Re: Faith, Evolution, and Tax Dollars?

From: Ted Davis <>
Date: Mon Apr 05 2004 - 10:27:23 EDT

Howard has explained where/why he differs with me.

I'm not convinced that "exnihiling" does not also entail "intervention," or
at least does not entail an excercise in coercive power that I am content to
call "omnipotence." In the picture I have presented, God's freedom is the
source of the anthropic coincidences--that is, they do not follow
necessarily from some set of axioms, some "theory of everything" that has
not been as yet produced for us. Rather, they are a result of free choice.
To "set" the constants and laws of nature is, as it were, an exercise in
world building. We don't make the dirt, God did, in terms of that well
known cartoon. My view is that the laws of nature *actually could have been
and could now be and could in the future be different* from what they
presently are. Hence, God "set" them as God wished, in order to obtain
results that God intended. I call that "exnihiling", and I think that does
entail coercive power and is an "intervention", in the sense that without
such activity there would have been no world; and without such activity in
the future, there will be no world to come in which we will dwell in
glorified bodies with the Lord of Easter.

Now I grant that there may be other ways in which one can make sense of
this. But I don't see how one can make sense of the crucial pieces
here--creation ex nihilo and resurrection--without the kind of coercive
power that entails "intervention."

Received on Mon Apr 5 11:32:33 2004

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