Re: [asa] chance (formerrly BioLogos - Bad Theology?)

From: Randy Isaac <>
Date: Thu May 28 2009 - 20:31:32 EDT

I second this recommendation. It is one of the best books on the topic. Note
that Dembski reviewed it on p. 248 of PSCF Dec 2008 but mainly focused on
Bartholomew's critique of ID.

What I appreciated most about this book was the recognition that randomness
and order are uniquely linked in many aspects of our universe. Randomness
leads to order and order leads to randomness in many different fields.


----- Original Message -----
From: "Don Nield" <>
To: "Schwarzwald" <>
Cc: <>
Sent: Thursday, May 28, 2009 7:34 PM
Subject: [asa] chance (formerrly BioLogos - Bad Theology?)

> Yes, it is a potentially foggy area. For some clarification I recommend
> the book "God, Chance and Purpose: Can God Have It Both Ways?) by David J.
> Bartholomew (Cambridge U.P., 2008). The product description reads:
> "Scientific accounts of existence give chance a central role. At the
> smallest level, quantum theory involves uncertainty and evolution is
> driven by chance and necessity. These ideas do not fit easily with
> theology in which chance has been seen as the enemy of purpose. One option
> is to argue, as proponents of Intelligent Design do, that chance is not
> real and can be replaced by the work of a Designer. Others adhere to a
> deterministic theology in which God is in total control. Neither of these
> views, it is argued, does justice to the complexity of nature or the
> greatness of God. The thesis of this book is that chance is neither unreal
> nor non-existent but an integral part of God's creation. This view is
> expounded, illustrated and defended by drawing on the resources of
> probability theory and numerous examples from the natural and social
> worlds. "
> Don N.
> Schwarzwald wrote:
>> One question I have about this entire debate...
>> Is ascribing something to "chance" really a scientific statement, no
>> matter how thoroughly we know the conditions? I would understand if
>> "chance" were just a statement about the limitations of our knowledge.
>> But are "biological item X was created by chance" or "chance events
>> resulted in biological item X" scientific statements at all, at least in
>> the opinion of most here?
>> From my layman vantage point, this seems like a foggy area to say the
>> least. I could say more, but I'd like to keep this simple, if anyone is
>> willing to respond.
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Received on Thu May 28 20:31:47 2009

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