Dispatch From the Saving Darwin Tour

FROM KARL GIBERSON: Salon.com made its interview with me the top story this morning, which has done wonders for the Amazon ranking of my book, Saving Darwin. There are already more than a hundred letters in response, some of them pretty vicious. I guess some people don’t want Darwin saved, at least not by a Christian.

Denis Lamoureux Is an Evolutionary Creationist

We got a note last night from Denis Lamoureux, an assistant professor of science and religion at St. Joseph’s College at the University of Alberta and the biggest name in this field up in Canada. Lamoureux is the author of the upcoming book Evolutionary Creation, and he responds to Ken Miller’s opinion on the term “theistic evolution” and shares a bit about his own view of origins:

“I certainly appreciate Ken Miller’s approach to the term ‘theistic evolution.’ For example, I practiced dentistry, and in the early years I was an atheist and later I became a theist (evangelical Christian). I never practised ‘atheist dentistry’ or ‘theistic dentistry.’ I practiced dentistry, period. I found that there was one good way to extract a wisdom tooth, and atheism or theism had nothing to do with my protocol. So in may ways I’m with Dr. Miller.
However, Ken Miller is a leading figure in the modern origins controversy, and the term ‘theistic evolution’ does assist us in understanding his position. Clearly, he does not embrace the views of Richard Dawkins, an ‘atheistic evolutionist’ or ‘dysteleological evolutionist.’ I think that in the context of this controversy these qualifications are necessary.
I must also add that I find the term ‘theistic evolution’ problematic because which ‘theism’ are we referring to? Pantheism? Panentheism? Traditional theism? Or even a deistic spin on theism? As well, and this is my personal twist, I don’t like the inversion of priority in the term theistic evolution–a scientific theory as the substantive (noun), and God as a qualifying term (adjective). Consequently, I prefer ‘evolutionary creation.’ This term also seems to be emerging with those who accept evolution and have distinctly conservative Christian views.”

Thanks, Denis, for introducing another term into the discussion. What do you think: Is “evolutionary creation” better or worse than “theistic evolution”?

Ken Miller Is Not a "Theistic Evolutionist"

Ken Miller, on a train to New York City for a radio interview about his new book Only a Theory, just sent us this quick note from his iPhone:

“I always reject the term ‘theistic evolutionist.’ I am a theist and an evolutionist, to be sure, but the combined term makes no sense to me. Never heard anyone described as a ‘theistic chemist,’ have you?”

Thanks, Ken, for setting the record straight. What do you think: Is there value in the term “theistic evolutionist”?

Darrel Falk Speaks

Darrel Falk, a biology professor at Point Loma Nazarene University in California who’s known for being an anti-creationist, spoke to an all-Christian audience about “Bridging the Worlds of Faith and Biology” last night at Eastern Nazarene College in Massachusetts. Beginning with Scripture and ending with prayer, the central part of Falk’s talk focused on evolution—or what he calls “gradual creation”—as he explained the role of chromosomal mutation in the process. “God has guided creation to where it has gone, but has not micro-managed all the details,” he said. And just like enjoying a beautiful sunset can be a way of meditating on God, Falk said, exploring evolution can be a “worship experience because it’s God creation and God’s truth.”
Falk, who also addressed the evolution-creation controversy in his 2004 book Coming to Peace With Science, is currently working with Dr. Francis Collins, director of the Human Genome Project, and Rick Warren, founder and pastor of the Saddleback Church, to address the divide between science and evangelical Christianity. —Heather Ciras

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