Science is highly respected because it is based on empirical evidence and rigorous research. For example, Sydney Adventist Hospital is held in high esteem for being on the cutting edge of prostate cancer research. Based on new knowledge and technology, the theories and methods of detecting and treating this cancer are changing—they are now more accurate.
Scientific advancement is beneficial but blindly following science leads to naïve thinking: Science says it, so it is right. Scientific theories are changed or discarded as knowledge increases. [pullquote]
The same is true of the science of origins.
Visionary Adventist pioneer Ellen White, reflecting on the differences between science and Scripture, wrote, “There should be a settled belief in the divine authority of God’s Holy Word. The Bible is not to be tested by men’s ideas of science. Human knowledge is an unreliable guide. Sceptics who read the Bible for the sake of caviling, may, through an imperfect comprehension of either science or revelation, claim to find contradictions between them; but rightly understood, they are in perfect harmony” (Patriarchs and Prophets, 114).
Theoretically, if we knew everything, science and Scripture would harmonise—because God is consistent. However, we humans are limited in our knowledge of both science and Scripture. Paul acknowledged, “For now we see in a mirror dimly” (1 Corinthians 13:12, ESV) and, as Moses pointed out, “The secret things belong to the Lord our God” (Deuteronomy 29:29, ESV).
Current scientific conclusions may raise questions we don’t have answers for—but part of maturity is living with questions and exploring possible new answers, without throwing out the solid foundation of Scripture. We’ll have access to all the answers in eternity. In the meantime we can keep marvelling at the wonders of God’s Creation.
The worldwide Seventh-day Adventist Church will celebrate Creation Sabbath on October 26. For more information and additional resources, visit www.creationsabbath.net.