Last week, Dr. Darrel Falk announced his upcoming resignation as President of BioLogos. Dr. Falk became President of BioLogos after Dr. Francis Collins stepped down to take the position of Director of the National Institutes of Health. Dr. Falk’s resignation follows the departures of Dr. Karl Giberson, formerly Executive Vice-President of BioLogos, and former Senior Fellow Dr. Peter Enns.
What is interesting is Dr. Jerry Coyne’s take on Dr. Falk’s resignation and on the purpose of BioLogos. Dr. Coyne writes at the blog, Why Evolution is True, and is a professor of Ecology and Evolution at the University of Chicago. Here’s what Dr. Coyne had to say:
Do have a look at Falk’s account of BioLogos‘s “accomplishments,” none of which actually include converting science-averse evangelical Christians to evolution. They’ve had workshops, meetings, and a big website for three years, as well as tons of funding from the Templeton Foundation and, I suspect, wealthy evangelicals. But they have no record of actually doing what they set out to do: reconciling science with evangelical Christianity.
The reason is palpably clear of course: those “ways of knowing” are incompatible. But Falk seems cluelessly puzzled by BioLogos‘s failure:
But as thankful as I am for that support, no straddling ought to be required. Science studies God’s creation, which places it on sacred ground, not foreign territory. And if it is sacred ground, then Christians ought to be right there providing tours of the landscape, not out on the fringes looking in. True, there are sections of the science landscape that need to be redeemed from the scientism Richard Dawkins and others use to surface-mine and subtly rearrange the terrain for their own philosophical purposes, but the fact that they have been able to do this may be partly due to our near-absence from the territory. We have been far too hesitant to enter this world, and sometimes it seems we have simply preferred to cast stones from the outside.
Elaine Eklund has shown that Evangelicals are fourteen-fold under-represented among the scientists at the nation’s leading universities. Is this a result of what Mark Noll (almost twenty years ago) described as a scandal—“the scandal of the evangelical mind?” Could it be that the territory seems foreign because we have stayed away and failed to adequately understand how science works and why it is such a dependable way of revealing truth about the physical and biological world that God has created?
Oh for crying out loud! Evangelicals and other hyper-religious people are underrepresented in science because it threatens their faith. It’s not an inadequate understanding of how science works, but a realization that the findings of science, if taken seriously, make the idea of a god superfluous. And, in the end, this is why all efforts like those of BioLogos will fail.
I probably don’t agree with much of what Dr. Coyne believes, but I think he’s absolutely correct about one thing: evolution and Christianity are completely incompatible. If BioLogos exists to make Christianity palatable for evolutionists, it doesn’t appear that they have removed the offense of the Gospel for those committed to an atheistic, evolutionary worldview. I hope that more Christians will realize that compromising Scripture to gain acceptance is dangerous and ultimately unsuccessful.