The Bible and Science, Essay Example

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Essay

Examples of so-called »flawed design« presents a compelling challenge to proponents of intelligent design theory, since they challenge the very “intelligence” of created things. Namely, how could an omniscient being such as God who apparently created the universe have mistakes in his design? Would this not mean that God is himself flawed? We are left with two options in this case: either a “blind idiot god”, to use H.P. Lovecraft’s phrase, who makes countless mistakes throughout creation, or we have to discount the notion of God altogether. So say those who promote intelligent design.

However, one of the problems of this argument is that it involves judging God by standards of human rationality. Namely, human beings have enthroned the discourse of science as its primary mode of knowledge: everything is judged according to this standard of scientific rationality. But one of the key tenets of the Christian faith (and Islam also) is that God does not think like humans: he is radically alien to humans. That means that to confer to God rationality, would mean to conceive of this being in an anthropomorphic way and judging him by common contemporary standards. Hence, arguments for flawed design tend to point out parts of the human body that apparently have no pragmatic function. This, of course, is the essential projection of pragmatism as the highest value of God’s creation. Since pragmatism is so closely tied to capitalism, this could almost be said to argue that God is also a capitalist.

However, it is important to note that flawed design arguments are a response to intelligent design theories. Intelligent design is arguably guilty for this idea of conceiving God as a pragmatic and rational character – they look for examples of these values within nature. They therefore overlook some of the fundamental features of God: His unknowability, which means that God’s knowledge is radically different from ours. Judging God by our standards quite simply is a category mistake.

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