October 2018
volume 30 (2)

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Keith Fox
Pages: 101-101


Interaction between genes and the relational environment during development of the social brain

Graeme Finlay
Pages: 102-115


Humans have complex brains. These have evolved over a vast phylogenetic history. Scientists are discovering genetic innovations that may have contributed to brain development over evolutionary time. The science of comparative genomics reveals when during evolution each such formative genomic event occurred and the mechanism by which it arose. However, genetics are necessary but not sufficient to account for our mental capacities. For example, our ability to interact as persons (to practise theory of mind) is not genetically encoded, but is learned. During infancy and childhood, brains cannot follow normal developmental trajectories in the absence of attentive, loving caregiving. Human brain development and function require personal input. We share in the fullness of being human by interpersonal relationship, and a Christian interpretation of this fact is that human flourishing requires that people know, and are known by, God.

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Does the Bible Affirm Scientific Errors? A Reply to Denis Lamoureux

Andrew Loke
Pages: 116-133


In recent years a number of scholars have argued that numerous biblical texts affirm what we now know are erroneous scientific notions. The sort of arguments they use and the biblical texts they cite have been well summarised in the writings of Denis Lamoureux. Lamoureux argues that these texts affirm erroneous notions concerning a three-tier universe, the movement of the sun across the sky, a solid firmament, flat earth, the mustard seed being the smallest seed, the death of the seed during germination, preformatism and creation de novo. I show that Lamoureux has not adequately considered Beale’s distinction between what the texts affirm and what the author believes. I develop various arguments based on this distinction and demonstrate that Lamoureux’s arguments fail to refute Beale’s position concerning biblical inerrancy and rule out an alternative view of divine accommodation which uses ancient common ways of expression without affirming scientific errors.


Markers of Human Creaturehood: Soil, Spirit and Salvation

Ted Peters
Pages: 135-146


When faced with the invitation for self-transformation through bio-nano-technology, we must pause to ask: just what does it mean to be a human being? Both scripture and evolution make the same point: we humans live at the metaxy, in the tension between soil and spirit. Genesis 2:7 says we live at the in-between where the ineffable God beyond touches the mundane realm of daily existence. Even in salvation, we will be redeemed creatures and not gods. The promise of technological utopianism, then, becomes an empty promise. Even with dramatic bio-enhancements or improved intelligence, we Homo sapiens must still pray that divine grace will provide the ultimate transformation. In the meantime, we should simply enjoy the metaxy.


Penultimate Curiosity in the Pre-Modern World

Peter N. Jordan
Pages: 147-158


This is a lightly edited version of a talk given at the 2017 Christians in Science Conference in Oxford. Intended as a response to Roger Wagner and Andrew Briggs’ book The Penultimate Curiosity, it argues that in past circumstances where (as Wagner and Briggs put it) ‘science swims in the slipstream of ultimate questions’, at least one additional factor – a positive view of scientific curiosity – must also have been operative. Curiosity has not always been viewed in a positive light, and projects aimed at obtaining knowledge of nature have often been judged to be problematic. Those who promoted new knowledge acquisition projects often felt a need to defend those projects against accusations of misplaced or misdirected curiosity. Given this, strong slipstream effects – particular theological convictions about the relations between ultimate and penultimate things – alone must have been insufficient to encourage penultimate curiosity.


Obituary R.J. (Sam) Berry

Malcolm Jeeves
Pages: 159-160


Book reviews

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Who Needs the Old Testament? Its Enduring Appeal and Why the New Atheists Don’t Get It

Katharine Dell (Rebecca Watson)
Pages: 161-162

Science and Religion: Beyond Warfare and Toward Understanding

Joshua Moritz (James R. Hofmann)
Pages: 162-164

Aquinas and Modern Science – A New Synthesis of Faith & Reason

Gerard M. Verschuuren (Ignacio Silva)
Pages: 165-166

Picking up the Pieces

Philip Bligh (Stephen Thompson)
Pages: 166-168

Genes, Determinism and God

Denis Alexander (John Bryant)
Pages: 168-169

The Little Book Of God, Mind, Cosmos And Truth

Kenneth Francis (Joshua Fountain)
Pages: 169-170

Astrophysics and Creation: Perceiving the Universe through Science and Participation

Arnold Benz (Eric Priest)
Pages: 170-173

Christianity and the Roots of Morality: Philosophical, Early Christian and Empirical Perspectives

Petri Luomanen Anne Birgitta Pessi Ilkka Pyysiäinen (editors) (Michael Fuller)
Pages: 173-175

Creation Care: A Biblical Theology of the Natural World

Douglas J. Moo Jonathan A. Moo (Prof. Robert (Bob) White)
Pages: 175-176

Questions in the Psychology of Religion

Kevin S. Seybold (Mark Graves)
Pages: 177-178

Blue Planet Blue God: The Bible and the Sea

Meric Srokosz Rebecca S Watson (Nicholas Higgs)
Pages: 178-180

The Luminous Web: Faith, Science and the Experience of Wonder

Barbara Brown Taylor (Dr Ruth M. Bancewicz)
Pages: 180-180

Science, Evolution and Religion

Michael Peterson Michael Ruse (Roger Trigg)
Pages: 181-182

The Gospel according to Dawkins

Graeme Finlay (Patrick Richmond)
Pages: 182-183

Hope in the Age of Climate Change: creation care this side of the resurrection

Chris Doran (Rev. Dave Bookless)
Pages: 183-185

The Not-So-Intelligent Designer: Why Evolution Explains the Human Body and Intelligent Design Does Not

Abby Hafer (Keith Fox)
Pages: 186-186

Wonder, Value and God

Robin Attfield (Bethany Sollereder)
Pages: 187-188