The Bible: A Book of Research in the Development and Advancement of Science
The Bible, for centuries, has been and remains the most widely used book throughout the world. It is translated into several languages and distributed to thousands of people (Kuen, 2012). However, most of its readers, namely scholars, pastors, preachers, teachers, theologians, and ordinary members of the evangelical sector ignore the importance of Bible research. As a source of research, it is a book that one can tap into to develop science, contribute to the advancement of science and make scientific advances. We spent a lot of time reading, studying and researching in the fields of philosophy, chemistry, physics, psychology, medicine, and computer science to further our knowledge. And yet, all of these sciences and many great recent scientific discoveries were already present thousands of years ago in the Bible (Comfort, 2001). So these last only confirm the contents of the Bible. In addition, many of the great scientists who founded and developed key disciplines of science (physics, biology, geology, astronomy, etc.) were creationists, therefore believers in the Bible. Moreover, for them, their highest vocation and scientific enterprise is to be dedicated to the thoughts of God . Which would amount to saying that they were interested in what God reveals through creation or says in the Bible. Nevertheless, there are people who engage in Bible research, but fail to find that Bible authors or writers were eminent researchers, to find answers to their questions or to solve their problems.
This paper aims, by scrutinizing the Holy Scriptures, to show that research could have its source in the Bible, and that the Bible makes its contribution to the development and advancement of science. The Bible, a book containing a plethora of research examples, is filled with scientific facts written thousands of years before their discovery by man (Comfort, 2001). In this way, there are Bible writers and other men of God in the Bible who were involved in research.
Definition of research
Research is a systematic study of an object aimed at obtaining knowledge allowing to shed light to solve theoretical or applied problems. In this definition, we see that research has a dual objective; on the one hand, it allows us to deepen our knowledge in a field, and on the other hand, it allows us, through the knowledge acquired, to solve a given problem or to clarify a problematic situation. So Bible research could be defined as a study that allows us to deepen our knowledge in the Word of God, to know the truth, and to apply that truth in our daily lives. Roughly speaking, true Bible study or research is motivated by the need to find out the truth about a given fact or problem (Kuen, 1986).
The Bible, its contribution to the development and advancement of science
Biblical research is of paramount importance in the lives of individuals. Because, it allows us to discover answers to a considerable number of questions that philosophers have always asked themselves such as: Is there life after death? Where do we come from? How to please God in the sufferings of life? Why so much suffering in our life? Etc. Biblical research also contributes to the development and advancement of science. As an example, in the book of Genesis we found out that Joseph is one of the greatest accountants, administrators, and managers the world has ever known. Thus, during Egypt's seven fertile years, Joseph gathered the surplus produce and made provisions (Ge. 41:47, 48). These products / provisions would then be put in reserve for the seven (7) years of famine that would arrive in the land of Egypt (Ge. 41:36). Is it not correct to say with good reason that God gave Joseph intelligence and wisdom to apply the principles and techniques of accounting and management so that he could gather provisions during the seven years of plenty and to save the country of Egypt and other countries in the world during this time of famine? So to speak, in accounting, the function of procurement is to ensure good stock management and good purchasing control . In addition, Joseph was able to establish supply places in the cities, he raised a fifth of Egypt's crops during the seven fertile years, and sold wheat to the Egyptians and to all the countries that came to buy wheat. in Egypt (Ge. 41: 34, 56, 57). According to the literature consulted, traces of accounting are found in Egyptian history in the 4th millennium BC . Some researchers have mentioned that the beginnings of accounting were actually entries and exits having been found using papyrus writings .
By the way, there are several biblical passages which could claim that the Bible is the queen of all sciences. First of all, the Bible contributed to the development of the science of "Leadership and Management". In the book of Genesis, God entrusted to man the responsibility to manage the earth, to multiply, to subjugate the earth and to rule over all animals (Ge. 1:28). In short, God entrusted man with the function of developing his leadership and management skills on earth. Additionally, many scholars, theologians, and leadership experts unanimously assert that Moses is one of the greatest leaders the world has known. The scientific or biological classification of species has its origin in the Bible (Ge. 1: 24,25). And the Eternal God, after having formed the animals of the earth, brought them to Adam to express by a name the nature of each of them, and thereby to characterize them (Ge. 2:19). The text tells us that man gave names to all animals and was able to identify males and females (Ge. 2:21). The Bible also contributed to the development of genealogy being an auxiliary science of history. In the 4th chapter of the book of Genesis, the author presents us the genealogy of Adam up to Noah (Ge. 5: 1-32). In today's world, there are digital archives to trace every inhabitant or every family in a country. The Bible has also contributed enormously to the development of the human sciences (linguistics, geography, sociology, history, etc.). For, there is biblical data supporting this opinion in the 11th chapter of the book of Genesis. Indeed, all the inhabitants of the earth were one people, used one language and the same vocabularies (Ge. 11: 1). Thus, they formed the plan to build a city and a tower whose top could reach the sky (Ge. 11: 4-5). The Lord, seeing their determination to achieve their ends, confused their language and scattered them over all the face of the earth (Gen 11: 6-9). This confusion of language gives rise to several languages in the world (linguistics) and to several societies or peoples (sociology) and each people occupies a geographical space and has a different history (history and geography). To support this idea, the word of God teaches and we quote “The Most High gave an inheritance to the nations, he divided the children of men, and set the limits of the peoples” (Deut. 32: 8). In sum, there is a lot of biblical evidence confirming that the Bible is the mother of all sciences and that it has contributed and still contributes greatly to the development and advancement of knowledge and science.
The Bible, a research book
The Bible, being considered the mother of all sciences, has therefore become an inexhaustible source of research for scientific and non-scientific fields and can help in their development. For example, the Bible offers a considerable contribution to philosophy and other sciences. In other words, the Bible is a source of certainty for philosophy (Laloi, 2010). Nevertheless, one cannot ignore that philosophy brings to theology, more precisely to the Bible, the practice of reflection. When, for example, philosophers ask themselves questions about the origin of man, students of the Bible find it necessary to push their reflections on the great questions which dominate human thought and draw from the Bible the answers to these questions. questions. The Bible is a book that encourages research. In other words, most biblical writers and kings used to research the writings of the Bible and in the performance of their duties. Thus, we are going to examine some texts from the Old Testament dealing with the notion of research. Subsequently, we will present some texts from the New Testament affirming unambiguously that biblical authors or writers were doing research to also produce reliable and scientific work.
In the book of Chronicles, in the first year of Cyrus, the Lord awakened the spirit of Cyrus and ordered him to build the temple of Jerusalem in Judah (Ch. 36: 2, 23). Under the command of King Cyrus, the heads of the families of Judah and Benjamin, the priests and the Levites whose spirit the Lord awakened rose up to go and build the temple of the Lord (Ezek. 1: 3-5 ). However, the enemies of Judah and Benjamin prevented the people of Israel from building the temple of the Lord (Ezra 4: 5). In chapter 6 of the book of Ezra, we read that King Darius ordered that an investigation be made to find out whether King Cyrus ordered the people of Israel to build the house of the Lord and we read this : "Then King Darius gave orders to do research in the house of archives where the treasures of Babylon were deposited. And there was found a scroll upon which was written the following memoir: In the first year of King Cyrus, King Cyrus commanded concerning the house of God in Jerusalem: Let the house be built ”(Ezes 6: 1-3). Basically, from the research, the problems that the people of Israel had encountered about building the house of the Lord had been solved. In other words, research has uncovered the truth about Cyrus' edict concerning the building of the house of the Lord. Therefore, research in the Bible is useful in order to solve a given problem and find out the truth. In the 1st chapter as well as in the twenty-sixth chapter of the book of Numbers, the Lord commanded Moses to take a census so that he could quantify the children of Israel who were twenty years old and over (No. 1: 2-46; 26). In the book of Samuel, King David asked Joab to go through all the tribes of the people of Israel and take a census to find out how many people there are (2 Sam. 24: 2). Indeed, it is true that the word search is not mentioned in this passage; nevertheless, researchers would believe that the census, like the poll or survey, is a very popular method of research. In the 7th chapter of the book of Joshua, the word of God relates that the children of Israel committed an infidelity to the Lord over goods doomed to destruction. Because of this sin, the people of Israel were delivered into the hands of the men of Ai, who put them to death. In other words, the people could no longer resist their enemies because of this fault. To deal with this problematic, Joshua, under the command of the Lord, made a research in order to identify that of the people having committed this infidelity concerning the things doomed by interdict. In terms of method, the Lord commanded Joshua to proceed as follows: "In the morning you will approach by tribes and the tribe which the Lord will designate will approach clan by clan, the clan which the Lord will designate s' will approach family by family; then the family designated by the Lord will approach man by man. Whosoever shall be appointed having taken goods destined for destruction will be burnt with fire, and finally Achan was appointed ”(Jo. 7: 10-19) . In this text, we find the five fundamental elements of scientific research. Respectively, these are the problem, the research question, the research objective, the research method adopted and the research results found. The problem is very obvious: one of the children of Israel committed an infidelity about things by prohibition. As a result, the people were delivered into the hands of their enemies. One could ask the following research question: Who committed this infidelity among the children of Israel? Therefore, the objective of this research would be to identify that of the people who committed this infidelity. To achieve this goal, Joshua adopted a deductive research method. As part of a deductive approach, we want to know how to go from a general case to a specific case. In this text, to identify the person (specific case) who committed the sin, a tribe was designated from among the tribes (general case). Subsequently, a family was designated from among all the families of a tribe. Then, one house among all the houses of a family and one person among all the people in a house. Ultimately, the result was that Achan was identified and designated as the one who had taken staunch goods by interdict. This allows us to conclude without ambiguity that the research has a divine origin. In other words, the Bible necessarily turns out to be a book of research. It should be emphasized that research is the basis of all inventions and discoveries; which implies that scientific discoveries and inventions are generally made by men who invest themselves in the field of research. We could ask the question, who is at the origin of scientific discoveries and inventions?
In the book of Exodus, the Lord chose Bezaléel, he filled him with the Spirit of God, wisdom, understanding and enabled him to make inventions (Exo. 31: 1-4 ). Based on this biblical passage, could we not rule on the fact that God is at the origin of all good inventions and discoveries made in the world? Indeed, God gives man intelligence to make inventions and discoveries, and Bezaléel is a blatant example in the Bible. God enabled him to make inventions, to work with gold, silver and brass (Exo 31: 1-4). Bezaléel and Oholiab were therefore endowed with knowledge of sculpture, architecture and civil engineering in order to be able to build the tabernacle of the Lord (Ex. 31: 4, 5).
In the New Testament, there are also Bible passages showing that Bible writers were doing research. The surest example would be Dr. Luke who, in order to prove to his excellent Theophilus the certainty of his teachings, was doing exact research about the events of the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ ( Luke 1: 1-4). Indeed, Luke wanted, through his research, to verify the authenticity of the information received from the eyewitnesses (Luke 1: 1, 2). In his 1st epistle, the apostle Peter mentioned that the prophets were researching salvation when he said: “The prophets, who prophesied of the grace reserved for you, made this salvation the object of their salvation. research and their investigations ; they wanted to search the time and the circumstances marked by the Spirit of Christ which were in them… ”(1 Pet. 1: 10,11). The Greek word which translates investigation is " exeraunao " which means in French "to seek with anxiety and diligently ". As for the Petit Robert dictionary, the word investigation means “continuous, systematic research” . In other words, the prophets, by making systematic and prompt research, diligently examine the times and circumstances so that they may discover the time of the appearance of the Messiah.
Without going deep into the interpretation, the text teaches that the prophets announced in advance the sufferings that Jesus would have undergone for the salvation that was intended for us. However, they could not understand or find out when or in what events these things would be realized. In verse 12, God revealed to the prophets that this message was not for them, but for us. In terms of application, when our Bible research is truly motivated by the need to uncover the truth about the things of God, the Lord will reveal Himself to us.
In his 2nd epistle, the apostle Peter related that the apostle Paul covered in all his letters the subject concerning the coming of the Lord Jesus and that there are points which are difficult to understand in these letters (2 Pet. 3: 16). Peter continues his ideas by confirming that there are ignorant people who try to twist the meaning of Paul's scriptures (2 Pet. 3:16). This text showed without ambiguity that the apostle Peter made an in-depth study of all the letters of beloved Brother Paul. And, we know that any in-depth study involves, among other things, research. It can therefore be deduced that Peter had researched all of Paul's letters and that, according to the results of his research, he was able to identify difficult points in them to the point that there are false teachers trying to twist the meaning.
The Bible is not limited only to a research book or a book contributing to the development and advancement of science, but it is also a comprehensive book that could contribute to the success and integral growth of man as cognitively, socially and spiritually. In the Gospel according to Luke, the Word of God teaches that Jesus increased in wisdom, in stature and in grace before God and before men. In other words, Jesus was growing cognitively, socially, and spiritually (Luke 2:52). Indeed, research is a skill that God entrusts to men, whether they are believers or not. You just need to develop this skill. In the book of Exodus, the Lord filled Bezaléel and Oholiab with intelligence to execute works of sculpture and art and he also bestowed upon them the gift of teaching (Ex. 35:34, 35). Additionally, studies from many sources have shown that Moses is a distinguished scholar and drew on the book of the covenant to write the Pentateuch ((Exo. 24: 7). So the leaders and members of the evangelical sector need to invest more in biblical and theological research in order to be more educated in the affairs of God, and to be able to better teach and preach God's way accurately and righteously. Also, we need to invest in scientific research, since we are endowed with natural intelligence; which will allow us to put our talents and abilities to contribution to the development of our community in the fields of engineering, technologies, mineralogy, industry oil, psychology, seismology, etc. All the more, being Christians, we are endowed with supernatural intelligence and wisdom, since the Spirit of the Lord rests on us: Spirit of wisdom and of understanding, Spirit of counsel and of strength, Spirit of knowledge and fear of the Lord (Isa. 1 1: 2).
In short, the Bible remains and remains a source of research from which one can draw to develop sciences, advance knowledge and contribute to scientific progress and advances. Many great discoveries in archeology, chemistry, physics and technology, etc. only confirm the contents of the Bible.
B. Th, M.Sc. A, Ph.D. candidate in cognitive computing,
University of Quebec at Montreal, Qc, Canada
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