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Book Review column title

God's Undertaker: Has Science Buried God?

by John C. Lennox, Lion Books, © 2009,
224 pages, $12.95 (paperback), ISBN-13: 978-0745953717

The cover of Answering Skeptics by Douglas Jacoby

Dr. John Lennox is professor emeritus of mathematics at the University of Oxford and has written several books on the compatibility of science and faith. This book originated from a course taught by Dr. Lennox at the University of Oxford titled “Faith, Reason and Science.” Even though it is scholarly, it is also very readable.

In this book, Dr. Lennox deals with the clash of worldviews. He examines the scope and limits of science and evolution. As a mathematician, he is interested in the information contained in the genetic code and the mathematical improbability of it deriving by chance.

Dr. Lennox has warnings for both scientists and believers. He tells about how Galileo, as a Bible believer, advanced a better scientific understanding that went against not only the churchmen but also the philosophers of his day. They were disciples of Aristotle and interpreted the Bible to fit an Aristotelian view of the universe. Referring to the refusal of the authorities to accept Galileo's more scientific perspective, Lennox has this warning: “Philosophers and scientists today also have a need of humility in light of facts, even if those facts are being pointed out to them by a believer in God.”

On the other hand, Lennox warns believers not to fall into the same errors. He gave this warning for religious leaders: “The important lesson is that we should be humble enough to distinguish between what the Bible says and our interpretations of it.” In other words, both sides must follow the facts wherever they lead, free from devotion to HUMAN doctrines.

According to Lennox, materialism is “self-defeating.” Here is his explanation: “The scientist's confidence in reason ultimately depends on the existence of a rational and purposeful Creator. Otherwise, our thoughts are nothing more than electro-chemical events, the chattering of soul-less synapses. If you take the atheistic, naturalistic, materialistic view, you're going to invalidate the reasoning process, … .”

You do not need a Ph.D. to understand the point Dr. Lennox is making about self-defeating materialism. If you want more wisdom from John Lennox, we recommend that you read his book.