By Babu G. Ranganathan
What really is science? There are two types of science. Empirical science is the knowledge of an event or a thing witnessed through our senses. You know that the moon exists. You can see it! You know that the chair exists because you can see it or feel its support.
The other type of science is forensic science. Forensic science is not direct knowledge but indirect knowledge of something. You didn’t witness the person’s death and you didn’t see how he died, but through careful collection and analysis of evidence you are able to determine how the death occurred.
The scientific method is used every day in forensic science to determine whether an event in a crime scene was an accident or by design and intention. Mathematical probability is a scientific argument and is frequently used in determining many issues of scientific inquiry.
The scientific method cannot be used to prove events which occurred outside of human observation. No one observed the origin of the universe by either chance or design (so neither can be proved by science), but scientific evidence via mathematical probability can be used to support either a chance or design origins for the universe.
If you went to an uninhabited planet and discovered only one thing, a cliff carved with images of persons similar to what we find on Mt. Rushmore, you cannot use the scientific method to prove that these images came about by design or by chance processes of erosion.
Here’s another example. If you discovered a sand castle on a lonely beach, you can’t prove it was made by either chance or design. No one observed its origins. Either it was designed or the random forces of wind and waves made the castle. What if there are no fingerprints? Did the wind wipe the fingerprints away? How do we know that there were fingerprints in the first place?
Mathematicians have said that any event with odds of 10 to the 50th power or over is impossible even within the entire time frame of the supposed billions of years popularly assigned for the age of the universe.
The odds of an average protein molecule coming into existence by chance are 10 to the 65th power. That’s just one protein molecule! Even the simplest cell is composed of millions of them.
Protein molecules are made of smaller molecules known as amino acids. In order for a protein molecule to work the amino acids have to be together in a precise sequence, just like the letters in a sentence. If they are not in the right sequence then the protein molecule won’t work.
It has been shown that the basic building blocks of life, such as amino acid molecules, can come into existence by chance, but it has never been shown that these basic building blocks can come together into a sequence by chance to form protein molecules.
Once there is a complete and living cell then the genetic code (or program) and biological mechanisms exist to direct the formation of more cells with their own DNA and protein molecules. The problem is how did DNA, proteins, and life come about when there was no already existing directing code and mechanisms in nature.
It seems that the cell is irreducibly complex. For example, without DNA there can be no RNA, and without RNA there can be no DNA. And without either DNA or RNA there can be no proteins, and without proteins there can be no DNA or RNA. They’re all mutually dependent upon each other for existence! It could not have gradually evolved! Evolutionists generally believe that it took one billion years for the first life form or cell to have evolved. That belief, although still taught as gospel in many elementary and secondary schools, cannot be sustained by modern science.
An amazing fact is that there are left-handed and right-handed amino acids. In life all the protein molecules have to be made up of left-handed amino acids as well as be in the right sequence. If a right-handed amino acid gets into the mix the protein won’t work.
DNA, the genetic code, also is made up of various smaller molecules (nucleic acids) that have to be together in a precise sequence in order for the DNA to work. There are left-handed and right-handed sugar molecules making-up nucleic acids. In order to get a working DNA molecule the various nucleic acids have to be not only in a precise sequence but they also have to contain only right-handed sugar molecules. If a nucleic acid with a left-handed sugar molecule gets into the mix then the DNA won’t work.
What about “Junk DNA”? The latest science shows that “Junk DNA” isn’t junk after all! It’s we who were ignorant of how useful these segments of DNA really are. Recent research published in scientific journals such as Nature and RNA has revealed that the “non-coding” segments of DNA are essential in regulating gene expression (i.e. when, where, and how genes are expressed in the body). Here’s an interesting article by biologist and science writer Brian Thomas on the subject, “Evolutionary Leftovers in DNA? Not So, Says New Study”: http://www.icr.org/article/6131/
Brian Thomas emphasizes in the article:
It is now clear that “noncoding” RNAs, which were copied from “noncoding” lengths of DNA, in fact contain vital codes! Just because they do not necessarily code for new proteins does not mean they do not code for something else the cell needs, and these researchers-publishing in a standard evolution-oriented journal-provided specific examples of important regulatory codes in these “noncoding” sequences.
The great and well-known British scientist Frederick Hoyle showed that the probability of the simplest form of life coming into being by chance is 10 to the 40,000th power. You don’t have to be a theologian to respect such numbers!
In the midst of arguments over evolution and intelligent design, it is amazing how many in society, including the very educated, believe that scientists had already created life in the laboratory. No such thing has ever happened.
All that scientists have done is genetically engineer already existing forms of life in the laboratory, and by doing this scientists have been able to produce new forms of life, but they did not produce these new life forms from non-living matter. Even if scientists ever do produce life from non-living matter it will only be through intelligent design or planning so it still wouldn’t help support any theory of life originating by chance or evolution.
If the cell had evolved it would have had to be all at once. A partially evolved cell cannot wait millions of years to become complete because it would be highly unstable and quickly disintegrate in the open environment, especially without the protection of a complete and fully functioning cell membrane.
What if we find life on Mars or in a meteor? There’s a good explanation for why we may find remnants of life on Mars and in meteors. In the Earth’s past there was powerful volcanic activity which could have easily spewed dirt and rocks containing microbes into outer space which not only could have eventually reached Mars but also ended up traveling in orbit through space that we now know as meteors. A Newsweek article of September 21, 1998, p.12 mentions exactly this possibility. “We think there’s about 7 million tons of earth soil sitting on Mars”, says scientist and evolutionist Kenneth Nealson. “You have to consider the possibility that if we find life on Mars, it could have come from the Earth” [Weingarten, T., Newsweek, September 21, 1998, p.12].
Life is far too complex to have happened by chance. Therefore, it is much more logical to believe that the genetic and biological similarities between species are due to a common Designer rather than common ancestry through evolution. The Creator simply designed similar functions for similar purposes in all of the various forms of life from the simplest to the most complex.
Natural laws are adequate to explain how the order in life, the universe, and even a microwave oven operates, but mere undirected natural laws cannot fully explain the origin of such order.
And what about the stars? Oh, yes, gravity may explain how the order found in the precise courses of trillions of stars is maintained, but gravity cannot explain the origin of that order!
What about natural selection? Natural selection cannot produce anything. It can only “select” from what is produced. Furthermore, natural selection can only operate once there is life and reproduction and not before. Natural selection is a passive process in nature. It’s simply another term for “survival of the fittest”. If a change occurs that helps a species survive in a particular environment then that species will survive (i.e. be “selected”). That’s all it is.
Even the recent news of artificial life is not creation of any life. In artificial life, scientists, through intelligent design, build a DNA molecule from “scratch” and then implant that DNA into an already living cell. Genetic engineering and artificial life projects all happen by intelligent design – not by chance. Just ask the scientists behind the projects!
Science cannot prove that we are here by either chance or design, but the scientific evidence supports an intelligent cause for the origin of the universe. Science just explains how the universe works. That doesn’t mean there’s no ultimate Creator and Designer behind the universe. Science can also explain how an airplane works, but that doesn’t mean no one designed or made the airplane.
Where did God come from? What if God didn’t need a beginning? We do know from science that the universe cannot be eternal, that it requires a beginning.
We know from the First Law of Thermodynamics in science that matter/energy cannot be created from nothing by any natural process. And we know from the Second Law of Thermodynamics that the universe does not have the ability to have sustained itself from all eternity and, therefore, must have had a beginning. So, if the First Law teaches us that the universe could not have brought itself into existence by natural means and the Second Law teaches that the universe requires a beginning then the only logical and rational conclusion is that a supernatural power (God) brought the universe into existence.
There has been confirmation of virtual particles generated by space, but this is not creation of something from nothing by natural forces because Einstein showed that space itself is physical. Space and time are as physical as matter. That’s why gravity can affect space and time. This isn’t something most can comprehend, but Einstein showed this to be true.
But, isn’t the Second Law of Thermodynamics merely an expression of probability? Yes, but the probability is so high and certain that the odds of just one calorie of energy spontaneously defying the Second Law of Thermodynamics would be trillions times trillions to one, and the universe is made up of far more than just one calorie of energy!
Even though energy cannot be created or destroyed (by any natural processes), over time the useful energy in the universe becomes more and more useless. This is known in science as the Second Law of Thermodynamics. If the universe were eternal then all of the energy would have become totally useless by now and I wouldn’t be writing this article and you wouldn’t be reading it either!
Regardless of whether the universe is a closed system or an open system, the Second Law of Thermodynamics (expressed through the law of entropy) will have reduced the universe to totally useless energy. This is true even if the universe were expanding and contracting, as some scientists believe.
The law of entropy (continual net energy decay) occurs in open systems as well as closed systems. We discovered the law of entropy here on Earth which is an open system in relation to the Sun. The only way that entropy can be temporarily overcome is if there is an energy-converting and directing code and mechanism such as exists in life, but the problem for atheists is how did life come about there was no already existing energy directing code and mechanism in nature. The answer is to look to an intelligent Cause outside of nature.
The universe is decaying and its net direction is toward increasing disorder and chaos. The disorder in the universe is because of chance but the order can only be explained due to an intelligent Cause and Power.
Another perspective is the fact that Einstein’s equations and theory show that time, space, and matter came into existence simultaneously. Science has supported Einstein’s equations. Time itself had a beginning! Time didn’t exist before space and matter and space and matter did not exist before time. If time isn’t eternal then the universe cannot be eternal!
Einstein showed that all matter actually is some form of energy. Again, since we know from the First law of Thermodynamics that matter/energy could not have brought itself into existence from nothing by natural processes then the only rational conclusion is that a supernatural force and intelligence was behind the universe’s origin. Obviously, God does not operate under these natural principles so it was not necessary for God to have had a beginning.
It is only fair that evidence supporting intelligent design be presented to students alongside of evolutionary theory. No one is being forced to believe in God so there’s no real violation of separation of church and state.
But, when all the evidence is presented it should show beyond all reasonable doubt that life didn’t originate by chance but by design.
I most highly recommend the book IN THE BEGINNING (free to read on the internet at: http://www.creationscience.com), by MIT scientist and creationist Dr. Walt Brown.
The Institute for Creation Research ( http://www.icr.org ) offers excellent articles, books, and resources from Master’s or Ph.D degreed scientists showing how true science supports creation. Another excellent resource ( http://www.answersingenesis.org ) provides many answers about the creation/evolution issue and other issues including many “problem” questions about the Bible. I encourage Christians everywhere to support these ministries with their prayers and finances. God will most certainly bless you!
The author, Babu G. Ranganathan, has his bachelor’s degree with concentrations in theology and biology and has been recognized for his writings on religion and science in the 24th edition of Marquis “Who’s Who in The East”. The author’s articles may be accessed at http://www.religionscience.com.
Some popular articles by the author: Just google the titles (below) to access them.
CONSERVATIVE THEOLOGIAN NO LONGER BELIEVES ETERNAL TORMENT
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ANY LIFE ON MARS CAME FROM EARTH!
WAR AMONG EVOLUTIONISTS!
NATURAL LIMITS OF EVOLUTION
ARE FOSSILS REALLY MILLIONS OF YEARS OLD?
EVOLUTION AND THE BIBLE CANNOT MIX!
THE RACIST GERMAN SHEPHERD AND THE BULLDOG