Re: Wesley and extinction

From: George Murphy <>
Date: Mon Aug 01 2005 - 16:33:30 EDT

----- Original Message -----
From: "Ted Davis" <>
To: <>; <>; "Cornelius Hunter"
<>; "Glenn Morton" <>
Sent: Monday, August 01, 2005 1:38 PM
Subject: Wesley and extinction

> George Murphy's comments on the "chain of beings," etc are a propos here.
> Belief in the sanctity of speces per se is rooted both in the Christian
> tradition (God values what God creates, hence no extinction) and in the
> Greek philosophical tradition (God's goodness requires that whatever can
> exist must exist, and once it exists it would not be good were it no
> longer
> to exist). My students seem to think that valuing species as species is
> some wild belief coming from "tree huggers" and other modern folks; some
> even associate this (believe it or not) with "evolutionists." It of
> course
> has quite different roots. Ironies all over the place today.

People have tried to appeal to the Christian tradition for this conclusion
but it's a questionable procedure. Precisely the same logic leads to the
YEC dogma "No death before the fall": God values not only each "kind" but
each individual of a kind, hence no death. But as most of us are aware,
there is no warrant for extending biblical statements about the connection
between sin & death to non-human creatures. The rejection of death both at
the individual & species level is simply an application of the "God wouldn't
do it that way" argument that has been noted here - an argument which
usually means "I wouldn't do it that way if I were God."

Received on Mon Aug 1 16:35:41 2005

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