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Following an extensive career in research science and teaching, molecular biologist Anjeanette “AJ” Roberts joined Reasons to Believe (RTB) as a visiting scholar in 2015 and, in 2016, became a permanent member of RTB’s scholar team. As an RTB research scholar, AJ puts her passion for truth to work engaging in science-faith topics such as evolution and design, harmonizing science and Christianity, and a theological perspective on viruses. She holds a BS in chemistry at the University of Tulsa, a PhD in molecular and cell biology from the University of Pennsylvania, and an MA in Christian apologetics from Biola University.

  • How Do I Respond When Others Are Curious about My Faith as a Scientist?

    January 18, 2018

    A few weeks ago I had the privilege of interacting with apologists from the RZIM (Ravi Zacharias International Ministries) Connect online community in a forum called “Ask RZIM.” I thought I’d share some of the questions and my responses here on Theorems & Theology.

    • Faith
    • Good Questions
    • Apologetics
    • Faith & Reason
    • Christian Life
  • Answering Questions about Darwinism

    January 11, 2018

    A few weeks ago I had the privilege of interacting with apologists from the RZIM (Ravi Zacharias International Ministries) Connect online community in a forum called “Ask RZIM.” The questions I encountered there are similar to ones I often think about and am asked when I’m out and about. I thought I’d share some of the questions and my responses here on Theorems & Theology.

    • Philosophy
    • Naturalism
    • Good Questions
    • Apologetics
  • Answering Questions about Gene Editing Technologies

    January 4, 2018

    A few weeks ago I had the privilege of interacting with apologists from the RZIM (Ravi Zacharias International Ministries) Connect online community in a forum called “Ask RZIM.” The questions I encountered there are similar to ones I often think about and am asked when I’m out and about. I thought I’d share some of the questions and my responses here on Theorems & Theology.

    • Human Flourishing
    • Good Questions
    • Apologetics
  • Why Skiers Can Be Thankful for Bacteria

    December 28, 2017

    I was 12 years old when I first learned to ski. Our family was visiting relatives in Washington for Christmas, and after a good snow the previous day, my sisters, cousins, and I headed for the slopes. None of us from Oklahoma had ever been skiing before, but our cousins were gracious hosts and good teachers. We not only learned how to ski that day but also had such great fun and worked so hard at it that we devoured my aunt’s unending stew before surrendering to sleep and the next day’s soreness, stiffness, and stories. Ever since then I have loved the snow. I am captivated with the beauty of snow as it blankets everything, burying the bleak grays of asphalt and urbanization. Snow also reminds me of the Scripture in Isaiah that invites us to reason together that though our sins are like scarlet, God will make us whiter than snow.

    • RTB's Creation Model
    • Bacteria
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  • A Common Design View of ERVs Encourages Scientific Investigation

    December 21, 2017

    Viruses are a mystery: No one knows where they originate. As a virologist, I’ve always thought of viruses as incomplete components of once functionally reproducing cells. As a Christian, I’ve often linked viruses to the fall because of their association with disease and suffering. Although evolutionists certainly wouldn’t agree with my second line of reasoning, many do support an escaped gene theory to explain the origin of viruses. In other words, the vast array and diversity of viruses in nature may originate from sets of genes that have escaped from once living cells.

    • Common Design vs. Common Descent
  • Viruses, Mosquitoes, and Suffering: Bad or Good?

    December 14, 2017

    Last week I had the privilege of interacting with apologists from the RZIM (Ravi Zacharias International Ministries) Connect online community in a forum called “Ask RZIM.” The questions I encountered there are similar to ones I often think about and am asked when I’m out and about. I thought I’d share some of last week’s questions and my responses here on Theorems & Theology.

    • Viruses
    • Q&A
  • Questioning Evolutionary Presuppositions about Endogenous Retroviruses

    December 7, 2017

    In a 2006 lecture at Emmanuel College, Cambridge,1 Dr. Graeme Finlay, an immunologist, cancer biologist, and Christian, made some remarkable observations about the genetic similarities of human and nonhuman primate (NHP)2 genomes. He drew the conclusion that these similarities presented incontrovertible genetic evidence for the common ancestry of humans and other primates.3 In doing so, Dr. Finlay employed his expertise in cancer biology to explain the evidence for common descent. I found his presentation compelling.

    • Common Ancestry
    • Common Design vs. Common Descent
    • Interpretation
  • Mutations—How They Work and Which Worldview They Favor

    November 27, 2017

    Does “Evolution” Point to Naturalism or Design? Before addressing this question, it is always important to define terms. Evolution, at a very basic level, means change over time. We use the words evolution and evolve in this way all the time. As an example one might assert that one’s thinking about race and cross-cultural interactions evolves over time as one gains exposure to various cultures and races. In scientific language evolution can have this same basic meaning: change. But often in naturalistic explanations of the origins of life and of species this simple concept of change is misapplied to mean more than has been scientifically or mechanistically demonstrated.

    • Evolution
    • Adaptation
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  • Why I Blog at “Theorems & Theology”

    November 8, 2017

    I blog for two purposes: to spur on thinking (mine & yours) and to pursue truth (together). Science and Scripture both reveal the truth about our world. Although they deal primarily with different types of knowledge, they are not completely separate areas of inquiry. Science, rightly employed, allows us to ask how the physical world around us functions and to learn about creation and our own physiology and well-being.

    • Seeking Truth
    • Science
    • Dialogue
    • Theology
  • What Best Accounts for Our Sense of Morality?

    September 21, 2017

    In a recent RTB scholars’ discussion, we talked about the grounding provided in the Judeo-Christian worldview for our shared sense of morality. Many of you have probably heard that a moral argument for the existence of God can be very persuasive, and even helps skeptical people consider the possibility of God more easily than other arguments like the Kalam argument or the anthropic principle.

    • Apologetics
  • Too Little Knowledge or Infinite Potential for Discovery?

    August 30, 2017

    Even the brightest, like a Hawking, an Einstein, or a Ross only knows a fraction of what can be known. Do we corporately even possess knowledge of 0.01% of what can be known of reality?

    • Apologetics
  • Vintage Saints and Sinners

    August 3, 2017

    Anyone who has the desire to walk through the doors of the Bonhoeffer House (near the Grounds of the University of Virginia) for discussions centered on men and women who have been touched and changed so as to live life radically different, ...

    • Book Reviews
    • People of Faith
    • Historical Figures
    • Christian Life
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  • Do Devils Evolve?

    July 20, 2017

    I was extremely sad a few years ago to hear that the real Tasmanian devils were being devastated by a transmissible form of cancer. Recent research hints that genetic variations may be the Tasmanian devils’ saving grace—as it may be the hallmark of a robust adaptive capacity allowing a species to survive even when threatened beyond the ability to thrive.

    • Natural Selection
    • Adaptation
  • Fearfully and Wonderfully Made

    March 23, 2017

    Have you ever wondered if human cloning might be a real possibility? And if so, how close might we be to seeing mini-me’s walking about? I think about this periodically. And I have to admit, I’ve met very few people who I think would be clone-worthy. I’m certainly not one of them!

    • Life
    • Human Uniqueness
    • Genetic Variation
    • Fine-Tuning
    • Design
  • Science and the Spiritual Disciplines: Silence

    January 19, 2017

    Spiritual disciplines. I'm not sure how many Christians think about spiritual disciplines, and if they do, how often they actually reflect on them. Hopefully each one of us is practicing some spiritual disciplines on a regular basis even if we didn't know they were called "spiritual disciplines."

    • Human Flourishing
    • Christian Life
  • Should We Be Thankful for WHO Ending Zika Virus’s Emergency Status?

    December 15, 2016

    The week before Thanksgiving, the World Health Organization (WHO) ended the international public health emergency status for the Zika virus that was enacted on February 1, 2016. So why isn’t that just one more thing to be thankful for?

    • Viruses
  •  
  • What Exactly Is Novelty in Evolution?

    December 1, 2016

    Me to a friend: “I’m exhausted. I could really use a break.” My friend’s response: “Which leg do you want me to break—your right or your left?” Some might think that our exchange is funny, but it’s definitely equivocation. It’s equivocating over the meaning of the word “break.”

    • Evolution
    • Bacteria
  • Microscopic Superheroes Challenge Inferences in Science

    October 20, 2016

    Faster than a speeding bullet! More powerful than a locomotive! Able to leap tall buildings in a single bound! . . . It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s . . . Mighty Moss Piglet!

    • Animals
  • What Species Problem?

    October 6, 2016

    Most of us know what a species is. Or we think we do. So why is the scientific literature replete with papers trying to define and delimit species? Is there really a species problem?

    • Speciation
    • Natural Selection
    • Critical Thinking
    • Challenges to Evolution
  • More Viruses Than Stars? No Way!

    September 22, 2016

    When others learn I’m a virologist, they often respond with questions such as, “Are viruses alive?” When they learn that I’m a Christian, they want to know, “Why would God create viruses?” This question assumes that viruses are bad, causing sickness, suffering, and sometimes even death. But is painting the most abundant organic entities on Earth in such a poor light the only way to understand them?

    • Viruses
    • Diseases
    • Bacteria
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