A Review of the Book Faith @ Science: Why Science Needs Faith in the Twenty-First Century

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Editor's Note: This article originally appeared in the Volume 8, Number 1, Spring 2002 issue of Dignity, the Center’s quarterly publication. Subscriptions to Dignitas are available to CBHD Members. To learn more about the benefits of becoming a member click here.

 

Faith @ Science: Why Science Needs Faith in the Twenty-First Century (by Denyse O'Leary, Winnipeg, Canada: J. Gordon Shilingford Publishing Inc., 2001)

In Faith @ Science: Why Science Needs Faith in the Twenty-First Century, author Denyse O’Leary does an excellent job of covering many important scientific issues that Christians must become informed about and address. This book consists of a compilation of short articles written by O’Leary that cover a wide range of scientific issues from a Christian perspective. In some of these essays, O’Leary actually quotes Scripture, relating it to the issue being discussed. Her articles very clearly explain how Christian faith should affect beliefs about current science and its application to everyday life.

Faith @ Science addresses a broad spectrum of scientific topics. The first section deals with moral dilemmas in our society and the fact that bigger, faster science lacks the power to solve our moral problems. One particularly interesting essay in this section deals with Christian couples who underwent in vitro fertilization and who were advised by their doctors to “selectively reduce” (abort) one or more of their multiple babies. O’Leary considers various cases in which Christian couples were counseled to selectively reduce and discusses the biblical responses of those couples and the reactions of their doctors. She then comments upon the issue of in vitro fertilization in general and its use by Christians and shares ways in which Christian couples have dealt with either the guilt of having selectively reduced or the dilemma resulting from the storage of “extra” frozen embryos following in vitro fertilization.

In the second section of this book, “How Big Are Our Footprints?,” O’Leary includes a compilation of essays regarding how Christians should react to and think about environmental issues. Among other topics, she considers the issues raised by genetically engineered food, including its possible effect on our environment and on the economies of less well-off countries.

The third section of Faith @ Science deals with the myths of evolutionary theory. O’Leary’s essays focus on the “Big Bang” theory, the politics behind the teaching of evolution, and the questionable or inaccurate nature of some of what is being taught as “scientific fact.” These essays are eye-opening, revealing much of the motivation behind why there has been a push in recent years to make the teaching of evolution a very high priority in relation to other scientific topics.

In the fourth section of the book, O’Leary discusses what she terms “The Really Difficult Problems in Faith and Science.” In this section, she outlines and attempts to answer five questions that she believes are crucial for people of faith to confront. These issues include intelligent design and faith and healing

The final portion of Faith @ Science details the exploitation of human life for scientific purposes as seen, for example, in abortion, the trafficking of fetal tissue and body parts, and, most recently, in embryonic stem cell research. The author does an exceptional job in this section.

Overall, I would highly recommend Faith @ Science, especially for the less scientifically-oriented reader. While many books on scientific/bioethical issues delve into the science in too much detail for the average reader, O’Leary has done a wonderful job of presenting her information in a way that makes this book easily readable by anyone. This book is an excellent compilation of essays which cover a widely varied array of topics that must be addressed by Christians as we seek to live godly lives in a post-modern culture.

 

Cite as: Amy B. Coxon, "A Review of the Book Faith @ Science: Why Science Needs Faith in the Twenty-First Century,” Dignity 8, no. 1 (2002): 1, 4–5.

 

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