Is A Divine “Intelligent Designer” Just a “God of the Gaps”?
by J Warner Wallace
In my new book, God’s Crime Scene: A Homicide Detective Examines the Evidence for a Divinely Created Universe, I make a comprehensive case for the involvement of a Divine, Intelligent Designer based on eight attributes of design seen in biological organisms. Many skeptics believe intelligent design inferences are premature and impulsive, however, driven primarily by those who are impatient with the explanatory power of science. As our scientific understanding has increased in the past two centuries, much of what was once a mystery is now a matter of scientific knowledge. Skeptic Michael Shermer argues, “Just because Intelligent Design theorists cannot think of how nature could have created something through evolution, that does not mean that scientists will not be able to do so either.” When we infer the existence of an Intelligent Designer, are we simply inserting such a Being because we presently have a gap in our scientific understanding? Are we defaulting irrationally to a “God of the gaps”? No:
The Design Inference Is Based on What We Do Know, Rather Than What We Don’t Know
When detectives enter a crime scene, they collect evidence and begin to search for reasonable explanations. In God’s Crime Scene, I describe a nationally publicized murder case in which two officers entered the crime scene and observed a garrote lying under the body of the victim. The officers immediately (and intuitively) recognized it as a designed weapon based on the eight design characteristics I describe in the book. Given the evidence of these features, an external intelligent designer was the best and most reasonable inference. They didn’t jump to this conclusion on the basis of what they didn’t know; they concluded this on the basis of what they did know about the nature of designed objects. In a similar way, intelligent design in biological systems is inferred positively from the evidence of design we’ve defined…
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