In the last post, I used a Khan Academy video on their math courses to encourage the development of similar courses among believers.
Tied to a similar post on the Stellar Reaches blog, I want to expand a bit on Math and Christ.
Math as Law
First, from Gary North’s God’s Covenant, a book I will discuss in more detail later. He notes that in the current Darwinian environment, mathematics (and not God’s Will) is seen as the Law of the Universe.
Law. The supreme law today is overwhelmingly the law of mathematics. But the humanist cannot explain this. Why is it that laws of formal logic—mathematics—prove so successful in natural [science]? Why should a plaything of the mind—mathematical logic—correspond so closely with the operations of the external world, both animate and inanimate (“the quick and the dead”)? In1960, Nobel Prizewinning physicist Eugene Wigner wrote an essay for a mathematics journal: “The Unreasonable Effectiveness of Mathematics in the Natural Sciences.” He pointed out this oddity. The correlation is simply unreasonable.
The Darwinist cannot logically argue that the connection is based on special creation. He cannot say that God imposed the laws of mathematics on large sections of the creation, and then He gave to some people the mental ability to discover mathematical logical relationships and also their connections to the external realm of nature. The Darwinist must find some other explanation. So far, no one has.
Next, James Nickel’s Mathematics: Is God Silent? goes on to explain the implications for teaching
…approaching mathematics from a Christian perspective will make a difference in mathematics education. A biblical Christian teacher will not be content to teach students just the mechanics of mathematics. A vast gold mine of history, philosophy, and breathtaking revelations of the manifold wonders of God’s creation lie behind the mathematical formulae. In order for the student to see these rich nuggets, the teacher must be skilled in “prospecting,” so to speak. For example, the surface beauty of a rainbow is appreciated by all. That is given. But, buried in this beauty, and uncovered only by the industrious researches of the mathematician, lie a marvelous complexity and order. Before the eyes and mind of the student, the teacher must dig up these treasures and bring them to the surface.
I am cheered to see that there are more material available that teaches mathematics with a Christian eye. The better grip we have on math, the greater the advances we can make on gaining Dominion over the whole world, taming it (that is, not ruining or spoiling it, but making it more stronger, vibrant, and productive – as well as more beautiful), and making it a blessing for God and ourselves, and even the plants and animals we must govern and direct.
Christians and Science – Liberty
Which leads to a quick comment on technology. Since at least the 1980s, technology has been a major driver in the fall of various tyrannies: it has toppled the Soviet Union, and I am confident that it will topple the current drive for State-backed Tolerance as well. Christians should understand that it is the free market, coupled with advancing science & technology, that has made the future prospect of true liberty more and more bright – and not the political liars of the week, or the intellect of our political theorists and law-creating judges.
(“Did you see how fast they abandoned the concept of free speech? Of live and let live? Of a life free of surveillance – or, for that matter, of regular indignities at any airport?”)
Christians and Science – Expansion
As this is true, then Christians have an obligation to expand their freedom (and, as a byproduct, the freedom of everyone else) by pushing the sciences as far as they can go, in the direction of greater prosperity, liberty, and life – as well as decentralization, local production, willing co-operation, and information exchange.
That means a renewed commitment to math & science, as indispensable tools of freedom, liberty, and extending the Dominion Mandate – more life, more health, more prosperity, more peace, coupled with less want and fear and tyranny.