Schools out and various industries are in the midst of Christmas shutdowns. You might find yourself with a little extra time on your hands this time of year. You also might find yourself lacking regular internet access, and be looking for some good reading material.
This year my Christmas present to you is a book recommendation. The book I'm recommending you read over your Holiday break is call The Science of God: The Convergence of Scientific and Biblical Wisdom.
Schroeder is a physicist and Bible scholar. His previous work was called Genesis and the Big Bang. In The Science of God, he compares the Genesis account of creation with current scientific knowledge about the origin of life. No doubt he is well versed in both the Bible and biology; he's also a skilled pedagogue, explaining abstract or counterintuitive concepts in lay terms.
Some of his arguments (for instance, that the sequence of Genesis creation is congruent with evolution's progression from prokaryotic to human life) are compelling.
He demonstrates how some of the issues between the Church and the scientific community were not actually Biblically based at all. For example, the Church fought against the scientific discovery of elliptical orbits because they believed a perfect God would use perfect circular orbits, but no where in the Bible does it talk about Circular or Explical orbits at all. It wasn’t an issue of Science versus the Bible, but Science versus the Church.
I loved his turn of the phrase "Render undo Einstein, that which is Einstein’s, and render unto God that which is God's"
Schroeder is very lucid in explaining difficult scientific concepts, such as the passage of time according to the theory of relativity, and religious data, such as the original Hebrew words.
I'm finding this book truly fascinating. Whether you are a skeptic, or a believer, I think you will find the book an interesting read.
You could also check out some of the books I recommended last year. You can see them here: http://honorscode.blogspot.com/2008/12/holiday-reading.html