On Science: Introduction
By Pastor Gregory J. Scalzo
Too often we hear the sentiment that faith and science are opposed to each other. This perceived antagonism permeates our secular society, so much so that many are adamant that the science taught in the public schools and universities be totally divorced from any reference to Biblical creationism. This concern and fear even reaches to banning the intelligent design movement, which is not religious in any sense, but simply puts forth scientific evidences for some type of design in nature without making any endorsement for the source of that design. I believe we underestimate the effect this academic animosity has had on each successive generation. As youngsters grow up with this idea that religion is something—some good-feeling symbolic tradition—you celebrate on the weekend but evolution is scientific factual truth taught by experts, they are impacted deeply inside their hearts and their minds. Maybe just as destructive are the attempts by some of the “religious” to harmonize the Bible with so-called modern science, resulting in such blends as theistic evolution. These compromises always explain away or belittle the Biblical accounts in order to line up with the current theories that are perceived as indisputable science (even though those theories change from year to year).
In these series of short articles, I would like to introduce the believer to important concepts and scientific facts which he or she will find useful in bringing others back from the hopeless pit which much of our educational dollars have helped to dig.
First, let’s discuss what science is. Science, historically, was supposed to be and should be a search for truth—to be able to understand the world around us, how it works, and what laws are at play. Experiments are planned. Data is taken, observations are made, and hypotheses are tested. Conclusions are drawn. The Random House Dictionary of the English Language, copyright 1981, gives the first definition of science as “a branch of knowledge or study dealing with a body of facts or truths systematically arranged and showing the operation of general laws.” Truth, facts, reality should be central. However, the more current definition of science is an attempt at materialistic understanding that must explain everything without God. The presupposition in most of modern science is that there is no God and, should God, intelligence or design be brought into the discussion as possible explanations, then it cannot be science—even if that is where the data and evidence lead.
Notice: Modern university science starts with the premise that there is no God, so truth is no longer the concern. Trying to explain the existence and working of everything from a view that sees only the material universe is the only acceptable framework. But though this is put forth as “modern,” “advanced,” and “enlightened,” it is really very much like the heathenism of old. Paul writes:
18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, 19 because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them. 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse, 21 because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man — and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things.
Professing to be wise, they became fools. Like the idolatry of old, the modern academic community attempts to substitute the corruptible (consider where evolution says we come from: from chemicals to slime to simple organisms to creeping things to four-footed animals to us, and all by random chance) for the incorruptible glory of the eternal Creator God.
Here is an enormous problem for the “scientific” elite: We are here! You are here! You think, you feel, you function. You can grasp concepts such as love, hate, good, and evil. You can perform mathematical calculations or create works of beautiful art. Your brain and body are marvelously complex machines. How? Everything certainly seems designed to work, to function. But human experience tells us that design requires intelligence and planning. Chaos destroys, but thought creates.
I remember back to discussions I had several years ago. I belonged to a local chess club and one of the members, against whom I would often be matched, was a high school physics teacher. He, as many in his field, saw no place for God or design in science. When I questioned him about the universe, our planet, life and our very existence, his answer was always that “there is an appearance of design” but no real design. Then he would proceed to say that this “appearance of design” happened by random processes—there was no thought, no plan, no design, no logos, no God.
But here is the problem: He had to admit at least “the appearance of design!” Now if someone tried to say that stochastic processes (random chance) caused all this “appearance of design”—caused us—in one day or one year or even 10,000 years, no one would believe it. Thus long, deep times are needed. Push it millions, hundreds of millions, billions of years back and then, “Well, maybe randomness could do it if given enough time.” What would otherwise be ridiculous by common sense can seem plausible if repeated over and over again and if the time to allow chaos to work is so immense and the “beginning” moved so far back in time so that nonsense seems possible—to some. You see evolution, both cosmic evolution and the evolution of life, needs and must have huge amounts of time. It is a requirement for the charade to even begin to seem reasonable.
How many times are Christians who believe in the Bible ridiculed: “You believe in Adam and Eve? You believe in a garden in Eden and Noah and the Flood?” That is, “You believe in such impossible myths?” The next time someone tries to belittle you in this way, maybe you should answer, “Let me understand. You believe that all the matter and all the energy of the universe and all its galaxies was less than the size of a dot 14 billion years ago—infinitesimally small? And all of a sudden, for some unknown reason, this “singularity” inflated and then expanded wildly in what is known as the Big Bang and, without any purposeful direction, here we are with our entire DNA and reason and the marvelous engineering clearly seen in all living creatures? Where did the ‘singularity’ come from? Or maybe you are one of those who believe that this dot universe, which comprises all the somethings that ever would follow, came from a ‘quantum fluctuation in nothingness’?”
Quantum fluctuation in nothingness as an explanation for the origin of the universe is one of the current bizarre theories that are popular among the academic and media elite. Notice that if you call it a “quantum fluctuation” it sounds very scientific, especially if you have a condescending sounding narrator with an educated British accent articulate it in a PBS or Discovery Channel documentary for extra effect. Properly scripted, something coming from nothing becomes acceptable. But is it even remotely reasonable to accept as sound science such a teaching that everything in the universe came into existence spontaneously from absolutely nothing (without any outside Creator as the source and designer)? Push the scheme back far enough, tie it into some esoteric theory that is difficult to understand and which changes readily, and give it a designation that sounds scientific, and the absurd will gather millions of dollars in grant money. Professing to be wise, they became fools.
© 2013 Gregory J. Scalzo
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