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In Christianity Today's Cover Story, Intelligent Design is the Excluded Middle Ground

Christianity Today has a cover story out now profiling two Christian scientists with different views on what to do with Darwinian arguments that point away from life's origin and development in any kind of theistic context. One of the scientists is Darrel Falk of BioLogos fame, who advocates accommodating Darwinism to the maximum possible extent. The other is Todd Wood, a young earth creationist at Bryan University (named for William Jennings Bryan) in Dayton, Tennessee.

It's a good article, in the sense that it made me feel more personally sympathetic to Falk, the influential theistic evolutionist and critic of intelligent design, than I'd done before. As for Todd Wood, for all that he and Falk differ on evolution, they seem to agree on steering clear of any fights with Darwinists on the science of life's origin and history. They appear to direct their fire more at other Christians.

I come to this as somewhat of an outsider. Not a Christian, nor a theistic evolutionist (TE) or young earth creationist (YEC). Maybe that's why I'm puzzled at Christianity Today's preference to make no mention of another choice besides TE and YEC. Intelligent design represents, for the religiously committed, a more robust option. ID isn't another variety of apologetics -- it's a scientific program, drawing support from believers and nonbelievers alike -- but it has the confidence to go out and confront Darwinian evolutionary thinking on its own terms, offering scientific evidence of a source of purpose and design that permeates nature.

I've always wanted my faith to have confidence in itself, and it troubles me when I've found some of my fellow Orthodox Jews acting as if Judaism is not sturdy enough to meet challenges directly. So too in the Christian context, intelligent design is an idea that -- whether on life's long development, its origins, or the origins of human beings -- I would have thought readers of Christianity Today should find of interest.