Thursday, December 01, 2005

I'm no scientist, but...

I'd like to chime in on this evolution-Intelligent Design debate. I just got done reading an article in the latest Newsweek. Darwin is on the cover. It's a pretty good article about his views on science and it's effects on religion. But, it's really just a fancy way to set up a discussion about evo vs. ID, which, by the way, is making the public school system it's battleground of choice.

First of all, let's not pigeonhole all Christians as strict fundamentalists who want to hide from anything "worldly" and dismiss anything that science says or proves. That's just not the case. Matter of fact, most Christians are pretty level-headed when it comes to mixing well-accepted scientific facts with faith. I, for one, have no problem with science itself. Science has made breakthroughs that allow me to drive more safely, take care of myself better, and wear tiny pieces of plastic on my eyeballs that miraculously make me see better.

Second, let's make a distinction between macro-evolution and micro-evolution. Micro-evolution claims that animals change and adapt over time, and those that adapt best survive. The key to micro is that it doesn't make the jump that says that these adaptations create new species. For example, fish adapt and change over time, but they don't eventually "evolve" into frogs. Macro-evolution agrees with all of micro, but also makes the claim of the creation of new species through adaptation. Micro-evo I have no problem with. Macro-evo I do.

Third, Intelligent Design is not tied to any specific religion. It simply states that the vast amount of complexity in nature is evidence of a creative force behind the universe. Intelligent design arguments are not "Christian" in nature, but they leave the door open to a possibility of Creator who is beyond the universe.

Also, the evo-ID debate is kind of a moot point if you don't consider a bigger question. Where did the "stuff" of the universe come from anyway? Even if you adhere to macro-evolution, you still have to account for where the ingredients of evolution come from. No matter where you stand in this debate, you are left in one of two positions in relation to this important question. Either: a) Matter itself is eternal -OR- b) An eternal God created matter. It takes just as much "faith" to believe either one, since no one can prove anything in relation to eternity.

Finally, the article closes with a prominent scientist talking about how the complexity of the human eye and its many interdependent is still a mystery to evolution, and an "unknown" celebrated by ID followers as evidence of God's handiwork. He then goes on to say, "What happens when science discovers the origin of the eye? What happens to God then?"

Here's my answer. My faith in God does not simply exist in the shadows at the edge of science. Therefore, when science advances, my faith is not trampled underfoot. There will never be a scientific finding that "disproves" my belief in the God of the Bible. Ultimately, religion and science deal with two separate questions. Science tells us WHAT is here and HOW it works, while religion tells us WHY we're here.


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