Science vs creationism: round two

In light a few recent events, I thought it was appropriate to revisit a subject that I touch upon frequently in this blog: religion and faith, specifically Christian creationism.

For anyone living under a rock, there was a recent announcement from the scientific world that has the creationist community abuzz. A Harvard team has announced the discovery of gravitational waves predicted by the BBT and cosmic inflation. Naturally, the creationist camp has had a lot to say about this. Sadly, most of it has been incorrect. I’ve seen a lot of chatter on social media sites and other blogs that this whole gravitational waves things is “just a theory” like the big bang and inflation, or that it’s simply a model dreamed up by scientists to help prove their secular theories (as a quick aside, this is a fundamental misunderstanding of the scientific processes. The BBT theory was developed to explain observations made by astronomers and physicists–not the other way around. And, ironically, one of the earliest scientists to propose an expanding universe created from a single point was a Belgian physicist who also happened to be a Roman Catholic priest. But details like that are often covered up lost to history).

Unfortunately for creationists, that’s outright false.

The gravitational waves discovered by the Harvard team are not theoretical, they aren’t simply a model, and they aren’t a simulation. They are an actual, literal piece of physical data. They were detected using a physical, scientific instrument. They exist in the real world. Answers in Genesis neglected to mention this key point, which does nothing but perpetuate the misinformation and falsehoods surrounding this latest discovery.

AiG leads me to another interesting story. Suffice it to say, I ended up being referred to Ken Ham’s official Facebook page the other day by my brother, who had seen that one of his friends had commented on it. Needless to say, there was a lot of discussion going on about the gravitational waves, and a lot of this, “it’s just a theoretical model” hoopla being banded about. I decided to make a comment clarifying the situation. I was perfectly civil and cordial. I said nothing about anyone being “wrong” or “incorrect.” All I simply said was, “The data obtained by the Harvard team is actually not a model or a theory, but a tangible, observable piece of evidence.” And guess what? My comment was instantly deleted and I was banned from the page. And creationists are the ones going on about how secular science and public schools are indoctrinating people, and that scientists aren’t leaving room for debate? Please, give me a break. The censorship here for a simple, non-combative Facebook post is astonishing.

As I further pondered the differences between mainstream science and creationism, a second thought occurred to me. And it goes a little something like this: if creationists are correct, why is there even a universe? If one is going to take the bible and everything in it to be literal truth, then anything beyond the earth, moon, and the sun is superfluous and useless.

If taken literally, the bible would seem to indicate that the only life God created is the life on earth. There is nothing in the bible about aliens, extraterrestrials, other habitable planets, or even cosmic microbes. Zip, nada, zilch. If one subscribed to a literal interpretation of scripture, then it’s just the life on earth in the universe. The entire universe. So I ask again, what is the point of the universe if creationists are correct? Because if creationists are indeed right, then every single star in the sky is completely and utterly devoid of purpose. The billions of stars in our galaxy do absolutely nothing for us. We receive no light or heat from them. The same could be said of all of the other galaxies. Essentially, God created a mind-blowingly huge universe, filled it with billions of galaxies and trillions of stars…and then only put life on one planet. Because…and this is where I lose it. If creationists are correct, other galaxies serve zero purpose. So why do they exist? If the cosmos was created for the sole benefit of mankind–as a literal interpretation suggests–why doesn’t the universe only consist of the sun, the moon, and the earth? (I’m lumping the moon into this equation because of it’s involvement with the physics and mechanics of the earth that life has incorporated into it’s biology).

And please, don’t tell me that God created the universe and filled it with stars and nebulae and comets and everything else just to remind us of his power or whatever. I’m pretty sure that an omnipotent being beyond time and space could make his power known to us anytime he damned well pleased in an infinite variety of ways. There is no logical reason why the universe is as large as it is and contains what it contains if creationists are correct.

And speaking of things that make no logical sense, the creationist responses to Fox’s new “Cosmos” program are, to me at least, very amusing. The last episode of the show focused on evolution, a touchy subject for creationists. What I particularly liked about the program was the simple way that they laid out the evolution of the eye, something that creationists commonly point to as irrefutable proof that God must exist, because the eye is “too complex” to have evolved through a sequence of random mutations. Except that there really isn’t anything “overly complex” about the eye to begin with. “Complex” is an entirely subjective word. For some people, Shakespeare is too complex to read, but that doesn’t mean there was a supernatural element to ol’ Bill’s writing.

If you believe that the eye is “too complex,” then you either don’t know enough about physiology or you don’t really understand how evolution works. The physiology of the eye is actually very well understood and quite easy to grasp–there isn’t anything beyond reason or understanding at work here. One common fallacy that creationists like to use when talking about complexity is the 747 argument: that the chances of something as complex (again, a subjective idea) as the eye spontaneously emerging is similar to a tornado fully assembling a 747 after passing through a junkyard.

The 747 argument, however, is based upon a flawed conception of evolution. The 747 gambit completely ignores the fact that evolution is a gradual process that functions as the result of accumulations of mutations. The true biological equivalent of the 747 gambit is essentially taking an atom and going straight to a fully formed human being overnight with zero steps in between. This, as any biologist will tell you, is not what evolution is based upon. The entire 747 gambit fails to address the most basic, foundational tenant of evolution: a gradual accumulation of small changes over large stretches of time.

But back to the eye. A common theme I hear in the creationist community with regard to evolution is that human beings are the most evolved or most superior creature on the planet. One would have to subscribe to this belief if one interprets the bible literally, since the bible tells us that God clearly created man to be superior to animals–indeed, he gave us dominion over them. However, the complexity argument breaks down when you realize that there are animals with superior eyes to those of human beings. Nocturnal creatures have a tapetum lucitum that allows them to see in the dark; human eyes don’t see in the dark. Think of the visual acuity that birds of prey have in order to see small prey in thick brush hundreds of feet from the air at incredible speeds; human eyes don’t have that kind of acuity. There are many animals that are more complex or have more complex parts than human beings, which were supposedly created with a design superior to animals.

All of this say that while people in this country are free to believe whatever they want, and I personally don’t care what you believe in the privacy of your own home or church, this week seemed to see science deliver several critical blows to the creationist narrative. I’ll be curious to see how their responses develop in the coming weeks and months.

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27 thoughts on “Science vs creationism: round two

  1. Just because something isn’t mentioned in the Bible (say aliens or other habitable planets) doesn’t mean God’s denying their existence. They’re just irrelevant to the message of that book. It’s like if I write a book about religion, why would I talk about aliens unless they were integral to the religion somehow… Maybe the aliens have their own bible with its own Genesis. I think it’s safe to say that secular or religious, the beginning of the universe is incomprehensible to the human mind. (For instance a singularity is not something we can imagine, or even mathematically understand any more than we can understand the number infinity). But whatever it says in Genesis must be conveyed in a way that humans can understand, or perhaps in a way that has spiritual significance. But since no words could really paint us a description I think Genesis does a great job.

    Satan’s REAL trick is to polarize creationism and evolution, making it seem like they’re mutually exclusive. But you can believe in both! duh… Nothing religious says that animals (or even humans!) cannot or do not evolve. It’s just that humans did not become human by the process of evolution, which doesn’t contradict science because we haven’t (and probably never will) find that elusive “missing link” (when in actuality there must be MANY links, because, like you said, evolution is a very gradual process and the closest thing we’ve found to US is still quite a few significant steps away from being US human). It seems that SATAN has made science his new religion. Which is a shame because studying and understanding the natural world is one of the greatest gifts God gave us. And any scientist whose not completely arrogant would have to agree that life, this world, and the universe are all AMAZING MIRACLES.

    Here’s an intersting thought I had. What if intelligence isn’t a trait of evolution, but of being primitive. Like you said, animals are expertly adapted to their environment, they don’t destroy the earth, and they don’t have complex emotional problems… How can we say we’re the more evolved ones? Maybe we will EVOLVE TO BE MENTALLY MORE LIKE ANIMALS and finally live in peace. By the look of it, mentally we’re well on our way!

    ~Jones

    1. I do feel like I should clarify that I don’t think that evolution or the Big Bang disproves the existence of a God–only the specific story that the Christian bible tells. The god of the bible is but one of many possible representations of God.

      I like your idea about animals! There’s a certain nobility that animals have that humans seem to distinctly lack.

      1. Well said. I’ve always liked the Buddhist parable about looking at an elephant from different angles. An elephant looks completely different from the side, front, top, or bottom, but it’s still an elephant. In the same way each religion looks at God from a different angle. That’s why He seems so different, yet they all have deep truths.

        It stands to reason that God in IMPOSSIBLE to comprehend. People like to understand and make sense of things (especially in this scientific culture of America). This is one major reason why religion seems unappealing to many people these days. You CAN’T really understand and make sense of God (that’s why you need FAITH). It’s unfortunate because it’s just a misunderstanding (or more likely an intentional consequence of the devil’s work), but it’s REALLY unfortunate because the consequences could be DIRE! I hate to sow fear, but it seems like God really doesn’t like people who live their lives arrogantly for selfish reasons and reject Him. He made a very uncomfortable place for them in eternity! That’s why these kinds of squabbles about specific points and interpretations and vs science bother me so much! It doesn’t matter who wins, either way people become bitter and divided and focus on the parts of religion that are not NEARLY as important as the meat and potatoes of it which is SO SIMPLE:

        Believe in God and be a good person!

        Boom. There it is.

        ~Jones

      2. And yea, we should learn to carry ourselves more like animals. As a species most of us are so out of touch with our bodies’ and the spirit of non-thinking (turning off that damn frontal lobe!). It’s interesting that we have to work so hard to achieve what comes to animals by instinct. In the Quran God says:

        “We (God) will punish him/drag him upon his forehead – a lying, sinful forehead!” (Quran 96:16)

        A strange thing to say, until you consider that the frontal lobes of the brain (inside the forehead) is the cradle of conscious thinking and thus where lying and sin (because committing sin must be chosen, that is why animals don’t sin regardless of what they do) originate from…

        I’ve feel that people need to stop putting the brain on a pedestal! We have lots of other vital organs that we can’t live without, yet everybody thinks the brain is so great! But when has your spleen ever made you sad or angry? When have your lungs ever compelled you do something you regretted later?

        ~Jones

    2. Jones- you’re right that just because something isn’t mentioned in the bible doesn’t mean God is denying its existence, but I disagree with rest of your point. It may be true that the existence of aliens, to some degree, is irrelevant to the message of the Bible. But, if you believe in God, then we have to confront what the Bible does tell us. And it tells us why God created the sun, moon and stars. Genesis 1:14-19 tells us that God created them to separate day from night, to serve as signs to mark the sacred times, days and years, and to be lights in the vault of the sky to give light on the earth.

      Sure, one could argue that because the Bible doesn’t mention aliens, maybe God did create aliens on other planets, but we can’t escape the fact that God told us the purpose for creating the sun, moon and stars, and he completely leaves out other life. So then, he must have had a reason to withhold that piece of information, and you propose that it’s because it doesn’t have anything to do with the gospel message. But maybe it does. Consider that the Bible tells us that Jesus died once for all (1 Peter 3:18). If Jesus only died once for sin, then that rules out the possibility of aliens having their own Bible, Genesis, and salvation. God also tells us that he created man in his image (Genesis 1:26-27), so it doesn’t logically make sense that God created aliens, nor that he created them in his image.

      As to whether or not creation and evolution are mutually exclusive, I guess it depends on how one defines evolution. If you accept the general theory of evolution- that all life is related to a single common ancestor- then there are mutually exclusive differences. The Bible does tell us that animals and humans don’t evolve. Genesis 1:20-31 very clearly says that God created plants, trees, sea creatures, birds, land animals and humans to reproduce “according to their kinds”. There’s no escaping that this is in direct conflict with a belief in the general theory of evolution. Evolution says that animals do not reproduce according to their kind, but eventually will become a different kind of organism. Nobody has ever observed one organism evolve into another organism, but we’ve all seen animals reproduce according to their kind, just as the Bible says. Evolution also tells us that man was not created in God’s image, but that we evolved from other animals. Trying to combine evolution with God just doesn’t work if we actually believe that the Bible is God’s revelation to man.

  2. Oh and I totally agree with what you said at the end, people should believe what they want. I think these so-called “creationists” do themselves and their religion a disservice by partaking in these meaningless squabbles, in my humble opinion. We’ll never be there to witness the universe begin, so there will never be indisputable evidence either way… and therefore there will always be disputes. Jesus didn’t teach to argue with thy neighbor did he?

    ~Jones

    1. Jones- You’re right that Jesus didn’t teach us to argue with thy neighbor, but he did tell us to defend our faith (1 Peter 3:15-16). Creationists like myself are defending God’s word, and I don’t think that’s a disservice at all. God also didn’t tell us to conform to the world, accept their standards, and adopt their philosophies. I think he said just the opposite

  3. A lot of Christians I have known say the universe is simply there for our entertainment. The resources on this planet and the animals are all here for human use. Everything…is for us. The human conceit for which religion revolves around is incredible, and Christianity isn’t the only one. I would argue that evolution and creation are at odds for the simple reason that evolution proves quite distinctly that it is divergent and not convergent. The evolution of our intelligence is an accident. Evolution was not trying to create intelligence, it just happened. So thus any dogma that tries to claim that humanity has a special relationship with God is quite simply false. Now I am not saying that it means there isn’t a God. Just not a personal one that cares specifically about humanity and our wants and desires.

    There are many contradictions in the bible and many claims that can simply not be proven with any evidence. The bible does not need to lose credibility on what it doesn’t say, what it does say can be refuted easily enough.

    1. Thank you for making a distinction between “a” god and “the” god. I’ve tried to elaborate on that in the past, but I feel like whenever I say that it falls on mostly deaf ears. There’s a distinct difference between the idea that science disproves the existence of ANY god and that science disproves the existence of specific gods.

    2. Swarn Gill- I’m not sure what it is that you see as “human conceit”. Is it conceited because the Bible tells us that God created the earth for man and gave us dominion? Is it conceited that God made us to “rule” over the fish of the sea and the birds in the sky and the land animals, and to fill the earth and subdue it? Why is it conceited to fulfill our God-given purpose? You make it seem as if mankind is violating some kind of law or is an intruder, but that’s not the case at all.

      You may not believe in the God of the Bible, but if that God does exist, then this notion of “human conceit” vanishes. The important thing to understand is that God intended us to be good stewards of this planet and to care for it, not to pollute it.

      What contradictions have you found in the bible, and what claims in the Bible cannot be proven with any evidence?

      1. There was a time when I would spend a lot of time arguing with someone like you, but I’ve done it too many times to know that there is zero value in it. You don’t really understand what evidence actually means. You believe the Bible is truth and to me it is nothing more than the hopes of a group of men trying to explain the world and live a good life and filling in the gaps with supernatural explanations. It’s not even very original considering how numerous stories are based on stories from older religions. Little of the world was understood back then and most religious scholars in all cultures I think had good intentions. But it’s still a work of man. As a result we can never come to an agreement. Your view of the world is entirely based on faith even though you have convinced yourself it isn’t because of what you consider as being hard evidence or truth. The Bible. I wish you happiness in that path.

    3. It does seem pointless to argue with those who disagree with us. I can appreciate the wisdom behind not arguing with people like me. But I think there’s value in defending our faith. If your faith is in a naturalistic understanding of the world, then by all means defend your faith.

      If I don’t understand what evidence actually means, then please enlighten me. I’ll be happy to listen to your personal definition.

      People like me tend to believe that words mean things, and that words have definitions. Let’s examine a couple definitions. This is from dictionaryreference.com: 1) That which tends to prove or disprove something; ground for belief; proof. 2) Something that makes plain or clear; an indication or sign: His flushed look was visible evidence of his fever. 3) Law. data presented to a court or jury in proof of the facts in issue and which may include the testimony of witnesses, records, documents, or objects. 4) To make evident or clear; show clearly; manifest. 5) to support by evidence.

      Webster’s defines evidence as: something which shows that something else exists or is true.

      I think my understanding of evidence is consistent with the English language, so please show me where I’m mistaken.

      I do believe the Bible is truth, and my belief isn’t based on “blind faith”. It’s built on a rational understanding of the evidence, reason and logic. I may have been introduced to my faith by my parents, but I was given the opportunity to accept or reject that faith, and I’ve accepted it because I’ve been presented with enough evidence to overcome any doubts and unbelief.

      To you it may be feel-good spiritual stuff, but I think you’re ignoring evidence that says otherwise. I think if you were truly seeking truth, you wouldn’t dismiss it so easily. If truth means anything, then consider the evidence with sincerity and without bias.

      Help me understand your point about my faith being “not even very original”. You claim that Biblical stories are “based” on stories from older religions. I think this claim is based on evolutionary assumptions and full of bias. Consider this from a different perspective: what if Noah’s descendants did populate the earth, and as they spread out they eventually settled in different regions on the earth and began their own cultures. Each culture would have brought with them the religious beliefs of their forefathers, including Noah and the flood. These cultures would have passed on their own versions of the stories, and they would have incorporated brand new religious ideas. And eventually, when we get to Moses, he wrote down the Biblical version of history- even though other cultures already had written accounts of what transpired in the past. In this way, it’s kind of moot whether or not the Bible is “original” because it’s rooted in truth and real history. We can’t suggest that Moses shouldn’t have written Genesis or Exodus because it wasn’t very original. He wrote it because it was real history, regardless if he wasn’t the first person to write about what happened in the past.

      Your point about the Bible not being very original is kind of like saying that someone else can’t write their own story about the events of 911 because it wouldn’t be original, and since it’s not original, the story can’t be true and must therefore be false and based on wishful thinking.

      1. I don’t want to put words in Swarn’s mouth, but in the case of religion originality seems to be important because how arbitrary everything becomes. For example, both the bible and the epic of Gilgamesh contain flood stories with very striking similarities. But I’m willing to bet dollars to donuts that you don’t believe in Ninsun or Shamash. To people like Swarn and I, that belief is completely arbitrary.

        I know that I’ve brought this up before, but to me, there’s no reason to believe that any scripture is true. Most of the reasoning that I hear amounts to, “it’s the word, so it’s true,” in which case I would point out that there are numerous other texts in various religions that purport to be the word of God, so how does one determine which one is true?

        “Well, it says right there in the bible that it’s all true and it’s the word of God.” If all it takes for people to blindly devote every once of faith they have to a text is a forward that essentially amounts to, “Everything you’re about to read is totally true, take our word for it,” then I think the human race is in big trouble.

      2. Thanks Ryan. I believe the Bible’s claims can be backed up by archaeology, and they have been proven accurate time and again. There have been many instances where people doubted certain claims about the Bible, but then archaeology was able to confirm the Biblical claims. And now many secular people even accept the Bible as one of the most accurate history books written.

        As for the epic of Gilgamesh (and all the other flood stories around the world), it was based off a real, world-wide flood. It was probably passed on for many years before it was written, so it’s hardly original. And as long as it was a real event, it’s “originality” is completely irrelevant.

        If you really want to know what “religion” is true, try praying about it for a month and see what happens.

  4. Firstly I applaud your approach to this topic. You might, though, as I have, find that after awhile it gets really pointless trying to point out certain things to certain people. Maybe they don’t get it or they don’t wanna get it. Who knows?

    I’m actually quite excited at this new discovery, and as much as I’m looking forward to new knowledge and perhaps innovations, I can’t help but lower my expectations. There is just SO MUCH that scientists are grappling with; bodies of knowledge that take lots of resources, and time, to explore and verify. It almost seems like the more we know the more we find out what we don’t know.

    This might seem kinda off tangent but while reading your post I was momentarily distracted by a thought I had some time back: one of the limiting factors to the speed at which we progress in terms of understanding this universe better is our lifespan. I feel that by the time you’ve accumulated the knowledge and experience to give you a real good and broad vision of things, you’re near the end of your life.

    There’s two ways around I think: one, live longer. Two, import someone’s mind (memories? what else?) into another’s, so he can pick up from where the former left off. The internet is coming close to that, giving us ACCESS to information, but how would we know what to search for if we didn’t first know it exists? The eye wouldn’t see what the mind doesn’t know, said my doctor-teacher once.

    So again, despite the internet, we still take a pretty long time to get that info INTO our heads and then get the experience to know how said info relates to the real world.

    That’s all; just felt like sharing.

    1. You have no idea how often I wrestle with the issue of pointing things out to people who might not want to or be ready to really hear them. Although I feel like with this blog, people are generally willing to respectfully hear me out, even if they don’t agree with me. Honestly, most of the time I write stuff like this, it’s mostly for myself.

      Sure, I want to present my ideas to others and generate some discussion. And while I do realize that by and large I won’t be changing anyone’s heart of mind on the subject, it’s personally very hard for me to keep the thoughts and ideas I have bottled up. I feel like even if everyone disagreed with me or nobody read this blog, it would still be beneficial to me personally to get everything in my mind down on paper and out in the universe, just to put it out there and get it off my chest.

      With regard to your technological tangent, I follow this subject with great interest, actually. There are some scientist who predict that at some point in my lifetime it will become impossible to function in society with technological augmentation of some sort, because technology will have equaled and then surpassed human ability. That event has been termed the singularity, and the man who developed the theory believes that we will reach that point in 2049. Between now and then, we will see massive leaps in computing power, data storage, nanotechnology, and biotechnology.

      We’re already starting to see the foundations for that the advances in carbon nanotubes and 3D printing, and with the current interfaces between living tissue and technology. It’s entirely possible that lifespans could be indefinitely expanded by organ replacement if its as easy as culturing healthy cells and using a 3D printer to spray them onto a matrix and create a healthy new organ that won’t be rejected by the body. Or, as nanotechnology develops, to completely halt the aging process altogether. As, as you suggested, at some point, a human brain will be digitally transferred to a computer. Honestly, the only thing holding us back right now as far as that goes is not having a computer with enough memory to store all of the information in a human brain. If that could be overcome…

      1. Actually I agree with what you said, I somehow missed that point. It’s strange cos that’s happening to me on Facebook. It’s convenient, so I post my thoughts regularly. In the end I get flak from some people but, like you, I’m posting for me. I’d still post if nobody read. Ah, people. Spice of life, I say. Without such characters life wouldn’t be interesting heh.

        Hmm singularity, sounds familiar. I find that idea interesting, however the more I think about it the more I think society might ‘collapse’ before tech can be that much fused with us.

        Why I say this is because I’m observing an increasing trend of ‘going back to nature’, or, as another reader posted up there, we’re becoming more like animals. Idk it might be a fad, a coincidence or an isolated thing. Thoughts?

        Glad I shared this here btw, couldn’t have found a better place

  5. In an effort to avoid being too lengthy, I’ll make several posts regarding each of your points.

    I’ve read briefly about the Harvard team study on the Big Bang, but I haven’t had a chance to study it very closely. My first reaction is that this isn’t the first time someone has claimed to offer proof of the Big Bang, and it probably won’t be the last. So if the Big Bang has been proven (which it hasn’t), then why do some scientists keep offering new proofs, as if the previous proofs didn’t really prove anything? Of course science isn’t about proving anything anyway.

    Personally, I don’t see why this is much of an issue. While I’d rather see evidence disproving the Big Bang, I have no issue with observational science. What I do have problems with are the interpretations behind the science. In this case scientists made predictions regarding inflation that- if confirmed- substantiate those predictions. According to an article in Discover, the research provides crucial evidence that inflation did indeed occur. It doesn’t prove that inflation occurred- just that there’s evidence in favor of it. If inflation does occur, then there shouldn’t be much of an issue anyway. It is what it is. The article also assumes that these findings will be confirmed, which only raises the obvious- that it hasn’t been confirmed yet.

    Even if this research is confirmed, I think it still fits neatly into God’s creation and doesn’t disprove God’s creation. If God created the universe at his command, why couldn’t inflation occur? And why couldn’t God’s creation be consistent with what we’re observing? As you pointed out, a Roman Catholic priest, Georges Lemaitre, proposed the Big Bang, which many believe to be consistent with the Bible, although there are major differences between the two.

    I think all the buzz is because we’d like to see the Big Bang theory abandoned. But, despite all the issues associated with it, it likely isn’t going to be abandoned anytime soon. Creationists will just have to continue dealing with it. I’d like to see everyone know God personally, but I think the Big Bang can be an obstacle to believing in God because it resorts to a naturalistic explanation and excludes God on the grounds of a supernatural creation.

    I will side with you on your being censored and banned by AiG on Ken Ham’s Facebook page. You know I don’t agree with censorship, so I don’t think that your post should have been deleted, nor should you have been banned. However I don’t know if that happened because they want to ban all opposition, or if they simply want to reserve posts for fellow creationists. While such censorship bothers me, they do receive a huge amount of “trolling” by those only wishing to antagonize, so maybe they erred on the side of caution.

    1. I will definitely concede that I’m absolutely sure Ham and AiG do receive a lot of trolling, which really is a shame because it does absolutely nothing for anyone involved. And I suppose from a logistical point of view it’s far simpler to just instantly ban something that’s reported than individually review every single post that gets put up there.

  6. As to why there’s even a universe, there’s a Biblical answer that can be found in the first couple paragraphs of Genesis. According to Genesis 1:14-19, God made the universe (including the sun, moon and stars) to separate the day from night and to serve as signs to mark sacred times, days and years, and to give light on the earth. It’s a very simple explanation really. You’re right that the Bible says nothing about aliens and other habitable planets, so we wouldn’t expect to find them, but God put the stars there for us for the purpose he explained. The fact that the universe is HUGE is irrelevant. You seem to poo-poo the idea that God wouldn’t show his greatness, but it didn’t take any extra effort to make a “mind-blowingly huge universe” for man to observe. It’s simply not true to say that every single star in the sky is completely and utterly devoid of purpose. God gave them a purpose, and it’s stated very clearly in the Bible. It’s not that God was showing off his power, it’s that his power has been revealed by his planning and creating a habitable planet for us to live and enjoy. Psalm 147:4 says that God “determines the number of the stars and calls them each by name.” This shows that they do have purpose.

    Why does it sound like you’re upset that God would create such a huge universe? Doesn’t he have the right to create such a huge universe for us if he wanted to? It’s not a huge waste of space at all. That’s an entirely subjective idea that the rest of the universe is superfluous, useless, pointless, purposeless and illogical. It serves the very purpose God intended it to.

    1. Other stars do not give light to earth. There are stars that we don’t even know exist yet because their light hasn’t reached our planet.. Most calendars are based upon the lunar cycle–not astronomical cycles.

      I wouldn’t say that I’m angry that God created a large universe–I’m just saying that there doesn’t seem to be a lot of rhyme or reason it. Unless you believe that mankind will eventually reach and explore every single corner of the known universe, then I would have to think that some of it is essentially a waste in terms of creation.

      So God has an individual name for each star in the universe? To what end? If that’s the case, then all God would have had to have done to cement mine and every other atheist’s belief in him is produce a bible that has about 50 trillion pages with the name of every star in existence in it.

  7. Regarding the complexity of the eye (or lack of complexity)…

    If you don’t think there’s anything complex about the eye, or eye evolution, then kindly demonstrate how an organism with absolutely no genetic makeup for eyes can evolve eyes, and back it up with observational evidence that can be tested and repeated. I don’t want to hear theory about how it “could” happen given enough time through just-so stories. If it’s so simple, then let’s see it. Even Charles Darwin admitted to the absurdity of eye evolution.

    In order for the eye to work, there are many complex steps involved that must take place. I linked to a couple articles that a bit lengthy, but if you really think eyes are simple, then I think you’re ignoring everything that has to occur at the molecular level in order for us to utilize sight. Cells must transmit signals to other cells, which initiate nerve impulses, allowing axons travel to the optic chiasm, etc. All this doesn’t happen by chance.

    Yes, some organisms have eyes that serve different functions from humans, and in some sense they may be “superior” to ours, but they typically serve a narrow function, while our eyes are more practical and serve a broader purpose. I don’t see eagles or other animals taking dominion over the earth and subduing it like man has as a result of their “superior” eyesight.

    And the 747 argument is quite valid. While evolution is a gradual process, the 747 argument demonstrates the absurdity of that gradual process occurring in terms we can understand. We can barely comprehend millions of years, but we can comprehend how absurd it is for a Boeing 747 to be assembled in a junkyard by a tornado. And this wasn’t something proposed by a creationist, but by the atheist Fred Hoyle. Ya gotta love it when atheists concur with us 

    http://www.answersingenesis.org/articles/arj/v4/n1/retina-design

    http://www.answersingenesis.org/articles/tj/v13/n1/retina

    1. I really don’t understand why you’re putting any stock in the 747 argument. “The 747 argument demonstrates the absurdity of that gradual process occurring in terms we can understand.” The argument is a false equivalency because it literally does absolutely nothing to address anything about gradual accumulations of traits. There’s nothing remotely gradual about the 747 argument, so how on earth can it speak to the absurdity of gradualism?

      To be fair, our dominion over the earth has a lot less to do with our eye sight and a lot more to do with our opposable thumbs. Without the ability to manipulate our environment and create tools, our eye sight would mean a lot less when stacked up against, say, a lion (which, by the way, has nocturnal vision).

      “All of this doesn’t happen by chance.” How do you know that things like the eye can’t happen by chance? You don’t. I understand that you believe that they don’t, but you don’t know. And to be fair, I don’t know either. But the certainty with which you speak about such things, quite frankly, is indicative of the conceit of religion (not you personally) which Swarn mentioned earlier.

      Your complexity argument would seem to suggest that the sum of things cannot be greater than their individual parts. Yes, there are a lot of processes occurring in order to make vision happen. So? What we see in most biological processes is a lot of simple processes happening simultaneously. It’s like any mechanical device–it’s comprised wholly of simple machines–inclined planes, pulleys, levers, screws, and the like. Those are incredibly simple parts, that, when all combined, create something as “complex” as an automobile. And I’m willing to bet that most people would agree that the function of a car is greater than the individual functions of the myriad of simple machines that comprise it. The same can be said of the eye, I believe.

  8. QF friggin T. Nice job. Good take on the creationist canards. Excellent presentation of the gravitational waves.

    For the last 2000 years they got nuthin. They have theologians, philosophers, quote mines, and canards. Evidence is the one thing they run quite shy of. As well as a capability to understand or admit the existence of the evidence available.

    Heads in the sand, only taken out long enough to proclaim they are right, then right back in they go.

    Jonathan Silcox, you should get out more. The AiG information you have been sponging up really isn’t information as the rest of us would identify it. It is in fact denial of the existing evidence. No argument made by AiG is valid, and no actual evidence has been put forth by them EVER. Repeating those arguments here or anywhere else is merely an indication of a desperate desire, for your particular belief system to have merit. It does not. If you and your kind actually had the faith you think you do, you would not need to bolster yourself with a bunch of not arguments from AiG.

    The rest of us aren’t sadistic enough to click on any of those links. I’d rather sign up for shock therapy.

    1. Nice insults. Are you even able to recognize your own canards, or examine what you consider to be evidence? You boast about your own understanding, but I think your criticism can be directed right back at you.

      The creationist organizations you mock have well respected scientists working for them, and they present some legitimate evidence that you’ve rejected without serious thought. I don’t think you know what evidence is or how to interpret it. It sounds like you’ve been taught what to think, but not how to think.

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