RE: Kline article in PSCF
Wed, 3 Apr 1996 14:03:17 EST5EDT

> On Wed, 3 Apr 1996, Keith B Miller wrote:
> > Jeff posted:
> >
> > >The position that I think is dangerous philosophically is just the
> > >reverse: that God cannot interject into the natural order and that
> > >natural law cannot be violated. I am uneasy about talk of a "seemless
> > >web" of natural law in science that cannot involve God in any way other
> > >than in secondary causation. I see no problem with having God have
> > >providential oversight and secondary causation and also having the
> > >ability to interject via primary causation whenever he wants to.
> >
> > I am uncomfortable with the distinction between primary and secondary
> > causation. I personally see no distinction as it relates to the
> > accomplishment of God's will in the physical universe. Many of the events
> > described in scripture as the actions of God were accomplished through
> > natural processes. Most answered prayer is accomplished through natural
> > processes. I think we get in trouble by viewing certain of God's actions
> > as more "direct' than others. For me "special creation" is not any more
> > special than God's use of natural process.
> >
> > Keith
> >
> Many of the events described in Scripture as the actions of God were
> accomplished through supernatural processes as well. If special acts of
> God are no more special than natural acts, then why are supernatural
> miracles used as "signs" to point to the divine person and message of
> Christ rather than natural processes? The only way that a natural
> process will do is if it is very unlikely and/or the timing very unlikely
> (of which some of the special acts of God were), but it seems that the
> turning of water to wine, and the resurrection of Jesus were not of this
> type.
> Jeff
Johann Diemer (a biologist who died in the concentration camp in WWII)
wrote an intersted booklet entitled, Nature & Miracle, in which he
argues that all of creation is a miracle ("wonder") because all of
creation are signs which point to God and to his activity in the
world. The special signs are done because human beings intheir
fallenness refused or were unable to see the miracle in creation.
Refusing to acknowledge the Word of God in creation, God then
accomplished the greatest miracle of all: the Word become flesh and
dwelt among us. Even then, and now, humankind still refuses to
acknowledge the miracle of God's activities which are all signs of
his kingdom.

Uko Zylstra, Chair e-mail:
Biology Department tel: (616) 957-6499
Calvin College fax: (616) 957-6501
Grand Rapids, MI 49546