Re: Natural Theology, Unguided Processes and Apologetics

Paul Arveson (
Fri, 12 Sep 1997 09:08:06 -0500

Terry Gray said:

"So when I say that God is intimately involved in the governing of the
universe, I mean just that. Intimately. I tell my students that God's
involvement in the conversion of water into hydrogen and oxygen in a
hydrolysis reaction is NO LESS than his involvement in the conversion of
water into wine at the wedding of Cana."

Terry's discussion is getting directly at the ancient theological doctrines
of providence, and the simultaneous transcendence and immanence of God.
These concepts have been forgotten by the modern mind, perhaps because of
its focus on individuality, chronological precision, measurement and so

Psalm 139 makes it clear that God is never and nowhere absent from
creation. This being the case, there can be no distinction between
autonomous processes and God-directed ones. This deistic fallacy,
exploited by people like Isaac Netwon, keeps emerging today in various
forms. But remember, Newton was an Arian; he didn't accept the
Incarnation. So I agree with Terry that perhaps 'Intelligent Design' is
just another idol.

Paul Arveson, Code 724, Signatures Directorate, NSWC
(301) 227-3831 (301) 227-4511 (FAX)