Science in Christian Perspective


A Golden Moment

J.W. Haas, Jr.
Gordon College
Wenham MA 01984

From: Perspectives on Science and Christian Faith 50:4 (December 1998): 295.

The half-century of our Journal has seen such enormous advances in understanding the natural world that few are now able to grasp even the broadest sense of the current picture. New disciplines and technologies have emerged at a breath-taking frequency. A burgeoning scientific force and new, rapid, automated methods for obtaining data demand more and fatter journals. We now are specialists within our speciality.

The same blossoming of knowledge and number of participants has taken place in the field of science and religionˇa discipline that hardly existed fifty years ago. There is a long tradition of essayists and book writers on science and religion themes but the recent upsurge of journals, books, organizations, and conferences would have been unimaginable to the few who founded this Journal.

Their vision wisely included the social sciences (psychology, psychiatry, sociology, and anthropology) as grist for the JASA mill along with the traditional physical sciences and the contributions of philosophers and biblical scholars. New fields and their attendant questions have quickly drawn the attention of our writers while the old chestnut "evolution" continues to provoke much discussion. The sidebar comments of British biologist Thomas Huxley and ASA Founder F. Alton Everest draw attention to our task and the way that we should carry it out. The minefield of public policy is one that should cause us to practice particular restraint in proclaiming the Christian responseˇwhether on global warming, cloning, nuclear power, dietary practices, or the next issue on the horizon.

As we contemplate the next half-century, it seems that ethical questions will be of increasing importance both in the possibilities offered through the advance of science and in the way that science is carried out. PSCF will continue to be of value only through the perceptive analysis of issues and articulate presentation to a diverse audience.

Our anniversary issue offers something old and something new. We welcome your response.