The BioLogos-Southern Baptist Theologian Dialogue:
Theistic Evolution vs. Creationism

March 14, 2012

The BioLogos Foundation is a group of Christians who see “evolution as the means by which God created life, in contrast to Atheistic Evolutionism, Intelligent Design, and Creationism.” In essence they are looking to prove that the findings in science are compatible with the Christian faith. BioLogos was founded by Francis Collins, the former head of the Human Genome Project and currently head of the National Institutes for Health.

A dialogue is now underway on the BioLogos blog entitled “Southern Baptist Voices: An Ongoing Series” between a group of Southern Baptist theologians and some BioLogos scholars (most of whom are scientists) over the issue of the BioLogos affirmation of a version of theistic evolution. The Southern Baptist scholars were recruited by Dr. Ken Keathley of Southeastern Seminary, writing their articles at the end of last year. The BioLogos scholars are responding to them article by article over a period of time. There are comment sections after each of the articles in which anyone can join in the discussion.

The Southern Baptist theologians participating, with their topics, are the following:

  • Dr. Kenneth Keathley, Senior Vice President for Academic Administration at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary – “Expressing Our Concerns, Part 1” and “Part 2.”
  • Dr. John D. Laing, Associate Professor of Theology and Philosophy at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary — “Evolution and Death.”
  • Dr. Bruce Little, Professor of Philosophy and Director of the L. Russ Bush Center for Faith and Culture at Southeastern Baptist Seminary — “Evolution and Essentialism.”
  • Dr. John Hammet, Professor of Systematic Theology and Associate Dean of Theological Studies at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary — “Evolutionary Creationism and the Imago Dei.”
  • Dr. Steve Lemke, Provost, Professor of Philosophy and Ethics, and McFarland Chair of Theology at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary — “Evolution and the Problem of Evil.”
  • Dr. William Dembski, Research Professor of Philosophy and Director of the Richard Land Center for Cultural Engagement at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, and well-known advocate of the intelligent design movement – “Is Darwinism Theologically Neutral.”
  • Dr. James K. Dew, Assistant Professor of the History of Ideas and Philosophy at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary – “Teleological Arguments, Theistic Evolution, and Intelligent Design.”

The first installment of the dialogue is two articles by Dr. Kenneth Keathley identifying six objections he raises against theistic evolution (the first three concerns in the first article, and the last three concerns in the second article:

Three BioLogos scholars have responded to Dr. Keathley’s articles (other BioLogos scholars may write responses to the other articles):

  • Darrell Falks, President of the BioLogos Foundation and Professor of Biology at the Point Loma Nazarene University in San Diego
  • Kathryn Applegate, Program Director of the BioLogos Foundation
  • Deborah Haarsma, a member of the BioLogos Board of Advisors, and Chair of the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Calvin College

Their responses to Dr. Keathley’s article are in:

This is a scholarly interchange of ideas, the best of Christian scholarship, about the proper interpretation of the Genesis narratives and other biblical teachings on divine creation. Again, we would invite Southern Baptists to join in this scholarly dialogue as it unfolds over the next few weeks.