Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Synopses: Intelligent Design and Long War Against God

I recently got my hands on some new material:

1.) Uncommon Dissent: Intellectuals Who Find Darwinism Unconvincing - edited by William A. Dembski

2.) Darwin on Trial - Philip E. Johnson

3.) Darwin's Black Box - Michael J. Behe

Because of this, I am holding off on my official reviews of Intelligent Design and Long Wars Against God because I want to read my new books first. I will, however, provide synopses of those books for anyone interested:

Intelligent Design:
Author: William A. Dembski
Publication: InterVarsity Press 1999

This book is excellent. The main thrust of the work is to demonstrate that, mathematically, complex specified information can not occur as a result of chance or random unguided processes. He gives some generous mathematical limits as to what random chance can generate and still concludes that chance can in no way account for the complex specified information existing even in a single cell, much less an entire organism. If his equations and theories hold true, which I think is a given, he proves that evolution is quite impossible unless an intelligent force guides it. Intelligent Design does not rule out evolution as long as that evolution is guided by an intelligent designer, but the theory is also quite satisfied with the idea that God created all life purposefully and immediately. In addition, Dembski's personal views aside, Inteligent Design as a theory does not require any sort of religious aspect either. It does require intelligence and a designer, but it does not require that such a designer be the Christian God. Of course, the Christian God Jesus Christ is the perfect match for such an Intelligent Designer, namely because he designed the universe and created everything that exists!

Evolutionists like to trash the ID camp because they label it religious. It is undeniable that many of the proponents are religious (and Christians, gasp!), but the theory is not. They won't give up their straw man easily though, their entire rebuttal of ID is dependent upon character assassination and the supposed sinister Christian agenda inherent within it. Creationists have done a good job, however, of demonstrating that evolution is a worldview of its own, namely naturalism. The evolutionist camp is doing the very thing they accuse the ID camp of doing: forcing their worldview, unsupported by particular facts, on others in the name of science. Naked science is just as comfortable with the concept of design as it is with evolution and thrives on honest and constant questions and challenges. Naturalism, on the other hand, screams, shouts, and cries any time it is called into the smallest degree of scrutiny.

The Long War Against God:
Author: Dr. Henry Morris
Publication: Master Books 2000

This book is boring at times, but the content is good. Morris's premise is that evolution today is actually the result of a long standing battle of two primary worldviews: Judeo-Chrisitian Monotheism and Chain-of-Being/Evolution. He demonstrates a great deal of research into this topic and does an excellent job of demonstrating that from the beginning, these two world views have been battling one another on the world stage. He traces the religious roots of evolution back to cultures just as ancient (if not more ancient) than the Jews.

I found his conclusion well supported and reasoned. It has been a while since I've read it so I can't provide a large amount of detail on the actual content, but suffice it to say that he effectively traces evolution, as a world-view, to ancient paganism. Evolution is nothing new, it has just taken over the scientific world today and has a new makeover. This book is excellent for those who want to understand evolution/naturalism as a religious worldview.

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