Can you defend your faith when challenged by others? Our Veracity blog founder, John Paine, has been thinking about this question, courtesy of J.I. Packer. But what are some of the obstacles that you and your fellow Christians face when given the opportunity to defend one’s faith? I have been meditating on these type of questions lately, as our Facts & Faith Symposium wrapped up about six weeks or so ago in November, 2013. I would like share some of the things that I have been learning.
Our Symposium, sponsored partly by Veracity over three nights (#1, #2, and #3), covered the topic of Creation and how Science and the Bible relate to one another. OK, hang on for a minute. I admit that I am a bit of a science-geek. This is no surprise, as I am a computer engineer, so it comes with the territory. I know that there are a lot of friends of mine who could care less about science. As long as they can use their iPhones and work the microwave oven, technologies that have been brought to us by the miracle of modern science, then that is just fine with them.
I get that. Not everyone can be totally into “science-ish” type stuff, and I am no expert either. I still can not figure out how to connect a DVD player to a television screen easily, so if you ask me to help you hook up your home theater system, I will just end up staring at the puddle of wires for as long as you did. So, please do not get disappointed if I act like I have no clue as to what is going on.
Because you know what? I do not have a clue.
That’s what Google and YouTube videos are for.
But you do not need to be a science-geek to talk about the God of the Bible with your neighbors, friends and family. Working through our own theology of what it means to say that God is our Creator, that we are created in His image, the question of how we are to view the problem of suffering, death, and evil, and that we are fallen and in need of healing is crucial to the journey of personal discipleship. Our contemporary world is built on the foundations of modern science, and that scientific outlook presents challenges to the Christian faith were not there a couple of hundred years ago. So, it is difficult to avoid these challenges.
However, here is the interesting part. Thinking about the relationship between Science and the Bible with respect to Creation is but one example of the type of work Christians need to be able to do in order to effectively communicate the Gospel to a world today that finds it easier to ask Google instead of God for the answers to their questions. I have come to learn that the “Creation issue” is merely a case study illuminating a larger set of issues. Here is what I have learned: