By: Dr. Joe Francis, Dean of the School of Science, Mathematics, Technology & Health
The Master’s University has offered degrees in science for 50 years. With the rigor of our programs under the School of Science, Mathematics, Technology and Health, 95% of our graduates are accepted into the graduate schools of their choice, and many of our science and kinesiology majors have moved on to serve in health professions, athletics, research, the armed forces and education, both nationally and internationally in places like Africa, New Zealand and China.
Students graduating with degrees in mathematics and computer science have achieved careers in business, education, engineering and bioengineering. Many computer science graduates have obtained positions at major companies including Fortune 500 companies like Hewlett-Packard and others. Just as our graduates are expanding across countries, our school is expanding its reach by adding a Bachelor of Science degree in Geosciences. This degree will allow students to go into the fields of geology, petrology, environmental science, geo-engineering and planetary science.
However, what is the difference between us and every other secular Christian institution who may boast of a more comprehensive list of degrees and emphases offered?
We hold Christ and Scripture as inerrant and above all else.
Everything is interpreted through that lens without compromise. This means the Bible is the foundation for science, not science for the Bible. This is blasphemy for secular institutions or atypical at Christian institutions, as the latter merely integrate a biblical worldview into the sciences or view science as an authority equal to but separate from Scripture. These views of science and faith place them— in the words of a famous evolutionary biologist — in separate non-overlapping magesteria; two truth-seeking realms that do not relate well to one another. At Master’s, science and Scripture are not separated.
At TMU we believe that the Bible is a true foundation for all the disciplines. In the case of science, the study of the physical world, the Bible declares the physical world exists in its very first verse (Genesis 1:1). The idea the physical world exists is a major assumption of science which cannot be proved to be true by science itself, yet the Bible declares it to be true and therefore serves as a true foundation for science. For instance, in Proverbs, it is declared that wisdom comes from the very words of God. Yet also in Proverbs it is declared that knowledge and understanding of the world, and decision making abilities, aspects that are central to the discipline of science, also flow from the idea that there is a source of true wisdom (Proverbs 2). Seen in this light, science simply is a method for learning about the world, but it is subordinate to the foundational truth of Scripture.
Furthermore, science raises questions about where we come from including everything around us, and correspondingly raises speculations about the future via prediction. The Bible answers these questions raised by science by describing the origin of the physical universe in a historical account in Genesis, and it also instructs about the future, which involves man’s destiny, including a new life through salvation in Christ.
The history of science also shows that some of the great scientists of the scientific revolution, like Isaac Newton and others viewed the Bible as a true source of wisdom which could provide a basis for science. They did not view science as some type of separate or competing worldview or an activity outside of biblical truth. This is further proof that the Bible serves as a foundation for science and is a very practical method for studying the physical world around us.
Based upon that foundation, successful and excellent research is done. With a 10:1 student-teacher ratio across campus, this research is highly individualized, allowing for small groups of students to work together with their actual teacher, rather than a teaching assistant common to most major universities across the nation.
In these key groups, critical thinking and problem solving skills blossom. Students and faculty have attended research conferences and, recently, a TMU research group won an award for their presentation on molecular biology at a nationally recognized conference in biological sciences.
It’s exciting to be a teacher in the sciences at TMU and be part of scientific inquiry and discovery. We know from our trustworthy biblical text that God also placed in His creation a way for man to see Him through His power (Romans 1). And thus, with this guiding Scriptural principle, it’s exciting to point out to students, neighbors and peers that scientific study helps reveal His power and creative genius in all He has made, and these concepts have guided great scientists for centuries.