[Update to this posting: About the brand-new Big Bang discoveries and gravity waves. Exciting news! Nothing from what we've read so far for Christians to be alarmed about. But again, as discussed below, watch for seems to be evidence and what seems to be "hoped for." More in a future post…]

“God-of-the-Gaps” is a popular word Christians sometimes use to account for an occurrence of “change” where science presently gives no plausible explanation.

“Not fair!” say many naturalists. “For one thing, it discourages doing more science.”


What say we?


Let’s consider the other side of the coin:


For more use the DOOR. 


Bruce Gordon reminds us of this little used–but helpful–expression to sort of level the playing field. In a recent book review, he declares, “This ‘naturalism-of-the-gaps’ is a faith-attitude rooted in false narratives of the inexorable march of material explanations science can offer, no more, and no less.”¹

As is the “God-of-the-Gaps” faith attitude (working within a different narrative).

ADS offers  four comments about this.

(1)  “God-of-the-Gaps” also rides on faith. We usually  refer to what prompts this as “premises,” “assumptions,” or “postulates,” recognizing that  interpretations of both science and the Bible rest upon faith-attitudes.

(2)  Use of these hyphenated terms in discussion and argument should be deliberate and sparing because of their often pejorative tone.

(3)  Let us never discourage science attempting to learn more about these “gaps.”

(4)  Let us be careful in science (and what is not science) to distinguish what is evidence and what is simply hoped for.

All this said, let us remember that questions of origin and change are very complex. Use of these two hyphenated phrases shouldn’t be used as excuses for not trying to learn more.


¹ Bruce Gordon, “Seeing with Both Eyes,” (a response to a critic of his article “In Defense of Uniformitarianism” that appeared in PSCF 65, no. 2 [2013]: 79-86) Perspectives on Science and Christian Faith. (Sept.)Vol. 65, no. 3, 216.