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Tuesday, February 17, 2009

bac to the teria, or, flinging down the gauntlet on macroevolution


This one.

This one.

Michael Behe's Edge of Evolution

Michael Behe's answer to Ken Miller

Posts that reveal the failure of scientists to demonstrate macroevolution. Bacteria have not been able to put two useful mutations together to improve or evolve from their natural state. This despite scientists artificially stresssing or altering their environments to encourage mutations and/or the degradation of certain systems within the bacterial strain.

Now consider that probably the simplest known bacteria, Mycoplasma genitalium, consists of 482 genes and over 580,000 DNA "letters"/chromosome base pairs or let us just call them bits of genetic information. But then DNA itself is made of many different components, so the chromosome is in no way a simple thing to alter or replace. A chromosome is an expression of information made up of many parts itself.

How does anyone begin to believe that this "simple" organism simply happened into existence when modern bacteria cannot produce even two bits of information to add to the organism's gene pool? The reason this is happening is related to what information really is. Information is the intelligence behind the design. A 2mm length of DNA (or approximately what would sit on the head of a pin) has the information equal to what would be contained within a pile of books reaching to the moon and back 500 times. A book contains information but the information is not the paper nor the ink, it is the intelligence behind the design of the letters and the sequencing of the letters produced by the proper placing of ink on paper.

Therefore, a "simple" bacteria is not made up of 482 parts or 521 parts or 582,000 parts, but when all the systems and reactions and components are added up you get into the millions. All of these different parts have to be arranged in a certain way and work in very specific ways and orders.

A better question to ask is this. Where did the first living cell come from, since even bacteria are immensely complex? How can anyone who believes this simply happened claim that such a belief is scientific? It is magical thinking.

However, design is evidence of a Designer. A Creator God is the only explanation. I dare any humanist/darwinist/evolutionist to explain to me how a bacteria just showed up out of nowhere?
You need proteins/amino acids/enzymes/special processes to order them...you have the problem of homochirality. You have to explain the very existence of RNA. You have reactions that would take up to a trillion years to happen just once that are happening in fractions of a second because there are special processes and chemicals in place working in order to artificially speed them up. Jonathan Sarfati once estimated the chances of a 256 gene simple life form (the theoretical lowest limit to a living organism) to happen even once would be 1 in 10 to the minus 3330 if all space and all time would be considered fertile ground for the development of a cell, which is of course not true. So far we can see no place in the Universe in which life lives and probably could live other than Earth. Yet we have millions of varieties of living organisms on the planet today.

You think life is simple? Check this out. Read about this. Or this. Now you have just begun to consider how complex life really is.

Bacteria do not evolve into anything else and we cannot see a way that they could have ever happened...without having been designed and created. Naturalistic materialistic humanistic scientists are predisposed to ignore the obvious.

As excerpted:

Evolution and theism

The evolutionists’ views on the relationship between science and theistic religion are surprising, considering their strongly anti-theistic personal views. Of course, evolution in itself is a religion and an explicit substitute for Christianity, as evolutionary philosopher Michael Ruse admitted.

Predictably, only 3 percent believed that evolution and religion were completely compatible and 8 percent chose the philosophically bankrupt non-overlapping magisteria principle advocated by the late Marxist Stephen Jay Gould. And a surprisingly low percentage said that evolution and religion are mutually exclusive, as evolutionists like Richard Dawkins and William Provine claim. Instead, a large majority of 72 percent took the view that religion is ‘a sociobiological function of human culture, a part of human evolution, not a contradiction to evolution’. Though they do not themselves believe in God, they are loath to completely dismiss it, perhaps because the vast majority of Americans still claim theistic faith. Darwin himself privately believed that Christianity was incompatible with evolution, as shown in the article Darwin’s arguments against God: How Darwin rejected the doctrines of Christianity. But he used the theistic evolutionary ideas of Asa Gray to ease the concerns of those who raised religious objections to evolution until the acceptance of his hypothesis meant that he no longer needed to defend a theistic view of evolution. The American Scientist article admits that treating religion as a sociobiological product of evolution, ‘while a plausible hypothesis, denies all worth to religious truths.’

~~~~~~~


Evolution is the prime example of the example of the false alternative: Evolution and life happening by chance MUST BE TRUE they say because God is the only alternative and God could not possibly be correct. "It's unscientific!"

Suppose we are playing three-handed Pinochle. I win the bid and name Clubs as trump. You have four Spades, including two Aces and also an Ace of Hearts. You figure you will take a few tricks. With a total of twelve Spades available in the deck, you are pretty confident you can play and win at least both of the Ace leads. You wait until your first chance to take the lead and, when I lead a Queen of Hearts, the next guy plays the King and you wind up winning the trick with a Ten of Hearts. You hold the Ace of Hearts but figure maybe I want you to play Hearts, so you go to your strong suit.

You play the first Ace of Spades and I play a Club, which is trump, to win the hand because I have no Spades. You are now sitting there telling me that it isn't possible for me to win the hand with a Jack of Clubs when you led an Ace of Spades. You are in the position of a Darwinist. The hand is played and God trumps chance. Chance has to win, you proclaim, because God is not possible. But you are wrong, God is not only possible, He is plausible and His existence in tandem with the evidence trumps chance, which has shown itself to be useless as a source for life itself and incapable of producing new information within existing populations.

Science, like Pinochle, used to have rules of evidence. You would follow the evidence to its logical conclusion. The evidence points to God, more so each and every day as attempts to reproduce evolution fail and the intricacies of life and the fine-tuning of the Earth become more apparent. But orthodox scientists cheat by refusing to accept the obvious and seek for a magic new way out, a way to get away from the truth.

There is no magic card that will save you from my Jack of Clubs that, because it is trump, even though you figured your Ace would win. My Darwinist friends, no Dawkins verbal hip-hop nor continually revised Miller-Urey experimentation nor a magical space rock nor a Get Out Of Logic Free card will save you from the truth.

So I am supposedly too ignorant to understand evolution. So I am going to invite the explanations and be quite specific. Here goes...

Explain why bacteria will not evolve after multiple thousands of generations. Explain how life came from non-life. Pretending that bacteria are evolving while losing information or trading information is an automatic failure. You absolutely need to nail both of these down before you can even begin to explain the Archer Fish or the flight of the Bumblebee. I am giving you the easy ones first, whatcha got for me?

Meanwhile, suppose I give Behe a couple of paragraphs to consider while you look...

Why is intelligent design science? Isn’t it just giving up on finding a scientific explanation for something that we don’t yet fully understand?

Intelligent design is science because it is based completely on physical data — the molecular machinery of cells — plus ordinary logic. Whenever we see systems in our everyday world of a certain degree and kind of complexity (like clocks), we always have found them to be designed. Now, much to our surprise, science has discovered similar systems in the cell. I see no reason to withhold the conclusion of design for cellular components. So the design of cellular machinery is an inductive argument based on physical evidence — a scientific conclusion.

When the motions of the galaxies away from the earth was first observed in the 1930s, that led to the Big Bang hypothesis. Many scientists of that time hated the idea of a beginning to nature, because it seemed to have theistic overtones. What if they had said that the Big Bang hypothesis was simply giving up on finding a scientific explanation for something that we don’t fully understand yet? If they had, physics would have missed out on a lot of progress. Science has to follow the evidence wherever it leads, or it ceases to be science. Right now the biological evidence is leading to the conclusion of design.
~~~~~~~

PS - I would add that the Bible is also evidence, physical evidence. We who believe in a specific Intelligent Designer have more than faith, we have data and we can apply it forensically in more common sense ways than can the Darwinists.

45 comments:

Matteo said...

Darwinists are intellectually insane. Never forget: Atheism makes it possible to be an intellectually fulfilled Darwinist.

If you point out that the screamingly evident design of life is direct evidence for a designer, they will come back with the retort, "But there is no evidence for your designer."

If you point out that they have not even scratched the surface of the work that needs to be done to establish the accidental origin of designed systems, they will ask you who designed the designer or, in effect, what caused the First Cause. Wallowing in philosophical ignorance, they will then perform a victory dance. For them, ignorant theological/philosophical arguments place their science on solid ground.

Again, they are intellectually insane.

chaos_engineer said...

I just got back from vacation, and noticed that my other favorite Christian blog also has a couple of articles about Creationism.

Executive summary: He's strongly opposed to Creationism, partly because it's false; and partly because he thinks the people pushing it are harming Christianity-as-a-whole:
"Why I'm peeved"

In another essay, he notes that Creationism is specific to Christian Fundamentalism, which is a fairly recent and non-traditional form of Christianity.
"Well Put"

More traditional forms of Christianity don't have a problem with Evolution. For example, the Catholic Church is comfortable with Theistic Evolution:
"Adam, Eve, and Evolution"

highboy said...

"More traditional forms of Christianity don't have a problem with Evolution. For example, the Catholic Church is comfortable with Theistic Evolution:
"Adam, Eve, and Evolution"

It says that the Catholic Church has no official position. Nothing the other links say even matter. Belief in YEC or OEC has nothing to do with being a Christian "fundamentalist". Science has no role whatsoever in the label, as it pertains to doctrinal beliefs regarding the Gospel, not scientific theory.

highboy said...

Just thought I'd add that the "Pet Peeve" article is simply wrong. Yes, its true that fundamentalists such as myself believe every part of the Bible to be true, and since none of it has been proven false I'm not sure what his "peeve" is. As has already been pointed out, a literal interpretation of the Bible doesn't necessarily have to exclude an older earth. Not saying I believe in an older earth but there it is. But the bottom line is entire Bible has to work together or it simply doesn't work. Someone with an intellect can grasp that fact. For example, if the Old Testament Jesus quoted and referred to as "God's Word" is found to be false than that would pretty much make Jesus' claim of Savior very suspect. If His claim of Savior is suspect than it doesn't matter if "Jesus really loves me" or not. If He's not God-Jesus, Savior, Messiah, than His death has absolutely no meaning for me whatsoever, and the resurrection impossible. Without either you have no Christianity, and Jesus' claim of Savior is based on Old Testament prophecy written hundreds and in some cases thousands of years before hand. Those prophecies were written by men who were claiming to speak God's Word, and also followed the 10 Commandments, also claimed to be God's Word. If Moses received no factual revelation of creation from God, it stands logical to be suspicious of God's revelation of the 10 commandments and The Law. The Law being what is broken in the first place which created the sinful chasm between man and God. A chasm Jesus was sent to fill. So yes, when it comes to Christianity's fundamental beliefs, its all or nothing. Every aspect of the Bible, when one objectively reads it as a whole in its entirety, works together, and cannot work otherwise. If one wants to debate what the Bible LITERALLY means that's another matter. But the literal meaning is certainly there.

chaos_engineer said...

It says that the Catholic Church has no official position

Yes, the Catholic Church's goal is to deal in Eternal Truths, so it goes against their mission statement to get involved in scientific disputes. If they take a bunch of science and say that Catholics have to believe it, then they're going to get left with egg on their faces if more information comes in and scientists revise the theory out from under them.

But what's important is that the Church says that (Theistic) Evolution is *compatible* with Christianity. They say you can still be a Christian even if you believe in evolutionary theory as taught by mainstream biologists.

Belief in YEC or OEC has nothing to do with being a Christian "fundamentalist". Science has no role whatsoever in the label, as it pertains to doctrinal beliefs regarding the Gospel, not scientific theory.

Some types of OEC are compatible with mainstream science.

YEC seems to be derived from a particular kind of exegesis, where the two different Creation stories in Genesis are mashed together into a single narrative which is then taken as literal history.

As far as I know, that interpretation is unique to Fundamentalist Christianity...the other traditions are willing to accept that the Creation stories are a poetic way of establishing God as the creator of all things, and of describing Man's place in the universe. Or maybe there's a tradition I don't know about?

Taxandrian said...

Never truly believe anything you read on the Internet. There will always be cases of Poe’s Law.

highboy said...

"As far as I know, that interpretation is unique to Fundamentalist Christianity."

But that wouldn't make it a fundamental doctrinal belief. No denominations be they Protestant or Catholic have a doctrinal belief about macroevolution or OEC. That is my point. What is fundamental, and what the article you posted failed to acknowledge, is that Christianity is based on the idea that the Bible is 100% true, accurate, and 100% God's Word. As far as being a Christian, no one said you can't be a Christian if you believe macroevolution. (I don't) Not even Radar has gone that far to question someone's Christianity based on their scientific leanings. He simply thinks they are being mislead. If I'm wrong he can correct me.

scohen said...

Tim,
Actually, Radar said that there was a "price" to be paid for believing in "bad science", which I assumed was being cast into hell. If Christians are defined as those who are saved, then Radar was indeed questioning people's Christianity.

I think you should re-read the slactivist post, he specifically takes issue with those whom he terms "binary christians" who believe that if the Bible isn't 100% true then it's worthless. He says that those people are more likely to completely abandon their faith due to the inflexibility of their thought. The post is actually addressed to people like you (and more specifically Radar) and he's more concerned with keeping you in the fold than is a heathen like me ;).

Slactivist is an excellent blog and chaos beat me to the punch in posting the articles. Left Behind Fridays has been a guilty pleasure of mine for a while now.

Speaking of "intellectual insanity" (whatever that means); I wonder if Matteo knows he's posting on a YEC blog. Additionally, Creeper's link to the recent poll completely destroys the Evolution==Atheist argument, but hey; Matteo probably didn't see that 58% of Catholics and 77% of Jews don't have any problem with evolution (to be more specific, they believe it best explains the origins of human life on Earth).

Intellectually insane indeed.

highboy said...

"Actually, Radar said that there was a "price" to be paid for believing in "bad science", which I assumed was being cast into hell. If Christians are defined as those who are saved, then Radar was indeed questioning people's Christianity."

Radar already explained that belief in bad science doesn't equate to Hell, but that belief in bad science equates to greater risk of it. There is a huge difference.

"I think you should re-read the slactivist post, he specifically takes issue with those whom he terms "binary christians" who believe that if the Bible isn't 100% true then it's worthless."

That's because it is indeed worthless if any of it would be proven to be untrue. I've read the article and my opinion on that ridiculous logic still stands for the perfectly valid reasons that I that I described above.

"Additionally, Creeper's link to the recent poll completely destroys the Evolution==Atheist argument"

Matteo never said that evolution has to equate to Darwinism so the poll is irrelevant to his remarks.

scohen said...

"Matteo never said that evolution has to equate to Darwinism so the poll is irrelevant to his remarks."

?? Darwinism is a pejorative term for evolution, and he did make it clear that "Darwinists" need atheism in order to be fulfilled (either a mis-quote of dawkins or a clever twist). Clearly, this is completely untrue for the 77% of Jews, 80% of Hindus 81% of Buddhists and 56% of the Catholics surveyed. Maybe it's true for fundamentalist Christians, but don't lump all these other religious groups into an Atheist bucket.


As to hell, I thought your chances of getting in to hell were either 0% (saved) or 100% (damned). Since only Christ can save you, how could believing in bad science increase your chances? Either Christ redeems you and you are saved despite accepting "bad science", or you don't accept Christ and are damned. Can you show me where Radar backpedaled from his original statement? I might have missed the comment.

"That's because it is indeed worthless if any of it would be proven to be untrue."

The crux of what Slactivist is saying to you is that "not literal" does not mean "untrue". He's saying that this binary belief system is hurting your faith, and there might come a time (especially for radar) when you have to confront the fact that the Bible is neither a history nor science book, and the whole edifice of your faith will crumble. Adopting a different view will actually strengthen your faith and prevent it from falling apart in such situations.

But hey, if you want to have fragile faith, I'm not going to stop you.

highboy said...

"Since only Christ can save you, how could believing in bad science increase your chances? Either Christ redeems you and you are saved despite accepting "bad science", or you don't accept Christ and are damned. Can you show me where Radar backpedaled from his original statement? I might have missed the comment."

You'd have to show me first where Radar stated that belief in bad science meant you don't accept Christ. Its hard for Radar to backpeddle from a statement he never made.

"But hey, if you want to have fragile faith, I'm not going to stop you."

My faith would only be fragile if someone were able to point out certain aspects of my faith that were simply untrue. Since that hasn't happened, my faith is rather strong.

radar said...

I will go into more detail in a post, however, I will make this clear. I believe and the Bible teaches that there is one way, one simple way to salvation.

JC=S

Jesus Christ = Salvation


You can call yourself a Catholic or a Cadillac, a Pre-Trib or a Post-Trib or an I-don't-know-Trib. You can be a Unitarian or a Uniformitarian. Carnivore or Vegetarian. Republican or (choke, sputter) Democrat.

In terms of a relationship with God, you either become born again or not. Whether or not you think the Universe is 6,000 years old or 20 billion years old, those are side issues in terms of salvation.

Belief in evolution may serve to keep someone from believing in Christ and receiving Him as Savior. That is why bad science IMO is dangerous. But a Christian can believe in evolution and it will not have anything to do with his salvation. It is only dangerous if it KEEPS someone away from God.

I promised to present a post of a different sort tonight, but after that I guess this subject needs more attention.

I notice that no evolutionists have much to say about where the heck that first cell came from or why bacterial evolution never happens...

radar said...

I commented to chao's favorite Christian blogger as follows:

You are welcome to compromise as you see fit. But please do not try to use the Bible when you do without knowing what you are saying. The Bible was translated from another language into English and we have to consider the original language to be certain of meanings. Whereas the contextual use in the English indicates a 24-hour day in Genesis One, the Hebrew is even more specific and cannot mean anything else.

I will not say you need to believe in a young earth to be a Christian. I do say that you are going to need to have Christ as your Savior and be born again to be a Christian. But if you want to believe in millions of years you will have to decide that large parts of the Bible are simply wrong. Based on what you assert in this blog, you don't believe a great deal of what is contained in the Bible, so why do you think that you can depend on the parts you do believe in?

The word 'Yom' in the Hebrew, when used with the phrase "evening and morning" or with a number is ALWAYS used to indicate one 24-hour day throughout the entire Old Testament. Always. The Hebrew usage of the word is entirely consistent. 'Yom' can be used as "a period of time" or "a generation" when not used in association with night/day or evening/morning or a specific number. Genesis One (and the first three verses of chapter two) is a step-by-step account of the creation of all things. Genesis Two beginning with verse four is a more specific account concerning the beginning of man. Some Bible versions say "day" and some use "when" for the word 'yom' in this instance, since the translators understood with what context the word was being used.

Example - "In my father's day, it took three days to drive to Florida. I thought about that all day and then I went to bed."

We English speakers can use the word day to mean more than one thing. Context tells us how it is being used. In the above two sentences, it meant "period of time", "24-hour days" and "during the daylight portion of a 24-hour day while I was awake."

Hebrew is more specific yet. Evening and Morning and numbers like Third let us know that the writer meant one 24-hour day. Period.

Anonymous said...

"I notice that no evolutionists have much to say about where the heck that first cell came from or why bacterial evolution never happens..."

I pointed you to examples of bacterial evolution (and I recall IAMB discussing this with you as well not so long ago), so I'm not sure why you're being so obtuse about this.

As for the first cell, we've also been over this multiple times:

The theory of evolution is about the evolution of life, not the origin of life. You're talking about abiogenesis, the study of the origin of life. In that field, there are a number of different hypotheses as to how that could have come about. It's not known for certain, but it doesn't appear to be an impossibility.

But if you want to believe that God created life, you're perfectly welcome to that view and I don't think you'll find anyone here giving you much of an argument about it. And God creating life is perfectly compatible with the theory of evolution, which doesn't claim that God didn't create life.

You know, all this information is publicly available, and not just that, it's all been pointed out to you more than once before.

-- creeper

Anonymous said...

"Belief in evolution may serve to keep someone from believing in Christ and receiving Him as Savior. That is why bad science IMO is dangerous."

In what way would belief in evolution keep someone from believing in Christ? Plenty of religious folk have no problem in reconciling their religious/spiritual beliefs with the scientific theory of evolution.

And have you considered the alternative? What if an orthodox anti-science stance keeps people from believing in Christ?

The theory of evolution does not deny God; it merely describes a mechanism. If God created nature and all that we see around us, then why can't that mechanism be the mechanism God used? (Especially since creationists haven't found an alternate mechanism...)

-- creeper

Taxandrian said...

I notice that no evolutionists have much to say about where the heck that first cell came from or why bacterial evolution never happens...

Still waiting for you:

Here's what I'm asking for:

- clearly define 'information' and how it can be quantified
- clearly define what "new" information is and how this can be verified.

Please answer these questions, along with references to experiments, sources or other data to substantiate them. Think carefully. Can you really back up what you're saying?


Come on, Radar.

I DARE YOU!!

Bet you can't do it.

But of course, since this is just a parody blog, you won't even bother.

So there you go: by running away from these two questions you either prove that you're uncapable of backing up your own statements, OR that this whole blog is just a case of Poe's Law (which I seriously think it is - nobody can be this ignorant and still be serious).

Anonymous said...

"But if you want to believe in millions of years you will have to decide that large parts of the Bible are simply wrong"

Not large parts - actually quite a small part, and not just that, but a part that actually isn't even internally consistent, so probably not the best section to insist on absolute literal inerrancy.

Either Radar or Highboy mentioned that the word was used to refer to something other than a 24-hour day in poetic use - and a description of how God created everything can certainly fall under that, given the scope and the fact that whoever wrote the Genesis accounts of the creation was actually there.

-- creeper

Anonymous said...

"the fact that whoever wrote the Genesis accounts of the creation was actually there"

should read

"the fact that whoever wrote the Genesis accounts of the creation wasn't actually there"

Sorry.

-- creeper

Anonymous said...

There was an interesting comment over at that slacktivist site that is very apropos of Radar and the effect that certain proselytizing may have on keeping people from Jesus:

"I find it interesting to compare your observation here to some advice given by St. Augustine to Christian proselytizers in a book called "The Literal Meaning of Genesis" written somewheres around the fifth century AD:

Usually, even a non-Christian knows something about the Earth, the Heavens, and the other elements of this world, about the motion and orbit of the stars and even their size and relative positions, about the predictable eclipses of the sun and moon, the cycles of the years and the seasons, about the kinds of animals, shrubs, stones, and so forth, and this knowledge he holds to as being certain from reason and experience. Now, it is a disgraceful and dangerous thing for an infidel to hear a Christian, presumably giving the meaning of Holy Scripture, talking nonsense on these topics; and we should take all means to prevent such an embarrassing situation, in which people show up vast ignorance in a Christian and laugh it to scorn. The shame is not so much that an ignorant individual is derided, but that people outside the household of the faith think our sacred writers held such opinions, and, to the great loss of those for whose salvation we toil, the writers of our Scripture are criticized and rejected as unlearned men. If they find a Christian mistaken in a field which they themselves know well and hear him maintaining his foolish opinions about our books, how are they going to believe those books in matters concerning the resurrection of the dead, the hope of eternal life, and the kingdom of heaven, when they think their pages are full of falsehoods on facts which they themselves have learnt from experience and the light of reason?"


-- creeper

Anonymous said...

Radar,

someone over at slacktivist wants to know how long an HOUR was in the garden.

-- creeper

Anonymous said...

About that word Yom... here are some Christians saying it's meaning is not exactly limited to a 24-hour day. Far from it.

-- creeper

radar said...

I just thoroughly explained YOM and the usage thereof. I have learned that every time in which YOM is used in connection with the words evening and morning or night and day in the Old Testament it refers to a 24 hour regular old day.

In addition, every single use of that word in conjunction with a modifying number, like third or seventh, those are all simple 24 hour days.

radar said...

As to fragile faith-

I came from a Darwinist/agnostic background and my belief system is a result of the combination of an adult conversion to Christianity and a thorough exploration of the evidence. A reasoned faith is not fragile.

There is other book in the world as well-studied and documented as the Bible. I have carefully considered all the evidence available and concluded that the Bible is the inspired Word of God and that it is true. Sometimes the translation into English gets a bit sticky but the original is from God and therefore it is reliable.

IF the Bible is reliable, all statements of fact contained therein are true.

IF the Bible is unreliable, who is qualified to decide what parts should stay and what parts should be ignored?

If you decide to pick and choose which sections of the Bible are believable and which are not, why even bother with the Bible at all? Why not just make up your own religion and Bob's your uncle?

I have no fear at all that science will reveal anything that shakes my belief in God the Creator and Savior. None. Once logic and faith join hands with the God of the Universe that three-fold cord holds fast.

As it happens, science without God is becoming increasingly laughable, as the "Morphed" NatGeo series illustrates. Fairy tales. Ridiculous. Evolution happens because animals want or need it to happen.

A First Cause from a Designer logically explained how things came to be and why they are so obviously designed and contain a marvelous blueprint that continues to work despite mutations and diseases and wide-ranging conditions around the globe.

Only the False Alternative keeps otherwise logical and sane scientist from intellectual satisfaction on the issues of origins. Only a fear or distaste for the concept of God keeps macroevolution in the game.

You guys are like blindfolded kids walking around feeling for answers, bonking into tables, bumping their shins on chairs and constantly asking, "where is the floor? Where oh where can it be?"

Uhm, you are standing on it. Take off the naturalistic blindfold. Look around you. The Universe is designed to contain the Solar System which is designed to contain the Earth which is designed to sustain life which is designed to accomodate you, an individual designed to realize how cool God is and share eternity with Him.

scohen said...

"I just thoroughly explained YOM and the usage thereof."

And you're a fluent in hebrew and have read the entire bible in its original hebrew?

Or were you just told this?

I wonder why so many Jews (many of whom speak fluent hebrew) don't see it that way.

By the way, thanks for the clarification on what you meant. I'm glad that belief in real science isn't an impediment to heaven.

scohen said...

"I came from a Darwinist/agnostic background"

You keep saying this, but if it were true one would expect that you'd have a better grasp of evolution.

It's possible that you were secular, but you certainly weren't schooled in evolution and what it means. Either that, or you're purposely mis-representing it.

radar said...

""I came from a Darwinist/agnostic background"

You keep saying this, but if it were true one would expect that you'd have a better grasp of evolution.

It's possible that you were secular, but you certainly weren't schooled in evolution and what it means. Either that, or you're purposely mis-representing it."

This is the last gasp of a dying hypothesis-that-ain't-even-a-theory! I just don't understand it. Phooey (technical term)!

You cannot demonstrate a means to bring about the addition of information into the gene pool nor can you explain where in the heck the gene pool came from. All the reshuffling deck chairs on the Titanic being done by guys like Dawkins is meaningless.

You have no explanation for life beginning.

You have no explanation for the design of living organisms.

You have never been able to either demonstrate or observe macroevolution happening.

Whose faith is fragile? Wait until my next information post!

scohen said...

"Only a fear or distaste for the concept of God keeps macroevolution in the game."

Yet all these religious people accept it. Are they all closet atheists or something?

Come on, get real. You're not even trying any more --that logic only holds water if you think your views are in alignment with the views of every other religious person.

radar said...

"I just thoroughly explained YOM and the usage thereof."

And you're a fluent in hebrew and have read the entire bible in its original hebrew?

Or were you just told this?

I wonder why so many Jews (many of whom speak fluent hebrew) don't see it that way.

By the way, thanks for the clarification on what you meant. I'm glad that belief in real science isn't an impediment to heaven.


I would be surprised at any Hebrew scholar who disagrees with my points concerning the usage of yom in Genesis One. I would not be surprised if they disagree with me on how they wish to interpret the passages but my points are valid.

I have paid a really good sum of money to have a Hebrew and Aramic and Latin and Koine Greek Bible and about fifty translations thereof loaded on my computer. I can look up every word in scripture and study meaning and context. I have access to concordances and lexicons and yadda yadda to allow me to dig into the meaning of the Bible. I also took Greek in college for two semesters and, frankly, I realized I either needed four years of it or a bunch of good lexicons and interlinear bible resources so I went that direction.


~~~~~~~

It would please me no end to wind up in heaven and find you there, scohen. I say Jesus, you say Yeshua but either/or I hope your journey brings you to an encounter with Messiah with or without Darwin tagging along. Shalom!

radar said...

What I am saying is that, if scientists were not artificially ignoring God as an answer, they would dismiss the idea of macroevolution out of hand. It cannot be demonstrated and it has no proven mechanism.

Natural Selection is a function of microevolution, or variation within kind, and it does not in any way function as a creator of new systems or organs.

The "theory" includes no answer for where first life came from, let alone how "simple" operations like ADP/ATP or photosynthesis could happen.

scohen said...

"You have no explanation for life beginning."

This is not evolution. This has been explained to you over and over and over and (look, there it is again, above this comment).

"You have no explanation for the design of living organisms."

You mean the hack upon kludge evident in insects? The frailty of human's knees and hips? The fact we have blind spots and squid don't? Any serious student of Biology would immediately realize that while there are amazing structures present in our bodies, there are also areas of absolute stupidity. Would an omniscient designer make these mistakes? Hardly.


"You have never been able to either demonstrate or observe macroevolution happening."

?? Seriously? Try googling for it. We've tried to lead you to water many times, but you just won't drink. Instead you wonder aloud why a single cell prokaryote won't sprout a nose in 20 years.

"Whose faith is fragile? Wait until my next information post!"

The fragility of faith isn't my argument, that came from Slacktivist and it's not his faith. He's calling *you* to the carpet, not me.

If you want to go down the rabbit hole of Information Theory, be my guest. It's pretty deep math, and I've already got a bunch of errors that your "Git" has made that makes Hartnett look downright competent.

If I were you, I'd lay off. But hey, we've already been through statistics, integrals and quote mining Morowitz.

What I don't understand is why you post on subjects that you don't understand very well.

----

"The "theory" includes no answer for where first life came from"

Why aren't you getting this? It's not supposed to. Set theory has no answer for where the numbers came from, but it's useful once you have them.

"let alone how "simple" operations like ADP/ATP or photosynthesis could happen."

You're sure of this? There are *no* papers about the origins of mitochondria or photosynthesis?
(hint, I pulled up ten papers just now)

radar said...

The next post will cover much of this but:

1) Evolution needs to explain where life came from whether you like it or not, otherwise what is the point? God made a single-cell creature and then split the scene?

2) Explanations that are anywhere near reasonable. Not fairy tales. Anything I have ever seen on photosynthesis has ranged from lame to laughable

scohen said...

"What I am saying is that, if scientists were not artificially ignoring God as an answer, they would dismiss the idea of macroevolution out of hand"

Francis Collins is ignoring God? It doesn't seem like it to me.

Again, I ask Cranky's question --the one you have yet to answer:

Which scientific advances have been made by invoking the supernatural?

"1) Evolution needs to explain where life came from whether you like it or not, otherwise what is the point? God made a single-cell creature and then split the scene?"

You're really not getting this, are you? What if God made a framework for constant self improvement and sat back and watched? Why is that less plausible than Genesis?


"2) Explanations that are anywhere near reasonable. Not fairy tales. Anything I have ever seen on photosynthesis has ranged from lame to laughable"

...and you have the requisite knowledge to read and understand scientific papers and make a judgement on its laughability? You, who consider the 4.5 billion year age of the earth a fairy tale?

Pray tell, What gives you that authority? Why do you think you're qualified to make these judgements anyway? I can't read a technical paper on microbiology very well and I've had three years of the stuff. I can get the gist of it, but I'm a long way off from poking holes in the hypotheses.
Yet here you are, declaring them laughable.

Honestly, I'm not sure what to make of that.

Anonymous said...

"This is the last gasp of a dying hypothesis-that-ain't-even-a-theory! I just don't understand it. "

Just because you don't understand it doesn't mean it's not a valid theory. Even in this very statement you're demonstrating that you don't know the difference between a scientific theory and a hypothesis.

I also seriously doubt that you were well acquainted with the theory of evolution before you got ensnared in creationist talking points. Your statements about bacterial evolution are simply not compatible with someone who knows as much as basic biology and has any grasp of the theory of evolution at all. Maybe you think you can fool some readers of this blog by completely misrepresenting what the theory of evolution actually contends and would predict, but the fact that you consistently misrepresent it means that either your own stance is incredibly weak or you don't understand what you're arguing against. Or both.

-- creeper

Anonymous said...

"1) Evolution needs to explain where life came from whether you like it or not, otherwise what is the point?"

It has nothing to do with "liking" this or that.

Why would the theory of evolution have to explain the origin of life? The name makes it pretty clear: it's the theory of evolution, not the theory that explains everything about all life everywhere, ever.

Does the theory of gravity have to explain where planets come from? Is there no point to the theory of gravity if it doesn't do that?

" God made a single-cell creature and then split the scene?"

Who knows, perhaps he did. Maybe he came back and tinkered here and there.

Who are you to question God's motives, intentions and methods? He works in mysterious ways, but all of a sudden you know exactly what God would or wouldn't do?

-- creeper

Anonymous said...

"I would be surprised at any Hebrew scholar who disagrees with my points concerning the usage of yom in Genesis One."

Prepare to be surprised - here's one (PDF) and here's another (link).

The conclusions in the PDF, which goes into considerably more detail than Radar's statements:

Conclusion: What does all the foregoing mean for understanding Genesis 1?

1) The uniqueness of the Hebrew numbering of the creative “yom” actually supports the view that the creative “yom” are not ordinary (24-hour) days.

2) The numbering of the creative "yom” does not exclude the “extended period” or “age” meaning of the Hebrew word “yom” when referring to the six creative times. The unique numbering of the creative times adds support for the “extended period” or “age” meaning.

3) There are no other applicable examples of the numbering of a sequence that is equivalent to the numbering of the creative “yom.” Assertions which attempt to interpret numberings which read “yom” “second” using numberings which read “in yom” “the second” are flawed.


-- creeper

radar said...

"What I am saying is that, if scientists were not artificially ignoring God as an answer, they would dismiss the idea of macroevolution out of hand"

Francis Collins is ignoring God? It doesn't seem like it to me.


Thus, I need to make one Bible post before I make the second information post.

Again, I ask Cranky's question --the one you have yet to answer:

Which scientific advances have been made by invoking the supernatural?


I hope my next post answers that one for you...

"1) Evolution needs to explain where life came from whether you like it or not, otherwise what is the point? God made a single-cell creature and then split the scene?"

You're really not getting this, are you? What if God made a framework for constant self improvement and sat back and watched? Why is that less plausible than Genesis?


My next post will DEFINITELY cover that!


"2) Explanations that are anywhere near reasonable. Not fairy tales. Anything I have ever seen on photosynthesis has ranged from lame to laughable"

...and you have the requisite knowledge to read and understand scientific papers and make a judgement on its laughability? You, who consider the 4.5 billion year age of the earth a fairy tale?

Pray tell, What gives you that authority? Why do you think you're qualified to make these judgements anyway? I can't read a technical paper on microbiology very well and I've had three years of the stuff. I can get the gist of it, but I'm a long way off from poking holes in the hypotheses.
Yet here you are, declaring them laughable.

Honestly, I'm not sure what to make of that.


I can get the gist of it as well. But every single paper I have seen on things like the Bombadier Beetle or photosynthesis, etc, is full of suppositions with no means to explain them. Go ahead and read one of those papers again and notice how there are all these gaps in the reasoning process and the necessity for remarkable coincidental mutations that have NEVER been shown to actually happen in nature or experimentation.

Two posts and two ways to discuss these questions coming over this weekend!

Anonymous said...

"But every single paper I have seen on things like the Bombadier Beetle or photosynthesis, etc, is full of suppositions with no means to explain them. Go ahead and read one of those papers again and notice how there are all these gaps in the reasoning process and the necessity for remarkable coincidental mutations that have NEVER been shown to actually happen in nature or experimentation."

1. I hope (but doubt) that you understand that a lot of the focus on the bombardier beetle, the flagellum etc. has been in the area of irreducible complexity, i.e. the claim that it is theoretically impossible for these mechanisms to have evolved. The appropriate response is to point out how it is not theoretically impossible. So that may be one of the papers you've run across.

Maybe not, though. How about you put up links to the papers in question?

2. As for "gaps in the reasoning process", I've now watched you for who knows how long (months? years?) having elementary logical arguments go over your head like a frisbee and then try to sidetrack from them. You've forfeited any credibility in this area.

-- creeper

Anonymous said...

"What I am saying is that, if scientists were not artificially ignoring God as an answer, they would dismiss the idea of macroevolution out of hand"

Millions of Christians see no problem with reconciling macroevolution with their beliefs. Since this is not a Christian vs. Atheist conundrum, you can drop this argument.

-- creeper

highboy said...

"Would an omniscient designer make these mistakes? Hardly."

To ask the question you have to allow as you have for an omniscient designer's existence. Therefore, you wouldn't be able to ask the question. Since you're not omniscient, you have no way of knowing what is a mistake and what is not. A grand omniscient designer may very well have good reasons for designing what you call "stupidity." To allow in an argument the existence of an eternal being or omniscient being as you just have, you have to allow first that God is far enough above you that there are things about Him, His Creation, and His plan that might not understand. To use something as trivial as blindspots to suggest there is no design is a stretch.

"The fragility of faith isn't my argument, that came from Slacktivist and it's not his faith. He's calling *you* to the carpet, not me."

It depends. He seems to suggest that Christianity can function without parts of its faith being true and accurate. To suggest that one's faith in Christianity can be complete without the foundations for Christianity as we have already shown them is not only without merit but frankly stupid. If he's not suggesting this than ignore this remark and all is well. But that is how his argument seems to me.

"Which scientific advances have been made by invoking the supernatural?"

That's a stupid question. If invoking the supernatural has anything to do with the outcome of your research and experiments than you're not a very good scientist. Since you've already established that evolution has no dog in the fight over first cause, saying "God did it" shouldn't matter one bit.

"Who are you to question God's motives, intentions and methods? He works in mysterious ways, but all of a sudden you know exactly what God would or wouldn't do?"

Your buddy scohen claims to know an omniscient creator wouldn't give one species a blind spot while granting one to others, so is it far fetched? Radar isn't claiming to know God's motives, but he's arguing science behind the creation.

"Millions of Christians see no problem with reconciling macroevolution with their beliefs."

That doesn't mean they believe evolution. Lets keep that clear. http://www.gallup.com/poll/114544/Darwin-Birthday-Believe-Evolution.aspx

Its interesting how macroevolution is such an established fact that most don't believe it.

Anonymous said...

Highboy,

"To ask the question you have to allow as you have for an omniscient designer's existence. Therefore, you wouldn't be able to ask the question. Since you're not omniscient, you have no way of knowing what is a mistake and what is not. A grand omniscient designer may very well have good reasons for designing what you call "stupidity." To allow in an argument the existence of an eternal being or omniscient being as you just have, you have to allow first that God is far enough above you that there are things about Him, His Creation, and His plan that might not understand."

Interesting. It seems you have just blown Radar's statement / question -

"Evolution needs to explain where life came from whether you like it or not, otherwise what is the point? God made a single-cell creature and then split the scene?"

- out of the water.

Basically, if we can't know the motivations of the designer, than how can we possibly spot the design? If everything the designer does is beyond our understanding, then we can't possibly test for a design. Evidence of a "bad design" is simply explained away because "God did it" and "God is infallible and incomprehensible to us".

Which is - to pick up a term that Radar likes to throw around - "bad science". And from what I've heard in some quarters, bad theology to boot.

"He seems to suggest that Christianity can function without parts of its faith being true and accurate."

There seems to be an ongoing misunderstanding here that the opposite of "literally true" (as in "day" means 24 hours) is "false", ignoring the obvious alternatives of metaphorically / allegorically / poetically true. Do you see the opposite of "literally true" as "false"?

If God created the world in, say, 6 ages of undefined length, as opposed to 6 24-hour days, would that make the rest of the Bible any less meaningful? I know you're (at least partially) on board with this, I'm posing this more at Radar.

""Which scientific advances have been made by invoking the supernatural?"

That's a stupid question. If invoking the supernatural has anything to do with the outcome of your research and experiments than you're not a very good scientist. Since you've already established that evolution has no dog in the fight over first cause, saying "God did it" shouldn't matter one bit."


Perhaps the question strikes you as stupid because the answer is such an obvious "no", but it was aimed at Radar, who argued for a while that - oh I forget what he was arguing for, something about how God was important in science or something. His argumentation makes more sense now that he's made clear how little of science he understands, but still, for a while we thought he was serious, and that question - still unanswered by Radar - lingers from back then.

"Your buddy scohen claims to know an omniscient creator wouldn't give one species a blind spot while granting one to others, so is it far fetched? Radar isn't claiming to know God's motives, but he's arguing science behind the creation."

What "science behind the creation" is Radar arguing?

I don't know if scohen claims to know that, it seems to me he is grasping at some kind of consistency in the creationist argument, and with God being so mysterious, there is no consistency that can be usefully analyzed in a scientific context. Which is why it's silly to attempt to merge these aspects of the human experience.

And Radar is most certainly claiming to know God's motives when he says that God would see no point in just creating life without then - I'm not sure what his point was after that, he didn't clarify this - micromanaging life for ever more maybe?

"Millions of Christians see no problem with reconciling macroevolution with their beliefs."

"That doesn't mean they believe evolution. Lets keep that clear. http://www.gallup.com/poll/114544/Darwin-Birthday-Believe-Evolution.aspx"


Not sure what your point is here, Highboy. You just pointed me to a poll that confirms that there are millions of Christians who believe in evolution - and therefore presumably reconcile macroevolution with their beliefs. Here's another one.

"Its interesting how macroevolution is such an established fact that most don't believe it."

The poll you linked to said that 25% don't believe in evolution. That's not "most".

-- creeper

highboy said...

"Basically, if we can't know the motivations of the designer, than how can we possibly spot the design?"

You and scohen have been posing that evolution could have been a mechanism with which God used in His design. To do so you have to first grant His existence for the sake of argument. What neither you nor scohen have done is is grant that an omniscient being would have infinitely more knowledge of the overall design than we who look at a blind spot on a human and determine it "bad design".

"Do you see the opposite of "literally true" as "false"?"

The article that was posted suggested that we "binary Christians" were hurting Christianity more with our "all or nothing" doctrinal beliefs.

"The poll you linked to said that 25% don't believe in evolution. That's not "most".

It was the wrong link: http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2005/10/22/opinion/polls/main965223.shtml

Anonymous said...

""Basically, if we can't know the motivations of the designer, than how can we possibly spot the design?"

You and scohen have been posing that evolution could have been a mechanism with which God used in His design. To do so you have to first grant His existence for the sake of argument. What neither you nor scohen have done is is grant that an omniscient being would have infinitely more knowledge of the overall design than we who look at a blind spot on a human and determine it "bad design"."


I think we would grant that such a hypothetical entity would have more/different knowledge to the extent that its thought processes (if one could even call them that, since omniscience is something that is so completely beyond our comprehension) would be utterly incomprehensible to us. That's exactly what I was saying. We would not know the intentions of such a hypothetical designing entity and therefore would not be able to distinguish between what would constitute a good design or a bad design. And therefore there is no way of testing for it.

Which basically leaves us with an argument of "it looks designed because it has a function, therefore it is designed", followed by "but this thing over here doesn't look designed, because its functionality is bad, therefore it isn't designed".

"Do you see the opposite of "literally true" as "false"?"

The article that was posted suggested that we "binary Christians" were hurting Christianity more with our "all or nothing" doctrinal beliefs."


I'm not sure how that relates to the question preceding it. Maybe I didn't phrase it well. Do you think that if something isn't "literally true" it can still be "metaphorically / poetically true"?

In the past I've gotten the impression that when you said "literally true", you included allegories, metaphors, parables etc. within that. Is that right?

"The poll you linked to said that 25% don't believe in evolution. That's not "most".

It was the wrong link: http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2005/10/22/opinion/polls/main965223.shtml"


Interesting poll. It's four years old and also cites a poll that's five years old, indicating a trend away from creationism (55% to 51%) and towards evolution (40% to 45%). The more recent polls confirm that trend.

-- creeper

radar said...

If we are incapable of comprehending whether or not a design is good or even indicative of a designer for the reasons you give, then we are also incapable of determining whether our thoughts are logical and dependable. How can we know whether our brains actually make any sense? Arguing from a position of ignorance precludes logical argument altogether.

radar said...

I answered cranky long ago. The supernatural is the basis for all science to begin with. Because men believed the world to have been made by a God or gods, they expected it to be rational or orderly and therefore capable of being understood. This expectation drove both Christians like Newton and semi-Theists like Einstein. It is depended upon by the most devout atheists in science.

That naturalistic materialistic scientists, who believe in chance and random occurrences as an explanation for life, would depend upon reason and logic to always be there when any system, operation or organism is studied, is therefore quite ironic.

A random world should not be ordered or sensible and yet we find that laws can be established and tested and re-tested, yielding the same results. So the supernatural is required to have ordered all things by means of inputting information. Check out my second information post when it is done.

Anonymous said...

"If we are incapable of comprehending whether or not a design is good or even indicative of a designer for the reasons you give, then we are also incapable of determining whether our thoughts are logical and dependable. How can we know whether our brains actually make any sense?"

Define "making sense" as you understand it in your question.

We are perfectly capable of understanding whether a design is good or bad. For example, the human knee, hip, cleft chin are examples of bad design. The theory of evolution has an explanation for this. Creationism doesn't.

Now when you argue that such a design may not be bad, but actually very good except that we don't understand how it is good, and that it must be good because after all God did it, that muddies the whole "it's a good design therefore God did it" argument. It basically amounts to "God did it regardless of what we're looking at".

"Arguing from a position of ignorance precludes logical argument altogether."

We are human beings who can communicate and who can agree on certain ground rules of logic, of understanding etc. You even posted some of them recently, even if you continue to demonstrate that the fallacy of division is beyond your comprehension.

You're correct in that as long as you indulge in willful ignorance, logical argument is a bit of a challenge for you.

"I answered cranky long ago."

Nonsense. You have never answered the question "Which scientific advances have been made by invoking the supernatural?". As with your other claims of having answered this or that question, you can put the matter to rest by posting the link to where you did this.

"The supernatural is the basis for all science to begin with. Because men believed the world to have been made by a God or gods, they expected it to be rational or orderly and therefore capable of being understood. This expectation drove both Christians like Newton and semi-Theists like Einstein. It is depended upon by the most devout atheists in science."

A belief that it is possible to understand the world rationally is at the heart of science, that much is true. And yes, that went hand in hand with a belief in one or more gods. But it does not mean that the supernatural itself has anything to do with science.

Your inability to answer the question above should have made that clear to you by now.

"That naturalistic materialistic scientists, who believe in chance and random occurrences as an explanation for life, would depend upon reason and logic to always be there when any system, operation or organism is studied, is therefore quite ironic."

No irony at all. All scientists, no matter what their faith, engage in naturalistic materialism in their studies, and they depend on reason and logic. That is not in conflict with a universe in which there are certain laws that have resulted in order, such as atoms interacting each other in certain predictable ways.

"A random world should not be ordered or sensible and yet we find that laws can be established and tested and re-tested, yielding the same results."

A random world would not be ordered, but who says it is a random world? It's neither random nor ordered. There is a lot of order, but also a lot of randomness. We can understand the orderly parts through science.

"So the supernatural is required to have ordered all things by means of inputting information. Check out my second information post when it is done."

The supernatural is not required to explain why atoms and molecules attract, repel, combine with and react to each other in certain ways, why there is gravity etc. and those things are the basis of all order we see around us. No magic wand required.

-- creeper