Adam and the Genome— The Dialogue Part One

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Q.  What promoted you to do this co-authored book?

A. While I never made the sciences anything central to my own intellectual interests over the years science pops up as important to some biblical discussion I am engaged in, not least when I was teaching undergraduates at North Park. Many of them were science majors and many of them had some solid commitments to science and it made them wonder how solid their faith could be. Over the years I read various books, L. Duane Thurmond to Francis Collins to my co-blogger’s (RJS’s) posts to John Walton to Dennis Venema. The last of whom I met at BioLogos event, told him how much I appreciated his work. Unknown to me Dennis had the idea of applying for a BioLogos grant, we worked on it together, we were successful and we were launched to write this book.

Q. Q. At first blush this appears to be a dialogue book, but in fact it isn’t. Each of you do your own presentations with really not much apparent interaction.  Why did you decide to do it this way?  You don’t question his genetics arguments, and he doesn’t really question your Biblical and theological ones.

A. When I was a child I was somehow given a police hat — a little cheap plastic one. One day I was discovered in the middle of a (not at all busy) street standing in the middle of the street stopping a car and then waving it along. I soon learned that was wrong and dangerous and I was told I was not a policeman. A parable: I have no business, as I didn’t have any business directing cars as a child because I had a police hat, telling scientists what to say and they have no business telling me what to say. Each of us can hold the other a bit accountable, and that is in fact what happened in this book. Just because we are theologians and know the truth of the gospel doesn’t mean we are to tell scientists what to do. But we can see in scientists where they infringe upon our territory and they can see it in us at times infringing on their territory. The book, thus, lets the science be science and the Bible be the Bible. The biggest problem for this discussion is that too many Bible people think they can tell scientists what to think when it is clear (to some of us) that the Bible is not making claims about science.