Re: NTSE Report #1 (fwd)

Robert L. Miller (
Tue, 25 Feb 1997 08:58:41 GMT

>I also had an experience relevant to this point. Several years ago I was
>asked to give a review of Denton's book for a CT writer who was writing an
>article on "Evolution: A Theory in Crisis." I gave him an extensive and
>highly critical review. The writer called me expressing surprise that I so
>strongly disputed Denton's claims. When the article came out in CT it made
>no mention of _any_ of my criticisms and in fact did not even acknowlege
>that there was any criticism from Christians in science. How do we
>communicate our concerns to the Christian laity when the writers of
>Christian publications refuse to listen to us?
>Keith Miller
I have been a member of ASA since about 1958-59. I would like to reply to
your question.

We are unable to communicate with the Christian laity because we do not
badly enough want to. It has nothing to do with the Christian media. We are
an academic organization that delights in an academic discussion. A good
clean argument over some Science, Christian esoteria makes us resonate. We
enjoy it no end. I enjoy it. But the Christian public does not. We have two
strikes against us when ever we open our mouths to our Christian friends. We
are "intellectuals" and we are "scientists", both party poison to the
Christian public. Have Henry Morris and his fellow travelers been able to be
so successful in cultivating a hearing from the Christian public because of
their ability to explain the science of creation? I don't think so. They
have been successful because they have bashed the "atheistic scientists" and
by defending the Bible from its enemies. Read David Wells. There is a strong
anti-intellectual current in evangelical Chrisitanity. Cogent and relevant
explanations of the niceties of TE, ID, OEC, YEC, etc., etc., etc., will not
cut it.

The closet the organization has ever come to reaching out to the science
layman is the production of the booklet "Teaching Science in a Climate of
Controversey". It was a great start and was well done but it was not aimed
at a general audience. It positioned the organization to follow thru with
something but it never materialized. And by not reaching out to our
Christian public I think we have forfeited our ability to affect the
non-Christian public. There was great possibility in the proposed TV series
but that project seems to have died a quiet death. The tragedy to me is that
ASA is the one organization, in the US anyway, that has the intellectual
resources to be able to educate the Christian public about what good science
really says about creation. We lack the will to make the effort. I think we
will remain that way until a miracle occurs. Since I have a firm faith in
God I believe the miracle can happen, I just do not see it on the horizon.

Take a lesson from the liberal theologians of the early 20th century. How
did they capture the mainline denominations to their view? By capturing the