I've had several discussion about the basis for faith in an all powerful creator for the universe, and it seems as if the conversation often comes back to, "Well, either way, you have to have faith either in a creator or in the process of evolution because you can't observe that either." Setting aside the issue of creation and evolution (where I currently sit at undecided), I was also troubled by the tendency to treat faith as a static or absolute concept when in reality it is far more complex.
To begin with, faith isn't just about belief, it combines the concepts of belief and trust. For the purposes of this discussion, I will be focusing primarily on the second attribute. Trust is an interesting thing because it is not an absolute value (not for me anyway), instead, it is relative, in that I can trust two people but not necessarily to the same degree. Furthermore, my trust is not all-encompassing, for example, I might be willing to trust someone with my life, but that doesn't mean I'm going to trust their views on quantum mechanics to be accurate.
So in my view, it is perfectly all right, even wise to have "faith" in biologists to explain biology, and in historians to explain history. That "faith" however should not be absolute, but it can certainly be to a higher degree of trust than is given to a theologian. Logical reasoning (for whatever that is worth to a religious person) can certainly be used to grant such professionals a higher credibility, and this argument has nothing with education, but rather motive.
The fact of the matter is, that the processes that scientists use to prove their ideas are not at all impacted by whether or not the Bible is true, for if the methodology is really flawed then it will be discovered one way or another. The same principle proves true for archeologists and others who study history. So when these groups of people tell us that something in the Bible is not supported by their findings, what possible motive would they have for lying? (I'm referring to the communities as a whole, not individuals) Theologians on the other have a vested interest in the Bible being true, which will often cause them to simultaneously use historical evidence to verify their belief in the Bible, meanwhile, any evidence that contradicts the Bible must be wrong, based nothing other than the fact that it contradicts the Bible.
Anyway, those are just some of my thoughts on the nature of faith. Anyone else have thoughts they would like to share, or critiques of the logic I used? After all, I don't claim infallibility.