Posted by Worldview Warriors On Tuesday, November 25, 2014 13 comments

by Bill Seng

“O Timothy, keep that which is committed to thy trust, avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called.” - 1 Timothy 6:20

Science is not what it was meant to be at its founding. In the early years of science, although exclusively practiced by aristocrats with nothing better to do, it was performed out of a genuine curiosity to understand the world. Aside from conclusions that derived from certain biases, it seemed like most early scientists were engaged in a genuine pursuit of truth. Today, I think that it is safe to say that science has become a political battering ram championed and funded by politicians. Anyone who opposes the popular political view of a certain scientific proposal is ultimately labeled as Anti-Science.

Believe it or not, I have deviated significantly from what I was going to write in this post. I have a tendency to rebuke those who believe in old earth creationism, theistic evolution, and global warming, but I am going to take a step back and attempt to leave my bias at the door even if for a moment. We have to be very careful what we declare as science because science, regardless of what pop culture says, is not merely the scientific method. Science is knowledge. Knowledge is not a hunch about something; it is an absolute understanding of a given topic. For instance, I know that 2+2=4. That is an indisputable truth. That is science and no matter how many ways I take the quantity of 2 and pair it up with another 2 the result will always be 4. Anti-Science, then, is a denial of the truth. However, some things are not so black and white.

When going into the realm of the creation vs. evolution debate, global climate change, the Ebola epidemic, etc. one must be willing to admit that there is much that is not understood about each respective topic. In the creation vs. evolution debate, there truly is no way to know the age of the earth through natural observations. It is only through preconceived biases that such conclusions can be made. Regarding global climate change, it is impossible at this point in history to determine whether the “shifting seasons” and variances in temperatures is a result of cyclical patterns or man-made factors. With the Ebola epidemic, we know that the disease can be spread by certain means of transmission but there have been cases that may have defied the odds. Such occurrences have warranted a certain level of precaution when dealing with the disease. If a given topic is not fully understood, one should not assume that the conclusions presented by one faction or another are dogma. Sure, I have my biases regarding each one of these topics and would argue passionately about them. It would be unfair to say that those who disagree with me are not intelligent. For all I know, which is not much in the grand scheme of things, I could be wrong.

And yet, as Christians there are certain truths that we can call science in the truest sense. The passage above is from 1 Timothy and in the context of the book, the false science it is referring to has nothing to do with laboratories, Bunsen burners, or test tubes. It is referring to true knowledge that can be obtained through a genuine relationship with Jesus Christ. Paul and Timothy had been dealing with charlatans that were promoting false teachings about the Gospel message. Ultimately Paul told Timothy to avoid these false teachings. Science for them was revealed in the truth of Jesus Christ, who was risen from the dead to the glory of God.

Are you anti-science? Are we anti-science?  If we are grounded in reality, we will be humble enough to admit that our knowledge is so limited that we should not put down opposing points of view. I would further caution everyone on both sides of these debates to become suspicious when politicians get involved. In humility I think that the only statement that we can make in regards to science is this: “Yea, let God be true, but every man a liar” (Romans 3:4).


Anonymous said...

Does God have the power to make 2+2=1?

William Seng said...

First off, I must understand what your intention of asking this question is. If it is serious, I do have serious answers for you. Simple, but serious. If it is just to stir the pot...whatever.

If you are talking about the value of two added to the value of two, it will always equal four in the real world. Now God can eradicate or multiply any real value if he so chooses.

If you are talking about on paper using meaningless symbols, of course God can make 2+2=1, that is if it does not stand as a lie and the symbols truly are meaningless. Heck, you just wrote 2+2=1, so why could God not do that (again, afforded his limitations from his holy nature).

In terms of actual value God could not make 2+2=1 because that is not a philosophical concept. It is an observed reality.

What you are really asking is, "Can God really do all things?" There are certain things that God cannot do and he cannot act in a manner inconsistent with his nature. I hope that if this is a serious question that I have answered it for you. If your question is serious, might I ask what you are truly asking with your question?

Charlie said...

To be honest, I am reminded of the question "Can God create a rock so big that he cannot lift it?"

Such questions show a lack of understanding of who God is, including that he is not bound to physical properties. Could God have made 2+2=1? Yes, he could have. But what does 2 and 1 mean? If God made 2+2=1, then 1 would be what we call 4 today. God does not lie, he does not stutter, he does not change. He is consistent. And that makes him dependable.

Charlie said...

So, how do you know how far back to take your dating methods WITHOUT first assuming deep time first?

If you want to talk open-minded, you are a great counter-example of what that looks like.

William Seng said...

Thank you for your response ashley, although I do find it strange that you decided to latch on to the creation evolution aspect of my blog. I tried to minimize my menton of this debate to draw more attention to the idea that one side in the scientific debate has monopolized how science should be understood, per se.

Indeed, I am a young earth creationist, although I have not always been one. Naturally, as the product of the public school system, I was previously an old-earther. In college I was exposed to yec and scoffed at it for about a year. Yes, bitterly scoffed at it. It was actually after seeing endless contradictions and uncertainties inside of my science classes that I realized that yec had better answers.

But that's enough about me, my blog was about knowledge/science. How old do you believe the earth to be and how do you know that more evidence will not apear to prove it to be older (it is never proven younger, btw)? Why does it matter how long you or I have been engaged in this debate, as you previously made mention of your involvement (btw I have been engaged in it for quite some time)?

You made a claim that one of my statements was rubbish. Why? You can throw your interpretation at me all you want but I assure you I have already studied the main topics of this debate adequately.

You told charlie that you hope I am more open to what you say. Understand, him and I are in the minority of thought which means we probably had to be open (or stubborn) to get there. What would qualify me as being open to your perspective aside from me conceding to what you believe? How do you define open minded?

Putting Aside yec was there anything in my post that we can agree on? That might help us to bridge a gap in helping us to understand one another. Thanks again!

William Seng said...

you know, I don't care what the majority opinion is. when science has been corrupted and politicized, it is very easy for a bad idea to dominate the majority opinion. for instance, not to get too controversial, if you have been following U.S. news we had a huge riot in Ferguson, Missouri. Everyone thinks that a white officer shot an unarmed black teen for racial reasons alone. Funny thing is, the facts suggest otherwise. And yet it takes more guts in our country to confess the truth than to fall in line with the masses that find it easier and more socially acceptable to believe in a convenient lie. If you read my previous responses, that is all you need to know about me. I am a man of science and I reject the popular scientific theories regarding our origins and the age of the earth and I do so both on scientific and faith based grounds. I truly don't know how to help you to understand why I have chosen to do so because I have been down the "facts" road with many other people in the past to no avail. I guess all I can ask is that you do some honest research and ask yourself if it is possible after looking at the facts, not even likely...just possible, that someone who is reasonable can arrive at the same scientific conclusions that I have. That is all I have to say about, did you like anything about my post? I'm not just a young earth creationist you know.

Anonymous said...

"you know, I don't care what the majority opinion is. when science has been corrupted and politicized, it is very easy for a bad idea to dominate the majority opinion."

The thing is, science transcends culture. It is the same in Japan, China, Russia, the Middle East, Europe, the US and everywhere else. Do you think scientists in Japan really care what Al Gore thinks?
If evolution and climate change were just some political thing influenced by culture, I would expect scientists in different countries to come to different conclusions. I don't see that. Of course, this leads many people to believe in crazy New World Order shadow government conspiracies. But in reality, science is unified across the world because it is based on evidence and not culture.

William Seng said...

Ashley, I appreciate your statements concerning my post, but why can't you concede that there is a scientific basis for yec? You do understand science, if I am understanding correctly. Do you merely seek approval in the eyes of those you consiDer intelligent. I would encourage you to do more research concerning the age of the earth debate, predating scientific studies. It is very interesting and it helps to make sense of the scientific debate of the subject.

Anonymous, you make many false assumptions about me. I don't believe in conspiracy, but I do believe in ideology. Richard Dawkins makes no bones about his quest to eradicate religion fRon the world and is antagonistic toward christianity...he is not alone on this quest and many of these people are quite open about their intentions.

Science does not transcend culture. All countries did not invent the light bulb on their own efforts. They borrowed that technology from us. Science travels and so does ideology. Technology has made it possible for ideas to spread quickly and certain people inside of academia have convinced others of certain ideas through an effective balance of persuasion and intimidation. Hence, the public classroom cannot pursue an honest investigation of certain ideas. They instead preFer to make fun of those who disagree with them.

Ashley, one more point. You mentioned that it is almost impossible to find people in the UK who believe the world is 6000 years old. Do you also find it increasingly more difficult to find people who believe in the biblical God if they believe in God at all? I think I caught a comental in one of your posts that suggests you are a christian. Does the uk's situation trouble you at all? I appreciate the dialogue.

Anonymous said...

Bill, I made no assumptions about you (though I'll make one at the end of this post). I was referring to the many conspiracy theorists I see in the comments on AiG's facebook page.

Richard Dawkins and Lawrence Krauss have very different ideologies than Francis Collins and Ken Miller, yet they all accept pretty much the same scientific findings. That's what I mean when I say science transcends ideology. Though scientists are less religious than the general population, there are still a lot of people from many different faiths in the scientific community.

On the other hand, there are no scientists outside of the Abrahamic religions who think there was massive world-wide flooding within the last 6000 years. And nothing in the presuppositions of atheist or agnostic scientists would prevent them from accepting massive flooding if there were good evidence for it. They, by definition, have no holy book that tells them specific things to believe. If there were really something to "Creation science", I would expect at least a few secular scientists to at least accept massive flooding, if not cover-the-top-of-every-mountain flooding.

"Science must be based on evidence. Not on religious apologetics. "
It seems like Bill and Charlie think that because the primary use of "Creation science" is as apologetics for Christianity, the primary purpose of evolution and deep time must be apologetics for atheism. They probably think that they are being open about it, while evilutionists are trying to hide their true motivations.

William Seng said...

Mr. Anonymous, your point about the fact that there probably are no secular scientists that except a 6,000 year old earth is well taken. But that is exactly my point. That is because it is an ideological conclusion, not strictly a scientific one. Yes, there is a scientific basis for such a belief, but evidence for such an idea is not proof for the same idea.

Secular scientists do actually accept the idea of mass flooding...they just don't know it! According to secular science in the earth's early stages it was totally covered in water. They believe that the discovery of whale fossils and other sea creatures at high elevations above sea level can only be explained by such an event. What they do not concede is that the flooding of the earth was a catastrophic event and they will argue tooth and nail against the idea that such evidence could be proof of the genesis flood. Also, it has been proven through other catastrophic events that the strata found within the earth can and are created rapidly. it has never, to my knowledge, been displayed that such strata have been laid down over long periods of time (not to say they can't). The young earth model actually uses observable evidence/proof for their explanation of this phenomenon while secular scientists rely on extrapolation of slowly occurring events that have not been proven to lay down strata such as those found in the geologic column (and how could they if it supposedly takes millions of years?).

You are making many assumptions about Charlie and I, mr. anonymous. both sides are biased and they must be. secular science cannot exist without billions of years because it depends on the probability that life emerges from non-life (which is a statistical impossibility anyway...which defies the laws of nature and physics).

Ashley, I hope you read this post. I hope this is the sort of evidence you are looking for and I hope you look more into it. You seem like an open mind and it is my prayer that you don't just except the rhetoric of people like anonymous (who will without a doubt demean and ridicule what I have said...I don't know what qualifies as evidence according to his/her standard). If you are truly just looking at facts, follow the facts and do the best you can to put ideology aside as you search for the truth. Still enjoying this dialogue. I am sorry you have been through a crisis and I hope that this ministry, even if it has nothing to do with yec, can help you to once again rest in God's peace.

Anonymous said...

(I wasn't the first anon, but I'm the rest of them in this comment thread)
"Mr. Anonymous, your point about the fact that there probably are no secular scientists that except a 6,000 year old earth is well taken."
I made no such point. I said flooding. There is no reason for a secular scientist to reject that, say, the Grand Canyon was formed in a year, if the evidence points that way.

"But that is exactly my point. That is because it is an ideological conclusion, not strictly a scientific one."
As far as I know, 100% of secular scientists believe that Einstein's theory of gravity is better than Newton's theory of gravity. Is that because of ideology?

You're saying that because all of ideological group A accepts theory 1, 1 must be an ideological theory. But people from groups B, C, D, H and M also accept theory 1. But theory 2 is only supported by a few members of C and M. Given that info, I would say that theory 2 is much more likely to be the product of ideological motivation than theory 1.

"According to secular science in the earth's early stages it was totally covered in water. They believe that the discovery of whale fossils and other sea creatures at high elevations above sea level can only be explained by such an event."

I did some just a bit of Googling, and found an article referencing a model that says the surface of the earth may have been 97% to 98% water... 2.5 billion years ago. Whales are believed to have evolved in the past 50 million years. You do the math. Ashley has explained the secular belief.

"You are making many assumptions about Charlie and I, mr. anonymous. both sides are biased and they must be. secular science cannot exist without billions of years because it depends on the probability that life emerges from non-life (which is a statistical impossibility anyway...which defies the laws of nature and physics)."
Where do you and Charlie get this idea that scientists only think the earth is old because they need enough time for evolution to have occurred?

William Seng said...

I am citing secular sources when I stated about whale fossils I apologize I don't have the link available but you are able to Google just as easily as I am. So don't blame me for being inconsistent regardING your theory. Apparently y'all have a heretic in your ranks of secular scientists. But find them and dispose of them asap! (Btw, I'm just picking, I'm not being mean)

William Seng said...

Just did a Google search and actually it looks like the heretic is gone...or at least buried under the 1000s of search results. The narrative now from the secular realm is that it is evidence that mountains rose from the ocean...I could run wit this but we've been at this for a good while now. Because a solid theory on how mountains were formed has not been proposed, and this particular theory doesn't cut it with me I find the bible's explanation of how the flood formed the mountains we have today to be very credible especially since this particular study unwittingly affirms it.