Is Intelligent Design Theologically Sound?
The answer is in Genesis.
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Proponents of Intelligent Design are notorious for misrepresenting scientific evidence and for quoting fragments of scientific papers out of context to support their arguments.
But what if we turn it around? As Intelligent Design is a religious doctrine, rather than a scientific theory, should we not be looking at religious texts to determine ID’s validity? And to be fair, we will stay in context and not misrepresent what is written.
But first, what constitutes an intelligent design? Obviously intelligent design should be good design – and good design is that which fulfils the stated purpose. Something which is well designed does not just look good, it performs well the primary function for which it is designed.
Now let us turn to Genesis and look for something for which God (the supposed Intelligent Designer) clearly identified a need, and then designed something specifically to meet that need. Actually as we read through Genesis, we find God is not all that clear on why he is creating – he just does it, assigning roles after he has made something rather than designing to fill a need.
But when we reach Genesis 2:18, we find God detailing a clear purpose for a new being that he will create.
Then the LORD God said, "It is not good for the man to be alone; I will make him a helper suitable for him." (New American Standard Bible)
And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him. (King James Bible)
So there we have it: God intends to create something designed specifically to help Adam. And after checking out all the existing animals, it is determined that none of them meet Adam’s needs for a helper. (Genesis 2:20) (Prurient sheep joke deleted here)
Consequently in verses 21-25 we get God creating Eve as Adam’s helper.
So the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and he slept; then He took one of his ribs and closed up the flesh at that place. The LORD God fashioned into a woman the rib which He had taken from the man, and brought her to the man. The man said, "This is now bone of my bones, And flesh of my flesh; She shall be called Woman, Because she was taken out of Man." For this reason a man shall leave his father and his mother, and be joined to his wife; and they shall become one flesh. And the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed. ." (New American Standard Bible)
And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof; And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man. And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man. Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh. And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed. (King James Bible)
So here we are at the end of Genesis, Chapter 2 and we have naked Adam and naked Eve, right beside him, cleaving to him as Adam’s God-created helper.
And then as soon as we reach the next chapter we get the details on how Eve gets busy helping Adam? Not so – instead, we find her getting chatted up by the serpent.
There is not one word of Eve helping Adam one little bit before she is part of the advance guard for women's liberation and off doing her own thing. Enough of the five minutes of being under Adam's thumb, that snake's a more interesting conversationalist. And we all know the outcome of that.
God’s purpose in designing Eve was that she would to help Adam. Not only did she not help Adam, she actually hindered him by getting him in deep trouble.
This is not good design. It is not intelligent design. It is deeply flawed design.
Intelligent Design is not only not scientific; it is contrary to the Bible as clearly God is not an Intelligent Designer. And that answer is, of course in Genesis. (Not that the folks at answersingenesis.com would admit it.)
- Flawed only from the perspective of meeting God's stated purpose in Genesis 2:18.