Re: ID and Utility (THEISTIC ACTION)

George Murphy (
Mon, 29 Sep 1997 21:48:11 -0400

Craig Rusbult wrote:
> George Murphy states that
> > [there is no] incoherence between scientific
> >explanation & belief in divine action - IF God voluntarily limits his
> >action to that describable in terms of natural processes obeying
> >rational laws. But ID proponents will not allow God this type of
> >self-limitation.
> And neither does the Bible allow this. (in this, I'm sure George -- who
> is referring here to a way that ID might be legitimate in science, not in
> theology -- would agree)
> Are there only "natural processes obeying rational laws" in each of the
> many miracles of the Bible? If not, then why should we try to limit God's
> activity *in nature* to these "natural and rational" mechanisms?

Instead of starting with miracles, we ought to begin with God's
self-revelation in Scripture. & God's supreme revelation is given in a
paradoxically hidden way, in what appears to natural ways of thinking as
weakness & foolishness - I Cor.1:18-31. God limits himself by "emptying
himself" & becoming "obedient even unto death" (Phil.2:5-11), the
antithesis of what people want as a demonstration of divine power.
"Truly, thou art a God who hidest thyself, O God of Israel, the Savior"
Only after trying to absorb that should we go on to deal with
miracles. IMO there is no fundamental reason to insist that miracles
are completely outside the range of natural possibilities, & they may be
rare events whose possibilities God has built into creation. OTOH,
there may well be events which cannot be explained at all in terms of
natural processes - Goedel's theorem may point to that. But in any case
- God is still hidden even in miracles to those who have no faith - "If
they do not hear Moses and the prophets, neither will they be convinced
if some one should rise from the dead."

George L. Murphy