Skip to comments.The strange tension between theology and science
Posted on 04/25/2014 1:42:41 PM PDT by neverdem
In the late 1920s, astronomer Edwin Hubble established that the light we detect from galaxies is shifted toward the redder colors of the spectrum, indicating that they are moving away from us at enormous speeds. And the farther away galaxies are, the faster they are fleeing. Rewinding that expansion through mathematics dividing distance by speed indicates that something extraordinary happened about 14 billion years ago, when the entire universe was small, dense and exceedingly hot.
Scientists such as Alexander Friedmann and Georges Lemaitre had anticipated the big bang which Lemaitre described as a Cosmic Egg exploding at the moment of creation. Others theorized that such an event would have left a detectable residue of hydrogen plasma grown cold over time. In the 1960s, Arno Penzias and Robert Wilson duly detected it finding microwave background radiation in every direction they pointed their telescope. The whole sky glows faintly at a temperature of about 3 degrees above absolute zero. Part of the static between channels on broadcast television is an echo of the big bang.
These are some of the most regularly confirmed, noncontroversial findings of modern science. Yet a recent poll found that a majority of Americans are not too or not at all confident that the universe began 13.8 billion years ago with a big bang.
Some of this skepticism, surely, reflects the inherent difficulty of imagining unimaginable scales of time and space. And some fault must lie with American scientific education, which routinely transforms the consideration of wonders into a chore and a bore. But the poll also found that confidence in the big bang declines as belief in a Supreme Being increases...
(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...
Well, that’s only our local universe. Things may be entirely different in all the others....
All the Millitant Athiests completely deny that the church from the middle ages to the begining of the modern era contributed a LOT to advancing science.
They only love to point out all the roadblock the church put up to science and ignore all the roads that they built because it suits their agenda.
Thomas Aquinas was the first to describe faith and reason as two sides to one coin.
Reason is the working of the mind and faith is the working of the soul.
Without this dual structure of knowledge, man's ability to think properly gets all screwed up.
So, it is not really a strange tension but one that reflects man's ability to think.
The real problem lies in the fact that scientists want to ignore the mystery of faith and theologians want to ignore reason.
We need both - like two legs.
I guess you don’t count Galileo who was imprisioned by the Inquisition or Giordano Bruno, who was burned at the stake. Nor the fact that both their writings and those of many others were forbidden reading by the Catholic church. Pray tell, what were all these roads that were built?
[ I guess you dont count Galileo who was imprisioned by the Inquisition or Giordano Bruno, who was burned at the stake. Nor the fact that both their writings and those of many others were forbidden reading by the Catholic church. Pray tell, what were all these roads that were built? ]
That was a roadblock for sure, but one road was Gregor Mendel who studied plant genetics.
Here is a List of more:
There are Bad things the Church has done, but they also fostered science as well.
Don’t throw out the scientific baby with the church bathwater.
Not to mention all the schools that Church supported over the centuries that helped educate scientists some persecuted some not to become men of science!
On the contrary, This is how "to believe" is defined by Augustine (De Praedest. Sanct. ii).
I answer that, "To think" can be taken in three ways.
First, in a general way for any kind of actual consideration of the intellect, as Augustine observes (De Trin. xiv, 7): "By understanding I mean now the faculty whereby we understand when thinking."
Secondly, "to think" is more strictly taken for that consideration of the intellect, which is accompanied by some kind of inquiry, and which precedes the intellect's arrival at the stage of perfection that comes with the certitude of sight. On this sense Augustine says (De Trin. xv, 16) that "the Son of God is not called the Thought, but the Word of God. When our thought realizes what we know and takes form therefrom, it becomes our word. Hence the Word of God must be understood without any thinking on the part of God, for there is nothing there that can take form, or be unformed." In this way thought is, properly speaking, the movement of the mind while yet deliberating, and not yet perfected by the clear sight of truth. Since, however, such a movement of the mind may be one of deliberation either about universal notions, which belongs to the intellectual faculty, or about particular matters, which belongs to the sensitive part, hence it is that "to think" is taken secondly for an act of the deliberating intellect, and thirdly for an act of the cogitative power.
Accordingly, if "to think" be understood broadly according to the first sense, then "to think with assent," does not express completely what is meant by "to believe": since, in this way, a man thinks with assent even when he considers what he knows by science [Science is certain knowledge of a demonstrated conclusion through its demonstration.], or understands.
If, on the other hand, "to think" be understood in the second way, then this expresses completely the nature of the act of believing.
For among the acts belonging to the intellect, some have a firm assent without any such kind of thinking, as when a man considers the things that he knows by science, or understands, for this consideration is already formed.
But some acts of the intellect have unformed thought devoid of a firm assent,
whether they incline to neither side, as in one who "doubts";
or incline to one side rather than the other, but on account of some slight motive, as in one who "suspects";
or incline to one side yet with fear of the other, as in one who "opines."
But this act "to believe," cleaves firmly to one side, in which respect belief has something in common with science and understanding; yet its knowledge does not attain the perfection of clear sight, wherein it agrees with doubt, suspicion and opinion. Hence it is proper to the believer to think with assent: so that the act of believing is distinguished from all the other acts of the intellect, which are about the true or the false.
Good article. Thanks for posting.
I suspect that Gregor Mendel was creating his own project, not working on something the church asked him to do. Granted, providing room, board and a place to work is helpful, but how many good results were an actual part of church planning. I will read your link.
OK, I have looked at your list of more than 200 names. I recognized 4: Roger Bacon, the lamented burned Bruno, Mendel (genetics) and Mercalli (earthquakes). A few other names caught my attention, but I would have had to look them up to determine what there expertise had been. I had a major in General Science with a minor in education. Thus my conclusion is that either my education was seriously lacking, or most of these men played only a very, very minor role in science.
“I believe in God. I believe our “universe” began with a the Big Bang 13.7 billion yeas ago, but I will give them .1 billion. 13.8 does not offend me...
I do not see that there is a conflict, if one says God is the Creator and He created the Big Bang.”
I agree with you. I might add, that ours may not be the first Big Bang, nor the last. The Universe may contract and re-explode in cycles.
Thanks for the links. Should this post go to Catastrophism?
If one takes the Catholic Church in the year 2014 as the measure, there is no issue between science and theology(faith), unless it is instigated by defensive scientists. Outside the Catholic Church, there is still an isolated remnant of protestant obstinacy as with the "young earth" creationist delusion.
It is useful btw for all the Catholic bashers to note, that the reformation Lutherans were even more geocentric in their readings of scripture than was the Vatican.
There is actually a very long history of both “Faith and Reason” co-existing.
Here’s where things get interesting.
“Reason”, has become the domain of “science” and those that opposed understanding by “faith” or Religion. They pushed through and have dominated the narrative since the early 20th century.
As science has advanced, as it must, the questions that science alone, using materialism/reductionism, was to answer have created more questions than answers. Some would say that “that is how science works”. Always on the path of discovery, and that’s fine.
However, they have narrated and institutionalized conclusions that remain unresolved even under their own standards of the scientific method. These conclusions are easy for them to infer since they must be contained within the narrow framework of their discipline.
What is most interesting to me, is how they now invoke unprovable theories and present them as “scientific”.
Dark Energy, Dark Matter, String theory and a Multi-verse to name a few. All of these are beyond the scientific method but have become necessary in order for them maintain the a narrative that excludes Faith/Religion.
As a result, they are actually placing “Their Faith” in something that they cannot prove nor can ever prove.
There was a lost century where “theologians wanted to ignore reason”, but that is changing very very quickly.
The Scientific Establishment, and yes it does exist, is desperate to counter these pesky Christians.
Beyond Belief: Science, Reason, Religion & Survival
The above is ten sessions, well over 20 hours of video from our leading “Scientists” describing “their problem” and how to destroy Christianity.
It’s an extraordinary display of arrogance that you will ever see.
In the meantime, I see the results of this indoctrination into the “Scientific Method”, as being the only way to know truth, on display in virtually every aspect of our lives.
It’s crazy stuff.
This kid is not stupid. He is actually very intelligent, but his head has been filled with so much crap that the only thing he knows to be “Certain” is “Uncertainty”.
This is what is being taught and promoted and is influencing our public policies.
No Science, No Logic and No Morality: Atheism.
I welcome feedback.
Did you know that 105 of the first 107 colleges founded in the American Colonies were Christian?
Did you know that the reason why we can read today--the idea of a public education, which started with "hornbooks" (Google it) was because it was an expectation of Protestants that every person should be capable of reading, thinking, and understanding?
So many misconceptions stem from television and the bias from today's college professors.
The fact is, Christianity advanced knowledge. No other religion did the same. It is no coincidence that Europe came out on top, scientifically. It wasn't dumb luck. It was the influence of Christianity encouraging exploration and understanding, which was considered to be an essential part of a thinking mind.
Most of our history books contain more than a little anti-Christian bias....
Where's the conflict?! Oh, there's conflict if we believe in a [little] God.
Looking up, seeing the universe of galaxies, filaments/galactic walls and voids, the large scale structure of the universe...I believe in a Great Big God.
As an edification pastor once explained in class, "The river cannot be higher than its source," when comparing the universe to God. The Creator must be larger than, exist prior to, exist outside of and beyond, the universe.
This essay if from one of GWB's speechwriters. I wouldn't call it reporting. Have you noticed that the right is routinely denounced by the left as anti-science because they doubt global warming, evolution and the big bang?
Would you rule out the possibility that God created the universe with time/light in place ?
Does “Dark Matter/Dark Energy”, need to exist ?
Do you know why it’s called “Dark” ?
God’s gift to man - the ability to think and discover the wonder of Creation.
This answers (and asks) some Big Questions.
Thanks for the link.
No, but thanks for the ping, g.
Are you an Ex-pat or are you living in the UK ?
I agree with your comment 100% but I don’t think the post you replied to is profound in any way.
As the Creator, he could have. Do I think he did? Hell no. It's not logical. Yet...it almost appears that way, doesn't it? Something for us to explore, and that's not a bad thing, is it?
Does dark matter/energy *need* to exist? Apparently, it does. Life has taught me that things exist for a reason. Our problem: we don't understand the reason. Again, life and history teaches us to be patient, we'll figure it out. We used to think we didn't need tonsils. We used to cut out stomachs over and over again to "cure" an ulcer.
Yes, I know why it's called "Dark." It's virtually undetectable using any instrumentation and sensing we currently have available, as it doesn't interact with anything in a significant way, or at all. Were you being condescending in asking me that, or serious? ;) (I already know.)
Yes, I know why it’s called “Dark.” It’s virtually undetectable using any instrumentation and sensing we currently have available, as it doesn’t interact with anything in a significant way, or at all.
That’s not why it is called “Dark”.
It’s called Dark because it is “Unknown”. It is advanced out of necessity to fit their models.
There are plenty of theories and millions of dollars being spent on the detection of this. When or if they do detect “Dark energy/matter”, it will no longer be Dark.
It only exists out of a theoretical necessity.
Without Dark Energy/Matter, everything falls apart.
I really don't understand this. Scientists are driven to describe the physical universe, as accurately and in as much detail as possible. Yet some fundamentalists regard scientists as tools of the devil for being so literal and descriptive. For the life of me, I cannot figure out why describing creation as it actually is, and not as it was figuratively described in a book of moral lessons, is so threatening.
Nevertheless, religion will adapt to embrace the modern understanding of the world, just as it eventually accepted Gallileo's findings.
Wonderful. I only wish some of the literal 7 day creationists would expand their horizons with that understanding. Instead, they worship the earth.
Galileo's scientific peers are no different than the rabid climate scientist of today that want climate change deniers put to death.
Nevertheless, religion will adapt to embrace the modern understanding of the world, just as it eventually accepted Gallileo’s findings
Galileo was a Christian.
He fought against an “Establishment” Church.
Christians should NEVER be subservient to the manmade construct of what science has become.
Can you use the “scientific Method” to prove “Logic” is real ?
If so, how ?
By using logic?
“For the scientist who has lived by his faith in the power of reason, the story ends like a bad dream. He has scaled the mountain of ignorance; he is about to conquer the highest peak; as he pulls himself over the final rock, he is greeted by a band of theologians who have been sitting there for centuries.”
Actually, the big bank solves the problem of the six days of creation very nicely. It all has to do with how (and where) time is measured. This is because the universe is expanding at nearly the speed of light. Thus, while from our vantage point looking back our earth appears to be 14 billion years old. But if you measured time from the source of the big bang (the source of creation), then only six days have passed. It’s all in the math. The link below explains not only the math, but the theology behind it.
My contention, after many years of looking into this issue has come to something very similar.
It’s the starting point of what we know as expansion in the universe.
My belief that the Earth is young, 6 to 10 thousand years, rests not solely on Genesis, but from the fact that what science thinks they know to be true contains so many conflicts and assumptions that it can not be called science.
The math of “evolution” is impossible.
Nevermind the TOE is “unprovable”. It doesn’t even qualify as a theory under their own standards.
Many believe literally in the Bible as the word of God. They perceive these hypotheses as attacks on their religion, hence as personal attacks.
Galileo's heliocentric hypothesis was NOT the reason for his being sentenced to house arrest.
The problem as seen by the Scientists of the age, the vast majority of whom were connected to the Catholic Church one way or another was that to PROVE the motion of the earth, one would have to show some APPARENT motion of the stars, parallax.
No instrument was sufficiently precise to show parallax. Consequently, the motion of the earth was not proved. And so the Church said that while Galileo could certainly propose his conjecture, he could not describe it as certainly true. But he insisted on doing so, despite the lack of proof.
Despite his having been given public and official honors and patronage by the Church, Galileo (a lot of whose stuff I have read, though it was forty years ago) was gratuitously offensive. In my college, where we ALL read Galileo,we all agreed that he was baiting the Church.
He asked for it. He got it. I honestly think that if he were alive today he would have been diagnoses with a personality disorder. They guy was obviously brilliant and obviously obnoxious.
But to parlay his imprisonment into an anti-science stand does not stand up to history. It was because the scientists of the Church were MORE rigorous and logical than Galileo that they would not approve of his work.
Popcorn time! ‘-)
Not necessarily. The correlation actually is to prolonged exposure to unenlightened propagandizing by science-illiterate "ministers", taught by intellectually-inbred "professors" who think they can treat the few sentences in Genesis as if they were a graduate-level science text.
And the fire is kept smoking along by money-hungry YEC scamsters who deliberately (and/or egotistically) misinterpret Genesis and prey on the scientifically ignorant.
"Hidden in Plainn Sight II" postulates an alternative, that being a modification of the General Theory of Relativity. No big "bang," more like a "push," as gravitiy seeks to obtain a (massive) system with a surface area proportional to its mass.
Consider the claim in Isaiah 45:7 made by the One Who also claimed to be the Creator:
"I form [shape] light and I create darkness."
Unsurprisingly, the universe was dark until inflation and expansion dropped the temperature to 3,000 degrees Kelvin. Then protons and electrons were able to bond and form hydrogen -- and photons were freed to propagate as EM radiation.
...and God said, "Let there be light"...
There was no matter, of any kind, until God created Space and Time.
To listen in, click here.
I don't disagree -- but I don't see your point.
There was nothing -- neither matter, nor space, nor energy nor time -- until God created them all -- simultaneously.