Tag Archives: science

Cancer Growth Is Orchestrated at the Cell Level, Not By a Central Process

“How are human tissues put together from single cells? The description above might suggest the involvement of master builders who oversee crews of workers, directing them in the detailed construction of normal and malignant tissues. In reality, there are no overseers forcing throngs of cells to line up and assemble themselves into normal or cancerous tissues. Architectural complexity in living tissue comes from the bricks themselves, the individual cells. Control is exercised from the bottom up…The cells forming a tumor are all lineal descendants of a single progenitor, a distant ancestor that lived many years before the tumor mass became apparent.” (p. 1-2)

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Science Is Not Threatened By God

“It is time to call a truce in the escalating war between science and spirit. The war was never really necessary. Like so many earthly wars, this one has been initiated and intensified by extremists on both sides, sounding alarms that predict imminent ruin unless the other side is vanquished. Science is not threatened by God; it is enhanced. God is most certainly not threatened by science; He made it all possible. So let us together seek to reclaim the solid ground of an intellectually and spiritually satisfying synthesis of all great truths.” (pp. 233-234)

Balance Between Science and Religion

“Science is the only legitimate way to investigate the natural world…the nature of science is self-correcting. No major fallacy can long persist in the face of a progressive increase in knowledge. Nevertheless, science alone is not enough to answer all the important questions. Even Albert Einstein saw the poverty of a purely naturalistic worldview. Choosing his words carefully, he wrote, ‘Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind.’ The meaning of human existence, the reality of God, the possibility of an afterlife, and many other spiritual questions lie outside of the reach of the scientific method…Science is not the only way of knowing. The spiritual worldview provides another way of finding truth. Scientists who deny this would be well advised to consider the limits of their own tools, as nicely represented in a parable told by the astronomer Arthur Eddington. He described a man who set about to study deep-sea life using a net that had a mesh size of three inches. After catching many wild and wonderful creatures from the depths, the man concluded that there are no deep-sea fish that are smaller than three inches in length!” (pp. 228-229)

Christian Tolerance

“Far too much has been said by Christians about the exclusive club they inhabit. Tolerance is a virtue; intolerance is a vice. I find it deeply disturbing when believers in one faith tradition dismiss the spiritual experiences of others. Regrettably, Christians seem particularly prone to do this. Personally, I have found much to learn from and admire in other spiritual traditions, though I have found special revelation of God’s nature in Jesus Christ to be an essential component of my own faith.” (p. 225)

Finding Peace Between God and Science

“Will we turn our backs on science because it is perceived as a threat to God, abandoning all of the promise of advancing our understanding of nature and applying that to the alleviation of suffering and the betterment of humankind? Alternatively, will we turn our backs on faith, concluding that science has rendered the spiritual life no longer necessary, and that traditional religious symbols can now be replaced by engravings of the double helix on our altars?

“Both of these choices are profoundly dangerous. Both deny truth. Both will diminish the nobility of humankind. Both will be devastating to our future. And both are unnecessary. The God of the Bible is also the God of the genome. He can be worshiped in the cathedral or in the laboratory. His creation is majestic, awesome, intricate, and beautiful–and it cannot be at war with itself. Only we imperfect humans can start such battles. And only we can end them.”

Plea to Evangelical Christians About Creationism

“Let me conclude this brief chapter, therefore, with a loving entreaty to the evangelical Christian church, a body that I consider myself a part of, and that has done so much good in so many other ways to spread the good news of God’s love and grace. As believers, you are right to hold fast to the concept of God as Creator; you are right to hold fast to the truths of the Bible; you are right to hold fast to the conclusion that science offers no answers to the most pressing questions of human existence; and you are right to hold fast to the certainty that the claims of atheistic materialism must be steadfastly resisted. But those battles cannot be won by attaching your position to a flawed foundation. To continue to do so offers the opportunity for the opponents of faith (and there are many) to win a long series of easy victories.” (page 178)

Agnostics and Evidence

“To be well defended, agnosticism should be arrived at only after a full consideration of all of the evidence for and against the existence of God. It is a rare agnostic who has made the effort to do so. (Some who have, and a rather distinguished list it is, have unexpectedly converted themselves to belief in God.) Furthermore, while agnosticism is a comfortable default it conveys a certain tinniness. Would we admire someone who insisted the age of the universe was unknowable, and hadn’t taken time to look at the evidence?” (pp. 168-169)