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The Patristic Understanding of Creation: An Anthology of Writings from the Church Fathers on Creation and Design

3.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
ISBN-13: 978-0981520407
ISBN-10: 0981520405
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

William A. Dembski is an associate research professor in the conceptual foundations of science at Baylor University as well as a senior fellow with Seattle's Discovery Institute. His most important books are The Design Inference (Cambridge University Press, 1998) and No Free Lunch (2002). --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 612 pages
  • Publisher: Erasmus Press (June 11, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0981520405
  • ISBN-13: 978-0981520407
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.4 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,961,489 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By Fritz R. Ward VINE VOICE on July 26, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The story of creation has always been at the heart of the Christian story. Indeed, one can argue that creation stories are at the heart of most religious traditions because they offer us a vision of where we are coming from and frame a vision of where we might go. But in our culture, the Genesis version of the story is often cited as an alternative to Darwinism, the creation myth embraced by many materialists, so it has more than usual relevance in the political and social discourse of the United States. Of course, the problem is, how does one interpret the story as set down in Genesis? For fundamentalists, both atheist and Christian alike, the answer is pretty easy. It is the story of Genesis as it literally appears. For the rest of us, however, the problem is a little more complex. Indeed, some scientists, notably Howard van Till, claim to have found in patristic writings on Genesis ideas that resemble theological evolution. This book edited by Dembski, Downs and Frederick, attempts to rebut this approach by allowing the church fathers to speak for themselves in extended passages.

On the whole, I think the editors accomplished what they set out to do. They effectively established the claim that the church fathers believed God created the world "ex nihilo" and that creation is not sufficient unto itself. Creation is, to borrow a common metaphor of the fathers, like a musical instrument, incomplete no matter how finely tuned, in the absence of the player. Those who believe God created the world and then let it run, an essentially Deistic position, will find little support in the writings of these early fathers.
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