In preparing this issue’s cover story on the complex and controversial subject of genetic engineering, associate editor David Neff and I had two editorial objectives in mind: One, to update readers on what is actually happening in this rumor-plagued “industry” (No, man has not been cloned in his own image—yet!); and two, to help readers begin to get a handle on the ethical questions that recombinant DNA research is raising.

That’s a tough assignment, to be sure—and certainly one calling for more than a single-issue treatment. But we feel the article “Genetic Engineering: Promise and Threat” is a strong beginning. Science writer Dennis Chamberland provides the thoughtful and well-reasoned “state of the art” overview, with evangelical ethicists Lewis Smedes, Alan Verhey, and David Fletcher raising questions of faith that demand both our attention and response.

A postscript: While David was putting the final touches on this section, Terry Muck and Kenneth Kantzer, executive director and dean of the Christianity Today Institute respectively, were busy overseeing a forum on bioethics here in Chicago sponsored by the institute. The focus of that intense two-day discussion was the Christian world view and its relationship to the use (and abuse) of modern technologies.

The questions raised during that forum will be featured in a special institute supplement in the March 21 issue of CHRISTIANITY TODAY.

HAROLD SMITH, Managing Editor

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