Are We Genetically Predisposed to Believe in God?
This entry was originally posted on February 13, 2010.
In the previous installment of our video “Conversations”, Dr. Jeff Schloss, Senior Scholar at BioLogos and a professor at Westmont College discusses two reasons for evangelical opposition to evolution: the theory’s challenges to biblical historicity and to the belief in a creator. In this segment, Schloss addresses what he sees as the third major area of difficulty, and that is the question of whether or not human beings are predisposed toward belief in a higher power.
He observes that this has to do with human nature, and not just the origins of human beings. People take certain moral beliefs or the human capacity to have religious belief, for example, as tokens of the transcendent. Schloss notes that these are areas of inquiry that evolutionary theory didn’t touch for the first 150 years or so, but in the last few decades it has become a topic for research.
Schloss points out that while this question of evolutionary predisposition toward religious belief may be challenging, Christians need not see it as threatening. In fact, this is actually a Pauline notion that is explored in Romans 1, where Paul claims that it is in mankind’s nature to “know God”: “since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. 20 For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse” (Rom. 1:19-20, TNIV).
Commentary written by the BioLogos editorial team.