Missouri's 7th District, U.S. House of Representatives
Liberty Under God IS BASED ON OUR GOD-GIVEN CAPACITY FOR Reason
use it morally
The Nazi Doctors were very intelligent. In many ways they were good scientists. Their problem was that their use of reason and science was not restrained by morality, and human experimentation and eugenics led -- rationally -- to genocide.
Christians are not anti-reason. Libertarian atheist Ayn Rand defines religion as
blind belief, belief unsupported by, or contrary to, the facts of reality and the conclusions of reason. Faith, as such, is extremely detrimental to human life: it is the negation of reason.
Faith is not the "negation of reason" unless you want to use reason as the Nazis did.
The Bible teaches that man is created in the Image of God. Unlike the animals, Man has the capacity for reason. Man was given a command to "exercise dominion" over the earth. This is a scientific pursuit. It is the application of reason to the natural resources of the earth. Christianity has always recognized reason as an essential characteristic of Man. The Westminster Confession, written in the 1640's, emphasizes reason as an important feature of human beings created in the Image of a Reasonable God.
CHAPTER 4 Of Creation 2. After God had made all other creatures, he created man, male and female, with reasonable and immortal souls, endued with knowledge, righteousness, and true holiness, after his own image; having the law of God written in their hearts,
CHAPTER 7 Of God's Covenant with Man 1. The distance between God and the creature is so great, that although reasonable creatures do owe obedience unto him as their Creator, yet they could never have any fruition of him as their blessedness and reward, but by some voluntary condescension on God's part, which he hath been pleased to express by way of covenant.
CHAPTER 20 Of Christian Liberty, and Liberty of Conscience 2. God alone is Lord of the conscience, and hath left it free from the doctrines and commandments of men, which are, in anything, contrary to his Word; or beside it, if matters of faith, or worship. So that, to believe such doctrines, or to obey such commands, out of conscience, is to betray true liberty of conscience: and the requiring of an implicit faith, and an absolute and blind obedience, is to destroy liberty of conscience, and reason also.
CHAPTER 29 Of the Lord's Supper 6. That doctrine which maintains a change of the substance of bread and wine, into the substance of Christ's body and blood (commonly called transubstantiation) by consecration of a priest, or by any other way, is repugnant, not to Scripture alone, but even to common sense, and reason; overthroweth the nature of the sacrament, and hath been, and is, the cause of manifold superstitions; yea, of gross idolatries.
Q. 17. How did God create man?
A. After God had made all other creatures, he created man male and female; formed the body of the man of the dust of the ground, and the woman of the rib of the man, endued them with living, reasonable, and immortal souls; made them after his own image, in knowledge, righteousness, and holiness; having the law of God written in their hearts, and power to fulfill it, and dominion over the creatures; yet subject to fall.
Q. 24. What is sin?
A. Sin is any want of conformity unto, or transgression of, any law of God, given as a rule to the reasonable creature.
Q. 37. How did Christ, being the Son of God, become man?
A. Christ the Son of God became man, by taking to himself a true body, and a reasonable soul,
Science developed in Christian countries more than in countries dominated by any other religion, though all human beings -- created in the Image of God -- can make scientific discoveries and advancements.
The Puritans were great students of philosophy and logic. The "New Atheists" (Christopher Hitchens, Sam Harris, et al), following the lead of the older atheists (Ingersoll, Nietzsche, et al), will have you believe that religion (Christianity) is an impediment to science. Wrong. It is Christianity that created science. The vast majority of these argumentative atheists have contributed nothing to science, whereas all the great innovations of what we consider science, industry, and civilization were the product of Christians. Christians and Christianity laid the foundations for modern science. A survey of scientists established Sir Isaac Newton as the greatest scientist who ever lived, and he believed in God, in Christ, in the Bible, and in Creation. To the chagrin of modern evolutionary scientists, Newton wrote more
books on the Bible and theology than he did on science per se.
The inventor of antiseptic surgery was Joseph Lister, a Christian. ("Listerine")
In bacteriology, Louis Pasteur was a Christian. ("Pasteurized")
If Christianity is not true, and if God did not create us in His Image, and give us dominion over the earth, how do we know that our sense impressions are really telling us anything about what's really "out there," outside our brain? Secular science has no way of explaining how our brain can come into genuine productive connection with the "outside" world. Eugene Wigner's paper, The Unreasonable Effectiveness of Mathematics in the Natural Sciences, is a very well-known account of the issue from a Nobel Prize-winning physicist.
Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports. In vain would that man claim the tribute of patriotism who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness—these firmest props of the duties of men and citizens. The mere politician, equally with the pious man, ought to respect and to cherish them. A volume could not trace all their connections with private and public felicity. Let it simply be asked, "where is the security for property, for reputation, for life, if the sense of religious obligation desert the oaths which are the instruments of investigation in courts of justice?" And let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion. Whatever may be conceded to the influence of refined education
on minds of peculiar structure, reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle.
The emergence of modern science and technology came in response to the establishment of godly rule on a far wider basis than ever before. Prof. Lynn White, Jr., has chronicled the important technological developments of the Middle Ages. Medieval Catholic culture was far more productive than the pagan cultures that it replaced. But it was the Protestant Reformation which unleashed the forces of modern science. Loren Eiseley, the anthropologist-historian who was so successful as a popularizer of Darwinian evolution in the mid-twentieth century, understood this more clearly than most of his fellow scientists: "The experimental method succeeded beyond men's wildest dreams but the faith that brought it into being owes something to the Christian conception of the nature of God. It is surely one of the curious paradoxes
of history that science, which professionally has little to do with faith, owes its origins to an act of faith that the universe can be rationally interpreted, and that science today is sustained by that assumption."
Christianity was instrumental in producing the beginnings of applied science. Applied science and technology stemmed from the understanding of the world which affirmed its orderliness and man's access to knowledge of its processes. The fact that the mind's logic, especially mathematical logic, conforms to the operations of the external world, is nothing short of a miracle - an unexplainable coincidence from the standpoint of post-Darwinian science.
Lynn White, Jr., Medieval Technology and Social Change (New York: Oxford University Press, 1962).
For an introduction to this question, see the two articles that appeared in The Journal of Christian Reconstruction, VI (Summer, 1979): "Medieval Speculation, Puritanism, and Modern Science," by Charles Dykes, and "The Role of Puritan Calvinism in the Rise of Modern Science," by E. L. Hebden Taylor. See also Robert K. Merton, "Puritanism, Pietism, and Science," in his book, Social Theory and Social Structure (Glencoe, Illinois: The Free Press, 1967), ch. 17; R. Hooykaas, Religion and the Rise of Modern Science (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Eerdmans, 1972); and E. M. Klaaren, Religious Origins of Modern Science (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Eerdmans, 1977).
Loren Eiseley, Darwin's Century (Garden City, New York: Doubleday Anchor,  1961), p. 62. See also Stanley Jaki, The Road of Science and the Ways to God (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1978).
Eugene P. Wigner, "The Unreasonable Effectiveness of Mathematics in the Natural Sciences," Communications on Pure and Applied Mathematics, XIII (1960), pp. 1-14. Cf. Vern S. Poythress, ''A Biblical View of Mathematics," in Gary North (ed.), Foundations of Christian Scholarship (Vallecito, Calif.: Ross House Books, 1976), ch. 9.