Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Intelligent Design - A Loser

"Intelligent Design" (ID) - a rather peculiar term that somehow fits with the contemporary times in which we live. It is a term that has risen to the forefront of the current American culture wars, as proponents push for it to be taught in school science classes while their opponents vehemently resist. But what is Intelligent Design anyway? Well simply put, it is a modern day way of saying God is the creator of life, and is to be presented as an alternative ‘theory’ to the theory of evolution. But since the word God is such a 'hot button' word in today's society, some of the presumably smarter of us who happen to believe in creationism decided that perhaps we can 'sneak' God into the schools by calling Him something else.

Well, predictably, their 'smart' counterparts in the secular movement weren’t buying the argument. As far as they were concerned, God or however you choose to refer to Him has no place being taught as science next to their revered theory of evolution. A Federal Judge in Dover, Pennsylvania agreed and today ruled that teaching "Intelligent Design" to high school biology students violates laws prohibiting the endorsement of religion in public school. Intelligent Design is not science and as such cannot be taught to schools in their jurisdiction. People say this is a landmark decision, because there are countless other school boards across the nation that are facing the same issue.

On this issue I have to agree with the secularists and atheists...but for a very different reason: If you want schools to teach about God, creationism and by extension the biblical history of the origins of life, then be bold about it and plainly say so! Don't reduce God to a modern day initialization (ID). Quite frankly I see this as further evidence of the lukewarm nature of contemporary Christianity. Jesus said in Revelation 3:15 - I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! He also said this in Matthew 10:32 - Whoever acknowledges me before men, I will also acknowledge him before my Father in heaven. But whoever disowns me before men, I will disown him before my Father in heaven. (NIV). Since God has a Name, simple courtesy calls for Him to be referred to by that Name.

It is a lack of faith to assume that a watered-down pseudonym would be more palatable to modern day senses and as such would stand a better chance of being accepted by the very enemies of God. So the secularists basically said "not in our classrooms", go teach about "Intelligent Design" in your churches. Funny though, I can't recall seeing ID referred to as a name of God in any of the Bibles that I have read.

To the proponents of "Intelligent Design" I say this: if you want God taught to your children, then you be the primary teacher in your homes. Teach them about His Name - He has many, and Intelligent Designer is NOT one of them.


Ed Darrell said...

The great lack of faith is in the assumption that what God manifests in nature must be wrong, because it doesn't square with someone's odd interpretation of scripture.

Intelligent design should be avoided for any number of reasons -- but the best reason is simply because it's bad science. We should teach our kids the best we know, not the least we know.

Joshua Ritchie said...

"To the proponents of "Intelligent Design" I say this: if you want God taught to your children, then you be the primary teacher in your homes."

Absolutely! Parents need to step up and school their children in the ways and knowledge of God.

Sue said...

I don't believe the Hebrew word for "day" (Yom) in Genesis is clear about whether it was a 24-hour period of time or an undefined period of time (see item 1e, as well as the list of usages), and Jesus never talks about the timing - only the fact. The difference to a scientist is huge - the difference to a Christian is non-existant. God created the universe, and that's that. Whether the word "Yom" means 24-hour period or undefined period is irrelevant. The Bible (in its original language) is perfect, infallible, inerrant, and God's perfect communication to us. The inadequacy of the English language is not God's fault. His Word is perfect.

"Science" is defined by Webster as "Knowledge; knowledge of principles and causes; ascertained truth of facts,"

God can do what He wants regarding His timing of creation, and He can do it any way He wants. If He wants to take six 24-hour periods, He can do that. If He wants to take 4.5 billion years, He can do that, too. If He did it in 4.5 billion years, it should be just as much "science" to a Christian as to the scientists, because it's fact. If, however, He did it in 6 24-hours periods, that should be just as much science to the scientists as it is to the Christians, for the same reason. Fact is fact, and we can't have it both ways. One of them is truth, and therefore fact. Just because we don't understand it yet doesn't mean it isn't true - whichever of the two alternatives is true is the real, yet-to-be-proven science.

That should be the quest of science - to find that answer. They, however, have eliminated one as "mystical and religious, and therefore irrelevant," and so have disregarded it. A lot of the secularists' "facts" are actually their assumptions about what they see, and how they interpret their observations within their (only alternative) world-view. They've yet to be proven and so are no more "science" than the Christian 24-hour perspective. They can't afford to let other interpretations into their thinking because that would bring them to a God to whom they would be accountable. In their world-view perspective, they must eliminate that alternative from the outset, leaving them only one alternative - a random-chance 4.5 billion years.

Schools present this world-view as fact because they have no available, acceptable alternative ('religion' isn't allowed in the classroom), thus eliminating from the child's consciousness any other alternative. If they happen not to have Christian parents or training, they buy into it lock, stock, and barrel. It could take half-a-lifetime for that damage to be undone.

The problem with your argument is that you also seem to be putting the Christian creation position into the realm of religion rather than science. Whatever method God chose to build the world and the universe should be taught to our children as the science of the matter. Since we can't know for sure at this point which of the two methods He chose, both should be taught as alternatives, with a clear delineation as to what the real facts (proven knowledge) are, and what the assumptions are. There are lots of problems and holes with the standard scientific explanation of the origin of the universe, and the problems and holes should be taught as just that, and not presented as fact because they happen to support the only explanation that doesn't need God. In fact, the existance and intervention of God actually explains some of those problems and holes. The children should know that. That's all the ID people are trying to do.

I'm all for giving the children the information that other possibilities and explanations exist up front, and let the new scientists, with a broader persective, work it out.

Thanks so much for introducing this provocative topic, and for giving us a great foundation on which to present our own, humble perspectives. (Sorry this is so long..)

With much regard, Sue

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A God who sends people to Hell?