Majority of Evangelical Christians See No Conflict Between Science and Religion.

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A study suggests that the majority of evangelical Christians are not as anti-science, antagonistic to science, or threatened by scientific advancement as they are often seen portrayed as being. This is suggested by a survey presented at a conference organized by AAAS on misconceptions between scientists and members of religious communities.

Professor of sociology and director of Rice University’s Religion and Public Life Program Elaine Howard Ecklund says that nearly 70% of evangelical Christians do not view religion and science as being in conflict. Her study also seems to suggest that 21% of the evangelicals surveyed saw science and religion as entirely independent with each operating on separate views of reality; 48% saw them as complementary and thus capable of offering support for each other. However, it also seems that 29% of evangelists view science and religion in conflict and chose to support the side of religion. 60% of those surveyed agreed with the statement: “Scientists should be open to considering miracles in their theories and explanation.”

Ecklund does note that evolution remains a hot button for many evangelicals, a matter of special interest since evangelical Christians make up 25 to 30% of the U.S. population and therefore wield considerable influence on the public’s support for science. Evangelicals are “those who take the Bible seriously and who believe in Jesus Christ as savior and lord,” and pastors are urged to develop a strong, healthy relationship with scientists in their congregations.

One comment

  1. “Scientists should be open to considering miracles in their theories and explanation.” Questionnaires always run the risk of over-simplifying. This is not a yes or no statement, more of an ‘it all depends on what you mean by’. The resurrection of Jesus is a unique event and as such challenges our scientific assumptions about death and decay. Scientific thinking can choose to ignore the one-off exception, or to modify the theory and so encompass the ‘miracle’. But if the theories are modified, then maybe, scientifically, the resurrection would no longer be defined as a miracle. Scientific thinking is based on observation and description. It never sets out deliberately to define what is impossible. Furthermore, it seems that the more we know,the less we know. What at first appeared to be the summit of knowledge on our journey turns out to be merely foothills with the vista of great mountains yet to be climbed.

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