Science & Philosophy Cannot Obsoletize Religion (Herman Bavinck)

An excerpt from Herman Bavinck’s Reformed Dogmatics, vol. 1, chapter 8:

[T]hough religion and philosophy are related, there is also a world of difference between them. Although they frequently have the same content and object, these objects are viewed in each domain from a very different perspective. The aim of science is knowledge; in religion it is comfort, peace, salvation. … Even the most profound philosopher, therefore, for all his knowledge does not rise above religion; he can never meet his religious needs by science. Though science may tell him that God is and what God is, it is only by religion that he knows that that God is also his God and his Father. Science may teach him that sin and grace exist, but it is only by religion that he takes part in the blessedness of religion and the sonship of God. Even if science could know all things and solve all metaphysical problems, it would still only yield theoretical knowledge and not personal participation in the benefits of salvation. For salvation is bound up with believing, not with knowing. But it is far from true that science and philosophy can attain this benefit. There are still many people, to be sure, who continue to expect all salvation from science and to consider religion superfluous. … Nonetheless, a turnabout is in progress. Prominent men of science are beginning to see that science fails to answer the most important questions of life. … In the natural sciences the mysteries are not diminishing but increasing, and the philosophy of nature is again raising its voice. … And, further, the numerous manifestations of superstition evident today demonstrate that humankind cannot live by the bread of science alone but need every word that comes from the mouth of God. Indeed, science does not tell us what God is or what humanity is; it leaves us ignorant of the origin, essence, and goal of things. It can therefore never replace religion, nor ever compensate for its loss.