Friday, 26 March 2010

The God Delusion Debate

I was lent a DVD recently of a debate between Richard Dawkins and John Lennox, both of Oxford University. The subject was Dawkin's book, 'The God Delusion'. To hear two such intelligent men going head to head in the finest example of polite intellectual debate is truly refreshing. John Lennox argues from a convinced Christian worldview that Dawkins' arguments are self-destructive and inconsistent.

Fixed Point Foundation, based in Birmingham, Alabama, has organised other debates of a similar high standard. If you want to know how to answer the agenda of the 'new atheists', then here is a place to start.

Wednesday, 17 March 2010

'The hand that made us is divine.'

Two series on the BBC deserve special praise at the moment: 'Wonders of the Solar System' and 'Richard Hammond's Invisible Worlds'. Both have left me in awe of the natural created order of the earth and the solar system. For example, the way two of Saturn's moons, through a process called gravitational resonance, have caused a gap in the rings around the planet; or the way the gravitational pull of Saturn on one of its moons causes the moon to flex which in turn creates enough heat to make frozen water vapourise and spurt out in columns hundreds of kilometres high.

Or, in Richard Hammond's series, how a type of fungus which develops on horse manure launches it spores with such velocity that they can escape what is called 'the zone of repugnance' - a lovely scientific term that describes the area round the manure that a horse doesn't want to eat. The velocity that these spores are launched with results in a force of 2,000G. (Apparently 5G force on the human body is enough to cause a person to black out.)

None of this proves the existence of God, but with the intricacy and design of the natural order I can't help thinking of Joseph Addisons hymn:

The spacious firmament on high,
with all the blue ethereal sky,
and spangled heavens, a shining frame,
their great original proclaim.
The unwearied sun from day to day
does his Creator's power display,
and publishes to every land
the works of an almighty hand.

It's programmes like this that make me want to fight to keep the BBC as it is. "Hands off, Rupert Murdoch and your sons!"