Adapting Faith

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I’m going to take a break from my posts on skepticism and talk about the current state of faith in our culture.  This still has to do with knowledge and truth, but not on the same lines as my previous post.  As a Christian, I believe that we need to be aware of the history of faith and how it has changed.  I have come to believe one central thing in my studies.  Faith that cannot adapt to change will significantly shrink and eventually die out.  Now, what do I mean by this?  If our faith is grounded on what we may have thought at one point in our lives, or at one point in our history, then we will see Christianity slowly start to go away.  My theory is that this is what is happening in our society right now.  Yes, there are people genuinely seeking to disprove God, but there are also Christians who feel so strongly that they cannot abandon what they have been taught, that they are willing to refute modern findings in history, science, and other fields of knowledge to keep their fundamental beliefs.  The American society is becoming more and more hostile to Christianity, and it is not because they have no reason.  The popular myth is that Christianity cannot adapt to change, and this is because CHRISTIANS have not allowed it to adapt to change.

 

I live by one central motto in my life.  “All truth is God’s truth.”  I am not afraid to discover what is true, because I do not feel as if God wants me to live in ignorance.  God created the world and everything in it, and so I think it is a sin to sit back and just not discover what is out there because of fear of what we might discover.

 

There are several examples of times where science has changed and many Christians have felt that they cannot accept it, because of what they have been taught.  One example of ignorance in science is when Copernicus theorized that the earth revolved around the sun.  He was deemed a heretic because, in the book of Joshua, Joshua asks God to stop the sun in the sky.  This implied that the sun revolved around the earth, not vise versa.  The reason why he was called a heretic was because people could not let go of their fundamental beliefs and accept the change.  This change brought another way of viewing the Bible into perspective.  God does not correct us if we are ignorant of something in His creation, He lets us discover it on our own.

 

Another example of how science was very different in the past is the people who lived during the time that Genesis was written had a lot of strange, false views about what science was.  They believed that knowledge was derived from our intestines, not our brains.  They also did not believe in a supernatural or a natural world.  Nobody could even perceive of a world where God did not create it.

 

Now, we live in a culture where atheists and agnostics are making the claim that we do not need God or religion because science can explain everything, or will eventually be able to explain everything.  This is because they are taking advantage of the things that Christians are not willing to adapt to, and using them as a weapon against God.  I can see where they are coming with this, however it is not a proper approach.  We used to think angels pushed the planets in orbit, we now know that this is not the case.  We used to think that intelligence came from the intestines, we now know that this is not the case.  We used to think that the earth was only 6000 years old, and we now know that this is not the case.  We used to think that the great complexity of biological life on earth was the result of a designer, and we now know that this is not the case.  Sadly, there are many Christians who will not accept these truths.  I can go on and on, but the point is, if we are trying to conflate God with science, we are asking the wrong questions.  Asking the proper questions is the most important thing to saving Christianity in our culture.  You see, science hasn’t changed since the time when people were extremely ignorant of science.  We are constantly discovering just what is out there and what kinds of questions to ask when trying to figure out things about God.  If we are not open to change, and if we are not open to our faith evolving, we will lose opportunities for winning people to Christ.  Our society is becoming extremely secular because Christians will not open up and embrace the existing reality that is in front of them.  My hope and prayer is that Christians will not settle for intellectual laziness and go out, learn to ask the right questions, find the right answers, and then embrace the secular culture to ultimately further the Kingdom of God.

 

 

“Explaining how something happens scientifically doesn’t explain it away; the question of purpose, intentionality, the question of why still remains there on the table.”

-Alister McGrath

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