Christianity and evolution are logically incompatible

Sure, I guess, lol


  • viole

In my opinion your idea is flawed as your hypothesis counts on natural selection as a mechanism explaining the diversity of life. I think if you dig into the detail here you will find this a difficult claim to defend.

I’ll answer briefly then I’ll try to dedicate more space. Why would God create through evolution? First I would say it allows for a deeper interconnection between us and non-human animals (Collins 2008). Secondly it allows creation to take part in creating. I find that to be a very loving thing to do. Just like Fathers who allow their sons to help with a project. Thirdly, it creates a necessary epistemic distance between us and God. God isn’t going to make his existence obvious. That robs us of freedom in accepting him. He’s going to give us just enough. That’s what evolution does. I mean you’re an atheist because of it. I was too. Then I looked closer. Epistemic distances makes possible many great goods. Such as seeking God or helping others seek god (See Swinburne).
As far as your AE goes those are problems for Theism really and not EC,TC or CASE in general. You’re putting too much emphasis on selection. Most change is neutral and invisible to selection. So it’s not all these survival of the fittest, evolutionary arm races. You’re also ignoring the role of cooperation in evolutionary change. And things like converge. It’s not all this random, contingent mess. Also, God experiences time differently than we do. What we experience as random isn’t random to God. Though isn’t it odd through all these contingent events the evolutionary process created the exact type of being we would expect on Theism? Kinda like someone planned the outcome…


Yes, makes sense. But I have a simpler explanation:

We just happen to be primates with a bigger brain. and there is no God.

See? a one liner explains everything.


  • viole

That’s possible. But possible doesnt mean probable. I take an inductive approach much like Paul Draper, a metaphysical naturalist, and Richard Swinburne, a Christian. Which hypothesis best explains the world we see? At this time I’d say Theism. But I’m a card carrying Bayesian and im always ready to update my beliefs.


Theism has no particular predictions, and therefore zero explanatory power. You have to combine it with ad hoc hypotheses to get to a sort of God that would create our particular world, and thus the prior probability of the God you are invoking to explain the world has become as improbable as the world you are invoking your God to explain.

I think the situation is even worse for Christian theism. You now have to combine the Christian conceptions of God with loads of ad-hoc hypotheses for why the Christian God would create things with evolution despite the complete lack of scriptural (or sensible rational) support.

Of course there’s perfectly good psychological and sociological explanations for why anyone would even do this, because they have some sort of psychological/emotional connection to their religion and are allowing themselves almost limitless leeway to reinterpret and redefine their religious beliefs to square them with scientific findings no sane person could ever have predicted or claimed that they would expect that any God would have created the world like.

“God would totally have done it that way” predicted no-one ever.


You don’t think Theism best explains the existence of consciousness? I mean it’s Theism’s Starting point. Surely we have more reason to expect it on Theism than naturalism. The existence of the universe as a whole? The order and complexity of it. Religious experiences? Beauty? I’d argue all these things are best explained on the assumption that Theism is true. No good reason to expect any of these on naturalism


No, because it adds another mystery to the equation. Consciousness is a very effective way for us as hypothetically entirely natural beings to interact with the natural world.


Ok can you explain how you got from primates to humans?

Go away. We aren’t discussing science here. This is a theological/philosophical discussion. Start your own thread

He is making a scientific claim as the basis of his argument.

I can’t make sense of this. Sorry


We are assuming for the sake of the conversation that evolutionary processes can account for the biosphere. We aren’t discussing evolutionary theory. But it’s metaphysical implications


Whats Judean God mean? are you a Jew?
you make some good points. Yes its impossible dinos ruled the earth for so long and then dead and then a rat like thing diversified into well everything .
The bible instead teachs only 6000 years. then a flood that killed fossilized the creatures. Including dinos, which are not a real thing i say, and then the earth was repopulated from the ark .So a new ratio of clean to unclean and new divisions in biology.
Completely explained by Gods word.

Where does the bible teach only 6000 years?

I don’t think Theism “best” explains the existence of consciousness, because it adds a mystery to our incomplete understanding of it. We don’t know if God exists or how he would create consciousness. By appealing to God as the creator of consciousness, we would be taking something that we don’t fully understand, and attempting to explain its existence by appealing to an even greater mystery.

I’m not saying God couldn’t have created consciousness, and you may have other reasons for thinking he has done so, but I am saying that appealing to God doesn’t do anything to explain it.

On the other hand, we know that the natural world is here, and that we are part of it. Consciousness seems to be a very effective tool for us to have in the natural world, and I don’t see why it is unexplainable as a purely natural phenomenon.


I’m making a very modest argument. That the existence of conscious beings is more expected on Theism than naturalism. How it was created is beyond the point. All other evidence held equal consciousness is more probable on Theism than naturalism. Very modest and most naturalist scholars would agree.

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I don’t think theism explains consciousness at all. You can certainly declare by fiat that God makes consciousness exist, but I don’t see why you would expect that, and worse I certainly don’t see the explanation part.

One problem often thrown at naturalism is it’s apparent inability to explain the existence of consciousness using physics(why should particular structures of matter have conscious experiences?), and the qualitative contents of conscious experience (why does red appear to me the way it does, rather than appear as green, or some colour I can’t even imagine?). Whatever imaginary future findings of brain physics or chemisty will just be more theories about laws of actions, repulsion, attraction, and translocations of matter and energy. Why should particular complicated ensembles of these have experiences? It seems to me no amount of invoking the movements of electrons or protons could ever amount to “therefore you have the experience of the color red”.

But does theism then fare any better here? Humor me, how does theism explain these? Where is the explanation part of it? God just MAKES consciousness and we can’t fathom how? God just MAKES red appear to me like it does and we cant fathom how or why?

How is this any more, or a better explanation, than my brain just MAKES consciousness, or just MAKES red appear to me like it does, and we can’t fathom how or why?

It seems to me neither option actually predicts or explains consciousness. I think consciousness is fundamentally mysterious both in the fact that it exists, and for it’s qualitative contents, and I cannot even imagine how to account for it. Neither naturalism or theism score any points here as far as I can see.

I mean it’s Theism’s Starting point. Surely we have more reason to expect it on Theism than naturalism.


The existence of the universe as a whole? The order and complexity of it.

What is it about Gods, or universes, that make you connect the two and say universes are to be expected from Gods?

An argument to this effect I’ve heard before is that sentient beings want company, and a world with only one mind in it would be boring, so God created us(and therefore the world for us) basically out of boredom or loneliness. But boredom and the need of companionship are evolved biological instincts that exist in herd animals, you nave no a priori reason to expect a non-evolved mind to even be capable of boredom, or share any of your desires for companionship at all.
In social species that survive by cooperation and reproduce sexually by heavy investment in rearing offspring, the tendency to behave in ways that further cooperation and being part of a group/herd/tribe, and having companionship have pretty obvious fitness advantages. We desire to be intellectually and physically challenged and stimulated because it is a form of mental and physical practice that aids survival.

I don’t see why you would even expect Gods to have any desires at all. What makes you expect that, other than the fact that you yourself have them? You are taking things for granted I don’t see how you could.

Religious experiences? Beauty? I’d argue all these things are best explained on the assumption that Theism is true. No good reason to expect any of these on naturalism.

You have to invoke auxiliary hypotheses in addition to the existence of an omnipotent conscious mind to expect these on theism, radically decreasing the prior probability of God.

“Religious experiences” seem to me amalgamations of other positive experiences that aid survival and reproduction, ranging through everything from pleasure to love, awe, and wonder, connection and so on.

I can see an evolutionary explanation for basically any human desire or emotion (such as the things we find beautiful, aesthetically pleasing, and attractive (vibrant vegetation and fruit colours, symmetry, being able to see great distances, a source of water, youthful health, finding and understanding a logical pattern, or rythm, or harmony in a complex relationship), and the things we find ugly and repulsive (excrement, feces, pus, sores, exaggerated developmental abnormalities, rotting corpses, a chaotic mess/rubble), either as a direct product of natural selection, or as a byproduct other selected neurological processes, but then why should I expect a deity to share them if it did not evolve?


I don’t understand this either. What is “effective” about consciousness?

I think the issue can be concisely classified into the three points below-

  1. Evolution is an ateleological process while creation is teleological. Hence they are mutually exclusive processes.
  2. Evolution is not a process guided by an intelligence (hence it’s inefficient and wasteful). Whereas creation is the activity of an omniscient God and should be opposite in character.
  3. Evolution is a stochastic process which depends on unlikely accidents while creation should not depend on accidents. For example, there seems to be no logical reason for a creator to use mass extinctions to make the path for mammals… A creator could have just avoided creating dinosaurs.

@viole is the above a good summary of your argument?

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