But if I had to choose, guess door two would be it, though I would allow for perhaps some fine tuning by miraculous means here and there, though that leaves open the criticism that it really should not need it. However, perhaps there are some things like perhaps initial abiogenesis that needed a jump start. That too would leave the door open for a God of the gaps criticism.
This thread shows, perhaps for the first time in years, just how widely the views within (the higher levels) of EC range. Whilst I welcome, for example, the distancing of Ted from John Haught’s view of the resurrection, the latter still writes as a theistic evolutionist. A theological “position” on origins that can both affirm or deny the bodily resurrection of Christ is too theologically broad to be helpful to the Evangelical Church, and so the boundaries need to be more clearly drawn. Is Haught (purely as an example already given) “within the pale” of BioLogos, or not? Is Ted’s disagreement with him just an example of big tent diversity, or a demarcation boundary of “biologos” as Francis Collins’ theory?
(Analogy - Eddie has pointed out to me that the Theistic Evolution tome was not produced by Discovery Institute [contra Deb Haarsma’s post], but apparently by Biola.
Edit - I didn’t mean to give the impression that the book was an official Biola effort, but that a number of the writers are from there - and it’s published by Crossway. In either case, it’s not a Discovery Institute project.
If we want to attribute all ID to “Discovery Institute”, then are we not also bound to attribute all theistic evolution to “BioLogos”? Clearly not - each issue must be discussed in its own right, and not as “What ‘they’ say.” It would have been better were Eddie allowed to speak for himself here, of course)
Reading the thread up to this point, it is clear that pushing some of the points made would reveal some of the views stated to be simply incompatible - and I guess that pushing is required (elsewhere) to provide a process of natural selection and narrow the field of what is internally coherent, not to mention compatible with science and Scripture.
However, what seems the nearest thing to a common denominator on the thread, and a USP for BioLogos against ID, is some idea of the necessary completeness of “natural processes”, lest (as in your own stated preference here) you fall foul of the “God of the Gaps.”
And yet, to me, it is hard to find solid ground on which to base such a belief in the completeness of science, once one cheerfully accepts the reality of extra-scientific categories of divine action, or willing, or whatever word doesn’t create such a gap.
Presumably to clarify “natural” one must take some definition of scientific causation like “material efficient causes,” and make the intellectual leap to claiming that there is, in fact, such a causally complete chain in the Universe, to which divine action is either completely orthogonal (as in Jim’s formulation) or acts in tiny gaps that science already acknowledges (as in the Russell/Davis quantum mutation idea), or which has occasional naughty exceptions, as in your comment.
But the completeness of such science, like the corresponding theological idea that God must not act simply as “another” cause in his creation, is overturned by BioLogos’s universal belief in miracles, as stated by Jim. In that realm, bread and fish are multiplied by God, acting as a cause in the world, involving supernatural material efficient causation. Any argument that this involves Jesus as incarnate in the world is overturned by an OT equivalent like the widow’s cruse. Few, I think, argue that such acts come under “natural material efficient causes.”
The “science offers complete explanation” belief then has to become a belief in a closed (as far as material efficient causation goes) system of “scientific causes” that is universal “in nature”, but not in salvation history. The boat is then beginning to leak badly, because “salvation history” and “nature” are only human divisions of the world, and we need some firm basis for claiming that God sees “nature” as any different from “salvation” - what if they are both aspects of his immanence in all things?
It’s the old (but good) analogy of God as a master musician rather than a master artificer: not only is there no music at all if the musician is not playing the instrument (divine conservation), but the character of the music is the ongoing outcome of the player’s action (divine creation, government and providence). There are no gaps to fill, because the instrument, without the player, is dead.
One may disbelieve in the player, which leaves one having to believe the music arises from some other invisible entity such as Epicurean chance, but then the belief that the instrument is a complete explanation of the music is not so much incomplete, as simply wrong.