Friday, February 16, 2007

Theodore Drange on Prophecy, Pt. 1

Flourishing of Lebanon
Theodore M. Drange, in his error-filled "The Argument from the Bible," (1996) mentions many allegedly false prophecies. One of his citations was Isaiah 29:17, which says, "Is it not yet a very little while, and Lebanon shall be turned into a fruitful field, and the fruitful field shall be esteemed as a forest?" But Lebanon is a barren land, Drange complains. Here he commits the error of hyper-literalism. Isaiah is using a metaphor for God's plan of redemption.

Coming of St. John the Baptist
Drange also says that Isaiah 40:3's prophecy was not fulfilled in the time of St. John the Baptist. He especially focuses on Isaiah 40:4, which says "Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low, and the crooked will become straight, and the rough ways plain." Drange says that mountains were not leveled when St. John the Baptist came. Again, this is a metaphor for God preparing to lead His people home via an easy highway and with glory before other nations, with St. John the Baptist as the forerunner to Jesus Christ the Messiah.

How Did The Sons of Amaziah Die?
Furthermore, Drange cites Amos 7:17 as a false prophecy. Amos says that Amaziah's sons will die by the sword, but Amaziah's son Uzziah died from leprosy. Amos was referring to the children of the priest Amaziah, whereas 2 Chr 26:1,21 refers to the leprous son of king Amaziah.

Sadly, I’ve looked far and wide and this is probably the single best professional anti-Christian treatise (e.g. Bertrand Russell's "Why I Am Not a Christian" is imbecilic rubbage!, esp. his 'First Cause' section), while Brian Holtz’s highly flawed yet exceptionally succinct and self-contained "Arguments Against Christianity" piece is probably the best amateur anti-Christian treatise.

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