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Creationism’s Reluctance to Enter ID’s Big Tent

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Critics of ID are quick to label it creationism. It is therefore ironic that creationists are increasingly reluctant to identify themselves as design theorists. Creationists, both of the young-earth and the old-earth variety, tend to think ID doesn’t go far enough and hesitate to embrace ID’s widening circle of allies, a circle that now includes Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, New Agers, and non-dogmatic agnostics. Indeed, creationists are increasingly distancing themselves from ID’s big tent.

By creationism, I don’t mean merely the belief that God created the world. All theists believe that. Rather, creationism denotes the view that the Bible, and Genesis in particular, guarantees the truth of certain scientific models. Thus, for instance, the young-earth creationist model of flood geology (and, in particular, the use of this model to explain the fossil record) finds its ultimate support in the Genesis account of Noah’s flood. Rather than simply following the evidence wherever it goes and letting the science speak for itself (which is the stated aim of ID), creationism is self-consciously involved in a Bible-science controversy. Because creationists have, in their view, an inside track on scientific truth through the Bible, they already know more (or think they do) than any ID theorist can ever know. For them, ID is too thin a soup on which to nourish a robust creationism. Hence their increasing refusal to place themselves under ID’s big tent.

As evidence, I cite the following three items:

(1) The Institute for Creation Research‘s (ICR’s) 2005-2006 Resource Catalog includes no books published by ID proponents after 2000 — and the bulk of our books have been published since then. In particular, none of my work appears in their catalog. More telling still is where ICR is placing its bets, namely, on showing that the earth is thousands rather than billions of years old. Thus, the very first item, prominently displayed, in that Resource Catalog is a book and video titled Thousands . . . Not Billions. If the earth is indeed thousands rather than billions of years old and this young age can be settled definitiely, then not only will young-earth creationism be vindicated but evolution will be disproven immediately as a straightforward corollary (there simply wouldn’t be any time for evolution to have taken place). Thus, rather than cast their lot with ID, which admits an old earth (if only for the sake of argument, though most ID proponents I know do indeed hold to an old earth) and requires a case-by-case analysis of biological systems to determine their design characteristics and the obstacles these present to evolvability, ICR appears to want a quick and decisive solution. Good luck to them in pulling it off.

(2) Reasons to Believe (RTB) is the ministry of old-earth creationist Hugh Ross. Their online store (go here) serves the same role for RTB as ICR’s Resource Catalog. It too is very sparse in ID offerings. As with ICR, RTB has no books by ID proponents on the biological aspects of ID subsequent to 2000 (with regard to the cosmological aspects of ID, there is one exception, namely, The Privileged Planet by Guillermo Gonzalez and Jay Richards, which is not surprising given that Gonzalez is a long-time associate of RTB). Again, none of my work is in that catalog, with one exception: Mere Creation. This book is the procedings of a conference from 1996 at which Hugh Ross spoke, so he has an essay in the book. Nonetheless, the RTB Store lists Mere Creation as a clearance item, indicating that RTB will soon no longer carry it.

(3) RTB’s official press release in August 2005 claimed that ID is not science (even the young-earth creationists don’t go this far). Note that Fazale Rana is the number-two man at RTB and Hugh Ross’s collaborator on a number of projects:

From: CCNWashDC@aol.com
Sent: Friday, August 05,his 2005 3:30 PM
To: newsdesk@earnedmedia.org
Subject: PR: Creation Scientist says Intelligent Design Has No Place in
Public School Science Curriculum

“As currently formulated, Intelligent Design is not science,” says Dr.
Fazale Rana, internationally respected biochemist and one of the world’s
leading experts in origin of life research.

To: National Desk

Contact: Kathleen Campbell, Campbell Public Relations, 877-540-6022,
kcampbell@thecompletesolution.com

NEWS ADVISORY, Aug. 5 /Christian Wire Service
/ — Internationally respected
biochemist and one of the world’s leading experts in origin of life
research, Fazale “Fuz” Rana, PhD, is available for comment on the validity
of teaching “Intelligent Design” in public schools. Dr. Rana states:

“As currently formulated, Intelligent Design is not science. It is not
falsifiable and makes no predictions about future scientific discoveries.

“As a biochemist I am opposed to introducing any idea into the educational
process that is scientifically ludicrous. Proponents of Intelligent Design
lose credibility, for instance, when they say that the Earth is thousands of
years old when the scientific evidence and the fossil record clearly prove
our Earth is at least 4.5 billion years.

“At Reasons To Believe , our team of scientists
has developed a theory for creation that embraces the latest scientific
advances. It is fully testable, falsifiable, and successfully predicts the
current discoveries in origin of life research.

“With the creation model approach every perspective is encouraged to
participate in the scientific process to see which theory best fits the
emerging data. With this cutting edge program no philosophical or religious
perspective is denied access. It holds the possibility of bringing to
resolution the creation /evolution controversy once and for all.”

Fazale Rana, Ph.D. is the vice president for science apologetics at Reasons
To Believe. Dr. Rana earned his Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Biology
and Biochemistry at West Virginia State College and his Ph.D. in Chemistry
at Ohio University. He was twice winner of the Clippinger Research Award at
Ohio University. Dr. Rana worked for seven years as a senior scientist in
product development for Procter & Gamble before joining Reasons To Believe.
He has published more than fifteen articles in peer-reviewed scientific
journals and delivered more than twenty presentations at international
scientific conferences. Dr. Rana is the co-author of the chapter on Anti
Microbial Peptides for Biological and Synthetic Membranes in addition to
contributing numerous feature articles to Facts for Faith magazine. Origins
of Life:Biblical and Evolutionary Models Face Off is Dr. Rana’s first book.
His newest title, Who Was Adam?: A Creation Model Approach to the Origin of
Man is due to release in September ’05.

For more information visit the Reasons To Believe website at www.reasons.org
.

To schedule an interview contact Kathleen Campbell; Campbell Public
Relations, LLC; 877-540-6022; kcampbell@thecompletesolution.com

This press release is remarkable in a number of respects. On the one hand, Rana calls ID to task for not taking a stand on the age of the earth when the fact is that every ID theorist develops ID arguments consistent with standard geological and cosmological dating (i.e., billions, not thousands). Thus, if there are young-earth creationists in our midst, they put their young-earth creationism aside when focusing on ID. This is not to say that they stop believing creationism or lay it aside when considering other scientific questions, like the age of the Earth. The point is that for ID, neither thousands nor billions of years make the problem of design in nature go away. The age question is irrelevant to ID.

On the other hand, Rana dismisses our efforts to develop ID as a scientific program and advertises RTB’s own approach to biological origins as the science of the future. In response to this press release, I wrote Drs. Rana and Ross the following:

I’ve been meaning to ask you about the press release. I’m curious about Fuz’s appeal to Popper’s falsifiability criterion as a defining condition for science. String theory, for instance, isn’t falsifiable at present; maybe it isn’t science, but lots of people in physics departments do it. And yet it seems that RTB is not about to issue a press release against discussing string theory in science classrooms.

But isn’t the real issue not falsifiability but confirmation/disconfirmation. A scientific theory should be disconfirmable by evidence. Whereas falsifiability is supposed to be dramatic and fatal to a theory, disconfirmation merely renders it less plausible. ID is certainly disconfirmable: if someone takes an allegedly irreducibly complex system and finds a good neo-Darwinist story to explain it, then ID is disconfirmed. If you don’t agree, please let me know why.

[[Note that in writing this letter, I drew from a private email by a colleague on Rana’s press release — I would name this colleague, but because his academic position is at this time not secure, I need to preserve confidentiality.]]

Neither Fazale Rana nor Hugh Ross ever responded to this email.

As for their theory of creation, known as the RTB model, which Rana’s press release promises will bring “to resolution the creation/evolution controversy once and for all,” I encourage readers to look at it closely. This theory, known as “the RTB Biblical Creation Model,” appears in a book by Rana and Ross titled Origins of Life: Biblical and Evolutionary Models Face Off. Their model, which states that God created life as recounted in the Bible, is supposed to establish its scientific bona fides through eight predictions on pages 43 and 44 of that book. Here are these eight predictions (note that boldface and italics are as they appear in the text):

The RTB Model’s Predictions

The RTB biblical creation model for the origin of life sets forth the following central ideas and predictions:

1. Life appeared early in Earth’s history, while the planet was still in its primodial state. The backdrop for the origin of life in Genesis 1:2 was an early Earth enveloped entirely in water and as yet untransformed by tectonic and volcanic activity. This tenet anticipates the discovery of life’s remains in the part of the geological column that corresponds to earth Earth.

2. Life originated in and persisted through the hostile conditions of early Earth. Genesis 1:2 describes early Earth as tohu wabohu, an empty wasteland. This model maintains that God nurtured the seeds of Earth’s first life, perhaps re-creating these seeds each time they were destroyed. This model predicts that science will discover life’s first emergence under the hellish conditions of early Earth.

3. Life Orignated abruptly. If God created the first life on Earth through direct intervention, one can reasonably assume that life appeared suddenly, seemingly out of nowhere. This model predicts that the planetary and geological record will demonstrate life’s emergence in a narrow, if not instantaneous, time window.

4. Earth’s first life displays complexity. If a Creator brought life into existence, first life should display significant complexity. Therefore, the RTB Model predicts that fossil and geochemical remains will indicate that Earth’s earliest life forms display complexity.

5. Life is complex in its mininal form. Life in its simplest form should also display considerable complexity. An inherent minimal complexity reasonably indicates that life has been intelligently crafted.

6. Life’s chemistry displays hallmark characteristics of design. Systems and structures produced by intelligent agents typically possess characteristics that distinguish them from those produced by natural processes. These properties serve as indicators of design. They will be apparent in biochemical systems of the cell if the biblical Creator is responsible for life. . . .

7. First life was qualitatively different from life that came into existence on creation days three, five, and six. The third creation day describes the creation of plants. . . . The fifth creation day discusses the creation of marine invertebrates and fish, marine mammals, and birds. The sixth creation day includes the creation of specialized land mammals. These multicellular advanced plants and animals are qualitatively different from the first life forms created on primordial Earth.

8. A purpose can be postulated for life’s early appearance on Earth. The RTB Model bears the burden of explaining why God would create life so early in Earth’s history and why (as well as when) He would create the specific types of life that appeared on primordial Earth. While God would be free to create life for nonutilitarian purposes, discernible reasons should exist for God’s bringing life into existence under the violent conditions of early Earth — conditions under which life could not persist and would presumably need to be re-created.

After reading and re-reading these predictions, I’m frankly scratching my head. These predictions, according to Rana and Ross, are supposed to render their model science whereas ID is not science? Take point 8: How is it a scientific prediction that “a purpose can be postulated for life’s early appearance on Earth”? This is so vague that it can’t count as a prediction. As for points 4 to 6, in drawing attention to the complexity of life and design detection, these points touch on central ID concerns (but note, neither Behe nor I receive any mention in the book’s index). But why should the complexity of life and design detection in living forms follow from Genesis? Presumably God could have made a world in which life forms were materially simple.

Bottom line: Creationists want more than ID is willing to deliver and are now distancing themselves from it.

Comments
Fuz and Hugh have it wrong. Benjii
I'm afraid that's a bit too simple. Read the non-mathematical sections of my paper "Searching Large Spaces" on my website: www.designinference.com. --WmAD William Dembski
Dr. Dembski, thank you for your response. Unfortunately, as I live and work in Eastern Europe I don't have a particularly large book budget, and depend a lot on the internet for my learning resources. I have read through a number of your articles on the designinference site (instead of buying your book, sorry!), and the answers I have obtained from there are: The design process is still ongoing. Neo-darwinian evolution is part of the design, but can't by itself be credited with more complex pieces of design; and can be said to be responsible for micro-evolution and not macro-evolution. Does this represent an accurate summary? Greyshade
More consternation over dark matter? Say it isn't so. Let's ask Heddle. Maybe it can all be explained, like dark energy, as a tweak to the cosmological constant fudge factor. Nothing of interest here, Gump. Move along. Modern physics has all the answers. DaveScot
DaveScot and Dr. Heddle, Thought you guys might find this interesting: http://www.space.com/scienceastronomy/051010_dark_matter.html http://www.sciencenews.org/articles/20051008/bob9.asp Gumpngreen
Oh yeah, check out ID and Elvis. Hope it's okay that I used your pic. ô¿ô dchammer
I'd suggest that you make a distinction between Bible-believing folks who aver that "In the beginning God created," and the muck-a-mucks who sit at the top to of the heap of the Creationist movement (whether traditional YEC or "new-age" OEC). Most of the former are in the stands (or the pews, I guess), rooting for you all the way. In the 1970s I began reading most of the major Creationist books, starting with The Genesis Flood. But I've got to tell you, the day I put down Johnson's Darwin on Trial -- must have been ten years ago now -- I thanked my God to by alive during the era of history when the Darwinists "got theirs." "Whang their arses, Dembski!" dchammer
Higgity, you are just dead wrong when you define science only to "evolutionary explanations." Isn't science the search for the truth? Shouldn't it be about the best inference to the best explanation? Benjii
Higgity It's rather discouraging that you don't have sufficient background to understand anything on Stephen J. Gould's website. I really don't think you should be commenting here until you do. I'm not formally trained in evolutionary biology and I don't have any trouble at all understanding Gould's work. I can only conclude you're exceedingly wet behind the ears. DaveScot
Higgity Natural selection as a creative force is DEAD IN THE WATER. Get used to it. When one first ventures outside the bounds of neoDarwinian dogma (I hope you read the wiki article so you know what neodarwinism is now) the first bit of wool to fall one's eyes illuminates the fiction that is the natural selection canon. One discovers that natural selection is not a creative force in nature and it doesn't serve to preserve beneficial mutations. Beneficial mutations, don't you know, happen as all mutations happen, in a single individual. These beneficial mutations in individuals are so very, very slight in the rare cases they're beneficial at all, that their beneficial effect is swamped (lost in the noise) by the normal factors (luck and environment) that determine how many offspring that individual has. Natural selection is actually a conservative force because when random mutations do happen where it causes a change to a binding site on an enzyme the result is usually disastrous in the short term to the stricken individual's reproductive success (usually death in the embryonic stage). In the interest of furthering your education here are some illuminating facts: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miscarriage Pay close attention to prevalence and causes. DaveScot
I'm new to these ID theories, I have to admit. What I've gathered from this thread is that there are a number of creationists who also subscribe to ID, and a number that don't. There are a number of ID supporters who are creationists, and a number who are not. (There are also some people who say that ID, creation and evolution can all fit together as well?) So - for the ID supporters who are not creationists - did the design process happen once, at the beginning, or is it still ongoing? And is 'darwinian evolution' part of the design? I'm a bit confused, to be honest! [This is well-worn ground. Read the relevant chapters in The Design Revolution. --WmAD] Greyshade
Higgity The answer to my question "was Matzke's article published in a peer reviewed journal" was no. Had you not equivocated you might have gained a modicum of respect. Your definition didn't suck. It was a lie. The Stephen J. Gould website, which I might point out is not sympathetic to ID, has an honest definition:
Their [DI's] only policy statement is that they do not support the idea that complex design was caused by a random process.
"you have to stop saying “Darwinism” and “Neo-darwinism” if for no other reason than I have no idea what it means." If you don't know what Darwinism and NeoDarwinism are then you shouldn't be commenting here. The following might help but an education would help even more: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neodarwinism DaveScot
DaveScot 1: I don't think the article did, but it references five separate peer-reviewed articles and a couple of other sources to make its claim. DaveScot 2: Fine. The definition I gave sucked. Give me an objective definition of ID. DaveScot 3: Honestly, you have to stop saying "Darwinism" and "Neo-darwinism" if for no other reason than I have no idea what it means. As for Lynn Margulis, she's a great scientist. She's also definitely not an ID supporter. Natural selection is not the only concept in evolution. Her main criticisms are that evolution is incomplete. There's nothing wrong with that. It will continue to gain strength. DaveScot 4: I saw that website a few weeks ago and could not make heads nor tails of it. I still can't. higgity
More homework for Higgity re; natural selection http://www.stephenjgould.org/
The Stephen Jay Gould Initiative for Non-Darwinian Evolution Science in America is in the grip of a potentially fatal dilemma. The brilliantly organized forces of Intelligent Design are backed by President George W. Bush, the Pope, the Dalai Lama, and a majority of American voters. Their only policy statement is that they do not support the idea that complex design was caused by a random process. At this point it is probable that most scientists concur. While virtually all scientists see no place for God in science, science itself is divided into two camps, making it impossible to effectively present opposing arguments. The Discovery Institute, headquarters of Intelligent Design, is run by an impressive panel of bona fide scientists. They have successfully presented convincing arguments to laymen. They are winning. While some of the organizers have a history of belief in divine intervention in the design process, this remains unstated. For the last half century science embraced Charles Darwin's idea that evolution was the result of natural selection, the survival of randomly occurring mutants which by chance possessed features more advantageous for survival than their normal brethren. Sounding good on paper, the theory was adopted uncritically at the time of the discovery in 1953 of the complex structure of DNA, which was assumed to encode the structure of the body, accounting for the first time since antiquity the way the embryo is formed from one cell. Genomics and Darwinism, the so-called Neo-Darwinian Synthesis, became the basis for Biology, which has spent its time and resources to decode the genome. This colossal effort has failed. Apparently the code for the body form does not lie in the genes. Evolutionary biologists no longer believe that natural selection is the prime mechanism of evolution. In June 2005, at an evolution symposium held in the Galapagos, eminent biologist Lynn Margulies publicly proclaimed that the Darwinian Synthesis is dead. Next, respected evolutionary biologist William Provine declared that biology needs a new theory of evolution. But this implies the unthinkable collapse of the entire billion dollar infrastructure of biology which employs tens of thousands of biologists in the pursuit of a code which does not exist. This weakness is the strength of the forces of Intelligent Design. Organizations dedicated to opposing ID base their argument on Darwinism. But they are reluctant to enter the debate knowing that ID can produce hundreds of disinterested scientists who will testify that natural selection is not the prime cause of evolution. They quote Stephen Jay Gould, who concurred. But there is no case prepared to present an alternative theory, which will be needed in the dozens of court cases which have recently opened all over the US . There will be new Scopes trials. William Jennings Bryan is ready, but there is no Clarence Darrow. Hundreds of scientists who have no commitment to genetics, no lifetime belief system to give up, and whose jobs are not at stake, are still reluctant to openly oppose natural selection as the cause of design. At stake for them is opposition from their geneticist colleagues. This is already manifested in the case concerning the well-documented persecution of biologist Dr. Richard Sternberg by the Smithsonian Institution, whose work centers on the theory of evolution by Structural Self-Organization, the general name for non-random accounts or theories of evolution. A premise is that life is organized by the same principle responsible for crystals, rocks, and geological formations. Non-Darwinian Science has had no centralized spokes-organization comparable to that of the Discovery Institute. But one is now organized--The Stephen Jay Gould Initiative for Non-Darwinian Evolution—and is endorsed by a growing list of leading scientists at major centers of learning.
DaveScot
Higgity: Ever heard of Lynn Margulis? She was the keynote speaker at the 2005 World Conference on Evolution held in the Galapogos Islands this year. She's also one of the most respected evolutionary microbiologists in the world and she is also super critical of natural selection. In her keynote address at the "Woodstock of Evolution" she declared neoDarwinism dead in the water. Here's a nice bit of her work: http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0465043925/qid=1129360641/sr=1-2/ref=sr_1_2/103-2566463-8415861?v=glance&s=books You can thank me by performing your own due diligence before parroting the neoDarwinian party line that we've all heard before. DaveScot
Higgity: "Well it looks to me like it falsifies IC of the BF." ROFLMAO! You're joking, right? It's a made up story. A narrative. Science fiction. DaveScot
Higgity: "ID says that life could not have gotten to where it is today through natural explanations and invokes a creator who is playing outside of nature." BZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZT!!!! Wrong. That's a straw man. Try again. DaveScot
Higgity Did Matzke's article appear in a peer reviewed journal? [wink wink nudge] :-) DaveScot
how is there no need to explain a creative force? how do a trillion happy accidents equal people? the idea is absurd. accidents, in any other part of the universe, never cause anything good, let alone human beings with intelligence, compassion, love, the ability to build skyscrapers and write operas. a trillion accidental chemical reactions? thats what its reduced to?! ive read 3 papers that have shown NS does very little in nature. dont have the links no. even the PE gang think that NS is much less a powerful mechanism than neodarwinists. that linked item doesnt explain away half the BF. it attempts to get into the mind of a designer, which is always silly, especially from someone who claims there is no designer. (theres no design in nature, but let me explain why A and B are clearly ways a designer wouldnt do things!). the article doesnt mention half the parts of the BF that have no other purpose outside of the BF. a slight problem, id say! evolution has to account for the mechanism that has supposedly done all of this work, and a purposeless accident had to have happened to start it all off. of course origins of life is part of evolution. if neodarwinism posits that life is a big cosmic accident, that the mechanism that is responsible for all life is goal-less, purposeless, etc. and that all life came from a theoretical 1 celled life form, that like started somehow at all- it cant claim it says nothing of ultimate origins! evolution cant be used by scientists as this grand scheme of life sort of theory, used to try to explain every facet of biology, why species formed, how life itself went from 1 celled to millions of complex species then say- oops, sorry. we dont know how it all got here. we dont know how on earth the mechanism itself arose or why it arose, and if its the result of intelligence or not (the creation of the mechanism would have to have been outside of nature as most scientists label "nature"). you cant speak of a mechanism that might not have any power to change species into different species, create entirely new body types, life forms, etc. then claim you have nothing to say of why, how, what, when, or where of the mechanism itself and its origins. if you stop at the origins of species, why does the theory claim first life? evolution cant make all of these grand claims then stay silent on the very basic question. if it doesnt even try to answer the basic question, the theory cant possibly posit purpose at all, or the lack of purpose. nor can it posit common ancestry if its not about lifes origins in general. thats just laziness. jboze3131
"umm i think we can reasonably say that mutations working on a mechanism (NS) that many studies have shown does very little in the wild creating every form of life on earth, via trillions of “happy accidents” is more or less saying its happened by magic." What studies are these? Have you shown them to anyone? "when someone shows me any accident can have any creative power, that might be a tiny step." There is no need to assume that there is a creative power at work. You're trying to get me to give you evidence for ID. The point is that evolution does not need to be guided by intelligence. "the article btw did very little to disprove anypart of the IC of the BF." Well it looks to me like it falsifies IC of the BF. "Intelligence is a perfectly natural explanation." But there is no natural evidence for intelligence. The change of species over time is not a dichotomy of the Theory of Evolution or design. If evolution is wrong, it is not evidence for design. As for jboze's second post, you appear to be stuck on the misconception that evolution explains the origin of the universe. higgity
when you think about it- the origins of the world cannot be natural in the usual sense of the word. nature couldnt possibly give birth to itself. you cant proclaim that nature is responsible for the start of the universe, considering nature had to, by definition, predate the universe. i think its an easy out for a lot of scientists who dont want to confront the issue- the fact that nature couldnt have possibly created itself. if a man suddenly appeared in front of us out of thin air (a man CREATED), scientists would never call it a natural phenomenon. yet, before the universe, there was no "nature" nor a "natural" so neither could have given birth to itself. the terms natural and supernatural get distorted a lot too. as others have pointed out in other comment threads- if a creator created, then he is outside and also part of nature. of course, hed be part of nature because ultimately nature would be a part of him...so you can label it supernatural, yet you can also just as easily see it as a natural event. jboze3131
Know your science! Benjii
Sure, we should look for a natural explanation. However, why does it have to be a reductive explanation in which nature does it's own creation? If we can't observe that, then, why do we invoke it? Intelligence is a perfectly natural explanation. Archeaologists, SETI scientists and Forensics constantly use these explanations. Unless, it's unnatural to suppose that a human agent is responsible for an action. Know your science? Benjii
umm i think we can reasonably say that mutations working on a mechanism (NS) that many studies have shown does very little in the wild creating every form of life on earth, via trillions of "happy accidents" is more or less saying its happened by magic. when someone shows me any accident can have any creative power, that might be a tiny step. the article btw did very little to disprove anypart of the IC of the BF. jboze3131
Huge difference: Evolution itself invokes only naturalistic explanations to explain how life was changed. ID says that life could not have gotten to where it is today through natural explanations and invokes a creator who is playing outside of nature. That's more or less saying that it happened by magic. higgity
One closing point for you to think about, Higgity. A lot of people, including a large fraction of scientiest, believe that standard evolution was how God did it. It's called theistic evolution. The Catholic Church promotes this position. Evolution is not rendered either non-science or unconstitutional just because a lot of religious people say that's how God did it. DaveScot
"It is likely that neither of us will be satisfied with the other’s answer on this" Ok. If I want to try convincing a brick wall there's one more convenient than you around my fireplace. Goodbye. DaveScot
jaredl: http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/CB/CB200_1.html Right there in black and white. higgity
Dr. Dembski has a wonderful God-given intellect and has contributed much toward raising people’s awareness that life is far too complex to be accounted for by chance. However, his criticism of young-earth creationists is unwarranted and misguided. I don’t want to be harsh, but I believe he tips his hand a bit in his reference to the Institute for Creation Research’s resource catalog with the statement, “In particular none of my work appears in their catalog.” This is the evidence he cites in support of his belief that young earth creationists are increasingly refusing to, “ place themselves under ID’s big tent.” Can a person not embrace the concept of intelligent design without being a proponent of Dr. Dembski’s books? Though he has contributed significantly to the argument for design, the concept is not a new one. Cicero used it in the century before Christ in his book, De Natura Deorum (On the Nature of the Gods). Paul used it in Romans 1, and Paley’s famous watchmaker analogy was published in His book, Natural Theology in 1802. Young earth creationists have used the design argument as a tool in creation evangelism for years; just read some of the writings of Henry Morris and many others. And therein lies the difference. Young earth creationists use their scientific observations and reasoning in an effort to convince people that the Bible is actually true in hopes that all will confess Jesus as Lord. This is not the intent of the ID movement as stated by Dr. Dembski. On page 44 of his book, The Design Revolution, he writes, “Intelligent design is a strictly scientific theory devoid of religious commitments. Whereas the creator underlying scientific creationism conforms to a strict, literalist interpretation of the Bible, the designer underlying intelligent design need not even be a deity.” Big tents are great, but they are not much good if they can’t protect us from the rain. [More significant than the absence of my books is the emphasis of the ICR catalog on the age rather than the design question. Increasingly it seems we are pursuing different paths. --WmAD] nrdsmja
What is the method of evolution, when applied to, say, the bacterial flagellum? Where is this method published? What is the margin of error? Who has accepted this method? In other words... evolution doesn't meet it either, since ID and darwinism are simply the logical negations of each other. jaredl
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