RE: intelligently designed means

Doug Franks (
Tue, 6 Apr 1999 10:18:06 -0400 (EDT)

>Doug Franks writes:
>>The designing and crafting of a watch imputes "information" in the ordering
>>of the collection of atoms and energy that we call "a watch". At issue is
>>the improbable arrangement that the craftsman achieves by design.
>Doug, thanks for the suggestion, but I would rather say that the watch was
>"conceptualized by design" and that the "improbable arrangement" of its parts
>and materials was achieved by the "form-imposing action" of the watchmaker.
>One of the questions at issue is whether God, as the Creator (the giver of
>being to the creation) achieved his intentions by: 1) giving being to a
>creation gifted with all of the formational capabilities needed to actualize
>the desired array of life forms in time, or 2) giving being to a creation not
>equipped in that manner so that the actualization of at least a few desired
>forms required occasional episodes of form-imposing action by God in the
>course of the creation's formational history.
>Howard Van Till

Greetings once again,

I will reiterate your question to be sure I am considering the issue that
you mean to address.

Your question is how much did God imbue creation with the capacity for
creativity. Is creation dynamic to the extent that from the initial
conditions it generates new forms, especially those attributed to
biological evolution. The alternative being that it is less dynamic and
God must continuously, or intermittently, intervene to add new complexity,
especially new life forms. If it is highly dynamic then we may not be able
to discern ID in the emerging changes since they do not require new special
intervention, new design activity.

Back to the crafting watches illustration. I am inclined to think the
"form-imposing action" is also design. The distinction between the idea
and the act seems very small. If you are not involved in building
watches, the concept of the watch will remain incomplete. Who can compose
music if it is divorced from any anticipation of actual performance?
Programming may be more forceful as an illustration. There is intelligent
design in writing the code. Is there creativity in the "form-imposing
action" of running the program?

Thoughts on how God creates.

I feel that God cannot leave creation alone. He is always actively
involved, "not very far from any of us." God at times is involved
patiently, maybe luxuriating in things as they are, maybe enduring
patiently, then he chooses to rearrange things and we have a Cambrian
Explosion or an Exodus. I would not consider God to be more absent at the
quiet times. Creation is not on autopilot. That may be a good analogy.
Planes do not fly themselves on autopilot. They get guiding input in less
direct ways than when the pilot is manipulating the wheel, but the plane is
being monitored and controlled.

Positions #1 and #2 may not be distinct. Creation is genuinely creative.
New things emerge. Yet this creativity is not autonomous. God is acting.

All the questions remain. How can a sceptic be encouraged to acknowledge
that there is any pilot? Can we discern the mechanism for autopilot
manuvers? Can we differentiate autopilot manuvers from piloted manuvers?



Douglas Franks
1000 Forty Foot Rd
Lansdale, PA 19446
215 362 2943 fax
215 721 4324 hm

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