Looking at how scientific theories have challenged Christian beliefs and thinking about how science informs our faith today.
The Christian faith is about encountering God in various ways, and through these encounters accepting as truth certain things such as: the existence of God; that Jesus both was a human, and is God; that God loves us; that it matters how we behave…Often these things cannot be proved, but often, overwhelming experience suggests that they are true. There are other aspects of faith on which Christians would not all agree. As Christians we use our experiences of God, and those of other people we trust, to develop our understanding and the language and models we use to talk about God.
Science is about encountering the world in various ways, and through these encounters accepting certain things as true, for example: the earth is a sphere; the planets orbit the sun; plants use light energy in order to grow…These things cannot always be proved, but often, overwhelming evidence suggests they are true. There are other aspects of science on which scientists would not all agree. Scientists use observations, experimental results, and results gained by other scientists they trust, to develop their understanding and the language and models they use to explain the world.
As a Christian and a scientist, both of these ways of looking for the truth have always been important to me. I cannot put them in separate compartments and describe them as working in completely different spheres. If they are both true – they are both true at the same time.
Through the centuries, the bible has often been used as a basis of how people understand the world. As scientific evidence has built up against an established way of looking at the world, this has therefore challenged the faith of Christians of the time – who have had to revise their understanding of Christianity and particularly of the bible. This is still true today.
If we choose not to ignore the science, or abandon our faith, then we must look at how these two ways of searching for the truth can inform each other.
(Revd. Alison Battye – Assistant Curate)
Read the Notes
Find all our talks from other years on our Lent Talks page.