Perhaps one of the greatest minds in science was born 200 years ago on February 12 1809. What Charles Darwin accomplished through simple observation and recorded as a naturalist has transformed many of the scientific fields through the years. There are other great minds, no doubt, and maybe some that will be proved as great or greater after time, but Darwin’s simple observations have not only withstood two hundred years of being rigorously tested in many different disciplines, it has been instrumental in leaps of knowledge: genetics, biology, bio-geography.
I have been reading Saving Darwin: How to Be a Christian and Believe in Evolution, by Karl W Giberson, and I realized, again, the sad truth of how much of the Conservative Christians in North America are blinded by a simplistic faith. Their attitude is summed up in:
But Americans have never been eager or even willing to be led by intellectual elites. A simple commonsense argument by someone you trust is worth more than the pompous pronouncements of an entire university of condescending eggheads. America is a nation that loves cowboys, and cowboys don’t need experts telling them what to think.
It is the sad truth. We have rejected scientific facts in a multitude of scientific disciplines that prove evolution. We have also rejected or twisted archeology, history and biblical critic simply because of our overly literal interpretation of the bible. We have rejected a massive wall of scientific facts, pushing them aside because they contradict teachings we cling to. We ignore and even make fun of global warming with a simple wave of a simple hand despite the overwhelming facts. Often we find ourselves opposing God and His command to us to be His agent in creation; to help care for it. We have not been faithful in this little thing, how will he be able to trust us to have dominion with His new heaven and new earth?
Its no wonder the masses are rejecting this antiquated faith. We blame it on an attack of the enemy. I say, rather, that it is an attack from within our own ranks, our attack on intelligentsia. We honor people with simple minded faith more than we honor those that study and teach us the facts of God’s creation. There is nothing wrong with simple faith, as long as it is not simple mind but rather is grounded in truth that includes the truth that is revealed through our study of creation.
The thing is that there is no conflict between believing the gospel /following Christ with passion and believing in the facts as they are revealed in natural reality, in God’s creation. God has revealed himself through the Hebrew and Christian scriptures and he has revealed himself through his creation. His ultimate revelation, though, is found in Joshua the promised one; Jesus the Christ.
I am an Evolutionary Creationist;
I am a conservationist;
I am a proponent for an intelligent and critical study of the biblical text and of our faith. One that is in harmony with the gospel, the context of the original writings and our current knowledge of the world around us;
I am a believer in/ follower of the historical Jesus, the promised on of Israel.
Here is to hoping that the next two hundred years will bring a balance between a faith worth believing with both our minds and our hearts, and the natural knowledge that results from science.
Happy birthday Darwin!