The Instigator
giraffelover
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
ax123man
Con (against)
Winning
13 Points

The Bible predicts history in advance

Do you like this debate?NoYes+0
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 3 votes the winner is...
ax123man
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/26/2012 Category: Religion
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,081 times Debate No: 26609
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (0)
Votes (3)

 

giraffelover

Pro

I use the statue in Nebuchadnezzar's dream as evidence that the Bible predicts historic events (Such as Jesus' birth, death, resurrection, the fate of Israel, the fate of Babylon, etc.) years before the events occured. Who accepts my debate?
ax123man

Con

I graciously accept. Bring your case.
Debate Round No. 1
giraffelover

Pro

Daniel 2:31-41

Daniel: You looked, O king, and saw a large statue. The head was made of pure gold, it's arms and chest of silver, it's belly and thighs of brass, it's legs of iron, it's feet of partly iron and partly of clay. As you watched, a rock of super
natural origin struck the statue on the feet of iron mixed with clay. The feet were destroyed, but the rock of supernatural origin became a mountain that filled the Earth.

This was the dream, and now I will interpret it to you, king. You, king (of Babylon), are the king of kings. God gave you great dominion. However, a kingdom will take over, even though it is inferior to you. (Meade and Persia). Next,
a third kingdom will rule over Earth (Greece). Finally, a fourth kingdom as strong as iron will rule. (Rome). Just as
you saw that the feet and toes were part clay and part iron, so this will be a divided kingdom, yet will have some of the
strength of iron, even as you saw iron mixed with clay. As the feet were made with both iron and clay, so will the nation be partly strong and partly brittle. The people will not mix, just as iron won't mix with clay.

Daniel is talking to the king of mighty Babylon. Meade and Persia were well known, as was Greece. However,
Rome was just a speck on the wall. How could Daniel have known that Rome would conquer the world?
Another point to consider is this: Daniel could have known the source of Babylon's strength was gold. That would be
pretty obvious. If he did his research, he could also know Meade and Persia used a lot of silver. Bronze instruments
were very common in his time. However, how could Daniel have not only known that Rome, a little speck on the map,
would conquer almost the entire world? Not only that, but iron swords weren't common in his day because people
back then didn't know how to make swords out of iron that would stand the stress of battle. A few people, such as
the Phillistines, knew the secret, but this gave them a huge edge, so it was pretty much top secret.
Also, how could Daniel have seen the use of CLAY as a tool of war, rather than as a building block? It would seem
almost impossible... except for the fact that a lot of bullet-proof vests use tile to help stop bullets. How could someone
in ancient Babylon have known about bullet-proof vests?
ax123man

Con

I thank Instigator for this opportunity to debate the bible's predictive capability.

Instigator claims that the bible "predicts history in advance". This is interesting since history is in the past - even I can "predict" history in that sense.

Fun aside, I find the burden of proof on Instigator to show that this bible predicting power exists. Simply believing something does not make it true. I believe this is all an example of postdiction, where history is made to fit after the fact.

Instigator has given Daniel 2:31-41 as proof the bible predicts the future, with the following claims:

C1: Predicted the "fourth empire", Rome
C2: Predicted the importance of iron as Rome's strength
C3: Predicted the use of clay as a tool of war

C1
Being that Rome has a well known association with iron, it conveniently becomes the fourth empire. Daniels text is vague and, in fact, doesn't mention ANY empire by name. Even religious scholars debate whether the fourth empire was Greece or Rome:
http://www.danielprophecy.com...

C2
Instigator says iron was "pretty much top secret" and yet Daniel knew enough to write the words "as strong as iron". We have a metal that was new and stronger than anything before it. No surprise Daniel used that for his fourth empire.

C3
This contention is patently false. The text given:

As the feet were made with both iron and clay, so will the nation be partly strong and partly brittle.

is clearly calling clay brittle not strong, so makes no prediction about strength or war. Also, in what way does this text "predict" bullet proof vests? Instigator has clearly gone on a postdiction binge here.
Debate Round No. 2
giraffelover

Pro

You asked how Daniel was talking about bulletproof vests. He described the strength of the first nation as using gold,
the second nation using silver for their strength, bronze for the third nation's strength, and iron for the strength of the
fourth nation. Since he was describing the metal the nation used as their source of strength, why would the feet with
iron and clay be the only exception?

As to my insistence that Rome is the 4th empire, he claims that the only way to reconcile the ten toes with Rome being
the 4th nation is assuming that ten nations would grow in the Consummation. Here's the problem in his logic: The Bible assures us that if we suffer with Christ, we shall also reign with Him. Last time I checked, there were more than
ten people who suffered with Christ. Another problem is that God doesn't WANT to take our power from us, yet Daniel says one horn is broken off and four inferior kings took his place. Sounds like what happened to Greece, right?

As for the ten kingdoms, there's the European Union that could be this kingdom.

Anyone who wants to may read Daniel 8: 15-27. This section is all about the interpretation of Daniel's dream. Compare what Daniel says to what history says.
ax123man

Con

You continue to hold to the idea that vaguely written words somehow predict specific events. I say the
faithful simply fill in the blanks. This isn't anything new or unusual and has been well studied by behavioral scientists.

http://www.scientificamerican.com...

In fact, we earthlings tend to believe in all kinds of interesting fairy tails:
60% believe in the devil
42% believe in ghosts
32% believe in UFOs
26% believe in astrology
23% believe in witches
20% believe in reincarnation
http://www.harrisinteractive.com...

The bible isn't the only written text that proclaims such predictive capacity. Authors such as Edgar Cayce and Nostradamus made the same claims. Put simply, if you write enough text in vague enough terms, you will indeed eventually "predict" (sarcasm) the future.

To address my opponents specific claims:
Your first paragraph speaks again about iron and clay. I refer again to my rebuttal C3 in round 2 which wasn't addressed at all. Specifically the wording of the text clearly implies Daniel refers to the clay as brittle.

Rome as the fourth empire.
I guess chapter two, the story of the statue isn't working for you so you've decided to take up chapter 8, the goat and some broken toes. My original C1 rebuttal in round 2 still stands: vague words left for the faithful to fill in blanks.

The fact that you say the EU might be one of the ten kingdoms proves my case regarding postdiction: you are simply filling in facts as history plays out. Then and only then can we say what was actually predicted. I wonder which toe the United States is? Probably a big toe :)

In closing, making a claim as strong as written text predicting the future requires more than interpretation of vague terms left to ones imagination, especially when readers want to believe.
Debate Round No. 3
No comments have been posted on this debate.
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by philochristos 4 years ago
philochristos
giraffeloverax123manTied
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:05 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro just didn't carry his burden of proof. He was not able to show clearly enough that Daniel was talking about Rome. Con adequately pointed this out.
Vote Placed by Muted 4 years ago
Muted
giraffeloverax123manTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Illogical resolution. History is what has happened, the future is what is predicted.
Vote Placed by xenofreedomx 4 years ago
xenofreedomx
giraffeloverax123manTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:05 
Reasons for voting decision: I often find biblical arguments to be on shaky ground. People are often blinded by faith ( although not a bad thing), but they can't detach and be objective about it. When you can't do that, you can't use logic to debate. You can't win on, it says so , so there logic.