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"And he said, Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of. And Abraham rose up early in the morning, and saddled his ass, and took two of his young men with him, and Isaac his son, and clave the wood for the burnt offering, and rose up, and went unto the place of which God had told him." (Gen.22:2-3)
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HOME CALL
Br. Samuel Babu, Believers Brethren Assembly, (BBA), Majlis - Bahrain For the last few days, we have been relentlessly praying for Br. Samuel Babu, who suffered Cardiac Problems and was admitted in Salmaniya Medical Complex, Bahrain. It was well pleasing for our Lord to call HIS child to the Eternal Home, where there is no pain, no sorrow, no tears, no sickness and no death. He went to be with the LORD around 10:30 PM Bahrain Time today (Friday 23rd 2015). Let us uphold the grieving family members to the Throne of Grace. May the Lord bestow upon them heavenly Grace, Peace and strength and console them with the word of God.
 
 
 
BIBLE & SCIENCE

BIBLE AND MODERN SCIENCE

Examination of Some Passages - 2 (Part-2)

Dr. Johnson C. Philip, ThD, PhD, DSc

 

XVIII) METALLURGY: Several metallurgical processes are mentioned in the Bible, some of them with striking modern-day parallels. e.g, "Surely there is a vein for the silver, and a place for gold where they find it. Iron is taken out of the earth and brass is molten out of the stone". (Job 28 : 1-2).

The above passage shows that Job, as far back as about 1700 B.C., knew clearly the how and what of metals extracted out of the earth.

XIX) THE EARTH'S INTERIOR: Today we know that in all probability the interior of the earth is made up of molten metals. People of Job's time (C 1700 B.C.), who held the earth to be flat, just could not have imagined a molten core for it. Yet Job seems to identify the very molten core when he says about the earth; "and under it is turned up as it were fire". (Job 28:56).

XX) SOME HABITS OF OSTRICH: "Gavest thou the goodly wings to the peacocks ? or wings and feathers unto the Ostrich ? Which leaveth her eggs in the earth, and warmeth them in

and forgetteth that the foot may crush them, or that the wild beast may break them. She is hardened against her young ones, as though they were not hers: her labour is in vain without fear;

Because God hath deprived of wisdom, neither hath he imparted to her understanding. What time she lifteth up herself on high, she scorneth the horse and his rider". (Job 39:13-18).

The above passage gives a detailed description of the Ostrich life history, nesting habits, care of the young, intelligence and speed. Each detail has been challenged by one or more ornithologists.

In reality, the Ostrich makes a hole in sand, lays her eggs and covers them (Vs. 4). Many a time she tramples them, and jackals, wild cats and other animals attack them (Vs. 16). It has been found that on occasions Ostriches can be cruel to their chicks (Vs. 16). At first, Ostrich seems to be wise, but over-all it is full of foolish habits (Vs. 17) and therefore in Arabic fables it is portrayed as a foolish bird. In Africa the Ostriches often eat prickly pear foolishly and die; also it often breaks its legs by foolish running; their violent reaction on seeing dogs frequently leads to their death; cock-fights frequently prove fatal. and it has been observed (when domesticated) to foolishly swallow lighted cigarettes and cigars.

The speed of the Ostrich is well-known, and they can definitely defeat horses (Vs. 18). There is an amazing thing in this passage. Even in the twentieth century people believe the fable that Ostriches bury their head in the sand when faced with a storm. But Job's account is correct even in this detail that it omits any such fable.

XXI) THE ENTROPY: "Of the old hast thou laid the foundation of the earth: and the heavens are the works of thy hands. They shall perish, but thou shalt endure: Yea, all of them shall vax old like a garment; as a vesture shall thou change them, and they shall be changed." (Psalms 102:25-27)

Using the everyday analogy of new garments eventually turning into useless rags, the writer of this Psalm explains what is going on in our universe. Ancient philosophies, like the ones from Greece, and also the modern "steady-state" theory maintain that the universe is unchanging and eternal. According to them, the universe was always here and it will always remain here exactly as it is today. All such theories have been generally abandoned today.

In spite of such theories, which were popular even in ancient times, the writer of the psalm states that matter is not eternal. The Universe is running down every day and after some finite interval of time it will become "useless" like a rag.

The second law of thermodynamics, developed rigorously in the past one century, is a firmly established law. A Consequence of this law is that everything in our Universe is running down. This process is irreversible and one day, like rags, the Universe will die an "entropy death".

The entropy-death is a firmly established principle and there are many more Biblical passages that affirm the same fact.

XXII)THE EMBRYO: "For thou hast possessed my reins: thou has covered me in my mother's womb. I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well. My substance was not hid from thee when I was made in secret, and curiously wrought in the lowest parts of the earth. Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being unperfect and in thy book all my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when as yet there was none of them". (Psalms 139;13-16).

The above passage poetically, but accurately, describes some aspects of the embryonic growth. The accuracy of these statements should be contrasted with the scientific views described below.

Till a few decades ago two views were current about embryonic development of organisms. One was called the Pre-Formation theory, the other the theory of Epigenesis. The Pre-Formation theory, widely circulated for the first time in the last century, taught that the human reproductive cells carried a tiny, but whole, human inside it. They claimed that this tiny human called "homoneucleus" could be seen under the microscope. They taught that this microscopic individual grew to become the body of the child.

The Epigenesis believers thought the above theory to be false. They taught that inside the human reproductive cells there was only shapeless material that could form many more cells that would finally become a human being.

Modern biology has confirmed the truth of Epigenesis theory. We know for sure that reproductive cells do not have tiny replicas of men; they have a chemical compound known as DNA which stores all the information necessary for the formation of a human being. This is in striking agreement with the Biblical statements which say that the original substance was "unperfect" which were then fashioned into a form which it did not have before.

XXIII) THE ANT: "Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise; Which having no guide overseer, or ruler, provideth provideth her meat in the summer, and gathereth her food in the harvest".(Proverbs 6:6-8).

Modern zoology has discovered many social insects, chief among which are the ants and the bees. Most species of ants live an ordered life, though they have no guides or overseers just as is mentioned in the Bible.

Verse eight quoted above was attacked by many who said that it was an error to say that the ant "provideth her meat in the summer, and gathereth her food in the harvest". But Entomologists working in Palestine have discovered the presence of "agricultural ants" which not only feed on seeds, but also harvests them; if a heavy rain makes their seed-stores wet, they bring the seeds up to the surface to prevent sprouting.

There are still other ants who prepare the soil for crop, plant seeds, keep the field free of weeds and reap the harvest. Clearly, it was the critics and their scientific knowledge which was behind the times, and not the statement of Solomon.

XXIV)BIRD-MIGRATION: "Yea, the stark in the heaven knoweth her appointed times; and the turtle and crane and the swallow observe the time of their coming; but my people know not the judgment of the LORD". (Jeremiah 8:7)

In the above verse, the prophet was speaking about recognizing the times and seasons, and for this he chose a very good example -- the migratory birds. The migration of birds has been studied in detail in this century, but still it remains a puzzle for us. No scientific theory has been able to explain this behaviour satisfactorily.

Due to some reasons which are unknown yet, many species of birds migrate every year at definite times and seasons. Even though the prophet wrote the above verse hundreds of years before Christ, he was accurate scientifically.

XXV) CHEMICAL REACTION: "Like one who takes away a garment on a cold day. Or like vinegar poured on soda, Is one who sings songs to a heavy heart". (Proverbs 25:20, N.I.V.)

Today all science students know that mixing of most of the common bases and acids evolves Carbon-dioxide. The above verse uses the same idea when it implies that the Carbon-dioxide which evolves when vinegar (acid) is poured upon soda (base) is similar to trouble-making.

XXVI)THE WIND CYCLE: "The wind goeth towards the south, and turneth about unto the north; it whirleth about continually, and the wind returneth again according to his circuits". (Ecclesiastes 1:6-7)

Air currents cannot be seen by the eyes. They need special instruments for detection. Due to this difficulty, a satisfactory theory of wind-currents of the world could be formed only after wind-flow data from the whole of the northern hemisphere and the tropics was collected.

Around the equator there is a zone where air rises due to the heating from the direct rays coming from the sun at that position. This hot air rises and moves towards the north. There it comes down, pushing the air there southwards. This cycle goes on continually and is called the North-East Trade-winds.

For science, such knowledge of the wind-cycles is of recent origin only. Yet the inspired records mention the same thing with unquestionable accuracy. When heated air rises at the south, cold air from the north rushes in to fill the void. The hot southern wind goes to the cold north, carrying moisture, and replenishes the rivers at their sources.

XXVII) THE RAIN CYCLE: "All the rivers run into the sea; yet the sea is not full; unto the place from whence the rivers come, thither they return again". (Ecclesiastes 1:7).

The "rain-cycle" is a phenomenon known even to school children today. But our knowledge of such a cycle is not older than merely a few centuries. At the time of king Solomon, who wrote the above passage, rain was a mystery for people. They did not know of its natural cycle.

Most ancient civilizations had conceived of rain-gods who made rain at their wish. Many such stories were popular at the time of Solomon, but his writings do not show any influence of those myths. He simply tells that there is a cycle of evaporation and rain that keeps all in a balanced state.

In the book of job we find an equally fascinating and accurate description of rain and related phenomena. It says, "For he maketh small the drops of water : they pour down rain according to the vapour thereof. Which the clouds do drop and distil upon man abundantly. Also can any understand the spreading of the clouds, or the noise of his tabernacle ? Behold, he spreadeth his light upon it, and covereth the bottom of the sea". (Job 36:27-30).

The above verses give an accurate summary of the rain-cycle involving evaporation, condensation, and precipitation. There are many more passages in the Bible which are in accord with modern hydrology and meteorology.

XXVIII) THE SPHERICITY OF EARTH: For a long time people used to think that the earth is flat. It was not considered safe for ships to venture beyond the pillars of Hercules (at the entrance to the straits of Gibraltar) into the Atlantic ocean because at the boundary of the flat earth the ship would fall into the abyss. However, Bible teaches no such error. In Isaiah 40:22 the "circle of the earth" is mentioned in connection with its shape. The word KHUG used in Hebrew refers to a spherical body.

We infer the same from the Lord Jesus when He spoke in Luke 17:34 to 36 about His second coming. This coming was to be instantaneous yet He said, "I tell you, in that night there shall be two men in bed, the one shall be taken and the other shall be left. Two women shall be grinding together; the one shall be taken the other left. Two men shall be in the field; the one shall be taken and the other left". (Luke 17:34-36)

The Lord Jesus said that He will come in a moment yet three activities corresponding roughly with morning noon and night have been shown to take place at the same moment. Obviously, the reference is to the spherical earth on which alone simultaneity of such events is possible.

XXIX)MATTER AND ENERGY: "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". (Hebrews 11:3)

Speaking of the material universe, the above passage explains that the things which we seen in the universe are made of entities which are not apparent. A few generations ago the above statement would have looked ridiculous because their science told them that "all things could be accurately and completely described in terms of mechanical laws and models with which they were familiar". This view was refuted only with further growth of science.

Today we know that electricity, magnetism, heat, gravity, and many other phenomenon connected with things "that are seen" are themselves "things that are not seen". Moreover, all of the matter is ultimately energy which cannot be seen.

Conclusion

When the Bible is interpreted properly, there is no conflict between its statements and the proven facts of science.

 

 
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