Hasn’t science disproved God?

god-scienceI’ve been asked to write brief answers to six thorny questions:

Hasn’t science disproved God?

Is God homophobic?

Why does God appear so violent in the Old Testament?

Are the gospel accounts trustworthy?

Why isn’t God more obvious?

Why has the Church caused so much pain?

I’ve got to keep it under 600 words. I’d love if you could help. What have I missed? What have I got wrong?

………………………

Hasn’t science disproved God?

Thinking God’s Thoughts

When Johannes Kepler discovered the laws of planetary motion in the early 17th century he did not lose his strong Christian faith. Instead he spoke of the wonderful privilege of “thinking God’s thoughts after Him.” That’s been the mind-set of so many giants in the history of science: Copernicus, Galileo, Newton, Faraday and, in our own day, Christians like Francis Collins, leader of the Human Genome Project. They have not imagined “a God of the gaps” who was ever shrinking as their science progressed. They have believed in “the God of the whole” whose thoughts they were thinking after Him!

Faith and Foundations

Einstein said, “The fact that the universe is comprehensible is the greatest miracle.” Science depends entirely upon this “miracle”. We need our minds ‘in here’ to correspond to the world ‘out there’ and for both of those to correspond to dependable laws of nature ‘up above.’ The fact that this triangle lines up so perfectly is astonishing. But Christians should not be surprised. Jesus, our Maker, sustains the universe (Hebrews 1:3) and at the same time has entered our world and assumed our humanity (John 1:14). He is the One who unites the laws ‘up above’, the world ‘out there’ and our minds ‘in here’. Faith, therefore, does not undermine science. Faith in Christ is the strongest possible foundation for scientific enquiry.

Mechanism and Maker

Science is wonderful at discovering mechanisms in nature. But understanding a mechanism does not rule out a Maker! If you explain the inner workings of a new contraption, I don’t say “Wonderful, now we can do without the inventor.” Instead I say “So that’s how they did it. Ingenius!” Same with science and God. We love to find out more of the mechanisms, but this should make us exalt our Maker, not exclude Him!

Pragmatics and Purpose

Professor of Mathematics, John Lennox often asks people to imagine a cake baked by Aunt Mildred. The cake is passed around various scientific departments. They discover 1001 facts about the cake’s nutritional content, it’s chemical and physical properties, they reverse engineer the recipe and replicate its tasty goodness. Wonderful! But can any of the scientists tell you why the cake was baked? No. For that you’d have to ask Aunt Mildred. Science is wonderful at answering the pragmatic questions: what? and how? It is simply not in a position to answer questions of purpose: why?

Evolution and Creation

Christians take different views on the question of evolution but some things we all agree on. Every creationist believes that natural selection happens – after all, from a single pair of cats on the ark we now have tabbies and tigers. At the same time no Christian evolutionist thinks natural selection explains everything about life. So we can all agree that natural selection happens while questioning its ability to explain the whole show.

For the sake of argument though, let’s imagine that random mutations and natural selection account for all the varieties of life on planet earth. This only explains the origin of the species. That’s as far as Darwin can take you. He cannot explain the origin of life itself (he must assume the origin of life). He cannot tell you the origin of the cosmos. And he cannot tell you the origin of consciousness. Those three origins questions are far more pressing, yet natural selection is no help for any of them. Science simply does not have a credible mechanism for explaining these deep issues. And even if it did, the mechanism would not disprove the Maker.

Posted on by Glen in apologetics, evangelism, science

About Glen

I'm a preacher in Eastbourne, married to Emma.

13 Responses to Hasn’t science disproved God?

  1. the Old Adam

    All scientists do is to think God’s thoughts, after Him.

    They can answer (to a limited extent) how…and when, and where. But who and why? They haven’t a clue.

  2. Duane Seaberg

    How about defining which God first? Then build our case with Jesus.

  3. Anselm Hart

    Good stuff. I wouldn’t use the human races example in the “evolution and creation” section, as “race” doesn’t have biological meaning and the variation between humans doesn’t really relate to natural selection. Humans are all one species, so wouldn’t be the best example of natural selection. Also, the (false) belief that some “races” are less evolved than others has had terrible consequences in the past so it’s best not to go down that road.

    Creationists do believe that new species can arise, but better examples would be the species believed to have arisen within the original “cat” or “dog/wolf” created kinds.

    Article on “race” here: http://creation.com/one-blood-chapter-4-one-race

    Natural selection and speciation here: http://creation.com/one-blood-chapter-2-natural-selection-and-speciation

  4. Glen

    Yes indeed OldAdam.

    Good call Duane. This part of the book comes after a lot of that ground-work has been laid. If I had more space I’d begin with “Faith and Foundations” and outline how only Jesus provides a solid basis for knowing either God or the world.

    Thanks so much Anselm, that’s very helpful. I’ll switch to the cat illustration then.

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  10. matt

    Way to not answer science disproving god. Religion is a disease, and we would all be better off if man never invented it. I’m not sure if people are lying to themselves or if someone can actually believe in religion. Religion was created to control the masses. I hope someday in the future religion will be a embarrassing mistake we look back on. Just like how foolish it would sound if someone said the earth is flat.

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  13. JMG

    Is it worth stating that science can only investigate things that can be tested. Organic chemist D. Sherwood Taylor said “science does not say Jesus didn’t turn the water into wine – only that the phenomenon has not been observed at other times.”

    Also – science is forever changing and so a scientist never expects to arrive at certainty

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