I had a conflict the other day, triggered by my son’s science book. He attends a Christian school and his book actually said that humans aren’t animals. What?!? We’re Homo Sapiens. Everyone knows that. It goes something like this:
- Species: Sapiens (Modern Humans)
- Genus: Homo (Human, including more ancient ancestors)
- Family: Hominidae (Great Apes, includes Chimpanzees, gorillas, orangutans, and humans)
- Order: Primates (Self-explanatory)
- Class: Mammalia (Mammals – Warm blooded vertebrates giving birth to live young and feeding them milk from the mother, etc, etc)
- Phylum: Chordata (Vertebrates)
- Kingdom: Animalia (Animals)
The word animal means something belonging to the kingdom Animalia. Humans CLEARLY belong to this kingdom. So what the heck?! Why would a science book, Christian or not, disagree with that? At first I couldn’t figure it out. I was just glad that X was smart enough to have pointed it out to me (he actually said “dad, I have to answer no here because the book is wrong” …that’s how it was brought to my attention).
Unfortunately I think I’ve finally realized the issue. It seems to me that the only explanation is that Christians think science is evil. They’ve taken different sides on several issues (like creation vs evolution – another topic for another post, but suffice it to say I tend to agree more with science here) and they’ve let that taint their logic. Like the man doomed to lose a fight because he’s blind with rage and can’t see what’s coming. Science is not evil. It’s our way of exploring our universe, whether you think the universe was created or just happened.
Science is a search for truth. I wish the same could be said of Christianity (There are a few that are open-minded and pursuing truth, but it seems to be the exception not the rule). If we were created by God, and that’s the truth, then why fear science as it investigates and searches for the truth? Vincit omnia veritas. Truth conquers all. Science may or may not have found the truth at this point (we’re constantly learning more), they may have lots more to learn and may change their views after some new discovery, but I for one do NOT fear the truth.
You say, “But the Bible says ____, and it’s infallible.” Even if it is, you aren’t. Neither are the thousands of people that handed down the texts or the people that translated it. Please never forget that. I’ve spent a lot of time lately going back to the original language in the Bible and have been absolutely astonished by how different things actually are when you read them without bias.
So to sum things up, science isn’t evil and you should question what you’re taught. Oh, and if you’re teaching science and using a scientific classification system, but trying to claim humans aren’t animals on some weird (imagined) Biblical technicality, that’s stupid and you’re wrong.
Wake up, or get out of my way. I’m on a mission to figure out the TRUTH.
The school removed the question from the quiz the very next day and after our meeting with the principal they had the teacher correct the issue in class. The principal pointed out that the new 3rd/4th grade curriculum didn’t match their Jr High curriculum and even apologized. All in all, things went pretty well.