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Tuesday, August 01, 2006


You Need to Read What These Christians Say About Science

Scientists who are Christian? Not Christian Scientists. These guys aren't prescribing prayer instead of penicillin. They're not even Intelligent Design advocates. These people practice real science, make real discoveries, and receive respect from other scientists. In fact, they make up 40% of scientists!

And they aren't afraid of talking about their faith.

Consider this interview I did with John Medina, just published on TheHighCalling.org. That's him on the left and he really is that excited about life. (I wish you could hear the man talk--he fires off words and ideas like his head is a gatlin gun. And let me tell you, his words have more power than any bullet.)

TheHighCalling.org isn't the only site interested in faith and science. The Foundational Questions Institute is offering big money to scientists who want to study the relationship between physics and theology. The New York Times and the big publishers are getting in on the action, too.

In a recent New York Times article, Faith, Reason, God, and Other Imponderables, Cornelia Dean writes about the onslaught of recent books about faith and science. Here's her introduction:

Nowadays, when legislation supporting promising scientific research falls to religious opposition, the forces of creationism press school districts to teach doctrine on a par with evolution and even the Big Bang is denounced as out-of-compliance with Bible-based calculations for the age of the earth, scientists have to be brave to talk about religion.

Not to denounce it, but to embrace it.

That is what Francis S. Collins, Owen Gingerich and Joan Roughgarden have done in new books, taking up one side of the stormy argument over whether faith in God can coexist with faith in the scientific method.

With no apology and hardly any arm-waving, they describe their beliefs, how they came to them and how they reconcile them with their work in science.

In “The Language of God,” Dr. Collins, the geneticist who led the American government'’s effort to decipher the human genome, describes his own journey from atheism to committed Christianity, a faith he embraced as a young physician.
If you don't want to read the column, check out this video interview with the Cornelia Dean (about five minutes long).

I go to a Southern Baptist Church, so I'm used to hearing the dichotomy of science and religion. (Consider what the thoughts of Mainstream Baptist Dr. Bruce Prescott several months ago.)

I'll leave you with John Medina's thoughts on this dichotomy:
A great God has made this universe that we see. Why do we fight over something so beautiful? Science and Christianity are sometimes opposed because people are opposed, not because the ideas are opposed. That's something we should not forget.
(To my friends who disagree with my take on science, I love you. I don't post this to pick a fight or try to force my views down your throat--though you are certainly welcome to comment if you'd like.)

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Joan Roughgarden's new book, Evolution and Christian Faith, is mentioned in the NY Times piece. It is a superb book by a Stanford biologist. It is well worth the read.
Anonymous, thanks for the comment! I'll definitely have to look into Roughgarden's book. Publisher's Weekly liked it.

The book description is encouraging too: "I'm an evolutionary biologist and a Christian," states Stanford professor Joan Roughgarden at the outset of her groundbreaking new book...

The thing that appeals to me most though is the length. It's only 168 pages! I love a concise argument.

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