Religion vs. Science: The Thinking of Evidence vs. Faith

For really where they contradict is in the thinking of evidence and faith and how it applies to daily worldviews.  That you can live in a world where faith and religion don’t contradict, but you have to separate the domain of thinking for both of them.  That when you have your faith and go into church on Sundays, you must take off your hat of science and reason.  And vice and versa, when you go into the lab and into the office or courtroom, you must put back on your critical thinking hat and use logic, facts, and evidence, and disregard personal beliefs.

I would say its about more than being right or wrong. It’s about the idea of living in a religious world where faith reigns supreme and religious over facts and evidence.  That something is true based on evidence not religious faith.

The most essential conflict between science and religion is not in their conclusions — such as evolution, the heliocentric solar system, or the origin of disease — but in their ways of arriving at their conclusions. The fundamental disagreement is in how, rather than in what.

Religion relies on authority — from a person, book, or tradition — and its Truth is supposed to be universal and eternal. But in science, the authority is in the evidence and reasoning, which are always open to challenge; so science’s truth is relative and tentative.

A scientific investigation starts with a question, and tries to reach a conclusion by finding evidence and applying reason. A theological investigation, though, starts with a conclusion, and tries to wiggle around any impediments of evidence and logic in order to justify that conclusion.

To superstitious people, things not understood might be assigned to the realm of supernatural whims, which to a scientist represents a very pessimistic outlook. But as things that were once not understood become understood, this realm gets smaller and smaller. For example, most of us no longer attribute bad weather and disease to curses, mental disease to possession by devils, or earthquakes, storms, and eclipses to angry gods.

An interesting item along this line is that Isaac Newton had a small deficiency between his calculations of the motions of planets and the actual observations, so he invoked the hand of God. But a century later the great mathematician Laplace made better calculations with Newton’s own equations and showed that there was no such deficiency.

Strangely, although religious people nowadays don’t usually blame the god for illnesses and other catastrophes, they tend to credit the god for any relief from these!

It’s true that many intelligent people embrace both science and religion. They seem to compartmentalize their thinking; it’s as if they use different parts of the mind for science and religion, with hardly any interconnection between those parts. They adopt the comfortable myth that there isn’t, or shouldn’t be, a conflict between science and religion. -(Edgar Pearlstein, Professor of Physics at the University of Nebraska) 

For this is what is implied when people say that science and religion don’t contradict, cause what they really mean is that you have to separate the two worldviews in order for them to coexist.

“Science and religion are fundamentally incompatible because of their unequivocally opposed epistemologies.” –Victor Stenger

In the presentation of ideas, science starts with evidence; but religion starts with (unproven statements of) faith.  If you were to ask any Christian/Muslim did God create the heavens and earth?  Almost all would say Yes; But follow that question up with, Can you prove it? Can you provide empirical evidence for this?  And has this evidence been peer reviewed with similar conclusion by others with a high level of scientific expertise?

For this is where the difference is…In how things are evaluated and concluded.  For in a scientific world.  Things are concluded after a careful process of testing, and evaluation.  Yet, in a religious mindset, things are concluded on faith…tell me which method of conclusion would you prefer to have?

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About M. Rodriguez

When I first received Christ salvation, I made it a priority to read the whole bible and I did. But it was the Bible that made me question my faith. For I found it flawed and lacking. Due to this I launched a personal inquiry/investigation into my faith, and ultimately realized that the Christian God of the Bible was indeed man-made. Now I Blog about those findings and life after Christ.
This entry was posted in apologetics, belief, christian history, evolution vs. creation, fallacious, fallacious reasoning, Free-Thought, freethinker, history, inductive reasoning, Intelligent Design, logic, probability of God, reasonable evidence, reasoning, religion, religion vs. science, scientist, skeptic, skepticism and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

25 Responses to Religion vs. Science: The Thinking of Evidence vs. Faith

  1. Arkenaten says:

    I was reading something by Neil Tyson and basically what he was saying is, religion and god belief both boil down to the God of the Gaps, and those gaps are getting smaller and smaller.
    Nice post. Enjoyed the read.

  2. unkleE says:

    you can live in a world where faith and religion don’t contradict, but you have to separate the domain of thinking for both of them

    This may be true for you Marcus, but it is certainly not true for me and many other christians. I think you should have written “I” rather than “you”.

    Science and religion are fundamentally incompatible because of their unequivocally opposed epistemologies.

    This nonsense is so often said by sceptics that I wonder whether it somehow comforts them or makes them feel more sure of their unbelief. It is a principle of honest discussion that one should base one’s criticism on the best expressions of a viewpoint, not its worst. So sure there are christians who believe on faith (generally in a pastor, teacher or author) without looking at the evidence themselves, but many things show that many other christians care greatly about evidence.

    If Stenger really cared about evidence, he would show it by basing his view on all the evidence of christian behaviour and belief, not just on the caricature he presents.

    Here are some examples.

    1. Christians believe there is good historical evidence for Jesus:

    1.1 The New Testament shows this interest:

    “Many have undertaken to draw up an account of the things that have been fulfilled among us, just as they were handed down to us by those who from the first were eyewitnesses and servants of the word. With this in mind, since I myself have carefully investigated everything from the beginning, I too decided to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, so that you may know the certainty of the things you have been taught.” Luke 1:1-4

    “That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched—this we proclaim concerning the Word of life. The life appeared; we have seen it and testify to it, and we proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and has appeared to us. We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard” 1 John 1:1-3

    Even if you don’t believe it, you should in honesty recognise that these passages show an interest in historical and personal evidence.

    1.2 New Testament scholars show this interest.

    NT scholars spend a lot of time determining what is the best historical evidence about Jesus, and even when they apply very strict standards of evidence, they still conclude we can know a lot about Jesus.

    Christians show a lot of interest in scientific evidence and philosophical argument.

    Read writings by Alvin Plantinga , John Polkinghorne, Simon Conway Morris, Francis Collins, Stephen Barr, Ken Miller and many other christians who are scientists and philosophers writing about science (some of them world-renowned), and you’ll see a great concern for evidence. How could a person be a scientist and a christian if Stenger was right? And some of these writers are very popular with christians, showing again a concern for evidence.

    The problem is, you and those you quote have set up a false dichotomy. Faith is not the opposite of reason – it as something different to reason, and can exist in association with reason, or not. That is must be contrary is a figment of the imagination of people who want to denigrate without integrity.

    I feel very disappointed in this post Marcus. By all means express your own views, but please don’t ascribe them to those of us who think differently. Best wishes.

    • M. Rodriguez says:

      hello unklee,

      do understand I have admitted that this is not the majority of Christianity, but a significant portion. check out these statistics:
      46% of the american population believe in the Creation story and deny evolution, that means nearly half the population deny a scientific theory that is the pillar and foundation of all biology. There is something wrong with that.

      65% of Biological Scientist express no belief in God
      79% of Physicist expressed no belief in God
      Among the scientific community 44% are atheist or agnostic and if narrow that don’t to the scientific elite, than that number doubles.

      This is what the christian group (Barna) came to conclude about its survey of young CHRISTIAN and what they said about religion and church.

      29% said that Churches are out of step with the scientific world we live in.
      25% said that the Church is Anti-Science
      18% said that the Church is anti-intellectual

      Study after Study has shown that the more scientifically minded, and evidence based a person is, the more likely they are to reject religion.

      Even though this blog does express my personal opinion, it is not only my opinion expressed.

      now lets take it one step further, you say that historical evidence show that the existence of Jesus was real, and I would agree, but evidence does not show nor prove that Jesus was God.

  3. unkleE says:

    Thanks for that response Marcus, but I notice that you don’t show anything that supports the quote from Stenger that faith and science are incompatible, only that some people choose an interpretation of the Bible over science on some issues – a very different statement.

    But even the evidence you provide is one-sided.

    “nearly half the population deny a scientific theory that is the pillar and foundation of all biology”

    Let’s accept that as a survey finding. But then let’s place alongside it these survey findings:

    1. John Evans at the University of California surveyed 4,510 people on their attitudes to science, and found that christians generally have equal or more scientific knowledge than non-believers, and have taken equal or more science courses. He also found that conservative christians will be inclined to question scientific conclusions when they conflict with religious beliefs, but they didn’t think the two conflicted very often.

    2. Surveys in US and UK show that it is generally the less educated who are dropping out of christianity and the highly educated that are converting.

    3. While it is true that about half Americans deny evolution, about 90% of US christians belong to denominations that accept evolution.

    So it is clear the the truth is rather complex, and not as simple as your statistic suggests.

    “65% of Biological Scientist express no belief in God
    79% of Physicist expressed no belief in God
    Among the scientific community 44% are atheist or agnostic and if narrow that don’t to the scientific elite, than that number doubles.”

    Again, let us accept this as a valid finding. But then let’s also accept this survey by Ecklund, Park, and Sorrell found that only 15% of about 1600 scientists thought there was an inherent conflict between science and religion as Stenger has suggested, while 70% recognised that there was sometimes conflict between science and some religious groups. Almost half were “religious” and two thirds of them regarded themselves as “spiritual”.

    So again, the exact numbers can vary according (perhaps) to the exact questions asked, but there’s nothing like support for Stenger’s extreme view.

    “Study after Study has shown that the more scientifically minded, and evidence based a person is, the more likely they are to reject religion.”

    I haven’t seen this – can you give me any references? The studies I quoted above found that converts to christianity are significantly more educated than converts to atheism.

    “you say that historical evidence show that the existence of Jesus was real, and I would agree, but evidence does not show nor prove that Jesus was God”

    I’m glad we can agree on something! 🙂 The historical evidence doesn’t just show that Jesus existed, but that a number of facts about his life are historical. Furthermore, while historians tend not to pass judgment on the question of whether we should believe Jesus was divine, a strong case can be made on the basis of the evidence that historians generally do accept. For example, see Jesus – son of God? and How on earth did Jesus become God?. So of course there’s not proof (even science rarely supplies that!), but good evidence that we can base our views on.

    Finally, and here’s the killer – I looked up all the links in your post and they were pretty much all blogs, all opinions. I didn’t find one reference to a scientific paper or study. So unless I missed one, your post wasn’t based on evidence but on hearsay. Your comment had one reference in it. In contrast, I quoted about half a dozen properly conducted and peer-reviewed studies.

    Doesn’t this show that atheists are not necessarily as evidence-based as you claim, and christians may sometimes be far more evidence-based? Surely a fairer response than your post would be to say that everyone bases some things on evidence and some beyond the evidence (using faith, intuition, guesswork, assessment of probabilities or whatever), we just vary how much of each, and some christians are less evidence-based than some atheists.

    • M. Rodriguez says:

      Once Upon a time, there was an Italian scientist we believe that the earth rotated around the sun. This was a very unique thought, for the rest of world, especially the religious believed that the sun revolved around the earth. So the church and this scientist had two very different views of how the world operates. One could almost say they had opposed epistemology standpoints. So when the two groups got together discuss which viewpoint is correct, did they both take same epistemology viewpoint of evaluating the evidence & facts? Did they peer-review each-other scientific position, to double check for any-type of falsification?

      In fact, what ended up happening, in this trial of a discussion, instead of considering evidence and facts to determine what was true. The church had already pre-concluded that they knew they after. That they took it on FAITH, that their viewpoint was correct, because the bible said so. And condemned the man who presented evidence.

      And this is viewpoint for many Christians (but not all), that they conclude that they all ready know the answer on faith, cause the bible said so, and then search for the evidence to support that presupposition.
      Imagine if galileo would have said, take my viewpoint on faith. Imagine if after a major scientific experiment, that after a scientitest did their study and research, the scientist would implore faith to at the end of their scientific articles. What would they scientific community look like?

      In fact early on in my deconversion, I remember reading this same type advice to the doubting christian on biblical contradictions. In the article it concluded without reason nor investigation, that bible is inerrant and perfect, then went on the find the evidence to support this claim by saying that all those who have a problem with biblical inerrancy, the fault is in their own misunderstanding.

      And this has traditionally been the clanging bell of the church, to assume everything of God, and then look for the evidence to support their claim/conclusion.

      “For here we are not afraid to follow truth wherever it may lead, nor to tolerate any error so long as reason is left free to combat it.” – Thomas Jefferson

      -(I actually didn’t include the links to the last comment I made, They can be found in the Gallup survey of 2012 on religion and science, the other is actually findings by a christian author David Kinnaman in his book You lost me, the 2009, the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press polled members of the American Association for the Advancement of Science on belief in a higher power. The study found that 51 percent of members polled expressed such a faith, compared to 95 percent of the American public. Additionally, the National Academy of Science charted belief in God as low as 5.5 percent among biologists and 7.5 percent among physicist and astronomers in a 1998 study.

      http://news.discovery.com/tech/are-scientists-atheists.htm
      http://www.gallup.com/poll/21814/evolution-creationism-intelligent-design.aspx
      http://religion.ssrc.org/reforum/Ecklund.pdf

      and gallup is very reliable, they have predicated every presidential election with accuracy since 1950.

  4. unkleE says:

    Hi Marcus, thanks for your reply. But unfortunately, your description of the Galileo episode is quite unhistorical, and the points you wanted to make are in fact historically wrong!

    First some clarification. I am not a Catholic, I do not endorse everything (or even very much) that the Catholic Church did during the Middle Ages, and I would be critical of lots. Nor do I think that the church behaved well during the Galileo episode. But again I say that many of the points you made are in fact historical myths.

    “This was a very unique thought, for the rest of world, especially the religious believed that the sun revolved around the earth.”
    This isn’t true. Many of the scientists were also clerics. Some of the church opposed heliocentrism, some accepted it and supported Galileo. Some of the main opponents were academics in universities. So the situation wasn’t at all clearcut as you suggest.

    “So the church and this scientist had two very different views of how the world operates. One could almost say they had opposed epistemology standpoints.”
    Also not true. The main arguments on both sides were scientific. The church (Cardinal Bellarmine) said the Bible could easily be re-interpreted if heliocentrism could be proven scientifically – but at that stage it couldn’t! The two theories were equally successful in explaining the available data, and Galileo’s main argument (tides) was in fact wrong.

    “Did they peer-review each-other scientific position, to double check for any-type of falsification?”
    It seems they more or less did. Like I said, the argument was about the science. And the scientists couldn’t agree. So the church stuck to its existing view. When the scientists finally came up with the proof, the church changed its view.

    “And this is viewpoint for many Christians (but not all), that they conclude that they all ready know the answer on faith, cause the bible said so, and then search for the evidence to support that presupposition.
    Imagine if galileo would have said, take my viewpoint on faith. Imagine if after a major scientific experiment, that after a scientitest did their study and research, the scientist would implore faith to at the end of their scientific articles. What would they scientific community look like?”

    So you can see this is just irrelevant. It wasn’t what happened with Galileo.

    But don’t believe my word for this. Read the experts. Here are a few references:

    Galileo Goes to Jail and Other Myths about Science and Religion by Ronald Numbers, one of the most respected historians of science today (and an agnostic!).
    God’s Philosophers by James Hannam, a historian of science who was shortlisted for a major science prize for this book. Yes, he is a Catholic, but you might also like to read this book review by an atheist.
    The Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy summarises it this way: “The conflict between the Catholic Church and empirical scientists over heliocentrism is often treated as if the scientists, interested only in the truth of the matter, were ruthlessly persecuted by the Church, which was blinded to the facts by its narrow-minded dogmatism. But that is almost certainly an exaggeration, if not an outright mischaracterization, of the early debate.” It goes on to outline some of the facts.

    ““For here we are not afraid to follow truth wherever it may lead, nor to tolerate any error so long as reason is left free to combat it.” – Thomas Jefferson”
    So the challenge is there for you Marcus.

    1. You posted on the conflict between science and religion, evidence vs faith, and made a number of statements. You gave no evidence and I showed evidence that much of what you said was mistaken.
    2. You then provided statements (though little evidence – though I accept the statements) showing christians are opposed to science, and I provided more evidence that they are not necessarily.
    3. You used Galileo as an example of science vs faith, but most of what you said was historically wrong, as you can verify. (I’m guessing you obtained these views from internet atheists who repeat them as true when they are in fact myths.)

    So in all three cases, the evidence doesn’t support what you have said. So the challenge is – will you take Jefferson’s advice and change your view on this matter, and come to a more reasonable view?

    I’m sorry to be so forthright, but it is surprising how often people who say that are rational and evidence based actually put forward myths and misunderstandings. I’ll be interested to see what view you now come to. Best wishes.

    • Arkenaten says:

      I clicked on the Theos link. Smile…a Christian Think Tank. that sponsors a survey about religion.
      You wouldn’t consider any sort of bias might creep in, Unklee?
      Smile..bit like the Templeton Foundation I suspect.

    • Arkenaten says:

      In the end, unklee the bottom line is simple.
      Anything that science cannot answer – at this stage -christians/believers often/usually equate with god.
      In your case, where you believe in evolution , but also believe that at some point a god had a hand in it – you are guilty of the same fallacy.
      It is simply a god of the gaps.
      If you had an ounce of genuine integrity you would acknowledge this fact.

      Furthermore, you also believe in a Personal god, Yeshua, and your belief in this individual rests entirely on faith. There is not a shred of evidence to back a single Christian supernatural claim attributed to this individual. Not one.
      So while you can be ”so forthright” your position is ambiguous and you almost always argue from a disingenuous standpoint: Your god is claimed to have been a human. You have to demonstrate how this human was also a god and was able to create the universe.
      And then your problems are really going to start.

      Until you are able to demonstrate this claimed attribute of your god, you and every other god believer’s point of view in this regard is treated with the respect that it deserves.

      However, any time you are ready to offer up evidence of your god to restore a measure of credibility…..

      The floor is yours.

    • Arkenaten says:

      Oh, and that UK survey was from 2009! lol.
      And what a shoddy piece of disingenuous journalism too.
      Really, unklee?
      Shakes head and walks off…….

  5. royceehall says:

    Thank you for the link and for your comments in this blog. Concerning the way that religion and science are validated, it is true that they use different methods. We cannot expect matters of metaphysics to be answered in the same manner matter of physical sciences are. However, we can still look at the world around us and ask if our worldview makes more sense of it than the next worldview. It is completely valid for us to ask how our worldview affects the other studies of our lives as well. Also, if you conclude that Christian theism makes more sense of the universe than does atheistic naturalism, then it is completely valid to ask what effect that will have on other studies, such as science. Take evolution for example. I think it is valid for Christians to critique that hypothesis. What we cannot do, however, is deny that creatures have the incredible ability to change rapidly. That is helpful data. Data is not up for deliberation, it is a fact. What is up for deliberation is the interpretation of that data. The worldview that we approach that data with, whether it be Christian, Buddhist, Naturalist, etc. will necessarily affect the conclusions we draw and the theories we create in order to connect the dots the data gives us.

    • M. Rodriguez says:

      hi royce thanks for the feedback, I have used read and used your blog several times,

      u are correct in that matters of metaphysics cannot be exclusively answer by physical or natural science. In that not all answers are scientific, and that not all scientific answers are the best answers.

      I guess my intention of this post is not to say that christian are incapable of following evidence, but that idea of taking things on faith (as defined in the book of hebrews) is to disregard evidence.

      And you are correct in that even though evidence and facts can be presented to both sides, either side can interpret differently.

      • royceehall says:

        I am flattered that you have used my blog, and appreciate that you are willing to reason with me rather than simply write me off as happens so often with debates on the internet.

        As far as faith verses evidence, I do have faith in the authority of the Bible and try to understand the world through its lens. So, I do have faith in the words of Scripture, and when I come across propositions that disagree with it, I have to ask if my interpretation of Scripture is accurate or if the data the proposition is based on can be reinterpreted. I simply want to argue that it is valid for Christians to reinterpret the data of science based on their worldview. Even the atheist assumes a worldview when approaching the study of science. The physicist who believes in the Big Bang must assume that the chronology that a straightforward reading of Genesis provides is inaccurate, and that we should not try to make theories that explain the data in light of Genesis. This is not a neutral position. I understand that most scientists will not agree with the conclusions that creationists make, but I think that creationists can make equal claims to be scientific just starting from a different worldview that deals with the data found in science and the data found in scripture in order to make theories that fit with both data sets. I do recognize also that we need to make a distinction between the propositions in the Bible and our interpretation of these propositions. Theologies are simply theories about the data of Scripture, and should be open to expansion and change as well as warranted.

  6. unkleE says:

    Marcus, I have just re-read what I wrote here, and realise I may have given a wrong impression at one point, when I wrote: “The main arguments on both sides were scientific.” This was literally true, because Galileo did not dispute the church’s right to do theology, but he wanted the church to take a less literal view of the Bible’s statements on cosmology. To do this, he had to show that the Copernican Theory which he supported had a better scientific basis than the 2 competing theories, the old Ptolemaic system and the system proposed by Tycho Brahe, both of which had supporters among the scientists of the day. But he couldn’t do it, even though he was right. But my statement was misleading in that of course there were theological issues at stake, and in the end Galileo was convicted of heresy.

    Nevertheless it remains true that the whole affair was much more complex than your summary, and it wasn’t a simple matter of church and faith vs science, for the reasons I gave – that many of the scientists were clerics (so there weren’t clear “sides”), and the scientific consensus of the day was against Galileo (so Galileo’s views were at that time contrary to both science and religion).

    Thanks.

    • M. Rodriguez says:

      hello unklee, i guess on this topic we many never see eye to eye.

      1. you said You then provided statements (though little evidence – though I accept the statements) showing christians are opposed to science, and I provided more evidence that they are not necessarily.

      I would say the gallup poll of 2012, showing that half the american population outright deny evolution, in favor of creationism. If this is not a clear of example of religion vs. science, or evidence vs. faith in bible, then I don’t know what is?

      2. you said You posted on the conflict between science and religion, evidence vs faith, and made a number of statements. You gave no evidence and I showed evidence that much of what you said was mistaken.,

      there are multiple talking points on this topic, do understand I am not saying you can’t be believe in god and believe in science. What I am saying mostly in the post series at the core of the two points, that you can’t be scientific and be religious at the same time. That the same reasoning tools we use for every area of our life, we throw it to the way side when it comes to religion. That when we implore FAITH as it is defined in the bible Hebrews 11:1, we must believe irregardless of evidence. That in order to use faith, you are not using evidence. Even the bible admits of this.

      3. ur right I guess my very brief explanation of the galileo trial was not the most accurate, It was a paraphrase summary, but if we are to think that the trial was a fair trial of evidence and reason, than why was galileo found guilty of heresy. I’ll tell you why, cause galileo used evidence and science, and the church used the bible and faith.

      Do understand, I am not using this as a knock on catholics, I would say since that trial, the catholic church has wised up and learned not to make scientific claims, that really belong to scientist. I only wish the american protestant church would learn from their example (ie: evolution)

      4. Now if you have read my previous two post on this topic, I have admitted over and over again, that this is not the majority circumstances for christians, believers, and scientisit. But it is a significant percentage. By Christian David Kinnaman’s number this issue directly affects 1 out of every 3 young adults. Again, not the majority, but a very significant amount. I myself, have been taught, and seen others, to reject certain scientific theories and proves and evidence in favor over faith. And this is something that continues to happen among millions of other religious people around the world.

  7. unkleE says:

    Hi Marcus, yes I appreciate what you say here, and I appreciate how you allow me to make critical comment. I’m sorry that I sometimes get a little strong about these things.

    My problem comes when you, and others, seem to make general statements when really the matter is more complex. As you say, some christians think certain things, while others don’t, but you make it seem like the viewpoint you describe is true in principle.

    I’ve seen atheists get upset if they think christians are suggesting they can’t be moral, or aren’t being honest, etc, and I can understand this, because stereotypes can become entrenched. I feel the stereotype about faith being mutually exclusive with reason is also unfair, and doing damage, so I wanted to combat it.

    So when you say: “you can’t be scientific and be religious at the same time” I think you make that seem so certain and but I feel it is so wrong, so I feel upset. Can we be scientific and make love to our spouse at the same time? Making love isn’t a scientific activity in itself, but a scientific person can love their spouse. So I cannot see why the same can’t be true for faith. So I think you are entrenching a false stereotype.

    But I think I have said enough for a while. Sorry if I have been too forceful. Best wishes.

    • M. Rodriguez says:

      I would also suspect, that our expierences would have something to do with it as well.

      When I think of Faith, I think of Faith as it is defined in Hebrews 11:1,

      11 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the EVIDENCE of things not seen.

      So my definition of faith, is very strict, based off of what the bible says.

      so for me, if we using evidence to validate our beliefs, then we are not using faith. Because faith, is the non-evidence of something not seen. Personally, there is nothing wrong in taking some things on a matter of faith. As I mentioned in a post before, In What do I believe https://bittersweetend.wordpress.com/2012/10/12/what-do-i-believe/

      I do belive and faith in ” I believe that a man can be a decent & kind person. I believe that if I put my mind to it, I can accomplish or achieve anything. I believe that if I love my wife, she will love me back. I believe that if I am a good father to my children, they will return that favor in my old age. These are just some of the things I believe. ” some of the things I put faith.

      But faith should not be resistant to common sense.

      Secondly, I would is that our experiences as in regard to the church and other christian brethren our different. I have had many Christians be anti-science. I have seen many of my christian friends and colleagues making re-marks about science, which they know very little about. I have seen and experienced the anti-science side of Christianity. In fact, that book by David Kinnaman, You Lost Me. http://youlostmebook.com/, when I first read it as a christian I did not like it. I thought it was a little too liberal for me. And the issue of the church being anti-science, was little overstated, because I took the idea, that science doesn’t know everything, so why should this be an issue. Someone can still be a biologist and be christian, (just not an evolutionary biologist) little did I know that all scientist that biologist, are evolutionary biologist.

  8. gold price says:

    Actually they compliment each other rather well. Naming the basics: The big bang theory sits quite well with most creationist religions. In the Quran, iron raining down from the sky, (Iron is created by stars), Sounds about right. In the bible, Sodom and Gomorra being destroyed by fire and brimstone, if you look in an atlas where the cities supposedly were you’ll see that the geography of the area matches that of a meteor strike although vaguely I’ll admit, last I head more evidence in favour of this is being brought to light. To add to this, if god does not sit well with the natural laws of the universe then (following the multiverse theory) god doesn’t sit in our universe at all but in the void between verses thus not held back by our laws. If people like Darwin, Galileo and Newton believed that god and science were incompatible then we may not be as advanced as we are today.

    • Mike says:

      Or without religion we would be much more advanced. Perhaps without religion we might well have spread all over the solar system.

      A Imam ruled that mathematics was of the devil and the Muslim technological superiority fell apart. It’s been the same cesspool ever since. The Catholic church has had a long history of banning books and quashing scientific beliefs. Just because a person was of some faith and they made an intellectual discovery doesn’t mean their faith enabled the discover. You have shown the proof for this. You are taking this notion “ON FAITH”.

      And just because you can interpret small, in fact tiny sections of ancient script and fit modern scientific knowledge into it in some hodge podge random way doesn’t mean that is what the text intended. You reading them in English after being translated and out of context. But on the other hand the number of supposed science “facts” in sacred text, including the Bible(s) which fall apart under scrutiny, including Genesis is many.

      BTW, where EXACTLY does it say in the Koran that starts make Iron? And, FYI, Stars do not make iron. Super nova’s make iron. And perhaps they are talking about arrows tipped with steel? Or meteorites? Do you have proof of your point of view?

      And even if you are correct, which you are not, there is ZERO evidence of any sacred text being “inspired” or “created” by God. None. Zip. Zilch. They are simply books created by humans. In fact the Bible took hundreds of years to be created, then the early church voted on what books would and would not be included. Is that how God creates a sacred book, by majority vote of humans?

      I don’t think so. So people take this knowledge of it being created by God on faith. Belief with evidence. Science is evidence for belief. The two are apposed and mutually exclusive.

      People who are both Christian (or pick your religion) and “scientific” often compartmentalize the two belief systems. One system requires evidence to work. The other just the opposite. Those who have tried to used scientific principles to support inane religious beliefs, such as young earth creationism, have been shown to be liars at worst and self deluded at best. They attack many different forms of science, biology, physics, climate science, geology all because those very solid sciences don’t and can’t fit in with their deluded world view. The Dover court case is an excellent example where fundamentalist Christians are caught perjuring themselves in order to push their religion onto others while doing their best to discredit science.

      • unkleE says:

        Hi Mike,

        Do you know that contemporary historians and scientists believe the evidence contradicts most of what you say here? If you are interested in knowing the evidence, I would be happy to share it with you.

  9. unkleE says:

    Marcus, I think we are somehow talking different languages. In this comment you quote (my bolding):

    “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the EVIDENCE of things not seen.”

    Then you say (my bolding again):

    So my definition of faith, is very strict, based off of what the bible says. …. faith, is the non-evidence of something not seen.

    So how can your statement be based on the Bible quote when it is the opposite? And it ignores passages like I quoted earlier from Luke 1:1-4 & 1 John 1:1-3.

    I’m sorry, what you say seems to me to be illogical and the opposite of the Biblical evidence, not based on it. It seems you have an idea and you say it even while quote verses which say the opposite. I don’t want to keep harping on the same things, so I think it is best I stop commenting. Best wishes.

  10. Arkenaten says:

    @Unklee
    ”Hi Mike,

    ‘Do you know that contemporary historians and scientists believe the evidence contradicts most of what you say here? If you are interested in knowing the evidence, I would be happy to share it with you.”

    Okay,I’m game. Let’s see what you’ve got….No BS, no nonsense, no interpretation.
    Straight talk.

    You don’t even have to address it to me, I know you aren’t bold enough to engage me any longer.
    Do a post or a heads up here on Marcus’s blog.

    The floor is yours

  11. gold price says:

    There is an emtional need for everyone it seems, including Lumo, to show respect for the concept of religion. Fine. All I ask is that we define our terms.”Religion” to most people means faith in something told to them by what they believe is a higher authority, with no need for empirical proof and if contradictory empircal data comes up, faith is seen as the higher truth and the perpretators of any such empirically based challenge to religious dogma end up persecuted.”Science” means to look at nature for evidence to support our beliefs, discarding beliefs that go against observation, and developing new theories that take into account the observational record. Science does not persecute people who follow religion, it just doen’t take them seriously. Science does not demand orthodoxy, it just wants to be free to inquire and study freely.And why would you say science should be more like religion? Has a scientist ever burnt a priest at the stake? Rather, religion should bemore like science. If there are mysteries to the universe we can uncover, it will be science, not religion that will accomplish the task.I like it better whe Lumo is strongly disagreeing with Bee, who on these and other matters seems to have a soft spongy part in her brain.

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