Science, Theology, and Tea Kettles
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Can there be meaningful interaction between the realms of science and religion? Many would argue that the two live in different worlds, and encompass completely different worldviews.
In their book Questions of Truth, John Polkinghorne and Nicholas Beale agree that religion may not be a proper partner for science. Theology, however, is, because its "concern is with intellectual reflection on human encounters with the sacred."
Science asks, "How?" Theology asks, "Why?" Yet both are questioning the nature of reality. Polkinghorne and Beale use the image of a boiling kettle to illustrate the concept:
"The kettle is boiling because burning gas heats the water.The kettle is burning because I want to make a cup of tea, and will you have some too? We do not have to choose between these two answers, and, in fact, if we are fully to understand the event of the boiling kettle, we need both."
- Questions of Truth, page 8
For more insightful responses to questions on God, science, and belief, be sure to check out Polkinghorne and Beale's Questions of Truth.