Mankind's Greatest Experiment - What Will It Prove?
Allen L Stout
Has "science" made you skeptical of the Bible? For nearly 6,000 years men have tried to negate what God says, but their efforts are utterly hopeless.
Satan has deceived the whole world and would deceive the very elect if it were possible (Rev. 12:9, Matt. 24:24)! How? One way is through scientific knowledge, falsely so called. Paul warned Timothy, "O Timothy, keep that which is committed to thy trust, avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called: Which some professing have erred concerning the faith" (I Tim. 6:20-21). Scientific knowledge doubles every decade. Science has radically changed mankind's way of life and beliefs. But the fruits of science have been both good and evil, concurrently bestowing on mankind ingenious and useful technical capabilities as well as weapons of mass destruction that now threaten to erase all life from this planet! Now, with the pooling of scientific knowledge, we may again be at a time when "nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do" (Gen. 11:6).
The attitude of science
Man looks with awe at the achievements of science. We expect science to provide our needs and solve our problems. Science has become a veritable modern messiah. But in enshrining science as a god — and accepting much that calls itself science but cannot be proven — this world has utterly rejected ,the basic source of all true knowledge, the revelation of God in the Bible. An alarming number of people today consider the Bible nothing more than a book of fables and mythology, unproven and unprovable by science. Consequently, the Bible has been virtually banned from all public schools in the United States. The major controversy is the conflict between the biblical account of creation and the "scientific" doctrine of evolution. Recently, supporters of the Bible account (and creationists even disagree among themselves, not understanding what the Bible means) have begun an all-out drive in courtrooms, classrooms and state legislatures across the nation to gain equal time for teaching creation as an explanation for the origin of human life. To counter this drive, the National Association of Biology Teachers has created a Fund for Freedom in Science Teaching to combat legal challenges to classroom activities. According to Wayne A. Moyer, executive director of the organization: "No one is saying that religion and scientific views are incompatible. We just don't think students should be taught information that can't be supported by a shred of scientific proof' ("New Battle Over Teaching of Evolution," U.S. News & World Report. June 9, 1980, p. 81). Science has had a clear influence on our society as far as biblical truth is concerned. Satan has mixed truth and error in education. Can you discern between scientific truth and the oppositions of science falsely so called? Very few in this world, including most scientists, can. Few scientists accept the biblical narrative, though some profess belief in a god.
The scientific method
The word science (from the Latin scientia — to know) means knowledge of facts, phenomena, laws and proximate causes, gained and verified by exact observation, organized experiment and ordered thinking. At the heart of science is the "scientific method." What is the scientific method? According to the authors of The Scientists. published by Time, Inc., in 1964: "To begin with, it should be noted that the term scientific method is itself somewhat of a misnomer. It furnishes no detailed map for exploring the unknown, no surefire prescription for discovery. It is, rather, an attitude and a philosophy" (p. 51). Is it only coincidence that Paul warned, "Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ" (Col. 2:8)? The "attitude and philosophy" of science is probably best summed up by E. Bright Wilson in his book, An Introduction to Scientific Research: "He [the scientist] rejects authority as an ultimate basis for truth.... Each generation of scientists has to decide for itself what it will believe" (p. 21). But Jesus said, "Full well ye reject the commandment of God, that ye may keep your own tradition" (Mark 7:9). According to Robert Jastrow, director of the National Aeronautic and Space Administration's Goddard Institute for Space Studies and a professed agnostic in theological matters: "There is a kind of religion in science; it is the religion of a person who believes that every event in the universe can be explained in a rational way as the product of some previous event. This faith is violated by the discovery that the world had a beginning under conditions in which the known laws of physics are not valid, and as a product of forces we cannot discover" ("Have Astronomers Found God?" by Robert Jastrow, New York Times Magazine. June 25, 1978).
Man is about to complete the greatest experiment he has ever undertaken... carried out in the most scientific manner possible. It has been repeated countless times... it will yield the most conclusively proven result ever discovered by man.
The scientific method for discovering knowledge begins with observations of nature. Observations are grouped together in some hypothetical manner to explain cause-and-effect relationships. Inductive reasoning is used to formulate hypotheses, which when verified may become scientific fact or law. Contrast this with the Word of almighty God, who says, "Come now, and let us reason together" (Isa. 1:18). God expects man to think and reason, but how? "If ye be willing and obedient, ye shall eat the good of the land: But if ye refuse and rebel, ye shall be devoured with the sword: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it" (verses 19-20). This is not inductive reasoning, but deductive. Deductive reasoning begins with a known law and predicts the consequences that will arise as a result of various actions relating to the law. God speaks with authority — He is the Lawgiver (Jas. 4:12). He formulated and upholds all the natural laws scientists have been able to discover. Yet man, in his vanity, has rejected the authority of the great Creator God and the knowledge He has revealed for man's benefit in favor of discovering and deciding for himself, through inductive reasoning, what he will believe.
Adam and Eve, in the Garden of Eden, rejected revelation as the basis of all other knowledge. God had described the blessings they would receive if they obeyed Him — and told them they would die if they disobeyed by taking of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. But Satan appeared in the form of a serpent and began to discredit God's authority. He urged our first parents to decide for themselves what they wanted to believe — to use their physical senses alone to try to understand how to live. So Adam and Eve performed the first scientific experiment. They observed and saw the tree was good for food. They reasoned. with Satan's encouragement, that the fruit would make them as wise as God, and that they could then govern themselves. They tried the fruit to see if their hypothesis was correct. Result? They died! And this failure to accept God's Word and live by it has been the cause of every evil this world has suffered for the last. 6,000 years! But man has continued to rely on "science" alone, and scoffed at God's revelation of knowledge he cannot otherwise obtain. Controversies and questions about the biblical record basically arise because man is unwilling to believe what God says. In many cases people misinterpret the Bible or tacitly accept assertions that science itself has not proven. Several areas of science are speculative, based on hypotheses usually not subject to testing and scientific proof. Mr. Wilson explains: "The difficulty of testing hypotheses in the social sciences has led to an abbreviation of the scientific method in which this step is simply omitted. Plausible hypotheses are merely set down as facts without further ado. To a certain deplorable extent this same practice occurs in medicine as well" (ibid., pp. 26-27). The same is true of evolution and geologic history. "Most events with which geologists deal were not directly witnessed or recorded by anyone [except the biblical record of Noah's Flood, which scientists do not accept] and cannot be repeated at our convenience like a chemical experiment. For this reason, the usual methods of scientific proof involving experiments that can be repeated and mathematically analyzed are not applicable" (Essentials of Earth History, by William Stokes, 1960, p. 5). "If the facts are not sufficient to justify immediate and positive answers, the investigator may have to substitute a theory or 'educated guess' until additional information is discovered" (ibid., p. 3). Unfortunately, many of these theories and "educated guesses" become accepted as fact and are even taught as such in schools. The fact is, according to Mr. Stokes: "They [scientists] had to decide whether the physical world had originated in its entirety within the very short time span suggested by Genesis [a misinterpretation of Genesis 1:1-2] or had required a much larger period.... The idea [of uniformitarianism — that natural forces presently working can explain the past] emerged as a reaction against the time-honored and almost universal belief that the earth and its physical features are products of mysterious and supernatural events [creation and Noah's Flood].... "Since an infinite variety of things could [presumably] have happened in an infinity of time, some thinkers were led [not by scientific fact or proofs] to believe that man and his world are merely chance occurrences among all manner of other possible occurrences. If, however, the period of time involved was short or limited, the problems of explaining the development of the universe become more difficult and factors other than chance must be "considered" (ibid., pp. 30-31).
Human wisdom foolishness with God
Factors other than chance must be considered indeed! Theories of science falsely so called often ignore and even contradict proven natural laws. The theory that life could come from nonlife was conclusively disproven by the famous French scientist, Louis Pasteur. Biogenesis — that life comes only from living things — became recognized as a law. Yet evolutionists do not accept biogenesis as a law, despite the fact that all scientific research and evidence supports it.
Why has God allowed man to go his own way — to produce his own knowledge, set up his own laws and govern himself? It is not God's desire that men suffer. He is allowing man to taste for himself the fruits of obedience or disobedience.
Scientists and philosophers concede that with the existing laws, it would be impossible for life to begin without a Creator or greater power or intelligence. However, they propose an alternative "materialism hypothesis" that says the laws did not come into existence until after matter became organized, by chance processes, to higher levels in some stepwise fashion. The biased attitude of many scientists is reflected in the statement of Norman Newell, a paleobiologist at the American Museum of Natural History in New York, "Creationist views are filled with naivete, falsehood and pseudoscience," and that of John W. Patterson, an engineering professor at Iowa State University: "Committed religious believers in general, and creationists in particular, are the enemies of higher education because they cannot seek an honest, critical. inquiry into nature. They must be drawn into open and highly visible confrontation with capable scientists who will candidly expose them and their views for what they really are" (U.S. News & World Report, June 9, 1980, pp. 80-81). God challenged Job's vanity when He asked him, "Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? Declare, if thou hast understanding." Job could only reply, "Behold, I am vile; what shall I answer thee?" (Job 38:4, 40:4). God warns those who would trust in human wisdom: "Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you seemeth to be wise in this world, let him become a fool, that he may be wise. For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, He taketh the wise in their own craftiness. And again, The Lord knoweth the thoughts of the wise, that they are vain. Therefore let no man glory in men" (I Cor. 3:18-21). "For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold [suppress] the truth in unrighteousness; Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools... And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are, not convenient" (Rom. 1:18-22, 28).
Man's greatest experiment
Man is about to complete the greatest experiment he has ever undertaken. It is far more sophisticated and grandiose than all medical research, geologic studies and space programs put together. This experiment has been carried out in the most scientific manner possible. It has been repeated countless times in completely random fashion, generation after generation. By the time this experiment is finished, it will yield the most conclusively proven result ever discovered by man. This colossal experiment has profoundly affected every man, woman and child who ever lived. Countless wars have been waged and multiple millions mutilated or killed for the purpose of testing the basic hypothesis of this experiment. Millions more have died from famine and pestilence for the same reason, not to mention the crimes, upset lives, broken homes and other untold miseries resulting from it. The results have always been the same, yet plans are now in motion for the grand finale — the epitome of all experiments, as the final attempt to prove the original hypothesis. Mankind's greatest experiment has been the attempt to prove that God is wrong — that His laws and Word are not valid. The same lie Satan foisted on Adam and Eve. But 6,000 years of research and experimentation have proven the opposite — the results have always been just as God said they would. What greater scientific proof of God's Word could there be than 6,000 years of human experience? Yet Paul warned, "that in the last days perilous times shall come.... men shall be... Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth" (II Tim. 3:1-2,7). Why has God allowed man to go his own way — to produce his own knowledge, set up his own laws and govern himself? It is not God's desire that men suffer. But to produce righteous, godly character, He is allowing man to taste for himself the fruits of obedience or disobedience. "See, I have set before thee this day life and good, and death and evil... therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live" (Deut. 30:15, 19). God wants men to choose obedience. (Deut. 5:29). There are two ways to prove God's Word. One is to believe and obey it, and enjoy the promised blessings. The other way is to reject and disobey God's Word, and suffer the consequences. Sadly, mankind in general, deceived by Satan, has chosen the second method.
Proving true science
How can we discern true science from science falsely so called? David gives the key: "Thou through thy commandments hast made me wiser than mine enemies: for they are ever with me. I have more understanding than all my teachers: for thy testimonies are my meditation. I understand more than the ancients, because I keep thy precepts.... Through thy precepts I get understanding: therefore I hate every false way" (Ps. 119:98-100, 104). And in Psalm 111:10, "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom: a good understanding have all they that do his commandments." God's Word is truth (John 17:17). All truth begins with God, who made all things. True science does not conflict with God's Word. In fact, true science corroborates, substantiates and further proves God's Word. Science begins with the observation of selected parts of nature. Scientists merely discover and describe what God made, and define the physical laws He set in motion. A botanist observes and describes plants. Chemists and physicists search out knowledge concerning energy and matter. But it is God who made and upholds the laws. Scientists can describe what God has created, but not how, when or what the universe was created from. Mr. Stokes admits, "Geologists cannot conclusively verify by experiment or prove by observation their conclusions regarding the age of the earth" (Essentials of Earth History, p. 11). Mr. Jastrow concurs: "The scientists' pursuit of the past ends in the moment of creation. Who or what put the matter and energy into the universe? Was the universe created out of nothing, or was it gathered together out of preexisting materials? ... science cannot answer these questions. Now we would like to pursue that inquiry further back in time, but the barrier seems insurmountable. For the scientist who has lived by his faith in the power of reason, the story ends like a bad dream. He has scaled the mountains of ignorance; he is able to conquer the highest peak; as he pulls himself over the final rock, he is greeted by a band of theologians who have been sitting there for centuries" ("Have Astronomers Found God?"). Paul explains, "Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear" (Heb. 11:3). God's Word says, "The secret things belong unto the Lord our God: but those things which are revealed belong unto us and to our children for ever, that we may do all the words of this law" (Deut. 29:29). Solomon, one of the wisest men who ever lived, expended all his energy "to seek and search out by wisdom concerning all things that are done under heaven" (Eccl. 1:13). In his proverbs he noted, "It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honour of kings is to search out a matter" (Prov. 25:2). Solomon offered the conclusion of the whole matter — the basis of true science and successful living: "Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man. For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil" (Eccl. 12:13-14).