Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Science and Naturalism

I opened this year's (Bend, OR) Apologetics Guild luncheon series today with a talk on "Science and Naturalism." We discovered that there is no historical, philosophical, or scientific justification for bringing a naturalistic worldview or approach to science. Indeed, we saw that, as Alvin Plantinga asserts,
Modern science was conceived, and born, and flourished in the matrix of Christian theism. Only liberal doses of self-deception and double-think, I believe, will permit it to flourish in the context of Darwinian naturalism.
I hope to make both the PowerPoint and the audio portion of my talk available for download and listening, and will let my readers know when those are available.

There is one thing, which bears upon this question, that I didn't have time to share. I'll do that now (for those of you who heard my talk, consider this bonus coverage).

I cannot think of a single scientific discipline--except for evolution itself--in which understanding biological evolutionary theory (macroevolution) has any practical value for conducting research. One can be a top-notch chemist, physicist, geologist, astronomer, ecologist, conservation biologist, biochemist, medical researcher, or what have you, and never let biological evolutionary theory cross one's mind. Likewise, the research carried out in any and all of these disciplines contributes nothing to understanding or advancing evolutionary theory.

Richard Dawkins is so enamored with evolution that he believes that if superintelligent beings from elsewhere in the universe ever make contact with us, the first question they will ask is "Have you discovered evolution yet?"

But if biological evolution is of such central importance to science--if, indeed, it is the imagined success of evolutionary theory that has caused us to unwisely accept a naturalistic approach to science generally--then why can research in all of the other scientific disciplines be conducted without any reference to it?


Anonymous said...

I posted this comment before, but no response. I'll post it again. :)

Rick - "The very philosophical presuppositions that allowed the scientific revolution come from a biblical understanding of the world."

Does this statement commit the fallacy of association?

(Specifically the fallacy of
"Honor by association")

Did they actually come from it or is it possible that most of these great minds of the scientific revolution culturally happened to be Christians?

Rick Gerhardt said...


I remember your comment, and addressed it in the next post (Feb. 6, 2007). I'll repost that one now, and if you're not satisfied with my response, let me know.

Thanks for reading.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Rick, I went back and found your detailed response to my question.