Tue 21 Aug 2007
I’m still slowly working my way through Dawkins’ The God Delusion. I’m about halfway done with chapter four, “Why God Almost Certainly Doesn’t Exist”. Chapter three, in which Dawkins attempts to refute the positive case for God’s existence, was unconvincing, for the reasons that have already been noted as well as others. I’m making copious notes as I read so that I’ll be able to make a series of posts when I finish reading it, but because of this it’s taking a long time to read.
One of the threads on the FORU.MS discussion board was deleted recently, and one of my old posts went along with it. (Not sure why the thread was removed.) A mod was kind enough to forward my post in the thread to me before it was removed, so here’s my reply below to someone who posted some comments on science and faith, which I have edited & expanded a bit for this blog: (original poster’s comments in italics; assume all spelling errors in his/her writing were in their original post)
Christians don’t trust in Science because it clean’s their clock. I mean Noah’s ark? Camon.
There are several different theories regarding Noah’s Ark. Many believe it was a local flood; ie, it covered the entire world that was known to people at that time. Others claim that it was indeed a worldwide flood, which is buttressed to some extent by the other flood stories that appear in other ancient documents. Still others take it metaphorically. Personally I think that may be stretching the account to interpret it that way. But, we can’t really know for sure which is more likely the correct approach.
The bible is full of contradictions, I could name thousands. Do a google search.
Let’s keep in mind what a contradiction is: “a logical incompatibility between two or more propositions. It occurs when the propositions, taken together, yield two conclusions which form the logical inversions of each other.” What are usually cited as contradictions are actually purported errors, but nevertheless, if Google searches are your fancy, do a Google search on answers to the supposed contradictions and you’ll find solid answers for most of them (for example, one of J P Holding’s lists, or this refutation of a Muslim “101″ list). There have been times when certain alleged errors or contradictions have been cleared up by further research or archaeological finds, so for the few questions that are as yet unknown, it doesn’t really bother me that we may not understand every word of the Bible completely. There are of course good reasons to believe the New Testament is trustworthy and reliable.
Science and Christianity to not play nice together. Christians sometimes get angry and kill the bringers of science: “Galeao and his godless telescope for example”
This is unfortunately true. It’s sad when Christians abandon the teachings of Jesus and immorally commit acts that deny His teachings. But this is not proof that Christianity is false. Thousands of Christians are martyred every year by secular governments; that does not prove that atheism is wrong any more than the bad things done by some Christians prove that Christianity is wrong. For more on this topic, see Skeptical Christian’s “Evil Christianity” or my own (brief) post Christians do bad things. That said, as per Philip J. Sampson the story of Galileo has become a ‘modern myth’ and the real story is not quite so condemning once we acknowledge all the relevant details.
Science provides solid proof that Christians are ridiculous therefore Christians cannot allow science to invade their sacred space of Faith.
I’m sorry that you feel that way, but please keep in mind that many of the great scientists throughout history have been “religious”, and a large number today believe that God exists. A recent study of college professors demonstrated that the majority believe God exists (source). For example, Dr Alister McGrath, who holds two PhDs from Oxford, one in molecular biophysics and the other in theology, is a proponent of what he refers to as scientific theology.
Is there a fundamental conflict between science and religion? I don’t think so. Is there a fundamental conflict between science of the naturalism or scientism sort and religion? Naturally!