Re: [asa] Does nature leads you to believe or to reject God?

From: William Hamilton <>
Date: Sat Nov 28 2009 - 13:22:18 EST

Hi Oscar
Some answers that occur to me

   1. In my case what brought me to Christ was seeing the example of
   experienced adults who embraced Christianity and had for many years. I grew
   up in a nominally Christian home in a city that was quite evangelical. So I
   was evangelized mainly by people my own age. It was easy to dismiss their
   efforts. After all, what did they know that I didn't? But when I met
   experienced adults who told me of their faith in Christ, that was a
   different matter. To summarize, then, it wasn't observing nature that
   convinced me of God's existence, it was observing a real Christian
   community. That's why 1 Peter 3:15 is so important: You have to live a life
   that leads unbelievers to ask what you have. Evidently there is something
   about you that led your advisor to ask. Good for you!
   2. It's true that there is a great deal of cruelty in nature. However,
   humans are (mostly) different. Humans have instincts such as altruism,
   charity, etc. Even when we purposely do something that is cruel, we
   (usually) feel a pang of conscience. These instincts present in humans seem
   to have their source in something outside of nature. This of course doesn't
   point specifically to Yahweh or His son, but it is indicative of something
   over and above nature.

On Sat, Nov 28, 2009 at 1:02 AM, Oscar Gonzalez <>wrote:

> Hello Asaers.
> I ask this question in this forum for this reason: I have started this year
> my PhD studies in Ecology; and this topic appeared while I was talking with
> my advisor. He is a well known ecologist with several years of experience in
> the Neotropics. Mean while I was discussing my research proposal, which is
> in the effects of climate change on birds, we swifted to social causes of
> environmental degradation and he expressed his interest in how religious
> communities impact the environment.
> I told him how I worked with a faith-based institution in my country to get
> christians towards nature conservation and the opennes that we found in poor
> rural communities; also explained him what is the responsible stewardship of
> creation and how to interpret the bible. He defined himself as a atheist but
> not a "hard-core" hater of religion. He was raised as a baptist, his parents
> are christian; but he lossed his faith while studying nature and as he told
> me, understood how cruel, irrational and senseless the interactions of
> animals are.
> Then I felt free to share how I became a christian a year before I entered
> the University when I was 16, to study my bachelor's degree as a biologist.
> I did see Biology as the wonders of God's creation; also how I became a
> young earth creationist (It was impossible to be an evangelical christian
> and not be a creationist in the fundamentalist environmment where I lived)
> and later a Theistic evolutionist.
> The time for the interview reached an end, but he wants to talk more about
> this, I know that he has a strong spiritual need.
> I will not advocate intelligent design or something similar to convince him
> that God is present in nature, I know that ID is not science. But if he
> thinks that nature led him to reject God, what can I say? Any advice of how
> to preach to your advisor?
> Thanks,
> ------------------------------
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William E (Bill) Hamilton Jr., Ph.D.
Member American Scientific Affiliation
Austin, TX
248 821 8156
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Received on Sat Nov 28 13:22:32 2009

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