pepperdine-science.jpg“Do you believe in evolution?” It’s a common question, asked in countless schools, churches, debates, and surveys. However, as Douglas Swartzendruber, professor of biology at Seaver College, notes in his essay “Scientific Knowledge and Belief in God”, it’s a question based on some incorrect assumptions about both science and faith.

First of all, the question carries with it an underlying assumption that one cannot accept both evolution and faith in God the creator. Such a dichotomy is simply not the case. Furthermore, the question implies that evolution itself is a belief system. While scientific knowledge can be seen as a type of belief system, it is a wholly different system because it is based on independent verification and falsification. Evolution is based on observable facts from the world of biology. As Swartzendruber writes, “Asking about belief in evolution is akin to asking about belief in light.” Just as the scientific theory of light provides the best explanation for the paradoxical characteristics of light, so evolution provides the best explanation for the characteristics of life.

Ultimately, science is not the only source of truth, and scientific truth does not conflict with the understanding of the world that religion provides. Swartzendruber holds to his university’s affirmation that “truth, having nothing to fear from investigation, should be pursued relentlessly in every discipline.” Likewise, both science and religion should not be feared, so long as they are both grounded in truth.

More from Beliefnet and our partners
previous posts

Science & the Sacred is moving to our new home on The BioLogos Foundation’s Web site. Be sure to visit and bookmark our new location to stay up to date with the latest blogs from Karl Giberson, Darrel Falk, Pete Enns, and our various guests in the science-religion dialogue. We’re inaugurating our new site with […]

  Source: Iridescence — a key component of certain makeup, paints, coatings of mirrors and lenses — is also an important feature in the natural world. Both fish and spiders make use of periodic photonic systems, which scatter or reflect the light that passes against their scales or skin to produce an iridescent camouflage. […]

Looking for a unique way to mark the days of the Advent season? The Web site offers an Advent calendar composed of images from the Hubble Telescope, both old and new. Each day, from now until the celebration of the Nativity of Christ, the calendar will offer a beautiful image from the heavens above. […]

Recently BioLogos‘ Karl Giberson was interviewed by Marcio Campos for the Brazilian newspaper Gazeta do Povo‘s Tubo De Ensaio (i.e. “Test tube”) section. What follows is a translated transcript of that interview, which we will be posting in three installments. Here is the first. Campos: Starting on more of a lighter note, when I read […]

Close Ad