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Is the bible 100% scientific fact?
Thank you for your question about whether the Bible is 100% scientific fact. It’s a question that more and more people are asking today, as some people say that there are contradictions between what the Bible says and what is taught by many scientists.
I will start answering your question by looking at what the Bible is, and isn’t. The Bible was written over a very long period in ancient history. Modern science has developed over the past two hundred years and is still making new discoveries based on changing even very recent scientific ideas that are now accepted as wrong.
God spoke through the biblical writers using patterns of thought familiar to them in their time. He might have revealed things consistent with modern knowledge - such as that the earth revolves round the sun, or how rain is formed - but they would not have been understood in ancient cultures. For example, Psalm 19:5-6 describes the sun going across the skies each day, yet we would now say scientifically that the earth goes round the sun. Is this an error in the Bible? Of course not. The psalmist simply states what we all see and say ourselves every day. Secondly, the kind of truth God communicated in His revelation is not knowledge for its own sake, especially about how the world works, but about the relationship between Himself, ourselves, and creation: such as why we are alive (to know and serve God) and to understand that the sun, moon and stars, etc. were not supernatural beings to be worshipped (which they were in most ancient cultures) but were part of His creation, as it says in Genesis 1-3.
We also need to realise the difference between literal and other kinds of truth. When it tells us that God is a rock, we don’t assume that he is actually a grey rock sitting on the sand. We understand that it is using a picture to help us understand something about God. Indeed, the Bible is full of poetry, imagery, history, prophecy, and so much more.
While it is not 100% scientific fact, we can say that it is 100% true in everything that it affirms, including everything scientific.
One example of this is the fact that the Bible speaks of the universe having a definite beginning. That has been denied by many scientists but more recently some are claiming that the evidence points to such a beginning.
The Bible tells us that it is the word of God, and that although the books in the Bible were written by men, this was done in such a way that they are also God’s words.
All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness. (2 Timothy 3:16)
For prophecy never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit. (2 Peter 1:21)
We are also told in Scripture that God knows everything, and he cannot lie. Therefore the words of the Bible, in their original languages, are without error and are completely true. So while not everything in the Bible is scientific fact, everything in the Bible is true.
There is this popular myth that the Bible and science are opposed to one another, but it is just a myth. The Bible teaches that because there is a God of order, not chaos, we should expect a universe that is orderly, not chaotic. We can therefore use science to examine this world and marvel at how extravagant and intricate the universe is. Science can therefore help us to give glory and praise to the great God who made it all. Christians should celebrate and love science when it is done rightly, and many Christians have been at the forefront of modern science - and still are.
It is worth noting two other points before finishing this answer to your question. Firstly, science is based on repeatable, measurable, observable data. Much speculation about the origin of the human race is not based on that which is repeatable, measurable and observable, and therefore does not fit with science’s own criteria of what makes good science. If this contradicts the Bible, it might be science that is at fault.
Finally, we should note that although God is never wrong, our interpretation of the Bible can be wrong, and science can be wrong. In the past, many Christians wrongly believed the Bible did teach that the sun went round the earth. Similarly, in the past, many scientific theories have been promoted as fact and have now been found to be inadequate or sometimes completely wrong. We must always approach humbly both our study of the Bible and scientific enquiry, knowing our limitations.
But we must always keep in mind the following:
God is not man, that he should lie, or a son of man, that he should change his mind. (Numbers 23:19)
I do hope this general answer to your question goes some way to helping you find peace with God through Jesus Christ our Lord. If you want to know more about what Jesus has done for you please watch the video on the main part of our site: www.lookingforGod.com
In closing, I want to encourage you to get more involved with your local church. It would be good to speak to a Christian leader or another trusted church individual regarding your question. I know they would be delighted to further answer you as well as offer prayer and support as you continue your spiritual journey:
Please use our Interactive Answer Matrix and feel free to ask another question. Our helpful staff are praying for you and waiting to try and answer to you from the Bible, and will be delighted to tell you more about Jesus Christ the Lord, the Saviour of the world.
Here are some more Bible verses for your further consideration:
- The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork. Day to day pours out speech, and night to night reveals knowledge. There is no speech, nor are there words, whose voice is not heard. Their voice goes out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world. In them he has set a tent for the sun. (Psalm 19:1-4)
- Forever, O Lord, your word is firmly fixed in the heavens. (Psalm 119:89)
- For the word of the Lord is upright, and all his work is done in faithfulness. (Psalm 33:4)
All Scripture references are taken from the English Standard Version of the Holy Bible.
If anything in this answers affects you directly, then please feel free to call our confidential prayer line in the UK on 0845 4567729, where trained Christian volunteers will take your call and pray both for you and with you. If you are outside of the UK then you may submit your request for prayer on line at www.ucb.co.uk/prayerline
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