Science and Christianity not mutually exclusive

Bernie Hendricks

Bernie Hendricks

Brady Phelps recently certified that, “Today, many students arrive at college with a disdain for science ? here at SDSU too.” Validations were evidently not thought necessary in this claim – perhaps because Phelps views the issue as a self-evident truth.

His mistaken perceptions may be a simple matter of SDSU students expecting more out of science, in the way of supportable assumptions, than Phelps requires of own critiques. And, the fact that the April 1 edition of The Collegian was chosen to make his charge may hint at a Freudian admission surfacing in the process.

The criticisms in his letter were plainly leveled against students who do not necessarily restrict themselves to an atheist-materialist world-view for science. Those students have some well-credentialed company, however. Phelps’ warning against compatibly between God and science happen to substantiate Max Planck, also, of harboring a similar ‘disdain for science.’

Max Planck (1858-1947), Nobel Prize Laureate for Quantum Theory, understood that “Science brings man nearer to God. In fact, science and religion are fighting in a joint battle in an incessant never-relaxing crusade against skepticism and against dogmatism, against disbelief and against superstition ?” Indeed, many of the greatest advances in the history of science, with some of the greatest benefits for mankind, have come at the hand of those who advanced various fields of science from a Christian foundation:

Louis Pasteur (1822-1895) – Germ theory of disease, vaccines, pasteurization.

Sir Alexander Fleming (1881-1955)

– Penicillin.

Sir Isaac Newton (1642-1727) – Gravitation, Laws of motion, calculus.

Robert Boyle (1627-91) – Boyle’s Law, Chemistry.

Michael Faraday (1791-1867) – Electromagnetism.

Johannes Kepler (1571-1630) –

Celestial mechanics, logarithms.

Nicholas Copernicus (1473-1543) – Astronomy.

Lord Kelvin (1824-1907) – Thermodynamics, Elasticity and material strength.

Bernhard Riemann (1826-66) – non-Euclidian geometry.

Finally, Phelps summarized that atheist-materialist science, built upon the foundation of Darwinism, “is liberating from deception.” While his claim is inspiring, there may be somewhat less there than meets the eye.

It has become universally known that Ernst Haeckel’s embryonic drawings in support of biogenetic law and Darwinian evolution had been deliberately falsified by Haeckel himself. His biogenetic law had been confidently accepted by science as a ‘self-evident truth,’ and his famous drawings were legendary in biology texts world-wide. It has since been noted (American Scientist, May/June 1988), “Surely [Haeckel’s] biogenetic law is as dead as a doornail?”

Haeckel later divulged: “After this compromising confession of ‘forgery’ I should be obliged to consider myself condemned and annihilated if I had not the consolation of seeing side by side with me in the prisoner’s dock hundreds of fellow culprits, among them many of the most trusted observers and most esteemed biologists.”

Similar issues of falsification have surfaced with regard to several other Darwinian idols such as Piltdown Man, Java Man and Nebraska Man.

If Phelps’ unequivocal faith in the atheist-materialist approach to science is not enthusiastically shared by “many SDSU students,” it may simply signify that they have not yet been drawn up to the higher states of “liberation” that Phelps demands of them.

And, if “many SDSU students” continue to approach science from a Christian foundation, history has positively demonstrated that they may yet accomplish great things in the advancement of science – and for the betterment of mankind.