Intelligent Design

This debate has been brewing for a couple of years now and I really haven’t given it much thought. But in the last couple of weeks it has reared its head on the highest political plain when President Bush stated that he believed in ID. Then yesterday the pastor of the church that I attend pointed out some websites on the subject. Now, I think it is time that I look into it because I have a couple of questions that I would like answered. Now, I realize that I am bias since I do believe in God and I find it hard to believe that everything that we see today is the result of random consequences and an explosion of nothing that turning into something. However, my biblical teaching never accounted for the complexity of the world either. So here are my questions in particular:

1. How does evolution account for the complex nature of life and the missing links that occur in its theory?
2. Does ID recognize any aspect of evolution or does it state that everything that is, has always been?
3. Does ID align itself with the biblical teaching that God created man or does it state that God created the precursor on which life would revolve?
4. What are the flaws of the evolution theory?
5. What are the flaws of the ID theory?


If you can answer any of these then be my guess. I am in the beginning stages of my understanding of the subject.

 

26 Responses to Intelligent Design

  1. Midlife Crisis Says:
    I certainly cannot answer any of your questions but I found an interesting article: http://jmm.aaa.net.au/articles/1213.htm

    While the bible is a source of some of the history of the civilizations at the time of it's writings, I do not credit the bible as a source of the history of earth's beginnings because according to the bible, the earth is only about 6,000 years old.

    I do believe that the universe is far more complex than most facets of Christianity would like to believe. Reliigous 'leaders' make people feel like they have to make a choice between GOD and LOGIC. Like you can only believe in one or the other. That shouldn't be the case.

    The bible was written by men.
  2. Cynthia Says:
    I think this may answer Number 1 and 4:

    A Good Scientific Definition of evolution...

    "In the broadest sense, evolution is merely change, and so is all-pervasive; galaxies, languages, and political systems all evolve. Biological evolution ... is change in the properties of populations of organisms that transcend the lifetime of a single individual. The ontogeny of an individual is not considered evolution; individual organisms do not evolve. The changes in populations that are considered evolutionary are those that are inheritable via the genetic material from one generation to the next. Biological evolution may be slight or substantial; it embraces everything from slight changes in the proportion of different alleles within a population (such as those determining blood types) to the successive alterations that led from the earliest protoorganism to snails, bees, giraffes, and dandelions."

    - Douglas J. Futuyma in Evolutionary Biology, Sinauer Associates 1986,
  3. Jerry McClough Says:
    I have been thinking about the same thing !
    My brother I need your help!

    Please email me at

    jerry.mcclough@gmail.com
  4. Anonymous Says:
    Evolution is another man made theory that contradicts the word of God. If you truely believe in the God of the Bible, and believe the the Bible is the word of God, you should turn to the book of Genesis 1:1.

    Something to ponder: Do explosions create order or chaos? Is it possible for this highly complex, perfectly ordered universe to be created by "chance" or a "fluke" collision of atoms?
  5. Deb Says:
    Leave it to yet another "anonymous" to shove a faith book at a science topic and call it good.

    An excellent post on the subject of the ID/evolution debate can be found here:

    http://robschumacher.blogspot.com/2005/08/bush-talking-intelligent-designdoesnt.html

    and a small collection of discussions here:
    http://www.flickr.com/groups/pbu/
  6. Dell Gines Says:
    James, this is an interesting subject. The fact of the matter is this, evolution is a theory with many holes in it. My personal opinion is that being that it has so many holes, and individuals have switched, changed, or countered the position of evolutionist so many times throughout the course of the years, that those who hold dogmatically to this position as "The Truth" are similar to individuals who believe in cults.

    Scientist do have biases, and this has been proven time and time again.

    I guess my ultimate point is this, evolution doesn't necessarily contradict the idea of an intelligent designer. Evolution doesn't account for 'the first cause'. Evolution does n't provide a solution to the dilema of life coming from non-life (IE a clump of lifeless cells evolving into the complexity we see today) and I can go on and on. So believe in evolution takes an equal if not more amount of faith than belief in God.

    So me, being pragmatic, look at it this way, what does a belief in evolution provide for me, that a belief in God does not? To me, a believe in evolution provides nothing for me, emotionally, spiritually, intellectually and therefore to believe in it, for me, is a waste of time. I know what God has done for me, but the scientist who promote evolution have done nothing.
  7. Cynthia Says:
    James,

    For me evolution doesn't contradict God. If God created everything and he/she gave us the tools to understand the creation in human terms, then I think it is the will of God to do so. God gave us this wonderful brain so that we can understand the creation around us. Using science, molecular genetics, to be specific, I've traced my ancestry back to Sierra Leon and Liberia. I would not have known this information otherwise. I should add, I’m not a believer in the bible, there are too many contradictory stories, but I do believe in a higher power and some called that power God/Jesus/Allah/Yahweh, etc….

    http://cdaniels225.blogspot.com/2005/03/african-ancestry.html
  8. Deb Says:
    Actually, Dell, the theory of evolution is NOT full of holes. But it sounds logical to say so...especially to those who have a predisposed wish to believe in ID. You (plural) will have to do your homework, I'm afraid, to understand why this is NOT an issue of diverse opinions.

    And I can't believe I'm wasting my time here. Quite frankly, there is soooooo much wrong in this country right now (in large part due to extremist Christians) that I have no patience to bang my head against the wall with closed-minded believers. I think the good Christians should be screaming to the top of their lungs (more so that the rest of us) about the many injustices perpetrated on this nation IN THE NAME OF CHRISTIANITY by the corrupt now in power.

    Deb
    former Christian and still very spiritual; but want no part of the blood bath crimes/torture done in the name of Jesus.

    Here is another evolution link:
    http://www.atheistfoundation.org.au/evolution.htm
  9. James Manning Says:
    Thanks for the information. I have still not come to any fine conclusion on the ID debate but one part is that I don't see how anyone can reconcile ID and the literal interpretation of the Bible. My girlfriend sent me a link to an interesting article.

    http://www.beliefnet.com/story/172/story_17219_1.html
  10. Cynthia Says:
    James,

    You can't reconcile ID with the bible if you do it literally. If you believe in ID - then you must also conclude that the bible shouldn't be taken literally period. This is why I think they are treading on thin ice with this ID theory.

    In addition, a theory should be able to be proven true or false and theories change over time. Is the creation of the world by God a theory or is this the absolute truth? If we say that God theoretically created the world and everything therein as the bible says, then scientist should be able to test experimentally the accuracy of the bible's account of creation and then determine if the information should be adjusted or change in the bible to reflect the new information. However, if we say that God created the world and this is the absolute truth, then how can ID be taught as a theory?

    In essence, people are opening up a can of worms and many people will not like the outcome.
  11. James Manning Says:
    Cynthia,

    That was my initial thought when I decided to look into it. I couldn't get why Christian would support ID when it takes away from the Bible. The article my girlfriend sent men acknowledged that. It will be interesting.
  12. Dell Gines Says:
    Intelligent design doesn't necessarily take away from the bible James. But what it does do is set a premise for 'intelligence' in creation. This is why the atheist fight against it so hard.

    For example, intelligent design does not contradict the literal six day theorist, nor those that believe the six days in the bible are not literally six days, but six eras.

    Deb...are you crazy or just intellectually dishonest. There are several holes in evolutionary 'theory'. If there wasn't it would no longer be considered theoretical but a fact. Science 101 hun.

    And your argument about 'close mindness' does not make since because in effect you are doing the same thing when you accuse others of being close minded.
  13. James Manning Says:
    Dell, so how does ID reconcile with evolution and the six day theory at the same time? I know evolution has some holes in it but there are a lot of fact to it as well. I'm open to ID but I'm still not sure how that fits in with Adam and Eve.
  14. Cynthia Says:
    Dell,

    Are you saying ID is a theory or a fact? Can anyone conclusively say that God Creative the world? Can anyone conculsively say that God didn't? Certainly, science isn't trying to make either claim.
  15. kansasscott Says:
    I've been following the discussion with great interest. The question about 6 days is a good one. In the Hebrew language (language of the Old Testament) days can be translated periods, as in periods of time. Those within the ID camp vary greatly on whether 6 days is literal or not. The key for me is two verses in Genesis, "in the beginning God created", is the first one. How He created is not revealed, nor is it important, only that God is the creator. The second phrase is stated after something is created, when it says, "and they produced after their kind." Nothing evolved into a totally different species. There is evolvement within species types, though.

    At the heart of evolution is a desire to write God out of the equation. If one could do that, then one is able to do whatever one wants, without any accountability to a higher power, which is also in Genesis. Adam and Eve succumbed to the temptation "you will be like god." Evolution seeks to make man the chief end of all things.

    Hence my belief in creationism.
  16. Cynthia Says:
    If ID should be taught in schools, then evolution should be taught in churches to balance things out.
  17. James Manning Says:
    Scott,

    Thanks for your input. I'm in the camp that I've never believed a bird turned into a monkey, then into man. I found ID and the 6 days the most interesting aspect of the debate.

    As for teaching it in schools - that I haven't gotten to because evolution doesn't really deal with how life began but how it evolved over time. If ID doesn't dispute that some aspect of evolution happened, then I'm not sure what part they want to present as a science. Still, it is an interesting topic.

    I think the sticker idea that was presented in Alabama or Georgia is a farce. Putting a sticker on a science book stating that evolution is a theory does nothing to further science.
  18. kansasscott Says:
    James,
    I could handle teaching evolution as a theory, but not as fact, as it seems to be taught. ID could be taught as a theory, also. I'm with you on the sticker thing. And ID does not need to be taught that it is the God of the Bible, though I believe that's the Creator, just that there is a higher power, intelligent designer.
  19. ... Says:
    scott,
    Though i do not agree with the complete theory of evolution, the "heart of evolution" is not to write out GOD, Darwin himself, it's been said, would hate what the world has turned his theory in to. It was never intended to be an anti-God theory. And as far as having evolution taught in schools, I was taught evolution as a theory, and creastism as a theory...neither of which are completely ruled out one way or the other....perhaps a mixture of both is what should be adapted. God created and allowed evolution. Heck, i was taught the big bang theory as a "theory", and this was in the school at your church. The youth of today have an understanding, as far as i've seen, that we couldnt have just happend. Most adolesents when asked will say that they believe in a "higher power" but not neccessarily "God". So wether the general puplic chooses to accept it, the future of tomorrow is being allowed to make up their own minds on the "ID theory".
  20. crysharris Says:
    Basically, it's a bit of a red herring to talk about Evolution as a "theory" or Creationism as a "theory". In the scientific community, when a theory is established, it is done through the scientific method, testing and attempting to disprove the original theory. It is fine tuned over years of peer review and study. The Theory of Evolution continues to hold weight because of empirical evidence found from Natural Selection, geology, palentology, vulcanology, radio isotoping, plate techtonics, and I could go on.

    Each time one of those disciplines discovers something new, the Theory of Evolution is vetted against that new knowledge and the theory is either further strengthened or discarded, much like the Big Bang Theory, which has substantially "evolved" since it's inception. String theory and blah blah blah has changed the understanding of what might have happened at the "beginning" of the Universe.

    Gravity is only a theory, but we believe in it both scientifically and intrinsically. Evolution is not necessarily a theory with as much weight (teehee) as gravity, but it is judged with the same methods.

    Creationism has failed to meet the rigorous demands of the scientific method. The answer of the Institute for Creation Research www.icr.org/ has been to deny the value of radio isotope dating, to disclaim plate techtonics and palentological evidence. That's the only way the world could have been created in 6000 years. Intelligent Design believers improve upon the Creation idea to be more consistent with the many scientific disciplines that "prove" the age of the planet.

    "Science lecture" off.
  21. James Manning Says:
    I think those that follow the ID model have gotten more sophisitcated with their argument, but I think there is some merit to it. I'm just falling on the side of evolution.
  22. Starr Says:
    1. How does evolution account for the complex nature of life and the missing links that occur in its theory?
    A. Evolution accounts for the nature of life (Natural Selection) by allowing living organisms to change to adapt to new adaptations brought on by the combination of climate and population changes.
    2. Does ID recognize any aspect of evolution or does it state that everything that is, has always been?
    A. Not well versed on ID but can tell you that it is a fairly good try by those who are anit-evolution to come up with a halfaz'd plausible excuse. As you know, these anti-theories have been with us for many, many years. Even as recently as the 1800's when Wallace and Darwin were trying to out-do each other in putting forth their versions of the theory of the origin of the species.
    3. Does ID align itself with the biblical teaching that God created man or does it state that God created the precursor on which life would revolve?
    A. The various theories handed down by early man regarding the creation of 'man' shows a total lack of understanding that these cultures had regarding the nature of 'nature'. We who embrace scientific study are grateful to these folks who did the best they could do with the 'science' of their times.

    4. What are the flaws of the evolution theory?
    A. The major flaw of the evolution theory is most people have it confused. The 'theory' as it has come to be known , never ever tried to explain why man is here or where he came from. The evolution 'theory' has been evolving ever since ancient man began worshipping rocks and trees.

    5. What are the flaws of the ID theory?
    A. Illogical. It wants to use a flawed work (Bible) as a basis for serious discussion and as a point of departure for questions such as these, when we all know that those works were political works, designed to establish national identity and a natural next-step from the theory of 'animalism' that their ancestors embraced, not a serious look at how the world works.
  23. Starr Says:
    On my last blog, Item 5 discourse should refer to 'animism' NOT 'animalism'.

    Thanx
  24. James Manning Says:
    Thanks for your comments, starr. Very insigtful. We've discussed this issue again. If you look in the November Archives, you will find some more post on this topic.
  25. right wing Gene Says:
    "It's what I expect from them. They're down with OPC (Other People Children). So as long as it is Iraqi children the children of Liberals dying, then they're cool."There is a lot folks in my church that have love in the war and they are not crying.And they are not calling for them to come home.

    On Intelligents desing
    " In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth."Genesis 1:1
  26. Anonymous Says:
    I believe in inteligent design you only have to look at the angels by our local river they are lining their nests with pubic feathers and shortly we can expectto see a brood of fairies