The RTB Science-Scripture Integration

I don’t necessarily assume that Moses had such doctrinal intentions, especially in terms of fullest implications. I do assume that the OT prophets were inspired to make statements which they themselves only understood in part.


It is always difficult for me to evaluate such statements because it is usually not clear to me if the term intelligent design is referring to ID as a philosophical-theological stance (i.e., all Christians would agree that God designed the universe deliberately and intelligently) or as a compelling scientific conclusion. When ID is promoted as a scientific conclusion, I confess to being curious but usually disappointed.

I would be personally delighted if someone where to publish a convincing Comprehensive Scientific Theory of Intelligent Design using the Scientific Method (and therefore subject to falsification testing.) But nobody has even come close. In fact, I’ve never even seen any ID proponent publish compelling heuristic rules which would allow me to examine any entity or process “X” and determine whether it was “intelligently designed” or “not intelligently designed”. So I get the impression that most of what is mistakenly called “ID theory” is just a philosophical-theological stance about a Creator (by implication even though a specific identification is usually denied) which hopes to bolster its position by claiming to have some sort of scientific basis. After all, most people are more impressed by scientific arguments than by philosophical arguments.

At one level, I truly admire their ardor in trying to find scientific evidence to support their philosophical-theological position. But I get embarrassed for them when I observe them failing so miserably on matters of science.

As for me, yes, I believe that God designed the universe and the physics which governs it. And I believe he did so intelligently. Yet, I respect the Scientific Method and the definition of science, so I am too honest to claim that I can publish a compelling Comprehensive Scientific Theory of Intelligent Design based on the available evidence and a cogent sets of processes for falsification testing of any such theory. I am willing to say that my knowledge of science helps provide support for my philosophical position of an intelligent designer but that shouldn’t be confused with “ID theory” per se and the often absurd claims of today’s “ID movement”.

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It’s difficult to be a science minded Christian without seeing God’s design all around us.

It’s all those inconvenient political carpet bags of the I.D. movement that cause so much grief…
As well as the completely unnecessary view that science must (somehow) be able to detect God’s hand.

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Agree with time being a property of a matter filled universe as without matter, can’t measure time. Agree that God must be outside of time since He is in the metaphysical domain.

Agree, it doesn’t.

This is where the train goes off the track. How can the metaphysical God be omnipresent in the purely physical 4 dimensional spacetime of our universe?

Answer: By definition.

Regardless of whether one is a theist or an atheist, in philosophy (and theology) God is by definition omnipresent.

And just to give a casual illustration and a little of the “flavor” of such topics in philosophy, someone could assert that numbers are metaphysical concepts which “intersect” the three-dimensional world (and therefore are “omnipresent” in the matter-energy universe despite being metaphysical.) So if you are grappling with the possibility that a metaphysical entity cannot also “intersect” with the physical world, I think you will get a lot of pushback if you deny it.

I can create a imaginary “domain” in terms of a kind of “virtual reality” (such as a simulation within software) and be the omnipotent and omnipresent “overlord” in that virtual universe despite the fact that I exist outside of it and am not dependent upon it. So if you think that there is some aspect of the standard definition of God which conflicts with God’s omnipresence within a created universe, I’m not sure I follow. Of course, perhaps that is not what you are implying at all.

Seems contradictory or a deistic God. Either way, your invisible God very much like my unnecessary, non-existent God.


How many times do you need to state this? We get it. You are an Atheist.

We are constantly shocked and surprised - not.

Can you stop with the repetitive denial of the very premises that have been construed to create the very blog that gives you the privilege to be so annoying?

I’m not sure why it would be “contradictory”. And as far as a “deistic God” (by which I will assume for now that you mean a creator who never intervenes in his universe), I’m not saying that there are no such things as miracles or Divine interventions. I am saying (among other things) that I see no reason to assume that the evolution of life on earth required any sort of ongoing intervention or manipulation of mutations or “epigenetic events” or some such. I’m not saying that such is impossible or inconceivable. I simply don’t see why it would need to be presumed as necessary. And I certainly don’t know of any means of detecting and identifying it by means of the Scientific Method.

I find a lot of the “this couldn’t happen by any natural process that I currently understand, therefore it must be God at work” arguments of the ID community fully deserving of the god-of-the-gaps label which is usually heaped on it. Moreover, I don’t see how they can claim their position is a scientific one when they never seem to be able to formulate a scientific theory of ID which is meaningfully subjected to falsification testing. (Philosophically and theologically I may have very much in common with them. But scientifically, I just can’t support them until I see them vindicate themselves by means of some compelling peer-reviewed publications. I’ve been waiting for decades now for ID proponents to get to even first base in that regard.)

By the way, considering how rare and usually very “localized” are most of the miracles (supernatural interventions) in the Bible in terms of both time and space, I get the impression that God acts through such supernatural interventions into natural processes not all that often. But that is just a hunch on my part. (One can basically count the relatively brief eras of major observable supernatural intervention in the Bible on one hand.)

I chose my words carefully there. I’m not saying that God is not supernaturally active in the lives of many millions of people on a daily basis, especially through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. Yet, meanwhile, in the natural realm which is explored by science, I can’t cite any scientific evidence that God (or some “supernatural force or agent”) is manipulating natural processes to operate differently than they otherwise would—and certainly I don’t see any evidence of this happening on a frequent basis. Perhaps it does happen but I don’t observe it and have any means of verifying that it is a supernatural intervention.


Why does this annoy you so much? We should explore that? Perhaps some resentment of the clarity of my conviction?

Frankly I enjoyed the discussion with AllenWitmerMiller, I learned a lot.

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Jack Collins would argue the correct view is to say that God providentially governs the world, and when He acts, we might be able to personally discern it, but science cannot detect it.

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9 posts were split to a new topic: Science on Localized Events in Distant Past

Because the question of how quickly humanity arose, and during what kind of time frame, can be evaluated by the forensic data. It can help others sort through the various scenarios offered. Joshua has refuted BioLogos’ claim that science doesn’t allow for a biblical scenario. It is a fundamental misunderstanding to look to genetic LCAs to find Adam and Eve. Are there any other questions you’d like to ask that you already know the answer for?

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Isn’t that being done by thousands of scientists throughout the world in many scientific disciplines? Results are coming out nearly everyday. Ancient Genome Analysis together with Archaeology, Linguistic, Paleontology, are providing huge amount of data. Are you up to date on the latest findings?

It would be best for Biologos to let speak for Biologos and let Joshua speak for Joshua as it is Dr. Swamidass who has his reputation and scientific career on the line.

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A post was merged into an existing topic: Methodological Naturalism, Incorrectly Named

@Patrick --it would be best for you to actually try to understand us before you try to counsel us. But, thanks anyway. As Dr. Swamidass has pointed out, in this supposedly neutral “secular” climate, every one of us who uses our real names openly is “putting it all on the line,” because we are too easily mischaracterized, pigeon-holed or belittled for openly expressing our faith in the marketplace of ideas, as are you. Neither Josh nor the rest of us are stymied by vague threats of academic or professional censure. So, just keep enjoying the temperature of the water, and tell your fellow atheist cohorts that “this damn group is one helluva find when it comes to such questions. I’ll have to admit that they’re not all bad.” Cool?

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6 posts were split to a new topic: Going to the Ark Museum!

BTW, I don’t see you as “being threatening,” but of being a little to blithe about warning us what others might do. In what universe does Joshua, say, deserve ridicule, scorn, or censure for what you’ve seen him propose here? Cheers.

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@Guy_Coe thanks for the defense, but that is not exactly what is happening here. @Patrick is 100% correct. He is pointing out, correctly, that there is a lot at stake for me, and warning people not to impute things onto me that may or may not be true (THANK YOU @Patrick).

It comes off as a threat sometimes, but the real thing going on here is that there are some strict rules we all have to play by in science, especially me. He is being fair too, and not trying to silence us. The issue for him is protecting the neutrality of science and of government, and accurately representing it. That is our best hope for living together at peace in a society where people agree. For all those reasons, his warnings are not threats, but gentle reminders that we need to take this seriously.


not all of you, just Joshua. He is the one sticking his neck out. And btw, nothing that Joshua has done deserves ridicule, scorn or censure.