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PRINCIPLES ADRIFT IN A SEA OF CONFUSION
with reference to
When you are adrift in an ocean, it is wise not to be disoriented. Thus if you find a bit of a polished cabinet, it is not acute thought to imagine that the salt, ozone and other components of the total situation, whether imaginary or actual, that one might consider, would have placed the mathematical specifications apparent in the geometry of the cabinet. You look rather than to water as source, to water as course. That is where the thing has now got. Where it came from must not be occluded in logical precision, by the fact that you personally are at the time in question, soggily sopping up water, in a drifting state resulting from ship-wreck or other misfortune.
There is a limit to environmental thinking, to making whatever it is that hits you, into God for the sake of listless inertia, because things keep ... bumping into you, and water keeps soaking into your skin. The pressure of circumstances should never, if one wishes to be logical, be allowed to become the criteria of thought.
Naturalism however loves to imagine things on the wings of fantasy, while ignoring the soil of fact, as if it had forgotten that anything other than the sea of philosophic confusion could be found, as if the concept of making 'something do it somehow, but anyway, not anything with power sufficient' were some kind of mantra. It may be, but it doesn't work. Things don't make things because they happen to be next door. Always fundamental adequacy is required for any specification, correlation and system, and making magic or confusion the sea for it is merely a breach of scientific method as well as metaphysical validity. Let us however move to our present topic. First we shall look at the concept of 'principle' ... 'some sort of principle' as they like to say, when nothing else occurs. This is given the oscar, the accolade, the starter motor position ... but what exactly IS a principle ?
First let us cite a small quotations from SMR p. 159 and 315C
1 ... What sort of a principle thinks and conceives and even constructs conceptual apparatus in man ? Oh well, not quite a principle. After all, a principle is a name for some thing which is caused to operate in some way. It is the cause which makes it do so which is needed. A principle is a description of an order and procedure; and because of this, it needs its base, the force and creative content which it describes so that it can be a principle. You need the worker to make it work, the creator to allow it to happen, the structure in which it is to work, the imagination to formulate it so that it might work, the thinker for whom it is a thought, the functionary for which this is a function. Something which is in order needs the orderer, if code then its commander; and what operates needs the gear in which to operate, the power by which to operate and the basis on which to act. (Cf. pp. 252B, 315B-316G, 348-353 infra.)
Very well, as always you need God: all we are seeing in modern evolutionary gasping and panting after immediate 'creation' is a denial of the cause and a clamour for the effect. It is always the same: God is smuggled in and His name is smuggled out.
''Without a cause, events do flow,
without conception they will know,
plans unplanned arise and fashion,
each has its specific ration,
perpetrated and in much,
perpetuated while they last,
framed and founded, not confounded:
consciousness itself arises, life is full of such surprises,
minds are made within the matrix,
a sort of adventitious perspex, respectable and valid,
being altogether very neat, full of meaning and of meat;
for what can come without due cause, might as well to all applause,
think and find and know and be, everything that God could be...''
Now we can resume our
news item as it roves over some modern thought climates. For perspective, it
would be helpful to consult here SMR pp.
422 E on
which gives an historical and logical perspective at the outset. Also SMR Ch. 2,
S1-33 could be useful background.
Meeting the Designer, Not by Chance, but by Design
Critique of an Interview
Looking at Facts
"Evolution: A Theory in Crisis" was on the whole an expertly presented book, apt in language, precise in depiction, knowledgeable and ready to deal with facts. In this, Dr Denton made a succinct but salient contribution to the exposure of Darwinism, to exhibition of style in the creation and the attestation of the "perfection" of miniaturised, coherent, correlated work in program and maintenance, implicit in living things. Even the smallest, he indicated, were such in their underlying, complex and remarkable equipment. There was no evidence whatsoever of evolution in cells. They were as cities from the most simple. The concept of 'continuity in nature', he pointed out, has existed in the minds of those who speak rather then before their eyes!
All this we have noted in SMR and elsewhere, in detail, in its place. However in New Life, an interview with Dr Denton, subsequent to the writing of this book is provided. In this, one sees the unhappy movement from the all but amazing reticence in speech of Dr Denton, when it came to identifying the source of the wisdom and contrivance, integral in character and brilliant in design, which he had attested. Dr Denton in fact had another interview with Dr Wieland, in which the noted author indicated something closely resembling a reflection on the Creator. Not now however, not that is, in any sense which would meet what has been shown to be the logical requirement (SMR 1, ASP 1-9).
In this interview, we find that Dr Denton continues to regard anything which would, for example, show a series of small steps culminating in "the avian lung", itself a "solution" which is "fantastic", as "miraculous". In fact, of course, it was miraculous in the sense that a competent cause operated to produce this apposite result, and the competent cause was not of the formed and formulated character known as matter, which shows only capacity to obey. It was what is termed 'spirit', which simply signifies an operative efficiency and sufficiency which is non-material in format, but which exhibits concepts and has dynamism. There is more, but not less.
It would, then, according to this report of an interview with Dr Denton, have been miraculous for a series of mere gradual short steps to have instituted this coherent and brilliant and intimately inter-related whole, the avian lung, incorporating as it does a brilliant solution to certain problems and giving specifications apt, adroit and adept. It lacks a logical interface for this fashion of being, style of procedure, avenue of operations. In some detail, why this may correctly be said has been noted in such places in Repent or Perish Ch.7, in some detail; as well as in SMR Ch.2, esp. pp. 251ff..
Observing that "gradual changes" as an idea for arrival of what is, has gone "out of vogue", Dr Denton notes that in fact, "punctuated equilibrium", arguing for "sudden jumps in nature", without intermediate forms, is "really only a description of the apparent jumpiness" of what has in fact come to be. "I don't think," he added, "it is actually an explanation for biological design". It is really a "label" of "a palaeontological phenomenon". "The fossil record seems to be jumpy and in many cases it would be difficult to imagine exactly what the intermediate would be." It is, then, not merely, as the famed Dr W.R. Thompson pointed out (SMR Index), that the intermediates lack in fact; it is here being noted that they seem to baffle the imagination as to what they would be. It is rather like trying to "imagine" what an intermediate between a Volkswagen and an Apollo rocket would be, if there had to be a line of flight from the earlier to the later models, in some sense practical and manageable! (even by intelligence!).
At the more minute level,
in the interview noted, Dr Denton observed that there are many components of
individual proteins, and they are very complex. Each one of the components is
part of a whole, "and the whole has an end and a meaning and a purpose."
He indeed notes, in trend rather like Sir Fred Hoyle of Cambridge fame in this,
that "a biological end or purpose is written throughout all the laws of
physics ... that in fact the entire cosmos bears evidence that biological
phenomena is the end of nature". (Cf. SMR
226, 224, and esp. Repent or Perish,
99ff.). The blatant and
patent error in magical Darwinism, which impressed its author far less than its
exponents, as has been shown before in this Site, leaves Dr Denton surmising
that perhaps even a "silent majority" of biologists do not find the
answer in any form of Darwinism. He notes further that a number of physicists
are of the view that the laws of nature seem to be arranged for an end."
Looking at Fictions
It is here that the lapse in logic begins to appear, which formerly had looked more like a failure to apply it. Speaking of "creation", Dr Denton is looking for something other than the Creation of the Bible. Nevertheless, he considers it clear from the evidence that the "world is optimised for our existence". Overall, he appears to consider this: "I think there is a general teleology which is behind nature and which has generated it." He proceeds to what seems a caricature of Biblical truth: that Biblical creationists believe in a "myriad of interventions by God in the history of the Earth... they don't represent the theory of design really." He makes what is perhaps an even more obvious error in this assertion: that it is in the English-speaking world (actually the interchanges make this a rather imaginary conception), only in the last 100 years or so that the "strict Biblical creationism" has become prominent, and this, in his own opinion, as a reaction to the delusive errors of Darwinism.
First, we must notice that
the Bible produces NOT LESS, but much MORE than a design theory, to use Dr
Denton's phrase. It produces what is minimal for a design function: that is, a
sufficient cause. Whether with or without mediation, this must at last
incorporate the criteria required: brilliance of conception, execution and
contrivance. Unconceived conceptions are not design
at all, but contradictions in terms. Mental operations require a mental
operator, a mind in which they may occur, a milieu for which they
This may be far in excess of what we use; but it must at last incorporate the minimal conditions of roving function, envisagement and actualisation. Matter, as we have shown, has no such powers, does not make itself but makes its making apparent by what it does. Science does not account for what might have been, but for what is; and this is what is.
The whole bunch of exceedingly UN-NOVEL views about making a system do it all, a somehow interwoven, programmed, or meditatively musing interstices of "things" have all the thoughts: this fancy is as old as it is delusive. It is merely to seek the function without the functioner, the cause without its criteria, the operation without its means. The relationship between conception and creation, possibilities, the putative and the real is well-known to us. (Cf. News 52.)
It could happen differently, but it must happen, or the simple reality would be that we would be "explaining" the combination in observable reality, creativity and creation, without bothering to construct from observable reality what it is that happens in such cases. If we failed to be empirical in this way, and it would not be science since the model, the paradigm is both multitudinous in nature - our own, for example - and intimately known as to its operation and mean: then of course even there, there would need to be a limit.
The imaginary, non-natural
concept we would generate, about "what did it" would need to HAVE THE
POWERS AND FUNCTIONS to act logically, create brilliantly, conceive
efficiently, call into being in understanding what is to be instituted in
practicality and so on. What does this is already labelled
quite clearly: MIND. It need not be like ours in some ways; it could
outdistance them infinitely, and in fact the Bible teaches clearly that it
does! But ours are in some vital ways, of this, as modelled BY IT. THAT
explains how we can see the affinities between what IN FACT is instituted in
Nature, and what IN FACT, we do. The last is a point to which
We can of course - and some
do - talk airily about "principles" which will supposedly avoid
having a mind, an analyst and a contriver and a creator and a surveyor and
indeed, a person. We have already in various places noted the superficial
oversight of minimal, causative realities which this constitutes. Thus on p.
159, SMR, we note this, reproduced below, adapted and extended.
Thus creation alone stands before logical thought.
A PRINCIPLE! This however is merely a description of
a happening, not a cause of the happening. If there is a principle, the
causative sequence is to find its basis, what produced it. But what principle
creates! The "principle of creation" - what is that except a tag (to use
These are the capacities of a person, or super-person if you like; but of someone who has power of thought and action that in no way are less than our own, however much greater they may - and must - be. But a principle ? What then would this "principle" do!
· This it must do. It must have power to institute law, to constitute concepts in an immaterial (non-conditioned, SMR Ch.1 ) form and express them in material one; to constrain, contain and restrain, so that copies are made and errors are fought against in cells and organs and organisms; it must rise like a phoenix from the ashes, equipped with powers to conceptualise therefore, and to implement.
· But wait! what do we say about ashes! We are discussing institution not destitution. Our wars and judgments make ashes too near; but in the institution phase, what was not instituted has no ashes, or anything else destroyed; for destruction must first wait upon construction. So, not after all like a phoenix from the ashes arising, but rather arisen, without pile beneath, is what makes the piles, the foundations, instituting and constituting the world of change in order that it might change from beginnings to endings, from creation to desecration, judgment or performance as the case may be.
· And it must provide mind for man and spirit for him, that he in turn (as factually is the case) might conceptualise and implement in his own derivative and contained way. And for man, an 'image' is needed so that he may do business with God and have ground for truth, without which he is mere reactor and could not intelligently discuss what is and what is not, or take any part in what we are now doing; nor, therefore, do this - affirm or deny truth, such as is implicit in all these presentations.
Looking at Fiascos and Reverting to the Faith
· It is here alone that the irrepressible human desire for truth, to declare it or rebut what others think it to be, has its rational basis. Indeed, the capacity to know God is the ground of the assurance that truth may be known, and that we may logically assert it. Without absolute truth, the possibility of finding it of course does not exist. Even where this knowledge of God is lacking, it is the fact that He is, which is the non-irrational basis of the assumption of availability of truth, which is normally implicit. In a parallel way: the frustration so common in this research of so many for so long about the nature of the universe and of creation, results necessarily as well as being found actually, from the point that the truth is blindly rejected so that its teaching is not available.
· That too is what the Bible teaches (Romans 1:18-32, Ephesians 4:18ff., moral and metaphysical consequences both being in the line of flight, which can pass over varied terrains!). No one ever shows it up by DOING THIS JOB without God; and this is just a fact of philosophic history. On the other hand, it is all explained clearly when one acts rationally, asserting truth on the basis that it is there, identifying it and applying it, assessing and considering the entire felicity of the whole.
Freely and frequently, it is by some other ground than what is logically possible, by some rote or cultural obsession, that the predictable logically untenable result comes for the renegade from reality. Buttressed with a refusal of truth, he builds as if obsessed over the history of thought, the edifice of "explanation" which falls. THAT in fact is what has made philosophy what it is: an endless search for what is, with similar endlessness, not found, on the one hand; and a beautifully amusing, but gravely sad, rebuttal, generation after generation, of what has been asserted before, made in its due turn, by what is now asserted, itself, shortly rejected likewise.
THAT is the fault of folly, the price of rejection. It is like 2+2=4 being ALONE rejected in advance, as diligent Ph.D.'s are written over hundreds of years, in vain seeking to cover the case. In this case, this scenario, what is right CANNOT be accepted, so what is WRONG MUST be put forward, and this in turn, CANNOT work, so the work MUST be repeated. This goes on ad nauseam, but not ad infinitum, for the Bible asserts forthrightly that judgment is coming. It is not a game (cf. Acts ).
After all, if you reject that only thing that is true, frustration
in seeking truth HAS TO RESULT, and it DOES, as we
have abundantly shown, do just that and do it constantly, in the basics of
philosophy without God. The very simplicity of the coherent answers available
is looked at in crucial cases in
· Biblically one finds, as in one's own pastoral experience, that the underlying reason for that failure is that God lives; and many do not want that life, whatever private gods they may create - cf. John 3:17-19.
· It is here Bible gives the evidence... shown in SMR Chs.1-3. We need not however recapitulate: it is the same. The movement from the conceptual calamities of the organic evolution hypothesis is the same thing as movement towards the God of the Bible. There are many red-herrings on the way, but this is the immense, intense and inevitable thrust. As to organic evolution, the circuit to avoid God is now in the re-entry phase. How shall it be formulated ? Where shall it be found ? Oh, just in the same place as always, in God, who from everlasting to everlasting is God. (See Psalm 90:2; cf. Isaiah 29:13- 20, esp. v. 16 - "Shall the thing framed say of Him who framed it, He has no understanding!")
Yet surely there is a trip-wire provided ? But of course! It has been there waiting a long time, and has often been used before (thrift on the part of the devil, perhaps).
· But what sort of a principle thinks and conceives and even constructs conceptual apparatus in man ? Oh well, not quite a principle. After all, a principle is a name for some thing which is caused to operate in some way. It is the cause which makes it do so which is needed. A principle is a description of an order and procedure; and because of this, it needs its base, the force and creative content which it describes so that it can be a principle. You need the worker to make it work, the creator to allow it to happen, the structure in which it is to work, the imagination to formulate it so that it might work, the thinker for whom it is a thought, the functionary for which this is a function. Something which is in order needs the orderer, if code then its commander, who has created and commandeered it; and what operates needs the gear in which to operate, the power by which to operate and the basis on which to act. (Cf. pp. 252B, 315B-316G, 348-353 infra.)
· Very well, as always you need God: all we are seeing in modern evolutionary gasping and panting after immediate 'creation' is a denial of the cause and a clamour for the effect. It is always the same: God is smuggled in and His name is smuggled out.
as noted in regard to
Pinpointed in the passage about to be quoted,
dealing with "it", that is, with the creative, basic power and enterprise on which the universe is based, on the one hand, and on the other, with the way philosophers have acted as if to 'bury' it (we have this abbreviated here),
the fallacy is given the necessary exposure:
This was on Hoyle, and it is a fortiori applicable to many more!
For more detail in this area, see Ch.3, SMR. For further accounts in Great Burials of the smuggling of the reality of God in the words of man, far less successful than the boats of immigrants, detectable on radar as they seek to enter a land illegally, see Ch. 4, SMR loc.cit.. Here the less than beautiful and almost immutable fashion parading of philosophies which seek to suppress God into a coffin of camouflaging words, which deny Him while implying Him, over the centuries, is expose, and cases are listed.
It is one of the most prodigious verifications*2 of the Bible, that precisely this is stated in the diagnosis of the rebellious heart of man, in the Bible in Romans 1:17ff. and Ephesians -23, to name but two locations. The activity is logically ludicrous, psychologically inveterate and functionally futile. It goes on, like atmospheric pollution, while the mouths that spew it forth send forth their fumes. It has not been quenched, smothered, left behind as immaturity; it goes right on in the manner diagnosed, and it does so to its smouldering crises as the world matures towards the time of judgment (cf. II Timothy 3:1-5, II Peter 2:1ff., Revelation 16:13), not only outside the professing church, but inside it, corrupting and corroding, invading*3and investing false faith as well as open unbelief. It is shown in "false prophets" (Matthew 24:24) aplenty (SMR Ch.9, pp. 836-884 and SMR Index), as well as in the foolish fabrications of secular philosophy.
It is wonderful that the love of God does not disdain the diseased, but only the disease, and calls notwithstanding, to those who err. Proverbs 1 is one of the most poignant cases, and although it shows the seething negation of the love of God, yet it shows the earnestness of His desire to liberate from the woes of blindness.
What however of the reported claim by Dr Denton that the strict, Biblical creationism is a matter of the English speaking world in the last 100 years, or conceivably, is there found in that time. At any rate, what of the idea that this is basically a reaction, a post-Darwinian reaction, an unfortunate, too narrow conception... ? Is it factually correct ?
First, in my mathematics, 1688 is not in the last 100 years. Merely as one (justly and enormously famous) example, let me cite the commentator Matthew Poole. I have a 1688 copy of his work in my possession, passed on down the generations. In it, I find in Genesis 1 that the days are 24 hour (or thereabout) days, and there is intelligent discussion about the precise relationship of night and day intended, but it is diurnal, daily routine. In 1710 or so, Matthew Henry's commentary came forth, to a vast reception over time, one still favourable to it. In this, we read that the Lord worked the creation in a week partly so that the Sunday rest would be illustrated. HE, God, says the author, COULD have done in an instant; but He chose a longer time, a week, with out instruction in view, so that we could follow the divine example.
That is beautiful. We as parents can do just that: condescend to a mode in order to give to the children what to them is not a mode, but a need! It is beautiful but it is also clear. No reactionary teaching here, it is the simple reality taught for thousands of years, without the compromising zeitgeist of an abandoned generation, which tries ever new ways of avoiding the inevitable, with inevitable suffering.
One might wish to refer to my work on Cosmology, in SMR pp. S17-18, where further attestation is cited from eminent authority, about the long period time during which strong emphasis was given on the straightforward meaning of evening and morning, that is, light arrival and light departure according to a climate of operation made famous: as in the Bible, so in Nature, as to its character and cause. This, as there attested, is true both in the Jewish and the Gentile worlds! In SMR pp. 171-197, discussion in given in some detail on the contextual parameters of the Biblical exposition. It is not a matter of foolishly merging the Bible and philosophies, as if some combination of mutual opposites would produce an "interpretation". A place for everything and everything in its place is not for the household only!
WHAT THE BIBLE teaches is one thing, and this we discuss in detail. What man seeks, is another, and it is kaleidoscopic, though strangely subject to inert fashions, often seen to be positively fatuous, 100 years or so later, as is more and more happening to Darwinism, which is simply one of many such cases in point. They do not work, they were logical casualties from the start, and stout hearts that defied God, with or without a Bible in tow for the escapade, have taken up these irrational options with all the proverbial desire of a 'teenager for dad's car (though personally, I am grateful to have been spared this phenomenon re cars!).
Words of the Faithful, and the Logic that Requires the Lord
As shown in the
above reference to Cosmology, there was a whole school of theology, in the
early centuries of the Christian Church: the Alexandrian. It was strongly emphasising that God needed no more than an instant to
institute and complete creation. Clement affirmed that the world did not come
into creation IN time, since time was something created with the world. The
time may be what it was, is the emphasis of Augustine, and at ANY time, man
Why not sooner ?
But in the
infinitude of God's being, not limited, any time is insignificant compared with
all of ours: this is Augustine's stress. Always, in his City of
Anything further from evolution, it would be hard to imagine. Non-processive time is a good description of the time that scholar envisages. Augustine himself could perhaps have spared himself some trouble if he had realised more clearly, that time is being brought into existence with the other creation, so that the processes of creation, as now known, are conceivably far removed from those aroused during the institution of time, that is, of serial, progressive time, where you wait one moment for the next to arrive, a wonderful novelty from eternity's all-embracive knowledge of the Almighty (Acts 15, Isaiah 42:9, 46:9-10).
Time was being manufactured with all else; and its processes were successively evoked, by which its passage is often measured! Humphreys touches on this matter in a practical manner, but it is there in necessary essence at all times! In Augustine's City of God, we find numerous expressions of this fait accompli character of creation, as far as conception, knowledge and prior standards and certainties are concerned (e.g. see pp. 373, 378, 364, 381, 393, 395, 397, 409).
In reality, there is dominion and there is actuality which needs neither subject nor situation. God can make, like an artist, ever so many pictures of times and possibilities actualise. There is simply no limit. Our type of time is to be understood as to its institution in only one way: the way which the only One who knows, being there at the inception of this sort of time, describes. The description is meticulously clear and decisive. There is however nothing even approaching a problem; merely a delight to the imagination to consider the other things that might have been. In science, however, our concern is what is, something systematically 'forgotten' in the whole ludicrous episode of Darwinianism. Yet let us not attack science; it is merely this parasitic philosophy in terms of which many scientists have become preachers of illusion rather than
Indeed, many are the great scientists, and even ones great in the history of science, who have been decisive in their insistence on the fixity of the created kinds, with no concession to imagination and myth. Kepler, Robert Boyle, Sir Isaac Newton, Joule, Lord Kelvin, Clerk Maxwell, Michael Faraday, all appear as clear on the majesty and creatively definitive character of God's action. There is basic Biblical faith that has not truck with evolution. Linnaeus, Cuvier and Owen, are but three, noted for emphasis on fixity of kind.
· In this connection, as to the assertion of Dr Denton that there are multitudes of divine interventions asserted in the case of strict Biblical teaching -
· by which he is taken not least to waive a textually unimaginative - because contextually constrained, construction of what is given in Genesis (see references above in SMR),
· to the point that Biblical teaching is not really a 'theory' of design:
· the case is quite otherwise.
His reported words: "myriad of interventions by God in the history of the Earth... they don't represent the theory of design really."
In fact, it is not that the Biblical presentation is contrary to any valid theory of design as we know it, find it and use it in our own lives, but that the whole concept of creation itself, in terms of "myriad interventions of God in the history of the Earth" itself is contrary to the Biblical statement on creation! Such a concept indeed appears as not even a parody of the word of God written in the Bible in this domain. It is like attributing obesity to a severe case of anorexia or slim lines to Gothic architecture.
If we are to consult the Biblical text on creation, in dealing with creation, with the mode of arrival and non-arrival into this world of the brilliant and ultra-sophisticated designs, right down to their bio-chemical interstices, which inhabit the earth like fruit on a tree, we must do better than this.
Dr Denton's erroneous attribution in the very context of creation, merely
the felicity of the text of Bible on the topic of creation, as it is written. What then do we find in Genesis ? Co-ordinates, correlates, concepts, control for each kind or category, all proceed from the mind and Spirit of God into this world, by a word. The declarations are exceedingly economical as listed! It is creation itself, the invisible as we all experience it (cf. It Bubbles, It Howls, He Calls ... Ch. 9, SMR pp. 348ff.), by a word conveying all of this into the explosive moment of actuality.
As the power is greater, so the word is more sure, certain and immediate. God with all power has nothing interposed between the word and the deed: He speaks and it is done is the RECORD OF THE TEXT. FEW are the listed statement. Great is the attested result.
The word of God transfers the creation, the understanding into the theatre of operations. We CAN relate readily to this, since as having spirit, thus in the image of God, we can in a subordinate role, relate to Him who IS Spirit, who created matter, mind and spirit for man in one ingenious and spectacular ensemble. So in our limits indeed, do we act, the concept may dazzle, the thought invite, the coherence appear as in a dream, the flash of insight spurts, thrusts itself with spurs into actuality and form, and this into the world. As we are limited, it is harder; as we have more power or opportunity, it becomes easier. With God, NOTHING is too hard. In creation, He speaks, and it is done.
Indeed, as Paul applies Genesis in II Corinthians 4:5-6:
"For we do not preach ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord, and ourselves your bondservants for Jesus' sake. For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ." There is nothing fiddly about that. It is fiat not fiasco, command not intimation, the glorious power of dominion, not the puny pushy of effort.
Again, the apostle applies it: "Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation: old things have passed away: behold, all things have become new" - II Cor. .
The concept of myriad interventions in the field of creation, the
point at issue, then appears not even a burlesque of the Bible, of what is written. How important it is that
imagination should be used to investigate what is written, not invest it
however unconsciously, with one's own thoughts. When the word of God is
concerned, frequently is this error of intrusion found, and it is part of the
nature of the case, that man should be inclined so to err (Ephesians 4:17-19).
This is a matter of principle, not personality, of pathology according to the
word of God. When HE is concerned, the departures are almost like the lounge at
an airport! On Biblical analysis as in Ephesians 2 and 4, this is endemic to
the race apart from Christ as Saviour and Lord, and
manifests itself repeatedly, therefore. HE, biblically, is like the key to a
house. Outside, you wander.
It is scarcely then surprising that both before and after the delusive escapist irrationalisms of Darwin, outstanding scientists of massive stature remained untouched by the febrile fever of evolutionism; just as some, as is natural and found in nearly all tests, succumbed, the mass of propaganda and as later seen, deceit in various cases, being too great a test. Yet in all this, the obvious has remained so, and it is merely the loudness of the blasting loud-speakers which could produce even an impression of difficulty.
The kinds which the Creator is shown to create in Genesis 1-2, are vast in their scope. The mechanisms increasingly now being found for a flexibility within the fixity of kinds, a non-progressive but a precision engineered adaptability, like that of a car equipped with variable springing and suspension for certain types of road, are impressive. (Cf. Creation, March-May 1999, pp. 16-17, where from an interview with prize-winning CSIRO scientist, Ian Macredie, are listed a few of the ingenious capacities for life to respond with fascinating variety, by intriguing built-in provisions, WITHIN kind.) 'Kinds' is the word used as rendered, and the context is not in a minute but a vast overall scope at this point. There could not be a more obvious and ample provision of a basis for kind, in a world created to run in a certain way, by the one who ordered and ordained the parameters and the fixities, the mobilities and their limits.
Things may be switched on or off, response can be made to foods and environment situations which in our limited mechanical way, we achieve by sub-systems as in a car, but which in life are provided with the techniques apt and appropriate which give what we see: variation within kind, precisely as attested; no variation beyond kind, precisely as found. The case is that design theory is here met for intelligence, cast into life as we into inert systems, so that what is created is kept, and what is kept is able to respond without destruction through its vital capacities. These are its enduements; what is endued is its kind.
As shown above, suppositions contrary to the intensive evidence on logical realities of creativity and creation, shown within our own minds continually, in terms other and inadequate bases, are neither scientific nor logically valid; nor are they Biblical. While God far transcends our powers, and is in no way limited to our capacities, He has shown in His own creations qualities in excelsis, which we can understand in kind, through our kinship.
The real scope for valid imagination is a sphere inclusive of our own observations empirically, whether shown in the laboratory or elsewhere, and with due regard to the available evidence in terms of the production displayed as, and in the form of the universe. What we have in this, we continually find with all the flair and magnificence fitting for our Maker, in the character of His creation, both as Biblically attested in Genesis, and as empirically found in life. Indeed, the more that is found, the more is the marvel of intelligence, the thematic and the applied in combination, speaking to us not only in the construction of our minds, but in such supremely superior yet categorically comprehensible relationship to our thoughts, as to amaze. THIS is the area of kinship. The material is but the butt.
With this, should come an evaluation of the features of our minds necessary as a minimum, and exploration as to maxima which transcend, but do not evacuate these primary necessities. God is at LEAST such and such as the functions require: spirit, with wisdom, intelligence and imagination all in limitless provisions (cf. SMR pp. 23ff., Repent or Perish 7, A Spiritual Potpourri 4, That Magnificent Rock, Ch.1). To know precisely the nature of the eternal being and wisdom of God, it is necessary, as with many, to hear from Him, and to relate this to what we see of His works. It is then that the majestic parallels, the precise exactitudes and the marvellous additions, such as come in a personal interview, and are placed in the Bible, become clear.
It is not just that the Biblical teaching meets the case of
an observably ordered universe,
with divine interventions at will,
but never wilfully;
within His purposes but never to ruin the point and purpose of this pilgrimage:
but much more.
The Bible shows us more and more from His words, the control He has over all His works. Scientifically, it is the most remarkable of all the vast indications of truth; and leaves the work of Einstein as very junior in its scope by comparison, because of the limitless terrain which it covers. Logically, as shown in SMR 1-3,10, it is necessarily true; and of course, there is no truth without it, as shown in SMR 3. It is indeed a fascinatingly frustrating exercise for those who wish to argue that their views are true, when their views in advance evacuate any possibility of knowing it! That however is the constant and intense irony of this case, where the ONLY wholly valid, and never falsified account of things at the top level, which embraces the dimensions below, is rejected.
But let us take up the issue of time in the Biblical context.
Whether from the
Jew or the Gentile, the treatment of what is written in this regard has long
been inclusive of a vast store of simple exposition that when light is created,
and day and night follow, concerning the nature
of this world, what is meant is what is found. That is the stated parameter of
coverage, the observable character of which is seen, and this is the account of
The creation ? day and night ? yes of course. This is how it happened. The terms relevant are used in the context defined, and in that context, they are as delimited as are the requirements for the use of equipment in any scientific experiment.
If someone else
wants to talk otherwise about some of these elements or concepts, so be it; but
let us not be fooled into imagining that this is in some way connected with the
Bible, or that those who interpret it to mean what the context depicts (unless
it were delusively obscure, imaginatively unintelligible, and a foul exercise
in mismanaged expression) are in some way 'literalists'. To be 'literal' in a
pejorative sense, it surely is something like this: to fail to follow the
flight of imagination which the daring and perhaps dashing author has in mind;
to be woodenly stolid before the iridescence of the mind of the wholly
superior author; to be in fact, pedestrian, laypeople of platitudinous proportions in the presence of genius.
But in this case, for the reasons we have given (SMR loc.cit. and cf. pp. 560-569 SMR), it is the READER who rejects the explanation of what is before us in "heaven and earth" as the ground and subject, and the language which is well-known in this locale as meaning what is here found, who is being "brilliant" but alas facile. Sadly, it is the 'interpreter' who here is making use indeed of imagination, but in intrusive fiasco, deluded into inventing scenes and scenarios unknown, in the face and light of those shown in the environment first clearly defined in the text and context.
No, the idea that God meant what is stated in the environment evoked by the context, by some brilliant alienation from his defining words, events and scenario, to be something else: it is not really impressive in literature or in life.
It is not really so HISTORICALLY, in terms of the evidence of the actual literature concerned and the teaching given in the past on Genesis, or the faith held by some of the most eminent scientists of all time; or in other ways which fall short of the design ground stated in the Bible. It is not supportable LOGICALLY (cf. e.g. SMR Ch.1, including pp. 7-10, 23ff., 107, 159, Ch.3, including, 298-310 ). Nor is precise Bible teaching on this topic concerning the days of creation, a matter of reaction PSYCHOLOGICALLY to the elephantine folly constructed by Darwin, since the clear Biblical statements and their hosts of expositors in accord with this over thousands of years attest clearly, as over hundreds do some of the best scientific minds, what is in fact of logical necessity.
The independently demonstrable necessity that the Bible is true and the word of the Almighty God to mankind, the sole authorised such word written, is another phase of the matter. Its provision of biological base moreover is ineluctable (cf. SMR Ch.2, That Magnificent Rock, Chs.1,8, A Spiritual Potpourri Chs. 1-9), however uncomfortable.
· or the declarative magnificence of what God has said, which is
· Self-proclaimed mirror of the meaningless universe, decked in this hideous ideological tuxedo, sophisticated man-of-today,
· often using the Universities as a hostel of power, place of persuasion and intoxicatingly easy opportunity of influence,
· while students are not always welcome who do not ... conform,
· proceeds for his own part, to assert "meaning" in all directions.
From a (suitably) ghostly figure (or figurine of the imagination), Hoyle would have the universe beckoned to brighter things (Evolution from Space, p. 150, Hoyle and Wickramasinghe, 1981 - cf. W.R. Bird, The Origin of Species Revisited). Man can even, as with Hoyle, have what he calls a 'future', a spectral impetus-provider, beckoning and working in the past (The Intelligent Universe, pp. 189, 214), without bothering to establish the reality of the feature of the future which worked in the past, as an entity equipped for all time, over time and sufficient for any time. The end of self-sufficiency which requires no more beginning, and provides causal consistency, is not met either by wearing out programs, or componential beckoners.
There is nothing 'ghostly' about such brilliance - as Hoyle so well attests in the construction of the created universe - as this! The correct, and clearly definable term is 'spiritual', and the Being, Spirit: rather than the confused imagery of 'spectral', as shown in SMR Ch.1. This term, spirit, signifies an entity having power and personal gifts, but not part of the material universe. The device of Hoyle, on the other hand, is merely an imposition of an intermediary, without evidence, before coming to the God who made both it and the power to create.
1) Drawing, beckoning component plus
2) drawn, attracted components in a universe - these are what ? What is it that is found here, on such a construction ? It is merely a system, like any other, requiring logically its ground, basis and sufficient cause, and in particular, that for the programmed components like matter, and the imaginary active 'spectral' ingredient, 'incorporated' without evidence of further advance in creation, since that was deposited in its initial sequence.
We do not,
however, need to account for what does not happen, but for what did.
· It is in the end, God, blurrily signified but far from blurry in what is done, who is the inevitable requirement! This sort of vague retreat is so common, that one may advisedly repeat the false principle involved: Attributing to the universe a facility it does not manifest, he ignores the demands of the creative action it incorporates. (Italics added. Cf. pp. 80-88, 121, 131, 252C-N, 265, 293-299ff., 313ff..)
· Hoyle also set up for action a universe in terms of a creative facility which is not now seen to operate in the construction of the said universe! Thus ignoring what is required, and requiring what is absent, he innovates in one of the best contortions to be seen, leaving vagueness for the essential specifications of minimal qualities required. It is a cover; but it is both too broad, making account for what is not seen, and too short, leaving out what attests itself munificently.
Others, for the universe, would see its ground of being in nothing, while yet more make the hard rationality of the universe to have sprung, perhaps in a moment of absent-mindedness from the powers that are not there, from the resources that are lacking. The term lunacy came from the concept of being moon-struck, and spiritually the sheer profusion of authoritative statements about what it is all about, from a basis which commences by knowing only that there is no truth, seems to attest a moon-struck generation. So knowledgeable is it, that knowledge is invented, where it is not found, discounted where it is, and man rules the waves instead of Britannia.
In principle, thus, depriving himself of meaning, in practice he asserts it, denotes it, promotes it - it is this! that! or the other! Often the sophisticate of today, to whom the people listen as if it were some more succulent form of the rural loudspeakers which were used to keep Chinese countrymen in the right thought patterns, wallows in the concept of meaningless, only to assert it - IT IS meaningless! So much meaning to be known by one so meaningless is like a fortune to a beggar, who still insists for income tax purposes, that he has no fortune and is indeed still a beggar. It HAS no meaning, he roundly declares, as though a meaningless member, midget in a meaningless universe, could know it! This he knows, or should know, and is responsible for knowing, that his foolish heart is darkened with myths of his making, while he is far better at the making of myth than the making of man! He has not even made a living cell!
His appalling contradictions abort logic, and he even gives reasons for being irrational, as if common sense had marred reason and fled! The rational necessity of God, he flees from, the superabundant testimony of the divine, he despises, and the more obvious it is made (cf The Biblical Workman, Ch.4, pp. 60ff.), the more he runs from it , saying to a stone, 'You are my father!', as Jeremiah, both scathing and accurate, depicts it from his own time. The mental miasma, idols of the mind, changes merely the outward form of this flight to fancy, always in the rebellious heart.
Always seeking life where it is not to be found (cf. A Spiritual Potpourri, Chs.1, 7, 8, 9, 12, That Magnificent Rock, Chs. 1 , 8 and Appendix 1), he frazzles his resources in vain searches (as does the US re Mars and beyond, as do vast efforts to find evidence of intelligent messages from 'space', while vast arrays of intelligent messages in their billions, reside in the brain between the listening ears of every man, in his delicately programmed DNA).
Yet he has no eyes within, with vision of heart dimmed and blurred:
slain by his own beauty (cf. Ezekiel 28:17),
immunised to truth and indeed trampling on it,
he progresses with that strange, sad feeling of regress
which the statistics of folly repeatedly attest.
How do they do this ?
It is in millions killed, children maimed, babes sundered by starvation,
youth distressed, alienated and degenerating,
while tall, amid the growing judgments of God -
not surprising either morally or factually, in view of their prediction for the last few thousand years -
man waits for the ending of all this folly,
a bitter cup and drear, for those who blind themselves to reality,
but choice indeed for those whose heart desires Him
whose is the beginning and the end,
and find Him where He is to be found, in Christ Jesus the Lord.
Nor is the fulfilment of the Biblical predictions less than precise, but rather gloriously covering the death mask of false philosophy as if recently taken, now in the day to which some of it applies. It is indeed PART of the divine design not merely to create CATEGORIES with the brilliant lustre of divine thought, the speech of God, but to create history with the oversight apt for the stage of life He has engendered and populated, but to demonstrate His love, discipline and thoughts, so that none has excuse. For all that, sparing indeed is His intervention ever here, for He is patient, and exposes folly in history with time. Long did He await the appointed date for Christ's entry into this world (cf. SMR pp. 886ff.), and long did He tolerate the fantastic abuses of
(as in Isaiah 1, 30, I II Kings, I II Chronicles) of His word, mandate and governance. Israel
Is it no part of design to have a handbook in your Holden or Ford ? Is it no part of wisdom to decree what is to be, or to require maintenance ? Since when has this been so in design! Thus has God in wonderful grace allowed the phases of history, and predicted them in vast scope (Amos 3:7 and see prophecy in SMR index), intervening from time to time in signal ways as in the appointment and apportionment of empires, being Creator to the race, and Father to His own. The design at this level is PERSONAL, and so is the inter-relation with the characters, far beyond that intimacy known to authors, but one to which this can serve as an introduction. It has however this marvel of increment that He has desire for His characters, and indeed, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us, the just for the unjust to bring us to God. In this way, the scope for pardon is adequate and its application is limited (Romans , I John 2:1-3).
The design is intense and intensive; the scope for the players immense and extensive; and the result, known to God, is all part of a design so multiple and yet so simple, so vast and yet so concentrated in a word, the Gospel, to a point, that it is bathed in brilliance, thrust into cohesion, concordant in coherence, intimate in character, glorious in scope.
Indeed, it specialises, this word, this sovereign and majestic word which instituted the very design of man on earth, and now exhibits the design of God for that design, on the end of the story. Its culmination like the coda of some magnificent masterpiece has many strains in it, one comprehension, the love like waterfalls, the grace like oaks in Spring, the power like nothing but visible when the form of the design of matter is opened in the atomic bomb, the truth which will not yield to pretence, the purpose which is immovable, the expression in the Bible which never is changed, which nothing can change. The design is explicit, implicit, devastating in its scope and delightful in its glory.
Thus II Peter 3 speaks of events which are to characterise the "last days" - a phrase designating the approach of that vast divine enterprise of culmination and conclusion of our history as we know it (Acts 3:19-21, 1:7, II Corinthians 4:14-5:2), commencing with the return of the Lord Jesus Christ, so that the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord as the waters cover the sea (Habakkuk 2:14).
The coverage of the prophet and apostle Peter includes the following:
· 1) unbelief will be arrogant, militant and scornful.
· 2) it will specifically pour scorn on the concept of the universal deluge.
· 3) it will in parallel despise the concept of any alteration in the settled ways of things, which it would rather take as its all if not indeed, its hope.
· 4) the philosophies/religions/intrusive, vain religious attitudes - will be 'personal', the product of mental self-assertion ("walking according to their own lusts" - no sign of logical necessity or spiritual propriety).
· 5) they will seek to maintain something which a) excludes God and b) is nevertheless in "some sense" creation (II Peter 3:4, where this word is still attributed to them, the very latest of the wriggles of those who reject God, the Creator who has told us what we need to know), twisting and tormenting words and logic alike: for they will do this "wilfully".
· 6) they will "forget" the realities of divine creation, despite having no rational answer apart from it for the creation, and the evidences of the flood, as if hypnotised by their adventurism, like children with imagination in control.
This gravely amusing scene (cf. A Spiritual Potpourri 1-9, That Magnificent Rock
4), is spreading before our eyes, as it was spread before those of the prophets who predicted it. Between 1900 and 2750 years, approximately, separate the prediction and the situation described. Its more precise siting is in terms of the predictions of Jesus Christ concerning the "end" which is to come (Matthew 24:24), starting with His own return. (See SMR Ch.8.) These likewise pour like a torrent from the mouths of the prophets to the events of today. Ch.
( You may care to consult further. See Dreamland Causes -
a few dreamy contortions with them,
that float about,
like intoxicated airships ...
and how to keep the feet on the ground and the eyes alert!
The cases of unsound academic intrusion vary. Some exhibit merely a trend, and may cohere with the restraining hand of strong ethics. One recalls a crucial post-graduate episode which exhibited incredible blindness, and indefensible procedure, of which the academic concerned was probably unaware. For him, it seemed unusual. You see, ice-bergs below the surface, are still there! and they do have effects.
At other times, by contrast, a militant campaign, blatant and baleful, may be directed at at theme or student, something the author experienced in an Australian seminary, where no limit appeared in the hostilities witheringly directed at the student, in this case myself, except for the evident absence of truth and reason in the assault. As to that, it reached a crescendo of frustration and rage, when a challenge to students to defend the Bible, proved so effective in the response, that bluster and attack, being all that was left, thundered onto the scene. It was these which were what was deployed against myself, as answering too well for the Biblical faith. No matter of interpretation, the issue was nothing less than that of the authenticity and indeed, honesty of whole books of the Bible.
The failure of the assailant, the teacher to defend his position, and the use of force instead, is only one small part of the history of persecution which has so dishonoured the name of Christ, but which is also so predictable, when the Bible becomes a source book and the church allows innovators to deploy their own ideas, in the name of Christ (John 16:2, Matthew 10:24-25,17ff., John 15:18-20, 5:46-46). As Christ said, if they did not believe Moses, how will they believe His words! Nor was this the only assault.
It is a delicious irony that in misusing authority in this way against the defence of the Word of God, those guilty were merely fufilling the Biblical testimony of what to expect in and out of churches, when the latter do not follow the word of God. In that sense, even the outrageous wrath and persecution, long sustained but eventually overcome, were attesting the truth of the very Bible, which, long before the assault on the student, was itself under years of assault from that same seminary! But let us move now back to the secular scene.
Frequently, a blithe or atrabilious attitude of irrational intolerance is directed at things never understood, or at those who hold them, while, as in the organic evolution case, grandiose assumptions are made that the facts know nothing about!
Issues are clouded, fiascos repeat themselves, and students as victims often suffer long, but on the other hand, others of them follow the campaign, like successful bidders at an art show. There are spoils as well as sufferings to distribute and disperse.
Despite all such common and rampant academic intolerance, it is necessary to buy the truth and not sell it (Proverbs ), being corrupted neither by honour, success, ridicule, blandishment nor assault - whether this be verbal or in withheld rewards. LØvtrup, a famed Scandinavian, scientific academic has stressed the absurdity of the philosophical directedness of research grants. It is difficult, he indicates, to gain funds outside subservience to the adopted theories of the ruling cult in biology. The eminent Dr W.R. Thompson, former Director of the Commonwealth Institute of Biological Control at
, indicated that it was also very hard to have works published without the same subservience! (As shown in his introduction to one of the Everyman Editions of Darwin's book, he himself is far from subservient, but systematically destroys its credibility.) The rigours are strict and far-reaching. Ottawa
Here lie barriers in a "free society" that attest the simple fact that while some political systems are vicious in themselves, yet even in a democracy, truth may be maligned without reason, entrenched prejudice can blatantly dictate with penalties and rewards, and integrity is needed to resist even at sacrifice.
After all, in a few decades in many cases, a new fever will afflict the academic powers-that-be, as the current themes often yield to new ones (cf. Acts -21 ), while the headiness of their new propagators, may despise those of today. As to the philosophies concerned (for that is what they are), often they are worthy enough of contempt! Science is as ignorant of them as are the birds! They are imports from another field, filled with their diseases. The cycle, however, has its own interest and brings its own testimony of futility and arrogance. The philosophies do not last because they are unsound, and this too they are, because they will not accept the word of the God who made us. HENCE, and this is one more verification, they are unstable and nothing ever stands in the end - except that same word of God and what is in accord with it, because it is so. It however is the source and criterion, the test and the statute of truth.
Only in Jesus Christ, the living and changeless truth, in God Himself, is there liberty from this seething mess of academic squalor. As to Judgment, it too will be according to truth (Romans 2:1).
The serene beauty of the truth as it is in Christ Jesus, grows where there is ground, unspoiled by its earthy surrounds. The seed of the word of God does not alter, being incorruptible ( I Peter ).
Reason applauds it, which power resists, and unlike the case of the theories of its detractors: the word of God happens!
See Questions and Answers 7 and Biblical Blessings Ch.11; and also That Magnificent Rock
8, where the juvenile oppression is State-wide in Ch. , surging into young hearts or heads or both, like a cross between a military campaign and an art form. S.A.
On the other side, and at another level, one has met at Westminster Seminary in America, some professors who appeared notably forbearing, showing that in Christ, it is perfectly possible to be equitable, forbearing and just. Indeed, as a teacher, one must say that equity is a delightful desideratum, far from unattainable, and a delight to relish. There is indeed nothing too hard for the Lord, whether in challenges of the heart or of the head (Luke ).
When Christ returns, folly will be exposed in power as well - as now - by reasons, and peace from the Prince of Peace will accompany righteousness under the only hand able
to provide it. He? He has been crucified already , not as a mere victim, but as atonement. In the power of His resurrection is sufficiency now, and then ? then "shall the earth be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea" (Habakkuk ).