Christianity and Human Origins
For many in our culture, the relationship between Christian faith and the science of human origins directly impacts the credibility of the Church’s gospel witness. And for many in our churches, this matter can often become a reason to question their faith. Does the Biblical account of creation concord with scientific findings, and if so, how? What are the ramifications of the various views on the rise of humanity to the Christian faith? What room is there for Christians to explore these issues and remain faithful to Scripture? How can pastors and Christian leaders walk others through these questions in an intellectually credible and faith-compelling manner? Join us for this two-day event, during which we will hear different views on this issue from four Christian scientists across several academic disciplines. We will also hear theological and hermeneutical perspectives from Denver Seminary faculty members Dr. Patty Pell, Dr. Sung Wook Chung, and Dr. Rick Hess on the matter of human origins and the approaches presented by our guest speakers.
Date: September 14, 4:30pm-6:15pm and September 15, 8am-3pm
Location: At Denver Seminary and Online
Cost: Thanks to generous donor funding, there is no charge to attend the Christianity and Human Origins conference.
For more information, contact Jason Woodman, Director of Public Engagement for The Gospel Initiative
Thursday, September 14
- *4:30pm | Registration and reception with faculty guests and guest speakers
- 5:15pm | Opening remarks
- 5:30pm | Faculty interviews with Dr. Pell, Dr. Chung, and Dr. Hess
- 5:55pm | Guest interviews with Dr. Rana, Dr. Swamidass, Dr. Schloss, and Dr. Lamoureux
- 6:15pm | Dismissal until Friday
Friday, September 15
- *8:00am | Registration
- 8:30am | Opening remarks with President Dr. Mark Young
- 8:45am | Dr. Fuz Rana Keynote
- 9:22am | Dr. Josh Swamidass Keynote
- 9:59am | Break
- 10:09am | Announcements
- 10:14am | Dr. Jeff Schloss Keynote
- 10:51am | Dr. Denis Lamoureux Keynote
- *11:28am | Table Discussion
- *11:48am | Lunch
- **12:33pm | Seminars
- 01:40pm | Panel discussion with all guest speakers
- 2:40pm | Closing remarks with President Dr. Mark Young
- 3:00pm | Dismissal
* These program sections will be unavailable for virtual guests
**Virtual guests will have access to the seminars of Dr. Jeff Schloss and Dr. Josh Swamidass. All seminars will be recorded for future viewing.
- Hors d’oeuvres will be provided on Thursday evening, September 14. Coffee, light breakfast and lunch will be provided on Friday September 15.
- Free parking is available for conference guests in the guest parking spaces in lot A and in select spaces in lot B. No parking pass is required.
Map of Parking.
Dr. Fuz Rana, President, CEO, and Senior Scholar of Reasons to Believe
Biochemist Fazale “Fuz” Rana is President, CEO, and Senior Scholar of Reasons to Believe (RTB), an organization dedicated to communicating the powerful scientific case for God’s existence and the Bible’s reliability to both Christians and non-Christians.
Rana converted to Christianity during graduate school. Though he initially embraced the evolutionary paradigm, he eventually drew the conclusion that only a Creator’s involvement could explain the elegance of biochemical systems. After a pastor challenged him to read the Bible, Fuz became convinced of the validity of Christ’s claims and of his own need for a Savior.
Rana earned a BS in chemistry with highest honors from West Virginia State College and a PhD in chemistry with an emphasis in biochemistry from Ohio University, and completed postdoctoral work at the Universities of Virginia and Georgia. Before joining RTB in 1999, he worked for seven years as a senior scientist in research and development for Procter & Gamble.
To date, Rana has addressed more than 500 university, church, and conference audiences in the United States and abroad. His books include Humans 2.0, The Cell’s Design, and Fit for a Purpose.
Dr. Denis Lamoureux, Professor of Science and Religion at St. Joseph’s College in the University of Alberta
Dr. Denis O. Lamoureux is Professor of Science and Religion at St. Joseph’s College in the University of Alberta. He is also a research associate in paleontology.
Lamoureux’s academic specialty focuses on the modern origins controversy. He embraces the time-honored belief that there are two major sources of Divine revelation—the Book of God’s Words and the Book of God’s Works—and that the Bible and the physical world complement each other. Science reveals how the Creator made this spectacular intelligent design-reflecting world, while Holy Scripture declares precisely Who created it—the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
Professor Lamoureux has written several books on the origins debate. I Love Jesus & I Accept Evolution (2009) is an introduction to a Christian view of evolution. The Bible and Ancient Science: Principles of Interpretation (2020) reveals there is an ancient understanding of nature in the Word of God. Beyond the Evolution vs. Creation Debate (2021) is a book on origins for high school students. And Struggling with God & Origins: A Personal Story (2023) offers his personal testimony of coming to faith in Jesus Christ.
Lamoureux holds three earned doctoral degrees—dentistry, evangelical theology, and developmental and evolutionary biology.
Dr. S. Josh Swamidass, Associate Professor in the Division of Laboratory and Genomic Medicine at Washington University in St. Louis
Dr. S. Joshua Swamidass is an Associate Professor in the Division of Laboratory and Genomic Medicine at Washington University in St. Louis. His group uses artificial intelligence to solve problems at the intersection of chemistry, biology, and medicine. He is the author of The Genealogical Adam and Eve and the founder of Peaceful Science (peacefulscience.org). Swamidass is a fellow of the AAAS (American Association for the Advancement of Science) in recognition of his significant contributions to deep learning in biology and for extraordinary outreach to communities of faith. He holds a Medical Doctorate as well as a PhD in information and computer sciences.
Dr. Jeffrey Schloss, Distinguished Professor of Biology and T.B. Walker Chair of Natural & Behavioral Sciences at Westmont College
Dr. Jeffrey Schloss is Distinguished Professor of Biology and T.B. Walker Chair of Natural & Behavioral Sciences at Westmont College, where he directs the Center for Faith, Ethics & Life Sciences and also serves as Senior Scholar for the BioLogos Foundation.
After meeting Christ as a college dropout, Jeff got his undergraduate degree in biology from Wheaton College and did his doctoral work in ecology/evolutionary biology at University of Michigan and Washington University. He has taught at the University of Michigan and Wheaton College, and has been a Danforth Fellow, a Crosson Fellow at Notre Dame’s Center for Philosophy of Religion, a Plumer Fellow at St. Anne’s College Oxford, and a Witherspoon Fellow in Theology & Science at Princeton’s Center of Theological Inquiry.
Jeff’s scholarship involves the relationship between human flourishing and altruism, moral cognition, and religious faith, and the implications of evolutionary theory for issues of purpose, human exceptionalism, and good creation. Collaborative volumes include The Believing Primate: Scientific, Philosophical and Theological Perspectives on the Origin of Religion; Evolution and Ethics: Human Morality in Biological and Religious Perspective; Altruism and Altruistic Love: Science, Philosophy, and Religion in Dialogue. He is married to Melody and has three adult sons.
Jason Woodman, Director of Public Engagement for The Gospel Initiative, is available before, during, and after the event to answer questions.