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In the first lesson we talked about God’s act of Creation and how living things change over time in the process of evolution. In this lesson, we will think about God seeking to be in relationship with us in real time through the birth, life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Along with this we will look at the scientific understanding of birth, life, and death.
When Christians make a faith statement that describes Jesus as God’s Son who was crucified and resurrected or say the lines from the second article of the Apostle's Creed: 'I Believe in Jesus Christ, God’s only Son, our Lord. . ." they are making a claim about how they believe that God entered into human life in the person of Jesus Christ who lived, died, and was resurrected. When scientists make a claim about living things, specifically humans, they are also making a claim about how they believe humans enter into life, function as a living being, and die.
Life and death are big issues for humans, and we have many different ways of thinking about them. For the Christian, God is the source of all life and salvation. God also enters into human existence with the incarnation (or how Jesus came to be alive in the world) of Jesus Christ which includes how Jesus was "conceived by the Holy Spirit." Through the incarnation, the promise of new life in resurrection continues life beyond death.
For the scientist, human life begins with conception and ends when body functions stop working. For science, life begins and ends at a specific point.
Often, when the beliefs of Christianity are used to understand the incarnation, life, death and resurrection of Jesus, it can conflict with the scientific understanding of conception, life, and death. Click on the link below to see an example of conflicting views on the understanding of life, death, and an afterlife: