?

The Scientific Revolution established science as a source for the growth of knowledge. During the 16th century, the practice of science became professionalized and institutionalized in ways that continued through the 20th century.

When modern science was established in the 1600's, revolutionary scientific figures such as; Louis Pasteur, Charles Darwin, Isaac Newton, Albert Einstein, Galileo Galilei, Etc. took hold of the worlds big questions and established ground for answering them.

The reason why it is obvious that The Bible can not conform to modern science is because of what?--- The Time Gap- The time gap between the Bible and modern science (1700 years) is so huge, that to claim they are reconcilable in anyway would be ridiculous.




I thank my opponent for providing such an interesting topic.


Fowls and Insects:

As my glorious translation so wonderfully puts Leviticus 11:20-23

'(20) Of things that fly, whatsoever goeth upon four feet, shall be abominable to you. (21) But whatsoever walketh upon four feet, but hath the legs behind longer, wherewith it hoppeth upon the earth, (22) That you shall eat, as the bruchus in its kind, the attacus, and ophiomachus, and the locust, every one according to their kind. (23) But of flying things whatsoever hath four feet only, shall be an abomination to you:'

From this it can clearly be seen that the entire passage is referring to insects, rather than birds.

Additionally, it can also be seen that there is a distinction made between 'feet' and 'legs'. Look at some locusts [4]. For some reason, the first picture is pornographic, but if one scrolls down the page work-safe locust images may be found.

It is clear that the locust has four small-ish legs and two massive ones 'wherewith it hoppeth upon the earth'. Without a doubt, 'four feet' refer to the little feet and the 'legs behind the longer' refer to the two huge legs. Add those together and you get six feet in total, which is not in conflict with science.

Bat Classification:

Because I want to artificially inflate my argument's length, I will requote Leviticus 11:13-19 from my preferred translation.

'(13) Of birds these are they which you must not eat, and which are to be avoided by you: The eagle, and the griffon, and the osprey, (14) And the kite, and the vulture, according to their kind, (15) And all that is of the raven kind, according to their likeness. (16) The ostrich, and the owl, and the larus, and the hawk according to its kind. (17) The screech owl, and the cormorant, and the ibis, (18) And the swan, and the bittern, and the porphyrion, (19) The heron, and the charadrion according to its kind, the houp also, and the bat.'

Of course, this is merely a translation, and not the actual text. According to a concordance, the actual Hebrew word used ('עוֹף') means 'Flying creatures, fowl, insects, birds' [1]. This cannot, therefore, be taken as as unreconcilable with modern science unless my opponent posits that bats are not flying creatures.

The Value of Pi:

I don't really see much of an issue here, personally. My opponent himself shows that the difference is only roughly 1.4 cubits. Possibly the measurements were rounded, if the diameter was roughly 9.7 cubits (for example) and the circumference was roughly 30.4 cubits, you could hardly blame the author for rounding the values to 10 cubits and 30 cubits respectively.

This can easily be reconciled with science by recognizing that the measurements were not by necessity 100% accurate and completely exact.

Rabbits and Cud:

Leviticus 11:5-6

'(5) The cherogrillus which cheweth the cud, but divideth not the hoof, is unclean. (6) The hare also: for that too cheweth the cud, but divideth not the hoof.'

Pro wrote 'The problem here is that cud is food that is regurgitated from the stomach into the mouth so that it can be chewed again and neither the rock badger or the rabbit regurgitate their food into their stomachs to chew.'

I don't quite see where my opponent got 'rock badger' from (my wonderful and glorious translation uses the beautiful word 'cherogrillus', and my opponent failed to quote a verse containing the words 'rock badger'), so I will not respond to that yet.

Forgive me, as my explanation of this will be rather... gross.

It appears that rabbits eat their own feces [2] in order to extract further nutrients from them. While that is not chewing cud in the very modern meanings of the word, it is not unreasonable to assume that Moses simply defined 'cud' differently than is defined today, and as rabbits do in fact engage in a process not dissimilar from chewing cud, this is fully reconcilable.

Pro writes 'Another problem with this is rabbits or hares do not have hooves.'

You cannot part a hoof if you do not have one. I don't see this verse as claiming that rabbits are hooved.

Time Gap:

My opponent hypothesizes that an immense time gap between modern science and the Bible make them by nature irreconcilable, however this is a claim of such laughable absurdity that I'm not even sure how to address it.

Definition of reconcilable: 'capable of being brought to a state of acquiescence or acceptance.' [3].

What my opponent here puts forth would make anything from hundreds of years ago automatically unable to agree with modern science just because they were written hundreds of years ago.

Does my opponent doubt that Caesar's 'Commentarii de Bello Gallico' can be reconciled with modern science? It contains nothing contrary to science, yet it was written over two thousand years ago, therefore it must be irreconcilable by my opponent's logic.

If I lived in the 9th century B.C. and I at that time wrote the phrase 'The Earth exists', does my opponent declare that that writing can never be reconciled with modern science merely because of a time gap? Either this argument is preposterous, or am I greviously misinterpreting it.

In unrelated news, my opponent's list of the books of the Bible is heretical.


The Bible is in no way irreconcilable with modern science.

Debate Round No. 2


emospongebob527 forfeited this round.


I interpret my opponent's forfeit as meaning that he is unable to counter my arguments.

Hopefully he'll return. In the interim, extend all arguments.
Debate Round No. 3


Defense Fowls and Insects:

Of course by modern scientific understanding; Locusts do not only use four feet to walk they use all six; But whatsoever walketh upon four feet, but hath the legs behind longer....... Why does this not conform to current scientific understanding? Because as it is understood by science; Locusts do not walk upon four feet, and have longers legs behind those four feet. Locusts walk upon six feet, with four small legs and two big ones;

Bat Classification:

Of course my opponent is taking it from the translation and not the text, regardless of the translation, Bats are not birds.;

The Value of Pi:

This most definitely cannot be reconciled by science because it is a grave miscalculation; it can not be rounded, the diameter of a circle in groundless and accurate; if it must be rounded then it is not a true circle.

Rabbits and Cud:

Con mistakes "something mistaken for cud chewing by a narrow-minded apostle" for "cud by modern scientific terms"

While yes it is reasonable to see that Moses may have mistaken something else for cud chewing, that is simply not acceptable, the text should be read as it is, and it has already been established that rabbits do not chew cud.

You have to have a hoof to not do something with it.

Time Gap:

Of course; The resolution doesn't say science, it says current science.

Of course my opponent's logic is gravely infallible; if some wrote the phrase 'The Earth exists', this can not be reconciled with modern science because modern science didn't exist back then, as already established.



Bat Classification:

I don't really know what my opponent's getting at here. I showed that the actual Hebrew word could mean 'flying creatures', and does not by necessity mean birds. Since my opponent has provided no real response to this, extend my counter argument.

A bat is a flying creature. The word in question does not necessarily mean 'bird', but can mean 'flying creature'. If it is taken as meaning flying creature, there is no conflict.

The Value of Pi:

Somewhat humorously, my opponent writes 'it can not be rounded'.

I suppose he himself has never rounded anything; every measurement must be taken exactly (never mind that modern science itself does not measure things to complete accuracy, and that's with modern scientific equipment), to the billionth place if need be.

The people in question were using much more primative measurements and measuring utilities; it's hardly surprising that they recorded an inexact result. Since it's impossible to get a perfect result anyway, this is not a problem.

Rabbits and Cud:

I didn't say that Moses may have mistaken something else for cud chewing. I said since Rabbits reingest previously digested food to extract more nutrients out of it, it is possible that word used, meaning 'cud', at the time was more encompassing than the modern word 'cud'.

Certainly, rabbits do engage in a practice very similar to cud chewing.

The entire point is that the rabbit isn't doing anything with the hoof that it doesn't have.

New American Bible's Leviticus 11:6 reads

'the hare, which indeed chews the cud, but does not have hoofs and is therefore unclean for you; and the pig,'

I rest my case.

Time Gap:

I'm glad to see that my opponent recognizes me as a source of infallible logic. That right there should be a concession of his argument, because if my logic is gravely infallible, then it must hold true no matter what.

My opponent's argument makes no sense. If I wrote the phrase 'The Earth exists' in the 9th century B.C. and someone dug it up today, is it irreconcilable with modern science? Is 'Commentarii de Bello Gallico' (to which my opponent failed to respond) irreconcilable with modern science?

I'll let the voters decide.


The Bible is reconcilable with modern science.
Debate Round No. 4


Fowls And Insects

Dropped by Con.

Bat Classification:

The translation that doesn't lie within the text does not equate what lies within the text.

The Value of Pi:

My opponent essentially drops this argument.

Why is it not reconcilable: 31.4159265358979 =/= 30, regardless of the miscalculation.

Rabbits and Cud:

Two things that are similar are not the same thing.


The entire point is that the rabbit isn't doing anything with the hoof that it doesn't have.

Lol, strawman.......... Pigs have hoofs.........

According to this;

1. Hares don't have hoofs.

2. Pigs don't have hoofs. They do.;

Time Gap:

I apologize for my slight grammatical error, forgive me Satan Buk Lao.

Precisely. lol.


Con drops all of my arguments and makes numerous red herring and strawman arguments............. Like........

Con's Strawman's-

Pigs don't have hoofs.
30 = 31.4159265358979
Modern Science existed in the 9th century.
Translation that doesn't lie within text lies within text.
Rabbits chew something similar to cud therefore they chew cud.

Vote Pro. Resolution Affirmed.


I accidentally forgot to respond to fowls and insects, but it doesn't really matter.

Fowls and Insects

My opponent sites the Wikipedia main page, which obviously contains no information on locusts. Thus, he has failed to succesfully argue this point.

Bat Classification

Although my opponent's sentence is incoherent, from what I am able to dicipher it has absolutely nothing to do with my argument. Therefore, extend it.

The Value of Pi

Pi does not equal 3.14159265358979, as pi is a repeating and unterminating decimal [1]. That's my argument; you can't measure to perfect accuracy ever, so just because the ancient Hebrews were less accurate than we are today doesn't mean anything important.

Rabbits and Cud:

My opponent has deigned to ignore my point regarding a potentially broader meaning of cud at the time that Moses wrote.

Pro writes 'Lol, strawman.......... Pigs have hoofs.........'

Never said they didn't. The description of pigs was cut off because the only part relevant to the argument you raised was the rabbit part. Leviticus 11:7, which finishes off what 11:6 began, is as follows:

'which does indeed have hoofs and is cloven-footed, but does not chew the cud and is therefore unclean for you.'

So my opponent clearly failed to even understand my argument, let alone refute it.

Time Gap:

My opponent drops this argument.


Oh great irony, my opponent is strawmanning my arguments and claiming that they're strawmen. If anyone actually reads this debate, then they will see how my opponent is misconstruing my arguments. I think my arguments speak for themselves quite nicely, and so I feel no need to blatantly strawman my opponent.

Thank you.

Debate Round No. 5
13 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by truthseeker613 5 years ago
I loved AMTY answer for pi. particularly the way he made the #'s fit.
Posted by Stephen_Hawkins 5 years ago
I am so tempted to run antirealism.
Posted by Stephen_Hawkins 5 years ago
I am so tempted to run antirealism.
Posted by TrasguTravieso 5 years ago
I accept my newbie status takes me out of the running, but as to AMTY I assure you that you would have quite a challenge with him on this prompt.
Posted by AlwaysMoreThanYou 5 years ago
If you lower the debate count, I will accept.
Posted by emospongebob527 5 years ago
60 debates or more, I need a challenge.
Posted by TrasguTravieso 5 years ago
I'm relatively new, so I understand that some debate criterion exclude me. But you've been here for one month and exclude AllwaysMoreThanYou? What are the criteria for accepting this debate?
Posted by Smithereens 5 years ago
ehem, your definition of prevalent theory won't work since the current prevalent theory in modern science is the big bang.
Posted by AlwaysMoreThanYou 5 years ago
I would accept this if I could.
Posted by thetallest1 5 years ago
Yup you have fun with this, i just turned 14 on halloween. Most epic birthday ever!
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by MochaShakaKhan 5 years ago
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Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: Hmm I've noticed pro seems to forfeit a lot in his debates. Either way, Pro pointed out inconsistencies between the bible and our understanding of science, which con responded to mostly by suggesting translation errors. This may or may not be the case, but Pro never really showed this to be false, so I must assume it is true.
Vote Placed by Nur-Ab-Sal 5 years ago
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Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: Conduct to Con for Pro's forfeiture. Arguments to Con because of (1) Pro's forfeiture, and (2) Con pretty much destroyed all of Pro's arguments ... with the animals, Pro really didn't argue strong enough to fulfill his Burden of Proof, whereas Con provided a clearer interpretation of the passages cited; with pi, Con argued from his beginning round that any sort of measurement would be inexact because it's an irrational number; with the time gap point, Pro just engaged in chronological snobbery and really didn't have any substance. Con refuted all of these, and left no room for Pro to return.