In Celebration of Psalm Nineteen:
God's handiwork in Creation

Dr. David C. Bossard

Biographical Information. Dr. Bossard earned a Ph.D. in mathematics from Dartmouth College in 1967 after a B.Sc. (Drexel) and A.M. (Dartmouth) in Physics. His thesis in probability theory was published in the Transactions of the American Mathematical Society (1971). He also earned a M.Div. from Biblical Theological Seminary in 1982. His primary work has been in scientific computer modeling and simulation, with emphasis on military applications. He has had a particular interest in ocean science, and this eventually led him to the H.M.S. Challenger Exploratory Expedition of 1872-1876, which was perhaps the most extensively documented deep ocean voyage of exploration. All of the reports of this Expedition are posted at the 19th Century Science website, which includes along with the Challenger reports, some contemporary accounts of this and similar voyages, in the HMS Challenger Library. From that work, he turned his attention to the development of the Geological Sciences in the 19th Century, and posted many of the prominent books from this era in the Golden Age of Geology Library.

Dr. Bossard has had a lifelong interest in understanding the parts of the Bible that relate to science, and has used his scientific knowledge to explore that relationship. He believes that the Bible is inspired by God the Creator, and therefore it is accurate in the statements it makes of a scientific nature -- understanding that the Bible was written for all people, not just for scientists, and that language by its very nature is metaphorical, so any scientific content can be expected to be explained in ways that could and can be understood in all ages by the typical intelligent person of the time, using the common language, figures of speech, analogy and other literary devices, to make the message relevant and clear (unless it is intentionally obscured), without mis-statements of fact. Many silly statements pointing out supposed scientific errors in the Bible, result when modern notions of accuracy, grammar and scientific expression are erroneously projected onto the Biblical writings.

With regard to the creative works of God as displayed in nature, Dr. Bossard accepts the following principle, which is described and amplified throughout this website:

"God does not create by fiat those things which are quite within the range of natural processes."

Thus, for example, God created the elements required for life in the stars over a (necessarily) long period of some 10 billion years, because God had formed the natural laws of physics with the exquisite precision required to do this creative act by natural means. Certainly God could have created these elements by fiat  - by willing them into existence - but the evidence from the Silent Speech of Psalm 19, is that he did not do that.

Related to this is Dr. Bossard's view of the task of science:

"The task of science is to explore the limits of what can be done by natural processes."

To do this, science must first discover (or postulate) the built-in laws  and constants of nature, and then form effective experiments to test these postulates and press them to discover their natural limits. Science has been remarkably successful at doing this, but there still remains much to be done.