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Origins News Roundup for July 23, 2014

This week in origins news, a great collection of articles by key players in the conversation about theology and science, a surprising science fair discovery, and the Apollo 11 anniversary!

 

Not So Dry Bones: An interview with Mary Schweitzer

We don’t have all the answers and never will. And when God says that he is revealed in his creation, I think that means we need to take care of what we have and understand where we came from. The more I understand how things work, the bigger God gets. When he was just a magician pulling things out of a hat, that doesn’t even compare to how I see him now!

 

Series: On Creating the Cosmos, by Ted Peters (9 entries)

Last year I introduced readers to one of the leading voices about Christianity and science, John Polkinghorne. I also helped BioLogos bring in another leading voice, Robert Russell. This new series introduces a third prominent Christian thinker, Lutheran theologian Ted Peters, Research Professor Emeritus in Systematic Theology and Ethics at Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary, the Center for Theology and the Natural Sciences (http://www.ctns.org/), and the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, California.

 

Series: Belief in God in a World Explained by Science (3 entries)

 

Series: Seeing God in Everyday Work (2 entries)

 

The Christian Reformed Church votes to support scholarship on human origins

We should celebrate the many times that our churches and colleges encourage scholarship. I saw several delegates at Synod stand up and speak directly about the importance of supporting scholars who engage the science and religion dialogue. The recent Synod decision was a move in the right direction.

 

Series: The Human Fossil Record (19 entries)

In this series, James Kidder provides an intriguing study on transitional fossils and the evolutionary history of modern humans. He begins by discussing the fossil record, explaining how new forms are classified. He then explains the physically distinguishing trait of humankind—bipedalism. From the discovery of Ardipithecus, the earliest known hominin, to the australopithecines, the most prolific hominin, Kidder focuses on the discovery, the anatomy, and the interpretation of these ancestral remains.

 

Series: Evolution Basics (44 entries)

Written by BioLogos Fellow of Biology Dennis Venema, this series of posts is intended as a basic introduction to the science of evolution for non-specialists.

 

What Americans Think and Feel about Evolution

The new Gallup survey shows in broad strokes the challenge we face. But more nuanced surveys find that only 8% of Americans are convinced creationists whose beliefs are dear to them, and only 4% are convinced atheistic evolutionists whose beliefs are dear to them. The vast majority of Americans are not sure of their position and are open to a conversation.

 

From Cosmos to Psyche: The 2014 ASA/CSCA/CiS Annual Meeting

We are interactive human beings with a capability and a need to connect with others. Those connections can be through electronic or written means but nothing can replace the need for direct personal engagement. Our annual meetings continue to provide that interaction in an environment of open discussion and often vigorous debates.

 

The Creator’s Canvas: How should Christian science teachers approach controversial issues?

Most Christian students have a lot of questions about evolution and the other controversies, but are afraid to ask them for fear of the adults gasping in horror. The right way for a Christian teacher to proceed is to accommodate questions, foster inquiry, and encourage students to think and engage with the issues.

 

Religion, Science, and Society

Conflicts occur when people argue one worldview against another. They may be arguing Atheism versus Monotheism, then pull out science as a weapon saying, "science proves I'm right because of this or that..." In my view, science is rather more limited than this. Science has a lot of interesting resonances with the big questions, and can inform them, but I don’t believe it can answer them.

 

Origins News Round-Up for May 28, 2014

This weeks in Origins news: studies of a skeleton uncovered in 2007 provide clues about rapid human evolution in the Americas, our climate and Christian stewardship, a few BioLogos folks give interviews, and some cool links to miscellaneous finds.

 

Interview with Ronald Osborn

We must press beyond the various creation narratives in the Hebrew Bible, including the final chapters of Job, to the picture of God revealed in the New Testament—the Creator who does not rationally explain away the scandal of suffering but who instead enters into it.

 

A Review of “Death Before the Fall: Biblical Literalism and the Problem of Animal Suffering” by Ronald E. Osborn

The confident assertion that the Bible trumps science stems from a misunderstanding of the purpose of the scriptures, and a misapplication of the Bible to answer questions that can only be answered by the application of science.

 

Origins News Roundup for May 14, 2014

This week in our Origins News Roundup: News of new nucleobases, the future of synthetic biology, and some healthy dialogue and critique of certain aspects of modern science.

 

Series: Intelligent Design and Common Ancestry (4 entries)

Would those genuinely interested in learning about evolution benefit from a careful explanation of why these common objections don’t hold water? Here the answer seemed to me to be “yes.”

 

Origins News Roundup for May 2, 2014

Today’s Origins News Roundup features a tour of trending topics in neuroscience, from commentaries and questions made recently by popular media to developments in neuroengineering and the BRAIN initiative.

 

An Impossible World

What if political, social, religious, and scientific groups the world over adopted [a gracious] approach to dialogue and their own desires? What if we didn’t have to be snide and aggressive to get our point across and to elicit cheering (or jeering) from our respective constituencies?

 

Series: Interpreting Adam (6 entries)

A few months ago Zondervan published the anthology Four Views on the Historical Adam. This valuable new resource addresses one of the most common questions Christians have about evolution: how does the Adam of the Bible fit with the scientific and historical evidence about early humans?

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