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Science and Faith: Friends or Foes? Paperback – October 15, 2003
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"Collins maps the entire interface between faithful biblical interpretation and questions of all sorts posed in the name of the sciences. Interesting, fair-minded, shrewd, and clear from start to finish, this will prove outstanding as a pastoral resource."
—J. I. Packer, Board of Governors' Professor of Theology, Regent College
"There is something here for just about everyone. Science and Faith is required reading for all who are interested in the relationship between science and the Christian faith."
—J. P. Moreland, Distinguished Professor of Philosophy, Biola University; author, The Soul: How We Know It’s Real and Why It Matters
"This is a highly significant book on possibly the most important subject confronting the church today-the neutrality of science. A delightful style makes it easily accessible yet the author never neglects important issues. It is the best book of its kind for decades."
—Ranald Macaulay, Speaker, L'Abri Fellowship; Coordinator, Christian Heritage, Cambridge
"Jack Collins is my kind of guy-a fellow MIT nerd. But he is much more: a brilliant scholar of biblical languages and a keen observer of the interaction between science and the Christian faith. This is a wonderful book, and I recommend it most strongly."
—Henry F. Schaefer III, Professor of Chemistry and Director of the Center for Computational Quantum Chemistry, University of Georgia
About the Author
C. John Collins (PhD, University of Liverpool) is professor of Old Testament at Covenant Theological Seminary in St Louis, Missouri. With degrees from MIT and Faith Evangelical Lutheran Seminary, he pursues such research interests as Hebrew and Greek grammar, science and faith, and biblical theology. He is the author of The God of Miracles, Did Adam and Eve Really Exist?, and Science and Faith.
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Top Customer Reviews
Collins first explains that science is controversially defined, but that it is best viewed as "a discipline in which one studies features of the world around us, and tries to describe his observations systematically and critically." (pg. 34) In his definition of faith, Collins lauds a statement by C. S. Lewis who said, "Faith ... is the art of holding on to things your reason has once accepted, in spite of your changing moods. For moods will change, whatever view your reason takes." (Quoting C.S. Lewis, pg. 38)
Finally he shows their relations and explains what each has concerning truth.
Collins also delves into the public debate, teaching his readers how to think critically about Darwinist arguments. In a chapter entitled, "Culture Wars and Warriors," he critiques the arguments of Darwinists such as Barry Lynn and Eugenie Scott. Lynn, he observes, aims to "mold your emotional reaction" to design proponents by comparing them to "fundamentalists" and proponents of "astrology." Lynn's misrepresentations draw attention to the need for "education that fosters sound critical thinking and keen awareness of rhetoric." (pg. 335) Next Collins scrutinizes the arguments of Eugenie Scott:
"First, she wants you to think that she speaks on behalf of science and scientists--you can see that from how she uses "we." Second, she wants you to think that your religious values--"whodunit" and "ultimate causes"--are safe with her version of science. And third, she uses a harmless definition of evolution that almost no one can be bothered about." (pg.Read more ›
In addition to the time of creation controversy, Collins deals with other issues where science and theology intersect. He favors a "realist" philosophy, according to which we are able to observe the actual universe, and are able to make true inductions from what we observe. He provides an excellent treatment of the doctrine of humanity, including an extensive discussion of the relation of the soul to the body, the mind and the spirit to the brain, and related topics. He discusses the effects of our fall into sin to the "curse" on the earth, and relates it to the promised new heavens and new earth. Collins also offers help in relating Christian theology to the questions of God's providence in the world, to methods of apologetics, and to our relation to the environment. His discussion of the Intelligent Design movement is up-to-date and sensible.
Especially helpful are the extensive notes, unfortunately placed at the end of the book. These notes provide documentation, and interesting expansions of the discussion in the text. Particularly interesting is the full text of the letter by the linguist James Barr, a letter often quoted by recent creationists; this letter does not support the idea of a recent creation in the Bible to the extent touted by recent creationists.
I recommend this book to anyone who is interested in studying the relationship of modern science to the Bible and the Christian faith.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Collins' science-related degrees are not in biology or geology, but electrical engineering. He does not refer to any biology scholars in his prose or in his index or in his... Read morePublished 13 months ago by paradoxical
There is perhaps no other subject more divisive and misunderstood than the intersection of science and religion. Read morePublished 16 months ago by K. Mann
Highly recommended for any high school or college student to get a balanced view of what the sciences really reveal about the universe to counterbalance the "conventional... Read morePublished 20 months ago by Drinian
Another good book from Collins. Collins helps explore foundational issues that are often ignored or just accepted without much thought. Read morePublished on March 20, 2014 by Alabama Cooker
I must confess I have an affinity to works of this nature - they wonder why we wonder - and for this I admire the author's work. Read morePublished on June 10, 2013 by Jasen Tenney
This book must not be confused with the book "The Language of Science and Faith" by Francis S. Collins, a book that would not even be worthy of one star even though written by a... Read morePublished on February 7, 2012 by K. Feucht
Now here is a strange book written by an educated Christian who teaches at a seminary in St. Louis. Collins has come up with the analogical days theory to explain the six days of... Read morePublished on June 14, 2011 by The Brilliant Reviewer
Exceptionally frank and seemingly fearless look at the modern Sciences from the perspective of an MIT-educated electrical engineer turned Old Testament-Hebrew scholar. Read morePublished on September 16, 2009 by A Reader