Is There Any Such Thing As A “Neutral” or “Unbiased” Position In the Creation/Evolution Debate?


Short answer: No.

Now let me tell me why you are fooling yourself if you believe there is any such thing as an unbiased source or neutral ground in the origins argument.

Microbes-to-man evolution is the all-natural Just-so story intended to supplant the idea of supernatural causation. You cannot add dashes of supernatural agency to a framework meant to explain the universe without God’s agency without being arbitrary. It’s a complete contradiction to say God created via a process meant to explain the universe without need for Him.

If we interpret Genesis (and related passages in the OT and NT) according to man’s fallible, finite knowledge (especially when the Bible and a survey of religious beliefs within the scientific consensus reveal that their minds are at enmity against God [Romans 8:7] and they are suppressing the truth of the Creator in unrighteousness [Romans 1:18]), you are saying that man – not God’s revealed Word – is the ultimate authority; you are saying that we do, in fact, follow cleverly devised fables [2 Peter 1:16] when it comes to our origins; and you’re saying that some portions of the Bible dealing with our origins are not God-breathed [2 Timothy 3:16] since they came by the will of man [2 Peter 1:21]. This in turn is a refutation of the claim in the Psalms that the Word of God is true from the beginning [Psalm 119:160] for you’ve denied some portions of it in favor of the all-natural interpretations of man. Since Jesus affirmed that God made humanity male and female from the beginning [Mark 10:6] – not hundreds of millions of years after the beginning, and spoke of the worldwide Flood as a historical event [Luke 17:27], you’ve stated that Christ was in error; since God cannot lie, you’ve negated the possibility that Jesus was God [Numbers 23:19], which the Bible affirms contrary to your notion [John 1:1, 3, 14]. If Jesus was not God, He could not have been a substitutionary sacrifice for all of humanity [Hebrews 1:3; 7:27; Romans 5:6] and we are still in our sins [Romans 4:25].

 On the other hand, if God actually created the universe as the Bible states then any theory or framework based on the idea that the universe should be explained by all-natural causation is necessarily wrong where it contradicts supernatural [Biblical] revelation to the contrary. This would include the Big bang, microbes-to-man evolution, the evolution of man from ape-like creatures and local flood models.

Someone who attempts to compromise between supernatural agency and all-natural causation does so arbitrarily, for he cannot consistently refer to either the word of men committed to science via naturalism or the Bible as His ultimate authority. He has in effect set himself up as the ultimate authority over the scientific consensus based on naturalism and the Bible itself, picking and choosing what portions of each he will believe. But this is, again, neither consistent with a Biblical worldview or naturalism, and since either proposition is exclusive of the other, there is no reason to hold the compromiser’s opinion as our ultimate authority either since his worldview is arbitrary and inconsistent.

…so tell me again how on would find an unbiased source on the origins argument?

The evolutionist, the Biblicist and the compromise advocate are each biased in favor of their model. The insistence that there exists neutral ground is both logically untenable and, well, unBiblical [truth is diametrically opposed to error, as affirmed by both the logical law of noncontradiction and several Biblical passages I could cite]; furthermore, the Bible makes it clear that he who is not with God is against Him [Luke 11:23] – there is no neutral ground; therefore, there are no sources that are unbiased where it concerns Biblical revelation and authority on any subject, including the origins argument.

-Tony

Advertisements

27 Comments Add yours

  1. drlindberg says:

    All of science is an attempt to explain the things of nature in terms of natural causes that we can see and in many cases control.Is it not hypocritical to enjoy the benefits of science such as our increased life span, and use the tools developed by science such as the computer to attack science?
    What is the “creation science” explanation for how your computer works?

    1. Dr Lindberg,

      Is it hypocritical to “use the tools developed by science such as the computer to attack science?” you ask. Of course not. Science is not dogma. I can criticize any theory I wish. No hypothesis, law, fact or theory within science is supposed to be immune from critical inquiry.

      And it’s not as if I’m attacking science itself.

      As I’ve noted elsewhere, the type of question you’re posing to me is not uncommon:

      “When I announce that I’m a Creationist, some people ask, “How can you reject the same science that put man on the moon?” The irony is that it was a Creationist rocket scientist, Wernher Von Braun, who got us to the moon. He did it without need of evolution.

      Many inventions and discoveries and scientific disciplines that were founded were the work of Bible-believing scientists, who didn’t need evolution. The Scientific Method itself is credited to one of these Bible-believing scientists, Sir Francis Bacon, and is based on the idea that we have an orderly universe that may be rationally understood because both it and our minds were designed by a Creator.”

      Furthermore, I am aware that you have read another post of mine because you commented on it, in which your objection was addressed:

      “Creationists recognize that there are two type of science: operational and origins.

      Operational science deals with the present and is subject to the scientific method – It is testable, observable, repeatable and falsifiable. Origins science, also refered to as historical or forensic science, deals with the past and is NOT subject to the scientific method. It is not directly testable. The past cannot be observed or repeated; it’s already happened. Operational science deals with the material world we observe and is temporally limited to present phenomena.

      Origins science is something of an educated guess based on a weight of arguments and evidences, the latter of which are not self-interpretive and are generally interpreted according to our presuppositions. Typically, a rescuing device may be employed to avoid falsification. Our presuppositions are derived from whatever we hold our ultimate standard of authority (eg. reason, the Bible, consensus, et cetera). Origins science is therefore not the same as operational science.

      Creation science is science that holds the Bible as it’s ultimate standard.”

      So you’re comparing apples to oranges when you erroneously charge me with hypocrisy on this wise.

      As for your other question, I should hope the answer is now obvious. What is the “creation science” explanation for how your computer works? The question is erroneous. There couldn’t be a creation science explanation for how your computer works any more than there could be an evolution science explanation for how your computer works. The question of how your computer works is the domain of operational science, not origins science.

      -revTony

    2. Wam Bam says:

      Not hipocricy, just cherry picking.

      1. Cherry picking?? Utter nonsense! Sir, are you unaware that the men who founded the scientific disciplines as we know them were doing so in an attempt to “think God’s thoughts after Him”?

        To the contrary of the charge of either hypocrisy or cherry picking, it’s completely consistent for a Biblical Creationist to use the operational science that gives us computers yet reject the origins science that insists on pure naturalism [which by definition rules out the possibility of supernatural agency].

        The Bible tells us that God is omnipotent, that He cannot contradict Himself and that He created the universe; thus, the Biblical Creationist has a non-arbitrary basis for believing in that the uniformity we see in nature extends to all regions of the universe and will continue to operate in the future. Verses such as Genesis 8:22 assure us that except where special revelation [the Bible] indicates otherwise, these uniform processes have continued since Creation and the Fall. The evolutionist on the other hand believes that the universe came to be by chance, undirected processes, so he has no non-arbitrary reason to believe that the uniformity we see in the present has existed in the past or will exist in the future or even exists in all regions of the universe. His worldview is inconsistent. The theistic evolutionist has the same problem because he has rejected the Bible as His ultimate authority and cannot use passages such as Genesis 8:22 to justify his commitment to uniformity, because he views naturalism as his ultimate authority over passages that refer to the literal Creation Week, the literal Fall of Adam and its effects on the universe, and a worldwide Flood that covered the entire planet [including the covenant made with mankind afterward through Noah of which Genesis 8:22 is a part]. When he invokes the Bible as his authority over naturalism, he does so arbitrarily and most contradictory to naturalism [naturalism and supernatural agency being polar and exlusive opposites of one another]. Thus only the Biblical Creationist has a rational worldview that isn’t arbitrary or inconsistent by which to conduct scientific investigations under the assumption of uniformity.

        This being the case, it is the evolutionist [theistic or otherwise] who cherry picks and thus falls into the trap of arbitrariness.

  2. drlindberg says:

    First of all, I would like to thank you for taking the time to reply to me, and for opening up you site to comments. Most anti-evolution sites seem to be afraid of comment, which makes your first sentence quoted below rather ironic.

    However, I would like to make a few further comments on your comments.

    “No hypothesis, law, fact or theory within science is supposed to be immune from critical inquiry.”
    Of course not. The question is rather whether what you and other “creationists” are doing can by any stretch of the imagine be fairly labelled as “critical inquiry.” I would certain like to see examples that prove me wrong, but what I have seen is pretty well entirely ad hominems (such as atheist), misrepresentations and misunderstandings. Might I say, critical but no inquiry?. There appears to be no knowledge of or interest in what the science is actually saying.

    “The irony is that it was a Creationist rocket scientist, Wernher Von Braun, who got us to the moon. He did it without need of evolution.”

    Of course not. Evolution had nothing whatsoever to do with what he was doing, which was more engineering that science anyway. You will enlighten me of course if I am wrong, but as far as I know, he didn’t use anti-evolution “Creation science” either.
    What evidence do you have that von Braun was a Creationist in the anti-evolution sense in which you use the term? As far as I know he was a Lutheran, and most Lutherans I know have no problem accepting evolution. From a site about him I read that he believed in a “master plan for this marvelous system of natural laws and orderly evolution.” He is quoted as saying “For me, there is no real contradiction between the world of science and the world of religion. The two are dealing with two different things, but they are not in conflict with each other. Theologians are trying to describe the Creator; scientists are trying to describe His creation. Science and religion are not antagonists; on the contrary, they are sisters . . . While, through science, man tries to harness the forces of nature around him, through religion he tries to harness the forces of nature within him . . .” “(http://www.adherents.com/people/pv/Wernher_von_Braun.html). No sign here that he rejected evolution.
    There’s also a question of consistency in claims. Anti-evolutionist writers and websites are continually claiming that all Nazis were atheists. Now you are claiming that a Nazi (Party number: 5,738,692) was a Creationist

    “Operational science deals with the present and is subject to the scientific method – It is testable, observable, repeatable and falsifiable. Origins science, also refered to as historical or forensic science, deals with the past and is NOT subject to the scientific method. It is not directly testable. The past cannot be observed or repeated; it’s already happened. Operational science deals with the material world we observe and is temporally limited to present phenomena.”

    I think you are exaggerating the differences. If not, a lot of people in jail convicted on the basis of forensic science should be released. (And those released on evidence such as DNA showing that they didn’t do it should be reimprisoned.)
    Anyway, evolution nowadays is mostly interested in processes, how things work, and most of this work is going on in laboratories, and subjected to as many tests as any other science. If I thought you were interested, I would suggest the PBS documentary “What Darwin Never Knew,” which looks at various examples of recent research.
    .
    “There couldn’t be a creation science explanation for how your computer works any more than there could be an evolution science explanation for how your computer works.”
    Exactly. Science is science. It makes as much sense to pretend that there is a difference between “creation science” and “evolution science” as it did for Hitler to pretend that there was a difference between “Jewish science” and “Aryan science.” The only question is the validity of the science, and how well it stands up to further testing.
    Science, to use your words, “investigates the world as if God did not exist,” which you rather unfairly label as “atheist.” Isn’t it rather agnostic, in the sense that it is the same no matter your religion or lack thereof?

    Finally, your implied suggestion that because it is very difficult if not impossible to be completely unbiased, we can just go ahead and ignore our own and others’ biases disturbs me. Science is an attempt to eliminate bias by methods like testing your assumptions, and constantly retesting everything.
    It is equally difficult if not impossible to be completely honest, but I don’t think you would say that therefore honesty is not important, that we shouldn’t try to be honest, or that everyone has the same level of honesty/dishonestly. Don’t you check people out at least informally before you tend them money?

    1. Lindberg,

      I apologize for taking so long to respond. I am quite simply swamped.

      Here is my response [following quotes from your comment for clarity’s sake]:

      “First of all, I would like to thank you for taking the time to reply to me, and for opening up you site to comments. Most anti-evolution sites seem to be afraid of comment, which makes your first sentence quoted below rather ironic.”

      Your use of the term “anti-evolution” rather than creation sites is argumentative. Many creation sites don’t welcome comments simply because they’ve purposed themselves not to be debate sites. It’s nothing personal; they’ve simply decided to provide information rather than facilitate discussion. Generally even those sites will answer email, but they’ve basically decided not to give someone else a soapbox on their site, which is within their rights.

      With that in mind, you should familiarize yourself with the Rules of Engagement for this site.

      “However, I would like to make a few further comments on your comments.”
      RE: “No hypothesis, law, fact or theory within science is supposed to be immune from critical inquiry.”
      Of course not. The question is rather whether what you and other “creationists” are doing can by any stretch of the imagine be fairly labelled as “critical inquiry.” I would certain like to see examples that prove me wrong, but what I have seen is pretty well entirely ad hominems (such as atheist), misrepresentations and misunderstandings. Might I say, critical but no inquiry? There appears to be no knowledge of or interest in what the science is actually saying.

      Stop right there. What justification can you give me for placing the word creationists in quotation marks. Do you really suppose we don’t actually exist? Or did you mean to use an associative ad hominem, where an argument is invalidated by the fact that a certain group uses it. I also see that you’ve placed the term “critical inquiry” has likewise been placed in quotes. You’ll have to be more specific in your charges than merely alleging that we’re “critical but no inquiry,” as it were. The same goes for your charges of ad hominem, misunderstanding and misrepresentation. I give specifics on this site, not vague accusation.

      Since you’ve been at least specific enough to charge me with using an ad hominem by equating microbes-to-man evolution, I will address this charge [see below].

      Yet while we’re waiting, I cannot fail to point out that your accusation of scientific ignorance is [1] baseless, as even a cursory examination of the articles on this site would demonstrate, and [2] inarguably an ad hominem, since it accuses me of intellectual laziness and scientific ignorance. The canard that creationists would be evolutionists if only we understood the science needs to be laid to rest: in my experience, creationists are demonstrably more knowledgeable of the claims of microbes-to-man evolution than anti-creationists are of what creationists actually affirm; how else am I to explain the distortions of creationist belief on evolutionary blogs, message boards and even from anti-creationist commenters on this site? They seem to disagree with creation simply because it’s not evolution, never mind whether their notions about creation are accurate or not!

      RE: “The irony is that it was a Creationist rocket scientist, Wernher Von Braun, who got us to the moon. He did it without need of evolution.”
      Of course not. Evolution had nothing whatsoever to do with what he was doing, which was more engineering that science anyway. You will enlighten me of course if I am wrong, but as far as I know, he didn’t use anti-evolution “Creation science” either.

      Once again “creation science” in doubt-casting quotation marks is an associative ad hominem.

      Actually, Dr. Braun was a strong advocate of a Creator and of design. His views became more firm on this subject as he grew older. For example in an untitled foreword to Creationist Harold Hill’s “From Goo To You By Way of the Zoo,” Dr. Braun wrote:

      “For me the idea of a creation is inconceivable without God. One cannot be exposed to the law and order of the universe without concluding that there must be a divine intent behind it all. Some evolutionists believe that the creation is the result of a random arrangement of atoms and molecules over billions of years. But when they consider the development of the human brain by random processes within a time span of less than a million years, they have to admit that this span is just not long enough. Or take the evolution of the eye in the animal world. What random process could possibly explain the simultaneous evolution of the eye’s optical system, the conductors of the optical signals from the eye to the brain, and the optical nerve center in the brain itself where the incoming light impulses are converted to an image the conscious mind can comprehend?”

      Some have looked at his writing and decided that he must have been an Intelligent Design advocate and no more, but to cast him in the role of an ID supporter rather than a supporter of Creationism is to commit a fallacy of anachronism: How could Dr. Braun be a supporter of a position that had not yet been conceived? He might have been an Old Earth Creationist [some of his writings would suggest that as a possibility] or a Young Earth Creationist, but it would be impossible that he would have espoused a position that was at that time merely one argument [the teleological argument] in support of Creationism.

      “What evidence do you have that von Braun was a Creationist in the anti-evolution sense in which you use the term? As far as I know he was a Lutheran, and most Lutherans I know have no problem accepting evolution.

      So are we to invoke the No True Scotsman fallacy as well. Just because a lot of Lutherans accept evolution, doesn’t mean all of them do.

      “From a site about him I read that he believed in a “master plan for this marvelous system of natural laws and orderly evolution.”

      You can see how the article’s view of Dr. Braun do not match the position he advocates in the foreword from Creationist Harold Hill’s book [above].

      He is quoted as saying “For me, there is no real contradiction between the world of science and the world of religion. The two are dealing with two different things, but they are not in conflict with each other. Theologians are trying to describe the Creator; scientists are trying to describe His creation. Science and religion are not antagonists; on the contrary, they are sisters . . . While, through science, man tries to harness the forces of nature around him, through religion he tries to harness the forces of nature within him . . .” “(http://www.adherents.com/people/pv/Wernher_von_Braun.html). No sign here that he rejected evolution.

      Creation scientists today advocate much the same position as Dr. Braun expresses here. We see no contradiction between the Bible and science because we interpret the evidence of science by the ultimate authority of divine revelation. As for the comment that there is “no sign here that he rejected evolution,” it appears your article was selective in its presentation of Dr. Braun’s views, as evidenced from the above quote on evolution.

      There’s also a question of consistency in claims. Anti-evolutionist writers and websites are continually claiming that all Nazis were atheists. Now you are claiming that a Nazi (Party number: 5,738,692) was a Creationist.

      Grrrrrr. Have you ever seen this claim on this site, that all Nazis were atheists? No, you haven’t, and neither will you. So by invoking this argument, you’re bringing up an irrelevant thesis. Please stick to the argument at hand; I have no time for chasing rabbit trails.

      In Dr. Braun’s defense, his views did change over time, or do you accuse the space program of employing a Nazi?

      “Operational science deals with the present and is subject to the scientific method – It is testable, observable, repeatable and falsifiable. Origins science, also referred to as historical or forensic science, deals with the past and is NOT subject to the scientific method. It is not directly testable. The past cannot be observed or repeated; it’s already happened. Operational science deals with the material world we observe and is temporally limited to present phenomena.”
      I think you are exaggerating the differences. If not, a lot of people in jail convicted on the basis of forensic science should be released. (And those released on evidence such as DNA showing that they didn’t do it should be reimprisoned.)
      Anyway, evolution nowadays is mostly interested in processes, how things work, and most of this work is going on in laboratories, and subjected to as many tests as any other science. If I thought you were interested, I would suggest the PBS documentary “What Darwin Never Knew,” which looks at various examples of recent research.

      What Darwin Never Knew gives plenty of examples (dogs, rock pocket mice, Galapagos tortoises, finches, etc.) of variation, speciation, natural selection and adaptation (which both Creationists and evolutionists observe and agree upon), but not a single example of microbes-to-man evolution (which we obviously dispute). Creationists note that these horizontal changes are consistent with the Biblical concept of variation within created kinds of animals [so that a dog is still a dog and recognizably so, be it a wolf, English bulldog or a wiener dog], but has never been anything but a dog. The credulous NOVA program goes on to tout the merits of evo-devo [a souped-up variant of the discredited hypothesis of embryonic recapitulation, popularized long after its fall by the inclusion of Haeckel’s fudged embryo drawings in school textbooks]; but the discovery of switch genes and body-plan genes are observations that in no way tell us that one kind of animal changed into another. Nor is it sufficient to show how similar one kind of creature is to another. The NOVA program brings up the old 99% chimp-human similarity canard [the percentage is much lower and no one thinks we evolved from chimps anyway], but is this discovery is also consistent with creation science’s claims for while men and apes were created separately, why would we not expect the genetic coding of two morphologically similar creations to be more similar than creations who are not morphologically similar? In other words, similar coding is just as easily evidence for common design as common descent. In these matters, evolutionists make observations but then extrapolate well beyond the data to add evolutionary interpretations, to connect the dots to bolster their Just-so story of microbes-to-man common descent. To show that one kind of animal eventually becomes another, you’d need a prevalence of transitional forms in the fossil record, but instead we see stasis and sudden appearance [which has caused some to postulate theories like punctuated equilibrium], and rather than the innumerable transitional forms that Darwin predicted for his theory we only have a handful of disputable candidates like Tiktaalik [mentioned in the program] which could easily be mosaics as true transitional forms. All the research into genetics shows is how complex the code language of DNA truly is. The irony is that we know from experience that this sort of specified, complex information only comes from an intelligent source. In other words, it implies a Creative Designer as the source of this coding. Evolutionists have unfortunately chained science to a commitment to pure naturalism and so they refuse to see the obvious implication of the evidence. This does not change the fact that the evidence of design implicit in the complex, specified code system of DNA fairly demands that the evidence be interpreted in favor of common design rather than common descent [for common descent is a theory chained to pure naturalism, while design implies quite the opposite, so that the DNA code system ironically enough testifies against a methodology of pure naturalism; the basis of common descent (pure naturalism) is therefore a contradictory worldview].

      “There couldn’t be a creation science explanation for how your computer works any more than there could be an evolution science explanation for how your computer works.”
      Exactly. Science is science. It makes as much sense to pretend that there is a difference between “creation science” and “evolution science” as it did for Hitler to pretend that there was a difference between “Jewish science” and “Aryan science.” The only question is the validity of the science, and how well it stands up to further testing.

      And here you grossly misrepresent me. In essence, you quote mine me, for you attempt to make my words mean something that they could never mean if they were taken in context. There cannot be either a creation science or evolution science explanation for how a computer works, because how a computer works falls under the realm of operational science rather than origins science. Contrary to your sophomoric assertion that “science is science,” one would never explain the workings of the cell with geological science precisely because such a question falls under the realm of biology. Likewise, one would never apply forensics or tests of historical reliability to something directly testable.

      Your false equivocation of the operational/origins distinction to Hitler’s concept of ethnocentric science is therefore clearly fallacious. I should note that I am here supplying answers to your objections for the sake of my readers alone. Generally speaking, one utilizes an ad Hitlerum [not a fallacy but a rhetorical strategy] when one is utterly through listening to the other guy’s point. It is an appeal to emotion [argumentum ad misericordiam] which attempts to discredit an opponent’s entire argument via an invocation of Hitler or the Nazis. You’ve invoked an ad Hitlerum twice during your response, which leads me to believe you really aren’t interested in my responses anyhow.

      Science, to use your words, “investigates the world as if God did not exist,” which you rather unfairly label as “atheist.” Isn’t it rather agnostic, in the sense that it is the same no matter your religion or lack thereof?

      Agnostic science would not be able to comment whether God exists or not, but science chained to naturalism doesn’t take such a shoulder-shrugging position on the matter. Rather it concocts an all-natural account of origins and history and refuses “to allow a Divine foot in the door.” This is a position which is antagonistic towards God, not neutral.

      “Finally, your implied suggestion that because it is very difficult if not impossible to be completely unbiased, we can just go ahead and ignore our own and others’ biases disturbs me. Science is an attempt to eliminate bias by methods like testing your assumptions, and constantly retesting everything.”

      In theory, science is supposed to eliminate bias, but in practice it does not. It is impossible to remain neutral where the ultimate authority of the Word of God is concerned. It goes without saying that if we are constantly retesting everything with an all-natural bias, we simply reinforce the bias. This being the case, the all-natural bias of modern science has kept it from considering the validity of ID’s claims; in doing so, science has cut off its nose to spite its face, for in rejecting the exploration of ID on the grounds that it might provide evidence for a Grand Designer, science has also prevented itself from being able to objectively distinguish between the natural and the artificial.

      It is equally difficult if not impossible to be completely honest, but I don’t think you would say that therefore honesty is not important, that we shouldn’t try to be honest, or that everyone has the same level of honesty/dishonestly. Don’t you check people out at least informally before you lend them money?

      I don’t lend out money. The borrower is servant to the lender and, well, I’ve no use for servants. I simply give money out of charity or I don’t. I am not, after all, a bank.

      I do think we ought to be honest, especially about the presuppositions, biases and assumptions we’re bringing to the table.

      Regards,
      Rev Tony Breeden
      DefGen.org

  3. Wam Bam says:

    So, putting your stated fallacies aside…. I pose a question.

    If one does not accept the Bible as an ultimate authority, is there (then) no problem with accepting Evolutionary Theory as the most accurate course of biological diversification?

    1. I would still have a problem with macro-evolution, the big claim of common descent via unobservable vertical [phyletic] changes [eg. dinos-to-birds, ungulates-to-mammals]. Gradualism just doesn’t pay off under observation of either the fossil record [which evidences stasis and sudden appearance] or present nature [where a dog is still a dog, whether a wolf, English bulldog or a poodle]. Punk eek assumes that the changes promised by the corpse of gradualism still occur but it attempts to pull a rabbit out of thin air with proposed saltations. It’s simply an attempt to explain the dearth of evidence for gradualism without giving up on the whole project.

      So honestly, even if it weren’t for sensibly accepting the Bible as my ultimate authority, I’ve other reasons for rejecting the grand theory of evolution as the most accurate description of biological diversification. The only means of seeing universal common descent is by making mountains out of molehills with fantastical speculation.

      For more on this see Deflating Dobzhansky’s Grand Assumption, or Why Microevolution Does not Lead To Macroevolution.

  4. Wam Bam says:

    Not to inflame, but I’m seeing more cherry picking.
    ____________________________________
    While I though the quoted material you have on you’re linked page from Gould is more often quoted from his work “The Panda’s Thumb” (if I’m wrong, a link to the journal article would be great), you did fail to include the text immediately following. In the full work, that passage is followed by:

    “”Evolution proceeds in two major modes. In the first, phyletic transformation, an entire population changes from one state to another. …. The second mode, speciation, replenishes the earth. New species branch off from a persisting parental stock.

    “Darwin, to be sure, acknowledged and discussed the process of speciation. But he cast his discussion of evolutionary change almost totally in the mold of phyletic transformation. In this context, the phenomenon of stasis and sudden appearance could hardly be attributed to anything but imperfection of the record; for if new species arise by transformation of entire ancestral populations, and if we almost never see the transformation (because species are essentially static through their range), then our record must be hopelessly incomplete.

    “Eldredge and I believe that speciation is responsible for almost all evolutionary change. Moreover, the way in which it occurs virtually guarantees that sudden appearance and stasis shall dominate the fossil record.”

    Although I agree that forgetting to include this statement does make you’re argument against evolutionary theory more interesting, it is very misleading to your audience.
    ____________________________________

    I’ll pass up the opportunity to inquire as to why you chose Dobzhansky’s work to criticize evolutionary theory. After all, it is approaching 75 years of age since it’s original publication….. and you use quoted material from Mendel to support your argument against it. While it is occasionally possible to refute modern scientific views with older materials, there is a chronology to science and this possibility decreases significantly with time.
    ______________________________________________

    I curious about for some examples of mountains out of mole hills you mention.

    1. Cherrypicking? You’re seeing nothing of the sort. I did not include those other quotes because they are irrelevant to the discussion. Any decent writer needs a good editor. Gould’s views are well-known, but they are inconsistent with what he observed.

      I quoted Dobzhansky to illustrate the point that while he was honest enough to admit that macroevolution was assumed, modern evolutionists conflate the two processes [one observable and the other assumed] as one without mentioning the unequal ground they stand upon. In fact, most of the time the evolutionist will cite an example of microevolution [speciation, etc] to say that macroevolution is established as a scientific fact!

      I used Mendel because I still feel his observations concerning the limitations of variation are valid. We have myriad pea plants, pigeons and canines cultivated from a single common ancestor, but they’ve never been anything but peas, pigeons and dogs. The modern evolutionary synthesis and the emerging extended evolutionary synthesis both borrow Mendel’s ideas on genetics [which mostly account for speciation and variation with noted exceptions] but reject the idea of limits that would prevent universal common ancestry, a point I happen to agree with Mendel onfor reasons stated in an earlier comment.

      Your suggestion that older materials may be irrelevant to the modern scientific view is certainly possible, but it must be demonstrated that this is fatal to my argument rather than merely insinuated.

  5. therivernilejordan says:

    Just spotted an interesting question:

    “If one does not accept the Bible as an ultimate authority, is there (then) no problem with accepting Evolutionary Theory as the most accurate course of biological diversification?”

    I have a friend. He recently came to Christ, but as far as I know he hasn’t cracked open the pages of a bible. It is early days 😀 The interesting thing about this friend is that even before he accepted Christ, he refused, on scientific, grounds, to believe in evolution.

    And this is where I tend to get worried. I meet intelligent people who’ll tell you, “Evolution is a lie. The Big Bang never happened.” And I ask them, “Then where does the universe come from? Where do people come from?” And they’ll shrug and continue to play golf. Apatheists – people who couldn’t be bothered if God manifested in their kitchen sinks while they were rinsing their coffee mugs – are not out-and-out evil people; they’re just folk who shrug or laugh at everything. Nothing is sacred or important enough to bring about a “holy shudder”. They’ve seen the desperate, gaping holes that hold secular science together, but they couldn’t be less interested in the implications of a non-mechanical reality.

    Because if evolution is not true (and it isn’t) then oops! there goes
    a.) Pantheism, for we did not evolve, and nature has no mechanism in itself by which it can bring forth life (this would be “spontaneous generation”, evolutions’s equivalent of the Resurrection). The universe does not have “life in itself” (a suspiciously biblical term that carries devastating ontological implications) so we could have only been created by a being that, unlike the universe, DOES have life in itself. This being would have to transcend the universe
    b.) atheism, for reasons I hope are obvious to all
    c.) deism. Why would anyone go to all the trouble of creating humans, and then lose interest?
    e.) Islam, which does not recognize a Fall of man/nature, a reality we’re only too painfully aware of.
    Throw Christ’s historical, investigatable Resurrection into this mix, and you’re only left with two possibilities: apatheism and Judeo-Christianity.
    Aside from the bible’s revelation of creation, which I’m trying to not invoke directly, the bible pulls no punches on the type of God that created us: one whose wrath has been revealed, not against humanity, but against humanity’s choice to cut itself off from the source of life. A good God cannot be an indifferent God and if you’d prefer an indifferent God or no God at all, then I’m very worried.
    The thing that scares me is that people actually toy with apatheism for a long time (like my friend did) before they come to the only viable alternative, the God of Judeo-Christianity.
    Because let’s face it: God holds all the cards, he’s the source of all good, we owe him, it’s his game, and he gets to name the rules. Christianity proclaims the “good news” – that God has made the rules as easy as can be at full cost to himself and maximum benefit to us.
    And do you know what scares me?
    That people aren’t interested. #rinses coffeemug cautiously

  6. therivernilejordan says:

    12Now if that first DNA strand be preached that it rose from the swamp, how say some among you that there is no spontaneous generation?

     13But if there be no spontaneous generation, then that proto-cell be not formed:

     14And if that first DNA strand be not formed, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain.

     15Yea, and we are found false witnesses of Chance; because we have testified of Chance that it accidentally created life out of non-life: which it createth not, if so be that non-living molecules live not.

     16For if non-living molecules live not, then is not the first cell accidentally made:

     17And if that first DNA strand be not made, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins.

     18Then they also which are fallen asleep without Christ are perished.

     19If in this life only we have hope in Chance, we are of all men most miserable.

  7. drlindberg says:

    “Microbes-to-man evolution is the all-natural Just-so story intended to supplant the idea of supernatural causation. You cannot add dashes of supernatural agency to a framework meant to explain the universe without God’s agency without being arbitrary. It’s a complete contradiction to say God created via a process meant to explain the universe without need for Him.”

    Is it logical to claim that the motives of the inventor determine the truth or otherwise of a theory? Has nothing we use every day ever been invented by criminals, or con men or shysters of some other sort? Many common products were invented in wartime or for war. Does that make us militarists? Even the theory of gravity, as well as calculus, were invented to calculate the trajectory of cannon balls in order to more efficiently blow up somebody else’s building and kill those inside. That bit about the planets was just an afterthought.

    In history, we read that various rulers have adopted and often imposed Christianity for political motives. Does that invalidate its truth?

    Do you really think that the leaders of virtually all the major denominations are too stupid to understand the implications of their own theology? The fact that the vast majority of Christians around the world have no problems with the theory of evolution would seem to cast doubt on your claim that “evolution is the all-natural Just-so story intended to supplant the idea of supernatural causation.” Do you have any evidence for this claim, beyond the fact that ANY science is perforce an attempt to explain things in terms of natural causes?

    Do you think that the theory of electricity “is the all-natural Just-so story intended to supplant the idea of supernatural causation” of lightning?

    Do you think that atomic theory “is the all-natural Just-so story intended to supplant the idea of supernatural causation” of water, among other things?

    Do you think that germ theory “is the all-natural Just-so story intended to supplant the idea of supernatural causation” of disease, in contradiction to the Biblical theory of evil spirits?

    I would like to read your thoughts.

    Thank you.

    1. Lindberg,

      I doubt very much that you really wish to hear my thoughts on this, because your comments reflect a complete and utter lack of consideration of any of my previous comments.

      All of the objections you brought up fall within the realm of operational science, not origins science, to which my comments are applicable. They are therefore straw men and red herrings.

      -Tony

      1. drlindberg says:

        The distinction you are claiming to make between “operational science” and “origins science” is a straw man and red herring. They work on the same rules: test your assumptions, test your conclusions, and then test them again.

        And get others to test them.

        What previous comments have I failed to consider?

      2. Lindberg,

        Really? OK, I’ll play your little game, if only to demonstrate the foolishness of your claim. Here’s a test for whether there’s any difference between origins science and operational science, blind guide:

        If I say that the Eiffel Tower is the tallest building in Paris, standing at 320 meters, and was built in 1889 by Gustave Eiffel as the entrance to the 1889 World’s Fair, how would you test my claims? You could use operational science to measure the height of the tower and then compare that height to the other building in Paris to substantiate two of my claims, but how would you verify that it was built in 1889, that is was built by Gustave Eiffel, and that it was the entrance to the 1889 World’s fair? Quite simply, you’d have to fall back on origins science, where you have to check out historical artifacts, historical records and, if you’re lucky, eyewitness accounts, because the past in non-repeatable and not directly testable by the scientific method.

        There it is as plain as day, yet you are actually willing to deny an obvious distinctioin between operational and origins science in order to remain loyal to the current scientific consensus. Such faith I have not seen, not in all Israel!

        A list of previous comments you have failed to consider would be both time-consumptive and just sad. You’re welcome to re-read the posts and comments you’ve engaged.

        -Tony

      3. drlindberg says:

        If by “origins science,” you simply mean history. well OK. History is not science.

        Is that all thou mean? Then what is the point of calling history science?

      4. My point is that origins science is really just history. People are trying to re-create the history of the earth and they cannot use operational science to do so.

      5. drlindberg says:

        Although it is of course limited, operational science CAN tell you an awful lot. Getting back to your Eiffel Tour example, operation science can tell you that it was not built last week, or last year, or by the ancient Romans or Gauls, or by using Asterix’s magic potion, that it is not made of papier maché, that it did not fall out of the sky.

        Indeed, it can tell you a lot about how it was built, and can rule out probably an infinite number of possible theories about its origin..

        If operational science cannot tell us anything about the past, there are a huge number of people in jail who were improperly found guilty, and perhaps an equal number walking around free who were improperly found not guilty.

        As ever, thanks for your thoughts.

      6. Lindberg,

        My hope is that you are never falsely convicted of anything, because men are flawed and forensic science has a degree of uncertainty. In fact, one piece of evidence can change our entire conclusions! History grows more uncertain the further into the past we go. Your points regarding that we can tell its old and that it was not built with techniques consistent with [ancient] French or Roman builders is irrelevant to the point. These points build on our experience and yet again refer back to historical science rather than operational science. [ie., you’re trying to cheat, but we could not come to these conclusions without using historical science]… and your point about paper mache’ or it falling from the sky is ridiculously irrelevant! The fact remains that you cannot answer the remainder of these questions by using ioperational science, which was the entire question. You can also display that brilliantly vapid credulity of yours where it concerns forensic science, but a man who wasn’t cutting off his nose to spite his face would admit that there is a degree of uncertainty when dealing with the past which grows greater the further back we go. The evolutionist goes so far back into the past as to render any reasonable probability moot, for the degree of uncertainty becomes astronomical at millions of years. Furthermore, he must believe that nature is capable of non-uniform miracles [the Big bang, the origin of life, etc] which are non-repeatable and do not follow any uniform, observable process we see today. So how much faith do you suppose it takes to believe as you do?

      7. drlindberg says:

        I have been talking about science, which everyone admits is fallible, and always open to revision as new evidence becomes available, so I don’t see what your point is. Science never claimed to be infallible. Or to have all the answers. It’s religion that makes such claims.
        I specifically said that science call tell us a lot. I did not say that it could tell us everything, which you seem to be attacking me for. I repeat, “it is of course limited”!
        Do you deny that there are “operational science” tests that can be run on the Eiffel Tower to determne something about its age and what it is made of, and how it was made?
        And you insist on confusing evolution with astronomy and geology. The Big Bang and the origin of life are not things that the theory of evolution attempts to investigate or makes any claims about.
        But thanks for your thoughts.

      8. drlindberg,

        Do not dissemble on this site! How many times have I heard the canard that evolution only concerns biology? It’s a lie, as you well know [or should know, at the very least].

        Consider the following from George M. Marsden, one of the evolutionist witnesses for the 1981 Arkansas creation law trial:

        “In any case, creation scientists are correct in perceiving that in modern culture ‘evolution’ often involves far more than biology.” “Creation versus Evolution: No Middle Ground.” Nature 305 (Oct. 13, 1983):574

        Or Sir Julian Huxley:

        “The concept of evolution was soon extended into other than biological fields. inorganic subjects such as the life-histories of stars and the formation of chemical elements on the one hand, and on the other hand subjects like linguistics, social anthropology, and comparative law and religion, began to be studied from an evolutionary angle, until today we are enabled to see evolution as a universal and all-pervading process.” “Evolution and Genetics.” What Is Science? J.R. Newman, ed. New York: Simon & Schuster (1955), p. 272.

        Or Theodosius Dobzhansky:

        “Evolution comprises all the stages of the development of the universe: the cosmic, biological, and human and cultural developments. Attempts to restrict the concept of evolution to biology are gratuitous. Life is a product of the evolution of inorganic nature, and man is a product of the evolution of life.” “Changing Man.” Science 155 (Jan. 27, 1967): 409.

        These quotes are by no means an isolated sentiment.

        Furthermore, it is doublespeak to dogmatically defend evolutionary ideas at every turn and then make a pretense that you nver said science wasn’t infallible. In other words, your actions bely your words.

      9. drlindberg says:

        What I said was “The Big Bang and the origin of life are not things that the theory of evolution attempts to investigate or makes any claims about.”

        I’m afraid that I don’t see how your quotations contradict this. Of course, the word evolution and the concept can be used in other contexts. Canada, for example, never had a revolution like the US, but changed gradually from being a colony of Great Britain to being a completely independent nation, so that historians argue about the exact point when the changeover from one to the other can actually be said to have taken place, so we can say that Canada has evolved, but this has nothing to do with the theory of evolution, which is an attempt to explain HOW living creatures evolve.

        Historically the concept of evolution is bound up with the idea of progress that first found expression in the American and French revolutions, when people began to understand that things can change, and that Plato’s concept of unchanging ideal or archetypal forms was not all that valid. So it’s pretty universal nowadays. But again, nothing to do with the theory of evolution.

        I don’t see that pointing out inaccuracies or misrepresentations is “to dogmatically defend evolutionary ideas at every turn.” Just as pointing out that Jesse James did not kill Jimmy Hoffa is not to make Jesse James an angel.

        Again, thanks for your thoughts.

      10. you don’t see those quotations contradict the idea that evolution entails so much more than biology?

        That’s right. Deny the evidence and keep dissembling. You’re hopelessly commited to your dogma, drlindberg

  8. zuma says:

    a)Using coolness of the earth to compute its age with the presumption that the earth would be in molten state:
    Using coolness to compute the age of the earth might not be reliable for the fact that its computation has presumed this earth could be in molten state or in other words, it could be in liquid form.
    However, the initial stage of earth could be either in solid state that would be fully or partially covered with or without water. The water might be either warm or cold and that I do not like. If the earth would be in solid state that would cover with or without water, it would not take much time for the earth to cool down. Thus, the computation of the age of the earth by means of its coolness would not be feasible since the earth might be in solid state cover with water.
    b)Benoit de Maillet (1656-1738), a French anthropologist and diplomat, measured declining sea level and arrived the conclusion that the earth would be 2 billion years.
    His computation would not be feasible since sea level could rise as shown in the website address:
    http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/07/01/us-climate-sealevel-idUSBRE8600EG20120701
    The rise of sea level has caused his computation of the age of the earth to be unreliable.
    c)Radioactive dating method has been used to test the same stratum of rock and yet the same results (within the margin of error) would produce. The reason to explain this is simple. Using the same isotope to test on the same stratum of rock would produce almost the same result due to the same rock would produce the same unstable atomic nucleus of ionizing particles and electromagnetic radiation in spite of its spontaneous emission.
    The following is the list of some isotopes that are used for dating:
    Parent daughter half-life
    Samarium-147 Neodymium-143 106 billion years
    Rubidium-87 Strontium-87 50 billion years
    Uranium-238 Lead-206 4.47 billion years
    Potassium-40 Argon-40 1.3 billion years
    Uranium-235 Lead-207 704 million years
    Uranium-234 Thorium-230 80,000 years
    Carbon-14 Nitrogen-14 5,730 years
    Question has to be raised. If all the materials as mentioned above would have been created ever since the beginning of this earth, how could the scientists compute the half life of decay rate for Lead-206 from Uranium-238 to be 4.47 billion years? The reason is simply that the half life of decay rate for, let’s say, Lead-206 from Uranium-238, should be 0 if they would have been created at the same time in the very beginning. As the decay could be 0 if these materials would have been created in the very beginning, how could the Scientists be sure of its reliability and to use it to compute the age of the earth to be billion years?
    Besides, even if one material could be the transformation from another, how do the Scientists compute the figure of half life decay rate? For instance, how could the Scientist get 4.47 billion years or not 4 thousand years or others for Uranium-238 to decay to Lead-206? This half year decay rate that has been established by Scientists has pushed the age of the earth and even fossils, i.e. dinosaurs, to billion years. Whenever they use this isotope to test a rock to guess its age, it would give them billion of years since the decay rate has already set by them in the first place to push up to billion years.
    Thus, radioactive dating method is rather subjective and not accurate since the half year decay rate is indeed questionable.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s