I had the privilege of attending Michael Behe’s talk at Westmister Chapel in London on Monday evening.
The talk was organised by Premier Christian Radio, so it is safe to assume that most of those in attendance were Christian listeners of that radio station. The hall was almost full as Professor Behe began his talk by illustrating how we intuitively recognise design. He contrasted a ‘natural’ mountain range in Idaho with the famous sculptures of four US Presidents at Mount Rushmore, before explaining how his ground-breaking concept of irreducible complexity provides a more rigorous method of establishing whether a particular structure is the product of purposeful design by an intelligent agent. This was illustrated by his famous mousetrap and bacterial flagellum.
The workings of the latter are not easy to grasp for those without a degree in mechanical engineering, but Professor Behe’s relaxed and clear delivery, interspersed with flashes of wry humour, had the audience hanging on his every word. Anyone unfamiliar with ID might suppose that a predominantly Christian audience was bound to be sympathetic, but those who have followed this debate will know that some Christian theologians have sought to reconcile their beliefs with Darwinian materialism. If Monday night was anything to go by, however, many ordinary Christians have recognised that this is a futile enterprise, and are ready to re-embrace the argument from design.
All in all it was a very encouraging evening from an ID perspective.