A weekly dose of science for the church

Do you want to receive the kind of content you see below on the day we release it? Every Tuesday, we will deliver our blog to your inbox.

Becoming Like Trees

Recent scientific discoveries about trees fascinate me because of what I learn about the intricate interdependence of ecosystems. But unlike so much of modern life, trees also populated the world of the Bible, and they populate the pages of Scripture. Learning about trees has helped me understand my backyard. It also has helped me to understand how to remain nourished and connected to God.

In Praise of John Polkinghorne

The Rev. Dr. John Polkinghorne will undoubtedly remain a preeminent voice in faith and science. He died March 9th at age 90. I met John Polkinghorne only once, at a small science and religion conference. I interrupted his breakfast for our notably awkward encounter…

Signs of New Life

St. Augustine famously defined a sacrament as “an outward and visible sign of inward and invisible grace.” This definition could be applied to much more than baptism and communion—perhaps even to tulips and sea slugs.

Youth Ministry Part 2: Why Science Matters

Youth Ministry Part 2: Why Science Matters

When church becomes the one place that’s either silent or hostile about science, young people learn the implicit lesson that it’s not just the church that can’t handle their tough questions. God can’t either. The way we interact with science provides young people with a template for how God views science. So we have an opportunity. In our engagement with science, will we lean in and lead or lose out and be led?

The Spirit’s Pentecost Strategy

The Spirit’s Pentecost Strategy

At Pentecost, the Spirit gave the church two fluencies. The first is in the fundamentals of the Good News about God’s work in Jesus Christ… the Spirit’s strategy is also for the church to speak to various people in their own “mother tongues.” The focus of this newsletter is on that second fluency with a particular accent: speaking the languages of technology and science.

A World From Dust: Q & A with Biochemist Ben McFarland

A World From Dust: Q & A with Biochemist Ben McFarland

We’re taking a break from our usual newsletter format to interview a Christian leader in the sciences. Ben McFarland is Professor of Biochemistry at Seattle Pacific University, where he studies structural aspects of protein biochemistry and design. Dr. McFarland wrote A World from Dust: How the Periodic Table Shaped Life (Oxford, 2016). I caught up with Ben and posed few questions about his role as a scientist in the church, as well as the coronavirus outbreak. 

Don’t Touch Your Face

Don’t Touch Your Face

Like habit formation, self-control is another evergreen topic for the church. It can inform how we resist temptation and live more Christ-like lives. It also is accompanied by a great deal of relevant scientific research.  But it’s a difficult topic because that science continues to change.

Easter Habits

Easter Habits

COVID-19 has forced ongoing Lenten-like discipline on us all even as we enter Eastertide… So what should we do? After exhausting all umpteen seasons of our favorite Netflix series, how do we make good on our remaining days under quarantine?

2020: An Easter in Exile and in Denial?

2020: An Easter in Exile and in Denial?

I know this week is about the science of Easter and resurrection, but it seemed to me that we need to be honest about our life in a COVID-19 world. Because only then can we truly feel the miracle of God’s redemption.

The Rhythms of Holy Week

The Rhythms of Holy Week

This pandemic threatens to overwhelm our preparation for the day when the church must always proclaim, The Lord has risen! He has risen indeed! So as we try here at Science for the Church to help the church to engage science, facing a Holy Week unlike any in my lifetime, I want to offer three apparent realities coming from the scientific community.

When the Body Cannot Gather

When the Body Cannot Gather

Humans are relational beings. Biologists often refer to us as a social species, one of the most social of all species. Isolation is not in our nature. In fact, most of what nurtures us is interpersonal connections. So what do we do when, for the greater good, we are forced to stay away from one another, to not to leave our homes unless it is absolutely necessary?

Coronavirus

Coronavirus

If your church is anything like mine, there are leaders—lay and staff—trying to determine how to move forward as a faithful, worshipping community in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic.

We Take Care of What We Love

We Take Care of What We Love

God certainly treasures this earth and its creatures. God created this world and poured beauty and love into it. As Christians, we know that God calls us in Genesis 1:26-28 to value the earth because we “have dominion” over it and over the creatures. “Dominion” is closely related to stewardship, that is, to act as God’s viceroy on earth, to “bear his image” as Genesis 1:27 says.