America’s founders centered their discussions of almost every topic around what the Bible taught. Although not all were believing Christians, they did recognize the unique authority of the Bible. One study conducted by the University of Houston found that 92% of important American quotes from 1750 to 1790 were either direct or indirect references to Biblical teachings.1
Today, if a person were to state that his viewpoint were based on Biblical teaching, he would be met with either a blank stare or open ridicule. America’s culture is post Christian in nature because Christianity is no longer the primary influencing philosophy. The belief that science can define reality has replaced Christianity as the primary source of truth.
Science is a powerful tool which has helped mankind develop the technological marvels of our modern age. Because of this, many people are under the false impression that science can prove what has happened from the beginning of time, predict what will happen eons into the future, and explain everything in between. This false conception of the capability of science is promoted by false philosophic ideas, such as evolution, which have masqueraded as true science for over 150 years. Understanding the limits of science can help put this discipline into a proper perspective.
Science Can’t Define Reality
Science can not explain what life is or define the difference between human and animal life. Science can describe how things work but not what makes life “alive” or even what makes life exist.
Furthermore, science can never answer the “why” questions. Why does life exist? Why is the earth in the perfect position to sustain life? Why can’t people just get along? Why does evil exist? All of these questions are part of reality, yet science has no answer.
Science Can’t Prove the Past
There are vast differences in opinion between equally qualified scientists over what has happened in the distant past. For instance, there have been dozens of theories on what caused the extinction of the dinosaurs and all of them are unprovable. Scientists can view the exact same data and come to completely different conclusions because all scientists approach the past with a bias. Equally intelligent and well-trained creationists and evolutionists will differ profoundly on the history of life’s development, the cause of the fossil record, and the age of the universe. All of these subjects deal with events of the past which can never be proven by scientific experimentation because the past cannot be repeated. Wise scientists from both viewpoints will admit that science cannot prove what has happened in the past.
Science Can’t Predict the Future with Certainty
The wiser the scientist, the more tentatively he draws his conclusions and the more carefully he extrapolates his data. Science can predict what may happen if all the variables are known, but seldom are all the variables known. This is the very basis of new scientific discoveries and frequently changing theories. Furthermore, if God does exist, He is fully capable of changing the future course of events just has He seems to have done repeatedly in the past.
Science Can’t Show How Things Should Be
Science merely observes and makes tentative predictions. It can make no comment on happiness, purpose, or fulfillment. It knows nothing of love, hate, faith, honor, or virtue. Science is totally silent on these important human characteristics and can provide no guidance concerning the existence of right and wrong. Yet each person has an overwhelming inborn sense of how things “ought to be”. Most of us also realize that things are not as they should be. Science simply can not explain why there seems to be so much wrong with this universe in which we live.
1. David Barton, The Myth of Separation, A revealing look at what the Founders and early courts really said, Wallbuilders Press, 1992.