Posts Tagged ‘evolution’

Reasons to Believe Jesus

October 23, 2015

There are at least 5 reasons to believe Jesus.  Here they are–in no particular order.

  1.  Scientifically.  Jesus talked about the Creation many times.  There is a creator.  If you have intricate design and purpose, you have a designer and a creator.  It is just not possible to get from amino acids to even the simplest cell.  To get to the simplest protein we know of, you have to have the right DNA combination.  The chances of getting that are 10×10 to the 77th power.  All the rest of the combinations won’t work.  That makes chance mutation, over and over, mathematically impossible, and this chance mutation is the basis for evolution.
  2. Historically.  The resurrection is one of the best testified events in history.  All history is based on the testimony of reliable witnesses.  The witnesses to the resurrection wouldn’t recant their testimony even under pain of death.  All but one of the apostles died for their witness.  Only John did not, and he was persecuted, imprisoned and exiled.  People will die for what they believe is the truth, they will not die for what they know is a lie. And the tomb was empty.  If there had been a body, somebody would have produced it.  As for the theory he really didn’t die–no one survived a Roman crucifixion.  Their job was to see their convicts died.
  3. Change in the apostles.  The changed lives of the apostles are a testimony that something happened.  They never portrayed themselves as heroes.  They all abandoned Jesus at his arrest.  Yet, after seeing the risen Jesus and receiving the Spirit, they became bold witnesses who traveled all over spreading the news of Jesus resurrection and his teaching.
  4. Prophetically.  Jesus fulfilled 317 prophecies about himself that were written in the old testament more than 400 years before his birth.  No one could do that on their own.  You can’t control how you will be born or die.
  5. Practically.  Look at the changed lives of people today, whose path has been turned around completely when they asked Jesus to come into their lives.  So many of them have experienced things they can’t explain and they will tell you they didn’t make it on their own.

This may not be enough reasons for everyone.  Nothing can be proved beyond the shadow of a doubt.  Thats why in a court of law, proof must be based on  the “beyond a reasonable doubt” premise or the “preponderance of the evidence” method, depending on how the applicable law is written.

“”God always gives enough light for those who believe and enough shadows for those who doubt.”  Pascal

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In the Beginning

August 9, 2015

“In the beginning, God…” The bible opens with these four words, and they are infinitely appropriate. They separate the bible account from other beliefs or philosophies humans have followed. “In the beginning” assumes there was a beginning. Evolution doesn’t assume that. It assumes atoms were on earth, but it never explains where they came from. It assumes laws of chemistry, but can’t explain where they came from either. There is no beginning, but some things simply exist–i.e., atoms, molecules, laws of chemistry, energy etc. The word “God” assumes God existed at the beginning. Not all belief systems assume that, either. Some assume many gods, spirits, aliens, or simply nothing. These four simple words set up the framework for all that will follow.

“…God created…” This sets God as the creator of everything, from light, earth, heaven, Sun, moon and stars, earth and water, and all that is present on the earth, including all living things. Nothing happened by chance, nor did anything evolve. For those who feel they must try to work evolution into this, I would ask “why?” As a professor once said to me “Evolution doesn’t answer everything, but it is simply the best explanation we have if we can’t accept a creator. And Science can’t accept a creator because it is outside the realm of science, which must be able to see and measure what it studies.” Well, ok, but evolution can’t be seen, measured or replicated either. We can only conjecture what happened, and a lot remains to be answered there as well. It is a faith-based philosophy when it can’t answer the questions either of its own statistical impossibility or the problem of irreducibility. I heard another professor say “We believe all the questions about how evolution is possible will someday be answered when we have discovered more.” Thats faith.

Evolution and Survival of the Fittest

March 24, 2011

Something about the theory of human evolution just doesn’t make sense.  If a key component is “survival of the fittest”, it would seem those who survive are those who are most self interested.  Yet this doesn’t fit what we see.  There are so many people who are truly interested in the welfare of others, who sacrifice for others, you would think they would not be surviving.  Yet if those other-centered people also love and trust God, they seem to be really thriving.  They are happy, optimistic and healthy.  Those who sacrifice for others out of some sense of duty, rather than love, suffer compassion fatigue and burn out.  They aren’t thriving.  And those who live solely for self eventually wind down and suffer “self fatigue”.  They aren’t thriving either.

Arguments and Arguments

January 3, 2010

I have received several posts from contrarians. Normally I print all comments when I have time to post a thoughtful response. However, I have learned not to bother with people who argue for the sake of argument. Its endless. No matter what you say, how well thought out or presented, they have some kind of argument. They aren’t really interested in thinking or pursuit of truth, just putting others down. Its obvious by the way they set up caricatures of others beliefs, they haven’t done their research. They are often disrespectful of huge groups of people, writing them off with their simplistic descriptions. For the record, I have studied biochemistry, cell biology, microbiology, arguments for and against evolution, comparative religions, bible research and arguments for and against intelligent design, all at the college level. I have decided the best evidence is on the side of a creator. I have also decided the evidence for both the historicity and claims of Jesus Christ are compelling. This is for each of us to decide. There are two opposing worldviews that can’t be reconciled. One is the naturalistic, godless evolutionary worldview. The other is the creator God worldview. They travel in opposite directions, and once you decide on one or the other, your life choices will reflect your starting point. All I can advise is study deeply and honestly, and choose wisely.

Marvelous

May 1, 2009

I read something today that made the hair stand up on the back of my neck.  When I was in college, way back when, I accepted without question the idea that human cells evolved from simpler cells, which started in an organic pond struck by lightening.  Well, you know the story of all that.  What I never sort of “put together” was the biology of the cell which I studied in those same years, and the believability of the evolution story.  Today I learned that that microscopic (electron microscopic) human dna is a whole lot more complex than 46 little helixes.  If these microscopic helixes were unwound and laid end to end, they would extend about 28 feet!  Thats out of a cell thats microscopic itself!!  And all this replicates itself every time the cell divides!  Whatever I might wish to believe, or not believe, the idea this all happened through random processes just defies reason.  Some say it takes faith to believe in a designer.  I think it takes more than faith to believe the sheer irrationality of this all happening by chance.  It takes less faith to believe that Stonehenge happened by chance through some as yet unknown natural processes (look at the Scandinavian and other stone circles) than to believe the human cell happened that way.  Yet, when I suggested we’d never looked at the possibility that Stonehenge might have happened without any intelligence behind it, people acted as though I were insane.  The same thing can be said of the human cell happening without Intelligent design.  Why does no one think that is insane?

I Saw Expelled Recently

April 29, 2008

I saw Expelled recently, and can understand why the atheist blogs are in such a snit over it.  It does have quite a ring of truth to it.  I can personally testify that someone I love was blacklisted from University teaching positions because he had a link to an Intelligent Design website on his personal website.  Like some of the people interviewed on Expelled, he got interviews, but the interviewer wanted to argue against Intelligent Design, not interview him.  They also mentioned visiting his personal website.

 

If academic freedom is so restricted—and it is restricted to political correctness in fields other than biology, how will we remain the innovative thinkers the world has always depended on?  How can we advance if so many fields of inquiry are closed to study?  Another person I love has been a university professor, and I am amazed at the stories of shunning and downright harassment of those who don’t tow the politically correct line.  I’m nearly convinced academic freedom is gone from most American Universities. 

 

I thought the link to Nazi Germany was frightening.  Ideas have consequences, and part of  Nazi ideology was about the superman who would evolve if inferior people were eliminated from the gene pool.  It isn’t too far away, judging by the selective abortion we’re already practicing in this country.  Scary thought for those older folks like me who may one day require care—wonder if I’ll just be “put away” by my government.

 

I thought Richard Dawkins was interesting—especially his “moral” condemnation of the “Old Testament God”.  How silly to call a God you don’t believe in a whole bunch of derogatory names—especially since making moral judgments falls in the realm of religion, which he says he doesn’t believe in.

 

What about the statistical evidence for the unlikelihood of evolution happening through random processes?  That question was never answered.  Also, what about the intermediate steps between amino acids or even proteins and a living cell?  No one answered that question either. 

 

Lastly, if our bill of rights is based on “our creator” endowing us with certain inalienable rights, what will happen to our freedom when the creator has been expelled from the country?

Orchestra without a conductor

April 13, 2008

I was in the middle of a small orchestra and chorus today.  It is amazing being in the center of that experience of sound.  You hear things you don’t hear from the audience.  Each instrument sounds individually, and the individual voice parts can be heard to some degree as well.  Its taken for granted that written music is used…and it takes a conductor to keep everyone together.  Now, it would be quite possible for everyone to sing or play whatever they felt like, and none of that would hurt the others, but without playing the same song, it would be noise and not music.  Also, even when playing and singing the same song, if the whole group isn’t together, it still sounds like noise, tho faintly recognizable as something supposed to be music.  The audience surely doesn’t appreciate it.  When everyone is on the same page, and the director has everyone together, and each part is coming in at exactly the right time, its beautiful music.  The whole thing seems to me to be an allegory of the creation/evolution debate.  How could evolution happen with no script and no director, and the whole universe be in such a marvelously beautiful harmony.  Take into account the physics and chemistry that have to work together for the biology to even have a chance.  Amazing!  Seems without belief in a director you have to concentrate on each part without considering the awesomeness of the whole as it works together.  Next time I will share an awesome bit of information I just found.

Nonni

The Human Race in its Teenage Years

April 12, 2008

After spending time, recently, with my teenage grandchildren, I am reminded of all the things that made me pull my hair out as a parent of my own teenagers.  Teenagers absolutely know everything.  They insist they don’t need anyone.  If they don’t know something, they’d rather look it up on the internet or try to figure it out on their own rather than ask an adult.

I was appalled when I drove my granddaughter to a party, and she wanted me to drop her off a block down the street, because she didn’t want her friends to see her with me.  I am told its not cool to be seen with parents, or any other adult relative.  I guess the teens like to fantasize that they don’t have parents and have just always been here, never born, never babies.  They seem uninterested in anyone’s wisdom or experience.  As Will Rogers said, “Some people can learn from the experiences of others, but most have to touch the electric fence for themselves!”   Teens are sure nothing will ever happen to them, and their favorite saying is “I KNOW!”  They are so sure they know everything, they bypass, ignore or refuse to believe anything that doesn’t fit their preconceived ideas of whats cool.  They want no rules, no restrictions, no responsibilities, but if they really get into trouble, the screams for a bail out are unbearable.

What really hit me, as I was returning home, is that teenage behavior toward adults looks like much of humanity’s behavior in relation to God.  We humans insist we have all the answers, or will have, if we just work a little longer.  We have a mindset about what the world is like, and we won’t acknowledge the truth of anything that doesn’t fit our preconceived ideas about the universe.  We are sure we will one day control the whole thing.  The very idea that something got us here, or nurtured us, is abhorrent to us.  We aren’t thankful for anything–we’re sure whatever didn’t just evolve, was of our own making.  We don’t acknowledge God, don’t seek wisdom, and don’t want to acknowledge anything beyond what we understand and control.  Yet, when we fall off our scaffolding, we insist somebody is going to bail us out, somebody is going to pay.  Thats where the lawyers come in, but don’t get me started on that.  I’m sure God is slapping his forehead, wanting to hurry us on out of this stage.

Nonni

How Can Children be Atheists?

April 7, 2008

I just got back from 2 weeks with my great grandchildren, and what a refreshing time it was.  I love how simple and honest children can be.  They strip all the fanciful veneer right off us.  We think we’re so many wonderful things, and they see right through all our hypocrisy, see all our vulnerabilities, and even manage to love us anyway.  No wonder Jesus said we had to be like them to even see the Kingdom of Heaven.  Adults have too many prejudices, too much pride, and too many blinders on.

The kids say things like–“why don’t you talk to me in your telephone voice”, meaning, how come you can yell and me and then pick up the phone all sweet.  They will tell the embarrassing truths about you, the ones you hoped no one would notice.  I love the story, I forget who told it, about the little boy who was totally unruffled about evolution.  When the speaker asked, how could God create a world in 6 days when its obvious the world is millions and millions of years old?  The little boy answered “Easy, He put it on fast forward.”

Kids do a number of things atheists could never do.  First, they expect order.  In fact, they absolutely demand it.  One of my little great grandsons has a tee shirt that says:”Feed me or nobody sleeps.”  Thats truer than true.  Kids expect to be fed, cleaned, and to have their discomforts fixed.  No random processes for them, and random processes are the only explanation left for the atheist who rejects the very idea of design.  Second, children learn to talk and all you hear (and all I heard for two weeks) is why? why? why?  They will take your answer trustingly, even if you have to fudge a little because you really don’t know.  What you can’t do is say “I don’t know”,  you certainly can’t say to them “There is no answer”.  No, you’d never get away with that one!  Science can tell us “what”, it can sometimes tell us “how”, but it absolutely can’t tell us “why”, and that was the child’s question, “why?”  Third, children have an almost exaggerated sense of justice.  You hear constant complaints of “No fair!”  “Thats mine!”  and so on.  You can ask them to work it out themselves, but you can’t tell them there is no fairness in the world, or that nothing belongs to them, really, or anything else that implies there is truly no justice in the world.  They just won’t buy it!  Now justice requires moral order, and in a random universe with no design and no God, there is no moral order.  The very idea that humans make up their own morals shows there is no justice, and no fairness, because the strongest of the humans will be the ones who make up the legal system.

I suggest if you really want your children to grow up atheists because their significant adults (we can’t say Mommy and Daddy anymore, can we?) are atheists, you should prepare them for living in a random universe.  You should buy five or six jigsaw puzzles, open all of them, pour them into a big bag, shake them all up, and then divide the shaken up pieces among the empty boxes and give them to your children.  It won’t make a picture, and the pieces won’t fit, but tell them to make their own meaning out  of it.  Then make up some puzzles with no solution.  (I’ve seen some Sudoku puzzles that feel like this).  Let them hack away on those for awhile, and then tell them to make up their own solution.  This will prepare them for the real world as you, the adult see it.   You had better be prepared, they will ask you “why?”

Evolution of the Senses

April 2, 2008

Another of Nonni’s ideas:

I was just wondering about the evolution of hunger and thirst.  These sensations alert us to do something about fulfilling a real need—for food or water.  I wonder about the other hungers that seem almost universal: the hungers for the eternal and the transcendent.  Every society in recorded history, as well as societies examined by archaeology, has had these two hungers.  They have all worshipped something, and they have all desired an afterlife.  Whether providing for their deceased relative’s afterlife, or writing about their wishes to see their loved ones again, this hunger is universal, crossing every culture.  Whether manufacturing idols to worship, or philosophizing about the nature of one God, every society worships something bigger than the individual human.  I just wonder if those two hungers aren’t in man for ultimately the same reason hunger and thirst are in man: they point to a need that is supposed to be filled.  Augustine of Hippo thought so.  He said: “Thou hast made us for thyself, O Lord, and our hearts are restless until they find their rest in Thee.”..

 Submitted by Michelle