Evolving Faith

Evolving Faith

Wanderings of a Mormon Biologist

October | 2015
Subject Categories mormon-studies

Table of Contents


"In this excellent collection of essays, biologist Steven L. Peck has interwoven his unique and thoughtful insights on the complex intersection of science and his personal commitment to faith. As a first-rate scientist who thinks intensely about the meaning and rigor of scientific inquiry, and as an exceptionally gifted writer, he shares with readers the value of science from a powerful perspective in captivating prose."

Daniel J. Fairbanks, Dean of Science & Health, Utah Valley University and author of Relics of Eden.

"With the meticulousness of a scientist who has spent years in the laboratory and in the field honing his skill, Peck has dissected his religion—his most precious and most deeply held beliefs—with the incisive blade of evidence-based logic. He displays his work here as a true entomologist would: in a beautifully arrayed display of his most exquisite words, artfully chosen to share with the world. Whether you’re a scientist, a faithful member of the LDS faith, neither, or both, your mind will be enlightened and your faith strengthened by Evolving Faith: Wanderings of a Mormon Biologist."

Andrea Pratt Rediske, M.S., Microbiology and doctoral student in Science Education at the University of Central Florida.

"Wrap up in one Latter-day Saint someone with professional-level training and publications in physics, philosophy, theology, mathematics, ecology, and evolutionary biology–not to mention fictional writing–and you’ve got Steven L. Peck. No other LDS author has possessed the broad vision Peck uses to explore basic dimensions in the debates about science and religion. Beyond any others, Peck outlines insightful philosophical and theological paths toward a productive synthesis. His writing is engaging, his thinking incisive, and his suggestions provocative. This book of collected essays is a ground-breaking resource for serious students of LDS theology in relation to the rapidly-expanding advances of modern science."

Duane E. Jeffery, Emeritus of Professor Biology, Brigham Young University.

"Peck’s writing and storytelling is entertaining and compelling. His approach of utilizing faith as part of rational pursuits is strong but not alienating. This accessible collection of essays reflects the hand of a bright scientist and a devoted person of faith."

Jani Radebaugh, Associate Professor of Geological Sciences, Brigham Young University.

"In his latest work, biologist Steven Peck's own famously polymath brain is itself under the microscope, and what a fascinating specimen it is! We see an eclectic collection of approaches—scientific, theoretical, theological, and personal—combined in an unmistakably loving way, offering a model for how religious believers can flourish in a science-driven world many fear is increasingly hostile to faith. "

Cynthia Bailey Lee, Computer Science Department lecturer, Stanford University.


Peck has provided a benchmark in LDS dialogue between science and religion. Not only will this book be helpful for lay readers, but it can serve as a model for future academics seeking to tackle similar subjects.

Walker Wright, World’s Without End blog.

“Evolving Faith represents an ideal way to go about life. Think hard, rigorously, and deeply but also take time to enjoy the moment, go exploring, and strive to suffer the unexpected and undesired pain of life

Brian Dillman, Rational Faiths blog.

Steve’s short book is a great addition to the already-stellar Living Faith series…The capacity of this book to engender curiosity is perhaps its greatest value, and for this the author is to be applauded.

Steve Evans, By Common Consent blog.

“Evolving Faith is a thought-provoking book on subjects I care about very much: faith, science, and their unique epistemologies. If I’d been able to give one suggestion to the author and editor it would have been this: change ‘wanderings’ to ‘wonderings’ in the title. There is so much to wonder about in the universe, and Steven Peck gives the impression we humans have only scratched the surface.

Emily Updegraff, Exponent II blog.

As I finished this book with a satisfied sigh, I realized I had more than achieved my goal of deepening my understanding of all things scientific and religious. I had also enlarged my appreciation for my time on earth and the part I can play in protecting its immeasurable gifts.

Heather Young, Association for Mormon Letters.

[Peck shows that] by adopting a more nuanced paradigm concerning the relationship between reason and faith, science and scripture, Latter-day Saints can largely (though, admittedly, not always entirely) avoid stumbling blocks that may damage faith or testimony.

Stephen Smoot, Ploni Almoni blog.

Whether you like science, philosophy, or just enjoy a well-written story, Peck has something for you. He is as skillful a writer as he is a thinker—a very uncommon gift.

Tarik LaCour, from the office of, blog.

"Evolving Faith is a remarkable book within the context of Latter-day Saint faith. Steven L. Peck has put together a marvelously readable book that addresses some of the most difficult philosophical issues confronting not only Mormons, but all people."

Blake Ostler, BYU Studies.

Publication Information

Publication Date: 2015

ISBN 13: 978-0-8425-2944-0

Page Count: 205

Size: 6 x 9

Binding: Paperback, ePub

Price: $19.95

Series: Living Faith

Imprint: Neal A. Maxwell Institute for Religious Scholarship

Steven L. Peck

peck-steveSteven L. Peck is an associate professor of Biology at Brigham Young University where he teaches courses including “The History and Philosophy of Biology” and “Bioethics.” His research in theoretical mathematical ecology and insect populations has been recognized by the National Academy of Sciences and the United Nations for helping to fight insect-borne illness. His published works include over forty scientific articles in prominent publications like American Naturalist, Newsweek, and Zygon, fictional works like The Scholar of Moab and A Short Stay in Hell, and a number of poems and short stories. His book Evolving Faith: Wanderings of a Mormon Biologist is part of the Maxwell Institute's "Living Faith" series.

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