Engaging Culture

Darwin Turns 200

David Galernter, writing in The Weekly Standard about the new Darwin biography by Tim Berra, puts forth a compelling case about the cultural presence that is Charles Darwin.  I interviewed David a few years ago at Yale for a documentary on the life of William Tyndale, who translated the Bible into English. At the end of the article he writes something that I think on this anniversary is worth thinking about:

“David Berlinski, one of the most impressive Darwin dissenters, quotes (in a Commentary essay) a smugly childish pronouncement by the journal Nature: “With all deference to the sensibilities of religious people, the idea that man was created in the image of God can surely be put aside.” But what makes these ignoramuses so sure they know what the Bible means by “create”? How do they know that “evolution by natural selection” is not exactly what the Bible does mean? And how do they know that man is not “in the image of God”? Yes, we all know about the Bible’s famous seven days, but has Nature never heard of a parable? It’s not such a difficult concept. Does Nature fault the Bible for not starting with an account of Darwinian evolution? –right after the verses dealing with the Big Bang and astrophysics, which in turn follow the verses that brush everyone up on the necessary algebra, geometry, and calculus?

“The Torah speaks in the language of man,” say the rabbis, and when the Bible emerged, men did not speak Darwin’s language. But they did care about right and wrong, good and evil, justice and mercy, sanctity and man and God, and these (not biology or astrophysics) are the Bible’s topics. Charles Darwin was a great thinker who taught us not only about science, but about religion–specifically, about what religion does not teach, and (for that matter) does not care about. He was buried in Westminster Abbey, at England’s Christian heart. Darwin rejected the church, but the church didn’t reject him.”

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7 Comments

  1. Phil,

    Please Ask Mr. Galernter if he thinks that Jesus believes in Darwinian evolution, or in the book of Genesis – and the account of creation as it reads: that MAN WAS “CREATED IN THE IMAGE AND LIKENESS OF GOD”, and not the biological offspring of a Monkey that “magically” materialized from a premordial ooze over 13 Billion years ago!

    -Minister Mason

  2. And so another front opens in the Creation-vs-Evolution war…

    When did Young Earth Creationism Uber Alles replace the Gospel as the core message of Christ?

  3.  2 Peter 3

    3First of all, you must understand that in the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires. 4They will say, “Where is this ‘coming’ he promised? Ever since our fathers died, everything goes on as it has since the beginning of creation.” 5But they deliberately forget that long ago by God’s word the heavens existed and the earth was formed out of water and by water. 6By these waters also the world of that time was deluged and destroyed. 7By the same word the present heavens and earth are reserved for fire, being kept for the day of judgment and destruction of ungodly men

  4. The immature are rigid. They tend to feel threatened by a slow creation.

    The mature are flexible. They tend to say, as Billye Brimm says, “The earth is as old as the scientists say it needs to be.” They are not threatened by a slow creation.

    When will the immature and rigid-righteous ever see the light and become more holy and flexible? Because rigid-righteousness doesn’t help the top-third people in intelligence-ranking…. understand Christianity.

    For too long a time, rigid-righteous people have kept people of high discernment and high critical reasoning…. from Christianity.

    A reasonable person, of high-caliber mind, who stood on the rim of the Grand Canyon, would not believe it was made in six days, but through God’s tricksterism was made to look older! No, the high-caliber character would believe the person who rigidly said the Colorado River was plunked down that canyon in six days…. would think that simpleton proposal was full of tricksterism.

    But, by definition, a rigid mind is a rigid mind. And such reasoning as this tends to dement the rigid.

    But God loves the rigid, even though they persecute the flexible. Last page of the Bible: Let the (rigid) righteous be righteous. Let the holy (flexible) be holy.

    In other words: Let ’em both be. Because wars against the two don’t work out too well. It’s like younger and older siblings, separate only in maturity, fighting each other.

    Just remember, in any situation… it is the immature who are the most dangerous!

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