Re: It's the Bible or evolution

From: George Murphy <>
Date: Sat Oct 01 2005 - 10:33:20 EDT

----- Original Message -----
From: "Denyse O'Leary" <>
To: "'Ted Davis'" <>; <>;
Sent: Friday, September 30, 2005 10:26 AM
Subject: RE: It's the Bible or evolution

> Ted, just this: Special creation is special creation. It may not be
> special
> divine creation - that's another story.
> But if/when scientists can create life forms from scratch in a laboratory,
> they will demonstrate that special creation can definitely occur without
> divine intervention.
> Special creation will then be a fact, not an argument.
> If scientists arrive at the point where they decide that special creation,
> like ftl time travel, quantum freezing of large objects, or the
> calculations
> of LaPlace's demon, is not practically possible in this universe, that
> would
> be evidence for a divine origin of life.
> I think you are not giving enough credit to the contribution that humans,
> as
> intelligent designers, can make to the question, by ruling various
> possibilities in or out.

A great deal of confusion is caused by the ambiguous use of the word
"creation." Of course sometimes it's used in purely secular contexts where
there's not likely to be any confusion - e.g., when we talk about the
"creations" of a fasion designer. But when the subject under consideration
is precisely the relationships (or lack thereof) between science & theology,
between natural processes & divine action, it would be much better to
restrict the word to its theological sense & use it to refer to divine
action. The word "create" then would have something like the sense of the
Hebrew verb /bara'/. Atheists then could say unambiguously that they don't
believe in creation & theists (including Christians) could say unambiguously
that they do.

This does NOT mean that the word "creation" would then refer only to direct
unmediated divine action: The concept of /creatio continua/ is well
established in the Christian tradition as well as /creatio ex nihilo/, and
providence, God's ongoing action in the world which may take place through
secondary causes, is part of creation in the traditional sense. But to say
that "special creation ... may not be special divine creation" would then be
seen to be self-contradictory, a sentence of the form "A is not A."

Received on Sat Oct 1 10:36:22 2005

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