This question may well be the age-old question, or at least, ever since the beginning of the Scientific Age. The problem is this: If there is a Creator God of the universe, doesn’t sound logic suggest that true science and true religion should be in perfect agreement with one another? With this in mind we should recognize that as long as there will be failure of agreement between the two it will only be because something is wrong with either one of them, or both.
Considering that science claims to be perfectly rational in its approach to empirical realities of the universe, religion is made to appear as the only culprit of this enigma. Interestingly enough though, even science has been obligated to review many of its prior conclusions, or to adjust them to fit new research and discoveries. A professor of medicine was telling his students that by the time they become physicians about half of the scientific understanding they will have gained will be irrelevant or obsolete in years to come. The problem, the professor added, is that no one knows which half of the scientific knowledge thought to be true now will later be proven false.
We all witness that science is in a constant state of flux. The huge changes that have taken place on recommended dietary charts in the last 50 years should serve as a clue. While science can often be applauded for its willingness to make the necessary adjustments, the same is unfortunately not true of religion. Why is humanity facing such a dilemma? Why such confusion if both science and religion are the product of the same Creator? In the face of this dilemma, it is obviously easier to dismiss the notion of a Creator God, and this, for good reasons. Indeed, by and large religion is never founded on logical thinking. It is founded on something religious people call “faith,” and they often refuse to recognize faith as involving logic.
The writings of the prophet Isaiah begins with startling statements regarding the relationship that should exist between God and His created beings. First there is a complaint that the children of Israel have failed to listen to God. “(T)hey have rebelled against me,” said the Lord” (Isaiah 1:2). A bit later God calls them a brood of evildoers, children given to corruption!” (v.4). Interestingly, the prophet reports God’s complaint in the following terms, “Why do you persist in rebellion? your whole head is injured, your whole heart afflicted. From the sole of your foot to the top of your head there is no soundness”(v.6). The reference to the injured head and the lack of soundness is God’s way of saying that His people are not thinking correctly because they are not thinking logically. Their religion has led them away from sound thinking founded on pure logic. The LORD goes on to say: “The multitude of your sacrifices – what are they to me?” … “I have more than enough of burnt offerings…I have no pleasure in the blood of bulls and lambs and goats.” (v. 11).
God is sick of His people’s meaningless worships. He tells them, “Stop bringing meaningless offerings! Your incense is detestable to me. New Moons, Sabbaths and convocations – I cannot bear your evil assemblies. Your New Moon festivals and your appointed feasts my soul hates. They have become a burden to me; I am weary of bearing them” (v. 14). God goes on to say, “even if you offer many prayers, I will not listen” (v. 15). Why should God listen to people unwilling to listen to Him and His logic? If they did, they might finally recognize the pure soundness of His message to humanity.
In desperation the LORD addresses His children by exhorting them in the following terms: “Come now, let us reason together” (v. 18, emphasis supplied throughout). The call to reason with God is a call to think logically about His message to humanity. His logical message should constitute the foundation of all our scientific and religious beliefs. The problem of humanity is that they have yet to respond to this call from God. All religions are founded on various forms of superstitions and religious concepts lacking logic.
It appears that the religions of our world have not changed much since the days of Isaiah the prophet. The forms of our religions have changed, but their foundational beliefs built on pagan concepts involving irrational superstitions, have not. This is a tragedy of biblical proportion for humanity.
As long as there are flaws both in science and in the religion of people claiming to listen to God, the two shall forever fail to agree. Humility on both sides should suggest that they still lack pure truth. Both should be open to new approaches to truth founded on logic. Short of truth on both sides, the reconciliation of science and religion will remain impossible. The larger culprit however, is religion; because it often refuses to change from a so-called meaningless “faith-based” understanding of God’s messages to a logical approach to His communications. Religion prides itself for dealing with invisible powers in the universe – the problem is that in the process sound logic is set aside. The lack of logic in religion is detestable to God. How can a religion lacking the very logic God has created, ever be reconciled with a science willing to consider logic, but unwilling to accept the possibility that there is a Creator God?
This topic will continue to be the object of our consideration in the next few weeks. Let me know what you think.