The Language of God by Francis S. Collins began my journey toward an evolutionary view of the Earth’s origins. This brilliant Christian scientist has the perfect blend of expertise and faith to present a well balanced argument. He illustrates the extent to which the wars between science and faith is mostly cultural not epistemological. The matter of our origins does not need to be inflammatory but the religious and scientific communities have used it to further their respective agendas. How Collins manages to work with some of the great scientific minds in America with the Human Genome Project and maintain a healthy, orthodox Christian worldview demonstrates the conflict is not due to a genuine dichotomy. Science and faith are mutually inclusive. The God of science is the God who can be trusted. Why pit God against himself?
Collins led the team that cracked the DNA code during Clinton’s Administration in the early 2000s. His knowledge of these fundamental building blocks of human life informs a Biblical worldview. As Thomas Kuhn’s The Structure of Scientific Revolutions suggests, there is a paradigm shift that is happening in the Christian world concerning the theory of evolution. Darwin’s observations have long been labeled the enemy. Collins illustrates how the DNA evidence suggests human evolution is part of the very fabric of DNA.
The spiritual riches to this realization are that God designed us for change. This fundamental reality of our composition is essential to maintain a healthy understanding of creation. The static nature of funamentalism and conservativism in this area has blinded so many by arguing over an antiquated worldview. Copernicus’ and Galileo’s realizations about the universe took time to accept, but we all see the geocentric theory as archaic. Such a shift is now underway concerning evolutionary theory. A new metaphorical sun is taking center stage and some egos are offended just as they were in the 16th century.
I must admit I felt apprehensive venturing into a worldview where science and faith walk hand in hand together. I sensed on a small scale the fear of perceiving the universe in a new way such as the early heliocentric believers, but it makes the most sense of the Biblical narrative, the scientific evidence and the nature of God to affirm change. I now am proud to see these two necessary components of my life as close associates. Collins argues convincingly that science and faith are necessary partners in a well rounded Christian existence.
Collins also has written Belief: Readings on the Reaons for Faith and The Language of Life: DNA and the Revolution in Personalized Medicine