Friday, February 25, 2011

Science in Scripture

When we think of science in the Bible we often think of examples like the circuits of wind flow (Eccl. 1:6), the life is in the blood (Lev. 17:11) and the importance of hygiene (Lev. 15:13). Have you considered Isaiah 28:23-29 and 29:11-16 in this regard?

Is. 28:23-29 (NKJV)
23 Give ear and hear my voice, Listen and hear my speech.
24 Does the plowman keep plowing all day to sow? Does he keep turning his soil and breaking the clods?
25 When he has leveled its surface, Does he not sow the black cummin And scatter the cummin, Plant the wheat in rows, The barley in the appointed place, And the spelt [rye?] in its place?
26 For He instructs him in right judgment, His God teaches him.
27 For the black cummin is not threshed with a threshing sledge, Nor is a cartwheel rolled over the cummin; But the black cummin is beaten out with a stick, And the cummin with a rod.
28 Bread flour must be ground; Therefore he does not thresh it forever, Break it with his cartwheel, Or crush it with his horsemen.
29 This also comes from the LORD of hosts, Who is wonderful in counsel and excellent in guidance.

v. 24: Timing is important in farming and this gives a motivation to know astronomy which helps us track the seasons (Ge 1:14). Farming has existed from the beginning (Ge 3:23, 4:2) and experiment improves agricultural methods.
v. 25: The location of where various grains are planted is important. Planting is rows is an orderly arrangement. What should be planted on the border? Trees or potatoes?
v. 26: God made man in his image and gives him wisdom and understanding (Job 38:36). The all-wise God gave us reason and the ability to discern the structure on the world. The cosmos is not random, but ordered. The Lord may have communicated the basics of horticulture to Adam during the “cool of the day” (Ge 3:8). Language and technical skill have been transmitted from father to son, parent to child for thousands of years. Some isolated people groups do not farm at all – the skill has been lost.
v. 27: Through experiment and experience we learn that we must use the right tool for the right job. You don’t kill termites with sledgehammers.
v. 28: Various grains must be treated differently. Distinct methods fit corn versus cotton. Many things in creation remind of us wheels. Design in creation can inspire human inventions. Many things are cone shaped (carrots, pine cones) and a truncated cone makes a great millstone.
v. 29: Science is possible because God gives us a sense that the Maker of the universe is a God of order and purpose. The equations of creation are not random. Consider the simplicity of Snell’s Law that describes how light bends when it hits water or some other medium (n is the index of refraction):
Design in nature exhibits the fact that God is “wonderful in counsel and excellent in guidance.” Consider the photosynthetic sea slug:
Is. 29:11-16 (NKJV)
11 The whole vision has become to you like the words of a book that is sealed, which men deliver to one who is literate, saying, "Read this, please." And he says, "I cannot, for it is sealed."
12 Then the book is delivered to one who is illiterate, saying, "Read this, please." And he says, "I am not literate."
13 Therefore the Lord said: "Inasmuch as these people draw near with their mouths And honor Me with their lips, But have removed their hearts far from Me, And their fear toward Me is taught by the commandment of men,
14 Therefore, behold, I will again do a marvelous work among this people, A marvelous work and a wonder; For the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, And the understanding of their prudent men shall be hidden."
15 Woe to those who seek deep to hide their counsel far from the LORD, And their works are in the dark; They say, "Who sees us?" and, "Who knows us?"
16 Surely you have things turned around! Shall the potter be esteemed as the clay; For shall the thing made say of him who made it, "He did not make me"? Or shall the thing formed say of him who formed it, "He has no understanding"?

v. 11: Many evolutionists may say “I can’t read the Bible – that’s just myth.” But the Bible actually gives science its logical foundation. [1] The basis of science is biblical. God’s Word is revealed truth from the Creator of the Cosmos. If we want to know about the beginning we must go to the Bible. Scripture gives us True Truth, for God cannot lie (Num. 23:19). Jesus said that God’s truth is often sealed from the “wise and prudent” (Mt. 11:25).
v. 13: Evolutionary tradition, “commandments taught by men,” tells students to avoid research from creation organizations like CRS, ICR, AiG, CMI and others. Many are over-awed by scientific experts who pronounce the fact of evolution in the past, even though they were not witnesses to the events they describe.
v. 14: In the end, Darwinian “wisdom” will perish (2 Peter 3). The spurious speculations of the sages of science will ultimately fail.
v. 15: We can’t hide our sin from God (Num. 32:23). Could it be that the motivation for many who accept the molecules-to-man view of origins wish to explain God away to justify their ungodly lifestyle?
v. 16: Evolutionists deny their Creator – the Potter. You may have a Ph.D. in Biochemistry, but the Lord of heaven and earth knows infinitely more than you do. You can’t manipulate God. Yahweh is in control of the universe, not man.
Reflect on these quotes from G. K. Chesterton’s Father Brown (fictional detective) stories:

It's the first effect of not believing in God that you lose your common sense
(The Oracle of the Dog, 1923).
You hard-shelled materialists were all balanced on the very edge of belief - of belief in almost anything (The Miracle of Moon Crescent, 1924).

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1) The Ultimate Proof of Creation by Jason Lisle (Master Books, Green Forest, AR, 2009), pp. 57-66.