Re: Design as Concept, Sign, and Production

Moorad Alexanian (
Mon, 12 Apr 1999 10:56:32 -0400

In what sense does God sustain the creation? Also, it seems that you are
getting dangerously close to deism. What then of miracles? Are our prayers
truly answered or are they mere coincidences? Did God knew of my prayers
before I was born?


-----Original Message-----
From: Howard J. Van Till <>
To: ASA Listserve <>
Date: Monday, April 12, 1999 10:03 AM
Subject: Re: Design as Concept, Sign, and Production

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
>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,
>can you derive scientific hypotheses and observations from it. How does
>verify or demonstarte that creation is fully gifted? Directly?

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
form of episodic creationism) comes from two sources:

1) Theological considerations: I hold God to be the Creator who gave being
the entire universe. The Creation's being includes all of its capabilities,
including all capabilities that contribute to its formational economy. I
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

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=