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Christian Darwinism

Will Templeton continue to fund BioLogos? Why?

BioLogos? They’re Christians for Darwin, or evolution or something, but for sure not for ID or anything. At Hump of the Camel, Jon Garvey, a retired British physician and theologian, notes that BioLogos writers accuse ID folk of heretical or bad theology by thinking of God as a designer. But, he says, their own theological leanings are much further from classical Christian orthodoxy than anything written by ID folk: But I felt I had to comment on a recent thread on BioLogos, in which the argument is made that Intelligent Design implies that God is merely one amongst a number of possible designers, whereas God is, in fact, not to be compared with any other agent. … I would not Read More ›

Claim: Natural selection does not refute design?

Oops. One last religion news item just landed: A friend writes to say that these guys didn’t get the memo from theistic evolutionists that an explanation by natural selection doesn’t refute intelligent design: From Thiago Hutter, Carine Gimbert, Frédéric Bouchard and François-Joseph Lapointe, “Being human is a gut feeling,” Microbiome, (2015) 3:9: Before Darwin, intelligent design arguments (such as the ones found in Paley) explaining the organization found in biological individuals via divine creation were the norm. Since Darwin, the origin of organization of biological individuals is to be explained thanks to designer-free adaptive processes. Individuals were functional wholes whose parts-integration was the result of evolution by natural selection. (public access) More. Some people believe natural selection somehow naturally produces Read More ›

Casey Luskin on TE’s evidence-phobia

Closing our religion coverage for the week: In a 2014 article in Christian Research Journal, “The New Theistic Evolutionists: BioLogos and the Rush to Embrace the ‘Consensus’ (not online), Luskin writes: Of course, when BioLogos claims “it is all intelligently designed,” they mean that strictly as a faith-based theological doctrine for which they can provide no supporting scientific evidence. Indeed, it’s ironic that BioLogos accuses ID of “removing God from the process of creation” when Collins writes that “science’s domain is to explore nature. God’s domain is in the spiritual world, a realm not possible to explore with the tools and language of science.” Under Collins’s view, God’s “domain” is seemingly fenced off from “nature,” which belongs to “science.” Since Read More ›

Is this guy the Baptist Dawkins?

Hey, peace—for all its faults, it’s still a free country. And after Karl Giberson and Peter Enns, one’s entitled to at least wonder about stuff like that… Anyway, Waynesburg University (Pennsylvania) biology prof Wayne Rossiter writes at Shadow of Oz blog: Unfortunately, Dr. Paul Wallace (an astronomer and ordained Baptist minister) has proven Daniel Dennett’s point, “Darwin’s idea — bearing an unmistakable likeness to universal acid: it eats through just about every traditional concept, and leaves in its wake a revolutionized world-view, with most of the old landmarks still recognizable, but transformed in fundamental ways.” Of course, Wallace’s new book was supposed to be transformational in its ability to meld science and faith as one common body. Nonetheless, it’s clear that Read More ›

Wayne Rossiter asks: What the Lamoureux?

Waynesburg University (Pennsylvania) biology prof Wayne Rossiter, author of In the Shadow of Oz, offers thoughts on Saturday’s debate in Toronto: Lamoureux’s role in the debate was largely to offer a robotic rolodex of tired cliché’s (e.g., “I find the evidence for evolution overwhelming, there is no debate on that,” and “biology only makes sense in light of evolution”). Among them was the classic, “show me one tooth in the Cambrian, and we’ll turn all the science upside-down.” Of course, we have good reason to doubt that he would be true to his ultimatum. After all, we didn’t think evolution could account for the massive diversification of animal life seen in a 5-8 million year sliver of the Cambrian period, Read More ›

But for Meyer there would have been no debate

From David Klinghoffer, editor of Evolution News & Views: on the Toronto debate between Steve Meyer, Lawrence Krauss, and Denis Lamoureux It was not the ideal of a clash between ID and Lawrence Krauss’s atheism that one would hope for. However, the event was something else, in a way, of no less interest. It was a dramatic test and acting out of character. Almost as if it had been intelligently designed that way. Meyer’s courageous performance, while not his most articulate, was in a moral sense heroic. When all was said and done, Meyer with a migraine offered a whole lot more substance than either of his interlocutors. In addition, he was a gentleman throughout. His argument was about science Read More ›

At Forbes: Dump the term “theistic evolution”

Ending our religion coverage for the week, from John Farrell at Forbes: It’s Time To Retire ‘Theistic Evolution’ His basic point is that it is all just evolution, and any talk of “theistic” is superfluous. And it’s well past its sell-by date. More. Farrell makes quite clear that there is no essential difference between “theistic” evolution and metaphysical  naturalism (nature is all there is). Of course there isn’t ny difference, except for sponsorship. To say that God created absolutely everything equally and that no design is especially evident anywhere means that an elemental atom is just the same as a human life or a human mind, or for that matter a religious revelation. Catholic chemist Stacy “Science in the Light Read More ›

Baylor U doc not Darwinist. But sky didn’t fall?

A reader writes to ask why Dr. Joseph Kuhn didn’t get the same treatment: at Baylor University Medical Center for a 2012 article, “Dissecting Darwinism,” as Bill Dembski got at Baylor U in 2000?: William Dembski was already a research fellow for the Seattle-based Discovery Institute when he was approached by Baylor University President Robert Sloan in 1996. Sloan had read some of Dembski’s work and thought that Dembski could help with his project of promoting the integration of faith and learning on campus. … But the honeymoon ended when the Polanyi Center established its website in January 2000. When “other groups with evolution-bashing agendas began linking up their Websites … An e-mail frenzy at Baylor spread to other schools. Read More ›

As (believing) in Adam, all sinned?

Readers may recall former Biologos leader Karl Giberson (see, for example, But at this point who cares what Darwin’s Christianhuffs at Huffpo?). Giberson now describes himself as a former evangelical. From the Gospel Coalition, which is unsymathetic but treisto be charitable, some thoughts on his most recent book, Saving the Original Sinner: Giberson’s irritation with the concept of basic beliefs and their implications connects with another aspect of Saving the Original Sinner. Complaining of evangelical “heresy hunts,” he also disparages the place of confessional statements in institutional life. Why? The fact is some—perhaps all—of the individuals Giberson casts as victims challenged and contradicted commitments to which they’d subscribed at their hiring. This doesn’t mean in every case they were entirely Read More ›

Censor of the Year: United Methodist Church Commission on the General Conference

From Evolution News & Views: Closed Minds, Closed Doors: United Methodist Church Commission Is Censor of the Year It is unclear who on the Commission participated in deciding to exclude Discovery Institute from the church’s upcoming General Conference, and thereby censor discussion of intelligent design. When we inquired, we were told only that the “leadership” of the Commission made the decision. The UMC — with its motto of “Open Hearts, Open Minds, Open Doors” — refuses to disclose who made up this shadowy “leadership” group. So the best we can do is bestow COTY on the Commission. Certainly, we mean no criticism of United Methodists as a whole, many of whom support ID and free speech, and have vigorously objected Read More ›

Slate offers poster child for Christian atheism

Or something. Maybe there’s never much religion news on Superbowl Sunday, so… From Slate, we learn: How an evangelical creationist came to accept evolution. The article focuses on Kramer, 27, who would seem to be a Christian Darwinist: “Kramer found a way to have his faith and Darwin too.” Interesting. Darwin didn’t find the way, but then what did he know? Anyway, Kramer got a job at Templeton-funded BioLogos, which is currently trying to distance itself from the views of its living (b 1950) founder, Francis Collins, after barely a decade. As Slate puts it, Of course, Kramer’s view is not everyone’s. Most people who study evolution see no evidence of or need for God in the history of life Read More ›

The United Methodists and NOMA

Before I put the issue with the United Methodist Church and Discovery Institute to rest, I want to make one last comment on the UMC’s Statement on Science and Technology, which I wrote about the other day. One of the most significant assertions in the statement is “We preclude science from making authoritative claims about theological issues and theology from making authoritative claims about scientific issues.” If that sounds vaguely familiar to readers here at Uncommon Descent, it should. It is little more than a restatement of the late Stephen J. Gould’s principle of Non-Overlapping Magisteria (or NOMA). In essence, NOMA is the idea that Science and Religion occupy different spheres of knowledge and influence and as such are subject Read More ›

BioLogos distances itself from views of founder?

Religion news running a bit late this “weekend,” but better late than never: From biology prof Wayne Rossiter, author of In the Shadow of Oz, (not a fanmag for Christian Darwinism], an account of his dealings with BioLogos (reclaiming the Christian world for Darwin) here: Recently, a higher-up in the BioLogos organization contacted me via email, in an attempt to open up private dialogue (rather than public conversation). I replied in like fashion, dealing with several of the objections. Now clearly, I did not expect the BioLogos crowd to be happy about my book. If it had not registered on their Richter scale, I would’ve been disappointed. But, one might have anticipated a response of some sort to my reply. Apparently, Read More ›

It actually doesn’t matter to the United Methodist leaders what’s true

Yesterday, DonaldM posted an item here: United Methodists Bar Intelligent Design From General Conference The skinny: After submitting an application to be in the exhibit hall per the established process, Discovery Institute was informed that they would not allowed to be present as the Institute’s position on ID was at odds with the UMC’s Statement on Evolution and Intelligent Design which says in part that the UMC opposes “…the introduction of any faith-based theories such as Creationism or Intelligent Design into the science curriculum of our public schools.” It should be readily clear that when this language was drafted back in 2008 and inserted into the UMC’s Book of Discipline, the guiding document of the Church, that the UMC was Read More ›

Dawkins becomes theistic evolutionist? … Hmmmm.

Okay, we are just passing on what philosopher and photographer Laszlo Bencze heard from a bearded turtleneck at the local Ice Ball, wrapping up the New Year’s festivities: Turtleneck: Yes, it finally happened—but not like we’d expected. Move a little to the side, okay; you’re blocking my line of sight on the vodka… … Oh, look, … here … He then shoved a crumpled piece of paper into Bencze’s hand and rushed out to wait in the Horton’s for the last westbound bus. The paper read, [FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 1/2/2016] WHY I AM NOW A THEISTIC EVOLUTIONIST—Richard Dawkins FRS FRSL Those of you who have read my many books and articles may find it strange that I have modified my stance Read More ›