Road to Astonishment

2004 11 21

Matthew 24F 38,39  @ @@           } ^Cɂ镟@24F 38,39

Psalm 136

1 Corinthians 1:18-25


Let me start by stating my educational history so that I may not be questioned for lack of understanding. In university I studied Natural Science and even today science is a great love of my life but often I am disappointed in the science of today as it has lost some of its strongest attributes. I was taught the scientific method: in this thinking an idea is tested in such a way that it is considered to be incorrect and then proven correct. In many areas today we have presumptive science that the scientist feels an idea is correct and then he creates an experiment to show this. Todayfs science also often works on the concept of least astonishment in other words any data that does not comply with their set way of thinking is simply thrown away. For me this is not true science. 

As you all know I have a son of 4 years. As with most boys his age, he is very interested in dinosaurs. This is when I discovered a major problem. You see from this point on the questions begin, school begins. gHow long ago did the dinosaurs exist?h gWhy is the sky blue?h gWas there really a great flood?h gWhy are there starsh etc. Ifm sure you can add to the list and then add some of your own. But as a Christian parent I must consider how I will answer these questions. Will I follow the world? Or Will I follow my faith and the word of God.

In 100 A.D. a man named Ptolemy was born. He was a great thinker and eventually moved to Alexandria to join other scientists and philosophers of that time. You may not recognize the name but you do know of his greatest mistake. Ptolemy thought up the Ptolemaic system that stated that the earth was the centre of the solar system and the sun and other planets revolve around us. Whether this was just a mistake or whether it came from mans egoism we donft know but we do know it is wrong.  But what did we believe before Ptolemy? Well, it seems we believed much as we do now that the sun is the centre of the solar system. Ptolemyfs ideas became very popular and many in Alexandria followed him. As the idea spread, the church began to feel pressure after all these we great men of science, how could they be wrong. Eventually even the church fell under the spell and followed the Ptolemaic system even though it was a mistake and put forth by people of non-faith. For 1300 years this mistake was considered truth/doctrine and any who went against it persecuted. A sad period in our church history as Christians listened to the voice of the world and not God. This eventually was proven incorrect by a Christian of strong faith. Initially, written as an endnote in his book  published after his death, Nicolas Copernicus denied the Ptolemaic system and restored the idea that the sun was the centre. Johannes Kepler a strong Cristian, took Copernicusf idea and set out to prove it true and the thinking of the day false. Kepler also discovered how the planets move and a lot more. But one fact little known about Kepler is that he was one of the first to calculate the biblical age of the earth to be from 6000 to 10 000 years.

How can this be after all didnft dinosaurs live millions of years ago. I learnt that in school, all science says the same. Didnft man slowly evolve into what he is today? I learnt that in school too. Well in the days of the Ptolemaic system we learned the earth was the centre and that was wrong. Is the world making a similar mistake? Will it take 1300 years to discover that a science that throws away data that opposes the status pro quo was in fact deceiving itself. As Christians we are taught not to follow the wisedom of the world. Should we be teaching it to our children. I know there are worries, I have them too. If I teach my son that some of the worldfs ideas are wrong how will he be able to survive and excell in school. I am still working that out in my mind. But I do know that I will teach him the wonder of Gods creation as it is the foundation upon which our faith also stands. To ignore some of the Biblefs teachings destroys the ability to believe in any of the Biblefs teachings and destroys our faith. Investigate, think through faith. I would rather be a fool in the worldfs eyes than in Godfs eyes.  You will be astonished by Godfs creation, wonder, greatness, mercy and love.