Re: "Defeating Darwinism by Opening Minds"

Allan Harvey (
Wed, 03 Sep 1997 10:08:20 -0600

Inge Frette wrote:
>Allan H. Harvey wrote:
>> I can't speak for Terry, but I suspect that what most bothers him is not
>> Johnson's conviction that God has acted in creation in scientifically
>> discernable ways, but rather his insistence that God *must* have acted in
>> such ways, or else theism is false. That is certainly the main problem I
>> have with Johnson -- the position that theism is only compatible with
>> "interventionist" models of God's creation, which implies that those who
>> picture God as having created in more providential ways (ways that would
>> appear "natural" to the scientist) are not real theists. Making the
>> truth of theism dependent upon a particular model of God's creative
>> activity is unwise both theologically and apologetically. It is as
>> presumptuous of us to insist that God *must* have created in an
>> interventionist way as it is to insist that he *can't* have created in
>> that way.
>Do you think that God *could* have acted in an "interventionist" way in
>creation, or do you think that God *must* act in what you call a
>*providential* way in creation ?

My last sentence above answers that. I think God *could* create however
he pleases. I have no major quarrel with those in the ID movement who
say that we should be *open to the possibility* of God acting in an
"interventionist" manner that is scientifically discernable. My quarrel
is with those who would make that mode of creation a necessity on which
the truth of theism depends. Johnson seems to me to draw that
unfortunate line in the sand, while some others in the movement (Paul
Nelson, for example) seem to be coming from a healthier perspective
without these presuppositions on how God must or must not have acted.

| Dr. Allan H. Harvey | |
| Physical and Chemical Properties Division | Phone: (303)497-3555 |
| National Institute of Standards & Technology | Fax: (303)497-5224 |
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