I was clearing out highlighted posts from my too-full Google reader (does anyone else have this problem?) and came across a series of posts on ID at Tough Questions Answered: A Christian Apologetics Blog. The two fellows who run the site (one of whom was formerly LDS) obviously disagree with Mormonism when it comes up, but they do so nicely. How refreshing.
Anyway, in three posts the author outlined what I take to be the conservative Christian view of Young Earth Creationism (YEC), theistic science, and Intelligent Design. Here is the author’s conclusion and summary:
Theistic science is a philosophy of science that integrates Christian theology and primary agent causation with the modern scientific method. A person practicing theistic science is free to draw upon all that they know, including propositions of theology, to conduct their investigations into the natural world. Intelligent design provides mathematical and scientific tools for the theistic scientist to detect signs of intelligent agent causation in the natural world. ID, as such, cannot identify that agent, nor does it try. Young earth creation is a creation hypothesis which fits comfortably under the theistic science umbrella, but does not exhaust all possible creation hypotheses that a theistic scientist may want to explore.
I’m not going to detail my discomfort with “theistic science”; I’m more interested in the status of ID within Evangelical churches. In Mormon circles, ID is not an issue that gets much discussion. When evolution does come up in LDS discussions, it is generally brought up by someone who has a Young Earth mindset. My general impression is that conservative Christians take a more sophisticated approach (ID) than Mormon Christians (YEC) — but that in Mormonism support for YEC is limited to a fairly small percentage of believing Mormons, whereas among conservative Christians support for ID is a mainstream position.
So I guess I’m curious how many Christians share the author’s positive evalutation of ID (which is, of course, separable from a person’s positive evaluation of God) and how central ID is to the beliefs of most conservative Christians. The author himself provides a partial response to this question in another post you might find interesting, “What Do Evangelicals Think About Creation?“