By Alexander Carpenter
Over here I've been conversing about the issues of evolution and good Clifford Goldstein tossed in this:
"True evoutionists mock those Christians who somehow think that there's
a way to syncretize evolution and theism, particularly theism with a
Christian slant. And they are right, too. I was raised, educated and
thoroughly indoctrinated in an evolutionary paradigm, and trust me--at
its core it is antithetical to anything even remotely related to
CHristianity. I've been utterly, utterly baffled by this notion that
somehow we can, and must, incorporate evolutionary theory into our
theology. I think that's because, having come out of it (the
evolutionary world-view) and knowing the presuppositions behind it, I
know that one has to stretch Christianity (especially Adventist
Christianity) into something ludicrous in order to make it fit. We
might as well be Seventh-day Atheists; that's about as logical as
something like Seventh-day Darwinians."
My coffee-fueled reply:
Ha Cliff, on this your ignorance flaps free of the evidence.
True, the most vocal evolutionists often don't like religion, but, in
fact, the majority of scientists are theists, and here's 10,000
clergy who take their faith and evolution seriously.
Outside of gadfly Dawkins -- probably one of the
most prominent and angry atheists out there -- the easy binaries of the
mainstream media and the propaganda of the super-funded Discovery
Institute, there exist really smart scientists who move past the forced
I'd like to introduce you to the American Scientific Association
whose goal includes: a fellowship of men and women of science and
disciplines that can relate to science who share a common fidelity to
the Word of God and a commitment to integrity in the practice of
science. ASA was founded in 1941 and has grown significantly since that
time. The stated purpose of the ASA is "to investigate any area
relating Christian faith and science" and "to make known the results of
such investigations for comment and criticism by the Christian
community and by the scientific community."
They have a peer reviewed journal, check out
some of the Christian scientists at places like Calvin, Eastern,
Messiah, Stanford, the Smithsonian Institute.
Here's a good essay, Evolution
for Christians in which the author explains the difference
between evolution vs. "evolutionism."
In a comment above I listed books three well-respected scientists
(Stanford, Harvard, Human Genome Project) who take their faith, even
bible and science seriously. Frankly your opening line reveals a false
prejudice. In fact thousands of true evolutionists don't mock Christian
faith; they believe too.
It seems like some of your evidence here comes from your past
experience (which may convince in the gray-slacked GC) but there's lots
of us in the world today and sometimes you sound like that uncle who
keeps repeating those stories about how when he was a kid -- nice, but
the epistemological context is changing and more and more Adventists
don't walk to school through the modernist snow anymore.
clearly combined existential angst with evolution, there are millions
of Christians who don't. Check out my friend Jim Gertmenian's 1800-member (and growing) evolution and
But if people aren't going to read and take a critical look at the
evidence here, we'll be rooting our faith less and less in an
epistemological model that makes sense to the people who actually pay
attention to the evidence. See the numbers of Adventist
offspring attending LLU, they see the evidence, and find these BRI/GC
non-scientists pounding out the either/or prose as a joke at best and
disengage from the faith because it seems dominated by folks more
interested in being "true" than getting it right.
Please stop rooting your arguments on your past, the mainstream
media, and Dawkins and his ilk (I enjoyed his Unweaving the Rainbow, but he has missed the linguistic turn.)
Here's someone who hasn't. Check out this paper, "Anglo-American Postmodernity and the End of Theology-Science Dialogue?," by believer and philosopher of science (and Berkeley/GTU grad!), Nancey Murphy who teaches at Fuller, an evangelical seminary.
Dear pal Cliff, please start reading Christians who take the bible and science
seriously. This church is often a force for Christ-like good and if we
forge ahead treating the evidence honestly you'll see that one doesn't
have to substitute atheist for Adventist, or Darwin for hope.