Science and the Bible
Part 1

Let’s look at four different areas of science to see if the Bible and those sciences are compatible with each other in what they say about this world we live in. If they are compatible then it is another source that proves the authenticity of the Bible.

a.      The Sun, moon and stars

Astronomy is the study of the heavens above. It is looking at the heavenly bodies passing through the skies and coming to conclusions about their movements in the past, their movements in the future and their purpose.

Over the centuries many men have gone out on a clear night and wondered about the heavens above. They’ve looked at those pinpoints of light in the sky and wondered about their origin and who put them up their. All they had to do was read the Bible to discover where those pinpoints of light came from.

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth…And God said, ‘Let there be lights in the expanse of the sky to separate the day from the night, and let them serve as signs to mark seasons and days and years, and let them be lights in the expanse of the sky to give light on the earth’. And it was so. God made two great lights – the greater light to govern the day and the lesser light to govern the night. He also made the stars. God set them in the expanse of the sky to give light on the earth, to govern the day and the night, and to separate light from darkness. Genesis 1:1…1:14 – 18
The moon provides light at night

So we see from this passage that God was the creator of the heavens above. We also find in those verses that he created the heavenly bodies in it as a way to tell time and to give light. The light was given by the star which we call the Sun during the day and by the satellite called the moon at night. The moonlight was especially important at night because artificial light in the old days was very rare, expensive and dim. So this great creator called God, created the heavens with the twin purpose of time and light in his mind.

b.      The number of stars in the heavens

We find that men through the centuries busied themselves trying to count the number of stars and constellations in the sky. Before the invention of the telescope in the seventeenth century the number of stars had almost been decided on:

  • The scientist Ptolemy gave the number 1056.
  • The astronomer Tycho Brahe said their was 777
  • The well known astronomer of that time Kepler disagreed with the other two saying the total number of stars in the heavens came to 1005

If only they had read the Bible! If they had, they would have got the answer straight away. The Bible says:

“The host of heaven cannot be numbered”. Jeremiah 33: 22

The Bible is telling us that there are so many stars in the heavens above that there is no way that a man could count them. Science today has proved the Bible to be correct and those past astronomers, who didn’t have the help of telescope, to be wrong.

Thousands of distant galaxies. Stars are not scattered randomly through space, they are gathered together into vast groups known as galaxies. The Sun belongs to a galaxy called the Milky Way. Astronomers estimate there are about 100 thousand million stars in the Milky Way alone. We can see many of these stars from our galaxy when we look up into the night sky.
Photo courtesy: NASA

It is known through modern scientific research that there are well over 100 billion stars in our galaxy, with probably billions of other galaxies like our own. Most astronomers now agree that it is not humanly possible to count all the stars. Every time they invent a more powerful telescope they find even more stars even further out in space. The astronomers recently sent up a telescope (James Webb Space telescope) into space with the intention of seeing further out to space without the encumbrance of the earth’s atmosphere to limit there viewing.

So we find that a scientific fact stated by the writers of thousand’s of years ago has just now been verified by science.

c.       Earth and gravity

As another example of how science has just recently proved the Bible to be correct is found in the book of Job in the Bible where it says:

He suspends the earth over nothing. Job 26:7

So long before man knew what the earth was resting on, the Bible was telling it’s readers about the existence of gravity, for we now know that the earth is kept hanging in the heavens by the gravitational pull of the sun.

The earth suspended over nothing.
A photo taken by a NASA spacecraft looking back towards the earth.
Photo courtesy: NASA
d.      The shape of the earth

Another verse verified by modern astronomy is found in the book of Isaiah. Here we see the prophet Isaiah talking about God and he says:

“He sits enthroned above the circle of the earth”. Isaiah 40: 22

The word “circle” found in this sentence is translated from the Hebrew word “khug” and is more accurately translated “spherical” or “roundness”.

Up to a few centuries ago everyone believed the earth was flat and it was only an astronomer in the seventeenth century who put forward the theory for the first time that the earth might be a sphere, yet here we have in the Bible – a book written thousands of years previously the notion being put forward that the earth was a circle or sphere.

The circle of the earth. The sun rising over the curved edge of the earth. The atmosphere of the earth can be seen lit by the Sun.
e.      The identity of the greatest Astronomer

The writer in the book of Psalms identifies who the greatest Astronomer and Mathematician of all time is:

He determines the number of the stars and calls them each by name. Great is our Lord and mighty in power. Psalm 147: 4–5

This verse is telling us about God and is saying that He knows exactly how many stars there are in the universe and not only does he know the number but He also knows the name of everyone of those stars.

Surely, God is the great Astronomer of all time. In a similar way to how he knows every star in the universe, He also knows every one of us on this planet and is calling everyone of us to come to Him.

a.      the water cycle
The water vapour is carried by the wind over the land to be precipitated again.

Meteorology is the study of the weather; of the clouds, the rain, temperature, humidity and so forth. Meteorologists, when talking about rain, talk about the water cycle.

The water cycle is where water is precipitated as rain or snow onto the land, from where it drains off by the river system into the ocean, where it is raised back into the sky by evaporation and then carried by the wind back over the land to be precipitated again. Even though this cycle is now a fundamental fact in the study of Meteorology, it was only discovered or worked out in the last couple of centuries.

Yet when we look at the Bible we can see this principle being explained by a king who lived 3,000 years ago! His name was King Solomon. This is what he said in the Bible:

All streams flow into the sea, yet the sea is never full. To the place the streams come from, there they return again. Ecclesiastes 1: 7

Modern science has also shown that the major wind currents of the world follow well-defined circuits. These great wind circuits are largely responsible for all the great ocean currents as well as the great air currents of the world. Yet, despite meteorologists only discovering this fact in past few centuries the Bible 3,000 years ago had already told us that these wind circuits or current existed. Let’s look at what the Bible says about the wind circuits:

The wind blows to the south and turns to the north; round and round it goes, ever returning on its course. Ecclesiastes 1: 6

The question we need to ask ourselves is how did King Solomon know these facts about the weather, when no one else knew them until thousands of years later?

b.      the water cycle and evaporation

There are other parts of the Bible which also talk about the water cycle. Let’s look at the words of a man called Elihu in the Biblical book of Job:

He draws up the drops of water, which distill as rain to the streams; the clouds pour down their moisture and abundant showers fall on mankind. Who can understand how he spreads out the clouds, how he thunders from his pavilion. Job 36: 27-29

Here Elihu gives a description of the water being evaporated, condensed into rain and then precipitated onto the earth.

Water vapour in the air above the surface of the lake

There are many other references in the scriptures to various phases of the science of meteorology, all remarkably tying in with the most up-to-date studies in this field.

Part 2

Please continue to consider the compatibility of the Bible and the sciences by reading part 2 of “Science and the Bible”.