In our last post, we considered the random events that led to our existence today. All those ancestors, all those relationships, all those unpredictable developments!
Now let’s make this more personal.
Where did you come from?
How did your existence begin?
Science provides a satisfying, fascinating answer to that question. We know that sperm from your dad impregnated an egg from your mom. That moment was the beginning of your story.
But wait—is that biblical? Doesn’t the Bible say God formed us?
Check out these verses:
You clothed me with skin and flesh, and knit me together with bones and sinews. | Job 10:11
You formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. | Psalm 139:13-14
…I formed you in the womb… | Jeremiah 1:5
What’s going on?
Genetics—does it undermine the Bible?
Should we reject science’s explanation for where babies come from because of what the Bible says?
Clearly, that would be a bad idea.
Given our modern scientific understanding of how conception happens, it is best not to read the above Bible verses as if they are biological facts.
Forcing someone to choose between what the Bible says and what science says about conception would be a mistake. You don’t have to accept only one of them. You can (and should) appreciate the findings of modern science while also believing that God created you.
As Christians, it’s okay to acknowledge that the authors of the Bible did not understand conception as well as we do. They didn’t know about DNA, eggs, and zygotes. (Back then people thought the man planted the “seed” into the woman’s “garden”, and that seed then grew into a baby. They did not realize that sperm from the man fertilizes an egg inside the woman. The biblical authors also thought infertility was the woman’s—never the man’s—fault.)
So where does that leave us?
Think again about the question. “Where did you come from?”
Science says, “Sperm impregnated an egg.”
Faith says, “God created me.”
Two different descriptions of the same event. We know the first one through science, we believe the second one by faith.
What does that tell us?
Yes, science and faith can work together.
You do not have to either believe the Bible or believe science. As this example of conception shows, you can believe both.
(We’ll explore this fascinating concept further in our next post. Stay tuned.)
Key takeaway: the question, “Where did you come from?” provides a helpful case study of how science and faith can work together to answer questions in a complimentary, compatible way
Welcome to Science and Scripture, where we seek to read the Bible in a healthy way by respecting the worldviews of the biblical authors. Click here to read more about our new science and faith initiative.