Where Science and Faith Converge

Theorems & Theology


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.

  • 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
  • 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

    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, ...

    • 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
  • 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
  • Why All the Buzz about Mosquitoes?

    September 1, 2016

    Mosquitoes are the deadliest creature on Earth, killing over 2 million people annually and sickening hundreds of millions more.1 So why on earth would we celebrate World Mosquito Day?

    • Ecosystems
    • Diseases
  • Demystifying Evolution and the Species Problem

    August 18, 2016

    Evolution is a word that refers to many different processes (chemical evolution, microevolution, microbial evolution, speciation, and macroevolution) with different underlying mechanisms. And as with any word with multiple meanings, one has to be careful not to equivocate when speaking about evolution...

    • Evolution
  • Why Is That Goat Staring at Me?

    August 11, 2016

    As God-ordained stewards of creation, we have an ability not only to care for animals and pets but also to form relational bonds with them. A recent report in Biology Letters highlights this relational capacity in domesticated goats.

    • Creation
    • Animals
  • Failures to Philosophize

    August 4, 2016

    I’ve been thinking a lot about the failure to philosophize over the past couple of years. As a molecular biologist, it has come as a bit of a shock to my system to realize the importance of philosophy.

    • Philosophy
    • Faith & Reason
    • Critical Thinking
  • Christ Calls All Christians to Unity

    July 28, 2016

    The other day, I heard a couple of my colleagues discussing the similarities and differences in the major Abrahamic religions’ views of God. How similar and dissimilar is the Christian God from the Muslim God or the Jewish God?

    • Disunity in the Church
    • Christian Life

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