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This tag is associated with 9 posts

Evidence-based approach to origins leads to creation

The following is adopted from Come and Reason Ministries

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Can any scientist demonstrate something coming from nothing? I can show you a world filled with evidence of new things coming from something that already exists.

Can any scientist demonstrate life coming from non-living matter? I can show you a world teeming with life coming from living matter.

Can any scientist demonstrate complexity coming from chaos by random forces without any intelligent input? I can demonstrate a world filled with complex machines, computers, and technology, all of which is a result of intelligent design and input.

Can any scientist demonstrate random genetic mutation that has added genetic fitness? I can show you millions of genetic mutations that destroy fitness.

Can any scientist demonstrate selection that removes enough genetic damage to cause a species to become more genetically fit than the preceding generations? I can show you that despite selection the accumulation of genetic damage increases with each subsequent generation thereby degrading the species.

Further, which theory is in harmony with known laws of physics? The first law of thermodynamics, energy is conserved, rules out the first premise of evolution origins. Something cannot come from nothing if energy is conserved.

The second law of thermodynamics, things tend toward disorder unless energy is put into a system, simply states that left to its own things decay over time. This law rules out the premise that complexity comes from chaos without intelligent input. It also rules out the idea that genetic mutation results in increased fitness.

Both of these scientific laws of thermodynamics support the premises of creation origins but fail to support evolution origins.

So, which theory is actually built upon testable, reproducible evidence, in harmony with known laws, and which theory is demonstrated, by the evidence, to be inconsistent with testable evidence and laws? Then which theory is more scientific?

I find it fascinating that Creationism is actually founded upon scientific premises and beliefs, and supported by testable laws, whereas evolutionism origins is founded upon “blind faith,” premises that are disproved by objective testable science. Yet, scientists refuse to follow the evidence and instead persist in proclaiming evolutionary origins are actually scientific.

 

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Twitter debate with Biologos

This week I had the pleasure of interacting with Mario Anthony Russo of Biologos.  Russo is a God-loving Christian who used to be an outspoken young-earth creation apologist and is now with Biologos, the largest theistic evolution promoting organization.  We had a debate in 140 characters or less on Twitter.

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It was in response to his new article titled “Tales of a recovering Answer Addict: From young-earth apologist to Evolutionary Creationist” (http://biologos.org/blogs/brad-kramer-the-evolving-evangelical/tales-of-a-recovering-answer-addict-from-young-earth-apologist-to-evolutionary-creationist).  Here is some more background info on Russo:

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The following are screenshots of our Twitter debate.  Since it is kinda confusing to go into Twitter and see everything, I tried to reassemble it in chronological order below.  Of course Twitter is not the most preferred format for a debate (and hard to screen cap – you will see a couple duplicates, etc), it certainly gets to the point quickly.

I hope you will be able to see how I believe he dodged several direct questions and was not willing to admit that he interprets the Bible through his beliefs about science…

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This entire debate can be summed up in this image:

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Patterns of Evidence: The Exodus [movie review]

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A couple weeks ago I had the opportunity to attend the Fathom Event showing of “Patterns of Evidence: The Exodus”, a documentary by Timothy Mahoney 12 years in the making.  The central question was why archeologists are not finding evidence for the biblical Exodus.  Although I knew the general answer, the evidence presented blew my mind!

The general answer to the issue is that researchers are looking in the wrong time period.  Most investigators look for evidence of the Exodus during the reign of Ramses II around 1250 BC since the Bible does mention his town in the account.  Mahoney explains how the Bible often uses names of locations during their most popular time instead of their time at the moment.  In the movie, Mahoney shows another city excavated underneath the city of Ramses, from a few hundred years earlier that does contain evidence!

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Mahoney organized the search for the Exodus into six stages according to the biblical account:

  1. Arrival of Joseph & Jacob’s family in Egypt
  2. Multiplication of Hebrews into a nation in Egypt
  3. Hebrew Enslavement in Egypt
  4. Ten Plagues on Egypt
  5. Exodus from Egypt
  6. Conquest of Canaan by the Israelites

In the ancient city archeologists find remnants of a town of homes with Hebrew traditions as well as a special palace of a prominent Hebrew with 12 special graves outside of it.  One tomb is a pyramid tomb (not traditional of Hebrews).  Inside the special tomb, a statue of a Hebrew man in a multi-colored coat.  The filmmaker believes this to be the tomb of Joseph (a man of Hebrew origin, but also prominent in Egypt) and the other 11 graves, his brothers.  Further evidenced by the bones of Joseph missing (the Bible says Moses took them to the promised land).  In these parts grave robbers would not normally take bones, but the treasures contained within.

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At this point we see great growth in the Hebrew city.  The “Brooklyn Papyrus” contains a list of slaves from the earlier time period, with 70% having Hebrew names – some straight out of the Bible.  The papyrus called the “Admonition of an Egyptian Sage” is a poem describing many calamities in Egypt that greatly resembles the ten plagues.  Excavations at Jericho provide evidence after evidence that matches the Biblical record including burn marks (the city was torched after the walls fell), and a piece of the wall not collapsed where Rahab would have lived and been spared as promised.  The Berlin Pedestal provides further evidence of Israelites in Canaan 100 years before Ramses.

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This is just an overview of a few of the more memorable evidences, but in no way a complete chronicle of the movie.  Mahoney presents evidence after evidence for two straight hours.  I figured the movie would make a good appeal to have the traditional chronology revised, but I never imagined the amount of evidence that would appear once the chronology was revised.  The movie is aptly titled Patters on Evidence since that is exactly what the filmmaker does.  He creates not just one, not two, three, or four, but dozens of evidences that create an undeniable pattern.  Mahoney himself sums it up towards the end of the movie:

“It’s startling to think how significant this could be because chronology, the dates assigned to these events, is the thing being used to convince the world that the Bible is just a fairy tale. But look at the pattern! Evidence matching Joseph and the early Israelites’ arrival in Egypt, their tremendous multiplication, their descent into slavery, the judgment and collapse of Egypt, the deliverance and Exodus of the Semitic population, and, finally, in Canaan, evidence matching the conquest of the Promised Land. I know there’s a lot of disagreement over the dating but what strikes me is that if you put all the dates to the side for a moment what emerges from the archaeology is this pattern that matches the Bible every step of the way and doesn’t that deserve to be taken seriously? But for now, those who hold to established conventions will not allow these connections to be made.”

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The documentary is also incredible because it doesn’t force a conclusion on the audience.  It presents the perspectives of plenty of experts who disagree with the chronology revision, but their perspectives come off sounding traditionalist and anti-evidence.  They seem to want the Exodus to be where they want it, and if it’s not there – then there’s one more reason to doubt the Bible.  It seems to make more sense to simply look for the evidence no matter our starting assumptions about how/where we find it.

Find more info on the movie herehttp://www.patternsofevidence.com

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mDNA rate of change match creationist predictions, & why this won’t change anything

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New research published this week by Dr. Nathaniel Jeanson shows conclusive evidence that recorded mitochondrial DNA change rates almost perfectly match creationist predictions and are wildly off from evolutionary predictions.  Using a mathematical model to congregate the data accumulated from humans, fruit flies, roundworms, and water fleas – Dr. Jeanson shows the following chart figures with a 95% confidence interval.

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“The evolutionary results cannot in any way be explained by invoking a slower mutation rate in the past. First, this would be inconsistent with the assumption of constant rates and constant processes invoked in astronomy and geology. Second, for species to be as genetically similar as they are today yet as old as the evolutionists claim, they would need to mutate only once every 21,000–36,000 years and consistently so for millions of years. This incredibly slow rate is completely counter to the actual mutation rates observed in genetics; in fact, rates this slow seem biologically impossible. These results appear to present a dramatic challenge to the millions of years espoused by evolution and old-earth creation, and they seem to powerfully confirm the biblical account.”

More info here (including responses to 7 objections):  http://www.icr.org/article/8017/

Of course, this will not deter the evolutionists.  Casey Luskin of Salvo Magazine published this week an excellent critique of normal evolutionary behavior called “How evolutionary theory predicts what it finds”.  Luskin shows how he explained to famous atheist biologist PZ Myers how the pharyngula stage of development, which Myers advocates as strong evidence for evolution, doesn’t exist in any observation.  When presented with overwhelming data that the stage didn’t exist, Myers story changed.

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More info here:  http://www.salvomag.com/new/articles/salvo30/heads-or-tails.php

As Luskin ends his report: “the data often fail to fit the predictions of common descent, but when that happens, proponents of common descent don’t get worried.  They simply change their predictions”.  So, of course this new data on mDNA genetic differences matching creationist predictions and defying evolutionary calculations will do nothing to shake their faith.  Because to them the concept that “evolution is true” guides their interpretation of the data.  It’s the same thing they say we do with our biblical worldview interpreting the data.  They’re right!  But they won’t admit their own bias.  They’ve accepted the conclusion, instead of letting the data actually reflect the truth.  They could say – so have you!  And they’re right.  But that’s the whole point actually!  The topic of origins will always be a faith-based argument.  Everyone interprets the data through their preexisting beliefs about how the world works.  That is why we can talk about evidence all day long and get nowhere.  We will always eventually get down to your beliefs and presuppositions.

Confirmation bias in mainstream science

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Creationists are often accused of confirmation bias.  In other words they say when we look at data we contort it to fit our preconceived ideas about how we think the world works.  These accusers often cite how science looks to weed out that bias through the peer review process.  They are right and wrong at the same time.  We do have a bias, but so do they.  We take certain unprovable, unverifiable beliefs about the past (supernaturalism, catastrophism) to interpret evidence from the past (unobservable).  They take other unprovable, unverifiable beliefs about the past (naturalism, uniformitarianism) to interpret the same evidence.  Therefore we both have a bias before we look at the evidence.  Those who share our biases will also interpret the evidence the same as we do.  That is the answer to why the majority of scientists see the evidence the same way – they all are interpreting it the same and agreeing with the starting assumptions.

So… how does confirmation bias play into mainstream science?  Five scenarios:

  1. Red blood cells, soft tissue, and DNA found still intact in supposedly millions-of-years old dinosaur fossils (http://blog.drwile.com/?p=12518).  Normally these elements would decay very rapidly.  Mainstream sciences answer:  preservation must last longer than we thought before.   Obviously, the most apparent response is that the dinosaurs are not as old as previously thought.  Instead they maintain their beliefs and offer explanations with no evidence as to how these materials can last this long in the face of repeated demonstrations of rapid decay of these materials.  Their explanations actually defy the evidence of decay to maintain their beliefs.  Confirmation bias!  Note:  some evolutionists have tried to use iron as the mechanism for preserving the materials, but that explanation fails miserably (http://blog.drwile.com/?p=11753).

 

  1. Do a Google search or image search for human artifacts found in coal deposits or “out-of-place artifacts”.  Mainstream science maintains that coal seams were formed over millions of years of gradual, uniform deposits well before humans came onto the scene.  Yet, there are many examples of manmade items found embedded in these coal deposits and other rock layers (http://s8int.com/page8.html).  The only response from mainstream science is that these anomalies must be forgeries.  They must be forgeries because the alternative explanation does not fit their worldview.  Confirmation bias!  Of course the obvious interpretation is that perhaps humans existed prior to a worldwide catastrophic event (the flood) that laid down most of the coal deposits and rock layers.

 

  1. Did you know that genetics only finds evidence of degeneration?  Dr. John Sanford, a geneticist, argues that evidence from observational genetics confirms what he calls genetic entropy.  That man is degenerating, not improving through some imaginary upward evolution.  Here are three peer-reviewed papers published in secular journals confirming this concept (http://www.tbiomed.com/content/9/1/42, http://ge.tt/7mN7K6O/v/0, http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1716299/pdf/ajhg00429-0003.pdf).  Dr. Sanford goes on to claim that nearly all leading geneticists acknowledge this: “Kondrashov, an evolutionist who is an expert on this subject, has advised me that virtually all the human geneticists he knows agree that man is degenerating genetically. The most definitive findings were published in 2010 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science by Lynch. That paper indicates human fitness is declining at 3–5% per generation.”  Obviously evolutionary biologists must simply ignore this data to maintain their beliefs.  Confirmation bias!  I would say this is possibly the most striking blow to Darwinism and a complete scientific confirmation of a creationist prediction.

 

  1. Carbon still remaining in diamonds.  Carbon, which due to its decay rate cannot last longer than 60,000 years, is consistently found in diamonds and other samples believed to be millions or even billions of years old (http://creation.com/radiometric-dating-breakthroughs)!  What is the mainstream science answer: contamination.  They claim the scientists or labs must have contaminated the samples… yet often times these are the same scientists and labs they use to verify their own data.  I smell a double standard.  What is the obvious answer?  The samples are not as old as believed.

 

  1. Young comets exist with no evidence of a comet-maker.  Every time a comet circles the sun in our solar system it loses some of its matter.  Therefore comets have a relatively short lifespan, yet we have no observable evidence of a source that is making new comets.  Mainstream science suggests either the Oort Cloud or the Kuiper belt – yet neither of these have been observed.  They are mythical.  They are necessary for mainstream scientists to maintain their beliefs about the age of the universe.  The Oort cloud and the Kuiper belt have never been observed.  They are hypothetical.  Need I say it?  Confirmation bias!  What is the obvious answer?  The solar system and the universe are not as old as previously believed.

 

Seeing a pattern?  This is by no means an exhaustive list either, there is much more I could go into.  We could also talk about fossils being found “out of place” all the time (http://creation.com/fossils-wrong-place).  Or we could talk about the dinosaur stone carving from 1200 AD (http://creation.com/did-angkor-really-see-a-dinosaur).  Or we could talk about the Big Bang’s horizon problem (https://answersingenesis.org/big-bang/light-travel-time-a-problem-for-the-big-bang/).  We would simply not have enough room to write about all the inconsistencies.  Yet in the light of all these inconsistencies, the UK has the gall to outlaw any suggestion of anything contrary to that of the consensus!

Mainstream scientists believe creationists are the only ones who use confirmation bias to hold onto their beliefs, yet this is demonstrably incorrect.  Now combine all five anomalies to mainstream science from above (DNA still in dinos, human artifacts in coal, genetic entropy, carbon in diamonds, & young comets), combine those with all the other inconsistencies that have filled volumes of books (https://answersingenesis.org/store/topics-themed/) that we don’t have time to discuss here , and now decide if there is still “overwhelming evidence” for their positions?  I will leave the conclusion up to you…

I will leave you with a quote from Michael Crichton (PhD in biology, writer of Jurassic Park), although an evolutionist – he had strong words for what he called consensus science…

“I regard consensus science as an extremely pernicious development that ought to be stopped cold in its tracks. Historically, the claim of consensus has been the first refuge of scoundrels; it is a way to avoid debate by claiming that the matter is already settled. Whenever you hear the consensus of scientists agrees on something or other, reach for your wallet, because you’re being had.”

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For more resources on scientific issues with the consensus I suggest…

http://blog.drwile.com/  –  written by a PhD in nuclear chemistry & science textbook writer.
http://darwins-god.blogspot.com/  –  written by a PhD in biophysics.
http://www.evolutionnews.org/  –  collection of recent science news that defies the mainstream.
http://www.icr.org/news/ – Institute for Creation Research.
http://www.reddit.com/r/creation/  –  online community discussion.

1 hour video of young-earth evidences

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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GOvyuNxlovE

Those who read my blog know that I favor arguing more from a pre-suppositional perspective than at the evidential level.  I feel we can go back and forth all day over different evidences, but at the end of the day we can still only interpret the evidence through our starting assumption.  But nevertheless I feel compelled to share with you a recent video I watched on YouTube by Dr. Thomas Kindell recorded at the Seattle Creation Conference.  Dr. Kindell presented 52 minutes of evidences for a young-earth.  He does a much better explanation of these topics then I could do, but here are some highlights that I enjoyed:

 

  • Spiral galaxies cannot maintain themselves for millions of years, they will turn into a big blur.
  • Micrometeorite material is being sucked into the sun over time, why do we still have it?
  • Supernovas:  no large ones (4 per century for millions of years?) none are bigger than 7000 years of expansion, should be 7291 in 1 million years… 200 only visible!
  • Moon dust, not very deep under Neal Armstrong’s boot, at the rate of accumulation it should be much denser.
  • Is the Lincoln Memorial 250,000 years old?  Dating stalagmites under it would suggest this, right?  Or maybe they form faster under certain conditions (flood).
  • The Lost Squadron in Greenland, abandoned military aircraft 48 years ago on the glacier, found under hundreds of layers of ice, 268 feet.  Perhaps ice does not actually accumulate at the accepted rates.
  • For those who wonder about distant starlight:  ask them how fast was the speed of light during the creation week?  Research time dilation.  Einstein proved that light would not take that long to get to us since it is relative to your location.
  • Shows how diamonds and opals, under right conditions can be formed in hours or days vs. millions of years.  It was never tried since we were told it can’t be done.  Old-earth dogma actually inhibited scientific advancement.

 

… and much more.  WARNING:  the video quality is pretty low, but the message still makes it through.  See the video below: