Originally posted by IkNOwSTuff
I see alot of religious threads on the site and alot more threads that have nothing to do with religion and yet still have posts by people preaching
in them and its very rare any of it will be what I would call intelligent. There has been a proven link between intelligence/education and a lack of
religious belief, basically the smarter you are the less religious you are.
I disagree, many higly intelligent people had faith in God:
Nicholas Copernicus (1473-1543)
Copernicus was the Polish astronomer who put forward the first mathematically based system of planets going around the sun. He attended various
European universities, and became a Canon in the Catholic church in 1497. His new system was actually first presented in the Vatican gardens in 1533
before Pope Clement VII who approved, and urged Copernicus to publish it around this time. Copernicus was never under any threat of religious
persecution - and was urged to publish both by Catholic Bishop Guise, Cardinal Schonberg, and the Protestant Professor George Rheticus. Copernicus
referred sometimes to God in his works, and did not see his system as in conflict with the Bible.
Sir Francis Bacon (1561-1627)
Bacon was a philosopher who is known for establishing the scientific method of inquiry based on experimentation and inductive reasoning. In De
Interpretatione Naturae Prooemium, Bacon established his goals as being the discovery of truth, service to his country, and service to the church.
Although his work was based upon experimentation and reasoning, he rejected atheism as being the result of insufficient depth of philosophy, stating,
"It is true, that a little philosophy inclineth man’s mind to atheism, but depth in philosophy bringeth men's minds about to religion; for while the
mind of man looketh upon second causes scattered, it may sometimes rest in them, and go no further; but when it beholdeth the chain of them
confederate, and linked together, it must needs fly to Providence and Deity." (Of Atheism)
Johannes Kepler (1571-1630)
Kepler was a brilliant mathematician and astronomer. He did early work on light, and established the laws of planetary motion about the sun. He
also came close to reaching the Newtonian concept of universal gravity - well before Newton was born! His introduction of the idea of force in
astronomy changed it radically in a modern direction. Kepler was an extremely sincere and pious Lutheran, whose works on astronomy contain writings
about how space and the heavenly bodies represent the Trinity. Kepler suffered no persecution for his open avowal of the sun-centered system, and,
indeed, was allowed as a Protestant to stay in Catholic Graz as a Professor (1595-1600) when other Protestants had been expelled!
Galileo Galilei (1564-1642)
Galileo is often remembered for his conflict with the Roman Catholic Church. His controversial work on the solar system was published in 1633. It
had no proofs of a sun-centered system (Galileo's telescope discoveries did not indicate a moving earth) and his one "proof" based upon the tides was
invalid. It ignored the correct elliptical orbits of planets published twenty five years earlier by Kepler. Since his work finished by putting the
Pope's favorite argument in the mouth of the simpleton in the dialogue, the Pope (an old friend of Galileo's) was very offended. After the "trial" and
being forbidden to teach the sun-centered system, Galileo did his most useful theoretical work, which was on dynamics. Galileo expressly said that the
Bible cannot err, and saw his system as an alternate interpretation of the biblical texts.
Rene Descartes (1596-1650)
Descartes was a French mathematician, scientist and philosopher who has been called the father of modern philosophy. His school studies made him
dissatisfied with previous philosophy: He had a deep religious faith as a Roman Catholic, which he retained to his dying day, along with a resolute,
passionate desire to discover the truth. At the age of 24 he had a dream, and felt the vocational call to seek to bring knowledge together in one
system of thought. His system began by asking what could be known if all else were doubted - suggesting the famous "I think therefore I am". Actually,
it is often forgotten that the next step for Descartes was to establish the near certainty of the existence of God - for only if God both exists and
would not want us to be deceived by our experiences - can we trust our senses and logical thought processes. God is, therefore, central to his whole
philosophy. What he really wanted to see was that his philosophy be adopted as standard Roman Catholic teaching. Rene Descartes and Francis Bacon
(1561-1626) are generally regarded as the key figures in the development of scientific methodology. Both had systems in which God was important, and
both seem more devout than the average for their era.
Isaac Newton (1642-1727)
In optics, mechanics, and mathematics, Newton was a figure of undisputed genius and innovation. In all his science (including chemistry) he saw
mathematics and numbers as central. What is less well known is that he was devoutly religious and saw numbers as involved in understanding God's plan
for history from the Bible. He did a considerable work on biblical numerology, and, though aspects of his beliefs were not orthodox, he thought
theology was very important. In his system of physics, God is essential to the nature and absoluteness of space. In Principia he stated, "The most
beautiful system of the sun, planets, and comets, could only proceed from the counsel and dominion on an intelligent and powerful Being."
Robert Boyle (1791-1867)
One of the founders and key early members of the Royal Society, Boyle gave his name to "Boyle's Law" for gases, and also wrote an important work
on chemistry. Encyclopedia Britannica says of him: "By his will he endowed a series of Boyle lectures, or sermons, which still continue, 'for proving
the Christian religion against notorious infidels...' As a devout Protestant, Boyle took a special interest in promoting the Christian religion
abroad, giving money to translate and publish the New Testament into Irish and Turkish. In 1690 he developed his theological views in The Christian
Virtuoso, which he wrote to show that the study of nature was a central religious duty." Boyle wrote against atheists in his day (the notion that
atheism is a modern invention is a myth), and was clearly much more devoutly Christian than the average in his era.
Michael Faraday (1791-1867)
Michael Faraday was the son of a blacksmith who became one of the greatest scientists of the 19th century. His work on electricity and magnetism
not only revolutionized physics, but led to much of our lifestyles today, which depends on them (including computers and telephone lines and, so, web
sites). Faraday was a devoutly Christian member of the Sandemanians, which significantly influenced him and strongly affected the way in which he
approached and interpreted nature. Originating from Presbyterians, the Sandemanians rejected the idea of state churches, and tried to go back to a New
Testament type of Christianity.
Gregor Mendel (1822-1884)
Mendel was the first to lay the mathematical foundations of genetics, in what came to be called "Mendelianism". He began his research in 1856
(three years before Darwin published his Origin of Species) in the garden of the Monastery in which he was a monk. Mendel was elected Abbot of his
Monastery in 1868. His work remained comparatively unknown until the turn of the century, when a new generation of botanists began finding similar
results and "rediscovered" him (though their ideas were not identical to his). An interesting point is that the 1860's was notable for formation of
the X-Club, which was dedicated to lessening religious influences and propagating an image of "conflict" between science and religion. One sympathizer
was Darwin's cousin Francis Galton, whose scientific interest was in genetics (a proponent of eugenics - selective breeding among humans to "improve"
the stock). He was writing how the "priestly mind" was not conducive to science while, at around the same time, an Austrian monk was making the
breakthrough in genetics. The rediscovery of the work of Mendel came too late to affect Galton's contribution.
William Thomson Kelvin (1824-1907)
Kelvin was foremost among the small group of British scientists who helped to lay the foundations of modern physics. His work covered many areas
of physics, and he was said to have more letters after his name than anyone else in the Commonwealth, since he received numerous honorary degrees from
European Universities, which recognized the value of his work. He was a very committed Christian, who was certainly more religious than the average
for his era. Interestingly, his fellow physicists George Gabriel Stokes (1819-1903) and James Clerk Maxwell (1831-1879) were also men of deep
Christian commitment, in an era when many were nominal, apathetic, or anti-Christian. The Encyclopedia Britannica says "Maxwell is regarded by most
modern physicists as the scientist of the 19th century who had the greatest influence on 20th century physics; he is ranked with Sir Isaac Newton and
Albert Einstein for the fundamental nature of his contributions." Lord Kelvin was an Old Earth creationist, who estimated the Earth's age to be
somewhere between 20 million and 100 million years, with an upper limit at 500 million years based on cooling rates (a low estimate due to his lack of
knowledge about radiogenic heating).
Max Planck (1858-1947)
Planck made many contributions to physics, but is best known for quantum theory, which revolutionized our understanding of the atomic and
sub-atomic worlds. In his 1937 lecture "Religion and Naturwissenschaft," Planck expressed the view that God is everywhere present, and held that "the
holiness of the unintelligible Godhead is conveyed by the holiness of symbols." Atheists, he thought, attach too much importance to what are merely
symbols. Planck was a churchwarden from 1920 until his death, and believed in an almighty, all-knowing, beneficent God (though not necessarily a
personal one). Both science and religion wage a "tireless battle against skepticism and dogmatism, against unbelief and superstition" with the goal
Albert Einstein (1879-1955)
Einstein is probably the best known and most highly revered scientist of the twentieth century, and is associated with major revolutions in our
thinking about time, gravity, and the conversion of matter to energy (E=mc2). Although never coming to belief in a personal God, he recognized the
impossibility of a non-created universe. The Encyclopedia Britannica says of him: "Firmly denying atheism, Einstein expressed a belief in "Spinoza's
God who reveals himself in the harmony of what exists." This actually motivated his interest in science, as he once remarked to a young physicist: "I
want to know how God created this world, I am not interested in this or that phenomenon, in the spectrum of this or that element. I want to know His
thoughts, the rest are details." Einstein's famous epithet on the "uncertainty principle" was "God does not play dice" - and to him this was a real
statement about a God in whom he believed. A famous saying of his was "Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind."
I fully believe organised religion is merely an "opiate for the masses" and MOST (not all) people who are religious are either Loopy, Dumb ( IQ quite
low) or merely ignorant.
Now I know alot of people who attend church and will call themselves christian if anyone asks but I know either by asking or just observing that they
arent true believers, Like the vast majority of the population they are "Culturally" christian i.e follow the holidays, espouse that general
worldview, know the history/mythology of it all etc etc
What I want to do is hear from an intelligent educated christian there thoughts on the blatant contradictions and even lies that are in the bible and
also put out there by the church itself.
I have been asked to join Mensa, but I declined and I also have continued my education well past school. I am a member of the Golden Key Honour
Society because of my academic achievement, so I hope I qualify as an intelligent, educated Christian.
By the way, I am a "born-again" type Protestant Christian with Charismatic leanings, just so you know (There are many "flavours" and "intensities" of
Christian experience just as there is great diversity in all people).
I have a book called "Alledged Discrepancies in the Bible", which is as thick as my Bible (ie: a lot of content) and I often use it as an aid when I
am reading the Bible. Often, because of the vagaries of language confusion can arise to the true meaning. By looking at these alledged discrepancies
you can usually see that it is a misunderstanding of, or mistranslation of wording and there is no real discrepancy.
I have a ton of questions and also what I think are some answers but I would like to hear from a few of you before I put my 2 cents in. So to
1) have you heard of the council of Nicea? what do you think of it?
Yes, during the early years of the Church, several heresies arose and were spreading, despite the attempts by Christians to explain the truth from the
original and venerated documents. Also during this time, a trade in fake relics and texts (targums) was becoming a problem. The Nicean council was an
attempt to put up a unified face against these heresies and fakes and to identify books and letters that had no shadow of doubt about their
authenticity. Books and letters that did not have this degree of surety were not removed, but were classified as Apocryphal.
2) How do you rationalise the contradictions in the bible?
I haven't actually found any.
3) how old were you when you were indoctrinated or did you find God on your own? if so what brought him/her into your life?
I was brought up in a Christian household and made a commitment to Christ when I was eight, however it wasn't until I was 23 that I re-evaluated
myself and became truly committed to follow "the Way".
4)what do you think of the Vatican?
Nice bit of architecture. With my Protestant background, I am not really hooked in to the whole Catholic bit but I do know many deeply religious and
true Christians who are Catholic.
5) what do you think Jesus would say about the state of christianity if he were around today?
I know that exactly! Read from Revelation 1:9 to 3:21 (here's an online
). The different "churches" in this passage could be seen to be phases that the Church has gone through historically, as well as being
churches in specific locations a millennia ago.
OK that should get us started
This is not a thread designed to attack anyone or their beliefs (I may have come across a tad harsh but its my honest opinion and would never hold
anyones beliefs against them) so please no nasty comments from non believers and no christians jumping in and saying its all a matter of faith etc
Im looking for intelligent answers here
In summary, I feel that there is too much "baggage" in discussion of Christianity (on both sides). The truth is, it is between Christ and yourself or
otherwise what you think is Christianity is just a social club.
We need to remove the ismISTs, ismISM and ANITY's to get to the real truth, which ultimately is personal, not corporate.
May God bless your path.
edit on 16/5/2011 by chr0naut because: (no reason given)