A veteran NASA astronaut who will soon become the American record holder for most days in space is an outspoken professing Christian who believes that scientific research confirms the Bible’s creation account.
Jeff Williams is a 58-year-old astronaut with a decorated career at NASA spanning two decades. According to his online biography, he served as a flight engineer on a space shuttle flight in 2000, helping deliver and install over 5,000 pounds of equipment and supplies for the development and construction of the International Space Station (ISS). In both 2006 and 2009-10, Williams served six-month tours of duty on the ISS.
On Friday, Williams—along with two Russian cosmonauts—launched into space for another six-month mission at the ISS. This most recent space flight, Williams’s fourth, will be historic.
“During his six-month mission, Williams will become the American record holder for cumulative days in space—534—surpassing Expedition 46 Commander Scott Kelly, who wrapped up his one-year mission March 1,” NASA explained in a Friday press release. “Williams will take command of the station on June 4 for Expedition 48. Williams … will remain aboard the station until early September 2016.”
“Williams is now the first American to become a three-time, long-term resident of the International Space Station,” NASA noted.
Early on Saturday, Williams posted pictures of his expedition’s launch on Twitter. “It is great to be back on board @Space_Station, an amazing orbital outpost!” he wrote.
Williams is not only an accomplished astronaut; he is also outspoken about his profession of the Christian faith. In 2010, he wrote a book entitled “The Work of His Hands,” which showcased vivid photographs he took while on board the ISS in 2009-2010, along with numerous Bible verses.
Williams says there is no conflict between his Christianity and his work for NASA.
“There is a generalization that anyone who worked for NASA, or an organization like that, would naturally be an atheist, but that’s not true,” he told the Institute for Creation Research in an interview last year.
“There are many Christians in the organization, many Christians in other government agencies—there are Christians everywhere,” Willams explained. “The work that I do and have done through my military career and with NASA has been perfectly compatible with the Scriptures, and I’ve lived out my life as a Christian, and there’s been no issue there.”
Likewise, there is no conflict between the Bible and honest science, Williams says.
“I don’t find a conflict with true science—genuine science with integrity—and the Scriptures,” he stated. “I have found that in all cases where there is a conflict, it’s not a conflict with the science, it’s a conflict with the presupposition going in. … If somebody perceives science to be in conflict with, for example, the early chapters of Genesis, it’s not the science, it’s the presupposition that goes into it.”
“If you have a presupposition that excludes the possibility of a God, that excludes the possibility of supernatural acts, and that [believes] everything has to be explained just with natural processes, then you’ve basically limited what you can let the objective observation of science tell you,” Williams continued. “That’s where the issue comes in. I presuppose God. And I presuppose the truth of the Scripture.”