Cultivating the Mind of Christ

Cultivating the Mind of Christ: James Clerk Maxwell by John Stonestreet and Glenn Sunshine via Christian Headlines

To be Christian, especially in this confusing cultural moment, requires the intentional cultivation of our minds. An exemplary model of someone who took this calling seriously is James Clerk Maxwell.

The only two physicists most people could name, if at all, are Albert Einstein and Isaac Newton. However, they should know James Clerk Maxwell, whose work was foundational for many of the most important discoveries of 20th-century physics.

Born in Edinburgh, Scotland, in 1831, Maxwell entered the University of Edinburgh at age 16. When he didn’t find his studies all that demanding, he dedicated his spare time to self-constructed chemical, electric, and magnetic devices, especially with polarized prisms and gelatins. This work led to two scientific papers which he completed at age 18.

Support Our Site

Now is your chance to support Gospel News Network.

We love helping others and believe that’s one of the reasons we are chosen as Ambassadors of the Kingdom, to serve God’s children. We look to the Greatest Commandment as our Powering force.

Personal Info

Donation Total: $100.00

In 1850, Maxwell went to the University of Cambridge. While there, he underwent an evangelical conversion. He remained an evangelical Presbyterian for the rest of his life, eventually becoming an elder in the Church of Scotland.

He graduated from Trinity College in 1854 as one of the top two mathematicians. Although he was made a Fellow of Trinity in 1855, he instead accepted a professorship at Marischal College in Aberdeen. While there, he won the Adams Prize from King’s College Cambridge for demonstrating that Saturn’s rings could be neither solids nor liquids, but rather made of smaller particles that orbited Saturn independently. In the 1980s the spacecraft Voyager confirmed the theory in a flyby of Saturn. At the time he wrote the paper, it was considered the finest example of an application of mathematics to physics in history.

In 1860, Maxwell took a position at King’s College London, before moving on to Cambridge in 1871. Soon, Maxwell’s work changed the field of physics. For example, he showed that light was a form of electromagnetic radiation and worked out key concepts describing electromagnetic behavior. That work was later simplified into four partial differential equations that paved the way for Einstein’s theory of special relativity. He also produced the first light-fast color photograph (in 1861), and he proposed a system for defining physical quantities which today is known as dimensional analysis.

Continue Reading / Christian Headlines >>>

Related posts