Introduction


The beauty, order and complexity of the natural world provide strong evidence for the existence of a Creator. Indeed, among many cultures, this ‘argument from design,’ is used as a strong proof of the need for God’s existence.

A key part of the legacy of this argument has been the scientific ‘Intelligent Design’ argument, which has been formalised in the last few decades. ‘ID’ argues in a secular fashion not for God, but simply for design, and the need for a designer — whoever that may be. Compellingly, for example, proponents argue that biological organisms exhibit attributes which strongly point to them having been designed by an intelligent entity, rather than by blind processes such as natural selection.

This ‘Intelligent Design’ movement has found particular currency among Christian circles, with many of its key proponents in the modern day being devout Christians. Though not alone in producing modern day ID, such Christians have produced thought-provoking and insightful work in the field. They claim that the natural sciences can lead one to a logical and rational belief in God. And contrary to popular belief, much work conducted in the field of Intelligent Design is scientifically rigorous and does not blend into religion per se.

It can be argued, however, that those Christians who so strongly adhere to the principles of ID when it comes to biology and physics, abandon it when it comes to their own personal theological convictions.

In this article, I will explain how. I will describe, in brief, the scientific concepts used by ID advocates.  I will then examine a critical doctrine within Christianity – the resurrection of Jesus Christ, peace be upon him.

Using the same principles that ID advocates and their followers use for their scientific work, we will ascertain whether their beliefs in the resurrection are logically consistent, or whether alternative theories fit the agreed facts better.

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Can Christian scientists adhere to scientific reasoning when looking at Christianity?



ID & Inference to the Best Explanation


But first, we need to examine Intelligent Design Theory itself. It begins with a series of pertinent questions.

How did everything come to be? How did the beauty of the natural world, the perfect balance of ecosystems, and the vast complexities of the human bodies emerge, all from nothing? While we cannot literally go back in time to observe the development of our universe and life on Earth, we must utilise scientific ways of thinking to guide us.

One of the most common methods is known as abductive reasoning. Also known as ‘the method of multiple competing hypotheses’ or ‘inference to the best explanation,’ this system of thought is used in many strands of science. The technique is simple – we have a set of data, or an observation of some sort, and we are trying to ascertain how these data or this observation came to be. In order to assess this, we consider all the possible competing explanations, and analyse the explanatory power of each one. The hypothesis with the greatest ability to causally explain the phenomenon we see, is the one most likely to be correct.

Let’s take an example from Stephen Meyer, a leading thinker in Intelligent Design. In his book, ‘The Return of the God Hypothesis,’ Meyer explains, by way of an analogy, how in our day to day lives, we use ‘inference to the best explanation’ as a successful scientific tool to explain unobserved events:

“Suppose Ms. Jones falls asleep on the couch on a warm weekend afternoon while watching television. On awakening, she steps outside and sees that (1) the driveway of her house is glistening with water and (2) the car in the driveway is also wet. She decides to investigate. From those two pieces of evidence, she might conclude…that it rained while she was asleep. But based on the two facts at hand she might just as logically conclude that the automatic sprinklers came on or that someone washed her car. With only the data that the driveway and the car are wet, these explanations are equally plausible.

But suppose our groggy investigator also sees that (3) the lawn and the street are perfectly dry and (4) there isn’t a cloud in the sky. Now what might she conclude? Although the sprinkler hypothesis and the rainstorm hypothesis are still possible, these explanations seem much less likely in the light of the additional evidence (facts 3 and 4). Now, finally, suppose she looks a little harder and sees (5) a bucket with soapy water and a sponge sitting behind the car. With the final piece of data, the best explanation for observations 1 through 5 becomes obvious: someone washed the car.

Untitled design

This everyday scenario provides a good example of making an inference about a past cause based upon present observations using abductive reasoning enhanced with the method of inference to the best explanation…. Our investigator weighed several possible explanations to see which would make the best sense of the clues. She evaluated the competing explanations using the available evidence and what she knew about cause and-effect relationships in the world (e.g., people often wash cars in their own driveways, rain doesn’t usually fall on single small areas). She then worked backward in time to what probably happened when she was not around to see it. The best explanation was the one that explained more of the evidence more simply than any other.

This example also shows that considerations of causal adequacy often determine which among a set of possible explanations will constitute the best. Our sleepy friend wanted to know what had caused the evidence she observed. She weighed the competing possible explanations by reference to her knowledge of cause and effect. Of course, it might have rained. But only above her driveway? With no clouds in the sky? And would a rainstorm produce a bucket of soapy water? Not likely. Therefore, the rain hypothesis did not seem causally adequate as an explanation of some of the relevant clues. Indeed, notice that as our investigator used the method of “inference to the best explanation,” she not only considered several possible hypotheses, but she also compared the known (or theoretically plausible) causal powers of the various postulated explanatory entities. She then progressively eliminated causally inadequate explanations.

This example also shows how, based on our background knowledge about how the world works, we typically avoid unnecessarily convoluted explanations—explanations that multiply causal postulations. For example, Ms. Jones didn’t seriously consider that (a) it had rained just over her driveway and (b) her son had gotten out the bucket and put soapy water in it only to leave it there with no intent of washing the car. Though that was a possible explanation of the facts, it seemed unnecessarily complex and improbable.

Stephen Meyer, the Return of the God Hypothesis (2021), Page 273-275

In summary therefore, identifying the ‘best’ cause follows a few common sense guidelines. The cause should be sufficient to explain what you want to explain. It should also appeal to causes that are known, and familiar, rather than appeal to exceptional, novel phenomena that have never been observed.

Using such a philosophy, ID advocates explain how an intelligent designer is the best explanation for the incredible features of the world around us: from the extreme fine-tuning in the laws of nature, to the evolution of man from primordial forms. Alternative hypotheses, like the multiverse or blind evolution are found not to be causally adequate to explain the world we see, and are thus discarded in favour of the design hypothesis.

The Design Hypothesis is thus a scientific one, rather than a theological one. In other words, it asserts that the best explanation for the design of universe and life was from an intelligent source outside the universe itself, which directs the flow of events in the universe. However, it gives no credence to specific theological claims about a traditional monotheistic God — it is agnostic on such issues.

Thus, Christian Intelligent Design advocates are able to separate their theological beliefs from their scientific arguments. But do their own personal Christian beliefs match up to their impressive scientific rigour?

earth sunset

When it comes to the evident features of design in the universe, a designer is a better explanation than mindless forces



The Agreed Facts of the Crucifixion Event


The crucifixion of Jesus Christ, peace be upon him, is one of the most iconic moments in human history. Occurring in the first century CE, the narration is told in the four Gospels. Jesus was threatened, demonised, and persecuted by the Jewish elders and the High Priests of the Sanhedrin. Eventually, they managed to accuse him of blasphemy, and he was sentenced to death. This death sentence was approved by Pontius Pilate, the Roman Governor in Judaea. Though Pilate was reluctant to originally approve the decision, his decision was swayed by the crowds, who urged him to crucify Jesus. The night before his eventual crucifixion, Jesus prayed with his companions in the Garden of Gethsemene, imploring God to have the bitter cup of death taken away from him.

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Jesus is said to have been given a crown of thorns

On the day of the crucifixion, Jesus was beaten with a whip, and made to wear a prickly crown of thorns on his head. He was led to his crucifixion site, too physically weak to carry his own cross. Jesus was nailed to the cross, where he stayed for a few hours. He was taunted and mocked by passers-by, and as he was at his weakest, he cried out ‘My God, my God, why have You forsaken me?’

That evening, however, he was taken down as per Jewish custom, as the Sabbath had arrived. Typically, the Roman soldiers guarding the cross would break the legs of the crucified individual, hastening death. However, seeing that Jesus already appeared dead, they did not do this, rather they pierced his side with a spear.

Following this, he was taken down by Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimathea and placed in a tomb. While he remained in the tomb for the following day, on the Sunday morning, the tomb was found empty. Jesus’ followers went to Galilee to the top of a mountain, on which they saw Jesus, still wound-stricken from his ordeal on the cross, but very much alive.



The Explanations


Nobody alive today was present when the crucifixion occurred. Therefore, similar to the question of how the universe arose, we must use abduction, and the process of inference to the best explanation, to help us ascertain exactly what occurred during and after the crucifixion of Jesus.

The two major competing hypotheses that we will discuss are the mainstream Christian theory, and the theory given by Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian, peace be upon him, the Founder of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, in his seminal book Jesus in India. The same theory and its relevant evidence was beautifully summarised by Muhammad Zafrullah Khan, one of the most decorated statesmen of the 20th Century, in his book Deliverance from the Cross.

The Death & Resurrection Hypothesis


First, the Christian belief. In order to explain how it could be possible for a man to be whipped and then placed on the cross, appear dead, and then greet his followers once more within days, Christians say that Jesus died and then was resurrected. In order to come to this conclusion, they use arguments including (but not limited to) the following:

  1. The tomb in which Jesuswas buried was empty on the Sunday morning.
  2. The tortures of crucifixion were incredibly brutal, rendering it unlikely that Jesus could have survived the ordeal.
  3. The Bible documents that Jesus had died.
  4. Jesus was pierced in the side, thus ensuring that he would die, even without the need for his bones to be broken.
  5. Jesus was himself God, and needed to die, as this was the plan all along — to die on the cross so that others may receive eternal life, though atonement.

These points are well known, and will not be expounded upon in depth here. However, they should be considered when thinking through another hypothesis — the survival theory.


The Survival Hypothesis


The Survival Hypothesis asks the ponderer to consider one main point, by means of an analogy. If a man fell from a large height, appearing as though there was little chance for him to survive. Days later, however, he is seen again, with wounds from the fall still present on his body. What would be the most likely explanation? Would it be that he had died from that fall, but then returned back to life? Or would it be that he had survived the whole incident?

Again, let us imagine that a man is sentenced to death, and his execution by hanging is scheduled that day. Now, imagine that a day after his scheduled execution, we see this man, alive and looking worse for wear, with marks around his neck from where he was suspended. What would we conclude from this? No normal person would conclude that this man must have died by hanging and then must have come back to life. Rather the most reasonable, and causally adequate explanation, is that he was hanged but somehow survived the execution attempt.

This concept of ‘survival against the odds’ has occurred many thousands of times throughout human history. Simply because we cannot fathom how someone has survived a certain experience, does not normally prevent us from believing that an unlikely survival has taken place. In no other sphere of human experience would we ever say that a man seen a few days after a horrific event had died and then returned back to life. Moreover, such an incident has never been thought seriously to have taken place in the entirety of the modern human history. We understand, from intuition, science, and our own experience, that human beings who underwent a dangerous experience and are seen days later, with their wounds still visible, have not died and resurrected, but have rather simply survived an ordeal.

Aside from analogies, there are also several modern instances of individuals mistakenly being thought dead by doctors. For example, in 2018, 29-year-old Gonazolo Montoya Jimenez, a prisoner in Northern Spain, was found unconscious in his cell and certified dead by three separate doctors. Four hours later, on the autopsy table, he began snoring. Evidently therefore, these sorts of events occur even in today’s world of seemingly limitless technology and science. Therefore, the fact that Jesus appeared dead to those present at the time, but was in fact alive, is not at all beyond the realms of possibility. In fact, by any measure, proponents of this hypothesis would argue that it is far more likely than the resurrection hypothesis, given that the latter has never previously been witnessed or experienced. 

When we consider the specific aspects of the events of the crucifixion, Jesus’ survival seems more and more evident. The following arguments explain why.

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Before the Crucifixion

First, in the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus is documented to have made a prophecy related to his future ordeal. He is reported to have said:

A wicked and adulterous generation seeks after a sign, and no sign shall be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah.” And He left them and departed.

NKJV, Matthew 16:4

“An evil and adulterous generation seeks after a sign, and no sign will be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah. For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.” 

NKJV, Matthew 12:40

The significance of this statement is that Jonah’s sign was of remarkable survival. Being on a ship in the midst of a storm, the ship’s inhabitants decided to throw him overboard, apparently condemning him to death. But when they did so, two remarkable things happened. Firstly, the sea stopped raging, and secondly, Jonah was swallowed by a whale:

So they picked up Jonah and threw him into the sea, and the sea ceased from its raging… Now the Lord had prepared a great fish to swallow Jonah. And Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights…

So the Lord spoke to the fish, and it vomited Jonah onto dry land.

NKJV, Book of Jonah

Thus, despite life-threatening circumstances, Jonah did not die in the belly of the whale, but remained alive and came out alive, eventually returning to his people, witnessing their repentance, and finding their acceptance. Jonah’s remarkable survival is clearly understood as being the design of God.

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This analysis is instructive. Jesus claims that his sign, his only sign for the people of Judea, would be the Sign of Jonah. Jonah’s great sign was one of survival against the odds. If then Jesus had died in the ‘bowels of the earth’ (i.e., the tomb he was placed in after his crucifixion), what resemblance could there have been between him and Jonah? As Mirza Ghulam Ahmadas said, what resemblance is there between the living and the dead?

Christians therefore must accept that Jesus survived his crucifixion ordeal. Without surviving it, he would not have fulfilled the ‘only’ sign he was going to show the Jewish people of the time, and thus could not be true in his Messianic claims.

But this is not all. Jesus explained that part of his core mission was to seek out the ‘lost tribes of Israel’ (Matthew 15:24), saying that there will be ‘one shepherd and one flock’, and that they will literally hear his voice:

And other sheep I have which are not of this fold; them also I must bring, and they will hear My voice; and there will be one flock and one shepherd.

NKJV, John 10:16

“I was not sent except to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.

NKJV, Matthew 15:24

Only two tribes (Judah and part of Benjamin) were in Palestine at the time. All the other tribes were further East, having been dispersed by King Nebuchadnezzar, eventually settling in Kashmir and its surrounding areas. Jesus had not yet reached there. Thus, if he had died on the cross, the mission of his life would have failed. It is written in Luke 4:43:

And he said unto them, I must preach the kingdom of God to other cities also: for therefore I am sent.”

This further affirms the fact that his mission was not to die and be resurrected, but to preach the message of God to the tribes of Israel with the role of a Prophet and Messenger of God.

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There exists a wealth of evidence for the settling of the Children of Israel in Kashmir and surrounding areas on the Silk Road

Thirdly, the Jews knew that death by hanging is accursed, as stated in Deuteronomy 21:23: ‘For he who is hanged is accursed by God.’ In any context, to say that an individual as holy as Jesus, peace be upon him, was ‘accursed by God,’ is surely completely impossible, and is a great offence to his purity and to God’s Wisdom. How could God allow for his Messiah to be killed in such a fashion that would give the Jews legitimate cause to reject him? To be accursed is to be estranged from God — impossible if Jesus was indeed sent by God, let alone if Jesus was somehow ‘God Himself’ as Christians believe.

Fourthly, the night before the crucifixion, Jesus prayed to God in the Garden of Gethsemane with humility and in great distress:

“Father, if it is Your will, take this cup away from Me; nevertheless onot My will, but Yours, be done.”

NKJV, Luke 22:42

Is it possible that God could have rejected the prayer of Jesus? Jesus was afraid of dying an accursed death as it would negate his own God-given mission. From the Bible we also learn that God listens to the prayers of his servants:

“The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.”

James 5:16

All this highlights the fact that Jesus himself was never aware of any kind of plan that he would resurrect and ‘atone’ for the sins of mankind. Rather he prayed against his own death, predicted survival against the odds as his primary sign, and yearned for God to save him, so he could continue his preaching to the Lost Sheep of the House of Israel.

During the Crucifixion

When Jesus was to be crucified, all the disciples fled. There was not a single disciple with him when he was brought to be crucified and the immediately succeeding events. If the disciples were aware that Jesus was to rise from the dead after his crucifixion (which they should have been if this were true), why did they flee away from him? Even his last man standing, Peter, the ‘rock,’ denied him, seemingly with little faith. 

While on the cross, Jesus cried out ‘My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?’ If the purpose of his life was to die, then surely it would have been an honour for him to die for the sake of all of mankind. Many people are pleased to die for a single loved one, let alone the entirety of humanity. Why then was he crying out in such a desperate manner? Most likely, this was because he did not understand how God would save him from his impending death, and that an accursed death of the Cross would falsify his truth.

Jesus was taken down from the cross after only a few hours, owing to the arrival of the Sabbath. Why Jesus was only allowed to be on the cross for around a maximum of six hours, is remarkable in itself, and owes to the design of Pontius Pilate. His wife had reported having terrible dreams on account of Jesus, and based on this implored Pilate to have nothing to do with him, that is, to not allow him to be crucified:

While he [Pilate] was sitting on the judgment seat, his wife sent to him, saying, “Have nothing to do with that just Man, for I have suffered many things today in a dream because of Him.”

NKJV, Matthew 27:19

But Pilate succumbed to public pressure, choosing to condemn him to death. Despite this, Pilate appeared to have engineered the fact that the crucifixion day was set for Friday, so that by sunset he would have to be taken down, given that the Sabbath began at sunset on Friday.

Normally, however, it takes a few days for a person to die from crucifixion. Death doesn’t occur from being nailed to the Cross itself, but due to a myriad of eventual medical complications. The method is thus notorious for being a slow and agonising way to die. However, it is more than possible for people to survive. Josephus, the famous historian of the period recalls:

I saw many captives crucified, and remembered three of them as my former acquaintance. I was very sorry at this in my mind, and went with tears in my eyes to Titus, and told him of them; so he immediately commanded them to be taken down, and to have the greatest care taken of them, in order to their recovery; yet two of them died under the physician’s hands, while the third recovered.

The Life of Josepehus Flavius, 75

For Jesus, a fit and healthy man in his thirties, to have died after relatively so little time on the cross, would have been unlikely. To highlight this further, the thieves either side of Jesus were alive at the time when the soldiers were taking them all down from the cross. To hasten death, they broke the legs of the thieves. However, they did not do this with Jesus, as they thought he was already dead.

As we have discussed, it is very possible for a person to appear dead, when in fact they are only in a comatose state. To further demonstrate this, the Gospel of Mark documents Pontius Pilate’s surprise that Jesus had already died:

Joseph of Arimathea, a prominent council member, who was himself waiting for the kingdom of God, coming and taking courage, went in to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus. Pilate marveled that He was already dead; and summoning the centurion, he asked him if He had been dead for some time.

Mark: 15:43-44

Instead of breaking his legs, the thieves stabbed Jesus in the side, and ‘blood and water poured out.’ (John 19:34). Interestingly, this alone appears to prove Jesus’ survival, as after death, blood would coagulate and not gush out. The ‘water’ was likely to be pleural fluid, fluid around the lungs, and its release from the lungs may even have been therapeutic, allowing the lungs to decompress and permitting Jesus to breathe more easily.


After the Crucifixion

After being taken down, Jesus’ body was handed over by Pilate to two of his friends – Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus, who was a doctor. Nicodemus applied myrrhs and aloes to Jesus’s body (John 19:39). This again is a remarkable act. Why would a doctor apply healing herbs to a corpse? He wouldn’t — he would only do this if he believed Jesus to be alive.

Thereafter, Jesus was placed in the sepulchre, essentially a cave of sorts where Jesus lay. A rock covered its entrance. On Sunday morning, the rock had been moved, and Jesus was seen outside of it, not dressed in his normal garb.

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There are entire books focused on the question of who moved the tomb stone such that Jesus could leave the tomb. Surely, only an angel of God could displace such a heavy item? However, the Bible itself refutes such a perspective. In order to roll the stone to the entrance of the tomb to begin with, it took only one man to do so.

“So Joseph took the body, wrapped it in a clean linen cloth, and placed it in his own new tomb that he had cut into the rock. Then he rolled a great stone across the entrance to the tomb and went away.”

Matthew 27:59-60

The purpose of the stone, therefore, was not to form an immovable barrier, but rather to simply prevent wild animals from entering the tomb. A recovered Jesus could surely have displaced it. When Jesus was seen by his disciples on the Sunday morning, he showed them his wounds, highlighting that no supernatural miracle had occurred rather this was a case of ‘survival against the odds.’

This is further highlighted by the incident of ‘Doubting Thomas,’ a disciple of Jesus who was stunned to learn that Jesus was alive after his crucifixion. The following passage details his meeting with Jesus post-crucifixion:

Now Thomas, called the Twin, one of the twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. The other disciples therefore said to him, “We have seen the Lord.”

So he said to them, “Unless I see in His hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and put my hand into His side, I will not believe.”

And after eight days His disciples were again inside, and Thomas with them. Jesus came, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, “Peace to you!” 

Then He said to Thomas, “Reach your finger here, and look at My hands; and reach your hand here, and put it into My side. Do not be unbelieving, but believing.”

And Thomas answered and said to Him, “My Lord and my God!”

John 20:24-28

This excerpt clearly highlights that Jesus still possessed his wounds his marks from his crucifixion ordeal, which he asked Thomas to examine. His case is like that depicted earlier, of the man seen after his execution with marks from where he was hung.

The best explanation for both these similar occurrences is that an unlikely survival had occurred, not a case of resurrecting from the dead. 

Resurrection HypothesisSurvival Hypothesis
Fails to explain past prophecies (e.g. Sign of Jonah)Explains past prophecies (e.g. sign of Jonah)
Fails to explain specific details of crucifixion (e.g. blood/water, short duration, aloes given to Jesus post-crucifixion)Explains specific details of crucifixion (e.g. blood/water, short duration, aloes given to Jesus post-crucifixion
Appeals to unknown phenomena (resurrection after death)Appeals to known causes

Table demonstrating how the survival hypothesis compares to the resurrection hypothesis


Was the Crucifixion Intelligently Designed?


We have examined thus far the most likely hypothesis regarding what happened to Jesus during the crucifixion. However, in examining all the events, it appears not only that the survival hypothesis is the ‘best’ explanation, but that Jesus’ survival was specifically engineered by a Higher Power. It was planned by God, intelligently designed, so that Jesus would be saved from dying an accursed death on the cross.

In the natural world, we see arrangements of parts to fulfill specific purposes, in a delicate and finely-tuned way. Similarly, when considering the case of Jesus, we also see extremely specific and often unlikely events arranged in a perfect way so as to ensure his survival, and thus continuation of his mission.

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What does a rational interpretation of the Bible require?

For example, it so happened that Pontius Pilate’s wife had nightmares, which inclined Pilate to guarantee that Jesus would go on the cross on Friday morning, ensuring that not enough time would pass for him to die. It so happened that his legs were not broken by the Roman soldiers, as they thought he was already dead. It so happened that instead they stabbed him in the side, which was probably therapeutic for him, removing fluid from around his lungs. It so happened that once taken down from the cross he was cared for by a doctor, who tended to his wounds. All of these phenomena, combined together created the end result, that Jesus was able to survive and continue his God-given mission, rather than leaving the earth without succeeding.

‘And he said unto them, I must preach the kingdom of God to other cities also: for therefore I am sent’

Luke 4:43

God looks after and takes care of the men He chooses the Prophets and their successors. The events of Jesus’ crucifixion are a prime example. Despite being sentenced to death, by God’s intelligent design, a series of unlikely events united together to save him from his seemingly inevitable demise.



Conclusion


By every measure scientific, logical, and even scriptural the survival hypothesis is the best ‘competing hypothesis’ as to what really happened to Jesus Christ, peace be upon him. It appeals to known causes to explain Jesus survival (fainting, coma), and doesn’t appeal to the exceptional event of Jesus dying, going to hell for one or two days and returning by Sunday. It explains the gamut of relevant factors, including how Jesus prophesied a survival against the odds, why he prayed all night for survival, and why his disciples were shocked when it looked like he would die.

If the crucifixion event were not a religious one, all scientists would conclusively say that the best explanation was that Jesus survived the crucifixion. After all, there is no one today who claims that Gonazolo Montoya Jimenez died and then came back to life, despite three doctors having explicitly pronounced him dead. Nor is there anyone who would assert that a man who was seen after his scheduled execution date looking worse for wear had died and then returned to life.

It is surely inconceivable that God would expect us to use our rational minds in understanding His universe, but abandon them entirely when trying to understand past religious events, such as the crucifixion of Jesus. Christian proponents of the Intelligent Design hypothesis conduct excellent work in their scientific spheres. However, they must consider whether their own religious beliefs are grounded in reason, or rather steeped in a dogma which they inherited from generations before them. The ‘multiple competing hypothesis’ framework provides strong evidence that the universe was designed, rather than appearing by chance. When applying this same framework to their own theological belief system, however, Christian adherents to Intelligent Design decide to accept a less-than-plausible hypothesis.

Indeed, it is difficult for a person to change their spiritual or religious beliefs. However, it must also be difficult for a person to have an inherent conflict in their approach to life — utilising scientific reasoning in one sphere, and doing quite the opposite in the other.

Perhaps Christians who follow Intelligent Design will consider applying their own ingenuity and critical thought to their personal beliefs. If they do, they may discover a more satisfying, appealing, and beautiful truth than they could ever have previously imagined.

Call to mind also when Jesus son of Mary said: O children of Israel, surely I am Allah’s Messenger unto you, fulfilling the prophecies contained in the Torah, which was revealed before me, and giving glad tidings of a Messenger who will come after me whose name will be Ahmad. But when he came to them with clear proofs, they said: This is clear deception.

Holy Quran, 61:7