Periodical Reviews -- By: Anonymous
BSac 135:538 (Apr 78) p. 165
“Science versus Religion: An Old Squabble Simmers Down,” Martin E. Marty, Saturday Review, December 10, 1977, pp. 29-32, 35.
“The Scopes Trial in Reverse,” Duane T. Gish, The Humanist, November-December, 1977, pp. 50-51.
Marty’s article is one of several in a special section discussing the topic “God and Science: New Allies in the Search for Values.” The editorial introduction to the section explains, “When science first began making inroads on the human mind, it was looked upon as the enemy of religion. More and more, however, the two antagonists have become reconciled to each other” (p. 13). This reconciliation takes place, the editorial continues, “as long as religion’s dogma is not too absolute and unbending” (p. 13). In other words, the capitulation of religion to science brings reconciliation.
The title to Marty’s article reflects the same editorial slant, which either ignores or is ignorant of the current evolutionism-versus-creationism battle and the catastrophism-versus-uniformitarianism conflict centering in the views of Immanuel Velikovsky. Apparently the title was supplied by the magazine’s editors, because Marty is at least aware of these debates, even though he dismisses the evolutionism-creationism one as a minor skirmish almost beneath his notice. Actually, instead of simmering down as the title insists, Marty declares “the battle is still on” (p. 30), even though its complexion has changed.
Gish’s article is the best evidence that the battle between the Bible and scientism still rages. His article is the response of the Creation Research Society to the January-February, 1977 issue of The Humanist devoted to the promotion of evolutionism as scientific and the elimination of creationism as a scientific option (see “Periodical Reviews
BSac 135:538 (Apr 78) p. 166
“there are no alternative theories to the principle of evolution…that any competent biologist of today takes seriously.”
Gish’s final paragraph summarizes his whole position: “Ultimately, acceptance of either creation or evolution involves a faith commitment, but creationists maintain that the scientific evidence that is available provides a much more rational basis for belief in creation than for belief in evolution. At the very least, the scientific case for creation, devoid of all references to the Bible or Genesis, should be fully available to students in public schools and universities. A logical, rational study of all the data and a consideration of all alternatives, so important to good education, as well as to academic and religious freedoms, requires it” (p. 51).
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