BioLogos head Darrel Falk has been in the news around here lately, and now – over at Evolution News & Views – Bill Dembski has replied to him (linking their previous exchanges at BioLogos):
Falk, echoing Psalm 19, proclaims that all aspects of creation bespeak God’s handiwork and glory. Now let me concede that “oddness,” in the sense of what appears odd to us very limited human beings with our very limited vantages on the world, is not a good criterion for determining what God would and wouldn’t do. Still, it hardly seems that God is mandated to create via a process that provides no evidence of his creative activity — and nowhere does Falk admit that God provides actual evidence of himself in creation (at best he allows that nature provides “signposts” — but what exactly are these signs? who is reading them? why should we take them as pointing to God?). Moreover, for Falk to echo the psalmist is hardly an argument for the world proclaiming God’s handiwork and glory, because many atheistic evolutionists will deny Falk’s confident affirmations of divine perspicuity.
I’ve seen this directly. I recall posting on my blog a gorgeous picture of wildflowers, hinting at the wonders of God’s creation, and seeing comments by atheistic evolutionists who dismissed it as merely “sex” run amuck. Thus, when Falk echoes Psalm 19, what more is he doing than giving expression to his own faith? Indeed, what more is he saying to atheists than merely “I see God’s hand in all of this and you don’t — you’re blind and I see.” Perhaps faith has given him sight that atheists lack. But in that case, how can it be claimed that God is not occluding his activity in nature? God, as omnipotent, can certainly make his existence and presence known to even the most ardent atheist – we can all imagine flamboyant enough miracles that would convince anyone.
Still, the more interesting question here is whether there is a rational basis for Falk’s faith that is grounded in the order of nature. ID, in finding scientific evidence of intelligence in nature, says there is. Falk, along with BioLogos generally, denies this. But in that case, how can he avoid the charge that the faith by which he sees God’s handiwork is merely an overlay on top of a nature that, taken by itself, is neutral or even hostile to Christian faith? Note that I’m not alone in thinking it odd that God would create by natural selection. Many atheistic evolution see evolution as a brutal and wasteful process that no self-respecting deity would have employed in bringing about life. Jerry Coyne, Richard Dawkins, and the late Stephen Jay Gould were united on this point.
Of course, the increasingly popular Darwinist option is to “Darwinize” the mind – to argue that rationality is an illusion, rending the discussion between Falk and Dembski superfluous.
But wait – doesn’t Falk think that Christianity can cozy up to Darwinism?
That said, there’s this also from Bill:
Moreover, I found it refreshing that Falk would distance himself and BioLogos from strict Darwinism, which Falk rightly sees as spanning not only the Origin of Species but also the far more theologically contentious Descent of Man.
Which is good news, but: Do Falk or BioLogians in general distance themselves from Darwin’s Descent of Man because it is very politically incorrect? Or because they know actual, science-based reasons for rejecting it? It’s the latter we want to hear about.
What aspects of either Descent or Origin do they distance themselves from, specifically?
Put another way: To what extent is the denial that they are Christian Darwinists a mere PR tactic or mere discomfort with the implications of Darwinism, as opposed to awareness of science-based reasons for rejecting Darwinism?
(Don’t forget the petition in support of star neurosurgeon Ben Carson, attacked by Darwinists.)
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