The “Conflict Thesis” of Science and Religion: a Nexus of Philosophy of Science, Metaphysics, and Philosophy of Religion by R. Clinton Ohlers
Articles , Philosophy / November 1, 2017

The “Conflict Thesis” of Science and Religion: a Nexus of Philosophy of Science, Metaphysics, and Philosophy of Religion R. Clinton Ohlers R. Clinton Ohlers (PhD, University of Pennsylvania) is a Residential Fellow with the Creation Project at the Henry Center for Theological Understanding, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. This research was made possible by the Henry Resident Fellowship program, funded by the Templeton Religion Trust. Abstract: The idea of inevitable and perpetual conflict between science and religion is known among historians as the “conflict thesis.” It exploded in popularity in the late nineteenth century with the rise of the Victorian scientific naturalists to positions of leadership in prominent scientific institutions. A common misperception exists concerning the two authors most central to the widespread dissemination and lasting popularity of the conflict thesis: John William Draper and Andrew Dickson White. This misperception assumes that because Draper and White pitted science and religion at odds, they were not themselves theologically engaged. On the contrary, Draper and White held very specific theological views and championed them in their written works. Like others at the time, they shaped their theology to conform to their vision of science, a vision articulated by scientific naturalism, with its commitments…

Christian Theology of Creation and the Metaphysical Foundations of Science by Joshua M. Moritz
Articles , Philosophy / October 30, 2017

Christian Theology of Creation and the Metaphysical Foundations of Science Joshua M. Moritz Joshua Moritz is an adjunct professor of philosophy at the University of San Francisco, Lecturer of Philosophical Theology and Natural Sciences at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, and Academic Editor of the journal Theology and Science. Abstract: Recent scholarship within the history and philosophy of science has shown that in both the past and the present, specifically Judeo-Christian theological assumptions about the value, the intelligibility, the regularity, and the character of the cosmos have provided foundational assumptions for certain key scientists and scientific discoveries. This article investigates the nature of the interaction between science and Christian theology by exploring the role that metaphysical presuppositions and theological concepts have played—and continue to play—within the scientific process. I will examine the role of Christian theological thought within both the general philosophical presuppositions that undergird the whole scientific enterprise and within particular presuppositions that were present during pivotal episodes of scientific discovery. I will show how Christian theology has both implicitly and explicitly influenced (and still influences) the ethical values, aesthetic principles, philosophical commitments, metaphysical presuppositions, and motivations underlying the modern scientific project. Because such non-empirical shaping principles are…

Can Science Answer Life’s Big Questions? The Error of Allowing Naturalism to Dictate our Origins Models by John A. Bloom
Articles , Philosophy / October 28, 2017

Can Science Answer Life’s Big Questions? The Error of Allowing Naturalism to Dictate our Origins Models John A. Bloom John A. Bloom is Chair of the Chemistry, Physics and Engineering Department and is Academic Director of the Science and Religion Program at Biola University. He holds a Ph.D. in Physics, an M.Div., and a Ph.D. in Ancient Near Eastern Studies. Abstract: The modern tensions between Christianity and science stem mainly from the philosophical assumption of methodological naturalism as a filter for proper “scientific” answers, even for answers to the Big Questions regarding our origins. The pressure to conform to this secular religious view and the way naturalism skews the interpretation of scientific data may unwittingly drive some Christians to propose and defend inconsistent biblical interpretations like theistic evolution. Key Words: origin of life, human origins, theistic evolution, evolutionary creation, science, methodological naturalism, intelligent design, theology, physical resurrection Share this on: FacebookTwitterLinkedin

Science and Christianity: The Three Big Questions by Josh A. Reeves
Articles , Philosophy / October 25, 2017

Science and Christianity: The Three Big Questions Josh A. Reeves Josh Reeves is Assistant Professor of Science and Religion at Samford University Abstract: I will present in this paper three major questions that shape background assumptions on matters of science and Christianity. The questions are the following: Does the Bible contain modern scientific theories, how much can non-Christians know, and how far does science reach? Depending on how one answers these questions, Christians will likely reach different conclusions about scientific data, regardless of how carefully they research the topic. By examining important background assumptions, my intent is to help make conversations about Christianity and science more fruitful. Key Words: Christianity and science, biblical interpretation, concordism, theistic science, philosophy of science Share this on: FacebookTwitterLinkedin

Why Studying Philosophy of Science Matters: An Editorial Invitation and Introduction by Ryan A. Brandt
Articles , Philosophy / October 24, 2017

Why Studying Philosophy of Science Matters: An Editorial Invitation and Introduction Ryan A. Brandt, Executive Editor of Special Issue Ryan teaches full-time at Grand Canyon University and is a Managing Editor of JBTS This special issue of the Journal of Biblical and Theological Studies features articles exploring contentious but important topics within the philosophy of science. It represents views from across the spectrum of evangelicalism. In keeping with the mission of JBTS—to relay content that is original and yet accessible—this issue will contain not only a diverse range of viewpoints but also unique writing styles that are addressed to different audiences; accordingly, some articles are more philosophically heavy and scholarly and others more approachable and readable. In sum, the issue offers a set of distinct contributions from varied backgrounds and positions, which make this issue a useful overview for students and an impetus for serious scholarly reflection. With an intent to address students and laymen and yet not exclude scholars, this editorial introduction will introduce the reader to three things. First, it will briefly explain the nature of philosophy of science. Second, it will address why philosophy of science is a subject worth studying, particularly for those in the biblical…

Theistic Evolution, Christian Knowledge and Culture’s Plausability Structure by J. P. Moreland
Articles , Philosophy / March 6, 2017

Theistic Evolution, Christian Knowledge and Culture’s Plausibility Structure J. P. Moreland J. P. Moreland is Distinguished Professor of Philosophy at Biola University Abstract: In thinking about this article, I have decided not to write a technical piece. Over the years, I have done plenty of that on matters relating Christianity and science or the philosophy of science. Instead, as an aging (!) senior scholar, I have decided to reflect on the broader cultural implications of adopting a certain way of integrating Christianity and science, to attempt to offer some wisdom on the matter, and to issue a word of caution to my younger brothers and sisters. That said, here are my central reflections. Key Words: philosophy of science, theistic evolution, Scientism, Physicalism, knowledge, neuroscience, Christianity, plausibility structure Share this on: FacebookTwitterLinkedin