Yesterday during a sermon the speaker talked about one of the many reasons why he believes that the Bible is the real, factual, word of God and the actual historical accounts of God’s people. He pointed out something I’ve known for a while but haven’t thought much about in detail: There is science in the Bible. I’ll share the speaker’s examples.
In the Bible there are often words that are specifically masculine, feminine, or neutral. When translating Hebrew and Greek into the more neutral English, sometimes those details can be lost, but in cases where the gender of a word is strong, the translators will try to be sure they express that. In Proverbs 6:6 the sluggard is told to go to the ant, and the ant is referred to as feminine. Until we had ways to look closely at ants, we didn’t really have a way of knowing that all the worker ants in a colony are female.
In Isaiah 40:22 it talks about the circle of the earth, in a time before humanity figured out that the world has no edges, is not flat, and you can’t fall off of it.
This next part is my favorite. In the book of Job when God is talking to Job, God refers to the universe He created, pointing out that Job wasn’t there when He made it and has no idea how a lot of it works. During part of this conversation in Job 38:32-33, God mentioned constellations that Job could see, but humanity has only recently been able to truly see the implications of what God had asked Job. During the sermon we talked specifically about Pleiades, Orion’s belt, and Arcturus. Through astral observatories, math, and algorithms, we can tell what stars and constellations looked like thousands or even millions of years ago, and what they will look like thousands and millions of years into the future. Many constellations change and even disappear over time, but some stars are particularly curious. The stars of Pleiades are all travelling at the same rate in the same direction (“Can you bind the sweet influences [or ties] of Pleiades?”). The belt of Orion stays the same over time, still recognizable after other constellations drift into entirely different positions (“Or loose the bands of Orion?”). Arcturus is the front of a stream of stars that all travel the same direction, like ducklings following a mother duck (“Can you guide Arcturus with his sons?”). I wonder how much of this Job could fully grasp.
Since God made everything from the ant to the motions of the cosmos, should it really surprise us that God’s book talks about these things before even most humans fully realize what they mean? Should it surprise us that God can tell us even more if we will only ask for His wisdom? Should it be strange to us that the One who made and knows the details of something as small as an ant also cares about us? Should it strike us as odd that the One who set the intricacies of cosmic motion in place and knows them at all times can also set and fully know the intricacies of existential or life’s motion?
Science As God
God Invented It
The Ageless One with an Age
Outside of and Unbound by Time
God and the Complete Context of Time
The Infinite Nature of God
God Has Made Himself Reachable