This is written in response to an Opinion piece that Professor William Zingrone wrote in The Murray State News (found at http://thenews.org/2013/11/08/zingrone-science-works-whether-or-not-it-is-believed/):
In a letter he wrote in the Opinion section on November 8, 2013, Professor Zingrone said, “Faith is belief without evidence, and it is the ultimate arbiter of religious claims. In direct contrast, acceptance in science in methods and findings has nothing to do with faith, only evidence.”
First, I disagree with the Professor’s definition of faith. Faith is not “belief without evidence.” It is the human response to evidence where questions still remain. Faith rests on the truth and fills in the empty spots. For the Christian, faith rests upon the truths of Scripture. God has said it and we believe it … even if we have lingering questions.
Second, even though he speaks so harshly against faith, Dr. Zingrone is just as much a man of faith as I am. For instance, I assume that he drives to and from work each day. The problem for Professor Zingrone arises when he tries to explain how he can make such a trip if he refuses to acknowledge the merits of faith. In reality, he exercises faith every time another car approaches. He trusts a driver he doesn’t know and has never met to stay on his side of the road. For all he knows, the driver in the other lane could be under the influence of alcohol, high on drugs or simply have a death wish. Yet, Professor Zingrone exercises faith (underline ‘faith’), trusting that the oncoming driver will stay in their own lane … and then stands in judgment of Christians for exercising faith. If he attacks us for not having substantial evidence to exercise faith, I would ask him what evidence he has for trusting the unknown driver in the other lane.
Truth be told, we all collect enough evidence to satisfy our minds and then we use faith to fill in the blanks. The problem is not “faith” as Dr. Zingrone has alleged. The potential problem arises in regard to the object of our faith.
Suppose I prepare to jump from a plane with the intention of parachuting to the ground. I would certainly need to be a person of faith to accomplish such a feat! The parachute would be at the top of the list of items that I would put my trust in. If I didn’t have faith that the parachute would open and safely take me to the ground, I wouldn’t make the jump! But, suppose that I place my faith in the parachute, make the jump, and then the parachute doesn’t deploy. The parachute malfunctioned! Would I hit the ground and die even though I exerted faith? Of course! Why? Because faith is important but equally important is the object that we put our faith in.
Professor Zingrone places his faith in science. I place my faith in God’s revealed Word. One of us is right and one of us is wrong. But, let’s consider the implications of what I have just said. If Dr. Zingrone is right and I am wrong, it won’t matter in a few years. Our bodies will occupy plots in a cemetery and we will simply cease to exist. Yet, if I’m right and he is wrong, he will regret placing his faith in the wrong object for the rest of eternity.
I’m praying that God would enable Dr. Zingrone to seriously consider the claims of Scripture and receive the gift of forgiveness and eternal life before it is too late.