Scientism and Secularism by J. P. Moreland, Free for CAPC Members
Christians need to grow in both the knowledge that science can provide us about God’s world, as well as the reasons why science isn’t the only path to knowledge.
“I don’t know why you always have to be judging me because I only believe in science.” —Escuelto, Nacho Libre
What is the biblical perspective on health, medical care, and scientific medicine? I suppose if you asked that question to people within distinct urban, suburban, rural communities; whites, blacks, and other ethnicities; even different economic classes, then the answers would be as distinct and varied as the number of people you inquired of. Our varied and distinct views of health and the Christian worldview live within a broad spectrum of what it means to be healthy—and where medicinal care comes into play. If you listen long enough at a typical evangelical suburban church in the United States you would hear views ranging from the inherent distrust of vaccinations for children on one hand to an absolute faith in quality of life physicians working with the elderly on the other. The “biblical” worldview, apparently is all over the map.Dr. Cutillo seeks to engage readers in rethinking, and re-engaging, health and care from a redemptive approach.
And the Christian faith, at least an orthodox faith, would in some way advocate for and advance a theology of vocation, giving room for Christian practice in the domain of so-called “secular” occupations. Which, if true, would require us to listen to and learn from those who are actually faithfully present within their vocations, making the arts and sciences a handmaiden to push back the effects of the Fall and reclaim them for the Kingdom of God. Simply put, we must engage in listening, thinking, and learning from those occupations that seek to apply their science and theology together for the betterment of our fellow humankind. The medical sciences are truly a very important pursuit for us today.
Doctor Bob Cutillo’s recent book, Pursuing Health in an Anxious Age, is an important conversation in building a holistic and faithful worldview in the realm of health care, medical science, and personal and social care. Crossway and Christ and Pop Culture have partnered together this month to give our members free access to this important book.
Dr. Cutillo’s ambition is to bring about a redeemed view of health and care in our engagement as the church today. Arguing against the secular view of a disembodied form of health care, as well as the societal inequity of health for the privileged and powerful, Dr. Cutillo seeks to engage readers in rethinking, and re-engaging, health and care from a redemptive approach.
The book is structured in four sections that promote such conversation. Section One debunks modern, affluent notions of our ability to control our own health. Section Two develops an applied theology of the place of person and personhood in the formation of good and just health care. Section Three brings us to the inevitable precipice of death and the means we take to possess immortality. Section Four, finally, seeks to answer two deep challenges that stand in the face of a redemptive approach to health: (1) how does care become more broadly available and justly distributed in our world today and (2) is there a way in which the realm of “faith” and the realm of “science” can be connected together for the good for society?
Health and health care will remain a volatile conversation in our culture mostly because of the political engagement and reach of the system itself. Informed thinking and cogent conversation from a Christian perspective cannot come about in the public square unless we are amply equipped from those who are vocationally engaged and faithfully present to educate our minds. Dr. Cutillo’s book is an important and accessible piece that equips us for this conversation. We believe it will be a valued and useful means of education and engagement for members of Christ and Pop Culture.
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