...The Bible was translated and spread by humans, not by God.....
Of course God is incapable of employing humans as his agents, isn't he?
If one attributes the acts of humans to the will of God how is that any different than attributing the fact that a stone falls when I drop it to the will of God? That sounds Ash'ari to me..
Speaking of attributing agency where there is none, there is an evolutionary advantage to that behaviour. If one hears a noise in the bushes, it might be just the wind or it might be a tiger getting ready to pounce. If it is just the wind but you think it is a tiger and run away, there is not much harm done. On the other hand, if you think it is the wind while it really is a tiger... Those that are "false positive" in the meaning that they are more likely to attribute agency (even if it turns out to be wrong) have a higher chance of survival than those that are "false negative" in the meaning that they are more likely to think that there's nothing there (and hence have a higher chance of becoming a predator's meal).
I doubt that Newton, Pascal or Galileo or most of the other early scientists would be able to obtain tenure at any modern secular university of our day.
Ah, so you've seen Expelled then? Well, if you want to reinforce a persecution complex.. Is the film still only showed in closed screenings, or is it finally available to the rest of us so that we can publicly correct the factual errors in it?
(...and that rocks, fossils and the total sum of what we can test and observe are "witnesses"....)
They are witnesses, whose testimony is interpreted today with the underlying worldview that there is no God and everything these witnesses tell us is filtered through the presupposition that the entire universe is a result of probabilistic mechanical processes, not involving any thought or planning.
It is true that humans are rationalising animals, we have an in-built bias to choose explanations that confirm what we already believe. We have known this for a long time, and that is why the process of science (scientific method) has all these rules to try to eliminate bias. Just saying "goddidit!" doesn't really explain anything, it does not produce hypothesis, models and predictions that we can put to the test in any sensible way. As such, it is easy to come to the belief that science is hostile to religion or the supernatural. It really isn't, it is just a methodology that tries to eliminate *all* kinds of human bias.
All laws of nature are quite independent of the underlying beliefs or philosophies of the scientists investigating them to learn how they operate.
True. Ultimate cause is likely outside the set of problems and questions that can be processed by the scientific process. As such, our different beliefs about ultimate cause is something that we will just have to agree to disagree on - it is something that is likely not testable, so that is an area where we will just have beliefs and opinions. What one can test is specific predictions that certain religious beliefs profess (in the case of xtianity, for example global flood in recent history, or 6Ky old universe).
Is it not strange that so much of science is devoted to the past, trying to understand how things came to be as they are?
Why so? Everything we see around us are products of what happened in the past, so investigating the past is important to understanding the present and predicting the future.
All of these have to be interpreted and all interpretations are subject to the basic philosophies of the interpreter. There is no way to get around this.
That is more an argument against religion than it is against science. Science does at the very least attempt to minimise or eliminate the bias of the interpreter.
Hubble and others INTERPRETED this shift to be caused by motion of the stars and galaxies due to the well-known Doppler effect.
Countless dissertations and theses have been written on the rapid motion of galaxies and the so-called Big Bang.
Red-shift is not the only reason that current theory posits a Big Bang. Other observations that point in the same direction include microwave background radiation, the relative ratio of different elements (lots of hydrogen/helium, less amount of heavier elements, and the relative abundance of each), the large-scale structure of cosmos, and other things.
You seem to have a cardboard strawman understanding of the scientific process. A hypothesis does not become accepted as scientific theory based on a single source of observational data. It only becomes a theory when it fits with several different observations (and it is still possible to falsify a theory if new lines of investigation show observational data that does not fit).
Rather than dump long-held, cherished theories developed over many years of academic studies, scientists were forced to come up with exotic constructs and ideas.
You mean like quantum physics? There was huge resistance in the scientific community to hypothesis like Einstein's relativity or quantum physics. If scientists were so resistant to throw away their "cherished theories" then they would still stick to Newton. Science is less resistant to new theories than you seem to believe, but science requires that these theories are supported by observational and experimental data.
Dark matter, dark energy, black holes, quasars and neutron stars and all sorts of other weird and wonderful objects are postulated to exist in the distant reaches of the universe.
There is much more observational and experimental evidence for these things than you seem to believe. In fact, I wonder if your dislike for science is actually rooted in misconceptions about what science is, what current accepted scientific theories actually say, the process that science uses for testing hypotheses and the amount of observational and experimental data that is needed for something to become accepted as a scientific theory.
For example, early in our discussion you said something to the effect of "we have never observed a bird giving birth to a plant" as if that in some sort of way was evidence that the theory of evolution was false. The theory of evolution claims no such thing. If you knew what the claims that ToE makes are, you would know that. Instead you argued against some sort of cardboard model of what you *think* ToE says. Which makes me wonder how much you actually know about current mainstream science.
You are mainly arguing against strawmen, against some made up idea you have about what science says instead of arguing against actual science.
When he first published this he was vilified by the mainstream astronomical and cosmological community and his data was dismissed as measurement errors.
"Vilified" as in the way Einstein's theory of relativity was vilified, you mean? Or quantum theory? What you interpret as "vilified" is just the scientific process at work. If a single new observation disagrees with an accepted theory that is supported by many different observations, one of the things that happens first is to see if there is any bias or methodology faults with the experiment/observation. That happens in *all* parts of science, not just those parts of science that you think is anti-god.
To their surprise and chagrin, their measurements corroborated Tifft's research.
Exactly. One other thing that happens is that others try to repeat the observation to see if their is really something there. That's just science at work. Why do you say "chagrin and surprise"? What they found is that red-shift shows some pattern of quantization, but that this pattern is nothing unusual when looking at the large scale structure of the universe.
What do you want, exactly? One observation found something that looked contrary to current theory. People investigated. It was found to not be so contrary after all. That is just science at work.
But for some reason you think that this is "vilification" and "opposition to cherished belief, therefore discounted". That is not what happened at all.
If the cherished interpretation of present-day measurable science is so hard to change with new data
It isn't. It is however hard to change long established theories that are supported by many different sources with just a single observation. If it had been found that the slight patterns in red-shift could not be incorporated in current theories, science would have gone into overdrive by scientists smelling Nobel Prizes.
In the study of origins and history, it is not possible to time travel and determine if the interpretation of the testimony of the witnesses is correct.
"All is witness, all is just interpretation, therefore goddidit". Ash'ari.