FW: Babel - Languages - European Creationist Congress

Tue, 29 Aug 95 12:08:00 CDT

Very interesting, concerning the Bibles accuracy.
From: gernoth
To: CRSnet (Creation Reflector)
Subject: Babel - Languages - European Creationist Congress
Date: Tuesday, August 29, 1995 16:43PM

This in response to Pete Williams' messages about the confusion
of languages at Babel.

There was a highly interesting talk touching this matter at the
European Creationist Congress about two weeks ago in Amersfoort.
It was delivered by Roger Liebi, a bible teacher from Switzerland with
a Ph.D. in linguistics. Roger knows perfectly something like a five ancient
and a four modern languages. The major goal of his talk was to demonstrate
that modern languages, when compared to their ancient ancestor languages
from which they derive, have in fact deteriorated over the
last few thousand years and not evolved into something more sophisticated
and developed which is what evolutionists would like to have.
Roger managed to convince me at least, an interested layman in this matter,

of his views.

One of the points Roger made was that he belives that
humans do not possess creative capabilities in the area of
morphology, which is, as far as I understand it (I'm not an expert in
linguistics!), basically grammar. As a matter of fact, grammar of
ancient languages such as Latin or Biblical Greek is far more complex
than grammar of modern languages. For this reason, things can be expressed
in a much more precise manner in these languages than in today's
languages. This at least is what also a couple of pastors with a
working knowledge of Biblical Greek keep telling me.
The grammatical structure of ancient languages is
more logical and far better organized. For me reading something in
Latin, the only ancient language I know, is almost like doing mathematics.
The fact that some modern languages today have a much larger vocabulary
than they used to have centuries ago is mainly due to input of words
from other, already existing languages and not a creation of a
genuinely new language. English for example contains a good dose of
words of Latin origin, e.g., the word `language' derives from the
Latin word `lingua,' meaning `tongue.' In this sense there is
some evolution in the vocabulary of languages but not in the structure
of grammar. The modern languages keep loosing grammatical complexity and
as a result also preciseness and clarity.

As far as the confusion of languages at Babel is concerned, Roger's view
is that before Babel only one universal language did exist for all
mankind and that God did create new languages at Babel from which all
modern languages descend. The Roman languages Italian, French, and Spanish
very clearly originate in Latin, which did leave quite an impact on English
vocabulary too.
Not so much on German vocabulary, although some words
of Latin origin did make it also into German language.

Roger Liebi has written a book on these issues entitled
``Der Mensch -- Ein sprechender Affe?'' = ``Man -- a speaking monkey?''
Unfortunately, an English translation of his book is not available (yet).
I am in contact with some people in the U.S. having translated
Christian books from German into English and having gotten the
English translation published in the U.S. I hope I can win them over to
have also Roger's book translated and published. I'll keep you updated on
any progress I make in this matter.

Klaus Gernoth