Re: The more they learn, the less they believe

George Murphy (
Sun, 02 Aug 1998 21:02:40 -0400

Dick Fischer wrote:
> Phil Johnson wrote:
> >>Suppose Larson and Witham had asked biologists who are members
> of the NAS to step forward publicly at a scientific convention to affirm in
> front of their colleagues that they agree with this statement: "A
> supernatural
> being we call God actively guided evolution in order to bring about the
> existence of human beings in furtherance of a divine purpose." How many
> would step forward?<<
> If this is the litmus test, I too fail it. The problematic phrase for me is
> "actively guided." Does God actively guide the changes that occur in
> the evolution of the human DNA molecule? How do deleterious genes
> slip through? How do genetic defects arise? Does God fall asleep at
> the switch from time to time? Your statement implicates the Creator
> for genetic disease. Is that your intent?

The phrase "actively guided" is a little like "inerrant" in connection with
Scripture. There is a sense in which I could affirm the latter but I'd rather not
because most people who use it mean not just "without error" but "accurate historical
narrative." Similarly, there is a careful sense in which I could speak of God"actively
guiding" evolution but I'd rather not because Johnson & others want it to mean that some
natural phenomena bear an unmistakeable _deus me fecit_ stamp on them.

George L. Murphy