Today’s guest post comes from Don Sullivan, one of an excellent class of students from Bethel Seminary who recently studied the intersection between theology and science.
A significant part of the last nine weeks of my academic life has been about the intersection of science, (primarily evolution) and theology. Up to this point, and I assume for the remainder of my academic career, I have had very little education in science in general and none in biology. To this day I have never dissected anything, or even seen it done. (How this happened is a long story, but its not because I am squeamish.) So as a pastor for 13+ years the question of evolution has always been about theology and not science. One result of this educational upbringing is that I haven’t dug into the science half of this conversation and couldn’t have really understood it if I had. Another result is that for whatever the reason I haven’t had much of an emotional reaction in this discussion, and at times I have struggled understand why conservative evangelical Christians have gotten so riled up over this, but I have learned that simply telling someone they are overreacting rarely has the desired effect!
We need to be open to discussions about this topic. In the last nine weeks I have heard from multiple sources that the data is what it is and not a matter of interpretation. I find it ironic that as a theologian with little science background, accepting the data of science is, or at least feels, like more of a faith move than interpreting the bible. I am forced to either accept or reject the scientific data as is.