How Scientists Have Armed Christians with Evidence
By Brace E. Barber
July 28, 2016
Christianity’s Truth Mission
Christianity was sorely damaged by its own search for the truth starting in the Renaissance. It is as if Christian leaders commissioned the digging of a well and then drown in the flood that their work caused. This water that was the focus of their theology ended up nourishing everything that they detested. The Renaissance of the 15th through 17th centuries brought about a renewed focus on reason instead of faith. Scholars began to explore evidence for their beliefs and they put a premium on conclusions that were empirically provable. Over time, science played an ever increasing role in shaping the core beliefs of society. The Renaissance created the environment where it was a virtue to deny anything that was scientifically unprovable as false or unknowable. Though the church itself was a proponent of the search for truth it later became a victim of its secular focus.
Truth is the core value of Christianity. The Bible tells us to, “Buy the truth and do not sell it” (Proverbs 23:23 NIV) And Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” (John 8:31-32 NIV) and “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6) Digging the well of truth should have resulted in an overflowing of living water to bring salvation to the world, but that’s not what happened.
Christianity Damaged by Search for Truth
Part of the damage to Christianity came at the hands of scientists discovering previously hidden truths. What happens when some of the truths of the Bible are contradicted by hard facts? If you go to Church and your pastor tells you that the world is flat, but Columbus says he’s been to the edge and it wasn’t there, what do you do? What happens when science tells you with clear calculations that the earth revolves around the sun instead of the other way around. Those who are disposed to following the conclusions of evidence rather than the fancies of faith begin to gain momentum. A clear and seemingly irreconcilable split between secular science and religious faith took place.
God of the Gaps
The Christian inclination to assign God to everything that they could not explain and which science could not prove was properly derided as weak minded and intellectually lazy. This practice, known as the “God of the Gaps,” became the go-to criticism applied to any assertion that God exists or that God was the cause. When bacteria were discovered to be the cause of illnesses, and when it was revealed that the rotation of the earth caused the sun to rise, the position of Christians began to narrow increasingly to the spiritual-subjective corner. Christianity became a theological preference that was as valid as any other religion. It became an opinion with no scientific authority or insights for modern society.
The God Cause Hysteria
Over time and with additional discoveries and theories destructive to the common understanding of Biblical truth, the split widened. Today, it would be unimaginable to hear a respected secular scientist proclaim God as the cause of anything. In January 2016, the PLOS One Journal printed a paper concerning the design of the hum
an hand. It caused outrage in the scientific community because the authors concluded that, “The connective architecture between muscles and articulations is the proper design by the Creator.” There were calls for the firing of the editors and retraction of the paper. PLOS One retracted the article and described the use of the word “Creator” as humiliating. God is not even considered a possible choice as a conclusion for any scientific evidence. Scientists pre-suppose that God is impossible and unprovable and therefore not worthy of resting on him as a cause. It would be laziness to conclude God since that would mean that no further study was necessary.
How Can They Both be True?
The non-scientific evidence for God as the creator and Jesus as the Savior remained compelling in spite of the scientific evidence pointing away from God. God continued to be the best answer as to why there was something rather than nothing, and Jesus’ fulfillment of numerous, specific ancient prophecies did not diminish because of the progress of science. There were still very strong rational reasons to be a Christian. The situation created a tension in both camps. Secular Naturalists struggle with the implications of not having a God. How can creation and life have any purpose or meaning if it all happened by accident? Christians distanced themselves from science as it contradicted what the Bible says. They struggle with maintaining faith in something that seems to be false in light of the evidence.
The Apple Falls
In modern western society, government and academia are squarely in the camp of the secularists and popular culture is shedding the constraints of Christianity at an ever increasing pace. Naturalism and relativism have taken the high-ground and is devouring the territory around it. There really doesn’t seem to be an escape for the supposed subjectivity of Christianity. And yet, from the flood of the reformation that nourished the tree of naturalism has today grown the fruit of truth which strengthens Christians and of which Secularists cannot eat. This tree in fact produces the fruit of the knowledge of good and evil, and also the fruit of the evidence of a Creator.
Rational Christianity, Irrational Secularism
Where at first the discoveries of science seemed to lend support to conclusions in conflict with Christianity’s truth claims, the discoveries of the past 116 years have consistently produced evidence unmistakably pointing to Christianity.
- Creation: During the Renaissance we discovered the spherical earth and the Sun as the true center of the Solar System. In the 1900’s we learned that time, space and matter all came into existence at the same time and that the Universe is expanding at an incredibly fine-tuned rate. The Universe had a beginning, which begs a beginner. Atheists are suggesting aliens as the creator, Christians are suggesting God as the creator.
- Design: During the Renaissance we discovered that bacteria caused illnesses, destroying the supernatural causes. In the 1900’s we learned that the simplest bacteria are intricately designed, containing a coded program that forms every part of how it works. Though the probability that the bacteria was designed is much greater than 99.99999999999999999999%, scientists suggest the unprovable theory that it actually happened by chance. Christians suggest God as the designer.
- Life: During the Renaissance we developed an understanding of gravity and the laws of physics. In the 1900’s we learned that if the force of gravity was changed just 1 part in 1060 not only could life not exist, but the Universe could not form solid matter. We learned that gravity was one of a hundred finely-tuned forces. Though the probability that these forces were purposely set is much greater than 99.99999999999999999999%, scientists suggest the unprovable theory that it actually happened by chance. Christians suggest God as the value setter.
Christianity’s Truth Claims Supported
Though extraordinarily painful, the search for truth has come full circle to supporting the very theology it once tore down. Christianity maintained its philosophical truths and added evidence for its historical accuracy through the centuries. Now it also has overwhelming scientific evidence supporting its claims of representing Christian truth. Unfortunately, the secular rejection of God is so thorough that in spite of the evidence, they are forced to seek non-god supernatural causes to explain the evidence they have produced.
There is no evidential support for secular conclusions in the fields of cosmology, mathematics and biology, the main areas of inspection from a scientific perspective. Secularists go to their pantry, once overflowing with hope and find it bare. They have abandoned the purpose that the movement once set out to accomplish in exchange for a secular agenda. They no longer feast on the conclusions that their evidence provided, but rather sit with empty plates imagining tea time. Sadly, the allies of naturalism, governments, popular culture and academia continue in their blind support unwilling to admit God.
We are at the beginning of a Christian Renaissance. We can create Christian Revival in our time, but not without a broad concerted effort to teach Christian youth the truths discovered in science. The time to arm Christian youth with the knowledge of the truth is now. There is no excuse for losing 75% of kids raised in Christian homes to the fantasies of secular society.
Stay Tuned: I am completing two books to address the problem of Christian youth leaving the faith. They are due out in 2016. Sign up for my email updates to be the first to learn when they are released. Christian Apologetics Solution
- The first book lays out the practical how-to steps for keeping Christian kids Christian for Churches and parents.
- The second book covers 14 apologetic subjects. It will come with tools to make it as easy as possible for anyone to teach and learn.
Brace E. Barber is a Christian Apologetics Speaker teaching Churches how to immediately stop the loss of Christian kids from the Faith. See more at Christian Apologetics Speakers