In a message dated 5/16/2000 8:48:15 AM, firstname.lastname@example.org writes:
<< "Chance" is not an "explanation" for anything. It is a confession of the
lack of a causal explanation.
Correct. I should say that there was a low probability that the incident
occurred by random events. Is that acceptable?
<<Suppose that Glenn & friends had been looking for an Italian speaker &
on their first try. We would still consider this an impressive "coincidence"
but not as
much so as with a Turkish speaker - there are lots of people of Italian
descent all over
the U.S. & if the quest had been for a Spanish speaker and the 1st person
been fluent in that language we might say, "Boy, that was lucky!" but we
consider it too amazing to find a Spanish speaker in Texas.>>
Letís push your example still further. Suppose Glennís incident had occurred
at 9:00 PM, and the lobby of the hotel was full of people. The young lady
comes in as Glenn described looking for a Spanish interpreter. Would Glenn
have prayed for an interpreter? Would he and Wayne have waited 10 minutes?
Of course not. They would have circulated in the crowd and found one in no
time at all.
Had that been the case, Glenn never would have written his story on the
internet years later. It would not have been remarkable. But arenít we all
amazed at the remarkable series of coincidences that occurred in his story,
i.e., one event of low probability stacked upon another?
<<Now given that in all these cases God would have been at work - as I
was God doing something qualitatively different in "producing" a Turkish
God didn't do with a Spanish speaker? & if so, what? Is the appearance of a
speaker a "miracle" which is beyond the capacities of natural processes? If
exactly is the miracle supposed to have happened?>>
No, God was not doing something qualitatively different from one extreme of
the Turkish translator to the finding a Spanish translator in a crowd. He
just had a harder problem to solve (from our limited human perspective) in
the case of the Turkish translator than in the case of finding a Spanish
interpreter in the crowded lobby.
I didnít use the word miracle. Thatís your word. It is clear that God
intervened everywhere in Glennís story. Had anyone of the actors failed to
do what they did the function of the system would have broken down. Was God
intervening somewhere in Glennís psyche when Glenn inexplicably suggested
they pray. Was God doing the same in the hearts of the young woman, of
Wayne, of the translator? Is this just a series of coincidences as you seem
to suggest that can eventually be resolved by natural processes?
The more I think about the problem of Godís interaction with creation,
including human beings, the more I am moved to say, which others have
probably stated better, that we are confronted with a profound mystery, and
that it is not a problem just for IDers, but also for TEs, and those who hold
that God works through secondary means. I donít know why IDers are held more
responsible to explain this than TEs who hold that God works through
You may have the last word on this, George. Thanks for the discussion.
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