Search This Blog

Thursday, December 30, 2010

For all the Worldview friends - Creationists and Christians and Patriots and Intelligent Design people, scientists, writers and friends

Why do I blog?   Because I want to convert the accepted slogans of today into the absurdities of tomorrow...because they ARE absurdities!   Darwinism,  Socialism  and Anthropic Global Warming are three fundamentally ludicrous concepts that threaten the future of our nation.   We are not a threat to our planet, the planet is here FOR us to use.   We do not share all THINGS, we simply have the same right to succeed or fail.  We did not randomly occur, we were intentionally created by a Creator God.  Hat tip to WUWT!
"The uncontested absurdities of today are the accepted slogans of tomorrow. They are accepted by default." - The Anti Industrial Revolution” – Ayn Rand

Now for the main point of this post. Thank you!

It would be impossible to thank everyone who helps inspire me to write this blog, those whose work I copy, those who encourage me, those who make intelligent comments, those who also blog in other ways seeking to make the world a better place and shine light into darkness.   By making a list I am likely to forget some and if you are among them I apologize...comment and remind me!

A category above all else = God is my inspiration and Debbie is my better half.   My primary motivation is to do what I was called to do and be what I am called to be.  My main rooter and partner and friend is my wife.

Without God I would never have been born and without Salvation through Christ I would either be dead, in jail, or one of those stretched-face rockers still touring a quarter-century past my prime.   To be husband, dad and grandpa and son to God is far better.  My family supports me and my blogging although they rarely comment because I am a phone call away and they all either pretty much agree with me or are not science/information geeks.   Sometimes my sister's husband and my two brilliant nieces read my blog so hi you guys!   Clark has to be pretty smart or Shelley would not have married him.   So the idea that they sometimes read and discuss my blog is pretty cool!   It is a lo-o-o-o-o-o-ong way from Indiana to California in more ways than one.

Ladies first, the gentleman says:  But if I laud Amy Proctor I must also commend her husband, MSG Johnny, who is a career Enlisted NCO very high up in the ranks and also a fine musician!  So you guys get thanked together.

Gotta be thankful for Angel!  Nice pictures today...

Pamela Gellar = Hated by the Daily Kos, so you know she is the real deal!

Kate from Canada.  Read her often but rarely comment.  Smart and funny...

Michelle Malkin has sent me exactly one email, lifetime.  But I like reading her so I am putting her on the list.

Also shout outs to Juliette and other Chicks on the Right.

Now for guys.  My buddy Tim likes to slug it out on the comments threads so thanks for that!   Also I usually beat him at fantasy football but this year I stunk that league up!  Ouch.

Mark is a friend who has lagged in his blogging lately but he is one sharp guy and so are his various swords...and knives...plus he has a lot of guns.   He drives a Porsche and has a hot blonde girlfriend so watch out!   Maybe I just figured out why he hasn't done any blogging lately?

Hawkeye has a new job!   Way to go...in the Obama economy times are tough so very glad for you, man!

A couple of the guys over at Stop the ACLU like Lobo have been very encouraging, and I believe Lobo has another blog so hey Ron, comment and remind me what your current blog is doing?   Doofus here forgot.

Then there is Karl Priest and Dr. Joseph M.,  who have sent me material and encouragement and I always appreciate hearing from you!   I also learn a lot from getting Ian Juby's emails, a guy who actually has done plume research and also proved the famous Delk Track to be genuine and the entire world of Climatology has been changed by Anthony Watts and his audits of climate stations.  

I have had the pleasure of speaking with Jonathan Sarfati of Creation.com as well as Gary Bates, very smart and very friendly people.  Interesting that J.P. over at Tekton introduced Jonathan to his very nice wife.  Then the US portion of CMI moved in with/merged with the group that includes two very smart Bible Brains in Hank Hanegraff and Gary DeMar.   Not sure how that all works, but I know the organizations often work or appear together.  Then there is so much good stuff at Cre-Evo headlines and Access Research Network and AIG.   Some of the best research being done today is that ICR founded by Dr. Henry Morris.  I could go on and on but check my links, lots of great scientific sites with a Creationist worldview.   Then there are many ID sites like IDTHEFUTURE and The Discovery Institute.  Tas Walker is a go-to guy for geology.  (see below)
Tas Walker on November 22nd, 2010
<em>Journal of Creation</em> <strong>24</strong>(3), December 2010.
Journal of Creation 24(3), December 2010.

The latest issue of Journal of Creation, volume 24(3), is now available. Creationist scientists have had to establish their own research journals because mainstream science journals are tightly censored and closed against creationist ideas. 
One of the first such journals was the Creation Research Society Quarterly, which commenced publication in 1964.

Journal of Creation began in 1984 as Ex Nihilo Technical Journal, and has undergone a couple of name changes since. All the papers published are listed on the web. After a one-year embargo, past articles are made available free. I have long been an enthusiast of the Journal, so it has been a wonderful experience over the last eleven years to have had the privilege of being part of the editorial team.

As well as these two journals, there are a few other good ones that are now being published. Consequently, we are seeing a significant body of creationist research becoming available, and starting to influence researchers in the scientific establishment—even if it is just to make them more aware of the need to be careful about what they say.

If you are a researcher, lecturer or teacher, or just a science enthusiast, whether creationist, IDer, evolutionist or atheist, I would encourage you to subscribe. The scope of the Journal is broad, so when you receive the Journal of Creation you will become powerfully informed of the alternative way of looking at the scientific big picture, and see how it affects the details in your area of interest. As well as being personally enlightening you will become better equipped in what you do.

To subscribe to Journal of Creation visit the store at Creation.com.

Tags: ,

ALAS, I have not yet read through this latest.  It is open and sitting on my desk waiting impatiently for me.  It does not become available on the internet for a year.  But the point is that there are now hundreds of organizations like Creation.com and dozens of respected journals being published and dozens of peer review groups formed to review non-Darwinist output since Darwnists have censored ID and Creationists out of their organizations, often illegally.   Ask the University of Kentucky...When the New York Times calls you out then you are truly called out.   Takes a lot for that liberal rag to print the word "Christian" normally.  I am a member of a few such groups as a teacher and amateur scientist (and before you laugh, I have far more scientific training than Charles Lyell ever did, which is probably why he was so catastrophically wrong about geology).  Can anyone spot the pun?

All that and I have barely scratched the surface of people who encourage me, sites that inspire me and inform me and even entertain me in some cases.   Cartoons?   Buy the Truth has 'em.  Tom has his own style. (see below):


Plus look to the left side to see the Day by Day posted every, uhm, day?   Example below:


If you want sarcasm?  Frank J. or the EWS or hot air baby!

Philosophy?  Man!   Now I have to name seven or eight more blogs.   But maybe another post.  If I linked you on the left side, I hope many people come see what you have to say...cheers!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Looking into the basis of atheistic thought part two

During this holiday season I am primarily posting the works of others and crediting them.   I hope you will be interested in their content.   Kindly ignore any sophomoric comments that criticize my intellect, the intellect of the source and other sad ad hominem attacks and consider the content of the posts themselves.   Are they logical and do they make a point?   Do they cause you to think?  



Atheism Analyzed is the author of this particular post.   His motto?

"A former 40 year Atheist analyzes Atheism, without resorting to theism, deism, or fantasy.
***
If You Don't Value Truth, Then What DO You Value?"

If you get part way through, get mad and want to furiously rebut what is said, you are not using the full intellectual capacity of your mind.   Quit attacking the messenger and deal with the message.  That is the only way your comments will be worthwhile.   Just a comment on comments.   Knee-jerk reactions and canned "how to answer a creationist" comments are eventually recognized for what they are.

Any cartoons included were added by me, with attribution.   The content of following post is entirely from Atheism Analyzed otherwise.  Happy New Year!

The Non-Intentional Life

There are some constants in the Atheist / Naturalist [1] worldview, some givens that resemble absolute truths at least within the limits of their worldview. One of these is that the only valid path to knowledge, at least reliable knowledge of any value, is through the empirical scientific process. For them, knowledge from any other source is suspect or worse. This position leads directly to another level, which is the reverence for the principle of Cause and Effect as a universal truth, and as the basis for science, which, in turn, somehow leads them to Atheism. If there exists no supernatural ontology, then everything that exists is just as we see it in the universe – that is the basis of Naturalism and Atheism. It is a big “if”.

As a consequence of the dependence of Naturalism and Atheism on the universal validity of principle of Cause and Effect, certain corollaries become necessarily true, in order to support that conclusion. That these corollaries are true cannot be in doubt under this thought process, because the conclusion which they support has been declared true, an exercise in rationalization. Some of these corollaries follow.

First, life is not a definable substance, and is not different in any way from the individual components that comprise the thing that is said to live. “There is no essence of life, unless it is [the existence of ] DNA”: Massimo Pigliucci. Life is not exceptional to purely material existence, and is fully defined by material causality.

Next, in humans as in all material substance based constructs there is no exceptionality from other material substances. Cause and effect applies to all substances, including humans. This means that every aspect of human functioning is a material effect which has a material cause.

This in turn means that the human does not exhibit any action that is not pre-determined by a chain of causes that go back to the Big Bang. So there is no human ability to decide anything, because every action is determinate beyond the ability of any self-agency to modify. And self does not exist either, because for one thing, there is no reason for a non-agent to be an independent entity, a self. A rock is not a self any more than the boulder from which it split was a self. Self is not a material substance; it cannot exist under the materialist decree.

So humans are without self, without agency, and without intentionality in their actions. If humans think that they have – or are – these things, then they are harboring an illusion or delusion. (Delusion occurs if one believes an illusion). If you doubt that this is a consequence of Atheism / Naturalism, then read the sources at the end of this article.

The typical Atheist response to this state of non-Agency is that the delusion of self and agency works just fine, and is a fine way to live, believing that we have agency in the face of being saddled with Fully Causal Determinism. Some Atheists and Naturalists even claim that there is a small bubble of non-determinism which is available to us, even though Causal Determinism is a universal principle; this allows us a small degree of agency within the constraints of our environmental and genetic histories.

If these ideas are valid, what would be the consequences? Are our actions fully predetermined and without recourse for modification? Or conversely, do the laws of Cause and Effect stop at some short-field locus that actually allows us to have some very limited agency?



Oh please, not Anaheim!

Living Fully Causal and Without Self, Except for Self-Delusion.

How can we be self-deluded if there is no self to delude? To self-delude a self, requires a self, and the idea is therefore non-coherent. So that can’t be.

But maybe we are deluded, not by ourselves which do not exist, but by circumstances. What is it that gets deluded? There is no self; the conscious mind merely gets informed of the predetermined, fully caused actions of the neural electrochemical discharges. If the conscious mind is only a register of what has already happened deterministically, yet the conscious mind thinks that it performed those actions, then the conscious mind is, in fact, delusional. And that is necessarily true of all conscious minds. Every mind is delusional regarding its self and agency. And by necessary extension, all the products of the self and agency.

But then the question of self arises again. Something has happened that causes non-entopic activities to occur in the wake of the activities of human mental faculties. If there is no core being that causes those non-entropic activities for which living things are known, then how are they caused (or are they delusions too)? And can I not think, consciously, in a manner to design, to create, to cause things to happen that could not otherwise happen without an agent’s causal force? And things which would not have happened without intentionality? Is the existence of these agent-caused intentional products not real (because there is no agency)? Exactly how delusional are we? And why would we be expected to share the same delusions with countless others, say when we board a plane or ride an escalator, or engage with communication devices? How are universally common delusions implemented - what is their cause? Is it more parsimonious to consider that we share a common, universal delusion, or that we share a common, universal reality?

Consider the other claims of Atheists and Naturalists, specifically the claim to be rational. If they claim universal delusion on the one hand, how can they claim rationality on the other? If they have no self, if they have no intentionality or agency, if their actions are fully causal with their conscious minds merely informed post hoc, how can they be rational? Even if the neural electrochemical discharge is declared the source of rationality, that also is fully caused, deterministic, and without any agency or intentionality, and moreover, why should a material mass of molecules have any non-deterministic capability, much less rationality and self-hood? The Atheist / Naturalist argument must apply to the neurons as well as to consciousness.

So unless the Atheists / Naturalists can produce an argument that provides an exception to their primary argument which universalizes determinism, an argument for a non-deterministic haven which endows themselves with agency even while surrounded with a fully caused and deterministic universe, then their argument fails. And paradoxically, if they do provide an argument for excepting themselves from determinism in order to allow their own rationality, then universal determinism cannot be a valid principle. Either way, full causal determinism fails.

Moreover, if we are merely deluded into the belief that any non-deterministic agency exists, then the reality that we think we have created is also a delusion. Therefore, if the principle of delusion of agency is valid, then delusion becomes a constant and consistent necessity, a state which we cannot differentiate from actual reality if there is any actual reality. Once again the Atheist / Naturalist claim of rationality cannot be valid if we all are deluded. The argument from delusion prohibits rationality.

Empiricism and the Question of Self, Agency and Delusion
Empiricism is an intentional activity; it is the sole source of valid knowledge according to the proponents of universal determinism, the Atheists and Naturalists. Yet that pairing of concepts self-contradicts. Again, without agency to design and perform the experimental analysis which characterizes empirical activity, there could be no meaningful knowledge product issuing from empirical activity. Once again there must be an exception to the principle of universal determinism in order for meaningful information or knowledge to come out of empirical activity. And once again, the principle of universal determinism cannot be valid if knowledge or meaning exists due to the exceptionalism of agent driven empirical activity. Unless of course, empiricism and its products are delusions. So either determinism does not apply to empiricism, or empiricism and knowledge are delusions. Either way, Atheism and Naturalism fail as rational worldviews, since they require both fully causal determinism AND empirical knowledge both to be valid simultaneously.

Why is delusion a part of the Atheist / Naturalist worldview? What are the rational (or non-rational) logic steps that produce the necessity of delusion?

The conclusion comes first by decree: There can be no non-material existence. The support for this conclusion is winnowed and selected for those items which do not contradict the conclusion.

For example the basic conclusion, full materiality of existence is decreed, not observed. Under the decree, certain things cannot exist, things which would invalidate the decree. So when those certain things are seen to exist after having been denied, they must be declared to be delusions.

This process is both non-rational and non-empirical. It is the product of a belief system, one that specifically denies parts of reality that conflict with the basic tenet of the belief. Any invalidating observations are thus delusions, especially if they cannot be defeated empirically.

So in this sense, both Atheism and Naturalism are religious-types of non-empirical belief systems, which actually deny certain aspects of observable reality as delusions, and which are based on faith in concepts derived by rationalization rather than valid logical processes. The fundamental concept – all existence is material only - is decreed rather than observed and it is not even observable, yet it is declared both true and the basis for what is called a rational worldview.

The belief in Atheism / Naturalism is not based in empiricism or rational analysis, it is based in something else: a desire for it to be true.

[Note 1] I use the term "naturalism" here, despite its confusing meanings. While I prefer "philosophical materialism", naturalism is commonly used in some of the "mind" literature, so I will use it here, too.

Sources For Further Reading:

Pinker, Steven; “How the Mind Works”; 1997, WW Norton & Co.

Schwartz, Jeffrey and Sharon Begley; “The Mind and The Brain”; 2002, Harper.

Clark, Thos; “Encountering Naturalism”; Center For Naturalism, 2007.

Huemer, Michael; “Skepticism and the Veil of Perception”; Rowman & Littlefield, 2001.

Martin, Michael; Atheism, A Philosophical Justification; Temple University Press, 1990.

“The Cambridge Companion to Atheism”; Michael Martin Ed.; Cambridge University Press, 2007.

“British Philosophy and the Age of Enlightenment”; Stuart Brown, Ed.; Routledge History of Philosophy Volume 5; Routledge, 1996.

Reason & Analysis; Bland Blanshard; Paul Carus Lectures Series 12; 1962; Open

Does he have a sense of humor?

Monday, December 27, 2010

Looking into the basis of atheistic thought....

Presenting Buy the Truth

The Atheist Delusion



There has been a torrent of books by the so-called New Atheists in recent years, diatribes from the pens of biologist Richard Dawkins (The God Delusion, 2006), journalist Christopher Hitchens (God Is Not Great, 2007), writer Sam Harris (The End of Faith, 2004) and their ilk. Whatever their expertise in their specialisms, they have arrogantly marched forth into the fields of their own incompetence, and thereby done us all a great favour in showing that the New Atheism spawns intellectual pygmies of the philosophy of religion. As philosopher David B. Hart has remarked,
A truly profound atheist is someone who has taken the trouble to understand, in its most sophisticated forms, the belief he or she rejects, and to understand the consequences of that rejection. Among the New Atheists, there is no one of whom this can be said, and the movement as a whole has yet to produce a single book or essay that is anything more than an insipidly doctrinaire and appallingly ignorant diatribe.
Their writings have drawn back the curtain to reveal the clanking machinery, the hollowness and the intellectual bankruptcy of the New Atheism. For this we are forever grateful, and when their other ideas have been discarded and relegated to footnotes, historians will surely point to their feet of clay displayed by their poor judgment, their bias, nastiness, ignorance and inability to structure logical argument in their writings on religion. As Hart confirms:
The best that we can now hope for [from New Atheists] are arguments pursued at only the most vulgar of intellectual levels, couched in an infantile and carpingly pompous tone, and lacking all but the meagerest traces of historical erudition or syllogistic rigour: Richard Dawkins triumphantly adducing “philosophical” arguments that a college freshman midway through his first logic course could dismantle in a trice…
The author of The Selfish Gene and The Blind Watchmaker can never again be taken seriously as a clear thinker: he has well and truly shot his bolt and missed his target.

Not that he is unaware of his crass ignorance. When challenged by biophysicist and theologian Alister McGrath about his ignorance of Christian theology, as displayed in The God Delusion that was aimed mainly as an attack on the God of Abraham, Dawkins replied
Yes, I have, of course, met this point before. It sounds superficially fair. But it presupposes that there is something in Christian theology to be ignorant about. The entire thrust of my position is that Christian theology is a non-subject. It is empty. Vacuous. Devoid of coherence or content
A puerile and unworthy answer. And how absurdly self-refuting. One cannot expect to be taken seriously writing a lengthy diatribe attacking Christian theology and not hold the presupposition that Christian theology is a subject that has content, and that it is therefore something that one can be ignorant about. Otherwise, Dawkins is a presbyopic old fool tilting at windmills. Dawkins is free to believe that there is no God, but he is self-evidently a fool to pretend that theology has no content when he is spending so much time attacking it. And if theology has content, what a fool to attack it without understanding it.
We begin our analysis by noting that those who attack religion have long had a penchant for the illogical and the self-refuting. One wonders whether their inability to spot self-referential gibberish and the fallacies within their own thoughts are the very causes of their atheism. We marvel how the manuscript of the sceptical eighteenth-century philosopher David Hume, An Enquiry concerning Human Understanding, ever made it to his publishers when within its pages he had declared
If we take in our hand any volume; of divinity or school metaphysics, for instance; let us ask, Does it contain any abstract reasoning concerning quantity and number? No. Does it contain any experimental reasoning concerning methods of fact and existence? No. Commit it to the flames: for it can contain nothing but sophistry and illusion!
From its own content, Hume’s essay should have joined the great conflagration since he could not have failed to notice that the answer was ‘No’ to both questions concerning itself.

Moving to the following century, we had the mathematician W.K. Clifford declaring in his 1877 essay The Ethics of Belief that
it is wrong always, everywhere, and for anyone, to believe anything upon insufficient evidence.
Doubtless Clifford believed his own maxim, but as he could not provide sufficient evidence for the truth of this moral and ethical statement, he was, by his own definition, always wrong to believe it, and, of course, even more blameworthy to propagate a wrong belief.

In the twentieth century we had the so-called logical positivists, and their great champion and atheist A.J. Ayer, with his Language, Truth and Logic (1936), who, like Dawkins, taught that all religious discourse was meaningless. Ayer set out the central tenet of logical positivism that a sentence can only be meaningful if it has verifiable empirical import. However, that statement is itself empirically unverifiable, and so the central tenet of logical positivism is, by its own definition, meaningless.

The same degree of inconsistency and self-referential meaninglessness infects the writings of the twenty-first century New Atheists. If existence is defined as limited to what is natural, and what is natural is defined in terms of what natural science can reveal, then the definition of existence is self-limiting, and the supernatural is eliminated, not in reality, but by definition. If the supernatural is defined as an effect or entity that violates the inviolable, then we would all agree that there can be no supernatural according to that definition. Theists are not so stupid as not to understand language, truth and logic. They have, after all, a couple of thousand years’ head start over the New Atheists. And some rather bigger hitters.

Science itself does not refute the existence of God, but definitions can be drawn as narrowly as one likes to exclude entities and events – in language and in logic, but not necessarily in reality. If atheists want to draw up definitions that exclude God, so be it: but they cannot from a narrow definition infer the non-existence of an entity in reality that was deliberately excluded from their contrived narrow definition. But this is, essentially, what they do. If I define that there is no copper in the universe, I cannot influence the reality of whether copper really exists in the universe ‘out there’, only that there is none in the universe of my own linguistic convention. The New Atheists seem to be infected with postmodernist, Kuhnian and constructivist ideas that reality is what I (or my group) think it to be. In postmodernism and Kuhnian science, reality is constructed not found. This is a far cry from the traditional demarcation that fiction is whatever I care to believe irrespective of reality, whereas fact is what is real, irrespective of what I believe. The constructivist approach of New Atheism is the classic philosophical fallacy of confusing methods, presuppositions and descriptions of reality with reality itself. So when atheists speak about the universe, they are speaking about the universe limited to their own definition, a concept of their own creation. When theists talk about the universe they are talking about the universe of God’s creation, as defined by the revelation they accept. And they are not the same universe. And the real universe can be something different again. C.F Wiezsacker in The Relevance of Science notes that
It is not by its conclusions, but by its methodological starting point, that modern science excludes direct creation. Our methodology would not be honest if this fact were denied…Such is the faith in the science of our time…
As the mathematician David Berlinski has remarked
The attack on traditional religious thought marks the consolidation in our time of science as the single system of belief in which rational men and women might place their faith, and if not their faith, then certainly their devotion. From cosmology to biology, its narratives have become the narratives.
Atheists are usually prepared to admit that the universe has the appearance of design, an honest observation that they are quick to couple with the assertion that a mere appearance of design does not automatically infer a designer because it could all be an illusion. Quite so. But the plausibility that something with the appearance of design might have that appearance because it is actually designed is ruled out by atheists not by evidence and conclusions but by presuppositions and prejudice.

So, for example, the geneticist Richard Lewontin will accept the atheist scientific mythological narrative
in spite of the patent absurdity of some of its constructs…in spite of the tolerance of the scientific community for unsubstantiated just-so stories.
Why? Because he “cannot allow a Divine Foot in the door”. Fine. Thanks for the honesty. At least Lewontin’s prejudice is there for all to see. See more about atheist mythology.

Richard Dawkins loves straw man arguments. Hart warns that he is severely challenged in even the most elementary of logic and that he has a
philosophically illiterate inability to distinguish between…theoretical claims about material causality and logical claims about the mystery of existence
Dawkins argues that there are two competing explanations for the apparent design in the universe from which we must choose:
1. A hypothesis involving a designer, that is, a complex being to account for the complexity that we see.
2. A hypothesis, with supporting theories, that explains how, from simple origins and principles, something more complex can emerge.
He does not inform his readers (is he even aware of it himself?) that the first hypothesis is not one that Christian theists have ever held. He has invented the concept of a ‘complex being’, which cannot be the Christian God since their God is always held to be simple. So, by not actually stating the Christian hypothesis, and introducing a hypothesis held by no-one, Dawkins sets up an argument that is a mere illusion to reach a conclusion that is a mere deception. As we noted earlier, and as Hart confirms,
Numerous attempts have been made…to apprise Dawkins of what the traditional definition of divine simplicity implies, and of how it logically follows from the very idea of transcendence, and to explain to him what it means to speak of God as the transcendent fullness of actuality, and how this differs in kind from talk of quantitative degrees of composite complexity. But all the evidence suggests that Dawkins has never understood the point being made, and it is his unfortunate habit contemptuously to dismiss as meaningless concepts whose meanings elude him. Frankly, going solely on the record of his published work, it would be rash to assume that Dawkins has ever learned how to reason his way to the end of a simple syllogism.
Then there is his ‘Ultimate Boeing 747 gambit’. Dawkins was not at all amused when atheist cosmologist Fred Hoyle, who held that life must have come from an extraterrestrial source because of its improbability originating here, stated that
the probability of life originating on Earth is no greater than the chance that a hurricane, sweeping through a scrapyard, would have the luck to assemble a Boeing 747.
Not wanting to let a good argument get the better of him, Dawkins recycled the argument to turn it against theism: if any cause is inadequate to bring life into existence because life is improbable, then God is inadequate for the same reason. Any theist will instantly recognize the fallacy of such a position: life is indeed exceedingly improbable if it is brought about by raw, undirected, unintelligent and random causes, but there is no such improbability if it is brought about by a designer. As Hoyle had rightly stated: it is utterly improbable that a hurricane can assemble a aircraft from scrapyard junk, yet there is nothing improbable about an aircraft emerging from Boeing’s Seattle factory – it happens all the time. Random outcomes can be exceedingly improbable: intelligently designed outcomes need not be.

With regard to the appearance of design (which Dawkins describes as a mere ‘illusion’), Fred Hoyle had also stated that
The universe looks like a put-up job
and the physicist Paul Davies remarked that
Scientists are slowly waking up to an inconvenient truth – the universe looks surprisingly like a fix. The issue concerns the very laws of nature themselves…change any one of them and the consequences would be lethal.
It is entirely reasonable to ask the question why things are as they are when they seem to be anything but arbitrary. Only after proper inquiry and exhausting all answers could we possibly conclude that such a question is meaningless – not at the start of the inquiry as the likes of Stephen Hawking do.

The obvious answer to the question is the one that theists have always offered – the universe looks like a fix and a put-up job because it is a fix and a put-up job. That’s not a proof, of course. But neither is it reasonable to think the answer false because it is obvious – it is a most reasonable working hypothesis until falsified. To suggest that it is not a reasonable working hypothesis until falsified is to betray prejudice, emotion and ulterior motives. As Berlinski notes
It is emotionally unacceptable because a universe that looks like a put-up job puts off a great many physicists. They have thus made every effort to find an alternative. Did you imagine that science was a disinterested pursuit of truth? Well, you were wrong.
The contrived mechanism that Richard Dawkins has borrowed from these physicists is the idea of the multiverse: if there are an infinite number of universes, there must be the possibility, however improbable, that at least one of them has the physical laws and conditions just right to permit human existence, and obviously we’re in such a one. This chimes with his argument for evolution – given enough universes any universe is possible, including this one; given enough time in this universe, anything is possible, including the emergence of Richard Dawkins.

But of course, this is just a metaphysical argument and not a scientific one according to Dawkins’ own definitions of what would constitute science. Quite why belief in a plurality of universes with no creators is superior to a belief in a single universe with a single Creator is given by Dawkins as follows
The key difference between the radically extravagant God hypothesis and the apparently extravagant multiverse hypothesis is one of statistical improbability.
Note that it’s all down to statistics and probability. Quite apart from the word games that Dawkins is using, begging the question by using terms such as ‘radically extravagant’ and ‘apparently extravagant’, the idea that one can apply the laws of statistical probability to the existence of God and other universes is breathtakingly stupid. Yet this nonsense becomes the centrepiece for his argument in The God Delusion against the existence of God. Dawkins’ argument in Chapter 4, Why there is almost certainly no God, can be summed up as follows
1. “The universe is improbable”
2. “The temptation [to explain the appearance of the universe by an appeal to a designer] is a false one, because the designer hypothesis immediately raises the larger problem of who designed the designer. The whole problem we started out with was the problem of explaining statistical improbability. It is obviously no solution to postulate something even more improbable.”
Firstly, we do not concede to Dawkins the benefit of the first premise, so his argument doesn’t get out of the starting blocks. ‘The universe is improbable’ is a starting point for an argument where this is a given, not necessarily what pertains in the present universe. It is an atheistic premise. The universe is only improbable if there is no God, so to start with the improbability of the universe is to assume the proposition to be proved in the premises, a logical fallacy known as begging the question, petitio principii, more of which below. So the argument starts out as a hopeless fallacy, but as we see, Dawkins soldiers on with his argument that if the universe is improbable,
It is obviously no solution to postulate something even more improbable
Such as a Creator. Well, given a premise that is begging the question, Dawkins manages to wade even deeper into the quagmire of the fallacious argument. Why an improbable universe would demand an improbable creator, never mind a more improbable creator, Dawkins declines to say. So we shall allow him to sink without throwing him a lifeline. Atheist arguments such as this are fallacious in attempting to force a dilemma where none can exist. This is cheeky rhetoric, smoke and mirrors, not the standard we expect from those who according to New Atheist Peter Atkins, colleague of Dawkins at Oxford, are “beacons of rationality, and intellectually honest”.

Dawkins confuses tendencies and categories that are incompatible and incommensurable. When theories are incommensurable, there is no way in which they can be compared with each other to determine which better explains the observable data. Probabilities belong to the world in which things happen because they might; creation belongs to the world in which things happen because they must. There is nothing contingent or chancy about divine creation; there is everything contingent and chancy about emergence of intelligent life and complexity from randomness. Creation is explained by reference to creators; chance events are explained by appealing to chance.

Theories of probability assign numbers to events. Quite apart from the fact that the eternal being of God, as understood by Christians, is not an ‘event’, the hypothetical emergence of some improbable Creator would have to be an improbable event in virtue of the process that controls the probability of such an event. Just which processes are in operation designed to yield a Deity as a possible outcome, by which Dawkins can determine the probability of such event, Dawkins does not say, nor can he. Having failed to know and establish the laws, conditions and circumstances by which the Deity’s probability is assigned, Dawkins also neglects to tell us how long the conditions have been in operation. Taking a leaf out of Dawkins’ writings on the probability of the improbable, we would have to admit that, after all, the Creator probably has all the time in the world. In truth, Dawkins can say nothing about the probability or improbability of God, and the very concept, the cornerstone of his argument, turns out to be an absurdity.

In formal logic, ‘All ravens are black’ is equivalent to ‘all non-black entities are not ravens’. One cannot rationally hold the one without the other. On his own admission, Dawkins holds the view that there are improbable events, and since he also denies God he must believe that ‘All improbable events are not God-caused events’ – this, at least, is what he is at pains to prove with regard to the appearance of life and the universe. But that logically also means that ‘All God-caused events are not improbable events’. So, the universe need not be improbable. Indeed, IF God exists, the appearance of the universe would NOT be improbable. To know whether the universe is improbable, one would first need to know whether God exists.
To say ‘If God created the universe, then the universe is not improbable’, would thus seem to be uncontroversial (except, it seems, to Dawkins). One does not have to accept that God DID create the world – there’s a big ‘IF’ in there as a get-out. But IF there is a God who actually made the world, THEN there can be nothing contingent or improbable about its existence. Again, this can be stated two ways that are logically identical:

If God created the universe, then the universe is not improbable.

If the universe is improbable, then God did not create the universe.

Thus, if the universe is improbable (Dawkins’ “begging the question” premise) then we will all agree that God did not create it. Big deal: Dawkins’ conclusion is nothing other that what he logically sneaks into the premise ‘the universe is improbable’, i.e. that God did not create the world. The sleight of hand is obvious, and it’s all the more amateurish because Dawkins cannot hope to establish the proposition that the universe is improbable. The most that one might say without begging the question is that a universe such as ours would be improbable had it not been created by God. A starting point with some intellectual integrity would be: If God does not exist, then the emergence of the universe would be improbable. We can perhaps all agree on that, theists, creationists, agnostics, evolutionists and atheists alike. But by quietly ignoring the ‘if’ part of the foundation on which we all agree, and making the ‘then’ part his starting proposition, his premise, i.e. ‘the universe is improbable’, Dawkins is just trying to pull a fast one. No rational thinker worth his salt should let him get away with that sleight of hand: that is not a logical deduction or inference from the position on which we all can agree.

This, then, is the atheist delusion.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

No free lunch for Darwinists - no substance to false claims of "progress" in the field of abiogenesis

 Here is another common fallacy:   "Everyone agrees that abiogeneis had to happen, that non-life developed somehow into life."


No, the Law of Biogenesis remains unchallenged.   Never has life come from non-life and real scientists are throwing up their hands at the thought of finding a natural means of producing life.  It is the same situation with the Laws of Thermodynamic.  Naturalism is helpless to explain existence, information and life.   

Only a supernatural Creator can explain these things.

The primary difference between ID proponents and Creationists is that Creationists are willing to identify the Designer as the Creator God whereas many ID scientists do not take the findings of operational science and deduce anything but simply study the world using the actual scientific method that involves methodological investigation.  Naturalism is not part of the scientific method.   


credit


From Biologic Institute:

An introduction to the Biologic Institute from me to you... A Christmas present for the scientific minded...I suppose if you are hoping to illustrate the hopelessness of abiogenesis this would be considered "progress" but otherwise it is just a few more shovelfuls of evidence thrown upon the coffin of Darwinism.  We are going to have that thing dead and buried before anyone gets around to holding a funeral!

Evolutionary Algorithms: Are We There Yet? 

— December 17th, 2010 by Ann Gauger

In the recent past, several papers have been published that claim to demonstrate that biological evolution can readily produce new genetic information, using as their evidence the ability of various evolutionary algorithms to find a specific target. This is a rather large claim.

It has thus fallen to others in the scientific or engineering community to evaluate these published claims. How well do these algorithms model biology? How exactly was the work done? Do the results make sense? Are there unexamined variables that might affect the interpretation of results? Are there hidden sources of bias? Are the conclusions justified or do they go beyond the scope of what has been shown?

A new paper by Montañez et al. [1], just published in the journal BIO-Complexity, answers some of these questions for the evolutionary algorithm ev [2], one of the computer programs proposed to simulate biological evolution. As perhaps should be no surprise, the authors found that ev uses sources of active information (meaning information added to the search to improve its chances of success compared to a blind search) to help it find its target. Indeed, the algorithm is predisposed toward success because information about the search is built into its very structure.

(This aforementioned paper is available for download as a pdf right here.)

These same authors have previously reported on the hidden sources of information that allowed another evolutionary algorithm, AVIDA [3-5], to find its target. Once again, active information introduced by the structure of the algorithm was what allowed it to be successful.

These results confirm that there is no free lunch for evolutionary algorithms. Active information is needed to guide any search that does better than a random walk.

[1] doi:10.5048/BIO-C.2010.3
[2] doi:10.1093/nar/28.14.2794
[3] doi:10.1038/nature01568
[4] doi:10.1109/SSST.2010.5442816
[5] doi:10.1109/ICSMC.2009.5345941

~~~~~~~

So as usual another attempt by Darwinists to identify a source of information for life is a failure.  Natural selection chooses FROM information, mutation is broken information that was already there in one way or another and all these computer-modeled information sources turn out to be provided with "help" finding information.

So we again reference the dictionaries to remind everyone:

Definitions of information on the Web from Merriam Webster

in·for·ma·tion

noun \ˌin-fər-ˈmā-shən\

Definition of INFORMATION

1
: the communication or reception of knowledge or intelligence
2
a (1) : knowledge obtained from investigation, study, or instruction (2) : intelligence, news (3) : facts, data b : the attribute inherent in and communicated by one of two or more alternative sequences or arrangements of something (as nucleotides in DNA or binary digits in a computer program) that produce specific effects c (1) : a signal or character (as in a communication system or computer) representing data (2) : something (as a message, experimental data, or a picture) which justifies change in a construct (as a plan or theory) that represents physical or mental experience or another construct d : a quantitative measure of the content of information; specifically : a numerical quantity that measures the uncertainty in the outcome of an experiment to be performed
3
: the act of informing against a person
4
: a formal accusation of a crime made by a prosecuting officer as distinguished from an indictment presented by a grand jury
in·for·ma·tion·al \-shnəl, -shə-nəl\ adjective
in·for·ma·tion·al·ly adverb

Other sources...
  • a message received and understood
  • knowledge acquired through study or experience or instruction
  • formal accusation of a crime
  • data: a collection of facts from which conclusions may be drawn; "statistical data"
  • (communication theory) a numerical measure of the uncertainty of an outcome; "the signal contained thousands of bits of information"
    wordnetweb.princeton.edu/perl/webwn
  • Information as a concept has many meanings, from everyday usage to technical settings. The concept of information is closely related to notions of constraint, communication, control, data, , instruction, knowledge, meaning, mental stimulus, pattern, perception, and representation. ...
    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Information
So how and when and where in the natural world do we find information?  From intelligent sources.  That is the way it is.

The Science of Denial 

— October 6th, 2009 by Douglas Axe

Scientists sometimes find themselves wishing things were different.  In one sense that’s a thoroughly unremarkable observation.  After all, scientists are human, and humans have always found themselves wishing things were different.

But what if some of the things scientists wish were different are the very things they have devoted themselves to studying?  In other words, forget about salaries, teaching loads, and grant funding.  What if some scientists want the brute facts of their own field of study to be other than what they really are?

As odd as it may seem, particularly to non-scientists, that tension between preference and reality has always been a part of doing science.  Like everyone else, scientists don’t just have ideas—they favor them… even promote them.  And for scientists, as for everyone else, sometimes those cherished ideas are just plain wrong.

For decades now, a growing minority of scientists have argued that the standard explanations of biological origins are prime examples this—cherished ideas that are spectacularly wrong.  That raises an interesting question.  If these ideas are really so wrong, why do so many experts affirm them?

Some, of course, would call this a false paradox.  By their way of thinking, the mere fact that so many experts accept these ideas shows that they can’t be badly wrong.  But paradigm shifts do happen in science, and every time they do the world is treated to the memorable spectacle of lots of experts being badly wrong.

Even experts have ways of avoiding reality.  When it comes to the improbabilities that plague naturalistic origins stories, the avoidance often takes the form of what I’ve called the ‘divide and conquer’ fallacy. [1] It works like this.  Instead of asking what needs to be explained naturalistically, you concentrate on what can be so explained.  Specifically, you look for some small piece of the real problem for which you can propose even a sketchy naturalistic solution.  Then, once you have this mini-solution, you present it as a small but significant step toward the ultimate goal of a full credible story.

But the only way to tell whether small steps of this kind are taking us toward that ultimate goal or away from it is to examine them carefully in the context of the whole problem.  If that analysis doesn’t give the intended result, it’s tempting to skip it and end on a happy note.

Consider the work that Lehmann, Cibils, and Libchaber recently published on the origin of the genetic code. [2] By one account they have “generated the first theoretical model that shows how a coded genetic system can emerge from an ancestral broth of simple molecules.” [3]

That would be huge alright.  And huge claims always call for caution.

Let’s start with some background.  The “broth” that Lehmann et al. are thinking of is sometimes called the “RNA world”—a hypothetical early stage in the evolution of life when RNA served both the genetic role that DNA now serves and the catalytic role that proteins now serve.

In modern life, most RNA performs a cellular function analogous to the function of the clipboard on your computer.  It enables sections of ‘text’ to be lifted from a larger ‘document’ for temporary use.  These sections are genes and the document is the genome.  By providing in this way temporary working copies of genetic text, RNA contributes to the central purpose of genes, which is to provide the sequence specifications for manufacturing the functional proteins that do the molecular work of life.

This is where the genetic code comes in, and with it the daunting problem it poses for naturalistic accounts of origins.  The key thing to grasp is that genes are as unlike proteins as successions of dots and dashes are unlike written text.  Only when a convention is established, like Morse code, and a system put in place to implement that convention, can dots and dashes be translated into written text.  And then, only meaningful arrangements of dots and dashes will do.  Likewise, only a system implementing a code for translating gene sequences (made from the four nucleotides) into protein sequences (made from the twenty amino acids) can enable genes to represent functional proteins, as they do in life.

What makes it so hard to imagine how this system could have evolved is the need for it to be complete in order for it to work, coupled with the need for it to be complex in order to be complete.  To agree that “•” stands for e is relatively simple, but not in itself very helpful.  Only when a whole functional alphabet is encoded in this way do we have something useful.  Similarly, it seems that an apparatus for decoding genes, and thereby implementing a genetic code, would have to physically match each of the twenty biological amino acids to a different nucleotide pattern.  Whatever else that apparatus might be, it can’t be simple.  Moreover, it can’t be useful without some meaningful genes (encoding useful proteins) to go with it.

This realization is enough to make even a committed to materialist give up on the idea of an evolutionary explanation.  Evolutionary biologist Eugene Koonin appears to have done just that.  In his words, “How such a system could evolve is a puzzle that defeats conventional evolutionary thinking.” [4] Accordingly, he proposes the unconventional solution of an infinite universe (a multiverse) in which even the seemingly impossible becomes certain.

I think it’s fair to say that most biologists are uncomfortable with Koonin’s proposal.  Part of what bothers them is the tacit abandonment of more conventional solutions, as though these have no hope of ever succeeding.  In the wake of this, Lehmann, Cibils, and Libchaber are, in effect, refusing to throw in the towel, and that merits attention in itself.

Instead of making the universe bigger, they propose a way of making the genetic code smaller, hoping that this downsized version might feasibly arise in a conventional evolutionary way.  But there’s a risk.  Their efforts to simplify could easily lead to oversimplification.

They presuppose an RNA-world endowed with two kinds of tRNA molecules, each of which has dual functional capacities: at one end they attach an amino acid, and at the other they pair with a specific base triplet (codon) on an RNA gene.  Their world also has steady supplies of two kinds of amino acid, at least one kind of RNA gene that restricts itself to the two codons recognized by the tRNAs, and “a ribosome-like cofactor” that cradles the complex formed between the tRNA that caries the new protein chain and the codon to which it is paired.

The immediate question is, how could a world that has never encoded proteins have done so much preparation to become a world that does encode proteins?  We seem to be left with the familiar alternatives of extraordinary improbability or guided design.  Here it has to be conceded that Koonin’s proposal is at least commendably frank, in that it acknowledges the improbabilities.  Lehmann et al., like everyone else, prefer not to go there.

Maybe that’s because, like everyone else, they find themselves between a rock and a hard place.  Since the modern system for implementing the genetic code is way too complicated to have appeared by accident, they know they need to look for not just a simplification, but a radical simplification.  But if it’s hard to explain how even a modest simplification could leave the basic function intact, imagine how hard it becomes for a radical simplification.

Their efforts to find a workable compromise between sterile simplicity and complex functionality are both laudable and instructive, but unsuccessful nonetheless.

Their simplified proteins are built from two amino acids instead of twenty.  People have tried to fish out life-like proteins from pools of random chains made from just a few amino acids, but nothing impressive has ever come of it.  That’s not surprising when you consider how fussy real-life proteins are about their amino-acid sequences.  The idea of forcing them to hand over eighteen of their constituent amino acids without so much as a complaint is just plain unrealistic.

Lehmann, Cibils, and Libchaber attempt to push their proteins even further.  Their translation mechanism has an extraordinarily high error rate, resulting in about one wrong amino acid for every six added to a new chain.  And that’s under ideal conditions.  Things get much worse if the conditions deteriorate.

Let’s experiment with this.  If you haven’t read the title of their paper, hold off and we’ll see if you can read a version of it that has been simplified along the lines of their proposal.  Protein functions would have to be remarkably relaxed about protein sequences for their simplifications to have worked in early life.  The test will be to see whether you are comparably relaxed about spelling when you read.

The most common vowel in the title of their paper is e, and the most common consonant is n.  To mimic their proposed simplification of proteins, let’s replace all the vowels in their title with e and all the consonants with n, randomly mistaking vowels and consonants about one sixth of the time.  The random errors make many versions of the title possible, but you don’t have to see many examples to convince yourself that this isn’t going to work:
simple titles
This isn’t meant to be a proof, of course, just an illustration.  It approximates the scale of simplification that Lehmann et al. have proposed for protein sequences, and in so doing it provides very reasonable grounds for suspecting they have oversimplified.  Something closer to proof can be had by examining how fussy real protein functions are about protein sequences.  That whole field of work, as I see it anyway, seems to confirm the suspicion.

So in the end, Lehmann, Cibils and Libchaber seem to have taken us a step further from a naturalistic explanation for life rather than a step closer.  Some people will be more pleased with that conclusion than others, and that’s okay.  From the standpoint of science, every step is progress.

[1] Perspectives, 1 April 2009
[2] Lehmann J, Cibils M, Libchaber A (2009)
[3] ScienceDaily
[4] Koonin EV (2007) 

 "As odd as it may seem, particularly to non-scientists, that tension between preference and reality has always been a part of doing science.  Like everyone else, scientists don’t just have ideas—they favor them… even promote them.  And for scientists, as for everyone else, sometimes those cherished ideas are just plain wrong."

Merry Christmas, Darwinists!  Here is your present...a chance to understand the error of your ways and adjust to 21st Century discoveries about life and existence.   Evidence, my friends, not fairy tales....And with that thought in mind, Darwinists are invited to take part in the discussion of complexity in the cell.  No need to deny it or hide it, but rather face it and explore it!


The Debate Over Design Gains Momentum with a New Peer-Reviewed Science Journal: BIO-Complexity  

— April 30th, 2010 by Douglas Axe

It’s no secret that the scientific establishment is decidedly against not just the idea of intelligent design but also the idea of debating that idea.  They just wish the whole subject would go away.  That being the case, most establishment-minded scientists will, I suspect, thoroughly disapprove of BIO-Complexity, a new science journal that positively welcomes the scientific debate [1].

Now, I usually sympathize with those who want troublemakers to stop making trouble.  Trouble has a bad name for good reasons.  But on the other hand, we often find ourselves looking back with gratitude at certain troublemakers of the past—people who persisted in shaking things up, usually at great personal cost, until their cause won the day.

It seems to me that the trouble ID has brought on the science academy is of this more noble kind.  Like all scientific controversies, this one is about ideas.  And while ideas can be very powerful, they only become dangerous when no one is allowed to critique them openly.  Where scrutiny is encouraged, the worst that an idea can be is false.  Where it is forbidden, things can get much worse (as history shows).

With that in mind, if you examine the way scientists on both sides of the ID debate are conducting themselves, which side would you say is generally doing a better job of inviting critical scrutiny?  Which side is earnestly seeking the strongest critique that the other side can offer?  The answer should be obvious.  It has to be the side that is promoting the debate, right?  Or conversely, which side has little tolerance for dissent?  That’s equally obvious.  It’s the conflicted side—the one that is constantly switching between denying that the debate exists, trying to win it, and trying to shut it down.

Of those three conflicting options, only one—the desire to be proven right—has a legitimate place in science.  The greatest moments in the history of scientific discourse happened when people were so committed to getting it right and so sure of being right that they welcomed critical scrutiny.  They weren’t always right, of course, but there is nothing shameful in that.  Quite the opposite, in fact.  This contest of ideas, this rigorous exchange, is precisely how science is meant to work.

And that’s exactly what BIO-Complexity is about.  Unlike most science journals, this one is founded on critical scientific exchange.  That commitment began with an inclusive approach to recruiting scientists to serve as editors.  As one of the people involved in the process, I can assure you that whatever the Editorial Board [2] ends up looking like when all the replies are in, the invitations went out to everyone we could think of with the expertise and the interest to make a useful contribution, regardless of their perspective on ID.  Inevitably some will have been overlooked, and these too will be welcome later additions, pending board approval.

BIO-Complexity demonstrates its commitment to critical exchange in other ways as well.  For every peer-reviewed article it publishes, it seeks a well-informed Critique of that article.  And for each of these it seeks a Response from the original authors.  Unlike the original articles they comment on, Critiques and Responses won’t be peer reviewed.  The reason for this is that we want to give people appropriate freedom to state informed opinions boldly, without the level of caution that peer review tends to enforce.  And on the subject of peer review, the policy of BIO-Complexity is to seek evaluation from experts who fall on both sides of the ID controversy.

Finally, you can have your say as well, because everyone who agrees to abide by three common-sense rules can post comments on anything and everything that BIO-Complexity publishes [3].  The rules are known as the three Rs: real names, respectful tone, and relevant focus.  Published articles will be technical, so you’ll want to have some familiarity with their subject matter in order to post comments, but we guarantee there won’t be any viewpoint discrimination here.  If you can find a polite way to say that someone’s conclusions look completely wrong, then go ahead and say it (and don’t be offended if someone politely returns the favor).

Enough said.  Go explore.  I can’t think of anything bad to say about BIO-Complexity, so I’ll leave that to others.  Let them have their say, and then come back to the question of what science is all about.  If you’re a big fan of science, I think you’ll end up being a big fan of BIO-Complexity.
[1] http://bio-complexity.org
[2] BIO-Complexity Editors
[3] See registration information.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Christmas = God's restoration project



You can go to Florin Street website to order the song.  I did!

Jesus Christ, we celebrate His birth today.   I want to make a statement about His ministry.

Jesus was born in a manger in Bethlehem and lived in Israel and Egypt (briefly) and then back in specifically in Nazareth.  His ministry and life and death and resurrection are recorded and are a part of human history.  But why is His existence as a man and His mission so important?

God made the world approximately 6,500 years ago and He made it good.  No sin, no death, no problems but the possibility of disobedience by Adam and Eve.   They were given free reign to do whatever they pleased and in innocence they lived and were in daily contact with the Creator of all.   There was only one prohibition in their life and that was they were not to eat the fruit of the Tree of knowledge of evil and good.  With no death and no concept of sin, the Garden of Eden was certainly paradise on Earth.   All creatures were subject to man.  Everything was in peace and harmony.   We see from the language of the Bible that man was given every plant to eat and there is a possibility that insects are also included in the foods allowed for all creatures.   Even if not, all creatures could subsist on vegetation and we even today have proven that carnivores can and will subsist on vegetation if necessary.   Certainly in a world where fruits and grains and plenty was everywhere there was no hunger and no predation animal to animal amongst what God included in the animal world.

But Eve was tempted to disobey God by the clever half-truths of Satan and Adam, although not fooled, also ate of the fruit.  Perhaps he feared life apart from Eve or perhaps he thought God would take from him the right to have a mate should Eve die?   Whatever the motivation, Adam willingly shared in the sin by eating of the fruit and both then had a consciousness of sin and therefore lost innocence.   In disobeying God they had brought sin into their lives and the guiltiness of that sin became inherent in mankind.   God could have slain Adam and Eve immediately, He could have remade everything, He could do what He willed to do.  But God's will was to allow man to face the consequences and yet give mankind a chance to be redeeemed.

God performed the first sacrifice by killing animals to make clothing for Adam and Eve from the skins.  I refer you to Genesis Three for the telling of the incident.

Man was aware that blood sacrifice was the price for sin.   Man also became aware that to trust in God would give him by faith an opportunity to receive God's forgiveness and solution for his sin. Genesis Four.
After Cain and Abel and the first murder, at the end of the chapter, we read this in verses 25 and 26:

" Adam made love to his wife again, and she gave birth to a son and named him Seth, saying, “God has granted me another child in place of Abel, since Cain killed him.”  Seth also had a son, and he named him Enosh.
   At that time people began to call on the name of the LORD." 

Thus men and women who trusted in God would call upon Him for salvation by faith.   In the same way, it is said of Abraham in the book of Romans, "What does Scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness.”  This is verse 3 of chapter 4.  Paul was quoting Genesis 15:6 "Abram believed the LORD, and he credited it to him as righteousness"   Romans then summarizes the faith of the people of God before Christ and the Hope they looked forward to at the end of chapter 4, beginning with verse 18...  "Against all hope, Abraham in hope believed and so became the father of many nations, just as it had been said to him, “So shall your offspring be.” Without weakening in his faith, he faced the fact that his body was as good as dead—since he was about a hundred years old—and that Sarah’s womb was also dead.  Yet he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God,  being fully persuaded that God had power to do what he had promised.  This is why “it was credited to him as righteousness.”  The words “it was credited to him” were written not for him alone,  He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification." but also for us, to whom God will credit righteousness—for us who believe in him who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead."

God  made the world "good" and good it was until man allowed sin to enter in.   But how can you argue against this?   If God had made robots with no free will, there would be no freedom, no self-awareness, no joy or fear or any and all of the experiences of living as sentinent beings with body, soul and spirit.   

We know from the fossil record that many creatures buried by the Flood were far too large to be sustainable today.   No creature such as the most massive of the Apatasaurus type could reach such giant sizes without an atmosphere far richer in oxygen.   We also know that man began with a remarkable lifespan.   If man and creature alike did not have a switch that "turns on aging" then man could live until a few hundred years of falls and accidents finally accumulated to bring on his death.   Dinosaurs could live long ages as well and we know that typically the reptiles alive today tend to keep growing until death.  

Unfortunately, long lives also brought about people who became jaded and wicked beyond the norm, and the general wickedness of the world was painful to God to the point that He determined to erase the blackboard, reboot the system, replace the old OS with a new one...start over.   However, there was one family who kept faith alive, one family who called upon God and so God gave Noah's family the instruction and means to build a massive Ark (with remarkable engineering, as the Ark's dimensions are ideal for a cargo vessel subject to the high seas even at their worst) and He himself sent the animals to the Ark that Noah was to keep.

I've written multiple posts on the subject of the Ark, it was large enough to accommodate all "Nephesh" life and in fact if insects had been included there would have been room enough for them and food enough for all.  The Ark was massive and the eight person crew could have maintained the floating zoo working shifts.   God probably sent young specimens to the Ark and very likely allowed for hibernation of most or all of them.  We do not know for the scripture does not go into great detail.   But God knew that fish and insects and plantlife would be able to find homes on rafts of floating debris and of course microorganisms not hitching rides on the inhabitants of the Ark would find living pretty easy in the Flood environment.   So God gave man around 2,000 years to prove himself to be evil and wicked above measure and God destroyed that world to begin a anew, with one family of believers and with the various animal kinds (baramin) preserved and given a chance to multiply and grow and speciate as they would.

Fast-forward some 2,300 years to a world unsettled and sinful.   Ruled by Rome in the West, under rulers subject to insanity by lead poisoning and overfed egos, the nation of Israel was unhappily chafing under Roman rule.   To them came the Son of God, the Messiah long awaited by the Jews.   There was growing wonder at the miracles that Jesus performed and the words he spoke.   His wisdom and authority baffled the Pharisees and Sadducees who sought to catch Jesus either sinning or defying Roman authority but He would turn their words around on them and shut their mouths thereby.   I suppose that Judas, being one of the zealots and intent upon overthrowing Roman rule, may have told himself that forcing the Hand of God by bringing Jesus to trial would prompt Christ to assert his rulership over all and create a Kingdom on Earth ruled by the Jewish people in concert with God.   That is being kind, for in fact Judas may have simply been a treacherous thief at heart, more intent upon personal gain than anything else.   

The world did not understand what Jesus came to do.   The Romans thought Jesus was just another typical Jewish rabble-rouser unworthy of attention.   The Jewish people hoped He had come to set up a Kingdom on Earth.  The Priesthood feared for their power and position and therefore sought to rid themselves of Jesus before they were sacked and replaced by Roman fiat.  Although Jesus had made it clear to His disciples what He intended to do, they could not grasp it.    The arrest and crucifixion of Jesus was a day of fear and sorrow and distress for the followers of Christ.   


But He did not stay dead.   He took upon Himself the sin of the world, died on the cross accursed and became The Lamb of God, the Sacrifice that would be sufficient for the atonement of sin and the salvation of all mankind.   He rose again as the first reborn Son of God, the Last Adam who had undone the damage of the first.  As it is written in First Corinthians 15:12-to the end of the chapter.  I will give you 46-58 here:


"If there is a natural body, there is also a spiritual body.  So it is written: “The first man Adam became a living being”; the last Adam, a life-giving spirit.  The spiritual did not come first, but the natural, and after that the spiritual.  The first man was of the dust of the earth; the second man is of heaven.  As was the earthly man, so are those who are of the earth; and as is the heavenly man, so also are those who are of heaven.  And just as we have borne the image of the earthly man, so shall we bear the image of the heavenly man.

I declare to you, brothers and sisters, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable.  Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed—  in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed.  For the perishable must clothe itself with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality.  When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: “Death has been swallowed up in victory.”

“Where, O death, is your victory?
   Where, O death, is your sting?”

The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law.  But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain."

Jesus Christ was killed upon a cross on the hill, Golgotha, in the presence of many witnesses.   Three days later He was seen risen and living in His glorified body, able to be touched by Thomas and seen by hundreds before leaving the Earth for His home with the Father...leaving behind His Spirit to live within each and every believer.   He did not come to overthrow Rome, he came to overthrow sin and death.   Now all Christians trust Christ to be their Lord and Savior, a present help in need and the promise of eternal life with God after this temporal life is over.

It has been over 2,000 years since Christ was born, almost 2,000 years since He was risen and gave men the ability to receive the Holy Spirit within, replacing the dead spirit killed on that fateful day in Eden by the first man and wife.   God's mercy is even greater than his justice, providing all a chance to repent of sins and be restored to God.  When God decides the time is right, He will also restore the Earth by creating a new heaven and a new earth.  As Isaiah foretold in chapter 66 and verse 22:  "“As the new heavens and the new earth that I make will endure before me,” declares the LORD, “so will your name and descendants endure."  II Peter affirms this in verse 13: "But in keeping with his promise we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth, where righteousness dwells."

On Earth at this time, Christians seek to help people in need and show them the way to God.   Our church sent a mission team to Haiti right after the disastrous earthquake and did what they could, teens and adults, to bring water and food and clothing and shelter to so many homeless and needy people.   One of ours goes forth every year to take vitamins and medication to the poor.   We have three of our members going on an eleven month world tour of giving and helping in third world countries.   We know several missionaries who work and live in third world countries, some for more than two decades, giving people help and hope.  This is Christianity.  We support these and other ministries, to inner city kids, to hurting families broken by death or drugs or divorce.   This is Christianity.

You do not need to know the Genesis story of creation to be a Christian.   I became a Christian before I actually believed that story of creation to be true.   Yet I also know this, that the evidence we can observe today supports the Book of Genesis and not the Fairy of Tale (Darwinism) and that if there was no Eden and no Adam there would also be no need or use for Noah and no need or use for Christ.   Christianity in fact is built on the foundation of Genesis and every other book of the Bible.  

Sixty-six books of human history and God's wisdom stand on one side alongside a Savior holding out His hand to you offering a gift of life.  

On the other side, a cold and brutal tale of millions of years of meaningless death and suffering and a philosophy that asserts that human life is of no great importance.

I stand with Christ and on this day celebrating His birth I celebrate His life and my relationship with Him.  God is always with me and I have forgotten what it was like to be alone within.   That is fine.  It is well with my soul.  May it be well with yours!