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Publisher's Summary

The New York Times best-selling author of Darwin’s Doubt presents groundbreaking scientific evidence of the existence of God, based on breakthroughs in physics, cosmology, and biology.

Beginning in the late 19th century, many intellectuals began to insist that scientific knowledge conflicts with traditional theistic belief - that science and belief in God are “at war”. Philosopher of science Stephen Meyer challenges this view by examining three scientific discoveries with decidedly theistic implications. Building on the case for the intelligent design of life that he developed in Signature in the Cell and Darwin’s Doubt, Meyer demonstrates how discoveries in cosmology and physics coupled with those in biology help to establish the identity of the designing intelligence behind life and the universe. 

Meyer argues that theism - with its affirmation of a transcendent, intelligent and active creator - best explains the evidence we have concerning biological and cosmological origins. Previously Meyer refrained from attempting to answer questions about “who” might have designed life. Now he provides an evidence-based answer to perhaps the ultimate mystery of the universe. In so doing, he reveals a stunning conclusion: the data support not just the existence of an intelligent designer of some kind - but the existence of a personal God. 

Supplemental enhancement PDF accompanies the audiobook. 

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio. 

©2021 Stephen C. Meyer (P)2021 HarperCollins Publishers

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A Wonderful Culmination of Dr. Meyer’s Work

If you follow Stephen C. Meyer, then whether you are friend or foe, you likely know what to expect from this book. I do want to try to tailor this review to the person that might not know what to expect, but I also think it only fair to disclose my bias. I have been following Dr. Meyer for some time now, read much of his previous work, and enjoyed several occasions to speak with him through webinar and zoom conferences, so keep that in mind when considering my opinion. Finally, I want you to understand what Meyer is trying to do here, so be aware that my summary will contain some content from the book. While I will try to keep it at a minimum, avoid my review if you direly disapprove of spoilers.

Summary:
While Dr. Meyer presents a sophisticated argument for theistic intelligent design, he does so in a fairly straightforward argumentative format. He starts with background of the areas he will discuss, in two parts. He then offers an explanation of the methodology he will use before applying it to the areas of interest regarding his thesis. From there he considers counterarguments to his points. Finally, he offers his conclusions.

The background begins with sort of a tour of the history and philosophy of science in order to refute the pervasive warfare myth between theism and science. The second part of his background treatment offers the history and current beliefs regarding the origin of the universe, the fine tuning of the universe, and the presence of information in both the origin and explosion of life.

Explaining his methodology and reasoning, Dr. Meyer discusses various modes of evaluation as well as various worldviews and their positions on metaphysical components to reality. From here, Meyer, using the method of abductive reasoning, seeks to show the adequacy and explanatory power of the God hypothesis, that is, theism, as compared to the competing hypotheses of deism, naturalism, and pantheism, to account for the beginning of the universe, the design of the universe, and the design of life.

After applying his methodology in examination of the three main ideas, Dr. Meyer addresses responses, potential refutations, and conjectures on behalf of the positions he claims are inadequate causally and explanatorily regarding his main thesis points. Some of these include chemical evolution, RNA world, evolutionary biologists (theistic and atheistic), various multiverse theories, quantum theories, and more.

Finally, Meyer moves to his conclusion, which is as the title suggests, that the God hypothesis has come full circle and is, once again, a viable and (in his opinion) superior explanation for the previously named phenomena.


Critique:
As I am fond of, I will offer my critique in a, “The good, the bad, and the ugly” format.

First, the good. Meyer is a storyteller. He doesn’t simply make assertions, such as, say, “The big bang suggests a big banger.” Rather, he will tell you the whole story of the big bang, how it was arrived at, what it means, why it is still around, who likes it, who doesn’t like it, and all such else. Then, he will, in light of those facts, explain the philosophical implications. This is just an example, but this is his style. He is very thorough. On that note, if you look at the bibliography, you will see over 500 sources. Again, he doesn’t just make claims, he presents whole accounts. When you read his work, you really get the feeling that you are getting a detailed and fair treatment of an issue or topic.

This leads to the bad. Sometimes, it is just too much for the average layperson to grasp. I did okay with this book because I am familiar with most of the material, but if a person is just learning about these topics for the first time, it can seem a little overwhelming. In his previous works, I had to, at times, skip through some of the more technical explanations and move to the parts in the chapters that were summaries.

The ugly. Dr. Meyer is on the bleeding edge of development in a philosophical and scientific turf war (or arms race if you prefer). He did a great job refuting the myth that science and religion were at odds in times past, but he is completely aware of the war of the worldviews currently in play. This is an ugly subject, and while he was ever the gentleman in his presentations, I expect a deluge of ad hominem attacks and invective from those who hate him and his position.

Conclusion:
If you are even at all interested in the relationship between science and religion, buy this book. If you don’t like having your presuppositions and worldview challenged, don’t buy this book. If you are open and objective, you will be pressed and stretched, whether theist, deist, or naturalist. If you buy the book and don’t like what it says, all of the claims are sourced and open for investigation.

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The best book for those skeptical of religion

I used to be a staunch atheist. I used to think that religion was merely a social construct designed to make people feel better about their lives. I believed that people who believed were ignorant and foolish. But in the back of my mind I always struggled with the big questions about the purpose of life and how to find meaning in a seemingly meaningless world.

After going through a really tough period in my life, I realized that religion, specifically Christianity, may be the answer to my questions. I have been trying to grow in my faith for over a year now, but I have always had the nagging feeling in the back of my head that this was all too good to be true and it’s made up. But this book has finally provided me the convincing reasons I needed to fully trust in the reality of God. This book has been the best thing I have ever done for growing my faith, and I would highly recommend it to anyone who is having a similar struggle as I had. I would also recommend it to those who are staunch atheists, so that they may consider that maybe they should not be so critical of religious believers being ignorant and foolish.

I would also like to say that if you are truly skeptical, you should listen to the entire book, as that should fully respond to your skepticism. Reading only specific parts will likely not satisfy you, and may leave you not fully understanding the argument of the book. Additionally, if you are interested in hearing the other side of the debate, the atheist perspective, you should check out Stephen C. Meyer’s debates on YouTube.

9 people found this helpful

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Clear and Scientific Case for God

It's sad that so many today have fallen prey to the belief that science and belief in God are at odds. Dr. Stephen Meyer carefully and methodically debunks such a notion and demonstrates how science actually points unequivocally in a theistic direction. This is a timely read that counters a lot of what my professors in college who made assertions about science being anti-God without actually making that case. Listen to this audiobook with an open mind. It's long, but well worth your time!

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Extremely detailed case for God

an excellent culmination of his previous books, both in using points from them, and in creating a new, formal argument for God. I also love the part of the book where he directly responds to the critics. if you like his previous books you will absolutely love this one. however it also has the capacity to be a standalone which is excellent!

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Devine creation, Devin accident Just an accident?

Stephen Meyer has done an admirable job of simplifying all the theories on the origins of the cosmos. It does become a slog for us of lower intellect because of all the philosophical scientist that have put forth their intricate theories and have built on others. And just like all the schools of thought in our culture, you have to rid yourself of the knotty problem of the Great Designer. A mere mention of God makes you superstitious and not allowed in high brow debate. One thing I gained from the read is that most of these astrophysicist and deep thinkers is they realize there was an event, some prime mover (which in Darwin's day they could deny), but they don't know what. It is worth the brain strain to listen, at least when you are turning in for the night. If you cannot engage you can snooze. But you will missout....rewind an try again

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convincing evidence for all who seek truth

Meyer exposes the scheme of those who twisted scientific evidence to fit their ideology, and dragged the society down to the atheistic pit. Convincing evidences show modern science supports the God hypothesis.

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I got your point in the first few chapters

I understood Meyer's three arguments for the existence of a divine intelligence behind the universe after the first few chapters of the book. He makes what I consider to be excellent presentations of the three main difficulties that secularists must deal with to explain the origin of the universe and the existence of biological life. However, he then devotes the middle part of the book to what constitutes legitimate scientific proof and the latter part of the book to secular objections to the three main arguments. Both of these sections were fairly tedious for me and it was obvious that I was listening to stuff from his area of expertise, which is the history and philosophy of science.

The latter two sections comprise a large portion of the book, and I have to admit my mind wandered a bit. There was something of a let down after the spectacular information about the three premises in the first part. I suppose that he felt he needed to be as complete and erudite as possible to go up against the storm of criticism that his position engenders from Dawkins, Harris, and others, and I suppose I need to hear it. I just don't have to enjoy it.

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Revelation 7: 9-10

It was a good book. I hope to meet the author one day. I also liked the book DNA enigma.

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A necessary balm for our confused souls

In these times of the unrelenting scientific progress, it’s hard for the average person to sift out the relevant from the arbitrary, let alone understand a bigger picture. This book does an excellent job of framing hundreds of years of discovery and philosophy in a way that is all to often dismissed with a hand wave by our academic institutions. The book contains an excellently structured argument that, in my opinion, will help those who find themselves stuck in the middle of what our external sources of information seem to want us to believe, with the internal spark that is kindled in us all. I’m thankful that Mr. Meyer has taken the time to put this work together, and articulate what is so difficult for most of us lay folk to say. Truly a paradigm shifting tome.

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A compelling argument

I found the "Return of the God Hypothesis" to be both interesting and factual. The author writes a compelling story and the reader presents to well. Highly recommended.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 04-07-21

Facts based reasons, gathered, presented very well

Easy to understand insight and overview, facts based reasons and historical backgroud, clearly narrated.


The core of reality concluded from visible/detectable/repeatable scientific knoweledge, without prejudice.

The knowledge you need to understand the world changing ideological history of this century.

Be prepared to can make a choice of your way to the meaning/sense/role of existence.

So why it is something instead of nothing ?

After 30 years of research on this subject I had made, this book is a very good summarize of knowledge for me , with interesting exact and important details , and well built reasoning.

It's my pleasure to read and understand, and thanks very much.

You will get eyes to see :" For his invisible qualities are clearly seen from the world's creation onward, because they are preceived by the things made, even his eternal power and Godship, so they are inexcusable" Romans 1:21

Be prepared to exhibit, demonstrate this.

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  • Mr. Christen J. Forster
  • 01-06-22

The implications of information

Meyer syntheses a vast array of research and lays them out following the history and philosophy of science in an intelligible way.

I've found my assumptions both challenged and affirmed.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 12-16-21

Written by a scientist for the scientific mind

Overall, the guy simply hypothesised that :
ALL the most prominent atheist scientists can't tell us where energy comes from. How it all started prior Big Bang. Where immensely complex computer-like coding comes from in the nuclei of each and every cell on the planet. at whatever stage in history..or...Why we're here!
The book suggests convincingly that all scientific theorems lead to a superhuman prehistoric mind.
These scientists...They're not as clever as history will judge.
And... without such hypotheses... they're all ultimately just guessing. ....really.
Hawkin, Dawkins.... all of 'em. They're seeking a god-like following for themselves.
Choose which messiah you want to follow.
I really enjoyed the book.

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  • Morgoth
  • 11-10-21

Science on God

A scientific look at proving God more likely exists, than not, through an examination of generally accepted scientific hypotheses.

Complicated at times, however, well written with a good use of analogies covering the topics looked at.

I didn’t agree with all the authors findings, specifically that God must exist as a Theistic God other than something else however, as there are more options on the table that could have been looked at other than those noted. If the author is reading this I would recommend he looks at Hermeticism, notably the Kybalion as a good starting point, as many truths are held within the text and will no doubt answer many questions. Of course, as the author is himself a theist, there will be bias at play.

In any case, it’s good to see that science is once again looking at God seriously, and I’m sure if many more people did so our civilisation would progress for the benefit of all, as opposed to the few. In this regard, I congratulate the author!

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  • Tahir Nasser
  • 11-02-21

One of the greatest books on science and religion

Phenomenal read presenting solid evidence. Meyer has shined a light on this topic so often made obscure by half truths on the topic by scientific materialists.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 10-23-21

Must buy

Very interesting book, which covers many critical topics about God and science. Interesting and unique book. Must buy.

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  • Stewart Gibson
  • 10-02-21

Belief in a Creator is scientific.

Dignified defense of mankind's most enduring belief. Knowledge seen through an intelligent mind strengthens this belief.

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  • Grant Baugh
  • 09-16-21

captivating

A rational, logical discourse of factual science, everything that evolution based on random selection is not.

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  • Beautiful History
  • 08-31-21

Brilliant

This is by far the most in-depth and most compelling book on the origin debate to date. Stephen leaves no stone unturned.

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  • Pink Pearl
  • 06-28-21

His best book so far

I this would be Stephen Meyers last book, it would be a worthy one. Excellent compilation of current astronomical, biochemical and philosophical findings that prove the case against materialism.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 09-20-21

A book that will stand the test of time.

While current scientific paradigms will pass away, this book will remain as the closest source to scientific truth in its most objective expression, ageless and profound.

Science points to a creator while most scientists do not.

Congratulations to Professor Meyer who is currently not widely recognised for his scientific contribution.

I hope another book is on the horizon.

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  • Mark Fitzmaurice
  • 01-01-22

Beautifully structured and personally compelling

Stephen has an outstanding mind and is a gifted communicator of complex ideas. He has a deep grasp of physics, cosmology and molecular biology. Together with these, his philosophical wisdom and his personal experience ensure a coherent discussion with respectful consideration of his opponents. If you believe in God read this book. If you don't believe in God this book will give you reasons to ensure you are not making the biggest mistake of your life. Enjoy!

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  • Graham Fitzgerald
  • 12-23-21

What a Return

An incredibly deep and detailed work. I loved the writers depth of disciplin as well as his personal candor. Thank you also for the further detail of the supplementary .pdf... Remarkadle...