I’ve heard, and been told, this several times. Now I feel I have to respond. The assertion, among some American Christians, is that Science is just trying to disprove that god exists. I’ll pass on trying to explain the problems with trying to prove a negative, and get to the main point…if an omnipotent being exists, he/she/it is making zero effort to have his/her/its existence proven.
Suppose that there is an all-powerful god, and that he did indeed create the universe in six days. During one of those days, he created Homo sapiens, and gave them intelligence and free will. That means that humans were created with the ability to observe the world around them, and to ask questions about what they were seeing.
When god created humans, he also created curiosity. He had to have known, at the time, that eventually some humans would come up with methods for testing the things they see around them. He had to have known that some humans would want solid, testable, measurable, repeatable proof of his existence. So why has he not provided it?
If god wants his creations to know he exists, there should be an abundance of proof in ANY form looked for. We should be able to conduct any repeatable, measurable experiment we can think of to answer “Does god exist?”, and get the same results no matter what. Those results should always, unequivocally, confirm that god does exist.
Here’s the problem. The results DO always come out the same: god does NOT exist. Pick any “miracle” you can think of, and examine it by scientific examination and experimentation, and you will always find an explainable, even repeatable, cause. Sometimes those causes are natural phenomena seen elsewhere, but usually they are caused by humans.
Then there’s personal experiences. I have no problem with personal experiences as a basis for spiritual beliefs. Here’s the thing, though…personal experiences are NOT proof. No two people will have exactly the same experience. Science cannot create experiments to replicate and measure personal experiences.
Now I hear someone say, “But the Bible is fact, the places it talks about really exist/ed.” Yeah, some did and do, but that doesn’t mean the whole thing is rock solid fact. The book and movie, Angels & Demons (Dan Brown), takes place in locations that exist today. That doesn’t mean the story is true. The movie, The Avengers, has a massive battle in New York City involving the Old Norse gods, Thor and Loki. That doesn’t mean the battle actually happened, and it doesn’t mean that Thor and Loki exist.
Anyone can go and see the landmarks in Rome, or walk the streets of New York City. Science can repeatably prove that those places exist, however, there is no way to prove that the events or people described in either story actually existed. Yes, we can use archeological (scientific) methods to prove that Jerusalem, Nazareth, Bethlehem, etc existed. But the proof of the people and events in the stories is lacking. Most of the time, when such “evidence” surfaces, it is proven (through measurable, repeatable testing) to be false. If god exists and wants his creations to know, without doubt, that he does, there should be proof everywhere we look.
It is the purpose of science to answer the Whys and the Hows of the universe we live in, and there are three basic assumptions that go along with that: 1) Things that happen in the world around us have natural causes, 2) The evidence for those causes can be found in the natural world, and 3) Causes operating in the natural world will be consistent. Sometimes the answer to Why and How is, “we don’t know, yet”. A scientist will keep looking. He will devise new experimental techniques, and invent new measuring tools. A scientist will keep asking Why and How because he is not content with “god did it” as an answer.
Extraordinary claims, like “god created everything in only 6 days”, require extraordinary evidence. Not only does that evidence not exist, but there IS overwhelming, repeatable, measurable evidence to the contrary.
Science is a process to understand the world around us. Science is not out to disprove god. Science isn’t even looking for god, in any form. If god exists, he is doing nothing to advertise the fact in any way that Science would recognize.