Mathematician Granville Sewell writes that the Schrodinger partial differential equation, if correct, means that the supernatural can never be said to be impossible, merely improbable. For example,
At the macroscopic level, quantum mechanics reduces to classical (Newtonian) mechanics, and when we throw a baseball, the odds are astronomically high that it will obey these classical laws accurately. But if it suddenly stops in mid-air just before Alex Rodriguez swings, it would not really be violating any now-accepted laws of physics, just doing something extremely improbable. If one Red Sox fan says “what incredibly good luck”, and another says “God wanted Alex to strike out”, science simply cannot say which theory is correct. …
Similarly, if a soup of organic chemicals suddenly organizes itself into the first living thing, or if a reptile produces a mammalian offspring, we do not need to conclude that any laws of science have been violated, only that something has happened which these laws tell us is extremely improbable. Science leaves us free to draw the obvious philosophical conclusions from such improbable events …
Likewise, as Dave Scot writes today, what this means is that arguments that either macroevolution or miracles can’t happen are valid and appropriate arguments from incredulity:
In principle it is possible for two cows to mate and give birth to a chimpanzee. The reason we don’t ever expect to see such a thing is we know (now) that the genetic differences between a cow and a chimp are so complex and specified that the odds against it actually happening in a single generation are nearly impossible. We can’t calculate the odds precisely but we know it is incredibly improbable. The argument that two cows won’t mate and produce a chimpanzee is an argument from incredulity.
Credulity? Anthony Bloom, of whom I have written before, suggests that we are incredulous about miracles simply because we have grown used to them, as well as become too sophisticated to appreciate them:
Miracles are usually thought of in a most primitive way by the least primitive people. People imagine that they are so sophisticated that they have outgrown the very notion of matter…
Coming back to the sophistication of science, astonomer A.S. Eddington wrote in The Nature of the Physical World (p. 309) that:
A rather serious consequence of dropping causality in the external world is that it leaves us with no clear distinction between the Natural and the Supernatural.
Of course, Christians have not needed mathematicians or scientists to tell us that all things are possible:
Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” Matthew 19:26
And, as so far neither Schrodinger nor Eddington has succeeded in rising from the dead, I’m satisfied with Jesus’ thoughts on the subject.