We should note that the preceding arguments are not ‘God of the gaps’ arguments; it is advances in science, not ignorance of science, that has revealed this fine-tuning to us. In that sense there is no ‘gap’ in the science. (73)
No, there is no gap in the science, merely in the understanding of the meaning of ‘God of the gaps’. The gap referred to is the explanation for the facts, not how the facts were revealed. Based on what he’s said here, it might come as a surprise to Lennox that everything we know, we know from advances in science. Strangely, revelation has revealed nothing about the natural world that any kind of science can be built around. ‘God of the gaps’ is:
“Wow, look at all these crazy giant fossils we’ve found in the ground. How did they get here?”
“God did it.”
Or in this case:
“Lucky the universe isn’t a little bit different or we wouldn’t exist. How’d that happen?”
“God did it.”
I cannot believe that a man in his position could make this mistake, nor that it could slip through the editing process that the book must have gone through. This is a deliberate attempt to befuddle the reader with his own version of ‘God of the gaps’.
Much of the section goes on about the incredibly low chances of all these phenomena appearing that are required for us to be here. Ergo, there must have been a designer. Now I’m not a scientist, but I’d like to know if that just means that if any of these variables were different, then there’d be life Jim, but not as we know it. In other words, there wouldn’t be the universe we know, but some other. Some other in which the beings are made out of living rock, or whatever the equivalent is in that universe. Some other where the laws that we know are altered, or the same, or both. The same, only different. Maybe everyone who’s evil sports a goatee?
And why make a universe which has laws that can sustain us without recourse to a god? Why make a universe where the tolerances are so exact for our existence and then put us in it, when instead he could have made a universe where without god we’d surely be without existence, yet somehow we’re sustained. Why don’t we live on a plane of fire that doesn’t burn our flesh? I vote for the land of chocolate. Of the set of all possible universes god could have created, he chose the least interesting one, the completely dull one where science makes sense, where math works and where avocados have a seed that’s too big. Bonus points if you can get the avocado reference without recourse to a search engine.
It’s been some time since I read the “The God Delusion” but I think it talked about just this kind of argument. There is an ameba sitting in a rain puddle contemplating how the puddle must surely have been designed, for how else could such a perfect environment for it have come into existence.