Are Christians “anti-science”?
Science is “irrefutably Christian.” In other words, science is built on the Bible. God created the three building blocks that are the basic ingredients required for our modern concept of “Science”:
2. Creative Thought
Those concepts are only intellectually justified and coherently explained as part of a biblical worldview. They were described in the Bible thousands of years before Francis Bacon integrated his observations and reason into a system built upon these notions and coined it the “Scientific Method.”
It is truly a tragedy in the world today that science and God (or the Bible, Christianity, etc.) are perceived to be in conflict. Nothing could be farther from the truth. The actual founders of science understood this, and the VAST majority of them were Christians. Somewhere along the way, either Christians failed to stand up for what is so obviously true, or they themselves have forgotten this. Either one is inexcusable.
Consider each of these concepts in more detail:
First, Uniformity. In simple terms, “Uniformity” can be defined as the “confidence that tomorrow will look like today.” In other words, that gravity won’t suddenly stop working or reverse its direction, the speed of light won’t randomly fluctuate, and the behavior of elements in the periodic table won’t change. Christianity provides the only intellectual and philosophical JUSTIFICATION for Uniformity.
Christians can have certainty in this because the Creator of the universe, God, never changes. He has revealed in Scripture that the stability of His creation is rooted in the permanence of His character. But in an atheistic worldview, there is no intellectual or philosophical JUSTIFICATION for these things, only blind and unsupported faith, the kind of faith that the Bible condemns and rejects.
Second, Creative Thought. Many people incorrectly personify science. They give it a lot more credit than it is due. They think it creates truth. It never does. It can’t. It can only be used as a tool to identify which potential truths are, in fact, false. But those important “potential truths” need first to be created. And they can only be created by the intelligence of a mind. Most people like to focus on the testing portion of science as the real innovation and value of the method. But the generation and modification of the hypothesis are the real gems. They are the only steps that can generate truth.
A simple example may help illustrate this. Suppose you throw a rock in the air and it comes crashing back down to earth (initial observation). Next, you guess that this happened because a universal force of gravity exists that attracts all objects in the universe together based on their mass. You test your hypothesis by throwing a feather into the air and observing that it, too, returns to the ground. You correctly conclude that you have yet to disprove your hypothesis. But it was YOUR mind (created in the image of God) that was required to formulate the hypothesis in the first place. Science can test a hypothesis, but it can never generate one.
Third, Logic. Science is one of the most quoted but least understood constructs in our day. Most people have yet to learn how it REALLY works. It is often deified as the ultimate weapon that secures the final victory of a completely materialistic worldview. How many times have you heard something like, “I follow the science!” or “I only believe in facts!” or “I demand data and irrefutable proof for my conclusions!”? The problem is that science itself requires an immaterial reality – the laws of logic.
Science is rooted in and constrained to the material world. It is wholly centered on observations: it starts with observations, proceeds through observations, and is ultimately vindicated by accurately predicted observations. But those observations are only a beginning, and without the laws of logic to characterize and define and govern those observations, they are meaningless.
A straightforward example is the “law of non-contradiction.” It means that something can’t be “true” and “not true” simultaneously. It is so simple that even a small child is intuitively assured of its veracity, yet so profound that no analytical conclusion could be deduced without it. As we observe the world around us and organize our conclusions into hypotheses about what should happen if our analysis is correct, we instinctively assume that our conclusions cannot be both “true” and “not true” simultaneously. But can that law of non-contradiction itself be observed? Can it be measured? Can it ultimately be tested and repeated? The great irony of a materialistic worldview that claims to have culminated in science is that the necessary philosophical underpinnings required FOR science cannot be proven BY science.
The next time someone describes science as “the source of all truth” or “science and the Bible are in conflict,” ask them to explain themselves and be ready to engage in a productive conversation. If they are open-minded, perhaps you may be able to help them understand the true nature (and limitations) of science. Remember, science only works if it has the ingredients provided by a biblical worldview.