I suggest that we discuss these matters in sequence. I will commence with a few remarks on how I understand revelation and science, to show these are differentiated. I would prefer that you respond on these points, and/or then you choose the next topic (eg freedom, law, or any relevant topic) and in this way we can work through this methodically. This post is lengthy, and hopefully your response would enable me to come back with a more focussed and shorter response.
To begin, we have knowledge of God because He has chosen to reveal Himself. The importance of Adam and Eve would commence with this point – God was fully revealed and they freely communed with Him. Yet we are now discussing this as sinners, and sin has separated us from God. Thus we cannot reason that revelation may be within a range of phenomena that are human potentialities or of the human senses. We can also ruled out objective-based activities such as found in the natural sciences. Revelation cannot be defined in a way that philosophy or science may argue and consider within the ideas of reason. In making negative statements about the capabilities of human beings I need to show that my arguments are reasonable. My argument must assume reason would sustain the goodness of life and the continuation of life. It is possible for a person to consider the possibility of good in life, and this is usually through experience (à posteriori).
Revelation requires a respond, to reason, and to consider the revelation within the (context of) life. The meaning of God, which includes that of love and concern for all humanity, is provided by revelation and needs to be completely comprehensible. Since I understand all human life and reason to be within the freedom of birth, freedom of life, and freedom of thought (intent), revelation is also understood within freedom. The unreasonable part of the human condition is lack of freedom that finds its ultimate unreasonable condition in death. This argument may be developed into a major premise that equates revelation of the meaning of God with a meaning of, and within, self-awareness-life. Briefly, such meaning is the goodness that God provides to life. This goodness is completely so and is synonymous with the Holy Spirit. In general I believe reason responds via the ideal. This should not to be confused with idealism. Any reasonable person may respond to revelation in this manner. Some may communicate this ideal in almost illiterate ways, while others may communicate this ideal with great elegance. Such a response includes the response to the Word of God, which provides an increased awareness of God and includes the goodness that results in life from God. Such a response is due to the Holy Spirit guiding reason rather than a scholastic analysis of words, even if these words are found in the Bible. Freedom is the framework for the possibilities of goodness to reason on an individual level (thus singular and multiple possibilities) and on the social level (thus general possibilities).
Science understands nature through the application of reason and systematic accumulation of knowledge of the physical world, and this leads to statements that are often discussed as laws of science. This is generally understood as laws of nature and includes outcomes to the human senses (and to reason) from nature’s activities, or phenomena. Observations of nature and hypothesis by scientists are activities of a reasoning human being and cannot be law-of-nature; in that a human being measures, weighs, calculates etc., the human being is ‘active’ in thinking and measuring, and thus his activities are within nature. In this way, it is difficult to differentiate between activities of a human being and those of an object; all consist of activity of matter in time and space, (in motion or in a dynamic state) and thus considered explicable via the scientific method. However, the subject-object or ‘both are in the world’, arises from a human being, not from the world. This actualises into language activity, which leads to a differentiation between the world of phenomenon/dynamics and that of human reality - although it may be reasoned that both are activities and thus explicable in time and space by the scientific method.
It may appear, however, that ‘mega-knowledge’ is sought to enable a human being to attain to a complete understanding of the phenomena and its objects, and this may provide an intellectual perception, or inference, that objects behave according to some principle; or, objects are required to be as they are by a ‘something in their being-ness’. This search for an explanation of everything, or a universal, arises from a human being’s intellectual questioning and doubting. We may reason that the universe is ‘lawful’ because it continues to be what it is, and also we may conclude that there is a finality, or that we may ‘finally’ or ‘completely’ understand it; we may also seek comfort from an ideal, suggesting that the universe and our understanding of it may become one and the same, or everything will finally be totally reasonable. The essential question in natural studies is therefore the intelligibility of nature – how is it that human reason and intellect can access natural phenomena and natures ultimate realities? One response to this question is the attribute often termed ‘image of God’ to humanity. The impact of the vast universe on the human senses, however, may be overwhelming, as we seek to understand its beginning and end. The universe does ‘talk’ to us of God (in its silence). This is shown in Psalms 19:1-14. The writer of this psalm shows us that it is the law of God that he understands, and through the law of God, he hopes to be free from error and those that indulge in error. The universe cannot reveal God. Our senses may be influenced by the silence, and our reason may comprehend the glory of God that the heaven declares. In this way we may understand beauty without feeling we have ‘invented’ it. In this silence, we do not listen to our own feverish mind constantly trying to explain to ourselves all that our senses may respond. Rather, the glory of God proclaimed by the silent beauty may lead us to wish we could share, and be a part of, such splendour. The Universe in all its splendour points to its Creator’s Glory, and similarly to the beauty that is found in the Law of God.
Currently astronomy and particle physics have been popularised and discussions have dealt with the origins of the Universe. The many difficulties faced by evolutionism are at times put to one side by the notion that the Universe is anthropomorphic – i.e. a Universe evolved that was conducive to the evolution of life and human beings on earth. The origins of the Universe appear to have crystallized into the big-bang theory, although others speculate alternate notions. Generally the view has been that God is the cause of causes, or the primal cause; since no-one witnessed the event, we cannot discuss this notion as a verifiable/testable theory– but people may feel this is sufficient, since the Faith teaches us that God can do anything. It is necessary, however, to consider the scientific view point as serious and believe that scientists are interested in obtaining a good understanding of the Universe. The Universe is accessible to human sense, and it appears reasonable to assume that a language such as mathematics would be sufficient when examining the Universe. Difficulties however, stem from a human assumption, in that the origin of the Universe may also be considered as a singular event; in this case physicists cannot dealt with such an event using the laws of physics; i.e. they contemplate notions in which the laws of physics may not apply. Indeed, notions such as “nothing existed” (nothingness!?) are difficult ones for science, and thus it may be inappropriate for science to think it can define a beginning per se.