Memory Text: “For the wisdom of this world is foolishness in God’s sight. As it is written: ‘He catches the wise in their craftiness’” (1 Corinthians 3:19, NIV).
Theologian William Paley wrote a book in 1802 entitled
Natural Theology, in which he argued that one can use observations of nature in order to develop an understanding of God’s character. He wrote extensively on the ways in which the features of animals exhibited the care and skill of the Creator. Paley may have made too much of some features, however, because he failed to recognize the effects that both sin and the Fall have had on nature, but his general argument has never been refuted-despite numerous and vociferous claims to the contrary!
Charles Darwin, in contrast, argued that a God who designed every feature of nature would not be good. As evidence, he referred to a parasite that feeds within the living bodies of caterpillars and the cruel way in which a cat will play with a mouse. For him, these examples were evidence against the existence of a loving Creator God.
Though Paley was obviously closer to truth than was Darwin, this week’s lesson will examine what the Bible has to say regarding the question of what it is that nature reveals, and does not reveal, about God.
Study this week’s lesson to prepare for Sabbath, February 16.