Mark Noll recently published an essay on Evangelicals, Creation, and Scripture for Biologos. Very little mention was made on Intelligent Design. I thought that I would provide these quotes from other sources. If anyone knows of a more extensive treatment, please add a comment here.
In his book The Scandal of the Evangelical Mind, Noll said:
One great tragedy of modern creationism is that its noisy alarums have made it much more difficult to hear careful Christian thinkers — like many in the American Scientific Affilitation or like Phillip E. Johnson in his attacks on the philosophical pretensions of grand-scale Darwinistic theories [with a footnote to Darwin on Trial] — whose work could carry evangelicals beyond the sterile impasse of earlier decades. p. 197.
I also found this in an article on Slate:
I’m talking about Intelligent Design, which, as you’ve probably guessed from the name, is a theory about the origins of life. A scholar Wolfe identifies as one of the most respected of the new evangelical intellectuals, theologian Mark Noll, deems Intelligent Design the most noteworthy of all the “substantial intellectual endeavors” that have taken place since the conservative Protestant revival began. (It came about largely as a result of Noll’s own excoriation of evangelicals in a 1994 book called The Scandal of the Evangelical Mind.)
What is Intelligent Design? It is, as Noll puts it, a “challenge to evolutionary naturalism.” Naturalism is the notion that only natural causes are required to explain the workings of nature. Naturalism lies at the heart of the scientific method. (To the Christian mind, naturalism is the opposite of supernaturalism. Supernaturalism is the gospel of God’s ability to intervene on earth, which Noll calls the “shared commitment” of all evangelical thought.) In short, Intelligent Design is a new and vastly more sophisticated iteration of creationism.
It’s important to differentiate ID-ers, as they call themselves, from old-school creationists, particularly of the young-earth variety. The latter are people who believe that the earth was created less than 10,000 years ago and that the fossil record, which appears to indicate otherwise, is actually an artifact of how the earth resettled itself after being churned up by the great flood. ID-ers don’t fly so baldly in the face of scientific reason. Their target is more limited: the theory of evolution as currently taught in most biology departments.
I do not think that these comments in Slate are entirely accurate, but I am not interested in doing a detailed fact check now. However, I thought that others might be interested in them, at least for the limited quotation of Noll about ID.