Scriptural Physics has the following characteristics:
Scriptural Physics seeks to find a fundamental underlying physical reality that is usually invisible and not experienced directly. In this sense it has much in common with the biblical conception of faith which depends on "evidence of things not seen." And like faith, the reality often turns out to be something unexpected, something contrary to outward appearances.
- The methodology of Scriptural Physics is largely inductive instead of deductive. That is, it proceeds inferentially from particular to general. It begins with specific facts and then tries to infer powerful principles that would encompass these facts and perhaps predict the existence of other phenomena yet undiscovered. In this regard, Scriptural Physics is rather ordinary, and not unlike the so-called scientific method, or even just plain old common sense.
- Scriptural Physics uses ordinary principles of biblical interpretation. Whatever the Bible meant to people of ancient times, it is taken to have basically the same meaning for us today. Likewise, what it did not mean to them, it does not mean to us today. This is required by the fact that the Bible was written in a historical manner anchored to real people and common, human circumstances. It was clearly not about physics, and because a scripture cannot mean today what it never meant in the first place, there is no point in looking for "secret messages that were concealed by the Holy Spirit in ancient times for the modern physicist" (or gamblers, fortune-tellers, etc., etc.)
- Scriptural Physics does not use "miraculous revelation" from God. The Scriptural Physicist acquires knowledge the old fashioned way: he works for it!
Biblical principles central to Scriptural Physics include the following:
Principle #1: The Physical Universe is worthy of study.
"He seals the hand of every man, that all men may know His work . . . Stand and consider the wonders of God. Do you know how God establishes them?" (Job 37:7, 14-15)
"The heavens are telling of the glory of God; and their expanse is declaring the work of His hands. Day to day pours forth speech, and night to night reveals knowledge. There is no speech, nor are there words; Their voice is not heard. . . . How many are your works, O Lord! In wisdom you made them all." (Psalm 19:1-3, NASB, 104:24, NIV)
"Great are the works of the Lord; They are studied by all who delight in them" (Psalm 111:2)
Principle #2: The Physical Universe is intrinsically reasonable, understandable, and accessible to man.
"What may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. For since the creation of the world God's invisible qualitieshis eternal power and divine naturehave been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse" (Romans 1:19-20, NIV)
"Do you know the ordinances of the heavens? . . . Where is the way that the light is divided? . . . Where is the way to the dwelling of light?" (Job 38:33, 24, 19; Note that these are "physical" questions, and that they are also "fair" questions that must have answers that are understandable by mankind.)
"All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work." (2Timothy 3:16-17)
"The anointing you received from [God] abides in you, and you have no need for anyone to teach you; but . . . His anointing teaches you about all things, and is true and is not a lie" (1John 2:27; John 14:26))
"walk as children of light for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness and righteousness and truth" (Ephesians 5:8-9)
"His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness" (2 Peter 1:3)
"Those who seek the Lord understand all things" (Proverbs 28:5; See also Proverbs 1:7, 29-33, 9:10, Psalm 111:10)
"The Lord will give you understanding in everything." ( 2Timothy 2:7)
"He has made everything beautiful in it time. Also He has put eternity in their hearts, except that no one can find out the work that God does from beginning to end." (Ecclesiastes 3:11, NKJ)
"I applied my heart to know, to search and seek out wisdom and the reason of things . . ." (Ecclesiastes 7:25)
Principle #3: The Bible outlines principles that pertain to perception of the invisible.
"Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. . . . By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible." (Hebrews 11:1-3, NKJ; Hebrews 11 goes on to give examples such as that of Moses who "endured as seeing Him who is invisible." )
See "Perceiving the Invisible" in Make Sure of All Things
Principle #4: The Bible outlines principles that pertain to obtaining reliable knowledge.
"The naive believes everything. But the prudent man considers his steps" (Proverbs 14:15)
"Test the spirits to see whether they are from God (1 John 4:1-3)
"Examine yourselves . . . Test yourselves" (2Cor 13:5)
"Do not be carried away by varied and strange teachings" (Hebrews 13:9)
For a fuller exposition, see "Examine Everything Carefully . . . " in Make Sure of All Things
Scriptural Physics is an intersection of physics and biblical principles. To many people, it will seem like an odd combinationlike the combination of a can-opener with a mouse trap. How could you use such a contraption? It is also unfamiliar and suffers from a lack of context that allows you to "fill in the blanks." Suppose you knew nothing about "brushing your teeth" but someone briefly explained it to you. The explanation made sense, but what do you do with the toothpaste in your mouth? Swallow it? It tastes good, after all. Or spit it out? Or if you have never seen an onion and someone tells you "An onion is food," then should you eat one like an apple?
Scriptural Physics suffers from the same sort of problems. For example, in my view, the atom is really what we are currently calling the nucleus. That is, the atom does not have a nucleus. Rather, the atom is the nucleus. But this raises all sorts of other questions, and I cannot even hope to discuss them. And what about Quantum Mechanics? Isn't there quite a large body of evidence supporting its validity? But if you are a Christian and you accept it, then how do you handle topics like action-at-a-distance, matter waves, tunneling, the uncertainty principle, and a host of other very strange, bizarre concepts?
To address this problem, I have included another article at this website, Make Sure of All Things. It is about my personal experiences in dealing with blind spots, illusions, "strange teachings" and deceptions in orthodox Christianity. It illustrates principles of interpretation, rules of evidence, obviation of controversies, and methods of perceiving the invisible. It also give insights on how Christians may handle hyper-difficult and hyper-complex problems. Although it is a long article, my email indicates it has been highly readable, both by Christians and non-Christians alike.
I hope you enjoy it too!
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"Physics is like a religion. It is founded
on the belief that there is reason in nature which the human mind is capable of fathoming.
The articles of faith are that the natural world is fundamentally interesting, that the effort to understand it is worthy of pursuit,
and that the pursuit will be made despite all obstacles. It is a demanding religion, but initiation is open to all."
(Waves and Grains: reflections on light and learning, Mark P. Silverman, 1998, p. 405)
"To live in the presence of great truths and eternal
lawsthat is what keeps a man patient when
the world ignores him and calm and unspoiled when the world praises him." (Honore Balzac)