The Sunday, Aug. 11 Dispatch had yet two more letters by Christians that provided no helpful insight into the relationship of temporal science to biblical faith. They did nicely demonstrate the logical fallacy of reasoning based on a false premise. In this case it is the false assumption that the words “faith” and “knowledge” have the same meaning in the realm of temporal-material-science as they do in the realm of eternal-spiritual-faith.
One biblical definition of faith is “…the assurance of things hoped for…” The foundational knowledge of science is not on things hoped for but rather verifiable empirical evidence. Science does not deny metaphysical/spiritual reality, but science makes no claim to give ultimate answers to questions in the faith realm, despite some claims to the contrary. Those who claim faith based on the Bible should also start by acknowledging that it cannot provide as meaningful answers as science can for such things as unexplained bodily pain or why a car won’t start.
The two realms of the temporal and eternal overlap and efforts to relate them are important. But it is divisive rather than productive for a Christian to start this exercise by denigrating a scientist’s answers to ambiguous “test” questions that were plausible in a scientific context. This approach can create some ego satisfaction but little else.
To also assert that faith-based knowledge is worthwhile because there is “nothing to lose” depends on which realm one is referring to. Multiple Bible passages admonish that one must be ready to lose everything temporal for the sake of the kingdom. A “nothing to lose” theology sounds like unbiblical cheap-grace hazard insurance. There may be more at risk in such thinking than what is recognized.