Faith accepts that the heavens and the earth were created by a being of immense power which they call god. The fact that the source of this belief, the bible, contradicts within its own pages the order in which creation proceeded is ignored. Was the light first, or the sun? The suggestion that the bible was written by men who could not possibly know they things of which they wrote is objected to vehemently, their knowledge, the believers claim, was the inspired knowledge of god relayed to them, by god. Faith accepts that all the answers are contained with the bible’s pages. Believers believe they have all the answers, and that to question their beliefs is an affront to god.
Science seeks the answers it strives for through logic and reason, trial and error, conjecture and thought. The present thought is that the universe sprang from a minute dot, expanded and cooled. Natural laws outlined by physics are used to explain the formation of the stars and planets. Abiogenesis, it is suggested, is the method by which life arose. Evolution, it is explained, proceeded then to produce the plethora of life now present. Science does not claim to know all the answers. Science does not accept that some supernatural force is at work when it cannot readily provide the answers. Science always produces more questions in its search for answers. Science seeks to know, it does not accept blindly answers that have no foundation.
Faith is not without its science. Some answers are accepted as long as they do not contradict but instead support scripture. It is the answers from science that do not support their beliefs that is in error, they assert. When believers use science they start with a conclusion, and then work to support that conclusion. Facts and theories that do not support the conclusion are assumed to be errors in the science, not the holy bible.
Science, properly done, does not start with the conclusion. A hypothesis may be put forth, suggesting a possible answer. Through the trial and error of the scientific method this hypothesis is put to the test. If through observation the outcome of the methods does support the conjectured hypothesis the hypothesis may become a theory. If subsequently, through more tests and observations, the theory proves in error, it is abandoned and another hypothesis emerges. If the answers do not immediately present themselves scientists do not ‘throw up their hands’ and conclude that some supernatural entity is involved. Instead, it continues to seek.
Imagine a world guided solely by the bible and the misery that would surely ensue. From its pages it will be gleaned that the earth is flat. That sky above is merely a tapestry created by the lord for human amusement, supported by the four corners of the earth. Space exploration would never be considered, for all that would happen is that you would smash against the tapestry above. Medicine would be a waste of energy as prayer would be the remedy for all ailments. Finding a cure through earthly means would be considered an affront to god. Education beyond the means to receive the wisdom of the bible would be non-existent. The world would never advance beyond that world humankind experienced during what are considered biblical times. Christians might rejoice at such a thought until they realized the reality of the misery of such times.
Science continues to search for the answers today. Its successes are however always in danger. The blind ignorance presented by those who insist that the bible has all the knowledge mankind needs still exists. Through subterfuge and usurpation of the young the threat to actual knowledge in favor of delusional knowledge continues. The rich and obstinate conservative right must be opposed lest we be forced to return to the “good ole days”.