Guest Post: Jack Gage: The Fact/Faith Debate

  • Monday, February 11, 2013

I am always on the lookout for challenging books and I came across this one. Faith? Science? Can the two coexist? Surely there are many scientists who are known for their faith? What do you think? 

I agreed to do a spotlight for this book (unfortunately this isn't available in print for review, so I had to pass). Hopefully this will be provoking reading for some of you. 

Let's welcome the author, Jack Gage, to shed a little light on how he came to write this book. Welcome, Jack. 

The Fact/Faith Debate: Why Science Hasn’t Killed Religion

Synopsis: The Fact/Faith Debate is a history lesson and religious analysis rolled into one, told in real life parables. Written with journalistic flair, The Fact/Faith Debate smoothly links religious history, both ancient and modern, to create one of the most intriguing and complete looks at the connections between the Christian sects, Doomsday predictions, and creation stories.

Enter a jury of six panelists of five different Christian denominations and an atheist. The trial? Twenty religion case studies, from the Book of Mormon to the Roman Inquisition, with the intent to discover which belief system is correct, once and for all. It seems a daunting task for The Fact/Faith Debate to uncover the answer to the question of the Ages, yet each chapter reveals the true motive of the panel: to find why each belief system views proven facts and historical events differently, based on their religious beliefs.

Genre: Science for skeptics and those interested in religious studies

Author Bio

Jack Gage was born and raised in Wyoming, attended Wyoming public schools, and graduated from high school in June 1944. He enlisted in the United States Army in July 1944 and was sent to Colorado A&M, now Colorado State University, in the Army Specialized Training Reserve Program. He was put on active duty in January 1945 and medically discharged that same year.

He entered the University of Southern California in the fall of 1945, left that school in 1947 when he ran out of money, and later worked for a construction company, Morrison-Knudsen, Inc., of Boise, Idaho, on Guam and Eniwetok Atoll from the spring of 1947 until the fall of 1949.

He returned to University of Southern California in the spring of 1950 and transferred to the University of Wyoming that fall, graduating with a BS in business administration in 1951. He returned to the construction business with Morrison-Knudsen Company and worked on projects in North Africa, Idaho, Oregon, New Hampshire, and finally in upstate New York on the Saint Lawrence Seaway. He left construction and became an investor and office manager for a company headquartered in New York City that manufactured heating elements. That company went broke, and in 1966, at age forty, Gage entered the University of Utah College of Law. He made the Law Review and graduated with a juris doctorate degree in 1968, settled in Cheyenne, Wyoming, and practiced law there until 1995, when he retired to the Kona Coast of the big island of Hawaii.

Author website + excerpt:

Can you tell us about the journey that led you to write your book?

Although I got my first college degree in Business Administration, and the second a Juris Doctorate in law, at heart I’ve always been fascinated by science and particularly astronomy. I was raised by my parents as an Episcopalian but the things I was taught there seemed inconsistent with what I was learning about basic science, and like a lot of teenagers I was starting to question the world around me, partly I suppose as teenage rebellion, but I think more out teenage curiosity, and about age 15 I stopped going to church. I really hadn’t become an agnostic or atheist at that point; the subject wasn’t important enough to me to make a decision. When I was married at age 26 to a very nice devout Mormon girl I dug deeper, and became convinced that I wasn’t Mormon material based primarily on a book titled No Man Knows My History by Fawn Brodie McKay. Those doubts were confirmed in spades later by Losing a Lost Tribe by Simon E. Southerton.

My wife raised our seven children in the Mormon religion and they attended church functions and services religious, like it or not, and I didn’t interfere. The two eldest became and are still practicing Mormons, the next two are either agnostic or atheist but aren’t interested enough to even decide. The fifth child joined the Catholic Church, left that church and is a devoted and non-denominational Christian. The next, and youngest is girl, and a Buddhist, and has been to India twice for audiences with the Dalia Lama and the youngest is a boy and a born-again Christian who had his epiphany in a Southern Baptist Church.

All of that got me thinking a long time ago: How and why have the world’s people come up with so many different religious belief systems, and many, including Christians, are willing to and have killed people who disagree with them, commandment number 6 notwithstanding.

Just this past week there was a blurb in our local newspaper about a MD in Atlanta, Georgia who is certain the Bible is the authentic word of God and believes the world is only 6,000 years old. My question is how in the blue-eyed world can someone smart and educated enough to get through medical school accept all those biblical stories as true, when they are so obviously folklore? How can an intelligent person conclude the world is only 6,000 old when they see the geological column, or learn that it takes distant starlight thousands and millions of light years to reach us at 186,000 miles per second? It just defies my imagination. How can someone accept that at Joshua’s request God keep the sun from setting? The only way that could be done is to stop the earth from rotating and then start it back up again; not possible.


© guiltless readingMaira Gall