Posted tagged ‘science and faith’

Follow The Evidence Where It Leads

July 31, 2017

Depositphotos Image ID: 97354170 copyright: alphaspirit

Francis Bacon, the father of modern science, used to say there are two books of God: the book of Scripture (the word of God) and the book of nature (the work of God). He believed, as did many people who came before him and after him, that all truth is God’s truth. He believed that there is no contradiction at the end of the day between those two “books”. Any apparent discrepancy or conflict is in the interpretation of one or the other of those two sources of the revelation of God. There is no discrepancy or conflict at the level of the facts themselves; the only discrepancy or conflict is in our understanding of Scripture (theology) or nature (science).

Theology and science are, at best, interpretations of the data. Theology and science are not the facts, but interpretations of the facts. Scientists and theologians have disputes and disagreement among themselves and between the disciplines. We all have preconceived ideas on ultimate and intermediate issues, but following the evidence where it leads is the approach most surely to result in the most accurate understanding.

People who identify in both camps of science and theology promote the misconception that science and theology (or science and faith if you will) are incompatible. That is unfortunate, because there shouldn’t be any tension between the two. While science is the study of the natural world and theology is the study of the super-natural world (so to speak), the two should be in perfect harmony if, indeed, a Causal Agent (who we might call God ) exists who caused the universe to begin.

(more…)

Ten Quick Responses to Difficult Questions on Faith with the Help of John Lennox

July 1, 2016

john-lennox-houses-of-parliament


The ten statements and responses suggested below are inspired by a presentation by John Lennox, the famous mathematician, philosopher and Christian theist. Neither the statements nor the responses are comprehensive in the least, but they offer a quick look into the richly rational world of faith through a theistic (and Christian) lens. At the same time, they expose the shallowness of many atheistic objections to the idea of God.

                1)    Christians are really just atheists regarding Zeus and other gods. True atheists go one god further and reject the Christian god.

Statements like these reveal a willful ignorance. The Christian God (as with Allah of Islam and Yahweh of Judaism, for instance) is an exclusive claim: there are no other gods. That Christians, Muslims and Jews cannot all be correct in their understanding of that exclusive God does not negate the possibility that such a God exists. (more…)

What of Rupert Sheldrake?

August 16, 2015

Brooke Elkstrom Lake Sunset 2


This piece is a bit afield for me. I am embedding a “banned TED Talk” given by Rupert Sheldrake, a Cambridge, Harvard educated, scientist and bane of the scientific community. What of Rupert Sheldrake?

He is not necessarily a Christian, though he reportedly says the Our Father every day. Dr. Sheldrake “evolved” from a biochemist and cell biologist and later to a plant physiologist to researcher in the field of parapsychology,[5] known for his “morphic resonance” concept.[6] He is the darling of the New Age adherents, not Christians. He is also labeled a “heretic” by his scientific fellows.

So why would I include the subject on Christian orientated blog site? (more…)

Are Reason & Faith in God Contradictory Terms?

December 30, 2014

Looking for a Sunset


I began taking notes on a series of hard questions posed to Tim Keller by some heavy hitting interviewers that is posted to the Veritas Forum. I thought I would take my notes and create a series of quick answers to these hard questions, but I got sidetracked by the first question: Aren’t faith and reason contradictory terms? The question took me back to college and things I first began to wrestle with, and answers I first found to be satisfactory, in college.

Implied in that question is an assumption that the only rational conclusion of reason is disbelief in God. Reason is defined by Merriam Webster as “the power of the mind to think and understand in a logical way.” Faith is defined as the “strong belief or trust in someone or something.” Reason (logic) depends on a premise, and premises are not necessarily subject to proof or disproof. (more…)

Connecting to Our Theological Hardwiring

December 22, 2014
Julia at Hershey - Copy (sm)

Jesus instructed His disciples to let the children come to Him, and he instructed His disciples to become like children to enter the Kingdom of God.

“Faith comes naturally and normally for children. Certain assumptions about the world and its creator seem to arise intuitively at an early age. For example, children tend to believe in spiritual beings without any trouble, and they distinguish between fairy tales and God in sophisticated ways. They believe the world was made for a purpose and by something greater than human beings. Essentially we have the beginnings of theology in some way hardwired.” (A statement from an article in Christianity Today, The Great Congruence of Science and Faith.)

Faith and science hardly seem to be a place of congruence in popular opinion and even less congruent with that popular opinion is a statement about theology hardwired in children. Or is it? Charles Darwin once commented that he could not trust his “inward conviction… that the Universe is not the result of chance”. (The Darwin Project, UK) Darwin recognized the “hard wiring” the author of the article asserted, but he rejected it. (See also Random Thoughts on Evolution)

Children come by this inward conviction naturally; adults have a harder time with it. Modern thinkers might say that other things are hardwired into people, such as sexual tendencies and gender identity. The Bible recognizes that we are born into sin, which is why we need to be born again. There is something in the way a child approaches the world, however, that is productive toward faith.

I am reminded of the words of Jesus, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.’” (Luke 18:16) The context in which He spoke those words is as important as the words themselves. People were bringing small children to Jesus for him to pray for them, but the disciples attempted to keep them away from the important things Jesus was doing. Instead continuing with whatever he was doing, Jesus stopped and gladly welcomed the children. Then he said something even more important:

“‘Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.’” (Luke 18:17)

God does not want us to lose that “theological hard wiring”. We have in us a tendency toward sin as well as a tendency toward faith. Paul would say that would say that truth is written our hearts so we are without excuse.

As we get older, we become more self-sufficient and more self-important. We become more dependent on ourselves, and we have a hard time allowing anyone or anything to dictate to us. We blaze our own trails. We chart our own courses. We separate from our parents, and we separate from God. We lose the wonder of childhood. We become jaded, hardened and tend toward the sinful tendencies if we are not careful.

Disillusioned Politician


Is it any wonder that we need to be born again to see the kingdom of heaven? We need a different approach than what we would naturally take as we get older. We need to become like a child to approach God, stripped of the self-reliance that we strive to attain as adults.

Faith opens the eyes of the believer up to the wonder of God in the world. The congruence of faith and science and reason and the reality in which we live is natural and normal, but we live in a fallen world that is tending away from God, tending toward destruction and decay. Faith takes us in a different direction.

At the end of the day, what is more reliable about our ability to reason over that inward conviction? Both reside in the finite human frailty. One will take us to the gate of heaven; the other will take us no further than the grave. One is not more prone to error than the other. Or is it?

Without faith we will not see the kingdom of heaven. If we will not receive what God has provided for us like a child, we cannot grasp it at all. The congruence of faith and truth is found in God who can only be worshiped in spirit and truth. Spirit requires that we let go of our own conceptions that are limited by our finite experience and knowledge and ability to reason and open up to what God would reveal to us.

To approach the world like children, as God instructs us, is to remain open to correction and change of direction as God would guide us. In fact, in the same context in which Jesus said we must be born again, Jesus added:

“‘You should not be surprised at my saying, ‘You must be born again.’ The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit.’” (John 3:7-8)

If we are to be born again, born of God, was must be open to the influence of God, to the direction of God. We must be sensitive to the wind, the breath of God, His Holy Spirit. Like a child, we may not always be happy or understand the direction that we are going, but a child would not think to go in any direction apart from God in whom and on whom we are utterly dependent. We need to plug into the hard-wiring God built into us that is connected to Him and walk away from any sinful tendencies we might have.

Reprinted from NavigatingByFaith


Work in Progress

My thoughts as I journey through this thing called life.

Small Town Girl Taking on the World

"The world is a book and those who do not travel only read a page." - St. Augustine

t2gospel

Core Ideas of the Gospel of Jesus Christ

The Daily Post

The Art and Craft of Blogging

Convergent Christianity

Where Evangelical, Charismatic and Historic church expressions are brought together in unity.

Urban Poetry

She's an Urban Pen spilling ink in inspiration and words.. A Digital Art & Poetry Wordpress By Linda J. Wolff

The Truth Will Make You Mad

Skeptical believer. Christian anthropicist. Post-partisan Hayek-Friedman-Reagan classical liberal.

Larry Hurtado's Blog

Comments on the New Testament and Early Christianity (and related matters)

WIT

Women in Theology

Real as the Streets

Faithfully Authentic

Reflections

We are what we think.

Rationalising The Universe

one post at a time

The Life Project

Finding Clear and Simple Faith

Boosterclub Blog

Supporting positive change

The Invisible Things

Articles in Apologetics

Overflow

Out of the overflow of the heart, the mouth speaks.

The Freedom Fight

Fight for Life. Fight for Liberty. Fight for Freedom.

Defending Hope

We Must Always Be Ready To Give A Reasoned Answer For The Hope That Lies Within (1 Peter 3:15)

Today's New Reason to Believe

Integrating Science and Faith

Testimonies

Christ Inspired

PastorBrianChilton.wordpress.com

This website has moved to BellatorChristi.com. Go there to see the latest posts and podcasts from Brian. Blessings!

SixDay Science

Faith in Science | Science in Faith

%d bloggers like this: