Frequent ESN contributor andÂ InterVarsity Christian Fellowship / USA Graduate & Faculty MinistriesÂ Staff Mark Hansard explores David Humeâ€™s ideas in Part 5 of hisÂ series on faith and reason. As you may remember,Â Part 1Â took aÂ brief look at a Scriptural basis for using reason and logic,Â Part 2Â discussed St. Augustineâ€™s ideas about faith and reason, Part 3Â engaged with the thought of Aquinas, and Part 4 addressed John Locke. Image: Sculpture of David Hume. [Read more…] about Faith and Reason, Part 5: Hume
Being a Christian has engendered in me a greater interest in intellectual matters I might not otherwise have taken seriously. History is no longer for me the torture it was as a schoolboy. And that is in part because I see the significance and relevance of history in my Christian faith. A deeper knowledge of the history and philosophy of science, beyond the logic of the disciplines themselves, I find fascinating and of enormous help in better understanding the relationships between the communities.Â â€“ Ian Hutchinson, Can a Scientist Believe in Miracles? An MIT Professor Answers Questions on God and ScienceÂ (InterVarsity Press, 2018), 13.
Similar to Friday’s Taking the â€œSelfie Challengeâ€, today’s post arose from a series of recent publicationÂ quotes shared on the Emerging Scholars Network’s Facebook and Twitter accounts. What brought Can a Scientist Believe in Miracles? An MIT Professor Answers Questions on God and Science by Ian Hutchinson to my attention? [Read more…] about Snapshots of “Can a Scientist Believe in Miracles?”
The Easter season is a natural time for Christians to reflect on miracles, as the resurrection of Jesus is the central miracle of our tradition. And as Robert Bruce Mullin reminds us in “Science, Miracles, and the Prayer-Gauge Debate,” miracles are a natural point of contact when science and Christianity meet. Thus scientists and theologians at that interface today continue to take up the question of whether one can reasonably believe that Jesus of Nazareth died and subsequently returned to life in a physical sense. BioLogos ran a whole series on the topic last month, Veritas Forum published this piece last Easter from scientist (and ESN contributor) Josh Swamidass, the Faraday Institute had N. T. (Tom) Wright speak on the topic a few years ago, to list just a few examples. Even Scientific American covered the topic last year, albeit with a different conclusion from Michael Shermer. (Let’s agree to be charitable and assume the fact it was published on April Fool’s Day last year rather than closer to Easter was a coincidence of the print publishing schedule.)
[Read more…] about Science Book Club: When Science & Christianity Meet Ch 9
Homonculi, animalcules, and hydra! O my! Sure, planets and moons and clockworks are interesting, important, and historically significant to the faith and science conversation. But start talking about morphallactic regeneration and now you’ve really got the attention of this biologist. This week, Thomas Broman introduces a significant dose of eighteenth century biology even if the chapter title “Matter, Force, and the Christian Worldview in the Enlightenment” doesn’t really suggest as much. In part that’s because Broman is also concerned with Newton and his contributions to physics. But a bigger reason is that we aren’t eighteenth century biologists and so we don’t appreciate just how significant concepts like ‘force’ were to the subject.
[Read more…] about Science Book Club: When Science & Christianity Meet Ch 4
Passion Week seems like an appropriate time to come back to more theological topics. Within the science and theology conversation, I periodically come across variations on this question: “How do you choose when to accept a miraculous explanation and when to seek a scientific explanation?” There is a sentiment that science is pushing aside certain traditional miracles, notably creation but potentially others like the parting of the Red Sea. The miracle of greatest concern is Jesus’ resurrection; if I were to reject the resurrection on scientific grounds, could I still consider myself a Christian? And if I affirm any miracles, why pick and choose instead of just accepting them all?
[Read more…] about Science Corner: Does Science Rule out Resurrections?