Part 4: Creation vs. Evolution—Is Darwinian Evolution a belief or a fact of science?
(This blog is part of a series. You can start the series by going back to the September 1, 2014 Introduction called A Case for Christianity: Why do we need one?)
There doesn’t seem to be the potential of finding a [natural explanation] for the origin of life. I think people who believe that life emerged naturalistically need to have a great deal more faith than people who reasonably infer that there’s an Intelligent Designer. – Walter Bradley, Professor of Engineering at Baylor University
As a high school science teacher, who became a Christian in recent years, I found it interesting that my perspective on the origin of life was one of the first things to change. I think I almost relished the idea that life could have evolved naturally because that meant I did not have any obligation to a creator and therefore did not have to be accountable for the way I lived, I’d just be following my chemistry. After all, science teaches that we are evolving into a more enlightened people and science will eventually be able to answer all of the questions of life, so I thought. But then I became a Christian and I think, like the Apostle Paul, the ‘scales fell from my eyes’. When I really looked at the evidence from both sides it brought me to a totally different conclusion.
Evolutionary theory for the origin of life uses philosophy not science. Evolutionists claim that Christians do not use science in their evaluation of origins, but do evolutionists? Origin questions require forensic science. Forensic science is a scientific method of gathering and examining information about the past. Science typically uses empirical evidence (evidence that is observable and testable). This type of evidence is required for a hypothesis to gain acceptance in the scientific community. Validation is achieved by using the scientific method that requires rigorous communication of the hypothesis (usually expressed in mathematics), experimental constraints and controls (that require observation and repeatable testing), and a common understanding of measurement. Can evolutionists acquire forensic evidence for the origin of life? Can empirical science be used for an event that occurred so long ago or does it require a philosophical presupposition to even begin?
What is taught in your local schools?
- National and State Standards now require our children to have proficient and advanced knowledge of evolution, but it is not just in science. This concept is imbedded across other fields of study (History, English, the Arts, etc.)—Just read through some of the sample tests and the language of evolution is found everywhere.
- Evolution (used as the answer to the origin of life) is the only theory that is treated as factual yet it does not follow the highly esteemed Scientific Method for empirical evidence nor does it have any hard evidence in forensics.
Last week we looked at the problem of philosophical presuppositions admittedly held by many who are responsible for the production of information, material and tests currently used in public education. Can we see this in the definition of evolution as the means for the origin of life? (I have numbered problems I found – explanations below).
A commonly used definition for the origin of life:
Highly energetic chemistry (non-living particles) is (1) thought to have produced a self-replicating molecule around (2) 4 billion years ago, and half a billion years later (3) the last common ancestor of all life existed. (4) The current scientific consensus is that the (5) complex biochemistry that makes up life came from simpler chemical reactions. (6) The beginning of life may have included self-replicating molecules such as (7) RNA and the assembly of simple cells.
Problems and misleading assumptions in this definition:
(1) This ‘thought’ has never been replicated in a lab and no one has ever been able to create sustainable life from non-living chemicals; (2) These timescales are generalized often contradictory in the literature, not to mention problems associated with dating methods; (3) There is no evidence in the fossil record to support this ancestral assumption; (4) This is not a true statement because there are many dissenters (growing in number) in the scientific community who are vigorously working against evolutionary theory; 5) No testable evidence is available, irreducible complexity makes this impossible; (6) Evolutionary theory plays a guessing game at best because the evidence here is missing; (7) There is no evidence that RNA and the structures required in the assembly of simple cells can survive independently (they all must be there at the same time).
Naturalistic biologists assert that life generated spontaneously from nonliving chemicals by natural laws without any intelligent intervention. But today this naturalistic theory flies in the face of everything we know about natural laws and biological systems. –Frank Turek and Norman L. Geisler, I Don’t Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist
Let me know what you think: If there are inconsistencies in evolutionary theory then why is the evidence from competing hypotheses such as Intelligent Design and Creationism not allowed to be heard in the public arena? If it is a matter of science and philosophy, who has the best evidence in both arenas? We will look at some of this evidence in the next few blogs.
But, dear friends, remember what the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ foretold. They said to you, “In the last times there will be scoffers who will follow their own ungodly desires.” These are the people who divide you, who follow mere natural instincts and do not have the Spirit. Jude 1:17-18 (NIV)
Come back next week for: Who are we, where did we come from and why are we here? Part 5: Creation vs. Evolution—the negative evidence
Over the next several blogs I am going to continue to present logical reasoning and sound scientific evidence not found in the public school textbooks.
Always be ready to give an answer for the hope that you have in Christ Jesus as Lord.
1 Peter 3:15