The Baptist Beacon
SCIENTIFIC THEORIES AND BIBLICAL FACTS
By Elder H.C. Vanderpool, Th.D.
It is the desire of this writer to examine the "Theories of Science" and "Biblical facts," their harmony and their contrasts. When the theories of science are proved to be facts, they harmonize with the Scriptures. When the theories of science fail to be in harmony with the Bible, they remain just theories and not facts.
THEORY: "A plan or scheme existing in the mind only; a speculative or conjectural view of something."
FACT: "Something that actually exists or has occurred; something asserted to be true or to have happened; reality or actuality."
The word "science" appears twice in the Bible; once in the Old Testament and once in the New Testament. "And the king spake unto Ashpenaz the master of his eunuchs, that he should bring certain of the children of Israel, and of the king's seed, and of the princes; Children in whom was no blemish, but well favored, and skilful in all wisdom, and cunning in knowledge, and understanding science and such as had ability in them to stand in the king's palace, and whom they might teach the learning and tongue of the Chaldeans." Daniel 1:3-4.
The word "science" in this scripture is the Hebrew word "madda" and means "knowledge" The apostle Paul wrote: "O Timothy, keep that which is committed to thy trust, avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called:" I Timothy 6:20. The word "science" in this scripture is the Greek word "gnosis" and means "knowledge".
In the scripture just given above, the phrase "science falsely so called" in the Greek is "tes pseudonumou gnosis" translated "the falsely named knowledge." To learn something that is false, is to affect the Christian faith and behavior. Paul sustains this fact as he continues his message to Timothy, "Which some professing have erred concerning the faith." I Timothy 6:21
The problem of assumptions: If the basic terms and the initial postulates of a "theory" are defined or stated so that they designate or pertain to rigidly specified properties or conditions, which either are directly observable or are imagined as existing in a rigidly structured model, the scope of the "theory" is restricted to the range of these properties or conditions and cannot be extended to include new "facts".
In the above reference are two words "theories" and "facts" that will be considered. Due to the scope of previous theories, even "facts" cannot be included with the things "imagined," according to scientists. Since the word "facts" means the truth, things as they are, real; we see "theories" are accepted in this area of reasoning instead of "facts" which questions this method of reasoning.
"For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent. Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world?" I Corinthians 1:19-20
The theme of this writing is to search and examine those theories of science with those related in scripture which have to do with inconsistency and with harmony.
The Holy Scriptures
"All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instructions in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works." II Timothy 3:16-17 "For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost." II Peter 1:21 "As for God, his way is perfect; the word of the Lord is tried: he is a buckler to all them that trust in him." II Samuel 22:31; Psalm 18:30 "Every word of God is pure: he is a shield unto them that put their trust in him. Add thou not unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar." Proverbs 30:5-6
The unity of the Bible is unique. Nowhere else have so many different treaties; historical, biographical, ethical, prophetical and poetical, ever been combined making one book. It is combined as is the hewn stone and timber make up one building, or as bones, muscles and ligaments make one body. This again, while indisputable as a "fact", is unparalleled in literature; all the conditions being humanly speaking, not only unfavorable, but fatal to such combination.
There are sixty-six books in the Bible, written by forty different men, coming from various conditions and circumstances in life, possessing varying degrees of culture from the shepherd to the statesman. These books were written in three different languages, during a period covering over sixteen centuries.
The subjects on which they wrote were diverse and varied, and yet there is a doctrinal and structural unity pervading the whole. Notwithstanding all the divergent elements, they have produced essentially one book.
Great cathedrals, like those of Milan and Cologne, occupied centuries in building. Hundreds and thousands of workmen wrought upon them. Surely no one needs to be told that behind and beyond these builders there must have been some one architect who built the temple in his own mind before the cornerstone was laid, who, first of all, drew the plans and furnished even the minute specifications; so that such structure owes its matchless symmetry, not to men of brawn that worked on it, but to that one man of brain that thought out the cathedral in its completeness.
The Bible is a stately cathedral. Many human builders have in turn wrought on the structure. Who is the architect? What one mind is that which planned and saw the whole building, before Moses wrote those first words in Genesis, which by no accident, as though to carve the architect's name on the vestibule, are these: "In the beginning God......."
With the foregoing considerations of science and the texts from holy scripture, one might readily accept Biblical "facts" rather than "scientific theories."