Does science conclusively show that God is unnecessary? Some people think so. Many in our culture today use this as an excuse to ignore matters of faith. But there are significant problems with these assumptions. First, faith in God is not a matter to be dismissed based on prevailing cultural winds. And second, some very important scientific developments reinforce the case for faith in God. It is as the psalmist declares, nature itself proclaims the existence and glory of God. It should not surprise us when science, which is the disciplined study of nature, proclaims the handiwork of God.
To demonstrate this let’s consider the prevailing theory about the beginning of our universe, often called the “Big Bang.” This understanding teaches that the universe, time, and the laws of physics had a beginning about 13.8 billion years ago in a single event. Those who try to use science as an excuse for atheism are severely contradicted by the Big Bang. All the atheistic pseudo-scientific theories depend on an endless natural order without a beginning or an end, called a “steady state” Universe. Oddly, in scientific terms, nearly 14 billion years is far too short a time to account for merest beginnings of accidental evolution, let along the full-blown reality of human life. The very thought of a cataclysmic beginning to the universe reinforces the need for a creator. The evidence for the Big Bang makes Genesis 1 the world’s earliest and most scientifically accurate account of the creation process.
Another example of how science reinforces traditional tenants of faith is something called the “Anthropic Principle.” This theory supports the Bible’s perspective that all of creation is organized with human life as its central purpose. When the Big Bang disproved the “steady state” Universe, theoretical scientists began to look carefully at the critical physical constants in the universe such as the gravitational constant, the mass of a proton, the age of the universe. When many factors were considered together, some scientists reached the conclusion that the laws of physics are specifically structured in a way that produces human life. Slight changes in any one of the critical constants would negate the possibility of life as we know it. The chance that so many physical laws would occur in their present perfect harmony by accident is astronomically unlikely.
There are many members of the scientific community who are also people of faith. They both adhere to the strictures of the scientific method and place there hope in the promises of Christ Jesus. Some of these scientists have begun inquiry into a set of theories that are collectively called “Intelligent Design.” These scientists engage in the of scientific study of things that suggest a divine intelligence behind creation. For instance, Intelligent Design studies evolution and the fossil records concluding that careful research shows that origin of life in evolution is not accidental. In fact, the repeated failure to scientifically substantiate a random beginning for life and the fossil record itself raises critical issues that point toward an intelligent designer behind evolution, not random chance.
These examples are only part of the growing body of evidence that calls into question the assumption that science proves that there is no God. Science proves no such thing and never will. What needs to be understood by Christians defending their faith today is that science supports faith in God just as much, if not more than the claims of those who have abandoned faith. Christians very much need to engage in the work of science today to better balance the metaphysical conclusions drawn from scientific findings. Furthermore, Christians need to encourage the scientific community to accurately reveal their findings and to make public the scientific findings that challenge our culture’s atheistic assumptions about the nature of the Universe.
Praise the Lord! Praise the Lord from the heavens; praise him in the heights! … Praise him, sun and moon, praise him, all you shining stars! Praise him, you highest heavens and you waters above the heavens! (Psalm 148:1-4)