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Same Universe, Different Lenses: Science, Ethics, and Religion in Dialogue

This is a transcript of an interview given by Dr. Jennifer Wiseman at The Faith Angle Forum Conference on Religion, Politics, & Public Life on November 5, 2013.

 

Fine-tuning and the “Fruitful Universe”

I ask the question, “Why is the universe so special?” Now scientists don’t like things to be special; we like things to be general, and our natural anticipation would have been that the universe is just a common specimen of what a universe might be like.

 

Speciation and Macroevolution

A common challenge to evolutionary theory is that while life does indeed change over time (what is known as microevolution), no one has ever seen one species evolve into another species (macroevolution).

 

Saturday Sermon: The Failure of Religion

In the last verses of Romans 2, the Apostle Paul relates the “failure of religion because of the terrible beauty of the Law” to the need for a regenerate heart.

 

Saturday Sermon: Heart of Darkness

In the Garden of Eden, Eve is tempted to put her own desires ahead of God’s call for her life. The serpent tells her that if she eats of the fruit she can become like God: she, in essence, can become the master of her own fate.

 

Was Humanity Inevitable?

If the tape was rewound and evolution started over from scratch, Conway Morris says, the evolutionary details would be different, but the end result would be similar: a species characterized by intelligence and complex civilization.

 

Saturday Sermon: The First Wedding Day

The ordained and blessed tradition of marriage is established in Genesis 2: 18-25. This passage communicates important ideas, Dr. Keller affirms, about both marriage seeking and marriage executing. When considered, these concepts will allow one to be successful in both areas.

 

Saturday Sermons: The Garden of God

Genesis 2:2-17 places an interesting emphasis on work—not only does God work to bring about all creation, but also, man is called to the task of caring for God’s world.

 

Evolution and the Origin of Biological Information

In this paper, Venema explores several examples in biology where random mutation and natural selection have indeed led to substantial increases in biological information. The question of how new specified information arises in DNA, far from being an “enigma”, is one of great interest to biologists.

 

Series: John Polkinghorne on Natural Theology (5 entries)

Polkinghorne discusses the origins and aims of natural theology in this series. It does not offer truth, but rather a “best explanation” for the world, answering primarily meta-questions. Two such questions asked by Polkinghorne are, “Why is science possible at all?” and “What makes the universe so special?” To explore the answers, he looks at the ability of human minds to penetrate mysteries of the natural world as well as the fine-tuning of the universe necessary to produce the fruitfulness of life.

 

Creation, Evolution, and Christian Laypeople

In this paper, Keller considers three main clusters of questions lay people raise when they learn of anyone teaching that biological evolution and biblical orthodoxy can be compatible. Keller offers some ideas on how to provide responses that take these concerns seriously.

 

Science as an Instrument of Worship

NASA astronomer Jennifer Wiseman asserts that studying creation can show us the nature of God; science can inform us of what we need to do as stewards of God’s creation; understanding the natural world gives us a deeper knowledge of Jesus Christ; and science can give us a better understanding of ourselves. This essay was presented at the November 2009 Theology of Celebration Workshop.

12 resources found