Re: Faith, Evolution, and Tax Dollars?--ps

From: Ted Davis <TDavis@messiah.edu>
Date: Mon Apr 05 2004 - 13:04:24 EDT

>>> Keith Miller <kbmill@ksu.edu> 04/05/04 11:45AM >>>writes:
Fine tuning argues that initial conditions were so
established by God that they permitted the subsequent outworking of
God's creative will. In Van Till's terminology the creaturely
capacities to fully actualize God's creative will were already present
in the properties of the universe.

To reply more specifically to Keith:
I don't see how the creation can be "gifted" (a term Howard has often used)
with "the creaturely capacities to fully actualize God's creative will," I
don't see how "the properties of the universe" can be "given" to nature (my
term, which I've used for twenty years, even before I think Howard was
writing about this) without the exercise of raw creative power. Matter has
either one set of properties or another set of properties. If God can
meaningfully be said to have "gifted" it with a particular set of
"creaturely capacities," then it can only mean that it could have been
"gifted" with other capacities that God did not give it, for reasons beyond
our ken. This means that the "laws" of nature are not binding on God, they
could have been otherwise; thus God "intervenes" to make a universe that
would not exist without God actively giving it a particular kind of being.

Now perhaps Howard and Keith are using the word "intervention" to mean only
certain other kinds of divine action, perhaps they are excluding this one.
But in Howard's case, at least, the term "intervention" is rejected partly
b/c "omnipotence" is being rejected. I do see that as inconsistent with the
"gifting" language he used to employ regularly. I don't think we get fine
tuning and/or "giftedness" without actual divine origination of the
universe, in the sense of calling into being that which once did not exist.
(What is most commonly meant by "creation" in the classical sense, not in
the YEC sense.) I fail (again) to see why this is not properly speaking an
"intervention," but it may be that Keith and Howard are using the word in a
different sense.

ted
Received on Mon Apr 5 13:05:49 2004

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