John Lennox

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Dr John Lennox is Emeritus Professor of Mathematics at Oxford. His achievements and debates are documented in Wikipedia.

He believes in evolution with divine intervention, but usually does not mention this in his frequent debates defending Christianity against atheists.

Ken Ham's "Answers in Genesis" documents his objections to Lennox's teachings here. At this page you can also see a three minute extract from Lennox's debate with Richard Dawkins in 2008, in which Dawkins pushes Lennox to state his acceptance of evolution more clearly that in he does in his entire book against evolution, "God's Undertaker?"

Lennox accepts evolution

"I think there may be several points in the history of the universe where God did something special."

— John Lennox

When pushed to admit what he believes, Lennox describes a concept of evolution in which God intervenes on "several" occasions — i.e. a version of what is normally called "Theistic Evolution" without a great deal of divine intervention. Here is a transcript of an occasion when he made this admission, in his Oxford Museum debate with Richard Dawkins. This transcript is taken from at 53:26. Lennox's wikipedia page has links to this and other debates.

Bruce (talk) 22 July 2021
Dawkins: You think you're going to survive your own death, I gather?
Lennox: Yes I do.
Dawkins: Yes. I mean, but so you think that even though your brain dies, something else . . . I mean, at what point in evolution did that remarkable faculty emerge?
Lennox: I, I haven't a notion, it's part of the . . . the . . .God has created human beings in his image.
Dawkins: What on earth does that mean? In his image? Do you think he looks like us?
Dawkins: Well what then?
Lennox: That we have personality, that . . . it's an anthropomorphism. But we are persons. God is a person. and therefore we can relate to him … [inaudible]
Dawkins: Was Australopithecus   a person? was homo erectus a person?
Lennox: Well I can't decide by looking at fossils whether it was a person or not, but you are a person.
Dawkins: Do you think it happened gradually? Or was there a moment when a child was born that was a person and its parent weren't?
Lennox: I . . . my own feeling is that there was a point when God did something special . . .
Dawkins: Aha!
Lennox: . . . but it would be very hard to detect that from any scientific investigation.
Dawkins: So God suddenly . . .
Lennox: One day I will . . .
Dawkins: . . . kind of dived into the evolutionary process and said, Right, from now on there are going to be persons?
Lennox: Well, whether he dived into an evolutionary process or did it specially, . . .
Dawkins: as in evolution itself? or . . . or . . .
Lennox: . . . is an open question. I do believe in evolution as far as Darwin saw it, the variation and modification that we've been talking about . . . I'm not actually sure, but this is a vast topic now to begin. I'm not . . .
Chair *: Gentlemen, I think we digress.
Lennox: Yeah, OK.
Taunton: The issue again is ah, is purpose.
Dawkins: I want to hear that ending. I want to hear whether he believes in evolution.
Lennox: Well, I've said, that I believe in what Darwin observed, but I'm not sure that the mechanism of mutation and natural selection can bear all the weight that's put on it.
Dawkins: Aha.
Lennox: For example producing consciousness and so on. I think there may be several points in the history of, um, the universe where God did something special. But I'm not going to be over dogmatic on that tonight because those aren't the places where I rest my faith in God.

* Chair was Larry A. Taunton of Fixed Point Foundation

Lennox's Debates and Quote Mining


Lennox has defended his Christian faith in public debates against famous atheists, listed in Wikipedia and in best-seller books such as God's Undertaker?.

against Richard Dawkins

  • Lennox debated Richard Dawkins at the University of Alabama (Birmingham, Alabama) about Dawkins's book, The God Delusion in October 2007 — nearly two hours on Youtube.
  • The debate "Has Science Buried God?" was staged theatrically in the Oxford Museum of Natural History in October 2008.
  • Other encounters are listed on Lennox's wikipedia page.

Quote Mining

See Ken Gilmore's post about "quote mining" (dishonestly selective quoting) on his blog here. Lennox is not alone in quote mining against scientists: see this archive.

Dawkins complains about being quote-mined by Lennox in these two clips on Youtube: