We are in the process of developing a course called “Beautiful Harmony – Scriptures and Science”. We intend to submit the course for inclusion in the YouVersion suite of applications and make it available freely to others as well. We are developing this course here in the open because it is a simple way to collect our ongoing thoughts and because it gives you an opportunity to provide feedback in the process.
Beautiful Harmony – Scriptures and Science
This course will attempt to explain the beautiful harmony that can be found between the Holy Scriptures of the Bible and the findings of modern science. To keep things simple, we will focus primarily on the first chapter of Genesis, the beautiful summary of the creation of our universe, the earth, creatures and mankind. This one chapter captures highlights of the different stages of creation, which we will explain more fully in this course.
Our Multifaceted Genius God
We need to begin with some background about our God, the Creator of this vast and beautiful universe and all that is good within it. As can be seen from creation, our Creator obviously delights in great diversity in the universe. And it is a diversity bathed in beauty and wonder. God is not only the Creator of the beautiful physical universe, but our God is also the Creator of our souls, spirits, and minds that allow us to appreciate the beauty and wonder of this vast universe. In human terms, we can say that God is so much beyond genius, since human geniuses only glimpse a small part of the creation that God has made.
God is also the Creator of communication, language being a chief means of communication that can be kept as a somewhat permanent record over historical time periods. And so it is no surprise that our language can have sometimes very clear and sometimes very subtle meanings – to enable the various purposes of communication. So, God is multifaceted in the many different aspects of creation.
So, it is not surprising that our multi-faceted, genius God has used language for Genesis 1 that can be interpreted and has been interpreted on many different levels. Genesis 1 has been interpreted as beautiful poetry for our soul. Genesis 1 has been interpreted as an origin story about who we are essentially as human beings, made in God’s image. Genesis 1 has been interpreted as a lesson about our place within creation, as care-takers of the earth and everything that has the breath of life. For the last century or so, however, mankind has missed out on the harmony between Genesis 1 and science. But now, we are coming to appreciate that Genesis 1 can also be interpreted as an accurate, high level summary that matches some of the events that science now describes as happening during the creation of the universe and the transformation of the earth and the development of life. There are many books and writings that focus on Genesis as poetry, as our origin story, and as describing our responsibility as care-takers of this earth. But the harmony between Genesis 1 and science is not yet a story that is widely understood. So, explaining that harmony between Genesis 1 and contemporary science is the focus of this short course.