Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Is Theisitc Evolution a Good Idea for the Christian?

I came across this blog post: "Where theistic evolution leads." It engages with Dr. Francis Collins bio-logos view.

(Here is an excerpt) Editor's Note: This is crossposted at David Klinghoffer's Beliefnet blog, Kingdom of Priests.

Some readers thought I was unfair in a previous entry explaining the difference between my perspective on evolution and that of my fellow Beliefnet blogger Dr. Francis Collins over at Science and the Sacred. Am I really not being fair? Well, let's test that hypothesis by picking out one idea from Dr. Collins's book and from his website BioLogos. It's his treatment of the idea that somehow a moral law in every heart points us to the existence of God.

Because BioLogos -- or theistic evolution, however we may designate the general approach -- surrenders so easily to naturalism, it must be willing to accommodate Darwinism's explanation of where that moral law comes from. Dr. Collins thinks radical acts of altruism may defy an evolutionary explanation, or maybe not. Thus quoth BioLogos:

Even if a purely natural account of moral development could be found, the simple fact that morality has evolved is something that would be expected in a world created by a just and loving God.
On the contrary...(more....)

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

47-Million-Year-Old Fossil the Missing Link?

You know a story is big when Google changes their search engine logo to resemble this fossil.

The basic headline?

"Scientists yesterday unveiled a 47-million-year-old fossil that they’re calling the "missing link" between primates and humans. Technically called a Darwinius masillae, but nicknamed "Ida," the juvenile female primate was discovered in Germany’s Messel Pit and is one of the most intact fossils ever found. In fact, scientists were even able to identify her last meal: fruit, seeds and leaves." (click for more)

National Geographic here...

"Revolutionary" Fossil Fails to Dazzle Paleontologists

So what does this mean? Has the missing link been found? Well here is an interview with Dr. Fuz Rana with one Christian perspective from Reasons to Believe.

This article from Evolution News.

Also, a blog post here at Uncommon Descent and another Christian perspective from Answers in Genesis.

This will become another icon like "Lucy." On a side note, this has been released with the PR blitz of a major movie (book, website, documentary) all without a lot of examination and peer review. Time will tell. But I wouldn't be surprised to see a retraction on page 26 sometime in the future clarifying the import of this fossil.

For a very helpful introduction to evolution, the fossil record, and intelligent design see the Design of Life.

Helpful thoughts from Stand to Reason

"One question that has to be raised with any fossil evidence is the presupposition and interpretation imposed on the evidence placing it in the fossil chain of evolution. Fossils don't come lined nicely in the strata in transitional order, as the pictures of fossils lined up in science books nicely illustrate. Fossils are dated, which gives us their historical place, but that doesn't prove transition. What is evident in the fossil evidence, and in Ida, is variation in species, which isn't at all remarkable. Claiming those variations are proof of one species evolving into a new one is an interpretation of those physical features already with the assumption of evolution, not objective proof.

A transition is only a transition only if it occupies the space in the historical development that it needs to occupy, and no fossil can provide that proof without the presumption of evolution imposed upon it placing it in the transitional chain. That's circular reasoning."

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

What is the New Atheism?

I came across this clip by Tim Keller. It is a succinct summary of the New Atheism.

Check out Timothy Keller's response in Reason for God.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

What Darwin Didn't Know...

Would Charles Darwin be a 'Darwinist' if he were around today? An intersting question to be sure. Dr. Fazale 'Fuz' Rana has written an engaging article--What Darwin Didn't Know--exploring the kinds of evidence Darwin did not have available to him when he set forth his theory.

(excerpt) "When Charles Darwin advanced his theory of biological evolution, there was a lot of biology he didn't know. Some of it he recognized. But there was much he never even thought about. During the 150 years since then, scientific advance has yielded important understanding about life's origin, history and characteristics. These accomplishments provide the framework for modern biology. Even more, they are causing scientists to question his theory. Learning what scientists know will equip Christians with a response to the Darwin anniversaries and his theory of biological evolution that can change minds and lives..." Read More...