How Fear May Be Keeping You From Knowledge

 

how fear may be keeping you from knowledge -- the evolution of man

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A few weeks ago during the debate between Bill Nye and Ken Ham, Christians were posting stuff on Facebook like, “maybe you choose to believe we came from monkeys, but I believe the Bible.”

Evolution in fact does not teach that human beings came from monkeys. It teaches that both humans and apes evolved from a common ancestor. In saying those things, Christians were disowning evolution, even as they showed how dramatically they did not understand evolution. It’s so reactionary, quite small, and pretty darn embarrassing to those of us who think it’s important to know at least something about the thing you’re opposing before you oppose it. It reminds me a little of all the Christians years ago who were protesting “The Last Temptation of Christ,” the majority of whom apparently had not seen it.

It would be like me standing up at a football game and screaming, “You can support the traditional rules of football if you want, but as for me, I’m in favor of the designated hitter.”

No matter your opinion of this post, you’re my friend and I love you, I just thought I’d say a few words in favor of knowledge. How badly more of that is needed! But in order to pursue knowledge, a person must face and conquer fear. Fear (of how knowledge may rock their worlds and challenge their beliefs) is the reason people often choose to remain ignorant, though there has probably never been a time in history where we have less of an excuse for not knowing.

Christians, consider this: If Jesus is who you believe him to be, he knows everything there is to be known. If that’s the case, why should you fear knowledge? The only answer is because you’re afraid you might learn something that makes faith difficult. But that’s not a good reason, because truth is simply reality, the way things actually are. If your God can’t handle the way things really are, that being is not God. At least not any more so than Zeus.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic. A request for me to defend some of my comments does not obligate me to do so.

  • Mark Glubke

    Thank you, David, for a wonderful post. Fear is not only behind the rejection of science but it also fuels fundamentalism and is the cause of homophobia and all forms of prejudice. Fear does indeed lead to small, impoverished lives. Thank you for affirming this, and powerfully reminding us that Jesus offers us another perspective.

    • And thank you, Mark, for this fantastic summary of the spirit of my post. I appreciate your input.