Physics and Chemistry Belong to God
“So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.”
When I was a high school science teacher, I taught both Physics and Chemistry. However, Chemistry was my main subject. Because of my background in education, I really enjoy taking groups of families and young people on the excursions to Mount St Helens, which I lead two or three times a week during the Summer. One of the questions I ask of the young people is about the color of some of the rocks that can be seen in the National Volcanic Monument Area. The rocks that I am particularly talking about are sort of blue-green color.
Last week, as I write this, I asked one group of teenagers why the rock was blue-green.
One boy answered “Because the rock absorbs red light, but reflects blue and green”.
Of course, the way I had phrased the question meant that he had given a correct answer. So I said “That is a correct Physics answer. But what is the Chemistry answer?”
One of the girls correctly answered that the rock looked as if it contained malachite, which is hydrated copper carbonate. Hence, the rock is an ore for the metal copper.
It is interesting that I got a correct Physics answer and a correct Chemistry answer to my question. God has provided humanity with resources in the world, for which we are responsible, and over which we have dominion. He has also made the physical laws, which govern why colors appear the way they do. We apply our Physics and Chemistry knowledge for the extraction of such resources, and to understand their properties.
Prayer: Thank You, Lord, that You have provided the resources that we need in this planet, on which You have placed us. We marvel at the grace of Your provision for us. Help us collectively, and individually, to be good stewards of what you have given to us. Amen.
Author: Paul F. Taylor
Image: Jonathan Zander, released under Creative Commons Attribution, 3.0.