April 1990
volume 2 (1)

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Obituary: Professor G. C. Steward

C. A. Russell
Pages: 2-2


Is there a Preferred Philosophy of Science for Christians?

Paul Helm
Pages: 3-14


After some remarks about the relationship between Christian faith and theoretical and experimental enquiry, particularly scientific enquiry, the author provides a sketch of some different approaches to the philosophy of science. The inevitable connection between the theory of science and scientific success is stressed. But there is a basic difference of approach between those who emphasise the formal conditions of explanation in natural science and those who claim that any explanation must, first and foremost, convey an increased understanding of the phenomena. The article concludes by stressing that, while the Christian has considerable liberty in his approach to the philosophy of science, it would be inconsistent with the Christian faith to adopt any philosophy which denied that there were objective truths of nature.


Whaling–a Christian Position

Ray Gambell
Pages: 15-24


Whaling has a long history of depleting successive stocks and the whale has become the symbol of our mishandling of environmental matters in general. The biblical foundation for man’s dominion of nature should be the source of a sound conservation ethic. It implies responsible stewardship, including the taking of no more than sustainable harvests. In the case of the whales this has not happened, through ignorance and greed. The problem of humane killing of animals is highlighted. The question of whether or not whales are ‘intelligent’ is left open; but they are not made in the image of God as is man, and are not his equal. Certain Arctic communities are dependent on whales for their subsistance, with no reasonable alternatives available, while some other coastal villagers have a long whaling tradition, so that its prohibition causes them hardship. We need to be responsive to these human needs.


Genetic Engineering in 1990

Darryl Macer
Pages: 24-40


This paper seeks to review ‘the state of the art’ in genetic technology and look at key issues of ethics arising from their use on nonhuman life. A Christian approach to these issues is able to deal satisfactorily with them, involving Biblical principles of high respect for life and stewardship.


John D. Barrow and Frank J. Tipler: The Anthropic Cosmological Principle

Robert K. Clifton
Pages: 41-46


Barrow and Tipler’s treatment of the anthropic principle is briefly discussed, and a critique is given of their claim that the ‘strong’ anthropic principle is verifiable without appealing to theological presuppositions.


A theological perspective on Barrow and Tipler’s: The Anthropic Cosmological Principle

Lawrence H. Osborn
Pages: 47-52


The role of teleology in general and the various forms of the anthropic principle in particular are lucidly summarised in this important book. This review article focuses its attention upon the philosophical and theological implications of Barrow and Tipler’s work. It is argued that, in their hands, the anthropic principle becomes a vehicle for the defence of post-Enlightenment liberalism. The possibility of a natural theology based upon the anthropic principle is noted and several doubts about the wisdom of such an approach are raised.


Divine sovereignty, personal freedom and indeterminacy: A response to Dr. Polkinghorne

Valerie MacKay
Pages: 53-58


God and the New Biology’–an elucidation: A response to Alister E. McGrath

Arthur Peacocke
Pages: 59-62


Book reviews

View book reviews

The World within the World

John D. Barrow (Robert Boyd)
Pages: 63-64

Science and Providence–God’s Interaction with the World

John Polkinghorne (Douglas C. Spanner)
Pages: 64-66

A Brief History of Time

Stephen W. Hawking (M. W. Poole)
Pages: 66-67

Does God Play Dice?

John Houghton (David Ingram)
Pages: 67-68

Does God Play Dice? The Mathematics of Chaos

Ian Stewart (David A. Wilkinson)
Pages: 69-70

Towards a Story of the Earth: Essays in the Theology of Creation

Dennis Carroll (Ron Elsdon)
Pages: 70-70

Memoir of a Thinking Radish

Peter Medawar (M. B. Roberts)
Pages: 70-71

Vital Principles

Andrew Scott (A. B. Robins)
Pages: 71-72

The Design of Life

Renato Dulbecco (A. B. Robins)
Pages: 71-72

Biology through the eyes of Faith

Richard T. Wright (Oliver Barclay)
Pages: 73-73

The Riddles of Jesus & Answers of Science

Osborn Segerberg Jr (Edward Rogers)
Pages: 73-75

Taking Darwin Seriously: A Naturalistic Approach to Philosophy

Michael Ruse (Gordon E. Barnes)
Pages: 75-77

Science and Hermeneutics–Foundations of Contemporary Interpretation

Vern Poythress (Melvin Tinker)
Pages: 77-78

Galileo: Heretic

Pietro Redondi (C. A. Russell)
Pages: 78-79

Chaos: Making a New Science

James Gleick (John Houghton)
Pages: 79-80