Friday, November 19

Science and Christianity

As I have mentioned before, I was trained as a scientist. I began to actively studying theological matters quite recently. However, habits built up over a lifetime do not just go away. As a result, I bring, perhaps, a different outlook on Scripture than many others who study it.
As I read and learn, some questions that seem "burning" issues (or at least fun to discuss) just don't strike a chord with me. For example questions like,
  • how to interpret the Creation stories (literal, figurative, parable?)
  • What does it mean that God is omniscient? How does free will figure in with respect to his Omniscience. How can I have free will, if God already knows what I will do.
  • What sort of eschatological prediction of the end is the correct interpretation of scripture?
Why are these questions not important to me. Well, in short, because whatever the answer might be, I don't see how one's behavior (thoughts and actions) would be altered by that decision.

for example
  • Creation. Are the stories parables, or are they a true description of what occurred? For me however the answer leads, I see no difference in how my faith guides my actions and thoughts. I suppose if I were a practicing Cosmologist, it may change my viewpoint of the validity of the anthropic principle, but I'm not.
  • God is Omniscient, or to take the OVT (ht: Joe Carter) stance, i.e., God is as Omniscient as physically possible. Other theological arguments and philosophical straining resounds around the questions regarding God's Omniscient nature and man's free will. But how can my conclusions about free will and its relationship to God change my actions? Now quite possibly the construction of my ethical framework would entail a concept of free will, but only if I decide that a lack of free will abrogates my personal responsibility for my actions. Since I don't think that is the case no matter how the free will question plays out, I think answers in this realm are of secondary import.