I grew up in a Christian home, going to Bible classes and worship every Sunday and Wednesday. My father served as an elder in the church for 22 years. I attended the Silver Maple Bible Camp every single summer for ten years straight, where I learned to memorize the books of the Bible, the sons of Jacob, the Judges, the kings of Judah, and much, much more. For one year, I attended Oklahoma Christian University, where I met my wife. We continued to be faithful and very active members of the church as we began to raise a family, to follow in the same pattern that we had growing up. Other than a stretch of time while at college, where I experienced the greatest struggle with my faith, I had probably “missed church” a maximum of 10 times in 25 years, hearing more than 2,500 sermons and sitting in over 3,000 Bible classes, and it wasn’t until I sat in Warren Wilcox’s Christian Evidences class at the Bear Valley Bible Institute, that I had even heard of Apologetics or Christian evidences. How that was possible, I do not know, but I am afraid it is the case with many young people in the church. They are flooded with propaganda every single day with theories, thoughts, and ideas that contradict what they hear their preachers and Bible class teachers tell them, yet too many times; they are not given the tools that are needed to make a Biblical defense of their faith. I am forever thankful to Brother Wilcox for introducing me to the world of Apologetics because it has opened my eyes to the abundance of evidence that God left for us to analyze and verify everything He has given us in the Bible.

In the past four articles, I have focused on the evidence that we have, outside of Scripture, that verifies the existence, death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus. But apologetics goes so much deeper and wider than this. Even the existence of God Himself can be seen in the evidence He has left for us in this world.

Paul wrote,

“For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse”…Romans 1:20

I sat through a lot of science classes in my lifetime that tried to convince me that what I was told in the Bible could not possibly be correct. I had unknowingly developed a worldview that was contradictory to the Bible. I have found that this has happened to Christian teenagers all over the world. Everywhere I have done mission work, whether in Europe, Africa, Australia, or America, I have asked teens to explain one thing to me.

First, I ask them to explain all that they know about cavemen. I always get a lot of participation because they have been well-versed in the details of these primitive homo sapiens in their public schools. They describe these half-ape-like people who are fairly unintelligent, cave-dwelling, grunting barbarians.

I then ask them who the first man and woman were, and they all immediately say, “Adam and Eve.”

Then I just wait and watch as the expressions on their faces begin to reveal their confusion. Most of them had never even considered the contradiction between what they read in the Bible and what they read in their biology textbooks.

Can you understand science and still believe in God? I remember clearly when I first started asking that question. I loved science in school because teachers actually encouraged us to cut open a frog so I could discover how it functioned. Science gave me the excuse to always ask the “why” questions I was wondering about. I was able to try experiments, not worried if they failed because I could learn from my mistakes. To me, science represented the hard facts because it was experimentally proven. So, even though I didn’t believe in evolution or any of the theories that came from it, I didn’t realize how many false ideas had been planted in my mind. Then, I was introduced to Biblical apologetics, and that is where the mind-blowing began.

A theory that intrigued me the most comes from the Arabic word “kalam,” or what we call the cosmological argument. This argument has three steps:

  1. Everything that begins to exist has a cause.

  2. The universe began to exist.

  3. Therefore, the universe has a cause.

In most people’s experience, things don’t just pop into existence uncaused, out of nothing. You don’t worry while you are driving down the road that a cow will materialize in front of you. The evidence of experience suggests that whatever begins to exist does have a cause. However, there is always a scientific theory that will challenge this, and in this case, it was found in the world of quantum physics. The theory states that things can materialize spontaneously out of a vacuum, and there is a lot of research that has been done by a lot of smart people on this subject. So, this is true. Truth be told, the subatomic particles believed to appear in a vacuum are called “virtual particles,” which are theoretical entities, and it is not even clear that they actually exist. However, a point they don’t want you to consider is that even if these particles are real, they do not come out of nothing. The quantum vacuum is not what most people think of when they think of a vacuum. It has been described as “a sea of fluctuating energy, an arena of violent activity that has a rich physical structure and can be described by physical laws.” So, this would not be an example of something coming out of nothing or without cause. And if this is how the universe came into existence, who would have created the quantum vacuum to make it possible in the first place? So, even this theory ultimately demands a cause, and the first step of the cosmological argument seems to be correct.

As recently as one hundred years ago, the idea that the universe began to exist at a specific point in time would have been very controversial. The belief, ever since the time of the ancient Greeks, has been that the material world is eternal. People who believe in the Bible have always denied this, but secular science has always assumed that the universe always existed. So, the discovery in the twentieth century that the universe is expanding was a complete shock to the scientific world.

I was never very good at math, so I never paid attention to the mathematical evidence, which there is a lot that shows that the universe had to have a beginning point. Early Christian, as well as Muslim scholars, used mathematical reasoning to demonstrate that it was impossible for the universe to have an infinite past. Because an infinite past would involve an infinite number of events, they concluded that there must be a beginning. This can be illustrated using marbles. Imagine that you have an infinite number of marbles, and you decide to give me some of them. One way you could do that is by giving me all of the marbles, leaving you with none. So, infinity minus infinity = zero. Or you could give me all of the odd-numbered marbles. So, I would have an infinite number and you would have an infinite number, therefore, infinity minus infinity = infinity. Or you could give me all of the marbles numbered ten and higher. That way I would have an infinity of marbles, but you would be left with nine. That means infinity minus infinity = 9. Do you see how an infinite number of things leads to contradictory results? That is because the idea of infinity is only in our minds and is not something that is descriptive of the real world that we live in. Substitute “past events” for “marbles.” The universe cannot have an infinite number of past events; it must have had a beginning. I know, it hurts my brain to think about it too.

The scientific evidence also becomes just as compelling as the mathematical evidence. Almost all scientists today believe that the universe did have a beginning, and they will say it started with the “Big Bang.” This all started in 1915 when Albert Einstein developed his general theory of relativity and was shocked by his discovery that the universe should either be exploding or imploding. Since that meant that the universe must have had a beginning, he actually adjusted his equations by putting in a factor that shows the universe is remaining steady. Then, in 1920, Russian mathematician Alexander Friedman and the Belgian astronomer George Lemaitre developed a model predicting that the universe is expanding. That means if you went back in time, there would be a single point when the universe came into existence. Astronomer Sir Fred Hoyle mockingly called this the Big Bang, and that name stuck. In 1929, the American astronomer Edwin Hubble discovered that light coming from distant galaxies appears to be redder than it should be, indicating that these galaxies are moving away from us and the universe is expanding. In the 1940s, George Gamow predicted that if the universe truly had a beginning, the background temperature of the universe should be just a few degrees above absolute zero. Then, in 1965, two scientists accidentally discovered the universe’s background radiation and found that it was only about 3.7 degrees above absolute zero, verifying Gamow’s prediction.

The evidence seems to verify the second step of the cosmological argument as well, leaving us with the conclusion if everything that exists has a cause and that the universe began to exist, then the universe has to have a cause. Many theories are proposed concerning this cause, but as Christians, the evidence continues to point directly at what we have always believed.

“In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth”…Genesis 1:1

The beauty of apologetics is that we get to use geography, physics, chemistry, astronomy, geology, history, archaeology, mathematics, and every other field of study to search for the true evidence that God left for us to discover. So, yes, you can understand science and still believe in God. As a matter of fact, it only strengthens my belief in God.

Steve Schinnerer
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Steve Schinnerer was raised in the church in Scott City, KS where his father served as an elder for 25 years.  Steve attended Oklahoma Christian for one year where he met his wife, Jennifer, of Yukon, OK.  Steve and Jenni have four children: Ajay, Jagger, Liberty, and Jase, they also have 4 grandchildren. Jenni is a stay-at-home mom where she homeschools and is focused on raising her children in the Lord.

Steve and Jenni both attended Bear Valley Bible Institute of Denver where they graduated: Steve with a Bachelor’s degree in Biblical Theology, and Jenni with and Associates degree in Bible. 

Following Bear Valley, Steve and his family moved to Porter, OK where he served as their pulpit minister for six years, and then another six years as the pulpit minister for the Cherokee Hills church of Christ in Oklahoma City before coming to Cave Springs in the fall of 2013.

Steve and Jenni have a passion to teach the saving message of Jesus Christ and do so whether it be in their home congregation, at summer camps, gospel meetings, lectureships, or in the foreign mission field.  Steve has been able to preach in eight different countries around the world with most of his time abroad spent in Africa and Australia.  Steve and Jenni have recently been focusing on young families, trying to help strengthen marriages, encouraging parents to utilize Biblical discipline and training with their children and especially in helping men in their battle to become the husbands and fathers that God desires for them to be.