Wednesday, August 27, 2014

“Scientists Create First Living Organism”

In 1925, Adolph Hitler published his famous autobiographical manifesto, “Mein Kampf.” In German, the title means “my struggle.” This two volume book outlined Hitler’s upbringing all the way to his ultimate conviction towards The Nationalist Socialist Movement (Nazism). In Volume 1, chapter 6, Hitler famously said the following: “The most brilliant propagandist technique will yield no success unless one fundamental principle is borne in mind constantly and with unflagging attention. It must confine itself to a few points and repeat them over and over. Here, as so often in this world, persistence is the first and most important requirement for success.” As you first read that, his point may not be immediately obvious. But, if you say it another way, it is quite clear: “If you repeat a lie often enough, people will believe it, and you will even come to believe it yourself.” The rest is very ugly history.

The philosopher, George Santayana famously said, “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” Today, we are witnessing the same propagandist tactics that Hitler proposed, even in the arena of science. Science continues to claim that life can arise from nonliving matter without applied intelligence, even though there is zero scientific evidence for such an assertion. If that were not bad enough, there is zero logical and philosophical support for it as well. But, the lie is repeated over and over again. And, today, not only do the vast majority of scientists believe it, so do the blinded masses that worship their twisted intellect. This is how propaganda is born and how it thrives.

Take for example, the title of this post. This title is a direct quote from an article published in “Nature” in May of this year. The full article title is “Scientists create first living organism containing artificial DNA.” Just from the plain reading of this title, you would reasonably conclude that scientists had in fact created life. You might also conclude that they did this using artificial DNA. And, if you accept those two positions as proven scientific fact, the leap from nonliving matter to life would be all but removed (aside from needing a transcendent and intelligent cause, of course). But, if you read past the deceptive headline to the content of the article and the actual experiment, you quickly see that the title could not be further from the truth.

So, what did they actually accomplish in this reported scientific adventure? These scientists took two already living bacterial organism and added two pieces to their genetic code. And, the bacteria accepted the artificial DNA. That’s it. They did not “create” anything. They certainly did not create life or a living organism. This may be a landmark achievement, but it is not the achievement that they claimed it was.

And, notice how they used the word "create." When creationists use the word “create” that is scientific sacrilege. But, evolutionists can use the word, even when it does not apply? Isn’t it grossly arrogant to make such wild claims from unsupporting experiments? The answer is yes. But, they will get away with it as long as they are unchecked. That is what Hitler meant by “with unflagging attention.” Who is going to "flag" this down, so to speak? And, if man could form organisms it would be referred to as creation. Why then, if an intelligent cause other than man forms organisms, are we forbidden from using the word create? In other words, living organisms require creation by someone, don’t they? Isn’t humans attempting to assemble living organisms actually an experiment that should support Intelligent Design Theory (IDT)? Aren't these scientists attempting to mimic intelligent design? And, the fact that the most intelligent beings on the planet are incapable of the achievement, just reinforces IDT. Such failure certainly does not support random, unintelligent chance.

John 1:3 says, “Through Him all things were made; without Him nothing was made that has been made.” Christian, that is a truth that you should never forget and never forfeit. And, this truth was not refuted by this experiment. In fact, since they had to start with already living organisms, they created nothing. They had to begin with life that was already created.

Be encouraged that science actually supports the notion that you were created (even without recognizing that they have). And, the Bible is the only authoritative source that is entirely consistent with such notions. Be encouraged that you get the privilege to have a relationship with the Creator of life that scientists are trying and failing to mimic.

You can also follow @ReasonIfYouWill on Twitter.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Signs of The Times?

There have been several eras in human history where those in the Church felt that the end times that were prophesied in the Bible were near. Examples included the rapid rise of the Roman Empire and even the events leading up to World War II. Such misguided readings of those events have led many to ridicule such doomsday prophets and the brand of Christianity that they represented. Ironically, today Christians are far outnumbered in the arena of doomsday prophecy. Those decrying the Earth’s impending doom are more dominated by climate prophets than any other group. In fact, atheists far outnumber doomsday prophets of any other stripe. Regardless of which stripe a prophet bears, all doomsday prophets point to signs around them to back up their claims. For some, the signs are manipulated climate models. For the Christian, the signs are much more obvious. Instead of having to create models to create prophecy, we have been given ancient prophecies that we can tangibly compare to current events.

How do the current events of today compare with the signs outlined in the Bible that point to the coming end of time? Well, before looking to scripture, below are a list of headlines that are dominating our news today:

  • Christians beheaded in genocide
  • Israel attacked while its thinning allies turn
  • Ebola virus death toll mounts
  • Riots in the streets across the globe
  • Record droughts, earthquakes, storms and tsunamis
  • Millions of unborn babies murdered
  • Our largest economies on the brink of bankruptcy
  • Wars on almost every continent

The headlines are growing. The signs are increasing. The warning lights are blinking more rapidly than any other time that I can remember. We were warned of this. It was prophesied by Daniel, Jesus, Paul, Peter, John, etc. We were told what is about to happen. And, we were told what to do when and as these events unfold. Compare the list of headlines above with the following scriptures and ask yourself if the signs were ever more clear and aligned:
  • Daniel 9:24-27
  • Daniel 12:4
  • Joel 2:28-32
  • Matthew 24:1-51
  • Mark 13:32
  • Luke 21:1-38
  • Romans 13:11
  • 2 Thessalonians 2:3-4
  • 1 Timothy 4:1
  • 2 Timothy 3:1-17
  • 2 Peter 3:3-4
  • 1 John 2:18
  • Revelation 1:3
  • Revelation 3:3
  • Revelation 7:14
  • Revelation 13:1-18
Take these signs seriously. Realize that the end is ever nearer. Therefore, our time left is growing shorter. When our King returns (and He will), will He find us loving others as He loved us? Will He find us reconciling others to God by way of His gospel? Will He find us faithful to His parting commands? Will He find us faithful at all? Will He find you faithful?

Jesus said in Matthew 16:2-3, “When it is evening, you say, ‘It will be fair weather, for the sky is red.’ And in the morning, ‘It will be stormy today, for the sky is red and threatening.’ You know how to interpret the appearance of the sky, but you cannot interpret the signs of the times.” Like the rising of the sun, we can see its light before we can see the actual sunrise. Like that pre-sunrise glow, these signs are not the end but they point to what is coming. The good news if you are reading this is that there is still time. There is still time to share the love of Jesus with those in desperate need of it. There is still time to love at least one more person. God will place people before you today who need His love before their time runs out.

For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.

You can also follow @ReasonIfYouWill on Twitter.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

What Shrimp and Stars Have In Common

The fruitless quest for transitional fossils is the ongoing desperation of biased paleontology. Science remains in unconfessed, hot pursuit of fossils that are hybrids of two different species (whales with feet for example), because in Darwin’s own words, the fossil record should be littered with them: “Why then is not every geological formation and every stratum full of such intermediate links?” Aside from easily answering Darwin’s question, his own quote highlights science’s present desperation. If they could just find fossils that bridge two species, that might be proof of ancestry between those otherwise unrelated species. And, the present lack of such fossils is terribly inconvenient. But, even if they could find such fossils, is their assumption about common traits being proof of ancestry, reasonable? If common traits is proof of ancestry, what about common traits elsewhere in the universe? And, what about species that have traits that are shared with no other species?

A great example of the latter is the “snapping shrimp.” They are otherwise known as pistol shrimp (Alpheidae). Snapping shrimp are one of the loudest animals in the sea and certainly the hottest. When it snaps its special claw it produces a sound that can reach 218 decibels, a sound that produces pressure sufficient to kill a small fish. By the way, 218 decibels exceeds the sound of the Battleship New Jersey firing all 9 sixteen inch guns at the same time. In addition, the bubble that their snap creates can reach temperatures of over 4,700 degrees Celsius (8,500 degrees Fahrenheit). By comparison, the surface temperature of the Sun is estimated to be around 5,500 degrees Celsius. Why can’t we find this shrimp’s unique traits anywhere else in the animal kingdom both today and in the fossil record? And, is there anywhere else in the observable universe that we see such traits in common?

Before, we answer those questions, let’s pose some more that also demand answers. Can such an amazing design displayed in snapping shrimp ever arise from random non-intelligence? Have we ever observed a mutation that could result in what the snapping shrimp is able to demonstrate? With all of our human intelligence, we are unable to engineer a synthetic claw that can produce similar results. But, we are led to believe that this is possible by random chance with zero intelligence applied. In science, the possibility of something occurring should be governed with the highest level of evidence – observation. Has our observations been allowed to govern such wild claims? Are non-intelligent random forces more capable than actual advanced intelligence? Where is the proof of any of these wild assertions? Or, is Darwin’s appeal one of ignorance?

As Christians, we should not be surprised by animals that perform such amazing feats. Even Job 41 reminds us of Leviathan, a sea-dwelling dinosaur that snorted fire. In fact, these feats by animals speak to God’s amazing glory. Job 12:7-10 says, “But ask the beasts, and they will teach you; the birds of the heavens, and they will tell you; or the bushes of the earth, and they will teach you; and the fish of the sea will declare to you. Who among all these does not know that the hand of the Lord has done this? In His hand is the life of every living thing and the breath of all mankind.”

Not only do the “heavens declare the glory of God,” but the rest of His creation declares it as well. It’s individual glory aside, there is something else that the snapping shrimp shares in common with other things in nature. When you examine the snapping shrimp, you see the evidence of the One who also designed our Sun, a burning star about 109 times the size of our Earth. We observe a simpler and less intelligent creature than ourselves possessing the skill to mimic the mind-boggling heat of a massive star. As earthly creatures successfully mimic heavenly bodies, we are reminded of their common thread. That thread is not unobserved random chance. Their common thread is Godly intelligence. And, the snapping shrimp and our Sun share common traits. Using Darwin’s twisted logic, they must be related. Here is where we might agree but for different reason. They are related by virtue of their common Creator.

It is the truly ignorant who choose to ignore the obvious. And, it is evil for those who are ignorant to lead others to such a similar misfortune. Be encouraged as you observe the amazing design in the world with which our God surrounds us all.

You can follow @ReasonIfYouWill on Twitter.