Sunday, June 29, 2008

"My faith did not come to me through science"

One of the most science friendly apostles of this dispensation explained the origin of man this way:

"Man is the child of God.... He is born in the lineage of Deity, not in the posterity of the brute creation" (James E. Talmage, "The Earth and Man," 1931, 13-14).

Elder Talmage thus speaks against the scientific theory of his day (still current today) about the origin of man's physical body. I thought about Elder Talmage's above quoted statement as I read a blog article on the Word of Wisdom today. The article argues that it is ill-advised to expect that science will prove our faith.

"As a convert, I can see the danger in encouraging people to think that science has (or soon will) prove the veracity of all of our doctrines and practices. It isn't going to (in our lifetimes) and expecting it to is to build on the sandiest of foundations." (Julie M. Smith, Times and Seasons article, June 28, 2008)

One of the comments expanded on Julie Smith's thoughts:

"Though usually someone who believes very strongly in what science has to teach us, relying on it for support to validate eternal principles is truly relying on the 'arm of flesh'. It changes all the time, even if in small increments." (AHLDuke, Times and Seasons comment, June 29, 2008)

President Thomas S. Monson also believes it is ill-advised to expect that science will confirm our faith:

"I acknowledge that I do not understand the processes of creation, but I accept the fact of it. I grant that I cannot explain the miracles of the Bible, and I do not attempt to do so, but I accept God’s word. I wasn’t with Joseph, but I believe him. My faith did not come to me through science, and I will not permit so-called science to destroy it." (Thomas S. Monson, BYU speech, Nov 13, 2007)

On three previous occasions, President Monson said the same thing (click here). So why, I wonder, do so many of us insist that science is right about man having come "in the posterity of the brute creation?"

(read more...)