You supply the lies and then I supply the truth. This is the fourth post I have made today to debunk lies from the comments thread for Make My Day
Real Science Completely Falsifies Darwinism: The Law of Biogenesis
"Sadly, many simply refuse to accept the evidence. This refusal to accept the impossibility of abiogenesis has resulted in many scientists scrambling to conduct research that could be used as scientific support for abiogenesis. And subsequently, media personnel, along with many in the scientific community, are quick to jump to rash conclusions about the finds of research. When a researcher’s work can conceivably be twisted to support the idea of spontaneous generation, it seems that the evolutionist will strive to do so—against all reason to the contrary." - Jeff Miller,Ph.d. from article below
Next law coming up...ever since I began writing about creation versus evolution the Law of Biogenesis has been one of those scam situations. Darwinists have been claiming for many decades that they would find a way for life to develop from non-life. But it is not just a statistical impossibility, it is impossible chemically, it is impossible on the molecular level, it is impossible from the point of view of information theory and we have known it is impossible for a long time. Pasteur got the world to agree that there was a law that life only comes from life and this was agreed upon before Darwin published his first book.
The pathetic attempt to dodge real science on the part of Darwinists is perhaps the most compelling repudiation of Darwinism. The deliberate attempt to bury the actual findings of science under a rubbish pile of meaningless verbiage is the ultimate condemnation of Darwinism in general and the Darwinists who do it in particular. Those who know and understand life at the molecular level absolutely know that life cannot form from non-life. There are barriers that cannot be overcome. Perhaps some of you with the willingness to think critically will read this post and be saved from the pagan religion of Darwinism? It really isn't science at all.
Life from non-life is a Humpty-Dumpty. All the king's horses and all the king's men (aka the sum total of all Darwinists from Huxley to Dawkins) couldn't put him together in the first place, let alone back together again!
|by||Jeff Miller, Ph.D.|
INTRODUCTIONIt is highly unlikely that a high school or college biology student will learn about the gaping chasms that exist in evolutionary theory: chasms over which scientists have no crossing bridges designed or constructed. The existence of these chasms causes the entire theory of evolution to collapse, and that is precisely the reason these chasms are not broadcasted in school curricula: chasms such as the origin of matter as well as the laws which govern it [see Miller, 2007 for a discussion on the origin of matter]. At least two of these chasms exist due to the existence of the irrefutable, highly respected Law of Biogenesis, or Biogenic Law (Simmons, 2007). This law states that in nature, life comes only from life and that of its own kind.
The Earth is filled with non-living matter. The Earth also abounds with living creatures. The difference between the two is hardly insignificant. Human beings cannot create life, though many attempts have been made (e.g., Wong, et al., 2000; Miller and Levine, 1991, pp. 343-344; Hartgerink, et al., 2001; for refutations, see Houts, 2007; Thompson and Harrub, 2003). There is no evidence that anyone has ever been able to bring about life from non-life in nature (i.e., excluding supernatural occurrences during the miraculous periods of human history [e.g., Peter in Acts 9:32-41; Elisha in 2 Kings 4:17-37; and Elijah in 1 Kings 17:17-24]). The jump from non-life to life is no trivial matter.
So, how did life originate? Entire worldviews are built upon the answer to that question. There are ultimately only two possibilities. Years ago, evolutionist George Wald, professor at Harvard University and Nobel Prize winner in physiology and medicine, recognized as much, stating that “the reasonable view was to believe in spontaneous generation; the only alternative, to believe in a single, primary act of supernatural creation. There is no third position” (1954, p. 46). There are only two options for the origin of life. It was created; or it created itself. The late, eminent evolutionist, Robert Jastrow, founding director of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, said, “either life was created on the earth by the will of a being outside the grasp of scientific understanding, or it evolved on our planet spontaneously, through chemical reactions occurring in nonliving matter lying on the surface of the planet” (1977, pp. 62-63, emp. in orig.).
The biblical creationist asserts that life originally came directly from God. Concerning human beings, Genesis 2:7 says, “And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being.” [Note: This view, incidentally, is in contradiction to the theistic evolutionist’s attempt to harmonize the Bible’s story of origins with evolutionary theory, which portrays God as giving life to the original cell on Earth. Then, that cell, in accordance with evolutionary theory, evolved and passed on life from creature to creature until humans came on the scene. God, in this portrait, never “breathed” life into man’s “nostrils” at all, but rather, into the “nostrils” of a noseless cell.] The atheist asserts that life created itself, a belief known as biopoiesis. The Encyclopaedia Britannica defines “biopoiesis,” also called spontaneous generation, abiogenesis, and autogenesis (McGraw-Hill Dictionary…, 2003), as “a process by which living organisms are thought to develop from nonliving matter, and the basis of a theory on the origin of life on Earth” (2011, emp. added). In essence, once upon a time, there was a dead rock that oozed non-living, primeval, prebiotic, organic soup (Lahav, 1999; Miller and Levine, 1991; Hoyle and Wickramasinghe, 1978). One day, lightning struck, and that soup came to life.
I wonder if the lightning said, "Bippity boppity boo?" Picture and comment inserted by Radar
The atheistic evolutionist must hold to a belief in abiogenesis in order for his position to appear tenable. It is a fundamental premise of the theory of evolution. If biopoiesis did not occur, atheistic evolution cannot occur. This fact was recognized as far back as 1960, when G.A. Kerkut published The Implications of Evolution. Therein he listed seven non-provable assumptions upon which evolution is based. “The first assumption is that non-living things gave rise to living material, i.e., spontaneous generation occurred” (p. 6). In spite of the admission that evolution is based on non-provable assumptions, many today in the evolutionary community boldly assert that their theory is a scientific fact. However, the unbiased observer must ask: what does the scientific evidence actually have to say about the origin of life?
THE HISTORY OF THE LAW OF BIOGENESIS
Francesco Redi (1626-1697)
Redi hypothesized that the maggots actually arose from eggs that were laid by flies on the meat. The eggs, he claimed, were too small to be seen by the human eye. In 1688, he conducted experiments to test his hypothesis. Redi placed meat in jars, some of which were left open to the air, and some of which were covered with netting or were tightly sealed. Maggots were found to grow only on the meat that flies could reach. Thus, it was determined that life did not spontaneously generate on the rotted meat (Miller and Levine, 1991, p. 340).
Lazzaro Spallanzani (1729-1799)
Louis Pasteur (1822-1895)
Rudolf Virchow (1821-1902)
The Result: The Law of BiogenesisSadly, many simply refuse to accept the evidence. This refusal to accept the impossibility of abiogenesis has resulted in many scientists scrambling to conduct research that could be used as scientific support for abiogenesis. And subsequently, media personnel, along with many in the scientific community, are quick to jump to rash conclusions about the finds of research. When a researcher’s work can conceivably be twisted to support the idea of spontaneous generation, it seems that the evolutionist will strive to do so—against all reason to the contrary. A stream of research has surfaced over the years to try to prove that abiogenesis could have happened (cf. Haeckel, 1876; Miller, 1953; Wong, et al., 2000; Hartgerink, et al., 2001; Sommer, et al., 2008; Gibson, et al., 2010), all to no avail. [NOTE: See the Apologetics Press Web site for a discussion and refutation of these references.] In their desperation, some evolutionists have begun to acknowledge the unlikelihood of abiogenesis and have even begun to theorize the baseless idea that aliens seeded life on Earth billions of years ago (cf. Hoyle and Wickramasinghe, 1981; Gribbin, 1981; Stein and Miller, 2008).
Regardless of such speculation and conjecture, the evidence that science has found is clear. In nature, life comes only from life of its own kind. Period. All scientific evidence confirms this well-established principle of science. There are no known exceptions. Thus, biogenesis is a law. Abiogenesis is impossible. Prominent marine biologist and evolutionist, Martin Moe, admitted: “A century of sensational discoveries in the biological sciences has taught us that life arises only from life” (1981, p. 36, emp. added). Evolutionist George G. Simpson, perhaps the most influential paleontologist of the 20th century, stated, “[T]here is no serious doubt that biogenesis is the rule, that life comes only from other life, that a cell, the unit of life, is always and exclusively the product or offspring of another cell” (Simpson and Beck, 1965, p. 144, emp. added). In their textbook, Biology: A Search for Order in Complexity, Moore and Slusher wrote: “Historically the point of view that life comes only from life has been so well established through the facts revealed by experiment that it is called the Law of Biogenesis” (1974, p. 74, emp. in orig., ital. added).
What does the scientific evidence indicate about the origin of life? Life creates life. The evolutionists themselves begrudgingly admit this, and yet refuse to accept its implications. If atheistic evolution is true, abiogenesis must be true. Belief in abiogenesis is a stubborn refusal to accept the scientific evidence, choosing in turn to give credence to evolutionary superstition, myths, and fables.
EVOLUTIONISTS' CANDID ADMISSIONS CONCERNING ABIOGENESIS
“It’s impossible”In light of the extensive amount of scientific evidence against abiogenesis, many scientists have made candid admissions about it. Evolutionist John Horgan conceded that if he was a creationist, he would focus on the origin of life to prove his position, because it
is by far the weakest strut of the chassis of modern biology. The origin of life is a science writer’s dream. It abounds with exotic scientists and exotic theories, which are never entirely abandoned or accepted, but merely go in and out of fashion (1996, p. 138).Hosts of high school, evolution-based biology textbooks commonly make comments concerning Pasteur’s experiments like, “the hypothesis of spontaneous generation was finally disproved” (Miller and Levine, 1991, p. 341, emp. added), although they continue to propagate evolutionary dogma and the spontaneous generation of life, sometimes on the very next page of the book (Miller and Levine, 1991, p. 342). Evolutionist and Nobel Laureate, George Wald, of Harvard University wrote: “As for spontaneous generation, it continued to find acceptance until finally disposed of by the work of Louis Pasteur” (1962, p. 187, emp. added). He further stated: “One has only to contemplate the magnitude of this task to concede that the spontaneous generation of a living organism is impossible. Yet here we are, as a result, I believe, of spontaneous generation” (1954, p. 47, emp. added). So, “spontaneous generation is impossible, but I’m going to believe it anyway”?
That last quote is the attitude of most Darwinists. Real science does not have the least impact on them when it comes to their pet hypothesis. They ignore the evidence and hold fast to the myth. - Radar
Hoyle and Wickramasinghe discussed the origin of life, saying:
Once we see, however, that the probability of life originating at random is so utterly minuscule as to make the random concept absurd, it becomes sensible to think that the favourable properties of physics on which life depends, are in every respect deliberate…. It is therefore almost inevitable that our own measure of intelligence must reflect in a valid way the higher intelligences…even to the extreme idealized limit of God (1981, pp. 141,144, emp. added).Evolutionist J.D. Bernal, one of the leading scientists among x-ray crystallographers and the man who coined the term, “biopoesis” (Bernal, 1951), stated: “It is possible to demonstrate effectively…how life could not have arisen; the improbabilities are too great, the chances of the emergence of life too small. Regrettably from this point of view, life is here on earth…and the arguments have to be bent around to support its existence” (Bernal, 1967, p. 120, emp. added). In other words, “Life could not have spontaneously generated, but I refuse to accept the only alternative. The arguments must be bent to explain everything without the need of that alternative.” Such a rationale (if it can be deemed rationale at all) is hardly scientific.
Not only do evolutionists recognize that arriving at life from non-life is impossible, but many even concede that the problem is far worse than that. They conjecture (rather wildly) about what the conditions on Earth must have been like to produce life. However, they realize that arriving at those conditions would have been equally as impossible as the actual jump from non-life to life. John Keosian, biology professor at Rutgers University, said, “Even conceptually, it is difficult to see how a system satisfying the minimum criteria for a living thing can arise by chance and,simultaneously, include a mechanism containing the suitable information for its own replication” (Keosian, 1964, pp. 69-70, emp. added). Writing in New Scientist, Hoyle and Wickramasinghe lamented concerning the “prebiotic” soup allegedly necessary before abiogenesis could occur:
Precious little in the way of biochemical evolution could have happened on the Earth. It is easy to show that the two thousand or so enzymes that span the whole of life could not have evolved on Earth. If one counts the number of trial assemblies of amino acids that are needed to give rise to the enzymes, the probability of their discovery by random shufflings turns out to be less than 1 in 1040,000 (1991, 91:415, emp. added).John Horgan wrote in Scientific American:
DNA cannot do its work, including forming more DNA, without the help of catalytic proteins, or enzymes. In short, proteins cannot form without DNA, but neither can DNA form without proteins. But as researchers continue to examine the RNA-world concept closely, more problems emerge. How did RNA arise initially? RNA and its components are difficult to synthesize in a laboratory under the best of conditions, much less under plausible prebiotic ones (1991, 264:119, emp. added).A decade later, Horgan was still at a loss concerning the origin of DNA, RNA, and enzymes. Again writing for Scientific American,he wrote, “DNA can make neither proteins nor copies of itself without the help of catalytic proteins called enzymes. This fact turned the origin of life into a classic chicken-or-egg puzzle: Which came first, proteins or DNA?” (2011). That’s quite a problem. How likely is it that DNA and its necessary proteins happened to evolve at exactly the same moment? Again, Horgan pressed the fact that the RNA-world hypothesis is not the answer. “The RNA world is so dissatisfying that some frustrated scientists are resorting to much more far out—literally—speculation” (2011, emp. added). In concluding his article, he stated: “Creationists are no doubt thrilled that origin-of-life research has reached such an impasse…” (2011). He is right about one thing. Creationists are thrilled at such findings. However, the thrill is not from origin-of-life research reaching an “impasse.” Rather, it is from the removal of an impasse in front of true origin-of-life research!
Evolutionists themselves realize that abiogenesis is impossible. The McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific and Technical Terms defines “abiogenesis” as, “the obsolete concept that plant and animal life arise from nonliving organic matter,” although the contributors would hardly be deemed creationists (2003, p. 3, emp. added). It bears repeating: the notion of spontaneous generation is an obsolete concept!
“We Don’t Have a Clue”Given the impossibility of abiogenesis, one might logically ask the evolutionist, “How, then, did life arise?” Over seven decades ago, J.W.N. Sullivan admitted what remains true to this day:
The beginning of the evolutionary process raises a question which is yet unanswerable. What was the origin of life on this planet? Until fairly recent times there was a pretty general belief in the occurrence of “spontaneous generation”…. But careful experiments, notably those of Pasteur, showed that this conclusion was due to imperfect observation, and it became an accepted doctrine that life never arises except from life. So far as the actual evidence goes, this is still the only possible conclusion (1933, p. 94, emp. added).The student of evolution might very well reply, “Well, that was over seventy years ago. We know how it all happened now.” Moving into the sixties, the question was still unanswered. Chemists D.E. Green and R.F. Goldberger asked:
How, then did the precursor cell arise? The only unequivocal rejoinder to this question is that we do not know…. There is one step [in evolution—JM] that far outweighs the others in enormity: the step from macromolecules to cells. All the other steps can be accounted for on theoretical grounds—if not correctly, at least elegantly. The macromolecule-to-cell transition is a jump of fantastic dimensions, which lies beyond the range of testable hypothesis. In this area all is conjecture. The available facts do not provide a basis for postulating that cells arose on this planet. This is not to say that some para-physical forces were not at work. We simply wish to point out that there is no scientific evidence (1967, p. 403, 406-407, emp. added).In the late 1970s, Jastrow said, regarding the evolution of life:
According to this story, every tree, every blade of grass, and every creature in the sea and on the land evolved out of one parent strand of molecular matter drifting lazily in a warm pool. What concrete evidence supports that remarkable theory of the origin of life? There is none.... At present, science has no satisfactory answer to the question of the origin of life on the earth (1977, p. 60, 62-63, emp. added).One might suppose, “Surely, by the 1980s an answer had been reached!” Evolutionist Douglas Hofstadter said, “There are various theories on the origin of life. They all run aground on this most central of all central questions: ‘How did the Genetic Code, along with the mechanisms for its translation (ribosomes and RNA molecules) originate?’ For the moment, we will have to content ourselves with a sense of wonder and awe rather than with an answer” (1980, p. 548, emp. added). Evolutionist Andrew Scott, writing in New Scientist, observed:
Take some matter, heat while stirring, and wait. That is the modern version of Genesis. The “fundamental” forces of gravity, electromagnetism and the strong and weak nuclear forces are presumed to have done the rest…. But how much of this neat tale is firmly established, and how much remains hopeful speculation? In truth, the mechanism of almost every major step, from chemical precursors up to the first recognizable cells, is the subject of either controversy or complete bewilderment.
We are grappling with a classic “chicken and egg” dilemma. Nucleic acids are required to make proteins, whereas proteins are needed to make nucleic acids and also to allow them to direct the process of protein manufacture itself.
The emergence of the gene-protein link, an absolutely vital stage on the way up from lifeless atoms to ourselves, is still shrouded in almost complete mystery…. We still know very little about how our genesis came about, and to provide a more satisfactory account than we have at present remains one of science’s great challenges (1985, 106:30-33, emp. added).In the late 1980s, Klaus Dose pointed out:
More than 30 years of experimentation on the origin of life in the fields of chemical and molecular evolution have led to a better perception of the immensity of the problem of the origin of life on Earth rather than to its solution. At present all discussions on principal theories and experiments in the field either end in stalemate or in a confession of ignorance (1988, 13:348, emp. added).The arrival of the 1990s did little to help evolutionists find an answer for the origin of life. Evolutionist John Maddox, writing in Nature, said, “[I]t is disappointing that the origin of the genetic code is still as obscure as the origin of life itself” (1994, 367:111, emp. added).
And today, scientists are still at a loss as to how life could have arisen spontaneously. In the lecture series, Origins of Life, Robert Hazen made several notable admissions:
- “This course is unusual because at this point in time, there is so much that we don’t know about life on Earth.”
- “The origin of life is a subject of immense complexity, and I have to tell you right up front, we don’t know how life began.”
- “It’s as if we are trying to assemble a huge jigsaw puzzle. We have a few pieces clumped together here and there, but most of the puzzle pieces are missing.”
- “How can I tell you about the origin of life when we are so woefully ignorant of that history?”
This course focuses exclusively on the scientific approach to the question of life’s origins. In this lecture series, I make an assumption that life emerged from basic raw materials through a sequence of events that was completely consistent with the natural laws of chemistry and physics. Even with this scientific approach, there is a possibility that we’ll never know—in fact, that we can’t ever know. It is possible that life emerged by an almost infinitely improbable sequence of difficult chemical reactions. If life is the result of an infinitely improbable succession of chemical steps, then any scientific attempt to understand life’s origin is doomed to failure; such a succession could not be duplicated in a program of lab experiments. If the origin of life was an infinitely improbable accident, then there’s absolutely nothing you or I or anyone else could do to figure out how it happened. I must tell you, that’s a depressing thought to someone like me who has devoted a decade to understanding the origin of life (2005, emp. added).Evolutionist Paul Davies, theoretical physicist, cosmologist, astrobiologist, and professor at Arizona State University, writing in New Scientist, said, “One of the great outstanding scientific mysteries is the origin of life. How did it happen?...The truth is, nobody has a clue” (2006, 192:35, emp. added). Richard Dawkins stated in an interview with Ben Stein regarding the origin of life, “Nobody knows how it got started. We know the kind of event that it must have been. We know the sort of event that must have happened for the origin of life. It was the origin of the first self-replicating molecule.” Stein asked, “Right. And how did that happen?” Dawkins replied, “I’ve told you. We don’t know.” Stein then said, “So, you have no idea how it started?” Dawkins replied, “No. Nor has anybody” (Stein and Miller, 2008, emp. added). John Horgan did not even try to veil his admission within an article. He titled one of his articles, “Pssst! Don’t Tell the Creationists, but Scientists Don’t Have a Clue How Life Began” (2011, emp. added). Such admissions are quite telling, albeit incorrect. What Davies, Horgan, and Dawkins mean is, no naturalist “has a clue.” Biblical supernaturalists, on the other hand, know exactly how life originated, and the answer harmonizes perfectly with the Law of Biogenesis—unlike evolution’s life-origins fairytale.
“It’s a miracle!”So, according to atheistic evolutionists, the origin of life through spontaneous generation—a fundamental plank of evolutionary theory—is impossible. “Nobody has a clue” how life could have started. What conclusion is left? It must have been a miracle. No wonder many evolutionists have ironically started cautiously using religious terminology to describe the origin of life, in spite of the attacks they have made against the religiously minded community for doing so. Jastrow stated:
At present, science has no satisfactory answer to the question of the origin of life on the earth. Perhaps the appearance of life on the earth is a miracle. Scientists are reluctant to accept that view, but their choices are limited; either life was created on the earth by the will of a being outside the grasp of scientific understanding, or it evolved on our planet spontaneously, through chemical reactions occurring in nonliving matter lying on the surface of the planet. The first theory places the question of the origin of life beyond the reach of scientific inquiry. It is a statement of faith in the power of a Supreme Being not subject to the laws of science. The second theory is also an act of faith. The act of faith consists in assuming that the scientific view of the origin of life is correct, without having concrete evidence to support that belief (1977, pp. 62-63, emp. added).“Faith”? “Miracle”? Evolutionist John Sullivan admitted, “The hypothesis that life has developed from inorganic matter is, at present, still an article of faith” (1933, p. 95, emp. added). Sir Francis Crick conceded, “An honest man, armed with all the knowledge available to us now, could only state that in some sense, the origin of life appears at the moment to be almost a miracle, so many are the conditions which would have had to have been satisfied to get it going” (1981, p. 88, emp. added). Noted physiologist and zoologist G.A. Kerkut said that spontaneous generation is “a matter of faith on the part of the biologist…. The evidence for what did happen is not available” (1960, p. 150, emp. added).
The very people who claim that Bible believers are beholden to ancient mythology and fables without evidence are beginning to admit that they, in fact, are the ones guilty as charged. In his classic text, The Immense Journey, the late evolutionary anthropologist, Loren Eiseley, said the following regarding the idea of spontaneous generation:
With the failure of these many efforts, science was left in the somewhat embarrassing position of having to postulate theories of living origins which it could not demonstrate. After having chided the theologian for his reliance on myth and miracle, science found itself in the unenviable position of having to create a mythology of its own: namely, the assumption that what, after long effort, could not be proved to take place today, had, in truth, taken place in the primeval past (1957, pp. 201-202, emp. added).Hoyle and Wickramasinghe concluded:
It is doubtful that anything like the conditions which were simulated in the laboratory existed at all on a primitive Earth, or occurred for long enough times and over sufficiently extended regions of the Earth’s surface to produce large enough local concentrations of the biochemicals required for the start of life. In accepting the “primeval soup theory” of the origin of life, scientists have replaced religious mysteries which shrouded this question with equally mysterious scientific dogmas. The implied scientific dogmas are just as inaccessible to the empirical approach (1978, p. 26, emp. added).If the origin of life is “a matter of faith” in the sense that no human being was physically present to observe it, then how can we determine which view—spontaneous generation or special creation—is the truth? The atheistic evolutionist insists: “I don’t know how it happened, but I won’t accept God.” However, the Bible asserts that the evidence is available for us to arrive at truth, and it is the truth that will set us free (John 8:32). It is not a “leap into the dark” without evidence. God “did not leave Himself without witness” (Acts 14:17). Knowledge of God’s existence, and thus special creation, is not only attainable, but those who reject the evidence are “without excuse” (Romans 1:20). The created order “declares” the truth of the matter (Psalm 19:1).
Is it not true that the reasonable view on the origin of life will be the view that is in keeping with the evidence we do have? Why would science lie? It has no agenda or bias. Science should support the correct view—not contradict it. What does the evidence say? In nature, life comes only from life and that of its kind. Therefore, abiogenesis does not happen. Science has proven this truth time and time again. To continue to champion abiogenesis is to hold to a view that flies in the face of the evidence, taking a leap into the dark without evidence. The only plausible option—an option that does not contradict the scientific evidence—is supernatural creation.
The sequel is below, in fact - Radar
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Stein, Ben and Kevin Miller (2008), Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed (Premise Media).
Sullivan, J.W.N. (1933), Limitations of Science (New York: Viking Press).
Thompson, Bert and Brad Harrub (2003), “Have Scientists Created Life?: Examining the Miller-Urey Experiment,” Apologetics Press, http://www.apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=9&article=1108.
Wald, George (1954), “The Origin of Life,” Scientific American, 191:44-53, August.
Wald, George (1962), “Theories on the Origin of Life” in Frontiers of Modern Biology (Boston, MA: Houghton-Mifflin).
Wong, Gerard C.L., Jay Tang, Alison Lin, Youli Li, Paul Janmey, and Cyrus Safinya (2000), “Hierarchical Self-Assembly of F-Actin and Cationic Lipid Complexes: Stacked, Three-Layer Tubule Networks,” Science, 288:2035-2039, June 16.
[EDITOR’S NOTE: Part I of this two-part series appeared in the January issue. Part II follows below, and continues, without introductory comments, where the first article ended.]
“Well, I know it’s impossible, but maybe…”How do atheistic evolutionists get away with teaching a viewpoint that so brazenly contradicts the scientific evidence? Concerning this question, Wald said:
Most…biologists, having reviewed with satisfaction the downfall of the spontaneous generation hypothesis, yet unwilling to accept the alternative belief in special creation, are left with nothing. [Actually, they “are left” with God.—JM] I think a scientist has no choice but to approach the origin of life through a hypothesis of spontaneous generation. What the controversy reviewed above showed to be untenable is only the belief that living organisms arise spontaneously underpresent conditions. We have now to face a somewhat different problem: how organisms may have arisen spontaneously under different conditions in some former period, granted that they do so no longer (1954, pp. 46-47, emp. added).So, pre-biotic planetary conditions were different? Conditions which would allow for the spontaneous generation of life? On what is this conjecture based? Has any evidence been brought to light which proves that there are any possible conditions that could lead to abiogenesis? No. Else scientists would be able to create life in a laboratory. Conclusion: “different conditions” = evidenceless speculation. Abiogenesis is impossible, but life is here and had to come from somewhere. We, the atheistic, evolutionary community, refuse to consider the God option. That leaves us with the assumption that Earth’s planetary conditions must have allowed for the miracle of abiogenesis in the past. There is no evidence for such speculation, but who cares? In his next breath, Wald went on to admit:
To make an organism demands the right substances in the right proportions and in the right arrangement. We do not think that anything more is needed—but that is problem enough. One has only to contemplate the magnitude of this task to concede that the spontaneous generation of a living organism is impossible. Yet here we are…. (1954, pp. 46-47, emp. added).Evolutionists write, in essence, children’s fables—full of wild speculation, theories, and conjecture about the possible pre-life planetary conditions, but ultimately their viewpoint is “inaccessible to the empirical approach” (Hoyle and Wickramasinghe, 1978, p. 26). Richard Dickerson agreed with Wald. Writing in Scientific American under the heading of “Chemical Evolution and the Origin of Life,” he remarked that when speculating about Earth’s pre-biotic conditions we have “no laboratory models: hence one can speculate endlessly unfettered by inconvenient facts” (1978, p. 85, emp. added). He went on to concede: “We can only imagine what probably existed, and our imagination so far has not been very helpful” (p. 86, emp. added). So, basing theories upon imagination is now considered scientific!
Notice from this discussion that in holding to such a position about “pre-biotic conditions,” atheistic evolutionists have nonchalantly moved away from the standard evolutionary model—recognizing that it simply cannot account for the existence of life. Evolutionary theory has historically been based on uniformitarian principles, which assume that geological processes existing today on Earth have existed throughout the past as well (Merriam-Webster On-line Dictionary, 2003). Theorizing conditions that are not in existence today is, in effect, a rejection of standard evolutionary assumptions. It is the creation model—not the evolutionary model—which has historically rejected uniformitarianism. Sadly, in today’s scientific community, it appears that evolutionists have been given the freedom to cherry-pick what their standard assumptions will and will not apply to. How can such be deemed scientific?
“Watch us convert young minds to the Church of Evolution, in spite of the evidence!”Some 50 years ago, in Frontiers of Modern Biology, George Wald admitted:
As for spontaneous generation, it continued to find acceptance until finally disposed of by the work of Louis Pasteur—it is a curious thing that until quite recently professors of biology habitually told this story as part of their introductions of students to biology. They would finish this account glowing with the conviction that they had given a telling demonstration of the overthrow of mystical notion by clean, scientific experimentation. Their students were usually so bemused as to forget to ask the professor how he accounted for the origin of life. This would have been an embarrassing question, because there are only two possibilities: either life arose by spontaneous generation, which the professor had just refuted; or it arose by supernatural creation, which he probably regarded as anti-scientific (1962, p. 187, emp. added).So, according to Wald, in 1962 the demise of spontaneous generation was openly taught in biology classes “until quite recently,” and then, with the next breath, the teacher would proceed to engage in self-contradiction by teaching evolutionary theory with its abiogenesis myth. Though this statement was made years ago, the same is still the case a half century later.
According to evolutionists, the planetary conditions must have been different in the distant past—more conducive to abiogenesis. Enter the endless speculation about the pre-biotic world. Consider an example of how such speculation plays out in the high school biology classroom. In one high school biology textbook from the 1990s, published by the popular company Prentice Hall, immediately after explaining how Pasteur, Redi, and Spallanzani disproved spontaneous generation, the authors queried: “If life can come only from life, how did life on Earth first arise?” (Miller and Levine, 1991, p. 342). The book proceeds to speculate with profound certainty what conditions were like on Earth billions of years ago. The observant student, who is able to see through all of the jargon, will notice that throughout the ensuing discussion about these hypothetical conditions, subtle disclaimers are made. “No one can say with certainty…”; “Somehow these earliest life forms appeared…” (p. 343, emp. added). While discussing the experiments of Miller and Urey conducted in 1953, the textbook says, “Thus, over the course of millions of years, at least some of the basic building blocks of life could have been produced in great quantities on Earth” (p. 344, emp. added). The authors proceed to admit concerning the experiment’s products: “A collection of organic molecules such as amino acids is certainly not life” (p. 344, emp. added).
Next, as if emphasizing the power of intelligent design, the authors briefly discuss the experiments of Russian scientist Alexander Oparin and American scientist Sidney Fox and the round droplets (deemed “protolife”) they “created” in their lab, which can “perform tasks necessary for life” (p. 344). However, they admit that, “we would still not say that these droplets are alive” (p. 344, emp. added). So, recapping the evolutionary rhetoric to this point: evolutionary theory’s explanation of the origin of life is based on words and phrases such as, “no one can say with certainty,” “somehow,” “some,” “could have,” “certainly not life,” and “still not say that these droplets are alive.” Recall that the original point of the authors’ discussion was to explain how life could have spontaneously arose in the past. The authors, in spite of several paragraphs of “explanation,” have yet to answer the question. Assuming they have a brilliant answer coming in the following paragraphs, the ambitious student reads on.
Unfortunately, by now, the authors have likely “lost” the typical student. At this point, these students, probably not catching the authors’ disclaimers, will tend to “zone out” and just take the evolutionist’s word for it—“So, we came from goo. Please move on.” However, now the authors actually start to make candid, significant admissions. Under the heading “From Proto-life to Cells,” the authors concede:
The next step in our story is the most difficult to understand completely. From the jumbled mixture of molecules in the organic soup that formed in Earth’s oceans, the highly organized structures of RNA and DNA must somehow have evolved. Scientists do not know how these vital information-carriers formed, but there are several interesting hypotheses (pp. 344-345, emp. added).The authors then imaginatively give several potential suggestions for how matter could have arranged itself in preparation for life to spring into existence, liberally sprinkling in words like “could have arisen” and “might have combined.” They finish off the section stating, “This is one piece of evidence supporting this interesting, but as yet unproven, hypothesis” (p. 345, emp. added). Notice that the authors still have yet to prove, or even attempt to explain, how spontaneous generation could have occurred. They spent their time presenting imaginary ways matter allegedly could have randomly and accidentally arranged itself in ways that might prepare it for life—although they have no way of knowing whether that arrangement would help or hinder the process, since abiogenesis has never been observed to occur. No evidence was given for how matter could have actually sprung to life.
Finally, the authors simply skip over the question of how the spontaneous jump from inorganic matter to living cells occurred, perhaps correctly realizing that most of the dazed and confused students will not catch this subtle sleight of hand. The authors boldly state, “Although the origin of the first true cells is uncertain, we can identify several of their characteristics with certainty” (p. 345, emp. added). So, the student is quickly distracted and led away from the original question. According to the authors, scientists do not know how living cells actually spontaneously generated, but they assert they know “with certainty” what those cells were like once they mysteriously sprang into life. The authors state this assertion as if they have decisively answered the original question about how life arose. They then proceed to speculate concerning the nature of these living cells, never answering the question of how they originally came to life. In all fairness, how could they answer such a question? Spontaneous generation has already been disproven—scientifically—and they admitted as much on previous pages. Yet they have conveniently failed to come to grips with the import of their own admissions.
The 2006 edition of the textbook did not rectify the problem. The authors acknowledge the work of Spallanzani and Pasteur, unabashedly stating that Pasteur’s work,
convinced other scientists that the hypothesis of spontaneous generation was not correct. In other words, Pasteur showed that all living things come from other living things. This change in thinking represented a major shift in the way scientists viewed living things (Miller and Levine, 2006, pp. 12-13, emp. added).Sadly the evolutionary community has not allowed Pasteur’s findings to “shift” the way they view living things and their origins.
In this same, more recent edition, the authors “wisely” separated the discussion of Pasteur’s and Spallazani’s work from the discussion on the origin of life by 415 pages. This helps students to forget that evolution contradicts the scientific evidence found by these scientists’ work. In discussing the origin of life, the authors once again fail to accept the implied conclusion from Pasteur’s work regarding the origin of life, stating, “As you will see shortly, researchers still debate such important questions as precisely how new species arise and why species become extinct. There is also uncertainty about how life began” (p. 386, emp. added). Undaunted, the authors proceed to engage in the same hapless speculation they engaged in 15 years earlier. Similar to the previous edition, they discuss the findings, or rather non-findings, of the Miller-Urey experiments. A significant change in the 2006 edition was a candid admission about those experiments which was couched in the midst of the discussion: “Scientists now know that Miller and Urey’s original simulations of Earth’s early atmosphere were not accurate” (p. 424, emp. added). If such is the case, one might rightly ask why the experiments are still discussed at all. The answer lies in the embarrassing fact that evolutionists still have absolutely no evidence that can corroborate abiogenesis. Leaving the discussion out would highlight the unscientific nature of evolution. Leaving the discussion in the textbook creates the impression with youth that some hidden support remains for the abiogenesis postulate in the Miller-Urey experiments—support that is somehow too advanced to discuss with them at their current competency. After all, many youth are more likely to believe the teachers and textbooks they have been trained and taught to believe than they are to think critically about the material actually being presented.
In the next section, under the heading, “The Puzzle of Life’s Origins,” the authors admit, “A stew of organic molecules is a long way from a living cell, and the leap from nonlife to life is the greatest gap in scientific hypotheses of Earth’s early history” (p. 425, emp. added). And that’s it. Proof for abiogenesis is not presented. A scientific refutation of the Law of Biogenesis is not conducted. Once again, the authors fearlessly launch into pages of speculation concerning the origin of the building blocks of life, liberally using qualifying language to subtly admit that nothing the authors are saying has been proven. Concerning proteinoid microspheres, which have some cell-like characteristics but which are not considered living entities, the authors note: “Microspheres are not cells, but they have some characteristics of living systems…. Several hypotheses suggest that structures similar to proteinoid microspheres might have acquired more and more characteristics of living cells” (p. 425, emp. added). Such unending speculation, not backed by any proof whatsoever, is being allowed to fill the minds of unsuspecting youth, causing them to lose faith in the biblical model of life origins—which, in reality, is the origin model actually in keeping with the scientific evidence. The authors proceed to admit once again, “Another unanswered question in the evolution of cells is the origin of DNA and RNA” (p. 425, emp. added). So, in their pointless trek to prove evolutionary theory, evolutionists cannot even reach the abiogenesis chasm of impossibility that they must cross in order to prove their theory. They are still hampered by the chasms that exist much earlier in their mythical journey.
|Structure of a Cell|
In spite of the truth, sadly, with the wave of a hand, the typical biology student becomes an evolutionary disciple, not realizing that he has just succumbed to the longest, evidence-less leap into the dark that he may ever make in his life. Such vague speculation, substanceless hope, and blind “faith” can hardly be dignified as scientific. One might rightly ask, “Why are Americans allowing their children to be subjected to such anti-scientific propaganda? Why are parents not outraged that their students are wasting valuable class time learning about such speculation, rather than learning true science?”
OTHER IMPLICATIONS OF THE LAW OF BIOGENESIS
An Unreasonable Assumption which Leads to Contradiction of the EvidenceThere is no scientific evidence in nature that life can come from non-life. Not one experiment has been conducted which can boast an exception to this rule. One must start with the assumption that there is no Creator and that only nature exists in order to even consider abiogenesis—in spite of all the evidence to the contrary. Again in his lecture series, Origins of Life, Robert Hazen said:
In this lecture series I make a basic assumption that life emerged by some kind of natural process. I propose that life arose by a sequence of events that are completely consistent with the natural laws of chemistry and physics. In this assumption I am like most other scientists. I believe in a universe that is ordered by these natural laws. Like other scientists, I rely on the power of observations and experiments and theoretical reasoning to understand how the cosmos came to be the way it is (2005, emp. added).[Notice the fact that Hazen contradicts himself by claiming that he relies “on the power of observations and experiments” in his belief on the origin of life, while also admitting in his lecture series that he and all evolutionists are “woefully ignorant” concerning the origin of life, and that likely, “any scientific attempt to understand life’s origin is doomed to failure; such a succession could not be duplicated in a program of lab experiments” (2005, emp. added). He claims to rely on “observations,” “experiments,” and “reasoning” to arrive at his scientific conclusions—one of which is abiogenesis. However, he accepts this belief without reason since it is not, and cannot be, backed by observation or experiment, and according to his own words, such may not ever even be possible.] Hazen states that he considers himself to be in line with “most other scientists” in his self-contradictory assumption regarding the naturalistic origin of life. Of course, he means “atheistic evolutionists” when he speaks of such “scientists” and is absolutely correct in his assertion.
Atheistic evolutionists begin with the biased assumption that there is no God, regardless of its contradictory and unsubstantiated nature. Atheistic evolutionist, prominent science writer, and director of the Knight Science Journalism Fellowship at M.I.T., Boyce Rensberger, admitted:
At this point, it is necessary to reveal a little inside information about how scientists work, something the textbooks don’t usually tell you. The fact is that scientists are not really as objective and dispassionate in their work as they would like you to think. Most scientists first get their ideas about how the world works not through rigorously logical processes but through hunches and wild guesses. As individuals they often come to believe something to be true long before they assemble the hard evidence that will convince somebody else that it is. Motivated by faith in his own ideas and a desire for acceptance by his peers, a scientist will labor for years knowing in his heart that his theory is correct but devising experiment after experiment whose results he hopes will support his position (1986, pp. 17-18, emp. added).Rensberger’s overgeneralized statement certainly does not describe all scientists’ approach to their day-to-day research, but it is clear from its handling of the matter of origins that such a statement certainly describes the evolutionary mindset—hardly “objective and dispassionate,” and often given to “wild guesses.” Regardless, with the assumption in place that only the physical or natural exists—no Creator exists—abiogenesis must be true, since life is here and had to start somehow. Thus, if abiogenesis is true, biogenesis cannot be a law. [Note: Rather than making assumptions that do not contradict the scientific evidence, evolutionists resort to unscientific assumptions—assumptions that contradict scientific laws which have been time-tested to be scientifically accurate 100% of the time.]
Consequently, some scientists have become increasingly uncomfortable with calling biogenesis a “law,” since a scientific law, by definition, is “a regularity which applies to all members of a broad class of phenomena,” and abiogenesis would constitute an exception, thus removing it from “law” status (McGraw-Hill…, 2003, p. 1182, emp. added). What once was commonly taught in textbooks due to its universal support by the scientific evidence is being systematically stripped from biology courses in spite of its continued universal support. In the commonly used middle school/junior high textbook, Life Science, the text’s authors do not even mention the word “biogenesis,” much less, “The Law of Biogenesis.” Instead, under the heading, “Life Comes From Life,” the authors explain the work of Redi and Pasteur and proudly proclaim:
Living things arise from living things through reproduction…. The mistaken idea that living things can arise from nonliving sources is called spontaneous generation. It took hundreds of years of experiments to convince people that spontaneous generation does not occur (Coolidge-Stolz, et al., 2005, pp. 36-37, emp. added).So, the truth of biogenesis still stands as law, though now stripped of its appropriate scientific designation: “Living things arise from living things”; “[S]pontaneousgeneration does not occur.” Unfortunately, it seems that evolutionists, like these very authors, still have not gotten the memo. One would think that the admission, “spontaneous generation does not occur”—clearly implying there are no exceptions to this rule—would mean that biogenesis is still a law. After all, the same statements were made when it was considered a law. The only change appears to be the removal of the word “law,” while still teaching the same truth. Starting on page 170, the authors proceed to teach evolutionary theory, never even addressing the question of how life could have come about—a question which must be able to be answered before the impossible theory of evolution could even begin its “work” millions of years ago.
Other textbooks still use the term “biogenesis,” but have lowered its standing from that of a law. Under the heading, “Spontaneous Generation and Biogenesis,” another prominent life science textbook briefly explains the work of Pasteur, stating that he “provided enough evidence to disprove the theory of spontaneous generation. It was replaced with biogenesis, which is the theory that living things come only from other living things” (National Geographic…, et al., 2005, p. 19, emp. added). Notice the sly adjustment from a “law” to a “theory.” Why change biogenesis to a “theory” instead of a “law,” particularly since the same textbook defines a “scientific law” as “a statement about how things work in nature that seems to be true all the time” (p. 10)—a statement which perfectly describes biogenesis? Based on this definition, has scientific investigation over the last several years nullified biogenesis as being a “law”? As we have already seen above, the answer to that question is a resounding, “No.” There is absolutely no evidence for abiogenesis. Thus, biogenesis, by all rights, is still a law, not a theory. Only the biased evolutionist would proclaim otherwise.
Again, in spite of “hundreds of years of experiments,” in an attempt to lighten the certainty and implication of biogenesis, others are now calling it a “principle,” instead of a law. Has experimentation proven there are exceptions to its validity? No. Quite the contrary is true. However, if it is considered to be a law, then atheistic evolution cannot be true, and one must then concede the existence of God. In their textbook, Biology: A Search for Order in Complexity, Moore and Slusher discuss the Law of Biogenesis. In a footnote, they say:
Some philosophers call this a principle instead of a law, but this is a matter of definition, and definitions are arbitrary. Some scientists call this a superlaw, or a law about laws. Regardless of terminology, biogenesis has the highest rank in these levels of generalization (1974, p. 74, emp. in orig.).In truth, calling Biogenesis a “principle” instead of a “law” does absolutely nothing to aid the evolutionary model, other than making its proponents falsely feel more comfortable with the self-contradictory viewpoint they embrace. After all, the McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific and Technical Terms defines a “principle” as “a scientific law which is highly general or fundamental, and from which other laws are derived” (2003, p. 1671, emp. added). Evolutionists simply cannot escape the truth of the Law of Biogenesis. Evolution cannot be true, and the Law of Biogenesis also be true. Why go against the scientific evidence in support of an unscientific whim?
A Recent QuibbleToday’s evolutionist tries to side step the abiogenesis problem by contending that evolution has nothing to do with the origin of life, but rather is a theory which starts with life already in existence and explains the origin of all species from that original life form. However, this is wishful thinking. Historically, evolutionists have recognized that abiogenesis is a fundamental assumption inherent in evolutionary theory. Recall that Kerkut listed abiogenesis as the first assumption in a list of non-provable assumptions upon which evolution is founded (Kerkut, 1960, p. 6). Recall further that atheistic evolutionist Robert Hazen admitted that in his assumption of abiogenesis, he is “like most other scientists” (2005). After all, without abiogenesis in place, there is no starting point for atheistic evolution. One would have to concede, at the very least, some form of theistic evolution. However, proposed theistic evolutionary models have been found to be untenable as well (cf. Thompson, 2000). Further, evolutionists themselves often use the term “evolution” as a generalized catchall word encompassing all materialistic origin models, including those dealing with the origin of the cosmos, not just the origin of species. Creationists are merely using the evolutionists’ terms in the same way they use them. The truth is, one cannot logically commence a study of Life Science or Biology—studies which are intimately linked with the theory of evolution by scientists today—without first studying the origin of that life which allegedly evolved from a single-celled organism into the various forms of life on Earth today. The two are linked and logically cannot be separated. The reality is that since macroevolution cannot harmonize with true theism (cf. Thompson, 2000), that theory is left alongside abiogenesis as a fundamental plank of atheism. The two are intimately linked and stand or fall together.
One wonders why some “scientists” are so unscientific in their view of origins. Why pick the view that is, by their own admission, “impossible”? Why not look at the scientific evidence and allow it to lead to a conclusion that is in keeping with that evidence—regardless of whether or not they wish to accept it, and regardless of whether the ultimate Cause of life can be directly observed? Would not such an approach be the reasonable one? Would not such an approach be the scientific one? Why should the assumption be made that there is no Creator? Recognizing the existence of a Creator allows for an explanation of the origin of life that is in keeping with the scientific evidence—unlike abiogenesis. The late, renowned British philosopher and former atheist, Antony Flew, after decades of promoting atheism, decided at the end of his life to accept the evidence and concede the existence of a Supreme Being. He wrote, “The only satisfactory explanation for the origin of such ‘end-directed, self-replicating’ life as we see on earth is an infinitely intelligent Mind” (2007, p. 132). While his willingness to stand against the overwhelming tide of false science in becoming somewhat of a deist is certainly commendable, coming to such a conclusion should not be difficult. An unbiased examination of the scientific evidence on the matter shouts the truth to the unbiased mind.
CONCLUSIONIf it could be said that the Law of Biogenesis contradicts the scientific evidence, it would be false. However, such is not the case. It is in keeping with all the evidence. Consider, though, that if one rejects the Creation model, the Law of Biogenesis must be false, since without the Creation model, life had to come from non-life—in violation of that law. The atheistic evolutionist’s conclusion: all of the scientific evidence over the centuries which has proven, according to the evolutionists themselves, the impossibility of abiogenesis, should be discarded in support of a theory which has no scientific support.
Evolution is not in harmony with true science. Creation, however, is. If abiogenesis is not true according to science, special creation, which does not contradict the Law of Biogenesis, must, of necessity, be true. Science, once again, is the friend of God and His Word and the enemy of the atheist.
REFERENCESCoolidge-Stolz, Elizabeth, Jan Jenner, Marylin Lisowski, Donald Cronkite, and Linda Cronin Jones (2005), Life Science (Boston, MA: Prentice Hall).
Dickerson, Richard E. (1978), “Chemical Evolution and the Origin of Life,” Scientific American, 239:70-110, September.
Flew, Antony and Roy Varghese (2007), There Is No God: How the World’s Most Notorious Atheist Changed His Mind (New York: HarperOne).
Hazen, Robert (2005), Origins of Life (Chantilly, VA: The Teaching Company).
Hoyle, Fred and Chandra Wickramasinghe (1978), Lifecloud (New York: Harper & Row).
Kerkut, George A. (1960), The Implications of Evolution (London: Pergamon).
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific and Technical Terms (2003), pub. M.D. Licker (New York: McGraw-Hill), sixth edition.
Miller, Kenneth R. and Joseph Levine (1991), Biology (Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall).
Miller, Kenneth R. and Joseph S. Levine (2006), Biology (Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall).
Merriam-Webster On-line Dictionary (2003), http://www.m-w.com/cgi-bin/dictionary.
Moore, John N. and H.S. Slusher (1974), Biology: A Search for Order in Complexity (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan).
National Geographic Education Division, Lucy Daniel, Peter Rillero, Alton Biggs, Edward Ortleb, and Dinah Zike (2005), Life Sciences (New York: McGraw-Hill/Glencoe).
Rensberger, Boyce (1986), How the World Works (New York: William Morrow).
Thompson, Bert (2000), Creation Compromises (Montgomery, AL: Apologetics Press).
Wald, George (1954), “The Origin of Life,” Scientific American, 191:44-53, August.
Wald, George (1962), “Theories on the Origin of Life” in Frontiers of Modern Biology (Boston, MA: Houghton-Mifflin).
Wednesday, September 01, 2010
A comic club does Darwinism...take my primordial soup, PLEASE!
Louis Pasteur (1822-1895)Seung Yon Rhee
Line drawing of Louis Pasteur drawn by
David Wood from Genentech, Inc. Graphics Department.
|If one were to choose among the greatest benefactors of humanity, Louis Pasteur would certainly rank at the top. He solved the mysteries of rabies, anthrax, chicken cholera, and silkworm diseases, and contributed to the development of the first vaccines. He debunked the widely accepted myth of spontaneous generation, thereby setting the stage for modern biology and biochemistry. He described the scientific basis for fermentation, wine-making, and the brewing of beer. Pasteur's work gave birth to many branches of science, and he was singlehandedly responsible for some of the most important theoretical concepts and practical applications of modern science.|
Pasteur's achievements seem wildly diverse at first glance, but a more in-depth look at the evolution of his career indicates that there is a logical order to his discoveries. He is revered for possessing the most important qualities of a scientist: the ability to survey all the known data and link the data for all possible hypotheses, the patience and drive to conduct experiments under strictly controlled conditions, and the brilliance to uncover the road to the solution from the results.
On the discipline of rigid and strict experimental tests he commented, "Imagination should give wings to our thoughts but we always need decisive experimental proof, and when the moment comes to draw conclusions and to interpret the gathered observations, imagination must be checked and documented by the factual results of the experiment."
The famous philosopher Ernest Renan said of Pasteur's method of research, "This marvelous experimental method eliminates certain facts, brings forth others, interrogates nature, compels it to reply and stops only when the mind is fully satisfied. The charm of our studies, the enchantment of science, is that, everywhere and always, we can give the justification of our principles and the proof of our discoveries."
The pattern of logic in Pasteur's scientific career and the brilliance of his experimental method are well documented. It all started from studying crystal structure. As a student at the Ecole Normale, Pasteur observed that the organic compound tartrate, when synthesized in a laboratory, was optically inactive (unable to rotate the plane of polarized light), unlike the tartrate from grapes, because the synthetic tartrate is composed of two optically asymmetric crystals. With careful experimentation, he succeeded in separating the asymmetric crystals from each other and showed that each recovered optical activity. He then hypothesized that this molecular asymmetry is one of the mechanisms of life. In other words, living organisms only produce molecules that are of one specific orientation, and these molecules are always optically active.
This hypothesis was tested again by utilizing a synthetic tartrate solution that had been contaminated with mold. He found that this solution became more optically active with time and concluded that the mold was only utilizing one of the two crystals. Later in his career, he was approached with a contamination problem in alcoholic fermentation, which was thought to be an entirely chemical process at the time. After careful examination, he found that the fermenting solution contained optically active compounds and concluded that fermentation was a biological process carried out by microorganisms. This hypothesis, called the germ theory, was followed by many elegant experiments that showed unequivocally the existence of microorganisms and their effect on fermentation.
The germ theory was the foundation of numerous applications, such as the large scale brewing of beer, wine-making, pasteurization, and antiseptic operations. Another significant discovery facilitated by the germ theory was the nature of contagious diseases. Pasteur's intuited that if germs were the cause of fermentation, they could just as well be the cause of contagious diseases. This proved to be true for many diseases such as potato blight, silkworm diseases, and anthrax. After studying the characteristics of germs and viruses that caused diseases, he and others found that laboratory manipulations of the infectious agents can be used to immunize people and animals. The discovery that the rabies virus had a lag-time before inducing disease prompted the studies of post-infection treatment with weakened viruses. This treatment proved to work and has saved countless lives.
All of these achievements point to singular brilliance and perseverance in Pasteur's nature. His work served as the springboard for branches of science and medicine such as stereochemistry, microbiology, bacteriology, virology, immunology, and molecular biology. Moreover, his work has protected millions of people from disease through vaccination and pasteurization.
Make no mistake about it, Pasteur was a Christian but that did not hinder his science, in undergirded it. This article underlines this and reveals him to be one of the absolute greats of science.
"Louis Pasteur’s calling was to investigate God’s creation and to help mankind through his discoveries. Let no one claim that faith in God is a detriment to science! Pasteur said, “The more I study nature, the more I stand amazed at the work of the Creator.” In his last famous speech, he says:
You young men—doctors and scientists of the future—do not let yourselves be tainted by apparent skepticism; nor discouraged by the sadness of certain hours that creep over nations. Do not become angry at your opponents, for no scientific theory has ever been accepted without opposition. Live in the serene peace of libraries and laboratories. Say to yourselves, first, “What have I done for my instruction?” And as you gradually advance, “What am I accomplishing?” Until the time comes when you may have the immense happiness of thinking that you have contributed in some way to the welfare and progress of mankind. (Vallery-Radot 1901, vol. 2, pp. 297–298)At first glance, Pasteur’s achievements seem to be a miscellaneous assortment of discoveries (table 1). They in fact form a cohesive whole, in which one can easily follow his unity of thought. We have tried to describe just a few of his projects that led to his remarkable discoveries. You will see that, like a brilliant detective, this great man of science conducted investigations using his wealth of experience and scientific guidelines. It is this method of study that held true for other men of God, each one of whom was called and was devoted to a particular field dealing with a specific problem."
|Table 1. Louis Pasteur and his major milestones in microbiology.|
|Date:||Milestones in Microbiology:|
|1822||Birth of Louis Pasteur in Dole, France|
|1844–1848||Discovers crystal rotation of polarized light to the right and left|
|1857||Shows lactic acid formation in milk and butter is due to bacteria|
|1861–1864||Disproves spontaneous generation|
|1862||Elected to the Academy of Sciences|
|1864||Invents pasteurization for wine and other foods|
|1867||Helps Joseph Lister develop aseptic surgery|
|1870||Publishes his studies on the diseases of silkworms|
|1873||Elected to the Academy of Medicine|
|1877||Propounds the germ theory of disease|
|1879||Discovers immunization against chicken cholera, using attenuated bacteria|
|1881||Successful experiment of vaccinating sheep against anthrax|
|1881||Awarded the Grand Cross of the Legion of Honor|
|1882||Elected to the Academie Francaise|
|1885||Successfully tests his first vaccine against rabies on Joseph Meister|
|1894||The Pasteur Institute succeeds in producing vaccine for diphtheria|
|1895||Death of Louis Pasteur at Saint Cloud (near Paris), France|
Now one could say, at the risk of some superficiality, that there exist principally two types of scientists. The ones, and they are rare, wish to understand the world, to know nature; the others, far more frequent, wish to explain it. The first are searching for truth, often with knowledge that they will not attain it; the second strive for plausibility, for the achievement of an intellectually consistent, and hence successful, view of the world. (Chargaff 1971, pp. 637)
Almost all historians recognize Pasteur’s great contributions to science, microbiology, and medicine. He was an experimentalist and daily performed operational science. Pasteur is a prime example of the principle that one does not have to be an evolutionist to conduct good science. However, in recent years his Christian and creation views are being challenged. His most straightforward, anti-evolution remarks came from his studies on whether life can spontaneously arise. His case for special creation is best seen in his experiments disproving spontaneous generation. These experiments took place over a period of about five years. It was during this time that Pasteur “converted” from being a chemist to a microbiologist."
I also thought this little bit was especially worthwhile:
"The theory of biogenesis states that life can only come from other life. This idea mirrors the principles of Genesis 1: life begets life and like begets like. Yet evolutionists imagine that at one time several billion years ago, life did spontaneously appear. For example, German organic chemist Dr. Günther Wächtershäuser and his colleague Dr. Claudia Huber of the Munich Technical University have suggested that the first polypeptide chains necessary for life formed at the bottom of a primal ocean, in the heated environment of undersea volcanoes. But science continues to show a total lack of evidence that would suggest any living cell (even the smallest) could originate spontaneously through time and chance. Recently the evolutionist Franklin Harold (2001, p. 218) said, “The crux of the matter is that living organisms cannot be rationally and systematically deduced from the principles that generally do account for the properties of inanimate matter.” It has always been known that Louis Pasteur opposed the doctrine of spontaneous generation, and he presented compelling empirical evidence against it. He believed that the idea of spontaneous generation did not fit with the view of God as the Creator of life.
This is why the problem of spontaneous generation is all absorbing, and all-important. It is the very problem of life and of its origin. To bring about spontaneous generation would be to create a germ. It would be creating life; it would be to solve the problem of its origin. It would mean to go from matter to life through conditions of environment and of matter. God as Author of life would then no longer be needed. Matter would replace Him. God would need to be invoked only as Author of the motions of the universe. (Dubos 1950, pp. 395–396)"