I’ve emailed Dr. Beates to see if there’s a way to get the entire chapter he wrote, “God’s Sovereignty and Genetic Anomalies,” posted here. Some of the other contributors to the book, Genetic Ethics, are also interesting, but his is the best articulation of God’s sovereignty thus far. I’ll let you know what I think after I read the entire book.
Here’s another excerpt from his chapter that I found both sobering and encouraging:
One of the most frequently-quoted but least-believed verses of Scripture is Romans 8:28. ‘And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.’ If we really believe that verse, if we really believed it to be true, we could rest in peace even in the midst of painful realities of life, such as children born with genetic anomalies. (Beates, p. 57-58)
“If we really believe that verse. . .” That is about as clear as it comes, and part of why I appreciate his writing. For Dr. Beates, the scripture is the anchor for assessing reality, not how he feels about his circumstance as a father of a daughter with significant disabilities. He trusts that God is able to do exactly what God has promised.
Dr. Beates then articulates the result of knowing who God is as revealed in God’s word: peace in the midst of painful realities of life.
I hope there will be a way to provide access to the entire chapter for you. It is not an easy read; I found myself pausing several times to make sure I understood things. But it isn’t overly academic, either. There were a couple of places I paused because I’m not sure I agreed. On the central question about God’s sovereignty, however, I absolutely agree with him!
And he freely and frequently quotes the Bible. Maybe I read my own desires into it, but I got the impression he quoted so freely because he loves the Bible so much. I like that as well.