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Case for a Creator

An Excellent Resource

Review by Ryan Huxley

Case for a Creator

Pictured above is the cover of The Case for a Creator by Lee Strobel.
Is the case for evolution clearly a shut case? Are all the basic aspects of evolutionary theory known to be correct? Can the entire universe be explained simply in terms of matter and energy? Do science and religion conflict? Do people who believe in a Creator suffer from an inability to rationally comprehend the brute facts of the world around them? If you’ve ever pondered these questions, then this book is for you. If you are looking for a summary book with highlights of intelligent design, along with several key evidential problems with evolutionary theory, this is it. In a wonderfully engaging style, Lee Strobel takes you through his investigation for the scientific evidence for a Creator. But do not feel like you need to be scientifically sophisticated to follow the extremely informative interviews with leading academics – the down-to-earth and always practical approach exemplified in Strobel’s first two books (The Case for Christ and The Case for Faith) is refined further in this work. Tough, contemporary questions, the hallmark of Strobel’s investigative approach, are ever present and address conundrums from eminent skeptics.

The framework for this book follows a logical and well-thought-out progression. Strobel poses the questions hard skeptics ask on such broad topics as: evolution, faith and science, the Big Bang, fine-tuning of the universe, Earth’s privileged place in the cosmos, biochemical complexity, the origin of life, DNA and, finally, the mind. He interviews many of the top minds in each of these topics, including many prominent ID personalities, such as Michael Behe, Jonathan Wells, Stephen Meyer, Jay Richards, Guillermo Gonzalez, and J. P. Moreland. The material in his interviews often covers very recent work, such as Richards’ and Gonzalez’s Privileged Planet, which came out approximately the same time as The Case for a Creator.

Strobel gets at the heart of the scientific issues for the various topics, even such esoteric concepts as superstring theory and Stephen Hawking’s supposedly “non-singularity” universe. Though reading those words may cause your eyes to cross, the book provides easy to follow examples, analogies, and explanations to drive home the basic ideas. For example, when considering Hawking’s “non-singularity” universe (that is, a universe without a beginning) interviewee William Lane Craig, Ph.D., shows how Hawking attempts to deny a beginning point for the universe. However, to do so, Hawking has to employ an imaginary number (i.e. the square root of negative one), which appears to mathematically address the issue, but cannot be valid for the real world – in reality, the beginning has just been masked behind a mathematical model. Craig exposes Hawking’s mathematical slight of hand for what it is. Thus, Strobel writes: "I was amazed! Even though Hawking's Internet Site says his theory implies that the universe 'was completely determined by the laws of science,' even he wasn't able to successfully write God out of the picture." (pg. 120) It should be noted that Strobel casts the book as providing scientific evidence for the existence of God. Many in the ID movement note that the argument for intelligent design from the presence of specified complexity does not allow one to identify the designer. Strobel clearly identifies the designer as God, and in doing so relies upon scientific evidence to establish a designer, and various other philosophical arguments to establish the designer as a supernatural Creator.

Reflections, anecdotes and big picture summaries are interspersed throughout the book along with the engaging interviews. One noteworthy story is from Strobel’s own life, where he recalls his early days as a reporter at the Chicago Tribune. He was a self-proclaimed atheist at the time and was assigned to cover a local dispute over the teaching of evolution in West Virginia. Various Christians opposed the teaching of evolution, and at the time, Strobel wondered, "Why couldn't these people get their heads out of the sand and admit the obvious: science had put their God out of a job!" 30 years later, Strobel gives a compelling account of how the scientific evidence does not support the naturalist worldview, and points out that ironically, “My road to atheism was paved by science … but, ironically, so was my later journey to God.”

Similar to Strobel’s past works, this book is very well referenced and provides great information for further reading after each chapter. In fact, there’s even a website specifically aimed at helping people to learn more about and promote intelligent design: The website includes highlights from the book and an entertaining audio program online, complete with sound effects to help visualize Strobel’s personal recollections of events past.