How do we deal with contradictions between science and faith?

I received a question about the relationship between science and faith.  How are we to overcome contradictions if they should arise?

My response is below:

In general we will want to evaluate evidence on a case by case basis.  It is for that reason that we are in a difficult position to decide in advance how we will respond to discoveries that have not yet been made.

Dr. Moreland and Dr. Craig give a number of options for integrating science and faith in Philosophical Foundations for a Christian Worldview, one of which is that science helps to differentiate between theological claims.  Says Moreland and Craig, “…if two theological propositions are rivals, say two different interpretations of some text, A and B, and if A removes an intellectual tension with science and B does not, then A is to be preferred to B, all other things being equal.”

William Dembski argues something similar in his article, Does the Bible Conflict with Science?  He writes, “…the role of the Bible is as explanandum, the role of science as explanans.  What explains the Bible? Theology.  What is science explaining? Nature.  Theology is to the Bible as science is to nature … Thus, it would be more accurate to ask whether theology and science conflict.  Strictly speaking, the Bible and science can conflict no more than nature and theology can conflict.”  In Dembski’s view, any conflict between theology and science will depend on the best explanation of the evidence presented (which will include Biblical data).


Matt Bilyeu

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