Thursday, July 5, 2012

The God of Science and the Science of God

Let us be honest, Religion has been guilty of interfering with fields of study such as science.  When Galileo purposed the earth revolve around the sun instead of the sun around the earth, the Church was quick to contradict such claims based off unrelated scriptural texts.  But if we are truly honest, we must admit that Science has been guilty of interfering with faith and religion as well.  With the theory of evolution and the Big Bang, many scientist of pointed out that these prove God cannot exist.

Both Religion and Science have overstepped their bounds.  As a pastor of an American Baptist Church let me contradict many strongly held stereotypes and say that I am a big fan of science and technology.  Issues such as Evolution and the Big Bang do not disturb my faith.  I feel no overcoming urge to refute scientific claims because I have not the knowledge or understanding to debate with highly trained physicists.

My faith expresses the beauty of a creative God carefully and deliberately fashioning a habitable world full of diversity and life.  If God decided to developed life through slow evolving creatures that is his prerogative.  It is simply beyond my scope to suggest the validity of theories of Big Bangs and Evolving Apes, they may be correct, they may not be. 

Scripture, though intimidating to many, is relatively brief when considering its subject.  The Christian Bible does not have the luxury to detail every nuance of creation and existence.  In fact, John even admits that not everything about the short life of Jesus could be accounted for because the world is not spacious enough to hold the volumes it would produce (John 21:25).  If scripture is too brief to account for the entire life of the Savior, how could we reason that it holds all mysteries of heaven and earth?

I believe that there is much to be revealed about the amazing planet given to us.  What we do with the discoveries is what is important.  If Science is used to better care for humanity and the world I believe every Christian and non-Christian should celebrate.  However, if our advancement in science and technology is used to strip men and women of jobs, produce unfathomable and consequential pollution, if the earth is raped of its resources and beauty, and money becomes the pursuing ambition of our research, then the prophets of God ought to speak again unjust practices.  While science has brought comfort and efficiency, too often it has brought great consequences.  The atomic bomb is a great example of scientific advancement but at too great of a cost, one that too few Christians spoke out against in its debut during World War II.

Science has also been guilty of misusing their expertise and betraying the very field they represent by concluding god could not exist.  Science does not have the ability to affirm or deny the existence of everything in existence.  The scientific process relies on materials that can be measured, weighed, seen, or heard.  Yet humanity overwhelming believes in love, a reality that cannot be succumbed to scientific research.  Though brain patterns can be measured and tested, love and its practices will always be an unproven theory.  I find it amazing that Scripture testifies that "God is love" (1 John 4:8).

I celebrate the fact that we live in a world that can be discovered and revealed through the power of science.  I also celebrate the reality that there is more to life than what mere humanity can capture, hold, and analyze.  Love, forgiveness, loyalty, compassion are all beyond quantifying.  Science has revealed many mysteries and complexities of our existence.  I think it is disingenuous for anyone in the scientific or religious field to assume all is revealed and understood in the ever expanding universe we live in.  There is so much we have come to know, but think of the so much more that is unknown.  I see God in the known and unknown, I see God in power of love and forgiveness, and I see God transforming lives in miraculous ways.  Some say it is psychology, others insanity, but for me and millions of others it is truth that defines truth itself (John 14:6).

So let us as followers of Christ not be intimidated by the findings of science, and let science not be intimidated at the prospect of something greater than their methods exists.  Let us use our skills and wisdom to advance the world in things of love, compassion, health, and forgiveness.  Let us put aside our pride and remember nothing we have made or invented has come without the resources given to us.  Let us not be surprised about the statistical prospect of something greater than us exists, and let us rejoice that the greater thing loves us and desire to be known.

1 comment:

  1. Fantastic post. Thank you for your words. I will be linking to this on my blog.