If God exists, then science cannot replace God. Science exists because God exists. Where we got the notion that scientific advancement somehow replaces God comes from pagan idea of God that’s called the “god of the gaps.” I mentioned this in “Deconstructing the God of the gaps.” I will further elaborate here with the help of philosopher and theologian, David Bentley Hart.
According to Christian theology, God is not a “god of the gaps.” He’s not a placeholder we use to explain what we don’t know about reality. He’s the God of both what do know as well as what we don’t know. What we’re saying is that if God did not exist, nothing whatsoever would exist. Not science, not matter, not quantum vacuums, not the cosmos, nor anything in it. Actually, we could not even be having this conversation because we would not exist.
Of course, naturalists and materialists will object and ask for evidence. But, as David Bentley Hart puts it, asking such a thing only points out their dilemma:
“The one thing of which it [Naturalism] can give no account, and which its most fundamental principles make it entirely impossible to explain at all, is nature’s very existence. For existence is most definitely not a natural phenomenon; it is logically prior to any physical cause whatsoever; and anyone who imagines that it is susceptible of a natural explanation simply has no grasp of what the question of existence really is. (“The Experience of God,” p.18, emphasis added)
As Hart mentions in the video below about God and cosmology, from a Christian theological perspective, this is why such discussions amount to nothing more than a fallacious category error.
“The question of cosmology is an etiological question, it’s a question about physical states….The question of creation is ontological. It is the modal plausibility of the existence of any physical state at all.”
“We might be able to explain the entirety of the universe, but that doesn’t mean we can explain its existence.”
“So whatever we can know about the causal state of universe has nothing to do with the question of creation. As Thomas Aquinas explicitly said, the issue of creation is unrelated to whether the universe is an eternal succession of physical states or not. Even if the universe existed without beginning, still this question would need to be answered.” (Emphasis added)
He says a lot more about God and cosmology on the clip. Here’s the discussion on Robert Kuhn’s “Closer to Truth”:
Science gives us the goods in understanding nature, but it cannot prove or disprove God. To try to make it explain all knowledge is the religion of scientism, which is a self-refuting worldview.
To give a simplistic explanation for God, here’s what Hart says about this category error:
“God is not a contingent being, entirely unconditioned, not composite, dissolvable into parts upon which it’s dependent, not a being among beings and, therefore, not dependent upon some larger sphere of actuality, not temporal.
“Laws and quantum events exist within realities that are, by the same logical calculus, are contingent. Quantum events don’t happen in nothingness in the ontological sense. It just means you’re dealing with a prior physical state that is a yet unarticulated, but that physical state is not a logically necessary reality, and certainly not a reality that could be described in a way that would make it coherent to say that it is an absolute.”
Hart says a lot more about what we mean by “the being of God” on the clip below. Here’s that conversation…
16 For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. 17 He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. (Col.1:16-17 NASB)