Re: Design as Concept, Sign, and Production

Howard J. Van Till (
Mon, 12 Apr 1999 10:01:46 -0400

Walter Bradley asked:

>If I understand your comments in this post, you are saying that matter
>has creaturely properties which are not fully determined by the laws of
>nature and the universal constants. If this is so, is there any way to ever
>be able to identify the existence of such properties scientifically or are
>we to just base our belief on such properties on metaphysics?

Bob DeHaan comments:

>I think it is a legitimate question. Is your position only metaphysical, or
>can you derive scientific hypotheses and observations from it. How does one
>verify or demonstarte that creation is fully gifted? Directly? Indirectly?

I have said this repeatedly, but let me try one more time.

My inclination to favor the idea of a "fully-gifted Creation," that is, a
Creation that has been gifted with robust formational and operational
economies (economies that *need* not, for instance, be supplemented by
occasional, form-imposing, divine interventions of the sort envisioned by any
form of episodic creationism) comes from two sources:

1) Theological considerations: I hold God to be the Creator who gave being to
the entire universe. The Creation's being includes all of its capabilities,
including all capabilities that contribute to its formational economy. I take
the richness of that formational economy to be a "sign" of God's creativity
(in conceptualizing it) and God's generosity (it giving it such wealth of
being). Therefore I have high expectations of the giftedness of the Creation.

2. Scientific considerations: Although the sciences have only just begun, in
the past century or so, to become familiar with the wealth of Creation's
capabilities, including those that contribute to its formational economy, I
expect that far more is to be learned in the future. I could, of course, be
wrong, but I fully expect that the credibillity of the "robust formational
economy principle" will increase considerably with time.

All of these considerations can be found in the publications that I have
recently called to the attention of the members of this list. Please refer
further questions to those publications.


Howard Van Till