First, I am so glad to see someone else who quotes Randal Rauser. I’m a fan of his kind approach. He’s a friend of Lamoureux but doesn’t hesitate to question him, too.
Second, I think I’ve listened to this one before, but I’ll do it again (I can’t at this very moment, but will try this weekend). George Macdonald’s view that God has a relationship with all of creation, including dogs, horses, and lesser animals, perhaps to a lesser extent with those that have less insight into responsibility, has attractive points to me. Thus, there’s a continuum of responsibility and relationship to God. As we grow in awareness of Him, we become both more responsible and more understanding of His characteristics. Thus, I think that Adam’s parents and great-great-grandparents also had relationship capabilities to God as well; but with the multi-thousandth generation before him, perhaps less, based on their God given intelligence, etc.
This is one option that I don’t think that Rauser or Lamoureux would accept; and while Macdonald acknowledged evolution’s possibility, I don’t think he got that deep into extrapolations. I’d be interested in your thoughts.
If there is a question about relationship between God based and those who have learning challenge, that’s a great point and really needs to come out. Autistic people, for example, may have less interaction than intelligence. I think that we could benchmark them though in terms of potential. Someone who is ill, mentally challenged, should be recognized as having all the potential, but not yet there. Once in Heaven, they’ll be healed.
I am not completely comfortable with this as a definition either. So your feedback is appreciated.