Your opinion of the new Theistic Evolution book edited by JP Moreland?

As far as I can tell, this book edited by Moreland and involving theologians such as Wayne grudem is a blast against the entire project of entities seeking to build bridges like BioLogos. It appears to have the full endorsement of fellows of the Discovery Institute. I haven’t bought it yet however. Just saw who reviewed it for Amazon

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You might find Biologos’ own review of the book by Jim Stump helpful.


Actually written by Deb!

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I just re-read the review, and found it a respectful yet a vigorous defense of Biologos’ position.

Speaking of books, I just got Walton and colleagues new book “Understanding Scientific Theories of Origins,” and I am impressed so far. While a college textbook like volume, it integrates a lot of theology with current science in a beautiful way. I am torn between keeping it as a reference vs. donating it to our church library. (Not real sure how that would go, as most of our church library seems to be “pop culture” authors, kids books and "Christian fiction.)

We discussed this book when it first came out.

Ah, my mistake!

When I look at the same natural world through my theology glasses, I see a another aspect of reality—one that shows God’s care, providence, and yes, even God’s guidance of the grand story of creation. I affirm both explanations and invite others to the fruitfulness of this dual way of seeing reality. @jstump from the article on Does God Guides Evolution.

I agree with the thoughts written above, but they raise some questions. First they say that there can be two reasonable explanations for the same event. That seems to contradict the Law of Non-Contradiction. X cannot also be non-X.

Second, if the spiritual is true, then it must be real and not an optical illusion. If evolution is a physical process that has a spiritual dimension, then nature must have a spiritual dimension, meaning that that both these aspect are true and real. I would also suggest that evolution has a rational aspect, which is also real, because humans can understand evolution rationally. The physical dimension, the spiritual dimension, and the rational dimension are all real and true, because Reality is 3 and 1, is physical, spiritual, and rational.

Third, the basis of the relationship between God and the universe is found in John 1:1-3, 14.

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I wrote one too (at least on one aspect of the book): Does God Guide Evolution?

It is significantly expanded in my article in PSCF which just came out, “Did God Guide Our Evolution?” (but it is behind a paywall for a year).

The most substantial review of the book I have seen is Jamin Andreas Hubner, “The Progress (or Extinction?) of Modern Creationism: A Critical Review of Crossway’s Theistic Evolution” in Canadian-American Theological Review (Vol 7, 2018). 55 pages long, and 195 footnotes!

There was also a big panel on the book at ETS last year, responding to a helpful paper about the book written by Michael Murray and John Churchill. I’ve not heard that they published it anywhere.

I don’t see the problem here. Polkinghorne’s boiling teapot examples shows how there can be two different reasonable explanations for the same event.

Don’t waste your money. I didn’t review the book, but I had a few thoughts in my own article on God’s guidance of evolution:

Like any general term, Theistic Evolution has been used to describe a range of positions, but in Discovery’s book Wayne Grudem gives it a definition that few Christians would accept. Namely, he says, “God created matter and after that did not guide or intervene or act directly to cause any empirically detectable change in the natural behavior of matter until all living things had evolved by purely natural processes” (Grudem, 67).

Strictly speaking, this “hands-off” description of God has more in common with 17th-18th century deism than with Christianity. A deist would agree that a supreme being exists, but after setting everything in motion, the creator then allowed the universe to run its course without interference. God is a disinterested observer, in other words. Creation thus becomes an infinitely complex course of dominoes that God set up “in the beginning,” and once he tipped over the first, nothing else was necessary to achieve his ultimate end. To be fair, a few Christians do believe that God “front-loaded” everything into his initial act of creation, and afterward didn’t need to be involved. But in my experience, I’ve found them so few and far between as to be negligible. Grudem’s “hands-off” definition of Theistic Evolution certainly doesn’t describe the vast majority of Evolutionary Creationists. And since the rest of Theistic Evolution bases its critique on Grudem’s flawed foundation, the result is a 1000-page doorstop.

“Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” -Colossians 4:6

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