Edited Transcript:

Now here we are at MIT. MIT is, of course, the high temple of science and technology in America, and we are proud of it, right? And as befits a high temple, we have some pseudo-Greek architecture complete with fluted columns. And actually, if this were truly Greek architecture, as many of you will know, at the top of those columns, we ought to have bacchanalian friezes depicting drunken orgies of the gods. Unlike that classic Greek style, we actually have the names of the heroes of science on our architecture, and some would say that the drunken orgies take place across the river in the frats. It is Friday night, I suppose they might be right …

Well, some years ago, a few of us Christian faculty set out to answer the question: how many of this list of people on our architecture were probably Christians? Now, of course, this is quite hard to discover. But our estimate was that roughly 50-60% of these people on our architecture were Christians.

When I became a follower of Jesus, when I was an undergraduate at Cambridge University, quite a few of my friends said or implied that by doing so, I was basically committing intellectual suicide. Well, here I am thirty-five years, it does not feel like suicide. I do not think it much looks like suicide either.

Discussion Questions:

  1. Do you know of any famous scientists who were Christians? If so, who?
  2. Were you surprised by Ian’s finding that a significant number of influential scientists were Christians? Why or why not?
  3. Does believing in Christianity require you to commit intellectual suicide? Why?