So, science does have value, even if it is only utilitarian! A strict sola scriptura stance would deny any value in the sciences, and that any utilitarian value would be accidental or incidental.I am not suggesting there is no value in the study of the sciences but, all the sciences can do is confirm the truths that are already in scripture.
Or, it may be man's limited understanding of scripture, or our obtuseness in not recognizing where or how there is agreement. (as an aside, in the science world, the mathematics of newton e.g. calculus, competed with the mathematics of Leibniz until they were proved to be equivalent)What I am saying is that the truth about causation and the nature of the natural world does not come from a study of the sciences, it comes from revelation. This always has to be the starting point, and when science comes into conflict with the revealed text, it will invariably be man's limited understanding of his world that is n error.
Looking at the Galileo matter, one should be able to see that the heliocentric model had many utilitarian features that were absent in the strict letter of only the Bible claim of the church. Of course, the church was trying to apply scripture relating to the earth being created by the omnipotent God standing against any opposing force. This does not preclude the Earth in motion with respect inertial frames, particularly when applied to mere physical properties.
Thank you for restating one of the 'legs' of my thesis. Man, even spirit led Christians come to differing interpretations of many passages. Man, by God's design, must go through a learning process. This is true both in each person, and in terms of mankind. Whatever we learn, we always understand it in terms of what was previously understood, or believed. As you point out, man by nature, does not read the Bible cold but always brings preconceptions into the reading. So, even though the Bible itself is inerrant, we are not. We cannot get past our nature and correctly understand the full meaning in all cases.The Church has had an unfortunate legacy of using the historical critical method in its practice of scripture reading. We have routinely chosen to start with human intelligence to create some type of synthesis between the human historical experience and the text of scripture. We start with current human observation and then try to work back in time searching for a point of causation that seems to fit what we think we understand of the universe. We then formulate theories that seem to best fit the evidence at hand and then we rationalize scenarios that satisfy what we will accept as a ‘rational’ view of how scripture fits into our human experience. How absurd is this? We have an insatiable desire to maintain control over the biblical text both logically and psychologically. We want to hold on to a comfortable reading of the text that fits our view of reality; and we have felt confident that such a method of scripture reading can foster a valid interpretation of what we mistakenly regard as a historical document. The problem with this method is that human intelligence does not have the capacity to start with itself in order to synthesize our physical existence with what scripture says about it.
The problem at the time of Galileo, which was pre-reformation, was that the church relied to much on a hierarchical clergy who claimed as much, or at times even more authority for truth than scripture.
This authority issue was one of the largest reasons for the reformation which sought to rest ecclesiastical authority from the authoritarian church and restore authority to the Bible. That is the reason for the sola scriptora principle. It was not to preclude God from speaking to us through nature, which would be unBiblical, given the usage the Bible makes of nature to teach us about God, and the fact that Paul decries the fact that we have failed to learn from nature, but it was to preclude men from using personal authority however well meant, to be the final arbiter. When one examines the record, it seems that much of the criticism of Galileo was because he contradicted Arstotle, even though a couple of hundred years earlier the church banned him, but by Galileo's time had deemed hid writings almost on a par with the scriptures.