Religion and Science

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  • Created by: Kescott
  • Created on: 12-06-16 12:53

What is the Biblical Teaching About the Origins of

  • Genesis - Universe made by God out of nothing (2 stories)
  • God planned it all and everything was made exactly to plan
  • Everything exists for a purpose
  • Different species there from beginning
  • Men and women given pride of place - image of God and given the Garden of Eden
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How do Scientists Explain the Origins of the Unive

  • Cosmology - study of the origins of the universe
  • Big Bang - massive explosion 18 billion years ago sending matter and gases flying in all directions. As these cooled formed stars and planets
  • Theory of Evolution
    • Charles Darwin travelled studying plants and animals from different sources
    • All life has common ancestor
    • Organisms adapt to suit conditions
      • Organisms that don't die
      • Organisms that do survive and breed
    • Natural selection
    • Humans evolved - not created in current form
    • Question traditional Christian ideas
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How do the Religious and Scientific Versions Creat

  • Religious
    • Purpose to existence of universe, everyone here for a reason (part of God's plan)
    • World shows pattern so must be designed/created by someone - "the argument of design"
    • William Paley added to this with watch analogy
  • Scientific
    • Here by chance, no reason for it, no plan, might not have happened this way
    • Science will come up with enough evidence to disprove religion entirely
    • Many people combine religious faith with career in science - the more we find out about the world, the more we can learn about God
    • Hawkins thinks act of God triggered Big Bang (Thomas Aquinas "first cause argument")
  • Genesis contradicts scientific ideas about evoluton - species there from start
  • Also contradicts how universe began - no mentioon of expanding always as it is today
  • Baptists - Biblical account sliterally true
  • Others - no contradictionand no general conflict between religion and science
  • "Science asks how things have happened, religion asks why" John Polkinghorne (Christian scientist)
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What do Christians Believe About the Place of Anim

  • People are different as they have souls
  • Other animals made just like plants but Adam made in the image of God - he is special
  • Image of God - people looked like God or humans share something of the nature of God
  • God gives Adam something special - symbolised as breath of God
  • Humans have soul - not die when body dies, lives on after death
  • Human lives are sacred and they have special rights and duties
  • Genesis 1 - animals first humans last
  • Genesis 2 - God made animals and presented to man to be named - people have control over animals
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So How Should Christians Treat Animals?

  • Horrified by cruelty to animals
  • Shocked when animals are used in sport and protest over wearing fur coats - 100 million killed for this a year
  • Choose to be vegetarian - wrong to kill animals for food
  • Humans were originally vegetarians but this changed after floods
  • Animals in scientific research:
    • Some - permissible if helping save humans lives
    • Too dangerous or costly to be carried out on humans
    • CofE - should be monitored
    • MC - Stewards not exploiters
    • Q - way we treat them reflects us and God
    • C:
      • Animals don't have rights, human duties to animals
      • Warn against exaggerated care spent on animals that could limit human suffering
    • All Christian denominations against animal tests for cosmetics
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How do Christians Respond to Environmental Issues?

  • Christian Churches should take some blame for environmental problems
  • Given impression that we should rule over other species - lead to arrogant attitudes, think they can kill animals for fun
  • "look after" "take care of"
  • "subdue"
  • "dominion" - humans are in charge, more important, use up whatever they want
  • Humans are set apart from other animals - made in the image of God
  • Most intelligent species - no right to kill, make animals suffer or destroy God's creation
  • Aware of damage to environment - people failed as responsible stewards
  • Discussion groups and conferences aim to find positive ways the Church can act reducing damage
  • CofE - take steps to minimise pollution, use energy resources carefully, reduce damage to plants and animals and contol population
  • RC - responsibility to think about amount we consume, plan for future generations and consider impact of richer countries on developing nations
  • All agree it's an important part of a Christian's duty to look after the planet, be responsible stewards and show agape to future generations
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What is a "Steward"?

  • The 1st law given to humans was to be "stewards" of the earth
  • Steward - acts in care-taking role - working on behalf of owner, serving others, representing the interests of the most vulnerable, making sure that everything stays as it should be (does not get out of hand) and keeping things safe
  • Care-taking role over earth
  • Told to look after the earthand will be held responsible on the Day of Judgement if it is not in good condition
  • People are in charge of living things but they do not own them - they have to look after God's belongings
  • This is an enormous privilege
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What do Churches Teach About Caring for the Enviro

  • Only take what you need and not persue material wealth
  • Such teachings been ignored and Christains have begun to shoulder their share of the blame
  • Right-wing Christians such as Americans for Prosperity - using up earth's resources as quickly as possible to bring about parousia
  • Share and develop not dominate and exploit
  • Consider welfare of future generations - forward thinking
  • Damage caused by greed of rich countries - some Christians work for Greenpeace or WWF to draw attention to damaging environmental policies from MEDCs
  • Work to conserve the environment:
    • Individual Level - recycling and conserving energy
    • Local Level - pressure on councils to implement initiatives and join campaigns
    • National Level - voting parties promising environmentally friendly policies - governments raising tax on peterol to reduce car use
    • International Level - joining/funding Greenpeace/WWF to work to conserve the environment and protect the environment from big companies BP/Mobil
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