The Discipline of Scientific Apologetics: A General Review

  1. Lemma
  2. Естественно-научная апологетика как целостная дисциплина: общий обзор
  3. Russian
  4. Asliturk, Miriam
  5. Orthodox Anthropology - Scientific theories and disciplines > Biology:evolution - Ecumenism and dialogue > Education - Various approaches to the problem of correlation between science and theology - Education, Science and Orthodoxy - Ecumenism and dialogue > Dialogue between churches - Key thinkers - Complementarity
  6. 21-01-2017
  7. Мумриков, Олег A. [Author]. Естественно-научная апологетика как целостная дисциплина: общий обзор
  8. Вестник Православного Свято-Тихоновского гуманитарного университета. Серия 4: Педагогика. Психология.
  9. Apologetics - anthropology - Creationism - Evolution - cosmology - faith and knowledge - Higher Education - Russian Universities - Early Church Fathers - Protestant Church - Catholic Church
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    1. <p>Мумриков, Олег Александрович (2009). Естественно-научная апологетика как целостная дисциплина: общий обзор. <em>Вестник Православного Свято-Тихоновского гуманитарного университета. Серия 4: Педагогика. Психология.</em> Retrieved from: <a href=""></a> </p>
    1. The author aims to present the development of scientific apologetics, including their history, methodology and present state. In the author’s view, many teachers today consider apologetics to play a highly significant role in high schools and university.

      The main goal for apologetics is to convince man of the primordial existence of man and defend the truth of Christianity. The core idea of natural science apologetics is traditionally referred to as the teleological proof of the existence of God, with arguments based on intelligence and the observable world around us, a scientific justification for the truths of faith.

      The author explains that the origins and foundation of natural science apologetics go as far back as the Apostle Paul and cites a number of fathers and teachers of the Church of different eras, who were also convinced that the observation of phenomena in the natural world is valid and useful, as its parts reveal to man its many properties and the existence of God therein.

      The author quotes the Russian scientist Lomonosov as saying: “The Creator gave to mankind two books. The first - the visible world ... The second book - the Holy Scriptures ... Both generally certify us of not only the existence of God, but in His goodness to us untold.” The author qualifies the status of science as a "handmaiden of theology" (using the terminology of Augustine (IV-V), Roger Bacon (XIII), Thomas Aquinas (XIII), and others). He explains that the Middle Ages contributed largely to the development of this term. The confrontation between religion and science in the Renaissance and later was caused, on the one hand, by the problem of demarcation (dividing areas of activity) between them and on the other, the tendency to use natural science to justify secular philosophy and atheism. Mumrikov explains that the main issue is not so much between religion and science, but rather between religion and atheism and that these dominant opinions stay relevant today.

      Mumrikov views dialogues on modern theology regarding natural science as a positive development, with natural science apologetics playing an important role in the process of goal-setting research, providing a complete picture of the world, the formation of ethical values scientists and an understanding of the achievements, language and prospects of the further development of civilization. The author views their role as important in building a model of reference regarding the biblical revelation, the creation of the world and modern scientific data, as well as the overall development of dialogue between theology and the natural sciences

      The author cautions that it would be wrong to strive for every detail of the biblical text to cover scientific data, noting that science is constantly evolving, whereas the sacred text remains the same. Thus, all concepts of harmonization between the biblical texts and scientific theories remain solely “models” or “working hypotheses.” The author provides an overview of the history of natural science apologetics, quoting a great number of Western biblical scholars who had a certain influence on Orthodox scholars. The author elucidates the vast development of apologetics both in the West and in Russia from the 19th century onwards. There was even, in 1870 Russia, the establishment of the first department of natural science apologetics, which taught courses including physics, chemistry, astronomy and was aimed at proving the existence of God through the study of the world and the laws of physics and chemistry. The author quotes a number of apologists, Catholic, Protestant and Orthodox from the 19th century and up until the late 20th century and provides a list of both English and Russian resources at the end of his article.