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February 1, 2014 / compassioninpolitics

Can a scientist believe in Creationism? Can a Creationist believe in Evolution?

The Variety of Opinion/The Continuum of Options
To examine this question I think its necessary to highlight the continuum of views on this topic–to that end I would suggest there are at least the following variations of “not believing in evolution”:

1) Believing that evolution was God directed or that God (i.e. the evolution alone is an insufficient explanation for the world that we experience).

2) Not believing in macro-evolution (ie change, but not catalytic change), but believing in micro-evolution.

3) Not believing it much at all.

And perhaps even more diversity, but these are probably the core categories.

The Scientific Basis of an Integrated View:

Here are three resources for those trying to learn about more Old Earth Creationist views, which are consistent with the first option.

Reasons to Believe ( reasons.org
Where Modern Science & Faith Converge) which is grounded in science.
Old Earth Creation: Science and Theology
Biologos, which I think is connected with Francis Collins the famous geneticist, but is also very grounded in science: Resources | BioLogos

You could also search “theistic evolution” which is I believe at least moderately congruent with “old earth creationism.”

I have a decent amount of respect for Dr. Fazale Rana from Reasons to Believe:

Since joining RTB as Executive Vice President of Research and Apologetics, Fuz has authored and coauthored the books Origins of Life, Who Was Adam?, The Cell’s Design, and, most recently, Creating Life in the Lab. Additionally, Fuz has published numerous articles in peer-reviewed scientific journals, including Origins of Life and Evolution of Biospheres, Biochemistry, Applied Spectroscopy, FEBS Letters, Journal of Microbiological Methods, and Journal of Chemical Education. He has made presentations at numerous international scientific meetings, coauthored a chapter on antimicrobial peptides for Biological and Synthetic Membranes, and holds two patents.

But more specifically he and RTB have a model which integrate the Genesis model and the evolutionary model. He believes the various explosions like the Cambrian explosion are more reflective of a (day = age interpretation of Genesis) than the strictly or exclusively evolutionary model.

To me his presentations at the Veritas forum or his books are probably the best unpacking of this theory available:

Veritas :: Talks (Hugh Ross of Reasons to Believe who works with Dr. Rana)
The Cell’s Design: How Biochemistry Reveals the Work of a Creator (I believe this same video is available on YouTube, if that streams better on your computer).
The Origin of Life (Dr. Rana debate with Dr. Ruse–I haven’t seen this)

Although a lot of the presenters at the Veritas Forum who are Christian take a Old Earth View–one that is consistent with the fundamentals of Evolution. For some reason I can’t find the YouTube or Vimeo of Dr. Rana’s presentation that Hugh Ross refeneces in the first link above.

The Critique of Scientific Reductionism or Scientism as Overarching Worldview:

Realize both sides of this debate leverage science, both just take a specific perspective on what the data say. To fully understand this you have to do work on worldview and the idea of scientism.

Five noted critiques of scientism include:
• This New Atlantis Article by Austen L Hughes: The Folly of Scientism (link)
• Alvin Platinga’s critique of Scientism as not having grounded assumptions (ie being circular) (link)
• Michael Polyani also has a famous critique of scientism and scientific-reductionism (link and link)
• Also, anyone in sociology is going to critique science as being ideologically skewed.
• And of course the philosophy of science also contains a large critique of the enterprise of scientism.

You can view other posts on scientism here. I also have a number of indicts of the new-atheist ideology and philosophy available as well.

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