Re: It's the Bible or evolution

From: Terry M. Gray <grayt@lamar.colostate.edu>
Date: Fri Sep 30 2005 - 10:28:35 EDT

Ted Davis wrote:

>
> I'm sympathetic with Randy and Cornelius, but then the only
> recourse is to
> say this.
>
> (1) We can't make any assumptions about what a creator would/would
> not have
> done relative to making creatures.
>
> (2) Thus, anything we find is consistent with special creation.
>
> (3) Thus, special creation is wholly untestable.
>
> (4) Thus, we can *never* put special creation on the same level with
> evolution--that is, we can *never* consider it as an alternative
> scientific
> explanation of the same data.
>
> Special creation then becomes entirely and only a faith position,
> emptied of
> content for purposes of comparing it with an alternative view to
> account for
> data.
>
> Is something wrong with the reasoning above? Is it perhaps (2) or
> (3) or
> (4)? Or the links between them? If so, I don't see it.
>
> My own voluntarist theology leads me to like (1). I don't like to put
> rational restrictions on God, I think God is higher than us and
> does what
> God wants to do. I've often argued for this, and I think that view
> of God
> was crucially important for the formation of the modern scientific
> enterprise in the first place. But I am unwilling to push it this
> far, so
> that it becomes impossible to draw observable consequences from the
> claim
> that special creation is true/false vis-a-vis evolution.
>

Ted,

I think you are correct here.

I have often taken it one step further and David Campbell's recent
post pointed out the same thing. If "special creation" was indeed
God's method of creation, He went to great efforts to make it look
like evolution (common ancestry) occurred. My position is that if it
looks like evolution (common ancestry) occurred, and there is no
reason Biblically or theologically to say that it did not occur (and
there isn't in my view), then the most reasonable conclusion is to
say that it did occur. To say otherwise undermines a great deal of
what I think is orthodox theology and it also undermines my
epistemology significantly.

Hence, I will reiterate. I agree with much of Cornelius Hunter's
critique of the theology of many evolutionists--including Darwin's
theology. I, too, cringe when I hear Ken Miller tell us that
evolution is true because an intelligent designer wouldn't do it the
way it appears to have been done. Such lines of argument contribute,
whether intentionally or not, to either/or types of argument. It's
not just the YEC's or the atheists. When you say that God wouldn't
have done it in a certain way, you end up saying that evolution did
it, NOT God.

However, my chief disagreement with Cornelius is that I don't believe
that the acceptance of evolution (common ancestry) rests on this bad
theology. That is the major flaw in his work.

TG

________________
Terry M. Gray, Ph.D.
Computer Support Scientist
Chemistry Department
Colorado State University
Fort Collins, CO 80523
(o) 970-491-7003 (f) 970-491-1801
Received on Fri Sep 30 13:57:21 2005

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