Living in the twenty-first century, we often take what we know and use for granted. The light bulb was developed in 1879, and today lasers (Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation) are used for everything from guiding bombs to performing delicate eye surgery. The first airplane flew in 1903, and we landed men on the moon in 1969. The first computer filled an 1800 square foot room and weighed thirty tons.[1]

Today, more computing power than the first room-size computer can be held in the palm of your hand. What we know and how quickly we can obtain information far surpasses the accumulated knowledge of millennia. Letters that once took months to deliver can now be sent in seconds electronically. What brought about these advances in scientific knowledge? Why didn’t science develop, for example, in India or China? China was using moveable type long before Gutenberg, and India came up with place notation in mathematics and the concept of zero. Try adding, subtracting, multiplying, or dividing with Roman numerals. Multiply the following numbers with no conception of Arabic numerals and place notation: CCCLCXII plus CMLXVIII. Islam advanced in the sciences and then experienced what Stanley Jaki called a “stillbirth.” Islam’s conception of God as capricious and no development of natural law stopped any scientific momentum.

Consider science. If we are to believe secularists, religion has been the enemy of science. In reality, “it is the Christian world which finally gave birth in a clear, articulate fashion to the experimental method of science itself.”[2] Before science could get started in proposing theories, certain assumptions about the way the world works had to be assumed to be valid and operationally consistent. Isaac Newton’s encounter with a falling apple and the theories that followed did not immediately change the way people lived. Everyone knew the effect of gravity, even though they did not always understand all of its characteristics and functions or give the “scientific law” a name. When people stepped outside, they never considered that they would float away. Rain always fell down from a cloud-filled sky, and sailors knew the daily change in the tides. Water was wet, and when it got cold enough, it froze, even if no one knew its precise freezing point.

For millennia, people from around the globe operated in terms of these assumptions even though they did not always comprehend them theoretically or scientifically. They came to be designated as “natural laws,” the “laws of nature,” or the “laws of Nature’s God,” a critical assumption that did not exist in India, China, or among the Islamic nations. These universal laws operated predictably because the majority of people—scientists included—accepted that they were God’s laws, established and upheld by Him.

It has even been suggested that such a view played a key role in the successful development of science in the Western cultures, and did so because they were influenced by the Judaeo-Christian tradition which fostered faith in the underlying rationality and orderliness of Nature during periods of history when human ideas were inbred by all manner of magical and occult notions.[3]

Life is predictable because God is predictable. Even those who did not embrace a biblical worldview knew that they could not develop an ordered world without the shared belief that God was necessary to make it happen.

In cultures where progress was made in mathematics, science, medicine, political theory, and law, people assumed that the world was not an illusion, that truth mattered, and man was a rational being created by a rational God even though at times man behaved irrationally and believed irrational things. Cultures that believed that spirits inhabited trees, rocks, and animals made very little progress culturally and scientifically because they never knew what the spirits might do. There was never a guarantee that what people did one day could be repeated on another day. They were at the mercy of what they believed were impersonal forces controlled by capricious gods who were always changing the rules.

In a similar way, we are seeing the manifestation of this older primitive worldview in protests against caricatures of the religion of Islam. Islam is a self-destructive religion because the formulation of its worldview does not comport with reality. Killing people, burning buildings, and sending hundreds of thousands of protestors into the streets are signs of a hollow worldview. When there is more outrage over a picture, no matter how seemingly blasphemous, than the bombing of a wedding party, worshippers, and women and children, we are seeing the end of a worldview with nothing to lose. In order to advance, it must destroy its competitors. Islam’s worldview operates very much like the early theorists of Communism and holdovers like Fidel Castro and Hugo Chávez: Once capitalism is gone, Communism will flourish. Islam believes in a similar type of wish fulfillment: When the infidels convert or die, Islam will blossom. It’s the essence of the older magical world that Judaism and Christianity replaced millennia ago. Islam cannot stand on its own worldview feet. The technology that Iran hopes to use to destroy the West has been bought from the West.


[1] The ENIAC was built in 1947 for $500,000. It contained 17,468 vacuum tubes, 70,000 resistors, 10,000 capacitors, 1,500 relays, 6,000 manual switches and 5 million soldered joints. When turned on, its power consumption caused the city of Philadelphia to experience brownouts.
[2] Loren Eisely, Darwin’s Century (Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1958), 62. Quoted in Nancy R. Pearcey and Charles B. Thaxton, The Soul of Science: Christian Faith and Natural Philosophy (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books, 1994), 18. [3] John D. Barrow, The World Within the World (Oxford, England: Clarendon Press, 1988), 23.