In many respects, this is the future forecast by right-wing evangelist Pat Robertson. He writes:
Boyer, P. (1992). When time shall be no more: Prophecy belief in modern American culture. Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press.
Neusner, J. (1994). Introduction to American Judaism: What the books say, what the people do. Minneapolis: Fortress Press.
We have in our power the ability to conquer disease, to extend life, to remove genetic abnormalities, to supply a reasonably abundant standard of living to every human being on the planet, to bring forth an ever increasing cornucopia of technological products to make each of our lives more pleasant, to have at our disposal increased learning, culture, and leisure (1990, p. 208).
Other kinds of scientific progress can be expected to have a more ambivalent reception in each of the three religions. In archaeology, for example, science will continue to make increasingly significant historical discoveries. Improved technology will allow scientists to more accurately date findings, locate excavation sites, and decipher obscure texts. For the most fundamental believers, such progress could be shattering, especially if scientists were to discover irrefutable proof either of the accuracy or falsity of important portions of the Bible or the Qur'an. Michael D. Lemonick writes, "It's a truism in archaeology that the absence of evidence is not evidence of absence" (1995, December 18, p. 67), but unquestionable evidence may well be found that will support or disprove the foundations on which a major religion is built. As he observes, "One crucial discovery - an independent, ancient chronicle of Abraham's wanderings, perhaps - could change . . . minds in an instant" (1995, December 18, p. 69).
Greeley projects 10 trends that will influence religion in the 21st century (1969, pp. 171-173), including an increased dialogue between theologians and social scientists. He sees, among other things, a substantially greate